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RAJAB 25, 1431 AH

Italian motorists steal € 10,000 in coins

Indian forces fire on Kashmiris, kill three

Widows a grim legacy for postwar Iraq PAGE 12

NO: 14782

KUWAIT: Temperatures have been extremely high over the past few days with the mercury yesterday hitting 51 degrees Celsius in Abdali and 49 degrees in Kuwait, said meteorologist Essa Ramadan. In a statement to KUNA, Ramadan said that these highs were expected to continue over the next two days, adding that northwesterly winds could cause rising dust in open areas. Temperatures are expected to start dropping on Friday, but will once again rise next Tuesday, he said. As a meteorologist at the Weather Forecast Department, he denied that temperatures had risen to 60 degrees in the past few days. — KUNA

Netanyahu gets warm White House welcome WASHINGTON: US President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sought to warm rocky relations yesterday, declaring after a White House meeting that any talk of a rift is unfounded. Obama said the US-Israeli bond is unbreakable. The president had praise for his guest, hailing as “real progress” Israel’s recent decision to ease its three-year blockade of the Palestinian-controlled Gaza Strip. He also said he believes Netanyahu wants peace with the Palestinians and is serious about resuming the face-toface Middle East peace talks that broke off in Dec 2008. For the Israeli leader’s part, he pledged “we’re committed” to peace with the Palestinians and said any reports of the demise of the US-Israeli relationship are ‘flat wrong’.” Continued on Page 14

Sanctions hurt Iran businesses in Dubai calls for measures against new Iranian banks abroad if a connection to the nuclear or missile programs is suspected, as well as vigilance over transactions with any Iranian bank, including the central bank. “I’m sure that from now on ... trade transactions in foreign currencies such as the euro and (UAE) dirhams will become more difficult,” said Masoumzadeh, who rejects any idea that Dubai is a centre for illicit trade with Iran. US President Barack Obama signed into law sanctions on Iran’s vulnerable petrol imports last week, further stepping up pressure over nuclear work which the West suspects is aimed at making bombs - something Tehran denies. Iranian aviation officials accused the UAE, Germany and Britain on Monday of refusing to refuel Iranian passenger planes in response to the tougher US measures, but this was later denied by the country’s Foreign Ministry. Iran and the UAE have close economic and historic relations but with Tehran facing growing Western pressure, its ties with Dubai have drawn scrutiny from Washington. In 2009, Dubai’s re-exports to Iran - goods originally from Europe, Asia or elsewhere and then sold on to Iran - rose 4.8 percent to 21.3 billion dirhams ($5.8 billion). In a possible sign of tougher times ahead, an Abu Dhabi banking source said last week the UAE’s central bank had told banks to freeze any accounts belonging to dozens of Iran-linked firms targeted by the latest UN sanctions. “I have no doubt that more restrictions will be applied towards Iranian businesses by the UAE authorities,” said Masoumzadeh, who has a Dubai-based shipping business. Masoud Daneshmand, the Iran-Emirates Chamber of Commerce head, said Iranian businessmen were unhappy about the UAE’s actions, Iran’s ISNA news agency reported. “Trade between Iran and the Emirates will be reduced in coming months,” he said. — Reuters


Obama, Bibi mend fences

No respite from searing weather

DUBAI: New sanctions on Iran are expected to complicate life further for Iranian businesses based in the United Arab Emirates, home to the regional trade hub Dubai, and may force some to close down, one of their representatives said. Morteza Masoumzadeh, vice president of the local Iranian Business Council, also told Reuters he believed the UAE authorities would impose more restrictions after the latest wave of international punitive measures against Iran. In Tehran, the head of an Iran-Emirates Chamber of Commerce said the UAE had taken steps beyond last month’s United Nations resolution and predicted bilateral trade would fall. Thousands of Iranian companies and businessmen operate in Dubai, and many of them are involved in the multi-billion-dollar re-export trade with the Islamic Republic across the Gulf. But the UAE, a US ally, has signalled a tightening of its role as a trading and financial lifeline for Iran after the UN Security Council imposed a fourth round of sanctions on June 9 on the major oil producer over its disputed nuclear program. “I predict a further decline in Iranian businesses in the UAE and other countries doing direct trade with Iran, like Turkey, Malaysia etc,” said Masoumzadeh. “This will make it even much worse than before, there is no question about it,” he said on Monday, when asked about the impact of the new sanctions on Iranian businesses in the UAE. His comments were in contrast to statements by Iranian officials in Tehran dismissing the latest measures. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has called them “pathetic”. Previous sanctions have hurt Iranian business activities by making it more difficult to get vital trade finance, such as letters of credit, after the United States targeted two Iranian state banks with branches in Dubai three years ago . The latest UN resolution

South African Semenya cleared to return



150 FILS

CAPE TOWN: Uruguay’s Edigio Arevalo Rios (right) competes for the ball with Netherlands’ Robin van Persie during the World Cup semifinal football match between Uruguay and the Netherlands at the Green Point stadium yesterday. — AP (See Pages 18-20)

Cyprus is a familiar stopover in spy lore LARNACA: The parade of foreigners who trod on Cypriot shores is long and ancient. Kings, sages, crusaders, merchants, tourists. Hittites, Assyrians, Romans, Venetians, Britons, Turks. They came in war and peace. One group, the spies, came in secrecy. The arrest and escape of an alleged member of a Russian spy ring last week recalls the rich history of espionage in Cyprus, an island in the eastern Mediterranean whose position at the crossroads of Europe, Africa and the Middle East made it a hub for clandestine activity. The end of the Cold War dampened that tradition, and mysterious attacks and arrests linked to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict subsided on the divided island. In Jan 2009, however, Cyprus seized a boat that was suspected of carrying Iranian-supplied weapons bound for Hezbollah militants in Lebanon in violation of a United Nations embargo.

“From the point of view of all participants in the Middle East dispute, Cyprus was always very, very convenient to conduct espionage business and also for the transportation of personnel and goods, legally or illegally,” said Ronen Bergman, Israeli author of “The Secret War with Iran”. “It is an active place as long as it is an active place for the other side,” said Bergman, who believes some Arab spies still meet their Israeli handlers in southern Cyprus because of its proximity and the fact that it is relatively safe from scrutiny. Cypriot authorities don’t know what the alleged paymaster of Russia’s “deep cover” operation in the United States was doing in Larnaca, a coastal city that hosts the main international airport and fills with beach-bound tourists in the summer. Continued on Page 14

Fadlallah laid to rest BEIRUT: Tens of thousands of people swarmed around the coffin of Lebanon’s top Shiite cleric as it made its way through the streets of south Beirut to the mosque for burial yesterday. Grand Ayatollah Mohammed Hussein Fadlallah, 75, died Sunday after a long illness. The cleric was one of Shiite Islam’s highest authorities and most revered religious figures. Seen by some as a spiritual mentor to the Hezbollah militant movement and by others as a voice of pragmatism and religious moderation, Fadlallah enjoyed a following that stretched beyond Lebanon’s borders to Iraq, the Gulf and Central Asia. “This is a sad day for the Muslim and Arab nation. I have been one of his followers since I was a child and I don’t know if anyone will be able to fill the vacuum left behind by Sayyed Fadlallah,” said Sayed Ali, a 32-year-old Kuwaiti mechanical engineer who flew in Continued on Page 14

Zimbabweans wash dirty dollars

HARARE: Alex Mupondi hangs one dollar notes on a drying line after washing them yesterday. — AP

HARARE: The washing machine cycle takes about 45 minutes - and George Washington comes out much cleaner in the Zimbabwestyle laundering of dirty money. Low-denomination US bank notes change hands until they fall apart here in Africa, and the bills are routinely carried in underwear and shoes through crime-ridden slums. Some have become almost too smelly to handle, so Zimbabweans have taken to putting their $1 bills through the spin cycle and hanging them up to dry with clothes pins alongside sheets and items of clothing. It’s the best solution - apart from rubber gloves or disinfectant wipes - in a continent where the US dollar has long been the currency of choice and where the lifespan of a dollar far exceeds what the US Federal Reserve intends. Zimbabwe’s coalition government officially declared the US dollar legal tender last Continued on Page 14

WASHINGTON: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (left) meets US President Barack Obama in the Oval Office of the White House yesterday. — AP

BEIRUT: Shiites carry the coffin of Lebanon’s top Shiite cleric Grand Ayatollah Mohammed Hussein Fadlallah during his funeral procession in a southern suburb of Beirut yesterday. — AP

Bus driver kills 6 in Egypt rampage

CAIRO: Egyptian policemen stand guard in front of a bus in which the driver shot dead six workers as he sprayed them with gunfire yesterday. — AFP

CAIRO: An Egyptian bus driver shot dead six employees of a construction company and wounded six more as he drove them to work through a Cairo suburb yesterday, the company and a security source said. Mahmoud Taha Swellem, 52, opened fire with an automatic rifle on the workers in a bus belonging to Egyptian construction firm Arab Contractors, company spokesman Effat Abdullah said. The man was arrested and questioned, and told investigators he launched the attack in revenge against three employees with whom he had been planning to steal antiquities, but who then cut him out of the deal, the security source said. Egypt has wealth of pharaonic and other archaeological sites and has battled to stop an illegal trade in stolen antiquities. The incident took place on a highway 15 km south of Cairo, the security source said, adding that

the driver was taking 23 employees from their homes to work when he stopped the bus in the middle of the road and opened fire. Arab Contractors, which is state owned, said it would offer a one-off payment of 100,000 Egyptian pounds ($18,050) to the family of each of those killed plus a monthly payment of 500 pounds until the family’s children finish their education. Those wounded would receive 20,000 pounds, it said. There were women employees on the bus but none were killed or severely injured, Abdullah said. “Only one woman had a small injury but she is fine now and has left the hospital,” he said. A security source said the victims included a financial manager and a department head. Another security official said the gunman appeared to have suffered severe depression after he was transferred to a new position. — Agencies



Wednesday, July 7, 2010

‘A victory of the ethics and morals’

Kuwait activists protest against Al-Fadala arrest By Hussain Al-Qatari KUWAIT: A plethora of activists and politicians from different affiliations gathered Monday evening at the National Democratic Alliance headquarters in Rawda to protest against the arrest of political activist Khaled Al-Fadala by the State Security forces. Parliament members, journalists and activists claimed that the arrest is a victory of the ethics and morals that Al-Fadala represents as the General Secretary of the National Democratic Alliance. “The supporters of Khaled’s cause respect the law and abide by it, and our protest is to celebrate the freedom of expression,” said MP Aseel Al-Awadhi.

