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TUESDAY, JUNE 29, 2010

RAJAB 17, 1431 AH

NO: 14774

Philippine boxing star Pacquiao enters politics

Saudi acquitted of terrorism charges in Indonesia

Chris Brown performs Jackson tribute at BET Awards



PAGE 36 & 37

Nod to tweaked defaulters’ fund By B Izzak KUWAIT: The National Assembly yesterday passed a modified version of a government fund to help Kuwaiti debtors who have defaulted on their bank loans amid stiff opposition from several lawmakers who said the fund is not enough. Thirty-seven MPs, including Cabinet ministers, voted in favour of the law, 21 against with one abstention and one MP, Waleed Al-Tabtabai, refusing to cast vote. The approval of the fund came just one day after the government and its supporters swiftly foiled an attempt by

opposition MPs to pass a law that calls for scrapping interest on debt taken by Kuwaiti citizens. The government has maintained that it wants to help only those Kuwaiti debtors who are unable to repay their debt while writing off the interest would mean providing help to those who need it and others who don’t. The fund was originally established under two years ago after many MPs complained that thousands of Kuwaiti debtors were being chased by court orders for failing to repay their installments. Continued on Page 14

CAIRO: As Egyptians contemplate an end to President Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year rule, Egypt’s neighbours and Western allies want and expect continuity in a nation that has been a bulwark of moderation in the stormy Middle East. For Western powers like the United States, seeking an end to decades of Israeli-Palestinian conflict, continuity means ensuring Egypt remains a voice for diplomatic moderation and a buttress against the spread of radicalism. For leaders in the Middle East, a region known for opaque governance and intolerance of dissent, another term for Mubarak or victory

for his hand-picked successor may be preferable as they worry any democratic opening in Egypt may force change at home. “The states in the region look at Egypt and say, ‘Well, Mubarak has delivered stability,” said Hani Sabra, an analyst with the Eurasia Group in New York. “That’s the one thing they want to see: continuity.” Speculation is mounting about whether 82-year-old Mubarak, a former air force pilot whose health is in question following recent surgery, will be fit enough to run in 2011 elections. If he steps aside, his son Gamal or another establishment candidate Continued on Page 14


Writer home after 49 days in custody • Court decision based on health report KUWAIT: Kuwait’s criminal court yesterday ordered the release of prominent writer Mohammad Abdulqader AlJassem on a KD 2,000 ($6,850) bail after 49 days of detention, his daughter said. “The judge has just ordered his release on bail. I and the rest of the family are extremely happy and we will complete the necessary procedures to bring him home,” Sumayya Al-Jassem told AFP. The release came after passionate appeals by Jassem himself and a number of defence lawyers during yesterday’s fourth hearing of the Kuwaiti writer and blogger who was sued by the minister of the Amiri Diwan. The reasons for the release were not immediately made available but a medical commission appointed by the court has concluded that the health of Jassem, who is a heart patient, was deteriorating. “A medical report (submitted to the court) said he was not in good health,” lawyer Jasser Al-Jidei said without elaborating, adding his client faces up to 18 years in prison if convicted. Jassem went on hunger strike after he was arrested but ended it over health concerns. Continued on Page 13

similar requests by Israel in the future. The Anatolia news agency quoted the prime minister as telling reporters in Toronto after the summit that his country had closed its airspace to Israel. A Turkish diplomat confirmed to AFP that one Israeli military flight had been banned and said that future requests would be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.”Military planes are required to obtain overflight permission before each flight,” the diplomat said on condition of anonymity. “One military plane was denied permission immediately after the raid due to the conditions of the day,” he added, stressing that civilian flights remained unaffected. Continued on Page 14

Allies, powers want continuity in Egypt

Federer, Nadal into quarters, Serena downs Sharapova

Jassem freed on bail

Turkey bars Israeli plane from airspace ANKARA: Turkey barred an Israeli military plane from using its airspace after last month’s raid on Gaza-bound aid ships killed nine activists, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said yesterday. The new sign of heightened tensions between the former close allies was revealed as Israel started an official inquiry into the raid in which Israeli commandos shot dead eight Turks and a dual USTurkish citizen. “They (Israel) requested an overflight permission to Poland in the first days after the May 31 raid on the aid ships,” Erdogan told reporters on his return from the G20 summit in Canada. “They were denied permission.” Erdogan refused to elaborate how Turkey would respond to

150 FILS

KUWAIT: Prominent opposition Kuwaiti writer Mohammad Abdulqader Al-Jassem waves to the media after he was freed on bail yesterday. — Photo by Fouad Al-Shaikh

Tehran freezes nuke talks for two months Iran blasts CIA • Oil firms stop business JOHANNESBURG: Brazil’s Luis Fabiano dribbles past Chile goalkeeper Claudio Bravo to score his side’s second goal during the World Cup round of 16 football match between Brazil and Chile at Ellis Park Stadium yesterday. — AP (See Pages 18-20)

FIFA turning a deaf ear to tech demands JOHANNESBURG: Coaches, players and even tennis superstar Roger Federer yesterday demanded FIFA rethink its controversial opposition to goal-line technology after a World Cup marred by a series of referee blunders. FIFA spokesman Nicolas Maingot said the organisation’s stance remained the same on the nonuse of technology, even though its use is widespread in tennis, Formula One, rugby, field hockey and cricket. “We will not open any debate on refereeing decisions at the daily media briefing, this is not the place for this and

you will appreciate that I am not competent to do that,” Maingot told reporters. Answers have been demanded of FIFA after major refereeing blunders in Sunday’s Germany-England and Argentina-Mexico second-round matches, which were beamed around the world. Midfielder Frank Lampard had a perfectly good goal ruled out in England’s 4-1 mauling by Germany in Bloemfontein. Lampard’s shot bounced off the underside of the German crossbar in the first Continued on Page 14

that they (the world powers) TEHRAN: President are disciplined to learn the Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said way of talking to other yesterday that Iran will nations.” penalise world powers by The Security Council freezing nuclear talks for imposed a fourth set of sanctwo months, as he laid down tions against Iran on June 9 several conditions for for refusing to halt its uraniresuming the negotiations. um enrichment work, the The hardliner said Iran most sensitive part of its wanted more countries to atomic drive. World powers be involved in talks over its led by Washington suspect nuclear program, and added Iran is masking a weapons world powers must clarify drive under what Tehran Israel’s status of nuclear says is a civilian atomic proarsenal and what exactly gram. But immediately after they sought from the disthe UN sanctions the world cussions. powers - Britain, France, “The negotiations (would likely occur) at the end of TEHRAN: Iranian President Russia, China, the United (the Iranian month of) Mahmoud Ahmadinejad States and Germany - that Mordad,” around the end of speaks during a news con- had been negotiating with Iran called for more dialogue August, Ahmadinejad told a ference yesterday. — AFP to resolve the crisis. Tehran news conference Ahmadinejad said Iran would talk with them when asked when Iran would talk to the world powers over its nuclear program. “We are post- but “other independent nations... will also take poning the talks because of the bad behaviour part,” without mentioning the countries Tehran and the adoption of the new resolution in the would like to be involved. Continued on Page 14 (UN) Security Council. This is a penalty, so

Obama challenges China at G20 meet

5 leaders hold mini Arab summit

TRIPOLI: (From left) Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, Emir of Qatar Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani and Arab League General Secretary Amr Moussa attend a mini-summit of five Arab states to discuss a proposal to form an “Arab Union” out of the Arab League yesterday. — AFP

TRIPOLI: Five Arab leaders meeting in Libya recommended yesterday that Arab nations to prepare a military force to take part in peacekeeping missions, according to a statement at the end of the meeting. The one-day mini-summit also recommended holding two full Arab League summits every year. Issues would be discussed and recommendations would be made at the first one, and decisions would be made at the second, the statement said. Another recommendation was establishing an executive council of heads of government to supervise implementing Arab summit resolutions, as well as other councils for economic and trade ministers. Yesterdayís mini-summit in the Libyan capital of Tripoli was attended by the leaders of Egypt, Iraq, Qatar, Yemen and host Libya as well as Amr Moussa, secretary general of the Arab League. The Arab League was set up in 1945 to promote cooperation among member states, but the Cairo-based organization has drawn criticism for its perceived ineffectiveness. Moussa was named to oversee the newly established executive council and work on issues related to defense, foreign affairs, security, energy, economy, education, agriculture and water. — AP

TORONTO: US President Barack Obama and King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia wave during a group photo at the G20 summit Sunday. —AP (See Page 13)

TORONTO: US President Barack Obama has launched a stern challenge to China, using the big stage of the G20 summit of world powers to demand Beijing’s help in rebalancing the world economy. The G20 leaders, representing both the world’s established economic giants and its dynamic emerging powers, agreed a package of measures to cut deficits, stimulate growth and return stability to financial markets. But Obama went further than the carefully worded joint statement, using his post-summit press conference to remind China that the United States expects it to allow its currency to rise and to reduce its huge trade surplus. “My expectation is that

they’re going to be serious about the policy that they themselves have announced,” Obama said Sunday, welcoming China’s announcement last week that it will allow more flexibility in the yuan exchange rate. As the world limps out of the worst recession since the 1930s, American policymakers fear the recovery will revive the onesided trade across the Pacific in Chinese goods kept cheap by the low level of the yuan. “After years of taking on too much debt, Americans cannot - and will not borrow and buy the world’s way to lasting prosperity,” Obama declared, in an implicit swipe at export-led economies such as China’s and Germany’s. Continued on Page 14

NATIONAL 2 Frustration mounts at registry office delays KUWAIT: Frustration is spreading among users of the Ministry of Health’s (MoH) births and deaths registry office in Hawally due to the lengthy delays in registering any birth, which currently takes around ten days on average to complete. The registry office used to include a Public Authority for Civil Information (PACI) subdepartment, enabling those registering births or deaths to complete all the necessary procedures in one place. This saved time, meaning that birth certificates were issued within a

maximum of three days. In recent months, however, the PACI staff were transferred to the authority’s headquarters building in South Surra after the PACI office at the registry office building were affected by maintenance problems, meaning they could no longer work there. This has caused lengthy delays, with those wishing to register births now having to commute between the two buildings rather than just visiting one to complete the necessary procedures. One registry office staff member explained

that the long waiting periods are caused by the protracted bureaucratic process. This requires copies of all birth or death certificates to be lodged at the MoH headquarters building to enable the Ministry of Interior’s citizenship and immigration department there to include all the details of each birth or death in the department’s database. The registry office is also required to liaise with the PACI over issuing civil IDs in the cases of the new births recorded, reported AlQabas.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Parliament passes law

Privatization plan knocks on power sector door By Nisreen Zahreddine KUWAIT: The privatization law approved earlier by the National Assembly is also applicable to the power and electricity sector that has recently implemented many future projects. This vital field has been undergoing a lot of pressure to cater to the huge demand and limited supply, taking into consideration the limited number of power plants in the country. Many might have experienced power outages during previous years as well. This summer too, heavy loads lead to a power cut off in many areas. The Parliament has passed a law to set up shareholding companies to build new power and water desalination plants. Furthermore, according to the development plan, KD 5 billion will be spent on agriculture, commerce, education, power generation and transportation. According to the law, the new companies will sell utilities to the government based on contracts that are valid for 40 years. At present, the country’s five desalination power and water plants are owned and run by the Ministry of Electricity and Water, which sells electricity and water at a heavily subsidized rate. Suheila Maarefi, Head of Research and Studies Department at the Ministry of Power and Water said that nothing is finalized regarding future projects undertaken in the power sector. She, though, pointed out that any project which is going to be above 500 MW production will be transferred on a Build-Operate-Transfer (B-O-T) basis. With regard to the rest of projects, they will be performed by the ministry, Maarefi said. Maarefi stressed that nothing has officially been done. She pointed out that the EPC (Engineering Procurement Contracting) power plant project will be set up on a B-O-T basis or in other words, in terms of IWPP

(Independent Water and Power Project). This project is of capacity of 1500 MW and 100 million gallons. David Pfeiffer, Managing Partner at law firm Denton WildeSapte’s Kuwait office commented on the subject saying that government officials have spent a lot of time since the Gulf War discussing power generation issues. One of the weaknesses of an open political society like Kuwait is that discussions over major projects like power plants are often protracted, as each constituency voices its concerns and protects its own interests, he said. Competing groups and individuals have collectively hurt the country, as these projects have been delayed year after year, he pointed out. “At some point, perhaps later this summer, we may pay the price,” he considered. Nevertheless, when the new power plant comes on line next year, the worst scenario will have been averted, he observed. The problem is not just capacity, but also the quality of the distribution network, he added. The Ministry of

Power and Water has acknowledged this. He hoped that the less glamorous projects, such as replacement of aging cabling, become a priority for there is a great new technology in the market that will allow wholesale changes in the distribution network without creating more shortages, Pfeiffer said. As for privatization of power production, there is uneven experience with all forms of privatization practiced worldwide. One thing is clear, however, that private operators are driven by profits. Kuwait’s current power system is highly subsidized, meaning that it will be a challenge to create a privatization program that takes advantage of the efficiencies that privatizations bring, while at the same time controlling pricing to ensure maintaining the historically inexpensive access to power, he observed. This is the challenge that all governments face when they try to privatize highly-subsidized industries. Kuwait will not be immune to this challenge, he concluded.

July 11 holiday for Isra KUWAIT: Sunday July 11 has been declared a public holiday for all civil servants and state employees, to mark the Islamic day of Isra. The decision to make the day a public holiday was announced on Monday by Abdulaziz Al-Zin, the head of the Civil Service Commission. Isra, which marks the Night Journey when Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) is believed to have ascended temporarily to heaven, falls this year on Friday July 9, reported Al-Qabas. CSC regulations state that if any such occasion falls on a weekend day, workers will be given an equal amount of days off at the beginning of the next week.

Lawsuit against Health Ministry KUWAIT: A Saudi Arabian court order has ruled that Kuwait’s Ministry of Health (MoH) pay one million Saudi riyals for failing to commit to the terms spelled out in a contract signed to organize Hajj trips. A Saudi citizen had filed a lawsuit against the ministry, accusing it of failing to pay the full amount in accordance with a five-year contract signed and amounted to 2.5 million Saudi riyals. The contract also covers renting out accommodation and medical clinics, reported Annahar. The court order was made after the ministry was found guilty of failing to commit to financial requirements for the remaining two

Tuesday, June 29, 2010


3 ‘It is a right of nationals’

Kuwaitis support KD 250 allowance for jobless By Ben Garcia KUWAIT: Against the backdrop of the falling unemployment rate, the government has tabled a proposal to provide unemployed youth with a monthly KD 250 unemployment allowance. The news was welcomed by Kuwaitis who jointly voiced their approval of the proposal. Recently, MP Dr Muhammad Al-Huwaila submitted the draft of a bill to grant the allowance to young, unemployed Kuwaitis.

KUWAIT: His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah receiving Head of the Kuwaiti Volunteer Work Center Sheikha Amthal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah and Director of Kuwait Center for Autism Dr Samira Abdel-Latif Al-Saad at Al-Seif Palace yesterday.

local spotlight

No salary for housewives By Muna Al-Fuzai f you are aware of a country in this world that rewards housewives with a monthly salary please share this piece of information with me because I personally have never heard of such thing. In fact, I think it would be a disaster to assume that a government would agree to such a suggestion, not to mention any intellectual person with a real sense of responsibility and awareness. But, what you may not expect could happen here. Someone suggested giving all non-working women and house wives a salary equivalent to KD 350 on a monthly basis for the rest of their lives.


She doesn’t need to work, or go to school to get an education in order to graduate and get a decent job. Someone had the nerve to claim that such a thing would be safe and protect housewives from the need to work. Why bother sending a woman out amongst men? Let’s just send her some money! The threat here is that the same man who comes up with this idea is the same one who will do his best to prevent a woman from going to college and locking her up in the house. Why such a call has come now is simple. I personally don’t believe that this is in a woman’s best interest. No good can come from promoting a person’s sense of laziness and carelessness by giving them money to stay at home. What would she do? I can’t agree with this because maids are the ones who bring up Kuwaiti kids. Let’s be real. It’s not wrong to have maids in any

home. We should not blame them for the mistakes of bringing up our kids. That is our fault. Maids were brought to help, not to become mothers, cleaners, cars washers, cooks and night guards as is the fashion now! Young mothers don’t even allow their kids to sleep in the same room with them! Maids are limited to what they can do and we should not exploit them. Giving a housewife a monthly salary to cover her needs will not make her a better person. As long as she is a housewife she is expected to be married. What is her husband doing if he can’t cover her expenses? Is that not the role of a husband or a father? The call to give housewives salaries is dead and has failed in the parliament. We should be careful about such calls because they send misleading messages.

The bill refers to youth who have faced difficulty trying to find a job but who have registered as unemployed with the Civil Service Commission. “I agree [to the grant] provided that the recipients pay it back when they finally get a job,” said a 38-year-old Kuwaiti man working in a private company in Shuwaikh. “It is something like giving assistance to an unemployed individual but the government should be responsible enough to not raise a population of lazy people waiting for alms from the government,” he said. He was quick to point out that “it will be unfair for others who are working hard but getting almost the same amount.” During the global financial crisis last year, through the Manpower Government Restructuring Programs (MGRP), the Kuwaiti government granted a certain amount of money to people who actively sought employment but could not secure a job. The government provided an unemployment allowance to Kuwaitis six months after they registered their names with the Civil Service Commission or the MGRP. For some Kuwaitis, the proposed monthly allowance is fair for those unemployed youths whose lifestyles have drastically changed with the advancement of technology and the quickly changing times. “The problem with Kuwaiti youth today is that they are living in a society that really needs more. We understand that they need more money for personal use and that they need more money to cope with the rising price of

commodities. So KD 250 is just fair,” said a concerned citizen. A Kuwaiti woman in her 30s said it was the right of Kuwaitis to get the needed

support from their government, especially if there is no job to find. “The system is not exclusive to Kuwaitis, countries all over the world support their unemployed citi-

zens. We deserve support from the government so we can all live peacefully with dignity and decency,” she said. The word amongst expatriates was similarly in favor of the move. An expatriate accountant said that being one of the richest countries in the world, Kuwait’s government should really help their own people. He said that the first thing they should do is help them find employment. If they are not proficient, citizens should be helped with skill trainings and education. “It’s their money they are spending to help their own people, why should we object to that? After all, they are not getting our salary. Why should they be envied for something that is not reserved for us. Let the people of Kuwait enjoy their own money while they can still enjoy it, while they are still alive,” he said. According to information published by Al-Wasat, whose information came from the Public Authority for Civil Information, 14,265 Kuwaitis were reported jobless in 2009. The report indicated that the unemployment rate decreased to 4.2 percent, as opposed to 4.9 in 2008. The total number of unemployed Kuwaiti women in 2009 was 7,587 while their male counterparts were 6,678. The report revealed that the total number of employed citizens are 265,432 in the government sector while 63,000 Kuwaitis work in the private sector. Of those working in the public sector, 148,652 of them are men and 117,279 are women.



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Report on sports law discussed

Cabinet gives approval for military salary increases By A Saleh KUWAIT: At its latest meeting on Sunday, the Kuwaiti cabinet reviewed a report from the Supreme Defense Council concerning salary increases for military and security personnel, approving all the requested pay rises. The issue will shortly be discussed in parliament, where MPs are expected to approve the increases. The meeting also featured discussion of a report on the contentious sports law issue, which was submitted by Minister of Social Meanwhile, speaking at a press conference held following the cabinet meeting, Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs Roudhan Al-Roudhan said that the cabinet had also reviewed a message from the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) which expressed satisfaction with the measures taken by Kuwait to protect human rights, as well as noting a message from the Muslim World League's Secretary General. Deputy Premier for Economic Affairs, Minister of State for Development and Minister of State for Housing Sheikh

Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah said that during the meeting the cabinet had also discussed recreation and tourism projects with the Touristic Enterprise Company's (TEC) Managing Director Khaled AlGhanim. The cabinet was also briefed by Minister of Electricity and Water Bader Al-Shuraian concerning his ministry's plans for handling the expected power shortages this summer. Meanwhile, the new parliamentary extension will house offices for 75 MPs rather than the current 50, which seems to suggest that previous proposals to

Affairs and Labor Dr. Mohammad Al-Afasi, said an insider, with the cabinet members authorizing Dr. Al-Afasi to begin work immediately on implementing the recommended amendments. "The amendments including banning dissolved clubs from operating again and forming a temporary committee to run the Kuwait Football Federation and call for new federation board elections," said the insider, adding, "The Public Authority for Youth and Sports [PAYS] will call on the dissolved clubs' board members to hold new elections according to the new laws." increase the number of parliamentary representatives in Kuwait may eventually be adopted. The lavish new complex, adjoining the National Assembly (parliament) building, which will include an information center, a training department and a services section, is expected to be opened in mid-2011, reported Al-Rai. The other facilities in the handsome new extension, include a 500-seat theater and a multipurpose conference hall with seating for 82 people that can be used for press conferences. A large park-

ing area has also been provided, as well as an emergency shelter. The latest technology has been deployed throughout the architecturally striking curved building, with the windows made from special glass that reduces the heat of the sun's rays, while an LED lighting system is being installed that will help reduce electricity consumption rates. The complex will also feature a central landscaped area where the plants will be kept watered by an advanced irrigation system.

in the news KUWAIT: The Ahmadi traffic department carried out a campaign against cars for sale on roads and public property. They specifically targeted cars for sale on the Fahad Al-Ahmad area roundabout. The campaign lasted for two days and resulted in 35 citations. Car owners, attempting to take advantage of the weekend when there is less of a presence from the Ministries of Commerce and Interior, where surprised by the number of citations issued. —Photos by Hanan Al-Saadoun

Spate of car accidents By Hanan Al-Saadoun KUWAIT: A car accident took place along the bridge connecting Hadiya to Al-Dhahar. Two citizens aged 20 and 25 sustained injuries to the head. One of them was administered treatment on the site, while the other was admitted to Adan hospital. In another car accident that took place between Al-Naeem and Al-Qasr near the gas station, a 30-year-old expatriate fractured his knee

and was admitted to Jahra hospital. Also, in a motor accident that took place near Fahaheel road, three citizens were injured. A 28year-old man fractured his right leg. He was admitted to Mubarak hospital. It is believed that the driver who spotted a large toy hanging from the bridge got confused which resulted in the accident. In a similar incident that occurred in Fahaheel, an 18-year-old citizen and a 19-year-old Arab expat were injured. Both were admitted to Adan hospital.

'Family Day' at Swimming Pools Complex KUWAIT: As part of the summer activities organized by Touristic Enterprises Company (TEC), the Swimming Pools Complex will host a special day of entertainment for families on July 3, 2010. "The Complex's administration has set aside several programs and activities in the event," said the facility's Interim Supervisor Mohammad Al-Hajri. The program includes special activities for children, as well as competitions held for both children and adults. This comes as part of the TEC's commitment to hold special programs for visitors during holidays and special occasions held throughout the year. This also includes special events that are held over the weekend. The Complex opens everyday between 9:00 am to 9:00 pm. Anti-torture convention KUWAIT: The Kuwait Human Rights Society (KHRS) has called for Kuwait to become a signatory to the United Nations Convention Against Torture. The KHRS made its call in a letter it sent to the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Dr. Mohammad Al-Sabah on the occasion of the International Day for Victims of Torture, which fell on Saturday, reported Al-Rai. The society urged the minister to consider making Kuwait a signatory to all conventions and treaties that could enhance the country's reputation internationally concerning human rights.

Security tightened at hospital over brawl fears KUWAIT: a senior Ministry of Interior (MoI) official has ordered that extra security personnel be stationed around Sabah Hospital following concerns that a dispute between a patient there and his assailant might escalate into a brawl. MoI Assistant Undersecretary Lieutenant General Dr. Mustafa Al-Zaabi ordered the extra security measures after a group of family members of a young man injured following a fight with a friend stormed the hospital searching for the friend who inflicted the injury, reported AlAnba. The two young men involved had apparently got into an argument in Sulaibikhat which rapidly escalated into a fight, with one of the two leaping into his car and ramming it into his erstwhile friend, causing extensive injuries, including multiple fractures. The injured man was rushed to hospital, with a rumor spreading among his enraged family members that his assailant was also there. The infuriated relatives then besieged the hospital, demanding that the accused youth be handed over, with security officers having to intervene to restore order. The accused was swiftly arrested and taken into custody.

Over 70% pass school exams 19


Tuesday, June 29, 2010

How many times did Slovenia reach the Euro Cup? Once Twice Thrice



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

KUWAIT: Over 70 percent of pupils at local schools have passed the final exams marked to date, with marking of exam papers still continuing, revealed a senior Ministry of Education (MoE) official on Sunday. MoE Assistant Undersecretary for Public Education Muna Al-Lughani said that marking is already underway on the Chemistry exam papers, while the results of the French language papers were expected to be issued yesterday, reported Al-Qabas. Tenth and 11th Grade pupils have been instructed to obtain their final exam results from their schools.

KUWAIT: Detectives from the General Department of Drug Control arrested an Afghan expat, who arrived in Kuwait using a forged passport. At least 500 grams of heroin was seized from his possession. The man had swallowed the drugs which were expertly concealed in the form of ingestible capsules. However, the detectives were already tipped off on the man’s activities. Legal action has been taken against the offender. — Photo By Hanan Al-Saadoun

Sharp increase in number of obese people in Kuwait KUWAIT: Kuwait has attained an unenviable first place, with the country's soaring obesity levels bringing it to number one globally in terms of the number of citizens with severe weight problems, according to a senior Kuwaiti health expert. Dr. Abdullah Al-Mutawa, a member of the American Society for Nutrition, indicated that while Kuwait had been in fifth place worldwide for obesity rates for the past five years, the sharp rise in the numbers of people diagnosed as clinically obese had seen the country take over the number one spot. Dr. Al-Mutawa was talking at the launch of an exhibition staged at the Movenpick Hotel by the

Kuwait Talents Campaign, of which he is a member, which aims to spread awareness of the health hazards of junk foods and poor dietary choices and to encourage healthy eating. The exhibition is sponsored by the Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs and Sate Minister for Development and Housing Affairs, Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah, reported Al-Rai. "We want to help people to adopt a healthier diet in which they can eat everything as long as they avoid food with high fat levels and a high calorie count as much as possible," Al-Mutawa said. He explained that a successful diet is based on exercising regularly and watching what one eats rather than depriving oneself of food.

DIVONNE-LES-BAINS, France: Ahmadi Governor Sheikh Dr Ibrahim AlDuaij Al-Sabah holding talks with Divonne-les-Bains Mayor Etienne Blanc.

Ahmadi governor signs twinning agreement with French city DIVONNE-LES-BAINS, France: The Governor of Kuwait's Ahmadi Governorate, Sheikh Dr Ibrahim Al-Duaij Al-Sabah, yesterday signed a twinning agreement of joint cooperation and exchange of expertise with the Mayor of Divonneles-Bains, Etienne Blanc. The head of the Kuwaiti delegation, Governor Sheikh Dr Ibrahim Al-Duaij, said that the agreement symbolizes the strong relations between Kuwait and France. He added that the aim of the agreement is to communicate with local municipalities and benefit from their experiences in the field of water investment, power supply, and environmental development through scheduled meetings with officials. Mayor Blanc, meanwhile, said that relations between the town of Divonne-les-Bains and Kuwait have been strong for many years, especially since many Kuwaiti families spend their sum-

mer vacation there every year, with most owning homes in the city. He added that the agreement will help in facilitating the exchange of experiences and expertise in the fields of environmentalism and electricity, referring to the underground water reservoirs in Divonne-les-Bains, as well as about 1,500 hectares of natural reserves, and revealing that there is an agreement with Switzerland on improving water quality. The signing ceremony, which was held in Divonne-les-Bains' town hall, was attended by the First Deputy Mayor Guy Michel, as well as the Deputy Mayor for Civil Planning, and Deputy Mayor for Economic affairs. Following the ceremony, the municipality held a reception for the Kuwaiti delegation, during which Sheikh Dr Ibrahim Al-Duaij Al-Sabah presented a memorial shield to Mayor Blanc. — KUNA

Tuesday, June 29, 2010



What gadgets are this summer's hottest sale items?

World Cup spurs flat-screen TV sales, holidaymakers shop for cameras By Nawara Fattahova

KUWAIT: His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber AlSabah yesterday received Chairman of Kuwait Public Relations Association Bader Abdullah Al-Mdaires who presented His Highness with a report about the first conference of the association, themed "Role of the public relations and media in enhancing Kuwait's status as a financial-economic center."

kuwait digest

Social insurance mismanagement By Mubarak Al-Hajri


ocial insurance regulations, which extend the civil service age to 55, are a form of injustice carried out by the Public Institution For Social Security. It is another procedure to be added to the list of this institution's failed adventures. Their claims to protect public funds have actually resulted in the loss of billions of dinars. In my opinion, retirement regulations should be returned to their original form. This would allow male citizens to retire from public service institutions after 20 years of service and female citizens after 15 years. This method is not only better for employees but it also opens the door for new graduates to have more job opportuni-

ties and helps to eliminate unemployment. Currently, frustration is spreading amongst the country's young workers whose ambition for employment is stopped because of rushed regulations that significantly limit job creating opportunities. These regulations have been put into place without thoroughly studying the long term affects. * When it comes to making threats that are never lived up to, MP Dr Salwa Al-Jassar has become a leader in the Parliament. Al-Jassar has long threatened to file an interpellation against the Minister of Education for the deterioration of the educational sector. No actual procedures have been made by the MP despite the fact that the situation of the educational sector continues to get worse. — Al-Rai

MoD staff pay to double KUWAIT: According to the pay recommendations submitted to parliament by the Ministry of Defense (MoD), which look set to be passed before summer recess begins shortly, the salaries of some in the country's security and military sectors (including those in the army, police, National Guard and fire service) will rise by as much as 100 percent. Salaries for First Lieutenant Generals are set to rise to KD 1,970 per month under the new recommendations, while Lieutenant Generals' pay will increase by almost 100 percent, going from KD 940 to KD 1,730, a leap of almost KD 800, reported Al-Rai. For Major Generals, meanwhile, the monthly salary will rise from KD 780 to KD 1,530, while Brigadier Generals' pay will increase from KD

675 per month to KD 1,330. Colonels will see their pay go from KD 575 per month to KD 1,170 and Lieutenant Colonels' salaries will increase from KD 495 to KD 1,010. Majors' monthly remuneration, meanwhile, is set to rise from KD 435 to KD 850, Captains' from KD 370 to KD 730, First Lieutenants' from KD 310 to KD 610, Lieutenants' from KD 280 to KD 550, Staff Warrant Officers' from KD 251 to KD 640, Warrant Officers' from KD 227 to KD 560, Sergeant Majors' from KD 207 to KD 500, Sergeants' from KD 191 to KD 440, Corporals' from KD 171 to KD 380 and Lance Corporals' from KD 156 to KD 340. The monthly salaries for lower-ranking policemen, guards and firefighters, meanwhile, will increase from KD 144 to KD 300.

MoI open to residency fee exemption proposal KUWAIT: The Ministry of Interior (MoI) has no objections to exempting the husbands and children of Kuwaiti women from paying the residency fees introduced by a parliamentary decree, according to minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Khalid Al-Sabah. On the recommendation put forward by the parliamentary women's committee to allow Kuwaiti women to sponsor their non-Kuwaiti husbands, one of a number of proposals recently submitted by the committee, the minister expressed reservations, suggesting that the proposal ignored the potentially damaging security-related and social repercussions such a move might have. The minister suggested that it was unwise to encourage such developments, suggesting for one hypothetical example that in some cases Asian women who had been granted Kuwaiti citizenship on marrying Kuwaiti men might, after their husbands passed away, go on to marry men from their original homeland and bring them to Kuwait if such legislation were passed, since they would be able to sponsor

them. On a proposal from the women's committee to grant the children of Kuwaiti women married to nonKuwaitis permanent residency status, Sheikh Jaber said that there is no such thing as permanent residency status in Kuwaiti law or under residency legislation elsewhere in the world. The minister said that there are two internationally recognized forms of residency status, which are temporary and standard visas. Sheikh Jaber Al-Khalid explained that Kuwaiti women with non-Kuwaiti children can already sponsor their children throughout their academic studies until they reach 21 years of age, reported Al-Qabas. After this, he said, the sponsorship can be extended by two years to allow them to find employment and then by another year if they fail to find a job within this period but can prove that they have been actively seeking employment. On the sponsorship of non-Kuwaiti daughters, the minister said that mothers are allowed to continue this until their daughters marry.

KUWAIT: As always, retail sales of electronic goods rise and fall according to the season and events taking place, with the World Cup seeing certain items, such as plasma TV sets, selling at higher-than-usual rates, in Kuwait as elsewhere. With summer being holiday season too, other electronic items, such as cameras and camcorders, are also in great demand.

According to Wael Deeb, the General Manager of Essa Hussein Al-Yousef & Sons, one of Kuwait's largest electronic goods retailers, sales of the latest technological gadgets are continuing to grow. "These include the iPad, iPhone and flat-screen TVs, which make up around 35 percent of the market share," he told the Kuwait Times. "The device most in demand at the moment is the flat-screen TV, with sales growing annually by 50 percent."

Deeb explained, "Prices for flat-screen TVs have fallen by up to 80 percent over the last five years. The [original] price was around KD 2,000, which meant many people didn't buy one." Today, however, the prices for the same item has fallen to around KD 200, which is far more affordable for most people, he said, adding, "Also here in Kuwait most Kuwaiti homes have a TV in every room, so they prefer to have a flatscreen in addition to the regular TVs." Digital cameras and camcorders are the second most popular electronic items, Deeb revealed. "That includes digital cameras and digital camcorders," he said. "These advanced cameras come with new technology, such as hard disks, so people don't have to carry any cassettes with them on their trip. They're small, light and have numerous settings." Buyers of electronic goods, meanwhile, continue to display a strong loyalty to those brand names which they are more familiar with. Ahmad, a young Kuwaiti, told the Kuwait Times that he's very selective about which electronic goods he'll consider buying and won't shop randomly for such devices. "I don't have my own house that I need to buy electronic items such as a TV, fridge or washing machine for," he explained. "I have a TV receiver in my room and I rarely buy electronic items. So when I do buy anything, I look at all the information about the device's functions before buying it, then decide whether to buy it or not." In Ahmad's own words, he's something of a techno-geek: "I'm a tech nerd," he laughs. "For me, shopping starts at home. Computer accessories are the gadgets I buy mostly." Other consumers are obsessed by particular brand names, regardless of the season. Suzan, a young Lebanese woman, said, "I buy anything that Apple launches on the

Times, "Generally, I don't buy many electronic gadgets as I share a furnished flat with a roommate. However, I like to buy electronic items for the kitchen, like a food mixer and an ice cream maker. I also like women's hair-removal devices; every time a new model hits the market I rush out to buy it.' For many, of course, like young Egyptian expatriate Reem, the most vital device is the mobile phone. "The most important gadget for me is

KUWAIT: Anything from Apple is a hot sale. The image is for illustrative purposes only. — Photo by Joseph Shagra market. I have an iPhone, an iPad, an iPod and I'm planning to get a MacBook." Apple doesn't supply all Suzan's technological needs, however: "I like hair products, like curling tongs and blow dryers too," she says. "usually, when I like one brand I stick to it. At the moment, I'm planning to buy the Playstation 3 on my next pay day." Other female consumers are more keen on domestically-oriented electronic goods and cosmetic items. Ibtisam, another young Lebanese expatriate, told the Kuwait

the mobile phone - I prefer the Nokia brand," she said. "Whenever a new model comes onto the market, I have to buy it. I got used to using Nokia when I was a kid." Games are another of Reem's passions: "I've been a fan of the Playstation since the first version came out. Now I have to buy every new version of it. I've also bought a PSP [Play Station Portable]. The electronic device I'm planning to buy this month is a Wii [home video game console] and this year I also plan to buy a 3D TV."

Kuwaiti donation to develop British museum DORSET: Kuwait's ambassador to the UK Khaled Al-Duwaisan declared here yesterday that Kuwait donated 1.5 million pound sterling for upgrading and developing British tanks museum in Dorset that includes British royal armored vehicles that took part in Kuwait's liberation war. Ambassador Al-Duwaisan handed over the cheque to the museum's patron in the presence of the head of the Kuwaiti military bureau Brigadier Salah Al-Sabei and members of the Kuwaiti embassy in London, besides a big host of British servicemen who participated in Kuwait's liberation war, namely the seventh armored division advanced British troops that entered Kuwait in order to liberate it from the claws of the invading Iraqi forces. Al Duwaisan said in an address-following handing over the donation cheque to the museum's patron-that this donation comes out of Kuwait's appreciation of the role played by the British royal troops during this period. He added that in front of a big host

that Britain stood by Kuwait in hard times and in times of adversity, pointing out that, "this donation comes out of recognition of the historic stance adopted by Britain that was of the first countries that supported Kuwait since the first hours of the invasion." He added that "this is a great honor for me and for the government and people of the State of Kuwait and the embassy's members who came with me to participate in this important occasion," asserting that this contribution reflects the appreciation of the Kuwaiti government and people for the sacrifices of the friendly British people. Al-Duwaisan added that this contribution adds to the distinctive relations binding the two friendly countries and helps consolidate the historic ties between them. Further, Al-Duwaisan expressed his thanks to the museum's patron for the good gesture of naming the museum's big hall after Kuwait, pointing out that this represents a clear symbol of the close friendship between the two countries. Al-Duwaisan, together with com-

mander of the British land troops in Kuwait's liberation war retired General Arthur Denaro, entered one of the British royal tanks named (B 11) that took part in the liberation war. Meanwhile, the museum's patron expressed in his address his utmost thanks for the government and state of Kuwait for this "munificent" donation for supporting the museum, hailing the solid historic ties binding the two friendly countries. He also asserted that the two countries enjoy distinctive relations long time ago, though it became more consolidated following Kuwait's liberation war in 1991, expressing his appreciation for the big sacrifices made by British and Kuwaiti soldiers along with other coalition's states during the liberation war. He added that, "I'm, in my capacity as the curator of this museum, express again my utmost thanks for the State of Kuwait, for this munificent donation that would enable coming generations to know more about the British army, its munitions and weapons, especially

tanks." Meanwhile, curator of the museum Richard Smith said that this donation by Kuwaiti government is a good gesture expressing the deep-seated ties binding the two peoples, pointing out the museum's administration decided to name one of the museum's biggest halls after Kuwait out of appreciation for this munificent support. He also said that the museum includes a big number of historic tanks, armored vehicles that were used throughout the British military history, noting that this tanks and armored vehicles played a big role in reshaping the world political map. Smith added that the museum includes a wide range of armored vehicles that were used in Kuwait's liberation war like B 11 that was used in crossing borders from Saudi Arabia to Kuwait in February 1991. The ceremony also included military parades of tanks and vehicles that took part in liberating Kuwait, besides a number of military displays of pictorial battles.— KUNA



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Woman killed in road accident

Inmates injured in tribal jail brawl KUWAIT: One Central Prison inmate was critically injured and five others sustained minor injuries in a tribal clash between gangs of prisoners in the wing used to house those convicted in drugs cases. The fight began after one inmate was informed by the senior warder there that he was to be transferred to another wing of the prison without being given any explanation of the move.

Dual citizen sentenced to prison KUWAIT: In an unprecedented case in Kuwaiti courts, the Criminal Court recently sentenced a citizen to five years in prison after he was found guilty of dual citizenship, reported Al-Qabas. The citizen’s illegal condition was discovered accidently following his arrest for drug possession. The man was arrested for a drug related case in which he was charged

with possessing drug pills for abuse purposes. While he was arrested he provided identification indicating that he was a Saudi citizen. His Kuwaiti identity was discovered when the man’s fingerprints were searched in a lab. It was discovered that his fingerprints matched the identity of a Kuwaiti citizen with a different name in the database.

He was referred to the immigration and citizenship department where it was confirmed that he was in fact a Kuwaiti citizen. An investigation revealed that he was able to earn Saudi nationality with the help of his wife’s relative. Authorities learned that he used a fake name to transfer between the two countries because his original name is on a blacklist.

New security plan at airport KUWAIT: The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) is introducing a new security plan at Kuwait International Airport (KIA) in order to cope with the increased number of travelers and flights during the summer holiday season. The plan will see support staff being used in the Departures Hall and at the entrance to the luggage zone to

regulate travelers’ departure procedures and ensure that airport operations run smoothly and to schedule, said DGCA operation manager Essam AlZamel. “Support officials will ensure that the queues of travelers at the check-in counters are organized and that the weigh-in procedures are run smoothly,” he told Al-Qabas, adding that all airport staff will be working

closely together to avert any potential confusion or disagreements between travelers, especially during the busiest periods when traffic levels are highest. Security staff will also be working to ensure that no incoming passengers’ friends or family members awaiting their arrival are allowed to enter the immigration zone while the passengers are waiting for their passports to be stamped.

DFA releases drug study KUWAIT: A special study called for the formation of a work team to rehabilitate drug addicts, reported Al-Anba. The study also recommended forming another team to randomly drug test schools, institutes, colleges, ministries and private sector companies. The study, titled “Drugs in Kuwait; Reasons, Prevention and Remedy,” was prepared by drug expert Dr Ayed AlHumaidan and statistics consultant Dr Abdul Hameed AlAbbassi. The study was conducted under the supervision of the Drug Fighting Administration (DFA) Director, Lieutenant General Sheikh Ahmad Al-Khalifa and was issued on international Drug Protection Day, June 26. The study worked on determining the size of the problem and used samples from 21,113 persons from different sectors of society. The study reviewed the strategy of the Drug Fighting Administration and its role in limiting the spread of drugs and liquor. It also covered different kinds of drugs and its harm to persons and society.

When he challenged the warder, an argument ensued, with the warder using an unspecified sharp object to attack the prisoner. At this, a number of other prisoners related to the inmate took his side, joining in the fight, while others from a different tribe came to fight them, with a massive brawl ensuing. Other warders intervened shortly afterwards, locking those prisoners involved in the melee in their cells and taking the injured to Farwaniya Hospital, where the critically injured man was rushed to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). A number of those involved in the fight were taken to solitary confinement and an investigation into the incident has been launched at the prison. Fatal accident A 46-year-old female citizen was killed and six children were injured in a car accident on Fahaheel Highway, reported AlWatan. In the vehicle were her own children and the children of relatives. The accident occurred when her vehicle collided with the vehicle of a young man. Paramedics responded to the emergency and brought the children to a nearby hospital. An investigation was launched to determine the cause of the accident. Suicide attempt A citizen tried to kill himself

by cutting the veins of his wrist after he learned of his brother’s death in Saudi Arabia, reported Al-Watan. Paramedics responded to the scene and admitted the citizen to the intensive care unit of a nearby hospital in critical condition. During the investigation, it was revealed that the citizen suffers from epilepsy and that he attempted to kill himself after he entered into a hysterical fit when he learned of his brother’s death. A case of attempted suicide was opened against him. Suspicious resident Police responded to an emergency call made by several residents in Salwa, reported Al-Watan. They complained about the actions of a citizen in his fifties who hosts Asian women in his home while his wife is out of the house. During the investigation, it was revealed that the man has a criminal history of laundering money and that he often hosts Filipina and Indonesian women in his home while his wife is away. Authorities were assembled to respond to the scene and take further actions. Drunk driving Police arrested two citizens for driving under the influence and for being in the possession of alcohol and drugs, reported Al-Watan. The arrest occurred

in Kabad after the driver of a vehicle was pulled over for driving erratically. Police discovered that the driver and his companion were intoxicated and a search of their vehicle revealed an imported liquor bottle as well as two bars of hashish. They were referred to the proper authorities. Jail theft An inmate at the Central Jail stole the cell phone of the prison’s doctor and sold it to another inmate before the incident was discovered, reported AlWatan. The doctor informed police that his phone had disappeared soon after he provided medical services for inmates. Police found the missing phone with one of the inmates and when questioned, he explained that he bought the phone from another inmate. Police confronted the inmate who reportedly stole the phone and he admitted to the crime. The two inmates were sent for further questioning. Weird request Students at a local private university were upset and confused when their instructor gave them a difficult exam and told them to bring him a bottle of liquor to guarantee a passing grade, reported Al-Watan. Upon investigation, it was revealed that this was not the

first time the instructor, an expat, had made the request. Sorcerer in custody An Asian man was arrested in Jeleeb Al-Shuoyukh when police found tools used for sorcery in his possession, reported Al-Rai. The man was apprehended by police and searched after he attempted to suspiciously avoid authorities. Police also confiscated the KD the 400 he collected from his illegal practices. He was referred to the proper authorities. Fugitive held Police arrested a fugitive facing 33 charges of theft on AlWafra Road, reported Al-Rai. The fugitive was pulled over by authorities for driving suspiciously. After an inspection of his ID revealed his criminal history he was apprehended and referred to the criminal investigations department. Farwaniya kidnap An Arab man kidnapped his infant son from his ex-wife just outside of the Farwaniya police station where she had gone to press assault charges against him, reported Al-Rai. Following the kidnapping, the woman reentered the police station and informed police of the incident. Police began searching for the woman’s ex-husband.

kuwait digest

Empty promises from the Cabinet By Dr Mohammad Al-Muqatea ountries around the world often take measures and make decisions to reassure citizens who are upset about local situations. These situations can stem from insufficient government performance, and the deterioration of services in health, education, electricity and traffic. However, the story seems different in Kuwait. While procedures have indeed been announced, no actual results have been made in almost a decade. This fur-


ther increases the frustration of citizens. Public services continue to deteriorate and the economy keeps struggling while the Cabinet promises projects of reform and development. Citizens have heard a lot of promises from the Cabinet to launch projects that include new roads, a subway, new residential areas and several other projects. All these repeated promises have proved to be empty of any actual accomplishments on the ground. Meanwhile, MPs vow to pass legislation that will fight against corruption by all available means,

including investigation committees and interpellations against the ministers. Their practices have proved to be a failure considering corruption continues to increase while anti-corruption draft laws are still struggling to be passed. MPs have shifted their attention to cases that will increase their popularity. Development and reform will never be achieved so long as we have people in the Cabinet, Parliament and other authorities whose priorities are to achieve popularity with empty promises that secure their posts. — Al-Qabas

Iftah Ya Simsim brought back to Arab region

KUWAIT: NBK Deputy General Manager- Consumer Banking Group Abdullah Al Najran Tuwaijri and NBK staff with the graduates of Allied Health Sciences & Nursing College.

NBK sponsors graduation ceremonies of Allied Health Sciences College KUWAIT: National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) the leading bank in Kuwait and highest rated in the Middle East sponsored the graduation ceremony of the Allied Health Sciences & Nursing College, Kuwait University, which was held yesterday at Radisson SAS Hotel. NBK will also sponsor the graduation ceremony of Petroleum & Engineering College, Kuwait University, which will be held at Arraya Ballroom on June 28. The graduation ceremony of the Allied Health Sciences College was attended by The Governor of Hawally, Major Gen. Abdullah Al Fares, along with the Dean of the College, Dr. Saud Al Obaidi, as well as select officials from the bank. NBK Deputy General Manager- Consumer Banking Group Abdullah Al Najran Tuwaijri said that NBK’s sponsorship of this event comes in alignment with the bank’s ongoing policy of supporting all national, educational and health-related activities, notably the functions and events organized or patronized by Kuwait University and

geared towards equipping the young nationals with the necessary tools to be able to serve to the best one of the most vital sectors in the country. Al Najran concluded by wishing the new graduates a successful career and bright future. Besides sponsoring the events, a handful of staff from NBK were present at the ceremony to introduce the graduates to the bank’s varied packages on offer to address the individual needs of each segment of society. The package benefits, Laki for women, Mustaqbal for first jobbers, Thahabi for mid career executives, will be presented and discussed with the graduates and attendees alike. The staff promoted the bank’s newest offers and campaigns, accepting applications from anyone wishing to benefit right away. NBK is the bank which consistently strives to participate in supporting the community and promoting awareness on all matters, being the bank most deeply engrained in Community Social Responsibility for a great number of years.

RIYADH: The Arab Bureau of Education for the Gulf States (ABEGS), a regional GCC organization dedicated to education, research, and development, and Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit educational organization, signed an MOU yesterday to re-launch the much-loved Iftah Ya Simsim brand for a new generation of children. Iftah Ya Simsim was the first Sesame Street co-production in Arabic which aired 30 years ago in the Middle East. The new educational initiative has an objective to achieve measurable educational gains for children in the early school years. To that end, the organizations will collaborate and convene a content seminar in December, enlisting regional experts and institutions to research and design a program curriculum that reflects children’s learning needs and values. Broad topics include the richness and diversity in Arabic culture and heritage, school readiness, healthy lifestyles and the importance of educating girls. Iftah Ya Simsim content may be featured on television, books and outreach materials. “ABEGS is committed to building and unifying education systems to meet the challenges of the 21st century,” said Dr Ali A. Alkarni, ABEGS General Manager. “With that comes promoting educational reform and modern techniques consistent with the traditional values of the region. We are pleased to work with Sesame Workshop, a renowned media organization with some of the most memorable characters in television history, to develop content that will inspire our children to learn about the world they live in and will inherit.” “With mass media, it’s not a

question of if children learn, but what they learn,” said Robert Knezevic, Sesame Workshop’s Regional Director of International Partnerships. “Mediums like television remain a vital and growing source of information and knowledge sharing in the region. We are proud to partner with ABEGS on creating relevant and age-appropriate content that will have a significant positive impact on children in the region and help them reach their highest potential.” “The private sector has a major role to play in this initiative since it is a high-quality and sophisticated CSR program to be adopted by corporations in the GCC,” said Feras Al-Maddah,

Iftah Ya Simsim representative in the GCC. He pointed out that the new production of Iftah Ya Simsim will kick off with content development seminar to set the educational goals. Al-Maddah added that many education channels such as TV program, books, DVDs, online material and outreach programs for kids, parents and teachers will be produced, “It is a public/private sector partnership and we will need the support of all to extend the communication channels and continue producing more educational products.” Iftah Ya Simsim was the GGC co-production of Sesame Street. The series debuted in the fall of 1979, and was the first Sesame

co-production in Arabic. There were 130 half-hour episodes produced and broadcast on a weekday basis in various Arabic countries. The Arab Bureau of Education for the Gulf States (ABEGS), located in Riyadh, is an intergovernmental regional organization that works within the six member states, (Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Yemen, Kuwait, Sultanate of Oman and Qatar). It was founded by the ministers of education in 23/10/1975 to promote cooperation and coordination in the fields of culture, education, science, information and documentation. This has been the mis-

sion of the Bureau since its establishment in 1975. The main objectives of ABEGS are to contribute to the unification of the countries and people of the region by providing collaboration among them and developing collective efforts and methods of cooperation in its areas of interest. Sesame Workshop is the nonprofit educational organization that revolutionized children’s television programming with the landmark Sesame Street. The Workshop produces local Sesame Street programs, seen in over 140 countries, and other acclaimed shows including The Electric Company, to help bridge the literacy gap.


Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Israel's defense minister, military chief to face panel

Flotilla ‘inquiry’ to question Israeli PM JERUSALEM: The Israeli commission of inquiry into last month's deadly naval raid on a Gaza-bound flotilla will summon the country's prime minister to testify, the chief investigator announced yesterday as the five-member panel officially began work. Alongside Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu,

DEIR AL-BALAH: UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) staff members inspect damages at a summer camp which was set on fire overnight by masked gunmen yesterday. — AFP

UN summer camp in Gaza vandalized GAZA CITY: Two dozen masked men vandalized a UN summer camp for children in Gaza early yesterday, burning and slashing tents, toys and a plastic swimming pool. It was the second such attack in just over a month. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, which took place before dawn when no children were present. Islamic extremists have accused the main UN aid agency here of corrupting Gaza's youth with its summer program of games, sports and human rights lessons for 250,000 children. The UN's main competitor in running summer camps is the ruling Islamic militant Hamas, which says it reaches some 100,000 children. The Hamas camps teach Islam and military-style marching, along with swimming and horseback riding. In a statement on yesterday's attack, the UN said that about two dozen armed and masked men targeted a seaside day camp in central Gaza, one of dozens of UN sites across the Palestinian territory. The assailants arrived at about 2:30 am, tied up four unarmed guards, then tried to set fire to two tents and a perimeter fence made from tarplike material. Wielding knives, they slashed a plastic swimming pool, an inflatable slide and toys. Hamas condemned the attack in a statement by the Gaza police and said it would be investigated. John Ging, the local UN chief, called it a "cowardly and despicable" attack and said the site would be rebuilt quickly. The about 2,000 children who attend the targeted facility joined another

camp and will remain there until theirs is rebuilt, UN officials said. Ging said the attack was the latest sign of growing levels of extremism in Gaza. He said it provides further evidence "of the urgency to change the circumstances on the ground that are generating such extremism." Ging has repeatedly called for lifting of the 3-year-old border blockade of Gaza by Israel and Egypt, arguing the sanctions have mostly hurt ordinary Gazans, not Hamas. The blockade was imposed after the violent Hamas takeover of Gaza in 2007. Last week, Israel said it would significantly ease the blockade, responding to international pressure following its deadly raid on a blockadebusting flotilla last month. UN camps have been targeted by suspected Islamic extremists since their launch in 2007. Last month, assailants vandalized one of the main camp sites, and last year a Hamas legislator waged a public campaign against the UN summer program. Gaza police said they have arrested five suspects in the previous camp attack, but would not give details about their affiliation. In recent months, Hamas has become increasingly assertive in trying to impose its strict version of Islam on everyday life in Gaza. However, the Islamists have also avoided open confrontation with the UN Relief and Works Agency, which provides services for two-thirds of Gaza's 1.5 million people. The UN avoids contact with Hamas, which is internationally shunned as a terror group. — AP

Byrd, longest-serving US senator, dead at 92 Held several Senate leadership posts WASHINGTON: US Senator Robert Byrd, who evolved from a segregationist to a civil rights advocate in becoming the longest serving member ever of the Congress, died yesterday. First elected to Congress in 1952, Byrd was 92. His death is not expected to have any immediate impact on the Democrats' 59-41 control of the Senate. West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin is virtually certain to appoint a fellow Democrat to succeed Byrd, whose current term expires in 2012. But Senate tributes may delay efforts to win final congressional approval for landmark financial regulation reform, initially set for this week. Democratic aides remained hopeful they could muster the 60 Senate votes needed either from within their own ranks or from Republicans wary to be seen siding with Wall Street. Byrd helped shape much of the nation's history and served with a dozen US presidents. He died peacefully at Inova Fairfax Hospital outside of Washington, DC, said his spokesman, Jesse Jacobs. Byrd was hospitalized last week with what doctors believed was a heat-related illness. "I love to serve. I love the Senate. If I could live another 100 years, I'd like to continue in the Senate," Byrd, who kept a copy of the US Constitution in his breast pocket, said in a 2006 interview with Reuters. Senator Jay Rockefeller, also of West Virginia, said: "Senator Byrd came from humble beginnings in the southern coalfields ... and triumphantly rose to the heights of power in America. But he never forgot where he came from nor who he represented, and he never abused that power for his own gain." Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell said Byrd will be remembered "for his fighter's spirit, his abiding faith and for the many times he recalled the Senate to its purposes." Byrd was first elected to the House of Representatives in 1952, and served six years in that chamber before moving to

The panel's main job, Turkel said, was to investigate whether Israel's actions leading up to the incident, which took place in international waters, "meet the norms of international law." He said public hearings would begin within weeks. The incident occurred on board the Turkish ship Mavi Marmara, which was intercepted by helicopter-borne Israeli commandos as it sailed in a six-ship flotilla carrying pro-Palestinian activists and supplies to the Gaza Strip. Five ships were commandeered without incident, but some of the 600 activists on board the Mavi Marmara, owned by a Turkish Islamic charity, actively resisted, and the soldiers opened fire. The soldiers, seven of whom were wounded, said their lives were in danger. Activists called their actions self-defense. Although Israel has said the blockade is necessary to keep weapons out of the hands of Hamas, it has come under heavy international criticism over the raid. The appointment of the commission was meant to defuse widespread calls for an international inquiry.

The move has been only partially successful: While the US has voiced support, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon wants an international inquiry as well as the Israeli panel. Some in Israel and abroad have criticized the Israeli commission's limited mandate - it will not be questioning the soldiers involved in the raid, though it will have access to military investigations - and for the advanced age of its members. Beside Turkel, 75, a retired Supreme Court justice, the commission includes a retired general, Amos Horev, 86, and Shabtai Rosen, a 93-year-old international jurist and diplomat who required help from security guards to reach his seat at the table. International pressure led Israel's government to include two foreign observers: David Trimble, a Nobel peace laureate from Northern Ireland, and Brig. Gen. Ken Watkin, Canada's former chief military prosecutor. "I recognize the significance of the decision to include an international element, and I understand the constitutional and political niceties that surround that," said Trimble,

the Senate. His early campaigns were punctuated by his skills as a bluegrass fiddler that helped draw big and enthusiastic crowds for the self-described West Virginia "hillbilly." With his old-fashioned courtliness, Byrd was a defender of the Senate's traditions and over the years held most of its key positions, including Democratic leader from 1977 to 1988 and later as the top Democrat on the powerful Appropriations Committee. Byrd was an early and eloquent opponent of the Iraq war, which began in 2003 with popular support but within a few years was widely condemned. He also warned against a buildup of U.S. troops in Afghanistan. 'Senate's man' He worked with and challenged presidents, Democrats and Republicans alike, and reminded all of them of Congress' responsibility to check their power. "I'm not any president's man. I'm a Senate's man," Byrd told Reuters in the 2006 interview. During his more than half century in Congress, America changed dramatically and so did Byrd. "When I got here, I was to the right of Barry Goldwater," Byrd told Reuters, referring to a conservative Republican senator

and failed 1964 presidential candidate. "I moved more to the center." In the early 1940s, before being elected to Congress, Byrd belonged to the Ku Klux Klan, a membership that he attributed to a youthful mistake. "It has emerged throughout my life to haunt and embarrass me and has taught me in a very graphic way what one major mistake can do to one's life, career and reputation," Byrd wrote in a 1987 memoir, "Robert C Byrd: Child of the Appalachian Coalfields." In Congress, Byrd, who denounced civil rights leader Martin Luther King as a "self-seeking rabble rouser," eventually became a leading backer of civil rights. Of the record-setting 18,500-plus Senate votes Byrd cast, he said his biggest regret was opposing the 1964 Civil Rights Act, a landmark law that brought down barriers for black Americans. He said his views changed most dramatically after his teenage grandson was killed in a 1982 traffic accident that Byrd said put him in a deep emotional valley. "The death of my grandson caused me to stop and think," Byrd said. "I came to realize that black people love their children as much as I do mine." — Reuters

a member of a pro-Israel grouping in the British House of Lords. "I can say that we are all determined that the inquiry be rigorous and hope that it can thereby make a positive contribution to peace." The flotilla was trying to draw attention to the Israeli-Egyptian blockade of Gaza. Israel first imposed sanctions after Hamas-linked militants captured an Israeli soldier in a cross-border raid four years ago. The embargo was tightened the following year after Hamas overran Gaza. Talks over the release of the Israeli soldier held in Gaza, Sgt Gilad Schalit, have stalled. On Sunday, Schalit's parents launched a cross-country protest to draw new attention to their son's plight. Hamas is demanding hundreds of imprisoned militants, including many convicted of deadly attacks against Israelis, in return for the soldier, and Israel has balked at the demand. Hamas' exiled leader, Khaled Mashaal, said yesterday in Syria that his group's price for Schalit will "increase over time" if Israel does not give in. International criticism of the raid forced Israel and

Egypt to ease movement of people and goods across Gaza's land borders. The naval blockade of the coastal territory, which Israel sees as necessary to keep weapons out, remains in place. A harsh response came from Turkey, whose government unofficially backed the flotilla's attempt to challenge a blockade maintained by a country that was until recently one of Turkey's close allies. Turkey recalled its ambassador to Israel, and yesterday announced that some Israeli military flights would no longer be allowed in Turkish airspace. Anger at Israel over the flotilla deaths comes at a time of little progress in peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, which rules the West Bank. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has been holding indirect talks with the Israeli government over the past two months but said yesterday that Israel has not offered enough to make it worthwhile to move to direct talks. In response, Israeli government spokesman Mark Regev said direct talks are the only way to solve the conflict. — AP

EU concerned over Egyptian blogger's death CAIRO: The European Union yesterday expressed concern over the death of a 28-year-old man allegedly killed at the hands of Egyptian police, and called for an impartial inquiry into the matter. "The EU Heads of Mission express their concern about the circumstances of the death of Khaled Said in Alexandria on 6 June," European ambassadors based in Cairo said in a joint statement. According to witnesses, Said was killed when plainclothes policemen dragged him out of an Internet cafe and beat him to death on a busy Alexandria street. Egypt's interior ministry said he had died from asphyxiation after swallowing a bag of narcotics when approached by officers. Rights groups have rejected the official account, and Said has since become a symbol for rights activists against police brutality, for which Egypt has been criticized at home and abroad. Following demands from Said's relatives and rights groups, Egypt's public prosecutor had ordered a second autopsy, after which he confirmed

earlier police claims that Said had died after swallowing the drugs. The European ambassadors said "they take note of the results of the second autopsy as well as of the conflicting accounts of witnesses and statements of the family of Mr Said and of human rights organizations which differ with the conclusions of the second autopsy." "In view of these discrepancies, EU Heads of Mission welcome the declared readiness of the Egyptian authorities to conduct a judicial inquiry into this death and look forward to the inquiry being conducted impartially, transparently and swiftly in a way that will credibly resolve the discrepancies," they said. "EU Heads of Mission are confident that the Egyptian authorities will investigate allegations of abuse by police effectively and prosecute offenders," they said. Disturbing images of Said's battered and bruised face have appeared on social networking websites, sparking public outcry and condemnation from local and international rights groups. — AFP

In Islamic Iran, prayer sellers' trade thriving In this 1967 file photo, Robert C Byrd Sen D-West Va, is shown. Sen Robert Byrd of West Virginia, a fiery orator versed in the classics and a hardcharging power broker who steered billions of federal dollars to the state of his Depression-era upbringing, died yesterday. — AP

Israel's defense minister and military chief of staff will also face the commission investigating the events leading up to the deaths on May 31 of eight Turks and one Turkish-American on a ship trying to break the Gaza blockade, commission head Jacob Turkel told reporters.

TEHRAN: In Islamic Iran where clerics rule, unofficial "prayer sellers", who promise to intercede with the divine to solve all manner of life's problems, are seeing their business boom. Backstreet spiritual guides like YaAli are tolerated by the authorities and increasingly sought after by Iranians seeking help from on high. "People from all walks of life-mostly young women-come here asking for prayers that can solve their problems," says YaAli sitting on a chair in a crumbly old alley in Tehran. Stroking his white beard, YaAli-a nickname he has been given by his customers-explains how each prayer must be used in its own specific way. "There are lots of methods depending on the problems. Some prayers (written on a piece of paper) should be burnt and some should be put in a bowl of water. You should follow the instructions." According to Islam, prayers have a divine source and make a spiritual connection between God and his servants. Those who have the right religious knowledge can write prayers for others to help them obtain better results. Regular customer Mahoor says YaAli helped her shake off a stalker. "I didn't see him any more after YaAli gave me the prayers," says the 26-year-old nurse. Mahoor and several of her friends come to YaAli believing his prayers will change their destiny and stop bad things happening to them. "This time I want prayers that will make my boyfriend marry me. He says he doesn't have enough money to start a new life," Mahoor says of her

reluctant beau. Hustlers Iran's clerics also believe in the power of prayer but they advise people against using prayers that lack a religious basis. Magic and superstition are both illegal under Islamic law. "Writing prayers quoting Shia's immaculate Imams and receiving money for that has no legal obstacle," said Grand Ayatollah Lotfollah Safi Golpaygani when asked about the religious legitimacy of the prayer sellers. "But referring to prayers written by hustlers without reliable sources is not permitted, and getting money for those kinds of prayers is (religiously) forbidden," he told news website Despite what Iranian clerics say, none of YaAli's customers ask him about the basis of his knowledge, which he says is founded on the Quran. "It is not important where his knowledge comes from, I just want my problems to be solved," said Marjan, 24, who complains it is getting harder to see YaAli as customer demand increases. "It seems people are facing more problems these days," she says with a bitter smile. It is not difficult to find prayer writers in Iran-a simple Internet search brings up dozens of phone numbers. Marjan says a lack of government support for women is one reason so many turn to them. "Despite the high prices, I know some people-especially women-who still refer to them as their last resort," she says. "Some women even ask for prayers to make their family life stronger." — Reuters

ALEXANDRIA: An Egyptian woman holds up a picture widely circulated of alleged torture victim Khaled Said during a demonstration after Friday prayers. — AFP



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Russian prez warns country could collapse

Kyrgyz vote wins 90% support, Russia wary BISHKEK: Kyrgyzstan has voted to create Central Asia's first parliamentary democracy, referendum results showed yesterday, prompting Russia to warn extremists could seize power after a wave of ethnic violence. Russian

President Dmitry Medvedev, whose country shares US fears about Islamist militancy in Central Asia, said the political system resulting from Sunday's referendum could eventually bring about Kyrgyzstan's collapse.

OSH: Members of a local election commission open a ballot box to count votes after a referendum at a polling station. — AP

Burundians boycott elections Presidential aspirant away 'on holiday' BUJUMBURA: Many Burundians stayed away from voting stations yesterday in a presidential election in which the outcome is already clear after a decision by opposition candidates to boycott the poll. Incumbent President Pierre Nkurunziza is without a challenger after six opposition candidates pulled out of the race alleging widespread fraud, and a series of grenade attacks during the campaign period have also heightened tension. "An election with only one candidate does not make sense, I am taking my coffee and after that I will go home to rest," said Willy Harerimana, sitting in an internet cafe. One of Nkurunziza's main opponents, former rebel leader Agathon Rwasa, has disappeared and is thought to be hiding in neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo. However, officials in his Forces for

the National Liberation (FNL) said he was away for a couple of weeks on holiday. Rwasa's FNL came in second in the May 24 district election in which the ruling CNDD-FDD won 64 percent of the vote. Opposition parties rejected the result. Local media reported there had been some grenade blasts in some areas of the country early yesterday morning although no one was hurt. "There is big difference today compared to the last election. An hour after the opening of polling stations, only a few people came to vote," the head of one polling station told Reuters. Voters for Nkurunziza put their ballots in white envelopes and dropped them into white boxes, while those against the incumbent placed theirs in a black envelopes and then into black boxes. "I

voted to express my gratitude to President Nkurunziza who has provided free health care for mothers delivering," said Cubwa Zainabu, a mother of six children. Yesterday's election was preceded by a number of arrests of opposition members over the weekend, who allegedly planned to disrupt the vote. Opposition members denied the accusation, and say the government is cracking down on the opponents. A series of polls in Burundi, which are also meant to include parliamentary elections in July, are a measure of stability in the country since 2005, when former rebel leader Nkurunziza was elected president after a long UN-backed peace process. "There are people who decided to stay home, but I came to vote because I need peace," said 32 year-old Gahungu Elias. — Reuters

Ex-Panama dictator Noriega begins trial PARIS: Manuel Noriega's money laundering trial opened in France yesterday, with the former Panamanian dictator's lawyers complaining about the prison where he is being held and the way he was extradited from the United States. There also was confusion about the most basic biographical information: Noriega's age. Noriega, who spent 20 years in US custody for drug trafficking, could be put back in jail for 10 years, if he's convicted as charged in France. He started his testimony with a stumble yesterday, when he was asked about discrepancies in his date of birth on different legal documents. His shoulders trembled, his black hair was slicked back. Asked to state his birth date, Noriega initially said Feb 11, 1936, then immediately corrected himself, saying he was born in 1934. He spoke through a translator. The Paris trial is a new legal battle for the aging strongman, deposed after a 1989 US invasion. After serving 20 years in a Florida prison for drug racketeering and money laundering, he was extradited to Paris in April to face accusations that he tried to hide cocaine profits in French banks. Since then, Noriega has been held at the La Sante prison in southern Paris. His lawyers argued yesterday that the prison is too dirty and dilapidated for him. They also argued that his extradition from the US should be annulled because France is not treating him as a prisoner of war. In

MIAMI: This arrest photo shows Panama's former army general Manuel Noriega. — AFP Miami, Noriega had separate quarters in prison and the right to wear his military uniform and insignia. Lawyer Yves Leberquier said Noriega's being held in Paris in "conditions that are unacceptable." He read a report by an EU human rights commissioner condemning the state of La Sante as "at the limits of human dignity." Noriega's cell measures 2 meters by 3 meters (7 feet by 10 feet), Leberquier said. He said Noriega has been asking to see a doctor for two months and hasn't yet seen one. Leberquier said Noriega suffers from blood pressure problems and is paralyzed on the left side because of a stroke 4 years ago. The lawyer

challenged the judges to visit La Sante and determine whether the conditions adhered to the Geneva Conventions. Another defense lawyer, Olivier Metzner, noted the "immense services" Noriega paid to France, and noted that he was made commander in the Legion of Honor. If convicted in France, Noriega could face another 10 years in prison. Panama is also seeking his extradition, bringing hope to his countrymen who want to see the former military strongman face justice at home for alleged torture and killings of opponents. France already convicted Noriega and his wife in absentia in 1999 for laundering several

million dollars in cocaine profits through three major French banks and using drug cash to invest in three posh Paris apartments on the Left Bank. France agreed to give him a new trial if he was extradited. Noriega's wife, Felicidad Sieiro de Noriega, is living in Panama and faces no charges there. The inabsentia conviction, obtained by The Associated Press, says Noriega "knew that (the money) came directly or indirectly from drug trafficking." It said he helped Colombia's Medellin drug cartel by authorizing the transport of cocaine through Panama en route to the United States. Noriega has maintained that he fought against drug trafficking and that the money came from other sources, including payments from the CIA. He had been considered a valued CIA asset for years before he joined forces with drug traffickers and was implicated in the death of a political opponent. The French indictment says Noriega was born in 1938, although his legal team says he was born four years earlier. As a youth, he claimed to be older than he was to win a scholarship to a military academy in Peru and his exact age remains in dispute. Three judges, including two women, were presiding the trial, which was held in a small courtroom in Paris' main courthouse. Noriega was following his lawyers' arguments through a translator, who was standing outside the defendant's box, made of wood with a fenced ceiling. —AP

At least 294 people, possibly hundreds more, were killed this month in violence between ethnic Kyrgyz and Uzbeks in southern Kyrgyzstan, a former Soviet republic which hosts US and Russian military air bases and shares a border with China. Official results showed that with almost all votes counted, 90.6 percent of voters backed a new constitution paving the way for a parliamentary election in October. Only 8 percent voted against, according to preliminary data from 99.6 percent of the country's 2,319 polling stations, the Central Election Commission said on its website, Turnout was 69 percent. The commission's head, Akylbek Sariyev, said final results would be known in two to three days' time, after all ballot papers had been collected. Results have been relayed in electronic form from regional centers to the capital Bishkek. Interim leader Roza Otunbayeva, speaking before the first results were known on Sunday, said Kyrgyzstan-which lies on a major drug trafficking route out of Afghanistan-had embarked on a path to establishing a "true people's democracy". The 56-nation Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) said the referendum was transparent and that the high voter turnout signaled the resilience of Kyrgyz citizens. Its election monitoring arm, the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR), said it had observed some flaws that would require improvement ahead of parliamentary elections scheduled for October and every five years thereafter. The United States and Russia say they would support a strong government to prevent the turmoil spreading throughout Central Asia, a region bordering Afghanistan in which all countries have until now been run by authoritarian presidents. "We hope that this is an effective step toward stable, democratic governance. We welcome the calm, orderly process, but await final polling results," a US State Department spokesman said on Sunday as the first results came in. Medvedev skeptical Medvedev, speaking after a G20 summit in Toronto, said: "I do not really understand how a parliamentary republic would look and work in Kyrgyzstan. "Will this not lead to a chain of eternal problems-to reshuffles in parliament, to the rise to power of this or that political group, to authority being passed constantly from one hand to another, and, finally, will this not help those with extremist views to power? "In its current state, there are a host of scenarios for Kyrgyzstan, including the most unpleasant scenario-going up to the collapse of the state," Medvedev said. His remarks contrasted with the immediate support shown by the Kremlin for Kyrgyzstan's new government after the April 7 uprising that overthrew President Kurmanbek Bakiyev. Keneshbek Dushebayev, head of Kyrgyzstan's National Security Service, has said extremists could have played a role in this month's violence and that the country was a weak link that could be exploited by terrorist groups. Security analysts say violence is unlikely to hand gains to militant Islamists as authorities are on alert. This opinion was echoed by a member of Hizb ut-Tahrir, or Party of Liberation, a movement that says it uses only peaceful methods to achieve its goal of establishing a worldwide caliphate-a theocratic Muslim state. "We are not planning to use this chaos to increase our influence," said Abdullah, a tire salesman and senior Hizb utTahrir member in Osh, epicentre of this month's violence. "This can only backfire because then we would be accused of orchestrating all of this, and that would lead to more bloodshed," he said. — Reuters

PRAGUE: The leader of the right-wing Civic Democratic Party (ODS), Petr Necas (left), is appointed prime minister by Czech President Vaclav Klaus yesterday at Prague Castle in the capital, a month after a center-right coalition won a parliamentary majority in a general election. — AFP

Reform-minded right-winger Petr Necas chosen Czech PM PRAGUE: Czech President Vaclav Klaus appointed right-winger Petr Necas prime minister yesterday, exactly a month after a centre-right coalition won a parliamentary majority in a general election. "I am convinced the government is in the right hands. I believe you will manage to put a cabinet together in a short time," Klaus told Necas. Necas' Civic Democrats reached agreement with the rightist TOP 09 and the centrist Public Affairs parties to form a coalition with a total of 118 seats in the 200-seat parliament shortly after the vote. Necas, 45, said the coalition would focus on fiscal austerity and reforms, halting the growth of debt, fighting corruption, supporting the economy and boosting the rule of law. The new government, leaning on what Klaus called "an incredibly comfortable majority", will be the strongest the country has had since gaining independence after former Czechoslovakia split in two states in 1993. "This country needs a stable, hard-working cabinet that will really work on the essential problems the country is facing," Necas said after the appointment. "This undoubtedly includes the fiscal issue. We have to take an active approach to the state budget for next year and the years to come," added Necas, who dubs the three parties "a coalition of budgetary responsibility." Although the country weathered the global downturn better than some, the Greek debt drama and eurozone crisis that played out during the election campaign underscored the centre-right's message of fiscal responsibility. Czech public debt is among the lowest of the 27 European Union states, standing at 35.4 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2009. But its fast growth on a government deficit of 5.9 percent of GDP last year made it a primary

cause for concern among voters worried by the Greek crisis. The solid backing in parliament is expected to allow the coalition to carry out pension, healthcare and labor market reforms, badly needed to restore faith in the Czech economy which contracted by 4.1 percent in 2009 and is forecast to grow by a timid 1.4 percent this year. Necas has said the coalition leaders would settle on a common program by July 7, and by midJuly would start work on an austerity budget for 2011. Klaus, a liberal economist, said earlier he would appoint Necas "to make things happen" as "there is the Sword of Damocles in the shape of the state budget." The three parties started talks on forming a government immediately after last month's election that was topped by the left-wing Social Democrats who however were unable to form a majority coalition. The coalition has overcome several moot points in the talks, but serious wrangling is expected in talks on ministerial posts. The carve-up has not officially started yet, but Czech media suggest it has been the subject of extensive haggling since the vote. The Civic Democrats and TOP 09 are fighting for the finance minister's seat. And Public Affairs, pledging to suppress corruption, have threatened to leave the coalition unless their chairman Radek John -- a former investigative TV journalist-becomes the interior minister. Outgoing prime minister Jan Fischer formally quit on Friday, paving the way for Necas to take over in line with the constitution. The nonpartisan Fischer took office in May 2009 after a fragile centre-right coalition led by then-Civic Democrat head Mirek Topolanek was toppled midway through the Czech presidency of the European Union. — AFP

in the news ongoing political stalemate. "It is not an action against the Communist Party but against the Soviet symbols, because of which many families suffered in Moldova who were exiled to Siberia in the Stalin repression," he said. A pro-Western government coalition, led by Prime Minister Vlad Filat, replaced the Communists after elections last year but the day has even proved controversial within its ranks.

Germany 'irritated' after Ukraine detains analyst

NANTES: French Muslim woman, Sandrine Mouleres, fined for driving while wearing a full-face veil, leaves the police court yesterday. —AFP No need for EU-wide burqa ban BRUSSELS: The European Union sees no reason to create a law banning the use of the full Islamic veil because such decisions rest in the hands of national governments, a top European official said yesterday. "I do not see the need for a European law on the burqa," EU Home Affairs Commissioner Cecilia Malmstroem told a news conference when asked if a ban could one day be imposed at the EU level. Debate is raging in Europe over whether governments should ban the full Islamic veil amid moves in France, Belgium and Spain to impose laws against the garment. Last week Spain's upper house of parliament approved a motion calling on Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero's socialist government to ban the use of face-covering Islamic veils in public. Spanish Interior Minister Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba, whose country holds the rotating EU presidency, said at the news conference in Brussels that laws on the burqa were "a domestic issue". In April Belgium's lower chamber of parliament voted to ban the full Islamic veil in all public places. The Senate still has to vote on the bill before it can come into force.

Storm in Moldova over 'day of Soviet Occupation' CHISINAU: Ex-Communist Moldova yesterday for the first time marked a day remembering the "Soviet Occupation", a event that has sparked huge controversy and which critics tried to cancel until the last minute. The "Day of the Soviet Occupation", set up at the instigation of proWestern interim President Mihai Ghimpu, remembers the day on June 28, 1940 when Soviet troops annexed the region of Bessarabia which was then part of Romania. Bessarabia then became known as the Moldovan SSR within the Soviet Union, with Moldova winning independence after the break-up of the USSR although until last year it was still ruled by the Communist Party. Russia has already slammed the decision to hold the day of remembrance as a "blasphemy" and another attempt by the authorities in Chisinau to "distort our shared history". "I am not trying the make political capital out of this," said Ghimpu, parliament speaker who is serving as president until elections later this year amid an

BERLIN: Germany lashed out at Ukraine yesterday after authorities held a German analyst at Kiev airport for 10 hours after he was critical of the president, calling on the country to adhere to EU standards. Berlin was "irritated" that Nico Lange, director of the Kiev office of German think-tank the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, was detained on Saturday and threatened with deportation, government spokesman Christoph Steegmans said. He was only allowed to enter the country on Sunday after German intervention on several levels, Steegmans said. "The Ukrainian side has described the incident as a misunderstanding but the (German) government will continue to follow the situation closely. "We hope that the proven and important work of German foundations in Ukraine will remain unhindered in future and that Ukraine adheres to European Union standards in this area," Steegmans told a regular government briefing. Influential news website Ukrainska Pravda said that Lange had encountered problems with the Ukrainian authorities due to his criticism of President Viktor Yanukovych's administration.

Turkish Cypriot nationalists make strong showing in polls NICOSIA: The hardline nationalist party in power in the breakaway north of Cyprus made a strong showing in local elections, grabbing most of the mayor's offices, electoral authorities said yesterday. The ruling National Unity Party (UBP) won 12 of the 28 mayor's offices in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), in Sunday's vote, according to preliminary results. Its closest rival, the centre-left Republican Turkish Party (CTP), an advocate of Cyprus reunification, won eight. The centre-right Democrat Party got five offices while independent candidates won the remaining three. Control of the three main cities remained unchanged. The UBP retained the Turkish section of the divided capital Nicosia, while the CTP held Famagusta and Kyrenia. Voter turnout was 79.5 percent. About 164,500 people were eligible to vote. In April, Turkish Cypriots elected the nationalist hardliner Dervis Eroglu, who used to head the UPB, as the new president of their statelet to represent them at UN-led peace talks. Earlier this month, a new hitch hit the fragile peace talks, underway since September 2008, when Cypriot President Demetris Christofias cancelled a planned round of talks with Eroglu over his comments doubting the basis of the talks.


INTERNATIONAL 'Vessel unmoving at present': EU naval force

Pirates hijack Singaporean cargo ship in Gulf of Aden BEIJING: A Singapore-flagged cargo ship with 19 Chinese crew aboard was hijacked yesterday by pirates in the Gulf of Aden off the coast of Somalia, maritime authorities said. The MV Golden Blessing, a petroleum and chemical tanker, was travelling to India from Saudi Arabia when it was hijacked.

The shipowner said the crew was reported to be safe. The European Union's anti-piracy taskforce said a German helicopter sent to survey the area had reported "sighting suspected pirates" on board the 14,445-tonne ship about 60 nautical miles off northern Somalia.

MANILA: Philippine honor guards line up during a rehearsal at the Quirino grandstand yesterday, in preparation of the inauguration of President-elect Benigno Aquino. — AFP

Philippines' Aquino builds experienced political team Purisima expected to be finance secretary MANILA: Philippine president-elect Benigno Aquino III is building an experienced political team ahead of his inauguration tomorrow, with former Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima looking set to return to the job. Although Aquino has not finalized key appointments, outgoing Finance Secretary Margarito Teves said he met with Purisima yesterday and talked about how to reduce a budget deficit expected to be around 3.6 percent of GDP this year. "We talked about the general situation on fiscal sector and what needs to be done. But Mr Purisima was there as a member of the transition team because we're not sure if he already has the appointment paper," Teves told reporters. Aquino's cabinet appointments are seen as an indicator of policy priorities as he faces a large budget deficit, a need to rebuild investor and public confidence in institutions and governance, reduce poverty and resolve long-running insurgencies. "We may expect more dramatic approaches in the fight against corruption in the next 18 months as Noynoy will focus

more time, energy and resources into it," said Earl Parreno of the Institute for Political and Electoral Reforms, using Aquino's nickname. "But what I am really afraid of is that this anti-corruption agenda would end up as a big government propaganda, because it's really difficult to get it off the ground due to our slow and problematic justice system." The head of the country's human rights commission, Leila de Lima, said she had accepted a position in the government. She is expected to be named Justice Secretary when Aquino officially unveils his team, most likely today. The Justice Department would be involved in any investigation into allegations of corruption against outgoing President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and her administration, as well as cases such as the election-related massacre of 57 people on Mindanao last year. "At least the Justice Secretary can be his partner in pursuing some of the initiatives he want to take. The president and his new cabinet are very encouraging signs," Ramon del Rosario, a former finance secretary and

head of the lobby group Makati Business Club, told Reuters. Aquino, son of democracy leader and former President Cory Aquino, has promised a break from the allegations of corruption that dogged the previous two administrations, and his family's reputation for honesty was a factor in his big win. Hyatt 10 One of Arroyo's longest-serving Cabinet members, Foreign Secretary Alberto Romulo, said at the weekend that he had been retained by Aquino. Other expected appointments include Liberal Party campaign manager Florencio Abad, who was once education secretary under Arroyo, as budget secretary. Corazon Soliman has accepted the social welfare and development post and Teresita Quintos-Deles is presidential adviser on peace process with Muslim insurgents. Purisima, Abad, Soliman and QuintosDeles were among the Hyatt 10; members of Arroyo's cabinet who resigned in 2005 over allegations she was involved in electoral fraud in the 2004 poll. — Reuters

N Korea threatens to boost nuke potential SEOUL: North Korea threatened yesterday to bolster its nuclear capability in a new - though unspecified - way to cope with what it says is a hostile US policy and military threats amid tensions over the deadly sinking of a South Korean warship. The North's military also accused the US and South Korea of bringing heavy weapons to the village of Panmunjom - which lies along the heavily militarized border between the Koreas - and vowed to take "strong military countermeasures" if they aren't withdrawn. Neither Washington nor Seoul had immediate comment on the accusation, though both Koreas have increased military preparedness in the wake of the sinking of the warship Cheonan. An international investigation concluded last month that North Korea torpedoed the vessel near the tense Korean sea border. North Korea flatly denies the allegation and has warned any punishment would trigger war. Forty-six South Korean sailors died in the sinking. "The recent disturbing development on the Korean peninsula underscores the need for (North Korea) to bolster its nuclear deterrent in a newly developed way to cope with the US persistent hostile policy toward (the North) and military threat toward it," the North's Foreign Ministry said in a statement. The statement, carried by the official Korean Central News Agency, did not elaborate on how North Korea would strengthen its nuclear capability. The North is known to have a plutonium-based atomic program and has carried out two underground nuclear explosions, one in 2006 and the other in 2009. Pyongyang is believed to have enough weapon zed plutonium for at least a half-dozen weapons. Analysts said yesterday's threat likely referred to recent statements from the North that have trumpeted new nuclear programs. Last year, Pyongynang said it was in the final stages of enriching uranium, which could provide an easier way to make nuclear bombs. Also, North Korea said in May that it had succeeded in creating a nuclear fusion reaction - a key technology necessary

to manufacture a hydrogen bomb - though South Korean experts doubt the claim. "North Korea is applying pressure on the US by saying it can have additional nuclear capability," said Koh Yu-hwan at Seoul's Dongguk University. North Korea cites the threat of a nuclear attack from the US as the main reason behind its drive to build atomic weapons, though the US has repeatedly said it has no intention of launching an attack. The North's warning came after top world leaders at a G-8 meeting near Toronto over the weekend criticized its nuclear program. The leaders also condemned the attack that led to the sinking of the Cheonan, citing an independent report that found North Korea was responsible. Also yesterday, the North's military said, "the fully armed US imperialist aggression troops and the South Korean puppet army" deployed heavy weapons to Panmunjom village. It was "an indication that they are set to perpetrate a military provocation (at) any moment," the North's military said in a protest message sent to the US command in Seoul yesterday, according to a separate KCNA dispatch. The US military said it was checking the North Korean statement. South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said it cannot confirm North Korea's claim that weapons were brought into Panmunjom. Despite the tensions, Seoul officials and experts have said major armed clashes are unlikely. Seoul's Defense Ministry said yesterday that there has been no unusual activity by North Korean troops in border areas. The 1950-53 Korean War ended in an armistice rather than a peace treaty. The United States stations about 28,500 troops in South Korea as a deterrent against the North. The American-run UN Command - which oversees the armistice - said in a statement yesterday it has proposed military talks with North Korea to discuss the warship sinking but the North declined it. On Sunday, Pyongyang accused the US of trying to meddle in inter-Korean affairs under the name of the UN. — AP

China says 107 people trapped in a landslide BEIJING: A landslide caused by heavy rains has trapped at least 107 people yesterday in southwestern China, and there is little hope for their survival, a local official said. Rescue work was under way and the number of casualties was not immediately known, said an official in Guizhou province who would give only his surname Xue. Large areas of southern China have been hit by flooding in the last week, with at least 239 people killed and another 109 missing. More than 3 million people have fled their homes over the past two weeks, according to the Ministry of Civil Affairs. On Sunday, floodwaters began receding in the hard-hit south and workers finished repairing a dike breach that forced the evacuation of 100,000 people. But torrential rains have continued in the southwest, where the landslide occurred yesterday afternoon in the village of Dazhai, said Xue, the provincial official who works in the flood prevention headquarters. "The landslide was triggered by heavy rains in the past few days, especially last night's rain. There is little chance that the people who are trapped will be able to survive," Xue said in a phone interview from Guiyang, the provincial capital, about 120 miles (200 kilometers) northeast of the landslide-hit area. —AP

"The vessel is under pirate control but remains unmoving at present," the EU naval force said in a statement, adding there were no reports of injuries. An employee of Golden Pacific International Holdings, which owns the ship, told AFP that the company was in contact with the crew. "The crew so far is safe," said the staff member, who asked not to be named. He added no ransom demand had been made so far. Rescue efforts had begun, the China Marine Rescue Centre said on its website, but gave no further details. Singapore maritime authorities said the ship had been chartered to Shanghai Dingheng Shipping Co Ltd, adding they were closely monitoring the situation. Heavily armed pirates using speedboats operate in the Gulf of Aden where they prey on ships, sometimes holding vessels for weeks before releasing them for large ransoms paid by governments or ship-owners. In October, a Chinese cargo ship called the Dexinhai with 25 crew members on board was captured by pirates northeast of the Seychelles as it was sailing to India from South Africa. The vessel was held on the Somali coast and was only recovered at the end of December following the payment of a 3.5-million-dollar ransom. China has been active in international anti-piracy efforts in the Gulf of Aden since the end of 2008, sending at least four flotillas there. Last December, Yin Zhuo, an admiral and senior researcher at the navy's Equipment Research Centre, even proposed setting up a permanent base to support ships on anti-piracy missions in the gulf. Unofficial figures show that 2009 was the most prolific year yet for Somali pirates, with more than 200 attacks-including 68 successful hijackingsand a total in ransoms believed to exceed 50 million dollars. There were another 35 attempts between January and March this year, according to the International Maritime Bureau (IMB), a decline of 27 from the same period last year. But Pottengal Mukundan, head of the IMB, has said he fears there will be even more hijackings this year than in the past, noting that pirates are now operating over a wider area than they have before. Earlier this month, a Dutch court sentenced five Somali pirates, the first to stand trial in Europe, to five years in prison for attacking a Dutch Antillesflagged ship last year. Some 110 pirates have already been tried in Kenya. Six Somali pirates were condemned to death in Yemen in May for an attempted hijacking of a Yemeni oil tanker during which two people died. — AFP

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Australia's new PM reorders cabinet but keeps out Rudd SYDNEY: Australia's new Prime Minister Julia Gillard left dumped ex-leader Kevin Rudd out of her first cabinet yesterday as she announced a minor pre-election reshuffle after her spectacular rise to power. Gillard said Trade Minister Simon Crean would take over the education and employment portfolios that she vacated after last week's quickfire leadership challenge, which made her Australia's first woman prime minister. Foreign Minister Stephen Smith will add Crean's trade portfolio to his list of responsibilities while Rudd, who was left in tears by the sudden party revolt, will remain sidelined until after polls that could be just weeks away. "I have determined that it is best to have as limited a reshuffle as possible to keep the maximum stability amongst the team and to keep our focus on the work that Australians need the government to be doing," Gillard said. Gillard swept to power last Thursday when the alienated Rudd, whose enduring popularity had crumbled from record highs, stood aside from a parliamentary Labor party vote to avoid a humiliating defeat. "This will be a close, hard-fought contest but if the government is re-elected I will be very delighted to welcome Kevin Rudd into the cabinet in a senior position," Gillard told reporters. Gillard said popular Finance Minister Lindsay Tanner would remain in the post until the polls despite not seeking re-election, while there was no cabinet place for the factional chiefs credited with orchestrating her rise. Rudd's shock dismissal has delivered an early popularity boost with Labor returning to a sevenpoint advantage and Gillard well ahead of opposition chief Tony Abbott as preferred prime minister, according to the latest Newspoll. The survey of about 1,100 voters, which roughly chimed with polls released over the weekend, found 53 percent

SYDNEY: File photo shows Australian government minister Simon Crean standing before the Sydney Harbor Bridge as he speaks to media following the launch of Australia's new national brand "Australia Unlimited". Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced yesterday that Crean would take over the education and employment portfolios which she vacated after becoming Australia's first woman prime minister in last week's quickfire leadership challenge. — AFP wanted Gillard as prime minister against just 29 percent for conservative Coalition leader Abbott. "It's not skyrocketing yet but it's very good... the vast majority think that Julia will be at least as good as Kevin, or better," Newspoll's Martin O'Shannessy told Sky News. Gillard, an unmarried, Welsh-born red-head, has promised elections within months as she sets about reversing Rudd's failures by negotiating on a damaging row over a new mining tax. She has also turned her back on the "Big Australia" embraced by Rudd, which envisioned a 60 percent population explosion by 2050 and had prompted concerns over housing, urban congestion and the availability of

water. New Zealand Prime Minister John Key said Gillard may seek a popular mandate as soon as August as she seeks to capitalize on her honeymoon period among voters. "I think six weeks... she's had quite a big lift up in the polls over the weekend," Key told Television New Zealand. Gillard is popular for her competence and straight-talking style, and is known as a formidable debater. But analysts say Labor has taken a gamble in changing leaders in such ruthless fashion so soon before polls. "A midnight knock on the door followed by a political execution is no way for an Australian prime minister to be treated," Abbott said last week. — AFP

Fiji regime imposes new media controls SUVA: Fiji's leading newspaper, owned by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp, has three months to change its ownership structure so 90 percent of its shareholders are Fijian citizens or it will be forced to close, the military-led regime said yesterday. Armed forces chief Commodore Frank Bainimarama launched a media crackdown after seizing power in a December 2006 coup. Foreign reporters and media managers have been expelled, and dozens of local journalists arrested and interrogated. Military censors operate in newsrooms on a daily basis. Announcing the latest measures yesterday, Fiji Attorney General Aiyaz Sayed Khaiyum warned any news organization that fails to comply with ownership requirements "shall cease to operate as a media organization." He mentioned by name the Fiji Times, the country's oldest and largest newspaper owned for the past 23 years by News Ltd - the Australian branch of Murdoch's New York-based News Corp. News Ltd chairman and chief executive John Hartigan called the measures "an appalling assault on free speech and a terrible blow for the fragile economy of Fiji." In a statement from Sydney he said that News Ltd "will fight while we

still can, but there is no doubt that this move is designed to force our hand in selling the business and pulling out of Fiji altogether." Last December, Bainimarama accused the Times and Fiji TV, the country's largest broadcaster, of being "perverse" and biased for not recognizing his government. New Zealand's Media Freedom Committee said heavy handed actions the government has taken in the past indicated it could follow through on its threat to close the newspaper if it did not comply with the new measure. The new controls were part of a disturbing trend toward dictatorship, committee secretary Tim Pankhurst said in a statement. The new decree establishes a tribunal to monitor the media's compliance and ensure nothing is printed or broadcast against the "national interest or public order," Khaiyum said. Regulations would require all printed news to name the author and similar provisions would apply to broadcast material. A media organization is now liable for fines of up to 100,000 Fiji dollars ($50,000) for breaching content regulations. Journalists face fines of up to F$1,000 ($500), and publishers and editors could be fined as much as F$25,000 ($12,500). — AP

in the news eral times since 2008 and ran business without a proper visa. The July 17, 2009, attacks on the J W Marriott and Ritz Carlton hotels in the world's most populous Muslim nation ended a four-year lull in suicide bombings blamed on the Al-Qaeda-linked regional network, Jemaah Islamiyah and its affiliates. Together, more than 260 people have died, many of them foreign tourists. Abdullah was accused of lending money to Syaefudin Zuhri, one of the alleged masterminds of last year's hotel attacks, after meeting him and a man who later turned out to be one of the suicide bombers at the airport in Jakarta. Zuhri, who was killed by anti-terror police during a raid in October, helped the Saudi by sponsoring his six-month visa.

Indonesian MPs seek action against Islamist vigilantes

JAKARTA: A retired Saudi Arabian teacher AlKhelaiw Ali Abdullah jokes with journalists as he waits for his trial inside a court fence yesterday. - AP Saudi acquitted of terrorism charges JAKARTA: A retired Saudi Arabian teacher was acquitted yesterday of charges he helped finance last year's attacks on two luxury hotels in the capital that left seven dead and wounded more than 50. A panel of judges at the South Jakarta District Court, however, sentenced Al-Khelaiw Ali Abdullah to 18 months in prison for violating immigration laws. They said the 55-year-old, who had been running an Internet cafe east of Jakarta, entered the country sev-

JAKARTA: Indonesian lawmakers yesterday demanded the government crack down on a violent Islamist vigilante group that has threatened "war" against Christians in Jakarta and urged mosques to set up militia forces. Parliamentarians from various parties held a press conference to demand the government outlaw the Islamic Defenders Front (FPI) -- a private militia with a self-appointed mission to protect "Islamic" values in the secular country. "The only way to stop the FPI from creating anarchy is to ban it. The FPI is not registered as an official group," lawmaker Eva Kusuma Sundari of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle told the news conference. "The police, military and government should be held responsible for their role in creating the FPI. Now they're incapable in controlling it," she added, referring to the group's origins in a 1990s paramilitary outfit. The FPI warned Sunday that it was ready to wage war against Christians in the outer Jakarta suburb of Bekasi over claims of "Christianisation" of the mainly Muslim area.



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Gen David Petraeus expected to testify today

Pentagon to convince Afghan war on track W ASHINGTON: The Penta gon w ill try to convince the na tion this w eek tha t the w a r in Afgha nista n rem a ins on tra ck , despite a sha k e-up in m ilita ry lea dership. Gen Da vid Petra eus, hea d of US Centra l Com m a nd, is expected to testify toda y before a Sena te com -

MANKULAM: In this file photograph, a Sri Lankan soldier trims a customer’s hair at a military-run salon. — AFP

Lanka soldiers adapt to post-war pastimes MANKULAM: In a wooden shelter in north Sri Lanka a soldier has swapped his gun for a pair of scissors, trimming hair and beards of civilians who now travel through what was a war zone until last year. Business is brisk at the army-run salon, which also offers scalp and foot massages by battle-hardened soldiers. Next door is the “Military Cafe”, where veterans of the government’s long civil war against the separatist Tamil Tiger rebels now serve up tea and snacks to passing domestic tourists. “The food is fresh. It’s made in the nearby army camp. Prices same as elsewhere,” said Corporal Nimal Karunaratne at the cafe in Mankulam, 190 miles (300 kilometers) north of Colombo as uniformed soldiers wipe plastic tables. The small businesses are just two signs of how the end of the war last May has affected life in Sri Lanka. Situated on the main A9 highway that links the northern Jaffna peninsular to the island’s south, Mankulam was a stronghold of the Tamil Tiger rebels who controlled one-third of Sri Lanka as recently as 2006. After a massive military offensive that attracted international concern about civilian deaths, the Tigers were eventually crushed in May last year. But the northeast of Sri Lanka, scene of much of the fighting, has been left a scarred and deserted landscape as former residents are unable or

unwilling to return to many of the villages destroyed by the war. The area is still littered with landmines and other unexploded ordnance. With little or no civilian life, the military has set up shops along the highway selling groceries, top-up phone cards and food. A few miles up the road, Malaysian mobile phone operator Dialog has erected advertising over a military hut selling snacks to local tourists. Many pose for pictures near the burnt-out shell of a bulldozer used as a makeshift tank by the rebels. Back in the capital Colombo, a former naval troop carrier is being used as a venue for cocktail parties. A sound system plays hits by Swedish pop-group ABBA as guests sip drinks and watch the sunset from the decks of the Jetliner. As the vessel leaves port on its short evening voyage, dozens of navy women release colorful streamers and balloons. A naval tug blares horns and a sailor points out passing landmarks to guests. “This is the new image that the Sri Lanka government wants to project,” navy chief Thisara Samarasinghe told AFP as he mingled with guests aboard the ship, including diplomats, leisure industry executives and socialites. During the final years of war, the Jetliner ferried 3,000 men and military supplies to the battlefields up and down the northeast coast. —AFP

in the news Japan starts talks with India on nuke power TOKYO: Japan began the first round of talks with India in Tokyo yesterday on exporting nuclear power generation technology made by technology giants such as Toshiba and Hitachi, the foreign ministry said. The first round of two-day talks are aimed at devising a treaty to allow cooperation between both sides on peaceful use of nuclear power, but no deadline to reach an agreement has been set. Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada said last week that Japan would urge India to make further efforts for nuclear non-proliferation. India, along with Pakistan, faced a backlash in 1998 when they declared themselves nuclear weapons states. However, New Delhi has since signed nuclear cooperation deals with the United States and other countries. Canada and India signed a landmark nuclear deal Sunday, ending a quarter of a century of mistrust after India used Canadian technology to build its first nuclear bomb.

Accidental truck blast kills 18 in Pakistan KARACHI: A truck carrying chemicals accidentally exploded yesterday in southern Pakistan after pressure built up in its storage tank, killing 18 people and wounding 40, police said. Hundreds of people rushed to the truck depot in Hyderabad city to search through the rubble of destroyed shops for dead and wounded, local television footage showed. Authorities ruled out terrorism and determined the blast occurred from a pressure build-up, said Mohammad Ali Baloch, the senior police official in Hyderabad. The truck was carrying 30,000 liters (7,925 gallons) of “thinner,” said Babar Khattak, the police chief in Sindh province where Hyderabad is located. He was not more specific about the chemical being transported.

SRINAGAR: Kashmiri Muslim protesters beat an Indian police during a protest on the outskirts yesterday. — AP

Troops attack Kashmir protesters, two killed SRINAGAR: Two teenagers were killed and at least 20 people wounded yesterday when troops in Indian Kashmir fired to disperse thousands of anti-India protesters across the disputed Himalayan region, police said. The deaths were the eighth in the past two weeks blamed on government forces and have escalated anti-government demonstrations in the Muslim-majority Kashmir valley. Analysts warn that if the government fails to check the growing protests and deaths, they could weaken government efforts to reach out to moderate separatists and the strife-torn region could slide into a fresh phase of armed uprising. Peace in Kashmir, which lies at the heart of the conflict between India and Pakistan, is seen as crucial for progress in relations between the nuclear-armed neighbors. Both claim the region in full but rule in part and have fought two wars over it. The two sides have begun a tentative process to normalize relations that dipped sharply after the 2008 Mumbai attacks in which 166 people were killed. India blamed the attacks on Pakistanbased militants and called off a 2004 peace process. —Reuters

Lamenting what he called “a lot of obsession” about the July 2011 withdrawal date for US troops, Obama defended his war strategy Sunday and said the United States would assist the Afghans “for a long time to come.” Asked about a five-year exit strategy endorsed by the Group of Eight major industrial democracies, Obama told reporters at the economic summit in Toronto, “I don’t have a crystal ball.” The president added: “I think that right now the debate surrounding Afghanistan is presented as either we get up and leave immediately because there’s no chance at a positive outcome, or we stay basically indefinitely and do quote unquote whatever it takes for as long as it takes.” He repeated his view that beginning to pull out troops next year doesn’t mean the US will “suddenly turn off the lights and let the door close behind us.” Picking Petraeus is a signal that there won’t be a significant change in strategy, according to Obama and senior defense officials. But lawmakers say they’ll be watching carefully to see what other changes might be in store. “This is a chance to start over completely,” said Sen Lindsey Graham, R-SC. Because the military’s relationship with its diplomatic counterparts is so important, “I’m very concerned if nothing changes on the civilian side,” Graham added, later calling the military-civilian relationship “dysfunctional.” The public relations effort comes amid mixed reviews on US success in Afghanistan. Obama is advancing a risky new war plan that relies on 98,000 US troops to prop up the Afghan government and prevent Al-Qaeda from returning. On Sunday, CIA Director Leon Panetta said the US has driven Al-Qaeda into hiding and undermined its leadership. At the same time, the US is struggling to oust its primary sympathizer, the Taleban, from Afghanistan, the nation’s spymaster said Sunday. “We’re seeing elements of progress, but this is going to be tough,” Panetta told ABC’s “This Week.” Panetta said AlQaeda’s evolving attack strategy relies increasingly on operatives without any record of terrorism involvement or those already in the US. As for Osama bin Laden, Panetta said it’s been years since the US had good intelligence about his whereabouts. Panetta estimated there are fewer than 100 Al-Qaeda militants operating inside Afghanistan, with the rest hiding along Pakistan’s mountainous western border. He said US drone strikes and other spy operations have helped “take down” half of Al-Qaeda’s senior leaders. “We are engaged in the most aggressive operations in the history of the CIA in that part of the world, and the result is that we are disrupting their leadership,” Panetta said. At the same time, Panetta offered a less upbeat assessment of the US fight against the Taleban, the anti-US insurgency operating inside Afghanistan’s borders. When asked whether the Taleban has grown stronger since Obama took office, Panetta said the Taleban was acting more violent and being more aggressive in “going after our troops,” including its use of roadside bombs. There is progress, he said, even if it’s “slower than I think anyone anticipated.” — AP

Americans plead Pak terror convictions LAHORE: Five Americans sentenced to 10 years in jail by a Pakistani court for waging war against the state and funding a terrorist group appealed their convictions yesterday, their lawyer said. The five, aged 19 to 25, were convicted by an anti-terrorism court in a prison in the eastern city of Sargodha last week after being on trial since March. Defense lawyer Hassan Katchela told AFP that the appeal had been filed in the Lahore High Court seeking the acquittal of the five Americans, who were of Egyptian,

Eritrean, Pakistani and Yemeni descent. Umar Farooq, Waqar Hussain, Rami Zamzam, Ahmad Abdullah Mini and Amman Hassan Yammer were arrested in December and had faced a maximum punishment of life in prison. The five were each convicted last Thursday on two charges and handed concurrent sentences of 10 and five years in prison and fined 70,000 rupees (820 dollars) after a mostly secret trial. Both the defense and the prosecution had vowed to appeal after the verdict, with prosecutors seeking

increased prison sentences of 20 years. Pakistani prosecution officials said the young men had planned to travel to neighboring Afghanistan and join up with Taleban-led militants fighting US and NATO troops. The defendants pleaded their innocence, saying they had come to Pakistan to attend a wedding and wanted to travel on to Afghanistan to do humanitarian work. They accused the FBI and Pakistani police of torture, but the authorities have flatly denied any illtreatment. —AFP

m ittee. It w ould be his first a ppea ra nce on Ca pitol Hill since being pick ed to lea d the w a r in Afgha nista n follow ing President Ba ra ck Oba m a ’s firing of Gen Sta nley McChrysta l for criticizing the a dm inistra tion.

