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Suicide bomber kills 10, injures 145 in Nigerian church

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Indian PM overhauls cabinet ahead of 2014 polls

Clashes, air strikes in Syria after truce bid fails





Drama and disgust as United beat 9-man Chelsea



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Syrian pilgrims curse Assad in haj protest Saudi authorities disperse demo calmly, no one hurt

Liberals and Islamists in rare alliance KUWAIT: In Kuwait, clashes last week with anti-government protesters were more than just a sign tensions may be mounting. The crowds themselves showed the widening nature of the nation’s political crisis: Stirrings of a rare alliance of convenience between liberals and Islamists against Kuwait’s Western-backed leadership. While it’s not the first time Middle East protests have brought together political foes - Cairo’s Tahrir Square last year and Iran’s postelection unrest in 2009 had a full spectrum of voices - Kuwait’s tiny size means that the coalescence of such varied groups could make for an opposition that punches far above its own weight. Simultaneous pressure from liberals and Islamist conservatives could push Kuwait deeper into a political morass that has already disrupted the economy and raised questions about stability in one of Washington’s most critical military footholds in the region. “This is certainly not a revolution. It is a call for change and serious reform,” said Shafeeq Ghabra, political affairs professor at Kuwait University. Continued on Page 13

MINA, Saudi Arabia: Muslim pilgrims cast stones yesterday at a pillar symbolizing the stoning of Satan in a ritual called “jamarat”, the last rite of the annual haj. — AP

Myanmar Muslims relive riot ordeals SITTWE, Myanmar: Muslim survivors of six days of sectarian violence in western Myanmar spoke yesterday of fleeing bullets and burning homes to escape on fishing boats after an attack by once-peaceable Rakhine neighbours. The United Nations said 22,587 people had now been displaced after unrest between Muslim Rohingyas and Buddhist Rakhines claimed at least 84 lives in Rakhine State and tested the reformist mettle of the quasi-civilian government that replaced Myanmar’s oppressive ruling junta last year. “We were told to stay in our homes but then they were set on fire,” said Ashra Banu, 33, a mother of four who fled the coastal town of Kyaukpyu after its Muslim quarter was razed on Oct 24. “When we ran out people were being shot at by Rakhines and

police,” she said. “We couldn’t put out the fires. We just tried to run.” New York-based Human Rights Watch earlier released before-and-after satellite images showing the near total devastation of the Kyaukpyu’s Muslim quarter. No new clashes were reported yesterday, but a Reuters journalist at Te Chaung camp near Sittwe witnessed a constant trickle of new arrivals, mainly from Kyaukpyu, where more than 811 buildings and houseboats were destroyed according to Human Rights Watch’s analysis of satellite imagery. “The Rakhines came to attack us with knives. They set fire to our homes, even though we have nothing there for them. I left with only the clothes I am wearing,” wept a 63-year-old woman who said her name was Zomillah, as she sat on a crowded space in Te Chaung camp. “I can’t go back.” — Agencies (See Page 12)

MINPYAR, Myanmar: A Muslim Rohingya woman and child sit at their burnt house at this village in Rakhine state yesterday. — AFP

Max 36º Min 25º High Tide 11:45 & 23:16 Low Tide 05:20 : 17:05

MINA, Saudi Arabia: Enraged Syrian pilgrims yesterday cursed President Bashar Al-Assad and prayed for his death as they hurled pebbles at pillars representing Satan in the final ritual of the annual haj pilgrimage. Saudi authorities swiftly dispersed the protesters. Rebel flags billowed among vast crowds of Muslim pilgrims who heaved towards the stoning site in the Saudi holy city of Mina amid the chanting of anti-Assad slogans. “Oh God, may we see Bashar Al-Assad soon hanged or burnt, kicked out or a humiliated prisoner,” one Syrian yelled through a loudhailer as dozens walking behind him shouted: “Amen.” “May Bashar follow (Muammar) Gaddafi,” they chanted, referring to the Libyan dictator killed last Oct 20 in his home town of Sirte by rebels who rose up against his regime last year. “Please tell the whole world about us. We are under siege in Syria, in Homs. They demolished our homes so we fled to Saudi Arabia,” said one old woman, tears welling. “Tanks were right next to our house. I was alone with my daughter, so we fled. I want victory for Syria. I hope to see the free Syrian flag waving in the country and all refugees and all the homeless going back,” she added. Two police vehicles drove slowly in the direction of the protesters with sirens wailing as officers asked the crowd through loudspeakers to leave the area. The protesters swiftly dispersed and melted into thousands of other pilgrims in the area, the witness said. No one was hurt in the incident. Continued on Page 13

‘Frankenstorm’ bears down on US Presidential race jolted by looming hurricane NEW YORK: US authorities ordered coastal evacuations and airlines canceled transatlantic flights on Sunday as Hurricane Sandy bore down on the east coast after claiming 66 lives in the Caribbean. Forecasters warned of catastrophic impacts from the mid-Atlantic to southern New England as the historic storm crashes ashore late today or early tomorrow, with New Jersey and New York City bracing for particularly dangerous conditions. Nine days out from election day, the hurricane also threw the US presidential contest into disarray as Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney cancelled events and prepared for the unexpected fallout. Torrential rain and high waves battered South and North Carolina as the storm moved up the coast. The US meteorological service warned that New Jersey and New York could see record flooding because of the storm surge. Sandy, which is packing hurricane force winds upwards of 120 km per hour), has already claimed at least 66 lives in the Caribbean, most of them in Haiti, where 51 people were reported killed. New York authorities issued an evacuation order for hundreds of thousands of people in low-lying coastal towns on Sandy’s projected route. About 1,100 national guard troops were to be deployed in the towns and villages. New York mayor Michael Bloomberg issued a mandatory evacuation order for 375,000 people in the city alone, including the threatened coastal zones of Coney Island and Staten Island. The city was to open 72 shelters in schools and other buildings. It ordered subway, buses and commuter trains to close down from yesterday night. “This is a serious and dangerous storm,” Bloomberg told a news conference. At the city’s Rockaway Beach, inhabitants started putting up sandbags on Saturday and many said they would brave out the storm as

REHOBOTH BEACH, Delaware: Raymond Souza carries away a ladder after boarding up Tidal Rave’s 5 & 10 gift shop on the boardwalk yesterday ahead of Hurricane Sandy’s landfall. — AFP they did with Hurricane Irene last year. Delaware and New Jersey also issued evacuation orders. Authorities ordered gambling to halt in Atlantic City from yesterday. Airlines have cancelled hundreds of flights into airports along the US east coast. Though still far out at sea, the massive storm was spinning off high winds and seas for hundreds of miles around. All along the US coast, worried residents packed stores, buying generators, candles, food and other supplies in anticipation of power outages. Some local governments announced schools would be closed today and tomorrow. “They’re freaking out,” said Joe Dautel, a clerk at a hardware store in Glenside, Pennsylvania. “I’m selling people four, five, six packs of batteries when I had them.” Television images from North Carolina’s Outer

Banks, a chain of low lying islands, showed wild surf and torrential rain. Hurricane force winds were expected to batter a huge section of the US east coast from Virginia to Massachusetts. Current projections show the storm making landfall early Tuesday on the Delaware coast, then bending north and inland as it merges with a cold front descending from Canada. Weather experts say that the collision of Sandy with a cold front from the north could create a super-charged storm bringing floods, high winds and even heavy snow across a swath of eastern states and as far inland as Ohio. Meteorologists have nicknamed the phenomenon a “Frankenstorm” because it is due to hit just before Halloween on Oct 31 and is composed of parts from different sources, as was Frankenstein’s monster. — Agencies

in the


HRW to Saudis: Stop prosecuting protesters DUBAI: An international rights group urged Saudi Arabia yesterday to stop prosecuting and punishing people for peaceful protests, after the kingdom charged 19 men for staging a sit-down demonstration outside a prison last month. Security forces arrested dozens of men after the Sept 23 protest near Tarfiya prison in central Saudi Arabia to press for the release of detained relatives. Demonstrators and a rights activist said police had kept the protesters, including women and children, without food or water for nearly a day. In a separate demonstration on the same day, dozens of protesters gathered in front of the government-linked Saudi Human Rights Commission also calling for the release of jailed relatives. “Instead of addressing the protesters’ concerns, the Saudi government has used the judicial system to punish them,” said Joe Stork, deputy Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “The sentences handed to these men are part of a wider effort to target and harass activists across the country.”

Tehran has advanced drone tech: Minister

MALKIYA, Bahrain: Anti-government protesters carry a palm tree trunk to use as a roadblock yesterday in preparation for a march calling for freedom for political prisoners and in remembrance of those killed from Bahrain’s western villages. Clashes erupted toward the end of the march. — AP

DUBAI: Iran possesses drones that are far more advanced than the unmanned aircraft Iranian-backed Hezbollah launched into Israeli airspace this month, Iran’s defence minister was quoted as saying yesterday. Earlier this month, Israel shot down a drone after it flew 55 km into the Jewish state. Lebanese militant group Hezbollah claimed responsibility for the aircraft, saying its parts had been manufactured in Iran and assembled in Lebanon. Iranian Defence Minister Ahmad Vahidi said the downed drone did not use his country’s latest knowhow. “The Islamic Republic of Iran currently possesses unmanned aircrafts with technology that is far more advanced than the drone recently sent by Hezbollah forces to fly in the skies of the Zionist regime (Israel),” he was quoted as saying. “Undoubtedly the technology in the (Hezbollah) drone ... was not Iran’s latest technology.” Vahidi had earlier said that the drone’s launch into Israel was a sign of the Islamic Republic’s military capabilities.

Pop star Glitter held in sex abuse probe LONDON: British police arrested 1970s glam rocker Gary Glitter yesterday as they probe the mountain of sexual abuse allegations against the late TV star Jimmy Savile that have plunged the BBC into crisis. Glitter is the first person arrested in an investigation which has snowballed since claims that Savile molested underage girls were aired in a television documentary earlier this month. Glitter, 68, the king of the glam rock era with a string of stomping Gary Glitter hits, has served a jail term in Britain for downloading child pornography and in Vietnam for child sex offences. Wearing a hat, dark glasses and a winter coat, Glitter was seen being escorted from his central London home into a waiting vehicle early yesterday. (See Page 37)




KUWAIT: His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, on advent of Eid Al-Adha on Friday, performed Eid prayers at the State Grand Mosque. HH the Crown Prince Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad AlJaber Al-Sabah accompanied HH the Amir in the prayers, along with former speaker of the National Assembly Jassem Al-Khorafi, senior sheikhs, Deputy Chief of the National Guards Sheikh Meshaal Al-Ahmad AlJaber Al-Sabah, Sheikh Nasser Al-Mohammed Al-Ahmed Al-Sabah, HH the Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah, Deputy Minister of the Amiri Diwan Sheikh Ali Jarrah Al-Sabah and other senior state officials.

Parliamentary election preparations underway Human rights society ‘partial’ By A. Saleh KUWAIT: The location and staff of electoral committees are likely to be decided during a meeting next week to be chaired by head of the Supreme Judicial Council, Faisal AlMershed, sources privy to the developments, said yesterday. The sources who spoke on the condition of anonymity believe that an announcement about the location besides the heads and members of main and subsidiary committees is expected to be made “within a couple of weeks” or before Nov 10. No significant changes in the number of staff compared to last February’s elections are expected, besides a number of consultants and judges “for personal reasons,” according to the sources. The upcoming elections are set for Dec 1.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Information will be allowing candidates to address the people for a few minutes, explaining their election agenda, in free-of-cost ads to be broadcast on Kuwait TV, as was done during last February’s elections. Candidates will be notified to contact the ministry after the end of the candidacy registration period, as the ads are to be broadcast in the second half of November. Separately, the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor received a complaint against the Kuwait Human Rights Society, accusing it of being “partial” in its approach and favoring the opposition. “The complaint argues that the KHRS board is in harmony with the opposition when it comes to highlighting governmental malpractices and releasing exaggerated reac-

tions,” sources, who refused to identify those behind the complaint, said. The complaint demanded investigation into the society’s work. This comes amid reports hinting that the Public Prosecution agreed to launch legal procedures with regards to a complaint filed by attorney Yaqoub Al-Sane’a against oppositionists Musallam Al-Barrak and Hamad AlMuttar, in which the two former lawmakers are accused of allegedly offending HH the Amir during a demonstration staged at the Iradah Square October 15th. An arrest warrant has already been issued against Al-Barrak for an earlier allegation in which former MPs Falah Al-Sawagh, Khalid Al-Tahous and Badr Al-Dahoum were also detained and released on bail following investigations.

Kuwait political crisis escalates KUWAIT: Kuwait is in the midst of an intensifying political crisis that poses the greatest risk to the country since its liberation after the 1991 Gulf War. Beset by a stalemate that has seen off nine governments since 2006, the basic division revolves around a struggle for power between the elected National Assembly and a cabinet appointed by His Highness the Amir. While Kuwait’s difficulties are distinct from the wider regional upheaval, the Arab Spring has energised the popular and political opposition and crossed hitherto-sacrosanct red lines of permissible dissent. The result is a showdown between the ruling Sabah family and ever-larger and increasingly assertive segments of the Kuwaiti population. The current deadlock began in the summer of 2011 when youth groups began calling for the resignation of the Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser AlMohammed Al-Sabah, a nephew of the Amir. Their weekly demonstrations escalated in September when news broke of a massive political corruption scandal involving the transfer of funds to 16 of Kuwait’s 50 MPs allegedly in return for supporting government policies. Tensions peaked in November after the Constitutional Court blocked a parliamentary attempt to question the prime minister over the scandal, and around 100 protesters, including MPs, stormed and briefly occupied the

National Assembly building. Although the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah, publicly vowed not to give in to street pressure, tens of thousands of Kuwaitis responded by joining rallies calling for the prime minister’s removal. A massive demonstration on Nov 29 drew more than 50,000 people and decisively forced the Amir’s hand. The prime minister was replaced by his deputy, Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah, another senior member of the ruling family, and parliament was dissolved pending fresh elections in February this year. These resulted in an opposition landslide as predominantly tribal and Islamist candidates won 34 seats. However, tense weeks lie ahead in Kuwait in the run-up to the Dec 1 vote. The country has long been at the forefront of democratic evolution in the Gulf. Kuwaitis are intensely protective of their constitutional and political rights, and will oppose any renewed attempt to water them down. With neither the ruling family nor the opposition in any mood for compromise, there seems little prospect for a negotiated way out of the impasse. Instead, gloves have now come off on both sides, with the rising tide of opposition demanding nothing short of an elected government and a game-changing end to Al Sabah dominance of executive power.

Work underway to extinguish Rawdtain oil well fire

KUWAIT: Opposition members gathered on Thursday at sunset during a mass iftar held on the Arafat Day, in what they described as a “peaceful message” to demonstrate the determination of the people to remain non-violent while taking part in the demonstrations against an emergency decree to amend the voting system ahead of Dec 1 elections. The event came four days after unprecedented protest marches in which police used force to disperse thousands of demonstrators taking part in unauthorized gatherings in the Kuwait City. —Photos by Yasser Al-Zayyat

Gulf Bank employees support battle against breast cancer KUWAIT: Gulf Bank enlightened its employees about Breast Cancer Awareness Month (BCAM) by distributing pink ribbons and breast cancer awareness brochures in recognition of those who battle with the disease. Breast Cancer Awareness Month (BCAM) is an annual international health campaign organised by major charities each October and its supporters wear a pink ribbon to highlight this important cause. During October, Gulf Bank distributed a pink ribbon and a Wataniya Telecom and Hayatt Early Detection Breast Cancer Centre Cancer Awareness brochure to all its employees so that they can express their support and to

remind them of the importance of early diagnosis. Fawzy Al-Thunayan, General Manager, Board Affairs at Gulf Bank said: “Gulf Bank is committed to keeping its employees informed about the importance of a healthy lifestyle. Breast cancer is a world-wide health issue which primarily affects women and can be successfully treated, if diagnosed early enough. By distributing pink ribbons to all our staff, we are trying to draw attention to the importance of breast cancer early detection and disease screening, as well as supporting all those who are currently combating this serious disease. The Bank treats its responsibilities to its

KUWAIT: Chairman and Managing Director of Kuwait Oil Company (KOC) Sami Al-Rasheed said here yesterday that work is still ongoing to extinguish a blazing oil well in Rawdtain, north of the country. The incident caused leakage of hydrogen sulfide gas mid-October. He added in a statement that the equipment needed to extinguish the well already reached Kuwait from the United States last Thursday, pointing out

that about 50 percent of the waste burning around the well has been completed, in addition to the processing of four pools of water for cooling and extinguishing the burning well. He said the fire brigade in the company began cooling of the well, a prelude to extinguish and then shut down the well, indicating that conversion of about 32 oil pipelines was completed and were linked to the gathering center to be far away from the well site. —KUNA

employees seriously and we recognise that it is not just a financial organisation that provides banking services, but an institution that can make a real and practical contribution to the wellbeing of the local community.” Gulf Bank also presented a cash contribution to the Ruqaya Al-Qatami Charity Foundation to assist in the financial and moral support of the Hayatt Early Detection of Breast Cancer Centre. The Bank will continue to demonstrate its commitment towards issues which affect the community by engaging in charitable activities as well as launching campaigns to deliver positive messages.

Defense minister visits Boubyan Land Force unit

KUWAIT: Gulf Bank employees supporting the Breast Cancer Awareness Month

KUWAIT: Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense Sheikh Ahmad AlKhalid Al-Sabah visited Saturday a Kuwaiti Army Land Force unit at Boubyan Island, marking the occasion of Eid Al-Adha. Sheikh Ahmad was accompanied by Kuwaiti Army Chief of Staff Lt Gen Khalid Al-Jarrah Al-Sabah, Deputy Chief of Staff Abdulrahman Al-Othman, along with high ranking military officials. During his tour, Sheikh Ahmad was briefed by Unit’s Army Commander on

the tasks and duties of his unit, and later visited various locations and chatted with the soldiers. The minister expressed keenness on the importance of protecting the country and conveyed greetings by His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad AlJaber Al-Sabah, His Highness the Crown Prince Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, and His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah. —KUNA



Social sciences play key role in development of society Kuwait to host world conference By Abdellatif Sharaa KUWAIT: The College of Social Sciences at Kuwait University is preparing to hold the Fifth International Conference next February under the slogan, “Partners in Development.” The conference aims at highlighting the role of social sciences and their contribution towards a society’s development, how social sciences help enhance communication among most sciences through cross studies, then help in their practical application. Another goal is to highlight the current scientific contributions in the field of social sciences and the most notable researches in this field. The final goal is to identify challenges and obstacles that face the human societies. The Dean of the College of Social Sciences, Professor of Political Science Adbul-Reda Assiri, said, “We at the College of Social Sciences aim to serve the society, and for that we have many training programs. We had 75 training programs last year and already have more than 10 this year though we are only in the second month of the school year.” Assiri said the college has had four conferences, including the one which was held in cooperation with high coordinating committee on conferences about the Asian Cooperation Dialogue (ACD). He said as far as students’ activities were concerned, a new trend of holding debates among various colleges has started. The College of Social Sciences won the first place among humanities and social science colleges. He said there were

plans to start debates among various departments within the same college. Such debates will be regularly organized every year, he added. Abdul Reda Assiri said plans were afoot for the students to visit China and have a first hand look at the Chinese educational system. He said the college was serious about honoring its teachers who died in harness. There were eight professors who died while still in service and eight halls will be named after them. He said it was in the fitness of things that those who left their impression on education and helped raise future generations be commemorated. Terming his college as “rather proactive,” Assiri said, “On the 50th anniversary of the implementation of Kuwait constitution on Nov 11, we will organize an exhibition and also lectures over five days, all in cooperation with the National Assembly.” The exhibition will be held at the College of Social Sciences. He said the National Assembly has appreciated the role of the Kuwait University and the College of Social Sciences. He said if Kuwait University had not reached this level of success, people from many other domains would not have chosen to cooperate with it. Commenting on the fifth international conference that the college plans to hold next February under the title “Partners in Development,” he said the college, which is itself 12 years’ old, organizes a conference every two years, and has already organized five. He termed it the periodic duty that the college performs in the interest of the social sciences. The slogan “Partners in

Opposition gears up for second gathering KUWAIT: Preparations are underway for the opposition’s second mass gathering since last week’s events that saw special task forces use force to stop thousands of demonstrators from marching along the Arabian Gulf Road. The second “more organized” event is slated for Nov 4, amid continuing reports about plans to file a request with the Administrative Court to challenge the emergency decree that alters the voting mechanism ahead of Dec 1 elections. In this regard, former MP Mohammad Hayef said following a recent meeting of his Justice Bloc that they support any “legal or constitutional steps” that can help end the crisis as a result of the opposition’s rejection of the electoral law’s amendment outside of the parliament. A member of the oppositionist Majority Bloc, Ammar Al-Ajmy, agreed in the meanwhile on the issue of “citizens’ right to appeal” against the decree. The Majority Bloc is a coalition of 34 oppositionists who won majority seats in the 50-seat parliament during elections held last February and annulled four months later by a Constitutional Court order that reinstated a pro-government parliament elected in 2009. The parliament was dissolved for the second time earlier this month and a decree was issued to call for elections on December 1 to be held as per an amended law in which each voter is entitled to vote for one candidate. Osama Al-Shaheen, another member of the opposition in the annulled parliament, asserted that the bloc’s demands are restricted to “protecting the electoral law” which divides the country into five constituencies and until the amendment was released, allowed voters to elect a maximum of four candidates. Al-Shaheen’s remarks came on Friday night during an Eid Al-Adha celebration held by the Social Reform Society where he refuted allegations about the presence of a Muslim Brotherhood plot to overthrow the ruling systems in the Gulf region. Al-Shaheen is a member of the Islamic Constitutional Movement, widely considered as being the political arm of the pan-Arab organization in Kuwait. Meanwhile, the Nahj group is set to take part in next Sunday’s demonstrations but not as an organizer, according to sources close to the coalition of oppositionist activists. The sources, who spoke to Al-Rai on the condition of anonymity, indicated that the next march is going to be more organized “especially when it comes to the places of gathering” compared to the first march on October 21st, which saw police use tear gas and stun grenades to disperse protestors at the Arabian Gulf Street while arresting a number of activists, according to the opposition. (Rai) There have been speculations that violence could erupt again on Monday, based on rumors about plans to stage marches in various main streets across Kuwait. However, AlWatan daily reported quoting a source close to the Majority Bloc that some oppositionists are against practices “which might give justification to security officers to resort to the security option” against protestors. These oppositionists are instead in favour of putting in more effort to convince as many citizens as possible to boycott the upcoming elections.

Action against unauthorized butchers KUWAIT: In order to deal with the menace of unauthorized butchers making hay as a result of the heavy demand during Eid holidays, an inspections campaign carried out by emergency department of the capital municipality, in cooperation with the public relations and security support from the Ministry of Interior, nabbed 30 cases of unlicensed butchery happening outside the butcher house in violation of municipality rules and regulations. This year, the butchers did not hide away from Livestock markets in Shuwaikh and Al Rai. In fact, many of them had set up shop in the residential areas in capital governorate, but inspections teams were well prepared to deal with the situation and stopped 30 such cases. Many others escaped the inspection drive by running away. Team head Mikhled Al Sawwegh said that 60 citations were handed for the butchers, two in each case. The first citation is about indulging in butchery without a valid license from the municipality and the second is about is hygiene and cleanliness.

Development” was coined because development has become vital and strategic not only for Kuwait, but most societies. The notion of development includes all its aspects, be they political, economic, social, cultural or others. Assiri added that conferences were being held and visits were being exchanged, all in the name of development. Kuwait was now con-

tice since at times, there is a certain construct being spoken about in the lecture room, while the practice is quite different. He added that though it may be correct, but “we are a part of the wider outside world. We speak in our books and lectures about the theoretical aspect, but we will not achieve success without linking it with the practical aspect, and that is

Abdul-Reda Assiri

centrating on development and it has become an important part of the duties of the executive and legislative authorities. He said the College of Social Sciences has a role to play in development as individual faculty members, be they lecturers or writers, care about the educational process. He said the choice of this issue was based on scientific and practical aspects. Assiri said the conference aims at moving from theory towards prac-

why there will be discussions during the conference by social science experts on issues in the field.” When asked if there is communication happening between the conference and official bodies about practical arrangements, Asiri said there are many communication channels. “We wrote to them and in some cases we spoke to them in person. We have a conference coming up and we are working hard to come up with practical and applicable results.”

“We asked them to tell us about their problems and what do you want from us at the university. They are insisting on certain topics and we have asked to discuss these with them,” he said. He gave an example of the nonviolence in children campaign, together with social affairs and health ministries, all involving finances from outside the university. When asked about the demographic parameters and how the college can help, Assiri said the college was asked to submit various papers on many cases including the population policy and the problems afflicting other countries. He said he has received requests for participation on this topic from countries which the college did not even expect to be interested. In fact, the largest number of requests came from Algeria. Assiri said the college has specialized professors who have the ability to link the theoretical with the practical aspects. Every country has a different experience. At the university, there are no restrictions on subjects or lectures in other areas, he said. Assiri explained that there will be workshops during the conference and most will cover the psychological and social aspects while some will be dealing with political and social service aspects. He said workshops will have a limited number of participants who will have discussions and exchange information. Some have requested to split the same workshop into two or three. He said there are some professors who have to wait outside the hall in case they get an opportunity to participate, especially in work-

shops from the interior, social affairs, health and education ministries. About the role of the social sciences in societies’ development, he said, “It is not possible for any development policy to succeed without the presence of all pillars of the development process and one of those are the scientists, experts and university professors who are the best help in this field.” He added that “professors of social sciences are the core of the development process.” He said it is not possible to ignore social sciences in any successful development policy, and that is why the College of Social Sciences is considered the core of the development process. When asked about his experience from previous conferences, and whether recommendations are adopted by concerned authorities, Assiri said, “We hand over the recommendations and our responsibility ends there. Some authorities accept them and others may ignore them. The most important thing is that the recommendations are all practical and can be applied.” The conference will cover the following aspects: 1. Role of Political Science and development. 2. Role of Psychological science in development. 3. Role of Social Science and anthropology in development. 4. Role of social service in development. 5. Role of Geography and GIS in development. 6. Role of libraries and information science in development.




Local Spotlight

kuwait digest

Listen to people’s whispers

Era of chaos, confusion

By Abdullatif Al-Duaij am not going to dish out advice, like most people do nowadays, for two main reasons. First, because no one listens anyway and second, because I believe that other people are more aware of the political developments happening around them. Therefore, I am only going to express my own opinion and convictions. My first belief has been, and will always be, that freedom of expression in a democratic system is an absolute right that must not be limited by regulations or curbed through any oppression, nor should it be restricted by citing any traditions or making heritage stand between it and the scientific research. Kuwait’s constitution which everyone vows to honor and protect dictates that this freedom of expression involves expression through


Muna Al-Fuzai


We are living in the era of freedoms that can never be controlled or limited. An era where a lone person can express an opinion online and be heard by billions around the world, an era where people who restricted, monitored and scattered all over the world still manage to communicate. speech, writing or by other means. This ‘other’ means any other method, be they demonstrations, performances, songs, whatever. Therefore, if the opposition wanted a gathering, it can do so as per the right guaranteed under the constitution. If they wanted to demonstrate, it is their constitutional right to do so as long as their demonstration remains peaceful. And likewise, if I wished to criticize a tradition revered as something valued very highly by the opposition, I would be within my constitutional rights to do so, as well as to discuss it and scientifically research it before going to bed and waking up the next day safe and sound, instead of finding myself being hanged inside the Nayef Palace (a reference to a legislation to inflict the death penalty against offenders of religious beliefs which was proposed by the opposition in the annulled parliament). We are living in the era of freedoms that can never be controlled or limited. An era where a lone person can express an opinion online and be heard by billions around the world, an era where people who restricted, monitored and scattered all over the world still manage to communicate. Governments can control individuals, and even groups, but they cannot control thought or spread of opinions. The best approach therefore is to deal with the thoughts and freedoms responsibly and respectfully, and to analyze the new opinions expressed every day. It is important to listen to people’s whispers and demands or we will be forced to hear the roars of their outrage. It is true that people follow one leader or party, but what is also true is the fact that people act to achieve a general goal, and their gathering always achieves a joint collective interest. —Al-Qabas

kuwait digest

Implementation of law ‘only way out’ By Thaar Al Rashidi here is no way to solve our political problems except by applying the law fully to everyone. The gains to be made from implementing the law, irrespective of how it is worded, will remain mere words unless it is implemented properly. Therefore, let us discuss the main subject about implementation of the law in a Kuwaiti way. In other terms, the law has to be implemented keeping in mind what is good for the state and not what is good for the government or some authority or the opposition. We need an approach towards implementation of the law that steers the entire country on to the right path. We need to reset our compass to find which way lies justice. I am going to enumerate the points in no particular order about what should be done. First, just as those who participated in the demonstration and the MPs were kept in shackles, the hands of merchants who deal in rotten food should also be similarly shackled. They should be jailed, taken to public prosecution, and interrogated. In fact, they should be photographed along with a few tins of rotting Tuna and their pictures should be circulated in the media, with a plaque proclaiming that these worthies are each a “trader of rotten food stuff.” It is important to retire any director and to immediately send him to a public prosecutor if he was suspected of passing a “suspicious” tender. Thereafter, the government should be withdrawing the multi million tenders from companies and contractors who do not stick to the execution schedule of the projects which they have contracted. It is better to send them along with the directors who cooperated with them to the public prosecutor on charges of wasting public money. Also, every civil society that practices politics should be shut down. By that, I mean any society which takes money from the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor, but openly practices politics. Do you want the country back on track? Nothing could ensure it better than application of the law in a just manner. Within just one week, you will find the country getting back on track as it was before. Law cannot be implemented by force, tear gas or bombs but by implementing it in letter and spirit, and, of course, in practice. Note: There is no one I hate in this world as much as I hate a pessimist. He can spoil your day when he narrates his opinion about the state of the country. Therefore, it is alright to be optimistic and we must be optimists. Drugs and every other problem will be rectified one day. If the pessimists start saying that the situation is disastrous, I will say that what we are going through is “hard labor” so that a new and better future is born. — Al-Anbaa

know that people always want to hear good news. That, I guess, is human nature. But I am afraid that as far as I can see, clashes and protests are not going to be over any time soon. The last week’s demonstration was only the beginning of a series of attempts by the opposition to usher in an era of chaos and confusion unless the Kuwaiti government stopped these. I made my views known publicly, and repeatedly so, over the national television about where and how do I see the situation in Kuwait and how I see the future will possibly shape the new Kuwait. First, I refuse to call demonstrators an opposition. Throughout history, any opposition is always rooted in the public’s demands for bread, better life and basic necessities like a roof over their head. Read history books and you will find that the root cause of virtually every revolution anywhere in the world was the basic and real demands of the people, not a faked opposition. On the other hand, in Kuwait, this so-called opposition is trying to turn the country upside down because it has realized that it is no longer wanted in this election, and figures nowhere in the scheme of things. Those in the opposition know very well that no one in Kuwait likes or wants to encourage anyone to align with the Muslim Brotherhood or wants to follow any of these so-called MPs who are going to lose their election because of the change in the number of votes from four to one per voter. They will prove to be the losers just as their so-called ‘Muslim brothers’ are losing their popularity. Thus, they will no longer be the majority. If you were to die soon, it matters little how you die. Right now, this self-styled opposition is trying to send the world a wrong message that these protests are against the Kuwaiti ruling system and that those leading the protests are the victims. That is a lie. The protesters have an agenda, which is to come to power. It does not matter how, where and at what cost? As long they can climb the power ladder and manipulate the country and its people, as they did for many years using the parliament as their tool, it matters little to them, but things have changed in such a way that they cannot bear to see or know how to deal with. For the record, the protesters were only demonstrating peacefully, at least ostensibly, but then when they started to attack the police force, the police did not respond as they had expected. It was because the Kuwait police would not have attacked the civilians. It has never happened in its history and it will not happen especially now. We are not a police country or living under a dictatorship. The world has to see and learn this. Now, this opposition led by former MPs will try to create chaos and issue calls for more protests. That is for sure, but I hope His Highness the Amir of Kuwait will handle this issue with the firmness and wisdom that we have all come to appreciate. Time will prove that there is no going back and we will be able to free Kuwait from a closed mindset. The new parliament will bring in new people, new faces and a refreshingly new mindset.

kuwait digest

Snowballing errors By Dr Mohammad Al-Moqatei t is wrong to analyze the current developments political corruption on the part of many of its happening on Kuwait’s political scene in isola- members. Such sentiments were only fuelled furtion from the political events over the past few ther by a feeling that the majority of MPs have years, particularly the ones that punctuated the ‘sold’ their seats to political figures, people with last year. This period witnessed many a practices influence or those who could pay dirty money. that were neither constitutional nor politically cor- Such practices were perceived as turning legislarect. These included acts committed by the former tive tools into goods on sale to the highest bidder. ministers, some members from the ruling family In all of this, the development process got effecand a number of members of parliament. These tively stalled. People’s frustration increased further errors led to lack of trust, insecurity and skepti- as they witnessed MPs using parliamentary tools cism about the political scenario and also caused to ‘blackmail’ the government and put pressure on ministers to pass legislapersistent tensions tions or take decisions that between the parliament Many Kuwaitis are concerned served individual agendas and the cabinet. because they think that the govrather than the general Many Kuwaitis are congood. The errors committed cerned because they ernment may not be fully conby both sides snowballed think that the governvinced about the idea of democinto collective frustration ment may not be fully racy, or they continuously hear and a feeling of loss among convinced about the idea citizens, who encounter one of democrac y, or they some exhorting the government after the other serious probcontinuously hear some not to tolerate the regular demlems even though they are exhor ting the governocratic practices. People are citizens of a wealthy country ment not to tolerate the that has only a small popularegular democratic pracalso expressing an increasing tion. tices. People are also concern about what they see are Overcrowded academic expressing an increasing feelers sent by certain members facilities, long queues of job concern about what they seekers and housing applisee are feelers sent by of the ruling family against the cants, mediocre health servcertain members of the continuation of Kuwait’s constiices and nightmarish traffic ruling family against the tutional system. jams came to define life. continuation of Kuwait’s People perceive all these constitutional system. Such speculations are fueled by a clear hesita- issues as problems left to happen as a result of polittion on the part of the parliament to accept active ical errors on the part of the cabinet and the parliaand strong commitment towards its legislative ment. Therefore, it is no surprise that people are and monitoring duties, as well as the way the gov- approaching a critical threshold point where things ernment deals with violations of human rights and can explode due to crises like a constitutional void freedoms, seeing them more as ‘privileges’ rather and undue delay in achieving political reforms. That is why I believe the emergency decree released than undeniable rights. On the other hand, the parliament lost a great to amend the electoral law left such a negative deal of respect among the people as a result of impact as is being seen today. — Al-Qabas



kuwait digest

kuwait digest

Crisis of hearts

Assessment of the situation By Ahmed Al-Mulaifi efore the recent demonstration, everybody developments that did take place, was the absence was, undoubtedly, very worried and concerned of the senior organizers, that is, the former lawmakers. For instance, had former MP, Jaman Al-Harbash about its possible consequences. However, everybody was not worried for the same been present on the scene, leading the negotiations reason. The majority group was apprehensive that with the police at the Liberation Tower instead of hanging around on the the demonstrations could building’s second floor, he lead to major scuffles, casuThe reason behind the would have been able to alties or serious injuries assess the situation in a betamong the demonstrators or unwanted developments that ter way and would have realthe security forces, or both. did take place, was the absence ized the dangers of remainThe larger ‘silent majority’ of the senior organizers, that is, ing stubborn. He could have was worried lest the incident then made the right decision was dealt with leniently, the former lawmakers. For and the there would have especially those who violate instance, had former MP, Jaman been no need to deal with the law with impunity, as Al-Harbash been present on the the demonstration by force. that would have led to chaos Had former MPs, Ahmed and loss of control. scene, leading the negotiations Al-Saadoun and Musallam AlBut when the demonstrawith the police at the Liberation Barrak been at the Kuwait tion was declared over, Tower instead of hanging Towers yard earlier, or if they everybody heaved a sigh of had led the demonstration relief since no one was seriaround on the building’s second themselves and negotiated ously injured on either side floor, he would have been able with the police instead of and the security forces dealt leaving everything to the to assess the situation in a betwith the situation decisively unorganized chaotic leaderand in a reasonable and ter way and would have realship of younger people, a peaceful fashion. ized the dangers of remaining better assessment of the situWe have all watched the ation would have been made. stubborn. video coverage of how the The bottom line here is security forces treated the both, the young people and demonstrators in a very civilized way. They modestly and respectfully addressed their folks, should understand the message clearly and them, almost in a fatherly tone, whether it was out- realize who is really backing them and who is actually side the Liberation Tower or at the yard outside only pushing them to brinkmanship and a confrontaKuwait Towers by the sea. They simply, and politely, tionist path. We need a calmer and more objective asked them to leave and head back to the assessment and reconsideration of the situation in order to maintain Kuwait’s fine image and democratic Determination Yard to say whatever they wanted. I believe that the reason behind the unwanted tradition. — Annahar


By Dr Yaqoub Al-Sharrah he current political crisis triggered by the amendment in the electoral law ahead of the upcoming elections should not have led to all this uproar in my opinion, nor did it warrant the conflicts among the people in a society that has long been characterized by coexistence. The real problem lies with the way people think, and the negativity surrounding the people. It is not in the change in the number of constituencies, votes per voter, or any other reasons mentioned during the ongoing conflict. Regardless of the shape of the constituencies or the number of votes, a clash between the MPs and the cabinet on political issues remains the real problem. How else can you describe conflicts over projects that serve the general interest and that both sides seek to achieve? The problem lies with the political practice in which both sides attack each other and practice destruction in the name of reform. Everyone agrees on the importance of reform and improvement, and no one opposes anyone from criticizing the government for its failure to push the development agenda forward. But the main factors that leave doubts in the minds of people are those that have to do with conscience and morals, which vary among people. Many do not agree with immoral practices regardless of the reasons. There are people who try to rise above minor issues and seek tolerance and harmony, irrespective of the cost. Meanwhile, there are others with a sick mind whose morals are so weak that the idea of respect and relationships matters little to them. I say this as we witness a moral crisis in which people turn offensive towards their own country and its people even as they talk about respecting the law and the constitution. It is important that people understand the significance of the country’s responsibility in holding accountable those who harm it. It is equally important that they understand the significance of an unwavering approach to penalize the offenders in order to avoid any chaos created by those who have scant respect for law. The authority of any individual can never be enforced over the authority of the state, nor should practices seeking to limit constitutional authorities be tolerated. That is why it is important to take deterrent action within the framework of the constitution to protect the country from any threats to its safety and security. — Al-Rai




Kuwait parliament eyes youthful look Polls to change legislature’s composition KUWAIT: Kuwait’s legislative elections on Dec 1 could usher in a parliament that makes a 90 per cent departure from the outgoing House in terms of its composition. The overwhelming change would be linked to a high participation of young people and to the boycott announced by veteran lawmakers, sources told local Arabic daily. “A high number of young figures have expressed their intention to run in the election amid predictions that their chances would be boosted by the absence of competition from heavyweight candidates,” said the sources whose identity the newspaper did not

divulge. The changes would be massive, up to eight seats, in four of the five constituencies. Only Constituency One would not have such a drastic change,” the sources said. Each parliamentary constituency in Kuwait sends 10 representatives to the parliament. Several outgoing lawmakers said that they would boycott the parliamentary elections to protest against the amendment of the 2006 electoral law that reduces the number of candidates a voter can elect from four to one. The government said that the amendment by His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-

Sabah aimed to ensure a fairer representation of the people in parliament and that the ‘one voter, one vote’ practice was the international standard. However, the opposition charged that the government sought to weaken it and that the amendment to the electoral law was its way of ensuring that parliament would be compliant with its orientations. Several former lawmakers announced that they would boycott the elections and launched campaigns calling for a general boycott. Reports that the opposition would call for a ‘one voter, two votes’ slogan

as a compromise with the government to overcome the crisis have been denied as “baseless.” However, according to Al Anba, several young Kuwaitis have said that they don’t relate to the boycott call and that they are ready to contest the elections and help create a new-look parliament. “We will have a different parliament both in its composition and in the issues to be discussed and the laws to be enacted,” the sources said. The cabinet is expected to announce on Wednesday the decree Calling for the elections, paving the way for the registration process.

KUWAIT: A group of four students visited the Kuwait Times office with their professor Dr Gilbert Fowler (second from left) from Arkansas State University. The visit was organised by Gulf University for Science and Technology (GUST). Marketing Director of Kuwait Times Adnan Saad (extreme left) is pictured with Joanna Al-Abduljalil (third from left) from the PR department at GUST who accompanied the delegation. —Photo by Yasser Al-Zayyat

16 injured in road accidents By Hanan Al-Saadoun

Fire dept delegation visits Al-Babtain hospital By Hanan Al Saadoun KUWAIT: A delegation from the Fire department paid a visit to the AlBabtain Hospital for Burns on first day of the Eid to wish the patients on this happy occasion, and brought the children patients gifts and cash money

besides wishing everyone a speedy recovery. The head of fire department delegation, public relations director Khailil Al-Amir, said that visit like these are a frequent feature. “We routinely pay such visits on the occasion of every Eid as firemen’s role is not just limited to fight fire and rescue lives,

but also extends to supporting the patients while under treatment, as it helps them in quicker recovery.” Al-Amir thanked the Al-Babtain Hospital administration for its efforts and the service it provides to the society. He also appreciated the cooperation extended by the hospital.

Illegal hunters ‘terrorize’ flamingos in Al-Judailiyat KUWAIT: Environmentalists are demanding that the state must act to stop illegal hunting activities targeting migratory birds nesting in Kuwait. The demand received an added impetus due to recent instances of hunters using live ammo to shoot down flamingos at the Gulf state’s northern shores. A bird monitoring team from the Kuwait Environment Protection Society was on an obser vator y mission in Al-Judailiyat beach, 20

kilometers north west of Kuwait City, recently when they witnessed “mass killing of flamingo birds” by illegal hunters. They provided a local newspaper with pictures showing up to four men participating in the “several hours long shooting spree.” One picture showed a man holding a rifle in one hand and dragging a dead flamingo out of the waters, while another depicted a person holding a dead bird near an

SUV. “[Authorities] are asked to take legal action against the violators” who shot the birds legally protected by Kuwait’s laws, said the team in statements to Al-Rai. The KEPS is active in detecting cases of illegal hunting targeting migratory birds which they say has become “a serious threat ” in a country considered a transit nesting place for a lot of birds making their annual migrator y routes between Asia and Europe.

Entertainment City open to all today


isitors are welcome to come to the Entertainment City today, which is routinely open exclusively for female visitors. The move is part of the special schedule for the the Eid Al-Adha holidays. This was announced by Acting Director of Activities and Operations at the Touristic Enterprises Company, Yaqoub Al-

Duaij, who added in a statement yesterday that the facility’s special ‘women’s only day’ will resume next Monday. The Entertainment City welcomes visitors from 11:00 am to 11:00 pm during the Eid AlAdha holiday, Al-Duaij added, noting at the same time that a new arcade hall has been opened at the facility.

Yaqoub Al-Duaij

KUWAIT: A car accident on Al-Ghazali road left a 34-year-old Kuwaiti man with an injured hand and a 32-year-old Bangladeshi with head and hand injuries. The latter was rushed to the Farwaniya Hospital and admitted to its intensive care unit. A car accident in Mina Abdullah left a 15-year-old Kuwaiti with a fractured right hand while a 14-year-old Kuwaiti also received some injuries. Both were taken to the Adan Hospital. A motorcycle accident in Shuwaikh opposite communication and navigation institute resulted in multiple injuries for a 23-year-old Kuwaiti man, who was later rushed to the Al Sabah Hospital. A car accident between Jahra and Abdaly border left an 18-year-old Kuwaiti man with a fractured right hand. He was taken to the Jahra Hospital. A car accident on the Arabian Gulf road in Salmiya beyond the Scientific Center resulted in multiple injuries to two Kuwaiti girls, aged 17 and 23 years. A 25-year-old Kuwaiti woman suffered a fracture in the right thigh and two other people, one a 24year-old Kuwaiti man and the other an Egyptian male of the same age, suffered multiple injuries in the same accident. Five ambulances had rushed to the accident site with 10 technicians. All the injured were

taken to the Mubarak Hospital and the Amiri Hospital. A car accident on the 5th Ring Road towards Damascus Street opposite Al Surra, resulted in multiple injuries for four Indian expats. The injured included two Indian women, one a 36-year-old and the other a 22-year-old, besides a six-month-old Indian baby and a 12-year-old Indian boy. All were taken to the Mubarak Hospital. A car accident on Fahaheel road opposite the Hadi Hospital resulted in a fractured left foot for a 25-year-old Kuwaiti man who was also hurt in his neck. He was rushed to the Mubarak Hospital and admitted to its intensive care unit. Another person, a 43-year-old Egyptian expat, who seemed to have been hurt in the accident as he complained of pain, refused to be taken to the hospital. Medical emergency The total number of casualty reports received by the medical emergency services on the second day of Eid were 268, out of which 186 cases were rushed to the hospitals of which 62 cases involved road accidents. Violent scuffle A violent scuffle among a number of teenagers in Jleeb Al Shoyukh Park left a 16-year-old Syrian injured on his lips. He was taken to the Farwaniya Hospital.




Fugitive nabbed at border checkpoint Eid revelers held for drinking KUWAIT: A fugitive was arrested recently when he tried to flee Kuwait on his brother’s passport. He was arrested at the Nuwaiseeb border checkpoint (south) where the GCC national tried to take the benefit of the crowd of travelers during the Eid Al-Adha holiday as an opportunity to mislead officials. He was detained when the passport officer compared the picture affixed on the passport with the man’s face. The suspect claimed during interrogation that he planned to return within days. He was referred to the proper authorities after police discovered that he was wanted in multiple cases and was banned from travelling. Meanwhile, a drug trafficker was nabbed at the Abdaly border checkpoint while trying to smuggle drugs from Iraq in his truck into Kuwait. The customs officials found 51.1 kilograms of hashish and 91,000 Captagon tablets hidden in the vehicle. The Iraqi driver admitted of selecting the Eid Al-Adha holiday to smuggle the drugs, thinking that the monitoring would be lax compared to regular days.

KUWAIT: NBK family with children

NBK to celebrate Universal Children’s Day KUWAIT: National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) will celebrate the Universal Children’s Day during the month of November by launching various programs and initiatives dedicated specifically for children. “NBK pioneered corporate social responsibility programs towards children 12 years ago by establishing NBK Children’s Hospital, which focuses on providing treatment for children suffering from leukemia,” said Abdulmohsen Al Rushaid, NBK Public Relations Manager. “NBK initiatives this month will include healthcare, education, and social programs as well as visits to NBK Hospital at Sabah Medical district, Beit Abdullah and other social associations for children.”

NBK Children’s Hospital stands as a landmark for the bank’s social initiatives towards children. Earlier this year, NBK increased its donation to build an independent cancer center, expanding the hospital’s ability to treat children with cancer and blood diseases. NBK also brought in a medical team from the renowned Great Ormond Street Hospital in the United Kingdom to NBK Children’s Hospital. Al Rushaid added: “NBK has been at the forefront of supporting Kuwait’s community through a range of education, healthcare and social programs. This month, our efforts will be focusing on supporting the children and addressing their needs”.