KUWAIT: A picture of a number of speakers at the event showing MPs Musallam Al-Barrak (3rd left), Hassan Jawhar (4th left), and Aseel Al-Awadhi (far right) before the event commences.

KUWAIT: A number of the attendees, amongst which is Kuwait Unviersity faculty member and political activist Dr Ebtehal Al-Khateeb (first left, front row). — Photos by Joseph Shagra

Court rejects Al-Fadala appeal KUWAIT: The Court of Misdemeanors has rejected an appeal from leading political activist Khaled Al-Fadala’s lawyers against his detention. The court also adjourned the trial of Al-Fadala, the Secretary General of the National

Democratic Alliance, in the case filed against him by His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser Al-Mohammed Al-Sabah, until next Monday, July 12. The court’s preliminary ruling, which saw the three-month

sentence previously handed down to Al-Fadala upheld, stated that while the Kuwaiti constitution protects the freedom of opinion and of the press and publication, it also stipulates that these freedoms be practiced within the defined legal

restrictions, reported Al-Qabas. The court upheld the earlier verdict which found Al-Fadala guilty of defamation, indicating that he had crossed the line of criticism by abusing the Public Prosecutor, which is considered a violation of the law.

A former National Democratic Alliance (NDA) candidate and current member, Al-Awadhi expressed her worry about the current situation. Speaking to an audience of hundreds, Al-Awadhi said, “It is very sad to see that politicians protect corrupt people, and yet Khaled is being put in prison for merely criticizing the problematic policies of the government over the past few years.” Liberal MP Abdulrahman AlAnjeri expressed his disappointment and wondered, “What message does the government want to send to the youth of today? Does the government intend to scare them off by showing them that if they express their opinion out loud in public again they will be prosecuted? Isn’t freedom of expression granted by the Constitution?” Al-Anjeri added to an applauding audience, “This is the Internet era, an era

NA committee urges probe into bedoon prisoner’s death KUWAIT: MP Walid AlTabtabae, the head of the parliamentary human rights committee, revealed that the committee’s latest meeting featured discussion of the case of a bedoon Central Prison inmate who died there due to the failure of prison staff to provide him with the necessary medication on time. The committee has asked the foreign ministry to look into the case and to provide it with the results of this investigation. Meanwhile, acting on a request from the committee, the foreign ministry has requested an extension of the period given for an investigation into the deaths in 1990 of 14 bedoon (stateless) residents of Kuwait who died fighting for the country against the Iraqi invasion in order to reach a final decision on posthumously granting them citizenship, which would also apply to their descendants. The proposal to posthumously grant these individuals citizenship, along with their spouses and descendants, was put forward by the committee to commemorate and reward their heroism, reported Al-Qabas.

of enlightenment. Our youth are involved in politics, and they will not let go of a right granted to them by the Constitution. They will speak their minds. They will speak up.” Conservative MP Faisal AlMeslim said in his speech that this is not a protest in support of Al-Fadala alone, but it is a campaign to change the status quo. “We currently live during the darkest eras of Kuwait’s political life. By gathering here, we protest the government’s negligence and demand transparency,” he said. Al-Meslim said that parliament members as representatives of the people should feel ashamed of their poor performance in the Parliament. “Had we worked harder on ensuring that the government does a better job running our country, you wouldn’t have been in prison now, Khaled. We are sorry. We

are deeply and utterly sorry,” he said. MP Khaled Al-Tahoos said that Al-Fadala has won the battle victoriously, “Khaled AlFadala, this young courageous Kuwaiti man is teaching each and every one of us a lesson today. He is teaching us to place Kuwait as our first priority,” said Al-Tahoos. He continued, “Al-Fadala is fighting for values that we must all remember and implement if we want to help Kuwait overcome the hardships of today. He, as a representative, of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) carries the same values that helped build Kuwait during the past decades when it was a developing nation. While government members spend their summers in Geneva and Paris, basking in European resorts, Khaled is in prison fighting for a cause that concerns the future of all of us.”

Musallam Al-Barrak, in his speech, said that it is very sad to see where Kuwait is heading to nowadays, “People don’t realize that there are specific people who benefit from the current situation in Kuwait. They love to create conflicts between the Shiites and the Sunnis, the tribals and the hadar, they enjoy seeing life in chaos because this creates the perfect environment for them to steal and practice their corruption.” Al-Fadala was arrested five days ago (July 2) after the court found him guilty of blatantly offending HH the Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser AlMohammed Al-Sabah. Ever since, he has received unprecedented attention on Kuwait’s cyber space. His Facebook support group has over 1,500 supporters. Supporters of Al-Fadala have put up a website, for the latest updates on Al-Fadala’s case.

kuwait digest

Coolness of Kuwait’s summer By Dr Abdullatif Al-Suraikh love spending the summer vacation in Kuwait. Despite the extreme heat and weather conditions things in the country, such as traffic, become much more streamlined. As long as you can adapt to the summer heat, you are safe to have a peaceful vacation inland. That’s assuming of course, that the Ministry of Electricity and Water are able to maintain power and water supplies during this period. Perhaps I would’ve decided to spend my vacation abroad if I had the assets to do so and


get a break from all the negative statements and actions of MPs and ministers who forget their national duty and resort to chaotic politics. What’s cool about Kuwait’s summer is that it features a Parliamentary recess from July until October. The break is an opportunity to regroup and a chance to have a break from the foul language used by MPs. However, as soon as the Parliament’s term is ended, we will be disrupted with news of extremely hot weather conditions that threaten to cause power outages and that the ministry is required to find a solution. — Al-Rai

Boubyan Port conducive to Kuwait development KUWAIT: Minister of Public Works Fadhel Safar said here yesterday the strategic goal of Boubyan Port is to create a regional transport system that would surely shore up an ambitious blueprint for Kuwait to become a regional economic and trade hub. The minister, who also doubles as Minister of State for Municipal Affairs, made his remarks just one day ahead of the signing of a contract for carrying out the second part of the first stage of construction works for the new seaport. The signing ceremony is to be attended by His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser Al-Mohammed Al-Sabah, Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs and Minister of State for Development Affairs and Minister of State for Housing Affairs Sheikh Ahmad Fahad AlSabah and Minister of Communication and Minister of State for National Assembly Affairs Mohammad Al-Busairi. The second part of the first stage for the project involves conducting studies, collecting data and checking the sea bottom, and costs some KD 300 million, Safar said. The contract of the project provides for establishing free trade zones, light industry areas and a governmental zone at the new seaport site, carrying out road maintenance, setting up four docks to be raised to 12 later on, he added. —KUNA

LONDON: Kuwait donating 1.5 million pound sterling to a British Military Museum during a ceremony over the weekend.

MPs working to amend penal rules KUWAIT: A number of MPs are working closely with the parliament’s legal advisors to devise amendments to the current penal code which allows imprisonment for statements of opinion, revealed MP Abdurrahman Al-Anjari. The proposed amendments would see this penalty scrapped, as well as allowing attorneys to attend questioning sessions,

including confidential ones. Meanwhile, the parliamentary finance and economic committee was yesterday scheduled to begin looking into recent reports of legal violations perpetrated by the Kuwait Investment Company. The committee has reportedly already asked MP Musallam Al-Barrak to provide it with the documents he possesses concerning

the issue, reported Al-Qabas. On another subject, the parliamentary negative phenomena committee was also scheduled yesterday to discuss the cabinet’s recent statement on the effects of alien practices on national unity at a meeting with the ministers of oil, education and information, according to committee member MP Mohammed Hayef.