NATO’s June death toll is 100 KABUL: The death toll for foreign soldiers in Afghanistan yesterday neared the grim milestone of 100 for June alone as the CIA chief warned the anti-Taleban war would be tougher and longer than expected. Britain’s Ministry of Defense said a soldier was killed in the southern province of Helmand on Sunday, taking the June toll as tallied by AFP to 99 — already the worst monthly total in nearly nine years of fighting. The British death came after four Norwegian soldiers died when their vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb in the northern province of Faryab on Sunday. The toll for the year to date is 319 — compared to 520 for all of 2009. NATO says the dramatic upswing in casualty numbers in June has been caused by the alliance stepping up military operations and taking the fight to the Taleban in areas where the Islamist militia has previously been unchallenged. The rising casualties come as questions mount in the United States and Europe about military strategy in Afghanistan following last week’s sacking of the top NATO commander, US General Stanley McChrystal. Eight civilians including women and children were also killed yesterday when a Taleban-style bomb ripped through a minivan in the central province of Ghazni, police said. NATO said it had killed several rebels in a pre-dawn raid near the troubled southern city of Kandahar but local villagers said the dead were all civilians. Police in the city said they were investigating allegations that the dead were all local men who had been sleeping on roofs to escape the heat. The issue of civilian casualties is incendiary among Afghans, who blame the presence of foreign troops

NAHR E SARAJ: This picture shows a commemorative memorial to British soldiers killed in action on previous tours of Afghanistan, at a patrol base yesterday. — AFP for the ongoing violence, despite a UN report early this year showing that most civilian deaths are caused by Taleban attacks. McChrystal won plaudits in Afghanistan for introducing battlefield measures aimed at reducing civilian casualties, principally with an approach known as “courageous restraint” which encouraged soldiers to hold fire until they were sure their targets were bona fide insurgents. However, the policy has been criticized among the ranks, who blame it for the rising number of deaths and injuries being suffered by NATO troops. McChrystal was forced to step down after disparaging remarks about US administration officials, including President Barack

Obama, emerged in an explosive article in Rolling Stone magazine. The article raised questions about whether McChrystal’s counter-insurgency strategy, under which an extra 30,000 US troops were scheduled for deployment in Afghanistan, was working and fully supported by the US administration. CIA director Leon Panetta acknowledged “serious problems” with the Afghan war. “We’re dealing with a country that has problems with governance, problems with corruption, problems with narcotics trafficking, problems with a Taleban insurgency,” Panetta told ABC television. “We are making progress. But it’s harder and slower than anyone anticipated.” —AFP



Tuesday, June 29, 2010


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Political Islam & Kemalist laicism By Leonidas Oikonomakis


few weeks ago, the Wall Street Journal published an article with the catchy title "Intrigue in Turkey's bloodless civil war". It was referring to the ongoing "cold war" climate between Turkey's Islamicleaning ruling party - the Justice and Development Party (AKP) - and the country's old laicist elites who describe themselves as "Kemalists" and seek to keep religion and politics entirely separate. But that's just the latest "battle" in the "cold war" between political Islam and Turkish laicism that started nearly a hundred years ago. Understanding the history of the two sides and their relationship with one another is key in resolving Turkey's cold war so the country can make peace with itself. It started in 1923 when the Turkish Republic emerged out of the ashes of the Ottoman Empire. Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the founder of modern Turkey, immediately launched his "cultural revolution". He believed that Islam had no place in the state's affairs and embarked upon a campaign to subordinate religion to the state: he abolished the caliphate; closed all religious schools, orders and institutions; replaced Islamic law with Swiss civil law, German trade and commercial law, and Italian criminal law; replaced the Arabic script with the Latin one; introduced compulsory education and female suffrage; and banned the display of religious symbols in public institutions. But Ataturk's "cultural revolution" was a revolution "from above" and never reached the hearts and minds of the majority. The first major run-in between political Islam and Turkish laicism occurred during Ataturk's heyday with the Menemen incident of 1930 when a group of Sufis incited rebellion. The rebellion was quelled and the instigators were eventually killed or jailed by the Turkish army. After Ataturk's death in 1938 and the first multi-party elections of 1950, political leader and soon-to-be Prime Minister Adnan Menderes and his Democratic Party campaigned and won on the platform of incorporating Islam back into public life by legalising Arabic and lifting the ban on the call to prayer. However, the Turkish army launched a military coup in 1960, proclaiming itself the guardian of Kemalist laicism, and arresting Menderes on charges of violating the constitution. Political Islam went underground again, only to reemerge with the election of former Turkish Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan and his Welfare Party (RP) in 1996. It was Erbakan who politicised the headscarf issue for the first time and also pro-

moted closer cooperation with Muslim-majority countries. However, the RP was also overthrown by the army in 1997 and banned the following year. Despite the ban, in 2001 the reformist wing of the RP created what was to become the greatest success of political Islam in Turkey to date. Current Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's AKP won the majority vote in the 2002 general elections and has been governing the country ever since. The AKP has brought Turkey to the doorstep of the European Union, politicised religion with the headscarf as its flagship issue, and tacitly encouraged the conservative transformation of Turkish society through its rhetoric and policies at the top level, translating into "neighborhood pressure" to become increasingly religious at the grassroots level. Eight years later, Turkish society is increasingly polarised. There is an ongoing struggle by the government and its supporters to take control of the media, the police and the judiciary out of the Kemalists' hands, though a large share of the country's media, including Zaman newspaper, is already said to be pro-government. At the same time, one cannot fail to notice a shift in Turkey's foreign policy, focusing on the so-called Muslim world and distancing itself from its traditional Western allies. But for genuine sustainable progress, Turkey has to address its own internal cold war without polarising the two sides as winners and losers. After all, it takes two to tango. The country's laicist elites have to come to terms with Turkey's distinctive religious landscape and sensitivities, and political Islamic activists have to realise that many believe Islam is a religion, not a way to run the state, and that it should stay in the private sphere. The EU and its Copenhagen criteria for accession eligibility - which includes respect for democracy, rule of law, human and minority rights, and a functioning market economy seem like the best way to ensure Turkey's two worlds finally meet so that the country can make peace with itself, through a socio-political framework both sides can compromise on. For this to be achieved the EU needs to play the major peacemaking role, which involves a great deal of responsibility. Europe is the orchestra playing this tango. And in order for the dance to continue the music has to keep playing. NOTE: Leonidas Oikonomakis is a research associate at the University of Crete, as well as at the Center for European Studies of the Middle East Technical University — CGNews

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.

Return of the fashion police in Iran By Rasa Sowlat


ike their counterparts in the West, girls in Iran often check the mirror before they head out the door. But instead of inspecting their hair or makeup, women here are looking to make sure there is no offending strand of hair showing or hint of cosmetics. After all, they could be fined more than $1,000 if they're judged too fashionable. The morality police are at it again. Within the last few weeks, they've launched a new drive to crack down on anyone deemed to be wearing "bad hijab" or flouting the rules of chaste behavior in other ways. As part of the campaign, the authorities have raised the fine for improper hijabs up to $1,300. Men can also be fined if it's determined they violated public decency rules. The "bad hijab" fines are proving lucrative business for the police. They range from $10 a finger for nail polish, eyeliner or lipstick to $200 for men wearing short-sleeved or tight-fitting shirts. A suntan can cost a woman up to $400. The hijab campaign is nothing new. But after the unrest caused by last year's disputed presidential election, the authorities appeared to have put their hijab obsession aside as they confronted more serious political issues. No more, however. About a month ago, Interior Minister Mostafa MohammadNajjar, who is also deputy commander in chief of the police, announced that the morality police were back on the job. Iran's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah

Ali Khamenei, gave the reinvigorated "bad hijab" campaign the green light at a meeting with senior police officers early this year in which he asked them to "deal harshly with corruption in society". "Those who, either deliberately or through ignorance, sully the face of society of religion, chastity and virtue must be dealt with effectively and correctly," Khamenei said. The Supreme Leader's comments triggered a concerted response from the clergy, particularly from Friday Prayer leaders across the country, who began using their sermons to bemoan the poor observance of hijab regulations and the Islamic restrictions on interaction between the sexes. The most widely reported remarks on the subject came from Kazem Seddighi, the Friday Prayers leader for Tehran, who declared on April 16 that earthquakes were caused by women wearing revealing clothing. Mohammad-Taqi Rahbar, who heads the clerical faction in parliament, asked, "What part of those tiny headscarves that some women throw on, with their hair showing, or the tightfitting outfits that they wear like dancers or Hollywood actresses, bears a resemblance to Islamic hijab?" Currently, at least 27 government agencies are working together to enforce the hijab and chastity initiative. A new organization called the "council for a strategy on upholding virtue and prohibiting vice" is to be established. Its head will be appointed by the Supreme Leader. Thus, those radical forces which have been demanding the creation of a

"ministry of virtue" for years will finally see their dream come true. The initiative will even be enforced in kindergartens. The interior minister has ruled that children will only be allowed to play games that are religiously correct and in tune with Islamic culture. They will no longer be taught to dance. It has also been proposed that the 14,000 privately-run kindergartens

across the country be taken over by the state. Women who work for the government will be subject to a uniform dress code, while the labor ministry has been instructed to inform private firms about the proper dress code, rules about makeup and male-female interaction their employees should observe. The same goes for universities. Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati, secre-

tary of the Guardian Council, has given a Friday prayers sermon demanding that students who flout the hijab rules be failed on tests. NOTE: Rasa Sowlat is a reporter in Iran who writes for The Institute for War & Peace Reporting, a nonprofit organization that trains journalists in areas of conflict — MCT

New hints over Kim's successor By Dirk Godder


he Communist regime in North Korea only rarely allows a glimpse of its inner political workings to be revealed to the outside world. The decision announced Saturday by the ruling Workers' Party, headed by the ailing Kim Jong Il, to convene an assembly of party delegates in September to elect a new party leadership has prompted speculation that the crowning of a successor to Kim is in the offing. Korea watchers are expecting that the meeting will bring Kim's 28- or-29-year-old son Jong Un officially into play. The younger Kim would then be the third generation of Kims to rule the country in its 60-year history. South Korea's intelligence agency chief, Won Sei Hoon, reported to parliamentarians this week that a campaign is already underway in the North to endear the country's 24 million inhabitants. Another conceivable scenario is that a military junta would take over running of the country in the event that the eccentric 68-year- old Kim senior, referred to as the Dear Leader, suddenly passes away. Kim was suspected of having suffered a stroke in 2008, which caused him to miss a parade commemorating the 60th anniversary of the founding of the state. To support the hypothesis that a momentous change in North Korean politics is in the works, observers have offered two supporting pieces of evidence.

Firstly, the assembly would be the second important political event in, for North Korean standards, a relatively short space of time. Three weeks ago Kim Jong Il's brother in law, Jang Song Thaek, was appointed by the People's Assembly in Pyongyang as the vice-chairman of the powerful National Defence Commission. Jang is himself seen as one of Kim's most trusted confidants, and could be the leader's appointed marshal of the succession process. The session of the Assembly was called at short notice in May, already the second meeting this year, unusual for a body that normally meets once or twice every twelve months. The second element is that the full-scale conference of the Worker's Party called for September would be the first such meeting since 1966. That means that it will have a "highly important agenda," says Paik Hak Soon, a North Korea-watcher from the Sejong Institute near Seoul. Besides the election of the party's leading committee, the meeting could see Jong Un elected as a member of the Defence Commission or as a member of the politburo itself. As ever, predicting what North Korea will do is not an exact science. "We cannot be 100 per cent certain," says Paik Hak Soon. Jong Un, who attended an elite private school in Switzerland, has long been seen as his father's favourite for the top role. He is thought to resemble the Dear Leader both physically and in character - but otherwise little about him is known. — dpa

HK in new era as Beijing co-opts Democrats By Polly Hui


fter cold-shouldering Hong Kong's oldest democratic force for years, China has redrawn the territory's political map by bypassing its government to deal with the moderate opposition directly. While ever-suspicious of full democracy, the communist government in Beijing has recognised the danger of letting more radical voices in Hong Kong's opposition camp dictate the agenda, analysts said. The financial hub, which returned from British to Chinese rule in 1997, last week adopted a package of political reforms that promises an incremental boost to democracy - but not universal suffrage, much to the radicals' fury. "The reform saga has opened a direct dialogue between Beijing and the Democratic Party. Hong Kong will see a shake-up of its political landscape," Sung Lap-kung, a political analyst at City University of Hong Kong, told AFP. "The breakthrough did not come out of the blue," he said. "Beijing has observed the Democratic Party for a long time, knowing it needs the support of a key pro-democracy party to push political progress while maintaining stability in Hong Kong." The party's leaders met Li Gang, deputy director of the central government's Liaison Office, over the reform plan in May - their first formal contact with a Beijing representative since the party was launched in 1994. Such a contact was unimaginable when the party was run by its founding chairman Martin Lee - once described by China as a "running dog of the colonialists" -

Protesters voice disapproval of the government's political reform package in Hong Kong on June 24, 2010. – AFP who is threatening now to desert the group. But under its current leadership, the Democratic Party has embraced gradualist reform while insisting that it remains wedded to the ultimate goal of one person, one vote in semiautonomous Hong Kong. "We cannot rely only on street protests any more. We need to adopt a pragmatic, flexible

approach in dealing with Beijing," said party chairman Albert Ho. That stance has left the southern Chinese territory's opposition bitterly split, and radicals remain outspoken in pressing for a firm blueprint for universal suffrage in the city of seven million people. Sing Ming, associate professor of social sciences at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology,

said that despite the rift, the democratic factions would have to reunite on a common platform. "I am not that pessimistic. The democrats know too well that permanent infighting within the camp would not benefit anyone," he said. And Ma Ngok, a professor of political science at Chinese University of Hong Kong, said the Democratic Party could now campaign on concrete

progress rather than lofty rhetoric after the passage of the reform package. The package had looked doomed in its original guise. But Beijing forged a compromise with the party, adding 10 directly elected seats to the 60-seat legislature and expanding the electoral base for choosing the chief executive. "The Democratic Party will very likely have some concrete plans to further democratic progress over the next two years, to prove to their voters that their decision to support the reform package was right," Ma said. China has expressed increasing displeasure at the tactics of more militant opposition groups in Hong Kong over recent months. The Post 80s, a new group formed by young activists, shocked authorities in January by rallying thousands of people against a plan to build a high-speed rail link with mainland China. In the same month, five radical lawmakers resigned en masse in a bid to turn the resulting by-elections into a popular "referendum" on democracy. Pro-Beijing parties boycotted the elections, nullifying their impact. The biggest loser of Hong Kong's protracted political fight could be the territorial government run by Chief Executive Donald Tsang, a former top civil servant under British rule. "After the passage of the reform plan, everyone is clear about who has the final say for Hong Kong," Ma said. "The Democratic Party has demonstrated its preference to deal directly with Beijing," he said. "The future role of the Hong Kong government in the city's political reform will be very limited." — AFP


Tuesday, June 29, 2010


World leaders take the deficit pledge By Martin Crutsinger


orld leaders made bold pledges to cut their spiraling budget deficits but will probably fall far short of their lofty goals. After spending massive amounts of money to rescue the global economy from the worst downturn in decades, the Group of 20 major industrial and developing nations have reversed course and promised to cut their deficits in half in terms of the global economy in just three years. This pledge, by nations which represent 85 percent of the global economy, would represent a sea change in how the world's major economies are handling their finances. It could usher in sizable tax increases and massive cuts in government programs, including popular benefit programs such as Social Security and Medicare in the United States. US President Barack Obama and other leaders in their closing news conferences on Sunday insisted that they really meant what they said, sounding like the dawning of a new age of austerity was just around the corner. There is certainly the possibility that the Greek debt crisis has scared many nations with similarly high debt burdens into doing what they can to improve their budget outlook to avoid their own Greek-style tragedy. Greece is facing years of painful austerity measures after it was forced to accept massive bailouts from its neighbors when it could no longer meet its debt obligations. "Other countries have seen what has happened to Greece

Leaders from around the world pose for the G20 Summit "family photograph" Sunday in Toronto. — AFP and they have gotten worried. They are facing deficits and debt burdens that are overwhelming," said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Analytics. In the United States, the issue isn't the threat of an unprecedented default on US government debt. It is the threat that foreign investors such as China, the largest holder of Treasury securities, will suddenly decide they do not want to hold as much US government debt, a move that could send US interest rates rising.

The deficit cutting pledge, included in the G-20 joint communique issued Sunday, certainly sounded dramatic. The developed countries promised to cut deficits in half in three years as a percentage of their total economies and said they would stabilize their total debt burdens by 2016. For the United States and most of the other nations, that would be a remarkable turnaround, especially from the past two years, a period when deficits soared as governments boosted spending and cut taxes in an effort to

keep the 2007-2009 Great Recession from becoming a repeat of the Great Depression of the 1930s. The US deficit hit an astonishing $1.42 trillion last year, the highest in history, and analysts think it will show only a slight improvement to $1.3 trillion this year. Obama's budget projects the deficit will never fall below $707 billion over the next decade. However, even these seemingly grim numbers would represent an improvement in the deficit picture that would allow Obama to meet one

of the deficit targets - cutting the red ink in half by 2013. His spending plan released last February has the deficit falling from 10 percent of GDP last year to 4.2 percent of GDP in 2013, a cut of more than half. Obama does miss the other target of getting total debt stabilized by 2016. His budget shows that the debt held by the public, which doesn't count what is owed to the Social Security trust fund, would keep rising from 56 percent of the economy this year to 69 percent of the economy a decade from

now and not stabilize by 2016, as the G-20 target calls for. But Obama insisted in his closing news conference Sunday that his administration has a plan to meet the G-20 goals. That effort includes getting recommendations from a deficit commission due to report in December on how to trim spending further in such areas as government benefit programs. The trouble is that Congress has shown little enthusiasm for making the tough choices on taxes and entitlement programs that will be needed to get the US deficit down to 3 percent of GDP, the level economists believe would stabilize the debt burden. And lawmakers in other countries, who also have to face voters, have shown a similar reluctance. "The G-20 goals are very good, but history tells us it is very unlikely that they will be met," said Sung Won Sohn, an economics professor at the Martin Smith School of Business at California State University. Obama said he would force Congress next year to address the deficit problem, which Republicans in Congress have made a major issue and polls show is eliciting growing concern among voters. "Next year when I start presenting some very difficult choices to the country, I hope some of these folks who are hollering about deficits and debt step up, because I'm calling their bluff," he said. But Obama is likely to find that lawmakers are much more willing to talk about the deficit than take the painful votes needed to do something about the deficit. —AP

G20 put to test by uneven recovery By Brian Love and Caren Bohan


ecession made the G20 the main forum for managing the world economy last year. Now, the recovery is putting to the test the new sense of common cause that united rich and developing countries. Meeting in Canada at the weekend, leaders from the Group of 20 struggled to maintain the solidarity they showed during the worst of the downturn last year, when they pumped trillions of dollars into the economy to prevent an even deeper slump. "When the house was on fire, we all knew what to do: get a hose," said Angel Gurria, head of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, told G20 leaders at the summit. "Today, the incipient recovery offers policy choices and policy options. While it is good to have choices, it becomes more difficult to find common ground." That summed up the challenge the G20 faces as the economy in Asia is roaring ahead but is weaker in the United States and feeble in Europe. Additionally, the industrialised world is deep in debt and looking for a way out, unlike China and some if not all of the other emerging market economies around the G20 table. The summit in

Toronto exposed issues that are harder to resolve when a lot of countries united under the G20 banner are emerging from the downturn at different speeds and with different priorities. G20 countries initially wanted to formally welcome China's new commitment to move towards a more flexible exchange rate. Many of them hope that will lead to a rise in the value of the yuan and fairer competition in world trade as a result. At China's request, the G20 removed a line on the matter from the statement issued at the summit. While Beijing said ahead of the summit that debate about the yuan had no place in international forums, the tractations over a line of praise showed just how difficult it remains for the G20 to address a matter considered key if world leaders are to tackle global economic balances in the longer term. On free trade, the G20 if anything backpedalled on pledges to press for a multilateral commitment to liberalisation under the long-stalled Doha round negotiations. Last year, the G20 leaders committed in their Pittsburgh communique to pressing for a successful conclusion to the Doha round negotiations by the end of 2010. This time they dropped the date and set no new

one. That, according to European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, injected a dose of realism into the communique, given that the divisions over the trade round has prevented a deal for the best part of a decade. But tensions between the United States and China have bobbed back to the surface too. The US and Chinese ambassadors have traded blame this week at the World Trade Organization over the Doha stalemate. President Barack Obama told G20 leaders over lunch on Sunday that the Doha proposals as they stood now were not good enough and would need to be changed significantly, officials told Reuters. The G20 leaders committed to a halving public deficits over the next three years as the priority shifts from pump-priming a recession-engulfed economy to slashing the debt the industrialised world is saddled with on the way out. There too, the different angle G20 countries come from is clear. Washington and Europe sniped ahead of the summit because of European austerity measures that might stifle the already weak recovery in Europe. But some emerging market countries in the G20 were more blunt with their misigivings. Europe was "absolutely wrong,"

Argentine President Cristina Fernandez told Reuters in an interview in Toronto. "If European countries proceed with their fiscal austerity plans, the global economic turnaround may slow down," said South Koreaan President Lee Myung-bak, another G20 member. From a European perspective, the need to show good on fiscal consolidation is urgent after Greece had to seek financial help and euro zone governments were forced to come up with an emergency funding plan for other countries recently. The debt of the advanced economies of the G20 is roughly three times as large as that of the emerging market members of the grouping, according to International Monetary Fund data. "Lack of international coordination is disappointing, but not as much as a threat (from debt) at this juncture, Marco Annunziata, chief economist at UniCredit bank said. The problem, analysts say, is that the G20 may be unwieldy, but the G8, the forum it is supplanting, is no longer considered representative of a global economy where the balance of power is shifting rapidly to the likes of China or Brazil. "Part of the problem that exists today among multilateral institutions is that they tend to reflect a postWorld War Two distribution of interna-

tional power. And they therefore lack legitimacy in many quarters of the globe," said Charles Kupchan at the US-based Council on Foreign Relations. "So then you say, 'well let's fix that' and the way you fix that is you just put a lot more chairs at the table." Even if getting the G20 to agree on policy is hard, at least it provides a forum for global coordination. White House adviser Ben Rhodes said that for the past year and a half, the G20 has sought to calibrate "the fine line" over how much stimulus to apply and its timing. "Frankly, if you didn't have the G20 to work that through we'd be a lot worse off," Rhodes said. Asked about that risk in Toronto, French President Nicolas Sarkozy vented his frustration at the media's scepticism about the G20. "As the G20, we represent 85 percent of global GDP. Do you think that it is not useful that we talk to each other? You prefer what, that we argue, that there are trade wars or wars period?" said Sarkozy, who will host a G20 summit in 2011. "I am always the first to say that sometimes the discussions are long, to get a paragraph into communique is exhausting. When I finish these summits, I feel drained and empty, but it is our duty to participate." — Reuters

Despite Toronto mayhem, G20 protests dim B By Andrew Quinn

urning police cars. Protesters emerging from sewers. Smashed windows, black-clad anarchists and tear gas: a global economic summit came to Toronto, bringing TV images of mayhem in its wake. Despite the clashes and arrests, the anti-Group of 20 protests in Toronto this weekend were smaller and more peaceful than the giant riots of years past - a sign, say activists and analysts, of a changing dynamic between civil society groups and the world's economic leaders. "We see protest as an important part of the mix, but it certainly isn't the only way we are mobilizing people," said Robert Fox, executive director of Oxfam Canada, noting Internet "eactivism" was an increasingly important force. "These days, there is a much broader range of ways to reach out and communicate with people." Anti-G20 groups made their presence felt in Toronto during the summit of rich and emerging economies, which followed a smaller meeting of Group of Eight industrial nations at a resort north of the city. Canada spent about $1 billion on security and the protests were largely peaceful, drawing several thousand activists pressing an antipoverty agenda and demanding action on labor and women's rights. Violence was sporadic. Police arrested about 500 people, among them four who climbed through sewers to emerge near the locked summit site. Authorities also used teargas on the public for the first time ever in Toronto to disperse violent protesters such as the masked anarchists who have become a regular feature at such global meetings.

Tajmim Islam, 16, walks with his family after being released from custody at the temporary detention facility which security forces setup for protestors detained at the G20 summit in Toronto on Sunday. – AFP While Toronto was unnerved and images of the violence were broadcast widely, the scuffles paled in comparison to huge demonstrations that marked earlier summits, including the "Battle of Seattle" at a World Trade Organization meeting in 1999 and the 2001 G8 meeting in Genoa, Italy, where one protester was shot to death. "This isn't even a sideshow. This is a Sunday picnic with a few bad elements," said John Kirton, director of

the G20 Research Group at the University of Toronto. "Even in a Canadian context, this is no big deal." The decline of the street protest is due partly to the media's focus on violence, which can discourage those who hope to express themselves peacefully, analysts say. "These protests are sometimes called 'uncivil society,'" said Peter Hajnal, a research fellow at the University of Toronto who studies the interaction of civic groups and global

organizations. "People still care about these things, but they are expressing themselves differently." The target has also shifted. Early fury focused on the original Group of Seven industrialized democracies often depicted as a rich man's club bent on world domination - but summits have expanded to include 20 big and emerging powers from across the globe. "Brazil is there and South Africa is there and Mexico is there, so it does-

n't have the same face," said Fox of Oxfam. "The G20 doesn't lend itself to caricature in quite the same as the old G7 did." Activists say they still care deeply about global inequities, and are fighting for improvements in healthcare, climate policy and anti-poverty initiatives. But they are increasingly lobbying their own elected officials, and have had regular consultations since the early 2000s with key world governments, a direct way of putting their priorities on the G8/G20 agenda. "It was very candid and open, and a good way to spread the message," said Dennis Howlett, coordinator of Make Poverty History, a Canadian activist group that participated in one such meeting with G8 policy officials in April. For some, declining mass participation in global economic summitry is a disappointment. Historians say public pressure was key to important shifts by the G7/G8 countries: the 2000 Jubilee debt relief campaign, launched at the 1998 G8 summit in Birmingham, England, and the pledge by countries at the 2005 Gleneagles summit in Scotland, to double overseas aid to $50 billion by 2010. That promise has come up short, with donors delivering only about $18 billion in additional money. With the public pressure off this year, G8 leaders pledged even less: just $5 billion over five years to promote maternal health in Africa - compared with the trillions spent to rescue economies and bail out banks following the financial crisis. "I'm personally disappointed," said Kirton of the G20 Research Group. "I would have wanted 100,000 people out there saying: 'G20 do more on fossil fuels! Do more for climate change!' But I don't think they're out there." — Reuters


Pak to exploit US command vacuum By Chris Allbritton


akistan is looking to exploit a shake-up in the US command in Afghanistan to bolster its allies within the Taleban and increase its influence over a future Kabul government, analysts say. The strategy, however, relies on bringing the brutal and independent-minded Haqqani network to heel, something many believe is impossible. The incoming US commander, General David Petraeus, "does not have a good relationship" with Pakistani Chief of Army Staff Asfaq Kayani, said Ahmed Rashid, a political analyst, journalist and expert on the Taleban. "The army does not trust him and they don't like him," Rashid said. "This hiatus is going to be used by both the Afghan government and the Pakistani government to see if they can get something going." In essence, Pakistan is hoping the American command vacuum proves a window of opportunity for Islamabad to deal more directly with Kabul in forcing an accommodation with its militant allies, such as the Haqqani network. This is currently opposed by the United States, but it would grant Pakistan a large measure of influence in Afghanistan, which before the Sept 11, 2001 attacks was firmly within its sphere of influence and an asset in its old rivalry with India. General Stanley McChrystal was forced to resign last week after an article was published in which he and his aides disparaged President Obama and his civilian leadership team. Obama replaced him with Petraeus, the head of the US Central Command. At the time, the Pakistani military declined to comment on the change in command. Now, Pakistan is hoping to establish a "reality on the ground" before Petraeus fully takes over, said Rashid. "I think there will be a review of US policy very quickly as soon as Petraeus arrives and I think these efforts are being made to try and influence that review and put Pakistan in the driving seat," he said. And the Haqqani network and the Taleban is one of the main levers for Pakistan to exert influence. "Pakistan is not just prepared but very eager to play a role in bringing peace

in Afghanistan," said Rahimullah Yousafzai, an expert on Taleban militancy and PakistanAfghanistan affairs. "And they definitely have an influence over the Taleban. But if someone believes they're in their hands, that is incorrect." Run by Jalaluddin Haqqani, an elderly veteran resistance leader against Soviet troops in the 1980s, the Haqqani network operates near Afghanistan's border with Pakistan. Leadership of the group has largely passed from the ailing Haqqani to his son, Sirajuddin, seen by US officials as more radical than his father. The group maintains a powerbase in the Pakistani tribal region of North Waziristan, across the border from Khost. Sirajuddin told Reuters in March his group was under the overall command of Taleban leader Mullah Omar. But US officials believe the movement does not always accept Taleban authority and often acts independently. Yousafzai and Rashid both think it would very difficult to convince the Haqqanis to lay down their arms. "He (Sirajuddin) is very committed to international jihad. Part of his network includes Al-Qaeda, the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, other central Asian groups, Chechen groups. He's been very protective of all these groups and they form his strength right now," Rashid said. "Secondly, they have never, never issued any kind of statement even remotely discussing the issue of reconciliation and peace in Afghanistan." This weekend, Al Jazeera reported that Sirajuddin recently met with Afghan President Hamid Karzai, Kayani and the head of Pakistan's InterServices Intelligence Ahmad Pasha to discuss a peace deal. But official sources in both Pakistan and Afghanistan, as well as Taleban spokespeople speaking for Haqqani, strenuously denied any such meeting. "The Haqqani group isn't a separate entity. It's fully part of the Taleban movement," said Yousafzai. "Jalaluddin is a member of the supreme Taleban shura. He has been loyal to the Taleban. I think it's impossible that Jalaluddin Haqqani or his son will strike a separate deal with Kabul and won't inform the Taleban. If there's any deal, it will be done jointly." — Reuters

Gillard as PM means nation has first bloke By Sid Astbury


ormer hairdresser Tim Mathieson, the partner of Australia's first female prime minister, has a hard act to follow. Therese Rein, the wife of Kevin Rudd, the Labor leader who Julia Gillard deposed last week, is a multimillionaire businesswoman with a university degree and a globetrotting lifestyle who felt right at home in the corridors of power. Mathieson, 54, is quite different and is expected to feature a lot less prominently in public life. The pair met in 2004 in the hair salon where he worked, became an item two years later and are now a first couple. Mathieson was with Gillard, 48, when she was sworn in at Government House but he was absent at her first press conference. In the past, a prime minister making a first public appearance has had family arranged photogenically in the background. There is no question of a power behind the throne. "I'm sort of a lightweight in that area anyway," the delightfully honest Mathieson said in 2007. "She's talking about that with high intellects all day, every day. We just talk about life stuff, or joke around." The couple lives in a modest, suburban home in Melbourne, where neighbours pay tribute to their affability. "Very quiet, no loud music, no barking dogs, no crying babies a perfect neighbour," Joy Vincent told The Australian newspaper. British-born Gillard is Australia's first unmarried, and first childless, prime minister. If she wins the next parliamentary election, scheduled later in the year, she is expected to move into The Lodge, the official residence in Canberra. Matheison would likely move there with her and give up his job as a salesman in a Melbourne real

estate agency. Mathieson's friends attest that they are a loving couple and ideally suited because they are so different. "I'm just so glad that she chose someone outside of politics," said Grace Romain, manager of Heading Out hairdressers where the pair met. "He's such a great guy and I know he'll make her very happy." Gillard, usually tightly scripted and indefatigably on message, has opened up about her partner. "He understands enough of what I do to support me in it, but he's not so obsessed by it that we can't just do our own things together, which is a great balance," she said. "He's supportive. It just gives that extra dimension to being able to go and be with someone else and do something else that isn't this life as I generally have to lead it." Rein, despite being the head of her own multinational employment firm, found time to do the sorts of things first ladies are famous for. In an interview with a women's magazine, she dutifully told the readers how she became more presentable, dropping four dress sizes by losing 25 kg. Mathieson is also expected to do his duty. In fact, he has already started. "She will absolutely be a fantastic prime minister," he bubbled after the swearing in. "She has the right mindset and she's very consultative. I'm so proud to be her partner." Britain's first female prime minister was Margaret Thatcher and husband Denis was famously an odd fit in the role of first mate. He did not speak to the press nor enjoy the role. His tip - and Mathieson is fond of his beer - might be worth repeating. "And certainly don't get caught by the press having too much to drink, you now, that sort of thing," is perhaps the most memorable oneliner from the late Denis Thatcher. — dpa



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Obama challenges China at G20 meet Continued from Page 1 “No nation should assume its path to prosperity is paved with exports to America. Indeed, I’ve made it clear that the United States will compete aggressively for the jobs and industries and markets of the future. A strong and durable recovery also requires countries not having an undue advantage,” Obama said, demanding “currencies that are market-driven.” Despite allowing the yuan to rise to its highest level in five years on the eve of the summit - in what was seen as a gesture to Washington - China has insisted that it will not be bullied into relaxing currency controls. Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada, the host of the Toronto G20, said China had even insisted that a draft phrase welcoming China’s concession be stripped out of the summit final statement before its release. “It is important to address trade frictions appropriately through dialogue and consultation and under the principle of mutual benefit and common development,” Chinese President Hu Jintao said at the summit. For Beijing, the greatest threat to the world economic recovery is not trade imbal-

ances, but the developed world’s attempts to shield its own producers from competition from the emerging economies. “We must take concrete actions to reject all forms of protectionism and unequivocally advocate and support free trade,” Hu said. The G20 statement, agreed by all the leaders and thick with exemptions and caveats, rejects protectionism and promises that unnamed “surplus economies will undertake reforms to reduce their reliance on external demand.” European leaders - Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Nicolas Sarkozy and Britain’s Prime Minister David Cameron - came to the talks calling for fiscal restraint and for a new levy on bank profits. They made some headway on deficits, but will have to go it alone on the banking tax, as countries like Australia, Canada and India that were spared by the 2008 financial meltdown rejected the proposal out of hand. The leaders’ joint statement, released at the end of two days of talks in Toronto, warned that “failure to implement consolidation where necessary would undermine confidence and hamper growth”. “Reflecting this balance, advanced economies have committed to fiscal plans that will at least halve deficits by 2013

and stabilize or reduce government debt-toGDP ratios by 2016,” it promised. Some experts warned that Europe’s fiscal austerity plans would also slow growth. But Dominique Strauss-Kahn, head of the International Monetary Fund, was quoted by The New York Times as saying he thought the risks of a new downturn were minimal. “We don’t forecast any double dip,” he said. “Double dip was not discussed at the meeting.” The group exempted Japan and its huge deficit from the pledge and noted that measures should be “tailored to national circumstances”. “Japanese debt levels while much, much higher than the rest of us, are also entirely financed domestically, so there has been some recognition that Japan’s targets may be slightly different,” explained Harper, the Canadian leader. For the G20 leaders, the differing agendas reflected in the catch-all final statement was not a weakness, but a recognition of the need for countries with different problems to nurture growth in their own ways. “The cohesion of the G20 was striking,” Harper said at his closing press conference. “We’re following different policies but with a single objective; to ensure growth and recovery in a durable and balanced way. -— AFP

Tehran freezes nuke talks for two months Continued from Page 1 He said the world powers must clarify what they are seeking from the talks, and that their “negotiators must clearly express their position on nuclear weapons possessed by the Zionist regime” Israel. Iran’s arch-foe Israel, believed to be the sole if undeclared nuclear weapons power in the Middle East, has never ruled out a military strike against the Islamic republic’s atomic plants in order to stop its nuclear drive. Tehran has on several occasions demanded that Israel become member of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and put its nuclear arsenal under the purview of the UN atomic watchdog. Speaking separately on the nuclear fuel swap deal, Ahmadinejad said Iran was ready to talk, “but the talks will be held on the basis of the Tehran Declaration... we don’t think there is any need to add anything to it”. “Naturally if France, Russia and the US are coming from the other side, from this side it will be Iran, Turkey and Brazil who will participate in the talks,” Ahmadinejad said. The fuel “exchange is a way for engagement and this is better than confrontation.” On May 17, Iran, Turkey and Brazil signed what is now called as Tehran Declaration, a proposal which envisages shipping Iran’s low-enriched uranium (LEU) to Turkey to be followed at a later date with the supply of high enriched uranium to Tehran from Russia and France. The West has cold-shouldered this proposal citing several concerns. Ahmadinejad also took the opportunity to reject the remarks of the chief of the US Central Intelligence Agency, Leon Panetta, that Iran could have nuclear weapons ready to use by as early as 2012. “We have clearly

declared that the nuclear bomb belongs to politically retarded governments who lack logic,” Ahmadinejad said. “What good is an atom bomb to anyone? The stupidest thing today is accumulating atomic weapons. They seek accomplices in the crime and Iran will not be an accomplice in their crime. We are standing firm on disarmament.” Panetta said on Sunday that Iran has manufactured enough LEU for two atomic weapons and that it would need another year to enrich it fully to produce a bomb. It would one more “year to develop the kind of weapon delivery system in order to make that viable”. Earlier, Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said Panetta’s remarks were part of a “psychological warfare” by the CIA against Iran. Ahmadinejad meanwhile warned the world powers against inspecting Iranian ships in high seas as stipulated in the new UN sanctions, saying Tehran “has the right of retaliation... which will make them regret” such checks. Iranian officials maintain Tehran will conduct similar checks in the Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz, the route for 40 percent of world’s sea borne oil supplies. Meanwhile, Iran faced growing economic pressure yesterday after two Western oil firms halted business with it, and a Gulf country seen as a trade lifeline for Tehran moved to freeze some Iranian-linked bank accounts. The developments underlined the major oil producer’s increasing international isolation over its nuclear program. France’s Total joined an expanding list of companies that have stopped gasoline sales to Iran, and Spain’s Repsol said it had pulled out of a contract to develop part of the country’s huge South Pars gas field in the Gulf. “Total has suspended its sales of gasoline or refined products to Iran,” a company spokesman said in Paris. The decisions were announced

four days after the US Congress approved a bill to penalise firms supplying gasoline to the Iran, which is the world’s fifth-largest oil exporter but lacks sufficient refining capacity for its own fuel needs. Moving to implement the latest round of measures, the UAE’s central bank told financial institutions to freeze any accounts belonging to dozens of Iran-linked firms targeted by the June 9 U.N. resolution, a banking source said. Last week an Emirati newspaper reported that the seven-member United Arab Emirates federation was “tightening the noose” on companies the Security Council suspects act as fronts for supplies to Iran’s atomic activities. Iran and the UAE have close economic and historic relations and tens of thousands of Iranians live and work in trade hub Dubai and elsewhere in the Arab state, many of them involved in the multi-billion-dollar, reexport trade to Iran. But Dubai’s ties with Tehran have drawn scrutiny from the United States, which is spearheading a drive to pressure Iran into halting nuclear enrichment, which can have both military and civilian uses. Iran has long circumvented restrictions on goods blacklisted by sanctions and much of the trade goes via the UAE, said Middle East analyst Gala Riani of IHS Global Insight. “The UAE, and Dubai especially, has come under a lot of pressure... to tighten restrictions and controls on Iranian firms,” Riani said. They are now “signalling that they are playing ball with the international community”, she said. Royal Dutch Shell, BP, Reliance Industries and independent Swiss trader Glencore are among suppliers that have already either stopped fuel sales to Iran or decided not to enter into new trading agreements with it. — Agencies

Allies, powers want continuity in Egypt Continued from Page 1 would be virtually assured of victory in a nation long criticized for using authoritarian tactics to quash dissent and to stifle democracy, even if a challenge from exUN nuclear boss Mohamed ElBaradei or another independent materialises. “The political elite in Arab countries don’t want to spread the values of democracy because they know very well that democracy is very risky for their interests in Egypt and the rest of the Arab world,” said Emad Gad of the Al-Ahram Centre for Political and Strategic Studies. “This is because democracy means change, human rights, accountability, and transparency.” Critics say Mubarak, who took power in 1981 following Anwar Sadat’s assassination by Islamist militants, has forged a system keeping his party in power and has thrown dissidents in jail by the thousands. The emergence of ElBaradei as a possible challenger has brought some Egyptian opponents onto the street, but it’s unlikely he will be able to change the election system to run. The Muslim Brotherhood, officially banned but Egypt’s biggest opposition party, is not planning on fielding a candidate and complains the system is stacked against them. Some warn Mubarak’s promised stability will come at a cost, possibly fuelling support for radical Islamist groups like those that mounted bloody attacks in the 1990s as they sought to establish an Islamic state in Egypt. “Continuity without legal, political, and constitutional reform will lead to an even tighter grip on power ... and more social and political confrontation in the shadow of

Islamisation of Egyptian society,” said political analyst Nabil Abdel Fattah. Egypt, no longer the regional leader it was in the 1950s and 1960s, at times must now vie for influence with Gulf oil and gas producers like Qatar, a fraction of its size. But Egypt’s location at the nexus of the Middle East and North Africa, its size - about one in four Arabs is an Egyptian - and its ties with Israel and the West mean that Egypt retains both symbolic importance and political clout in the region. “No one can do these things but Egypt,” said Ambassador Rasheed Hamad Al-Hamad of Kuwait, which has had close ties with Egypt since Mubarak sent thousands of troops to help defend the Gulf state from Saddam Hussein in the 1991 Gulf War. “If there is going to be change, Kuwait always looks for there to be stability as well, so there won’t be change in the kind of system that exists or the current conditions.” Countries like Saudi Arabia, another US ally in the Middle East, would like to see Egypt remain an influential partner on the kingdom’s regional priorities, like Lebanon and the Palestinians, said Khaled Al-Dakhil, an analyst in Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia’s ruling family would like to see a leader who is “sensitive, moderate in talking about the relationship with the West ... There are always differences between Arab states. What is more important is how you handle those differences.” Ongoing violence in Iraq poses a stark reminder of the risks that come with abrupt political change, making Egypt’s stability and security the paramount concern for neighbours such as Libya. “Libya

would be interested in seeing any change taking place in Egypt peacefully,” said Mustafa Fetouri, a Tripoli-based political analyst and professor. Another question is how a new Egyptian leader would handle Egypt’s complicated relationship with Israel. Since Egypt’s 1979 peace treaty with the Jewish state, Egypt has mediated between Palestinians and Israelis, but Egypt often condemns Israeli treatment of Palestinians as it fends off attacks from an Arab public that accuses Cairo of siding with Israelis to blockade Gaza. Edward Djerejian, who served as US ambassador to Syria and Israel, said Israel sees Mubarak “as a tactical asset” after three decades of dealings. “It’s better to be dealing with the devil you know than the devil you don’t know,” he said. One senior Israeli official, who asked not to be named, said: “There is a great appreciation in Israel for President Mubarak and the policies he has articulated and pursued to promote the peace process and regional stability.” Egypt was for decades the No. 2 recipient of American aid, a sign of Egypt’s key role in US efforts to improve Arab ties with Israel and stem the tide of Islamic militancy. After the Bush administration angered Egypt by pressing for democratic reform, President Barack Obama appears keen to keep ties with Egypt on an even keel as it grapples with more urgent challenges in Iraq and Afghanistan. “Having said that, people in Washington worry about the long-term political stability of a regime that doesn’t open up ... so that one day there can be a peaceful exchange of power,” Djerejian said. — Reuters

Nod to tweaked defaulters’ fund Continued from Page 1 The capital of the fund was then set at KD 500 million and its conditions were described as tough by MPs who began working on another law to write off the interest on loans and then reschedule them over extended periods. The interest write-off law was passed but then rejected by the government and an attempt by MPs to override the government’s rejection failed on Sunday. To convince more MPs, the government was forced to introduce amendments to the defaulters’ fund. It first accepted not to limit its capital and make it open to resolve the problems of any number of

defaulters. The government also softened the fund’s conditions, effectively allowing more debtors to benefit from it. The fund will assist Kuwaiti debtors in case they can prove they are unable to repay the debt or if their monthly installment is more than 50 percent of their income. During the debate, several MPs objected to the fund, insisting that it is not sufficient to resolve the debt crisis in Kuwait. MP Ahmad Al-Saadoun said that when the government found out that the original form of the fund will not work, it was forced to present the amendments. He said that the problem was from the banks, which were left without punishment, adding the fund amounts to squandering

public funds. Islamist MP Khaled Al-Sultan said the fund does not achieve equality among debtors and is in contradiction with sharia law. MP Saleh Ashour described the loan crisis as a major economic crime and said the fund was set up especially to help banks. He vowed that MPs will revive the interest write-off law in the next term. MP Adnan Abdulsamad said that after the failure of the interest write-off law, the fund is the only available means now to help defaulters. The Assembly today begins the debate on the state budget which will continue tomorrow before holding the final session on Thursday.

ARGENTEUIL, France: The Al Ihsan mosque is seen during its inauguration yesterday in this northern suburb outside Paris. — AFP

Philippine boxing star Pacquiao enters politics ALABEL, Philippines: World boxing star Manny Pacquiao took his oath yesterday as a Philippine congressman, bringing him into a political arena that he said seemed more daunting than boxing. The 31-yearold Pacquiao, looking a bit uneasy in an elegant formal shirt and leather shoes, pledged before about 1,000 spectators in Alabel town in his southern Sarangani province to be a good, God-fearing civil servant. “We can knock out any foe,” Pacquiao said, promising people in his impoverished province a “new chapter of our history”. Talking to reporters later, Pacquiao said he was nervous that he could not accomplish much but he promised to try his best to ease the widespread poverty gripping his province, about 1,000 km south of Manila. “Entering politics is more daunting than boxing,” he said. It was a triumphant second try at local politics. He was soundly defeated when he first ventured into politics in a run for the powerful House of Representatives in 2007, but his worldwide profile has grown exponentially since then. Aside from introducing bills during his three-year term in the House that would provide livelihood for farmers and fishermen and benefits for athletes, Pacquiao has promised to help build a university and a hospital for the poor in Sarangani. In a bid to show that he was serious at politics, Pacquiao recently took a 10-day crash course on legislation and governance at the Development Academy of the Philippines. A former baker and construction worker born to a poor family, Pacquiao became an embodiment of a rags-to-riches story in the Philippines where one-third of the 90 million people live on less than $1 a day.

SARANGANI, Philippines: Filipino world boxing champion Manny Pacquiao takes his oath as congressman of the lone district of Sarangani province in formal ceremony yesterday at Alabel township in this province in southern Philippines. — AP Worshipped as a hero for bringing glory to a country beset with poverty, armed conflicts and political strife, Pacquiao has said he was ready to enter the ring a few more times before hanging his gloves for good. In a remarkable career to date, Pacquiao became the first boxer to win world titles in seven different weight divisions. Promoter Bob Arum has been working

to stage the most highly anticipated fight in decades between Pacquiao and the undefeated Floyd Mayweather Jr - the two contenders for the unofficial title of world’s pound-for-pound champion. The two nearly reached an agreement to fight earlier this year, but negotiations broke down when Mayweather insisted on Olympic-style drug testing and Pacquiao refused to have blood drawn within 24

FIFA turning a deaf ear to tech demands Continued from Page 1 half and landed a yard over the goalline but it was missed by both Uruguayan referee Jorge Larrionda and his assistant. Then in the following match at Soccer City, replays showed that Carlos Tevez was clearly in an off-side position when he was awarded the opening goal in Argentina’s 3-1 defeat of Mexico. The row even spread to the All England Club where Wimbledon champion Federer insisted football should move with the times. In tennis, players are given three challenges per set to use ‘Hawk-Eye’ replay technology to determine whether the ball was in or out on close calls. “I do struggle a little bit with soccer because there’s so many mistakes from referees. Don’t blame them. They’re so far away sometimes from what’s happen-

ing, and then also so many goals are disallowed that are goals and others are not counted that would be goals. It’s frustrating as a fan,” said Federer. “I think it’s rough. To me it seems like it’s just crying for a change.” FIFPro, the body which represents players worldwide, believes Sunday’s controversial incidents have demonstrated the need for change. “We can do it, the football world wants it and yet it is still being thwarted, that is unacceptable,” said Tijs Tummers, the secretary of FIFPro’s technical committee. “The error during the German-England match would have been the easiest to avoid. There is not a single convincing argument against the use of goal-line technology.” Highly-respected Portugal coach Carlos Queiroz believes FIFA’s reluctance to adopt new techniques is damaging the

image of the sport. “We are at a World Cup and must limit ourselves to the rules and regulations that are being applied here,” he said. “But I do believe that certain technology could be introduced in the future. What is at stake is the credibility of the game.” FIFA’s refusal to use video technology has long been criticised with its president Sepp Blatter insisting the referee will always remain the ultimate decision-maker at all levels of the game. Blatter won support for his stance yesterday from Argentina goalkeeper Sergio Romero, who insisted that the application of technology “is not good for football”. “As far as I am concerned technology is not good for football - football needs people to be awake to what is going on to make the decision on their own account,” said Romero. — AFP

Turkey bars Israeli plane from airspace Continued from Page 1 Israeli daily Yediot Aharonot said the military plane had been taking an army delegation of 100 officers to the former Nazi death camp of Auschwitz in Poland, Turkish media reported. The Boeing 707 had to take an alternative route, the report said. Ankara recalled its ambassador to Israel immediately after the raid, scrapped plans for three joint military exercises and said economic and defence links would be reduced to a “minimum level”. Senior officials have said that Turkey expects Israel to apologise for the deaths and injuries, compensate the victims’ families, agree to an international inquiry and release three Turkish vessels seized in the operation. Ankara also wants the crippling blockade of the Gaza Strip to be lift-

ed. Erdogan said ties with Israel would recover if the Jewish state met the demands. “We have been very patient ... and have said that meeting our demands would be an important step to turn this process into a positive one. But if they are not met, then we should not forget that our friendship has already been weakened,” Anatolia quoted him as saying. “We have done whatever is necessary within national and international law, and we will continue to do so,” he added. If Israel fails to meet the demands, Turkey will downgrade its diplomatic representation to the level of a charge d’affaires, a senior diplomat told AFP on condition of anonymity earlier this month. Ankara would consider making no new cooperation agreements with Israel, the diplomat said, adding that existing deals were being reviewed. Israel says its sol-

diers acted in self-defence after they came under attack from the activists during the raid and has set up its commission with two foreign observers to investigate the operation. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will be the first witness to testify before the committee set up by Israel which began deliberations yesterday, a spokesman said. Defence Minister Ehud Barak and Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi would also appear before the commission, with all the major testimony likely some time after Netanyahu holds talks with US President Barack Obama in Washington on July 6. Turkey and Israel built a strong alliance after a 1996 military cooperation deal, but the relationship has nosedived amid sharp criticism from Ankara over the Jewish state’s devastating war on Gaza in late 2008 and early 2009. — AFP

human rights organisations have criticised the detention of Jassem, describing him as a prisoner of conscience, and sent letters to HH the Amir urging his release. Washington voiced concern about Jassem’s case and raised the matter with Western-allied Kuwait, whose foreign minister was later quoted as saying the US

comments amounted to interference in Kuwaiti affairs. Last week, the New Yorkbased Committee to Protect Journalists called on Kuwait’s ruler to intervene for his release, urging the Amir to “acknowledge that critical writing such as Jassem’s has an established place in Kuwaiti society and should not be criminalised”. — Reuters

Jassem freed on bail Continued from Page 1 Jassem, 54, has been charged with undermining HH the Amir’s status, attacking the regime and spreading false information damaging to Kuwait’s national interests. The charges carry a penalty of several years in jail. Several leading international


Tuesday, June 29, 2010


MLB results/standings Major League Baseball results and standings on Sunday: San Diego 4, Florida 2; NY Mets 6, Minnesota 0; Cleveland 5, Cincinnati 3; Philadelphia 11, Toronto 2; Baltimore 4, Washington 3; Detroit 10, Atlanta 4; Arizona 2, Tampa Bay 1; Chicago Cubs 8, Chicago White Sox 6; Kansas City 10, St. Louis 3; Milwaukee 3, Seattle 0; LA Angels 10, Colorado 3; Oakland 3, Pittsburgh 2; Boston 5, San Francisco 1; NY Yankees 8, La Dodgers 6 (10 innings); Texas 10, Houston 1. American League Eastern Division W L PCT NY Yankees 47 28 .627 Boston 46 31 .597 Tampa Bay 44 31 .587 Toronto 40 36 .526 Baltimore 23 52 .307 Central Division Minnesota 41 34 .547 Detroit 40 34 .541 Chicago White Sox 39 35 .527 Kansas City 32 44 .421 Cleveland 27 47 .365 Western Division Texas 46 29 .613 LA Angels 43 35 .551 Oakland 37 40 .481 Seattle 31 44 .413 National League Eastern Division Atlanta 44 32 .579 NY Mets 43 32 .573 Philadelphia 40 33 .548 Florida 35 40 .467 Washington 33 43 .434 Central Division Cincinnati 42 34 .553 St. Louis 41 34 .547 Milwaukee 34 41 .453 Chicago Cubs 33 42 .440 Houston 29 47 .382 Pittsburgh 25 50 .333 Western Division San Diego 45 30 .600 San Francisco 40 34 .541 LA Dodgers 40 35 .533 Colorado 39 36 .520 Arizona 30 46 .395

GB 2 3 7.5 24 .5 1.5 9.5 13.5 4.5 10 15

.5 2.5 8.5 11 .5 7.5 8.5 13 16.5 4.5 5 6 15.5

ANAHEIM: Los Angeles Angels Brandon Wood follows through on a grand slam as Colorado Rockies catcher Chris Ianetta (left) looks on during the eighth inning of an interleague baseball game.—AP

Phillies down Blue Jays, Yankees roll PHILADELPHIA: Jamie Moyer gave up his record-breaking 506th home run but was sharp otherwise as the Philadelphia Phillies took advantage of Toronto’s troubles to beat the Blue Jays 11-2 Sunday. Moyer’s only mistake was a two-run homer by Vernon Wells in the third inning. Moyer passed former Phillies Hall of Famer Robin Roberts for the most homers allowed in a career. The 47-year-old Moyer (9-6), whose mound opponent wasn’t even born when he made his major league debut, gave up two runs and six hits in seven innings. He struck out seven and walked none. Moyer made his big league debut on June 16, 1986, 16 days before Toronto starter Brett Cecil (7-5) was born.