Grave exhumed The Jahra detectives are on the

look out for an unknown suspect accused of exhuming a grave in AlSulaibikhat’s cemetery recently. A Kuwaiti man approached the Qairawan police station officers to report that his father’s grave had been damaged deliberately. The man could not say who could have been behind the crime as he suspected no one. Brotherly hate Two brothers pressed charges against each other following a brutal fight sparked by conflicts between their wives. Both the brothers filed separate cases with the Sulaibiya police station officers after they brought medical diagnoses reports from a local hospital and accused each other of battery assault and murder threat. The two explained during investigations that they clashed when both of them intervened to defend their respective wives against each other. Investigations are on. Shop robbery Investigations are on in search of a suspect who broke into a phone shop in Sharq and ran away with KD1,800 in cash and a number of

Kuwaiti loan for Serbia KUWAIT: Kuwait granted Serbia a $32.5 million loan for the construction of a railway station in Belgrade, an official from the Gulf country said. Kuwaiti Ambassador Fawzi Abdulaziz Ahmed Al-Jasem told Serbia’s Tanjug newspaper in an interview published yesterday that the loan will be used for the construction of the main railway station, Prokop, in Belgrade. A Kuwaiti delegation is expected to arrive in Belgrade late November or early December to sign a second loan agreement, Al-Jasem said without specifying the amount. Kuwait can loan Serbia for the third and fourth phases of the project if the Eastern European country needed more funding, he added. The loan has a fixed annual interest rate of three percent, 18 years of reimbursement period, and four years grace period, Belgrade-based B92 website reported. Al-Jasem said many Kuwaiti businessmen are heading to Serbia to find out more about business opportunities there.

used devices. Investigators reached the scene following an emergency call made by the shopkeeper as soon as he discovered the theft when he came to work on Friday morning. Detectives are trying to trace and arrest the suspect. Mugging suspects Two suspects responsible for at least 16 instances of mugging were arrested recently following investigations carried out by Jahra detectives. The two, a 19-year-old Kuwaiti and an 18-year-old bedoon, were arrested when they were lured into a trap in which they tried to rob an undercover informant. Police had sent taxis around those areas where taxi drivers had reported cases of mugging at knifepoint, including AlNahdha, Al-Qairawan and AlSulaibiya. They eventually received a signal from a driver who was asked to hand over his money to the suspects at knifepoint shortly after he ferried them and had left AlSulaibiya. The duo was referred to the proper authorities to face charges. Man drowns A man drowned at the Ras Al-

Salmiya beach while another was hospitalized in a critical condition in an incident reported on Saturday afternoon. Ambulances and police rushed to the place where the two unconscious men were sighted. One victim was pronounced dead on the scene while the other was rushed to the Mubarak Hospital where his condition later stabilized. Police are waiting for the doctors’ nod to ask the man the circumstances that led to the incident. Five in custody Five people were arrested in an inebriated state as they were leaving a building in Mahboulah late Friday night. Patrol officers on a control mission during the first day of the Eid Al-Adha took into custody a group of four men and a woman, who sported revealing clothes. Preliminary investigations revealed that one of the men was wanted in a criminal case while the female suspect was found previously charged for alcohol consumption. The five were referred to the Criminal Investigations General Department for further legal procedures.

NBK awareness campaign against breast cancer KUWAIT: National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) continues its “Be Aware” campaign to raise awareness against breast cancer. NBK offers its female customers and employees a special discount on Bilateral Mammogram for early detection of breast cancer, in collaboration with Royale Hayat Hospital. This offer is valid until Nov 30. NBK launched this campaign early this month as part of its continuous efforts to increase social awareness against breast cancer and promote ways of prevention. NBK has distributed Pink Ribbons to

all employees and customers in NBK’s branches to show support with women suffering from brest cancer. NBK also lights its head office in pink every night. This year, NBK extends the campaign to official NBK social media channels NBK - Official Page, Twitter @NBKPage and Instagram @NBKPage by including daily tips and facts about the cause. This awareness campaign reflects NBK’s commitment toward corporate social responsibility alongside many other activities and events that had been carried out to show its support the society and all its members.

KUWAIT: Visitors enjoyed various activities prepared by the Khairan Resort management at the facility in celebration of the Eid Al-Adha over the weekend. The program, which comes as part of the Touristic Enterprises Company’s plans for the holiday, featured several competitions for children including football, tug-of-war, painting and coloring, and that for prizes allocated by the facility’s management.


Ukraine votes in key democracy test

New peace bids eyed as Syria truce collapses Page 8

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KADUNA: Soldiers stand guard as people look at the remains of a burnt car after a suicide attacker drove a car bomb into a church in Kaduna, Nigeria, yesterday. The suicide bombing sparked in fierce reprisals that saw a Christian mob burn a man alive in day of a bloody of violence that left at least 10 people dead and 145 wounded. —AFP

10 dead in Nigeria church bombing Bombing sparks revenge attacks KADUNA: A suicide attacker drove a car bomb into a Nigerian church yesterday, sparking fierce reprisals that saw a Christian mob burn a man alive in a day of violence that killed at least 10 people and wounded 145. The church attack left at least seven people dead in addition to the bomber, while at least three people were killed in reprisal violence, a rescue official said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to provide figures. According to Musa Ilallah, regional coordinator for the National Emergency Management Agency, the number of wounded was 145. Christian youths took to the streets of the northern city of Kaduna with machetes and sticks after the blast, targeting those they believed to be Muslims as anger again boiled over due to repeated church

bombings in recent months. Attackers beat a motorcycle taxi driver near the church, then put his bike on top of him before dousing him with petrol and setting him on fire, an AFP correspondent who saw the violence said. Two other bloodied bodies apparently killed by the mob were seen near the church. A rescue official on condition of anonymity also spoke of the man being burnt and said rescuers could not save him because the mob was too violent. The mob also attacked an ambulance in the ensuing violence, but there was no indication that rescuers were wounded. The attacker rammed what residents said was an SUV into St. Rita church, shaking the Malali neighbourhood of Kaduna, a city that has suffered a wave of deadly violence blamed on Islamist extremist group Boko Haram. “All of a sudden it drove on high speed and

rammed into the church wall, forcing its way into the church premises,” said witness Samuel Emmanuel. “Initially I thought the driver had lost control of the vehicle. Suddenly there was a huge explosion as the car reached the church building. It was dust, fire and smoke all over.” A spokesman for Nigeria’s National Emergency Management Agency confirmed the bomb attack and said rescuers had been rushed to the scene. “A number of casualties evacuated to hospitals,” said the spokesman, Yushau Shuaib. “The incident was suspected to be triggered by a suicide bomber in a car.” An AFP correspondent said mobs were yelling “Why the church?” and some were carrying weapons, including machetes. Local elders were seeking to restore calm, while soldiers arrived on the scene and were working

Execution looms for SD killer, ending 22-yr saga SIOUX FALLS: Torrential overnight rains had washed away the blood so the searchers at first thought the pale form lying on the earthen berm might be a mannequin. “I almost didn’t believe it,” recalled former Lincoln County Sheriff Ken Albers, the first officer to approach the body of 9-yearold Becky O’Connell. “You don’t mess up a crime scene, but I had to walk over and touch the body to convince myself that it was real.” The shocking discovery that night in 1990 began a 22-year legal and emotional saga that is expected to end Tuesday, when Donald Moeller, who was convicted of abducting and murdering the girl, is scheduled to be put to death by lethal injection in the state penitentiary. After decades of appeals, Moeller, 60, now accepts his fate without protest. But the end leaves behind a community still marked by the crime and its experience with capital punishment. Moeller’s death sentence in

1992 was the first handed down in South Dakota in 45 years. Until this month, when the killer of a prison guard was executed, there had been only one other execution in the state since the 1940s. The child’s mother, Tina Curl, plans to drive the 1,400 miles back to Sioux Falls from her native New York state to watch Moeller take his last breath. She didn’t have the money for the trip but did fundraising events to pay her way. “I’m looking forward to it,” said Curl, who said she fell into alcoholism after her daughter’s death. “All this is just bringing what I tried to push way in the back, back up front.” Some residents said the murder changed how they felt about their city, where violent crime is rare. “It’s just like society as a whole just kind of tightened up for a long time,” said Jeff Masten, the former Lincoln County state’s attorney who prosecuted the case, and who later changed careers because of the

strain of criminal law. LaVonne Martley, a juror, said she knew the execution would bring the case back into the public spotlight “and I’ve dreaded it.” But she has never questioned the outcome. “He definitely did it,” she said. Curl thought she was escaping the dangers of big-city life when she moved her family in 1990 from New York to Sioux Falls, a wellkept, medium-size city along the Big Sioux River that serves as a market center for the sprawling expanse of farmland where South Dakota, Iowa and Minnesota come together. Homicides happen, but not many about a half dozen a year, most involving people who know each other, and where there is no mystery to solve. On May 8, 1990, Becky, a fourth-grader who lived with her mother and stepfather in a Sioux Falls mobile home, began walking a couple of blocks to Omer’s Market to buy sugar to make lemonade. She never returned.

Authorities say Moeller, a felon with a history of assaults who lived nearby, lured the brown-haired girl into his truck and drove her to a wooded area near the Iowa state line, where he raped her, stabbed her and left her to bleed to death. Moeller was interviewed shortly after the killing but disappeared before investigators could follow up. Detectives later tracked him down in Tacoma, Wash., and brought him back for trial. He was convicted in September 1992 based on DNA and circumstantial evidence. The trial, with detailed and graphic displays on how the child was killed, devastated the community, but the ordeal wasn’t over: The verdict was overturned by the South Dakota Supreme Court because of the mention of past crimes during testimony. With a new trial ordered in 1996, the horror of the gruesome killing was relived, and lingered for years longer. —AP

to bring order. The attack came after Friday’s Muslim Eid al-Adha holiday, but it was not clear if there was any link. In June, Boko Haram claimed responsibility for three suicide attacks on churches in Kaduna state, where the city of Kaduna is located, which led to deadly rioting. Dozens of people were killed in the violence. Boko Haram’s insurgency in northern and central Nigeria has led to more than 2,800 deaths since 2009, including killings by the security forces. While Muslims have often been its victims, it has in recent months also specifically targeted churches. President Goodluck Jonathan has said the group is seeking to incite a religious crisis in Africa’s most populous nation and largest oil producer, roughly divided between a mainly Muslim north and predominately Christian

south. Kaduna is a large, mainly Muslim city in Nigeria’s north and includes a sizeable Christian population. Nigerians have grown increasingly frustrated with security forces’ inability to stop Boko Haram attacks, and there have been warnings of more reprisals if the violence continued. Some Evangelical church leaders in Nigeria have said Christians may be forced to defend themselves if something is not done to address the unrest. A Kaduna-based rights activist, Shehu Sani, issued a statement after yesterday’s violence saying “our churches and mosques have now become a hostile arena for deranged and murderous psychopaths. “The government of Nigeria must wake up and live up to its duties and constitutional responsibilities,” he said. “We must find a lasting solution to this carnage and arbitrariness.” —AFP

Top ETA leader arrested in France MADRID: French police have arrested a top leader of the Basque separatist group ETA in eastern France, the Spanish interior ministry said in a statement yesterday. Izaskun Lesaka, one of “the three main leaders” of the banned organisation, was arrested during a raid by an elite French police unit at a hotel in the town of Macon, near the city of Lyon, it said. She was arrested with a man, also described as an ETA member. Although the statement did not give his identity, he was named in the Spanish media as Joseba Iturbe Otxoteka. Both of them were in possession of weapons. Spain’s El Mundo newspaper said Izaskun Lesaka was the head of ETA’s military wing. She had been on the run since 2005 and was sentenced to seven years in France in January. Born in Pamplona in 1975, she often used to stay in hotels and small bed and breakfasts to avoid detection. Searches at the hotel in Macon continued Sunday afternoon. The roads leading to it were blocked off by unmarked police cars, an AFP photographer said. The arrests are a new blow to the Basque sepa-

ratist organisation, which announced a year ago that it had abandoned violence in its 40-year fight for an independent homeland in northern Spain and southwestern France. ETA’s armed struggle has claimed more than 800 lives. While vowing to abandon violence, ETA has refused to disband and disarm, though it has only dozens of active members left. The group is on the EU and US terror group lists. Spanish Interior Minister Jorge Fernandez Diaz telephoned French counterpart Manuel Valls Sunday to thank him “for the decisive help,” the Spanish interior ministry said, stressing the “enormous importance of this operation.” Valls for his part hailed the “fruitful FrancoSpanish cooperation” in fighting terrorism.But radical pro-independence Basque groups slammed the arrests, which take to 24 the number of ETA members arrested, 16 in France alone. “It is totally incomprehensible that a year after (ETA’s announcement that it was abandoning armed struggle) they continue to make political arrests,” said a statement by the Basque group Left Abertzale. —AFP



Tunisian Salafis attack alcohol sellers in capital TUNIS: Clashes broke out between alcohol sellers and hardline Salafi Muslims in the Tunisian capital, a security official said yesterday, wounding a police commander in the latest illustration of religious tensions in the home of the “Arab Spring”. Tunisia, whose authoritarian president, Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, was overthrown by a popular uprising last year, now has an elected Islamist-led government. The struggle over the role of religion in government and

society has since emerged as the most divisive issue in the North African country, which for decades was considered one of the most secular countries in the Arab world. On Saturday night, a group of hardline Salafi Muslims attacked alcohol vendors in their small shops, a security official said. Police intervened to stop the violence. “Commander Wissam Ben Sliman was injured last night in clashes after Salafis attacked alcohol sellers in the Dawar Hicher (area),”

Sami Gnaoui, a member of the National Guard (police) syndicate said. “They attacked him with a knife in the neck. He is now in hospital in critical condition.” Last month, dozens of Salafi Muslims attacked a hotel in Sidi Bouzid, the birthplace of Tunisia’s revolution, because it was serving alcohol. They destroyed furniture and smashed bottles of alcohol. Gnaoui said it was the second time Salafis had attacked national security personnel in the Dawar Hicher neigh-

bourhood, a poor area on the outskirts of Tunis. He said a mosque in the area, called “Nour Mosque”, had become “like a military base where Salafis are hiding Molotov cocktails, knives and sticks”. Interior ministry officials were not immediately available for comment. Tension has been growing between Islamists and secularists since the Islamist Ennahda Movement won an election last year. Ennahdha, a moderate Islamic group, formed a coalition with two

non-religious parties and has promised not to ban alcohol, impose the veil or use sharia as the basis of Tunisian law. It is under pressure from both hardline Salafi Muslims calling for the introduction of Islamic law and secular opposition parties determined to prevent this. The US-based Human Rights Watch said this month Tunisia was failing to crack down on Islamist violence against advocates of secularism, including journalists and artists.— Reuters

New peace bids eyed as Syria truce collapses Air force bombs cities

BAGHDAD: An Iraqi woman looks at the wreckage of destroyed cars yesterday, at the site of a car bomb, which was exploded the day before in Baghdad’s Sadr city. Attacks mostly targeting Shiite Muslims during the Eid Al-Adha holiday killed 27 people across Iraq, the country’s deadliest day this month. — AFP

Drone strikes kill 3 Qaeda suspects in north Yemen SANAA: Suspected US drone strikes killed three Al-Qaeda militants yesterday in the northern Yemeni province of Saada, tribal sources told AFP. “Three Al-Qaeda suspects were killed in three separate drone strikes in Saada,” a tribal source said, adding the raids targeted Wadi al-Abu Jabara, an AlQaeda bastion some 250 kilometres (155 miles) north of the Yemeni capital. A second tribal source confirmed the toll, adding that yesterday’s strike “was the first by a US drone in the northern Saada province in recent months.” The United States is the only country that operates drones in the region. Yemen’s mountainous north is a stronghold of the Huthis, Shiite Zaidi rebels who in recent weeks have released several statements denouncing the presence of “unmanned drones” flying over their territory, according to the tribal source. Since 2004, the Huthis have fought six wars with Yemen’s central government before signing a truce in February 2010. Today they are embroiled in deadly sectarian clashes with Salafists who are trying to tighten their grip on the traditionally Shiite north. Yesterday’s drone strike was

the fourth this month in Yemen. On October 21, four Al-Qaeda members, including a local chief, were killed by a suspected US drone strike on their vehicle in Yemen’s eastern Maarib province. Four days earlier, rockets fired from a drone near Jaar in the southern Abyan province killed at least seven suspected Al-Qaeda operatives. On October 4, a drone strike blasted two cars carrying Al-Qaeda gunmen in the south, killing five of them. US drones that are deployed in the region have backed Yemeni forces in combating militants of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), the name given to the group’s Yemen branch, considered by Washington to be the most active and deadly. They took advantage of the weakness of Yemen’s central government during an uprising last year against now ousted president Ali Abdullah Saleh, seizing large swathes of territory across the south. But after a month-long offensive in May launched by Yemeni troops, most militants fled to the more lawless desert regions of the east.—AFP

Captured Turkish journalist alive ANKARA: A Turkish relief agency trying to secure the release of a Turkish journalist captured by government troops in Syria has obtained a photograph showing him in apparent good health. Cuneyt Unal, who works for the US-funded al-Hurra television channel, went missing with Jordanian colleague Bashar Fahmi shortly after crossing into Syria from Turkey on August 20. Unal appeared in an interview with a Syrian pro-government television channel several days later, in which he described his capture by Syrian soldiers in the city of Aleppo, but there has been no news of him since. IHH, a Turkish Islamic humanitarian agency, posted a picture of Unal on its website late on Saturday. It said the photograph was obtained by one of its delegations currently in Damascus trying to secure the release of detained civilians. The picture, which has a date stamp of Oct. 24, shows Unal unshaven and thinner Unal but in apparent good health, and bruising under his eyes seen in the August video has now gone. The IHH delegation, which has been in Damascus for the past week, did not

appear to have seen Unal themselves but were allowed to visit civilians, including women and children, inside one prison, according to a statement on the group’s website. IHH said it was still trying to confirm the status of Unal’s colleague Fahmi, who was reportedly wounded in Syria and has not been seen or heard from since the men went missing. A Japanese journalist who entered Syria with the two men was later killed in Aleppo by pro-Assad militiamen. IHH, better known as the owner of the Mavi Marmara aid ship to Gaza which was intercepted by Israeli commandos in 2010 with the deaths of nine people aboard, helped negotiate the release of two Turkish journalists from Syria earlier this year. Some 20 journalists have been killed in Syria since the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad began in March 2011. Media watchdog Reporters Without Borders said Ukrainian journalist Ankhar Kochneva was abducted on Oct. 9, apparently by a rebel faction. American freelance journalist Austin Tice has been missing since Aug 13. — Reuters

JERUSALEM: Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, second right, Vice Prime Minister Silvan Shalom, second left, Deputy Prime Minister Dan Meridor, left, and Cabinet Secretary Zvi Hauser, right, observe a moment of silence to commemorate the 17th anniversary of the assassination of former Israeli prime minister, Yitzhak Rabin at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem, yesterday. — AP

DAMASCUS: Fighting and air raids shook Syria yesterday as the international community looked to pick up the pieces of a failed effort to halt the violence for the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha. Fresh clashes saw rebels storm regime positions in the suburbs of Damascus as air strikes pummelled opposition-held areas on the eastern outskirts of the capital, activists and a watchdog said. The four-day ceasefire proposed by UN-Arab League envoy Lakhdar Brahimi collapsed amid clashes, shelling and car bomb attacks only hours after it had been due to take effect with the start of Eid on Friday morning. With hopes shattered of even a temporary halt to the 19 months of bloodshed in Syria, diplomats said Brahimi is looking ahead to new efforts to tackle the crisis. He is to go to the UN Security Council in November with new proposals aimed at pushing for political talks between President Bashar al-Assad and the opposition, UN diplomats told AFP, and will head this week for Russia and China to discuss the crisis. Brahimi will “come back with some ideas for Security Council activity early next month,” said one senior UN diplomat. “ The political process will not start until Assad and the opposition have battered each other so much that there is no choice. They are not there yet, but Brahimi has some ideas,” added another envoy at the Security Council. On the ground Sunday, rebel forces took control of three militar y posts in the outer Damascus suburb of Douma amid fierce fighting and killed four soldiers at another checkpoint in the region, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said. Regime warplanes hit targets in three air strikes in the nearby towns of Irbin, Zamalka and Harasta, where the military has been trying for weeks to dislodge rebel forces, the group said. At least 23 people were killed on Sunday, according to a prelim-

BEIRUT: Lebanese anti-government protesters holds an Arabic placard reading:”Syrian Ambassador go home,” during a demonstration demanding the resignation of Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati, in Beirut, Lebanon, yesterday. Mikati says his resignation is “out of the question” after raising the possibility following the assassination of a top intelligence official last week. — AP inary count compiled by the Observatory, following 114 deaths on Saturday, including 47 civilians, 36 soldiers and 31 rebels. The Britain-based Observatory relies on a countrywide network of activists, lawyers and medics in civilian and military hospitals. In northern commercial hub Aleppo, fierce fighting broke out in several districts of the embattled city, as the army shelled two neighbourhoods including the ancient souks in the heart of Syria’s second city, it said. The souks are part of Aleppo’s Old City district, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site. Parts of the souks were badly damaged by a fire caused by the fighting in late September. Assad’s regime has blamed the rebels for the failure of the ceasefire, saying government forces have only responded to opposi-

tion ceasefire violations. The rebels too have said they only reacted to regime attacks. Brahimi had hoped the Eid truce might lead to a more permanent ceasefire during which he could push for a political solution and bring aid to stricken areas of the country. Analysts and diplomats said the Algerian diplomat had been realistic about the ceasefire’s chances and that its failure would not stop him from making a new bid to halt the conflict. “Brahimi never pretended the ceasefire had a high chance of success,” said Richard Gowan, of the Centre on International Cooperation at New York University. “Diplomats at the UN won’t blame him for this failure. Syrian citizens may be less forgiving, but they have surely given up any hope in the UN already. Brahimi can and should soldier on after Eid.” Rights groups say

more than 35,000 people have been killed in the conflict, which began as an anti-regime uprising but is now a civil war pitting mainly Sunni rebels against Assad’s regime dominated by his minority Alawite sect, an offshoot of Shiite Islam. In the Muslim holy city of Mina meanwhile, enraged pilgrims cursed Assad and prayed for his death on Sunday as they hurled pebbles at pillars representing Satan in the final ritual of the annual hajj pilgrimage in western Saudi Arabia. Rebel flags billowed among vast crowds of pilgrims who heaved towards the stoning site amid chanting of anti-Assad slogans. “Oh God, may we see Bashar al-Assad soon hanged or burnt, kicked out or a humiliated prisoner,” one Syrian yelled through a loudhailer as dozens walking behind him shouted “Amen”. — AFP

Gaza rockets hit Israel after raid kills militant GAZA CITY: Four rockets fired from Gaza crashed into southern Israel yesterday without harming anyone, Israeli police said, hours after an air strike killed a Hamas militant. Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told AFP two rockets fell in open areas within the Eshkol district which flanks the southern sector of the Gaza border, while another two landed in and around Beersheva, a city of 194,000 people. None of them caused any injuries or damage. In Gaza, militants from the Popular Resistance Committees claimed responsibility for the two rockets fired at Beersheva. The exchanges prompted Beersheva mayor Ruvik Danilovitch to cancel school classes until further notice. “Many of the houses in our town are not protected (against rocket fire) and we cannot play with the lives of our children. I hope that lessons can resume soon,” he told Israeli public radio. Hours earlier, an Israeli air strike killed a Hamas militant and wounded another after they fired mortar shells at Israeli tanks on an incursion near the southern city of Khan Yunis, Palestinian medics and witnesses said. The dead man was named as Suleiman Kamel al-Qara, 25, a member of the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of Gaza’s ruling Islamist Hamas movement. The wounded man was also said to be a Hamas militant. The military confirmed the strike but refused to comment on the allegation Israeli armour had entered the Palestinian territory and come under fire from militants. “Overnight, IAF (air force) aircraft targeted a rocket launching site and squad in the central Gaza Strip, during final preparations to fire a rocket towards southern Israel. Secondary explosions were identified and a hit was confirmed,” it said, implying ammunition or explosives were hit. Militants had fired more than 150 rockets at Israel since the start of the month, it said. The latest exchanges took place after a three-day lull in

KHAN YOUNIS: Palestinian women react during the funeral of Hamas militant Suleiman al-Qarra in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, yesterday. A deadly Israeli airstrike and rocket and mortar fire from Gaza yesterday marred a fragile truce that took hold late last week. — AP violence after an Egyptian brokered truce went into force at midnight on Wednesday. The agreement was aimed at ending a 72hour spike in cross-border fighting, which began on Monday, with Israeli strikes killing eight militants and armed groups firing more than 100 rockets across the border, seriously wounding two Thai workers. Since then, just one rocket has hit Israel, falling on open ground and causing no casualties or damage, the military said. Yesteday morn-

ing, the Israeli cabinet approved plans to provide full protection for communities within a 4.5-to-7 kilometre range (3-4.3 miles) of Gaza which are not protected by the Iron Dome anti-missile system. “We are doing this because attacks by rockets and missiles at shorter distances are much greater in the area around the Gaza Strip than at other distances,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said of the project which will cost 270 million shekels ($70 million/54 million euros). — AFP


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Leftists target power in austerity-weary Lithuania VILNIUS: Lithuania’s leftwing and populist opposition parties eyed victory in yesterday’s run-off elections, two weeks after austerity-weary voters evicted a centre-right coalition in the first round of the Baltic state’s parliamentary polls. The first round on October 14 settled the race in 73 of the 141 seats in parliament, with the leftwing populist Labor party coming on top, narrowly ahead of its centre-left allies the Social Democrats. The two parties beat the Conservatives of Prime Minister Andrius Kubilius, who pushed through draconian spending cuts as the nation of three million was battered by one of the world’s deepest recessions. Labor and the Social Democrats opened coalition talks with the right-wing populist Order and Justice party after the first round, but are waiting until results before striking a final deal. They have pledged to mend ties with Soviet-era master Moscow, bring in progressive income tax and raise the minimum wage. “The most important thing is to stimulate the econo-

my and production,” Social Democrat leader Algirdas Butkevicius, tipped to become prime minister, said on the campaign trail. But analysts say sweeping changes to the Conservatives’ economic policy are unlikely, given Lithuania’s budgetary constraints. Butkevicius-finance and communications minister in previous centre-left governments-also cultivates an image for prudent economic stewardship and has insisted policy changes will not increase the budget deficit. Even if Labor stays top, its leader Viktor Uspaskich is highly unlikely to become premier. The Russian-born ex-minister and businessman, who made his fortune importing gas and producing dill pickles, is still subject to a long-running party funding probe. “I never say never, but his chances are minimal,” said Aine Ramonaite of the Institute for International Relations and Political Science in Vilnius. Order and Justice is also controversial, being run by impeached ex-president and former stunt pilot Rolandas Paksas.

Labor’s first-round seat tally was 18 and the Social Democrats’, 16, while Order and Justice earned six-a total of 40, meaning they may need a fourth ally to hit a parliamentary majority of 71. Labor is facing a votebuying inquiry that voided the first-round results in one constituency, forcing a re-run in coming months. Lithuania’s parties have struggled repeatedly to form stable coalitions. The outgoing Conservative-led administration swung between a parliamentary majority and minority at various points during four years in power-although Kubilius was the only the only premier to survive a full term since Lithuania seceded from the Soviet Union in 1990. The Conservatives earned 13 seats in the first round and their Liberal Movement governing allies, seven. In the 2008 general election, voters heeded the Conservative message that a Social Democrat-led coalition government had left the country ill-prepared

as growth-which spiraled upward after European Union entry in 2004 - ground to a halt amid the global economic crisis. Kubilius was also premier in 19992000 when Lithuania was lashed by the economic meltdown in neighboring Russia. But the 2009 crisis was far deeper, as Lithuania’s economy shrank by 14.8 percent. His government brought in austerity measures much wider in scope than measures adopted in western members of the 27-nation EU, avoiding a currency devaluation or international bailout. Growth returned in 2010, at 1.4 percent, before hitting 6.0 percent in 2011, but too few voters felt the benefits, analysts said. The pace slowed to a forecast 2.5 percent this year. “I’m hoping that the next four years will bring a better life,” highway maintenance worker Kazimieras Namenkevicius said as he cast his ballot. But retiree Aleksandras Bylatis said he was far from upbeat: “I’m not expecting anything from the new government.”—AFP

Ukraine votes in key democracy test ‘Every one of us has to fight this dictatorship’

LOS ANGELES: This August 15, 2012 file photo shows a huge crowd forming a line around the block from the office of The Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA) in California, on the first day of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Democratic US President Barack Obama failed on his promise of immigration reform, and Republican challenger Mitt Romney has employed harsh rhetoric against illegal immigrants. — AFP

GOP, Democrats court expat vote BERLIN: With the US presidential election too close to call, hundreds of thousands of Americans living in Europe have been posting their absentee ballots with a sense that they could truly make a difference on Nov 6. From Berlin to Paris and London to Madrid, they have closely tracked the battle between Democrat President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney, though the emotional temperature is several degrees lower than four years ago, when most expats rallied behind Obama after two terms of George W Bush, whom many thought had tarnished the US image abroad. Both the Republicans and Democrats have courted the expat vote since 1988, when absentee ballots reversed the outcome of a Senate race in Florida, allowing Republican Connie Mack to pip Democrat Buddy MacKay, who had led when polling stations closed. Absentee ballots also made the difference in another Senate race in 2008. Democrat Al Franken came from 215 votes behind to win with the help of absentee votes. The tightness of the presidential race, with a Reuters/Ipsos tracking poll showing a dead heat, has made the expat vote arguably more important than ever. Both Republicans Abroad and Democrats Abroad organizations have gone all out to get Americans registered and voting in their home states. “Americans in Germany are really excited about this year’s election but nervous too,” said Nancy Green, an opera singer who chairs the Democrats Abroad in Berlin. A New York state voter, she helped hundreds get registered in their states this year. “Everyone knows it’s going to be really, really close,” she added. “People abroad realize our votes really count. We’ve done everything we can to find Americans and help them register.” US citizens wanting to vote have to be registered in advance in a state, each with different rules and deadlines. Even though there is no data available about the distribution of the expat vote, it could have an impact in key swing states such as Ohio, Florida and Virginia. “There’s a high interest among expats in Germany, but I sense those on the Democrat side aren’t as fervent today as they were in 2008,” said Thomas Leiser of Texas, chairman of German’s Republicans Abroad and a businessman in Frankfurt. “There’s intense disappointment in President Obama’s leadership.” The

estimated 250,000 Americans in Germany the fourth largest US expatriate community in the world - traditionally leant toward Republican candidates, partly due to a large cohort of generally more conservative soldiers stationed there, and the coordinated efforts of the military to get absentee ballots to the 50,000 troops. But that shifted in recent elections as disenchantment with Bush in Germany and across Europe grew - though political scientist James Walston of the American University in Rome believes expats in the military will still mostly vote Romney. “The majority of soldiers will tend to be Republican voters because of the demographics,” Walston said. “They tend to come from the Southern and Central states where the Republicans win.” But civilian expats appear to have been more influenced by the overwhelmingly pro-Obama stance of their European hosts. Many Americans in Europe, for instance, are baffled that Republicans oppose national health care, which most Europeans take for granted. An opinion poll by the Emnid polling institute found 87 percent of German nationals would vote for Obama and only 5 percent for Romney if they had the chance to cast ballots. Those numbers are similar to polls of Germans taken four years ago. In France, a CSA poll found 67 percent would prefer Obama versus 5 percent for Romney. In 2008 the same poll found 83 percent for Obama and 10 percent for Republican John McCain. “Based on what I’m hearing, I’d say most expats are going to vote for Obama, probably about 90 percent,” said Alan Benson, a leader of American Voices Abroad, which helps people register. But Benson, a 53-yearold teacher who has lived in Germany for 47 years, said the enthusiasm for Obama was gone. “People were over-excited by Obama and got disappointed. Some people voted once in a lifetime in 2008. We met people who crawled out from under their rocks for that. But they’re not coming back.” In Britain, where about 400,000 Americans live, several of them admitted the mood was subdued this time and they were less passionate about Obama. Most seem disillusioned as the promise of hope and change was dashed by partisan politics and Congressional obstacles.— Reuters

Kenyan police kill 2 suspected Islamists MOMBASA: Kenyan police shot dead two suspected Islamists feared to be plotting attacks in the country’s popular tourist coastal region, officials said yesterday. Shooting broke out as police raided a house in the early hours of yesterday in the Majengo suburbs of Mombasa, Kenya’s main port, after a tip-off from a suspect arrested on Saturday. “We killed one suspect in the house and the one we were holding when he tried to run away,” deputy regional police chief John Gachomo told reporters, adding that officers were hunting several other suspects who had fled the scene. Suspected Kenyan supporters of Somalia’s Al-Qaeda linked Shebab insurgents have carried out a string of attacks in opposition to Nairobi’s sending troops into

Somalia last year to fight the extremists. Police also seized a pistol, three grenades and ammunition from the house. The violence was the latest in a string of clashes and police raids on Kenya’s coast, where Islamists and a separatist movement have increasingly battled with security forces. It has raised fears that political unrest could mar elections which are due to take place in March, five years after deadly post-poll killings shattered Kenya’s image as a beacon of regional stability. Tourism on the Kenyan coast, a major pillar of the area’s economy, has been badly dented, with visitors scared off first by a spate of kidnappings of foreigners in 2011 and then by violence attributed to Islamists.—AFP

KIEV: Ukraine voted yesterday in legislative elections seen as a test of the ex-Soviet state’s nascent democracy, which has been overshadowed by the jailing of charismatic opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko. The vote has also been shaken up by the emergence of world boxing champion Vitali Klitschko as a new political force challenging the rule of President Viktor Yanukovych-a two-year incumbent who has been largely shunned by the West over the jailing of his arch-foe Tymoshenko. The bitterly-contested election has seen Yanukovych’s Regions Party facing off not just against the opposition forces of Tymoshenko and Klitschko but also the Communists and nationalists along with a party backed by football star Andriy Shevchenko. The Regions Party is still expected to win the most seats in the 450-seat Verkhovna Rada. But its dominance could be under threat if Tymoshenko’s force and Klitschko manage to agree an alliance after the elections. The vote is the first big election in the country-wedged between the European Union and Russia and still undecided about whose alliance it values most-since Tymoshenko lost a close presidential poll to Yanukovych in early 2010. The firebrand 2004 Orange Revolution leader still managed to issue a statement from detention calling on Ukraine to oust Yanukovych from power. “Every one of us has to fight this dictatorship the best they can. Your mass turnout can help overcome ballot rigging,” she said. “This will be your personal contribution to the removal of Yanukovych from power.” The burly president meanwhile played on his favourite theme: protecting Ukraine from political and economic turbulence. “I voted for stability and economic growth of our country-for our people to live better,” he said after casting his ballot. Western nations fear the October 2011 abuse of power conviction for Tymoshenko is retribution by the president and the European Union has largely shunned Yanukovych in recent months. Yet election-day opinion remained strictly divided in a traditionally splintered nation where the Russianspeaking east supports Yanukovych and the west sides with his more nationalist foes. “I think that it is important to stick to the course we chose in 2010” when Yanukovych beat Tymoshenko, 68-year-old Russian-speaking librarian Raisa Puchkova said in the president’s eastern home town of Donetsk. “As many faults as the opposition has, I hope it still gets enough votes to show the (ruling) Regions Party who is in charge,” 34-year-old translator Vika Barchenko countered after voting in the

capital Kiev. “The Regions are only looking after their own interests.” Concerns that two years of Yanukovych in power have sidelined Ukraine from its democratic course prompted US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton to issue a rare joint appeal to the ruling elite. “Important steps now have to be taken by the Ukrainian government to fulfil its full potential,” the open letter noted while calling for more rights for opposition groups. “Today’s parliamentary vote is an important test for democracy and the rule of law,” German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle added in a message on Sunday. Pre-election opinion polls said Tymoshenko’s opposition Fatherland bloc should clinch second place behind the Regions Party. But in hot pursuit in third is the UDAR (Punch) party headed by world heavyweight boxing champion Klitschko-in politics in the Kiev city council since 2006 but who is now threatening to make

the breakthrough on a national level. “The main thing we have is our reputation. We will do everything not to disappoint people and ensure that Ukraine becomes a European state,” Klitschko said has he cast his ballot. A good performance by the Communists would help the Regions Party. But a wild card would be a strong polling for the ultra-nationalist Freedom party of firebrand Oleg Tyagnybok who is accused by opponents of racist rhetoric. Klitschko’s first steps in national politics have made a much bigger impression on voters than those of fellow sports star “Sheva” Shevchenko-a hero not only in Ukraine but also in Italy where he starred for eight years with AC Milan. The inspirational former forward is the deputy head of the Ukraine Forward! movement that opinion polls show picking up no more than three percent of the vote-a miscalculation for a newcomer to Ukraine’s bruising political world. Polling stations close at 1800 GMT, when exit polls are due to be published.—AFP

KHARKIV: One of the inmates of the Kachanivska prison in Kharkiv, where Ukraine’s opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko is jailed, casts her ballot yesterday, during national parliamentary elections. Ukraine’s jailed opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko urged voters not to boycott yesterday’s parliamentary elections because of her forced absence from the polls. —AFP

US, France pressure Algeria to stop fence-sitting on Mali PARIS: France and the United States are on a diplomatic offensive to secure vital Algerian backing for a military intervention in Mali, where Islamist militia are tightening their grip on the north every day. Algeria is the region’s biggest military power by some margin and has been dealing with northern Mali’s top Islamist leaders-most of them are Algerian-for years. “An intervention in northern Mali is possible without the military backing of Algeria but not without its green light,” said Pierre Boilley, the head of the Centre of African Studies, a French think-tank.

France, the former colonial master of both countries, discussed the crisis that has split Mali in two since March during a visit by Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius in July. Mali will again top the agenda when US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton meets President Abdelaziz Bouteflika in Algiers on Tuesday. French President Francois Hollande is expected there in December. Once considered one of Africa’s most promising democracies, Mali has slid into chaos this year. Renegade soldiers overthrew the government of president Amadou Toumani Toure on March 22. The coup

was short-lived but a Tuareg rebellion that had launched a major offensive two months earlier took advantage of the power vacuum to seize the entire northern half of the country. The main secular Tuareg group was soon overpowered by Islamist groups with ties to Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), itself an evolution of a fundamentalist movement involved in Algeria’s bloody civil war. The Islamists, who have been enforcing an extreme form of Islamic law in recent months, have access to the huge supply of Libyan weapons that flooded the region after Moamer

Kadhafi’s demise, heightening fears northern Mali could become what Afghanistan was to the Taliban a decade ago. Experts say Algeria’s huge foreign exchange reserves, its experience in tackling a decades-long Islamist insurgency and the 1,400-kilometre (870mile-) and largely porous border it shares with Mali, give it a crucial role in any intervention. Algeria, home to some 50,000 Tuaregs, had initially opposed plans for an international military force to wrest back Mali’s north, largely due to fears it could spark unrest at home. —AFP

S Africa’s Zuma drops suit over rape cartoon JOHANNESBURG: South African President Jacob Zuma intends to drop a four-year-old lawsuit claiming nearly $600,000 in damages from a cartoonist who depicted him poised to rape “Lady Justice”, a newspaper said yesterday. The Sunday Times, named as a defendant in the case, said it had reached an agreement with Zuma’s lawyers for the suit and all claims to be dropped, including the demand for monetary damages and an apology. Officials for the South African presidency were not immediately available for comment. The civil case had been due to start on Monday. Zuma, facing re-election for leader of the ruling African National Congress (ANC) at the end of the year, has been criticized for pushing laws seen as trying to muzzle the media. If the case went forward, it could have provided ammunition for foes in the party who say he wants to silence his critics through bullying. Zuma had been seeking 4 million rand ($462,300) for defamation from Avusa media and an additional 1 million rand from a former Sunday Times editor for publishing the 2008 cartoon. Ray

Hartley, the current editor, said in the paper: “A lot of time and taxpayer money has been wasted on

Jacob Zuma

an ill-considered effort to curtail free expression.” The cartoon from award-winning Jonathan Shapiro, better known by his pen name “Zapiro”, shows Zuma’s supporters holding down Lady Justice while Zuma stands over the woman with his trousers unzipped. It was published when Zuma was facing corruption charges that could have blocked his path to the presidency. A court in 2006 acquitted Zuma of raping an HIV-positive family friend in a case that garnered widespread public interest in a country with one of the world’s highest recorded rates of sexual violence. Zuma’s ANC took a Johannesburg gallery to court and led massive street rallies earlier this year to protest a painting called “The Spear” that portrayed Zuma with his penis exposed. The ANC, which has ruled since apartheid ended in 1994, called the image racist and intended to tarnish Zuma’s dignity. Zuma’s critics say the image was reflective of his colourful personal life. A Zulu polygamist with four wives and more than 20 children, he has also been caught having extra-marital affairs. — Reuters


i n t e r n at i o n a l

Indian PM overhauls cabinet ahead of polls Biggest reshuffle with seven new faces

NEW DELHI: In a file picture taken on October 12, 2012, India Against Corruption (IAC) activist Arvind Kejriwal (C) is detained by police personnel during a protest against Union Law Minister Salman Khurshid over allegations of irregularities by a non-governmental organisation (NGO) run by him in New Delhi. — AFP

Graft campaigner leaves Indian elite ‘rattled’ NEW DELHI: Arvind Kejriwal chuckles as he considers how his all-out assault on corruption has united India’s political elite in outrage. “All politicians are part of a ruling fraternity, there is no opposition in this country,” says Kejriwal in an interview with AFP. “They are all hand in glove, they share a nice, cosy relationship behind the curtains.” Campaigns against graft are hardly new in India-a country where corruption is a part of daily life for everything from getting a driving licence to a house. But with his targets ranging from government ministers to senior opposition figures and even the Gandhi-Nehru dynasty, Kejriwal has managed to alarm a cross-section of the ruling class as the media laps up his accusations. And while Kejriwal argues it is up to the people to decide whether to join him in purging the establishment, criticism is growing at his tactics as observers worry about erosion of trust in politicians in the world’s biggest democracy. Kejriwal first came to national prominence last year, serving as the chief lieutenant to veteran anti-corruption campaigner Anna Hazare during the latter’s 12-day hunger strike. But while Hazare has since stepped away from the national headlines, his protege has soldiered on and now plans to lead his own political party in a general election due to be held in 2014. Speaking at his headquarters on the outskirts of New Delhi, Kejriwal said corruption had eaten into the very core of the establishment and that he wanted to challenge the sense of helplessness among voters. “We have started a process of cleansing the political system. Let the people decide whether they want to be a part of this new system,” said the 44-year-old who hails from the northern state of Haryana, the capital’s neighbor. “There was a huge amount of cynicism. Earlier when I met people they said they had lost all hope, that nothing would ever change in this country. But now they say our movement has given them fresh hope.” If Hazare’s campaign tapped into a generalized sense of anger and frustration against politics as a whole, Kejriwal has captured headlines with his choice of high-profile targets. Salman Khurshid, India’s law minister and member of the main ruling Congress party, has been accused of misappropriating funds from an NGO that he runs. Nitin Gadkari, president of the main opposition Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP), is facing an official inquiry over claims about

the financing for his business. And even more controversially, Kejriwal has accused Robert Vadra, the son-in-law of India’s most powerful politician Sonia Gandhi, of unfairly benefiting from business deals with a property developer. Prime Minister Manmhohan Singh’s government has been embarrassed by a series of corruption scandals, including over the sale of second-generation (2G) telecoms licences and of coal mining tenders at far below their commercial value. Kejriwal has been accused in some quarters of acting as a judge and jury and acting irresponsibly with his naming and shaming tactics. “If every second day you come up with new allegations, then the common man gets confused, he starts losing interest,” Sanjay Kumar, a fellow at the New Delhi-based Centre for the Study of Developing Societies said. “It would be better if he follows up one issue for some time before jumping on to another. He seems to be in a hurry.” Khurshid has compared Kejriwal to an ant who is trying to destroy an elephant, referring to Gandhi’s Congress party. “This is a pipe-dream that some people have, that if they destroy everything that exists, parties that exist with long years of history in a frenzy of unreasonable and senseless attack, those parties will disappear and the field will be clear for them,” he told the Press Trust of India. But Kejriwal, a diminutive and bespectacled former civil servant, says the backlash vindicates his campaign. “These politicians are rattled and baffled, they are desperate,” he said. “When we exposed Vadra, everyone rushed to his defense. Even the Congress rivals stood up to defend him. I thought he was the son-in-law of Mrs Gandhi, I didn’t know he was the son-in-law of the whole country.” His primary motive, he insists, is not to expose individuals but the entire political system in the country where an “unholy nexus exists between the ruling party and the opposition”. “We have done our job, the media took it up, everyone is coming forward. We are happy we have started the process.” As he speaks in his cramped offices, his in-tray steadily mounts as assistants bring in requests from farmers, small businessmen and even corporate firms to take up the anti-corruption cudgels on their behalf. “People were earlier scared to come forward,” said Kejriwal. “At least our movement has given them the courage to speak up.”— AFP

New Pakistan outreach could aid Afghan peace deal ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has increased efforts to reach out to some of its biggest enemies in Afghanistan, a significant policy shift that could prove crucial to US-backed efforts to strike a peace deal in the neighboring country. The target of the diplomatic push has mainly been non-Pashtun political leaders who have been at odds with Pakistan for years because of the country’s historical support for the Afghan Taleban, a Pashtun movement. Many of the leaders fought against the Taleban when the fundamentalist Islamic group seized control of Afghanistan in the 1990s with Pakistan’s help, and have accused Islamabad of maintaining support for the insurgents following the US-led invasion in 2001 - allegations denied by the government. Many experts agree that Pakistan continues to see the Taleban as an ally, albeit a shaky one, in countering the influence of archenemy India in Afghanistan. But they also say Islamabad no longer believes the insurgents can take over the country or wants them to, a common misperception in the West. “A Taleban victory on the other side of the border would give a huge boost to domestic militants fighting the Pakistani state,” said Zahid Hussain, a journalist who has written extensively about Islamabad’s war against the Pakistani Taleban. Pakistan is also worried that unrest in Afghanistan following the withdrawal of most foreign troops in 2014 could provide the Pakistani Taleban with greater space to establish sanctuaries across the border. The Afghan and Pakistani Taleban are allies but have focused on different enemies. The Afghan Taleban have battled local and foreign forces in Afghanistan, while the Pakistani Taliban have mainly waged war against Islamabad. Pakistan’s concerns have led it to conclude that a peace agreement that includes all

Afghan groups is in its best interests, and contact with its traditional foes among the nonPashtuns is necessary to achieve that goal, said Moeed Yusuf, South Asia adviser for the United States Institute of Peace. “I think the fundamental point here is that there is a serious realization among some people who matter in Pakistan that they can’t continue to put all their eggs in the Taleban basket because it is too shaky,” said Yusuf. “This is a major shift, and a shift that I think everybody should welcome.” The outreach comes as Pakistan, Afghanistan and the US have stepped up efforts to breathe new life into the Taleban peace process, which has been hamstrung by distrust among all the parties involved. The US and Pakistan recently set up working groups to identify which Taleban leaders would be open to reconciliation and to ensure those holed up on Pakistani territory would be able to travel to the site of talks. Pakistan and Afghanistan have been in discussions to revive a joint commission set up to discuss the peace process. Pakistan is seen as key to a peace deal because of its ties with the Taleban, and there is hope that Islamabad’s increased engagement with nonPashtuns in Afghanistan will facilitate the process. “I think one of Pakistan’s realizations is that if you want to play a bigger role to reconcile all these groups, you need to reach out to every group,” said Rahimullah Yousufzai, a Pakistani journalist and expert on the Taleban. “They will be pushing the Taleban to share power with all these people, but it won’t be easy because the Taleban aren’t known to share power and the U.S. doesn’t want to give them a major share.” Islamabad’s historical support for the Taleban and other Pashtuns in Afghanistan, who make up about 40 percent of the population of 30 million, is partly rooted in the sizable number of Pashtuns who live in Pakistan. —AP

NEW DELHI: Indian Premier Manmohan Singh brought seven new faces into his cabinet yesterday in the biggest reshuffle since his re-election as he tried to revive his party’s flagging fortunes before polls due in 2014. Singh named Salman Khurshid, 59, as a replacement for the 80-year-old foreign minister S.M. Krishna as he attempted to dispel the image of a struggling government, which recently lost its majority. However there was no place at the cabinet table for Rahul Gandhi, the 42-year-old scion of the Gandhi-Nehru political dynasty, who once again turned down an offer to enter government. Speaking to reporters after a swearing-in ceremony for the new ministers, Singh said he expected his new team to remain in office until the next elections. “Probably this is the last reshuffle,” the prime minister said at the presidential palace in New Delhi. “I don’t see early elections. Elections will be held in due course.” The law ministry went to Ashwani Kumar, a ruling Congress party loyalist. The other newcomers include Rahman Khan who was named as minority affairs minister, Ajay Maken who becomes housing minister and Dinsha Patel who is now mines minister. They will be joined by Pallam Raju, who was promoted to human resources development minister. Harish Rawat was placed in charge of water resources and Chandresh Kumari was appointed culture minister. Singh named parliamentary affairs minister Pawan Kumar Bansal as new railways minister, a post which became vacant following the pullout of a regional ally, Trinamool, from the ruling coalition in September. The government has been mired in scandal in recent months, most notably by revelations surrounding the tender process for state-owned coal mines. Economic growth, which had been touching double figures at the beginning of Singh’s second term, has now slowed down to around five percent. Trinamool’s pullout in protest at a series of economic reforms means the government is now a minority administration. It is no immediate danger of falling as it has secured the support of another regional party which is outside cabinet. India’s two largest opposition parties scoffed at the shakeup, dubbing it a futile exercise by a scandal-tainted government. “It is a vain exercise by the government to refurbish its image in the

face of the corruption charges it is facing,” Rajiv Pratap Rudi, spokesman of the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party, told AFP. Communists, who have dubbed the recent rush of reforms by the government as “anti-people”, also mocked the long-awaited revamp. “The policies of the government will be the same they have been pursuing,” Prakash Karat, general secretary of the Communist Party of India-Marxist, told AFP. Analysts too doubted that yesterday’s overhaul would do much for Congress’s fortunes when the country votes in an election scheduled for the spring of 2014. “The cabinet reshuffle is a wake-up call which has come too late, just as the big-ticket reforms have come too late,” said Ajay Saha, a political scientist at Delhi University.