Wednesday, July 7, 2010


Clear views of youth-oriented problems

Kuwaiti youth are consumers, not producers: Young activist By Nisreen Zahreddine KUWAIT: There are a number of critical, youth-oriented issues facing Kuwaiti society. For many, however, one troubling question affects consideration of these concerns: are Kuwait’s young aware of these issues or are they passive and wholly driven by Kuwaiti society’s consumerist culture? One young Kuwaiti activist, 23-year-old Abdul Ghafour Hajieh, is concerned at the political and societal apathy he sees in many of his peers here. Hajieh, a Business Administration student at Kuwait University, is involved in numerous political and social activities. Apart from being the Public Relations officer for the National Democratic Youth Association, he is a member of the National Democratic Forum, the Kuwait Human Rights Society, and Friends of the Earth, and also finds time to participate in the Blood Bank campaign and to work part-time with local newspaper Al-Qabas. As if all this weren’t enough, Hajieh, who describes himself as a progressive reformist, represents the National Bloc at Kuwait University, which he says has a shortage of young members, unlike the university’s tribal and religious movements. Hajieh has his own, very definite views of the youth-oriented problems and issues facing Kuwaiti society. He told the Kuwait Times that, for him, the main problem is the lack of productivity among the young, which he attributes largely to the consumerist nature of Kuwaiti society. The young, he argues, have no need to produce anything or be active in any area since the government provides them with everything they need and more. On the subject of young Kuwaitis’ concerns, Hajieh said that few in this group are politically active in any way. Those who are, he went on, are dealing

‘Privatization needed for development’

KUWAIT: Mubarak Al-Abdullah Academy for Commanders celebrating the graduation of its 14th batch yesterday.

US embassy announces increase in fees for consular services KUWAIT: The US Embassy announced yesterday an increase in fees for delivering consular services, as instructed by the US Department of State. In a press release, the embassy said that these new fees “will help cover emergency services, including assistance to US citizens who have been victims of crime, assistance provided after the death of a US citizen, and visits to US citizens in overseas prisons.” It added that these services also include organizing the evacuation of US citizens affected by war or natural disaster in a foreign country, such as victims of the recent earthquake in Haiti. The increased fees are to take effect July 13, 2010. For passport and citizenship

services, the increases are as follows: the application processing fee for adult passport applications will change from $55 to $70; the passport book security surcharge will change from $20 to $40; the application fee for passport cards will increase, from $20 to $30 for adults, and from $10 to $15 for minors; a new fee of $82 for additional passport pages will be imposed; and the fee for a Consular Report of Birth Abroad will change from $65 to $100. As for immigrant and special visa services, the immigrant visa (IV) application fee-which must be collected from all IV applicants who are not feeexempt-will now be tiered. The new fees will be $330 for immediate relative and family prefer-

ence cases, $720 for employment-based cases, and $305 for other cases (special IVs), Diversity Visas (DVs), self-petitioned cases, and all other IVs. The IV security surchargewhich must be collected from all IV applicants who are not feeexempt - will increase from $45 to $74. The DV fee (which is charged in addition to the application processing fee and security surcharge) will change from $375 to $440. The fee for determining returning resident status is decreasing from $400 to $380. Meanwhile for documentary services, the notarial and authentication services, which now range from $20 to $30, will all be $50. — KUNA

KUWAIT: Kuwait’s economic system desperately needs the introduction of the private sector as a partner in the development process, said a Kuwaiti economic expert said yesterday. “Most economic studies have underlined the necessity for Kuwait to diversify its revenue and not depend on oil as its sole source of income, especially with the large numbers of Kuwaitis expected to enter the labor market within the next few years,” said Jassem AlSaadoun, the chairman of AlShal Economic Consultants. Speaking at a seminar held by the Kuwaiti Accountants and Auditors’ Society on ‘Privatization Law and the Development Plan’s Projects,’ Al-Saadoun called for far more privatization, saying, “Kuwait needs to privatize 62 listed and unlisted companies, in addition to 12 government entities.” Privatization could play a positive and effective role in the development process given the country’s existing sound legislative structure and the strong regulatory framework introduced by the government, he asserted. Kuwait’s key geographical location bolsters its potential to become an international and financial hub, Al-Jassem continued, adding that this should be achieved through establishing strategic and economic relations with neighboring nations, as well as by encouraging further increases in trade with Europe and Asia. — KUNA

kuwait digest

Defamation is not acceptable here By Abdullatif Al-Omairi any think that the court decision against MP Khalid AlFadhala, the Secretary General of the National Bloc, was a case regarding an opinion he published or about violating the press law. The fact however, is that the court made their decision against him for defaming a person’s character, which is a crime according to Kuwaiti law, article 209. Al-Fadhala accused the Prime Minister of money laundering and made his claim at a public seminar in front of hundreds of people. Based on those facts the court made its decision. The case had nothing to do with a single written article. I personally sympathize with AlFadhala and hope that he is released as


soon as possible. I am convinced of the government’s bad performance and have reservations about the way it governs our state. This does not stop me from saying the truth. Let everyone know that we are after the truth and that in this case the prime minister is right. He was accused of something punishable by law, in a public place and in front of many people. When we look to settle our differences in court we have to abide by the rules. It would not be a state of law if we had no respect for the court’s decisions. I am astonished at the behavior of those MPs who reject the detention of Al-Fahdala and claim he was arrested because of his opinion. A look at several of these MPs, such as Musallam AlBarrak, reveals that they have pressed

charges against those who have published negative comments about them. Some, such as Musallam Al-Barrak, have even won financial compensation. Also, MP Ali Al-Rasheed, who filed a case against Ahmad Al-Kos for an opinion piece he had published, demanded thousands of KDs in compensation. MP Adnan Abdul Samad also filed several cases against the writers of daily newspapers and so have many other MPs. Unfortunately, they somehow forgot. Some of them even started demanding changes to the press law. Despite our belief in the freedom of opinion, we are against talking bad about people. Defaming individuals and making jokes against them with the use of filthy language is outside of the manners and traditions of our society. — Al-Anbaa

principally with superficial issues rather than considering things at any deeper level. Rather than engaging with their society’s real problems and issues, he asserted, these activists tend to be interested in tackling minor concerns which, when resolved, do nothing to deal with the underlying problems that threaten them as a vital part of society. Hajieh said that his main concern as a young student at university here is his inability to understand anything of the subject he is being taught. The principal problem, he asserted, lies in the university’s educational shortcomings. He said, however, that while he is dissatisfied with the educational standards at KU, his classmates are unworried about the standards of education they are attaining there, since their primary objectives are getting a good job with a good salary, buying a high status car and getting married. The prominent youth activist pointed out that the government does not do much to encourage youth activism, adding that many youth-oriented activities are obstructed by the university’s bureaucratic system. These factors, he said, don’t help young people to get involved in activism and in civil society. Most of the university’s

extracurricular activities are concerned with religion, he explained, adding that not all young people are interested in these issues to the exclusion of all else. Hajieh added that even those youth oriented activities which do exist receive no government support or funding. He also asserted that it’s difficult to persuade young Kuwaitis to take an interest in political, humanitarian or other issues since most are only interested in subjects which directly and immediately affect their own lives rather than in considering more abstract matters that concern their future or that of their country. Even sports activities are politicized, he complained, saying that this means that young people who might otherwise participate are worried about being seen as belonging to one political faction or another and are thus unwilling to take part. These sort of factors make it difficult to motivate young people to take part in any sort of activity, he asserted. “They call me an extremist because I’m swimming against the tide,” Hajieh said of his university peers. He voiced a lack of concern about their opinions and about the recent furore over KU students’ dress code, saying that his major concern regarding the

Abdul Ghafour Hajieh university is the low standard of education on offer there, which he said other young people seem indifferent to. Hajieh stated that the system currently in place at the university is more akin to programming than education. However, he

continued, students are unlikely to act to change this since “the young are scared of politics,” a failing which he attributed to the poor performance of the country’s politicians who he said have lost all credibility with the Kuwaiti people.

in my view

The society that loves to complain! By Fouad Al-Obaid person dear to me told me that I had this tendency to not complain and accept situations as they come and deal with issues as they appear in a calm, studied manner. Ironic as it may sound, a few days ago, while at a gathering I remembered being annoyed at the fact that people here tend to complain too much without realizing what it is that they actually have. Such a notion is certainly one that I have seen in the past - arguably it appears to be a societal trend - whereby people love to complain about things! People in Kuwait, when they sit or gather, love to complain about the performance of the government and Parliament; they love to complain about the lack of services, about the lack of allowances, about the lack of this and that! If complaining were considered to be an Olympic sport, I believe that we will finally end up having a chance to earn Gold medals. In fact, our utter failure in the sports domain might after all be brought to


an end! On a more serious note, complaining is a bad habit because it tends to get people’s emotions attached to issues that are doomed to be left hanging in the air with no tangible solution brought forth. In its worst manifestation, a society that complains and that is not properly monitored can turn men and women into dangerous mobs. I believe that the latter is something that we are far from here in Kuwait. However, it is something that we could reach sometime in the future if this bad habit of complaining is not addressed at the national level by coherent policies. I have mentioned it in the past, and will reiterate in this article my complete belief that should our country be transformed overnight into a purely capitalist society where jobs are based on competence and where ‘Kuwaitization’ laws are not in vigor, little are the number of people who would be able to find jobs without extensive ‘re-training’ both formal and informal. The national workforce, at a majority, is the one that is not qualified to compete at the international arena without government subsidizes. When one looks into the current and upcoming national composition and the demographics of the country, a time bomb is certainly ticking. With a staggering

in the news Charity organization prosecuted KUWAIT: The Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor, with cooperation from the Public Prosecutor, pressed charges against a local charity organization who they accused of collecting charity illegally, reported Al-Qabas. Meanwhile, the ministry’s charitable organizations department is said to have detected violations committed by another organization and is prepared to take legal actions against them as well. The charges were pressed against the first organization when the ministry received complaints from citizens indicating that the organization published ads to collect charity without the proper licenses. The ministry explained that the organization was asked to stop their action before legal action was taken against them. The ministry is currently investigating the case of the second organization, which is said to have gone too far in urging people to donate to the cause of those suffering around the world. Birth certificates issued KUWAIT: The Central Department of Birth and Death Registrations at the Ministry of Health (MoH) recently issued birth certificates to children born to Kuwaiti fathers and bedoon (stateless) mothers, Al-Qabas. This step was made possible following a Cabinet order that allowed birth certificates to be issued. The space which asks for mother’s nationality will be left vacant. Fund for needy students increased KUWAIT: KD 500,000 has been set aside to pay off debts incurred for providing educational support to needy students for the academic year 2009-2010, announced Ministry of Education Assistant Undersecretary for Private Education, Fahad Al-Ghais. Demand for the KD 4 million fund had increased considerably during the just concluded academic year. As a result, the ministry incurred debts in order to cater to all candidates. Al-Ghais revealed that a proposal to increase the fund’s budget to KD 5 million was expected to be approved before the beginning of the next academic year, reported Al-Qabas.