Yankees 8, Dodgers 6 At Los Angeles, Robinson Cano hit a two-run homer in the 10th inning after the New York Yankees rallied with four runs in the ninth off Los Angeles Dodgers closer Jonathan Broxton. Mark Teixeira led off the 10th with a single off Ramon Troncoso (1-2) and Alex Rodriguez grounded into a force play. Torre brought in left-hander George Sherrill, whose second pitch was driven into the leftfield pavilion by Cano for his 15th homer. The Dodgers have lost eight of their last 10 games.

Rangers 10, Astros 1 At Arlington, Texas, Josh Hamilton extended his hitting streak to 21 games with the second-longest home run ever at Rangers Ballpark as Texas trounced Houston. Hamilton’s two-run homer in the second was a 468-foot drive several rows into the upper deck in right-center field, way above the Rangers bullpen. His 18th homer of the season put Texas ahead to stay against Roy Oswalt (5-10), whom AL Westleading Texas has expressed interest in acquiring.

Cubs 8, White Sox 6 At Chicago, the White Sox’s 11-game winning streak came to an end when a ninthinning rally against the Cubs fell short. The White Sox scored three times in the bottom of the ninth. But Alex Rios struck out swinging against Carlos Marmol with runners at first and second to finish it. The White Sox had their longest winning string since a 12-game run in June 1961. Paul Konerko hit his 20th homer for the White Sox, tying Frank Thomas’ club record with 11 seasons of 20 or more.

D’backs 2, Rays 1 At St. Petersburg, Florida, Tampa Bay stars Evan Longoria and B.J. Upton had to be separated in a dugout dispute after Gerardo Parra hit a two-run homer in the fifth inning that helped Arizona beat the

Rays. Rodrigo Lopez and three relievers combined on a two-hitter for the Diamondbacks, who took two of three from the Rays. Longoria, the third baseman, and Upton, the center fielder, were seen arguing in the dugout after the Diamondbacks went ahead in the fifth. Several teammates stepped in between the two, and Willy Aybar wrapped his arms around Upton while separating the two.

Mets 6, Twins 0 At New York, Jeff Francoeur and David Wright each hit a two-run homer in the New York Mets’ victory over Minnesota. Ike Davis also went deep — very, very deep — and the Mets racked up 14 hits to back the fourth straight win by Jonathon Niese (5-2) since coming off the disabled list. Francoeur finished a triple short of the cycle.

Red Sox 5, Giants 1 At San Francisco, Jon Lester pitched a five-hitter and David Ortiz splashed a home run into McCovey Cove as Boston beat Tim Lincecum and San Francisco. Lester put the Red Sox ahead for good with a sacrifice fly in the second inning. Adrian Beltre also homered and Marco Scutaro and Bill Hall each hit RBI singles as Boston took the series. After the game, the Red Sox learned catcher Victor Martinez has a broken left thumb.

Indians 5, Reds 3 At Cincinnati, Choo Shin-soo homered twice off Bronson Arroyo — the second time he’s done it this season — as Cleveland beat Cincinnati to end its seven-game losing streak. The Indians traded power hitter Russell Branyan to Seattle for a pair of prospects before the game, conceding this season is a lost cause. Choo hit a solo homer in the first and a three-run shot in the fifth off Arroyo (7-4), who can’t seem to get him out. Choo also homered twice off Arroyo on May 21 during Cincinnati’s 7-4 win in Cleveland.

Tigers 10, Braves 4 At Atlanta, rookie Brennan Boesch homered and drove in three runs as Detroit downed Atlanta. Boesch hit an RBI single during a five-run fourth inning that finished Tommy Hanson (7-5). Boesch added a tworun homer, his 12th of the season and eighth in June, the next inning.

Royals 10, Cardinals 3 At Kansas City, Missouri, Jason Kendall had a pair of two-run doubles and Jose Guillen stretched his hitting streak to 21 games for Kansas City. Wilson Betemit hit a three-run homer as the Royals took two of three from their I-70 rivals. Guillen had two singles, his first glanced off the glove of shortstop Brendan Ryan and drove in a run. His 21-game streak is the

longest by a Royal since Rey Sanchez hit in 21 straight in 2001.

Orioles 4, Nationals 3 At Baltimore, Miguel Tejada singled in the tiebreaking run in the eighth inning as Baltimore rallied for its season-high fourth straight win. Baltimore scored the game’s final four runs after trailing 3-0 in the fourth. With the score 3-all in the eighth, Julio Lugo hit a one-out double off Tyler Clippard (8-5) but strayed too far from second base and was picked off by catcher Wil Nieves. Corey Patterson followed with a double, and Tejada singled up the middle to give the Orioles their first lead of the game.

Brewers 3, Mariners 0 At Milwaukee, Chris Narveson allowed four hits over eight innings and Rickie Weeks hit a leadoff homer to lift Milwaukee over Seattle. It was the first time the 28year-old Narveson (7-4) had a scoreless outing in 17 career starts and the longest outing of his three-year career. Weeks hit a leadoff homer for the 17th time in his career and finished with four hits for the Brewers, who have won six of seven. Rookie John Axford converted his seventh save.

Angels 10, Rockies 3 At Anaheim, California, Brandon Wood hit his first career grand slam and Mike Napoli added a three-run homer as the Los

Dream defeat Sparks ATLANTA: Iziane Castros Marques scored 21 of her 25 points in the second half as the Atlanta Dream rallied from a 16-point second-quarter deficit to beat the Los Angeles Sparks 89-81 in the WNBA on Sunday. Angel McCoughtry had 19 points for Atlanta (11-4), which never led until Castro Marques hit a tie-breaking 3pointer with 6:52 left during a 13-0 run that made it 80-69. DeLisha Milton-Jones and Kristi Tolliver each had 19 points for Los Angeles (3-10). Milton-Jones added 11 rebounds and Ticha Penicheiro had 10 assists. Sancho Lyttle added 12 points and 10 rebounds for the Dream.

Mystics 95, Mercury 85 At Washington, Crystal Langhorne scored a career-high 31 points and added 10 rebounds as Washington won its fourth straight home game. Lindsey Harding added 24 points for the Mystics (9-5), who have won five of their past six. Nakia Sanford scored 12 points and Monique Currie added 10 points for the Mystics. Langhorne scored 27 points on Thursday and has averaged 27.6 points and 13 rebounds over her past three games. WNBA scoring leader Diana Taurasi had 18 points for Phoenix.

Storm 83, Shock 72 At Tulsa, Oklahoma, Svetlana Abrosimova scored 19 of her seasonhigh 21 points in the second half as the Western Conference-leading Seattle overcame a 13-point second-half deficit. Down by five points entering the fourth quarter, Abrosimova and Seattle found their touch from 3-point range,

Athletics 3, Pirates 2 At Oakland, California, Kurt Suzuki homered with two outs in the eighth inning after a dropped foul popup as Oakland handed Pittsburgh its 17th straight road loss. With the score 2-all, Pirates reliever Evan Meek (3-2) struck out the first two batters in the eighth. Suzuki followed with a pop that catcher Jason Jaramillo dropped for an error. Two pitches later, Suzuki hit his 10th home run. Lastings Milledge hit a home run and Jose Tabata also drove in a run for the Pirates, who finished 2-13 in interleague play.

Padres 4, Marlins 2 At Miami, Florida, Will Venable hit a tiebreaking, two-run home run in the eighth inning as San Diego completed three-game sweep of Florida. Venable connected on a 22 pitch from Brian Sanches (0-1), driving the ball just inside the right-field pole for his eighth homer of the season and breaking a 2-all tie. It was his third tiebreaking homer since Wednesday night and fourth homer in seven games.—AP

US, Japan advance

hitting 5-of-8 from behind the arc in the quarter, including four consecutive 3s that keyed a 16-0 Storm run. Lauren Jackson led Seattle with 24 points. She scored 11 in the first half when Seattle struggled with Tulsa’s pressure defense, scoring 30 points in one of its lowest-scoring halves of the season.

Liberty 77, Sun 68 At New York, Cappie Pondexter scored 19 points as New York rallied to beat Connecticut. The Liberty trailed by 16 in the first half and looked as if they were going to be run off their home court. But New York held Connecticut to 22 second-half points to take control. New York’s Nicole Powell had 14 points and 10 rebounds, and Taj McWilliams-Franklin added 10 points for the Liberty’s second consecutive win. Connecticut rookie Tina Charles had 10 points and 16 rebounds for the Sun, her 11th double-double of the season.

Fever 70, Sky 64 At Rosemont, Illinois, Ebony Hoffman scored 13 points and Katie Douglas and Jessica Moore added 10 apiece as Indiana held off a late Chicago rally for a victory. The Fever, who never trailed in the second half, hit 6 of 8 free throws in the final 64 seconds to pull away after Chicago tied it at 64-64. The victory was the fourth straight for Indiana (9-5) and the third this season over Chicago (6-9). Thorn scored 15 points off the bench for the Sky while Sylvia Fowles added 11 points and a game-high 17 rebounds.—AP

Angeles Angels downed Colorado. Colorado led 2-0 when the Angels turned three hits and an error into four runs off Jhoulys Chacin (4-7) in the fourth inning. Napoli highlighted the rally with his 13th home run. Wood’s grand slam keyed a fiverun outburst in the eighth.

Castros Marques drives to the basket in this file photo

CARACAS: The United States and Japan continued their unbeaten run on Sunday at the world softball championship. The United States, which has won this tournament six straight times, defeated Australia 9-2 and Olympic champion Japan edged Canada 2-1. Both teams are 5-0 with two more games to play in the group stage. Quarterfinals are set for tomorrow ahead of the semifinals on Thursday and the finals on Friday. On Monday, the US plays the Dominican Republic and Japan faces Britain. On Tuesday, the United States plays the Czech Republic and Japan takes on South Africa. Cat Osterman picked up the victory for the United States, a complete-game victory with 10 strikeouts. Alissa Haber led the Americans at the plate. She was 3-for-3 with four RBIs and scored one run. “I was seeing the ball really well so I was very relaxed at the plate,” Haber said. “I thought I would be more nervous playing such a great team like Australia, but I really wasn’t. I think it has to do with the amount of talent on our team.” The United States has now won 15 of its 20 games against Australia and leads 5-0 in world championship games. Mika Someya picked up the complete-game victory for Japan with seven strikeouts and no walks. Japan took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the fourth inning, but Canada tied it in the top of the fifth. However, in the bottom of the fifth Ayumi Karino doubled in Shizuyo Hamamoto — who had also doubled — to restore the one-run lead. Canada’s first two batters were retired in the top of the seventh, but Melanie Matthews singled to bring the potentially tiebreaking run to the plate. Caitlin Lever was thrown out at first on a fielder’s choice to end the game. In other results on Sunday, Taiwan beat Argentina 6-3, China blanked the Dominican Republic 7-0, the Netherlands trounced South Africa 7-0, the Czech Republic edged Botswana 5-4, Venezuela beat New Zealand 5-2 and Cuba overcame Britain 4-1.—AP



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Kerr romps to victory

PITTSFORD: Cristie Kerr poses with the trophy after her 12-stroke victory at the LPGA Championship presented by Wegmans 2010 at the Locust Hill Country Club. —AFP

Roberts clinches Dick’s Sporting Goods Open ENDICOTT: Loren Roberts birdied the final hole Sunday for a closing 7-under 65 to win the Dick’s Sporting Goods Open by one stroke over Fred Funk. Roberts hit a pitching wedge to 6 feet and made birdie at the 18th hole at En-Joie Golf Club to finish at 15-under 201 and edge Funk, who also shot a 65. It was the 12th victory on the Champions Tour for the 54-year-old Roberts, who rallied from five shots behind with eight holes to play. Local favorite Wayne Levi (69) tied for third at 13 under with Zimbabwe’s Nick Price (68) and Dan Forsman (71), who bogeyed three of the final five holes to lose the lead he held for most of the day. Mark Calcavecchia, who turned 50 two weeks ago and was bidding to win his tour debut tour, never mounted a charge and finished at 12 under and tied with Brad Bryant (71) and Bill Glasson (69). It was Forsman’s tournament to win, but after making just one bogey over the first two rounds he self-destructed at the end. Forsman made a pretty 8-foot putt that broke left-to-right and into the hole for birdie at No. 11 to vault into sole possession of the lead at 15 under. Moments later, Roberts chipped in from the rough for eagle at No. 12 to begin his late surge, and followed that with birdies on the next two holes to move into contention. Forsman reached 16 under with a birdie putt from inside 2 feet at No. 12 that he nearly missed. He then made bogey at the par-3 14th hole, running his 25-foot putt to within 2 feet of the hole but missing the easy par putt to give Roberts new life. “My putting has been a little bit of an issue,” Forsman said. “I think that’s what happened down the stretch. I just wasn’t popping the putter as

well.” It was the second straight bogey at 14 for Forsman, and his struggles continued at the next hole when he hit a poor drive, hit his second shot into a greenside bunker and made bogey again. Roberts birdied No. 16 to gain the lead by a shot but returned the favor at the par-3 17th hole when he drove the rough behind the green and was unable to get up and down. The five-shot lead Forsman had held over Roberts had vanished in a span of five holes, and when he went to the tee at 16, Forsman was in a three-way tie for the lead, with Price and Levi just a shot behind. Price began the day three shots off the lead and quickly moved into contention with eagle at the 554-yard, par-5 third hole. He followed with birdies at Nos. 6 and 7 to move to the top of the leaderboard. Forsman had a chance for eagle at No. 8, but he was poor with a chip-and-roll from the fringe above the pin and had to settle for birdie. Price’s surge halted in dramatic fashion at the par-5 12th hole, statistically the easiest on the narrow the 6,974-yard course. He drove the trees lining the right side of the fairway and pulled his third shot onto a cart path, where it rolled up against a retaining wall lining a water hazard. Price nearly saved par, but hit his long putt too hard and it bounced off the edge of the cup and stayed out. “I’ve got to make birdies, I need three maybe four birdies,” Price said as he walked up the 13th fairway after his second shot had landed 8 feet from the pin. “I’m going to try.” Moments later, his birdie try lipped the left edge of the cup and didn’t drop, and he never recovered, making par at the final six holes. —AP

Watson wins playoff at Travelers CROMWELL: Bubba Watson rallied from six strokes behind to beat Scott Verplank on the second playoff hole with a par putt to earn his first PGA Tour victory Sunday at the Travelers Championship. Watson, Verplank and US Ryder Cup captain Corey Pavin needed extra holes after they all finished at 14-under par. After sinking a 3-footer for par on the par-3 16th to win it, Watson hugged his wife, Angie, and began crying. He said he was so nervous, he could not feel his arms on the final putt. “For me to get into a playoff after shooting 4 under was unreal, and to somehow make that par putt to win was unreal,” said Watson, who had the largest comeback on the tour since Padraig Harrington also came from six back to win the 2007 British Open. Verplank left his tee shot short of the green on the second playoff hole and missed an 8-foot par putt. Watson, who had a 48footer for birdie, was able to steady his nerves enough to get it close. Pavin was eliminated on the first playoff hole after hitting his tee shot just 219 yards and putting his approach into a bunker short of the 18th green. He chipped to within 3-feet, earning a standing ovation. “The playoff was a little disappointing to me,” he said. “I kind of popped up a three-wood there and left myself in a pretty precarious spot.” Justin Rose, who was coming off his first PGA Tour win earlier this month at the Memorial, had a three-stroke lead coming into Sunday. But the 29-year-old Englishman was 1-over par on the front nine, and collapsed on the back, shooting a 5-over 75. “It was obviously my tournament to lose,” Rose said. “I could have shot 1-over par today and won the golf tournament. It’s disappointing. It wasn’t overly difficult today.” Watson almost won on the first playoff hole, hitting a sand wedge on his approach within an

CROMWELL: Bubba Watson holds the trophy after winning a three-way two-hole playoff after the final round of the Travelers Championship. —AFP inch of the cup from 128-yards out. But Verplank sunk an 8-foot birdie putt to extend the playoff. Verplank started the day in 13th place, eight strokes behind third-round leader Justin Rose, while Pavin and Watson were both six back. He shot eagles on the 13th and 15th holes to move into contention. But a birdie shot on 17 lipped the cup. “When I holed it on 15, I looked at the leaderboard, and I wasn’t that far back. I needed to birdie one of the last couple holes,” Verplank said. The crowd began chanting “USA” after Pavin sunk a 32foot birdie putt on the 17th hole that broke sharply from left to right and put him into contention. The 50-year-old said he wouldn’t have put himself on the Ryder Cup team, even if he had won. “Being captain is pretty tough, just to do that,” he said. “Arnold Palmer was the last one to do that, and that was a

different era, a different time. I wouldn’t have played.” No player in the first three groups made it into the playoff. Rose held the lead until he missed a 10-foot par putt on the 10th hole and moved into a three-way tie with playing partner Ben Curtis and Verplank. He lost the lead after a bogey on the 12th hole, then hit his tee shot on 15 into the water on his way to a double bogey. Curtis, who bogeyed just two holes in the tournament coming into Sunday, hit his tee shot on 12 out of bounds to the left, and made double bogey from there. Both he and Rose bogeyed 16 to drop out of contention. Curtis finished with a 73. Chris Riley began the day at 8-under par, but shot an eagle the par-4 14th hole from 155-yards, and was 5-under on the back nine. He finished a stroke behind the leaders at 13-under par. —AP

PITTSFORD: Cristie Kerr soared to a 12-stroke victory at the LPGA Championship on Sunday in one of the most lopsided wins at a major, leaving her in position to become the first American to be ranked No. 1. Kerr closed with a birdie for 6-under 66, finishing at 19under 269 and leading all four rounds. This was her second major title, the other coming at the 2007 US Women’s Open. “It’s been such an amazing week,” she said. “To play here well on a golf course this tough and to win by that many shots in a major championship — that’s just unreal.” Kerr began the final round with an eight-stroke lead on a humid, overcast day at Locust Hill Country Club. She opened with six straight pars before birdieing three of her next four holes. By winning the $337,500 purse at the $2.25 million tournament, Kerr was projected by the LPGA to overtake Japan’s Ai Miyazato when the world rankings are released Monday. Miyazato needed to finish second to remain No. 1. Kerr is the first American to win the LPGA Championship since Juli Inkster in 2000. She becomes only the fifth player to hold the No. 1 spot since the rankings were introduced in 2006. “It’s a dream performance,” Kerr said. “It’s like you wake up or you dream — I can’t even speak right now. Winning by two or three is great, but winning by 12 shots is ridiculous. It’s obscene.” Miyazato opened the day at 1 over. She mounted a big rally with seven birdies before closing with a bogey-5 after hitting her tee shot into the rough. The four-time winner on the LPGA tour this season shot 66 to finish at 5 under in a tie for third with Jiyai Shin (71), the world’s No. 2 player. Song-Hee Kim (69) finished second. Kerr’s margin of victory beat the previous LPGA Championship record by one stroke set by Betsy King in 1992. Among all LPGA majors, the 12-stroke advantage is tied for second on the list with Babe Zaharias’ victory at the 1954 US Open. Louise Suggs holds the record with a 14-stroke victory at the 1949 US Women’s Open. Kerr began celebrating while walking up the 18th fairway, having stuck her approach shot within 5 feet. She raised her arms, broke into a wide smile and hugged playing partner Jimin Kang. After sinking her birdie putt, Kerr pumped her fist and raised her arms before breaking into tears. She was then doused by champagne by friend and fellow LPGA Tour player Natalie Gulbis. This was Kerr’s 14th win in 14 years on the tour. It’s also her second victory — and fourth top-three finish — this season after winning the State Farm Classic two weeks ago. “I didn’t limit myself,” Kerr said referring to a tournament in which she carded 23 birdies and only four bogeys — and none Sunday. “I wanted to see how far I could take it. And I took it pretty far. ... I don’t think I could’ve played better.” Kerr opened her final round with flawless efficiency, hitting most of her fairways and shooting for the middle of the greens to protect her lead. Then came her run of birdies, which she began by sinking an uphill 18foot putt on the par-3 seventh. As a big cheer arose from the gallery, Kerr punched the air and flashed her first big smile of the day. Emboldened by her birdie, Kerr went for the green off the fairway on the uphill par-5 eighth and two-putted from 30 feet to go to 15 under. After a par on the par-3 ninth, she closed with four birdies on the back nine in her second bogeyfree round of the week.. Kerr opened with a 68 to sit in a three-way tie for the lead Thursday. She then took control with a 6 under in the second round to open a five-stroke margin. With a 69 Saturday, she extended her lead to eight to set the LPGA Championship record for largest 54-hole lead. The only question was whether she would be pass Miyazato in the rankings. Miyazato matched Kerr in carding the day’s low round despite the bogey on No. 18. “It was a little disappointing on the last hole, but I played really good, and didn’t expect I could shoot like 6 or 7 under,” Miyazato said. “I did my job, so it makes me feel good.” What blew her away was Kerr’s dominance. —AP

DES MOINES: Tora Harris clears the bar in the Men’s High Jump during the 2010 USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships at Drake Stadium. —AFP

Spearmon, Moore capture 200s at outdoor nationals

DES MOINES: Wallace Spearmon celebrates after winning the Men’s 200 Meter during the 2010 USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships. —AFP

Sumo wrestling grapples with gambling scandal TOKYO: The venerable sport of sumo wrestling — slapped with its worst scandal in decades — may make the unprecedented move of canceling its next tournament because of humiliating allegations that dozens of wrestlers and coaches bet on baseball games. With police investigating the accusations that first appeared in the weekly press, Japan’s Sumo Association is considering suspending more than a dozen wrestlers and their coaches for the baseball gambling ring, which allegedly involved gangster middlemen. Police are considering criminal action pending the outcome of the investigation. Even without charges, gambling is seen as a breach of discipline and not in keeping with stringent ethical standards sumo wrestlers are expected to observe. The association’s chairman, former wrestler Musashigawa, was expected to announce Monday whether he would step down and suspend or fire the implicated wrestlers and coaches. A special panel convoked by the association also recommended the next tournament _ one of six held each year _ be canceled if action was not taken. That would be unprecedented and costly. “There will be no tomorrow for sumo unless they take these kind of measures,” said Shigeru Ito, the head of the panel. The image of sumo wrestling, Japan’s ancient national sport, has taken a beating in recent months. Its top wrestler, Mongolia’s Asashoryu, recently quit in disgrace after media reports that he got in a drunken altercation. The sport has also been involved in criminal investigations into the death of a wrestler who

was brutally hazed and into the use of marijuana by wrestlers in its prestigious top division. “Unless they take action like the ones we have recommended they won’t be able to win back the public’s trust,” panel member Takayasu Okushima said in a news conference Sunday night. “This is the result of all the scandals they haven’t dealt with in the past.” The oversight panel was to formally submit its recommendations to the Sumo Association’s executive board Monday. According to Japan’s Kyodo news agency, it was to suggest 15 wrestlers be suspended, along with 12 coaches. It was also to recommend that one coach be expelled permanently. Sumo’s next tournament is scheduled to begin in the central city of Nagoya on July 11. The Sumo Association had said it would decide by July 4 whether it would be canceled. Sumo tournaments are televised live, and canceling the 15-day event would be a major blow to the sport. Though still widely popular, sumo’s fan base has dwindled in recent years, partly because of the scandals but also because of the lack of topflight Japanese wrestlers to cheer for. The sport’s reigning grand champion — who is not implicated — is Mongolian, and most of the best wrestlers are also foreigners. Gambling and associating with members of a crime syndicate will do little to improve sumo’s image. Sumo wrestlers, especially those in the elite division, are expected to live by higher standards and adhere to a rigid set of rules. Most wrestlers are required to live in communal training stables where all aspects of their daily lives are dictated by strict tradition. —AP

DES MOINES: Wallace Spearmon and Consuella Moore won national titles in the 200 meters at the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships on Sunday. Spearmon finished in a wind-aided 19.77 seconds to edge Walter Dix, who won the 100 on Friday. Dix took second in 20.14. Moore, who recently returned to the track after an extended absence, won in 22.40, edging out Shalonda Solomon. David Oliver upset David Payne in the 110 hurdles, breezing to the victory in 12.93. Payne, the silver medalist in the Olympics two years ago, finished fourth. Shot putter Christian Cantwell won his second straight outdoor title with a heave of 71 feet, 1/2 inches. Alysia Johnson won the women’s 800 in 1:59.87, while Nick Symmonds took his third straight American title in the 800 in 1:45.98. Ti’erra Brown won the women’s 400 hurdles by nearly a second, while Lopez Lomong beat Leonel Manzano by less than 0.1 seconds in the men’s 1,500. The absence of Tyson Gay, who missed nationals with a hamstring injury, and Shawn Crawford, who was a late scratch, left the men’s 200 field thinner than usual. That left Spearmon and Dix as the favorites, and Spearmon kept Dix from sweeping the short sprint events. Spearmon knows some folks might discount his win because of who he didn’t race against. But to him, a win is a win. “We’re missing Tyson...and (Crawford) too, and that guy, he’s an animal. Both of those guys are great competitors,” Spearmon said. “You’re going to hear ‘He wouldn’t have won if Tyson was there. He wouldn’t have won if Shawn was there.’ So I mean, hey. Take it. If they’d have been here I would had to race them and you never know what happens.” Moore was facing a similar situation with Allyson Felix, the 100 winner on Friday and a three-time world outdoor champion in the 200, choosing not to compete in Sunday’s 200 final. But Moore, running for the first time at the national meet since 2006, held off Solomon and Porscha Lucas for her biggest victory since resuming her career this season. Dwight Phillips, a three-time world outdoor champion, took the long jump in 27-51/2 and Jenn Suhr, the silver medalist in Beijing, won the women’s pole vault at 16-1/2. The shot put took center stage among the field events on Sunday, in part because the fans in Iowa are accustomed to seeing the nation’s best at the Drake Relays every year. Cantwell’s laid-back personality and success at Drake — he’s won seven titles there and was recently inducted into the meet’s Hall of Fame — have made him a fan favorite in Des Moines. The reigning world outdoor champ held off Reese Hoffa and Adam Nelson for the title. Cantwell wasn’t exactly thrilled with his winning put, which fell shorter than his world-leading 73-4 last weekend in St. Charles, Missouri, but in the end he’ll take it. “Maybe I was too comfortable, I don’t know. It was pretty ugly. But I guess that anytime you win a national championship in the shot put, in U.S., you should be happy,” Cantwell said. —AP


Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Roddick crashes out Federer, Nadal, Murray cruise

LOUDON: Jimmie Johnson, driver of the No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet, leads Kurt Busch, driver of the No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge, and AJ Allmendinger, driver of the No. 43 Berlin City Auto Group Ford, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series LENOX Industrial Tools 301.—AFP

Johnson surges past Busch to win at New Hampshire LOUDON: Jimmie Johnson surged past Kurt Busch with two laps left to win the Sprint Cup race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Sunday. Busch grabbed the lead with about seven laps left when he nudged Johnson out of the way. Johnson and Busch quickly got side-byside to energize what had been a lackluster race. The four-time defending champion pulled away to win his second straight race after taking the checkered flag last week on the road course at Infineon Raceway. Johnson dedicated the win to his pregnant wife, Chandra, who is at home and due with their first child. “Hopefully you didn’t go into labor with this victory,” he said to his wife. “Wait for me, I want to be a part of this.” Tony Stewart finished second and Busch was third. Jeff Gordon and Kevin Harvick round

out the top five. Johnson put a little bump on Busch to move him up the track, allowing the No. 48 to slip underneath and win for the fifth time this season. “I’m not good at doing that stuff,” Johnson said. “Usually I crash myself in the process. So I tried it once and moved him. The second time I moved him out of the way and got by him.” The 318-mile race was almost absent of cautions until the very end, with 201 straight laps of green flag racing. Kasey Kahne drove up front for most of the race until engine problems knocked him out. Pole sitter Juan Pablo Montoya also was in contention until he was knocked out late by a lapped car. Jeff Burton was a serious threat to win for the first time in two years until he made the decision not to pit with 17 laps left. He

was the only lead lap driver not to pit and it cost him when he spun into Kyle Busch and took them both out of contention. Kurt Busch knew his car wasn’t strong enough to win and just hoped that late-race tap was enough to hold off Johnson. “We did what we could to get the lead,” he said. “I was just counting the laps and was like, man, there’s not enough laps. The thought was those 10 points for winning would look a lot better stacked in our deck than in his chip count.” Johnson has totally silenced the doubts that he was in a slump or appeared vulnerable during a five-race stretch from April to May. He has two straight wins for the second time this season and four straight topsix finishes. Ryan Newman, Clint Bowyer, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Joey Logano and AJ Allmendinger completed the top 10.—AP

South Africa top third Test BRIDGETOWN: A record sixthwicket stand between A.B. de Villiers and Ashwell Prince put South Africa on top in the third and final Test against West Indies on Sunday. De Villiers fell in the final halfhour for 73, and Prince was unbeaten on 55, as the South Africans reached 285 for six, replying to West Indies’ first innings total of 231, at the close on the second day at Kensington Oval. South Africa captain Graeme Smith supported with 70, and Jacques Kallis made 43 to prop up the visitors’ batting. De Villiers and Prince batted resolutely for nearly four hours in humid conditions to defy the West Indies attack, and put the Proteas back on track, after they slipped to 145 for five early in the afternoon session. The pair added 134 to establish a new record for South Africa against the hosts in Tests before De Villiers was caught behind off Sulieman Benn attempting a cut. He struck halfdozen boundaries from 189 balls in 245 minutes of batting. Benn, the beanpole left-arm spin bowler, was the pick of the West Indies’ bowlers with four wickets for 59 runs from 31 overs, using clever variations of line and length to outfox the South African batsmen. Earlier, Smith fell just before lunch to Benn to bring West Indies back into the match. Smith departed, following a stand of 62 with Kallis for the fourth wicket, as the South Africans, resuming from their overnight total of 46 for two, reached 145 for four at the interval. Smith was unflappable throughout his 159-minute stay at the crease, and reached his 50 from 79 balls, when he worked Shane Shillingford through backward square leg for two. He survived an umpiring decision review for lbw to Benn, when he was 60, and had his sights set on his second hundred of the series. But the big left-hander misread his 115th delivery from Benn in the final half-hour before the interval, played defensively forward, and gave a bat-pad catch to forward short leg. He struck nine boundaries in his innings. Earlier, Brandon Bess claimed his maiden Test scalp, when night-watchman Paul Harris was caught at first slip for 11 in the first half-hour. After lunch, South Africa suffered an immediate setback,

BARBADOS: South Africa’s Ashwell Prince (left) bats as West Indies’ Dwayne Bravo (right) looks on during the second day of a Test cricket match in Bridgetown.—AP

SCOREBOARD BRIDGETOWN, Barbados: Scoreboard at stumps on the second day of the third and final Test between West Indies and South Africa on Sunday at Kensington Oval here: West Indies 1st Innings 231 (D. Bravo 61; J. Botha 4-56) South Africa 1st Innings (overnight 46 for two) G. Smith c Richards b Benn A. Petersen c Chanderpaul b Roach H. Amla c Nash b Benn P. Harris c Gayle b Bess J. Kallis b Benn A.B. de Villiers c Ramdin b Benn A. Prince not out when Kallis was dismissed from the last ball of the first over, following the interval. Kallis surrendered his wicket tamely with a rare misjudgement, when he offered no stroke to an arm-ball from Benn, and was bowled for 43. Prince, whose innings includes three boundaries from 173 balls in 235 minutes, joined de Villiers, and there were few alarms, as they carried South Africa to 203 for five at tea. On eight, de Villiers had an agonising wait before West Indies opted against reviewing a not-out decision from Australian umpire Steve Davis, when it appeared the

70 1 5 11 43 73 55

M. Boucher not out 4 Extras (b5, lb5, w5, nb8) 23 Total (6 wkts, 104 overs) 285 To bat: J. Botha, D. Steyn, M. Morkel Fall of wickets: 1-17 (Petersen), 2-41 (Amla), 360 (Harris), 4-122 (*Smith), 5-145 (Kallis), 6-279 (de Villiers) Bowling: Roach 20-6-43-1 (nb1, w2); Bess 9-065-1 (nb7, w3); Shillingford 25-2-85-0; Benn 317-59-4; D.J. Bravo 17-8-21-0; Gayle 2-1-2-0 Position: South Africa lead by 54 runs with four first innings wickets standing.

batsmen may have edged a delivery from Kemar Roach to the keeper. Video replays later proved inconclusive, and justified the West Indies’ decision, and de Villiers continued merrily along with Prince. After tea, de Villiers and Prince absorbed the pressure from the West Indies, and put South Africa in charge. De Villiers reached his 50 from 131 balls, with a five that also formalised the lead for the South Africans. He drove Kemar Roach to the right of Brendan Nash at coverpoint, and the fielder’s throw to

the striker’s end went wide, then travelled for four overthrows. Prince benefitted from that missed run-out chance, and proceeded to reach his 50 from 134 deliveries, with a sweep for a single through the leg-side off Benn. South Africa’s plans however, were undermined, when Benn struck to remove de Villiers about 15 minute before stumps were drawn. South Africa lead the three-Test series 1-0, after they won the first Test by 163 runs inside four days last Sunday at Queen’s Park Oval in Trinidad, and the second Test was drawn at Warner Park in St. Kitts.—AFP

LONDON: Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray were all in imperious form as they surged into the Wimbledon quarter-finals yesterday, but three-time finalist Andy Roddick crashed to a stunning defeat against Taiwan’s Lu Yen-Hsun. Swiss top seed Federer, who is gunning for a seventh Wimbledon title, blasted away the doubts after a pair of disappointing displays in the first week as he cruised to a 6-3, 6-2, 6-3 win over Austrian 16th seed Jurgen Melzer on Centre Court. Joining Federer in the last eight was second seed Nadal, the 2008 Wimbledon champion, who shrugged off concerns over his fitness after thrashing France’s Paul-Henri Mathieu 64, 6-2, 6-2. Nadal, who plays Robin Soderling next in a rematch of the recent French Open final, has been troubled by a right knee injury and is set to have treatment on it once the tournament ends. But he looked in good shape during a two hour demolition of the unseeded Mathieu on Court One and insisted he was fine after the match. There was a major shock late in the day as Roddick, beaten by Federer in last year’s final here, failed to get past a player ranked 84th in the world and competing in his first Grand Slam quarter-final. It was an historic victory for Lu, who became the first Taiwanese man or woman to reach the quarter-finals of a Grand Slam singles. That result was a boost to Federer, who could have played Roddick in the last four, and the Swiss admits he is in fine form at present. “I felt great. It was always going to be a tough match against Jurgen,” Federer said. “I found my range and I was playing well and very happy with the way I played. This is a very good win for me. “I think my form’s good now and that’s what I really care about. I know how to win here and that’s a great advantage for me.” Federer faces Tomas Berdych in the quarter-finals after the Czech 12th seed came from behind to beat Germany’s Daniel Brands 4-6, 7-6 (7/1), 75, 6-3. Brands made it through to the fourth round after Romania’s Victor Hanescu pulled out of their third round tie in controversial circumstances. Hanescu was fined for spitting towards the crowd and not trying as he threw in the towel in the fifth set. Elsewhere at the Championships, Murray defeated American 18th seed Sam Querrey 7-5, 6-3, 6-4 to revive a nation’s sporting hopes after England’s dismal defeat to Germany in the football World Cup. Just 24 hours after England flopped in South Africa, fourth seed Murray restored British pride with a crushing win on Centre Court to set up a last eight clash with France’s JoWilfried Tsonga. Murray has yet to drop a set in four matches at the All England Club this year and the Scot looks in his best form for months after some poor results heading into the tournament. The third seed, Serbia’s Novak Djokovic, also made it through as he clinched a 7-5, 64, 3-6, 6-4 win over in-form Australian Lleyton Hewitt. Djokovic admitted he had prepared himself for a gruelling match because he knew Hewitt, the 15th seed here, would be tough to overcome on grass. “We both expected a long and difficult match. We played a long match here three years ago and it was something similar this time,” Djokovic said. “It could have gone either way but I played the right shots at the right time.” Hewitt, the 2002 Wimbledon champion, added: “When you lose any Grand Slam, you’re disappointed. But there are a lot of positives to take out of the last month so I’ve got to try and look at those as much as possible.” Swedish sixth seed Soderling, beaten in the French Open final recently, also moved into the last eight after defeating Spanish ninth seed David Ferrer 6-2, 5-7, 62, 3-6, 7-5. In an all-French clash, 10th seed Tsonga beat 32nd seed Julien Benneteau 6-1, 6-4, 3-6, 6-1.—AFP

WIMBLEDON: Yen-Hsun Lu of Taiwan serves to Andy Roddick of US during their men’s singles match at the All England Lawn Tennis Championships.—AP

Hyundai Fan Park at 2010 FIFA World Cup SEOUL: Hyundai Motor Company, one of the official top partners of the FIFA 2010 World Cup, has officially kicked off the Hyundai Fan Park, a street cheering event, in Johannesburg, South Africa. Hyundai is offering soccer fans around the world the opportunity to enjoy the World Cup in a fun and safe environment by providing venues and large screens in 32 cities from 19 countries across the 31 days of the event. Giant screens will relay all the action from South Africa, while group cheering boosts the festive mood. Besides cheering in support of the national soccer team, fans and visitors to the Hyundai Fan Park have a chance to get involved in various festive events and programs, including music concerts, games, contests and awards. The Fan of the Match, giving one lucky winner the chance to be named best fan at the match, will be introduced to the crowd on the giant screens, while the winner of the Be There With Hyundai, the team slogan contest for participating countries, will be awarded, both with great prizes. Access to the Hyundai Fan Park is free of charge but tickets might be required for some occasions for security reasons. For detailed information of Hyundai Fan Park in your area, please visit m/.

Bangladesh sack Shakib, appoint Mortaza as captain DHAKA: Bangladesh’s cricket chiefs yesterday removed Shakib Al Hasan as captain and replaced him with Mashrafe Mortaza for the upcoming tour of England, Ireland and Scotland. Shakib was dumped just a few days before the team was due to leave for England, where he will serve as Mortaza’s deputy, Bangladesh Cricket Board official Enayat Hossain Siraj told AFP. Mortaza had been appointed captain for the tour of the West Indies, but suffered a knee injury and was replaced by Shakib, who went on to lead the side to victory in both the Test and one-day series against the depleted rivals. “Mashrafe was our captain during the West Indies series. But then he suffered injuries. So we are now bringing him back to his former position,” Siraj said. The official claimed that Shakib had voluntarily stepped down to concentrate on his cricket. But assistant coach Khaled Mahmud, a former Bangladesh captain, admitted he was surprised by the decision to change captains a few days before the team was due to depart for England. “Before Shakib became captain, the selectors always said that if Mashrafe could get fit, he might be able to take the job again,”

Mahmud told Cricinfo. “I’m not sure if it’s the right or wrong move, but it’s been a tough time for Shakib, whose recent performances, particularly with the bat, have not been up to standard. “It’s important for Bangladesh that he performs well, and perhaps the pressure of the captaincy is too much. He’s still young, while Mashrafe is more mature.” Under Shakib, Bangladesh lost a home Test series against India and were beaten both at home and away by England. They also fared poorly in the recent Asia Cup in Sri Lanka where they lost all three matches. Bangladesh are due to play three one-day internationals against England and two each against Ireland and Scotland on the tour, which starts on July 3. Bangladesh’s one-day squad: Mashrafe Mortaza (capt), Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim, Tamim Iqbal, Imrul Kayes, Jahurul Islam, Junaid Siddique, Raqibul Hasan, Faisal Hossain, Mohammad Mahmudullah, Abdur Razzak, Syed Rasel, Rubel Hossain, Shafiul Islam, Nazmul Hossain. Coach: Jamie Siddons (AUS).—AFP

18 Tuesday, June 29, 2010

FIFA, don’t ignore the Blunder of Bloemfontein BLOEMFONTEIN: Sepp Blatter must be squirming. If he isn’t, he should be. Why is it that the FIFA boss uses modern technology when it suits him — to burnish his public persona by Tweeting, for example — but not when it would do some good for global football, the game whose interests he is meant to be taking care of? Blatter merrily Tweeted on Sunday that he was on his way to the historically charged World Cup match between Germany and England. Since he was at the Free State Stadium, we must assume that he saw the Blunder of Bloemfontein with his own eyes. It was impossible to miss — unless you were a linesman from Uruguay called Mauricio Espinosa. Fact: Frank Lampard’s first-half goal for England was good. Please, let’s not fall into the trap of saying that Espinosa’s failure to see that

the ball crossed the line was merely 1966 in reverse, some sort of karmic retribution for Geoff Hurst’s goal in the 101st minute against Germany in the World Cup final 44 years ago. All this time later, it is not possible to say with 100 percent certainty that Soviet linesman Tofik Bakhramov called it correctly when he said Hurst’s strike crossed the goal-line. But this time in South Africa was entirely different. Lampard’s lob was clearly at least the length of a player’s shoe over the line and into the German goal. Not even a close call. This wasn’t poetic justice for Germany. It was an English goal. Fact: Espinosa should have seen it. Practically everyone else did, without the need for video technology. It was visible with the naked eye. England coach Fabio Capello actually started celebrating before he realized, horrified, that the goal wouldn’t be given.

“From the bench, I saw the ball go over,” Capello said. David Beckham, at halftime, went over to the referee, holding apart his hands like an angler boasting about the size of a prize salmon he caught. The message: Ref, it was that far over the line. German coach Joachim Loew agreed: “I saw in the television this ball was behind the line, it must have been given as goal.” Fact: The goal, had it been given, would have pegged the score back to 2-2 and perhaps altered the complexion of the match entirely. Instead, at 2-1 to Germany, England was forced to chase for another score. The English left themselves vulnerable at the back as they pushed forward. The German players didn’t need to be asked twice to take up the English invitation to attack them on the counter. Fact: Germany’s far younger and more coherent side was much better than

World Cup Photo gallery

England’s and deserved the win that puts it into the quarterfinals. Lampard’s unallowed goal should not mask the fact that England had a poor World Cup. England has wonderful players who play in the world’s toughest league but yet, as a national side, it cannot be taken seriously as a football power. Capello has failed in his lavishly paid job to change that enigma. Fact: technology exists that could quickly tell referees whether balls crossed goal-lines. FIFA has even experimented with it. Balls could be used with an embedded chip that sends the message “Goal” or a beep to the referee’s earpiece. Or Hawkeye’s all-seeing eye could be used, as it is in tennis for disputed line calls. But FIFA prefers the Dark Ages. Three months before this World Cup, it ruled out further experiments with goal-line technology. “Technology should not enter into the

game, whatever are the opinions,” said FIFA’s general secretary Jerome Valcke back then. Because of FIFA’s oft-stated refusal of machines, even the Blunder of Bloemfontein is unlikely to change its mind. As those who love football raged about and debated Lampard’s un-goal, FIFA said Sunday night it would not comment on the performance of the referee from Uruguay. The un-goal was also edited out of a 2minute highlight reel of the match on FIFA’s web site. Basically, FIFA doesn’t want to know. That the eventual score was 4-1 to Germany also gave it a teenyweeny fig-leaf to hide behind because it could be disingenuously argued that Lampard’s goal would not have made a major difference to the eventual result. What dinosaurs. FIFA fears that technology would undermine the authority of referees and their assistants. But the

reverse is in fact happening. Match officials are being made to look like idiots because they are not getting the help that they need. Football, like life, can never always be fair. The game is too complex, too fastmoving for video technology to be used in most situations. Stopping every few seconds or minutes to see whether players committed fouls or to inspect some other action would break up the rhythm of matches. And video replays are often not 100 percent conclusive, so humans would still be needed to interpret what is being shown on screen. But balls, as Lampard proved, can bounce in and out of goal so quickly that a linesman can miss it if he’s not paying attention, blinks or for whatever is looking away. That’s why technology is needed. The time to introduce it was yesterday. Blatter has some explaining to do. That’s a fact.—AP

Capello wants to carry on

DURBAN: A fan of the Netherlands poses for pictures prior to the World Cup round of 16 soccer match between the Netherlands and Slovakia at the stadium in South Africa. —AP

DURBAN: A young supporter of Slovakia smiles at Durban’s Moses Mabhida stadium during the South Africa 2010 World Cup round of 16 match between The Netherlands and Slovakia. —AFP

DURBAN: A dressed-up Netherlands fan cheers during the 2010 World Cup round of 16 football match Netherlands versus Slovakia at Moses Mabhida Stadium. —AFP

RUSTENBURG: Fabio Capello said yesterday he wants to continue as England manager but revealed he had been told by the Football Association (FA) that they would need two weeks to decide whether to keep him in the post. Despite being savaged by the media in the wake of England’s 41 record World Cup finals thrashing by Germany in their Last 16 match, Capello said he wanted to see out a contract that runs until after the finals of Euro 2012. “I have a contract and I refused a lot of opportunities to be the manager of important clubs because I want to stay here,” Capello told reporters. “I like this job. I like to be the England manager.” Capello said the FA had to decide whether they still wanted him in the wake of England’s heaviest defeat in a World Cup and admitted he had not won an immediate vote of confidence from Sir Dave Richards, currently the senior figure in the governing body. “I spoke this morning with Sir Dave,” Capello added. “He told me that he needs two weeks time to decide. I said that I can be, next season, the manager of England but they have to decide. Do I want to stay on? Absolutely.” In a sign that English football’s governing body is unlikely to seek to dismiss Capello-a move that could cost them several million pounds in compensation-an FA spokesman said that “nothing sinister” should be read into Capello’s conversation with Richards. “We are all very clear Fabio is under contract until 2012 and nothing has changed in that respect,” the spokesman, Adrian Bevington, said. “We are very disappointed to have gone out early and it makes perfect sense to go back to London, take stock and then speak to Fabio from there.” Bevington added: “It is very important to remember we hired Fabio at a time when we were, as a nation, on the floor having failed to reach a major tournament (Euro 2008). He completely restored our confidence and before this tournament we had an outstanding record in the qualifying campaign.” Capello admitted the England squad would have to be shaken up with several key players now entering their 30s, but he also said English football had to face up to the fact that the gruelling nature of the domestic club season inevitably meant players arrived tired at international tournaments. “We spoke about this with Sir Dave,” the Italian said. “About younger players we can play for the next qualification. I know what I have to do.” Asked why he felt Wayne Rooney had performed so far below his Manchester United standard, Capello blamed fatigue. “Not just Wayne Rooney but all the English players arrived really tired at this competition. “All the coaches told me the physical situation and the mental situation of the players was not like the players we know. They played not so fast, not so quick like I remember in other games.” Capello also reiterated his belief that Germany could have been beaten if Frank Lampard’s goal, which would have levelled Sunday’s match at 2-2, had not been mistakenly disallowed, and dismissed criticism of his tactics.—AFP

RUSTENBURG: England’s coach Fabio Capello (right) and manager director of Club England, Adrian Bevington, speak during a press conference in Rustenburg yesterday. —AFP

FIFA silent on referees’ errors JOHANNESBURG: FIFA refused to comment yesterday on mistakes made by World Cup match officials that contributed to the elimination of England and Mexico. The governing body of world football did not send any officials with responsibility for referees to its daily briefing despite widespread furor over Sunday’s errors. FIFA spokesman Nicolas Maingot faced hostile questioning but said he was not competent to discuss decisions by referees or football’s rules-making panel, which has rejected introducing video technology that would help match officials. “We obviously will not open any debate,” Maingot said. “This is obviously not the place for this.” Television replays quickly showed Sunday that England was denied a goal against Germany when Frank Lampard’s shot bounced down from the crossbar and over the goal line. Uruguayan referee Jorge Larrionda waved away the 38th-minute non-goal, which would have leveled the game at 2-2. Germany went on to win 4-1. Later Sunday, Argentina’s first goal in a 3-1 win against Mexico was scored by Carlos Tevez from an offside position but was allowed by Italian referee Roberto Rosetti after he consulted his assistant. Mexico players protested to the match officials after seeing replays on a stadium giant screen which showed the infringement. Former Netherlands great Johan Cruyff joined the debate yesterday in support of goal-line technology to help referees. “Cameras in the goal are fine,”

Cruyff wrote in Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf, “but if you also link that to offside decisions it gets tricky.” FIFA president Sepp Blatter, who attended both games Sunday, strongly opposes introducing any video technology to help referees. “Let it be as it is and let’s leave football with errors,” Blatter said after video experiments were halted at a March 2008 meeting of the rules panel, the International Football Association Board. “Other sports regularly change the laws of the game to react to the new technology. We don’t do it and this makes also the fascination and the popularity of football.” The voting structure for decisions by IFAB, which comprises FIFA and the four British national federations, means FIFA can block any proposal. The 2008 meeting rejected the Hawk-Eye system which is used in tennis to judge line calls. The football version used 12 cameras around the stadium to determine the ball’s position over the goal line and send a message to the referee. The subject was debated again last March and rejected. Blatter said then that video technology was too expensive to apply worldwide, would break up the flow of games and was not always conclusive. “No matter which technology is applied, at the end of the day a decision will have to be taken by a human being,” Blatter said. World Cup referees are scheduled to meet the media today at their training base near Pretoria, but are forbidden to discuss their own or colleagues’ match decisions. —AP

BLOEMFONTEIN: Uruguayan referee Jorge Larrionda (right) talks with England’s striker Wayne Rooney during the 2010 World Cup round of 16 match Germany vs England on June 27. —AFP

End of the road for England’s golden generation RUSTENBURG: For Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard and John Terry the morning after the night before must have been a painful one. The most prominent members of England’s ‘golden generation’ will have known as they ruefully packed their bags at the Royal Bafokeng Sports Campus that their chance of glory on their profession’s biggest stage ended with the humiliation they suffered at the hands of Germany on Sunday. There may be more medals waiting for them with their clubs and there might be one last hurrah with England at Euro 2012. But after quarter-final exits in both 2002 and 2006 - the year they were supposed to reach their peak - the World Cup triumph they all dreamed of and so many people believed them capable of delivering will now become the objective of a new, less celebrated generation of Englishmen. In 2014, the year that Brazil hosts the next World Cup, Lampard will turn 36, Gerrard and Terry will both celebrate their 34th birthdays. Ashley Cole’s athleticism may enable him to keep going all the way to Brazil but the England days of Rio Ferdinand, 32 in November and increasingly afflicted by injuries, look numbered. They think it’s all over too for David Beckham, who seems unlikely to get a chance to add to his 115 caps after missing out on this tournament with a knee injury. Likewise for Michael Owen, discarded by Fabio Capello and insufficiently prominent at Manchester United to harbour realistic hopes of a recall, even if the Italian departs his post. —AFP

19 Tuesday, June 29, 2010

World Cup

Spain wary of Portugal threat

Photo gallery

DURBAN: A football fan flashes the victory sign before the start of the 2010 World Cup round of 16 football match between Netherlands and Slovakia.—AFP

DURBAN: A supporter of Netherlands cheers for his team before the start of the 2010 World Cup round of 16 football match between Netherlands and Slovakia. —AFP

DURBAN: Supporters of The Netherlands pose at Durban’s Moses Mabhida stadium during the South Africa 2010 World Cup round of 16 match between The Netherlands and Slovakia.—AFP

DURBAN: A Dutch supporter poses prior to the 2010 World Cup round of 16 match Netherlands vs Slovakia in Durban. —AFP