Khurshid said the new ministers were expected to think “out of the box”. The new foreign minister told reporters that he saw “great opportunities... but also great challenges to peace and prosperity in our world”. Singh confirmed that he had offered a cabinet post to Rahul Gandhi, whose father, grandmother and great-grandfather all served as prime minister, but the offer was declined. “I wanted Rahul Gandhi in government but he wants to strengthen the party,” Singh said. Gandhi currently serves as a member of parliament and heads the youth wing of the main ruling Congress party. Singh himself, who turned 80 last month, is not expected to run for a third term in office. — AFP

NEW DELHI: India’s former law minister Salman Khurshid, left, who was named as external affairs minister, shares a light moment with newly appointed power minister Jyotiraditya Scindia during the swearing-in ceremony for the new ministers in New Delhi, India, yesterday. India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh reshuffled his Cabinet yesterday in a bid to overhaul his government’s image ahead of state and national elections over the next 18 months. —AP

Indonesia militant arrests show shift to violence JAKARTA: Indonesia’s arrest of 11 suspected Islamic militants it said planned to attack the US embassy and a plaza near Australia’s embassy is evidence that legal extremist groups are turning to violence, analysts said yesterday. The arrests could also step up pressure on the government of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, criticised for doing too little to curb religious intolerance in the country which has the world’s largest Muslim population. Anti-terrorist squad Detachment 88 squad seized bomb-making equipment and one bomb ready to be used by militant group Harakah Sunni for the Indonesian Society (HASMI), National Police spokesman Suhardi Alius said. The arrests by the elite squad on the island of Java were the latest in a crackdown against militants during which dozens have been arrested and at least seven killed. They come 10 years this month after a bomb attack on Bali killed 202 people, most of them foreign tourists. “The first piece of evidence was found at a housing complex in Madiun (Java), a bomb ready to detonate, as well as raw materials for bomb making and instruction books on how to make bombs,” Alius said. He listed targets as the US consulate in Surabaya, East Java, its embassy in Jakarta, Plaza 89 in Jakarta, which is in front of the Australian embassy, and the offices of prominent mining company Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold. HASMI also planned to attack the Mobile Police Brigade in the central Java city of Srondol, he said, adding that the spiritual leader of the group had been arrested. The State Department in Washington declined to comment. A spokeswoman for the US Defense Department said she was unaware of any request by the State Department to

increase security at its embassy in Jakarta. Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade declined to comment on security at its Jakarta embassy and a spokesperson said it had no information to suggest Australian citizens or interests were the group’s intended target. HASMI first surfaced in 2009 as a small “above ground extremist” organisation based in West Java and with links to the Islamic Defenders Front (FPI), said Todd Elliott, a terrorism analyst at Concord Consulting in Jakarta. HASMI participated in protests against churches in West Java in 2010 as well as protests against Israel and their overall goal was the establishment of Sharia law in Indonesia, he said. Until now, HASMI has not been linked to illegal activity. It existed, like the FPI, as a militant pressure group separate from Indonesia’s banned militant organisations, Elliott said. “They (HASMI) definitely pose a very real threat. We are seeing the next step in a bigger trend of above ground extremist groups crossing over into violence,” he told Reuters. Members of the FPI had also been implicated in previous attacks, including a suicide attack on a mosque used by police in Cirebon, West Java, in 2011, he said. The suspected militants could be former members of HASMI, a Salafi group, said Jim DellaGiacomo, Southeast Asia project director at the International Crisis Group think tank. Salafi Muslims are generally against violence but there are cases in which they turned to violence, Della-Giacomo said. “The apparent choice of the US embassy as a target shows that the so-called ‘far enemy’ is still a desirable target among Indonesian jihadis ... and not just Indonesian police or the socalled ‘near enemy’ who have been preferred in recent times,” he said.— Reuters

JAVA ISLAND: Indonesia police guards the US consulate compound in Surabaya located in Indonesia’s eastern Java island yesterday. Indonesian police yesterday arrested 11 members of an Islamic group allegedly planning attacks on American diplomatic missions, a spokesman said, in the latest terror alert to hit the country. The group had planned to hit the US embassy and the US consulate in Surabaya police said. — AFP


in brief

Woman held on drug charges ISLAMABAD: A British woman, held in Pakistan on charges of drug smuggling, has been sent back to prison with her newborn daughter after giving birth in a hospital, a British legal group said yesterday. Khadija Shah, 25, is being held on charges of trying to smuggle heroin worth nearly $5 million onto a flight to Britain. She gave birth to her baby girl Malaika a few weeks ago but was returned from hospital to Adiala prison near the capital Islamabad. The birth was not reported until yesterday. The baby has had no immunisations and has already had to be hospitalised when she developed severe diarrhoea in the unsanitary prison, said British legal group Reprieve. “To keep a baby behind bars is truly barbaric. Baby Malaika is weak and suffering from terrible health problems while Khadija faces execution. No mother would wish this scenario on their worst enemy,” Reprieve investigator Sultana Noon said in a statement. Shah has two other young children. After a period of incarceration when their mother was arrested in May this year, they were freed into the care of a relative. Quake hits Pakistan ISLAMABAD: A moderate 5.5-magnitude earthquake struck northwestern and northern Pakistan yesterday, with tremors felt in several cities, but officials said there were no immediate reports of damage or casualties. The epicentre was on the country’s border with Afghanistan and Tajikistan at a depth of 201 kilometres (125 miles), regional meteorological chief S. Mushtaq Shah told AFP. The quake was felt in several northwestern cities including Peshawar, Nowshera, Mardan and Charsadda and also in the northern town of Chitral, he said. Pakistan was hit by a 7.6-magnitude earthquake on October 8, 2005, that killed more than 73,000 people and left about 3.5 million homeless, mainly in Pakistan-controlled Kashmir and parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Bomb kills three PESHAWAR: A bomb explosion killed at least three people and wounded more than 20 others at a Sufi shrine in Pakistan’s northwestern city of Nowshera yesterday, police said. The explosion took place near the main gate of Kaka Saheb shrine in the city while people were visiting it on the second day of the Muslim religious festival of Eid-al-Adha. “It was a bomb explosion, which killed three people and wounded more than 20 others,” senior local police official Hussain Khan told AFP. The shrine itself did not sustain major damage. Mian Iftikhar Hussain, information minister for the Khyber Pakhthunkhwa province where the attack occurred, also confirmed the incident and casualties. He said: “According to our initial information it was a remote-controlled bomb but we are waiting for a final report from the bomb disposal officials.” The shrine houses the grave of a famous Pashtun Sufi saint Kasteer Gul, who is known as Kaka Saheb. There was no immediate claim of responsibility, but Taliban and Al-Qaeda linked militants have frequently targeted shrines as part of a five-year insurgency concentrated in the northwest.



China premier’s family denies huge wealth BEIJING: Lawyers have denied a report that Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao’s family has amassed $2.7 billion in “hidden riches,” a Hong Kong newspaper said yesterday. The New York Times said in a lengthy article Friday that most of the alleged wealth was accumulated by Wen’s relatives after he rose to high office in 2002. Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post newspaper published a letter yes-

terday it said was written by two lawyers for Wen’s family, Bai Tao and Wang Weidong, saying that The Times’ report was untrue. It said family members have not conducted any illegal business activities, do not hold shares in any companies, and that Wen has never been involved in his family’s business activities or allowed those activities to influence his policies. A spokeswoman for The Times,

Eileen Murphy, said the newspaper was “standing by our story, which we are incredibly proud of and which is an example of the quality investigative journalism The Times is known for.” In an article Saturday reporting on the lawyers’ statement, The Times said its earlier article did not allege any illegal business activity and that there was no evidence that Wen had personally intervened to help family members’ investments.

“ The article pointed out that as prime minister in a country where the state plays a large role in the economy, Mr. Wen oversaw many government officials whose decisions could play a large role in the fortunes of businesses and investors,” it said. Recent foreign media reports about wealth accumulated by Chinese leaders and their families have added to tensions as China prepares next month for a once-a-decade leadership

transfer. In particular, The Times’ report is a blow to Wen’s reputation as a politician concerned with bettering the lives of ordinary Chinese. Chinese authorities have blocked access to The Times’ English website and its Chineselanguage site that carried a translated version of the story. Searches for the names of Wen, his wife and son on China’s popular Twitter-like Sina Weibo microblogging site also were blocked yesterday. — AP

Tensions mount as police grab protesters in China Residents fear health risks from industrial projects

SITTWE: Muslims from Kyaukphyu town in Rakhine State who fled to Sittwe a few days ago because of clashes are seen at Thechaung shore near Sittwe town yesterday. More than 22,000 people from mainly Muslim communities have been forced to flee their homes in western Myanmar, the UN said, after a fresh wave of violence and arson that left dozens dead. —AFP

Over 26,000 displaced by Myanmar unrest: UN SITT WE: Homeless people fled to packed camps or clustered near their charred houses in western Myanmar yesterday, amid ongoing unrest that the UN said displaced 26,500 from mainly Muslim communities. Dozens have died and whole neighbourhoods have been razed in clashes that began last week between Buddhists and Muslims in Rakhine state, putting further strain on relief efforts in the region. The United Nations, which has warned that the bloodshed could imperil Myanmar’s reforms, said an estimated 26,500 — including 4,000 who fled in boats to the state capital Sittwe-had been forced from their homes by the fresh violence. This adds to some 75,000 people already crammed into overcrowded camps after unrest in June. Thousands of homes have been destroyed in the latest wave of arson. A Rakhine official who declined to be identified said violence flared again yesterday in the Pauktaw area, one of around eight affected townships. Most of those made homeless have remained near their villages, according to the UN, raising concerns about getting aid to remote areas. Those who fled to Sittwe told AFP of their despair and horror. “They torched our houses. My child was killed, my husband as well. That will not change even if I stay. Please kill all of us. It’s all I want,” said Cho Cho, a Muslim cradling a baby in her arms as she sat among throngs of displaced people on the shore near a camp on the outskirts of the city. The distraught 28-year-old said she was afraid of more attacks. “I do not want to stay in Rakhine State. I really hate it.” The displaced described fleeing in panic as attackers came, scattering families and forcing people to escape with nothing. “My father didn’t arrive. My sons didn’t arrive,” 40-year-old Mar Nu told AFP, saying she was still dizzy from the terror of the flight by boat. Animosity between Buddhists and minority Rohingya Muslims, that has simmered for decades, erupted in the state in June after the apparent rape and murder of an ethnic Rakhine woman sparked a series of vicious revenge attacks. The latest fighting has killed more than 80 people, according to a government official, bringing the total death toll since June to above 170. Myanmar’s 800,000 stateless Rohingya are seen as

illegal immigrants from neighbouring Bangladesh by the Myanmar government and many Burmese-who call them “Bengalis”. They face discrimination that activists say has led to a deepening alienation from Buddhists. The UN said 21,700 of those made homeless in the new fighting were from Islamic communities. “It is mainly the Muslims who have been displaced,” the UN’s chief in Yangon, Ashok Nigam, told AFP. Nigam, who had just returned from a visit to affected areas, said the UN was concerned both about the potential for a further spread of violence and the difficulty of reaching the displaced in remote areas. In Minbya township a senior police official told AFP that more than 4,000 victims, mainly Muslims, had seen their homes torched. Many were staying in tents near their incinerated properties. The official said a heightened security presence had prevented further clashes. “They are staying between Muslims and Rakhine people,” he said. The communal unrest is seen as presenting a serious challenge to Myanmar’s new quasi-civilian government, which has ushered in a series of reforms since replacing a feared junta last year. Zaw Htay, an official from the office of President Thein Sein, said that under a state of emergency imposed after the June unrest, security had been tightened across Rakhine state. But the new violence had “occurred in unexpected areas”, he said. Human Rights Watch Saturday released satellite images showing “extensive destruction of homes and other property in a predominantly Rohingya Muslim area” of Kyaukpyu-the site of a major pipeline taking gas to China. The images show a stark contrast between the coastal area as seen in March this year, packed with hundreds of dwellings and fringed with boats. In the aftermath of the latest violence, virtually all structures appear to have been wiped from the landscape. Other Muslims in Rakhine state have also been swept up in the latest violence. Near the camps in Sittwe, many of the displaced people whom AFP spoke to said they were Kaman, a Muslim minority recognised as one of Myanmar’s more than 130 ethnic groups. “My father is Muslim and my mother is Buddhist... They attacked us by defining us as ‘Rohingya’. We are not Rohingya. — AFP

BANGKOK: A Thai living in the US, holds a placard as she joins an anti-government demonstration at a turf club in Bangkok, Thailand yesterday. According to police, about 8,000 people took part in the demonstration accusing the government of misadminister, corruption and not protecting the royal family. — AP

NINGBO: Thousands of protesters marched through an eastern Chinese city yesterday, shouting for fellow citizens to join them in demanding that the government halt the expansion of a petrochemical factory because of pollution fears. The demonstration in Ningbo city in wealthy Zhejiang province is the latest this year over fears of health risks from industrial projects, as Chinese who have seen their living standards improve become more outspoken against environmentally risky projects in their areas. Such protests are exactly what the Chinese leadership does not want ahead of next month’s once-a-decade transition of power, with stability being paramount. “We can only depend on ourselves now, we can’t count on the government to think about us,” said one protester, a 40-year-old woman surnamed Jing. Hundreds of residents headed from a city square toward the offices of the municipal government yesterday. They were stopped by police at the gate, where they shouted for the release of people reportedly detained a day earlier. Tensions rose after about 200 riot police walked out of the gate, tore down banners that people had hung in trees and grabbed at least three protesters, carrying them into the government compound. The protesters threw plastic bottles and chanted “Release the people.” Riot police with batons later surrounded the government offices. Some protesters later marched away from the offices in an apparent effort to round up more support. Hundreds roamed along nearby shopping streets. Police diverted traffic to allow them to pass down a main road. The protests began Friday in the coastal district of Zhenhai, where the petrochemical factory is located. On Saturday they spread to the center of Ningbo city, whose officials oversee Zhenhai. Residents reported that Saturday’s protests involved thousands of people and turned violent after authorities used tear gas and arrested participants. Authorities said “a few” people disrupted public order by staging sit-ins, unfurling banners, distributing fliers and obstructing roads. Authorities said that the proposed project was under evaluation and that the public was being given opportunities to offer its input. The crowds in Ningbo are a slice of China’s rising middle class that poses an increasingly boisterous challenge to the country’s incoming leadership: Armed with expensive smartphones, Internet connectivity and higher expectations than the generations before them, their impatience with the government’s customary lack of response is palpable in every fist pump and every rendition of the national anthem they shout. A 30-year-old

woman surnamed Wang said officers took her to a police station Saturday and made her sign a guarantee that she would not participate in any more protests, but she came back yesterday anyway. “They won’t even let us sing the national anthem,” Wang said. “They kept ask-

we need to live in a green environment. This is a reasonable request,” Yu said. “But the government only puts out some statement and refuses to see us and also suppresses us. I don’t know how else we can express our views.” The Zhenhai district government, which

NINGBO: Chinese protesters march to protest against the construction of a 55.9 billion yuan ($8.9 billion) chemical plant in Ningbo, east China’s Zhejiang province yesterday. Authorities in east China ordered a security crackdown yesterday after thousands of locals clashed with police during a protest over the construction of a chemical plant. — AFP ing me who the leader of the protests was and I said that this is all voluntary. We have no leader.” Marchers included the elderly and children, as well as some pet poodles. People held up smartphones and tablet computers recording the protest and tried to send information to others through mobile Internet connections. In a sign that censors were at work, the name “Zhenhai” - the city district where the factory is located - was blocked on China’s popular microblogging site Sina Weibo, and searches for “chemical expansion project” were greeted with the line that “Some search results are not shown according to regulations.” Those that were visible included postings from media sites that said authorities were holding meetings to hear public opinion. Some protesters wore face masks and shouted slogans including “Protect Ningbo” and “Return my health.” “We have to do this for our future and our family’s future,” said protester Jing as she pointed to the smoggy air. “The sky was so clear when I was a child. Look at it now.” Another protester, Yu Yibing, said he wanted the factory to be closed, not expanded, and his 7-year-old son to grow up in a clean environment. “As the common people,

comes under the Ningbo government, said Ningbo’s Communist Party chief, Wang Huizhong, and mayor, Liu Qi, had held discussions with local residents Saturday night. A statement on the district government’s website yesterday said the opinions and advice of the people who attended were “very helpful” to the party committee and municipal government’s decision making and that the expansion project was “at an early stage.” “We will further solicit opinions and respond to people’s concerns and actively respond to people’s reasonable requests and demands,” the statement said. The official Xinhua News Agency said the planned project is designed to produce 15 million tons of refined oil and 1.2 million tons of ethylene per year and belongs to Sinopec Zhenhai Refining & Chemical Co., which has invested 55.87 billion yuan ($8.9 billion). Calls to Zhenhai police and the propaganda department of Ningbo police rang unanswered yesterday. Past environmental protests have targeted a waste-water pipeline in eastern China and a copper plant in west-central China. A week ago, hundreds protested for several days in a small town on China’s Hainan island over a coal-fired power plant. — AP

3 Philippine marines, 2 militants killed in clash MANILA: Philippine marines who were searching for long-held hostages battled al-Qaeda-linked militants in a fierce clash yesterday that killed three marines and two insurgents in the south, officials said. The fighting erupted after dawn yesterday and continued sporadically through the day in the mountainous hinterlands of Patikul town in Sulu province, where the Abu Sayyaf movement has survived in jungle encampments despite years of US-backed Philippine military offensives. At least 10 other marines were wounded in yesterday’s clash, regional military spokesman Lt. Col. Randolph Cabangbang said. Regional military commander Maj. Gen. Rey Ardo ordered air force planes and navy ships to back up the government forces, ensure the recovery of the slain marines and transport the wounded to a hospital. Cabangbang said the marines had been deployed in Patikul to check the reported sighting of hostages held by the Abu Sayyaf, which has been blamed for separate kidnappings of two Europeans, a Japanese, a Jordanian and two Filipinos. The marines stumbled upon an undetermined number of militants under Abu Sayyaf commander Radulan Sahiron and allied gunmen of Tahir Sali of the larger rebel group Moro National Liberation Front, setting off a clash. Sahiron and Sali, who maintain encampments in Patikul’s jungles, have long been suspected of collaborating to carry out kidnappings to raise funds, officials said. The Europeans - Ewold Horn of the Netherlands and Lorenzo Vinciguerra of Switzerland were seized by gunmen in February while bird watching in the southernmost island province of Tawi Tawi. They were later moved to nearby Jolo island in Sulu province, where they have been sighted by villagers in the custody of Abu Sayyaf gunmen, according to police. Police initially believed the two were seized by ordinary kidnapping gangs. Aside from the Europeans, the militants are believed to be holding a Japanese treasure hunter, along with a Jordanian TV journalist and two Filipino crewmen who reportedly traveled to Abu Sayyaf encampments in Sulu to interview the militants in June but have failed to return. — AP

ZHOUSHAN: In this file photo taken Friday, Oct. 19, 2012, Chinese navy vessels take part in a drill in Zhoushan in east China’s Zhejiang province. Backed by what is now the world’s second-largest military budget behind the US, the People’s Liberation Army is bristling with new armaments and is becoming increasingly assertive. That has distressed neighbors such as Japan, Vietnam and the Philippines, all locked in disputes with China over island territory potentially rich in oil, and has prompted the US to send more military assets to the region. — AP

Japan says four Chinese ships in disputed waters TOKYO: Four Chinese maritime surveillance ships were spotted in territorial waters around disputed Tokyo-controlled islands yesterday, Japan’s coastguard said. The ships entered Japan’s 12nautical-mile territorial waters around the East China Sea islands at around 0200 GMT and sailed out to the contiguous zone after a few hours, the coastguard said. It said the Chinese ships were not the same as those which spent several hours on Thursday in territorial waters around the islands claimed by both Tokyo and Beijing. That incursion provoked a strong protest by Japan. The socalled contiguous zone is an area that extends a further 12 nautical miles beyond the territorial waters. China’s state news agency Xinhua, cit-

ing the country ’s State Oceanic Administration, said the vessels were engaged in “routine patrols and law enforcement activities” in the waters. It said the Chinese fleet told the Japanese coastguard ships to “immediately leave China’s territory”, while monitoring them “for the purpose of collecting evidence of infringement on China’s sovereignty”. Tensions have risen in recent months over the islands, known as Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China, which lie in rich fishing grounds. The seabed in the area is also believed to harbor mineral reserves. Tokyo and Beijing are reportedly preparing for talks on the row which has hit multi-billion dollar trade ties between Asia’s two largest economies. — AFP


NEWS Liberals and Islamists in rare alliance Continued from Page 1 “There is an overlapping interest in Kuwait’s many political factions despite their differences. They want balance of power in the political game.” Islamists and their allies want power. They are pressing hard to reclaim their hold on the country’s legislature, which is the most politically empowered among the Gulf Arab states. Meanwhile, liberals are rallying around claims the rulers are overreaching. Many have strongly objected to the government’s hard-ball political efforts over the past months that included disbanding the opposition-controlled parliament. This has become the meeting point for the unusual joint onslaught - that could become the most broadbased challenge to Kuwait’s leadership since it was restored by the 1991 US-led invasion that drove out Saddam Hussein’s forces. “Today we unite together in fighting a bigger entity. The autocracy in Kuwait is stopping true democratic life. We must fight autocracy first,” said Lama Al-Othman, a human rights activist and liberal columnist for Aljarida newspaper. “As a liberal, my fight with the Islamist opposition is always ongoing,” she continued. “I refuse repression, I refuse it when it’s practiced by the opposition and I also refuse it when it’s practiced by the government.” At last Sunday’s protest rally, which drew thousands of people, fully veiled women marched alongside others wearing jeans and their hair in ponytails. Men in the traditional white robes of the Gulf chanted with college-age students in t-shirts. Riot police used tear gas and stun grenades against protesters who defied orders to limit the rally to a site in front of the parliament building. Dozens were reported injured or overcome by the gas clouds. The monarchy still

has wide public support and many - even those currently siding with Islamists - would likely favor the ruling system if any serious attempts were made by Islamist conservatives to impose strict social rules such as curfews on women and sex-segregated universities. Othman, the rights activist, said the move pushed some liberals to join the Islamist-led protests. “It’s more important for me to fight a repressive government that refused to admit that the majority of the people have voted for Islamists,” she said. Fay Al-Qassar, a 25year-old political science graduate who favors liberal causes, said she was angered by the crackdowns on last week’s protest marchers. “I realized we have to be more proactive if we want things to get better,” she said. Mohammed Al-Dallal, a member of Kuwait’s branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, claimed the Islamists do not seek to bring strict Muslim codes to Kuwait. But the now-disbanded parliament pushed for laws that demanded “modest” dress for women and sought to make Islamic law the exclusive source for all future legislation. “Our battle against autocratic rule can take years, but we will go with it,” he said. Some liberal political leaders, meanwhile, believe anyone who broke ranks to join the Islamists will live to regret the choice. “This is not a fight for liberty,” said Bassam Al-Asoussi, a member of Kuwait’s liberal faction the Democratic Forum. “In any revolution, three things should be present: demands for equality, liberty and justice. The opposition today is against these very things.” Eman Al-Bedah, another columnist for the Aljarida newspaper, said: “I don’t think that they will clamp down the freedoms of the people. I know so. I am certain.” — AP

Syrian pilgrims curse Assad in haj... Continued from Page 1 Although Saudi Arabia has led Arab efforts to isolate Assad and has supported the rebels with money and logistics, it wants to make sure the haj remains free of politics. Responding to a question about the protest, Makkah Governor Prince Khaled Al-Faisal said he was not aware of the incident. “This congregation (haj) is not political, economic or anything else. It is for worshiping God,” he said, echoing statements made by other Saudi officials in recent days. Prince Khaled declared the pilgrimage a success, saying that all rites have been conducted peacefully without any major incident. He put the final number of people who attended haj this year at 3.6 million people. The Saudi Health Ministry, in a report on the haj, said there had been no major outbreaks of disease reported despite the large number of people, thanks to strict health precautions. At yesterday’s protest, dozens of security guards already deployed in the area stood by without interfering. “Syria lives forever in spite of you, Assad,” the protesters shouted as they streamed past a giant wall at Jamarat Bridge used for the ritual stoning of the devil, one of the main rites of the haj. “We don’t want Bashar, all Syrians raise your arms,” others shouted. Syrian pilgrims were few at this year’s haj as the deadly civil war rages between the Assad regime and

rebels that a rights group says has so far left more than 35,000 people dead. Damascus has claimed that Riyadh barred Syrians from attending the haj, but Saudi officials have repeatedly denied the allegation, claiming to have issued some 10,000 visas to Syrian refugees now in Lebanon, Turkey and Jordan. Saudi Arabia, along with Qatar and Turkey, has supported the Syrian rebels with funds and arms in their fight against Assad’s forces. On Friday, the Imam of the Grand Mosque, Sheikh Saleh Mohammed Al-Taleb, called on the world to take “practical and urgent” steps to stop the bloodshed in Syria. “The world should bear responsibility for this prolonged and painful disaster, and responsibility is greater for the Arabs and Muslims who should call on each other to support the oppressed against the oppressor,” he said in his Eid Al-Adha sermon. The Syrian crisis had earlier been evident at Mount Arafat, scene of another of the haj’s main rites, where some Syrians held up rebel flags on Thursday despite a call by Saudi Arabia’s grand mufti to avoid national and factional slogans. “We want to make our voices heard because no one seems to listen to us,” said Sabri, 27, a Syrian who lives in Saudi Arabia, as he held up the rebel black, white and green flag. “This is not a political protest. It’s more of a humanitarian demonstration because the Syrian question has become a humanitarian one.” — Agencies





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Washington Watch

Romney’s foreign policy: About face or two-faced? By Dr James J Zogby uring the last few weeks of this Presidential campaign, I have become terribly confused listening to Mitt Romney address America’s foreign policy challenges. I have followed Romney’s every word for almost two years now, and I simply don’t recognize the guy who spoke at Virginia Military Institute on Oct 8 or the one who showed up to debate President Obama last week. Since the beginning of this long campaign, Romney has given ten foreign policy addresses. At every turn he has positioned himself as a severe critic of the Administration, condemning the President for “diminishing American leadership” and “betraying the trust that allies place in the United States”. Taking his cue from his bevy of neo-conservative advisers, Romney has appeared to embrace their tenets and even conflated their projection of American exceptionalism with elements of his own Mormon creed. His message has been that “America must lead through strength” and use its “great power to shape history”. And so it has been baffling to witness the sudden transformation that now sees Romney largely agreeing with President Obama’s approach to several areas and while feigning sharp criticism in others, still fundamentally agreeing with current policy. When he lamented the absence of Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations (after just recently dismissing the entire effort as hopeless) and then offered such benign pronouncements as “we can’t kill our way out of this mess” or “we don’t want another Iraq, we don’t want another Afghanistan”, I became thoroughly unsettled. Listening to this “kinder and gentler” Romney, two questions came to mind. Was all this a tactical ploy to sway undecided voters? Or was this the candidate’s declaration of independence from his neo-conservative advisers (three-quarters of whom are George W Bush alumni)? Since Romney has also selectively veered away from many of his other “severely Conservative” views during the last few weeks of the campaign, I tend to believe that it is more of a crass tactical move than an assertion of independence. In describing Romney’s effort at a “latter day make-over”, President Obama has coined the word “Romnesia” suggesting that the candidate may have forgotten the positions he embraced throughout the campaign. I tend to disagree. I don’t think Romney has forgotten a thing. I think he’s counting on the fact that his base knows the game that’s afoot and is willing to give him space to maneuver. The projection of the “new Romney” is directed at those Americans who are only now tuning in to the presidential contest and being introduced to the candidate for the first time. Romney is hoping that they will get to know him in his newly minted moderate incarnation. He is, likewise, hoping that some undecided voters who have heard him before will not recall the Romney of the primaries and believe that this “kinder and gentler” version is the one running for president. I found it interesting that some non-partisan commentators remarked after the debate that both candidates seemed, at times, a bit off stride. It was no wonder. Romney has been playing a part for years now. Once dismissed as the seemingly moderate Governor of a liberal state, he was dismissed by the religious right and not trusted by the new GOP with its Tea Party activists and neo-conservative brain-trust. And so Romney remade himself into the Conservative darling. Back in 2008 when this transformation began, I didn’t know what was more unbelievable-that Mitt Romney had in fact become a Conservative or that Conservatives really believed that he was a conservative. He embraced his conservative identity to such a degree that in his now infamous taped off-the-cuff conversation with donors, he rather comfortably elaborated on how compatible his hard-line views were with the party’s new mainstream. And so I don’t doubt for a minute that adopting this new moderate posture has a bit disconcerting to candidate Romney. Cynics sometimes say that in politics “the best actor wins”. Becoming a different person and feeling comfortable with the part may have been too much of a stretch for Romney. For my way of thinking the act was too cute by half. I’ve heard of candidates changing their positions on critical issues over a period of years. They sometimes even make a convincing case about the evolution of their views on same-sex marriage, or abortion, or global warming. But to make changes in one night or two weeks, without offering any explanation, is a bit too much to bear or trust. I, therefore, understand the president being caught a bit off stride. He had prepared to debate the candidate whom we had all come to know for the past few years. Even Senator John Kerry, who had taken the Romney part in the President’s debate preparation, expressed his surprise at much of what Romney said. Kerry remarked that these weren’t the positions they had prepared to contest, nor was this the candidate they had prepared to debate. The Mitt Romney who showed up on debate night was a different person. The questions for voters will be: for which Mitt Romney are they being asked to vote? And should he win, which Mitt Romney would show up for work?


NOTE: Dr James J Zogby is the President of the Arab American Institute

All articles appearing on these pages are the personal opinion of the writers. Kuwait Times takes no responsibility for views expressed therein. Kuwait Times invites readers to voice their opinions. Please send submissions via email to: or via snail mail to PO Box 1301 Safat, Kuwait. The editor reserves the right to edit any submission as necessary.

Asia a big focus for next US president By Matthew Pennington hanges could be in store for US-Asian relations, but that has little to do with the presidential race. Lost in the backbiting between President Barack Obama and Republican Mitt Romney over Beijing is their general agreement on how to approach Asia, a region in flux. The winner of the Nov 6 election will need to figure out how to keep Asia’s tensions from boiling over. Leadership changes are imminent in East Asia’s dominant economies - China, Japan and South Korea - in the midst of territorial disputes. The leaders who emerge will be crucial in setting the tone for relations with the US. Just two days after the US election, China begins its oncein-a-decade Communist Party Congress that will usher in a new crop of party leaders. Japan is expected to hold elections within months as the popularity of the country’s seventh prime minister in seven years sinks. In December, South Korea holds presidential elections that are likely to set it on a more conciliatory track in its relations with North Korea. The US relationship with China affects the entire region. Many Asian countries look to China as their main trading partner, but they regard the longstanding US security presence as a defense against China’s rapid military buildup. Xi Jinping, set to be anointed China’s president in March, is a largely unknown quantity. Some suggest his elite background, military ties and confident air might portend a more assertive hand in foreign policy than the incumbent, Hu Jintao. Bonnie Glaser, a China expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies think tank, said she expects Xi to continue constructive ties with the US While Washington will push Beijing


to adhere to international law and norms, she doesn’t expect a new administration to pick a fight with the new Chinese leadership, which will be focused on increasing economic growth and maintaining domestic stability. “The United States may be to some extent reactive,” Glaser said. “If China is seen as more assertive, challenging US interests anywhere, it will get a tougher US policy.” Romney accuses Obama of being soft on Beijing’s trade violations. Obama attacks Romney’s former business interests for outsourcing jobs. Yet the candidates agree that the United States needs to engage Beijing and make the US presence felt more in the Asia-Pacific, an area of growing economic importance. Obama has deepened ties with China, but there are new areas of tension. Beijing is accusing Washington of shutting out major Chinese companies, particularly its technology giants that are seeking a foothold in America. US diplomatic interest in maritime territorial disputes between China and its neighbors in the South China Sea also annoys Beijing. Washington is keeping a lower profile in a potentially more explosive territorial spat that has flared between China and staunch US ally Japan. US treaty obligations, however, require it to help Japan if disputed islands in the East China Sea come under attack. China has sent ships to the area in a show of force, and Japan shows no sign of making diplomatic concessions. If Japanese opposition leader Shinzo Abe gains power in elections that unpopular Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda is expected to call soon, tamping down tensions will become even tougher. Abe, a former prime minister with nationalist tendencies, is considered a hawk on China. The next US administration will have to deal with South Korea’s leadership change and how that affects cooperation on

North Korea, a perennial regional flashpoint. Obama has hewed to the tough stance of President Lee Myung-bak, but the next South Korean leader is expected to pursue a more conciliatory approach to the North, which could make it tougher to coordinate policy. There is little appetite in Washington to try for a new agreement aimed at the North dismantling its nuclear weapons program in exchange for aid. A February pact to give food in return for nuclear concessions collapsed when the North fired a longrange rocket. The North has hinted it could discard 2005 commitments on denuclearization and declare itself a nuclear state, which would be unacceptable to Washington. Judging from comments by policy advisers, Obama remains open to US-North Korean talks but first seeks concrete steps from the North on halting missile and nuclear tests and freezing uranium enrichment. A Romney administration probably would seek tougher penalties, which might put it at odds with a more moderate South Korean policy, although a sudden disagreement with Seoul on nuclear issues is unlikely. North Korea, which counts China as its only major ally, has scarcely registered as an issue in the election campaign. The only Asia-related policy promise that has garnered attention has been Romney’s vow to designate China as a currency manipulator, a step that could strain US-China ties. History shows that the China relationship is prone to dramatic ups and downs. Within three months of taking office in 2001, President George W Bush was thrust into a China crisis after a collision between a US spy plane and a Chinese fighter jet. Under Bush’s predecessor, Bill Clinton, US-China relations started badly, then improved, only to deteriorate sharply after the mistaken US aerial bombing of Beijing’s embassy in Belgrade in 1999. — AP

No decisive end seen in Afghan war By Robert Burns new chapter of the Afghanistan war is opening with a slimmed-down Western force doing more advising than fighting, a resilient Taleban showing little interest in peace talks, and Americans tempted to pull the plug on a conflict now in its 12th year. A decisive end seems nowhere in sight. The allied offensive that just ended, spearheaded by an influx of 30,000 US troops, hammered the Taleban in its southern strongholds. Yet the insurgency persists as the American-led international military coalition hands off security responsibilities to the Afghans before exiting in two years. “We are probably headed for stalemate in 2014,” says Stephen Biddle, a George Washington University political science professor who has advised US commanders in Afghanistan and Iraq. If that is the case, the US will have to pump billions of dollars a year into Afghanistan for decades to prevent its collapse, Biddle says. What began in Oct 2001 under the Pentagon’s hopeful banner of “Operation Enduring Freedom” has hardened into enduring resistance. The Taleban take heavy losses but regenerate as fast as they fall. They also maintain links to a range of other extremist groups, including Al-Qaeda and the Pakistan-based Haqqani network. US commanders say with confidence that their war campaign is on track, and President Barack Obama seemed to agree in his debate last Monday with challenger Mitt Romney. “ There’s no reason why Americans should die when Afghans are perfectly capable of defending their own country,” Obama said. Yet the path forward is dotted with question marks: • Will Afghanistan’s security forces be capable of holding off the Taleban on their own? Afghan forces outnumber the Taleban by more than 10-to-1, but currently not a single Afghan army battalion is capable of operating in the field without American advisers. • If the Afghan forces falter, will the US extend its stay or send in reinforcements to avoid a Taleban takeover? • Will the US-led military coalition hold together even as France and others dash for the exits in coming months? • Will enough Afghans come to embrace


the corrupt government in Kabul as a preferred alternative to the militant Taleban? • Will the Afghans manage a peaceful transfer of power after a presidential election scheduled for 2014, in which President Hamid Karzai cannot run again? The independent International Crisis Group warned this month of a “precipitous slide toward state collapse” unless steps are taken soon to prevent a repeat of the “chaos and chicanery” of the 2009 presidential election and the 2010 parliamentary vote. US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, who championed the additional American troops, remains optimistic. “We’ve come too far, we’ve fought too many battles, we have spilled too much blood not to finish the job that we are all about,” Panetta said in Brussels this month after meeting with his counterparts from NATO nations. The “job” Panetta referenced is no longer to defeat the Taleban before 2015 or to eradicate Al-Qaeda in its Afghan redoubts, but to create an Afghan security force that can at least hold the substantial gains achieved by the US-led international alliance. It’s not even clear whether the US still expects to get peace negotiations with them started by 2015. US officials have said for years that the Taleban were unlikely to

talk peace unless they felt their battlefield chances were slipping away. Those chances did take a heavy hit when the fresh American forces came on, yet the Taleban still show no appetite for negotiations. Nevertheless, coalition military officers still speak of softening up the Taleban. “Our task is to put our fist down the throat of the Taleban and squeeze his heart so that he will talk,” said Australian Maj Gen Stephen Day, the coalition’s chief of plans. He argues that the additional troops made the Taleban “a bit more quiescent,” if not yet willing to negotiate. Panetta and others assert that the troop increase also drove the Taleban farther from population centers and created an opportunity for the Afghan army and police to grow in numbers and experience. The US now has 66,000 troops in Afghanistan, joined by about 37,000 from allied countries. Decisions on how many more US troops to withdraw next year won’t come before the presidential election, but there are abundant signs that additional reductions will be ordered at some stage in 2013. Army Brig Gen John Charlton, a deputy commander of coalition forces in Afghanistan’s eastern provinces, says he is

This photo taken Oct 10, 2012 shows Army Brig Gen John Charlton (left, foreground) talking to members of the Afghan National Civil Order Police at a military base in Ghazni Province, Afghanistan.— AP

emphasizing to Afghan military leaders that the time has passed when they can expect the coalition to bear the lion’s share of the fighting. “Starting now, you’ve got to step it up,” he said he’s now telling them. Charlton and other US commanders interviewed recently in Kabul and at several remote outposts in eastern Afghanistan said they see marked improvement in the performance and confidence of Afghan forces this year. Roger Noble, an Australian brigadier general who is a deputy operations chief for the international coalition, said he sees “pockets of excellence,” but others see mediocrity and worse in the wider pool of Afghan forces. Noble acknowledged that Afghan soldiers are sometimes disillusioned with superiors whose corruption saps morale. Some US commanders express worry that no matter how much better the Afghan forces get before most Western forces go home in 2014, it could all be for naught if the Afghan government fails to strengthen its legitimacy in the eyes of ordinary Afghans. Adding to a sense of unease is anger over a rising number of killings of US and coalition troops by Afghan soldiers and police out of personal pique or in apparent sympathy with the Taleban. At least 57 coalition personnel, mostly Americans, have been killed so far this year in 40 “insider attacks.” The latest was Thursday, when two US servicemen were killed by a gunman in an Afghan police uniform. After a spurt of insider attacks in August and September, one of Congress’ most vocal advocates of pursuing the war, US Sen John McCain, was so fed up that he called for a re-evaluation of the Obama administration’s troop withdrawal plan, saying it might need to be speeded up. He later said that was a bad option. American public support for the war has dropped precipitously during Obama’s term in the White House. A Pew Research Center poll in early October found that 60 percent of respondents favored removing US troops from Afghanistan as soon as possible, with 35 percent saying they should stay until the country is stable. That’s a nearly complete reversal from a September 2008 Pew Research poll that showed 33 percent wanted troops out as soon as possible and 61 percent said they should stay until the country has stabilized. — AP


sp orts Eishin Flash wins Emperor’s Cup

Harden leaves Thunder

Hatton relaunches career

TOKYO: Eishin Flash stormed to victory in Japan’s Emperor’s Cup yesterday to end a winless streak of more than two years for the five-year-old. Italian Mirco Demuro steered Eishin Flash past favorite Fenomeno to win by half and length in a nail-biting finish and secure a first win since the 2010 Japan Derby. Watched by Japan’s Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko, making a rare appearance at the races, Eishin Flash clocked one minute 57.3 seconds over the 2,000-metre Tokyo Racecourse. Second favorite Rulership finished third, just behind Fenomeno. It was also a first Emperor’s Cup victory for trainer Hideaki Fujiwara, whose horse has won just five of 20 starts. “It was my first time to ride Eishin Flash, my first time Tenno-sho (Emperor’s Cup),” said Demuro after springing from his mount and kneeling before Japan’s Imperial couple. “Everything was new today. (The horse) was so relaxed today,” added the Italian, who pulled off an upset victory with Japanese horse Victoire Pisa at the 2011 Dubai World Cup. — Reuters

NEW YORK: The Oklahoma City Thunder traded James Harden to the Houston Rockets on Saturday after the Western Conference champions were unable to reach an extension agreement with NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year. In the multi-player trade, the Thunder acquired guards Kevin Martin and Jeremy Lamb, two first round picks and a second round pick while center Cole Aldrich and forwards Daequan Cook and Lazar Hayward went the other way along with Harden. “We wanted to sign James to an extension, but at the end of the day, these situations have to work for all those involved,” Thunder general manager Sam Presti said in a statement. “Our ownership group again showed their commitment to the organisation with several significant offers,” he added. “We were unable to reach a mutual agreement and therefore executed a trade that capitalised on the opportunity to bring in a player of Kevin’s calibre, a young talent like Jeremy and draft picks, which will be important to our organisational goal of a sustainable team. “We appreciate James, Cole, Daequan and Lazar’s contributions to the Thunder organisation and this community and wish them the best in the future.” In helping the Thunder reach the NBA Finals, Harden averaged 16.8 points and 3.7 assists last season, and later joined team mates Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook on the gold-medal winning US Olympic team. — Reuters

LONDON: Ricky Hatton has revealed how close he came to suicide during his three-year break from boxing, as he prepares to relaunch his career with a fight next month. The 34-year-old, who won world titles at both welterweight and lightwelterweight, slipped into depression after a brutal second-round knockout by Filipino superstar Manny Pacquiao in his last fight in May 2009. He has revealed that, during the worst bouts of the illness, his girlfriend had to take a knife from him to stop him hurting himself. “I was near to a nervous breakdown; depression, suicidal,” he told BBC Radio Five Live yesterday. “Most mornings my girlfriend would have to come downstairs and take a knife out of my hand. I had a knife at my wrists, I was in a really bad way, just hysterically crying for no reason. “I’ve always liked a little bit of a drink, but my drinking had gone way off the Richter scale. I was having black-outs. “And even if I was stone cold sober, I was trying to kill myself. — AFP

Hanson holds off McIlroy to produce Shanghai surprise SHANGHAI: Sweden’s Peter Hanson capitalised on the early errors of playing partner Rory McIlroy to hold on for a one-shot victory over the world number one at the BMW Masters yesterday. Overnight leader Hanson posted a final round 67 for a 21-under-par total on the Lake Malaren course to capture his second European Tour success in three events and move behind Briton McIlroy at the top of the Race to Dubai standings. The 35-year-old, who won the Dutch Open in September, stretched his advantage at the start of the day from one shot to four when his 23-yearold Ryder Cup-winning team mate recorded back-to-back bogeys from the fourth hole. Double major winner McIlroy regrouped to birdie four of his next eight holes before highlighting his round with a 25-foot eagle putt at the par-five 15th, moments before Hanson walked off with a birdie. Despite a finalhole bogey, Hanson held on to capture a sixth European Tour win while the $1.66 million first prize cheque is easily the biggest of his career. “It’s fantastic to win the BMW Masters and to go head-to-head with the world number one is always nice, but to come out on top, it feels great,” Hanson told reporters. “It’s kind of weird because when you have that kind of lead you’re playing a bit safe and I couldn’t really step it up towards the end, hit the shots and get it up close to the pin. “So it’s lucky we didn’t have to play another two or three holes. “This is by far my biggest win so it feels great as we had just so many guys in the world’s top 10 here... this trophy is very, very special to me.” Despite picking up a cheque for $779,000, McIlroy looked disappointed to be settling for a ninth second place finish on the European Tour. “I didn’t get the best of starts but it started coming together over the back nine... I was aiming to make him

SHANGHAI: Peter Hanson from Sweden holds his champion trophy for photos during the award ceremony of the Masters golf tournament. —AP work for it,” McIlroy said. “It would have been nice to hole that (birdie) putt on the last to have him think a little bit but it wasn’t to be. “He played well and deserved his win. To go out there with the lead and play the way he did and shoot 67 is very impressive, so he was always going to be tough to beat.” McIlroy is not contesting next week’s $7 million WGC-HSBC Champions event at Shenzen and a Hanson victory there would but the Swede ahead of the Briton on the European Tour order of merit. English Ryder Cup team mates Luke Donald (17-under) and Ian Poulter (16under) ensured the top four spots were secured by players who helped Europe register a stunning fightback victory over the US at Medinah last month. —Reuters

Watney wins CIMB Classic KUALA LUMPUR: Nick Watney was $1.3 million richer when he landed the CIMB Classic title yesterday but after using three caddies over the four rounds, including his wife, the American’s cheque will involve some big deductions. Watney, the world number 22, was battling jet-lag and rustiness as he sat way off the pace standing on the 18th tee of his opening round on Thursday when his caddie Chad Reynolds fell ill. With the stifling 34 degrees Celsius temperatures and high humidity in the Malaysia capital forcing Reynolds to seek medical care to deal with heat stroke, Watney looked around for a replacement. With the majority of the crowd following 14-times major winner Tiger Woods, Watney had few options behind the ropes to help lug the heavy bag up the 409 yard last other than short and slender wife Amber. “I was behind the rope watching the round and Nick just waved me over and said ‘Chad is going to go to the first aid tent’ I said ‘ok’. I didn’t know what I was getting myself into,” Amber Watney told reporters yesterday. “I have never done it before but my dad is a caddie on the tour so Nick was telling me it is in the blood.” “I would get out the yardage book but I would have no idea what I’m doing. I don’t play at all,” explained Amber, the daughter of experienced PGA Tour caddie Rusty Uresti. Watney managed to par the hole to sign for a level-par 71 as attentions turned to Reynolds, who received an intravenous drip at the Mines Golf Course and sat out Friday’s second round with Amber Watney also sidelined. “I put in my application for Friday’s round but I was denied, but I was ok with that,” she laughed. With the use of a local caddie, Watney showed big improvements in Friday’s second round, firing a six-under 65 to move up the leaderboard. “(Reynolds) was sore on Friday so we urged him not to go back out but on Saturday he was ready to get back out

Giants silence Tigers to lead World Series 3-0 DETROIT: The San Francisco Giants rode another virtuoso pitching performance to blank the Detroit Tigers 2-0 on Saturday and move within one victory of their second World Series title in three years. San Francisco have a commanding 3-0 lead in the best-ofseven series and can claim the championship with a victory at Detroit’s Comerica Park late yesterday. “It’s a good situation, but there’s nothing been done yet,” said Giants manager Bruce Bochy. “It’s a number, just like I said about two. Now it’s three. But that’s not the series. “So you have to keep going about your business as usual.” Giants starter Ryan Vogelsong allowed the Tigers just five singles over 5 2/3 innings before giving way to relievers Tim Lincecum and Sergio Romo, who did not surrender a hit. The Giants scored both of their runs in the second inning on an RBI triple by Gregor Blanco and a run-scoring single by Brandon Crawford. Those early runs drained the enthusiasm from a sellout crowd of 42,262 desperate to see the Tigers make a move in their bid to capture their first championship since 1984. Defeat left Detroit, shut out in the last two games, on the ropes and manager Jim Leyland said there would be no pre-game motivational speeches for his team on Sunday. “They can count,” said Leyland. “We know they’re down three games to zero, there’s no secret formula or message for them. They’re big guys, they know what the situation is, and they know we have to come out tomorrow and obviously win a game. “It starts with that. You don’t think about the four, you think about one, and that’s basically what we were thinking about tonight.” Vogelsong, who has been magnificent in the postseason, was aided by two inning-ending double plays in the first three innings. Then in the fifth, the Tigers had the bases loaded with one out but Quintin Berry struck out and Vogelsong got Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera to pop out to short. Cabrera this year captured the first Triple Crown in the majors since 1967 but the 29year-old seven-time All-Star has just two hits

and one RBI in the series. Vogelsong, who is 30 in the playoffs while giving up just three runs in 24 2/3 innings, breathed a sigh of relief after retiring Cabrera, calling him “the best hitter in the game”. “The way we were playing defense, I was really just trying to get him to put a ball in play somewhere, because I had a good feeling we were going to catch it if he did with the way these guys were all over the field tonight,” said Vogelsong. “I was just trying to make a pitch, and I was able to do that, and he popped it up.” The Tigers’ other big gun, Prince Fielder, has one hit and no RBIs in the series. “I don’t make excuses,” he said. “We are just not getting it done. We have to play it one game at time. “Makes the series one game, all we can do is play hard.” Detroit, desperate for offense, lost the opener 8-3, scoring two give-away runs in

the ninth after the game was all but decided. The next game they were blanked 2-0 on just two hits. Sanchez took the loss for the Tigers on Saturday despite pitching well, giving up six hits and two runs while striking out eight. Tigers right-fielder Andy Dirks conceded Cabrera’s bases-loaded pop-up was a missed opportunity but added: “You have to create more than one situation a game to win.” “It was a big situation and it is not always going to happen,” he said. “It’s baseball. The best hitters in the game they succeed one out of three times. “You just have to keep trying to put pressure on the other team as much as you can and maybe get a lucky.” The Giants are seeking their second title in three years, having beaten the Texas Rangers in a five-game World Series in 2010. —Reuters