number of students each year completing high school and much more finishing university, the government needs to seriously address the shortage of actual jobs available for the national workforce. Worse, the government needs to consider the implication of the current public sector employment scheme. I believe careful attention needs to be paid to the fact that subsidizing government jobs for the sake of employing a majority of the citizens would be unable to work in a ‘real’ work environment. It certainly is encouraging citizens to become lazy preventing future privatization plans, and should we seriously consider converting our national economy from a hydrocarbon dominant society to a multi-polar industrial one. The government sector needs to be cut down in size whereby an elite core would form the top and middle echelons of government, and the majority would be encouraged to participate in the private sector. This will surely be the cause of more future complaints. However, this is a necessary step towards the transformation of our beloved country into a regional business hub.



External staircase removals suspended KUWAIT: Kuwait Municipality has reiterated its commitment to carrying out the cabinet's ruling on dismantling external staircases outside homes which have been constructed illegally on state property. Although the municipality was supposed to begin work on removing the illegal staircases this month, legal appeals from a number of homeowners against the ruling mean that the work is not likely to start until October. "Coordination over this issue will soon get underway between the Municipal Council and the state's property encroach-

ment removal committee," said Minister of Public Works and Municipality Affairs Dr. Fadhil Safar on Monday. "However, the final decision in this regard is up to the cabinet." The three parties have held several meetings at which they discussed the steps to be taken in removing structures illegally built on state property, including external staircases, reported Al-Rai. The demolition committee does not expect any final decision on the matter to be issued until the beginning of the next parliamentary term in October, and reports indi-

cate that many householders have taken legally questionable action to avoid the demolition of such external staircases, including making unauthorized payments to officials in order to have the structures outside their homes exempted from the ruling. Some committee members have reportedly condemned the decision to halt the removal of the illegally built external staircases, saying that many Kuwaitis had already begun to dismantle them after receiving written warnings from the committee.

CAIRO: The foreign ministers meeting in progress.

Cairo meeting to finalize Arab-African summit schedule CAIRO: Kuwait's Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Dr. Mohammad Sabah Al-Sabah said here yesterday that the main objective of the ArabAfrican dialogue committee meeting set to take place in Cairo later in the day was to finalize the agenda for the Arab-African summit scheduled to take place in Libya on October 10. Speaking to KUNA, Sheikh Dr. Mohammad, who led the Kuwaiti delegation participating in the meeting, said that the talks at the gathering would focus on finding means to support economic, technological and environmental cooperation among Arab and African countries. He revealed that the Kuwaiti delegation

would present a working paper at the summit on Kuwait's role in economic and social development in Africa, adding that Kuwait is keen to see Arab-African cooperation being strengthened by means of giving a larger and more active role to the private sector and civil society organizations in this respect. Kuwait has promoted its cooperation with African countries at both the official and unofficial levels through charitable institutions and the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (KFAED), which has extended aid and loans to all African nations, Sheikh Mohammad noted. Earlier, Sheikh Dr Mohammad Sabah Al-

Salem Al-Sabah met here yesterday with Egyptian foreign minister Ahmed Abul Gheit and Arab League Secretary General Amr Moussa. During the meeting, the senior figures discussed the latest developments in the Arab political arena and the preparations and arrangements for an Arab-African summit taking place in Libya in October. The talks were held prior to the 15th ministerial session of the Arab-African Cooperation Committee, which began later in the day. The meeting was also attended by the Kuwaiti Ambassador in Egypt Rashid Al-Hamad, along with several other Kuwaiti foreign ministry officials. —KUNA

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Media forum 'a big success'

Syria praises role of Amir in Arab unity DAMASCUS: Syrian Vice-President Farouk Al-Shara commended yesterday the role of His Highness the Amir of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah in the unification of Arab ranks and inter-Arab reconciliation. Speaking at a meeting with a visiting Kuwaiti delegation partaking in the just-concluded Kuwaiti-Syrian Media Forum, Al-Shara said His Highness the Amir has terrifically succeeded in holding an Arab economic summit in Kuwait, and could wisely put SaudiSyrian relations on the right track. He also hailed His Highness the Amir for keenness on promoting Arab issues in all his moves and visits to world countries. Speaking following the meeting, Sami Al-Nesf, a Kuwaiti journalist partaking in the forum, quoted the Syrian vice-president as speaking highly of Kuwait's pioneering role in both cultural and media domains. Al-Shara voiced hope that the West would reconsider its position on Arab issues, and play a fairer role in the settlement of the Arab-Israeli conflict. In this context, he bitingly blasted Israel for being reluctant to positively respond to persistent international calls for achieving just and comprehensive peace in the Middle East region. On Syrian-Turkish relations, Al-Shara said there is large-scale coordination between both nations over several issues of mutual interest, believing that there is really an about-face in Turkish policies regarding Arab issues, chiefly the Palestinian cause. Asked about the impact of Syria's relations with Turkey and Iran on its ties with Egypt and Saudi Arabia, the Syrian vice-president defended such relations. He reiterated his country's keenness on maintaining its relations with Egypt and Saudi Arabia, believing that Damascus's closeness to Turkey and Iran would serve Arab issues. Al-Shara is in the belief that developing Syrian relations with Turkey and Iran stems from Damascus's real interest in consolidating the Palestinian stance and contributing to maintaining security and stability in the Arab region. The first Syrian-Kuwaiti Media Forum, which has just wrapped up here, focused on ways and means of developing an economic partnership between Syria and Kuwait. The forum also tackled the role of Arab culture in enhancing Arab-Arab relations. It stressed the importance of reactivating cultural exchange and facilitating the flow of books and publications into media institutions and cultural centers. The participants called for launching an Arab project to support cultural, intellectual and scientific production. The Syrian-Kuwaiti Media Forum has achieved all its goals with its various political, economic, parliamentary, media and cultural forums, said Kuwaiti MP and Deputy Head of the Kuwaiti-Syrian Parliamentary Friendship Committee Mohammad AlHuwailah yesterday. Al-Huwailah quoted, in a statement to KUNA, Syrian Vice President Farouk AlShara as saying during his

DAMASCUS: Kuwaiti media delegation pictured with Syrian Vice-President Farouk Al-Shara yesterday. meeting with the Kuwaiti delegation that the two countries had a distinctive relationship. He added that Al-Shara called on Arabs to work as one entity and that there should be a single Arab media system that expresses the Arab views and conveys the Arab hopes and aspirations to the world as a whole in what serves best, "our fair issues." He also asserted that ties between the two countries did not and would not be harmed under any condition, and they are in constant progress and, "we as parliamentarians do our best to develop them, noting that upcoming forums would be more effective." On his part, Syrian Rapporteur of the KuwaitiSyrian Media Forum Mansour Al-Ajmi said in similar statement to KUNA that the forum

was a distinctive and pioneering one and that it achieved its desired goals. He added that one of the most outstanding goals of the forum was to hold meetings among the Kuwaiti and Syrian prominent figures in the sectors of parliaments, media, press, culture and economy and that symposiums held came up with common visions that consolidate and serve the official ties between the two countriea at all levels, especially the popular one particularly as the elite influence the average people. Al-Ajmi hailed the facilities offered by the Syrian side and the distinctive sponsorship of the forum, saying that the Kuwaiti delegation met at the end of the gathering with Syrian Vice President Farouk Al-Shara.

He said that Al-Sharaa reviewed during the meeting many issues including bilateral ties between Kuwait and Syria, situation in Iraq and Lebanon and the Arab-Turkish relations with a focus on the SyrianTurkish ties. Al-Shara also reviewed the intra-Arab ties and Kuwait's contribution to closing the Arab ranks, hailing the role played by His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad AlJaber Al-Sabah during the Arab Economic Summit in Kuwait in 2009 in rallying Arab ranks and bringing views of the Arab leaders closer. Finally, Al-Shara concluded by saying that there would be another joint media forum to be held in Kuwait, as such gatherings serve feature the cultural facade of Kuwait and strengthen intra-Arab bonds. — KUNA

Cabinet urged to follow Al-Sayer's footsteps KUWAIT: The Minister of Health refused to commit political embezzlement when he rejected a bid to approve a medical treatment abroad transaction proposed by an MP. For his decision, the minister was verbally assaulted by the MP, reported Al-Rai. The minister's decision demonstrated his commitment to fight against corruption, and according to the Kuwait Transparency Society (KTS), the whole Cabinet should follow suit.