CAPE TOWN: Spain coach Vicente Del Bosque takes no pleasure in avoiding Brazil in the World Cup second round, with Iberian rivals Portugal an equally tough hurdle for the European champions today. After a rocky start to the tournament, Spain pulled themselves together to top Group H with Brazil doing the same in Group G. To many it was a relief, with the top two teams in the world meeting in the round of 16 seen as an anti-climax when that is the match long tipped by pundits as a potential final. Del Bosque though said Portugal was as much of a challenge. “We’ve seen how they controlled the game against Brazil, hitting them on the counterattack,” he said. “Portugal are going to be a very tough side. I take no satisfaction from the fact we’re up against Portugal instead of Brazil. They are both great national teams.” What Del Bosque has taken satisfaction from is the way his team have bounced back from losing their opening game to Switzerland 1-0. It was a shock defeat but they got back on track with a 2-0 win against Honduras before beating 10-man Chile 2-1. “We were very upset when we lost to Switzerland. We had to go against the current, swim upstream,” he said. “I think as from now we will be more optimistic in every sense of the word and I’m sure that optimism will be seen on the pitch.” They go into the match with Real Madrid midfielder Xabi Alonso still uncertain after spraining his right ankle in the Chile match on Friday. If he fails to recover, 21-year-old Javi Martinez could take his place. Centre-back Raul Albiol is also a doubt with a shin injury. Portugal have their own injury worries with striker Danny set to miss the game with a badly bruised leg, but playmaker Deco returns after sitting out the 0-0 draw with Brazil. At stake for both teams is a quarter-final berth against either Paraguay or Japan at Ellis Park in Johannesburg, a tempting fixture as both Spain and Portugal look to win the World Cup for the first time in their history. The Portuguese finished second in their group after goalless draws with Ivory Coast and Brazil and a 7-0 rout of North Korea. They successfully blunted Brazil’s natural flair with Duda, Bruno Alves, Ricardo Carvalho and Ricardo Costa holding a solid line at the back. Portugal have now kept a clean sheet in 22 of their last 26 internationals and these tactics are likely to be used again to counter the threat of Fernando Torres and the in-form David Villa, who has already scored three goals. Coach Carlos Queiroz warned though that statistics meant little in knockout football. “We can’t go into the round of 16 simply on reputation or statistics. The players now have to deliver the goods,” he said. Winger Simao knows his side will be facing one of the best teams in the world, but insists they have no fear. “Without showing them a lack of respect, we’re not scared at all,” said the Atletico Madrid star. “We’ve got a great team too. And to become better, we have to beat Spain. They’re champions of Europe, but we have our own qualities.” Torres and Villa are one of the most potent strike duos in world football and they need to be dealt with effectively. That job will go to Chelsea’s Ricardo Carvalho, who is the leader of Portugal’s last line of defense and the bedrock on which they lay their foundations. If he, Duda, Bruno Alves, and Ricardo Costa can successfully carry out their task, as they did against Brazil, then the Portuguese could sneak this one on the counter-attack.—AFP

JOHANNESBURG: A combination of two pictures taken during matches of the 2010 Football World Cup in June 2010 shows at (left) Spain’s striker David Villa and (right) Portugal’s striker Cristiano Ronaldo. —AFP

French chief quits over WCup fiasco PARIS: Jean-Pierre Escalettes resigned yesterday as French Football Federation (FFF) president following France’s chaotic World Cup finals campaign. The 75-year-old went into the finals in South Africa on a high after heading up the successful bid for France to host the 2016 European Championship finals. However, his position became untenable after a succession of problems hit the French World Cup campaign with striker Nicolas Anelka being sent home in dis-

grace after a foul mouthed outburst at coach Raymond Domenech, a player’s strike and a first round exit which saw them finish bottom of the group. Escalettes, whose head had been called for by French Sports Minister Roselyne Bachelot, said that he had had no choice but to resign after consultations with friends and colleagues. “After a weekend of reflection during which I consulted with my fellow elected colleagues, my collaborators and my close

friends and family, I consider it my duty to resign as President of the French Football Federation,” he said. “I will submit my resignation at the next Federal Council meeting on July 2 (Friday). “I will remain at the disposal of everyone to analyse the reasons for the fiasco surrounding the French team in South Africa. I will develop on these different points on Friday before my colleagues on the Federal Council.”—AFP

History beckons Japan, Paraguay PRETORIA: Japan and Paraguay stand on the brink of history ahead of their second round clash at the Loftus Versfeld stadium here today. Neither side has ever made it to the quarter-finals of the World Cup before so one team is guaranteed to be the greatest that their respective country has ever produced. This match-up is one of the most unexpected and unlikely in the second round and in some respects courtesy of the failings of others. Paraguay were expected to be playing for second place in their group but Italy’s failure to win a match saw them eliminated with Paraguay taking top spot despite only winning once themselves. Japan were an unexpected package in their group as they toppled both Cameroon and Denmark while falling by only by a single goal against the highly fancied Dutch. And as the only surviving Asian nation left in the competition, Japan coach Takeshi Okada believes his team can take inspiration from that just as Ghana did from being the last remaining Africans. “As a matter of course, I think we have to play with pride as a member nation of Asia. My wish to overcome Paraguay has grown stronger,” he said. “We have really played each group game as if we were playing in the (knockout) tournament. We want to keep on playing with the same attitude.” But Okada, who coached Japan in their World Cup finals debut in 1998 when they lost all three group matches, has warned his players against premature feelings of success. “Well, I think they will be alright because I have warned them against it ever since the (Denmark) match ended. It is because our goal is not here.” Okada said Paraguay’s two main strengths are their solid defence and their big forwards, meaning the Japanese have been paying special attention to set-pieces. “They have two big centre forwards. They

have five players who are strong in heading but not so much as the Danes,” he said. “In such a decisive match, set plays hold the key. We want to score on set plays no matter what and we don’t want to yield goals on set plays.” Although Japan reached the second round once before, that was on home soil in 2002 when they were then beaten 1-0 by Turkey. Otherwise they had never won a match in the World Cup until this year, losing five and drawing just once, 0-0 with Croatia in 2006. Paraguay have a much longer history in the tournament and coach Gerardo Martino is keen for his team to achieve something that will make them stand out from their predecessors. “If we don’t go through nobody much will remember us (but) if we turn in Paraguay’s best ever showing then they will talk about us for a good while,” he said. Manchester City striker Roque Santa Cruz believes the team has what it takes to keep progressing to a quarter-final match-up against either Spain or Portugal. “We want to do something we have never managed to achieve and make history,” he said. Paraguay have certainly had better luck this time around than in their three previous second round appearances. In 1986 they were thumped 3-0 by England before drawing hosts and eventual winners France in 1998. There they lost to the first ever golden goal in World Cup history, scored by new France coach Laurent Blanc. Four years later the draw again did them no favours as Germany awaited them and a goal two minutes from time broke Paraguayan hearts as the Germans went on to the final. Paraguay’s defence has been water-tight up until now and unless Japan can get in behind the South Americans, they’ll find it very hard to score. Paraguay won’t comme forward like Denmark did and Japan will have to take every chance they get because the talented South Americans are likely to find a way through the Japanese back line.—AFP

German press hails ‘revenge’ for 1966 BERLIN: “Thank you football God,” screamed the headline in Germany’s biggest paper, Bild following Germany’s inflicting England’s worst World Cup finals defeat, 4-1 on Sunday, in their Last 16 match. “After 44 years, the Wembley goal is finally balanced out. Now the English know how we have felt the whole time.” Many German papers concentrated on the disallowed Frank Lampard strike which replays showed had clearly crossed the goalline - which would have made the match all-square at 2-2 - claiming revenge for a similar incident in the 1966 World Cup Final, when West Germany felt similarly robbed. “Sorry,” said the Die Welt broadsheet in English. “Now we’re even.” After Bild wrote its Saturday edition scrupulously avoiding anglicisms on the eve of the game, the papers allowed their English creativity to flow after the game. “Thank you Fussball-Gott (football God),” wrote Bild, on a page with huge photos of the 1966 and 2010 incidents. And on the front page: “Jungs (lads), we love you.” “YES!” exclaimed the Berliner Kurier. “That was the revenge for Wembley.” “Forty-four years after the final in London, this time it is England crying over a bad refereeing decision.” The Sueddeutsche Zeitung mocked the “old enemy” with a simple “Sorry England” whereas Die Welt’s headline ran “Einfach (simply) wonderful.” The Neues Deutschland was at least somewhat more balanced in its headline of “Germany advances to the quarter-finals against Argentina with good passing football-and a little bit of luck.” —AFP

World Cup matches (local timings) Paraguay v Japan ........................... 17:00 Al Jazeera Sport 1 HD Al Jazeera Sport Global Al Jazeera Sport +9 Al Jazeera Sport +10 Al Jazeera Sport World Cup Spain v Portugal .............................21:30 Al Jazeera Sport 1 HD Al Jazeera Sport Global Al Jazeera Sport +9 Al Jazeera Sport +10 Al Jazeera Sport World Cup

PRETORIA: A combo of file pictures show Japan’s goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima (left) and Paraguay’s goalkeeper Justo Villar during the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. —AFP

World Cup

Photo gallery

Brazil ease past Chile

JOHANNESBURG: A Chile football supporter with painted face smiles outside Ellis Park stadium in Johannesburg as fans arrive before the start of the 2010 World Cup round-of-16 football match between Brazil and Chile. —AFP

SOUTH AFRICA: A Brazil supporter dressed up as a pharaoh cheers prior to the start of the 2010 World Cup round of 16 football match Brazil vs. Chile.—AFP

JOHANNESBURG: A Brazilian supporter cheers prior to the 2010 World Cup round of 16 match Brazil vs Chile at Ellis Park stadium.—AFP

JOHANNESBURG: A cheer leader dances during the 2010 World Cup round of 16 football match Brazil vs. Chile at Ellis Park stadium. —AFP

JOHANNESBURG: Brazil set up a mouth-watering World Cup quarter-final clash against the Netherlands with a convincing 30 win over Chile yesterday at Ellis Park. First-half goals by centre-back Juan and striker Luis Fabiano gave Dunga-coached Brazil a 2-0 lead before Robinho made sure of their quarter-final berth with the third goal after an hour. Brazil will face the Netherlands, who earlier saw off Slovakia 2-1, in Port Elizabeth on Friday. This was Brazil’s 47th win in 66 matches against Chile, who have only seven wins - and third in three World Cup meetings after 1962 and 1998. “We are on the right road and we played well, but we still have to iron out a few minor things,” Robinho said afterwards. Chilean keeper Claudio Bravo said Chile had given it their best shot but came up short. “We have been beaten by one of the best teams in the world. We gave everything but we came up against a team that was very solid and played good football. We are good going forward but we have a fair bit of progress to make when it comes to defending,” Bravo admitted. Chile made a bright start, but Brazil quickly got into their stride as Luis Fabiano and Gilberto Silva both forced goalkeeper Claudio Bravo into early saves. Brazil had a loud appeal for a penalty on 27 minutes when defender Pablo Contreras took away Lucio’s legs, but referee Howard Webb waved play on. Real Madrid’s Kaka, back in the side after serving a one-match ban for his red card against the Ivory Coast, picked up the first yellow card when he went for the ball, but caught Chile’s Arturo Vital on the ankle on 30 minutes. Brazil took the lead on 34 minutes when Maicon swung in a corner and Roma defender Juan rose the highest to head past Bravo. Luis Fabiano made it 2-0 four minutes later after Kaka took a pass from Robinho on the left wing and slid the ball through for the Sevilla star to draw Bravo and slot home. Chile’s Vital repaid the foul on Kaka and earned a yellow card on 47 minutes. Brazil then grabbed their third goal after Benfica’s Ramires ran from the halfway line to the edge of the penalty area where he laid the ball off for Robinho to fire home on 59 minutes. Chile refused to give up and substitute Jorge Valdivia fired over the crossbar on 67 minutes before team-mate Ismael Fuentes was booked for a foul on Luis Fabiano moments later. Ramires will miss the quarterfinal with the Dutch after earning his second yellow card of the tournament for a foul on Alexis Sanchez on 71 minutes. Suazo forced Brazilian goalkeeper Julio Cesar into a rare save on 75 minutes, just before Robinho had a second goal ruled out for offside. With ten minutes left, Chile substitute Rodrigo Millar picked up a yellow card and Kaka earned a vuvuzela-fuelled fanfare of appreciation from Brazil’s fans when he went off. Meanwhile, it was a mixed bag for former world player of the year Kaka as Brazil strolled past Chile into the quarter-finals at the World Cup yesterday. Kaka, in his first outing back from a one-match suspension for his red card against Ivory Coast, again went into the referee’s book and laid on the final pass for Luis Fabiano’s goal before he was brought off with nine minutes left. Kaka fell foul of English referee Howard Webb after hacking down Arturo Vidal in the 30th minute, putting him under the threat of another expulsion for his remaining time on the pitch. The Brazilians were upset that Kaka was sent off in his last match for what they deemed a light push on the Ivorians’ Abdelkader Keita, who collapsed theatrically to the ground. Playmaker Kaka has been slowly finding his form at the World Cup after he was dogged by a thigh injury in his first season since joining Real Madrid from AC Milan last summer. The 2007 World Player of the Year showed glimpses of his best with two crucial roles against Ivory Coast. The Real Madrid star was largely a peripheral figure against Chile before he provided the final pass for striker Luis Fabiano’s goal in the 38th minute.—AFP

JOHANNESBURG: Brazil’s striker Luis Fabiano (right) manoeuvres the ball past Chile’s goalkeeper Claudio Bravo to score during the 2010 World Cup round of 16 football match Brazil versus Chile.—AFP

Dutch shatter Slovakia’s dream DURBAN: Arjen Robben and Wesley Sneijder fired the Dutch to a 2-1 victory over giant-killers Slovakia here yesterday to set up a World Cup quarter-final against either Brazil or Chile. Robben made a 20-minute appearance against Cameroon in the Netherlands’ final group game after recovering from a hamstring injury that kept him out of the opening two matches. But coach Bert van Marwijk started the Bayern Munich winger and he repaid his faith by scoring a textbook goal in the 18th minute against a side that roundly failed in

their bid to repeat their giantkilling 3-2 group win over defending champions Italy. Robben latched onto an excellent long ball from Sneijder, cut back in past the retreating Jan Durica and Radoslav Zabavnik, and drilled a left-footed shot in at the near post past the despairing dive of Jan Mucha. Sneijder was on hand to convert a clever Dirk Kuyt cross in the 85th minute after the Liverpool striker had robbed an out-of-position Mucha of the ball with the Slovak defence in disarray. With the last kick of the game, Robert Vittek scored a

penalty for Slovakia after Dutch keeper Maarten Stekelenburg brought down Martin Jakubko in the area. “We deserved to win,” said van Marwijk. “There were phases when Slovakia could have got an equaliser, and when we should have been three or four up. “The quarter-final will be a enormous challenge.” Slovak coach Vladimir Weiss admitted that his team failed to capitalise on three opportunities at 1-0. “With a bit of luck we could have been in it,” he said. “The penalty will make us feel a little better on the flight home,

DURBAN: Netherlands’ Klaas Jan Huntelaar (top left) goes for the ball over Slovakia’s Jan Durica (bottom) during the World Cup round of 16 soccer match between the Netherlands and Slovakia.—AP

but the one who advances is the better team.” The fact the scoreline was kept to a respectable margin fell in large part to Mucha, who produced three excellent saves in the second-half prior to Sneijder’s goal. An early chance fell to Slovakia’s Eric Jendrisek who blasted a shot just over the crossbar and skipper Marek Hamsik shot wide after being given too much space. Robin van Persie had an excellent chance in the eighth minute, his header from a Kuyt cross just ricocheting off Zabavnik for a corner. The Arsenal player then laid off Sneijder in the box, but the Inter Milan midfielder could only drill an underpowered shot at Mucha. Mucha was on hand to make two great saves in a matter of minutes early in the second period, firstly parrying a Robben cutback and drive, and then brilliantly fending off a close-range Gregory van der Wiel stab. The keeper, who has signed for Everton from Polish outfit Legia Warsaw, then punched away an in-swinging free-kick from van Persie, with the Dutch looking very dangerous on the ball. Having spent the first hour not having made a save of note, Stekelenburg produced two fine efforts in quick succession to keep out efforts from Miroslav Stoch and Vittek. Kuyt went close with a header from a Sneijder freekick and then forced Mucha into a good save with a low 25yard shot.—AFP

South American teams dominate PRETORIA: Fitness and tougher qualifying are the big reasons South American teams have dominated the World Cup while European sides have struggled, Paraguay coach Gerardo Martino said yesterday. On the eve of Paraguay’s round-of-16 showdown with Japan, the Argentine boss took a hard line when asked how four South American teams could reach the semi-finals while European giants like Italy and England are gone. “I have no doubt the South American teams have huge difficulties in qualifying,” Martino said. “Leaving out Asian and African qualifying, I believe the level of compatability is quite different from one continent to the next.” South American teams play a long round-robin tournament while European sides play in smaller groups and knockout playoffs to determine World Cup qualifiers. Martino also admires the fitness of the teams behind perennial powerhouses Brazil and Argentina, both already into

the quarter-finals. “Brazil and Argentina are always contenders. They come to the World Cup well prepared collectively and individually,” he said. “The other three are in good shape. When you are in good condition, the outlook is better. “Argentina is really showcasing the individual. I haven’t seen that from Brazil, Uruguay and Chile. They play more as a team. Bring these players to the World Cup, with Lionel Messi on top of that, it makes a difference.” One South American star missing is Paraguay star striker and top scorer Salvador Cabanas, who was shot in the head in a Mexican bar earlier this year. The team called him in his hospital room last weekend. “He’s feeling at ease. We sent him a big hug,” said Paraguay midfielder Christian Riveros. “We haven’t yet felt his absence but we would very much like to have him here. It would be another ‘beautiful problem’ for our coach deciding who would play.”

Paraguay will try to advance past the round of 16 for the first time, having missed out after reaching the same stage in 1986, 1998 and 2002. “The important thing is to make it to the quarter-finals,” added Riveros. “If we make it, we will certainly go down in the history of Paraguay.” Standing in the way of La Albirroja (the White and Red) is a Japanese team that has allowed only two goals, while Paraguay have surrendered only one. “It’s really important to score the first goal. It’s really decisive in the World Cup,” Martino said. “All the teams know that if you give up the first goal, you might be packing your bags. It’s necessary to have good nerves.” Martino has bigger goals than simply going deeper than any prior Paraguay saide. “It’s nothing special that we made it to the round of 16. It’s far from my definition of glory,” he said. “We came with dreams. We’re still in the race.”—AFP

flydubai comes of age with 21st destination: Colombo

JTC achieves 30-year milestone



Oil spill economic damage may not go beyond Gulf


Tuesday, June 29, 2010

BISSupport warns of new economic crisis measures risk creating 'zombie' banks, firms

DUBAI: Cranes offload containers at the Jebel Ali port terminal 2 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. DP World, the world’s fourth largest ocean cargo handler, announced plans to seek a London Stock Exchange listing in January, but announced yesterday, it has delayed its plans because of the pending merger of the Gulf city’s own stock markets.—AP

Dubai ports firm delays LSE listing DUBAI: The global port operator controlled by Dubai World yesterday delayed a months-old plan to list its shares on the London Stock Exchange because of the pending merger of the Gulf city's own stock markets. DP World, the world's fourth largest ocean cargo handler, said in a regulatory filing it remains committed to pursuing the London plan, but is waiting until "an acceptable system" is in place to support a secondary listing. The stock is already listed on the Nasdaq Dubai, one of two stock exchanges in the Middle East financial hub. It was trading at 46 cents there by mid-afternoon, down 4.8 percent. DP World executives have expressed disappointment with the stock's performance on the Dubai exchange, which has struggled to gain attract significant inter-

est from investors. It is in the process of merging with the city's other bourse, the Dubai Financial Market. DP World announced plans to seek a London listing in January. Listing shares there would increase the company's visibility among international investors and potentially create additional liquidity, making the shares easier to trade. It has not said whether it would issue additional stock -- a move that would directly pump new funds into the company. A DP World spokeswoman said the port operator chose to hold off on the London listing until the two Dubai markets are able to link up and test their joint trading platform. That will give DP World time to ensure the trading platform is secure and syncs with the one in London, she said. DP World does not expect to pursue a London listing until

sometime next spring, the spokeswoman said. She spoke on condition of anonymity in line with company policy. "It just seemed to us to be sensible to delay until spring," she said. "We'll have fully audited results by that stage for 2010." DP World typically releases its full-year results in late March. It previously said it would seek a London listing by the end of the second quarter this year. DP World's shares have lost more than 60 percent of their value from their initial price of $1.30 each in late 2007. Mohammed Yasin, chief executive of Abu Dhabi-based brokerage Shuaa Securities, said regional investors are looking forward to the merger of the Dubai exchanges, which could make DP World shares easier to trade, but he questioned whether it makes sense to pursue a secondary listing in London

US consumer spending rises, savings highest in 8 months WASHINGTON: US consumer spending rose slightly more than expected in May even as savings touched their highest level in eight months, pointing to a recovery that remains on solid ground. The Commerce Department said yesterday spending edged up 0.2 percent after being flat in April. Analysts polled by Reuters had expected consumer spending to rise 0.1 percent. Consumer spending is being closely watched to gauge the strength of the economic recovery after a series of reports suggested growth is slackening. "The data looks in line with a moderate consumer, neither cautious nor expansionary," said Subodh Kumar, chief investment strategist at Subodh Kumar & Associates in Toronto. US stock index futures were trading lower while Treasury debt prices pared gains slightly after the report. The US dollar held gains against the euro. A government report on Friday showed consumer spending, which normally accounts for 70 percent of US economic activity, rose at a 3 percent pace in the January-March quarter -- slower than the 3.5 percent the government had estimated last month. Spending adjusted for inflation increased 0.3 percent last month after being flat in April. Real spending on services increased 0.3 percent, while spending on goods rose 0.2 percent, reversing the pri-

SAN ROMAN: A Safeway worker (left) bags items for a customer in San Ramon, California. Consumer spending rose slightly in May, a sign that Americans are nervous about the economy’s health.—AP or month's 0.1 percent decline, the Commerce Department said. Personal income increased 0.4 percent after gaining 0.5 percent in April. Markets had expected income to rise 0.5 percent last month. Real disposable income climbed 0.5 percent following a 0.6 percent increase the prior month. The saving rate rose to 4.0 percent from 3.8 percent in April. Savings increased to an annual rate of $454.3 billion, the highest level since September. The report also showed the personal consumption expenditures price index, exclud-

ing food and energy, rising 1.3 percent in the 12 months to May. The index, a key inflation measure monitored by the Federal Reserve, increased 1.2 percent in April. US central bank officials would prefer to see inflation running closer to 2 percent. On the month, the core PCE price index rose 0.2 percent. Separately, a measure of national economic activity slipped last month. The Chicago Federal Reserve Bank said its national activity index fell to 0.21 from 0.25 in April. — Reuters

now. "Is it going to attract new investors? I'm not sure," he said. "I'm sure the market conditions here didn't help." The company now ranks as one of the world's biggest seaport operators, with 49 cargo terminals on six continents. It runs Dubai's Jebel Ali, the Middle East's biggest port, and is developing a new deep-sea container port outside London. The port firm has avoided the US market since its 2006 plan to assume control of American cargo terminals sparked a political firestorm, but its operations elsewhere -- particularly in the developing world -- have proved profitable despite the global slump in trade. The company is majority owned by the deeply indebted state conglomerate Dubai World. It is not part of Dubai World's unresolved $23.5 billion restructuring plan, however. —AP

Noble Corp buys Frontier, inks Gulf deal with Shell NEW YORK: Offshore drilling services company Noble Corp is bulking up its operations while signaling that business as usual won't return to the Gulf of Mexico for some time. The Swiss company said yesterday it will buy privately held Frontier Drilling for $2.16 billion in cash and also struck $4 billion worth of new contracts with Royal Dutch Shell. Noble is also giving Shell the right to suspend any contracts the two have for rigs operating in the Gulf because of the proposed US moratorium on drilling in deep water. The agreements with Shell cover two ultra deepwater projects and are subject to closing the deal with Frontier. Shell will pay reduced fees for leasing Noble's rigs in the Gulf. The Obama administration in May ordered a six-month halt on exploratory drilling in waters more than 500 feet (150 meters) deep. The ban is being disputed in the courts. Noble was stung earlier this month when Anadarko Petroleum said it planned to excuse itself from drilling contracts because of the moratorium. Noble spokesman John Breed said the Shell deal is aimed at keeping oil companies from trying to abandon agreements altogether in the Gulf. "We're working with our customers to find a resolution that would allow them to keep rigs under contract," Breed said. Argus Research analyst Phil Weiss said the decision suggests that oil companies are digging in for an extended delay in drilling projects in the Gulf. Even if the moratorium ends, many companies are reluctant to expand in the area until they see how the government will regulate business there, he said. "If this was going to be a short moratorium, they wouldn't have had to come up with these kinds of solutions," Weiss said. The Frontier deal is expected to close by the end of July. It would add six floating drilling units to Noble's fleet. Noble said it should take on loans from existing lines of credit to complete the deal for Frontier, also known as FDR Holdings Limited. Noble shares added $1.71, or 5.8 percent, to $30.99 in morning trading. —AP

BASEL: Governments must slash budget deficits decisively and central banks should not wait too long to raise borrowing costs as side effects from measures prescribed to tackle the global recession may create the next crisis, the Bank for International Settlements said. The global economy as well as financial markets were on the mend, though the recovery remained fragile in the advanced economies and in the euro-zone the debt crisis put the recovery at risk, the BIS said in its annual report, published yesterday. Global leaders meeting in Toronto agreed to take different paths for shrinking budget deficits and making banking systems safer and Washington in particular has warned against cutting too fast. The head of the BIS said there was no time to waste. "We cannot wait for the resumption of strong growth to begin the process of policy correction," BIS general manager Jaime Caruana told the bank's annual general meeting. "In particular, delaying fiscal policy adjustment would only risk renewed financial volatility, market disruptions and funding stress." Caruana later told a news conference that recently announced fiscal consolidation in some countries together with the publication of bank stress tests in Europe and the support of the G20 for regulatory reforms were important steps forward. The BIS, which acts as a bank to central banks and a discussion platform for policymakers, said reforms of the financial system remained key to prevent further crises. Caruana said the benefit of making the financial system more resilient through tighter regulation outweighed any short-term growth losses. Top central bankers met at the BIS annual meeting June 26-28 in Basel, following the G20 summit where leaders acknowledged the uneven and fragile economic recovery in many countries. In a reversal from the unity of the past three crisis-era Group of 20 summits, the leaders left room to move at their own pace and adopt "differentiated and tailored" policies. But the BIS warned powerful support measures had strong side effects and said their dangers were starting to emerge. "To put it bluntly, the combination of remaining vulnerabilities in the financial system and the side effects of such a long period of intensive care threaten to send the patient into relapse," the BIS report said. The BIS said if the extraordinary measures were kept in place for too long, policymakers ran the risk of creating "zombie" banks or companies, dependent on direct support. But it acknowledged the tricky situation for policymakers as the stakes were high and the risks from capping lifelines too early loomed large. Central banks especially were walking a fine line. The banking system was still far from sound, as recent profits from fixed income and currency trading and the low interest rate environment were hard to repeat and not all crisis-related losses may have been booked. "But the longer that policy rates in the major advanced economies remain low, the larger will be the distortions they create, both domestically and internationally," the BIS said. Extremely low real or inflation-adjusted rates altered investment decisions, postponed the recognition of losses, increased risk-taking in the search for yield and encouraged high levels of borrowing, the BIS said.In addition, central bankers may underestimate inflation risks as the crisis may have lowered potential growth rate. Markets have pushed back expectations for rate increases in the United States and in the euro zone in the wake of the Greek debt crisis, and central bankers urged Europe to solve the crisis so as not to endanger uneven global recovery. — Reuters

BASEL: Jaime Caruana, general manager of the BIS (Bank for International Settlements), delivers a speech during a press conference in Basel yesterday.—AFP

Gulf banks need more provisioning: AMF BASEL: Some Gulf banks need more provisions to scrub themselves clean from problems from the credit crisis and their lending must become more prudent to avoid future bubbles, the head of the Arab Monetary Fund said. Jassim Al-Mannai, director general of the Abu Dhabi-based AMF, also told Reuters in an interview the Arab economies will grow around four percent this year but that he saw no threat from inflation. Lending growth in the Gulf economies remains sluggish as the region's banks suffer from shrinking margins and bad loans from the crisis. "I would not say everything has been addressed, no problems at all," Mannai said on the sidelines of the annual meeting of the Bank for International Settlements. "I have to be realistic. Some of the banks need to take more provisions. They have to be careful not to repeat the same practices before." "They have to address some problems inherited from the crisis through more provisioning, through prudent lending policies. I don't think banks will be able to provide the same amount of credit as they used to before. They have to be more selective." In the United Arab Emirates, banks are likely to book specific provisions in the third quarter against loans made to the troubled Dubai World conglomerate after the state conglomerate reached a deal in principle to restructure $23.5 billion in debt. UAE banks have an estimated exposure of $15 billion to Dubai World. Provisions of UAE banks for non-performing loans declined to 35.2 billion dirhams in May from 36 billion dirhams while general provisions edged up to 13.6 billion dirhams last month. "In the future they will have clean balance sheets and they can start fresh lending without any handicaps," Mannai said. "We have to think seriously about the lessens of the crisis.We have to avoid... bubbles." Mannai was optimistic that the Arab economies would see positive growth this year without threatening the price rises they saw during the pre-crisis boom period. "This year the situation for the Arab world will further improve. We're talking about 4 percent or more than that for the Arab economies," he said. "We have a very low inflation rate. For the time being it's not a threat. In the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) we're talking about 2 or 2 something percent." — Reuters

UAE issues takaful law to regulate industry DUBAI: A new UAE law regulating the growing Islamic insurance industry will provide more transparency and oversight but the extra costs of compliance may drive consolidation in a fragmented market, lawyers said. The Islamic insurance, or takaful, law was issued on Sunday, placing companies under the jurisdiction of the Insurance Authority of the United Arab Emirates and giving them a year to reorganize their processes. Under the law, every takaful firm must have a sharia board consisting of three qualified scholars with experience in Islamic finance. The boards will be responsible for issuing an annual report and will fall under the oversight of a supreme committee within the authority charged with all Islamic legal opinions. The law also sets standards for financial and accounting issues as well as rules for paying out surpluses resulting from premiums and investments. "Up until now, companies were just trying to put insurance law in an Islamic context without any specificity," said Peter Hodgins, partner at Clyde & Co. "The new law aims to standardise the operating structure of all takaful firms which will strengthen the industry." But any standardisation process will likely result in an increase in costs that could hit an industry already struggling to make a profit. That could help spur some long-awaited consolidation, said Justin Balcombe, director of Middle East advisory at Ernst & Young. Takaful premiums are expected to grow to around $8.8 billion globally by the end of 2010, compared with $3.4 billion in 2007, according to data from Ernsy & Young. But the industry is made

up of a few large players dominating the market, while smaller and mid-size firms struggle to make a profit because of the costs of sharia boards and limits on the types of investments they can make. "Some smaller players might just be unable to afford the cost of compliance to the changes under the law," Balcombe said, prompting some to consider merging with a larger competitor. Hodgins added that the UAE insurance market is extremely competitive, with only nine takaful companies competing with over 50 conventional firms, making consolidation a likely scenario. Hodgins said one of the major developments of the regulation is the creation of the supreme committee, which will bring consistency by providing detailed rules for the industry. "It's a relatively radical departure from Middle Eastern standards," Hodgins said. "It will provide two layers of sharia oversight, which will get rid of the criticism that there isn't any transparency or consistency in the industry." While the law is the first of its kind in the region, Malaysia has had similar rules in place to cover both takaful and Islamic banking. Market watchers hope that the implementation of the UAE law may spread to other markets in the six-state Gulf Cooperation Council. Sheikh Muddassir Siddiqui, an Islamic scholar and partner at Denton Wilde Sapte, said if the UAE's new law is properly implemented, it will provide more consumer protection and better auditing, ultimately reducing costs of business in the long run. "I hope similar steps are taken to regulate the rest of the Islamic finance industry," he said. — Reuters



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Inaugural flight touches down in Colombo airport

flydubai comes of age with 21st destination — Colombo Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka is a popular tourist destination and by making travel to the capital a little less complex, a little less stressful and a little less expensive, I am confident this new route will be a popular one. Especially since a one way fare with flydubai costs from just AED450, including all taxes, charges and one piece of hand luggage. “Travel to Sri Lanka has shown a significant increase so far this year, with a 106 per cent growth in the first quarter of 2010, according to the Sri Lankan tourism board. “With wonderful beaches and fabulous historical and cultural sites to attract visitors, Sri Lanka is always a popular destination for tourists. I am confident the advent of flydubai’s simple, uncomplicated, quality, low fare service to Colombo will be popular with travellers in both directions and will help to stimulate this growing market.” Sri Lanka’s economy has seen sustained growth in the last few years, recovering from a turbulent period marked by civil war and natural disasters. The country has shaken off these setbacks and started to re-emerge by recording a 3.5 per cent estimated GDP growth in 2009, helped along by extensive foreign investment, including trade with the UAE. Both countries are actively engaging in stimulating further bilateral trade and the flydubai service will help strengthen these ties. Sri Lanka is a diverse and culturally rich country, with a strong history as a trading society as well as having a documented history of royal families that stretches back 2000 years. Visitors are attracted to Sri Lanka by its mix as an exotic getaway offering tea plantations, beautiful beaches and tropical highland forests. Colombo is the commercial hub and is home to more than 700,000 of the island’s 20 million residents. flydubai will operate four flights per week on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and which offer a cinematic experience for 3D Saturdays. FZ555 leaves Dubai games and movies. A 1.3-megapixel webcam International Airport Terminal 2 at is included along with the You-Cam viewer 1855hrs and arrives in Colombo at for video chatting and conferencing. A Blu0110hrs local time the following ray drive is also included so users can enjoy day. The return flight FZ556 leaves true HD content on the road. Colombo at 0210hrs on Tuesdays, Beyond the high-performance multimedia Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays, features, the LG R590 offers a stylish and arriving in Dubai at 0510hrs local sleek design to appeal to discerning contime. sumers. The newest notebook offers a rich, Flights can be purchased on flyglossy appearance with a UV-coated shiny dubai’s website white or crystal black finish. A row of backlit (, through the blue touch buttons also provides instant call centre (+9714 301 0800) and access to commonly-used functions and the from travel agents. Using flydubai’s over the Montevina platform for the Core 2 soft feel of the body skin makes the LG R590 simple model, customers only pay comfortable to use for long periods. Duo processor. only for the services they want to LG’s Smart Pack is included to help keep The NVIDIA GeForce GT230M enhances receive. The price includes all 3D graphics quality as well. According to the LG R590 running at peak performance taxes and one piece of hand bagtests using 3DMark06, this graphics chipset and comprises Smart Indicator, Smart gage, weighing up to 10kg, per paswith 1G of DDR3 video memory offers about Recovery, and Smart Care to maintain an senger. eight times the performance of Intel’s GMA error-free notebook. A detachable ODD Passengers have the option to 4500MHD. In addition, the WXGA+ high- boosts mobility by enabling the notebook to purchase checked-in baggage in resolution display running at a native resolu- shed weight while out and about. An e-SATA advance at just AED60 for the first tion of 1600 x 900 pixels offers clear, crisp port is provided to connect with current-genimages. piece and AED150 for the second, eration hard drives and a High Definition The LG R590 is fully packed with a range Multimedia Interface (HDMI) connector weighing up to 32kgs, subject to of multimedia features to bolster the enter- makes it easy to integrate with modern disavailability. flydubai operates from tainment experience. The LED-backlit 16:9 plays. LG’s first quad-core processor notea modernized and enhanced ratio LCD widescreen is embedded with two book, the LG WIDEBOOK(tm) R590, will be Terminal 2 on the north side of stereo speakers with SRS TruSurround HD, rolled out in Kuwait from August. Dubai International Airport.

KUWAIT: flydubai, Dubai’s first low cost airline, notched up its fourth new destination in a week when its inaugural flight to Sri Lanka touched down in Colombo last Wednesday. flydubai’s CEO Ghaith Al-Ghaith, who travelled on the inaugural flight, said: “We’re delighted to be able to expand our range of destinations in the South Asian sub-continent with the start of our flights to

LG’s first quad-core notebook offers extreme 3D gaming excitement KUWAIT: LG Electronics (LG), a global leader and technology innovator in mobile communications, yesterday unveiled its first quad-core processor notebook, the 15.6-inch LG WIDEBOOK R590. The LG R590 packs the performance of a high-end desktop PC into a mobile chassis and includes a 1.73GHz Intel Core i7 processor with the PM55 Chipset, and a discrete NVIDIA GeForce GT230M with 1GB of dedicated DDR3 video memory. The combination provides the ultimate in portable performance and enables users to enjoy 3D games and full HD movies on the road. “Notebooks are narrowing the performance gap to desktops thanks to improvements in mobility and performance. However, rendering high-end 3D content on a notebook has been challenging until now,” said H S Paik, President of LG Electronics Gulf FZE. “By introducing a new workhorse with a quad-core processor and powerful multimedia features, LG is enabling our customers to finally be free of their desks to enjoy 3D games and full HD movies anytime, anywhere.” The LG R590 achieves its performance thanks to Intel’s Calpella Platform which integrates the Core i7 processor and PM55 chipset, boosting performance by up to 112%

New LG Widebook R590

Doha Bank’s Group CEO R Seetharaman (center) receiving the ‘Outstanding Contribution to the Industry’ award.

Doha Bank CEO recognized for his trailblazing initiatives KUWAIT: Doha’s leading banker R Seetharaman, Chief Executive Officer - Doha Bank Group, has been honored with the ‘Outstanding Contribution to the Industry’ award for his exceptional track record within the banking industry in the Middle East. A banker, a philanthropist, an environmentalist Seetharaman has made significant and lasting contributions in all three areas that earned him the well deserved recognition and accolades from industry observers. Seetharaman received the prestigious award at the 10th Banker Middle East Industry Awards 2010 gala dinner at Emirates Towers in Dubai on June 16. Organized by CPI Financial in partnership with the Hawkamah Institute for Corporate Governance the awards ceremony brought together more than 330 regional and global industry experts. The awards recognize both corporate and individual distinctions amongst top performers in the industry said Dominic De Sousa, chairman of CPI Financial. “Industry pioneers who have witnessed growth during these testing times have been recognized for their performance at the industry’s most prestigious event,” he said. Seetharaman has more than two decades of experience in banking, information technology and consultancy. He is a chartered accountant, holds a

certificate in IT Systems and Corporate Management, and was a top ranking graduate awarded the gold medal in Bachelor of Commerce. As one of the most respected and experienced bankers regionally who is recognized for his trade and investment banking expertise Seetharaman is a highly sought after economist in the GCC region. Media channels such as CNBC, BBC World, Reuters, Forbes, Dow Jones, Fox Business, Sky News, Bloomberg and a host of regional media channels call on Seetharaman for sharing his opinion and for seeking his expert comments on current economic, banking and environmental issues. A strong proponent of corporate social responsibility (CSR) he has initiated green banking measures at Doha Bank. He has also spearheaded a sustained environmental protection and awareness program through a series of environmental seminars and knowledge sharing sessions in the region and across the globe on “Global warming and Climatic challenges”. He is passionate about raising awareness about global warming and the steps every corporate and individuals in society need to take to conserve the ecological balance. These efforts have been very well appreciated by society, corporate houses and government dignitaries. Seetharaman is a prolific reader, speaker and writer and has also contributed articles to a wide range of media publications over the years.

Bahrain property market faces years of oversupply MANAMA: Bahrain’s property market is likely to remain subdued for some time due to lack of financing, while oversupply in both the residential and commercial sector will put further pressure on rents, a report said yesterday. Some 19,300 new homes are expected in the Gulf Arab state over the next five years if developers stick to current plans, property consultancy DTZ said, adding that residential rents fell 15-20 percent over the past year in some areas. “The freehold residential market in Bahrain continues to be characterized by general malaise and negative sentiment as it struggles to emerge from the downturn,” the

report said. “This is likely to continue as lack of finance, investor apathy and oversupply continue to have a depressing effect on the market,” it said. While the global financial downturn has hurt Bahrain’s property sector, it has suffered less than Dubai, the region’s business and tourism hub, where house prices fell as much as 60 percent from their peaks in 2008. Developers in Bahrain face significant levels of defaults on staged payments as buyers are no longer paying due to stalled construction on their properties, DTZ said. “The disappearance of this source of cash flow has led to the cancellation or delay of a large number of residential

projects with many now in a state of inactivity,” it said. Bahrain’s office sector will likely see further pressure on rents for the remainder of the year as more supply adds to already low levels of demand, it said. Knight Frank in a report published yesterday said sales of freehold villas and apartments “have been almost nonexistent in Bahrain over the last two years”. It said that asking prices for high-end apartments fell about 20 percent from 2009 levels. Both reports said there is significant pent-up demand for low-income housing, with some 47,000 Bahraini nationals on waiting lists for government homes. -—Reuters

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

.2860000 .4340000 .3560000 .2630000 .2780000 .2510000 .0045000 .0020000 .0786950 .7667040 .4020000 .0750000 .7516210 .0045000 .0500000

.2960000 .4440000 .3640000 .2710000 .2870000 .2590000 .0075000 .0035000 .0794860 .7744100 .4180000 .0790000 .7591750 .0072000 .0580000

US Dollar/KD GB Pound/KD Euro Swiss francs Canadian dollars Danish Kroner Swedish Kroner Australian dlr Hong Kong dlr Singapore dlr Japanese yen Indian Rs/KD Sri Lanka rupee Pakistan rupee Bangladesh taka UAE dirhams Bahraini dinars Jordanian dinar Saudi Riyal/KD Omani riyals Philippine Peso

CUSTOMER TRANSFER RATES .2899000 .4369930 .3587630 .2653580 .2798860 .0481930 .0375450 .2536010 .0372690 .2090160 .0032490 .0063010 .0025600 .0034100 .0042250 .0789670 .7693420 .4099910 .0773450 .7533520 .0063010

.2920000 .4397750 .3612960 .2672370 .2818670 .0485340 .0378110 .2553910 .0375330 .2104960 .0032720 .0063460 .0025780 .0034340 .00422550 .0794700 .7742460 .4128940 .0778380 .7581530 .0063460

US Dollar Sterling pounds Swiss Francs Saudi Riyals

TRANSFER CHEQUES RATES .2920000 .4397750 .2672370 .0778380

Al-Muzaini Exchange Co. EUROPEAN & AMERICAN COUNTRIES Japanese Yen 3.272 Indian Rupees 6.307 Pakistani Rupees 3.408

Srilankan Rupees Nepali Rupees Singapore Dollar Hongkong Dollar Bangladesh Taka Philippine Peso Thai Baht Irani Riyal - Transfer Irani Riyal - Cash

2.557 3.956 210.710 37.412 4.201 6.288 8.985 0.296 0.310 GCC COUNTRIES 77.694 80.044 756.900 773.800 79.331

Saudi Riyal Qatari Riyal Omani Riyal Bahraini Dinar UAE Dirham Egyptian Pound - Cash Egyptian Pound Yemen Riyal Tunisian Dinar Jordanian Dinar Lebanese Lira Syrian Lier Morocco Dirham

ARAB COUNTRIES 53.750 51.274 1.290 194.400 411.100 195.440 6.232 33.091

EUROPEAN & AMERICAN COUNTRIES US Dollar Transfer 291.200 Euro 362.000 Sterling Pound 439.710 Canadian dollar 282.720 Turkish lire 185.030 Swiss Franc 267.700 Australian dollar 254.900 US Dollar Buying 288.250 GOLD 250.000 127.000 67.000

20 Gram 10 Gram 5 Gram

SELL CASH 258.600 774.220 4.310 284.700 571.700 14.100 49.400 167.800 53.490 364.500

38.130 6.540 0.035 0.276 0.257 3.350 412.830 0.197 92.390 45.300 4.550 211.300 1.984 47.000 756.280 3.520 6.590 80.520 77.730 211.700 40.990 2.758 442.500 38.700 259.900 6.400 9.340 198.263 79.440 291.500 1.340

10 Tola

GOLD 1,370.780

Sterling Pound US Dollar

37.980 6.310

411.530 0.196 92.390 3.960 209.800

SELL DRAFT 257.100 774.220 4.202 283.200

211.700 51.295 363.000

US Dollar Canadian Dollar Sterling Pound Euro Swiss Frank Cyprus Pound Bahrain Dinar UAE Dirhams Qatari Riyals Saudi Riyals Jordanian Dinar Egyptian Pound Indian Rupees Pakistani Rupees

Sri Lankan Rupees Bangladesh Taka Philippines Pesso Japanese Yen Thai Bhat Syrian Pound Nepalese Rupees

2.559 4.209 6.286 3.253 8.957 6.349 3.946

Kuwait Bahrain Intl Exchange Co. Currency

756.100 3.420 6.295 80.090 77.730 211.700 40.990 2.559 440.500 258.400 9.170 79.340 291.100

Rate per 1000 (Tran)

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

TRAVELLER’S CHEQUE 440.500 291.100

291.100 3.425 6.295 2.570 4.205 6.300 79.360 77.840 773.800 51.270 442.900 0.00003280 3.990 1.550 413.900 5.750 366.500 286.700

Al Mulla Exchange

Dollarco Exchange Co. Ltd

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

291.050 281.900 438.691 362.643 266.025 713.390 770.385 79.222 79.923 77.782 410.715 51.263 6.323 3.414

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

Transfer rate 290.900 362.500 440.400 283.200 3.270 6.304 51.275 2.558 4.194 6.290 3.415 773.500 79.250 77.650

Tuesday, June 29, 2010



AgBank’s Shanghai price range seen close to HK’s IPO could be world’s biggest: Experts SHANGHAI: Agricultural Bank of China (AgBank) is expected to set a price range yesterday for its Shanghai listing similar to the one determined for the bank’s Hong Kong offering, thus giving a clearer indication of the size of the IPO, which could be the world’s biggest. But coordinated pricing for AgBank’s Shanghai-Hong Kong IPO masks divergent appetites for China’s third-biggest

KUWAIT: Yaqoub Yousif Al-Sahiel receiving his prize from Area Manager Bader Al Mutawaa

NBK’s ‘What would you do with KD 5000?’ draws new customers, much excitement KUWAIT: Amid spectacular enthusiasm and participation on the part of customers, National Bank of Kuwait (NBK), the leading bank in Kuwait and highest rated the Middle East, recently conducted the seventh draw of its first of its kind salary acquisition campaign designed to reward new salaried customers who transfer their salaries with a chance to win KD 5,000. “What Would You Do with KD 5000?” campaign offers 8 chances at winning, over a period of 3 months extending from 7 March till 30 June 2010. Winner of the 7th draw prize of KD 5000. Yaqoub Yousif Al-Sahiel, a legal researcher at the Investigation Department, said that during a recent visit he made to one of NBK’s branches with the intention of transferring his salary to the bank, he was informed by the branch officers about the renowned promotion “ What Would You Do With KD 5000” offered by NBK, but had never imagined that he will soon find himself one of the lucky winners of the grand prize. Yaqoub, with a big grin on his face, added that thanks to NBK and the Salary Transfer promotion, he will be able to

finance his marriage in the near future. Yaqoub expressed his sincere thanks and appreciation for NBK, adding that he is really proud of being an NBK customer and “ I cannot think of dealing with any bank in the country other than NBK, the bank I trust and the bank that offers me competitive and rewarding benefits throughout the whole year.” It is worth mentioning that the 7th draw of the weekly draws of the “What Would You Do with KD 5,000?” campaign was conducted on the 20th of June 2010 while the next and final draw will be conducted on July 7th with one final winner selected to win the grand prize of KD 5,000. Entry into the final draw is very simple, convenient and automatic. No forms or coupons are required. Just hurry up and transfer your salary at NBK and once you are an account holder you will get automatic enrolment into the last draw that will be conducted on July 7th. NBK has pioneered many firsts in both the local and regional markets offering innovative products and value added services.

With more than 350 million customers, the population of the United States, AgBank is the last of China’s Big Four banks to go public. The bank, headed by 53-year-old war hero Xiang Junbo, is looking to replenish its capital and drive growth. AgBank said last week it would sell 25.4 billion Hong Kong-listed H shares at HK$2.88-HK$3.48 apiece, potentially raising as much as $11.4 billion. The range represents a price-to-book value of 1.55 to 1.79 times for China’s third-largest bank with assets of $1.4 trillion. A similar range in Shanghai would value the mainland portion of the offering, or 22.2 billion A shares, up to about $9.98 billion, bringing the combined size of the IPO to $21.38 billion if priced at the top of the range. That would leave AgBank’s IPO slightly smaller than Industrial and Commercial Bank’s record $21.9 billion offering in 2006, unless a greenshoe option is exercised to increase AgBank’s IPO size by 15 percent. AgBank will set its IPO price on July 7 and start trading in Shanghai on July 15, and in Hong Kong a day later. Liu Jun, analyst at Changjiang Securities Co in Wuhan, said a unified pricing for the Shanghai and Hong Kong legs of AgBank’s IPO would not reflect the different investment culture in these two

markets. “In a more mature market like Hong Kong, there are more long-term investors who look at dividend ratios, and Chinese banking shares are already cheap and safe for them to buy.” “But most Chinese investors buy stocks for quick gains, so AgBank won’t arouse much interest,” Liu said, adding that some institutions who buy AgBank’s IPO shares under political pressure may sell them quickly after listing. The difference in investor tastes is seen in the fact that most dual-listed Chinese banks currently trade at a premium in Hong Kong over their Shanghai-listed peers. But investor interest in AgBank’s Shanghai IPO is reportedly high, with the official Securities Times reporting on June 25 that the Shanghai offering was 16 times oversubscribed upon the completion of domestic pre-marketing. The Hong Kong leg of AgBank’s IPO has already been over-subscribed by institutional investors at low to mid-range prices, sources involved in the deal told Reuters last week. Eleven cornerstone investors, including sovereign wealth funds in Qatar and Kuwait and United Overseas Bank, have agreed to buy $5.45 billion worth of AgBank shares, or nearly half of the Hong Kong offering, sources said.—Reuters

lender by assets, and could lead to different post-debut performance, analysts said. “Global investors are longer-term in nature, thus preferring companies like AgBank that serve as a proxy of China’s economic growth,” said Yu Wei, analyst at Guoyuan Securities Co. “Chinese investors are more speculative, and dislike companies with too much certainty.”

HONG KONG: Xiang Junbo, chairman and executive director of the Agricultural Bank of China (AgBank), waves during a photo call in Hong Kong. — AFP

German inflation Arabtec eyes contracts rate down to 0.9% in new markets: CEO JTC achieves 30-year milestone After 30 years of operations, Jassim Transport & Stevedoring Co W.L.L. (JTC) has emerged as one of the largest and most successful logistics companies in the region. Over the years JTC has grown and diversified its operations and today provides end to end supply chain solutions with a focus on three core divisions - Ports Operations, Contract Logistics and Equipment Leasing. JTC is now a dynamic, diversified, and responsive organization. The company has recently strengthened its top management team and is now initiating further development projects. Having reached the 30 year milestone is a great point in the company’s history, but with the outlined forward-thinking growth plan, the future will see this milestone eclipsed by the even greater goals set out by the company today. “JTCs 30 year milestone is of great significance to us, it has been an interesting journey that has witnessed us emerge as one of the key regional operators. Adjusting to changes in a highly competitive industry is still our biggest challenge yet also represents the key to our success,” said Chief Executive Officer of JTC,

Andreas Mohr. Mohr added, “As we move forward with our regional growth plans we will continue to focus on developments that will provide value to our customers and cost efficiency in our operations. We are committed to providing customers with market-leading quality logistics services and cost effectiveness. Our focus on customer value has enabled our long term commitment with them and is one of the main reasons for our success over the years.” JTC continues to move forward aggressively with their growth strategy and ensure market visibility by focusing on brand development and continuous improvement of it logistics end-toend solutions. JTC was founded in 1979 as an inland transportation company. Over the years the company has undergone significant change and growth and has developed into a dynamic, diversified, and responsive organization. JTC is associated with three core activities - Ports, Contracts Logistics and Equipment Leasing which serve a variety of market segments across a large geographical region in the Middle East.