DETROIT: San Francisco Giants’ Gregor Blanco watches his RBI triple against the Detroit Tigers during the second inning in Game 3 of the baseball World Series. —AP

Lorenzo seals second MotoGP title

KUALA LUMPUR: Nick Watney of the United States poses with his trophy after the final of CIMB Classic golf tournament.—AP there,” Amber Watney said. Another 65 followed on Saturday before a miraculous 10-under 61, with Reynolds back on the bag, landing the healthy winner’s cheque after overcoming compatriots Bo Van Pelt, Robert Garrigus and Tiger Woods to win the 48-man event. The importance of the Reynolds’s return not lost on Watney. “On 11, he talked me into laying up (on the par five) and we ended up making birdie and on the very next hole I wanted to hit a seven-iron, he said it was an eight, and I hit that to about four feet so he definitely helped me,” Watney told reporters. “I think it’s just good to have someone you are comfortable with there.” But with his second wedding anniversary coming up on Tuesday and money to burn following his Malaysia success, the Californian might have to spend more on a gift for his wife after her 15 minutes of help. Asked whether she was aware of the customary 10 percent of prize money that caddies are reported to earn from golfers, Amber said she was unaware. “I don’t know, maybe we are going to have to negotiate.” —Reuters

PHILLIP ISLAND: Yamaha rider Jorge Lorenzo sealed his second MotoGP title by cruising to a runner-up finish at the Australian Grand Prix yesterday after Dani Pedrosa, his only challenger to the title, crashed out of contention on the second lap. Honda’s Pedrosa trailed fellow Spaniard Lorenzo by 23 points entering the race and had hoped to take the title battle to the final round, but his challenge ended when he lost control at the Phillip Island circuit’s hairpin turn four. Lorenzo narrowly avoided the flailing Pedrosa and that was the last of his troubles as he settled into a fuss-free run behind retiring local hero Casey Stoner, who delighted home fans by extending his record to a sixth straight victory in his Down Under swansong. After Stoner saluted a roaring gallery on the final straight, Lorenzo pulled a ‘wheelie’ and shook his fist in triumph as he crossed the line more than nine seconds behind under brilliant sunshine. The ebullient 25-year-old continued the celebrations in the pit lane, burning his tyres to wrap himself in smoke as jubilant team mates and officials jumped up and down around him. “I’m really, really happy with this championship because we know how difficult it is to fight with riders like Casey, like Dani and to fight with a factory like Honda. It is very hard,” Lorenzo, who won his first title in 2010, told reporters. “You must be very consistent, never make a mistake and always try to finish the races and be very

focused, so today is a very special day.” Lorenzo takes an unassailable 43-point lead in the championship, rendering the final round a victory parade in front of Spanish fans in Valencia. Briton Cal Crutchlow finished third on another Yamaha, matching his best finish of the season. While the championship belongs to Lorenzo, the day belonged to two-time MotoGP champion Stoner, who was greeted by record crowds at the picturesque seaside circuit. The championship was a twohorse race between Lorenzo and Stoner until the Australian injured ligaments in his right angle at the U.S. Grand Prix, sidelining him for

three rounds before he returned at the Japan Grand Prix earlier this month. Despite carr ying the stillpainful injury to Phillip Island and crashing during qualifying, Stoner underlined his mastery of the track by taking pole on Saturday, with Lorenzo second on the grid. Lorenzo capitalised on a poor start by Stoner, however, and seized the lead at the first turn, but then had it quickly swiped by a desperate Pedrosa, who had won five of the previous six races to delay his countryman’s coronation. Stoner roared past his Honda team mate in the final straight of

PHILLIP ISLAND: MotoGP rider Jorge Lorenzo of Spain rides while holding his country flag after taking second place and winning the World Championship at Australian MotoGP. —AP

the first lap and the wheels fell off for Pedrosa four turns later, and at the same corner where the Australian was thrown from his bike during qualifying. Caution was Lorenzo’s watchword after qualifying, having endured a chequered history at Phillip Island, losing part of a finger in a sickening crash during morning practice last year and crashing out at the first turn in 2009. Happy to concede the race to the local hero, Lorenzo also enjoyed a threat-free view in his mirrors, with fellow Yamaha rider Crutchlow keeping a safe distance. “I just maintained a good gap to the guys behind and made sure it went up and was not going to push to follow Jorge because I think would have been sacked if anything happened,” Crutchlow quipped. Stoner, who announced his retirement in May, citing his disillusionment with the sport and the grind of touring, was hailed by a huge crowd in pit lane long after the chequered flag. “It’s been a fantastic buildup. It was very important for me to win a race before I retire and to do it at my home Grand Prix here was just a fairytale,” said Stoner, who won his first title with Ducati in 2007, and finishes his career at the age of 27. “ This whole weekend has gone almost ideally and the crowd of people, the fans, everything has just been amazing. “It gives me a great feeling and a great pride to be out there as an Aussie to make ever ybody proud.” —Reuters


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Vettel wins Indian GP

BASEL: Argentina’s Juan Martin del Potro celebrates his victory after the final match against Switzerland’s Roger Federer at the Swiss Indoors tennis tournament. —AP

Del Potro downs Federer BASEL: Juan Martin del Potro earned his revenge after six losses this season to hometown hero Roger Federer when he won the Swiss Indoors title, 6-4, 6-7 (5/7), 7-6 (7/3) yesterday. The upset victory over the top seed in two and three-quarter hours denied world number one Federer a sixth title from the last seven editions at the St Jakobshalle and kept him from the 77th of his career. Del Potro last beat the Swiss star in 2009 when he captured the US Open at Federer’s expense as well as posting a victory in the year-end final two months later. Del Potro won the 13th trophy of his career and improved to 62-14 on the season. “This is a great win for me, a dream,” said Del Potro, who finished with 10 aces to the 18 of Federer, holder of six trophies in 2012. “It’s an honour to be on the court with Roger, who is the greatest of all time, it’s great to share this moment with him.” Federer suffered his first loss at the tournament which he has ruled since the 2009 final against Novak Djokovic. “You played a great match and deserved to win,” Federer told Del Potro during the trophy ceremony. “I beat you in a couple of tight matches this year, so it was your turn after those tough losses. I’m happy for you, you played a great match today.” Del Potro won the opening set in just over half an hour before Federer settled in for a long afternoon in front of his home public. The Swiss top seed took the second set into a tiebreaker and squared the tight contest at a set each on his third

opportunity from Del Potro’s backhand wide. The third played out in a similar vein as Del Potro won a huge third game lasting for 10 minutes in which he overcame two double-faults and saved three break points to hold for 2-1. Federer set up a second tiebreak with three straight aces but was unable to carry his momentum forward to a seventh win this season over the South American. Del Potro took a 4-2 lead in the decider and set up three match points from a backhand error from the Swiss. The second seed finished off the final on his first match point. The last time the pair met, it took nearly four and a half hours for Federer to squeeze out a semi-final victory at the London Olympics, a match that went to 19-17 in the final set. Del Potro now heads to the Paris Masters after qualifying this week for the eight-man field at the season-ending World Tour Finals in London, starting a week from today. “I’m hoping to get back to my best level,” said the former top five-ranked Argentine, who missed the 2010 season with a wrist surgery. “Roger gave me a really tough match. It is super to win this fantastic title.” Federer was appearing in his seventh straight Basel final and ninth overall in 13 editions; he now stands 5-4 in hometown finals. Del Potro expanded his win streak to 10 matches, last losing to Djokovic in the US Open quarter-finals. He stands 17-1 indoors this season after adding Basel honours to trophies in Marseille, Estoril and Vienna. —AFP

GREATER NOIDA: Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel won the Indian Grand Prix yesterday and stretched his Formula One championship lead over Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso, who was a battling second, to 13 points with three races remaining. The victory from pole position was the world champion’s fourth in a row - the first time he has done that in a single season - and maintained his dominance in India after winning last year’s inaugural race at the hazy Buddh International Circuit from pole. The 25-year-old German now has 240 points to 227 for Alonso, who started in fifth place, and his surge towards a third title in a row is beginning to look unstoppable despite the Spaniard’s best efforts. His fifth win of the season was the 26th of his career, and the only mistake he made all afternoon was to switch off the engine too early as he came into the pitlane to park under the podium after Indian 2012 Olympic shooting bronze medallist Gagan Narang had waved the chequered flag. Australian team mate Mark Webber, who was third, gave the winning Red Bull a push with his car to reach the correct spot. “A very special grand prix. I don’t know what it is about this circuit but I really like the flow of it,” said Vettel, who has now led every single lap for three successive races - a feat last managed by the late triple champion Ayrton Senna in 1989. In two years, no other driver has ever led a lap of the Indian circuit either. “This was another good step for us but there’s still a long way to go,” said Vettel with his customary caution after performing his familiar raised finger routine. Webber, who started on the front row, complained of a loss of KERS after 45 of the 60 laps and was passed by Alonso three laps later. “It is not easy at the moment to fight the Red Bull but we will never give up,” said the Spaniard, who passed both McLarens in the early laps, in a podium interview in front of the cheering crowd. “Well done to Red Bull and Sebastian but we want to be happy and enjoy it in Brazil (the last race). It is not only here. I am sure we will do it.” Kimi Raikkonen hung on to third place in the overall standings with seventh place for Lotus on a hot afternoon but he is now 67 points off the lead and just six ahead of Webber.

McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button finished fourth and fifth respectively, with the latter denying Vettel the fastest lap but with his title hopes now mathematically over for another year. “The start of the race was my highlight,”

NEW DELHI: Red Bull driver Sebastian Vettel of Germany holds his trophy aloft as he celebrates his win in the Indian Formula One Grand Prix at the Buddh International Circuit in Noida. —AP said Button. “There were just millimetres between Lewis, Fernando and me. I’ve never had a start quite like that before, unbelievably hard fought, and none of us hit each other. It was so close, so tight, yet so clean.” The highlight of Hamilton’s race was a rare five wheel change pitstop, with his mechanics replacing his steering wheel as well as the tyres without missing a beat after he had complained of a downshift problem. Brazilian Felipe Massa was six th for Ferrari, ahead of 2007 champion Raikkonen, with Germany’s Nico Hulkenberg eighth for Force India in the team’s home race. Frenchman Romain Grosjean finished ninth for Lotus and Brazilian Bruno Senna grabbed the final point for Williams on an afternoon short on thrills for the crowd mak-

serving. Not that Sharapova struggled with double faults, occasionally a blight in recent years. Instead it was that her second delivery was more attackable than Williams’s. And Williams missed few chances to reveal that. Crucially, she did so in the opening game of the second set, and having gained an early break which felt like a statement, never looked likely to relinquish it. Sharapova fought with typical courage, but in the final game she found that her first delivery, as well as her second, was coming in for some ferocious treatment, and she dropped serve for a third time. Williams rounded it all off with a rocketing forehand return from a respectable first serve, that brought a jet engine roar from 15,000 throats. She celebrated with delighted hops and a raised arm, which indicated that, even after all these years, it meant as much to her as ever. Or perhaps more since it crowned an amazing comeback year after life-threatening blood clots on her lungs. “I think she can still improve, even at 31,” said her coach Patrick Mouratoglou. “She’s playing really, really well. Her results speak for themselves. — AFP

SOELDEN: Ted Ligety, of the United States, passes a gate on his way to winning an alpine ski, men’s World Cup giant slalom. —AP

Ligety masters Soelden slopes SOELDEN: World champion Ted Ligety mastered difficult weather conditions and new skis to win the opening giant slalom of the alpine skiing World Cup season for the second time in succession in Soelden yesterday. The American outclassed his rivals to win in a combined time of two minutes and 36.02 seconds despite skiing in poor visibility as snow kept falling for the whole of the afternoon leg on the Austrian glacier. “I was watching the guys go down and given the conditions I think I did very well,” said Ligety after securing a 12th World Cup giant slalom victory. Second-placed Italian Manfred Moelgg finished 2.75 seconds adrift while overall World Cup champion Marcel Hirscher of Austria was third, 3.12 off the pace. It was the widest margin of victory in giant slalom since 1979 and the days of Sweden’s Ingemar Stenmark, who won by a record 4.06 seconds in a race in Jasna, Slovakia. Ligety had to be content with second fastest in the morning run behind Frenchman Thomas Fanara, who took advantage of a sunny spell to eventually take fourth spot, 3.23 behind the American. “The morning run was a little bit dis-

appointing and gave me extra fire for the second run I guess,” said Ligety. Hirscher, who ruined his chances with an appalling first leg, readily conceded defeat. “The conditions were really difficult for all of us but Ted once again did a great job. He is nearly out of reach when he is fully achieving his potential,” he said. For Moelgg, a former slalom World Cup winner, experience paid off as it was only his third giant slalom podium, his first since 2008. Ligety’s victory was all the more spectacular as it was achieved with the new, longer and stiffer skis imposed by the International Ski Federation (FIS) for safety reasons. The American had been one of the fiercest critics of the decision to introduce the new equipment. “My skis were running really well today, we have been working hard on this and this is good for the confidence of course. Now we have to check how the new skis will behave in other conditions,” he said. “My goal this winter is to be as consistent as possible in each race and to improve my level in slalom too,” added Ligety, who has made the defence of his world crown in Schladming in Feburary a priority. —Reuters

Ferrer lifts Valencia title

ISTANBUL: Serena Williams of the US holds up the trophy after her tennis victory against Maria Sharapova of Russia after the final of the WTA Championships.—AP

That sent the 43-year-old German to the back of the field on his last race appearance in India. To compound his problems, he was lapped by Vettel after eight laps and was then under investigation for ignoring blue warning flags. Schumacher battled on until finally retiring on lap 57. Mexican Sergio Perez retired in the pits after also suffering a puncture when his Sauber clipped the front of Toro Rosso’s Australian Daniel Ricciardo as they were leaving the pits together on lap 20. “It’s been a difficult weekend. The contact with Ricciardo came and that’s it, we damaged rear suspension of the car,” said Perez, who is joining McLaren next season. India’s sole driver Narain Karthikeyan finished 21st for Spanish stragglers HRT. —Reuters

India bids Schumacher goodbye

Serena crowns year with WTA Championships title ISTANBUL: Serena Williams completed her sensational 2012 comeback by easing to a 6-4, 6-3 win over Maria Sharapova for a third WTA Championships title yesterday. The 31-year-old’s victory came at the end of a spectacular year in which she also collected the Wimbledon, Olympic and US Open titles. “It feels great to have achieved my dream,” said Williams, whose career head-to-head record over Sharapova now stands at 10-2. “Maria won the last time we played in the Championships final, but she’s ranked ahead of me so I had nothing to lose.” Williams, who has battled back to the top of her game after battling injury and a life-threatening illness, said 2012 was just as good as 2002 and 2003 when she completed the “Serena Slam” of all four Grand Slams. “It’s awesome. To come back after being in the hospital, I feel so happy whether I win or lose,” said the American veteran. The third seed’s weight of shot, reliability of serve, and undiminished motivation enabled her to apply constant pressure. As early as the fifth game, when she broke Sharapova’s serve for the first time, she looked the likely winner. Williams also saved her best performance of the week for Sharapova and history may have played a part in that. Since the year in which a 17-year-old Sharapova shocked Serena in the 2004 Wimbledon final, the Russian has not been able to repeat the win in eight attempts.After breaking for 3-2, consolidating for 4-2, and holding on to that advantage to close out the first set, she was relentless. At least it did not take Sharapova long to do better than last time when she managed just one game in the Olympics final. She looked keen to atone for that, so there was an edge to the encounter, over and above that of a big final. Sharapova also tried hard to force the issue with her ground strokes, taking risks in the process. She clung to her service games to reach 3-4 despite two break points against her in that game, varied her angles well, and covered the court better than she ever did, but the rewards were modest. That was partly because the biggest difference between them was not just the number of clean winners that Serena could make with her heavier hitting. A more significant difference was in their

ing the trip south from New Delhi. Seven times champion Michael Schumacher, probably the biggest Formula One name in a country more focused on cricket, collided with Toro Rosso’s Jean-Eric Vergne at the start and pitted with a punctured rear right.

MADRID: Spaniard David Ferrer gave the home fans something to cheer yesterday when he lifted the Valencia Open title after a 6-1, 3-6, 6-4 win over Ukraine’s Alexandr Dolgopolov to bag his sixth crown of the year. Ferrer, who hails from nearby Alicante on Spain’s east coast and who also had runs to the semi-finals of Roland Garros and the US Open, made it six wins from seven season finals, although 21st-ranked Dolgopolov made him work.

A break in the fourth game set Ferrer on his way in the opening set, finished off with a service game to love. But Dolgopolov pocketed a swift break as he raced 3-0 clear in the second set and maintained his advantage to level the contest. In a tight decider, Dolgopolov had two break chances but Ferrer dug in as he finally converted for a 4-3 lead, whereupon Dolgopolov began to commit too many forced errors as he saw his challenge fall away. —AFP

GREATER NOIDA: India bid a fond farewell to seven-times world champion Michael Schumacher yesterday as the great who got young sports fans in the country hooked on Formula One competed in the country for the last time. Formula One has never been popular in the cricket crazy nation but the German’s fame travelled way beyond the confines of a circuit and he became the face of the sport and a household name in India. Many of the 62,000 spectators at the Buddh International Circuit were there to cheer on the 43year-old Mercedes driver, and former Ferrari champion, who is retiring at the end of the season in three races’ time. “I’m wearing this T-shirt because of being a patriot,” said one fan in a Force India team shirt and Schumacher cap. “But I’ve been supporting Schumacher since I was 16 years-old and I know he’s not in the best of form because of his car but he’s a legend and he’ll always be one. And I’m only supporting him, only him.” Formula One has only been regularly aired on television in India since the mid-90s and a generation of young fans grew up watching Schumacher take the fight in a relatively uncompetitive Ferrari to the far more superior Williams and McLaren cars. Stories of his drives in Hungary 1998 or Spain 1996 are the stuff of legend among fans of the sport here and his success in restoring Ferrari’s lustre, and his dominant run of five world championships from 2000 to 2004, only made him more popular. Last year’s inaugural Indian Grand Prix, when Schumacher was a shadow of his former self, was the first chance for locals to see him race. Even if his three-year comeback has not lived up to expectations, the loyalty of India’s small legion of Formula One fans appeared undiminished on Sunday. “He has that brand value, no other player has that brand with him,” said Rishabh, an 18-year-old from Delhi who admits he isn’t a regular follower of the sport. “Not the car but the number of fans Schumacher has no one else has. He’s the personal favourite of many.” If most fans were clad in Ferrari or McLaren merchandise, affection for Schumacher was evident. “The legend always stays the legend so there is always a soft corner for Schumi, so I guess it feels bad that he’s going to be out of racing,” said Priyadarshan, who works for McLaren sponsors SAP and was a guest of the team. “In fact, even though I was sitting in the McLaren paddock, I was trying to get a glimpse of Schumi,” he said. In the end it was another German, Red Bull’s championship leader and race winner Sebastian Vettel, who hogged the limelight with Schumacher’s supporters disappointed. The German started 14th and a puncture as a result of Jean Eric Vergne’s Torro Rosso clipping his right rear wheel at the first corner dropped him to the back of the field where he was soon lapped. He retired three laps from the end, after also coming under investigation for ignoring blue flags warning him of faster drivers behind. The fans forgave him anyway. “Michael Schumacher is my favorite, all time hit, he’s there,” Vimal Jain, a die-hard Ferrari fan attending his 26th Grand Prix, said. “Whether he won, whether he lost, no problems.” —Reuters


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Messi hits 301 career goals mark in Rayo rout

GERMANY : Freiburg’s goalkeeper Oliver Baumann (left) saves the ball in front of Dortmund’s midfielder Kevin Grosskreutz during the German First Division Bundesliga football match.—AFP

Dortmund grab first away win BERLIN: Goals from Neven Subotic and Mario Goetze gave Bundesliga champions Borussia Dortmund a 2-0 victory at snowy Freiburg on Saturday to narrow their deficit on the top clubs. Schalke 04 jumped into second place with a 1-0 win over Nuremberg, a Jefferson Farfan goal completing a memorable seven days in which they also beat Ruhr Valley rivals Dortmund as well as Arsenal in the Champions League. Dortmund, who defeated nine-times European champions Real Madrid on Wednesday, were bullied by the hosts for much of the first half on a pitch covered with snow. “I don’t know if the undersoil heating was working on full power,” Dortmund sports director Michael Zorc said after his team bounced back after the break to claim their first away win of the season. Freiburg hit the post in the first half while the unmarked Fallou Diagne also sent a header over the bar. Dortmund found their passing game in the second period and missed a string of early chances including a point-blank volley from Goetze. The visitors then broke through when Subotic, with his back to goal, headed in a curling Marco Reus free kick in the 54th minute. Germany international Goetze made amends for his earlier miss with seven minutes to go, picking up a Robert Lewandowski pass inside the box to slot the second goal and lift Dortmund up to fourth place with 15 points, five behind Schalke.

“You could see in the first half we had trouble playing on this pitch,” said visiting coach Juergen Klopp. “We played much better after the break and we deserved to win but anything could have happened on this pitch.” VfL Wolfsburg, who sacked Felix Magath in the week and replaced him with interim coach Lorenz Guenther Koestner, climbed off the foot of the table after grabbing their first win in eight games with a 4-1 demolition of Fortuna Dusseldorf. Dutchman Bas Dost struck twice for Wolfsburg who had scored only two goals in their previous eight matches. Promoted Fortuna have now lost their last three games after going unbeaten in the first six this season. “The goals were a liberation for us,” said Koestner who had a previous spell as interim coach in 2010. “When you take over a team after four straight defeats you don’t expect it to brim with confidence. “But we were aggressive and did a lot of running, that was key,” said the 60year-old. A hat-trick by Hungary international Adam Szalai - his first in the Bundesliga - steered Mainz to a 3-0 victory over troubled Hoffenheim which moved them up to fifth place, a point behind Dortmund. Forward Nils Petersen’s goal on the stroke of halftime rescued a 1-1 draw for Werder Bremen at promoted Greuther Fuerth who slipped to the bottom of the table on six points.—Reuters

MADRID: Lionel Messi took his senior career goals tally to 301 as he scored twice in Barcelona’s 5-0 victory at Rayo Vallecano which put them three points clear at the top of La Liga on Saturday. The World Player of the Year got Barca’s second just after halftime and finished off the rout with another at the end. The 25year-old has now scored 270 goals for his club and 31 for Argentina. Spain players David Villa, Xavi and Cesc Fabregas scored the others as Barcelona continued their unbeaten start under new coach Tito Vilanova and moved on to 25 points from nine games. “We are delighted for Lionel,” Vilanova told a news conference. “He has scored a couple of goals but I prefer to remember the moment when he ran 30 metres to help out in defence in the 89th minute. I love the goals, but I like this more.” Malaga are third with 18 points after a disappointing 0-0 draw at struggling Espanyol while Real Betis beat Valencia 1-0 to move up to four th on 16 thanks to Salva Sevilla’s early goal. Second-placed Atletico Madrid, with 22 points, host bottom club Osasuna on Sunday when champions Real Madrid, in fifth with 14 points, travel to Real Mallorca. Barca, with midfielder Sergio Busquets and fullback Adriano Correia deputising in central defence, were under a lot of pressure from hard-running Rayo before taking control in Vallecas. Former Arsenal captain Fabregas laid on the opener for Villa after 20 minutes while Martin Montoya pulled the ball back for Messi to strike their second in the 47th. Rayo continued to hound Barca, but the visitors wrestled the game away from the hosts and Jordi Alba pulled another ball back for Xavi to finish the game as a contest in the 78th. Fabregas volleyed in from Pedro’s cross soon after and Messi scampered away to round the keeper in the last minute to pull away at the top of the La Liga scoring charts with 13 goals. Fabregas told Spanish televison: “It’s a difficult ground, with spectacular fans. They pressure

you and don’t let you breathe. But we played a serious game, perhaps the best of the season so far.” Betis took the lead against inconsistent Valencia when a half-cleared cross fell to midfielder Sevilla after nine minutes at the Villamarin, and his first-time shot was too powerful for visiting keeper Diego Alves. Valencia, still seeking their first away win this season, improved in the second half when striker Rober to Soldado, who scored a hat-trick against BATE Borisov in the Champions League during the week, twice went close. Betis keeper Adrian blocked

another Soldado effort with his legs in the closing minutes to leave Valencia ninth in the table with 11 points. Malaga’s 1-0 home win over AC Milan in midweek looked to have taken its toll as the Champions League debutants struggled to create openings against resolute hosts Espanyol. Espanyol’s under-pressure coach Mauricio Pochettino told a news conference: “A point doesn’t seem like much but it shows we have recovered our confidence, playing like we did against a Champions League team”. Celta Vigo are 11th with 10 points after surviving a 51st-

minute red card for defender Gustavo Cabral to draw 1-1 at home to regional rivals Deportivo Coruna in a pulsating Galician derby. Mario Bermejo bundled in the opener for the hosts after only eight minutes but former Spain player Juan Carlos Valeron, 37, rolled back the years to dance between two defenders and set up Juan Dominguez for the equaliser in the 29th. Cabral was dismissed after picking up two yellow cards in as many minutes early in the second half and either side could have bagged a winner in a highoctane encounter.—Reuters

MADRID: Rayo Vallecano’s goalkeeper Ruben Martinez (top) reacts as Barcelona’s Argentinian forward Lionel Messi (center) celebrates with his teammates after scoring his second goal during the Spanish League football match on October 27.—AFP

Del Piero scores again in Sydney win

ITALY: AC Milan forward Stephan El Shaarawy (right) challenges for the ball with Genoa defender Adreas Granqvist, of Sweden, during the Serie A soccer match.—AP

El Shaarawy gives Milan victory ROME: AC Milan’s Stephan El Shaarawy marked his 20th birthday with a second-half goal in a 1-0 win over Genoa in Serie A on Saturday while strugglers Siena and Palermo scrapped out a 0-0 draw. Milan’s victory, which puts them on 10 points from nine games, eases the pressure on manager Massimiliano Allegri despite a poor display that even Brazil forward Alexandre Pato, in his first start for eight months, could not light up. “The club has always believed in Allegri and we will carry on like this and look towards the next match,” a delighted El Shaarawy told Sky Sport Italia. “I’m a bit emotional, this has been the best birthday of my life,” added the teary-eyed striker. “I’m emotional and happy both for the win and the goal.” Despite the victory Milan are still languishing in mid-table a massive 12 points behind leaders Juventus, who will bid to extend their 47-game league unbeaten run at Catania on Sunday. Genoa could have taken the lead at the San Siro after a 15 minutes when Cristian Zapata gifted the ball to Luca Antonelli. He crossed to Ciro Immobile, who was too late to slot home but almost scored anyway after Marco Amelia punched the ball into the striker’s face only to see it rebound wide. The closest Milan came to a goal in a dull first half was after 37 minutes when El Shaarawy collected an overhit corner and flashed the ball across the six-yard box, only to see his team mates rooted to the spot and the chance go begging. Milan started the second half brighter and could have scored almost straight after the restart when Pato’s raid down the right flank ended with another teasing cross flying across Sebastian Frey’s goal and no-one on hand to put it in the net. However, it was more graft than craft, and the few fans inside the sparsely populated stadium soon started to make their feelings known,

whistling their team’s feeble efforts to break down Luigi Del Neri’s well organised side. Allegri’s team finally broke the deadlock with 15 minutes left after Ignazio Abate finished some good work on the right by rolling a cross in front of Frey’s goal that this time El Shaarawy, by far Milan’s best player on the night, tapped home. The Italy forward with the striking haircut, who came through the ranks at Genoa before joining Milan, did not celebrate as a mark of respect for his former club. His sixth goal this season leaves him joint top scorer in Serie A with Lazio’s Miroslav Klose and Napoli’s Edinson Cavani. The sluggish manner of Milan’s first win in four games, which ends a run of three straight defeats in all competitions, will do little to ease fears that this could be their worst season since Silvio Berlusconi took over the club in 1986. Earlier, Siena and Palermo produced an uneventful goalless draw that showed why they were the bottom two in the table. The first clear chance did not come until two minutes into the second half when Siena substitute Francesco Valiani whipped in an inviting cross that Emanuele Calaio headed wide. Fabrizio Miccoli thought he had given Palermo the lead after 56 minutes when he fired past Siena goalkeeper Gianluca Pegolo but he was offside. Two minutes later he fired over the bar from close range after a beautiful pass by Massimo Donati. Miccoli almost set up a goal with over a quarter of an hour to go when he played Nicolas Bertolo through in a smart exchange of passes but Pegolo was equal to the Argentine’s weak shot. Despite their superiority, Gian Piero Gasperini’s Palermo side could not fashion another chance and the sides shared the points leaving Siena bottom on three with Palermo on seven.—Reuters

SYDNEY: Alessandro Del Piero converted a penalty and Socceroo Brett Emerton grabbed the winner in Sydney FC’s 2-1 come-from-behind victory over Perth Glory in Australia’s A-League yesterday. The Italian World Cup winner scored his third goal in four starts to equalise for Sydney before former Blackburn Rovers man Emerton nabbed the winning goal in the 70th minute. Before 22,000 fans at Sydney’s Olympic stadium, Sydney fell behind to an 18th-minute goal from Travis Dodd before Glory went a man down

in the second half as Steve Pantelidis was red carded for a foul on Emerton. The Perth defender tossed Emerton to the ground in the box as he looked poised to shoot, with Del Piero stepping up to convert the penalty in the 58th minute to score for the third successive game. The Italian superstar had been fairly quiet by his lofty standards up to that point and even appeared to miskick his penalty before it trickled in off the left post. Man-of-the match Emerton put Sydney ahead 20 minutes from the end with a delightful chip kick over

goalkeeper Danny Vukovic. After losing their first two games, the Sky Blues have now climbed into the top six and sit alongside Perth on six points. Adelaide United and Emile Heskey’s Newcastle Jets are competition leaders after four rounds. Former England international Heskey scored both goals in the Jets’ 2-1 win over Melbourne Victory at home. The former Liverpool forward is the competition’s leading scorer with four goals in as many games as the Jets won their third straight game in their best start to an A-League season. Adelaide’s South American stars

Jeronimo Neumann and Cassio scored the goals as the Reds downed Wellington Phoenix 3-1 at home. Argentine attacker Neumann scored twice and Cassio celebrated his 100th A-League game with the other. Central Coast Mariners downed Melbourne Heart 1-0 and new club Western Sydney Wanderers won their first A-League game in a 1-0 upset of defending champions Brisbane in Brisbane. Striker Mark Bridge nodded in a cross from Dutch import Youssouf Hersi off a short corner kick from star Japanese import Shinji Ono in the 18th minute.—AFP

PSG struggle past Nancy

FRANCE: Paris Saint-Germain’s Swedish forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic (right) vies with Nancy’s French midfielder Lossemy Karaboue during their French L1 football match.—AFP

PARIS: Zlatan Ibrahimovic netted his 10th Ligue 1 goal of the season to give leaders Paris St Germain an unconvincing 1-0 victory over bottom club Nancy on Saturday. In his ninth league appearance, Ibrahimovic toyed with four defenders before nonchalantly firing a shot just past Guy Roland Ndy Assembe 15 minutes from time to put PSG on 22 points. Carlo Ancelotti’s side lead second-placed Toulouse, who beat Stade Brest 3-1, by three points before third-placed Olympique Marseille, also on 19 points, take on fourthplaced Olympique Lyon. Once again PSG had Ibrahimovic to thank as they suffered against a bold Nancy side, who came close in the first half when Benjamin Moukandjo’s 18-metre strike smashed against Salvatore Sirigu’s left post. Ancelotti’s side also had their chances before the break through Mamadou Sakho and Kevin Gameiro but the two were denied by brilliant saves from Ndy Assembe. Ibrahimovic dipped a shot from 35 metres just over the bar in the 70th minute as PSG increased the pressure. While Jeremy Menez wasted a couple of great opportunities, Ibrahimovic made the most of the little space he had with 15 minutes left to score the only goal. Wissam Ben Yedder scored his seventh goal of the season to help Toulouse sweep past Stade Brest. Champions Montpellier moved up to 12th on 11 points thanks to a 3-1 home victory against Nice. Lille ended Valenciennes’s brilliant run with a 2-1 home win against their neighbours who were reduced to 10 men. Valenciennes, who had scored 12 goals in their last three league matches, lacked inspiration and fell behind in the second minute when Gaetan Bong deflected a Nolan Roux shot into his own goal. Dimitri Payet made it 2-0 four minutes before the interval after Carlos Sanchez had been sent off for a second booking in the 28th. Anthony Le Tallec scored a consolation goal in the second half. The game between Sochaux and Evian Thonon Gaillard was called off because of snow.—Reuters



S P ORT S Soccer results/standings English Premier League Everton 2 (Osman 22, Naismith 35) Liverpool 2 (Baines 14-og, Suarez 20); Newcastle 2 (Ba 35, Cisse 90) West Brom 1 (Lukaku 55); Southampton 1 (Rodriguez 66) Tottenham 2 (Bale 15, Dempsey 39); Chelsea 2 (Mata 44, Ramires 53) Man Utd 3 (Luiz 4-og, van Persie 12, Hernandez 75).

German League results VfB Stuttgart 2 (Gentner 6, Ibisevic 84) Eintracht Frankfurt 1 (Meier 67); Bayern Munich 1 (Mandzukic 77) Bayer Leverkusen 2 (Kiessling 42, Boateng 86og); Hanover 96 2 (Schlaudraff 48, Diouf 53) Borussia M’gladbach 3 (Alvaro Dominguez 70, Brouwers 77, Arango 79).

Played Saturday: Arsenal 1 (Arteta 84) QPR 0; Aston Villa 1 (Benteke 27) Norwich 1 (Turner 79); Man City 1 (Tevez 61) Swansea 0; Reading 3 (Leigertwood 26, McCleary 85, RobsonKanu 90) Fulham 3 (Ruiz 61, Baird 77, Berbatov 88); Stoke 0 Sunderland 0; Wigan 2 (Ramis 8, McArthur 47) West Ham 1 (Tomkins 90).

Played Saturday Schalke 04 1 (Farfan 77) Nuremberg 0; Freiburg 0 Borussia Dortmund 2 (Subotic 54, Goetze 83); Mainz 05 3 (Szalai 21, Szalai 46, Szalai 64) Hoffenheim 0; Greuther Fuerth 1 (Edu 8) Werder Bremen 1 (Petersen 44); Fortuna Duesseldorf 1 (Langeneke 70-pen) VfL Wolfsburg 4 (Dost 50, 64, Olic 53, Diego 78-pen).

English Football League results on Saturday: Championship Barnsley 1 Nottingham Forest 4; Blackburn 1 Watford 0; Blackpool 1 Brighton 1; Bristol City 1 Hull 2; Cardiff 4 Burnley 0; Ipswich 0 Sheffield Wednesday 3; Leeds 0 Birmingham 1; Leicester 1 Crystal Palace 2; Middlesbrough 2 Bolton 1; Millwall 4 Huddersfield 0; Peterborough 3 Derby 0; Wolves 1 Charlton 1.

Played Friday FC Augsburg 0 Hamburg 2 (Son 13, Rudnevs 63)

Division One Brentford 2 Hartlepool 2; Bury 1 Walsall 1; Carlisle 2 Bournemouth 4; Crawley 1 Oldham 1; Crewe 0 Yeovil 1; Leyton Orient 0 Coventry 1; Notts County 0 Doncaster 2; Scunthorpe 0 Milton Keynes Dons 3; Shrewsbury 2 Colchester 2; Stevenage 0 Swindon 4; Tranmere 1 Preston 1.

Playing later Athletic Bilbao v Getafe, Atletico Madrid v Osasuna, Real Mallorca v Real Madrid

Playing today Sheffield Utd v Portsmouth Division Two AFC Wimbledon 0 Gillingham 1; Accrington 1 Bristol Rovers 0; Burton 1 Bradford 0; Cheltenham 3 Exeter 0; Chesterfield 0 Barnet 1; Dagenham and Redbridge 0 Aldershot 0; Northampton 2 Port Vale 0; Rochdale 0 Fleetwood Town 0; Rotherham 1 Plymouth 0; Southend 0 York 0; Torquay 1 Morecambe 0; Wycombe 1 Oxford 3. Scottish Football League results Second Division Queen of the South 1 East Fife 0

Spanish League results Real Zaragoza 2 (Postiga 25, Sapunaru 44) Sevilla 1 (Medel 70) Levante 3 (Martins 12, 60, Rios 73) Granada 1 (El-Arabi 84)

Played Saturday Espanyol 0 Malaga 0; Real Betis 1 (Sevilla 9) Valencia 0; Celta Vigo 1 (Bermejo 8) Deportivo La Coruna 1 (Dominguez Lamas 29); Rayo Vallecano 0 Barcelona 5 (Villa 20, Messi 48, 89, Xavi 78, Fabregas 80). Playing today Valladolid v Real Sociedad Italian league results Catania 0 Juventus 1 (Vidal 57); Bologna 1 (Cherubin 58) Inter 3 (Ranocchia 27, Milito 53, Cambiasso 64); Fiorentina 2 (Ljajic 46, Toni 90) Lazio 0; Pescara 0 Atalanta 0; Sampdoria 0 Cagliari 1 (Dessena 47); Torino 1 (Basha 90+2) Parma 3 (Sansone 72, Amauri 73, Rosi 88). Played Saturday Siena 0 Palermo 0; Milan 1 (El Shaarawy 77) Genoa 0

Third Division Clyde 0 Rangers 2 English Premier League table English Premier League table after yesterday’s matches (played, won, drawn, lost, goals for, goals against, points): Chelsea 9 7 1 1 21 9 22 Man Utd 9 7 0 2 24 13 21 Man City 9 6 3 0 18 9 21 Tottenham 9 5 2 2 17 13 17 Everton 9 4 4 1 17 11 16 Arsenal 9 4 3 2 14 6 15 Fulham 9 4 2 3 19 14 14 West Brom 9 4 2 3 13 11 14 West Ham 9 4 2 3 13 11 14 Newcastle 9 3 4 2 11 13 13 Swansea 9 3 2 4 14 13 11 Liverpool 9 2 4 3 12 14 10 Stoke 9 1 6 2 8 9 9 Sunderland 8 1 6 1 6 8 9 Wigan 9 2 2 5 10 16 8 Norwich 9 1 4 4 7 18 7 Aston Villa 9 1 3 5 7 14 6 Reading 8 0 4 4 11 17 4 Southampton 9 1 1 7 14 26 4 QPR 9 0 3 6 7 18 3

Oxford Utd Chesterfield Morecambe Plymouth Dagenham and red Bristol Rovers AFC Wimbledon Wycombe Aldershot Barnet

English Football League tables Championship Cardiff 13 9 1 Leicester 13 8 1 M’brough 13 8 1 Crystal Palace 13 7 3 Blackburn 13 6 5 Hull 13 7 1 Nottingham 13 5 6 Wolves 13 6 3 Huddersfield 13 6 2 Brighton 13 5 4 Leeds 13 5 4 Blackpool 13 5 3 Derby 13 4 5 Burnley 13 5 2 Millwall 13 4 4 Watford 13 5 1 Birmingham 13 4 4 Bolton 13 4 3 Barnsley 13 4 3 Charlton 13 3 5 Peterborough 13 4 0 Sheffield 13 3 3 Bristol City 13 3 2 Ipswich 13 1 4

Italian Serie A table Juventus 9 8 1 0 20 4 25 Inter Milan 9 7 0 2 16 7 21 Napoli 8 6 1 1 14 5 19 Lazio 9 6 0 3 15 10 18 Fiorentina 9 4 3 2 11 7 15 Roma 8 4 2 2 18 13 14 Parma 9 3 3 3 11 12 12 Catania 8 3 2 3 9 14 11 Cagliari 9 3 2 4 6 11 11 AC Milan 9 3 1 5 10 10 10 Sampdoria 9 3 2 4 10 11 10 Udinese 8 2 3 3 8 11 9 Torino 9 2 4 3 10 8 9 Genoa 9 2 3 4 10 13 9 Atalanta 9 3 2 4 7 12 9 Pescara 9 2 2 5 6 15 8 Chievo 8 2 1 5 7 15 7 Bologna 9 2 1 6 10 14 7 Palermo 9 1 4 4 6 11 7 Siena 9 2 3 4 9 10 3 Note: Sampdoria (one point), Torino (one point), Atalanta (two points) and Siena (six points) all docked points for involvement in ‘Calcioscommesse’ illegal betting scandal

3 4 4 3 2 5 2 4 5 4 4 5 4 6 5 7 5 6 6 5 9 7 8 8

26 20 21 23 19 20 20 18 18 16 20 22 18 26 23 17 15 19 15 14 16 18 24 10

15 12 18 21 14 18 14 14 19 9 19 18 18 29 24 21 21 22 20 15 20 23 28 26

28 25 25 24 23 22 21 21 20 19 19 18 17 17 16 16 16 15 15 14 12 12 11 7

Division One Tranmere Crawley Town Stevenage Sheffield Utd Doncaster Notts County Swindon Milton Preston Yeovil Brentford Colchester Walsall Carlisle Portsmouth Bournemouth Oldham Crewe Leyton Orient Shrewsbury Coventry Scunthorpe Bury Hartlepool

15 15 15 14 14 15 15 15 15 15 15 15 15 15 14 15 14 15 15 15 15 15 15 15

9 9 8 7 8 7 7 6 6 7 5 5 5 5 5 4 4 4 5 3 3 2 1 1

4 2 5 7 3 4 4 5 4 1 7 5 4 4 3 6 5 5 1 5 5 4 6 5

2 4 2 0 3 4 4 4 5 7 3 5 6 6 6 5 5 6 9 7 7 9 8 9

32 23 20 18 20 26 23 18 25 25 21 17 18 19 22 24 15 14 11 16 15 11 15 13

14 19 16 10 12 17 14 11 19 21 17 18 21 27 22 27 15 21 18 20 22 27 27 26

31 29 29 28 27 25 25 23 22 22 22 20 19 19 18 18 17 17 16 14 14 10 9 8

Division Two Gillingham Port Vale Cheltenham Fleetwood Bradford Rotherham Torquay Burton Albion Rochdale York Exeter Accrington Southend Northampton

15 15 15 15 15 14 15 15 15 15 15 14 15 15

11 9 8 7 7 7 6 6 6 5 6 6 5 5

2 3 4 5 3 3 6 5 5 7 2 2 4 4

2 3 3 3 5 4 3 4 4 3 7 6 6 6

30 33 22 21 24 23 23 23 21 20 21 18 19 20

10 16 17 13 18 17 18 20 19 18 24 22 17 21

35 30 28 26 24 24 24 23 23 22 20 20 19 19

15 15 15 15 15 14 15 14 15 15

6 4 5 4 3 3 4 3 3 2

1 6 3 5 7 5 2 3 3 4

8 5 7 6 5 6 9 8 9 9

22 17 18 20 20 14 18 13 12 13

27 18 21 21 22 23 29 23 25 26

19 18 18 17 16 14 14 12 12 10

Scottish Premier League table Celtic 10 6 2 Hibernian 11 5 3 Aberdeen 11 4 6 St Johnstone 11 5 3 Inverness CT 11 3 6 Kilmarnock 11 4 3 Hearts 11 3 4 Motherwell 10 3 4 Ross County 11 2 6 Dundee Utd 9 3 3 St Mirren 11 3 3 Dundee 11 1 1

2 3 1 3 2 4 4 3 3 3 5 9

19 21 14 14 23 16 12 13 13 9 15 4

9 15 9 13 19 13 12 15 15 11 20 22

20 18 18 18 15 15 13 13 12 12 12 4

Spanish League table Barcelona 9 Atletico Madrid 8 Malaga 9 Real Betis 9 Levante 9 Real Madrid 8 Sevilla 9 Real Zaragoza 9 Real Mallorca 8 Valencia 9 Valladolid 8 Celta Vigo 9 Getafe 8 Rayo Vallecano 9 Real Sociedad 8 Granada 9 Athletic Bilbao 8 Deportivo 9 Espanyol 9 Osasuna 8

8 7 5 5 5 4 4 4 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 2 2 1 1 1

1 1 3 1 1 2 2 0 2 2 1 1 1 1 0 2 2 4 3 2

0 0 1 3 3 2 3 5 3 4 4 5 4 5 5 5 4 4 5 5

29 19 13 13 11 16 12 9 10 11 12 10 8 11 8 8 11 14 11 7

11 8 5 13 14 7 11 11 9 12 9 11 11 22 12 14 17 20 15 11

25 22 18 16 16 14 14 12 11 11 10 10 10 10 9 8 8 7 6 5

German League table Bayern Munich 8 Schalke 9 Eintracht 9 Dortmund 9 Mainz 9 Hamburg 9 Leverkusen 8 Stuttgart 9 Hanover 8 Werder Bremen 9 Freiburg 9 Duesseldorf 9 Borussia 8 Hoffenheim 9 Nuremberg 9 Wolfsburg 9 Augsburg 9 Greuther 9

8 6 6 4 4 4 3 3 3 3 3 2 2 2 2 2 1 1

0 2 1 3 2 1 3 3 2 2 2 4 3 2 2 2 3 3

0 1 2 2 3 4 2 3 3 4 4 3 3 5 5 5 5 5

26 18 20 20 12 11 13 10 16 15 13 7 9 13 7 6 5 6

2 8 13 11 10 11 11 15 13 14 12 12 16 20 15 16 13 15

24 20 19 15 14 13 12 12 11 11 11 10 9 8 8 8 6 6

Vidal guides Juve to controversial victory MILAN: Champions Juventus reinforced their lead at the top of Serie A yesterday with a controversial 1-0 win away to struggling Catania as a rampant Inter Milan moved into second place, four points behind. Former Arsenal man Nicklas Bendtner made his full Juventus debut for Antonio Conte’s side, partnering Mirko Vucinic ahead of a five-man midfield which also featured French teenager Paul Pogba. It fell to Chilean international Arturo Vidal to give the Old Lady of Turin a 57th minute lead, which appeared to be safe when Catania defender Giovanni Marchese was sent off mid-way through the second half. However well before then the Sicilians appeared to have suffered an injustice when Argentine striker Ruben Bergessio tapped the rebound from Nicolas Spolli’s glancing header past Gianluigi Buffon in the Juve goal. Buffon, celebrating his 500th Serie A appearance, looked to have been fairly beaten but Catania’s celebrations were cut short when the referee disallowed it after consulting with his assistant. Catania reacted furiously and, after club president Antonino Pulvirenti was eventually sent from the bench for dissent, five of the club’s players picked up yellow cards as their frustration came to the fore. In comments to Sky Italia, Pulvirenti complained: “Bergessio’s goal was cancelled by the Juve bench. “There were seven officials out there, and none of them saw a thing.” Juventus president Giuseppe Moratta brushed off claims which seemed to suggest foul play on the part of the officials. “These accusations don’t even deserve a response,” he said. “The referee was wrong but we would have won on points.” Juventus are now unbeaten in 48 matches and could see title rivals Napoli, who are missing top

striker Edinson Cavani, fall six points off the pace if they lose to Chievo later Sunday when Roma also host Udinese. Inter confirmed they are still on the ascendancy with a 3-1 win away to Bologna which, thanks to Lazio’s 2-0 reverse at Fiorentina, moved them up to second.

ball into the net to end his recent goal famine. Bologna reduced the arrears five minutes later when defender Nicolo Cherubin beat Slovenian Samir Handanovic from Alessandro Diamanti’s short corner. But Inter put the result beyond doubt just after the hour when Palacio found Cambiasso unmarked

Italian Cristian Ledesma was sent off for a second bookable offence following a nasty challenge in the 75th minute and seven minutes later fellow midfielder, Brazilian Hernanes, was shown a straight red for reacting violently to a challenge. Fiorentina icon Luca Toni, who

ITALY: Juventus forward Sebastian Giovinco (right) is tackled by Catania defender Nicola Legrottaglie during the Serie A soccer match. —AP And it came largely thanks to their Argentine connection. It was Esteban Cambiasso’s free kick that giant Inter defender Andrea Ranocchia headed past Bologna keeper Federico Agliardi for their opener on 27 minutes. Inter doubled their lead when Rodrigo Palacio’s pass to fellow striker Diego Milito required his fellow Argentine to simply tap the

and the Argentine beat Agliardi low to his right with a well-placed shot. Lazio began the day in third place, four points behind Juve but dropped to fourth as La Viola grabbed a precious 2-0 win. Serbian striker Adem Ljajic broke the deadlock with a fine individual effort in first half injury time and, as Lazio fought in vain for the equaliser tempers frayed.

was signed on the summer transfer deadline, sealed the win when he used his physique to hold off the defence and beat Argentine keeper Albano Bizzarri in the 90th minute. Elsewhere Cagliari stunned Sampdoria 1-0 in Genoa while Parma gave their ailing campaign a boost with a shock 3-1 win away to Torino. —AFP

Bayern record run ended by shock Leverkusen defeat BERLIN: Bayer Leverkusen earned a shock 2-1 win at Bayern Munich yesterday to claim their first win at the Bavarians for 23 years as the Bundesliga leaders’ record winning streak came to an abrupt end. Having set a German league record last weekend with their eighth straight win since the start of the season, Bayern were left stunned as defender Jerome Boateng scored a late own goal to give Leverkusen the three points. Despite the defeat, Bayern still enjoy a four-point lead at the top of the table, while Leverkusen are fifth. “The defeat will not knock us of course, but we must learn the lessons from it,” insisted Bayern coach Jupp Heynckes. “We have to maintain the same pace over the 90 minutes which we showed in the second-half.” The visitors took the lead when Leverkusen captain Simon Rolfes found Andre Schuerrle on the wing, who threaded his pass through the Munich defence for striker Stefan Kiessling to tap in on 42 minutes. Bayern levelled on 77 minutes thanks to a header from striker Mario Mandzukic, but Leverkusen were not be denied their first win in Munich since October 1989. Boateng managed to get his head in the way as Leverkusen’s Sidney Sam headed home, but the ball only flew into the top left-hand corner and past goalkeeper Manuel Neuer on 86 minutes. There was also drama in Hanover as Borussia Moenchengladbach came from 2-0 down to score three goals in nine minutes to enjoy a 3-2 win and claim only their third league victory of the season to go ninth with Hanover tenth. Earlier, VfB Stuttgart striker Vedad Ibisevic headed a late winner to seal

MUNICH: Bayern’s Thomas Mueller (left) and Leverkusen’s Philipp Wollscheid challenge for the ball during the German First Division Bundesliga soccer match. —AP his team’s 2-1 home victory over Eintracht Frankfurt. Ex-Germany midfielder Christian Gentner played a big part in Stuttgart’s win, which lifts them up

to eighth, after he scored the opener in the sixth minute, then provided the final cross for Ibisevic’s 84thminute header. Frankfurt equalised when captain

Alexander Meier curled the ball inside the far post on 67 minutes before Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Ibisevic hit his fifth goal of the season to leave Frankfurt third in the league. On Saturday, defending champions Borussia Dortmund and Schalke had to dig deep as they returned to domestic action still in the glow of their midweek Champions League triumphs. After Borussia shocked Real Madrid 2-1 in Dortmund on Wednesday, the same night Schalke enjoyed a 2-0 win at Arsenal, the pair both needed second-half goals to win their respective Bundesliga games. Dortmund beat Freiburg 2-0 in heavy snow as centre-back Neven Subotic got the breakthrough the defending champions needed with a 54th-minute header. Germany midfielder Mario Goezte slotted home the second on 83 minutes to keep Dortmund fourth. Schalke also had to labour for their three points in Gelsenkirchen as Peru striker Jefferson Farfan hit the only goal of the game against Nuremberg in the 77th-minute to put the Royal Blues second in the league. VfL Wolfsburg, who parted company with coach Felix Magath on Thursday, picked up only their second win of the season with a 4-1 victory at 10-man Fortuna Duesseldorf to lift themselves off the bottom and up into 16th in the table. Mainz are up to sixth after Hungary striker Adam Szalai scored a hat-trick against Hoffenheim. Having opened his account in the 21st minute, he doubled his team’s tally with a second on 46 and wrapped up his hat-trick with a 64th-minute header to seal the 3-0 victory. —AFP

Lennon left seething by Celtic’s limpid showing GLASGOW: Manager Neil Lennon said Celtic’s 2-0 defeat by Kilmarnock in their Scottish Premier League match on Saturday was a reality check for his side. The Hoops had earned plenty of plaudits for their performance in Camp Nou last week when they suffered an agonising last-gasp 2-1 defeat to Barcelona in their Champions League match. However, Celtic showed all the signs of suffering from a European hangover as Kilmarnock ended a 57-year wait for a win at Celtic Park thanks to a first-half strike from Cillian Sheridan and a second-half penalty from Liam Kelly.