In their latest monthly report on Kuwait's political scene and anti-corruption measures, the KTS noted that the summer season usually features an increase in the number of fraudulent treatment abroad transactions. The report added that the requests are often approved by MPs for popularity purposes and recommended additional monitoring for these operations. The report also discussed the

Parliament's failure to enforce the anticorruption laws, which blamed both authorities for being unable to finalize preparations regarding the draft laws. The report pointed out that their inability to solve the problem has resulted in a continuous delay in addressing the problem, which is in direct contradiction to Kuwait's international commitments to the United Nation's Anti-Corruption Treaty of 2003.

VIVA Kuwait celebrates girls graduation 27 14782 Wednesday, July 7, 2010

During which period was the World Cup tournament suspended? 1942 and 1946 1956 and 1962 1990 and 1994

27 14782 Wednesday, July 7, 2010

KUWAIT: VIVA Kuwait participated in the graduation ceremony of the Alasma Bint alHarith High School for girls, with the goal of supporting Kuwaiti youth. To ensure maximum engagement and so that students could benefit from the latest services,VIVA Kuwait had a booth providing students with exclusive offers on postpaid and Blackberry packages. "This participation comes as part of the Giving Campaign launched by VIVA Kuwait to support all vital areas in the State of Kuwait and to contribute to the growth of the community," said Omar Al-Houti, VIVA's Corporate Communication Manager, VIVA Kuwait wishes the students at Alsama Bint al-Harith High School,who are poised to become future leaders, continued success. VIVA is the newest, most advanced mobile telecommunications service

provider in Kuwait. Launched in December 2008, VIVA makes things possible for our customers by transforming communication, information and entertainment experiences. The company has rapidly established an unrivalled position in the market through customer and employee centric approach. VIVA's quest is to be the mobile brand of choice for Kuwait by being transparent, engaging, energetic and fulfilling. VIVA continues to take a considerable share of the market by offering an innovative range of best value products, services and content propositions; a state of the art, nationwide network and world-class service. VIVA offers Internet speed up to 21.6Mbps due to the implementation of the most advanced third generation (3G and HSDPA) network in Kuwait resulting in superior coverage, performance and reliability.

Omar Al- Houti


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

5 Beat the heat with sports, culture

PAYS reveals host of summer activities By Ahmad Saeid KUWAIT: An official at the Public Authority for Youth and Sports (PAYS) said that they are prepared for the summer season with a number of sports and cultural activities. Speaking to Kuwait Times, the official said that PAYS's summer activities this year includes newly adopted activities as well as the regular annual events. "Among the special festivities we have this summer is a project called 'Youth and Arts Academy,'" said Abdallah Abdelrasool, head of the technical office of PAYS's youth section. "It is a new addition to PAYS summer repertoire of activities and is aimed at raising the skills and talent of youth in the field of TV and cinema production."

KUWAIT: A PAYS sports facility stood empty at midday yesterday as temperatures soared in the early hours of the afternoon. — Photos by Joseph Shagra

kuwait digest

KAC and...taking a bigger bite! By Nawaf Al-Fuzai


uwait Airways Corporation (KAC) is supposed to be financially independent, with its revenues covering its expenses. Nevertheless, the national airline had shown annual financial deficits because of bad management and limitless corruption. Although both KAC and Gulf Air are both state-run airlines, there is a huge difference between them. Successive parliaments haven't been convinced by the justifications given for KAC's massive losses, which is the reason why lawmakers haven't approved the carrier's budget requests since 2004. However, government sources shouldn't insult our intelligence by claiming that this failure to approve the requested budgets was the main reason behind the deficit. We all know that the finance ministry has covered these deficits and that this is

the only thing that has kept KAC afloat. How else could it pay its employees, who would otherwise have flooded Kuwaiti streets with strikes and demonstrations demanding their wages for the past six years? Fiscal years run from the start of April, which means that KAC employees have already been paid for April, May and June. Where does an employee get their wages from if their employer's budget is suspended, after all? Calls to privatize KAC have been increasing since the beginning of the nineties and massive amounts of money have already been paid to a private company to evaluate its assets. Nevertheless, KAC was not privatized despite its continuing huge losses. I think the government has its own political and economical gains by retaining KAC in its current form. It is used to

recruit some people or give free tickets to MPs and some other influential people. This reminds me of the recurring power supply problems and various statements suggesting that former ministers of electricity and water had warned that this problem might take place someday. We should instead ask why those various ministers didn't do anything to avert the problems rather than warning of them. Why did they keep their posts without being able to solve the problems? They are as culpable for them. A Japanese transport minister resigned his post recently because he failed to solve the problems with the country's railway system. So, don't give us this empty talk about poor governmental management while you are part of that management and still have your positions! If you can't solve the problems, don't tell us about it, just resign! — Al-Watan

kuwait digest

Make good decisions By Sajed Al-Abdaly


will tell you a story that is always repeated in the world of management and is attributed to an unknown source. I also think it may be made up, even though it is nice and very beneficial. The funniest version of the story is one I heard in a lecture by a leading Kuwaiti personality who exaggerated a little and said it was a dialogue between him and a famous friend of his in the world of management! The story goes that a media reporter once asked the successful manager of a major bank about the secret of his success. The manager gave him the answer in two words; "good decisions." When the journalist asked him how he managed to get all that experience he responded; "wrong decisions!" Some of you may not think the story is anything new, but in truth, it is much deeper than its simple appearance. The truth is that a human's entire life, with all its details, are formed by the flow of decisions whether they are big, sensitive and deep or simple and routine. Should I eat this or not? Should I go to sleep or not? Should I play sports or not? Should I travel or not? Should I study or not? Should I accept this job or not? Should I resign and go to the private sector or remain in government? Should I use this financial opportunity or not? Should I borrow or not? Should I buy this expen-

sive car on credit or not? Should I marry this woman or not? Should I do this thing or not... Should I... Should I... Tens of other questions that start with 'should' are the ones that form a life and decide its direction and results. The development of a human being's life, and his climb up life's ladder depends on what experience he will choose. His decisions will bring positive results and negative ones, which I believe is important because they are the pits from which he will be bitten and learn from! Yet, the funny human irony is that most people do not give this any attention and their lives carry on, as if they were feathers in the wind. As if they did not care on what grounds they fall or which side they are on. The truth is that they care very much about where they end up, even if they convince themselves otherwise. The evidence is that we see them complain against everything and anything that affects them, which is mostly a result of their bad decisions. My message here is that your life is in your hands. If someone says that a human's life is governed at the end by the fate of Allah, I would say yes but with good choices and learning from mistakes a person will escape from Allah's fate to Allah's fate, as Omar bin Al-Khattab once said. So, make good decisions and plan for your life because he who fails to plan his life is really only planning for failure! — Al-Jarida

in the news Police station drama KUWAIT: A family dispute left police in Sulaibiya in something of a predicament when the four young children of a couple in detention there demanded that they be arrested along with their parents. The incident began when the children's Kuwaiti father arrived at the station, demanding that his wife be arrested for spousal abuse, bringing a medical report that apparently proved that she had beaten him. Police summoned the accused woman, also Kuwaiti, who in turn claimed that her husband had beaten her, substantiating her claims with a medical report of her own. With the allegations, counterallegations and medical reports indicating that the couple had regularly traded blows, detectives ordered the detention of both. A few hours later, the couple's four children, aged four, six, eight and 13, appeared at the police station, appealing for their mother to be released since they could not manage without her and were at home alone. After police officers explained that this was not possible, the children asked if they could be taken into custody along with their mother, reported Al-Anba. These appeals too were rejected and the four confused youngsters were left outside the police station in the searing heat while the investigation into their parents continued.

Prices reduced KUWAIT: The prices of 100 essential commodities that are sold at cooperative societies will be reduced, the Chairman of Cooperative Union Dr Hussain Al-Duwaihas announced. The reduction varies between 6 to 26 percentage starting July 15

until 15 days after Ramadan. He asked cooperative societies to concentrate on marketing festivals, starting July 15 and to continue until after Ramadan, reported Al-Anba. He was speaking during a press conference and pointed toward the cooperation that exists between the union and Ministry of Commerce for Consumer Protection.

Power saving bulbs KUWAIT: The Ministry of Electricity and Water is coordinating with the ministries of commerce and industry to import and distribute power saving light bulbs to all of the state's facilities, reported Al-Rai. The ministry is expected to receive recommendations regarding the specifications of these lights from the technical committee of the supreme power consumption rationalization commission this week. The committee is led by the Minister of Power and Electricity, Dr Bader Al-Shuraian, and the decisions come as part of the ministry's efforts to reduce high levels of power consumption.

Expat Hepatitis tests KUWAIT: The Ministry of Health (MoH) is awaiting the cabinet's decision before taking any action on introducing compulsory PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) tests for incoming expatriates to detect the presence of Hepatitis, said a senior ministry official on Monday. MoH Assistant Undersecretary for Public Health Affairs Dr. Yousef Al-Nisf also told Al-Rai that the health ministry is awaiting the return of two of its leading specialists in this field, Drs. Rashid Al-Owaish and Ahmad Al-Shatti, who are currently on missions abroad, before launching the proposed testing system.