BERLIN: Germany’s year-on-year inflation rate has slipped to 0.9 percent this month, authorities in Europe’s biggest economy estimated yesterday indicating that the euro’s weakness isn’t translating into pressure on consumer prices. The annual inflation rate was down from 1.2 percent in May. Consumer prices were up 0.1 percent on the month in June, the Federal Statistical Office estimated. Final June inflation figures are due on July 9 but they rarely differ significantly from the preliminary estimate. Annual consumer price inflation in Germany has hovered within sight of the 1 percent mark for the past few months, fueled largely by year-on-year increases in oil prices. The statistical office said lower gas prices counterbalanced that in June. Andreas Rees, an economist at UniCredit, observed that “German infla-

tion is dead as a doornail” — which he described as “remarkable” given the euro’s sharp decline against the dollar in recent months. A weaker euro could be expected to make imported goods more expensive. However, Rees said that “weak domestic demand does not allow companies to pass on higher costs to Mr. Average Citizen.” Rees said he expects neither significant upward pressure on prices nor a move into deflation in the next few months, predicting that the inflation rate for 2010 as a whole will be 1.1 percent. Data from Germany are important to decisions on interest rates by the European Central Bank. The ECB has kept its benchmark refinancing rate at 1 percent since May 2009, and tame inflation in the 16-nation euro-zone’s biggest economy reinforces expectations that it won’t raise it any time soon. — AP

DUBAI: Dubai construction heavyweight Arabtec is focusing on winning projects in new markets following the downturn in Dubai and does not require any additional funding, its chief executive said yesterday. The largest builder in the United Arab Emirates by market value suffered when Dubai’s real estate sector collapsed in the wake of the global financial crisis, leaving several projects unfinished and developers and construction firms indebted. Arabtec shares have shed 30 percent so far this year. “We’ve tendered in Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan, Angola...some of this work may come our way in the very near future,” Riad Kamal said at a conference. Arabtec has no plans for new capital raising, with funding coming from advance payments on its projects, he said. Last week, Arabtec’s chief financial officer said

in an interview the firm has bid for enough work to achieve 7.4 billion dirhams ($2.02 billion) worth of orders. Kamal said yesterday he was told the firm will receive 40 percent cash payment from troubled developer Nakheel, “this week or next week,” while the remainder, to be in the form of a bond, is expected three months later. Nakheel, developer of some of Dubai’s most iconic landmarks is currently restructuring billions in debt payments. As part of the proposals, Nakheel’s trade creditors have been offered full repayment, with 40 percent in cash and 60 percent in the form of an Islamic bond which has a 10 percent annual return. Arabtec’s shares closed 2.2 percent lower in earlier trading yesterday, underperforming Dubai’s index which eased 1.2 percent. — Reuters

Weak Gulf steel demand may lead to oversupply: Trade DUBAI: Weak steel demand in the Gulf region might lead to oversupply in the market forcing prices to fall further in the coming weeks, steel traders said yesterday. Construction had slowed down in the Gulf over the past year as economic crisis set back many of the major projects in the region, curbing appetite for steel. “There’s an oversupply in the market which is pushing prices down and many of the mills are looking to increase their exports because there is excess capacity in this region,” said Bhaskar Dutta, the chief executive of Oman-based Jazeera Steel. Steel billet, which is used in making rebars for construction, held steady last week at around $430 a ton compared to $420 a week earlier. But some traders believe that the price could tumble in the weeks ahead as a seasonal slowdown is seen knocking down demand in key consuming areas such as the Middle East and North Africa. Economic activity in the Gulf region tends to subside during the Muslim holy month of

Ramadan, which begins towards mid-August this year. “We are seeing a drop in orders from construction firms in the UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain and many of these companies already have stocks of steel so buying is not on their agenda right now,” said one Dubai-based trader. Dumping from China, Turkey and Eastern Europe into the Gulf markets is also a concern to local producers in the region that struggle to match import prices, said B S Shetty, commercial manager of UAE based Al Ghurair Iron & Steel. “The problem is that there is an oversupply in the market so many countries are dumping steel here making imports much cheaper than the local prices,” he said. With the capacity of mills in the region and the current level of demand, the Gulf could potentially be self sufficient, said Shetty. “But this will not happen because imports are always going to be cheaper than the local products,” he added. —Reuters

Joyalukkas launches special-edition summer collections As the summer approaches and people prepare for trips home and abroad, Joyalukkas - in association with World Gold Council (WGC) - is introducing its latest handcrafted special-edition gold jewelry collections especially designed for the summer months. Furthermore, Joyalukkas is giving gold-lovers the chance to win 300 gold sovereigns for every KD 50 they spend, during its ‘World Gold Fiesta’ promotion from 25 June to 8 August 2010 in all GCC showrooms. “We are pleased to introduce these magnificent new summer collections,

which make ideal gifts for family and friends - or even as a little treat for you. We are thrilled to say that this beautiful handcrafted jewelry from around the world has prompted a tremendous response from gold-lovers in the region. And, as all these pieces are limited-edition and entirely unique, we would like to encourage people to come and make the most of these exclusive new collections in order to avoid any disappointment!” said Mr. John Paul Joy Alukkas, Director, Joyalukkas Group. So rather than purchasing transient, short-lived gifts this summer, why not

choose a gift with enduring value that will last a lifetime? The new gold jewelry collections - available at all Joyalukkas stores across the region are being introduced from Turkey and Singapore, in addition to interesting Indian wedding collections for the runup to the Asian wedding season. “With the holiday season approaching, WGC recognizes that the summer is a time for reconnecting with loved ones, as people in the region either visit home or plan trips abroad with friends and family. And during these special moments, gold is not only an enduring

and precious gift to be shared with loved ones, but it is also the latest style statement,” said Yogaani Bhatia, Country Manager, WGC. The limited-edition collections include suitable pieces for every occasion; the Singaporean collection contains exquisitely handcrafted pieces suitable for daily wear, while the Turkish collections include glamorous, intricately detailed pieces, ideal for party wear. For those gearing up for the wedding season, the Indian bridal wear collection offers timeless, traditional pieces suitable for the bride’s big day.



KSE equities remain bearish

Sectors Regarding Global’s sectoral indices, they ended the day on a

Oil falls toward $78 as traders eye Gulf storm NEW YORK: Oil prices dropped slightly to near $78 a barrel yesterday as traders kept a close eye on damage a possible hurricane could cause rigs in the Gulf of Mexico this week. By early afternoon in Europe, benchmark crude for August delivery was down 48 cents to $78.38 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract added $2.35 to settle at $78.86 on Friday. Tropical depression Alex, which has pounded parts of Mexico and Central America, is expected to regain strength as it moves over warmer waters in the Gulf and possibly become a hurricane heading toward Mexico’s Caribbean coast later in the day or today, said the US National Hurricane Center in Miami. The storm will likely strike well away from the area where BP is trying to stop a massive oil leak, the center said. “The lack of follow through from the bulls or the bears is understandable, hurricane activity in the Gulf Coast remains unknown,” energy consultant The Schork Group said in a report. Hurricane activity is one of the wild cards analysts are considering as they try to predict oil prices for the rest of the year. On Friday, oil prices surged to their highest level in seven weeks on the back of the hurricane threat.

KUWAIT: The Kuwait Stock Exchange declined for the fourth consecutive day. It is worth mentioning that Global’s general index gained only in seven sessions during June 2010. Global General Index (GGI) decreased by 0.42 points (0.23 percent) during yesterday’s session to reach 184.91 points. The KSE Price Index also fell 54.10 points (0.20 percent) yesterday and closed at 6,577.80 points. Market capitalization went down by KD69.11mn yesterday to reach KD30.57bn. Market breadth During the session, 107 companies were traded. Market breadth was skewed towards decliners, as 57 equities retreated versus 23 that advanced. A total of 132 stocks remained unchanged during the trading session. Trading activities ended on a mixed note yesterday as volume of shares traded on the exchange increased by 33.52 percent to reach 129.57mn shares, and value of shares traded decreased by 8.75 percent to stand at KD18.56mn. The Real Estate Sector was the volume leader, accounting for 32.07 percent of total market volume. The Banking Sector was the value leader, accounting for 35.92 percent of total market value. Investors Holding Group Company was the volume leader, with a total traded volume of 22.08mn shares. Kuwait Finance House was the value leader, with a total traded value of KD2.32mn. In terms of top gainers, United Gulf Bank increased its gains as it took the top spot, for the second consecutive day, adding 8.62 percent and closed at KD0.315. On the other hand, Al-Tameer Real Estate Investment Co was the biggest loser, shedding 8.77 percent, and closed at KD0.052, followed by Al-Safat Energy Holding losing 7.58 percent during yesterday’s session, and closed at KD0.061.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

mixed note. Global Insurance Index was the only gainer, adding a 0.89 percent to its value, backed by Warba Insurance Company, down 5.68 percent, closing at KD0.166. Global Investment index was the biggest loser, losing 0.66 percent of its value, backed by Housing Finance Co (ISKAN), down 6.85 percent, closing at KD0.156. Global’s special indices also ended the day on a mixed note. Global Small Cap Index being the biggest gainer, increasing by 0.76 percent, backed by

International Resorts Company, which went up 4.65 percent to close at KD0.045. Global High Yield was the biggest loser yesterday, shedding 0.48 percent, backed by Warba Insurance Co, down 5.68 percent, closing at KD0.166. Oil news The price of OPEC basket of twelve crudes stood at $73.82 a barrel on Friday, compared with $72.93 the previous day, according to

OPEC Secretariat calculations. Burgan Bank has bought out Tunis International Bank (TIB). The deal is part of the lender’s expansion strategy in the MENA region. TIB’s financial results will be added to Burgan’s statements as of Q2-10. United Gulf Bank (UGB) reported finalizing the sale of its equity in Tunis International Bank (TIB) to Burgan Bank for $120mn, thus generating $49mn profit before expenses.

“We suspect that some of Friday’s gains will be rolled back as fears will likely fade that Alex could threaten the more important US production outlets to the north,” said MF Global senior commodities analyst Edward Meir. “We would not be surprised to see a retreat back into the mid-$70 range,” especially if the weekly reports on US inventories of crude oil and refined products show more builds. Analysts said financial investors were closing long positions — those betting on rising oil prices — while increasing short positions expecting prices to fall further. “Obviously, speculative investors think that there is no longer any upward potential,” said a report from Commerzbank in Frankfurt. National Australia Bank expects oil to trade at $84 a barrel at the end of this year, less than the bank’s previous forecast of $87. Strong crude demand from emerging countries should help offset weak consumption in developed economies, the bank said in a report. In other Nymex trading in July contracts, heating oil fell 2.58 cents to $2.0864 a gallon, gasoline dropped 2.16 cents to $2.1462 a gallon and natural gas was down 3.6 cents at $4.825 per 1,000 cubic feet. In London, Brent crude fell 63 cents to $77.49 a barrel on the ICE futures exchange. — AP

Two new Kuwaiti companies set up at capital of KD 2m KUWAIT: Kuwait’s official Gazette announced the establishment of two Kuwaiti companies with the combined capital of KD 2 million. The first company is Lafarj was established as a closed shareholding company with a capital of KD 1 million and 10 million shares at 100 fils each. The company is specialized in producing concrete and selling it, in addition to

importing and exporting all materials used in the production of readymade concrete. The second company is Al-Inmaa for security services was constituted with a capital of KD 1 million and 10 million shares at 100 fils each. The company is specialized in transporting money and valuables, guarding governmental and public buildings, in addition to pro-

viding electronic security services. The two companies may use available surplus to invest in portfolios managed by specialized companies and bodies. The companies may also have interests in or strike partnerships with bodies engaged in similar activities, or those bodies which would facilitate meeting their objectives. — KUNA


Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Do-little G20 summit leaves markets unperturbed PARIS: Stock markets perked up yesterday after world leaders failed to agree on a global bank levy and softened the timetable for new capital requirements at a do-little G20 summit in Canada which posed questions about the forum's effectiveness. Shares climbed in Europe and Asia, led by banks, after the US Congress adopted a landmark financial regulation package on Friday and the G20 dropped a 2012 deadline for banks to adopt more stringent risk-provisioning rules. Leaders of the main developed and emerging economies papered over differences on the balance between reviving economic growth and cutting budget deficits at weekend talks in Toronto, in what was seen as a setback for US President Barack Obama. In a reversal of the unity of the past three crisis-era G20 summits, the leaders left room for each country to move at its own pace and adopt "differentiated and tailored" policies. European leaders emerged with what they saw as green light to pursue austerity measures they consider essential to restore market confidence in the euro dented by the Greek fiscal crisis and wider concerns about high European sovereign debt. "To be honest, it was more than I expected," German Chancellor Angela Merkel said of the G20's non-binding pledge to halve budget deficits by 2013 and balance budgets from 2016. The United States had pressed the Europeans ahead of the meeting to avoid withdrawing economic stimulus mea-

NEW YORK: Traders and specialists work the trading floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Stock futures are pointing to a higher opening yesterday after members of the Group of 20 nations pledged to cut budget deficits. —AP

E Guinea's Obiang woos oil investors with reforms CAPE TOWN: The President of Equatorial Guinea said yesterday he would introduce reforms in one of Africa's most corrupt and repressive nations to attract declining investment in the West African oil producer. President Teodoro Obiang Nguema told the Fortune Global Forum in Cape Town, his fivepoint reform program would be a "turning the page" in the history of his country, where oil reserves accounting for most of the country's revenues are in decline and pressure is mounting for reforms. Obiang said he would introduce transparency and accountability in the oil industry in a country placed 12th from bottom in a list of 180 countries ranked on efforts to stamp out graft by Berlinbased Transparency International in 2009. He pledged to also improve human rights, expand press freedoms, ensure judicial credibility, protect the environment and fight poverty and create jobs using oil revenues on his nation's impoverished population. Obiang stated he was aware of "criticisms of my government and even of my family," many of which he believed to be untrue. "We have a long way to go to achieve this ambitious program of reform and transparency," he said. "In many ways we have to fundamentally change the course of our history and parts of our culture. It will not be easy. We ask for your patience, especially that of the community of NGOs from around the world," Obiang said.

Equatorial Guinea's oil production has leapt from virtually nothing to around 380,000 barrels per day during the last decade alone. Most of the companies that have invested in the Gulf of Guinea state are from the United States. Obiang said a key plank of the reforms would be to introduce transparency and accountability in a bid to re-join the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI). Equatorial Guinea was suspended from EITI in April, piling pressure to claims by rights groups that his government enriches itself with petrodollars while neglecting its citizens. EITI is an international program aimed at improving transparency in the use of resource revenues, and exclusion from the group could hurt investment in the country due to the reputational risk involved. Equatorial Guinea is one of the smallest nations in Africa, where the oil wealth is concentrated in government and elite hands, with around 70 percent of the more than one million population living in grinding poverty. The country discovered big offshore oil reserves in the 1990s and drew a rapid influx of investment from mostly US energy firms such as Exxon Mobil, Marathon Oil and Hess that turned it into a big oil supplier. But production started to decline earlier this decade, and the pace of investment has fallen by about 30 percent between 2005 and 2008 to $1.3 billion, according to the latest United Nations statistics. — Reuters

Euro-zone private sector lending up in May: ECB FRANKFURT: Bank lending to the euro-zone private sector picked up in May, the European Central Bank said yesterday, a sign of stronger economic activity in the recovering 16-nation bloc. Lending increased by 0.2 percent from the level in May 2009, a bank spokesman said, adding to a slight rise of 0.1 percent in April, when it rebounded following seven straight months of declines. "There are some modestly encouraging signs in the eurozone credit data that bank lending to the private sector may be starting to pick up," IHS Global Insight chief European economist Howard Archer commented. Growth of the ECB's M3 money supply indicator, which measures cash, deposits and other financial benchmarks, decreased by 0.2 percent in May however, following a similar decline in April. Lending and money supply data are indicators of consumer demand and overall economic activity. Falling figures point to lower demand, which normally means inflation will ease and allow the ECB to cut interest rates. Rates are already at a record low of one percent however, and are not expected to be cut further. The euro-zone emerged from recession last year and is now trying to nurture its recovery as leaders tackle excessive deficit and debt in most member countries. And while the increased private sector lending

is encouraging, "it is still muted," Archer noted. "Conditions in the money markets have tightened appreciably with the euro-zone debt crisis magnifying concern over the health of the euro-zone banking system," he said. Commerzbank economist

Michael Schubert thought financing conditions for banks might deteriorate again owing to money market tensions, and prompt them to limit lending in the future. "A recovery in loan momentum may only be temporary," he warned. — AFP

sures prematurely and urged countries with current account surpluses such as Germany to boost domestic demand week, with the cabinet due to approve measures on Wednesday to curb public spending, and further cuts to be spelled out in September in a tough 2011 budget. Under orders from President Nicolas Sarkozy not to speak of "rigueur"-the French term for austerity-ministers have been salami-slicing announcements of deeper cost savings. Prime Minister Francois Fillon said last week the government might have to reduce tax breaks next year by 8.5 billion euros rather than the 5 billion initially targeted. Budget Minister Francois Fillon said at the weekend he was looking for up to 10 billion euros in savings on tax breaks. "We have an untouchable goal to reduce the deficit level by two points from 8 percent to 6 percent next year. That's never been done before," Baroin told France 2 television, adding the 2011 budget would be "the most difficult in more than 30 years." In Spain, workers on Madrid's underground rail system began a three-day strike against wage cuts that are part of an austerity plan to cut a massive budget deficit. The Socialist government aims to save 15 billion euros over the next 18 months partly by cutting civil servants' pay by 5 percent. In Greece, the main labour unions plan a national strike today in protest at a planned radical reform of the pension system, raising the retirement age and cutting benefits, that was mandated by a

bailout agreement with the IMF and the EU. In a sign that markets are still nervous about euro zone debt, the premium investors charge to hold French, Belgian, Spanish and Italian bonds rather than benchmark German bunds rose to their highest levels since early June. The interest rates at which banks lend to each other in euros also rose. The Toronto summit exposed issues that are harder to resolve when countries loosely united under the G20 banner are emerging from the downturn at different speeds and with divergent priorities. China avoided a scolding over the weak yuan, which has fuelled its export boom, by announcing a more flexible foreign exchange policy a week before the summit and letting the currency rise by 0.5 percent against the dollar last week. But Beijing also refused to let the G20 praise it for the shift, insisting the issue had no place in international forums.On trade liberalization, the G20 arguably moved backwards, dropping 2010 as the target date for concluding the longstalled Doha round of World Trade Organization negotiations. On financial regulation, the leaders endorsed a long phase-in for new Basel III bank capital and liquidity rules, allowing different speeds for different countries at the risk of encouraging regulatory arbitrage. "We welcome the fact that the G20 has stepped away from imposing an arbitrary timeline for the implementation of new measures and has instead agreed to phase-in requirements agreements as

and when national economic conditions allow," the International Banking Federation said in a statement. Opposition from Canada, Japan, Brazil and Australia, whose banks did not need state bailouts during the financial crisis, thwarted European calls for a common tax on banks to shield taxpayers from the costs of rescuing the financial sector. But the central unresolved rift was over the pace of fiscal consolidation after governments in the industrialized world ran up huge debts and deficits coping with the crisis. While Obama was diplomatic in masking disappointment at the communique, others were far more critical of the German-led European austerity drive. Europe was "absolutely wrong", Argentine President Cristina Fernandez told Reuters in an interview in Toronto. "If European countries proceed with their fiscal austerity plans, the global economic turnaround may slow down," said South Koreaan President Lee Myung-bak, another G20 member. Analysts said the meager summit outcome raised doubts about the G20's value as a forum for managing the world economy. "The G20 is fragmented as it transitions out of its role as a crisis-fighting committee," said Tom Bernes, vicepresident of the Center for International Governance Innovation in Toronto. "While G20 leaders agree on the need for stronger financial regulation, actual details continue to be vague and lacking a solid deadline.... There is a huge unfinished agenda." — Reuters

Oil spill costs hit $100 million/day

Oil spill's economic damage unlikely to go beyond Gulf WASHINGTON: The BP oil spill has hammered the fishing and tourism industries along the Gulf of Mexico. But it appears the economic damage to the rest of the United States will be limited. Analysts say the spill will reduce economic growth by only about one-half of 1 percentage point this quarter, and even less during the second half of the year. For an economy Psychiatrists who treated people after Katrina say the same symptoms are showing up now: Anger. Anxiety. Drinking. Depression. Suicidal thoughts. And now another storm may make matters worse. Tropical Storm Alex, which moved into the Gulf on Sunday, was not expected to cross the oil spill area or halt the cleanup and containment efforts. Alex could become a hurricane as it moves over the warmer waters of the Gulf, but it was forecast to hit Mexico's eastern coast, well away from the area where BP PLC is trying to stop the massive leak, the National Hurricane Center said. But it could still have an effect. "The center of Alex is not expected to approach the oil spill area, " said Stacy Stewart, a senior hurricane specialist at the center. "However, that does not mean there could not be some indirect effects as the outer wind field will produce winds possibly 20 to 30 mph, seas perhaps as high as 12 to 15 feet across the oil spill area, and that could exacerbate the problem there in terms of pushing oil a little bit further inland and also perhaps hindering operations." Analysts said there are several reasons the spill's effect on the US national economy will be slight: •Spending on tourism is moving elsewhere inside the country -- to the Atlantic coast, for example.*The Gulf's commercial fishing makes up only a tiny fraction of the US economy. •The Gulf energy industry, which makes up about 10 per-

as large as the United States' -- $14.6 trillion -- a $73 billion cut is barely a nick. That is small comfort to residents of the Gulf Coast. There, the economic impact is severe. And experts say the spill is taking a psychological toll on people still dealing with the emotional aftermath of Hurricane Katrina five years ago.

CHICAGO: Bob Juckniess, owner of 10 BP gas stations in the Chicago suburbs, looks out at the Chicago River in Chicago. BP station owners across the country say sales are slumping, in some instances by up to 20 percent. BP owns just a fraction of the 9,700 BP-branded stations across the US that sell BP fuel, and that gasoline comes from oil that may not even have been produced by BP. — AP cent of the regional economy, is not vital to the nation's. But the local economy may take years to recover. And the psychological damage is difficult to quantify. Shrimper Ricky Robin is haunted by memories of his father's suicide in the aftermath of Katrina, which in August 2005 devastated a swath from Louisiana to Alabama -almost as big as the area affected by the oil -- killing more than 1,600 people. "I can't sleep at night. I find myself crying sometimes," said Robin, 56, of Violet, a blue-collar

community on the southeastern edge of the New Orleans suburbs. "Everybody's acting strange," he said. "Real angry, frustrated, stressed out, fighting brothers and sisters and mamas and family." The helplessness, coupled with uncertainty about what's going to happen with the spill and when the next check from BP PLC will arrive, leaves charter boat captain George Pfeiffer angry all the time. "Our families want to know what's going on," said Pfeiffer, 55. "When we get home, we're

stressed out and tired, and they want answers and we don't have any." His wife cries a lot. "I haven't slept. I've lost weight," said Yvonne Pfeiffer, 53. "My shoulders are in knots. The stress level has my shoulders up to my ears." Mental health professionals say it is too early to have reliable data to understand the full severity of stress issues spawned by the spill. But they said the backdrop of Katrina means it is likely to get worse. "This is a second round of major trauma for children and

families still recovering from Katrina. It represents uncharted territory," said Dr. Irwin Redlener, director of the National Center for Disaster Preparedness at Columbia University and a member of the National Commission on Children and Disasters who has worked with Katrina survivors. Associated Press Writers Janet Mcconnaughey, Mitch Stacy, Greg Bluestein, Cain Burdeau, John Flesher and Michael Kunzelman in New Orleans, Shelia Byrd in Jackson, Miss., and Pauline Arrillaga in Houma, La., contributed to this report. BP said it had spent $300 million on its Gulf of Mexico oil spill response effort in the past three days, hitting the $100 million/day spend rate for the first time and bringing its total bill to $2.65 billion so far. The figures, which BP released in a statement on Monday, include the cost of trying to cap the well, clean up the environmental damage caused by the leaking crude and pay compensation to those affected by the spill. BP added it remained on track to complete its relief well, which aims to kill the leaking well at the point it meets the reservoir, in the three month timeframe initially envisaged, despite progress slowing on the well in recent days. Last week, the well was being drilled at the rate of 1,000 feet per day, but the pace dropped to less than 100 feet a day over the weekend, as the delicate task of closing in on the leaking well is conducted. —Agencies

Spanish developer BP denies Hayward to resign files for protection

MUNICH: The logo of German conglomerate Siemens is photographed at the Siemens-Forum center in Munich, southern Germany. German industrial conglomerate Siemens AG plans to set up a bank of its own in an effort to reduce risks of financing difficulties following the economic crisis.—AP

MADRID: Spanish real estate developer Sacresa said yesterday it would file for protection from creditors holding 1.75 billion euros ($2.15 billion) in debt. A spokeswoman said the decision came after three months of negotiations with banks over how to refinance the debt ended without agreement. It is the third major Spanish developer to file for protection since 2008, evidence of the crisis in Spain's once-booming real estate market. In July 2008, major developer Martinsa-Fadesa' filed for protection from creditors with a debt of 5 billion euros. Four months later, Promociones Habitat followed suit holding 2.3 billion euros in debt. The spokeswoman says the court will appoint an administrator to examine the company's accounts and decide its future. Barcelona daily La Vanguardia said the pool of banks involved in the negotiations did not consider the company's viability plan to be credible. It said the company wanted to shed 30 percent of the debt by handing over assets to the banks. The spokeswoman says lawyers would make the filing at Barcelona's No. 2 mercantile court. A court spokeswoman said most likely the case would begin to be processed today. Sacresa, one of the principal developers in the northeastern region of Catalonia, has 150 employees. It is controlled by the Sanahuja family. The firm's representative spoke on condition of anonymity in keeping with company regulations. Spain is struggling to emerge from nearly two years of recession following the collapse of its construction sector which had earlier fueled a decade of economic boom. —AP

LONDON: BP denied yesterday that its chief executive Tony Hayward was set to resign over the Gulf of Mexico oil spill which is costing the embattled British energy group about $4 million an hour. Russian Deputy Prime Minister Igor Sechin, preparing to meet Hayward yesterday, said the British boss was to resign and present a successor, Russian news agencies reported. But a BP spokeswoman insisted that Hayward was not stepping down. "Tony Hayward remains chief executive and is not resigning," she told AFP. According to the Interfax and RIA Novosti news agencies, Sechin said that "Hayward is leaving his post and will present a successor". Hayward was due in Moscow yesterday to meet Sechin, the Russian government's energy supremo, as the oil giant wrestles with the liabilities from the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Hayward, who has faced severe criticism from US President Barack Obama over his handling of the crisis, last week handed over management of the oil spill to another senior manager, Bob Dudley, who is a US national. BP yesterday raised the cost so far of its oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico to $2.65 billion, an increase of about $300 million over the weekend. — AFP

BP's chief executive Tony Hayward



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Analysts upgrade Reliance Comm after tower deal MUMBAI: Reliance Communications’ deal to sell its telecoms towers will help India’s No 2 mobile operator cut its debut by more than half to about $3.9 billion, a source said, in a move that triggered broker upgrades in a cut-throat sector. Carriers in India’s cellular market, the world’s fastest-growing, with more than 600 million users, have been shedding their tower businesses and renting capacity to cut costs. The deal prompted Macquarie to raise its rating on Reliance Comm to “outperform” from “underperform”, making it the brokerage’s only positive pick in a crowded Indian telecoms sector that is locked in a fierce battle for customers. Controlled by billionaire Anil Ambani, Reliance Comm had flagged a deal in its tower unit, and also plans to sell up to a 26 percent stake in itself, after India sold licenses for 3G wireless services at a price far higher than expected. On Sunday, Reliance Comm agreed to

offload its telecoms towers to GTL Infrastructure and said the combined operations would have an enterprise value of over $11 billion and own more than 80,000 towers. GTL Infrastructure shares rose as much as 9 percent, and were the most active major counter in Mumbai. Exact terms were not disclosed, but the deal will see Reliance Comm reduce its debt by 180 billion rupees ($3.9 billion), a person with direct knowledge of the matter said. “I think that the stock has reached a level from where further upside is limited. Most positives are already priced in” said R K Gupta, managing director of Taurus Mutual Fund. Reliance Comm’s debt before the deal stood at about 330 billion rupees, including the cost to finance its recent third-generation (3G) spectrum licenses. “We believe this is a significant positive catalyst for RCOM and positive for RCOM’s shareholders, as it sets the company up for focused

Mukesh Ambani

execution of its access and wholesale businesses,” Macquarie analyst Shubham Majumder said in a note. Macquarie lifted its earnings per share forecasts for Reliance Comm by 9 percent and 8 percent, respectively, in the financial years ending in March 2011 and 2012. Reliance Comm shareholders will receive shares in GTL Infrastructure. The swap ratio has not yet been finalized. “It also gives the power to RCOM shareholders to continue to participate in the towers growth story in India through a significantly improved, much larger and focused vehicle,” Macquarie said. Karvy Stock Broking also upgraded its rating on Reliance Comm, to “market performer” from “under performer.” The deal values the towers of Reliance Comm’s Reliance Infratel unit at 7 million rupees each, a 46 percent premium to the 4.8 million rupee per tower valuation in GTL Infrastructure’s recent acquisition of towers from carrier Aircel, Karvy wroe.

India’s 15-player cellular industry is fiercely competitive, with carriers engaged in a margin-crushing tariff war. Several potential suitors cited in media reports based on unnamed sources have denied being in talks with Reliance Comm. So far, only Abu Dhabi’s Etisalat has acknowledged that it is considering a deal with Reliance Comm. Shares in Reliance Comm are up 39 percent in June, far outperforming the 5.0 percent gain in the Sensex. Anil Ambani has been in dealmaking mode since ending a pact last month with his long-estranged brother, Mukesh Ambani, that forbade the two from competing on the other’s turf. That pact had enabled Mukesh Ambani, the world’s fourth-richest man, to assert a right of first refusal two years ago that blocked a deal between Reliance Comm and South Africa’s MTN. The brothers have been mending fences, and on Friday agreed to a renegotiated gas

supply deal, resolving a dispute that had been at the heart of their feud. Under the terms of Sunday’s deal, GTL Infrastructure Chairman Manoj Tirodkar would own 30 to 35 percent of the combined tower business and Anil Ambani’s Reliance ADA Group would own 26 percent, with shareholders in the two firms holding the remainder, sources with direct knowledge of the matter said. Spinning off tower holdings into an independent firm is intended to make it easier to attract rival carriers as tenants. The combined tower operations of Reliance Comm and GTL Infrastructure would be the largest telecoms infrastructure firm in the world not controlled by a carrier, Reliance Comm said. Rival Indus Towers—jointly owned by Indian cellular heavyweights Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Essar and Idea Cellular — has more than 100,000 telecom towers and says it is the largest tower company in the world. — Reuters

Shift unlikely to presage major currency revaluation

China slightly shifts yuan rate after G20 pressure BEIJING: China yesterday set its yuan exchange rate marginally higher following the Group of 20 summit, but analysts warned the shift was symbolic and did not presage a major revaluation of the currency. The move by the central bank came after US President Barack Obama and other leaders used the

weekend’s G20 meeting in Toronto to intensify pressure on Beijing to let the yuan strengthen. The People’s Bank of China said it set the central parity rate the centre point of the currency’s allowed trading band-at 6.7890 to the dollar, a fraction stronger than Friday’s 6.7896.

BEIJING: A grocery store cashier holding a display of 100 Renmibi notes in Beijing. China set the strongest yuan exchange rate in years yesterday after Beijing came under renewed pressure at the Group of 20 summit over the weekend to let the currency appreciate. —AFP

Growth in Japan retail sales slackens in May TOKYO: Japan’s retail sales expanded for the fifth straight month in May, though growth in spending lost momentum as government stimulus measures fade. Retail sales rose 2.8 percent from the same month a year earlier, the government said yesterday. The result compares with gains of almost 5 percent in both March and April and marks the slowest growth since January. Compared with the previous month, retails sales in May fell a seasonally adjusted 2 percent in the first decline in five months. Autos and household machinery sales were

particularly weak, reflecting the waning effects of consumer incentives for cars and energy-efficient home appliances. Despite the latest figure, economists say they expect consumer spending to stay solid in the months ahead as Japan’s economy improves. Robust exports have led to higher corporate profits and factory production, which is gradually filtering down to workers and households. “Looking ahead, we believe that underlying trend of consumption will remain firm with a gradual improvement in labor market and wages,” said Masamichi Adachi, senior

economist at JPMorgan Securities Japan, in a note to clients. Sales at large retail stores fell 4 percent from a year earlier, after adjusting for the change in the number of stores, according to the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. The government will release several key indicators this week that should provide a clearer picture of the world’s secondbiggest economy. Unemployment and industrial production data are due out today. The central bank will release its closely watched “tankan” survey of business sentiment on Thursday. — AP

Japan automakers report surge in global production TOKYO: Toyota’s global car production zoomed 27 percent in May as Japanese automakers benefit from improving demand in Asia and the US Toyota Motor Corp, the world’s No 1 automaker, which makes the Prius hybrid and Lexus luxury model, said yesterday it produced 637,675 vehicles worldwide in May. Toyota’s sales in Japan increased year-on-year for the 10th straight month, it said. Honda Motor Co.’s worldwide production totaled 278,543 vehicles in May, surging 42.8 percent from a year earlier for the sixth straight month of improved production. Honda, which makes the Insight hybrid and Odyssey minivan, said US production increased year-on-year for the seventh straight month while production in Asia was up for the 10th straight month. Even Japan, a struggling market, saw production rise for the fifth straight month, Tokyo-based Honda said. Japanese automakers were battered by a plunge in the auto market following the financial

crisis of late 2008. But sales have been gradually recuperating as the US economy recovers and demand continues to grow in Asia and other emerging markets. Toyota’s figures suggest its sales are holding up despite the bad publicity from a spate of quality lapses behind a massive global recall of more than 8 million vehicles, which began in October. Vehicle output at Nissan Motor Co, allied with Renault SA of France, was a record for the company in May, with global production at 309,287, up 41.9 percent from the same month a year earlier. Nissan, which makes the March subcompact and GT-R sportscar, said demand for its cars rose in various regions, including Japan, the US, Mexico, Spain and China. News was also good at Mazda Motor Corp, where its global production rose 46 percent to 97,175 vehicles in May. Mitsubishi Motors Corp reported global production for May of 83,418 vehicles, up 85.8 percent from the previous year. — AP

CHONGQING CITY: Chen Yunlin, chairman of China’s Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait (ARATS) (left) shakes hands with his counterpart, Chairman of Taiwan’s Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF), Chiang Pin-kung, at a welcoming ceremony in Chongqing city, China yesterday. —AP

It was the strongest level policymakers have set since China unpegged the currency in July 2005 and moved to a tightly managed floating exchange rate. China’s central bank pledged about a week ago to let the yuan trade more freely against the dollar but ruled out dramatic moves in the currency or a oneoff appreciation. Obama-facing angry lawmakers who want to slap China with sanctions for what they say is currency manipulation that has given it an unfair trade advantage-said Sunday he expected Beijing to “be serious” about its promise. Brazilian Finance Minister Guido Mantega also urged China to let the unit strengthen more quickly in order to level the playing field for world trade. The action was widely seen as a bid to head off an ugly spat at the G20 meeting following months of intense pressure on Beijing to embrace currency reform as part of efforts to enhance a global economic recovery. The currency appreciated 0.53 percent against the greenback over the course of last week. In Monday trade, the yuan was slightly weaker at around 6.7912 to the dollar. Analysts downplayed the significance of yesterday’s move, saying it might temporarily appease critics but did not signal a significant revaluation. The slight increase in the yuan was a deliberate attempt by Beijing to make its currency policy “more acceptable” to critics, said Ken Peng, a Beijingbased economist at Citigroup. “I don’t think they are in a hurry to appreciate the currency,” he said. Obama’s comments would have “some influence” on policymakers but any move in the currency would fall short of US lawmakers’ demands, said Xiong Zhiyong, an expert on US-China relations at the Foreign Affairs College in Beijing. US lawmakers have threatened to press ahead with legislation they said would treat “currency manipulation” as an illegal subsidy and enable US authorities to impose tariffs on Chinese goods. Some experts say the yuan is undervalued against the dollar by up to 40 percent. But Chinese leaders attending the G20 summit said Beijing would not bow to international pressure for a stronger yuan, with President Hu Jintao saying trade frictions should be addressed through “dialogue and consultation”. In a further sign policymakers are in no hurry to surrender control of the currency, central bank adviser Xia Bin said China would need to maintain a managed floating exchange rate for the next five to 10 years. The timing for the yuan to become an international currency is not yet ripe, Xia said in an article published in a pamphlet distributed at a financial forum in Shanghai at the weekend. China had effectively pegged the yuan at about 6.8 to the dollar for the past two years to prop up exporters during the global financial crisis. Critics say the policy gives Chinese producers an unfair advantage. — AFP

HAWTHORNE: Tesla Motors CEO, Chairman and Product Architect Elon Musk speaks at the unveiling of the Tesla Model S all-electric 5-door sedan, in Hawthorne, California. Tesla Motors Inc begins selling stock to the public today. The sale’s success depends on how much investors are willing to bet on a car company that has never made a profit, sells a single vehicle and expects to lose money until at least 2012. —AP

StanChart set for strong H1, market jitters hurt LONDON: Standard Chartered Plc said recent economic uncertainty had hurt business, taking the shine off a strong first-half performance as its key Asian markets fared better than the west and it grabs market share. The bank said in a trading update yesterday that worries about the sovereign debt crisis in Europe had dented client demand for some products in its key wholesale banking arm and wealth management in recent weeks and created a subdued trading environment. “In late May and in the first part of June we saw some impact on our income levels, washing over from the uncertainty in Europe. But this was off very strong underlying growth,” Finance Director Richard Meddings said on a conference call. Standard Chartered is one of the first banks to signal the impact of Europe’s troubles on global markets, and its shares dipped 2 percent as analysts said the comments were less upbeat than its previous statement in May, when it said it had a record first quarter. “The statement in May was very positive and it looks like a little bit of momentum has been lost,” said Bruce Packard, analyst at Seymour Pierce, who rates the shares as “hold”. Meddings said he remained “very comfortable” with analysts’ consensus forecasts for a 15 percent rise in 2010 pretax profit to a record $5.9 billion. The average forecast from 19 analysts polled by Thomson Reuters is slightly higher, at $6.1 billion. The bank, based in London but deriving over four-fifths of its profits from Asia, said its income and profit in the first five months of the year were ahead of the

comparable period of 2009, stripping out again last year on the buyback of debt. Growth at Standard Chartered, whose history of financing trade between Europe, Asia and Africa dates back to 1853, has been driven in recent years by its wholesale arm, which includes investment banking services and last year accounted for near 85 percent of group earnings. It said it is winning market share and continued to invest, hiring 450 staff in wholesale banking. Wholesale banking income in the first half was expected to be similar to the strong first half of last year, and up over 10 percent on 2009’s second half. Its consumer banking has fared less well in recent years, but the bank said the business turned a corner last year and was continuing its recovery. Bad debts in both its wholesale and consumer banking businesses had improved significantly, the bank said. By 0730 GMT its shares were down 30 pence at 17.12 pounds, up 9 percent this year and 7 percent below their all-time high from March, unlike most western peers, who are well below their peaks from 2007. The European bank sector is down 10 percent this year. The bank this month listed shares in India and Meddings said it remained keen to list in Shanghai, but the timing was dependent on regulators there and was unlikely this year. He declined to comment on whether his bank will invest in Agricultural Bank of China as part of its initial public listing. Standard Chartered will invest $500 million, people familiar with the matter have said. — Reuters

Germany’s Siemens to open its own bank BERLIN: German industrial conglomerate Siemens AG plans to set up a bank of its own in an effort to reduce risks of financing difficulties following the economic crisis, the company said yesterday. Siemens aims to expand the product portfolio of its financial services unit — boosting the sales finance area, adding flexibility to the group’s financing and optimizing its risk management, spokesman Marc Langendorf said. However, it won’t provide retail banking services. “The financial crisis has shown that financing has to be broadly spread across several banks in order to minimize the risk,” Langendorf said. Siemens has submitted an application to Germany’s banking authority, which is currently under review. A company official familiar with the matter, speaking on condi-

tion of anonymity because the application is still pending, said approval is expected before the end of the year. Lending money to its own customers to facilitate sales won’t pose an additional risk to Siemens since it will always have its products as collateral, spokesman Langendorf said — “and we’ll be acting in sectors that we know very well, just as our clients’ business models.” US competitor General Electric Co. has a fullblown financial division which also offers banking products for consumers. Last year, the financial crisis led to a big spike in losses on loans GE Capital made for mortgages, credit cards and commercial real estate. Siemens’ chief financial officer told the daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung that his company was not only seeking to diversify its sales financing, but also to strengthen its own

liquidity management. “Our liquidity currently stands at almost 9 billion euros ($11.1 billion), therefore we especially need safe investment opportunities,” Kaeser was quoted as saying in the newspaper’s Monday edition. He argued that, since the regulatory environment still isn’t entirely transparent, the company could still be hurt if banks get in trouble. Kaeser didn’t give a precise outlook for the second quarter, but said orders and profitability were up, just as the recent strengthening of the dollar against the euro is “good for Siemens.” Siemens’ stock gained 1.4 percent in Frankfurt to 75.12 euros. The company is based in Munich and has some 400,000 employees worldwide, with products ranging from light bulbs to trains. — AP

Tuesday, June 29, 2010



Over 12,000 Guineans SMS on election issues DAKAR: The US embassy in Guinea said yesterday more than 12,000 Guineans had used a novel SMS service to flag issues during the country's first free election, praised as having gone "extraordinarily well." The high-tech monitoring campaign is the first of its kind and sought to increase transparency by allowing Guineans to assist in monitoring the historic election, the first democratic poll since independence from France in 1958. "This was the largest response to an initiative of its kind anywhere in the world," Brett Bruen, spokesman to ambassador Patricia Moller, told AFP in Dakar by telephone. "What is particularly astonishing is that it took place here, where 80 percent of the population is illiterate. It was an unexpectedly overwhelming response," he said of the text message service. Sunday's election generated widespread relief as it took place peacefully, despite several logistical problems. The texts were reviewed by civil society observers and then forwarded to a web-

site to be monitored by the public and the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI). Before the election, Moller said this was the first time a government's election commission had agreed to use this tool as part of its election monitoring.The website ( has different categories such as voting irregularities, vote tampering, bribing, errors in ballot papers, the presence of the army, as well as space for compliments. Most of the complaints appeared to be about delays at polling stations, difficulties in voting due to problems with voter cards. The ambassador praised the conduct of the elections. "Based on the assessment from local and international observers and our own election missions, the US embassy believes the election to have gone extraordinarily well especially in the light of significant time and logistical challenges," she said in a statement. The United States is the largest bilateral contributor to the election.—AFP

NHK launches TV, online program 'Project Wisdom' TOKYO: NHK (Japan Broadcasting Corporation), Japan's national public broadcasting organization, started producing a new international debate on TV and online called "PROJECT WISDOM" ( from April, which focuses on the world's major issues. Our internet network is for so-called WISDOMs - leaders with an influence across the world, social entrepreneurs dedicated to addressing serious problems worldwide, etc. We engage in discussions by publishing various opinions and messages on the web-forum then we will achieve global debates with selected WISDOMs, connecting to our TV studio by using IP telecommunication technology. Send your opinion, activity or experience by topic! On the official website, there are several

questions about the theme. Kindly send us your opinion, information on the activities/experiences you have, or reports/local inputs related to the theme by digital files such as text, pictures, video, and audio. Comments to already-posted contributions are also welcome. Up coming topic: "A financial crisis out of control: How will the world respond?" With a huge fiscal deficit, Greece has been hit by a default on national bonds. There is every sign that "sovereign risk" will spread to other Eurozone countries, and through the rest of the world. How should financial institutions and markets operate? How should we confront financial capitalism, and a financial crisis that is so out of control? Participating WISDOMs will be searching for possible solutions. —AFP

NEW YORK: Apple fans in New York display iPhone4s after waiting in line to become the first owners of the latest-generation iPhone, called the iPhone4, as it made its global debut in five countries. —AFP

Most successful product launch in Apple's history: Jobs

Apple sold 1.7 million iPhones in three days SAN FRANCISCO: Apple sold more than 1.7 million new iPhones in the product's first three days on the market, the California gadget maker said yesterday after its most successful launch ever. The iPhone 4, which features video calling, a crisper resolution screen and the ability to shoot and edit high-definition quality video, went on sale in Britain, France, Germany, Japan and the United States on Thursday. Apple said it sold over 1.7 million of the devices through Saturday. "This is the most successful product launch in Apple's history," Apple chief

executive Steve Jobs said in a statement. "Even so, we apologize to those customers who were turned away because we did not have enough supply." Apple said the iPhone 4 will be available in an additional 18 countries by the end of July: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland. The iPhone 4 sells for 199 dollars in the United States for the 16 gigabyte model and 299 dollars for the 32GB

model. Carriers in the United States and France were forced to suspend early orders because of heavy demand and sales of a white iPhone 4 model have been delayed to the second half of July because of unspecified manufacturing difficulties. Apple last week also addressed antenna problems raised by iPhone owners who complained that holding the smartphone in a certain way cut signal strength. Apple designed silver edging on handsets to be part of the antenna system to improve signal strength. "Gripping any

mobile phone will result in some attenuation of its antenna performance, with certain places being worse than others depending on the placement of the antennas," Apple said. "This is a fact of life for every wireless phone." Apple advised users who experience the signal problem to "avoid gripping it in the lower left corner in a way that covers both sides of the black strip in the metal band, or simply use one of many available cases." Apple has sold more than 50 million iPhones since launching the handset in 2007.—AFP

Don't expect 3Ds until Turkish group 2011, says Nintendo opens court case over Google services

Putting a knife through the heart of gamers expecting Nintendo's handheld 3D refresh sometime this year, Nintendo president Reggie Fils-Aime now says the high-end gizmo won't see release until next year. Fils-Aime must have been hoping no one would notice. He made the announcement on Friday's Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, after playing a bit of Donkey Kong Country Returns (for Wii, out later this year). Alright, technically speaking Nintendo said the 3DS would ship by end of March 2011, so the announcement's not that surprising. Blame the grapevine for hyping the other direction: In April this year, CVG claimed "industry sources" had confirmed the system would launch "in advance of Christmas this year," pegging the month window to October, and leading some to speculate about an October 10, 2010 (10-10-10!) date.

The 3DS carries Nintendo's hopes of dominating the upcoming handheld wars with players like Sony and Apple. It features a 3.53-inch widescreen along its interior top half against a 3.02-inch touchscreen along its interior bottom half, both motion and gyroscopic sensors, 802.11n wireless, an analog thumb-nub, three cameras (one inside, two facing out for 3D picture-taking), a much faster processor for higher quality graphics, and the headliner: True stereoscopic 3D without the need for special eye-ware. Why would Nintendo miss the holiday window? I'd guess it's the screen technology and nascent manufacturing processes. Instead of debuting globally and risking months of consumer-exasperating supply constraints, the company's probably planning a Japanese holiday debut, with the rest of us taking our turn next year.—PCworld

SPACE: The first images released yesterday from Germany's new radar satellite the TanDEM-X which was launched from Kazakhstan on June 21. In the centre of this image the airport Moscow-Sheremetyevo, 30km northwest of Moscow, is visible. Terminal 1 in the North, Terminal 2 in the South and the two runways can all be seen clearly. —AFP

ISTANBUL: A Turkish Internet rights group opened a court case yesterday to end what it says are illegal restrictions on Google services, the latest step in a debate over Internet freedom in Turkey. Turkey has clashed with Google before and closed down Google's video sharing platform YouTube in 2008 for videos it said insulted the country's revered founder Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. Internet advocates say efforts to limit access to the video website have caused illegal restrictions on other Google services such as Google Maps and Google Analytics. "Millions of Internet users and thousands of companies that use Google services have been victimized," said the Internet Technologies Association in a statement sent to the court. The group says access to Google services has slowed down and in some cases became unavailable after Google Internet Protocol (IP) addresses were blocked in an attempt to hinder access to other websites. The Internet Technology Association opened a court case against Turkey last year at the European Court of Human Rights over the banning of YouTube, one of thousands of Internet sites that are closed in Turkey, a European Union candidate country. Turkey wants Google to open an office in Turkey and says the Internet giant owes some $20 million in taxes from revenues generated from the video site. "(YouTube) has entered a fight with the Turkish

Republic," said Communications Minister Binali Yildirim last week. "No matter how much of a fuss is made, we will not bow our heads," he said in parliament. Google representatives in Turkey did not respond to requests for comment on the issue. Turkey's AK Party government says it has broadened the scope of public debate since taking power in 2002. But curbs on websites have raised concerns. Freedom of speech reforms have ground to a halt in recent years, while the number of closed Internet sites has risen. As of May 2009 nearly 3,000 Internet sites were closed, according to Turkey's information technology watchdog, though advocacy groups put the number nearer 5,000. "There is no one here in Turkey that makes the effort to protect freedom of expression, there are 60,000 different videos about Turkey in YouTube, and ten have been found to be insulting," said Mustafa Akgul, head of the advocacy group and an Internet expert at Bilkent University in Ankara. Analysts have criticised the ease with which citizens can apply to have an Internet site closed down, with a form readily available on the information technology board's website. Most sites in Turkey closed by court order are due to allegations that they encourage suicide, contain libel, child pornography, help users access drugs or promote prostitution. — Reuters

LONDON: A Festo inflatable penguin robot flies over people during the Royal Society festival of science and arts at the Southbank Center in London. The festival explores links between the sciences and arts and features a host of cross-disciplinary collaborations, scientific and artistic events. — AFP

White House launches plan to boost broadband WASHINGTON: US President Barack Obama's plan to free up airways would nearly double the amount of commercial spectrum currently available for wireless devices, an administration official said yesterday. The plan would make available 500 megahertz of federal and commercial spectrum over the next 10 years, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity. Freeing up spectrum would also create jobs by meeting the growing demand for mobile and fixed broadband, spur economic growth and raise funds to build an emergency network for public safety workers, the official said. Some estimates suggest the next five years will see an increase in wireless data of between 20 to 45 times 2009 levels, reflecting the burgeoning use of smartphones, netbooks and other wireless devices. Obama was scheduled to sign a presidential memorandum on the policy yesterday as part of a broader effort that also includes legislation to

facilitate the transfer of spectrum, the official said. White House economic adviser Lawrence Summers was scheduled to provide details on the policy in a midday speech to the New America Foundation. "The president's plan will nearly double the amount of commercial spectrum available to unleash the innovative potential of wireless broadband," Summers said in remarks prepared for delivery. "This initiative will catalyze private sector investment, contribute to economic growth, and help to create hundreds of thousands of jobs," Summers said in excerpts made available in advance of the speech. Under the policy, most of the freed-up spectrum would be auctioned for mobile broadband use, according to the administration official who spoke on background. Revenues from the auction would provide funding to help build a nationwide mobile broadband network for public safety. — Reuters



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Diabetes drug risks reported ahead of US hearing CHICAGO: A new study led by a federal drug safety expert ties the controversial diabetes drug Avandia to a higher risk of heart problems, strokes and deaths in older adults, and says it is more dangerous than a rival drug, Actos. The study, a huge review of records from the federal health care program for the elderly, comes two weeks ahead of a Food and Drug Administration hearing on Avandia’s safety. The lead author, Dr. David Graham, is an FDA scientist who wants the pill banned. As many as 100,000 heart attacks, strokes, deaths and cases of heart failure may be due to Avandia since it came on the market in 1999, Graham said in an interview with The Associated Press. Harms from Avandia are great enough to “put you in a hospital or in a cemetery,” he said. Editors at the Journal of the American Medical Association rushed to release the study online yesterday, so the information would be available before the July 13-14 hearing, a spokeswoman said. Avandia is a once-blockbuster drug for Type 2 diabetes, the most common form of the disease and the kind often tied to obesity. Avandia and Actos are pills that help

the body make better use of insulin, a key digestive hormone. Avandia has been under a cloud since May 2007, when a review of dozens of studies suggested it may raise the risk of heart attacks and

heart-related deaths. Warnings were added to its label, and the American Diabetes Association told patients to avoid using it until safety questions were resolved. The FDA and Congress have

held meetings on the drug but it has remained on the market, still used by hundreds of thousands of Americans. Avandia’s maker, the British company GlaxoSmithKline PLC, maintains that its drug is safe. A spokeswoman said the new study has limitations, and that the company looks forward to a full discussion of evidence at the FDA hearing. The study involved 227,571 Medicare patients, average age 74, who started on Actos or Avandia from July 2006 through June 2009 and were followed for three years on average. Avandia patients were 27 percent more likely to suffer strokes, 25 percent more likely to develop heart failure and 14 percent more likely to die than those on Actos, researchers found. There were 2,593 heart attacks, heart failure cases, strokes and deaths among the 67,593 Avandia users, and 5,386 of those problems among the 159,978 people taking Actos. Just dividing these numbers to compare side effect rates can’t be done, though, because people were on the drugs for differing lengths of time. Unlike studies in younger patients that implicated Avandia, heart attack risks were similar in both groups in the federal study. Sudden

cardiac deaths are much more common in older adults, and whether Avandia affects heart risks differently in older versus younger patients is unknown, the researchers note. The findings suggest that if 60 people were treated with Avandia for one year, one extra case of heart failure, stroke or death would occur that could have been avoided if they’d taken Actos instead, Graham said. “The evidence is overwhelming,” he said. “There is not a single study where those two drugs are compared where Avandia doesn’t look worse than Actos. How many studies do you have to do before you come to your senses?” The study was observational, with the researchers examining data on patients whose doctors had prescribed Avandia or Actos. That’s less rigorous than studies that randomly assign patients to take different drugs, and therefore cannot prove that the drug is riskier. But Dr. Alvin Powers, a diabetes specialist at Vanderbilt University, called it “important information that’s consistent with prior studies,” even if it is not definitive. He said he doesn’t prescribe Avandia because of uncer-

tainty over its safety. Another AMA journal, Archives of Internal Medicine, yesterday released online an expanded analysis by the same authors who did the original one in 2007; both suggest higher heart risks for Avandia. At its hearing next month, the FDA plans to examine the latest safety data and air internal disagreement among its scientists over what should be done. At the FDA’s request, Glaxo began a big study last year comparing heart and stroke risks in patients on Avandia or Actos, made by Japan’s Takeda Pharmaceuticals. It aims to enroll thousands of patients, but an editorial in JAMA about the Medicare study says it would be unethical to let the study continue. The editorial, by Dr. David Juurlink of the University of Toronto, says it is hard to understand why patients and doctors would choose Avandia when a safer alternative exists. He led a previous study of elderly diabetics in Ontario that also found higher risks with Avandia versus Actos. AP Business Writer Matthew Perrone in Washington and AP Medical Writer Marilynn Marchione in Milwaukee contributed to this report. —AP