Celtic still top the table by two points from Hibernian, with a game in hand over the Easter Road side, but Lennon says he wants an instant improvement from his side in their match against St Johnstone in the League Cup quarter-final on Tuesday. “It is unacceptable from us all. It’s a dose of reality and brings us back down to earth with a bump,” Lennon said. “They’ve had a lot of nice things said about them but we warned them not to take that all in. “If ever we have seen the unpredictability of football then it is today. “I am very disappointed; it’s as poor as we’ve played in my tenure here and I’ll be looking for an instant

reaction tomorrow.” Celtic were without captain Scott Brown due to injury while Victor Wanyama and Gary Hooper dropped to the bench after their midweek exertions allowing on-loan striker Miku and Beram Kayal rare starts. Lennon said that the players coming into the side should have been good enough to win the match. “I didn’t envisage a performance as flat as that particularly with freshening the team up. I thought we had a strong team out there but there was no fluidity about us and we were too passive and there was no intensity to our play,” Lennon said. —AFP




Fernandez tops Chan at Skate Canada MONTREAL: Spain’s Javier Fernandez won the men’s title at Skate Canada on Saturday, getting the better of two-time world champion Patrick Chan in front of Chan’s home fans in Windsor, Ontario. Fernandez, whose silver at Skate Canada last year was the first medal for a Spanish skater in the ISU Figure Skating Grand Prix series, won both the short programme on Friday and Saturday’s free skate, building a winning total of 253.94 points. Chan, who had rallied in the free skate last year for a third straight Skate Canada crown, couldn’t pull off the comeback this time and settled for second with 243.43 points. Japan’s Nobunari Oda was third on 238.34. “It just feels amazing,” Fernandez said of his first international victory. Chan, starting the season with new choreographers and a new lead coach, landed one quadruple toe loop but put a hand on the ice on another. He said he was focusing his campaign not on Grand Prix events but on the world championships, which will be held in Canada in March. “I’ve won these competitions before and for me it goes beyond winning,” Chan said. “It’s become a learning process and taking this and taking it step by step for the world championships-worlds is my end goal, and it’s my only goal, and the year after that will be the Olympics.” Canadian fans still had plenty to cheer about, with 16-year-old teenager Kaetlyn Osmond winning the ladies’ title in her Grand Prix debut. “Not used to it, but definitely could get used to it,” Osmond said of thrilled reaction from the home crowd after her free skate to “Carmen” gave her a winning total of 176.45 points. Japan’s Akiko Suzuki led the way in the deciding free skate with a score of 120.04. It was enough to move her into second overall on 175.16 points, with Japanese teammate Kanako Murakami third on 168.04. Osmond fell on a triple Lutz in her free skate, but her score of 115.89 was good enough to garner the victory. Elene Gedevanishvili of Georgia, who led after the short programme on Friday, dropped to fifth after an error-filled free skate. Osmond’s relatively low world ranking means she isn’t entered in another Grand Prix event this season, although she could make Canada’s team for worlds. She admitted she’s also got the 2014 Sochi Olympics on her mind.”It definitely starts putting a whole bunch of thoughts in your head,” Osmond said. Canadians Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir won the ice dance with a total of 169.41 points ahead of Italians Anna Cappellini and Luca Lanotte (160.06) and Russians Ekaterina Riazanova and Ilia Tkachenko (143.39). Germany’s four-time world champions Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolkowy won the pairs title with a total of 201.36 points. Canadians Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford were second on 190.49 with Italians Stefania Berton and Ondrej Hotarek third on 172.03. The Grand Prix series continues next week with the Cup of China in Shanghai.—AFP

ONTARIO: Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier of Canada skate in the exhibition gala at the 2012 Skate Canada International ISU Grand Prix event in Windsor. —AFP

Man City, Arsenal climb after much-needed wins

LONDON: Newcastle United’s Demba Ba (center) vies for the ball with West Bromwich Albion’s captain Jonas Olsson (left) and Gareth McAuley (right) during their English Premier League soccer match.—AP

Cisse sees Newcastle past West Brom Newcastle 2

West Brom 1

NEWCASTLE: Papiss Cisse scored a fortuitous injury-time winner as Newcastle United edged in-form West Bromwich Albion 2-1 in the Premier League yesterday. Substitute Sammy Ameobi’s shot from the edge of the box flicked off Cisse’s back and wrongfooted visiting goalkeeper Ben Foster to give Alan Pardew’s side all three points at St James’ Park. Demba Ba had claimed his seventh goal in nine starts to put the hosts ahead in the 35th minute, but Romelu Lukaku looked to have given the Baggies a point when he headed home Zoltan Gera’s cross 10 minutes into the second half. The home side had the first real chance in the 14th minute when Shola Ameobi dug out a deep cross from the right that found Ba unmarked to flash a close-range header inches wide. Newcastle began to dominate possession, and Davide Santon brought a

fine save out of Foster with a longrange drive. But the visitors had a great chance to go ahead in the 26th minute when Graham Dorrans fed Lukaku, who was clean through on goal but saw his left-foot shot pushed away for a corner by the advancing Tim Krul. Shola Ameobi blazed a 32ndminute chance into the upper tier before the hosts finally broke the deadlock three minutes later. Krul’s long goal-kick was flicked into the box by Shola Ameobi and when Gareth McAuley made a mess of things, Ba nipped in to prod the ball past Foster. Lukaku had another superb chance five minutes before the break when he was put through by Youssouf Mulumbu, but once again could find no way past the impressive Krul. After a slow start to the second half, Lukaku got the goal his performance deserved when he squeezed in between Santon and Fabricio Coloccini to nod home Gera’s centre from close range. Markus Rosenborg came close to putting the visitors ahead on a number of occasions, but with a draw beckoning, Sammy Ameobi’s shot cannoned off Cisse and beat Foster to keep Newcastle’s fine home record on track.—AFP

LONDON: Champions Manchester City climbed to second in the Premier League table after Carlos Tevez’s fierce strike in the second half gave them a 1-0 win over Swansea City on Saturday. Arsenal, who also needed a win after two defeats in the last week, beat bottom club Queens Park Rangers 1-0 with a late winner from Mikel Arteta while Reading and Fulham fought out a 3-3 draw at the Madejski Stadium. In Saturday’s other games, Wigan Athletic beat West Ham United 2-1 while Aston Villa drew 1-1 with Norwich City and Stoke City and Sunderland ground out an uninspiring 0-0 draw. City midfielder Gareth Barry told ESPN afterwards: “It was a massive three points. Three games in seven days is always tough. It wasn’t a great performance but the manager said at halftime to stay calm and we’ll find our way and get a goal and Carlos came up with the goods.” The champions failed to impress against a Swansea side who enjoyed the better chances in the first half, most notably when Spanish striker Michu forced a sharp save from City keeper Joe Hart shortly after he had a goal disallowed for offside. City improved after the break and Tevez struck with a venomous angled shot from 25 metres which nestled in the corner of Swansea keeper Michel Vorm’s net. Vorm injured himself while diving for the ball and after a lengthy stoppage for treatment he was replaced by German Gerhard Tremmel. Another long stoppage followed soon after when City defender Micah Richards went down in agony clutching his knee with no-one near him. He was taken off on a stretcher and the match ended after almost 103 minutes, including nearly 13 minutes of stoppage

LONDON: Manchester City’s Carlos Tevez (center) keeps the ball from Swansea’s Jonathan de Guzman (left) and Chico during their English Premier League soccer match.—AP time-the longest in the league’s 20-year-history. Arsenal rose from ninth to fourth after Arteta’s 84th minute goal secured the points for Arsene Wenger’s men against QPR. Arteta struck from close range, turning the ball in from the rebound after he had hit the bar. The goal came soon after Rangers’ Stephane Mbia was sent off for lashing out at Arsenal defender Thomas Vermaelen, QPR’s ninth red card during 2012. Arsenal’s win halted a run of two successive defeats to Norwich City in the Premier League and Schalke 04 in the Champions League over the last seven days. The Gunners welcomed back Jack Wilshere after the England midfielder missed the last 17 months with ankle problems and he played well for the 67 minutes he was on. Arsenal manager

Wenger told Sky Sports the victory came as a relief after a difficult week. “When you lose two games the confidence goes quickly and for us today the most important thing was to win the game,” he said. “It was a fight against a good QPR side and a fight against our nerves. But QPR are a good team and they will not stay bottom of the league.” QPR manager Mark Hughes though, was far from happy as his side stayed bottom without a win from their nine games. “The referee has absolutely killed it to allow their winning goal because Arteta was clearly offside on two occasions,” he told the BBC. Reading and Fulham shared the points in a six-goal thriller which left Reading still looking for their first win of the season, although they moved up a place from 19th to 18th, ahead of

Southampton. Mikele Leigertwood put Reading ahead with a long range shot after 26 minutes before Brian Ruiz equalised for Fulham in the 61st minute, three minutes after coming on as a substitute. Chris Baird headed Fulham 21 up after 77 minutes but had to go off after injuring himself on the advertising hoardings as he celebrated his goal. Three goals then followed in the closing stages as Reading substitute Gareth McCleary made it 2-2 after 85 minutes before Dimitar Berbatov looked to have scored Fulham’s winner two minutes from time with a thunderous drive. Then, almost with the last kick, Reading’s second sub, Hal Robson-Kanu earned his side a point, scrambling home from close range 12 minutes after coming on.—Reuters

Serena crowns year with WTA title

Lorenzo seals second MotoGP title




Messi hits 301 career goals mark in Rayo rout

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LONDON: Chelsea’s Fernando Torres (right) competes with Manchester United’s Rio Ferdinand during their English Premier League soccer match at Stamford Bridge.—AP

Drama and disgust as United beat Chelsea Chelsea 2

Man United 3

LONDON: Javier Hernandez’s controversial winning goal gave Manchester United a dramatic 3-2 victory against nine-man Chelsea at Stamford Bridge yesterday. The result ensured Alex Ferguson’s side reduced the gap on Roberto Di Matteo’s Premier League leaders to just one point, but the Blues were left fuming at the performance of referee Mark Clattenburg. Chelsea had recovered from falling

behind to a David Luiz own goal and a Robin van Persie strike to level through goals from Juan Mata and Ramires when Branislav Ivanovic was sent off for a 63rdminute foul on Ashley Young. More contentious, though, was the second yellow card shown to Fernando Torres five minutes later, after the referee had decided the striker dived following a challenge by Jonny Evans. Replays suggested there had been contact between the two players and the decision sparked fury on the Chelsea bench that led to a touchline altercation between Ferguson and Di Matteo’s staff. Worse was to come for the home side, with substitute Hernandez clinching victory in the 75th minute with a close-range finish from what appeared to be an off-

side position. The events of the final half hour ensured the match ended in controversy but before that it had already been a thrilling encounter. The pre-match handshake between Rio Ferdinand and Ashley Cole, together with the absence of John Terry-who is serving a four-match ban for racially abusing Ferdinand’s brother, Anton-removed a potential flashpoint. But the subsequent 90 minutes more than made up for it. It was United who started the game with the greater urgency and were clearly driven by the motivation to keep Di Matteo’s side within their sights at the head of the table. While United quickly got into their stride, attacking fluently down their right-

hand flank, Chelsea’s defence looked disjointed and nervous, and the absence of Terry was telling. Petr Cech was called into action after less than three minutes when van Persie drilled in a stinging left-foot shot from outside the area. But the home goalkeeper had no chance of preventing United taking the lead 60 seconds later after Wayne Rooney had worked his way to the byline and pulled back for van Persie, whose shot crashed off the post and into the net via the back of Luiz. The second came just eight minutes later after another lightning move down the United right. Goalkeeper David De Gea started the move by rolling the ball out to Ferdinand and it ended with van

Persie sweeping the ball home from Antonio Valencia’s low cross. Chelsea looked in desperate trouble, while United were rampant. Slowly, though, the home side worked their way back into the game and when they were finally able to play to their strengths in the attacking third, the momentum of the game shifted dramatically. Suddenly it was De Gea who was the busier of the two keepers and the young Spaniard kept his side in it before Mata eventually halved the deficit shortly before the interval. Rooney fouled Eden Hazard on the edge of the United area, allowing Mata to curl a precise free-kick around the wall and beyond the reach of De Gea. Di Matteo’s side continued where they

Bale returns to haunt Saints

Everton rally to hold Liverpool in derby Everton 2

Liverpool 2

LIVERPOOL: Leon Osman and Steven Naismith scored the goals as Everton fought back from two goals down to draw 2-2 in an engaging Merseyside derby with Liverpool yesterday. The visitors took an early advantage through a Leighton Baines own goal, which saw Luis Suarez, who had been criticised for diving by David Moyes before the match, run half the length of the pitch to dive on the ground in front of the Everton manager. Suarez then headed Liverpool 2-0 up but Osman pulled one back just two minutes later before former Rangers forward Naismith pulled the hosts level with his first Everton goal. The 219th derby produced a pulsating opening period that the second half failed to live up to and left Liverpool six points behind their old rivals, with Suarez’s antics sure to dominate the fallout. Both managers had called for a strong performance from referee Andre Marriner, and he showed eight yellow cards on a contentious afternoon at

Goodison Park. Liverpool suffered some pre-match problems when Pepe Reina was deemed unready to return from his hamstring problem and Glen Johnson also failed to make the starting line-up due to injury. Australian Brad Jones, who had filled in for Reina in the previous two matches, looked uncomfortable in dealing with an early Kevin Mirallas corner but Liverpool moved ahead after 13 minutes. Johnson’s replacement, Jose Enrique, made a fine burst down the left flank and although Baines prevented Raheem Sterling from tapping in at the far post, the England defender then turned Suarez’s shot into his own net. Uruguayan Suarez produced a controversial celebration by diving to the ground in front of Moyes. Seven minutes later the visitors doubled their advantage when Steven Gerrard clipped a free-kick into the area and Suarez glanced a header into the corner of the net.Everton looked for a quick response and Marouane Fellaini’s drive was deflected wide. And Moyes’ side pulled level just two minutes after falling two goals behind when Jones could only produce a poor punch at a Baines corner and Osman found the net from the edge of the area. Suarez still looked a constant threat and after receiving a throw from Andre Wisdom the Uruguayan thumped a shot

had left off after the break and were level eight minutes into the second period when Ramires headed home from Oscar’s cross. At that point the game was perfectly poised, before an incident-packed fiveminute spell left Chelsea with nine men and United poised for victory. Ivanovic was first to see red in the 63rd minute when he tripped Young as the United winger was bearing down on goal after being played in by van Persie. And when Torres followed five minutes later, it was always going to be an enormous task for Chelsea to hold on. But their sense of injustice was further fuelled by Hernandez’s strike after the Mexico forward turned home Rafael’s drilled cross.—AFP

Southampton 1

Tottenham 2

LONDON: Liverpool’s Steven Gerrard (center) fires a shot as Everton’s Marouane Fellaini follows play during their English Premier League soccer match at Goodison Park Stadium.—AP past the post. But 10 minutes before the break, Everton pulled level when Fellaini’s cross was allowed to travel across the Liverpool area and Naismith stabbed in from close range. After their dreadful start, Everton looked strong and Jones did well to push away a cross from Mirallas, while Seamus Coleman also drove over the bar from just outside the area. Liverpool manager Brendan Rogers made two changes at the inter val, replacing Suso and Nuri Sahin with Jonjo Shelvey and Sebastian Coates, while the outstanding Mirallas had to be brought off for Magaye Gueye due to injury. Sterling should have restored the vis-

itors’ advantage when he raced past Phil Jagielka to collect Enrique’s return pass, but the 17-year-old’s shot squirmed wide. Nikica Jelavic had his first sight of goal when he cut in from the left and had a low shot pushed away at the near post by Jones. Everton’s American goalkeeper Tim Howard pushed away a Gerrard freekick that skidded off the turf and at the other end, Jelavic glanced a header wide from a Baines free-kick. The match finished scrappily, but there was drama in added time when Suarez toed the ball into the net, only for the goal to be ruled out for offside.—AFP

SOUTHAMPTON: New father Gareth Bale came back to haunt former club Southampton yesterday as Tottenham Hotspur won 2-1 at St Mary’s to climb to fourth in the Premier League table. Spurs had lost 4-2 at home to Chelsea in their previous outing, followed by a 1-1 draw at Maribor in the Europa League on Thursday, but goals from Bale and Clint Dempsey saw them roar into the Champions League places. Jay Rodriguez pulled a goal back in the second half for Southampton, who remain second from bottom after losing seven of their first nine matches on their return to the top flight. Bale was returning to Southampton for the first time since he left the club to join in Spurs in 2007 and he needed just 15 minutes to show the home fans what they have been missing. Tom Huddlestone supplied the assist with a cross that Bale directed past Southampton goalkeeper Artur Boruc with an emphatic header to mark his return to action after the

birth of his first child in style. Bale, Jermain Defoe and Aaron Lennon were giving the Saints defence plenty of problems, and Bale and Defoe were both involved in Spurs’ second goal six minutes before half-time. The Welshman freed Defoe and although the England striker’s shot lacked power, Southampton defender Jose Fonte stumbled as he attempted to clear the danger and Dempsey was able to bundle the ball home. Andre Villas-Boas’ men had no trouble keeping the home side at bay in the first half but Southampton rallied in the second period. Daniel Fox and Jason Puncheon both threatened the Spurs goal, before Maya Yoshida somehow contrived to miss from point-blank range, but the Saints’ pressure was rewarded in the 66th minute. Fonte flicked a corner towards goal and although Brad Friedel got down to claw the ball away, Rodriguez was on hand to tuck the rebound home and register his first goal for the club. The former Burnley forward came within inches of an equaliser moments later, only for his effort from the edge of the box to flash narrowly wide of the post. Nigel Adkins’ side pushed hard for an equaliser in the closing stages but Spurs held firm to climb above Everton and arch rivals Arsenal in the Premier League standings.—AFP


Kuwait real estate sector bearish in Q3 Page 24

BP, Rosneft reach for skies but challenges ahead


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Ambitious Asia plan to power Australia: PM

Mallya wonít sell ‘family silver’ to save Kingfisher Page 25

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TEHRAN: An Iranian woman inspects a kettle in a home appliance store in Iran. Iranian authorities have been forced to quell protests in recent weeks over the plummeting value of the country’s currency which lost nearly 40 percent of its value against the US dollar in a week early this month. — AP

US economic growth remains tepid GDP expands at modest 2% pace in July-Sept WASHINGTON: The latest snapshot of economic growth shows the US recovery remains tepid. Growth in the JulySeptember quarter climbed slightly but was still too weak to stir significantly more hiring. The pace of expansion rose to a 2 percent annual rate from 1.3 percent in the April-June quarter, led by more consumer and government spending. Voters who are still undecided about the presidential election aren’t likely to be swayed by Friday’s mixed report from the Commerce Department. “For the average American, I don’t think changes in quarterly GDP” make a big difference in their perception of the economy, said Andrew Kohut, president of the Pew Research Center. “It’s certainly good for the president that the number is not bad because that would resonate.” With 11 days until the election, the economy is being kept afloat by a revitalized consumer and the early stages of a housing recovery. But more than three years after the Great Recession ended, the nation continues to struggle because businesses are reluctant to invest, and slower global growth has cut demand for American exports. Republican nominee Mitt Romney is telling voters that President Barack Obama’s policies have kept the economy from accelerating and have even slowed growth in the past two years. The 1.7 percent annual growth rate for the first nine months of 2012 remains slightly behind last year’s 1.8 percent growth. And both are below 2010’s growth of 2.4 percent. The economy contracted at a 5.3 percent annual rate in the

first three months of 2009, just as Obama took office during the worst downturn since the Great Depression. Obama says his policies stabilized the economy later that year and argues that the stimulus package and auto bailout helped it grow in 2010. The White House points to an economy that’s expanded for 13 straight quarters. Yet this year’s third-quarter growth is slightly below the 2.2 percent average pace since the recession ended in June 2009. The economy’s health is most closely tied to consumers, whose spending drives 70 percent of economic activity. The latest report showed some progress. Consumer spending rose at an annual rate of 2 percent in the July-September quarter, up from 1.5 percent in the previous quarter. And a survey by the University of Michigan released Friday found consumer confidence increased to its highest level in five years this month. That suggests spending may keep growing. Americans spent more on cars, adding nearly 0.2 percentage point to growth. Housing added to growth for the sixth straight quarter. “Those are the sectors that reflect growing consumer confidence and greater lending,” said Joseph Carson, US economist for AllianceBernstein, an asset management firm. Still, more jobs and better pay are needed to sustain that growth, he added. After-tax, inflationadjusted income rose at only a 0.8 percent annual rate in the third quarter. That was down from a 3.1 percent rate in the previous quarter. Income includes not only wages but also dividends, rental income and government

Iran condensates exports in last month worth $1bn DUBAI: Iran’s exports of condensates amounted to more than $1 billion in the last month, a customs official was quoted as saying, softening the blow of Western sanctions on its crude oil sales. Much of Iran’s condensate sales have been shipped across the Gulf to Dubai. “(Between Sept. 22 and Oct. 21) $1.067 billion worth of gas condensates of South Pars were exported out of the country through the Pars Ports Complex,” said Ahmad Pourheydar, head of customs in Iran’s Pars Special Zone, according to Iran’s state news agency IRNA. “This amount of gas condensates was

transported to various countries in nine shipments at a weight of more than 1.3 million tons.” Iran’s condensate sales are its biggest source of income after crude and refined products, with Dubai its biggest buyer ahead of Asian buyers including China. Western countries have sanctioned Iran’s energy and banking sectors as part of an effort to starve Tehran of revenues for its disputed nuclear program. In the summer the US tightened controls on financial transactions for importing Iranian condensate. — Reuters

or workplace benefits, among other items. With businesses nervous about the economic outlook, hiring isn’t likely to pick up soon. Many companies worry that their overseas sales could decline further if recession spreads throughout Europe and growth slows further in China, India and other developing countries. Businesses also fear the tax increases and government spending cuts that will kick in next year if Congress doesn’t reach a budget deal. That’s caused them to invest less in new buildings and equipment. Business spending on equipment and software was flat in the July-September quarter, the first quarter it didn’t increase since the recession. “Uncertainty at home and abroad is holding back the business sector,” Nigel Gault, an economist at IHS Global Insight, said in an email. “How quickly those uncertainties clear up ... will determine how quickly the overall growth rate can pick up.” One big driver of growth was a sharp increase in defense spending, which rose by the most in more than three years. That was likely a one-time boost. Growth was held back by the first drop in exports in more than three years. It was also slowed by the effects of the drought that struck the Midwest last summer. The drought cut agriculture stockpiles and reduced the economy’s annual growth rate by nearly a halfpoint. In a healthy economy, growth between 2.5 percent and 3 percent is usually sufficient to keep the unemployment rate low. But the unemployment rate is 7.8 percent. Growth needs to top 3 percent to generate

enough hiring to lower the rate steadily. The government’s report covers gross domestic product, which measures the nation’s total output of goods and services from restaurant meals and haircuts to airplanes, appliances and highways. Friday’s was the first of three estimates of thirdquarter GDP. Analysts were doubtful that the report would sway many undecided voters in battleground states. Since the recovery began more than three years ago, the US economy has grown at the slowest rate of any recovery in the post-World War II period. And economists think growth will remain sluggish at least through the first half of 2013. Some analysts believe the economy will start to pick up in the second half of next year. By then, economists hope the tax and spending confrontations that have brought gridlock to Washington will be resolved. That could encourage businesses to invest and hire. The Federal Reserve’s continued efforts to boost the economy by lowering long-term interest rates may also help by generating more borrowing and spending by consumers and businesses. But the economy is still being slowed by consumers’ efforts to spend less, increase their savings and pay off debts, economists say. And banks remain cautious about lending in the aftermath of the financial crisis. That’s why recoveries after financial crises are usually weak. “There’s just a reality here,” said Paul Edelstein, an economist at IHS Global Insight. “You don’t recover from these types of events as quickly as you’d like.” — AP

Gold price falls for 3rd week in row KUWAIT: Prices of gold dropped for the third consecutive week reaching $1,698 per ounce on Wednesday, the lowest level in two months, according to a report released by Sabaek Al-Kuwait Company yesterday. The price of the precious metal fell half percent on Friday to the level of $1,700 per ounce, closing the week at $1,711, as a result of actual demand, which might reach $1,735-1,755 per ounce in the coming days, in case weak performance of the US labor market and euro-zone support for the Spanish government persisted. However, the report predicted further falls and correction moves, possibly to the level of $1,680. The gold price has fallen by five

percent, some $100, since end of September, from the level of $1,796. The prices are forecast to turn bullish in the second half of November, according to the report, predicting higher demand in India where the nation prepared to celebrate Diwali and Eid. The report indicated that the gold would continue to be a safe haven for many investors due to market jitters, slack of economic growth and diverse financial crises prevailing across the world. As to silver, the price of this metal rose 10 cents reaching $33 per ounce. Prices of other precious metals turned bearish. —KUNA

Troika seeks 150 new Greek reforms BERLIN: International auditors will demand Greece carry out a further 150 reforms to its recession-battered economy and suggest holders of Greek debt take a further hit, German newsweekly Spiegel reported yesterday. Citing an interim version of the findings of the troika of creditors, Spiegel said Athens would get an extra two years to carry out the reforms in its program but this delay would cost billions of euros. Greece has completed 60 percent of the reforms already demanded of it, the report says, according to Spiegel. A further 20 percent are being debated by the Greek government, while the rest are outstanding. Among the additional reforms demanded are a loosening of the hiring-and-firing laws, changes to the minimum-wage rules and a lifting of certain professional privileges, Spiegel said. The report also suggests that creditors including other euro-zone countries take a “haircut”, or write-off, on some of their holdings of Greek debt, meaning taxpayers would be funding the bailout. The European Central Bank would not write off its holding of Greek debt because this would amount to financing Greece, which is strictly forbidden, Spiegel reported. But the ECB-which is part of the troika along with the International Monetary Fund and the EU-is prepared to forgo profits on its Greek debt holding, the weekly said. German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble however dismissed the idea of a further haircut for Greece as unrealistic. “That is a discussion which has little to do with the reality in the member states of the euro-zone,” he told German radio station Deutschlandfunk. However, he suggested that Greece could buy back some of its debt at lower prices from bond holders. Private investors in Greek debt accepted to write off almost all of the value of their holdings as part of the second Greek bailout package negotiated earlier this year. But so-called “official sector” bondholders, including other euro-zone governments, have until now been spared such a write-off. Greece is striving to persuade the troika it has made enough progress in reforms and painful austerity cuts to unlock a 31.5-billion-euro ($41-billion) slice of aid needed to stave off bankruptcy. Prime Minister Antonis Samaras has said Greece’s coffers will be empty in mid-November. Spiegel said the long-awaited report would be published on November 12 at the latest. Creditors differ on how much the two-year delay would cost, with the EU and ECB estimating 30 billion euros and the IMF 38 billion euros, Spiegel said. — AFP




Mallya won’t sell ‘family silver’ to save Kingfisher family wealth and for long-term shareholder value.” “I must do that for every business because these are public companies and I owe it to the shareholders and stake-

that,” he said, cigar in hand. “So we are going to give it our best shot. We are committed to that.” The tycoon, who said on Twitter earlier in the week that he was relieved to no longer be a billionaire on the latest Forbes list because it might lessen some of the envy directed at him, defended the management of the company. He said there were many reasons for Kingfisher’s predicament, but laid much of the blame on taxation and the Indian government. “Very high fuel costs, obscenely high taxation, lack of foreign investment permission, until literally six weeks ago - so many different factors which make the Indian aviation space actually somewhat unattractive other than the potential growth going forward,” he explained. “The government needs to look at taxation very seriously. You can’t have a 25 percent average sales tax on fuel when crude oil prices that used to hover around $60 or $70 a barrel are now well in excess of $100 a barrel.” Mallya has been looking for partners for the airline and said two investment bankers had been hired as part of the search. “Both an Indian partner or partners or a foreign partner. we are in dialogue with a number of potential investors,” he said. “Now, you can’t possibly sew up a deal in six weeks. It’s impossible. It takes more like six months. Everything is moving. There are a lot of moving parts and we are trying to put together a good solid strong package,” he said. —Reuters

cash-strapped carrier said on Friday it would use its own money to try and get back in the air. The day before, staff had agreed to return to work after the airline said it would pay three months of over-

Vijay Mallya poses with Kingfisher stewardesses. holders in these companies,” he said. “Selling assets to fund the airline? No plans of that nature whatsoever.” Kingfisher Airlines Ltd, which has never made a profit, had its license suspended by India’s civil aviation authorities last week and has not flown since the start of October after a protest by employees, who had been unpaid since March. The

due salary by Nov 13. According to the consultancy Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation, Kingfisher has total debt of about $2.5 billion. Mallya said the airline had to be dealt with professionally, but he wanted it to survive. “The environment and government policy must also encourage me to do

S Africa mines face existential threat even as strikes cool JOHANNESBURG: South Africa’s mining sector is creeping back toward normality but large wage increases afforded to strikers mean the sector will face shrinking profit margins that could force companies to mechanize or close shafts. On Thursday, gold operators agreed to pay raises of up to 20.8 percent for some workers, a month after a platinum mine conceded a 22 percent pay hike to end illegal stoppages. The agreements offered the prospect of an end to crippling strikes, but also tighten the screws on the largest employer in Africa’s number one economy. It is a sector that has changed little in the last century and is battling for survival amid rising operating costs and a global crunch. “We have seen rising wage costs and rising electricity costs in the

mining sector,” explained Roger Baxter, chief economist at South Africa’s Chamber of Mines. “The industry is very focused on reducing cost pressures and this is through looking at productivity improvement, the adoption of new technologies and in some cases some mechanization may take place,” he told AFP. The mining industry lost 10 billion rand ($1.1 billion, 880 million euro) since the start of the strikes in August, according to Baxter. Individual operators are now looking hard at the books to see which mines can be considered a going concern. “The most fundamental problem of the mining industry is that it has a 19th-century business model which depends on cheap labor, low-skilled labor, and therefore large numbers of workers,” said Gold Fields chairwoman Mamphela

Ramphele in a recent interview. “It’s not sustainable,” she concluded. South African mines employ masses of low-paid mineworkers, most of them migrant workers who travel from far-flung provinces and even neighboring countries. Many mines have tens of thousands of people working underground. Despite low wages, the sheer number of employees represent the bulk of operating costs, and recent salary hikes drive up the bill even more. At Gold Fields, the world number four gold producer, Thursday’s agreement added 2.5 percent to a wage bill that already made up 55 percent of operating costs. On top of that, electricity bills now threaten to skyrocket. Public utility Eskom on Monday asked authorities to sign off on a 16-per-

cent tariff increase per year for the next five years. The numbers are worrying for a sector that accounts for nine percent of the nation’s output and employs 500,000 people-and almost double that number if ancillary industries are included. Companies therefore think about reducing an unproductive labor force that has become increasingly restless and rejects the authority of traditional labor unions. “We would expect mining companies to shut down operations first and worry about mechanisation a very distant second. We also think it would be hard to finance mechanisation, especially now that trust from investors has dropped”, said Nic Brown, head of commodities research at Natixis Bank, after agencies Moody’s and Standard & report By Lama Ataya alary negotiation is a tough art; if you master it you can get a sneak peek into what your employer’s “reservation price” is and use it to your advantage. The career experts at, the leading job site in the Middle East have developed below a simple code of salary negotiation that is easy to follow. DO your homework: Many people can’t find their words when they are asked about their salary expectations. It’s better to do your research about what the market rate for your prospective position is rather than concoct an impromptu answer. When researching, go through Salaries to find more about the salary levels for your profession and in the region. You can also get in touch with recruiters and approach people in your network of friends and colleagues who would be willing to share salary information with you. Using all that salary intelligence as a baseline, you can tweak it according to your own experience and qualifications and come up with a narrower range that you can confidently pitch to the potential employer. DON’T say yes too soon: Accepting the offer put forward right away is inadvisable. Usually fresh graduates and job-seekers planning on relocating to a different geographical location make this mistake. Weighing the salary offered against your actual worth is important. Do not say yes unless you feel that the offer is reflective of the value you will offer to the firm. Not speaking up might lead you to feel underpaid, and receive lower increments and a slower salary growth as you move up the career ladder leaving you stressed and demotivated. DO consider other benefits: To look at salary alone and ignore other benefits is also a common error while negotiating salaries. Other factors should be considered like insurance coverage, the option to have flexible work timings, maternity and paternity leave, paid vacation days etc. These factors have monetary value attached to them and should be grossed up with the salary figure to measure the value of your package. DON’ T make unreasonable comparisons: Salaries may differ from one industry to another. Comparisons should be avoided in such cases and salary negotiations should be based on research conducted for the particular industry in question. For example, comparing the salary of an administrative assistant in a school to that in a telecom company would be an unreasonable thing to do. DO wait for the right time to bring up the salary topic: Talking about the salary too early in an interview is not advisable. Market yourself as a worthy candidate and if the interviewer is genuinely interested in hiring you, they will bring up the topic themselves at a later stage of the interview. Take the cue from there and quote your range. If you have previous work experience, a good rule of thumb is to ask for a 20% increment over your last salary figure as the minimum expected salary. DON’T give a specific salary figure: Always try to give a range, as it gives more room for negotiation. If the employer is offering something below your minimum, negotiate on the benefits. is the #1 job site in the Middle East with more than 40,000 employers and over 9,000,000 registered job seekers from across the Middle East, North Africa and the globe, representing all industries, nationalities and career levels. Post a job or find jobs on today and access the leading resource for job seekers and employers in the region.


Stake sale to Diageo ruled out GREATER NOIDA, India: Indian liquor baron Vijay Mallya does not have to do a deal with UK drinks giant Diageo and will not sell prized assets to rescue his grounded Kingfisher airline, he told Reuters at the weekend. Speaking in his office at Force India, the Formula One team he co-owns, the UB Group head poured scorn on media reports that he would be forced to sell stakes in profitable businesses to fund Kingfisher. “That is the media perspective of what I am going to do. I am not so sure that I lack commercial acumen to the extent that I would sell a hugely thriving, successful business to take the cash and put it into an airline in an environment such as India,” Mallya said at the Indian Grand Prix at the Buddh International Circuit south of New Delhi. “My group is sufficiently cash-generative to fund the airline as we have done. We have put almost 150 million pounds ($241.47 million) since April 2012 into the airline. But that has not meant that I have had to sell my family silver to fund the airline.” Mallya has been talking to Diageo Plc, makers of brands including Johnnie Walker whisky and Smirnoff vodka, about selling a stake in his United Spirits Ltd. Earlier this weekend he said he was unsure whether or not he would agree terms with the London-listed firm. “I do not have to do a deal with Diageo at all,” said Mallya. “I am under no compulsion whatsoever. But having said that, I will do what is good ... for myself, my

The do’s and don’ts of salary negotiation

Poor’s downgraded the country’s sovereign rating. Production costs rise by seven to eight percent a year while the prices do not always keep up, he added. Extraction costs for platinum amount to $1,400 an ounce in South Africa, which barely allows for searching for new seams and modernising current equipment, said Brown. An ounce traded at $1,571 on Friday, after falling below $1,400 in February. But mechanising mine sites that have been criticized for dire living conditions is not simple, no matter how alluring, according to Peter Major, an analyst at Cadiz Corporate Solutions. “It is very difficult to mechanise in gold and platinum mining because of the narrow reefs,” he told AFP. —AFP

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

.2740000 .4470000 .3640000 .3000000 .2800000 .2870000 .0040000 .0020000 .0760950 .7413670 .3870000 .0720000 .7267780 .0430000

.2840000 .4600000 .3720000 .3070000 .2910000 .2980000 .0058500 .0035000 .0768590 .7488180 .4050000 .0780000 .7340830 .0510000

CUSTOMER TRANSFER RATES US Dollar/KD .2803000 .2824000 GB Pound/KD .4488300 .4521930 Euro .3660300 .3687720 Swiss francs .3022430 .3045070 Canadian dollars .2824040 .2845200 Danish Kroner .0490710 .0494390 Swedish Kroner .0424690 .0427880 Australian dlr .2893400 .2915070 Hong Kong dlr .0361670 .0364380 Singapore dlr .2294810 .2312010 Japanese yen .0035090 .0035350 Indian Rs/KD .0000000 .0053000 Sri Lanka rupee .0000000 .0021820 Pakistan rupee .0000000 .0029680 Bangladesh taka .0000000 .0034890 UAE dirhams .0763450 .0769170 Bahraini dinars .7437970 .7493700 Jordanian dinar .0000000 .3994340 Saudi Riyal/KD .0747670 .0753270 Omani riyals .7283360 .7337920 Philippine Peso .0000000 .0068870

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

ASIAN COUNTRIES 3.547 5.227 2.945 2.175 3.281 232.250 36.293 3.427 6.776 9.163 92.334

GCC COUNTRIES 75.030 77.309 730.800 747.310 76.614

Saudi Riyal Qatari Riyal Omani Riyal Bahraini Dinar UAE Dirham

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

ARAB COUNTRIES 48.400 45.981 1.313 181.220 396.880 1.888 4.847 33.482

EUROPEAN & AMERICAN COUNTRIES US Dollar Transfer 281.250 Euro 370.550 Sterling Pound 454.500 Canadian dollar 286.110 Turkish lire 156.860 Swiss Franc 306.370 US Dollar Buying 280.050 GOLD 332.000 168.000 86.000

20 Gram 10 Gram 5 Gram

SELL CASH 294.400 749.550 3.670 287.900 553.500 45.900 50.300 167.800 48.430 370.000 37.060 5.480 0.032 0.161 0.248 3.630 399.410 0.191 95.050 45.400 4.330 232.900 1.826

50.500 732.110 3.070 7.010 77.960 75.250 232.070 36.390 2.685 453.100 43.600 306.600 4.100 9.530 198.263 76.850 282.200 1.350

731.930 2.962 6.815 77.530 75.250 232.070 36.390 2.166 451.100 305.100 4.100 9.360 76.750 281.800

SELL DRAFT 292.900 749.550 3.470 288.400

232.100 46.135 368.500 36.910 5.250 0.032

3.330 231.400

76.605 77.255 75.015 396.745 46.099 2.164 5.260 2.945 3.440 6.809 690.395 4.515 9.275 4.365 3.430 92.080

Kuwait Bahrain Intl Exchange Co.

10 Tola 1,817.050 TRAVELLER’S CHEQUE 451.100 281.800

Sterling Pound US Dollar

COUNTRY Australian Dollar Canadian Dollar Swiss Franc Euro US Dollar Sterling Pound Japanese Yen Bangladesh Taka Indian Rupee Sri Lankan Rupee Nepali Rupee Pakistani Rupee UAE Dirhams Bahraini Dinar Egyptian Pound Jordanian Dinar Omani Riyal Qatari Riyal Saudi Riyal

SELL DRAFT 294.88 288.71 306.04 367.63 281.40 452.97 3.60 3.464 5.249 2.170 3.312 2.954 76.68 749.27 46.13 400.90 732.37 77.71 75.25

SELL CASH 294.500 286.500 308.000 371.000 282.500 455.000 3.690 3.600 5.500 2.320 3.750 3.150 77.350 748.500 48.500 398.500 735.000 78.000 75.750

Dollarco Exchange Co. Ltd 399.380 0.190 95.050

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


UAE Exchange Centre WLL

Bahrain Exchange Company COUNTRY 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

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 for Transfer US Dollar Canadian Dollar Sterling Pound Euro Swiss Frank Bahrain Dinar

Selling Rate 281.450 284.220 451.725 368.625 305.095 745.130

Currency Rate per 1000 (Tran) US Dollar 281.800 Pak Rupees 2.957 Indian Rupees 5.256 Sri Lankan Rupees 2.175 Bangladesh Taka 3.445 Philippines Peso 6.850 UAE Dirhams 76.830 Saudi Riyals 75.300 Bahraini Dinars 749.200 Egyptian Pounds 46.180 Pound Sterling 454.800 Indonesian Rupiah 2.990 Yemeni Riyal 1.550 Euro 371.700 Canadian Dollars 289.900 Nepali rupee 3.345

Al Mulla Exchange Currency Transfer Rate (Per 1000) US Dollar 281.350 Euro 368.200 Pound Sterling 450.900 Canadian Dollar 286.250 Japanese Yen 3.590 Indian Rupee 5.245 Egyptian Pound 46.130 Sri Lankan Rupee 2.164 Bangladesh Taka 3.462 Philippines Peso 6.805 Pakistan Rupee 2.942 Bahraini Dinar 749.350 UAE Dirham 76.500 Saudi Riyal 75.100 *Rates are subject to change



BP, Rosneft reach for skies but challenges ahead $61bn deal one of biggest in corporate history

MADRID: A picture taken on October 27, 2012 shows placards on a fence installed by police to protect the Spanish Congress during a protest against the government’s austerity reforms and the public payment of bank’s debts in Madrid. — AFP

Spain’s empty highways lead to bankruptcy MADRID: At the Leganes toll booth outside Madrid, the workers scan the horizon for cars. In Spain’s recession, the stream of paying drivers has slowed to a trickle and the toll road is all but bankrupt. Like the housing bubble, pumped up until it burst in 2008, and its speculation-funded phantom airports, the folly of Spain’s roadbuilding boom too is now being laid bare in vast stretches of tarmac. “Right now we can’t meet our debt repayments. We are in the hands of the judge,” said Jose Antonio Lopez Casas, director of Accesos de Madrid, the company that manages two major highways around the capital. The two highways, Radial 3 and Radial 5, opened in 2004 at the height of Spain’s construction boom. Now the company owes 660 million euros ($850 million) to the bank, 340 million to the builders and 400 million to residents evicted to build it. Since the MadridToledo highway entered bankruptcy proceedings in May, the trend has spread, with five other major routes following. “It’s no surprise,” says Paco Segura, a transport specialist at the environmental campaign group Ecologists in Action. “In Spain, just as there was a real estate bubble, there was also a bubble in infrastructure, and one of the areas that got most developed was the motorways,” he added. “We built thousands and thousands of kilometres of motorways on routes that did not have the traffic concentration to justify it.”