Netherlands to host Muslim Youth Camp BRUSSELS: The New European Muslim Summer Camp 2010 will be held in south Netherlands from July 17 to 22 with the aim of supporting new European Muslim converts. The Camp is being held under the supervision and with authorization of the Federation of Islamic Organizations of Holland. The organizers said in a statement on their website that the New European Muslim Summer Camp 2010 is not an isolated event, but part of a series of events organized to support and inspire new European Muslims. "In the beginning of this year, a group of new European Muslims travelled to Kuwait to attend the Kuwaiti European Convention. Converts of various European countries came together for two weeks in Kuwait," it said. "The program included intensive training on various Islamic topics, lectures including question and answer session, but also a group visit to various touristic sites and mosques, (in Kuwait)." "At this moment, we are working with a group of organizations to organize a second trip to Kuwait at the end of 2010. During that trip, the main focus will be on the 'local leadership' in the context of spreading the Islamic message and supporting new Muslims," noted the statement. "The summer camp (in the Netherlands) is the linking pin between these two events. With a location in Europe, travel costs for those who wish to participate will be much less and the accessibility to the camp for parents of New Converts can be established," it added. The guest speakers at the camp include Dr Belali and Sheikh Mohammed Daniel from Kuwait. The location for Camp is the 'Kuijpershoefke' which is a farm that was turned into a camping site situated in the calm and peaceful south of the Netherlands. The site is used frequently by a variety of Islamic organizations and the people that rent the location deal with Muslims and their specific requirements and etiquettes. Besides lectures and workshops, a variety of sporting activities are also scheduled to be held during the six-day camp. —KUNA

Abdelrasool said that this workshop is in great demand by young people who are interested in learning the ins and outs of filmmaking. "The project has started now and we have over 80 students learning the basic skills required," he explained. "The workshop will continue until the 10th of August and is located in the Adan area in a newly established academy that is equipped with all the necessary equipment to guarantee a high class education in these arts and the subjects they are studying," he explained. The PAYS official revealed that the 80 registered students, who are Kuwaiti and non Kuwaiti nationals, had to pass a qualification exam prior to their admission to the academy. "The folkloric professions center will also be active during the summer time," Abdelrasool said. He explained that though it is not a new addition to the summer program, the folkloric professions center is enhanced this year. "It teaches youngsters how to get in touch with the heritage of Kuwait by learning the skills of their grandfathers. These centers are now prepared to receive youth for the duration of the summer and we will soon announce the opening of registration," he added. According to Abdelrasool, the regular summer programs include Youth Center activities, Youth Authorities, and Youth Houses. Youth centers organize various activities during the summer time. "These activities cover youth from 6 to 18 years of age. We provide all kinds of activities for them including social, cultural and of course sports," he said. There are 10 youth centers in Kuwait, distributed throughout the six governorates of Kuwait, and the number of participants during the summer always increases. "Kuwaiti youth centers are considered among the leading centers in the Middle

Abdallah Abdelrasool, the head of the technical office of youth section in PAYS. East, be it on the building level or the level of quality of these activities," Abdelrasool noted. On the other hand, Youth Authorities offer camps with specialized activities for youth, such as formative arts, traditional arts or learning the Quran. The Youth Houses department has their own set of activities that are mainly geared towards encouraging youth activities and internal tourism. "In addition to all of that, the Authority prepares for the youth theatre festival during the summer time," he added. The official revealed that the number of Youth Centers in Kuwait will increase with the addition of new residential areas. "There is a coordination between PAYS, the Public Authority for Housing Welfare and the Kuwaiti municipality to include a space for

youth centers inside every newly built area," he explained. Abdelrasool said that having sports yards in residential areas serve as a refuge for those wishing to practice their favorite activities on a decent pitch instead of just on the street. "They can call the supervisor, book the pitch and enjoy a football game for example, free of charge," he said. "These sports yards are open from 4:00pm to 10:00pm every day, including weekends," he added. The official said that the Public Authority for Youth and Sports always tries to attract talented young people in order to give them the attention they deserve and develop their abilities. "This is our duty, this is the reason why we are here and we hope we can meet the expectations of our young boys and girls," he concluded.



Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Eight in hospital after brutal brawl

Rejected suitor threatens to burn down girl's home KUWAIT: A bedoon woman has filed a case at Sulaibiya police station against a man, also bedoon, who she says threatened to burn her family's home down and physically harm her after her family rejected his proposal of marriage to her. She explained that her father had rejected him as a potential husband after discovering that he had lied about his nationality, reported Al-Anba, since he initially led the family to believe that he was Kuwaiti before confessing to his true status some time later. After being informed of her family's rejection of his marriage proposal, the man phoned her and made the aforementioned threats. Police are searching for the man to question him over the allegations. Workplace suicide Horrified employees arriving for work at a company in the Capital area discovered the body of an Indian work colleague, who apparently hung himself from the ceiling at the firm's headquarters building. Initial police investigations suggest that the man committed suicide, reported Al-Qabas. His body was removed for autopsy.

kuwait digest

By Ibrahim Dabdoub


he decade-long Euro experience has failed, as it struggles to find a way out of its current economic crisis. This questions its viability and the goals that the Eurozone countries have achieved. First, it is important to note that the development of Euro-zone countries' economy has been regressing since the 60s; well before the unified currency was enforced. This took place due to the influence of the socialist, communist system which created societies that are less productive and more luxurious as time progresses. The Euro failed to save the deteriorating economic situation in Europe. Statistics show that it has touched 1.1 percent during the period between 2001 and 2009 when compared to 2.2 percent in the 90's. Furthermore, the development rate is expected to reach around 0.5 percent during the period between 2010 and 2011. Also, the Euro failed to narrow the inflation gap between member countries, as two opposing groups emerged: One, which includes a majority of commercial western countries of Europe had more export rates than import.

The other group imported more goods than it did during export, which caused them to suffer high inflation rates. Moreover, the economies of the Euro-zone countries continued to diverge, which proved that economical policies cannot be unified. Based on this, we can see that the Euro's failure is not a result of the global economic crisis. The crisis only exposed the fundamental problems that have already been present. In decade-old history, the Euro failed to achieve its goals. Economic achievements were garnered when the global economy was doing well. It promoted the currency. However, when the crisis emerged, all the persistent problems stemmed from the differences in the member countries' economies. This proves a point that a friend of mine the CEO of a European bank - always insisted on: That the decision to establish the euro is political, not economic. Given the fact that the Euro has failed economically, will it fail politically as well? In other words, will a decision be made to scrap the unified European currency? I do not think that the Euro will ever be squandered away, mostly owing to the political closeness that the unified currency has made, as well as the unified political stances that the

European Union has made as a result of that closeness. All these signs indicate that the EU is not ready to abandon the Euro as yet. However, insistence on keeping the Euro comes with a price; a high price I might add. If we divide the value of aid to be given to Greece, we can have an idea about the cost involved to save each slump country. In addition, the cost of the deteriorating economic development will also be higher, which makes it difficult not only in the euro zone countries, but also in non-member countries. This gives Europe a new option: Achieve political unification in a bid to save the unified currency. However, I don't think such an option will be taken, as people in Europe are opposed to the idea of their countries' unification. It would limit their personal freedom and gains. Nevertheless, this does not mean that the European leaders will not mull over this option. It is clear that the procedures currently taken to save the Euro will not be sufficient to save Europe's economy. Unless the European leaders take radical procedures to restructure the European economy, reform social systems or establish a comprehensive political unity, the Euro cannot be saved in the long term.— Al-Qabas

Body found The body of a 38-year-old Bangladeshi man was discovered at a municipality building in Omariya. The man had apparently been dead for some time before his body was found, reported Al-Qabas. Initial investigations by crime scene officers confirmed that the body was in an advanced stage of decomposition, indicating that the death had happened a few days previously. The body was removed for autopsy to determine the cause of death. Abduction, robbery A citizen of another Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) nation told police in Farwaniya that he had been abducted by five unidentified men who took him to a house in Abdullah Al-Mubarak where they seized his credit card, using it to withdraw money from his bank account after forcing him to give them the PIN code. Al-Qabas reported that the police had taken descriptions of the five men and a hunt is underway for them.