Findings offer avenues for potential drugs

Largest diabetes gene search finds 12 new links LONDON: An international team of scientists working on the largest study to date to look at DNA and type 2 diabetes say they have found 12 new gene links that offer important clues to how the chronic disease works. The consortium of researchers from across Europe, the United States and Canada said their findings would not only improve understanding of what lies behind type 2 diabetes, but suggest new biological processes that can be explored as possible targets for new medicines. “The signals we have identified provide important clues to the biological basis of type 2 diabetes. The challenge will be to turn these genetic findings into better ways of treating and preventing the condition,” said Mark McCarthy of the centre for human genetics at Oxford University, who led the study. Type 2 diabetes is caused by the body’s inability to adequately use insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas, to control glucose sugar produced from food. Sugar levels rise and can damage the eyes, kidneys, nerves, heart

and major arteries. The disease, often linked to poor diet and lack of exercise, is reaching epidemic levels as rates of obesity rise. An estimated 180 million people worldwide now have diabetes. The identification of 12 new genes brings the total number of genetic regions known to be linked with type 2 diabetes to 38. The international team, whose work was published in the journal Nature on Sunday, said the genes they found tend to be involved in the working of pancreatic cells that pro-

duce insulin and in the control of insulin’s action in the body. The researchers said each of the gene variants carried only a very small effect on diabetes risk, and even combined, their capacity to predict future risk of diabetes was modest. But McCarthy said one particularly important theme of their findings was that several of the genes seem to be important in controlling the number of pancreatic beta-cells a person has. Beta-cells are the cells in the pancreas that produce insulin, and McCarthy

said this result would help settle a long-standing puzzle about the role of beta-cell numbers in type 2 diabetes. It also “points to the importance of developing therapies that are able to preserve or restore depleted numbers of betacells”, he said. The team used gene sequencing technology to compare the DNA of over 8,000 people with type 2 diabetes with almost 40,000 people without the condition at almost 2.5 million places across the genome. They then checked the genetic variations

they found in another group of more than 34,000 people with diabetes and around 60,000 more without it. Jim Wilson of the University of Edinburgh, who also worked on the study, said another interesting finding was that the diabetes susceptibility genes also contain variants that increase the risk of other unrelated diseases, including skin and prostate cancer, heart disease and high cholesterol. “This implies that different regulation of these genes can lead to many different diseases,” he said. — Reuters

UN Agent Orange clean-up plan for Vietnam announced HANOI: The United Nations announced a five million dollar project yesterday to clean up wartime contamination in Vietnam caused by Agent Orange sprayed by the US military, but said much more money was needed. The project by the UN development agency will focus on contamination at the airport in Bien Hoa, near the fast-developing southern metropolis of Ho Chi Minh City. The UN’s resident coordinator, John Hendra, said it was the worst-affected site. Experts have also identified two other former US air bases, at Danang and Phu Cat, as “hotspots” of dioxin contamination. Dioxin was a compo-

nent of Agent Orange and other herbicides stored at the bases. US aircraft sprayed the chemicals to strip trees of foliage during the Vietnam War in order to deprive communist Viet Cong forces of cover and food. Vietnam blames the dioxin for a spate of birth deformities and it has also been linked to cancer. “The concentration of dioxin in the three main hotspots is much higher than nationally and internationally agreed standards,” the UN Development Programme (UNDP) said in a statement. “Without action, the hotspots will continue to contaminate the wider environment and pose a serious health

risk to people living and working nearby.” Cleaning up all three former air bases would cost an estimated 59 million dollars, most of which still needs to be committed, said Koos Neefjes, an adviser on dioxin to the UN in Hanoi. The Vietnamese government has already spent five million dollars building a four-hectare (10-acre) landfill that holds contaminants at Bien Hoa. Under the new project, contaminated soil at smaller sites elsewhere at the airport will be destroyed using technology that has been used successfully elsewhere, although not with such high levels of dioxin, Neefjes told

AFP. The project is expected to last three or four years. Vietnam’s Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment will carry out the project, funded by the UNDP along with the Global Environment Facility, an independent financial organisation. Since 2007, the US Congress has appropriated nine million dollars to help the Vietnam clean-up and related health activities. At Vietnam’s request, the United States is focusing help on the Danang site, where preparatory work has been underway and the actual clean-up is expected to begin next year. —AFP

Reute, Baden-Wurttemberg, GERMANY: A stock comes in to land at their nest on top of an electricy power line in the southern German city of Reute on June 28, 2010. —AFP

Repressive drug policies boosting AIDS spread VIENNA: Policies that criminalise drug use are increasing the spread of AIDS, experts said yesterday, calling for a milder and more effective approach to preventing drug use. “Misguided drug policies... fuel the AIDS epidemic and result in violence, increased crime rates and destabilisation of entire states,” said Julio Montaner, president of the International AIDS Society. “Yet there is no evidence they have reduced rates of drug use or drug supply,” he added in a statement. Montaner and other AIDS experts, including Francoise Barre-Sinoussi, the co-discoverer of the HIV virus, published yesterday a Vienna

Declaration calling for an end to ineffective and costly drug policies and for more emphasis on strategies that have been scientifically proven to work. In some parts of the world, such as eastern Europe and central Asia, injecting drugs is the main cause for the spread of HIV, the experts said. More widespread needle and syringe programmes, as well as access to opioid substitution therapy (OST), by which illegal drugs are substituted for less harmful substances, would lower the number of HIV infections without increasing drug use, they added. “The current approach to drug policy is ineffective because it neglects proven and evidence-based interventions,

while pouring a massive amount of public funds and human resources into expensive and futile enforcement measures,” said Evan Wood, founder of the International Centre for Science in Drug Policy (ICSDP). “It’s time to accept the war on drugs has failed and create drug policies that can meaningfully protect community health and safety using evidence, not ideology.” “Addiction is a medical condition, not a crime,” added Montaner, who will chair the upcoming AIDS conference in Vienna next month. Some 20,000 experts and AIDS researchers are expected at the biennial conference, which will be held from July 18 to 23. — AFP

Borneo’s crocodiles no longer endangered: Wildlife officials

HANNOVER: A young elephant is sprayed with water next to its mother at the zoo in the northern German city of Hanover yesterday. Temperatures of up to 30 degrees centigrade are forecast for the following days in Germany. —AFP

KUALA LUMPUR: Wildlife officials in Malaysian Borneo are pushing to have its saltwater crocodiles removed from a list of endangered animals, saying the reptile’s numbers have strongly recovered in recent years. Deputy director of the Sabah Wildlife Department Augustin Tuuga told AFP that a survey of the Crocodylus porosus population showed there were about 11,000 to 15,000 in the state compared to 1,000 to 5,000 two decades ago. “We are pushing to have the crocodile downgraded from the ‘endangered’ to the ‘not necessarily threatened’ list on the Convention of International Trade of Species (CITES),” he said. Tuuga said there was big demand for legal crocodile leather from handbag and clothing accessory manufacturers as well as for crocodile meat in kitchens throughout Asia. “Under

CITES, these crocodiles can only come from breeding farms but once the crocodile is downgraded, manufacturers will be able to get the crocodiles from the wild,” he added. “However, before this can happen we must have an effective monitoring mechanism to keep track of the crocodile population to ensure its numbers do not fall below acceptable levels.” Saltwater crocodiles have the most commercially valuable skin of its species and are found from Sri Lanka all the way to the Caroline Islands in the Western Pacific. Tuuga said the increase in the crocodile population has also seen 38 attacks on humans in the last 10 years with 23 deaths and 15 injuries. The latest was reported this month when the remains of a man who was eaten while looking for shellfish were found in the south of the state, he said. —AFP

Tuesday, June 29, 2010



Peru inventor ‘whitewashes’ peaks to slow glacier melt LICAPA: In a remote corner of the Peruvian Andes, men in paint-daubed boilersuits diligently coat a mountain summit with whitewash in an experimental bid to recuperate the country’s melting glaciers. It’s a bizarre sight at 4,756 metres (15,600 feet) above sea level. The man behind the idea is not a glaciologist but an inventor, Eduardo Gold. His non-governmental organisation Glaciares de Peru was one of 26 winners of the World Bank’s “100 Ideas to Save the Planet” competition in November 2009. Gold has already begun work while he waits for the 200,000-dollar prize money to fund his pilot project. His plan is to paint a total area of 70 hectares (173 acres) on three peaks in the Andean region of Ayacucho in southern Peru. Chalon Sombrero, the name of an extinct glacier which used to irrigate a valley and several rivers, is where he’s started with a team of four men from the local village, Licapa. The workers use jugs - rather than paintbrushes - to splash the whitewash onto loose rocks around the summit. So far they have painted some two hectares, just a tenth of the total area they aim to cover on that peak. “A white surface reflects the sun’s rays back through the atmosphere and into space, in doing so it cools the area around it too,” explains Gold. “In effect in creates a micro-climate, so we can say that the cold generates more cold, just as heat generates more heat.” The idea is

based on the simple scientific principle that changing the albedo (a measure of how strongly an object reflects light) of a surface by whitening it means that it does not absorb so much heat and emit infra-red radiation which takes time to leave the earth’s atmosphere and warms trapped greenhouse gases. US Energy Secretary Steven Chu has endorsed using white roofs in the United States to help combat climate change, an idea seen as more logistically feasible than painting mountain peaks. Gold, who has no scientific qualifications, adds: “I’m very hopeful that by doing this we could re-grow a glacier here because we would be recreating all the climactic conditions necessary for a glacier to form. In his 65 years, Pablo Parco Palomino has seen the Chalon Sombrero summit turn from an imposing snow-capped glacier into bare rock. Climate change has made life much harder in Licapa, so much so that he believes the scattered population of around 900 may have to move elsewhere. “All the peaks here should be painted in this way,” he says. Like him, most of the community welcomed Gold’s pilot project, hopeful that the peak might freeze over again. “That way there would be as much water as there was before the glacier disappeared, and that would mean more pasture to support more livestock.” Licapa is above the tree-line. At more than 4,000 metres above sea level crops or trees don’t grow. The people live mainly from selling their alpacas’ wool. Although the project

has been awarded funding by the World Bank, scientists have dismissed its contention that it could actually halt or reverse glacial melt. But on a small scale it might have an impact, concedes Thomas Condom, a glaciologist and hydrologist working at the French Institute for Research and Development of Lima, which has been monitoring tropical glaciers in the Andes for the past 15 years. “It might be possible to slow down a little the melting, to gain a drop of a few tenths of a Celsius, or maybe one or two degrees Celsius, on a local scale.” But the temperature and reflected radiation are only two of the factors impacting on the glaciers, he adds. Precipitation is another crucial one. Moreover, the project would be very difficult to implement on a large regional scale. Peru is home to more than 70 percent of the world’s tropical glaciers but global warming has already melted away 22 percent of them in the last 30 years, according to a World Bank report in 2009. Peru’s Environment Minister Antonio Brack has said the World Bank’s 200,000 dollars in funding would be better spent on other “projects which would have more impact in mitigating climate change.” “It’s nonsense”, he commented bluntly last year. But Gold believes he can put the theory into practice and get results. “I’d rather try and fail to find a solution than start working out how we are going to survive without the glaciers, as if the situation was irreversible,” he says — AFP

BAVARIA: Workers install a canvas on the glacier of Germany’s highest mountain, the Zugspitze (2.962 meters), near Garmisch-Partenkirchen, southern Germany, June 23, 2010. — AFP



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

United Indian School students council sworn in ednesday, the 16th of June, United Indian School witnessed the oath taking ceremony of the Students Council in a grand Investiture Ceremony. The Chief Guest of the event was Kuppanina, General Manager of Kuwait India International Exchange. After the prayer by the School Head Boy Martin Paul, the school Head Girl Alka Renu introduced the ceremony. This year being the Silver Jubilee Year of United Indian School the function had a greater significance. Amidst the boiling summer heat, the students marched rhythmically to the drum beats and flute played by the school band. The Chief Guest Kuppanna received the salute, and presented the badges of office to the newly elected office bearers. While addressing the students, in an enlightening speech, Kuppanna emphasized the relevance of leadership and reminded the students that listening is the hall mark of leadership. While congratulating the newly sworn in office bearers, Kuppanna asserted that as leaders they should all live up to their words and should be able to keep the spark in them alive throughout their lives. The meeting was presided over by the Principal Mrs. Susan Roy who administered the oath of office to the School Captain, Head Boy and Head Girl. The house captains took their oath from the school captain while the Vice-Captains were sworn in by the head boy. The 80 strong prefectorial body took their oath from the Head Girl. After receiving their badges, the entire student council expressed their commitment and vision in a melodious ren-


EMBASSY OF AMERICA The United States Department of State announces the increase in various visa fees to ensure sufficient resources to cover the increasing cost of processing nonimmigrant visas (NIVs). US law requires the Department to recover the cost of processing nonimmigrant visas through the collection of the application fees. The increased fees are to take effect June 4, 2010. Under the new rule, applicants for all visas that are not petition-based, including B1/B2 tourist and business visitor visas and all student and exchange-visitor visas, will pay a fee of $140. Applicants for petitionbased visas will pay an application fee of $150, as each of the below categories requires a review of extensive documentation and a more in-depth interview of the applicant than other categories, such as tourists. These categories include: H visa for temporary workers and trainees L visa for intra-company transferees O visa for aliens with extraordinary ability P visa for athletes, artists and entertainers Q visa for international cultural exchange visitors R visa for religious occupations The application fee for K visas for fiance(e)s of US citizens will be $350. The fee for E visas for treaty-traders and treaty-investors will be $390. EMBASSY OF INDIA dering of the famous song ‘To Dream the Impossible Dream’. The Vice - Principal Cherian Thomas and the Administrative Manager Adv John Thomas were also present to grace the occasion. United Indian School conducts school elections every year with a view of exposing the students to the

ideas of democracy and freedom of expression through election procedures at the school level itself. The candidates submit their nominations for various post and the Candidate Program helps the students to get the views of their leader and to elect them by casting their votes in the ballot box. The

elected office bearers for the year 2010-2011 are Mathew Joseph Panicker (School Captain), Martin Paul (Head Boy) and Alka Renu (Head Girl). The captains for the four houses arc Sofia Susan Thomas (Blue house), Jessica Fernandes (Green House), Shahzaib All Sheikh (Yellow House), Kevin Shaji (Red

House) and the Vice Captains are Reem Ijaz Inamdar (Blue House), Abhishek Anil Kumar (Green House), Anu James (Yellow House), Pretty Sumi Varghese (Red House). To add more colour to the program the class XII C presented a skit “A Good Leader” portraying the various influences a leader is

exposed to. The unique traits of a good leader such as good values, self confidence, decisiveness, self control and social skills were presented in the most effective way within the frames of a modern play. With the singing of the Indian National Anthem, the program came to a close.

IMAX film program From 24 June 2010 till 3 July 2010 Sunday Arabia 3D 10:30 am, 11:30am, 12:30 pm, 1:30 pm, 2:30 pm, 3:30 pm, 4:30 pm. 5:30 pm, 6:30 pm, 7:30 pm, 8:30 pm, 9:30 pm, 10:30 pm Monday Arabia 3D 10:30 am, 11:30am, 12:30 pm, 1:30 pm, 2:30 pm, 3:30 pm, 4:30 pm. 5:30 pm, 6:30 pm, 7:30 pm, 8:30 pm, 9:30 pm, 10:30 pm Tuesday Arabia 3 D 10:30 am, 11:30am, 12:30 pm, 1:30 pm, 2:30 pm, 3:30 pm, 4:30 pm. 5:30 pm, 6:30 pm, 7:30 pm, 8:30 pm, 9:30 pm, 10:30 pm Wednesday Arabia 3D 10:30 am, 11:30am, 12:30 pm, 1:30 pm, 2:30 pm, 3:30 pm, 4:30 pm. 5:30 pm, 6:30 pm, 7:30 pm, 8:30 pm, 9:30 pm, 10:30 pm Thursday Arabia 3D 10:30 am, 11:30am, 12:30 pm, 1:30 pm, 2:30 pm, 3:30 pm, 4:30 pm. 5:30 pm, 6:30 pm, 7:30 pm, 8:30 pm, 9:30 pm, 10:30 pm Friday Arabia 3D 2:30 pm, 3:30 pm, 4:30 pm, 5:30 pm, 6:30 pm, 7:30 pm, 8:30 pm, 9:30pm, 10:30 pm Saturday Ardbia 3D 10:30 am, 11:30am, 12:30 pm, 1:30 pm, 2:30 pm, 3:30 pm, 4:30 pm. 5:30 pm, 6:30 pm, 7:30 pm, 8:30 pm, 9:30 pm, 10:30 pm Notes: •Arabia 3D is in Arabic (English headsets are available upon request) •Film schedule is subject to changes without notice. •9:30 am slot (Saturday to Thursday) is available for Group Reservation with the choice of any IMAX film in TSCK’s library. For visit or information call 1 848 888 or visit

FAIPS dominates at the Inter-School Quiz Competition he students of FAIPS put up a sterling performance at the KITCO Inter-School Quiz contest organized by BCS on June 4, 2010, once again proving their superiority in the quizzing arena. In the clash of brains that ensued, FAIPS emerged victorious for the 4th consecutive year. After a grueling elimination round in which 30 teams from 15 schools, 2 teams per school, fiercely competed against each other, 6


teams secured their places in the final round. In the nail-biting and gripping finals conducted by the veteran Quiz Master, Derek O’ Brian, FAIPS team comprising Shaunak Ray (Grade 8) and Siddharth Dash (Grade 7) proved their mettle against heavy odds and stiff competition, winning by a margin of over 20 points against UIS, which was placed second. It was a reiteration of FAIPS versatile talent!

The other team of FAIPS had Immanuel Adriana Rakshana (Grade 8) and Meher Wadhwa (Grade 7). Kudos to the teachers who are constantly on the look out for bright young minds and train them to bring laurels for the school! Special cheers to the student coaches, especially their guidance and support extended to the participants. We wish the bright stars success and glory in the future!

Filipino Cultural Club show he Filipino music enthusiasts in Kuwait, the “Filipino Cultural Club” will organize an annual concert entitled “KAY GANDA NG ATING MUSIKA.” The show will be a combination of cultural and modern themes which will focus on popular music from yester-years. Performers include FCC Talents with the “SELDA 5C2 Band” which have been giving the Filipinos the finest entertainment to the Filipino Community in Kuwait. The purpose of the concert is to allocate funds for FCC scholars in the Philippines who, three out of eight, will graduate this coming March. The show is to bring the Talent’s we have here in Kuwait. The show will be held in Kuwait Medical Hall in Jabriya (Behind the Blood Bank) on July 30, 2010 Friday at 4 pm. So mga Kabayan punta na tayo! Come and listen to the music na Sariling Atm! For more details please contact: Clair Constantino 67037497; Maria Al Amen - 99079341; Bong - 99530665; Robert Fajardo 99593169; Meired Lacson - 66915361; Kuva Danny - 97467077 and Bebot 6521358.


IDAK holds first official meet ndian Dentists’ Alliance in Kuwait (IDAK) held their first meeting of the working committee on Thursday, June 10 in Salmiya. The meeting commenced with a silent prayer followed by the President Dr. Peter D’souza addressing the gathering and giving


Embassy information

a warm welcome to the new committee members. Dr. Shaheer, General Secretary, announced the names of the various area representatives and the committee coordinators. Dr. Jithendra, Treasurer, accepted the first membership fee from the President and later

handed out the membership forms and receipt books to all the area representatives. The committee coordinators were briefed of the calendar of events and their duties by Dr. Dileep and Dr. Pooja. The meeting concluded on a positive note followed by dinner.

The Embassy of India has further revamped and improved its Legal Advice Clinic at the Indian Workers Welfare Center, and made the free service available to Indian nationals on all five working days, i.e. from Sunday to Thursday every week. Kuwaiti lawyers would be available at the Legal Advice Clinic daily from Monday to Thursday, while Indian lawyers would be available on Sundays. Following are the free welfare services provided at the Indian Workers Welfare Center located at the Embassy of India: [i] 24x7 Helpline for Domestic Workers: Accessible by toll free telephone no. 25674163 from anywhere in Kuwait, it provides information and advice exclusively to Indian domestic sector workers (Visa No. 20) as regards their grievances, immigration and other matters. [ii] Help Desk: It offers guidance to Indian nationals on routine immigration, employment, legal, and other issues (Embassy premises; 9 AM to 1 PM and 2 PM to 4.30 PM, Sunday to Thursday); (iii) Labour Complaints Desk: It registers labor complaints and provides grievance redressal service to Indian workers (Embassy premises; 9 AM to 1 PM and 2 PM to 4.30 PM, Sunday to Thursday); (iv) Shelters: For female and male domestic workers in distress; (v) Legal Advice Clinic: Provides free legal advice to Indian nationals (Embassy premises; Kuwaiti lawyers 3 PM to 5 PM, Monday to Thursday; Indian lawyers 2 PM to 4 PM on Sunday); and (vi) Attestation of Work Contracts: Private sector worker (Visa No. 18) contracts are accepted at the Embassy; 9 AM to 1 PM; Sunday to Thursday; Domestic sector worker (Visa No. 20) contracts are accepted at Kuwait Union of Domestic Labor Offices (KUDLO), Hawally, Al-Othman Street, Kurd Roundabout, Al-Abraj Complex, Office No 9, Mezzanine Floor; 9 AM to 9 PM, Saturday to Thursday; 5 PM to 9 PM on Friday. EMBASSY OF NIGERIA The Embassy of the Federal Republic of Nigeria wishes to invite all Nigerians residing in Kuwait to come and register with the Embassy. The registration is compulsory for all Nigerians residing /visiting Kuwait. Kindly bring the following documents along with you: • A photocopy of the Nigerian passport • One passport photograph • Copy of the civil identification card or visa For additional information please call: 25620278 or visit the Embassy at Block, 4, Malik Bin Anas Street, Avenue 44, House 31, Along Al-Aqsa Road, Rumaithiya. The Consular Section opens Sunday - Thursday from 9 am - 3 pm Your prompt response is highly solicited. EMBASSY OF UKRAINE The Embassy of Ukraine in the State of Kuwait informs that it has started updating the information about Ukrainian citizens, who live and work in Kuwait. In this connection, we are asking you to refer to the Embassy and update your file in consular register in order not to be excluded from it. For additional information please call: 25318507 ext.106 or visit the embassy of Ukraine in the State of Kuwait (address: Hawalli, Jabriya, bl.10, str.6, house 5). The consular section of the Embassy open every day from 09:30 till 14:30 except Friday and Saturday.



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

NBK concludes the first Azraq summer internship ational Bank of Kuwait (NBK) successfully concluded the 1st session of its specially designed summer internship program for Azraq account holders. One of the highlights of the internship was a field visit to Al Qabas daily newspaper. The visit is basically geared toward providing the interns with a background and handson experience about the profession of journalism. NBK’s summer training program for AlAzraq account holders comes in line with the Bank’s corporate social responsibility. NBK lays great emphasis towards the youth of the country and has been successfully running this campaign for the past ten years. The participation of the youth has encouraged NBK to organize interesting summer internship courses to help build awareness on the environmental issues that the country is currently facing.


Hobbies & activities clubhouse, which is located at the Fahaheel Sea Club. Fortnightly racing plus International events in Bahrain and Dubai. Boats often require crew and will take you if you turn up!


NPIS Hawally holds UKG graduation ceremony spectacular Graduation Ceremony for UKG was held at NPIS on Wednesday the 2nd June 2010. The tiny tots kept the parents captivated with their mind blowing performances, which made this an exceptionally remarkable event. The kids enacted Goldilocks and


Three Bears beautifully. Audience could not help applauding the entertaining performances on Arabic, Urdu and English songs and poems. Abdullah, Adnan, student of UKG “A” very confidently in this speech thanked his teachers for nurturing and fostering them to cope well with the challenges

ahead. Anita Bukharey honored the occasion and gave away the certificates to the graduating students. She indebted the success of the ceremony to Shahila Shaukat and the staff, who made every effort to make it an unforgettable event.

The Arabian Gulf is the perfect place in which to learn to scuba dive. Although dive sites are not as spectacular as those in the Red Sea and Thailand, the local environment is conducive to teaching youngsters who wish to do fairly shallow dives and build up their confidence. It is a good idea for adults to attend the theory classes with their children. Dive Caroline 2371 9289 Fahaheel Sea Club, Fahaheel Dive Caroline is a friendly sailing and diving club with pool, beach, sauna, steam room, fitness and social areas. Scuba diving training and equipment sales; skippered sailing yacht charter for up to 8 passengers; fishing charters (up to 6 passengers with a max. of 2 trawling lines); skippered power boat hire for 6, 8 or 14 passengers. Dive Centre 9964 9482 The Palms Hotel, Salwa A full service PADI 5 Star Dive Centre catering for all of your diving requirements.

KAYAKING Kuw ait Surf-Ski Kayak Club 99706742 Sea kayaking is one of the fastest growing water sports in the world today.

MOTOR SPORTS Kuw ait Motor Bike Motorbike track (for trail/dirt bikes) and rally car-racing centre located behind the Science Club on the northern side of the 6th Ring Road (between roads 401 and 50).

NETBALL Kuw ait Netball

KIM Dive Centre 2371 6002 Villa 365, Hilton Kuwait Resort Kuwait International Marine (KIM) Centre is a full service PADI 5 Star Dive Centre catering for all of your diving requirements..

SHOOTING Hunting & Equestrian Club 24739199 Shooters can sharpen their skills at the range. Members aren’t charged any fee but have to bear the costs of the cartridges while guns are provided by the club. Shooting Range Complex 2475 9999 Off the 6th Ring road and drive past the Hunting and Equestrian Club.



Kuw ait Nomads The rugby season in Kuwait runs from September to May. Men, ladies and minis rugby are played and the teams frequently travel to participate in AGRFU tournaments. Any interested child between the ages of 5-17 can participate in the Minis rugby.

Ahmadi Softball Located at the softball grounds situated behind the Governorate Building in Ahmadi

RUNNING For anyone who likes walking, jogging or cycling in Kuwait there is a very good track around the area of Mishref. The track is 4.9km long and is marked out in distances of 100m. There are also a number of outdoor exercise machines located near the start and the end of the track. Catamaran Sailing 6658 7737 Dive Caroline Beach Fafaheel The Kuwait Catamaran Club is a group of enthusiasts who love sailing on fast cats in the Arabian Gulf’s waters around Kuwait. Usually an informal group sail on Friday afternoons. Fahaheel Sailing Club 2371 9289 KOSA 2398 3365 9974 5383 The Kuwait Offshore Sailing Association (KOSA) meets on the first Tuesday of each month (except July and August) at the Dive Caroline

Hasan Waris honored by CSK

SQUASH Squash courts are available at a few of the 5-star hotels as well as at the Salmiya Club. There are a number of squash leagues and tournaments are held throughout the year. Duffers League 9970 1720 The League comprises about 25 players of all standards. Players are placed in groups of 4 which means you play three games per month. The rules of standard squash apply with all matches being best of five. Games are arranged by mutual agreement between the players. Contact Philip Anderson at Kuw ait Squash Federation

2263 4618

Sheikha Squash

rominent Bangladeshi businessman and chief patron of CSK Hasan Waris was honored in a get-together, organized by the Chittagong Samity Kuwait. The special arranged event was held at his residence in Shuhada, Kuwait on 24th June 2010. Mahfuzur Rahman Mahfuz, President of the Samity welcomed the invited guests


with a short speech. Jahangir, the General Secretary of the Samity extended the appreciation with respect to Hasan Waris along with the invited guests, thanking them for attending this event. A marvelous crest was presented to honor him by the members of CSK. In his reply speech, Hasan Waris highlighted the close relationship of Kuwait

Bangladesh, since 1971 till date and advised the members of CSK, not to violate any law against the country of Kuwait and urge to do something better for our own country and to cooperate with each other at any working place or elsewhere. At the end, all of the members of CSK and invited guests were treated to a lavish dinner, which was hosted by the Hasan Waris.

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

ou are cordially invited to our diwaniya tomorrow about, “K’S PATH Working to protect Kuwait’s Habitat,” by Olivia Kimble. The Kuwait Society for the Protection of Animals and their Habitat is a revolutionary new organization bridging the gap between animals and humans in Kuwait. The last two decades have seen significant change in Kuwait. Several severe environmental catastrophes coupled with the military devastation from the 1991 Gulf war have had a cataclysmic effect on Kuwait’s ecosystem. Additionally, Kuwait lacks the effective


environmental and animal welfare laws and enforcement needed to protect its natural residents. As a result, Kuwait has seen an alarming departure from the compassion and kindness toward animals required by Islam and many different species suffer great cruelty and neglect. K’S PATH hopes to reverse this trend through education, advocacy, rescue, sheltering, sanctuary, cleanup, and the promotion of animal and environmentally friendly legislation. If you are interested in the topic, the AWARE Center is the most appropriate place to visit on June 29th at 7:00pm.



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Orbit / Showtime Listings 13:35 Da Vinci’s Machines 14:30 Mighty Ships 15:25 How Does That Work? 15:55 Race to Mars 16:50 Brainiac 17:45 Mega World 18:40 Ecopolis 19:30 Discovery Project Earth 20:20 How It’s Made 20:45 How It’s Made 21:10 Mythbusters 22:00 Ecopolis 22:50 Discovery Project Earth 23:40 Mega World

00:00 Law & Order Criminal Intent 01:00 Psych 02:00 ER 03:00 The Murdoch Mysteries 04:00 Psych 05:00 Dawsons’ Creek 06:00 Bones 07:00 Law & Order Criminal Intent 08:00 My Own Worst Enemy 09:00 Saving Grace 10:00 ER 11:00 Dawsons’ Creek 12:00 Bones 13:00 The Murdoch Mysteries 14:00 ER 15:00 Psych 16:00 My Own Worst Enemy 17:00 Saving Grace 18:00 Law & Order Criminal Intent 19:00 Bones 20:00 House 21:00 FlashForward 22:00 CSI Miami 23:00 Janice Dickinson

00:15 Dark Days in Monkey City 00:45 Animal Cops South Africa 01:40 Untamed & Uncut 02:35 I’m Alive 03:30 Animal Cops Phoenix 04:25 Animal Precinct 05:20 Living with the Wolfman 05:45 Monkey Business 06:10 E-Vets: The Interns 06:35 Dolphin Days 07:00 Wildlife SOS 07:25 Pet Rescue 07:50 Orangutan Island 08:15 Dark Days in Monkey City 08:45 Austin Stevens: Most Dangerous... 09:40 Monkey Business 10:05 The Planet’s Funniest Animals 10:30 The Planet’s Funniest Animals 10:55 Gorilla School 11:20 SSPCA: On the Wildside 11:50 Animal Precinct 12:45 E-Vets: The Interns 13:10 Pet Rescue 13:40 Animal Cops Phoenix 14:35 Wildlife SOS 15:00 SSPCA: On the Wildside 15:30 Orangutan Island 15:55 Dark Days in Monkey City 16:25 The Planet’s Funniest Animals 16:50 The Planet’s Funniest Animals 17:20 Monkey Business 17:45 Gorilla School 18:15 Pit Bulls and Parolees 19:10 Orangutan Island 19:40 Dark Days in Monkey City 20:10 Animal Cops South Africa

00:45 New Tricks 01:35 The Weakest Link 02:30 Last Of The Summer Wine 03:00 Teletubbies 03:25 Me Too 03:45 Tikkabilla 04:15 Teletubbies 04:40 Me Too 05:00 Tikkabilla 05:30 Teletubbies 05:55 Me Too 06:15 Teletubbies 06:40 Me Too 07:00 Tikkabilla 07:30 Teletubbies 07:55 Me Too 08:15 Tikkabilla 08:45 Teletubbies 09:10 Me Too 09:30 Mastermind 2006 10:00 Coast 11:00 Last Of The Summer Wine 11:30 Last Of The Summer Wine 12:00 The Weakest Link 12:45 Eastenders 13:15 Doctors 13:45 Mastermind 2006 14:15 Coast 15:15 Last Of The Summer Wine 15:45 Last Of The Summer Wine 16:15 The Weakest Link 17:00 Doctors

300 on Show Movies 17:30 Eastenders 18:00 Holby City 19:00 Holby City 20:00 The Weakest Link 20:45 Doctors 21:15 Eastenders 21:45 North And South (2004) 22:33 Doctor Who Confidential 22:45 The Whistleblowers 23:45 The Jonathan Ross Show

00:00 Masterchef Goes Large 00:30 Saturday Kitchen 00:55 Saturday Kitchen 01:20 Cash In The Attic 02:05 A Life Coach Less Ordinary 02:50 Come Dine With Me 03:40 Hidden Potential 04:05 Cash In The Attic Usa 04:30 Bargain Hunt 05:15 A Life Coach Less Ordinary 06:00 Masterchef Goes Large 06:30 Masterchef Goes Large 07:00 Cash In The Attic Usa 07:20 Antiques Roadshow 07:50 Bargain Hunt 08:35 Bargain Hunt 09:20 Hidden Potential 09:45 Cash In The Attic Usa 10:10 Saturday Kitchen 10:35 Saturday Kitchen 11:00 Cash In The Attic 11:45 Cash In The Attic 12:30 A Life Coach Less Ordinary 13:15 Come Dine With Me 14:05 Hidden Potential 14:30 Cash In The Attic Usa 14:55 Bargain Hunt 15:40 Bargain Hunt 16:25 Saturday Kitchen 16:50 Saturday Kitchen 17:15 Cash In The Attic 18:00 Hidden Potential 18:25 Cash In The Attic Usa 18:50 Come Dine With Me 19:40 Masterchef Goes Large 20:10 James Martin’s Brittany 20:35 What To Eat Now - Summer 21:00 Superhomes

00:45 Stories Usa-18 02:30 Survivre Avec Les Loups-PG15 04:30 The Apostle-PG15 07:00 It Might Get Loud-PG15 09:00 Save The Last Dance-PG 11:00 Frozen River-PG15 13:00 Chariots Of Fire-PG

15:00 L’age Des Tenebres-PG15 16:45 Brideshead Revisited-PG15 19:00 Heights-PG15 21:00 Wild At Heart-18 23:15 Days Of Glory-PG15

00:00 Rampage! 01:00 Street Customs 2008 02:00 Dirty Jobs 02:55 Ultimate Survival 03:50 Really Big Things 04:45 Mythbusters 05:40 How Stuff’s Made 06:05 Dirty Jobs 07:00 Really Big Things 07:55 Massive Machines 08:20 Street Customs 2008 09:15 Mythbusters 10:10 Ultimate Survival 11:05 Overhaulin’ 12:00 Border Security 12:30 How Stuff’s Made 12:55 How It’s Made 13:20 Mythbusters 14:15 Miami Ink 15:10 Ultimate Survival 16:05 Dirty Jobs 17:00 Deadliest Catch 18:00 Destroyed in Seconds 18:30 Border Security 19:00 How It’s Made 19:30 How Stuff’s Made 20:00 Mythbusters 21:00 Industrial Junkie 21:30 Industrial Junkie 22:00 World’s Toughest Tools 23:00 Extreme Engineering

00:30 Nextworld 01:20 Da Vinci’s Machines 02:10 Engineering Thrills 03:00 Beyond Tomorrow 03:50 Junkyard Wars 04:45 How Does That Work? 05:10 Weird Connections 05:40 Sci-Fi Science 06:10 Nextworld 07:00 Junkyard Wars 08:00 Race to Mars 09:00 Da Vinci’s Machines 09:55 Stunt Junkies 10:20 Weird Connections 10:50 Nextworld 11:45 How Does That Work? 12:15 Mega World 13:10 Sci-Fi Science

00:20 The Suite Life of Zack and Cody 00:45 The Suite Life of Zack and Cody 01:10 JONAS 01:35 Wizards of Waverly Place 02:00 Suite Life On Deck 02:20 Fairly Odd Parents 02:45 A Kind of Magic 03:15 Fairly Odd Parents 03:40 Replacements 04:00 Stitch 04:25 Fairly Odd Parents 04:50 Phineas and Ferb 05:15 Replacements 05:35 A Kind of Magic 06:00 Timmy Time 06:10 Special Agent OSO 06:35 Handy Manny 07:00 Imagination Movers 07:20 Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 07:45 Jungle Junction 08:00 Fairly Odd Parents 08:25 Phineas and Ferb 08:50 Wizards of Waverly Place 09:15 Sonny With A Chance 09:40 Hannah Montana 10:00 Hannah Montana 10:25 JONAS 10:50 Sonny With A Chance 11:15 Wizards of Waverly Place 11:35 Fairly Odd Parents 12:00 Phineas and Ferb 12:25 Replacements 12:45 Suite Life On Deck 13:10 Hannah Montana 13:30 Kim Possible 13:55 A Kind of Magic 14:20 Fairly Odd Parents 14:45 Phineas and Ferb 14:55 Replacements 15:15 Stitch 15:40 Wizards of Waverly Place 16:00 Hannah Montana 16:25 Sonny With A Chance 16:45 Fairly Odd Parents 17:10 Phineas and Ferb 17:35 Suite Life On Deck 18:00 Wizards of Waverly Place 18:25 Hannah Montana 18:45 JONAS 19:10 Suite Life On Deck 19:30 Sonny With A Chance 19:55 Hannah Montana 20:20 Wizards of Waverly Place 20:45 Wizards of Waverly Place 21:10 Suite Life On Deck 21:35 Suite Life On Deck 22:00 Hannah Montana 22:25 Hannah Montana 22:50 Sonny With A Chance 23:15 JONAS 23:35 The Suite Life of Zack and Cody

00:15 Leave It To Lamas 00:40 Dr 90210 01:30 Wildest TV Show Moments 01:55 Reality Hell 02:20 E!ES 03:15 Extreme Hollywood 04:10 Sexiest 05:05 Battle of the Hollywood Hotties 05:30 Streets of Hollywood 06:00 THS 07:45 Style Star 08:10 Style Star 08:35 E! News 09:00 The Daily 10 09:25 Denise Richards: It’s Complicated 09:50 Leave It To Lamas 10:15 20 Acts of Love Gone Wrong 12:00 E! News 12:25 The Daily 10 12:50 Battle of the Hollywood Hotties 13:15 Pretty Wild 13:40 Keeping Up with the Kardashians 14:05 Kourtney & Khlo√© Take Miami 14:30 Dr 90210 15:25 E!ES 16:15 Behind the Scenes 16:40 Behind the Scenes 17:10 Kendra 17:35 Kendra 18:00 E! News 18:25 The Daily 10 18:50 Wildest TV Show Moments 19:15 Pretty Wild 19:40 E!ES 20:30 THS 21:20 Kendra 21:45 Kendra 22:10 E! News 22:35 The Daily 10

00:00 Chopped 01:00 30 Minute Meals 01:30 Tyler’s Ultimate 02:00 Guys Big Bite 03:00 Barefoot Contessa 03:30 Everyday Italian 04:00 30 Minute Meals 05:00 Tyler’s Ultimate 05:30 Guys Big Bite 06:00 Barefoot Contessa 07:00 Everyday Italian 07:25 Food Network Challenge 07:50 30 Minute Meals 08:15 Tyler’s Ultimate 08:40 Guys Big Bite 09:05 Barefoot Contessa 09:30 Everyday Italian 10:00 30 Minute Meals 10:30 Throwdown With Bobby Flay 11:00 Iron Chef America 11:30 Barefoot Contessa 12:30 Everyday Italian 13:00 30 Minute Meals 13:30 Guys Big Bite 14:00 Throwdown With Bobby Flay 14:30 Tyler’s Ultimate 15:00 Iron Chef America 15:30 Barefoot Contessa 16:00 Everyday Italian 17:00 Food Network Challenge 17:30 Throwdown With Bobby Flay 18:00 Guys Big Bite 18:30 Food Network Challenge 19:00 30 Minute Meals 19:30 Tyler’s Ultimate 20:00 Iron Chef America 21:00 Barefoot Contessa 21:30 Everyday Italian 22:00 Food Network Challenge 23:00 Throwdown With Bobby Flay 23:30 Guys Big Bite

The Good German on Super Movies

00:00 World Sport 2010 00:30 Inside the PGA Tour 01:00 Golf Central International 01:30 The Golf Channel 04:00 Major League Soccer Toronto FC v

Los Angeles Galaxy 07:00 The Big Ten’s Greatest Games: Football 1997 Notre Dame v Michigan 09:00 Inside the PGA Tour 09:30 Global Golf Adventure 10:00 European Tour BMW International Open Rd. 3 Munich, Germany 13:00 Golf Central International 13:30 Seamaster 14:00 ASP Surfing World Championships Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach, Australia 14:30 ASP Surfing World Championships Hang Loose Santa Catarina Pro, Brazil 15:00 Major League Soccer Toronto FC v Los Angeles Galaxy 18:00 The Big Ten’s Greatest Games: Football 1997 Notre Dame v Michigan 20:00 Lucas Oil Motorsports Hour Devil’s Bowl Speedway 21:00 Lucas Oil Motorsports Hour Padukah Kentuky 22:00 Lucas Oil Motorsports Hour Riverside International Speedway 23:00 Major League Soccer Toronto FC v Los Angeles Galaxy

00:30 A Haunting 01:20 FBI Files 02:10 FBI Case Files 03:05 I Escaped Death 04:00 Forensic Detectives 04:55 Real Emergency Calls 05:20 Dr G: Medical Examiner 06:10 Ghosthunters 06:35 Ghosthunters 07:00 Forensic Detectives 07:50 FBI Files 08:40 Disappeared 09:30 Diagnosis: Unknown 10:20 Forensic Detectives 11:10 FBI Files 12:00 On the Case with Paula Zahn 12:50 Diagnosis: Unknown 13:40 Fugitive Strike Force 14:30 Forensic Detectives 15:20 FBI Files 16:10 Disappeared 17:00 Diagnosis: Unknown 17:50 Forensic Detectives 18:40 FBI Files 19:30 On the Case with Paula Zahn 20:20 Diagnosis: Unknown 21:10 Fugitive Strike Force 22:00 Deadly Women 22:50 Deadly Women 23:40 Dr G: Medical Examiner

01:25 Straight Out Of Brooklyn 02:50 The Commitments 04:45 Under Fire 06:55 Sonny Boy 08:40 The Bridge At Remagen 10:35 The Black Stallion Returns 12:20 Outback 13:55 Just Between Friends 15:45 Sleepover 17:15 Dirt 18:50 Another Pretty Face 20:20 Madison 22:00 Object Of Beauty, The 23:40 Extreme Adventures Of Super Dave, The

00:00 Bondi Rescue 00:30 Lonely Planet 01:30 Departures 02:30 Which Way To... 03:30 Banged Up Abroad 04:30 Madventures 05:00 Food Lovers Guide To The Planet 05:30 Surfer’s Journal 06:00 Bondi Rescue 06:30 Lonely Planet 07:30 Departures 08:30 Which Way To... 09:30 Banged Up Abroad 10:30 Madventures 11:00 Food Lovers Guide To The Planet 11:30 Surfer’s Journal 12:00 Bondi Rescue 12:30 Lonely Planet 13:30 The Best Job In The World 14:00 Weird And Wonderful Hotels 14:30 Finding Genghis 15:00 Finding Genghis 15:30 Banged Up Abroad 16:30 Madventures 17:00 Food Lovers Guide To The Planet 17:30 Surfer’s Journal 18:00 Bondi Rescue 18:30 Lonely Planet 19:30 The Best Job In The World 20:00 Weird And Wonderful Hotels 20:30 Finding Genghis 21:00 Finding Genghis 21:30 Banged Up Abroad 22:30 Madventures 23:00 Food Lovers Guide To The Planet 23:30 Surfer’s Journal

Amplified 04:00 The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (Best Of) 05:00 GMA (repeat) 07:00 Ahead of The Curve 07:30 Nature’s Edge 08:00 The Martha Stewart Show 09:00 10 Years Younger 09:30 10 Years Younger 10:00 The Best of Jimmy Kimmel 11:00 The View (repeat) 12:00 The Ellen DeGeneres Show 13:00 The Martha Stewart Show 14:00 GMA Live 16:00 GMA Health 16:30 What’s the Buzz 17:00 The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (Best Of) 18:00 10 Years Younger 18:30 10 Years Younger 19:00 The View 20:00 The Ellen DeGeneres Show 21:00 Jimmy Kimmel Live! 22:00 The Tonight Show with Jay Leno 23:00 The Monique Show

04:30 Home Improvement 05:00 Survivor 06:00 Emmerdale 06:30 Coronation Street 07:00 Without A Trace 08:00 Every Body Loves Raymond 08:30 Home Improvement 09:00 Dawson’s Creek 10:00 Survivor 11:00 Without A Trace 12:00 Emmerdale 12:30 Coronation Street 13:00 Every Body Loves Raymond 13:30 Home Improvement 14:00 Eureka 15:00 Desperate Housewives 16:00 Survivor 17:00 Dawson’s Creek 18:00 Emmerdale 18:30 Coronation Street 19:00 Lost 20:00 Lost 21:00 Without A Trace 22:00 Survivor 23:00 Dawson’s Creek

00:00 Hellboy Ii: The Golden Army-PG15 02:00 Shoot The Hero-PG15 04:00 Man In The Chair-PG15 06:00 Dragonlance-PG 08:00 Perfect Holiday-PG 09:45 The Express-PG 12:00 Swing Vote-PG15 14:00 A Previous Engagement-PG15 16:00 The Express-PG 18:15 Bottle Shock-PG15 20:00 300-18 22:00 Man About Town-PG

01:00 AFL Toyota Premiership 03:30 ICC Cricket World 04:00 International Rugby Union 06:00 AFL Highlights 07:00 NRL Premiership 09:00 ICC Cricket World 09:30 International Rugby Union 11:30 AFL Highlights 12:30 World Hockey 13:00 NRL Premiership 15:00 AFL Highlights 16:00 ICC Cricket World 16:30 NRL Full Time 17:00 FEI Equestrain World 17:30 Spirit of the Open 18:00 PGA European Tour Highlights 19:00 World Sport 19:30 NRL Premiership 21:30 Futbol Mundial 22:00 International Rugby Union

01:00 Final Destination 3-PG15 03:00 Hellboy II: The Golden Army-PG15 05:00 Enough-PG15 07:00 Fracture-PG15 09:00 Prisoner-PG 11:00 The Mist-PG15 13:00 Battle Of Wits-PG15 15:15 Prisoner-PG 17:00 Ghost Image-PG15 19:00 Inside Ring-PG15 21:00 The Incredible Hulk-PG 23:00 The Hills Run Red-PG15

00:00 Dream For An Insomniac-PG15 02:00 This Is Not A Test-PG15 04:00 Short Track-PG 06:00 Blank Check-FAM 08:00 The Broken Hearts Club-PG 10:00 The Clique-PG15 12:00 High Heels And Low Lifes-PG15 14:00 Trapped In Paradise-PG15 16:00 Dream For An Insomniac-PG15 18:00 Women In Trouble-PG15 20:00 Spring Breakdown-PG15 22:00 Kids In The Hall: Brain Candy-18

00:00 Barbie In A Mermaid Tale-FAM 02:00 The Chronicles Of Narnia: Prince Caspian-PG 04:30 Dr. Dolittle: Million Dollars Mutts 06:00 Babar: King Of The Elephants-FAM 08:00 Simba Junior To The World CupFAM 10:00 Dr. Dolittle: Million Dollars Mutts 12:00 Just For Kicks-PG 13:30 The Chronicles Of Narnia: Prince Caspian-PG 16:00 My Favorite Martian-PG

00:00 Eureka 01:00 Desperate Housewives 02:00 Without A Trace 03:00 Dawson’s Creek 04:00 Every Body Loves Raymond

00:00 International Rugby Union 02:00 NRL Premiership 04:00 AFL Highlights 05:00 Spirit of The Open 05:30 Mobil 1 The Grid 06:00 Futbol Mundial 06:30 World Sport 07:00 Masters Football 10:00 AFL Highlights 11:00 Sea Masters 11:30 International Rugby Union 13:30 AFL Highlights 14:30 World Sport 15:00 NRL Full Time 15:30 International Rugby Union 17:30 Sea Masters 18:00 AFL Highlights 19:00 Spirit of The Open 19:30 PGA European Tour Highlights 20:30 FEI Equestrain World

00:00 WWE Smackdown 02:00 WWE Vintage Collection 03:00 UFC The Ultimate Fighter Finale 06:00 UFC Unleashed 07:00 WWE NXT 08:00 WWE Smackdown 10:00 FIA GT1 World Championship 12:00 WWE Bottom Line 13:00 Red Bull X-Fighters 14:30 Mobil 1 15:00 UAE National Race Day 16:00 FIA GT1 World Championship 18:00 Prizefighter 21:00 UFC Wired 22:00 UFC Unleashed 23:00 UFC Unleashed

01:00 The Good German-18 03:00 Racing For Time-PG15 05:00 The Loss Of A Teardrop DiamondPG15

07:00 Where God Left His Shoes-PG 09:00 Grey Gardens-PG15 11:00 Monsters Vs. Aliens-PG 13:00 The Christmas Clause-PG 15:00 Bring It On 5: Fight To The FinishPG15 17:00 Grey Gardens-PG15 19:00 Music And Lyrics-PG 21:00 Fab Five : The Texas Cheerleader Scandal-PG15 23:00 The Unborn-18

00:45 Cannery Row 01:30 Where Eagles Dare 04:00 Ice Station Zebra 06:30 The Screening Room 07:00 Hearts Of The West 08:45 Fun With Dick And Jane 10:20 Grand Prix 13:05 Khartoum 15:10 Quo Vadis 17:55 The Screening Room 18:25 The Wonderful World Of The Brothers Grimm 20:30 December 22:00 Sweet Bird Of Youth 23:55 Slither

00:30 Ice Road Truckers 2 01:20 Tunnellers 02:10 Cannibalism: Extreme Survival 03:00 Man Moment Machine 03:55 Mega Movers 04:50 Shootout! 05:40 Warriors 06:30 Ice Road Truckers 2 07:20 Tunnellers 08:10 Cannibalism: Extreme Survival 09:00 Man Moment Machine 09:55 Mega Movers 10:50 Shootout! 11:40 Warriors 12:30 Ice Road Truckers 2 13:20 Tunnellers 14:10 Cannibalism: Extreme Survival 15:00 Man Moment Machine 15:55 Mega Movers 16:50 Shootout! 17:40 The Universe 18:30 Ice Road Truckers 2 19:20 Tunnellers 20:10 Cannibalism: Extreme Survival 21:00 World War II: Lost Films 21:55 Rudolf Hess: The Man Who Died Twice 22:50 Battle 360 23:40 Battle Stations

00:00 Dr 90210 01:00 Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane 01:30 Dallas Divas & Daughters 02:00 Split Ends 03:00 How Do I Look? 04:00 Dr 90210 05:00 Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane 05:30 Area 06:00 How Do I Look? 07:00 Style Star 07:30 Style Her Famous 08:00 My Celebrity Home 09:00 Style Star 09:30 Dress My Nest 10:00 Whose Wedding Is it Anyway? 11:00 How Do I Look? 12:00 Ruby 13:00 Clean House 14:00 Clean House Comes Clean 14:30 Dress My Nest 15:00 What I Hate About Me 16:00 Whose Wedding Is it Anyway? 17:00 Peter Perfect 18:00 Peter Perfect 19:00 Split Ends 20:00 Clean House 21:00 Clean House Comes Clean 21:30 Dress My Nest 22:00 Ruby 23:00 Ruby

00:00 Billable Hours 00:30 Will & Grace 01:00 The Daily Show with Jon Stewart 01:30 The Colbert Report 02:00 Friends 02:30 Friends 03:00 Monday night Stand Up 04:30 South park 05:00 Drew Carey 05:30 Friends 06:00 Friends 06:30 Everybody Loves Raymond 07:00 Eight Simple Rules 07:30 The Fresh Prince of Bel Air 08:00 Frasier 08:30 Yes dear 09:00 Married with Children 09:30 Drew Carey 10:00 Everybody Loves Raymond 10:30 Eight Simple Rules 11:00 Frasier 11:30 Hope & Faith 12:00 Best of Late night with Jimmy Fallon 13:00 Will & Grace 13:30 Yes dear 14:00 George Lopez 14:30 The Fresh Prince of Bel Air 15:00 Billable Hours 15:30 The Daily Show with Jon Stewart 16:00 The Colbert Report 16:30 The Drew Carey show 17:00 Everybody Loves Raymond 17:30 Frasier 18:00 Hope & Faith 18:30 Eight Simple Rules 19:00 The Office 19:30 Will & Grace 20:00 Late night with Jimmy Fallon 21:00 The Daily Show with Jon Stewart 21:30 The Colbert Report 22:00 Party Down 22:30 The Book Group 23:00 Saturday Night Live

00:00 The Martha Stewart Show 01:00 10 Years Younger 01:30 10 Years Younger 02:00 The Best of Jimmy Kimmel 03:00 Moms Get Real / Now you know /