The craze drove Spain to break records: it became the country in Europe with the most kilometres of motorways and the most commercial international airports, and was second only to China in the world for the length of its high-speed train lines. But while the state was approving all these projects by private companies, it was also developing a network of toll-free highways, naturally preferred by drivers. In the first quarter of this year, with Spain in recession, motorway traffic fell 8.2 percent compared to a year earlier, hitting its lowest level since 1998, the transport ministry said. “ Traffic around Madrid has fallen by between 15 and 20 percent in the past five years,” Lopez said. “In our case it has fallen by much more,” he said of his toll roads. “The economic situation makes the cost of a toll road much more of a factor in deciding whether to take a route or not, when there is a free alternative of sufficient quality,” said Jacobo Diaz, director of the Spanish Road Association. “The demand has clearly been overestimated. The actual volume of traffic is about a quarter of what was forecast.” Ecologists in Action estimates the motorway between Madrid and the city of Toledo receives 11 percent of the traffic its developers expected. Around Madrid, meanwhile, “nearly all the motorways which are going bust are not getting 40 percent of the traffic they planned for when they were built,” said Segura.— AFP

TEHRAN: A currency exchange bureau worker counts US dollars in downtown Tehran. Iranian authorities have been forced to quell protests in recent weeks over the plummeting value of the country’s currency which lost nearly 40 percent of its value against the US dollar in a week early this month.— AP

Comcast Q3 profit, sales top Street on upbeat subs NEW YORK: Comcast Corp, the nation’s largest provider of cable TV and Internet services, more than doubled its net income in the third quarter, chiefly due to the sale of wireless spectrum and its stake in the A&E TV channel. Underlying results were strong, however, as cable TV saw fewer cancelations than expected and the expensive-to-produce London Olympics broke even on NBC. Net income rose to $2.11 billion, or 78 cents per share, in the three months through September from $908 million, or 33 cents per share, a year earlier. Excluding gains from the sale of spectrum to Verizon Wireless for $2.3 billion and the sale of the 16 percent A&E TV stake to Disney and Hearst for $3 billion, earnings came to 46 cents per share, matching the expectation of analysts polled by FactSet. That figure was up 39 percent from the comparable one last year. Revenue grew 15 percent to $16.54 billion, blowing past the $16.07 billion expected by analysts. Comcast’s shares rose $1.20, or 3.3 percent, to close at $37.56 Friday. The shares hit an all-time high of $37.78 earlier in the day. The Philadelphia-based company lost 117,000 video subscribers in the quarter, leaving it with about 22 million. Video subscriber losses have slowed for eight quarters in a row, which the company said was due to better customer service and fewer in-person service calls. Analysts were looking for an average decline of 123,000. Comcast is mainly losing subscribers to telecom and satellite TV providers. Verizon and AT&T already reported combined gains in the quarter of 317,000. Comcast added 287,000 Internet customers, beating the 273,000 expected, giving

it more than 19 million. It gained a net 123,000 voice customers, also beating the 116,000 gain expected. More video customers signed up for all three services and the revenue it made from every video customer grew 9 percent to $150.73 a month. That’s up from $111.32 four years ago. An increasing number of customers added advanced products such as high-definition digital video recorders, which helped boost revenue per video customer, even though some analysts were expecting a decline. The good news on the Olympics wasn’t a surprise after NBCUniversal CEO Steve Burke said on Aug. 1 that the Games would likely break even rather than cause a $200 million loss, as was predicted earlier. The company decided to telecast events live on its website but wait several hours before airing them again in prime time in the U.S. The move ended up helping audience ratings, not hurting them, as the buzz on social media helped drive viewers to their living rooms. Comcast said it took in $1.19 billion in revenue for the Olympics alone during the quarter, topping the $1.18 billion it paid for the rights. The company also spent production dollars on camera crews, announcers and the like. The money helped NBCUniversal, which saw revenue rise 31 percent to $6.82 billion. Excluding the Olympics bump, revenue still grew 8 percent. Broadcast ad revenue at NBC more than doubled to $1.99 billion, and rose 9 percent excluding the Olympics. Ad revenue on pay TV networks such as Bravo, CNBC, MSNBC and NBC Sports was up less than 1 percent to $807 million. It wasn’t immediately clear if pay TV network advertising revenue would have fallen without the boost from the Olympics.—AP

MOSCOW: BP and Rosneft will transform the landscape of the global energy industry with their mega oil deal but the two companies still face challenges to close the transaction and then reap the benefits. Rosneft should next year enjoy 100 percent control of BP’s Russian joint venture TNK-BP after BP and its Russian partners both agreed to sell their 50 percent stakes in the firm to the Russian state oil giant. The deal as a whole is valued at $61 billion, making it one of the biggest in corporate history, and will bring BP’s stake in Rosneft to 19.75 percent as well as giving it two seats on the Russian firm’s board. The agreement marks the end of the chequered par tnership between BP and the Russian shareholders at TNK-BP that started in 2003 and was marked by acrimonious bickering as well as impressive production growth. Moreover it cements Rosneft’s position as an undisputed oil industry champion, a remarkable achievement for a company that only reached prominence when it acquired the assets of the jailed tycoon Mik hail Khodorkovsky’s now defunct private oil giant Yukos from 2004-2007. “The enlarged Rosneft would take on a more prominent role in Russia’s oil industry, in our view, and it would become a clear leader in terms of reserves and production, with unique access to certain new projects and majority government control,” said analysts at ratings agency Standard and Poor’s. Among the astonishing implications of the deal are: The deal makes Rosneft the world’s biggest oil company by production, overtaking ExxonMobil. Once the deal is completed, Rosneft will produce five percent of all global oil, about 4.6 million barrels (of oil equivalent) per day. After completion, Rosneft will also control 40 percent of Russia’s crude production. The deal is the third-biggest energy deal in modern times after the mergers between Exxon and Mobil in 1998 and Total and Elf Aquitaine in 1999. The agreement of the deal is also a massive victory for President Vladimir Putin’s long-time ally Igor Sechin who now serves as Rosneft chief executive after many years working as the overall supremo of the Russian energy sector. Mixed feelings’ Yet Sechin and his cohorts know that now is

not the time to rest on their laurels, with a mass of work remaining to complete the twin TNK-BP purchases. The Interfax news agency Friday quoted a source close to the deal as saying that Rosneft will only buy out the Russian stake in TNK-BP once the BP transaction is completed, which is expected in the first half of 2013. Moreover, Rosneft and BP will have to show that they do not fall into the same trap of WestEast animosity that stymied TNK-BP from the start, and that they can reach the full potential of their cooperation. “The ability of Rosneft to learn from BP’s experience and at the same time the ability of BP to influence Rosneft will be one of the most important factors for the future success of the deal,” wrote analyst Ildar Davletshin of Renaissance Capital. “We are not confident yet that Rosneft will be able to fully implement best practices from BP which has been the major success driver for

TNK-BP.” Putin himself revealed that the Kremlin had been ambivalent about the deal but decided in the end that BP’s desire to work in Russia needed to be encouraged after enduring years of “hand-to-hand fighting” over TNK-BP. “I will not hide that myself and the government had mixed feelings when this project was raised,” Putin told the Valdai Club of experts, describing the decision to back the deal as a “difficult choice.” Putin indicated he believed that TNK-BP had been doomed from the start, saying he had warned the then British premier Tony Blair when the joint venture was agreed that it was an “unworkable structure”. The editor of the Vedomosti financial daily, Tatyana Lysova wrote in an editorial that once it is completed the deal marks the end of the history of TNK-BP as an independent entity. “This is clearly bad for the sector and the economy as a whole. But does this matter in the face of ambitions of that size?” she asked. — AFP

MOSCOW: Igor Sechin, the CEO of state-controlled Russian oil giant Rosneft, speaks to journalists after his meeting with Russia’s President Vladimir Putin in his Novo-Ogaryovo residence outside Moscow.—AFP

Euro-zone states set down markers for budget fight BRUSSELS: Just a month ahead of what promises to be a very difficult summit on the EU’s 2014-20 budget, leaders are trading threats and blandishments, seeking advantage where they can to trim their bill. The man in the middle, European Union president Herman Van Rompuy called this week for the 27 member states to be ready to compromise but with Britain and Denmark threatening a veto, that seems a lot to hope for just yet. “I hope we can reach an accord in November,” Van Rompuy said. “For that, we need something without which nothing is possible-a sense of compromise, alongside the political will to find an accord. If there is no willingness, then we will never get there,” he said. In July, the European Commission proposed a budget of 1.03 trillion euros ($1.33 trillion), up 5.0 percent on the 2007-13 package, sparking howls of protest from the seven major contributor states and demands for a cut of 100 billion euros or more. Germany, France and Britain especially insist that with government budgets under pressure from all sides, the EU cannot expect to get away with such a large increase in spending. “We can’t have EU spending going up and up,” British Prime Minister David Cameron said at the October 15-16 EU summit, threatening to veto any November accord which failed on that score. Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt took a similar line Thursday, saying she would veto a budget which did not give Denmark a one billion kroner (134 million euros, $174 million) rebate. “Our key message to the other countries and what we are fighting for, is that we have to have a discount and that we do not wish to pay other rich countries’ rebates,” Thorning-Schmidt said, without naming her targets. Denmark currently has no rebate on its EU budget contribution-but Britain does and will jealously guard it, as Cameron has stressed time and time again. Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden and Austria have also all negotiated rebates of various kinds, arguing that they are paying much more than other countries into the EU and not getting enough back in return. The European Parliament has got in on the act too. “If Cameron can do it, then so can we,” said Hannes Swoboda, head of the Socialist group in the parliament, which has its own power of veto over the budget under the EU constitution. Highlighting the potential for strife, the EU parliament on Tuesday rejected cuts demanded by some member states in the 2013 EU budget, aiming to protect popular programs against shortfalls which disrupted them in 2012. “To boost growth and jobs, parliament reversed (cuts) ... in areas that MEPs believe are vital to boost the economy, such as research, entrepreneurship and employment measures,” it said in a statement. The European Commission set the 2013 budget at 138 billion euros, up 6.8 percent but France, Finland and Germany wanted it cut by 5.0 billion euros while London suggested even more. Tuesday’s vote means the parliament and the European Council, which groups the member states’ political leaders, will now have to take up the 2013 budget again to reconcile their differences. If they cannot do that, then the 2012 budget becomes the basis for next year with an increase capped at around 2.0 percent, and the same formula would be applied in 2014 if no accord is reached. Most want to avoid that outcome however because it would mean no change to their contributions nor, just as important, to the balance of spending-some 40 percent on agriculture and about the same on social cohesion funds. —AFP

Dreams can do more than finance for GDP: BIS experts PARIS: Finance drives growth, but too much of a good thing sucks the lifeblood, brains and brilliant ideas from an economy, according to “startling” findings at the Bank for International Settlements. And advanced economies are overweight and even obese with financial services. “Finance, literally bids rocket scientists away from the satellite industry,” BIS economists warned, saying that it competes for people with high qualifications as well as for buildings and equipment. “The result is that people who might have become scientists, who in another age dreamt of curing cancer or flying to Mars, today dream of becoming hedge fund managers.” So argue BIS economists Stephen Cecchetti and Enisse Kharroubi who offer deep insights into one aspect of the financial and debt crisis which has hit rich countries in the last four years. Referring to the dotcom boom of the 1990s and countless other boom-and-bust experiences, they said: “Booming industries draw in resources at a phenomenal rate. “It is only when they crash, after the bust, that we realize the extent of the overinvestment that occurred.” Beginning with the premise of economic theory that “finance is good for growth”, they noted that this had been one driver of financial deregulation. The argument was that “if finance is good for growth, shouldn’t we be working to eliminate barriers to further financial development?” The economists then set themselves a question: is this true regardless of the size and growth of the financial sector. “Or, like a person who eats too much, does a bloated financial system become a drag on the rest of the economy?” For an answer they said: “We present two very striking conclusions.” First, “with finance you can have too much of a good thing,” they said. “At low levels, an increase in the size of the financial sector accelerates growth of productivity.” But “there comes a point-one that many advanced economies passed long ago-where more banking and more credit are associated with lower growth.” Their analysis showed that when private credit grew to a point greater than gross domestic product, “it becomes a drag on productivity growth”. Also, when the financial sector accounted for more than 3.5 percent of total employment, further development of finance tended to damage economic growth. The two economists, writing in a personal capacity, have even come up with a cut-off or turning point at which the size of the financial sector does more harm than good: when the number of people in finance exceeds 3.9 percent of all people in employment. Examples of countries beyond this “growth-maximising point” are Canada (with about 5.5 percent), Switzerland (5.1 percent), Ireland (4.6 percent)and “to a lesser extent” the United

States (about 4.2 percent). However the economists, whose work was distributed recently by the BIS as a matter of “topical interest”, warn that the negative effect on growth may hit the economy sooner. Their table put this lower turning point at about 1.3 percent of total employment. In that case “all countries in our sample are considerably above” the lower band for the turning point. The sample used for analysis at the BIS, the so-called central bankers’ central bank, comprises 21 countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Britain, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United States. The calculations showed, for example, that if the number of people in finance in Canada were to fall back to the turning point, gross domestic product per worker would rise by 1.3 percentage points. For Switzerland the gain would be 0.7 percentage points and for Ireland 0.2 percentage points. “ The case of Ireland is interesting because over the period 1995-99, the Irish financial sector’s share in total employment was 3.84 percent-very close to the growthmaximising value. “But over the next 10 years, the share rose to more than 5.0 percent.” If the share had been constant at 3.84 percent, the growth of output per worker could have been up to 0.4 percentage points higher over the last 10 years. The economists came up with a second “quite striking” discovery: “The faster the financial sector grows, the slower the economy as a whole grows.” To demonstrate their findings, they gave the examples of the “extreme cases” Ireland and Spain. “During the five years beginning in 2005, Irish and Spanish financial sector employment grew at an average rate of 4.1 percent and 1.4 percent per year, while output per worker fell by 2.7 percent and 1.4 percent, respectively. “Our estimates imply that if financial sector employment had been constant in these two countries, it would have shaved 1.4 percentage points from the decline in Ireland and 0.6 percentage points in Spain. “In other words, by our reckoning financial sector growth accounts for one third of the decline in Irish output per worker and 40 percent of the drop in Spanish output per worker.” They said: “Overall the lesson is that big and fast-growing financial sectors can be very costly for the rest of the economy.” The report was written against a background of some evidence that finance has lost its shine for people going to university, and for those emerging as graduates, in advanced economies. At the height of the pre-crises boom in financial services, the sector was sucking in many people with high skills in mathematics and financial engineering, known as “quants”, for astronomical salaries. — AFP




Kuwait real estate sector bearish in Q3 ALSHALL WEEKLY ECONOMIC REPORT KUWAIT: Latest available data from the Ministry of Justice, Department of Real Estate Registration and Authentication, until the end of September 2012 indicates a noticeable growth in September’s trading visa-vis the preceding month of August. This growth approached 55.7%. September’s sales scored about KD 200.3 million (KD 128.6 million for August 2012). Quarterly data point to a drop in the real estate market’s activity reflected in a declining liquidity in the third quarter this year. Value of contracts and agencies trading during the third quarter scored KD 589.7 million, which is 37.5% less than the value during the second quarter of this year. Outcome of the third quarter was distributed as follows: KD 560.7 million went for contracts and KD 29 million went for agencies. Private housing sales captured about KD 345.5 million (58.6%) of total sales, investment sales took KD 203.5 million worth (34.5%) of total sales thus putting the share of both private and investment housing at 93.1% of the market’s liquidity leaving about 6.9% of liquidity to the commercial real estate activity (6.3%) and warehousing activity (0.6%). Total value of contracts and agencies trading during the first quarter of this year scored about KD 891.1 million and went up to KD 942.9 million during the second quarter but dropped to KD 598.3 million during the third quarter. Most of the drop occurred in August due to official holidays and the holy month of Ramadan. Total sales of the real estate market during the past 9 months of the current year scored KD 2423.7 million, which is 6.5% higher than its counterpart value of last year which hints at a relative improvement in real estate liquidity. Assuming liquidity continued at the same level in the remaining quarter of the year, real estate trading value, both contracts and agencies, would score about KD 3231.5 million which is KD 352.3 million higher (12.2%) than total 2011 trading which scored KD 2879.2 million. It is worth mentioning that there is a change in the characteristics of this trading. Focus or concentration on investment and commercial housing trading slightly decreased during the past three quarters to 37.7% and 6.2% respectively of total sales (39% and 7.7% respectively for the first 3 quarters of 2011). Economic Reform and Amendment of Election Law In the first working day after issuing a necessity decree amending the voting system in the elections law inviting voters to vote on December 1st , 2012 keeping the number of constituencies as is, i.e. five, but with one vote to each voter instead of four votes. All Kuwait stock exchange indexes dropped and the stock exchange lost on Sunday 21/10/2012 about KD332.9 million from its market value in one day in contrary to similar political events in the past which directly affected in the rise of assets prices, in anticipation by dealers that the government would try to satisfy them by injecting liquidity in the markets. We shall continue to monitor this matter. However, as it did not happen instantly (on the first day of this week), the sharp decrease is an evidence of the traders’ estimate to the gravity of events development. We have been lately following up efforts of a government team composed of two Cabinet members, Governor of the Central Bank of Kuwait and KIA Managing Director. The goal of the team in the short term was to confront prospects of negative inflation with its serious impact on the banking sector and the public finance due to the government’s insurance of private sector deposits. But after the necessity decree regarding voting, all assumptions have changed. We mentioned in a previous paragraph that economic reform can deal with politics differences as long as they remain within expected limits. However, the unknown remains the pest and any artificial increase in asset prices will not remedy the matter, if it occurs. The stock exchange weighted index ended its week losing by about -1.4% while the price index

ended losing about -2.4%. More importantly is that the listed companies ended last week losing about KD398.5 million of their value as of the beginning of the week. If an official interference occurred, and under the disturbed political situation we cannot confirm its success or its integrity. Coupled with a pledge to activate the real estate portfolio, which is a correct procedure under a sound political environment, the suspicion in its activation might extend to utilization and buying out allegiances in the current environment. That will result in doing the restricted, i.e. transferring public savings to private gains. Therefore, we hope that the economic team, or what remains of it after the true and appreciated resignation of the Minister of Commerce and Industry, would not be involved in measures whose responsibility they bear, when the measures are actually political and may be corrupt. The basis, regardless of the severity of the disagreement, is the clarity of goals, transparency and integrity. Past experience of similar conditions

1.805 billion over last year’s fiscal year budget of KD 19.435 billion, a rise by 9.3%. Chapter one allocations -Salaries- scored KD 5146 million, an increase by 16.2% over last fiscal year’s allocations. Chapter Two allocations -commodities and services- scored KD 4169 million, an increase by 37.4%. Chapter three allocations Transportation means, Equipment and Supplies- scored KD 477 million, an increase by 23.9%. Chapter four allocations -Construction Projects, Maintenance and Public Expropriationsscored KD 2162 million, a drop by -11.1%. Finally, Chapter Five -Miscellaneous Expenses and Transferred Payments- scored KD 9286 million, an increase by 1.4%. Total revenues estimates in the budget scored KD 13.9324 billion, an increase by KD 487.107 million over the estimates for last fiscal year’s budget in the amount of KD 13.4453 billion, a rise by 3.6%. Oil revenues were estimated at KD 12.7682 billion, or 91.6% of total revenues estimated on the basis of producing 2.220 million barrels per day and at a hypotheti-

does not guarantee that, and there is evidence that it went in the opposite direction.

cal price of $ 65 per barrel. Non-oil revenues were estimated by KD 1.1642 billion vis-a-vis KD 1.1382 billion for the last fiscal year, a rise by 2.3%. Based on the above figures, the hypothetical deficit in the state’s budget for FY 2012/2013 by KD 7.3076 billion without deducting the 25% of revenues for the future generations’ reserves as per the Cabinet’s decision. But what eventually matters is the actual figures in the final account. Though we published these figures in their totality in a former report, but they became a law published and effective since last week. Therefore, we had to document these details.

Decree for the General State Budget for the Fiscal year 2012/2013 A necessity Law decree No 5 for 2012 was issued linking budgets of ministries and government departments for the FY 2012/2013 which commenced on 01/04/2012 and will end on 31/03/2013. Figures of this fiscal year’s budget indicate it is a record budget with expenditures allocations scoring KD 21.240 billion ($75.9 billion), an increase by KD

Excluding the first part, expenditures allocations, what remains is meaningless, ie estimates of revenues and deductions thereof, and the hypothetical deficit figure because their assumptions are incorrect and unrealistic. NBK Financial Results The National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) announced the results of its operations for the past nine months of the year which indicate that the bank has achieved net profits, after deductions of KFAS, NLST, Zakat and taxes on branches abroad, in the amount of KD 228.9 million (KD 225.6 million for the same period 2011), a rise by KD 3.3 million (1.5%). During the period, the bank acquired an additional equity of 11.1% in Boubyan Bank thus increasing its share of Boubyan Bank’s equity to 58.4%. And after obtaining the absolute majority, the bank changed Boubyan Bank classification from an affiliated company to a subsidiary resulting in collecting Boubyan bank’s financial statements under NBK statements as of the date of obtaining the dominance on July 31, 2012. Therefore, any comparison of Boubyan balance sheet and income statement of the period 30/09/2012 with any prior periods might not be accurate. For better and correct comparison, numerous data and information must be available about the bank’s new situation, which means it needs some more time. Net operation revenues rose by 21.1%, KD 84.6 million, and scored KD 484.9 million (KD 400.4 million in the same period last year). Provisions and losses from the decrease in investment in securities value rose by 170.9% (or about KD 67.8 million) and scored KD 107.5 million (KD 39.7 million in the same period last year); this led to a slight rise in net profit (as we mentioned earlier) compared with a big rise in net operation revenues. In details, investment revenues item rose to KD 86.8 million vis-a-vis KD 8.7 million in the same period last year. As such, NBK achieved profits from fair value of the previously retained equity share (remeasuring) of KD 81.514 million after listing the holding equity at Boubyan bank at fair value. It seems that the bank benefited from the extraordinary profits resulting from the reclassification of the investment in Boubyan Bank to take extraordinary additional allocations against its financing portfolio. It is worth mentioning that interests net profit (include net interest revenues and net revenues from Islamic financing) rose by 2.9%, or KD 8.2 million, due to listing net revenues from Islamic financing amounting to KD 9.7 million. The bank would have achieved a net interest income close to the level of the previous year (up to September 2011) if the Islamic finance income was excluded. The bank’s financial statements indicate that total assets increased by KD 2.7 billion, or 19.9%, to KD 16.3 billion (KD 13.6 billion in the end of 12/2011), while it increased by KD 3.2 billion, 24.5%, compared with the same period of 2011. If we excluded the impact of the consolidation of Boubyan Bank, the asset growth would be around 5.8% and 9.9% compared with its level at the end of 2011 and September 2011 respectively. As for the loans and clients’ advances portfolio, which constitute the largest component of the bank’s assets, it increased by KD 1.4 billion, 17.7%, putting the portfolio’s total at KD 9.6 billion (58.9% of total assets) vis-a-vis KD 8.2 billion (60% of total assets) in 12/2011. However, loans and advances to clients’ portfolio increased above its value in the same period of 2011 by 21.6%, or KD 1.7 billion, and scored then KD 7.9 billion (60.4% of total assets). Similarly, if we excluded the impact of the consolidation of Boubyan Bank, the credit portfolio growth rate would have reached about 2.8% and 6.2% compared with its level at the end of 2011 and September 2011 respectively. As for government assets (bonds and bills), they increased by 11.7% to KD 950.6 million (5.8% of total assets) versus KD 850.7 million (6.2% of total assets) in the end of 2011. Those assets went up by 3.9% compared with their level in the end of 9/2011 when they scored KD 914.6 million (7% of total assets). As for the bank’s profit indexes, return on average assets index (ROA) declined to 1.5% (1.7% in 9/2011); return on capital index (ROC) also dropped to about 55.1% compared to 57% for the same period last year. Likewise, the return on equities (ROE) index declined to 9.7% compared to 9.8% for the same period in 2011. Earnings per share (EPS) rose to 53 fils (52 fils in the end of the same period 2011). Thus the bank achieved annual return on the share market value of 7.1%. Price multiplier to EPS (P/E) scored 14 times compared with 15.3 times for the same period in 2011 and price multiplier/book value (P/B) scored 1.7 times (1.8 times for the same period 2011). KSE Weekly Performance The performance of Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) for the last week was less active than the previous one (four trading days), all the indices showed a decrease, and the general index shows a decrease too. AlShall Index (value weighted) closed at 426.1 points at the closing of last Wednesday (Adha Eid), showing a drop about 4 points or about 0.9%, and a decrease of 24.1 points or about 5.4% compared to the end of 2011.



ECB chief backs German ‘super commissioner’ plan BERLIN: The head of the European Central Bank yesterday threw his weight behind a German scheme to allow the EU to intervene in countries’ budgets and propose changes before they are agreed in parliaments. Mario Draghi told Spiegel newsweekly that he “completely supported” a plan drawn up by German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble to bolster the power of the EU’s economic and monetary affairs commissioner. “I am certain: if we want to restore confidence

in the eurozone, countries will have to transfer part of their sovereignty to the European level,” Draghi told Spiegel in comments published in German. “Governments have taken steps that would have been unthinkable a year ago. That is progress but it is not enough,” added the powerful central bank chief. He also insisted that European rules on economic governance be respected, which he noted had not always happened in the past. Since the outbreak of the euro-

zone debt crisis three years ago, the European Union has taken unprecedented measures, including creating a fiscal treaty between them, setting up a huge joint bailout pot and moving towards a banking union next year. “Several governments have not yet understood that they lost their national sovereignty long ago. Because they ran up huge debts in the past, they are now dependent on the goodwill of the financial markets,” Draghi said. German finance minister Schaeuble

suggested earlier this month that the EU’s economics commissioner be given more autonomy in the policing of countries’ budgets and the power to intervene if necessary. EU leaders will gather in Brussels on December 13 and 14 to thrash out a framework for the future running of the 27-nation Union on the basis of a report being drawn up by Draghi and three other senior EU politicians. Draghi also reiterated his defense of the ECB’s disputed program of buy-

ing the bonds of debt-wracked countries to drive down their borrowing costs, which has proved unpopular in Germany. He hit back at the charge the scheme would lead to inflation and stressed his determination to keep price rises in check. “My family once lost a large part of its savings through inflation. So you can be sure that I champion price stability not just for professional reasons but also for personal reasons,” said the Italian. — AFP

Ambitious Asia plan to power Australia: PM Gillard unveils sweeping policy blueprint

MUMBAI: Chairman and Managing Director of Suzlon Energy India, Tulsi Tanti, attends the World Economic Forum - India Economic Summit in Mumbai. Wind energy giant Suzlon, once a star of India’s green technology, is facing a stormy future after aggressive expansion left it mired in debt at a tricky time for the industry, analysts say. — AFP

Consumers, farmers squeezed as grain giants tighten grip LONDON: A global race for grain trading power is putting more of the world’s vital cereals in the hands of fewer companies, with a string of recent acquisitions raising fears that consumers will pay even more for their food, while farmers are squeezed. Archer Daniels Midland last week bid for Australia’s last independent grain handler GrainCorp, the latest in a series of moves by grain trading heavyweights to grab a larger slice of a booming market as developing economies seek food security. The four “ABCD” firms - ADM, Bunge, Cargill and Louis Dreyfus - dominate global grain trading along with top global commodities trader Glencore and Japan’s Marubeni, both of which have made major acquisitions in the last few months. With food price volatility increasingly coming to the fore, most recently in the wake of drought in the US and other key producing regions, concern is growing among importers about extra upward pressure on prices. “The increasing concentration of power in the global grain market is not healthy. This will lead to grain prices being controlled by top trading companies,” said Rusman Heriawan, deputy agriculture minister of Indonesia, Asia’s top wheat importer. The United Nations sounded alarm bells on market volatility this summer as corn alone surged around 40 percent in less than a month. Soybeans hit record highs, while wheat also shot up dramatically, reviving memories of the 2007/08 food crisis. “So-called grain majors account for about 75 percent of the global grain market. If they keep on merging with other grain companies, there is the possibility of a monopolistic situation,” said Han Sukho of the grains division at the Korea Rural Economic Institute. “This will make things difficult for importing countries like South Korea. We might have to pay more than what things actually cost,” the assistant director of the state-run think-tank added. South Korea is a major importer of both wheat and maize. After a doubling in quarterly profits helped by the impact of drought on the grain trade, Bunge Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Alberto Weisser said on Thursday that he expected industry consolidation to continue. “I do believe that we will have more consolidation because the market has shown that it is necessary to have large companies” with geographically diverse assets and strong balance sheets “to operate and serve the market in these volatile times,” he said. “We are part of it.” Lee Gaus, vice president of

International Futures Group, said there were some benefits from the consolidation for the grain trading companies, who will have more flexibility from expanded networks. But consumers will feel the impact if importers and supermarkets are subject to higher prices, as the flexibility of supply reduces. “ There are efficiencies that are gained when you have this kind of consolidation. But, on the other hand, there’s a danger in a situation where you have more and more controlled by fewer and fewer,” he said. “Ultimately this hurts the consumer. I don’t know any time that you can concentrate so much leverage in so few hands that it doesn’t eventually impact the consumer,” Gaus added. Gaus also saw the consolidation as a threat to producers who are faced with fewer potential buyers for their crops - meaning that they might be forced to accept lower prices for their produce. Farmers are often dependent on the grain trading companies for their seed and fertilisers as well as providing a buyer for their crops. “It (grain market consolidation) has a negative impact, both on the many producers that feed into this very small number of traders and on the other end on their customers and ultimately consumers,” said Jodie Thorpe, policy adviser for Oxfam. ADM, through the acquisition of GrainCorp, will join Cargill and Glencore, both of whom have already made major acquisitions in the world’s second largest wheat exporter. “If GrainCorp is swallowed up by US giant Archer Daniels Midland, all bulk grain exporting capacity in South Australia, Victoria, NSW and Queensland will be foreign owned,” said Warren Truss, leader of the opposition National Party. “We are rapidly descending into a state where farmers will toil in their paddocks while post-farm gate profits from Australia’s A$9 billion-a-year grain crops will be counted in multi-national boardrooms,” he added. Australia is a key exporter of wheat to China, where demand is expected to rise sharply in coming years. “Such consolidation would result in lower prices for Australian farmers if those farmers are not big enough to compete,” said Zhong Funing, director at the International Research Centre for Food and Agricultural Economics at Nanjing Agricultural University. “China could also lose its access to relatively cheap Australian wheat. China’s grain imports are definitely on the rise. There is limited scope for expanding the farmland while demand growth is coming largely from the livestock industry.” — Reuters

Germany eyes balanced budget in 2014: Minister BERLIN: Germany is set to balance its federal budget by 2014, Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said yesterday, as Berlin urges other countries to slash deficits as a response to the euro-zone debt crisis. In an opinion article for the Tagesspiegel am Sonntag, Schaeuble wrote: “Germany will already this year lower its deficit to below 0.5 percent of GDP and from 2014 have a balanced budget again.” “Reducing debt is one of the most important political tasks both in Germany and in many other countries. The German people are rightly demanding this with great force,” added the minister. The deficit would be “nearly balanced” already in 2013, Schaeuble pledged. Germany has previously committed to balancing its budget by 2016. Led by Germany, the euro-zone has embarked on a program of slashing deficits as a response to the three-year debt crisis that has tipped many of the 17-nation bloc into crippling recessions. Schaeuble noted that 25 of the 27

European Union countries had signed up to a “fiscal compact” that sets limits on new spending, with fines for nations that do not comply. Only Britain and the Czech Republic refused to sign up to the Germany-inspired treaty that Chancellor Angela Merkel believes is the only way for the euro-zone to escape its deep malaise. Last year, the German public deficit stood at one percent of output, still well below the three-percent ceiling imposed by the European Union. Germany has come under fire for concentrating too hard on reducing its deficit and not enough on promoting growth that could help its euro-zone trading partners. But with the German economy, Europe’s largest, until now proving largely resistant to the crisis, Schaeuble rejected such claims. “It is important for the European and the world economy that the German economic motor does not sputter or stall. The trend in recent years in Germany has shown that our policy of growth-friendly consolidation is working,” he wrote. —AFP

SYDNEY: An ambitious plan aimed at maximizing links with booming China and other soaring Asian economies will power Australia into the world’s top 10 wealthiest nations by 2025, the government said yesterday. The sweeping policy blueprint, titled “Australia in the Asian Century”, sets a series of goals for the next 13 years to seize upon Asia’s rapid ascent as a global economic powerhouse led by the modernization of China and India. “The scale and pace of Asia’s rise is staggering, and there are significant opportunities and challenges,” Prime Minister Julia Gillard said. Gillard said Australians had long seen Asia as a threat “racially, militarily and economically” but the region had changed dramatically in the past 30 years, demanding “new changes of us today”. “It is not enough to rely on luckour future will be determined by the choices we make and how we engage with the region we live in.” By 2025, Gillard said Australia’s GDP per person-a measure of personal wealth-would jump into the world’s top 10, joining the likes of Qatar, Singapore, Hong Kong, Brunei, the United Arab Emirates and the United States. It is currently ranked 13th according to the International Monetar y Fund, which calculates the gauge by dividing goods and services produced by a country by its population and adjusting for relative cost of living and inflation. Australia dodged recession during the financial crisis due to its links to Asia but the mining-powered economy slashed its growth and surplus forecasts last week as China’s slowdown hits commodity

SYDNEY: Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard speaks during the release of the Government’s White Paper on “Australia in the Asian Century”, at the Lowy Institute in Sydney yesterday. The ambitious plan outlined in the white paper and aimed at maximizing links with booming China and other soaring Asian economies will power Australia into the world’s top 10 wealthiest nations by 2025, the government said. — AFP prices. Gillard said her vision was for Australia to “stand strongly as a mature and confident power” in the region, supporting greater participation by China and other Asian powers in decision-making while remaining a key US ally. “We are supporting the stabilizing presence of the United States, a strong defense force, building habits of trust and co-operation in our region and a rules-based regional order,” she said. Gillard said China, India, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea and the US would be Australia’s key

partners, and the rise of Asia’s middle classes would bring opportunities in industries from health and aged care to food and travel. Onethird of Australia’s economy would be underpinned by trade with Asia, up from one-quarter today, and it would be one of the world’s top five countries to do business in, she added. Education and business were key areas for goal-setting-by 2025 Gillard said Australia’s school system would be in the top five and it would have 10 of the world’s 100 best universities. Studies of Asia would be a core

part of the national curriculum and Mandarin, Hindi, Indonesian and Japanese were to be “priority” languages. Treasurer Wayne Swan said the Asian region would soon be the world’s largest production and consumption zone and was set to overtake the economic output of Europe and North America combined by the end of this decade. Average personal wealth in Asia was set to double by 2025 and even the most conservative projections predict four of the world’s 10 largest economies will be in Asia by then, Swan said. — AFPP

Germany: No to new Greek debt haircut BERLIN: Germany’s finance minister has dismissed the idea of governments and other public creditors taking a hit on their Greek debt holdings, arguing that it wouldn’t be legally feasible. However, Wolfgang Schaeuble said in an interview with Deutschlandfunk radio broadcast Sunday that a debt buyback program under which Greece would get loans that would allow it to pay off debts - might be possible. That, he said, “is not a trick; it is a consideration that can seriously be engaged in.” Greece is pushing for a two-year extension of the 2014 deadline to meet the terms of its bailout program, a move expected to incur substantial extra costs. Private creditors agreed earlier this year to take a so-called haircut, or restructuring, on their Greek debt holdings - accepting a 53.5 percent loss on the face value of bonds. Public-sector creditors were spared; however, German weekly Der Spiegel, without citing sources, reported yesterday that Greece’s international debt inspectors are now proposing a new restructuring that would include them. Schaeuble said guarantees were given at the time of the private-sector restructuring that “that will be all - so it’s a bit unrealistic now to talk about further haircuts.” He also argued that a new haircut would raise questions over whether other governments in the 17-nation euro-zone could continue helping Greece. “You don’t give a debtor who doesn’t service your debt claims new money,” he said. “We would be prevented by law from doing any more.” The European Central Bank already has said it can’t help Greece by rolling over government bonds it holds or accepting lower interest rates, noting that it isn’t allowed to finance governments directly. Germany, Europe’s biggest economy and a lead lender in euro-zone bailouts, has made clear that it wants Greece to stay solvent and stay in the 17-nation euro. However, it has kept pressure on Athens to implement reforms and get its finances in order while debt inspectors consider whether Greece has made enough progress to secure the next ?31.5 billion ($40.7 billion) tranche of rescue loans. On Wednesday, Greek Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras told the Greek Parliament his country had won an extension of the deadline to meet the terms of the bailout program - an assertion Schaeuble promptly shot down as “speculation.” In yesterday’s interview, Schaeuble said he had called his Greek colleague and Stournaras told him “he did not say the negotiations had been concluded. He was misunderstood, or perhaps he expressed himself ambiguously.”

THESSALONIKI: Demonstrators clash with riot police yesterday during a protest against austerity measures in the northern Greek city Thessaloniki during the annual celebrations of the National No Day.—AFP

Schaeuble stressed the need to bolster the credibility of Greece’s rescue program, mentioning as one possibility automatic spending cuts if targets are missed. On another thorny issue for the euro-zone, the creation of a single supervisor for banks, Schaeuble emphasized Germany’s position that it must not be rushed. He noted that European leaders this month committed to try and get a plan for it in place by Jan. 1, “but they did say ‘if possible.’” The supervisor needs to be up and running

before Europe can work on giving its bailout fund the power to rescue banks directly something that many governments would like to see soon. However, the president of the ECB, which is slated to host the new supervisor, joined Germany in saying quality should trump speed. “What is more important is that the (supervisor) works well, not when it starts,” Mario Draghi told Germany’s Der Spiegel. “Otherwise, the reputation and independence of the ECB are at risk.” — AP

Greek troops, police block protesters THESSALONIKI: A military parade commemorating Greece’s entry into World War II has been held without interruption as hundreds of Greek police and troops were deployed to keep anti-austerity protesters away. Authorities deployed some 2,000 police in the northern city of Thessaloniki yesterday and for the first time ever lined the annual parade route with armed troops, including some from an elite quick

reaction force that has served in Kosovo. A few hundred left-wing protesters were easily kept at bay until the parade had ended and officials attending it had departed. Last year, people protesting the government’s tough austerity policies during the country ’s economic crisis overran the parade, insulted officials and forced the evacuation of Greek President Karolos Papoulias.—AP




Markets waiting for the US election NBK WEEKLY MONEY MARKETS REPORT KUWAIT: Markets remain this week at the mercy of a divergence between a softening US business sentiment compared to consumer sentiment. Indeed, after the US labor department released a larger than expected drop of jobless claims and the commerce department showed better durable goods orders, the enthusiasm of the stock market was shattered by a much smaller increase in pending home sales. Adding to the pressure were rumors that Fitch ratings agency intended to release a statement regarding a downgrade of the AAA credit rating of the US, and Apple missing earnings expectations. Two events that contributed to the negative market sentiment by the end of the week. After starting the week over the 1.3050 level, euro broke down to reach a low of 1.2883. As equity markets failed to impress, most of G10 ended the week on a negative tone with euro closing at 1.2937 versus the dollar. The sterling pound followed suit starting the week above the 1.60 level, reaching a high of 1.6143 after a stronger GDP figures. The currency ended the week around the 1.6100 level on growing skepticism that the better GDP data were influenced by the Olympic Games revenues. On the Asian side, Bank of Japan’s expectation to ease the monetary policy next week via an increase in asset buying by at least 10 trillion Yen and its commitment to achieving a 1% target inflation placed a lot of pressure on the Yen. After weakening to the 80.38 level against the USD, the Japanese Yen closed the week at 79.65. On the commodity side, Gold continue to see support above the $1,700 level as Central Banks continue to pump liquidity in the system, While Oil prices remain support-

ed by Middle East tensions. US GDP grows 2% The US gross domestic product grew at an annual rate of 2.0% between July and September, according to the officials numbers released on Friday. Economists surveyed had expected 1.8% annualized growth. Economic output has expanded for 13 consecutive quarters; however, the pace has been on the weaker side with GDP only growing by 1.3% in the second quarter. As a result, unemployment has remained high and payrolls have expanded only slowly. So far this year, employment growth has averaged just 146,000 per month, down from 153,000 in 2011. The Commerce Department said that durable-goods orders climbed 9.9% last month, marking the biggest gain in more than two and a half years. Orders in August had declined by the largest amount in three years. Expectations were for an 8.3% increase. The rebound from August’s steep 13.1% decline in new orders came largely from higher demand for aircraft, a volatile category, hence the skepticism towards the data released. For example, orders for autos, another large transportation category, fell 0.4%to mark the second straight decline. The weakness also was evident in the core capital goods orders, which were flat last month after rising only 0.2% in August. Pending home sales While Pending Home Sales have accelerated for most of the year, the slightly increased in September, indicating a possible short term slowdown prior to the US election. Analysts agree that the market is recovering after years of struggling, and as mortgage rates are expected to

Alan Plaugmann, product specialist lan Plaugmann is responsible for a team of product development and product specialists that focus on the continued development of Saxo Bank’s proprietary trading platforms; SaxoTrader, SaxoWebTrader and SaxoMobileTrader. The department also develops product training and education material for use internally and externally. Alan Plaugmann joined Saxo Bank in 2003 where he most recently served as Deputy Head of CFDs and Listed Products. He was instrumental in developing the Futures and Listed Options product, launched in early 2004. Alan majored in finance at London University and is a native Danish speaker and fluent in English. Prior to joining Saxo Bank Alan spent 12 years in London working at CB Corporation in the Advance Arbitrage Trading Group and Advance Trading Group with focus on US & European bond arbitrage, market making and proprietary trading.


European partners will also give the country 2 additional years to meet deficit targets. Newspapers also reported that the Troika is uncertain Greece will be able to achieve a sustainable debt level by 2020. Bini Smaghi, a member of the executive board of the European Central bank, expressed confidence Europe will ultimately navigate successfully the crisis that has threatened its political and economic integrity. He also suggested on a US TV station that a weaker Euro would help Europe and that current conditions justify a weaker Euro. Although that is clear, the flow of funds however into Europe remains positive. Additionally, the International Monetary Fund stated that Portugal return to the bond mar-

ket remains in 2013 remains a “VIABLE” option, and points to the falling government yields. Italy’s economic sentiment index edged up by 0.6 points in October to 76.6 points after a slight fall in September. According to recent data, pessimism among Italian households is at its highest level since 1996. Confidence in the manufacturing sector, a key sector in

Italy’s economy, declined in October, suggesting that the country might take longer than expected to emerge from recession. Finally yet importantly, business confidence fell in signs that the recession is deepening. Unemployment in Spain Spanish unemployment continues to climb to a fresh record as the recession deepens. The data came at 25.02%, higher than the 24.6% in the previous quarter. Spain Prime minister Rajoy is under extreme pressure to ask for a nation’s bailout however continues to ignore it. For those under 25 years of age, the unemployment rate edged down marginally to 52% from 53% in the previous quarter. The UK economy rose by 1%

q/q in Q3 after falling by 0.4% in the previous quarter. Although the number beat estimates, economists reiterated that the number was that much above consensus due to two factors. The first was the bounce back from the output lost as a result of the extra bank holiday in June, which probably accounted for half the increase. The second was the Olympics, ticket sales from which boosted GDP by 0.2 points. According to analysts, growth in Q3 was probably in the region of 0.3%; not bad by Britain’s recent poor standards but half the long-term prerecession trend. Taking out these 2 factors, the economy has probably been growing at an average rate of 0.2% in the last two quarters according to economists. Mervyn King of the Bank of England made it clear last week that the Bank of England expected the recovery to be slow and patchy, with activity supported by ultra-loose monetary policy. China improves China’s MNI business sentiment index was revised upwards to 51.86 in October, versus the flash figure of 51.2. Both, the new orders and production series were revised upwards. Additionally, China’s Manufacturing PMI rose to a three month high of 49.1 this week. Although still below the 50 level, the data represent an improvement of the situation from September. The data adds to the market’s optimism over a slight rebound in the fourth quarter of the year. Japanese finance minister Koriki Jojima said the government’s latest economic stimulus measures are expected to increase GDP by 0.1%, following the approval of the package by the Japanese government. Of

the measures, government expenditures will be greater than JPY 400bn, including funds earmarked for earthquake reconstruction. The program will be funded out of the government’s existing funds and will involve no new debt issuance. Economy minister Maehara earlier commented that he wanted the Bank of Japan to expand its monetary stimulus next week, as it appeared unlikely the central bank will meet its 1% inflation target. Additionally, Japan CPI fell in September, the fifth straight month of declines, although not as severely as market expectations. Core inflation was also somewhat better than expected at -0.6% versus -0.7% consensus. However, the deflationary impulse will likely continue to keep the pressure on the BOJ to deliver additional stimulus measures going into next week’s monetary policy meeting. Commodities As Central banks continue to pump money into the system in an attempt to revive growth, gold prices remain supported above the $1,700 level. As unemployment is still on the high side and jobless claims have not been able to drop substantially in the US, gold investors continue to hold on to the bullion especially with the fiscal cliff debate coming after November’s election. Although the US economy expanded more than forecast in the third quarter, Oil prices were little changed as growth data came on the lower side. With fears that the global economy has been slowing down, oil prices have been sustained by the tension in the Middle East. Kuwait Kuwaiti Dinar at 0.28120 The USDKWD opened at 0.28120 yesterday morning.

ABK announces KD63.9m operating profits for Q3

Gulf Bank announces winners of 42nd Al-Danah draw KUWAIT: Gulf Bank held its forty-second Al-Danah weekly draw on October 21st, 2012, announcing a total number of ten Al Danah weekly prize draw winners, each awarded with prizes of KD 1,000. The 42nd Al Danah Weekly Winners are: lWahida Ibraheem Al-Shatti, lAziz Hajeea Al-Wakaa, lMohsen Guloum Malek Hussain, lAmenah Yousef Mohamed Al-Kandari, lAjeet Singh Anahd, lFouziya Jaber Jaly Fahad Al-Shemery, lMahmoud Aun Hassen Al-Mutawa, l Hayfaa Yousef Mohammed Al-Najjar, lMirza Abdelshakoor Mirza Abdelrazaq, lMohammad Shamroz Khan Lal Khan. Gulf Bank encourages everyone in Kuwait to open an Al Danah account and/or increase their deposits to maximize their chances of becoming a winner in the upcoming weekly (KD1000 each for 10 winners) and 1 million dinar draw. Gulf Bank’s AlDanah allows customers to win cash prizes and encourages them to save money. Chances increase the more money is deposited and the longer it is kept in the account. Al-Danah also offers a number of unique services including the Al-Danah Deposit Only ATM card which helps account holders deposit their money at their convenience; as well as the Al-Danah calculator to help customers calculate their chances of becoming an Al-Danah winner. To be part of the Al-Danah draws, customers can visit one of Gulf Bank’s 56 branches, transfer on line, or call the Customer Contact Center on 1805805 for assistance and guidance. Customers can also log on to, Gulf Bank’s website, to find all the information regarding Al-Danah or any of the Bank’s products and services or log on, to find out more about Al-Danah and who the winners are.

remain low, the sector is likely to remain supported and enjoying a more robust recovery. On Thursday, the press suggested the Troika will give Greece a new loan of between EUR 1620bn, after officials concluded that March’s 130bn bailout was not sufficient. The deal is expected to be announced at the November 12 finance ministers meeting, where Greece’s

Net profit reaches KD30.4 million after provisions KUWAIT: Al-Ahli Bank of Kuwait reported its financial results for the financial period ended 30 September 2012. The operating profits (before provisions) amounted to KD63.9 million, compared to KD58.7 million in the corresponding period, a growth rate of 9%. The net profit amounted to KD30.4 million after taking precautionary provisions for unexpected difficult market conditions. Earnings per share amounted to 20 Fils with return on assets of 1.3 % and return equity of 8.1 %. Commenting on these financial results for the nine months of 2012, Ahmed Behbehani, ABK’s Chairman said: “ABK continues to take precautionary provisions to face the difficult market conditions prevailing during the year. The delay in launching of new development projects, and continuation of

political instability in some countries have negatively affected the economic activity and local business environment. Despite these major challenges, ABK successfully managed these difficult conditions. The Bank will continue to follow a conservative policy to secure the interests of the shareholders” “The bank has a sound capital base and a strong capital adequacy ratio significantly above regulatory norms. This has given the Bank the ability to expand and grow its operations, withstand any unforeseen contingencies and provide us with the ability to meet Basel III capital requirements”, added Behbehani. Further, he stated that, “Our core strategy has been adapted to meet the turbulent economic circumstances and we remain focused on minimizing risks across our business areas, improving

operational efficiency and enhancing value for our shareholders and customers. The Bank has also increased its suite of products and services to provide a world class banking experience for its customers, depositors and business partners in the area. In the coming years the Bank will continue to minimize the risks on all our business sectors. The Bank will enhance its role in providing quality services to its corporate and retail customers in Kuwait and UAE through its Dubai and Abu Dhabi branches.” In conclusion, Behbehani commented that our efforts will focus in achieving the maximum operational efficiency in all our core business units, with effective control on risks and loan portfolio, which will mitigate the risks and enhance the financial position of the Bank.