Brutal brawl Eight Asian men were rushed to Jahra Hospital's Intensive Care Unit (ICU) after sustaining critical injuries in a vicious brawl in the Abdally Farms area in which they attacked one another with sharp objects. Emergency personnel were quickly at the scene, with police intervening to end the fight and paramedics quickly taking those involved to the hospital, reported Al-Rai. A police investigation is underway into the incident. Drug dealer busted Ahmadi police recently arrested a bedoon (stateless) man after discovering 90 narcotic tablets and four pieces of hashish in his car. The drugs were found during a search of his car when police pulled him over after becoming suspicious of his behavior, reported Al-Watan. On being questioned, the man admitted that he was a dealer and had been on his way to sell the drugs to customers. He was taken into custody and referred to the relevant authorities. Patrol Fire Two security officers managed to exit their vehicle after a fire broke out in the engine while they were driving down King Fahad Road between Jabriya and Surra. The driver of the vehicle immediately pulled over to the side of the road, with both officers quickly getting out before calling the

emergency hotline to report the incident, reported Al-Watan. Firefighters were quickly at the scene, putting out the blaze before it could spread any further. Burglar caught Hawally police have arrested a thief responsible for 30 burglaries of homes and businesses in the area. The man was caught after police investigators discovered that he had been attempting to fence some of the items stolen in the burglaries to local traders at low prices. On being questioned, the man admitted that he had carried out the burglaries together with a number of accomplices, reported Al-Rai. He is being held in custody and police are hunting for his partners in crime based on the information he has given them. Bootlegger escapes An Asian bootlegger whose car contained 125 bottles of homemade liquor managed to flee on foot and disappear after a police car chase in Saad Al-Abdullah. The pursuit began when the man panicked on spotting a police patrol car and drove away at high speed, reported Al-Rai. On realizing that he was unlikely to be able to evade the police vehicle, the man stopped and leapt out of his car, fleeing the scene. Police are using the information on the driver's identity contained in the car's registration details in their efforts to apprehend the culprit.

Scientific Center to launch summer camp KUWAIT: The Scientific Center of Kuwait announced yesterday that it would be launching its one-week summer camp for 2010 on Sunday. The camp will include a number of activities and programs, like the educational workshops, visits to the aquari-

um, discovery hall and watching IMAX movies, watching the feeding of fish and sharks, it added in a press releases. The camp programs are for children aged 7-13, starting everyday from 9:00 am till 2:30 pm, at the cost of KD 40 per child.

The members of the annual membership program will benefit from a special discount, besides presenting special offers and discount rates for cooperative societies and summer clubs planning to visit the Center during this season. — KUNA

Sheikha Al-Sabah and Al-Ghanim during the inauguration.

Sheikha Al-Sabah and Al-Ghanim pose with TEC officials.

TEC launches Interactive Kids Club KUWAIT: The Touristic Enterprises Company organized a ceremony to commemorate the start of the Interactive Children's Club for the third year in a row. The ceremony was held under the patronage of TEC Deputy CEO and Managing Director Khalid Al-Ghanim, and Honorary President of the Kuwait Disabled Club, Sheikha Shaikha Al-Sabah. The Interactive Kids Club, organized by TEC and sponsored by Zain, hopes to provide activities that can be shared by able-bodied youths and those with special needs. The club is an attempt to encourage a sense of belonging amongst those who are often made to feel like outsiders. It further aims to challenge the concept of isolating disabled children and change people's negative attitude toward those with disabilities. In a speech she made during the event, Sheikha Al-Sabah expressed her gratitude

to participate in the club for its third installment. She also acknowledged TEC and Zain for their role in making the events successful. She stressed the importance of voluntary social work and its ability to help disabled children overcome their physical or mental limitations. During Al-Ghanim's speech at the event, he explained that TEC decided to host the event because of their commitment to social duties and the necessity of voluntary work. He said that it helps TEC achieve its goal to provide all citizens and residents in Kuwait the best quality service possible. The club's program contains several activities that include workshops, sign language classes and computer skills courses. It takes place this year between July 4 - 29 and activities will be held from 9am until 2 pm during weekdays at the TEC headquarters in Shuwaikh.

Sheikha Al-Sabah in a conversation with a club member.

Sheikha Al-Sabah tours the club with TEC officials. Sheikha Al-Sabah checks on the work of club members.

Sheikha Al-Sabah attends a sign language class.


Sheikha Al-Sabah observes the work of a number of club members.


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Israeli military to prosecute soldier Soldier faces manslaughter charges over Gaza killings JERUSALEM: Israel's military is for the first time to prosecute a soldier for killing civilians during the December 2008-January 2009 Gaza war, the army said yesterday, while dismissing dozens of other cases. The army said it would press manslaughter charges against a soldier for allegedly shooting dead two Palestinian women who were waving white flags, in one of several disciplinary steps to be taken after an internal investigation. "The Military Advocate General has decided to indict a number of officers and soldiers for their conduct during the operation," an army statement said. Among those to be disciplined was a battalion commander accused of sending a Palestinian civilian into a house to persuade gunmen to leave, while a criminal investigation has also been ordered into the bombing of a housing complex. The 22-day offensive, launched in an attempt to stop rocket fire from the Gaza Strip, left around 1,400 Palestinians and 13 Israelis dead. However, the army also said it was dismissing dozens of other incidents, many of which were raised in the UN Goldstone report on alleged war crimes by both Israel and Gaza's Hamas rulers. These were dismissed because "according to the rules of warfare, no faults were found in the forces' actions," the statement said. "In other cases, there was not enough evidence proving that legal measures needed to be taken." In the

case of the soldier charged with shooting the women, the army said it did not press more severe charges because of discrepancies between the testimony of the witnesses and that of the soldiers at the scene. Israeli rights group B'Tselem said the incident occurred on January 4, 2009, when the Abu Hajaj family evacuated their home after it was hit by a tank shell. "When they saw tanks about 150 meters from them, two of them waved the (white) flags, and the children in the group sat on the ground," B'Tselem said. "Suddenly, and without warning, shots were fired at the residents, killing Majda Abu Hajaj on the spot. Her mother, Riyeh Abu Hajaj, was severely wounded by the gunfire," it said. She later died of her wounds. The army said Palestinian witnesses and dozens of soldiers had been questioned during its investigation, but it had "found gaps between the testimonies given by the soldiers and those given by Palestinians." "This fact made it impossible to make a criminal connection between the described incident according to Palestinian testimonies and to that described by the soldiers," it said. Nevertheless, the Military Advocate General decided to charge the soldier with manslaughter "based on evidence that the soldier, who was serving as a designated marksman, deliberately targeted an individual walking with a group of people waving a white flag without being ordered or authorized to do so." — AFP

Turkey's president says Israel acting irrationally ANKARA: Turkey's President Abdullah Gul said yesterday that divisions within Israel's coalition were stopping the Jewish state repairing relations ruined by the storming of a Gaza-bound aid ship over a month ago. Speaking to Reuters while returning from an official visit to Kazakhstan, Gul said Israel's apparent readiness to become more isolated by ditching relations with a country that had been its only Muslim ally was irrational. "They don't have many friends in the region, "Gul said. "Now it seems they want to get rid of the relationship with Turkey." The United States, a mutual ally of Israel and NATO-member Turkey, has quietly encouraged the two governments to overcome their differences. But in comments as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu prepared to meet President Barack Obama in the United States, Gul said that he believed bitter rivalries within the Israeli coalition were stopping a rapprochement. "As far as I can see, the internal political strife in Israel is very harsh. They undermine each other... they always block one another," Gul said. "It is important that everyone is aware of what kind of politics is going on there," Gul said. "My own impression is that they don't have the ability to act rationally." Nine Turkish proPalestinian activists were killed when Israeli marines stormed the Turkish-flagged Mavi Marmara in international waters on May 31, after which Turkey withdrew its ambassador, suspended joint military exercises and closed Turkish airspace to Israeli military planes. APOLOGY Turkey has demanded an apology, compensation for victims' families and an international inquiry into the incident. It doubts the impartiality of an Israeli inquiry begun last month. Turkey also led calls for an end to the Israeli blockade of the Gaza Strip. Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu warned on Monday that Turkey would not wait forever and without going into specifics he said Turkey would cut off ties if Israel failed to start making amends. Should the Israeli commission rule that the raid was indeed unfair and the Israeli government apologized in line with those findings, Turkey could be satisfied, Davutoglu added. Israel maintains the marines fired in self defense after a boarding party was attacked by activists armed with metal clubs and knives. Israel has partially relaxed its blockade of Gaza following the international outcry over the incident, but argues that a blockade is needed to choke off the supply of arms to Hamas Islamists running the enclave of 1.5 million people. Gul said a meeting between

ministers of the two governments in Brussels last Wednesday was requested by the Israeli side and was supposed to have been secret; but news of the talks was leaked by other factions in Netanyahu's cabinet who wanted to stop any progress. "There were those who were not happy with this, and the situation remains frozen." The meeting between Davutoglu and Israeli Trade and Industry Minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer had been the first face to face contacts between senior officials since the attack on the aid flotilla on May 31.