The Incredible Hulk on Show Movies Action

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

33 Flight Schedule Arrival Flights Tuesday 29/06/2010 Airlines Flt Route Jordanian 802 Amman Wataniya Airways 188 Bahrain Jazeera 463 Beirut Wataniya Airways 306 Cairo Kuwait 544 Cairo Wataniya Airways 434 Damascus Wataniya Airways 408 Beirut Gulf Air 211 Bahrain Turkish 772 Istanbul Ethiopian 620 Addis Ababa Air Arabia Egypt 551 Alexandria Egypt Air 614 Cairo Jazeera 267 Beirut DHL 370 Bahrain Emirates 853 Dubai Etihad 305 Abu Dhabi Qatari 138 Doha Air France 6782 Paris Jazeera 503 Luxor Kuwait 412 Manila/Bangkok Jazeera 527 Alexandria British 157 London Kuwait 416 Jakarta/Kuala Lumpur Jazeera 529 Assiut Falcon 201 Bahrain Jazeera 613 Lahore Kuwait 206 Islamabad Kuwait 382 Delhi Kuwait 302 Mumbai Kuwait 332 Trivandrum Fly Dubai 053 Dubai Kuwait 676 Dubai Kuwait 284 Dhaka Emirates 855 Dubai Arabia 121 Sharjah Iran Air 605 Isfahan Qatari 132 Doha Etihad 301 Abu Dhabi Jazeera 425 Bahrain Jazeera 497 Riyadh Iran Air 619 Lar Gulf Air 213 Bahrain Wataniya Airways 182 Bahrain Jazeera 113 Abu Dhabi Wataniya Airways 102 Dubai Jazeera 165 Dubai Egypt Air 610 Cairo Kuwait 672 Dubai Wataniya Airways 432 Damascus United 982 Washington DC Dulles Jordanian 800 Amman Fly Dubai 057 Dubai Wataniya Airways 332 Alexandria Wataniya Airways 422 Amman Kuwait 562 Amman Kuwait 512 Tehran Saudia 500 Jeddah Kuwait 744 Dammam Kuwait 1542 Cairo Syrian Air 341 Damascus Jazeera 525 Alexandria Qatari 134 Doha Kuwait 546 Alexandria Kuwait 1802 Cairo Mihin 403 Colombo/Dubai Etihad 303 Abu Dhabi Emirates 857 Dubai Gulf Air 215 Bahrain Wataniya Airways 402 Beirut Saudia 510 Riyadh Jazeera 493 Jeddah Arabia 125 Sharjah Jazeera 239 Amman Jazeera 367 Deirezzor Srilankan 227 Colombo/Dubai Wataniya Airways 304 Cairo Kuwait 104 London Kuwait 166 Paris/Rome Wataniya Airways 106 Dubai Rovos 093 Kandahar/Dubai Kuwait 542 Cairo Kuwait 502 Beirut Kuwait 786 Jeddah Kuwait 618 Doha Jazeera 481 Sabiha Jazeera 177 Dubai Kuwait 614 Bahrain Kuwait 674 Dubai Singapore 458 Singapore/Abu Dhabi Kuwait 774 Riyadh Kuwait 552 Damascus Fly Dubai 061 Dubai Oman Air 647 Muscat Indian 993 Chennai/Mumbai Middle East 402 Beirut Wataniya Airways 612 Sabiha Jet A/W 572 Mumbai Egypt Air 618 Alexandria KLM 0443 Amsterdam Wataniya Airways 404 Beirut DHL 372 Bahrain Gulf Air 217 Bahrain Jazeera 459 Damascus Emirates 859 Dubai Rovos 091 Baghdad Qatari 136 Doha United 981 Bahrain Jazeera 449 Doha Lufthansa 636 Frankfurt Jazeera 185 Dubai Jazeera 429 Bahrain Egypt Air 612 Cairo India Express 389 Kozhikode/Mangalore Kuwait 1804 Cairo Pakistan 205 Lahore/Peshawar Wataniya Airways 108 Dubai

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

Departure Flights on Tuesday 29/06/2010 Airlines Flt Route Jazeera 528 Assiut Tunis Air 328 Dubai/Tunis Indian 576 Goa/Chennai Pakistan 240 Sialkot Lufthansa 637 Frankfurt Turkish 773 Istanbul Ethiopian 620 Bahrain/Addis Ababa Air Arabia Egypt 552 Alexandria Egypt Air 615 Cairo DHL 371 Bahrain Emirates 854 Dubai Etihad 306 Abu Dhabi Qatari 139 Doha Air France 6782 Dubai/Hong Kong Wataniya Airways 101 Dubai Jazeera 112 Abu Dhabi Jordanian 803 Amman Jazeera 164 Dubai Jazeera 496 Riyadh Jazeera 422 Bahrain Wataniya Airways 331 Alexandria Gulf Air 212 Bahrain Wataniya Airways 181 Bahrain Rovos 094 Dubai/Kandahar Jazeera 524 Alexandria Wataniya Airways 431 Damascus Kuwait 1541 Cairo British 156 London Kuwait 545 Alexandria Fly Dubai 054 Dubai Kuwait 1801 Cairo Kuwait 671 Dubai Wataniya Airways 421 Amman Kuwait 561 Amman Arabia 122 Sharjah Kuwait 101 London/New York Emirates 856 Dubai Iran Air 604 Isfahan Kuwait 511 Tehran Qatari 133 Doha Etihad 302 Abu Dhabi Kuwait 121 Malaga/Casablanca Jazeera 480 Sabiha Gulf Air 214 Bahrain Wataniya Airways 401 Beirut Iran Air 618 Lar Kuwait 165 Rome/Paris Wataniya Airways 303 Cairo Kuwait 743 Dammam Kuwait 541 Cairo Wataniya Airways 611 Sabiha Jazeera 238 Amman Jazeera 366 Deirezzor Jazeera 492 Jeddah Kuwait 501 Beirut Kuwait 785 Jeddah Egypt Air 611 Cairo Kuwait 551 Damascus Jordanian 801 Amman Wataniya Airways 105 Dubai Fly Dubai 058 Dubai United 982 Bahrain Jazeera 176 Dubai Kuwait 673 Dubai Wataniya Airways 403 Beirut Kuwait 617 Doha Saudia 501 Jeddah Syrian Air 342 Damascus Jazeera 458 Damascus Kuwait 773 Riyadh Qatari 135 Doha Kuwait 613 Bahrain/Doha Kuwait 1803 Cairo Etihad 304 Abu Dhabi Mihin 404 Dubai/Colombo Gulf Air 216 Bahrain Emirates 858 Dubai Wataniya Airways 305 Cairo Rovos 092 Baghdad Arabia 126 Sharjah Jazeera 184 Dubai Saudia 511 Riyadh Jazeera 522 Alexandria Jazeera 448 Doha Sri Lankan 228 Dubai/Colombo Wataniya Airways 407 Beirut Wataniya Airways 433 Damascus Wataniya Airways 107 Dubai Wataniya Airways 321 Sharm El Sheikh Jazeera 428 Bahrain Kuwait 283 Dhaka Jazeera 266 Beirut Kuwait 361 Colombo Fly Dubai 062 Dubai Singapore 457 Abu Dhabi/Singapore Kuwait 343 Chennai Kuwait 351 Cochin Oman Air 648 Muscat Middle East 403 Beirut Jet A/W 571 Mumbai Egypt Air 619 Alexandria Wataniya Airways 187 Bahrain KLM 0443 Bahrain/Amsterdam Gulf Air 218 Bahrain DHL 373 Bahrain Kuwait 801 Cairo Kuwait 675 Dubai Emirates 860 Dubai Kuwait 381 Delhi Falcon 102 Bahrain Qatari 137 Doha Kuwait 301 Mumbai Jazeera 526 Alexandria Jazeera 636 Aleppo Jazeera 502 Luxor United 981 Washington DC Dulles Kuwait 411 Bangkok/Manila Egypt Air 613 Cairo


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

Sharing accommodation available for a single bachelor to share with another bachelor in a 2 bedroom C-AC flat in Abbassiya with a Keralite family. Contact: 66001671. (C 2430) 29-6-2010 Sharing accommodation available for Keralite family, working ladies or couple, rent KD 70. Tel: 97769931. (C 2422) Urgently available one furnished room in Farwaniya in a C-A/C building, with all facilities behind Al-Arbid building. Call 97245851. (C 2427) Furnished sharing accommodation available in C-AC flat (2 BR, 2 bath, 2 balcony, 1 hall, 1 kitchen) in Mangaf block4 with Keralite bachelor. Phone: 66513151 after 5:30pm. (C 2423) 28-6-2010 Sharing accommodation available in Abbassiya for couple or working ladies with Keraltie family. Contact: 66013882. (C 2425) 27-6-2010 Sharing accommodation

available for family or two working ladies with a Keralite family in Abbassiya near Neethi store Abbassiya. Phone 65730628. (C 2421) Immediate sharing accommodation available in C-AC flat small room with bath, working lady any nationality but Muslim or Christian. Call 55437519. (C 2418) 26-6-2010 SITUATION VACANT

Cook needed for Kuwaiti family, call 99800408 from 12:30 pm to 2:30 pm only. (C 2419) 26-6-2010

No: 14774

FOR SALE Caprice Classic 1995 maroon, registered till 12/4/2011, excellent condition, run 300000 kms, well maintained, Indian owner. Phone 66513151 after 5:30pm. (C 2424) Pajero-iO, 2004, silver, 100,000 km, very good condition, KD 1,250. Call: 99881982. (C 2429) 28-6-2010

MISCELLANEOUS Required car Opel, Victra or Astra, 2005 or 2006 or 2007. Please call 99881982. (C 2428) 28-6-2010

CHANGE OF NAME I, Bhaskaran Pillai Anil Kumar, holder of Indian Passport No G3439994 hereby change my name to JANARDHANAN PILLAI ANIL KUMAR for all purpose. (C 2420) 26-6-2010



Tuesday, June 29, 2010



Aries (March 21-April 19) Someone important or in authority may put a damper on your desires today. It may be time to reassess your thinking and either change your ideas or find others to back you. It is important to find work that does not deny your goals, or otherwise dissatisfaction and disappointment reigns. Advice from a trusted friend is in order to help coordinate your job and your emotional life. You would make a great investigator; either through research or undercover work--it makes no difference. Your ability to get to the point is all but phenomenal. You may help a community drive by signing a petition or asking others to sign the petition this afternoon. Close relationships take on more emotional depth, power and importance now. Taurus (April 20-May 20) This may not be the best time for a new job change. You may lack coordination and have feelings of inadequacy--fortunately, this seems to be temporary. Your emotions, led by your temper, can send you off in a direction that is anything but where you really want to go. There are options opening for you today and it would be wise for you to pace yourself. It is important to find work that helps you to express your talents. Advice from a trusted friend or someone in the field of job advisement is in order to help coordinate your job and your emotional life. It is easy for you to work with people that you respect--those older and more experienced than you. You would make a good manager. Relax this evening.

Pooch Cafe

ACROSS 1. A magnetic tape recorder for recording (and playing back) TV programs. 4. Wool of the alpaca. 10. Headdress that protects the head from bad weather. 13. A metal-bearing mineral valuable enough to be mined. 14. African tree having an exceedingly thick trunk and fruit that resembles a gourd and has an edible pulp called monkey bread. 15. A federal agency established to coordinate programs aimed at reducing pollution and protecting the environment. 16. The capital and largest city of Bangladesh. 18. A island in the Netherlands Antilles that is the top of an extinct volcano. 19. Inquire about. 20. Hinge joint in the human leg connecting the tibia and fibula with the femur and protected in front by the patella. 21. A city in north central Morocco. 22. Greek mythology. 24. Jordan's port. 26. Performance of moral or religious acts. 28. A sudden short attack. 29. Tropical American feather palm whose large nuts yield valuable oil and a kind of vegetable ivory. 33. A small pellet fired from an air rifle or BB gun. 36. An anxiety disorder characterized by chronic free-floating anxiety and such symptoms as tension or sweating or trembling of light-headedness or irritability etc that has lasted for more than six months. 37. A defensive missile designed to shoot down incoming intercontinental ballistic missiles. 41. Take by theft. 43. Someone who is morally reprehensible. 45. The length of a straight line passing through the center of a circle and connecting two points on the circumference. 46. An island in Indonesia south of Borneo. 48. A Chadic language spoken south of Lake Chad. 51. Made afraid. 53. A member of an agricultural people in southeastern India. 57. 100 aurar equal 1 krona. 60. A local computer network for communication between computers. 61. A change in the electrical properties of the skin in response to stress or anxiety. 62. A mountain peak in the Andes in Bolivia (21,391 feet high). 64. Airtight sealed metal container for food or drink or paint etc.. 65. A Turkish unit of weight equal to about 2.75 pounds. 66. The cardinal number that is the sum of seven and one. 67. A flat wing-shaped process or winglike part of an organism. DOWN 1. Unaged colorless liquor originating in Russia. 2. (used of boats) Inclined to heel over easily under sail. 3. Hear or try a court case anew. 4. A loose sleeveless outer garment made from aba cloth. 5. A white soft metallic element that tarnishes readily. 6. Arranged for pictorial purposes. 7. Lower in esteem. 8. A compartment in front of a motor vehicle where driver sits. 9. The trait of lacking restraint or control. 10. A collection of objects laid on top of each other. 11. A domed or vaulted recess or projection on a building especially the east end of a church. 12. The basic unit of money in Bangladesh. 17. Cubes of meat marinated and cooked on a skewer usually with vegetables. 23. The residue that remains when something is burned. 25. The branch of computer science that deal with writing computer programs that can solve problems creatively. 27. The persistence of a sound after its source has stopped. 30. Large sweet juicy hybrid between tangerine and grapefruit having a thick wrinkled skin. 31. Kamarupan languages spoken in northeastern India and western Burma. 32. Mild yellow Dutch cheese made in balls. 34. Any of various units of capacity. 35. Large brownish-green New Zealand parrot. 38. Small silvery schooling fishes with protrusible mouths found in warm coastal waters. 39. Any of a number of fishes of the family Carangidae. 40. (Babylonian) God of storms and wind. 42. God of death. 44. Diabetes caused by a relative or absolute deficiency of insulin and characterized by polyuria. 47. Left-hand page. 49. Small terrestrial lizard of warm regions of the Old World. 50. The capacitance of a capacitor that has an equal and opposite charge of 1 coulomb on each plate and a voltage difference of 1 volt between the plates. 52. The lean flesh of a cod-like fish of North Atlantic waters. 53. The sense organ for hearing and equilibrium. 54. Type genus of the Alcidae comprising solely the razorbill. 55. Any of numerous local fertility and nature deities worshipped by ancient Semitic peoples. 56. A former copper coin of Pakistan. 58. Rare (usually fatal) brain disease (usually in middle age) caused by an unidentified slow virus. 59. 10 hao equal 1 dong. 63. A soft white precious univalent metallic element having the highest electrical and thermal conductivity of any metal.

Gemini (May 21-June 20) There is an emphasis on communication, expression of ideas and the connections between things, places and people today. What goes on in your mind is your all-important motivation. You tend towards mental pursuits and admire intelligence. A reward system would be good. Creative visualization and consistent meditation will give you the insight into the answers you may need. Your general sense of concern for everything makes you valuable when anything needs doing. Given only a few facts, you are able to take in a situation and come up with a real picture of what is happening--globally or locally. You will find plenty of opportunities to involve yourself in what interests you this evening--creative art, technical equipment, music, etc.

Non Sequitur Cancer (June 21-July 22)There are many opportunities to accomplish much today. You seem to take in a lot of energy from the activities that happen around you at this time. The pace of your life picks up speed. With the wind at your back, it should be smooth sailing for whatever you set out to do. You are powerfully motivated, perhaps even driven to achieve positive results. You have a very analytical bent and your mind excels at making practical decisions. Your ideas run deeper than superficial issues in which an interest in market trends and business psychology are present. You are likely to meet and enjoy the antics of others that have the same hobby or talents that you enjoy. Corroborate with your mate when making future social plans. Leo (July 23-August 22) Before the day begins, try your hand at a new hairstyle or choice in clothing. A splash of color may help to give you a lift. Your outgoing nature and your extremely skillful ways of handling other people, make you a natural for working with or for the public. You would make an excellent teacher or coach and helping others to make career decisions is a skill you enjoy using. These are also the things you should consider when making those career decisions for yourself. If you become bored this afternoon, it would be a good time to get out the old bicycle and go for a ride. Repair work and perhaps some maintenance chores at home may catch your attention later. You may have new insights on how to beautify your surroundings; making life most pleasant.


Virgo (August 23-September 22) This is a great time to be with others and to work together. You may be sought after as just the person for a particular job. However, be aware that even though there is a lot of energy available for disciplined work--you could push too hard and may even break something or become irritable. This is the best time you will have to make progress, push forward and rise to distinction. It will be hard for you to do wrong, for all the cycles are working in your favor. This is also a time when you may find the right mate or you take on a new role in the community. You will receive recognition for your hard work. Friends and a social life are in order and, in general, an easy and untroubled life. This is a good time to be social, recognized, etc.

Mother Goose and Grimm

Libra (September 23-October 22) This may be a very superficial day. It may not be possible for you to penetrate to anything remotely meaningful or moving at this time. Work as usual may be the best road to take. Perhaps there is a sense of the artificial, the repetitive and the senseless. Do not worry about getting beneath the surface of anything new right now. You are gifted and even lucky when it comes to professional decisions, however. Things usually manage to work out for you so taking little steps is advisable for now. Do not be afraid to follow your own heart and to express yourself. You may find that the day fairs better as you maintain positive thinking. This evening, children or animals will be important to your life. Study nature; natural law. Play this evening. Scorpio (October 23-November 21) Others value you for your ability to make practical decisions in most every area of life. You may write or become interested in an article that includes the transportation industry. You have a natural sense of what the public wants at this time and can lend good advice. Clear decisions affecting others could be made from your discoveries. Perhaps passing your ideas on to others will give you a sense of organization and provide an opportunity for some new ideas to develop. You are very gifted, having great magnetism and warmth and a keen and powerful mind. You may find it more convenient to neglect your mental, conceptual and organizational abilities this evening in favor of your social agility and animal warmth. Romance is possible now. Sagittarius (November 22-December 21) Independence, as well as anything unusual or different, is valued. You may enjoy getting away from routine and doing something completely different for a change. You appear perhaps more charming and refined than usual. Now is a good time to make that special date or apply for a particular job or salary increase. Career choices, the obvious path that is opening up for you, may grate against your own sense of freedom and independence. Success and security at the expense of originality may be too great a price to pay. Some middle road could be found. You could feel loving and warm to those around you. You are appreciative of your own life and self. Be cautious in sports or risky activities now through the last day of this month.

Yesterday’s Solution


Yesterday’s Solution


INTERNATIONAL CALLS Kuwait Qatar Abu Dhabi Dubai Raas Al Khayma Al-Shareqa Muscat Jordan Bahrain Riyadh Makkah - Jeddah Cairo Alexandria Beirut Damascus Allepo

00965 00974 009712 009714 009717 009716 00968 009626 00973 009661 009662 00202 00203 009611 0096311 0096321

Tunisia Rabat Washington New York Paris London Madrid Zurich Geneva Monaco Rome Bangkok Hong Kong Pakistan Taiwan Bonn

0021610 002127 001212 001718 00331 004471 00341 00411 004122 0033 00396 00662 00852 0092 00886 0049228

Word Sleuth Solution

Capricorn (December 22-January 19) You will find that today is a great time to be with others and to work together. You may be sought after as just the person for a particular job. New business opportunities open up for you. Do not hesitate or you will miss the boat. Communicate your intentions clearly. You could find that you are appreciated or valued for your feelings or your ability to act and get things done. You may find you are more independent, confident and a little self-centered these days. You are learning to love attention and somehow manage to gravitate to the center of almost any group or happening. Others accept you--they sense you are a leader and admire your accomplishments. You could be teaching or perhaps, entertain if you wish.

Aquarius (January 20- February 18) You are able to manage and discover how to work with the energy of others. The word for the day is accomplishment. If there is a job, you can do it. As an amazing worker, you pour yourself into any task of the day with absolute determination. You have a great desire and drive to be thorough and responsible--down to the smallest details. You seem to know what is essential and what is not. You will love the routine that your work brings into your life now. There is a tendency to be too strict with yourself--ease up a bit this afternoon. Take a little trip, or get outside for a while. You may be sought after for your advice and counsel regarding very personal and emotional issues. You will be able to be understanding and handle any tough matter. Pisces (February 19-March 20) You are a heavy-duty thinker and serious student, always ready to work an idea through, reducing it to what is essential. You do a lot to fulfill the popular stereotype of how a genius might behave. There may be a sustained interest today in communication, computers, electronics and all that is electrical. You could be an excellent teacher in areas requiring discipline and organization. You value order and place a high premium on hard work and effort. You like to get down to the bare bones of a matter; to what is essential. Whatever is most practical is best and you appreciate things that are durable and long lasting. You love truth, philosophy, law, etc. You make a conscious decision to guide yourself in positive directions.


Tuesday, June 29, 2010

35 FIRE BRIGADE Operation Room 112 Al-Madena 22418714 Al-Shohada始a 22545171 Al-Shuwaikh 24810598 Al-Nuzha 22545171 Sabhan 24742838 Al-Helaly 22434853 Al-Fayhaa 22545051 Al-Farwaniya 24711433 Al-Sulaibikhat 24316983 Al-Fahaheel 23927002 Jleeb Al-Shuyoukh 24316983 Ahmadi 23980088 Al-Mangaf 23711183 Al-Shuaiba 23262845 Al-Jahra 25610011 Al-Salmiya 25616368

Ministry of Interior website:

For labor-related inquiries and complaints: Call MSAL hotline 128 HOSPITALS Sabah Hospital


Amiri Hospital


Maternity Hospital


Mubarak Al-Kabir Hospital


Chest Hospital


Farwaniya Hospital


Adan Hospital


Ibn Sina Hospital


Al-Razi Hospital


Physiotherapy Hospital

POLICE STATION Al-Madena Police Station Al-Murqab Police Station Al-Daiya Police Station Al-Fayha始a Police Station Al-Qadissiya Police Station Al-Nugra Police Station Al-Salmiya Police Station Al-Dasma Police Station

24874330/9 CLINICS













Abdullah Salim




Industrial Shuwaikh






Bneid Al-Ghar






Ayoun Al-Kibla










Maidan Hawally












New Jahra


West Jahra


South Jahra


North Jahra


North Jleeb














THE PUBLIC AUTHORITY FOR CIVIL INFORMATION Automated enquiry about the Civil ID card is 1889988 AIRLINES


PHARMACY Sama Safwan Abu Halaifa Danat Al-Sultan

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

PHONE 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

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

25726265 25647075 22625999 22564549 25340559 25326554


PRIVATE CLINICS Ophthalmologists: Dr. Abidallah Al-Mansoor Dr. Samy Al-Rabeea Dr. Masoma Habeeb Dr. Mubarak Al-Ajmy Dr. Mohsen Abel Dr Adnan Hasan Alwayl Dr. Abdallah Al-Baghly

25622444 25752222 25321171 25739999 25757700 25732223 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-Awadi22616660 Dr. Adel Al-Hunayan FRCS (C) 25313120 Plastic Surgeons: Dr. Mohammad Al-Khalaf 22547272

22434064 22435865 22544200 22547133 22515277 22616662 25714406 22530801

Dr. Abdal-Redha Lari Dr. Abdel Quttainah

22617700 25625030/60

Family Doctor: Dr Divya Damodar 23729596/23729581

Dr. Dr. Dr. Dr. Dr.

Zahra Qabazard Sohail Qamar Snaa Maaroof Pradip Gujare Zacharias Mathew

25710444 22621099 25713514 23713100 24334282

(1) Ear, Nose and Throat Psychiatrists Dr. Esam Al-Ansari 22635047 Dr Eisa M. Al-Balhan 22613623/0 Gynaecologists & Obstetricians: Dr Adrian Harbe 23729596/23729581 Dr. Verginia s.Marin 2572-6666 ext 8321 Dr. Fozeya Ali Al-Qatan 22655539 Dr. Majeda Khalefa Aliytami 25343406 Dr. Ahmad Al-Khooly 25739272 Dr. Salem soso 22618787 General Surgeons: Dr. Abidallah Behbahani 25717111 Dr. Amer Zawaz Al-Amer 22610044 Dr. Mohammad Yousef Basher 25327148

Paediatricians: Dr. Abd Al-Aziz Al-Rashed 25340300

Rheumatologists: Dr. Adel Al-Awadi 25330060 Dr. Khaled Al-Jarallah 25722290

(2) Plastic Surgeon Dr. Abdul Mohsin Jafar, FRCS (Canada)

25655535 Dentists:

Dr Anil Thomas


Dr. Shamah Al-Matar


Dr. Anesah Al-Rasheed


Dr. Abidallah Al-Amer


Dr. Faysal Al-Fozan


Dr. Abdallateef Al-Katrash


Dr. Abidallah Al-Duweisan


Dr. Bader Al-Ansari



Internist, Chest & Heart: DR.Mohammes Akkad 24555050 Ext 210 Dr. Mohammad Zubaid MB, ChB, FRCPC, PACC Assistant Professor Of Medicine Head, Division of Cardiology Mubarak Al-Kabeer Hospital Tel: 25339667 Dr. Farida Al-Habib MD, PH.D, FACC Consultant Cardiologist Tel: 2611555-2622555 Inaya German Medical Center Te: 2575077 Fax: 25723123

Dr. Sohal Najem Al-Shemeri 25633324 Dr. Jasem Mola Hassan

Internists, Chest & Heart: Dr. Adnan Ebil 22639939 Dr. Mousa Khadada 22666300 Dr. Latefa Al-Duweisan 25728004 Dr. Nadem Al-Ghabra 25355515 Dr. Mobarak Aldoub 24726446 Dr Nasser Behbehani 25654300/3

Physiotherapists & VD: Dr. Deyaa Shehab 25722291 Dr. Musaed Faraj Khamees 22666288


Gastrologists Dr. Sami Aman


Dr. Mohammad Al-Shamaly 25322030 Dr. Foad Abidallah Al-Ali


Endocrinologist: Dr. Abd Al-Naser Al-Othman 25339330 Dr. Ahmad Al-Ansari


Dr. Kamal Al-Shomr


Psychologists/Psychotherapists Soor Center Tel: 2290-1677 Fax: 2290 1688 Dr. Naif Al-Mutawa, Ph.D. 2290-1677 Susannah-Joy Schuilenberg, M.A. 2290-1677 William Schuilenberg, RPC 2290-1677 Zaina Al Zabin, M.Sc. 2290-1677

Kuwait Airways Wataniya Airways Jazeera Airways Jet Airways Qatar Airways KLM Air Slovakia Olympic Airways Royal Jordanian Reservation British Airways Air France Emirates Air India Sri Lanka Airlines Egypt Air Swiss Air Saudia Middle East Airlines Lufthansa PIA Alitalia Balkan Airlines Bangladesh Airlines Czech Airlines Indian Airlines Oman Air Turkish Airlines

22433377 24379900 177 22477631 22423888 22425747 22434940 22420002/9 22418064/5/6 22433388 22425635 22430224 22425566 22438184 22424444 22421578 22421516 22426306 22423073 22422493 22421044 22414427 22416474 22452977/8 22417901/2433141 22456700 22412284/5 22453820/1

INTERNATIONAL CALLS Afghanistan Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antiga Argentina Armenia Australia Austria Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia Bosnia Botswana Brazil Brunei Bulgaria Burkina Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Colombia Comoros Congo Cook Islands Costa Rica Croatia Cuba Cyprus Cyprus (Northern) Czech Republic Denmark Diego Garcia Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador England (UK)

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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

BET awards

Chris Brown performs Jackson tribute at BET Awards By Sandy Cohen t was a night of comebacks at the BET Awards, and none more unexpected than Chris Brown performing an emotional tribute to Michael Jackson. The embattled pop star has mostly kept a low profile since pleading guilty to felony assault for beating up Rihanna in February 2009. But here he was, center stage, mimicking Jackson’s signature dance moves with almost eerie accuracy. Introduced by Jermaine Jackson, Brown embodied the King of Pop, wearing his fedora and spangled glove and moonwalking across the stage to “Billie Jean.” Then, as Brown grabbed a microphone to sing “Man in the Mirror,” he broke down in tears. His voice cracked, he couldn’t sing, and at one point he crumpled to the stage in apparent agony. It was a moving moment made even more so by the song’s lyrics and Brown’s recent past. The 21year-old returned to the stage later in the show when he won the AOL “fandemonium award.” “I let you all down before, but I won’t do it again. I promise you,” he said. Sunday’s ceremony at the Shrine Auditorium began with a comeback: Kanye West opened the show atop a volcano onstage in his first TV appearance since dissing Taylor Swift at last year’s MTV Video Music Awards. T.I. also made a triumphant return to television in his first TV performance since being released from prison in December. Backed by Travis Barker on drums, T.I. performed “Yeah Ya Know,” and later returned to the stage to sing “Hello, Good Morning” with Diddy-Dirty Money, Rick Ross and Nicki Minaj, who won for female hip-hop artist. El DeBarge also made a comeback, his falsetto undiminished, performing hits “I Like It,” “Time Will Reveal” and “Rhythm of the Night.” He returned later to perform the title track from his new album due in the fall, “Second Chance.” Host Queen Latifah was also musical, first singing to famous members of the audience, then returning to her rap roots and rhyming about the royalty in the audience: herself and Prince, who received BET’s lifetime achievement award. The venerable entertainer was feted with an all-female musical tribute. Janelle Monae offered an energetic take on “Let’s Go Crazy.” Jazz musician Esperanza Spalding accompanied herself on standup bass for “If I Was Your Girlfriend.” Alicia Keys started behind the piano, then climbed on top of it, when she sang “Adore,” and Patti LaBelle kicked off her shoes to give her all to “Purple Rain.” Prince, who wore a tunic with his own image on it, seemed humbled by the tribute. “I’m just so thankful to be a part of this world of music,” he said. “Thanks for a wonderful night. I’ll never forget it as long as I live.” Performances were so plentiful during the 3 1/2-hour show that prizes were almost secondary. Usher was backed by a string section as he sang “There Goes My Baby.” Drake, who was named best male hip-hop artist, performed his hit “Thank Me Later.” B.o.B. was joined by Keyshia Cole, and later Eminem, on “Airplanes.” Eminem continued with his new single, “Not Afraid,” backed by a choir. Trey Songz, who was named best male R&B artist, crooned his hit, “Yo Side of the Bed,” as a banner on stage behind him read, “pray for our soldiers and their families.” Alicia Keys performed a medley of her hits, bookended by two awards. She won for female R&B artist and best collaboration for her song with Jay-Z, “Empire State of Mind.” Continued on Page 37


Prince accepts the Lifetime Achievement Award from Chaka Khan.

Chris Brown performs a Michael Jackson tribute at the BET Awards on Sunday. —AP photos

Kanye West performs “Power” at the BET Awards. Chris Brown and Jermaine Jackson hug onstage.

Alicia Keys accepts the award for Best Collaboration.

(From right) Busta Rhymes, Ludacris, Diddy and Rick Ross perform.

Nicki Minaj accepts the award for the Best Female Hip Hop Artist.



Tuesday, June 29, 2010

BET awards

Alicia Keys accepts the award for Best Female R&B Artist.

Continued from Page 36 John Legend was presented with BET’s humanitarian award for his work on the Show Me Campaign, which aims to eradicate poverty worldwide through education and health care. He challenged his peers to become humanitarians as well. “There’s a lot of money, fame and influence in this room tonight,” Legend said. “So I say to all of us: We can do better, we can make this world better. Let’s not waste this opportunity.” The BET Awards honor the year’s best in music, sports and film in 19 categories. Winners are selected by a voting academy comprising industry insiders and executives, music journalists and a group of fans randomly selected by Serena Williams won sportswoman of the year and LeBron James was sportsman of the year. Beyonce and Lady Gaga weren’t on hand to accept their award for video of the year for “Video Phone,” nor was Rihanna around to collect the viewer’s choice award for her song with Young Jeezy, “Hard.” Sunday’s show also introduced emerging musicians to the audience through BET’s Music Matters initiative, and shined a spotlight on four citizens who are contributing to their communities through education and outreach. Ludacris was surrounded by female violinists and backed by Tommy Lee on drums as he performed “My Chick Bad.” Then, a marching band joined him on stage-as did DJ Khaled, TPain, Ross and Minaj-to close the show with the rousing “Hands Up.”—AP

B.o.B and Keyshia Cole

Monica and Deniece Williams

Diddy and T.I. perform at the BET Awards.

Singer El Debarge performs onstage.

(From left) Patti LaBelle, Janelle Monae, Esperanza Spalding and Alicia Keys perform ’Purple Rain’.

Queen Latifah speaks at the BET Awards.

Usher performs “There Goes My Baby”.

(From right)Trey Songz, accepts the award for Best Male R&B Artist and invites his mom April Tucker onstage.

Singers Brandy, right, and Ray-J present the AOL Fan-Demonium mention.


Aubrey Graham, also known as Drake, accepts the award for Best Male Hip Hop Artist.

Young Jeezy accepts the Viewers’ Choice Award.

Taboo,, and Fergie of The Black Eyed Peas present the award for Best Male R&B Artist.



Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Sudan police arrest models after fashion show

udanese police briefly detained more than 20 models, make-up artists and designers after a rare mixed-sex fashion show in Khartoum, participants said on Saturday. Amateur models taking part in the “Sudanese Next Top Model Fashion Show” told Reuters they were rounded up late on Thursday by Sudan’s public order police, a body known for its crackdowns on indecent dress and drinking in the Muslim north. Police were not available to comment on Thursday’s arrests outside a club in the capital’s Khartoum 2 district. All of the detainees were released on Friday but at least six were told to report to the police on Sunday to face unspecified charges, said one


participant. “They came to the club after the show and arrested between 20 and 30 people-not just models, but people doing the make-up, the people who provided the clothes,” said the participant, who asked to remain anonymous. “There was nothing bad about the clothes. There were wedding dresses, traditional Sudanese clothes, suits, clothes from local shops and tobs (traditional Sudanese wraparound dresses).” Other participants said there had been fashion shows before in Sudan, many of them held in private. But Thursday’s event was thought to be one of the first public events to feature male and female models sharing the catwalk. —Reuters

Sudanese models walk the catwalk during the first mixed-gender fashion show in Khartoum. —AFP

Sudanese models receive final touch-ups backstage during the first mixed-gender fashion show in Khartoum. —AFP

Maxʼs new Summer 2010 Collection now in store day wardrobe solution. Varsity inspired tees are teamed with washed vintage denims for a retro preppy feel. Travel is key and the safari story is inspired from the African Safari. Casual shirts and multi-pocket cargos give this story the perfect look. Casual leisure wear collections feature colorful shirts,

ummer is here and we have what you need at Max to get you through the season. Colors are bright with summer corals, fresh yellows and jade green. There is a fresh palette of washed purples, reds and powder blues to combine with summer whites to add freshness to your wardrobe.


The classic safari stories with earthy tones of taupe and beige accented with bright purples, corals and jade to give that bright summer feel. Geometric tribal prints are added for the added punch. Linen is a key offering, to keep you cool in the heat with products like classic linen skirts, tunics and trousers. The country prairie look is

still going strong. Washed powder blues are mixed with tomato red and purple for that pretty casual look. We also have summer nautical stories with polka dot bow prints and floral in classic navy, red and ivory combinations. Nautical inspired tops and tunics with stripes are available to wear with classic indigo denim jeans or even the updated denim harem pants. The Summer Menswear collection from Max embodies an upbeat spirit and passion for life. The foremost inspirations are evolved from a sense of adventure, resort life, surf beaches and the summer holiday feel. Surfing themes with heavy surf inspired graphic tees and casual yarn dyed shorts; give the perfect holi-

and relaxed chinos are teamed with clean and precise checks and stripes. Surf is the key print direction for summer with Hawaiian floral, key for shirts and surf shorts. For the infants, travel themes are key in a palette of reds and oranges, punctuated with bright blues. Surf stories find expression in a bright palette of yellow, orange and

blue. This theme includes a variety of surf shorts, surf tees, bright plaid shirts and Hawaiian prints. The Jungle theme derives inspiration from the Amazon, and features interesting graphic tees with lime green and coral accents. All these are offered along with a wide range of Denims in blue washes that are key for the season. So for all your summer fashion needs step into any of the Max showrooms located at Hawally, Fahaheel, Al Rai, Salmiya, Khaitan and The Avenues and tap into smartness with a stylish edge that would brighten your summer even more!



Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Models in

space suits close

Paris menswear shows By Jenny Barchfield S designer Thom Browne’s stellar Paris debut-a cinematic performance piece featuring models in identical space suits and visored helmets-closed the City of Light’s spring-summer 2011 menswear show with an intergalactic bang on Sunday.


Models wear spacemen costumes prior to presenting creations by US designer Thom Browne.

Browne’s “Space Odyssey” display seemed destined to become a thing of legend-even in Paris, where the collections tend to be less commercial and the shows more creative than in Milan or New York. Despite the fact that the clothes themselves-shrunken blazers worn with snug Bermuda shorts and knee socks-got a bit lost in the overwhelming mise-en-scene, Browne’s was certainly the most memorable shows at Paris’ menswear week. Although Lanvin adhered to the basic notion of what a fashion show is and stuck to the script, the much coveted Parisbased label gave men a whole lot to lust for with a collection that was equal parts elegance, sportiness and menace. Wacky British designer Paul Smith, a die-hard old school rock fan who got his start in fashion hawking tee-shirts at concerts by the Rolling Stones and other mythic bands, delivered a mismatched collection that felt like it was channeling a hungover ‘70s rock star coming to after a long, hard night. A “Mad Men” vibe permeated the collection at British

heritage label Dunhill, where the models, in double-breasted suits and carrying leather briefcases, looked like account executives at Sterling Cooper. They padded the catwalk in pinstripe suits with pocket handkerchiefs poking out, in bow ties or skinny ties, with leather hip flasks-looking like some hungry junior executive angling for Don Draper’s job. All in all, it was a strong season for Paris menswear designers, who have a reputation for

inventiveness. Over the four-daylong displays, they turned out bold looks that either radically mutated the staple of men’s wardrobe-the suit-or dispensed with it entirely. Top trends included jumpsuits, sleeveless vests with plunging V necklines and sensible-buthideous sandals that looked like they’d feel more at home poolside at a retirement home than on a runway. Emerging Frenchman Alexis Mabille served up his jumpsuits short and bedazzled them with sequins and applique daisies, while Givenchy’s king of kink, Riccardo Tisci, delivered a sophisticated, subversive tuxedo-jumpsuit hybrid, which he paired with what was quite possibly the season’s most memorable accessory-head enveloping Mexican lucha libre masks in black leather. Vests were everywhere, lending a hard, don’t-mess-with-me edginess to collections from Dior Hommes’ exercise in minimalism to the post-apocalyptic ware at California-born, Paris-based designer Rick Owens. Paris designers brushed their fashion scruples aside, opting en masse for Jesus sandals and orthopediclooking footwear that no matter how you sliced it was just plain ugly. Much of the fashion glitteratti will remain in Paris through the rarified haute couture collections, where the ever-dwindling labels that still make the extravagant, handsewn, made-to-measure creations field their fall-winter 2010-2011 collection. In addition to fashion editors, stylists

and journalists, some of the wildly wealthy women who actually buy couture gownswith price tags that start at that of a new car-also attend the over-the-top shows. THOM BROW NE It was a moment when absolutely anything was possible: When the four models in matching dark suits, mirrored Ray Bans and slicked back

retariat and filed out again to remove their space suits in front a scrum of photographers and video cameras. Beneath the blinding white coveralls each wore a shrunken short suit in wild patterns with matching knee socks with loafers. It was like what the crew members of Apollo missions would have worn golfing in the 1960s-after the outfits had gone through the drier: Abbreviated blazers in primary colors or stripes or sharkand-fish prints and snug-fitting Bermuda shorts. It was a tour-deforce for Browne, a New Yorkbased designer whose theatrical runway shows have made him a critical hit in the US The only slight hitch was that the clothes were reduced to mere props in the cinematic display, instead of being its stars. PAUL SMITH Smith got into the hungover head of a ‘70s rock stars with this collection of tee-shirts and

hair took their place behind a conference podium at the French Communist Party’s headquarters, the crowd of habitually jaded fashion insiders faintly buzzed with childlike expectation. And when the almost the least foreseeable possible thing took placeand the “astronauts” in gleaming white space suits filed into the room-the collective sense of starry-eyed wonder was palpable. It was a fashion show-cumperformance piece that took one look at the line separating the realm of the normal from that of pure kitsch and shot past it at light speed. The Communist Party’s space age headquarters had been decked out in French and American flags to resemble the United Nations secretariat, and the show cast the audience of fashion insiders as UN delegates attending a news conference to honor the “heroes,” back from a mission in outer space. “The Blue Danube” — the iconic symphony from “2001: A Space Odyssey” — was piped in as the models traced figure eights through the sec-

skinny tie-dyed trousers that looked as if they’d been picked at random out of a pile on the floor after a long night of binge drinking. Low-crotched, tapered trousers in ochre and purple tie-dye were worn with tee-shirts, silk blazers and socks shot with Lurex for a glam touch. Oliver Twist blouses with droopy bows at the neck and long tails were paired with slouchy dress pants with sweatpant elastic at the ankles. Smith shows traditionally end with rowdy antics, and Sunday’s mix of models and real men-covered in tattoos and some sporting full beards-charged down the catwalk sipping beer from the can as Led Zeppelin blasted overhead. —AP

Models present creations by British Fashion designer Paul Smith.

Armed with stardom in Asia, Wu eyes return to US By Min Lee


Swedish actor Dolph Lundgren holds a falcon in Astana on June 27, 2010 in front of a traditional Kazakh tent after arriving to attend the opening of the first Astana International Action Film Festival, which takes place until July 1.—AFP

Star-spangled Copenhagen, the surprise culinary trend-setter By Slim Allagui


ith 13 Michelin stars to its name and a restaurant recently crowned the best in the world, Copenhagen has become a surprise must for Europe’s gastronomical pilgrims and a culinary trend-setter. Up until a few decades ago, not many would have predicted that the small capital of Denmark would become synonymous with refined and exquisite cuisine. Traditionally, the cooking has been heavy and Germanic, dominated by pork and syrupy brown gravies and an obligatory side of boiled potatoes. But in the past 25 years Copenhagen has metamorphosed into a creative gastronomical center, each year drawing thousands of amateur and professional food critics alike. “What is exceptional is that a country of 5.5 million inhabitants in a region not known for its gastronomy in previous decades has become a barometer of global trends,” food critic Adam Price marveled. In a clear sign that culinary achievement is no longer limited to “old Europe,” Copenhagen’s Noma, already aglitter with two Michelin stars, was recently named “the world’s best restaurant” by acclaimed British maga-

A file photo shows Chef Rene Redzepi, preparing a dish in his restaurant ‘Noma’. zine Restaurant. Another kudo came earlier this month when the prestigious Bocus d’Or Europe prize went to Danish chef Rasmus Kofoed from the one-star Copenhagen restaurant Geranium, which shut in 2009 because of financial problems. Explaining the shift, French chef Daniel Letz-whose restaurant Kong Hans secured Denmark’s very first Michelin star in 1983 — said that

“Danes have traveled a lot and have learned enormous amounts during their stays abroad.” “They have become fine gourmets who are much more interested in wine and local produce than their Nordic neighbors, where food import regulations are stricter,” he explained. Since the 1990s, the Danish capital has counted “a large number of gourmet restaurants,” Letz said, adding

that “the plethora is disproportionate to the number of inhabitants.” These fine-dining eateries are flourishing and Copenhagen now counts the most stars for a city in northern Europe and more than Rome, Milan or Madrid. And Noma is considered the jewel in Copenhagen’s crown. Headed by 32-year-old chef Rene Redzepi, the restaurant launched in 2004 has all but reinvented Nordic cuisine by returning to traditional roots while experimenting with unexpected produce. Some critics go so far as to compare it to the Dogme 95 avant-garde and purist film movement-led by directors like L ars von Trier and Thomas Vinterberg-that put Denmark on the international cinema radar. Just as the Dogme 95 films were free of spectacular special effects, post-production modifications and other gimmicks, Redzepi has vowed to develop a pure cuisine “based 100 percent on (Denmark’s) own local products and seasons”. The young chef, whose restaurant is in an 18th-century warehouse at Copenhagen port, insisted that he is only “rediscovering products used more than 100 years ago and preparing them in a different way.” His menu proposes musk ox with smoked bone

marrow, wild berries, dried scallops and even unripe fruit. “We continue to seek out new products and are planning to put beaver meat and seagull eggs on the menu,” he said, pointing out that “a lot of the products that we put on the table today and that we consider exotic are part of our culinary history over recent centuries.” Despite his success, Redzepi remains a realist. “When it comes to a question of taste, there is no absolute truth,” he said. And while he is proud his restaurant tops international lists, “you really can’t be the best in the world in our business.” His approach initially drew sarcastic comments. “Will they ask us to eat seal fat and black radishes and call it haute cuisine?” once wrote the daily Politiken, quoting skeptics from the culinary world. Not all find the restaurant to their liking. “Noma is not a gold mine,” said restaurant manager Peter Kreiner, noting that in 2009 it made a profit of only 660,000 kroner (88,700 euros, 109,000 dollars) on sales of nearly 28 million kroner. The global financial crisis has also hit Copenhagen’s high-end eateries. It is “luxury that takes the first blow,” said Kreiner.—AFP

Stevie Wonder cheers up Glastonbury after football failure crowd headed to the site’s far reaches where the “Block 9”, “Arcadia” and “Unfair Ground” areas offered a surreal and debauched par ty environment. Within Shangri-La, pleasure seekers were injected in the mouth by nurses administering tequila, treated to spas inside “Slumbarave”, a pillowfighting nightclub, and invited to trawl the temporary town’s seedy alleyways. And once revelers finally made it to bed, there was little rest as the searing sunshine made the tents furnace-like by nine o’clock in the morning, and unbearable for all but the most desperate for sleep. There were few complaints about

By James Pheby


otown legend Stevie Wonder made sure Glastonbur y’s 40th anniversary came to a joyful end on Sunday despite England’s disheartening World Cup football defeat. The American soul pioneer treated the audience at the British music festival to a greatest hits set, with “I Just Called To Say I Love You” and “Superstition” receiving a rapturous response from the huge crowd. The 60-year-old singer helped to put festival-goers back into the party mood after some 80,000 of them had earlier watched as England’s football team were crushed 4-1 by Germany, sending them out of the tournament. On the first anniversary of Michael Jackson’s death, Wonder promised a celebration honoring the life of “The King of Pop”, before performing the star’s song, “Human Nature”. Wonder brought to an end a sundrenched weekend of music-a contrast to the heavy rains that have so often plagued the festival in the past-described by the event’s founder Michael Eavis as “total magic”. “I’ve just had the best night of my life,” said Eavis, a dairy farmer who has held the festival on his Somerset farm, southwest England, for 40 years. “I’ve never seen anything so splendid in all my life, it was total magic.” He added: “I’m 74 and was up until four o’clock this morning but I don’t feel tired. I’m really proud of what we’ve created.” Revelers

the sun, however, which rendered useless the wellies that have been the staple footwear at Glastonbury ever since epic rainstorms in the late 1990s and a stor m in 2005 which washed away 300 tents. But 2,955 people had been treated by the festival medical team by Sunday afternoon, most of them for sun stroke. Two people also died after suffering heart attacks on Friday night. In addition, 112 ar rests had been made, most of them for dr ugs offences. After Stevie Wonder’s set, the tent city will quickly disappear, the cows will return from their enforced vacation and the guests return to

Marilyn Monroe X-rays snapped up for $45,000 US soul legend Stevie Wonder performs on the Pyramid stage on the final day of the Glastonbury festival near Pilton, Somerset on June 27, 2010.—AFP enjoyed one last sunny day of the festival Sunday, and were wowed by pop classics from Kinks legend Ray Davies and crunching guitars from for mer Guns N’ Roses axeman Slash. Other highlights of the weekend included surprise appearances on Saturday by Aussie pop princess Kylie Minogue and U2 guitarist “The Edge”. The guitarist joined headline act Muse on the main Pyramid Stage for the classic U2 song “Where The Streets Have No Name”. Rock megastars U2 were meant to play on Friday but the Irish band had to

pull out due to singer Bono’s back injury. Many revelers had been on site for over four days-the gates opened Wednesday-and by Sunday the sunshine, sambuca and Shangri-La late night activities began to show with many campers looking worse for wear. Shangri-La is one of the many “neighborhoods” which have been constructed in the 170,000-populated temporary city, all offering a different hedonistic or spiritual experience. After the official music ended late Saturday night, many of the


hree X-rays of Hollywood actress Marilyn Monroe’s chest and pelvis taken during a hospital visit have sold for more than 10 times their pre-sale estimates, ear ning $45,000. Auction house Julien’s said in a statement that the sale was part of an auction of Hollywood Legends memorabilia which took place at the Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino in L as Vegas over the weekend with the X-rays expected to go for $800 to $1,200 each. The highlights of the sale had toured Ireland, Japan and China before finally going under the hammer. The Monroe X-rays came from a 1954 visit by the actress to

the Cedars of Lebanon Hospital. The actress died in August 1962 at the age of 36. Other items also sold at the auction included a chair from Monroe’s last photo shoot that went for $35,000, Christopher Reeves’ Superman VI costume which sold for $32,500 and a dress wor n by Audrey Hepbur n in “Funny Face” which went for $56,250. A crystal-studded glove from Michael Jackson’s “Victory” Tour sold for $190,000 at an earlier Music Icons sale held by Julien’s Auctions at Planet Hollywood. The prices included the buyer’s premium.—Reuters

rowing up in the United States, Daniel Wu dreamed of a cameo in a Jackie Chan movie. The 35-year-old actor has long since realized that dream, co-starring with the action comedy veteran in several productions. Having achieved success in Hong Kong, Wu now hopes he can break into Hollywood as a positive example for a new generation of Asians. “I would like there to be some kind of Asian-American role model for the kids out there today,” Wu told The Associated Press on Sunday as he promoted his new action thriller, “Triple Tap.” As a youngster in Orinda, California, Wu said there were few Asian faces on the big screen he could look up to. Instead, there was Long Duk Dong-the awkward foreign exchange student parodied in the 1984 high-school comedy “Sixteen Candles.” So Wu found inspiration in a Chinatown video rental shop, devouring the movies of Chan, Bruce Lee and Jet Li, aspiring to “be in a Jackie Chan movie and be kicked down a flight of stairs.” His fascination with Hong Kong cinema led to a trip to the former British colony in 1997 to witness its handover to China. Out of funds, he tried modeling and was spotted by a Hong Kong director in a fashion ad. Thirteen years later, he has 50 movies under his belt and is one of the Chinese-language industry’s biggest stars. Childhood idol Chan has become a frequent screen partner, most recently in the Tokyo-set drama “Shinjuku Incident.” With a summer blockbuster due out on Thursday and clothing, watch and skin care endorsements, it’s hard to miss Wu’s picture in this wealthy shopping-crazed city of 7 million people. Now Wu is hoping to leverage his reputation in the land of his ancestors to correct the cinematic prejudices of his home country. He recently signed with the Hollywood talent broker Creative Artists Agency. “It’s amazing that 30 years later, there still aren’t (positive Asian-American role models). And I would like to help change that,” he said. The University of Oregon architecture graduate says part of the challenge is choosing the right roles. He said he has already turned down parts that he feels portrays Asians in a negative light. “I find that Americans still have a very big stereotype toward what Asians are, and I don’t feel a need to perpetuate that stereotype. So when a good character comes along, I’m all for it. I’m ready. I’d be very open to it,” Wu said. Wu said he would also enjoy a break from Chinese cinema’s historical epics and action fare and the opportunity to work with Hollywood talent. He recently got a taste of American star power after shooting with Kevin Spacey in “Inseparable,” a drama about an American expatriate living in China. “That was an amazing experience working with someone who’s won two Oscars,” Wu said. In the meantime, Wu is still churning away in the prolific Chinese film industry. The ChineseAmerican actor also hopes to delve into directing again, after making his debut as a director in 2006 with “The Heavenly Kings,” a parody of the Chinese pop industry, saying he enjoys executing his own artistic vision like an architect. “As a designer, you’re the one in control,” he said.—AP

In this Saturday, Nov 28, 2009 file photo, Taiwanese actor Daniel Wu arrives for the 46th Golden Horse Awards, in Banchiau, Taipei County, Taiwan.—AP

Chocolate terracotta warriors to hit Taiwan art show


rare exhibition featuring miniature chocolate replicas of China’s ancient terracotta warriors opens this week in Taipei, organizers said yesterday. The show, called ‘World Chocolate Wonderland’, follows on from a previous exhibition of chocolate art in Beijing which drew more than 400,000 visitors, the organizers added. The centrepiece of the show, which opens on Saturday and runs until late September, will be more than 400 mini terracotta warriors from the first Chinese Emperor’s tomb each measuring 35 centimetres tall, said Artsource Corp, a Taipei-headquartered art management company which is supplying a large part of the chocolate art work. “People visiting the exhibition will be able to feel that chocolate is not only edible, but also can be used as a material in art,” company spokeswoman Sherry Wung told AFP. Replicas of Taipei’s landmark buildings such as Taipei 101, once the world’s tallest skyscraper, will also be on display alongside a chocolate mock-up of the Great Wall of China, which was first shown in Beijing in January. The exhibits will be kept in a temperature-controlled room to prevent melting.—AFP

These miniature chocolate warriors will be kept in a temperature controlled room to prevent melting.—AFP

29 Jun  

Kuwait Times