BK Chairman Ahmed Behbehani

Saxo Bank launches new charts on SaxoTrader axo Bank, the online multiasset trading and investment specialist, has launched new charts on SaxoTrader and SaxoWebTrader with enhanced functionalities. The new charts offer significant improvements to users that include the ability to place orders using the drag and drop function, the ability to select the resolution, data range with one click and a faster update of current prices. More reliable and easy to use annotation tools allow traders to identify trends in the market with ease and the new functionality works on both PC desktops and MAC computers. New functionality allows customers to link the chart module to the Watchlist module, enabling them to quickly switch instruments shown in the chart. The timescale, range and technical indicator settings remain unchanged, so traders can scan the instruments available and select a trade set-up. Alan Plaugmann, Head of Trading Experience & Products at Saxo Bank, commented: “Our research shows that more than 70% of FX Traders use technical analysis to generate trade ideas. Therefore the chart we offer plays a


crucial role in improving our clients trading activity. We have spent two years analysing client behaviour and developing the chart to ensure efficient and straightforward usability. The chart allows clients to easily work through all the steps involved in scanning and analysing the markets, before making the decisions and executing them on the platform. The new chart offers vast improvements since clients can now simply click on the buy/sell buttons and then drag the order line to the desired level allowing them to graphically align the order with any technical indication they have identified as an opportunity. “As ever we will continue to improve and enhance the tools we provide to give our clients a consistent, simplistic and superior trading experience. We plan at least two more upgrades in the coming six months to add further enhancements to the new chart.” The new charts will be rolled out to white label clients in November, 2012. The new charts will run simultaneously in the SaxoTrader with the old chart until December, 2012 when the old chart will be discontinued.

Weak earnings reports weigh on US stocks NEW YORK: Stocks closed mostly lower Friday after investors found little to like in weak corporate earnings reports and news of only tepid growth in the US economy in the third quarter. The Dow Jones industrial average managed a gain of 3.53 points to close at 13,107.21 after spending much of the day in the red. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell 1.03 points to 1,411.94 and the Nasdaq composite rose 1.83 points to 2,987.95. Stocks rose in the morning before a mild midday sell-off, then recovered somewhat in the afternoon. The morning gains came after the Commerce Department estimated that the US economy expanded at a 2 percent annual rate from July through September. That was better than the previous quarter, and better than analysts expected, but not strong enough to bring down the unemployment rate. Even economic data that is mixed or positive won’t outweigh weak earnings, said Lawrence Creatura, a portfolio manager with Federated Investors. Reports like the one on Friday that measure gross domestic product tend to be backwards-looking, while companies are offering forecasts about the

months ahead, he said. “Company earnings trump macro data. Because investors own Apple, they don’t own GDP,” Creatura said. Apple fell $5.54 to $604 after saying its profit will decline this holiday season. Even with Friday’s rise, stocks lost ground this week, inflecting a sort of death-by-a-thousand cuts on the rally that began in September. The Dow was down 236.30 points for the week, or 1.8 percent. The S&P has fallen 21.25 points, or 1.5 percent. Goodyear Tire & Rubber sank 10 percent after a steep dropoff in sales in Europe delivered a blow to its earnings. The stock fell $1.28 to $11.02. The advertising conglomerate Interpublic also turned in results that fell short of analysts’ forecasts, and its stock fell 2.5 percent, or 26 cents, to $10.29. Amazon rose $15.32, or 7 percent, to $238.24 despite a smaller-than-expected quarterly profit and a prediction for smallerthan-expected holiday revenue. Among other companies making big moves, cable TV provider Comcast jumped $1.20, or 3.3 percent, to $37.56 after reporting that its income more than doubled in the latest quarter. — AP




Soundtrack to history: 1878 Edison audio unveiled NEW YORK: It’s scratchy, lasts only 78 seconds and features the world’s first recorded blooper. The modern masses can now listen to what experts say is the oldest playable recording of an American voice and the first-ever capturing of a musical performance, thanks to digital advances that allowed the sound to be transferred from flimsy tinfoil to computer. The recording was originally made on a Thomas Edison-invented phonograph in St Louis in 1878. At a time when music lovers can carry thousands of digital songs on a player the size of a pack of gum, Edison’s tinfoil playback seems prehistoric. But that dinosaur opens a key window into the development of recorded sound. “In the history of recorded sound that’s still playable, this is about as far back as we can go,” said John Schneiter, a trustee at the Museum of Innovation and Science, where it will be played Thursday night in the city where Edison helped found the General Electric Co. The recording opens with a 23-second cornet solo of an unidentified song, followed by a man’s voice reciting “Mary Had a Little Lamb” and “Old Mother Hubbard.” The man laughs at two spots during the recording, including at the end, when he recites the wrong words in the second nursery rhyme. “Look at me; I don’t know the song,” he says. When the recording is played using modern technology during a presentation Thursday at a nearby theater, it likely will be the first time it has been played at a public event since it was created during an Edison phonograph demonstration held June 22, 1878, in St Louis, museum officials said. The recording was made on a sheet of tinfoil, 5 inches wide by 15 inches

NEW YORK: This 1888 photo provided by the Museum of Innovation and Science in Schenectady shows Thomas Edison listening to a wax cylinder phonograph. long, placed on the cylinder of the phonograph Edison invented in 1877 and began selling the following year. A hand crank turned the cylinder under a stylus that would move up and down over the foil, recording the sound waves created by the operator’s voice. The stylus would eventually tear the foil after just a few playbacks, and the person demonstrating the technology would typically tear up the tinfoil and hand the pieces out as souvenirs, according to museum curator Chris Hunter. Popping noises heard on this recording are likely from scars left from where the foil was folded up for more than a century. “Realistically, once you played it a couple of times, the stylus would tear through it and destroy it,” he said. Only a handful of the tinfoil recording sheets are known to known to survive, and of those, only two are playable: the Schenectady museum’s and an 1880 recording owned by The Henry Ford museum in Michigan.

Holiday gadgets: Microsoft phone, Google events


t’s been a big week for tech gadgets. Microsoft started selling its Windows 8 operating system and Surface tablet computer. Apple announced new iPads and Mac computers. Samsung launched a giant smartphone. But there’s more: Microsoft has an announcement Monday on its Windows phone system. Google has one on its Android system for mobile devices. The search company may use that event to announce new gadgets to complement its Nexus 7 tablet computer. Later in the week, Barnes & Noble Inc. will start shipping new Nook devices, while Apple’s new iPads, including a smaller one, will be out. These are some of the gadgets to expect for the holidays: APPLE DEVICES Apple has done well selling its fullsized tablet computer, which has a screen that measures nearly 10 inches diagonally. But companies such as Inc and Google Inc have made inroads selling tablets with smaller, 7-inch screens and lower price tags. To maintain its dominance, Apple will start shipping the iPad Mini next Friday. It will have a 7.9-inch screen, making it slightly larger than those smaller rivals but about two-thirds the size of a regular iPad. The iPad Mini starts at $329, well above the $159 starting price for Inc’s Kindle Fire and $199 for Google Inc’s Nexus 7. Both have 7inch screens. The Mini will be just $70 cheaper than the 2011 iPad 2, which is still available. Unlike its rivals, Apple will make a version of the iPad Mini that can access cellular networks from AT&T, Verizon and Sprint. That version will start at $459, compared with $629 for the fullsized cellular model. Apple began taking advance orders Friday. The white version of the iPad Mini quickly sold out on Apple’s website, with deliveries now expected in two weeks rather than one. As of Friday afternoon, the black iPad Mini was still available for next Friday. Apple is also refreshing its full-sized iPad, giving it a faster processor and faster Wi-Fi capabilities. Advance orders started Friday as well, with shipments in a week. Meanwhile, Apple has unveiled a 13-inch version of a MacBook Pro with sharper, “Retina” display, complementing the 15-inch version unveiled in June. Apple also updated its iMac line. Last month, Apple began selling its iPhone 5. The new phone is bigger, but thinner than previous models and works with faster cellular networks known as 4G. PHONE RIVAL Apple’s leading rival, Samsung Electronics Co, came out with a new version of its flagship phone, the Galaxy S III, months ago. But Samsung is known for releasing products throughout the year, each targeted at a different base of consumers. For those who like to work with a stylus, the Galaxy Note II smartphone came out this week. T Mobile, Sprint and US Cellular are selling it now. Verizon and AT&T are taking advance orders for shipments in the coming weeks. The Note comes on the heels of Samsung’s campaign touting its Galaxy S III phone as its “next big thing.”

The Note is even bigger, with a 5.5 inch screen, compared with the S III’s 4.8 inches and the iPhone 5’s 4 inches, all measured diagonally. The Note runs the latest version of Google’s Android system, Jelly Bean. TABLET RIVALS Amazon’s 7-inch Kindle Fire is one of the smaller tablets with decent sales. Last month, it started shipping an updated version with a faster processor, more memory and longer battery life. It also cut the price to $159, from $199, making it far cheaper than the iPad, which starts at $399. Amazon is also releasing higherend models under the Kindle Fire HD line. A 7-inch one goes for $199 and an 8.9-inch one for $299. There’s also a $499 model that can use the 4G cellular networks that phone companies have been building. A data plan will cost an extra $50 a year. The smaller HD model is already available, while the larger ones will be available Nov. 20. Barnes and Noble Inc. is also updating its Nook tablets. The new Nook HD will come in two sizes, one at 7 inches (starting at $199) and one at 9 inches (starting at $269). They will be out Thursday. In addition to the new HD screen and a lighter body, Barnes & Noble is increasing the services the Nook offers. It’s adding a video purchase and rental service, allowing users to maintain different profiles and making it easier to browse titles in its book and magazine stores. Google has an event in New York on Monday. All the company is saying is that it has to do with Android. Google started selling the Nexus 7 over the summer and could use the event to announce an update. Toys R Us, meanwhile, is making a 7-inch Tabeo tablet aimed at children. It goes for $150. CALLING ON WINDOWS Microsoft Corp released a new version of the Windows operating system on Friday, one that’s designed to work on both traditional computers and tablet devices. Desktops, laptops and tablet computers with Windows 8 started going on sale Friday. Microsoft also released its own tablet computer, the Surface. It’s new territory for Microsoft, which typically leaves it to others to make devices using its software. Now, it will be competing against its partners. One model will run on the same type of lower-energy chips used in the iPad. It will start at $499, also like the newest, full-sized iPads. A keyboard cover will cost another $100. Sales started Friday. A heavier, more expensive version will run on Intel chips and be capable of running standard Windows applications. Microsoft hasn’t announced the date or price for that yet. A new version of the Windows Phone system is coming out this fall as well. Once-dominant phone maker Nokia Corp has been struggling in the shadow of Apple and Android, and it’s counting on the new Windows system for a revival. Nokia and Microsoft have unveiled two new devices, but few details are available on when and where they would go on sale. — AP

NEW YORK: Josh Hauk, an archival assistant at the Museum of Innovation and Science, demonstrates the use of an 1879 tinfoil phonograph. —AP photos

Hunter said he was able to determine just this week that the man’s voice on the museum’s 1878 tinfoil recording is believed to be that of Thomas Mason, a St. Louis newspaper political writer who also went by the pen name I.X. Peck. Edison company records show that one of his newly invented tinfoil phonographs, serial No. 8, was sold to Mason for $95.50 in April 1878, and a search of old newspapers revealed a listing for a public phonograph program being offered by Peck on June 22, 1878, in St Louis, the curator said. A woman’s voice says the words “Old Mother Hubbard,” but her identity remains a mystery, he said. Three weeks after making the recording, Mason died of sunstroke, Hunter said. A Connecticut woman donated the tinfoil to the Schenectady museum in 1978 for an exhibit on the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Edison company that later merged with another to form GE. The woman’s

father had been an antiques dealer in the Midwest and counted the item among his favorites, Hunter said. In July, Hunter brought the Edison tinfoil recording to California’s

Berkeley Lab, where researchers such as Carl Haber have had success in recent years restoring some of the earliest audio recordings. Haber’s projects include recovering a snippet of a folk song recorded a capella in 1860 on paper by EdouardLeon Scott de Martinville, a French printer credited with inventing the earliest known sound recording device. Haber and his team used optical scanning technology to replicate the action of the phonograph’s stylus, reading the grooves in the foil and creating a 3D image, which was then analyzed by a computer program that recovered the original recorded sound. The achievement restores a vital link in the evolution of recorded sound, Haber said. The artifact represents Edison’s first step in his efforts to record sound and have the capability to play it back, even if it was just once or twice, he said. “It really completes a technology story,” Haber said. “He was on the right track from the get-go to record and play it back.” —AP

NEW YORK: Chris Hunter, curator at the Museum of Innovation and Science, plays an 1878 tinfoil recording on a computer.

Buying guide: How to get, or avoid, Windows 8


n Friday, Microsoft Corp released a new version of its Windows operating system, one designed to bring the desktop and laptop experience to tablet computers. There are several ways to get it - or avoid it. Windows 8 represents the software company’s effort to address the growing popularity of smartphones and tablet computers, namely the iPad. The new software is a radical departure from previous versions of Windows. It may take people time to get used to the changes. The familiar start menu on the lower left corner is gone, and people will have to swipe the edges of the screen to access various settings. There will be a new screen filled with a colorful array of tiles, each leading to a different application, task or collection of files. Windows 8 is designed especially for touch screens, though it will work with the mouse and keyboard shortcuts, too. There are several versions of Windows 8: l Windows 8 Like its predecessors, Windows 8 will run on computers with processing chips made by Intel Corp or Advanced Micro Devices Inc. There’s a basic version designed for consumers and a Pro version for more tech-savvy users and businesses. The Pro version has such features as encryption and group account management. Large companies with volumelicensing deals with Microsoft will want Windows 8 Enterprise, which has additional tools for information-technology staff to manage machines. l Windows RT For the first time, there’s also a version running on lower-energy chips common in phones and tablets. That version will run on tablets and some devices that marry tablet and PC features. While tablets with Windows 8 can run standard Windows programs, the RT devices will be restricted to

applications specifically designed for the system. Borrowing from Apple’s playbook, Microsoft is allowing RT to get applications only from its online store, and apps must meet content and other guidelines. l Windows Phone 8 While Windows 8 and RT came out Friday, the phone version

Lenovo Group Ltd, HewlettPackard Co and Dell Inc. have designed new Windows 8 machines. They include hybrids combining elements of laptops and tablets. There are also all-inone models - desktops with a built-in screen. Many of the devices are available now, though some models won’t go on sale for

HONG KONG: An attendant demonstrates the Microsoft Windows 8 operating system during its launching ceremony. —AP won’t be available until an unspecified date this fall. Microsoft has an event on it today and may announce more details then. Nokia Corp and Samsung Electronics Co already have announced plans for new Windows phones. You can get Windows RT and Windows Phone 8 only by buying devices with the software already installed, while Windows 8 can be purchased as an upgrade as well. Here’s how you can get - or avoid getting - Windows 8: l Buy a new machine Desktop, laptop and tablet computers with Windows 8 already installed went on sale Friday, starting at 12:01 am local time around the world. Windows chief Steven Sinofsky said there have been 1,000 PCs certified for Windows 8, with the cheapest costing about $300. Several PC manufacturers including Samsung,

another month or two. Meanwhile, retailers such as Best Buy Co have trained staff to explain and demonstrate the new system. Microsoft also started selling its Surface tablet with Windows RT on Friday, but it’s available only at its retail stores and website. A Windows 8 version will come out later. l Upgrade your machine Anyone who’s purchased a Windows 7 PC (other than the Starter Edition) since June 2 can buy Windows 8 Pro for $14.99. The offer applies to Windows 7 PCs sold until Jan 31, and the upgrade must be claimed by Feb 28. To claim the offer, register the machine at . You’ll get an email with a promo code, which you can use to get the Windows 8 upgrade online. If you bought a Windows PC before June 2, you can upgrade for $39.99. You must

already have Windows XP with Service Pack 3, Windows Vista or Windows 7. Those who prefer to buy a DVD to upgrade will have to pay $69.99. Before buying the upgrade, check to make sure your machine is strong enough to run Windows 8. Microsoft lists the system requirements here: Not sure if you have what it takes? Microsoft has an upgrade tool that will stop you if you try to buy Windows 8 without the requirements. The tool will also warn you of software that might need updates to work on Windows 8. Go to to get started. If you’re upgrading from Windows 7, the tool will let you keep settings, personal files and applications. You can migrate settings and files from Vista and files only from XP. You’ll also have the option to start fresh and bring nothing to Windows 8. l Keep older versions of Windows Do nothing if you do not wish to upgrade to Windows 8. Most machines now on sale will have the new version of Windows, though it’s still possible to buy Windows 7 machines or upgrade to Windows 7. You may have to order online, and your choices may be restricted to gaming or business-oriented machines. Microsoft hasn’t said what the cutoff date for Windows 7 will be, but expect to be able to buy Windows 7 as an upgrade for another year or preinstalled on a new machine for two more years. After Windows 7 came out in October 2009, for instance, retailers were still allowed to sell boxed versions of the predecessor, Vista, until October 2010. PC makers were able to sell Vista machines until October 2011. Microsoft plans to continue providing technical support for Windows 7 until Jan 14, 2020. —AP

HTC seeks to reverse sliding smartphone sales

TAIWAN: A man walks by advertising boards of HTC Corp, two at right, and Samsung Electric Co. —AP

TAIWAN: Taiwan’s HTC Corp. enjoyed three golden years as the first company to make smartphones based on Google’s Android software. Now, it is struggling to halt a slide in sales and keep its status as a global brand in a market increasingly divided between Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics Co. An early maker of smartphones sold under brands like HP and Compaq, HTC started stamping its own brand on phones in 2006. Taiwanese company surged into the fast lane two years later with its Android smartphones that appealed to consumers because of competitive prices on the free operating system and their strong design.

But its sales faltered from the second half of 2011, partly because its limited financial resources put it at a strong disadvantage to aggressive marketing drives by Samsung and Apple. And unlike its American competitor, it lacked a distinctive flagship phone that captured the hearts of consumers as a musthave product. Instead it produced many phones, trying to cater to a wide range of consumers. HTC on Friday reported a 79 percent drop in third quarter profit to 3.9 billion New Taiwan dollars ($99 million) on revenue of NT$70 billion. It was HTC’s fourth consecutive fall in quarterly profit. — AP


health & science


’Frankenstorm’: Worse than sum of its nasty parts WASHINGTON: The storm that is threatening 60 million Americans in the eastern third of the nation in just a couple of days with persistent high winds, drenching rains, extreme tides, flooding and probably snow is much more than just an ordinary weather system. It’s a freakish and unprecedented monster. What forces created it? Start with Sandy, an ordinary late summer hurricane from the tropics, moving north up the East Coast. Bring in a high pressure ridge of air centered around Greenland that blocks the hurricane’s normal out-to-sea path and forces it west toward land. Add a wintry cold front moving in from the west and colliding with that storm. Mix in a blast of Arctic air from the north. Add a full moon and its usual effect, pulling in high tides. Factor in immense waves commonly thrashed up by a huge hurricane plus massive gale-force winds. Do all that and you get a stitched-together weather monster expected to unleash its power over 800 miles, with predictions in some areas of 12 inches of rain, 2 feet of snow and sustained 40to 50 mph winds. “The total is greater than the sum of the individual parts,” said Louis Uccellini, the environmental prediction chief of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration meteorologists. “That is exactly what’s going on here.” This storm is so dangerous and so unusual because it is coming at the tail end of hurricane season and beginning of winter storm season, “so it’s kind of taking something from both - part hurricane, part nor’easter, all trouble,” Jeff Masters, director of the private service Weather Underground, said Saturday. With Sandy expected to lose tropical characteristics, NOAA is putting up high wind watches and warnings that aren’t hurricane or tropical for coastal areas north of North Carolina, causing some television meteorologists to complain that it is all too confusing. Nor is it merely a coastal issue anyway. Craig Fugate of the Federal Emergency Management Agency told reporters Saturday: “This is not a coastal threat alone. This is a very large area. This is going to be well inland.” Uccellini, who estimated that 60 million people will feel the storm’s wrath somehow, said: “This storm as it grows and moves back to the coast on Monday and Tuesday, the circulation of this storm will extend all the way from the Midwest, the Ohio Valley, toward the Carolinas up into New England and southern Canada. It’s really going to be an expansive storm system.” It’s a topsy-turvy storm, too. The far northern areas of the East, around Maine, should get much warmer weather as the storm hits, practically shirt-sleeve weather for early November, Masters and Uccellini said. Around the MasonDixon line, look for much cooler temperatures. West Virginia and even as far south as North Carolina could see snow. Lots of it. It is what NOAA forecaster Jim Cisco meant Thursday when he called it “Frankenstorm” in a forecast, an allusion to Mary Shelley’s gothic creature of synthesized elements. Cisco and others have called this storm unprecedented. Uccellini, who has written histories about winter storms, said the closest analogs are the 1991 Perfect Storm and a November 1950 storm. But this is likely to be stronger and bigger than the Perfect Storm, will hit further south, and affect far more people. In fact, the National Hurricane Center’s 5 pm wind probabilities put the highest odds for gale force wind in the country’s most populous place: New York City. New York has a two-out-of-three chance of gale force winds by mid-day Thursday. One of the major issues is that the storm is going to coming into land - anywhere from Delaware to New York, but most likely southern New Jersey - almost a due west turn, which is unusual, Uccellini said. So the worst of the storm surge could be north, not south, of landfall. And that gets right to New York City and its vulnerable subways, which are under increasing risk of flooding, he said. “There is a potential for a huge mess in New York if this storm surge forecast is right,” Masters said. Add to that the hundreds of miles of waves and the overall intensity of this storm, Uccellini said in an interview “we are in the middle of a very serious situation.” — AP


health & science

Start-up leaches gold from water Magpie conjures up modern alchemy SAINT-PIERRE-LES-NEMOURS, France: A small French start-up company is selling a technology with a hint of alchemy: turning water into gold. It does so by extracting from industrial waste water the last traces of any rare - and increasingly valuable - metal. “We leave only a microgram per litre,” according to Steve van Zutphen, a Dutchman who founded Magpie Polymers last year with a fellow 30-year old Frenchman Etienne Almoric. “It’s the equivalent of a sugar lump in an Olympic swimming pool.” Magpie Polymers operates from slightly shabby premises at a factory at Saint-Pierre-lesNemours 80 km southeast of Paris. But it is at the leading edge of technology with a procedure developed at the prestigious Ecole Polytechnique in 2007. The process is based on the use of tiny pellets of plastic resin through which waste water is pumped. Gold, platinum, palladium and rhodium, the world’s most precious metals, little by little stick to the pellets and are thus separated from the waste water. A single litre of this patented resin can treat five to 10 cu m of waste water and recover 50 to 100 gm of precious metal, equivalent to “3,000 to 5,000 euros ($3,900 to $6,500),” Almoric said. Mobile phones, catalytic converters and countless other everyday products contain these precious metals. But once they are scrapped, the problem lies in retrieving the particles of precious metals. “What is complicated is that the amounts are infinitesimal, so hard to recover,” according to Steve van Zutphen. Once they have been separated and crushed some industrial waste products have to be dissolved with acid in water. Then the metals in the water have to be recovered whether they are valuable or not. “There are many technologies to get metal from water that have existed since the 19th century. But there comes a moment when existing technologies are no longer effective or become too expensive,” van Zutphen said. The chief markets to which the two entrepreneurs are looking are the “refiners”: specialists in the recovery of precious metals, such as British firm Johnson Matthey, the Anglo-French compa-

SAINT-PIERRE-LES-NEMOURS, France: Steve van Zutphen (unseen), the Dutch cofounder of French start-up Magpie Polymer, holds a small tube containing resins able to catch gold, precious or toxic metals diluted in big quantities of water, in the headquarters of the company on Oct 19, 2012. — AFP ny Cookson-Clal and Boliden of Sweden. But the technology could also be of interest to mining groups or large water treatment companies such as French Veolia or Suez Environnement. The timing is good. The economic crisis has revived interest in gold, and thanks to rising demand for platinum and similar metals, combined with increasing shortages, prices have soared. As platinum mines become exhausted, half the metal used worldwide is already recycled. Magpie’s technology can also be used to leach out harmful metals such as lead, mercury, cobalt, copper and uranium. “Obviously the amounts are much bigger. The problem is that nobody wants to pay for something that has no

value,” said Almoric. Tougher environmental standards, which would further tighten the rules of waste recovery for businesses, could add further strength to the Magpie model. The young start-up has already taken on six staff and hopes for a turnover of a nearly a million euros next year and Ä15 million in four years’ time. It has just raised half a million euros from the Fonds Lorraine des Materiaux (51-percent owned by the Caisse des Depots-Region Lorraine, 49 percent by ArcelorMittal). Magpie does not give the names of its chief clients but is already present in “France, England, Belgium and Switzerland” and soon in Germany and Spain. — AFP

Chefs tackle global obesity at Italy fair TURIN: As the world struggles with a growing obesity epidemic, Slow Food gurus from the US and Australia are urging international campaigners gathered in Italy to join a revolution in the way children eat. “Australia has exactly the same problem as almost any other developed country: a very large obesity rate. Something must be done, globally,” Melbourne chef Stephanie Alexander said at the world’s largest food fair in Turin. Alexander, who worked as a top chef for forty years before setting up the not-for-profit Kitchen Garden Foundation in 2004 to tackle poor eating habits, has come to talk to activists from India, Africa and Brazil about her project. While the United States, Mexico and New Zealand and Australia are the four most obese countries in the world, growing numbers of people are being affected across the globe, from South Africa to India, China, Russia and Saudi Arabia. “It’s all about education, teaching children the difference between good and bad food,” said Alexander, who owes her passion for Slow Food to her mother and gardener grandfather, who made eating fresh home-grown vegetables a pleasure. Her program, currently active in 265 schools, gets children aged eight to 11 involved in growing seasonal food in school allotments, then preparing it in special training kitchens and sharing it with their classmates at lunchtime. It has been such a hit that the Australian government, keen to find ways to tackle obesity, has invested 20 million dollars into the project, which currently influences about 30,000 children - a number set soon to double. “Within a very short time those who are not the habit of eating a wide range of fresh food open up to new experiences. They are very proud of what they’ve achieved and we have empty plates and a great deal of enthusiasm,” she said. Among others, her project has inspired celebrity chef Jamie Oliver in Britain, where over a third of children aged 11 are considered overweight or obese, “though he’s creeping very slowly at the moment, with just two schools”.

Alexander is in Turin with US chef Alice Waters, founder of Berkeley’s famed Chez Panisse restaurant and vice president of the Slow Food movement, which was founded in Italy in 1986 to combat the rise of fast food and unhealthy eating. Waters is best known as the woman who inspired US first lady Michelle Obama to open a kitchen garden at the White House, but has also dedicated much of her time to the Edible Schoolyard project, which she founded in California in 1995. “I’m terribly worried about the indoctrination of fast food around the world and the culture that comes with it. Slow food values need to be taught in all schools around the globe,” Waters said in the fair’s bustling food hall. “We’ve been working in California to try to gather the best practices, and map the movement across the country and ultimately around the world,” she said. One of the projects inspired by Waters is the Edible Sac High garden and kitchen in a school in Sacramento, which is particularly interesting because “in high school it’s much more difficult to get kids interested in good food”. “I’ve imagined having the kids run the whole cafeteria themselves, cooking all the meals for their classmates: they learn the budgets, they do the outreach, they find the farmers, they cook the food together,” she said. “One thing we know is that when kids cook food and grow it, they all want to eat it. It’s questionable whether they will want to eat it if they don’t participate, but it really works with a hand’s on approach,” she added. For Waters, the Turin gathering is an invaluable chance to spread the word about fresh food -and draw inspiration from the Italian culture. “The Italians have a very deep-seated food culture. Many, many people still have backyard gardens, which are very important. They know about seasonality, and still have the idea of eating together as a family,” she said. “This fair not only reaffirms those ideas but it is also a way to spread the good news, and in the face of obesity that’s what we need: hopeful, good news.” — AFP




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


RAK holds Onam Indian Embassy Announcements Indian Embassy passport and visa Passports and visa applications can be deposited at the two outsourced centers of M/S BLS Ltd at Sharq and Fahaheel. Details are available at and Consular Open House 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 at the Embassy. For any unaddressed issues, Second Secretary (Consular) can be contacted. Furthermore, the head of the Consular Wing is also available to redress grievances.

amapuram Association of Kuwait (RAK) have celebrated “Onam”. A complete family get-together had varieties of traditional cultural programs, Thiruvathira, Bharathanattyam, Kadhak, Onam songs were performed by the family members after a continues effort of a month time practice , program including chenda melam, vallam kalai, dances, music etc followed by a traditional yummy vegetarian lunch. Every attendee recalled the nostalgic memories of their childhood in the home country. The Onam-Eid fest was inaugurated

R NPIS celebrates Green Week ew Pakistan International School celebrated “Green Week”. The school was decorated with posters and charts reflecting the significance of the week. The students from different classes presented speeches, and a tableau in order to throw light on the importance of greenery in daily life. This event continued throughout the week. At the end the director of the school appreciated the efforts of the teachers and students for putting up such a wonderful event.


by the community leader RC Suresh and the UAE Exchange country head Pancily Varkey delivered the key note speech. Association president Chessil Ramapuram presided over the function, patrons MK Kuriakose, Dominic Mathew and Sam Painammoodu, Thomas Panicker, Rajan Rawather, Thomas, Nixon George, Jomon John, Anoop Andrews gave the felicitation. General Secretary Sunny Joseph delivered the welcome address and Treasurer Jaibe Manuel gave the vote of thanks. Mathukutty Joseph, Biju Pulickeel, Roby John, Joji Muthukaattil led the program.

Indian workers helpline/helpdesk Indian workers helpline is accessible by toll free telephone number 25674163 from all over Kuwait. It provides information and advice to Indian workers as regards their grievances, immigration and other matters. The help desk at the Embassy (Open from 9am to 1pm and 2pm to 4:30PM, Sunday to Thursday) provides guidance to Indian nationals on routine immigration, employment, legal and other issues. It also provides workers assistance in filling up labour complaint forms. For any unaddressed issues, the concerned attachÈ in the Labour section and the head of the Labour Wing can be contacted. Legal Advice Clinic Free legal advice is provided on matters pertaining to labour disputes, terms of contracts with employers, death/accident compensation, withholding of dues by employers, etc. by lawyers on our panel, to Indian nationals on all working days between 1500hrs to 1600hrs. Ambassador’s Open House The Open House for Indian citizens by the Ambassador is being held on all Wednesdays at the Embassy for redressal of grievances. In case Wednesday is an Embassy holiday, the meeting will be held on the next working day.

Patriotic songs competitions

Spoken Sanskrit workshop concludes he closing ceremony for the eightday spoken Sanskrit workshop conducted by Vichar Bharati joining hands with Samskrita Bharati and Bharatia Vidya Bhavan Sanskrit Department was conducted on Saturday, October 20, at Barathia Vidya Bhavan, Abbasiya. The function was blessed in the presence of eminences from educational field in Kuwait. N K Ramachandra


Menon, Chairman, Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, inaugurated the function lighting the traditional lamp. The function was presided by Sevadarsan President Krishnakumar Paliath. Samskrita Bharati Kuwait representative P Gopakumar extended a warm welcome to the gathering. The short Sanskrit play presented by the Shibir participants attracted the

crowd. The eminent teachers at the Shibiram, Balasubramaniam, (Samskritha Bharati Middle East Co-ordinator), Sunil Menon (Sanskrit Department Head, Bharathiya Vidya Bhavan), A Balaji, (Sanskrit Department Faculty, Bharathiya Vidya Bhavan ) were honored at the function. Santa Maria James (Principal, Indian Central School), Shafiq Ahmad (Principal, Integrated Indian School), and

T A Premkumar (Principal, Bharathiya Vidya Bhavan) gave away the certificates for the participants. T A Premkumar gave a presentation on Sevadarsan supported initiative Science India Forum (SIF), Kuwait Vichar Bharati Kuwait Co-ordinator Vibeesh Thikkodi delivered the word of gratitude.

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 Co-Sponsor of the Program.


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 9:30 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 was on 2nd of October, 2012 Gandhi Jayanti day. The entry is free to all and due to 2nd day of Eid AlAdha holidays, a large crowd is expected to attend in addition to, Senior Kuwaiti and Indian citizens will also grace the function.

Nritha-Sangeeth Utsav 2012 nine-day-long Nritha-Sangeeth Utsav 2012 organized by Bhavans Kuwait Kendra and Bhavans Rhythmscapes was held at Bhavans Auditorium, Kuwait. Bhavans Middle East Chairman Ramachandran Menon,


IES Kuwait Principal Premkumar, Bhavans Jack & Gill Principal Rati Devi and Rhythmscapes Director Ramji inaugurated the event. Highlight of the event was Mohiniyattam, Kuchipudi,

Bharatanatyam and Odissi dances rendered by its instructors Kalakshetra Archana, Kalamandalam Manju, Kalamandalam Reshma and Ojha. During the event more than 400 talents presented Carnatic vocals, veena con-

cert, flute concert, bhajans, classical and folk dances etc. The event ended with a community Dandiya and Garbha dance with the participation of more than 200 adults and children.

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

Math at KNES uwait National English School recently hosted for three days, Peter Ransom, President (designate) of the UK Mathematical Association and mathematics lecturer at Bath Spa University. Ransom had been invited to report on Mathematics and its teaching s at


the school by its Director Chantal Al-Gharabally. His findings reported that the quality of teaching was good to outstanding in regard to the teachers observed (according to OFSTED criteria) and that he was highly impressed with the ethos prevalent in the school. Prior

to leaving, Ransom delivered two workshops showing mathematics in a cross-curricular manner using history as a thematic approach. Students and staff enjoyed immensely the experience, particularly the role-play scenario.




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 Consulate-General in Dubai. Email: (VFS) (Visa Office); Tel: +971 4 355 1958 (VFS) - +971 4 508 7200 (Visa Office); Fax: +971 4 355 0708 (Visa Office). In Kuwait applications can be lodged at the Australian Visa Application Centre 4B 1st Floor, Al-Banwan Building Al-Qibla Area, Ali Al-Salem Street, opposite the Central Bank of Kuwait, Kuwait City, Kuwait. Working hours and days: 09:30 - 17:30; Sunday - Thursday. Or visit their website www.vfs-au-gcc-com for more information. Kuwait citizens can apply for tourist visas on-line at visa/e676.htm. ■■■■■■■

Hassan’s Optician Company organizes Blood Donation Drive s part of its ongoing Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives, Hassan’s Optician Company organized a Blood Donation Campaign Drive at their Head Office in Kuwait City in association with Kuwait Central Blood Bank on October 22.


The President of Hassan’s Optician Co Hassan Saadat and the CEO Kian Saadat expressed their gratitude to all volunteers who took part in the voluntary blood donation camp in large numbers and applauded their ‘overwhelming support’ towards this initiative. “On our part we recognize the importance of blood

donation campaigns as it assures an adequate supply of blood which is critical to saving precious lives. We also feel honoured to join the efforts undertaken by the Ministry of Health to enrich and ensure healthy living for all”.

EMBASSY OF CANADA The Canadian Embassy in Kuwait does not have a visa or immigration department. All processing of visa and immigration matters including enquiries is conducted by the Canadian Embassy in Abu Dhabi, UAE Individuals who are interested in working, studying, visiting or immigrating to Canada should contact the Canadian Embassy in Abu Dhabi, website: or, E-mail: The Embassy of Canada is located at Villa 24, Al-Mutawakei St, Block 4 in Da’aiyah. Please visit our website at The Embassy of Canada is open from 7:30 to 15:30 Sunday through Thursday. The reception is closed for lunch from 12:30 to 13:00. Consular services for Canadian citizens are provided from 09:00 until 12:00, Sunday through Wednesday. ■■■■■■■

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

Porsche childhood program starts ‘Safe driving in Kuwait’ he Decade of Action for Road Safety is an international World Health Organization (WHO) and United Nations (UN) global initiative. Fawzia Sultan Rehabilitation Institute (FSRI), a non-profit rehabilitation clinic owned by the foundation FAWSEC, is proud to design and support innovative health reform initiatives to address the most pressing public health challenges facing Kuwait. This year, through RunQ8 10km Run for Road and Traffic Safety, FSRI was able to raise funds through sponsors, and to partner with local organizations to implement initiatives that address the goals set out for this Decade of Action. Under the patronage of Sheikh Ahmad Al-Humoud Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, Minister of Interior and with the support of Porsche Centre Kuwait, Behbehani Motors Company, Qadsiya Sports Club and the Ministry of Interior, the Porsche Early Childhood Road and Traffic Safety Program is now available to schools throughout Kuwait. Research indicates that young children form attitudes that will shape their behavior later in life, and with early intervention, we can have a direct


impact on their future behavior. Children develop their own driving habits before the age of 7 by watching and learning from the driving habits of the adults who drive them regularly. This Porsche Early Childhood and Traffic Safety Program for Schools is designed to introduce road and traffic safety guidelines to children between the

ages of 3 and 7 years. A specially designed curriculum provides a child focused road and traffic safety program which identifies and builds on the child’s knowledge and understanding, showing how road safety can be incorporated into classroom topics and activities. Schools are invited to arrange visits for their children

to the Porsche Driving Centre at Qadsiya Sports Club, Hawally, where they will have the opportunity to drive model Porsche pedal cars around a specially designed road circuit. Children will experience firsthand the importance of the ‘Golden Rules of Road and Traffic Safety’ as they encounter a variety of traffic signs, traffic lights, round-

about, junctions, tunnel, speed bumps and a pedestrian crossing. This exciting and fun filled, practical learning experience informs children of the importance of remaining seated and wearing seat belts, never to use the mobile phone while driving, how to cross the street safely, not to stick arms or heads out of the windows and to stay within the speed limits. On completion of their visit, each child receives a Porsche drivers cap, first driving license, certificate and activity books from Porsche, Zain and the Ministry of Interior to practice their skills and knowledge. There is also the Porsche Safe Driving Handbook for the parents. By the end of 2012 over 7,000 children will have attended the Porsche Early Childhood Road and Traffic safety program for Schools at Qadsiya Sports Club, influencing the driving habits of the next generation and taking a huge step in the right direction towards making the streets and roads of Kuwait safer for everyone. Schools are invited to contact the Program Director, Aisha.

EMBASSY OF FRANCE The Embassy would like to inform that starting September 2nd, 2012, visa demands for France will be handled by the outsourcing company “Capago - MENA Company”. Capago - MENA’S Call Center will be operational starting Sunday August 26 for setting appointments beginning September 2nd (+965 22270555). ■■■■■■■

EMBASSY OF PERU The Embassy of Peru is located in Sharq, Ahmed Al Jaber Street, Al Arabiya Tower, 6th Floor. Working days / hours: SundayThursday /9 am - 4 pm. Residents in Kuwait interested in getting a visa to travel to Peru and companies attracted to invest in Peru are invited to visit the permanent exposition room located in the Embassy. For more information, please contact: (+965) 22267250/1. ■■■■■■■


The Embassy of Ukraine in the State of Kuwait would like to remind that the external polling station No 90046 was created in the Embassy’s premises at the following address: Hawalli, Jabriya, bl.10, str. 6, build. 5. The working hours of the polling station: Sunday from 13.00 to 17.00 pm; Monday from 13.00 to 17.00 pm; Tuesday from 13.00 to 17.00 pm; Wednesday from 13.00 to 17.00 pm; Thursday from 13.00 to 17.00 pm; Friday from 10.00 to 13.00 pm; Saturday from 10.00 to 13.00 pm On October 28, 2012 the working hours of the polling station from 8.00 am to 20.00 pm. Please be advised to refer to the Embassy to check your data in the Electoral Register as well as to pick up your personal invitation from the polling station if you did not receive this document by post.


TV PROGRAMS 20:20 Bang Goes The Theory

00:50 I’m Alive 01:45 Animal Cops Phoenix 02:35 The Last Lion Of Liuwa 03:25 Swarm Chasers 04:15 The Magic Of The Big Blue 05:05 Wildest Latin America 05:55 Animal Cops Phoenix 06:45 Michaela’s Animal Road Trip 07:35 Wildlife SOS 08:00 Talk To The Animals 08:25 Penguin Safari 09:15 Dogs 101 10:10 World’s Ugliest Dog Competition 11:05 Wildest Africa 12:00 World Wild Vet 12:55 Safari Vet School 13:20 Safari Vet School 13:50 Wildlife SOS 14:15 Shamwari: A Wild Life 14:45 Animal Cops Houston 15:40 Wildest Africa 16:35 Escape To Chimp Eden 17:00 Talk To The Animals 17:30 Must Love Cats 18:25 Baby Planet 19:20 Cats 101 20:15 Wildlife SOS 20:40 Shamwari: A Wild Life 21:10 Predator’s Prey 21:35 Escape To Chimp Eden 22:05 Wildest Africa 23:00 Cats 101 23:55 Bad Dog 23:50 Animal Cops Houston 00:20 Extreme Makeover: Home Edition 01:05 DIY SOS 01:25 DIY SOS 01:50 Holmes On Homes 02:40 Bargain Hunt 03:25 Bargain Hunt 04:05 MasterChef Australia 04:30 MasterChef Australia 05:40 MasterChef Australia 06:05 MasterChef Australia 06:50 MasterChef Australia 07:40 DIY SOS 08:10 MasterChef Australia 09:00 MasterChef Australia 09:25 Fantasy Homes By The Sea 10:10 Fantasy Homes By The Sea 11:00 Bargain Hunt 11:45 Antiques Roadshow 12:35 Extreme Makeover: Home Edition 13:20 Gok’s Fashion Fix 14:10 Gok’s Fashion Fix 15:00 Gok’s Fashion Fix 15:50 Bargain Hunt 16:35 Antiques Roadshow 17:30 Extreme Makeover: Home Edition 18:10 Gok’s Fashion Fix 19:00 Come Dine With Me 19:50 Rhodes Across China 20:40 A Taste Of Greenland 21:35 Extreme Makeover: Home Edition 22:20 Antiques Roadshow 23:10 Bargain Hunt EditionEdition 00:15 01:10 02:05 03:00 03:55 04:20 04:50 05:15 05:40 06:05 07:00 07:50 08:45 09:40 10:05 10:30 10:55 11:25 12:20 13:15 14:10 14:35 15:05 15:30 16:25 17:20 18:15 19:10 19:40 20:05 20:35 21:00 21:30 22:25 23:20

Dynamo: Magician Impossible Mythbusters Mythbusters Mythbusters Border Security Auction Hunters Auction Kings How Do They Do It? How It’s Made Extreme Fishing Street Customs Mythbusters Ultimate Survival Border Security Auction Hunters How Do They Do It? How It’s Made Dynamo: Magician Impossible Mythbusters Mythbusters Border Security Auction Hunters Auction Kings Ultimate Survival Street Customs Extreme Fishing Mythbusters How Do They Do It? How It’s Made Border Security Dirty Money Auction Kings American Guns Hellriders Chris Ryan’s Elite Police

23:20 Surviving Disaster 00:40 Moon Machines 01:35 Futurecar 02:25 Weird Or What? 03:15 Things That Move 03:45 Things That Move 04:10 Things That Move 04:35 Moon Machines 05:25 Weird Or What? 06:15 Space Pioneer 07:05 Catch It Keep It 08:00 Bad Universe 08:50 NASA’s Unexplained Files 09:40 Head Rush 09:43 Tech Toys 360 10:12 Patent Bending 10:40 Race To Mars 11:30 The Gadget Show 11:55 The Gadget Show 12:20 Building The Biggest 13:10 Scrapheap Challenge 14:00 Futurecar 14:50 Through The Wormhole With Morgan Freeman 15:45 Race To Mars 16:35 The Gadget Show 17:00 Head Rush 17:03 Tech Toys 360 17:32 Patent Bending 18:00 Building The Biggest 18:50 Race To Mars 19:40 Punkin Chunkin 2010 20:30 Things That Move 20:55 Things That Move 21:20 Meteorite Men 22:10 The Gadget Show 22:35 The Gadget Show 23:00 Things That Move 23:25 Things That Move 23:50 Meteorite Men

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

Special Agent Oso Special Agent Oso Lazytown Little Einsteins Jungle Junction Jungle Junction Little Einsteins Special Agent Oso A Poem Is... Lazytown Little Einsteins Jungle Junction Little Einsteins Special Agent Oso Lazytown Little Einsteins Jungle Junction Jungle Junction Little Einsteins Special Agent Oso Special Agent Oso Jungle Junction Jungle Junction Handy Manny Special Agent Oso Lazytown Mickey Mouse Clubhouse The Hive Jake & The Neverland Pirates Jake & The Neverland Pirates Handy Manny The Hive Mini Adventures Of Winnie The Mouk Mouk The Hive Mickey Mouse Clubhouse New Adventures Of Winnie The Art Attack Imagination Movers Lazytown Mini Adventures Of Winnie The Handy Manny Jungle Junction Imagination Movers The Hive Special Agent Oso Lazytown Mickey Mouse Clubhouse New Adventures Of Winnie The Jake & The Neverland Pirates Mouk The Hive Imagination Movers Lazytown Jungle Junction Mouk Art Attack Lazytown Jake & The Neverland Pirates Jake & The Neverland Pirates The Hive Mouk Imagination Movers A Poem Is... Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Jungle Junction New Adventures Of Winnie The Jake & The Neverland Pirates The Hive Mini Adventures Of Winnie The A Poem Is... Mouk Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Jake & The Neverland Pirates Special Agent Oso New Adventures Of Winnie The Timmy Time Jungle Junction Handy Manny

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

Under The Influence TNA: Greatest Matches M1 Selection 2010 The Cool Guy Files The Cool Guy Files Pinks: Lose The Race, Lose Your Pinks: Lose The Race, Lose Your Pinks: Lose The Race, Lose Your Pinks: Lose The Race, Lose Your Blood, Sweat And Gears Blood, Sweat And Gears Ride Guide Mountainbike 2009 Ride Guide Mountainbike 2009 Tread BMX Tread BMX Best Of The Streets Best Of The Streets Winter Dew Tour 10/11 Fantasy Factory Fantasy Factory Pro Bull Riders 2011 Mantracker I’ll Do Anything World Combat League Fantasy Factory Fantasy Factory Tread BMX Tread BMX Best Of The Streets Best Of The Streets Mantracker Pro Bull Riders 2011 I’ll Do Anything World Combat League Dragrace High Dragrace High TNA: Greatest Matches

00:40 Guy’s Big Bite 01:05 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 01:30 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 01:55 Food Network Challenge Special 02:45 Kid In A Candy Store Special 03:35 Unwrapped 04:25 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 04:50 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 05:15 Guy’s Big Bite 05:40 Outrageous Food 06:05 Unique Sweets 06:30 Chopped 07:10 Barefoot Contessa 07:35 Barefoot Contessa 08:00 Halloween Wars 08:50 Barefoot Contessa 09:15 Barefoot Contessa 09:40 Unique Sweets

10:05 Charly’s Cake Angels 10:30 Jenny Morris Cooks Morocco 10:55 Cooking For Real 11:20 Cooking For Real 11:45 Healthy Appetite With Ellie Krieger 12:10 Unwrapped 12:35 United Tastes Of America 13:00 Food Network Challenge Special 13:50 Guy’s Big Bite 14:15 Cooking For Real 14:40 Barefoot Contessa 15:05 Barefoot Contessa 15:30 Unique Sweets 15:55 Charly’s Cake Angels 16:20 Jenny Morris Cooks Morocco 16:45 Food(Ography) 17:35 Barefoot Contessa 18:00 Barefoot Contessa 18:25 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 18:50 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 19:15 Guy’s Big Bite 19:40 Kid In A Candy Store Special 20:30 Food Network Challenge Special 21:20 Halloween Wars 22:10 Jenny Morris Cooks Morocco 22:35 Jenny Morris Cooks Morocco 23:00 World Cafe Asia 23:25 World Cafe Asia

00:15 Great Crimes And Trials 00:40 Fatal Encounters 01:30 Police Women Of Memphis 02:20 Deadly Women 03:05 The Will: Family Secrets Revealed 03:55 Great Crimes And Trials 04:20 Great Crimes And Trials 04:45 Fatal Encounters 05:30 Police Women Of Memphis 06:20 Mystery Diagnosis 07:10 Disappeared 08:00 Mystery ER 08:50 Street Patrol 09:15 Street Patrol 09:40 Real Emergency Calls 10:05 Who On Earth Did I Marry? 10:30 On The Case With Paula Zahn 11:20 Murder Shift 12:10 Disappeared 13:00 Mystery ER 13:50 Street Patrol 14:15 Street Patrol 14:40 Forensic Detectives 15:30 On The Case With Paula Zahn 16:20 Real Emergency Calls 16:45 Who On Earth Did I Marry? 17:10 Murder Shift 18:00 Disappeared 18:50 Forensic Detectives 19:40 Street Patrol 20:05 On The Case With Paula Zahn 20:55 Stalked: Someone’s Watching 21:20 Nightmare Next Door 22:10 Couples Who Kill 23:00 Deadly Women 23:50 Scorned: Crimes Of Passion

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

Kimchi Chronicles Somewhere In China Don’t Tell My Mother Nomads Bite Me With Dr. Mike Leahy Banged Up Abroad Bondi Rescue Bondi Rescue Food Lover’s Guide To The Food Lover’s Guide To The Kimchi Chronicles Kimchi Chronicles Somewhere In China Don’t Tell My Mother Nomads Bite Me With Dr. Mike Leahy Banged Up Abroad Bondi Rescue Bondi Rescue Food School Food School Kimchi Chronicles Kimchi Chronicles Somewhere In China Don’t Tell My Mother Nomads Bite Me With Dr. Mike Leahy Banged Up Abroad Kimchi Chronicles Kimchi Chronicles Food School Food School Bondi Rescue Bondi Rescue Food Lover’s Guide To The Food School One Man & His Campervan

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

Big Cat Wars The Pack Underwater Oasis Sea Strikers Built for the Kill The Living Edens Megafish Underwater Oasis Sea Strikers Built for the Kill Croc Ganglands Lizard Kings Ultimate Predators GPU Monster Fish California’s Wild Coast Dolphin Army Caught In The Act Sumatra’s Last Tiger Rhino Rescue Ultimate Predator California’s Wild Coast Sea Strikers Built for the Kill Croc Ganglands

20:00 Fighting-PG15 22:00 Homecoming-18 00:00 03:00 03:30 04:30 Leno 07:00 08:30 11:00 Leno 14:00 17:00 18:00 18:30 19:30 20:30 21:00

Late Night With Jimmy Fallon Happy Endings The Tonight Show With Jay Hot In Cleveland Late Night With Jimmy Fallon Happy Endings Hot In Cleveland New Girl Melissa & Joey The Daily Show Global Edition

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

Fairly Legal The Killing True Blood House Unforgettable Fairly Legal Emmerdale Coronation Street Royal Pains The Ellen DeGeneres Show Unforgettable House Emmerdale Coronation Street The Ellen DeGeneres Show Royal Pains Fairly Legal Emmerdale Coronation Street The Ellen DeGeneres Show Royal Pains House Revenge The Newsroom Boardwalk Empire Grimm23:00 Grimm

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

Full Metal Jacket-18 Kalifornia-18 Jackie Chan’s Who Am I?-PG15 Last Breath-PG15 Taxi-PG15 Jackie Chan’s Who Am I?-PG15 Friday Night Lights-PG15 Taxi-PG15 Arachnophobia-PG15 Alien Resurrection-18 Hustle And Flow-18 Open Graves-18 The Morgue-18

00:00 The Trip-PG15 02:00 Friday After Next-18 04:00 How The Grinch Stole Christmas-PG 06:00 Below The Beltway-PG15 08:00 Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son-PG15 10:00 Letters To Juliet-PG15 12:00 Austin Powers In GoldmemberPG15 14:00 Just Go With It-PG15 16:00 Letters To Juliet-PG15 18:00 The Breakfast Club-PG15 20:00 The Royal Tenenbaums-18 22:00 Love And Other Drugs-R 22:00 Frenemy-18 01:00 Chico & Rita-18 03:00 Howl-18 04:45 Fish Tank-PG15 07:00 Sundays At Tiffany’s-PG15 09:00 Love The Beast-PG 11:00 Soldier Love Story-PG15 13:00 The 19th Wife-PG15 15:00 Love The Beast-PG 16:45 Up Close And Personal-PG 19:00 Boy-PG15 21:00 The Prince And Me 4: The Elephant Adventure-PG15 Square Grouper-18 01:30 Toast-PG15 03:15 The Great Gatsby-PG 05:45 Pina-PG15 07:30 Gulliver’s Travels-PG 09:00 Ways To Live Forever-PG15 10:45 Thor-PG15 12:45 Lorenzo’s Oil-PG15 15:00 Rio-FAM 16:45 Ways To Live Forever-PG15 18:30 Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Pt.1-PG15 21:00 After Life-18

00:00 Mia And The Migoo-PG 02:00 Winner & The Golden Child: Part II-FAM 04:00 Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. EvilPG 06:00 Spy Kids: All The Time In The World-PG 08:00 D’fenders-PG 10:00 Beverly Hills Chihuahua 2-PG 14:00 Free Birds-FAM 16:00 Sammy’s Adventure: The Secret Passage-PG15 18:00 Beverly Hills Chihuahua 2-PG 20:00 Blue Elephant 2-FAM 22:15 Resident Evil 4: Afterlife-18 00:00 04:30 06:30 07:00 09:30 12:00 13:00 15:00 17:00 18:00 20:00 21:00 23:00

PGA European Tour Top 14 Futbol Mundial NFL NFL Trans World Sport ITM Cup Currie Cup Trans World Sport Top 14 PGA European Tour Highlights ITM Cup Darts Grand Prix

22:00 Zoo Confidential 23:00 Dangerous Encounters 000:00 Carrie-18 02:00 AVP: Alien vs Predator-PG15 04:00 Stool Pigeon-PG15 06:00 Faster-PG15 08:00 Fatal Secrets-PG15 12:00 Hidalgo-PG15 14:15 Fatal Secrets-PG15 16:00 True Justice: BrotherhoodPG15 17:45 Hidalgo-PG15 20:00 Seventh Moon-18

02:30 03:30 07:00 11:30 15:00 18:00 18:30 19:00


Melissa & Joey Happy Endings Hot In Cleveland The Tonight Show With Jay

Trans World Sport Premier League Snooker PGA European Tour Premier League Snooker Prizefighter ICC Cricket 360 Futbol Mundial NFL


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360 º- 12 MISS MOMMY (DIG) 1:45 PM MISS MOMMY (DIG) 4:00 PM MISS MOMMY (DIG) 6:15 PM NO SAT (27.10.2012) Special Show “HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA (DIG-3D)” for KNPC 6:45 PM SAT (27.10.2012) MISS MOMMY (DIG) 8:30 PM MISS MOMMY (DIG) 10:45 PM MISS MOMMY (DIG) 1:00 AM NO TUE+WED


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360 º- 14 TAKEN2 :2D TAKEN2 :2D TAKEN2 :2D RUSH (DIG)(Hindi) TAKEN2 :2D TAKEN2 :2D NO TUE+WED

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Classifieds MONDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2012




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



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

Directorate General of Civil Aviation Home Page (

ACCOMMODATION Single bedroom flat for family near Salmiya garden. Rent KD 200 includes water electricity and internet. Furniture/ appliances available as additional. Contact: 94427060. (C 4190) Sharing accommodation for Filipino Farwaniya blk 1, st 122, in front of Gulf Mart, non-smoking, decent person only, call 66390770. (C 4191) 25-10-2012 An apartment for rent in Farwaniya, 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom, including a master room, good location, rent KD 205 per month available starting from 1/11/2012. Contact: 99977472. Single bedroom flat available for family in Salmiya with furniture, appliances plus a Mercedes B200 car, 2008. Contact: 94427060/ 66982274. (C 4188) 24-10-2012 Room with attached bath available in a C-AC flat in Abbassiya near High Way Center, couple or ladies are preferred. Contact: 66552905. (C 4185) 22-10-2012

FOR SALE Prado 2005, silver, 4 cylinders, full option, including double gear and censor, one owner only. Price KD 4,750. Tel: 97479763. Refrigerator (LG) KD 70, automatic washing machine (2 kg) KD 40, safe KD 65, Good condition, almost new, in Farwaniya Blk 1, St 22. Contact: 66396770. (C 4192) 25-10-2012 Mercedes 280s 1994 dark blue registered valid to July 2013, KD 1,000 please call 99633674 after 5 pm. (C 4186)

TUITION Maths teacher over 20 years experience. Tuition: KS2/3, IGCSE, AS/A2, CIC2C3C4, S1S2, M1M2, familiar with all boards. Contact: 66710630. (C 4183)

Mazda (3) white color, 2012, excellent condition, km 12000, KD 2850. Tel: 50699345. (C 4187) 22-10-2012 A Nissan Maxima in very good condition with one year registration validity. Tel: 90908406. 20-10-2012


SITUATION WANTED Young Indian, 3 years experienced CCNA & MCITP professional 18 no. visa, looking for suitable job in IT field. Contact: 55341119. (C 4189) 24-10-2012

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

04:39 11:32 14:41 17:05 18:22


LOST Policy No. 6330001223 issued by the State Life Insurance Corporation of Pakistan Gulf zone on the Life of Mr. Mohammad Sultan Kaler Mushtaq Ahmed is reported to have been lost. Anyone finding the same or claiming any interest in it should communicate with the Manager (PHS) State Life P.O. Box No. 11278, Dubai, UAE within one month from this date. 18-10-2012


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


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


Kaizen center














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



Te el.: 161


Ext.: 262 2627 - 2630




Relatively humid with light to moderate north easterly to northerly wind, with speed of 12 - 35 km/h and some scattered clouds will appear


Partly cloudy with light to moderate freshening gradually northerly to north westerly wind, with speed of 15 - 40 km/h with a chance for scattered light rain No Current Warnings arnin a


33 °C

23 °C



33 °C

23 °C




36 °C

28 °C




37 °C

22 °C




33 °C

18 °C


33 °C

19 °C




33 °C

18 °C

Maidan Hawally



32 °C

23 °C




34 °C

25 °C




33 °C

29 °C




31 °C

22 °C







28/10/2012 0000 UTC

4 DA AYS Y FORECAST Temperatures DA AY





New Jahra


West Jahra



South Jahra



North Jahra



North Jleeb






Wind Direction

Wind Speed

sunny + dust at open areas

32 °C

22 °C


15 - 40 km/h



31 °C

20 °C


10 - 32 km/h



30 °C

19 °C


10 - 32 km/h



30 °C

19 °C


08 - 28 km/h





MAX. Temp.

33 °C



MIN. Temp.

25 °C 73 %













MAX. Wind





All times are local time unless otherwise stated.

19 % SE 57 km/h .75 mm

28/10/12 03:16 UTC



PRIVATE CLINICS Ophthalmologists Dr. Abidallah Al-Mansoor 25622444 Dr. Samy Al-Rabeea 25752222 Dr. Masoma Habeeb 25321171 Dr. Mubarak Al-Ajmy 25739999 Dr. Mohsen Abel 25757700 Dr Adnan Hasan Alwayl 25732223 Dr. Abdallah Al-Baghly 25732223 Ear, Nose & Throat (ENT) Dr. Ahmed Fouad Mouner 24555050 Ext 510 Dr. Abdallah Al-Ali 25644660 Dr. Abd Al-Hameed Al-Taweel 25646478 Dr. Sanad Al-Fathalah 25311996 Dr. Mohammad Al-Daaory 25731988 Dr. Ismail Al-Fodary 22620166 Dr. Mahmoud Al-Booz 25651426 General Practitioners Dr. Mohamme Y Majidi 24555050 Ext 123 Dr. Yousef Al-Omar 24719312 Dr. Tarek Al-Mikhazeem 23926920 Dr. Kathem Maarafi 25730465 Dr. Abdallah Ahmad Eyadah 25655528 Dr. Nabeel Al-Ayoobi 24577781 Dr. Dina Abidallah Al-Refae 25333501 Urologists Dr. Ali Naser Al-Serfy 22641534 Dr. Fawzi Taher Abul 22639955 Dr. Khaleel Abidallah Al-Awadi 22616660 Dr. Adel Al-Hunayan FRCS (C) 25313120 Dr. Leons Joseph 66703427 Psychologists /Psychotherapists


Plastic Surgeons Dr. Mohammad Al-Khalaf


Dr. Khaled Hamadi

Dr. Abdal-Redha Lari


Dr. Abd Al-Aziz Al-Rashed

Dr. Abdel Quttainah


Family Doctor Dr Divya Damodar


Psychiatrists Dr. Esam Al-Ansari


Dr Eisa M. Al-Balhan


Gynaecologists & Obstetricians DrAdrian arbe


Dr. Verginia s.Marin

2572-6666 ext 8321


25665898 25340300

Dr. Zahra Qabazard


Dr. Sohail Qamar


Dr. Snaa Maaroof


Dr. Pradip Gujare


Dr. Zacharias Mathew


(1) Ear, Nose and Throat (2) Plastic Surgeon Dr. Abdul Mohsin Jafar, FRCS (Canada)



Dr. Fozeya Ali Al-Qatan


Dr. Majeda Khalefa Aliytami


Dr. Shamah Al-Matar


Dr. Ahmad Al-Khooly


Dr. Anesah Al-Rasheed



Dr. Abidallah Al-Amer


Dr. Faysal Al-Fozan


Dr. Abdallateef Al-Katrash


Dr. Abidallah Al-Duweisan


Dr. Bader Al-Ansari


Dr. Salem soso General Surgeons Dr. Amer Zawaz Al-Amer


Dr. Mohammad Yousef Basher


Internists, Chest & Heart Dr. Adnan Ebil Dr. Mousa Khadada Dr. Latefa Al-Duweisan

22666300 25728004

Dr. Nadem Al-Ghabra


Dr. Mobarak Aldoub


Dr Nasser Behbehani





Dr. Abd Al-Naser Al-Othman

Dr. Sohal Najem Al-Shemeri


Dr. Jasem Mola Hassan


Gastrologists Dr. Sami Aman


Dr. Mohammad Al-Shamaly


Dr. Foad Abidallah Al-Ali


Kaizen center 25716707


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LIFESTYLE G o s s i p

Helena Bonham Carter’s improved acting elena Bonham Carter thinks her acting gets better with age. The ‘Great Expectations’ star is happy with being offered film roles for older women and thinks it proves how versatile her skills are, despite feeling like a “fraud” when she first started out because she felt so inexperienced. Helena said: “Mother and granny parts? I’m up for them. Fine by me. I think that most people in the industry know that I have a range, you know. Actually, I do truly believe that ageing has made me a far better actor. “When I was in films with people who had so much experience, I felt a total fraud. I was waiting to be exposed. I was bluffing it.” The 46-year-old actress is grateful to her partner of 11 years, director Tim Burton, and their two children - Billy, eight, and Nell, four - for making her more confident on set and admits she lets the ‘Frankenweenie’ filmmaker be the boss at work. Helena added to OK! magazine: “Today, that’s gone, and that’s due to the fact that with Tim and the children, I am a fundamentally happy person. “I point and order at home, and he orders and points at work. On a film set, he is the boss and I try not to lose sight of that.”


Payne feels ‘sorry’ for Bieber iam Payne feels “sorry” for Justin Bieber. The One Direction star and his bandmates Harry Styles, Zayn Malik, Louis Tomlinson and Niall Horan has become close to the ‘Boyfriend’ hitmaker in recent years, but doesn’t think he has as much fun as the British group because he doesn’t get to perform with anyone else. He said: “Not in a patronizing way, but I kind of feel sorry for him. I know he’s got friends around him and they go on tour with him. But they’re not going through the same situation as these boys are with me. “If something bad happened to me tomorrow, Louis would be there for me 100 per cent. People sometimes ask if I want to be a solo artist, but it just wouldn’t be any fun being on your own.” Despite touring the world now and rarely being at home, Liam does like to have some time away from the band - even if it’s still with one or two of his bandmates. He told Now magazine: “It’s important to have a life outside the band. But at the same time I spent the night yesterday at Zayn’s house. We all have this amazing brotherhood and that’s what makes this job so special. If we didn’t have each other, I think we’d crumble a little bit.”


Harry Judd is ‘happier’ being sober he McFly drummer quit booze two years ago along with his band-mate Dougie Poynter, and he believes he is far better off without it because he has stopped experiencing anxiety attacks. He said: “Dougie stopped at a similar time to me. I just found I was starting to get affected by hangovers badly. “You know how people get hangover blues? I just started to not cope with them well, anxiety-wise, to the point where I was being really horrible. I loved going out and getting angry, the being drunk wasn’t the problem because I was never aggressive, I think I did take it a bit too far. “Drinking was my vice, but I can honestly say I’m happier without it.” Harry’s fiancee Izzy is also alcohol free, and he believes it is the best thing for both of them. He added in an interview with Attitude magazine: “Izzy doesn’t drink either so it’s ideal for her. It just means you want to leave the party at 1am, rather than not want to leave the party at all.”


Styles still in touch with Flack arry Styles is still “good friends” with Caroline Flack. The One Direction hunk admitted he still speaks to his former lover - who he split from in January - regularly on the phone but things don’t go so well when they meet face-to-face. He said: “Caroline and I are good friends and we are still in touch. “Every time we are in the same place we seem to argue, but we get along fine.” Harry has dated a string of older women including 32-year-old Caroline, but insists they aren’t the only females he is interested in as he is a natural flirt. He is quoted by the Daily Star on Sunday newspaper as saying: “I’m 18, I don’t love older women, I just love women. Sometimes I flirt without meaning to. “Perhaps it’s just how I was meant to be. I’ve got a good seduction routine which I execute very well.” Meanwhile, Harry has been accused of ruining a marriage. It was revealed earlier this year that the ‘One Thing’ singer had slept with married DJ Lucy Horobin and now her estranged spouse Oliver Pope - who is due to file for divorce this week - has admitted he entirely blames the young pop star. He told the Sunday Mirror newspaper: “I know how -stupid it sounds but I blame Harry 100 per cent for this. “OK, so Lucy may have technically split from me days before he first slept with her but that came after weeks of flirtatious text messages. “We were still living together in the same house. At that point, in the same bed. “She was wearing a wedding ring the first time they met. “I don’t think it matters to him whether the woman he wants is married or not.”


Pippa dating investment banker ippa Middleton is dating a wealthy investment banker. The 28-year-old party planner - who is the younger sister of the Duchess of Cambridge - has enjoyed a string of dates with 37-year-old James Matthews in recent weeks and friends say their relationship is going “from strength to strength”. An onlooker at London’s Hakkasan restaurant, who saw the couple on a recent date there, said: “Pippa and James sat in a secluded booth in the upstairs area, where it was quieter, sharing a bottle of white wine. “They were deep in conversation and only had eyes for each other. “Pippa was all smiles and kept -giggling. They stayed for nearly three hours and didn’t seem to want the meal to end.” Pippa - who has been largely single since splitting from Alex Loudon last November after three years together - had been focusing her attentions on her new book ‘Celebrate: A Year of British Festivities for Families and Friends’ but now the party guide has been released, she is ready to love again. A friend told the Sunday Mirror newspaper: “Pippa is quite taken with James. She wants to take things slowly at first but she is ready for a full-time man in her life again.” James is the older brother of Spencer Matthews, who stars on UK reality TV show ‘Made in Chelsea’.


Contostavlos dates Latham

Demi Moore wants to fall in love again he 49-year-old actress has finally come to terms with the end of her marriage to Ashton Kutcher - who she split from in November 2011 after a fiveyear union - and is reportedly looking forward to finding romance again. A source said: “She’s not desperate to date again but she is actually open to it which is a really good step. She wants to experience something new. She wants to fall in love again.” Demi has also realized that Ashton is in love with his new girlfriend Mila Kunis which has been one of the main factors in her wishing to move on. The insider added to America’s OK! magazine: “Demi seems to have rounded a corner. She’s been forced to get real. As much as it hurts her to see Ashton in love with Mila, it’s also been the push she needed to finally accept it’s over for good between them. “She truly believed she’d spend the rest of her life with Ashton so it’s not easy for her to simply move on but she’s determined to do it.”


ulisa Contostavlos is dating Jody Latham. The ‘Young’ singer has reportedly grown close to the British actor - who shot to fame after starring in TV drama ‘Shameless’ - since he appeared in the steamy video for her forthcoming single ‘Sight of You’ and the brunette beauty is said to have “really fallen” for Jody. A source told the Sunday People newspaper: “Tulisa has not had much luck with boyfriends of late but she has really fallen for Jody. “She didn’t really know him before he was booked for her music video but because they had to get intimate in a number of scenes; they realized they quite like each other. “Things have moved quite fast and Tulisa is already calling Jody her man.” The pair are said to be “inseparable” after Jody spent the last four nights at Tulisa’s London home, as well as accompanying her to a party earlier this week. And The ‘X Factor’ judge even made a secret visit to see Jody in Scotland, where he was filming a new show. A source told The Sun newspaper: “Tulisa has told a few guys on the show that she’s dating Jody. “Things have moved really fast between them. They’ve hit it off big time they have a real connection. “They both had a tough time growing up in rough parts of the country. Jody’s the life and soul of a party and Tulisa loves a night out - they are a perfect match. They’ve been inseparable this week.” Tulisa - who has previously dated her N-Dubz bandmate Fazer and ‘Skins’ actor Jack O’Connell - recently hinted she had been secretly dating someone. She said: “You don’t go out and date; you hide in a house and watch DVDs. That’s the secret. I may be dating and I’m enjoying it. “Someone might just come into your life randomly and you’re like, ‘Oh wow, there you go. Good timing’.”


Williams named his new album ‘Take The Crown’ obbie Williams named his new album ‘Take The Crown’ to give himself a “kick up the backside”. The 38-year-old singer admits he wasn’t confident about his last release, 2009’s ‘Reality Killed the Video Star’, and thinks that is why it performed poorly so he is determined to be as passionate as possible about his latest record. He said: “Taking the crown back, or telling people to come and take it from me. Or something. It’s a bit of a kick up the backside for me to go, ‘Look, front this, do it properly or don’t bother.’“I put out an album last time and I came out half-cocked. I wasn’t very confident with it. Some of the songs on Robbie’s new album were co-written by Gary Barlow and he admits it was nice to receive the approval of his former foe. He told ShortList magazine: “I think I’ve had a long yearning for Gaz to a) be my mate, b) see what I can do in the studio and c) to go, ‘Yeah, that’s good.’“I think I’ve needed Gary’s approval for a long time and I got it. I just wanted to be in the studio with him and have him go, ‘You’re good at this.’ It was important to him.” —Bang Showbiz



lifestyle M U S I C



Moroccan film wins top award in Spain’s Valladolid int’l festival

G Saji performs a Karakaattam, one of the four dance pieces he has composed as part of the Ernakulam comedy program. After each dance item, Saji goes off stage, strips a layer of clothes for the next item.

Comedians Arun (left) and Sumesh Thampi during the make-up. Sumesh who has cholesterol problems said he is not controlling his diet to keep up his physique, his trademark.

Sasankan, a comedy script writer and actor (right) helps Saji Ochira who is finishing his costume as a woman for the comedy show at Khaitan Indian Community School on Friday for Ernakulam District Association’s Onam-Eid program.

At odds, comedians live out many lives By Sunil Cherian


or Eid, they feasted on stage, on empty stomachs. Their audience, about a 1,000 people at Khaitan Indian Community School watched them in delight after a sumptuous meal as part of Ernakulam District Association Onam-Eid celebrations. The main entertainers, Vodafone comedy stars Sumesh Thampi, Sasankan, Binu Adimaly, Saji Ochira, and Arun Pulimath went on stage at 3 pm after swigging water not wanting a full stomach upsetting the performance. They were on the stage till 6 pm, imitating, s(w)inging, dancing, fighting and doing whatever else was needed for a laugh. Going hungry on stage is not something indigestible for artists like them who are most wanted on festival days. But Sumesh Thampi, the team manager of comedy team 2020, finds it hard to miss the meals. His over 100-kilo weighing body has already become a brand. “I’m afraid if I lose weight, I may lose my chance as well”, said Sumesh who

just finished acting in DYSP Shankunni Uncle, a film produced by actor Baburaj and directed by Sooryan Kunissery. TV shows and stage performances, the comedy stars admit, are more viewed if the performers have some films to their credit. It is natural for these artists to crave for film roles, however big or small. But Sasankan of Chirikkudukka team has one more feather in his cap. He is a scriptwriter, finding comedy in everything common and ridiculing people of all shoes including him. If the ‘beautiful damsel’, often acted by male artists, is speaking of ‘her’ man of dreams, you can be sure next on stage is the darkened, rough-skinned foul-looking Sasankan, contrasting our expectations. That is a usual scene Sasankan writes for himself. Artist Saji Ochira is the other extreme. He has roles that are admirable. He is the damsel either in distress or in mistrust. Women are often exposed as cheating wives in comedy shows. But the comedians shrug off this criticism. “Men are always presented as power-hungry politicians, sense-

less policemen, rash rapists and worse, fools!” Saji who claims the first female role in Malayalam comedy shows 20 years ago, performed her, err, his self-designed four types of dance at Khaitan on Friday. The fourth time when the dancer reemerged on stage stripping the 3rd cover of clothes, the audience roared with ‘her’ Arabic belly dance. In real life, Saji says, the character leaves him on stage. “I’ve had experiences of men, once it was a policeman, taking wrong steps, mistaking me for a woman”, Saji said. “My wife and my child do not have a problem. They appreciate my art. It’s my profession.” A mathematics degree holder, Saji works as a two-class per week performance teacher at a school in Karunagappalli, Kerala. His role as a eunuch with Mohan Lal in the forthcoming Major Ravi film Karma Yodha is reason enough for his family’s support. People accept you after a film, state the comedians. “But you don’t come back on stage once you are busy with films,” I say. “That’s the comedy of it”, said Binu Adimaly who recently acted in five films.

Voodoo adds tent camping to festival experience T he Voodoo Music + Arts Experience is bringing a European music festival experience to New Orleans with overnight tent camping and more Eurodance-based acts to its stage. The lineup for the three-day festival, which starts Friday at New Orleans City Park, includes Skrillex, Justice and Kaskade, electronic DJproducers who have performed at other US festivals in recent years as US radio continues to welcome dance music to its rotation, following Europe’s longtime trend. This will be the first year tent-camping will be available for concert-goers - a popular stable at European music festivals. “It’s a long-standing tradition that works really well there, so we thought why not bring it here?” said Voodoo producer Stephen Rehage. As one of the first American festivals to offer tent-camping, Rehage said he’s starting small, with about 300 tent sites. Restrooms and showers will be provided. The 14th annual Voodoo will include nearly 100 acts in rock, metal, hiphop, blues and electronica. Headliners include Neil Young and Crazy Horse, Metallica and Jack White. Rehage said he has moved the stage for the electronic DJs to a location that can accommodate more festive-goers because last year the fan base was spilling over into other stage areas. Xavier de Rosnay of the French duo Justice, who performed Saturday, says he doesn’t know what makes his music such a draw, and he’s not sure he wants to. “Sometimes not knowing is good because

knowing could be a temptation for us to begin making music to please people instead of making music as we do now with complete freedom,” de Rosnay said in a phone interview. Nas, The Avett Brothers, Bootsy Collins, Gary Clark Jr, Silversun Pickups and Dave Stewart will also perform. “This festival really is a musical gumbo,” Rehage said. “Every year we just throw it all in the pot, mix it up and hope it tastes good.” Voodoo, which is held annually around Halloween, includes a sampling of local talent with Irma Thomas, Marcia Ball, the Lost Bayou Ramblers and Little Freddie King. Max Bermis, frontman for the Californiabased punk rock band Say Anything, said he’s looking forward to being part of such a unique lineup. “Neil Young and Metallica are playing. It’s not an endless parade of what’s hip or what’s popular. It seems to have some cool culture to it,” said Bermis, whose band performs Friday. Metallica was added to the lineup this month to fill the slot previously held by Green Day, which canceled its performance. “We’re hoping we can fill those very large shoes and do them proud,” said Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich. Voodoo tickets start at $90 for one-day admission, $175 for three days, with packages for VIP, parking and camping.—AP

Madonna booed after touting Obama at concert


adonna drew boos and triggered a walkout by several concertgoers after she touted President Barack Obama on her “MDNA Tour” in New Orleans. The Material Girl asked during Saturday night’s performance: “Who’s registered to vote?” She added: “I don’t care who you vote for as long as you vote for Obama.” Drawing boos in touting Obama over Republican Mitt Romney, Madonna followed: “Seriously, I don’t care who you vote for ... Do not take this privilege for granted.

Go vote.” Madonna is often outspoken. Some Colorado fans, mindful of a mass shooting there, complained she used a fake gun to shoot a masked gunman in a recent concert act in Denver. A Madonna concert in Paris in July drew ire when a video showed a swastika on a politician’s forehead.—AP

A file photo taken on June 15, 2006 shows disgraced British glam rocker Gary Glitter entering the People’s Supreme Court in Ho Chi Minh City.—AFP

Gary Glitter, tarnished glam king


In this image distributed by SCOPE Mouthwash, Fuse News Anchor Jack Osbourne flashes a smile with fans at the SCOPE and Fuse area at the VOODOO Music and Arts Experience.

Olivia Nervo and Miriam Nervo of NERVO spin.

Seth Avett and Scott Avett of The Avett Brothers perform at the Voodoo Experience on Friday.—AP/AFP photos

od’s Horses, a movie directed by the MoroccanFrench Nabil Ayouch, has won the Golden Spike Feature-Length award of the 57th edition of the Valladolid International Film Festival, at Calderon Theatre on Saturday. The movie inspired by the terrorist attacks on Casablanca, northwest Morocco on May 16, 2003, tells the story of Yachine, a ten-year old boy who lives with his family in the slum of Sidi Moumen. His mother, Yemma, leads the family as best as she can. His father suffers from depression, one of his brothers is in the army, another is almost autistic and the third. Hamid, 13 years, is the boss of the neighborhood and Yachine’s protector. When Hamid is sent to jail, Yachine takes up jobs after jobs, though empty, to get free from the doldrums of violence, misery and drugs. Released from prison, Hamid, now an Islamic fundamentalist persuades Yachine and his pals to join their brothers. The Imam, Abou Zoubeir, their spiritual leader, starts to direct their long-standing physical and mental preparation. One day, he tells them they have been chosen to become martyrs. The Golden Spike FeatureLength cash award, won by the film, amounts to 60,000 Euros. The Silver Spike Feature-Length award was given to Hannah Arendt film, directed by the German Margarethe von Trotta.—KUNA

The 101 Runners perform at the Voodoo Experience.

File photo shows Madonna performs during her concert in St Petersburg, Russia.—AP

isgraced ex-pop star Gary Glitter, who was arrested yesterday on suspicion of sexual offences, has fallen a long way from his 1970s heyday as the leader of the glam-rock gang. Glitter, 68, was the dazzling king of the glam era, characterized by performers in sequinned dress and extreme make-up. The British singer sold more then 20 million records and had a string of stomping hits like “I’m The Leader Of The Gang (I Am)”. But his fading career was dealt a fatal blow when he was caught with thousands of hardcore child pornography images on his computer in 1997, and spent two months in jail. He left Britain for southeast Asia, only to serve nearly three years in a Vietnamese prison for child sex offences before being deported in 2008. Glitter had kept a low profile since returning to London, but yesterday became the first person arrested in a widening investigation into the activities of Jimmy Savile, who for decades presented “Top of the Pops”, Britain’s top music television show. The flamboyant star was born Paul Francis Gadd on May 8, 1944 in the town of Banbury in Oxfordshire, southern England. Gadd had been performing on the British club circuit since the 1950s. Riding the crest of British pop music’s glam wave, he adopted the Glitter name and scored a huge hit with “Rock and Roll (Parts 1 and 2)”. Complete with extravagant make-up, silver outfits and high boots, the showman notched up three British number-one records in the 1970s with a cheerfully anarchic brand of music based on the “Glitter Stomp”: a thumping drum beat and simple instrumental riffs. The hits kept coming, such as “Hello, Hello, I’m Back Again” and “I’m The Leader Of The Gang (I Am)”, as glittermania swept Britain. Concert-goers lapped up his energetic singalong performances, with Glitter striking poses and giving a wide-eyed stare. He announced his “retirement” from live shows in 1976, went bankrupt in 1980, then relaunched his career and scored a 1984 hit with “Another Rock and Roll Christmas”, one of the classic yuletide tunes. The Timelords’s 1988 British number-one hit “Doctorin’ the Tardis” featured Glitter and sampled “Rock and Roll”. But despite pulling in crowds with his extravagant live shows, Glitter’s record sales slowed. His shock arrest in 1997 came after he took his computer to a store for repair. Hardcore paedophilia was spotted in the computer’s files. He was sentenced in 1999 to four months in prison, of which he served two, after he admitted to 54 charges of downloading indecent pictures from the Internet. Keen to avoid the media, Glitter left the country. He was permanently expelled from Cambodia in 2002, allegedly for trawling for underage sex, although Cambodian officials did not specify his crime or file charges. After being tracked down in Vietnam by a British newspaper which alleged he was living with a 15-year-old girl, Glitter was arrested at Ho Chi Minh City airport in November 2005 while trying to leave for Thailand. He was charged with molesting two girls aged 10 and 11 and, in a two-day trial in March, was convicted. Glitter maintains his innocence, blaming a media conspiracy. The singer was sentenced to the minimum three years in prison, a term later cut by three months. It ended with his deportation and an apparently desperate attempt to avoid returning home, shuttling between airports as Thailand and Hong Kong refused to let him in. Now Glitter is back in the headlines, facing police questions once again in a strand of the investigation which detectives have called “Savile and others”. Police are following more than 400 leads in the snowballing Savile probe.—AFP


lifestyle F a s h i o n

Skaist & Taylor enjoying 2nd duet on fashion stage P

amela Skaist-Levy and Gela Nash-Taylor have come back to fashion with a second act, but they’re sticking to their favorite tune: a rock ‘n ‘roll look with notes

This undated image release by Skaist-Taylor shows designers Pamela Skaist-Levy, left, and Gela Nash Taylor. —AP photos of girlie glamour. The duo - honestto-goodness BFFs - say they are committed to creating clothes for their closets, and if that means rompers, eyelet skirts and boucle jackets in a season when many other designers are toning it down, so be it. “We are primarily wearing our own clothes. I see the label with our names on it, and it’s still a thrill. We are SOOO not jaded,” says SkaistLevy of their new line, Skaist Taylor. These founders of Juicy Couture made a fortune (reportedly $53 million) when they sold their hallmark

business of casual California cool clothes to Liz Claiborne in 2003. They exited the brand in 2010, agreed to a non-compete clause for 17 months - the period Nash-Taylor calls “fashion prison, or hell” - and found themselves with a lot of time on their hands to browse flea markets and listen to music. Nash-Taylor, who is married to Duran Duran’s John Taylor, even tried to learn to cook. “That didn’t work out so well,” she says sheepishly. “I can make a roast chicken, but that’s about it.” “You dream about having time off, but when it comes, you don’t know what to do with yourself,” Nash-Taylor says. She started sketching at the stroke of midnight when the clause expired, but they weren’t going to go back to tracksuits and T-shirts they designed for Juicy Couture. Their look had changed - really, their lives had changed - since the late 1990s and early 2000s Juicy heyday, when they’d hang out at Mr Chow’s restaurant in Los Angeles in those pieces paired with Chanel jackets or Louis Vuitton heels. There is a lot more time at the office, explains Skaist-Levy, 49, and from there it could be a school or sporting event, and then anything from a cocktail party to a baby shower. She says she has worn the opening look from last month’s New York fashion show previewing their spring collection many times. The white knit jacket with black piping which she wore home on the plane to Los Angeles after packing up their runway - is the sort of stylish, versatile piece they want to be known for. The same goes for the longer-hem lace dresses and a black fringe dress with strong shoulders. She might wear that one with gladiator sandals and switch to booties at night, she says. “I want

Models wearing designs from the Skaist Taylor Spring 2013 collection during Fashion Week in New York. clothes that can take you anywhere, and do it chicly.” Nash-Taylor, 53, pulled the orange romper off the rack when models with frizzed-out hair were finished doing their strut to “Witchy Woman” on a Manhattan rooftop. She’s drawn to a look with “a little pop.” Ooh, but she also likes the black minidress. “We’ve always been attracted to military, Victoriana and anything girlie. Those are running through everything we do,” she says. That gets approval and agreement from Skaist-Levy. But, really, could these two women always agree? They finish each other’s sentences, and often wear matching animal-print outfits. One of them has to have a little wardrobe envy, right? Nash-Taylor sets the record straight: “Pam’s closet is better: It’s the place I like to shop the most.” These women talk about clothes - a lot. It’s an “addiction,” they agree. But the experience of creating a juggernaut like Juicy, joining cor-

porate America and then going out on their own again has taught them that their passion is very much a business, too. Their strategy is not to chase trends but to carve out an identity with their new brand, which targets all the other rock ‘n’ roll fashion groupies out there. They want shoppers to be able to identify Skaist Taylor and its favorite leather, lace and cool-girl looks with nothing more than a passing glance. “There’s a crazy bevy of minimalists who are very good at their job,” says Nash-Taylor, “and we’re happy to be at the other end of the arch.” Their previous success allows them to be more thoughtful. Yes, it’s a business, but their hearts belong to fashion. “We’re building a new brand. We’re dressing our Skaist Taylor girl,” Skaist-Levy says. “... We are trying to educate our customer and that will only come with consistency. We’re a little bit edgy, a little feminine. We’re trying to find new words for ‘sexy’ and ‘rocker,’ but that’s really

File photo shows actress January Jones of “Mad Men” wearing Skaist Taylor as she arrives at the Paley Center LA Benefit at the Rooftop of The Lot in West Hollywood, Calif. what it is and what we’re all about.” And when they say “what we’re all about,” they mean it. “Pam and I are Pam and I, and we’ve grown up,” Nash-Taylor says. “We wanted to make something that speaks to us

today. It’s always biographical for us. We call our look California eccentric because we are California eccentric.” —AP

China Fashion Week This undated artist rendering released by Barneys New York / Disney shows Disney character Minnie Mouse featured in the Barneys New York Madison Avenue holiday window. —AP

Skinny Minnie: Disney fave gets Barneys makeover


Models parade creations by the Chinese fashion house Gioia Pan collection during the bi-annual China Fashion Week in Beijing. The seven-day fashion extravaganza will highlight works of hundreds of designers from both domestic and international fashion houses. —AFP photos

id Minnie Mouse do a catwalk cleanse? For a brief moment in Barneys New York’s upcoming holiday window display, Minnie becomes a long, lean high-fashion model - and the skinny Minnie is drawing some criticism. The Barneys display puts Disney characters on the runway in front of animated versions of industry bigwigs in a short film that features Minnie’s daydream sequence strutting her stuff in Paris in a hot-pink, ruffle-covered Lanvin dress. Runway Minnie gets only a few seconds of face time, but when she does, she transforms into a model who is tall and thin with longer legs, leaner arms and daintier gloved hands than the polkadot-loving character who typically embraces her curves from head to toe. Daisy Duck, Cruella De Vil and Goofy get similar insta-slim treatments. For most of the film, however, Minnie and crew look their usual selves. Minnie has her big bows, round face and signature wide-width pumps. “Viewers will recognize the Minnie they know and love, as she takes a turn on the runways of Paris and in her own mirror, wearing a custom creation from one of the world’s greatest designers,” Barneys said in a statement to The Associated Press. “Some of the early highly stylized fashion illustrations have garnered significant attention; however the reality is Disney’s Minnie Mouse proves that true fashion lovers come in all styles and sizes.” Still, the makeover has prompted several online petitions targeting Barneys and Disney for perpetuating the skinny-model image that the fashion industry has been criticized for many times over. One of the louder voices is Taren Stinebrickner-Kauffman, executive director and founder of, a consumer watchdog group. In just over a week, the petition has attracted close to 80,000 online “signatures.” There are a half-dozen additional petitions up on, including one with more than 135,000 supporters. It was launched by Ragen Chastain, who self-published the book “Fat: The Owners Manual - Navigating a Thin-Obsessed World with Your Health, Happiness and a Sense of Humor Intact.” StinebricknerKauffman said she took this issue on after a friend of hers - a mother to a grade-school daughter - posted about it on Facebook. “Girls have seen Minnie Mouse as a healthy character in their lives ... to have her image subverted like that is troubling.” Girls are “bombarded” by impossible physical figures in the media, says Stinebrickner-Kauffmann, and to have such a familiar face - and shape - be turned into such a skinny Minnie seems like it could fuel the insecurities young women often have about themselves and their bodies. Models are indeed taller and thinner than most women, and those features are further exaggerated in fashion illustrations used by designers - and by Barneys in its promotional material for the Nov. 14 launch of its displays, says Steven Stipelman, assistant chair of fashion design at the Fashion Institute of Technology. Those are the images that are being protested, as the film short has not been released beyond the trailer provided to The Associated Press. The film does not feature the drawing that has been the focus of criticism, though Minnie does undergo a transformation as soon as she steps onto the catwalk in front of Lanvin designer Alber Elbaz, International Herald Tribune reporter Suzy Menkes and Harper’s Bazaar global fashion director Carine Roitfeld, among other recognizable faces. —AP


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37 British designer Charlotte Macfarlane poses for a picture at her and Nicki Macfarlane’s showroom in London. —AFP photos

(From left) Beatrice, Isobel and Katie Mohr model bridesmaid dresses designed by Nicki and Charlotte Macfarlane.

From ‘Kate’ to cakes, French brides speak fluent English


rom “Kate”-inspired lace dresses to towering wedding cakes-and even British celebrants-French brides-to-be are looking across the Channel, and the Atlantic, to make their day that bit more special. “These past two years, we’ve been seeing girls pick and mix ingredients from English or American weddings,” said Sophie Chastrusse-Peyronnet, who heads up a giant Paris bridal fair, the Grand Salon du Mariage, each October. Start with the lingo: French couples no longer cut the “gateau” but a “wedding cake”, they order “escort cards” to guide guests to their seats, and talk of “DIY”, when it comes to Martha Stewart-style decorations. “Our DIY workshop is one of the fair’s most popular,” Chastrusse-Peyronnet told AFP. “Young girls go crazy for it.” Lifted from the movies, blogs, or last year’s royal nuptials, Anglo-American styles and customs are shaking up traditional French weddings. “Sweet tables” stacked high with pristine-looking candy are a strong trend, but the really big business is in cakes. Two years ago, Canadian chef Taylor McLoughlin and American business

partner Krista Juracek opened the Sugarplum cake shop in Paris, offering North Americanstyle stacked cakes, 80 percent of them for weddings. “It’s going through the roof,” the 33year-old Juracek told AFP. “During wedding season we book months in advance.” “Most French people don’t want the same thing their mothers or grandmothers had at their weddings.” US and British lovebirds traditionally invest quite a bit more in weddings than in France. An average French budget runs to 13,000 euros, says the Salon, compared to $27,000 (21,000 euros) in the United States, based on a 2011 study, and 21,000 pounds (26,000 euros) in Britain according to consumer group Which?. But this is changing, with budgets on the rise, and US-style wedding planners stepping up to orchestrate the event. “We no longer have to explain what we do,” said one of the growing ranks of French planners, Caroline Le Moigne-Hirel. “Quite clearly the trend comes from the United States.” “You can see the Anglo-American influence everywhere,” she added; even as far as the ceremony itself, with English “celebrants” called

on to officiate. “People of mixed, or no religion who want to add a spiritual dimension to their wedding are turning to English celebrants” to write them a personalized ceremony with just the right dose of gravitas. ‘Princess gowns, but not meringues’ Then of course, the dress. “This year’s trend is for Kate-style lace gowns, with a deep scoop at the back”-directly inspired by the muchcopied Sarah Burton dress worn last year by the now Duchess of Cambridge, said Chastrusse-Peyronnet. Jean Postaire, owner of an upmarket wedding dress store in Paris, Metal Flaque, saw brisk sales for a David Fielden model inspired by Kate Middleton’s dress in the wake of the royal nuptials. Likewise a Jenny Packham model, this time based on an evening dress she made for the princess. Postaire, who introduced both British designers to France three years ago along with US stars like Vera Wang, says brides come to him for styles they cannot find in the French market. “Americans know how to create princess gowns that aren’t meringues-big but

Isobel Mohr spins around modeling a bridesmaid dress designed by Nicki and Charlotte Macfarlane. not ridiculous,” he said. “The British are good at linear silhouettes, its English chic, a more demure look.” Hoping to tap into this new appetite, a group of upmarket British wedding designers crossed the Channel this month, hosting a showroom in a Paris mansion. Nicki Macfarlane experienced the “Kate effect” first hand, having designed the bridesmaid gowns for the royal wedding. “Lots of doors have opened, it’s been very exciting,” Macfarlane told AFP. “People are looking to the UK much more.” One of her most popular designs, a little organza dress hemmed with English Cluny lace, was directly inspired by the royal dresses. Macfarlane currently ships direct to France. Her goal in Paris? To identify “two or three perfect boutiques. We’re not out to flood the market.” Stephanie Allin’s handmade dresses also mine a vintage English seam, like one recent design, “Rose Alba”, a mid-calf silk satin gown under chantilly lace, intended to suggest “a chic English village fete”. “With it you have tea Beatrice Mohr models a bridesmaid dress and crumpets-and lots of champagne,” she designed by Nicki and Charlotte joked.—AFP Macfarlane at their showroom.

Chocolate conquers new worlds, from Asia to Brazil H istory is coming full circle: borrowed from the Aztecs four centuries ago, perfected for the palate by the Europeans, chocolate is conquering new worlds, with sales booming from Asia to Brazil. Every second, 95 tones of chocolate are wolfed down around the world, or three million tons a year, according to figures supplied by the annual Salon du Chocolat fair, which kicks off Wednesday in Paris. The globalisation of chocolate is most striking in Japan, where annual sales are soaring by 25 percent and French chocolatiers are feted like stars while their Japanese counterparts now rank among the world’s best. “Japan has converted en masse to chocolate in the past decade, with chocolate Salons in seven different cities,” said Francois Jeantet, co-founder of the Paris fair, which has spawned 21 sister events from New York to Shanghai. For the Salon’s annual fashion show

featuring life-sized chocolate dresses, this year’s model is a kimono-inspired number created by French chocolatier Frederic Casselwho has three stores in Japan. “We wanted to express Japanese tradition, cherry blossom in the wind,” in the long sleeves with chocolate flowers, said Cassel, who worked to a design by a young fashion student, Audrey Lempeseur. The 15-kilo edible dress-a month in the making-will be slipped on just moments before the show, lest it should melt under the spotlights. Afterwards, it will be shipped straight to Japan. According to Jacques Pessis, president of the highly-serious Chocolate Crunchers’ Club which each year rewards the best world chocolates, France and Japan are the current masters of the game. “Thirty years ago Belgian and Swiss chocolate ruled the world. These days French chocolate is known

the world over. And more and more Japanese chocolatiers, taking their inspiration from the French, are truly excellent.” Japan aside, chocolate sales are also growing 30 percent year on year in China, while in India-even though one in two Indians have never tasted chocolate-growth is 20 percent, for a treat taken ultra sweet and milky. “Nearly every country in the world is now part of the chocolate trade, including Asian countries and their colossal potential markets,” said Jeantet and his fellow founder Sylvie Douce. Six multinational firms together account for 85 percent of the vast market: Hershey, Mars, Philip Morris, Nestle, Cadbury and Ferrero. Producer countries like Brazil have turned into major consumers, while others like Vietnam or Indonesia are moving into cocoa growing. “In Brazil, the market is going through the roof,” said the master chocolate maker Stephane Bonnat. “Production-side, the country has shifted these past six years towards fine, high quality cocoa. On the consumer side, I had sold my whole stock of chocolate bars within half an hour at the first fair in Salvador de Bahia in July.” Bonnat works with 42 small-scale farms around the world. Like him, many chocolatiers now foster direct ties with cocoa-growers, who also take part in fairs, Douce explained. “Different worlds have come together, and it has helped to vastly improve the quality of both cocoa and chocolate,” she said. Some 200 chefs from around the world are set to converge on Paris for the 18th edition of the fair, which draws some 100,000 visitors each year.—AFP

An employee arranges some chocolates, during the second International Salon des Chocolatiers et du Chocolat.

Children participate in a chocolate workshop, during the second International Salon des Chocolatiers et du Chocolat, Saturday, in Geneva, Switzerland. —AP photos

New York billionaire gives famed park $100 million


ew York’s famed Central Park saw a different kind of green when a hedge fund billionaire made a $100 million donation, said to be the largest gift to a park of all time. John Paulson, who made a fortune with the Paulson & Co Inc investment fund, announced the contribution to the Central Park Conservancy, which manages the Manhattan institution, at the iconic Bethesda Fountain. “It is a great privilege to be able to contribute to the Central Park Conservancy, one of the most important cultural institutions in New York,” he said. “The Conservancy is responsible for transforming and sustaining Central Park as the celebration of culture, nature and democracy that it is today,” he said. “It is my hope that today’s contribution will help it endure and flourish and inspire others to join me in ensuring that the Park continues to receive the support it needs to be this city’s greatest asset.” Central Park has been dubbed the lungs of New York for its spread of open grass, woodlands and ponds, stretching from the Midtown area into the upper reaches of Manhattan. It has also been something of a barometer of the city’s fortunes, becoming crime-ridden and badly kept in the 1970s and 1980s, before gradually being restored to its currently excellent condition. “Mr Paulson’s donation is the largest gift ever made to the Central Park Conservancy. It is also the largest gift to any public park and one of the largest ever made to a New York City cultural institution,” the Conservancy said in a statement. “Mr Paulson’s gift comes at a time of unprecedented use of Central Park: with more than 40 million annual visitors, Central Park is visited by more people than any other New York City cultural institution.”—AFP

29th Oct  

Kuwait Times

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