Israel's Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said he had not been informed of the meeting as a row broke out within the Israeli cabinet. Netanyahu subsequently said that while his government regretted the loss of life and wanted to stop relations deteriorating further there would be no apology as the Israeli soldiers had acted in self-defense. Lieberman also ruled out an apology. Although Turkey is heading towards an election a year away, and politics are highly charged, there has been cross-party support for the government's stance towards Israel. — Reuters


Turkish troops clash with PKK, 15 killed Rebels attack military outposts in upsurge of violence DIYARBAKIR: Kurdish guerrillas attacked a military outpost in southeast Turkey overnight, triggering a clash in which 12 militants and three soldiers were killed, security sources said yesterday. The assault was part of a surge in attacks on the armed forces since the rebels ended a 14-month ceasefire at the start of June. More than 80 soldiers have been killed so far this year, exceeding the death toll in 2009. The increased violence has undermined an attempt by the government of Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan to boost Kurdish minority rights and end a 26-year separatist conflict. Military helicopters flew in troop reinforcements to search for the remaining Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) rebels who launched the attack in the mountainous Semdinli district of Hakkari province, near the border with Iraq. Three soldiers were also wounded in the fighting. The army operation was focused on the area around the Iraqi border, across which the militants frequently cross from bases in northern Iraq to attack the Turkish military. In a separate clash, one rebel was killed and six soldiers wounded on Monday evening after rebels opened fire on security forces at a military outpost in the eastern province of Elazig. In response to the surge in attacks, the military has carried out air strikes on rebel targets in northern Iraq, where several thousand PKK guerrillas are based. The head of the Turkish armed forces, General Ilker Basbug, warned that the PKK presence in Iraq could harm ties with its neighbor and with the

United States if action is not taken to curb the militants' activities in northern Iraq. "The time has come and is passing for those responsible- the people, institutions, states and formations in northern Iraq -- to do what is right," he was reported as saying in an interview with Star TV. NEGATIVE IMPACT ON TIES Turkey has repeatedly called for greater support from Iraq and the United States in its fight against the PKK, considered a terrorist organization by Turkey, the United States and the European Union. "The presence of the PKK in northern Iraq will have a negative impact on Turkish-Iraqi relations in the coming period. In a sense, it will negatively affect TurkishUS relations," Basbug said. The head of the General Staff estimated there were around 4,000 PKK fighters in the mountains of southeast Turkey and northern Iraq, compared with figures in the past of as many as 10,000 and an average of some 6,000. Turkish intelligence is setting up a unit to capture three leaders of the group based in northern Iraq-Murat Karayilan, Fehman Huseyin and Cemil Bayik-Sabah newspaper reported. Turkish Special Forces captured and jailed the PKK's leader Abdullah Ocalan in 1999 after forcing him to abandon his refuge in Syria. More than 40,000 people have been killed in the conflict which began in 1984 when the PKK took up arms against the state with the aim of creating a separate Kurdish homeland. — Reuters

ANKARA: Riot police detain a Greenpeace activist who was protesting against Turkish government's plans to build nuclear power plants, outside the Parliament in Ankara yesterday. Police detained dozens of Greenpeace activists who took part in a sit-in protest. Turkey and Russia signed a $20-billion project in May to build Turkey's first nuclear power plant. — AP



Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Johannesburg draws poor, struggles to house them JOHANNESBURG: The handsome art-deco building at 193 Jeppe St was typical of its apartheid times: full of white-collar professionals, mostly white, and an army of blacks pushing brooms and serving tea until night fell and the segregation banished them to their distant townships. Today it's a rooming house crammed with black tenants, and looks more like a vertical refugee camp. Mothers trudge up the stairs, babies on their backs and buckets of water in their hands. The building stinks of garbage and gasoline-burning generators. The elevators don't work. Water doesn't run. Only a few downstairs toilets still flush. The 10-story building in Johannesburg's old commercial center represents the bottom end of South Africa's gulf between rich and poor, and is a vivid example of the dislocations brought on by the dismantling of apartheid 16 years ago. It's one thing to strike down a hated system of racial segregation; to right its wrongs is a wholly different challenge. The World Cup has not only put its South African hosts to their biggest logistical challenge since the 1994 election that brought down apartheid, it has also focused renewed attention on one of the world's widest income gaps. The visiting fans who stay in comfortable hotels in the affluent northern sub-

urbs are unlikely to bump into Tony Maara. Maara, an immigrant from Kenya, lives on the seventh floor of 193 Jeppe St, and runs a small store on the second, selling cigarettes, candy and beer. The windows in his home have no glass so he covers them with cardboard. He carries fuel up the stairs to power a generator for his refrigerator, boombox and lights. Some of his neighbors have only candles. He has struggled long and hard to keep this one-room toehold in "Jozi," one of Johannesburg's several nicknames. Yet the 32-year-old has hope. Compared with the deadly riots that followed Kenya's disputed 2007 election - a bloodbath that made him leave for good - South Africa's economy and vibrant democracy encourage him. "Jozi is very tough," he says. "But it has opportunities." When he moved in he had no lease, but paid less than $100 a month in rent to a man he thought was the owner. After about a year, Maara said, police arrested the "owner." Strangers appeared claiming the building was theirs. They promised to renovate, and signed leases. But after a few months, they came back with police and evicted the tenants. Maara and other tenants sought help from a law clinic at Johannesburg's University of the

JOHANNESBURG: Soweto residents watch over a house wall in Soweto Township in Johannesburg.— AP Witwatersrand. The lawyers discovered that the second set of "owners" also were fake, and won a court order to let the tenants move back. A 2005 study by the Center on Housing Rights and Evictions, a Genevabased human rights group, estimated

Johannesburg had more than 200 buildings like Maara's, a result of white flight as the apartheid era ended. Owners simply disappeared or stopped maintaining their buildings. In some cases, criminals hijacked the building and demanded

rent from tenants. The turquoise paint on the outer walls of 193 Jeppe St faded. The Chinese store on the ground floor moved out, leaving only its signs in Chinese characters. Stuart Wilson, who helped research and write the

16 killed in Mogadishu

ROTHBURY: Armed police check a black Lexus car and secure the area around it in Rothbury northeast England yesterday. The car believed to have been driven by Raoul Moat (inset) - the man policemen are searching for in connection with shooting his ex-girlfriend, killing her new partner and seriously wounding a police officer. — AP

Police closing in on gunman UK police arrest 2 men in hunt for fugitive LONDON: Police hunting suspected gunman Raoul Moat said yesterday the net was closing in on him as officers imposed an exclusion zone around the village of Rothbury in Northumberland. They earlier announced they had found two men who they say may have been taken hostage by Moat. Both have now been arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to murder. Detective Chief Superintendent Neil Adamson, leading the search for the 37year-old body-builder, said the two men were found, unhurt, walking alongside a road near Rothbury. "Throughout this operation we have been dealing with a complex, fast-moving and challenging hostage situation," he told reporters. "At this time Mr Moat has not been located but I am confident that with the support of the public and the efforts our staff we are closing the net."

He would not give any more details about why the two men had been arrested although he said there had been a "significant risk" to their lives. Armed police were called to an area of Rothbury after a black Lexus car believed to have been driven by Moat was found. Earlier, police from six forces intensified their search for Moat after shootings in Gateshead and Newcastle at the weekend. A 49-page hand-written letter, purportedly by Moat, to Northumbria police and published by the Sun newspaper on Tuesday suggested he was pursuing a vendetta against the force. "Last night I called 999 and declared war on Northumbria Police before shooting an officer on the West End A69 roundabout in his T5 (patrol car)," the letter said. "The public need not fear me but the police should as I won't stop till I'm dead."

Northumbria police, who are leading the manhunt, would not confirm the letter was from Moat. Moat is suspected of shooting his former girlfriend, Samantha Stobbart, 22, and killing her boyfriend, Chris Brown, 20, early on Saturday morning at her mother's home in Gateshead, shortly after he was released from jail. He then allegedly shot and critically injured PC David Rathband, 42, as he sat in a patrol car a few miles away at East Denton, Newcastle. In the letter, Moat blamed police for wrecking his life and destroying his relationship with Stobbart. He has also accused a member of Northumbria police of having an affair with her, an allegation the force denies. "I'm not on the run, I will keep killing police until I am dead," the letter said. "They've hunted me for years, now it's my turn."— Reuters

Ahmadinejad to meet Muslim leaders at D8 ABUJA: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is to meet fellow Muslim leaders at a summit in Nigeria on Thursday after Western nations recently piled fresh sanctions on his country over its nuclear program. Turkish President Abdullah Gul will also attend the Developing Eight (D8) summit in Abuja, raising the possibility that damaged relations between Turkey and Israel following a deadly raid on Gazabound aid ships will be examined. The Istanbul-based D8 groups Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Nigeria, Pakistan and Turkey, with a total population of 930 million people. Turkey warned Israel on Monday it will cut ties unless it gets an apology for the bloodshed on a Turkish ship, but the Jewish state said it will never say sorry for defending itself. The talks open on Thursday, a week after Nigeria took over the rotating presidency of the United Nations Security Council. Last month, 12 members of the Security Council, including all five perma-

nent members, voted to impose fresh sanctions against Iran over its uranium enrichment program, the most controversial aspect of its nuclear drive. Brazil and Turkey, which had brokered a nuclear swap deal with Iran in May, voted against while Lebanon abstained. Observers said Iran's nuclear program and the sanctions were likely to be discussed at bilateral talks between Ahmadinejad and host President Goodluck Jonathan, if not at the main summit. "With the belligerent and hostile attitude of the five permanent members against Iran, it's in the interest of Iran to seek closer ties, cooperation and support from non-permanent members," said Shehu Sani, a prominent Nigerian rights lobbyist. "Nigeria is one and also strategic in Africa." World powers led by Washington accuse the Islamic republic of seeking to build nuclear weapons and are demanding that it freezes uranium enrichment activity, which can be a key step towards developing an atomic arsenal.

A defiant Iran last week told Security Council members that new sanctions will not affect its nuclear program, which it insists is peaceful. The new UN measures authorize states to conduct high-seas inspections of vessels believed to be ferrying banned items to Iran. D8 leaders are also set to discuss ways to cushion the effects of the global economic recession and climate change and tackle ways to boost trade among themselves by between 10 and 15 percent. Egypt will be represented by Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif, Bangladesh by premier Sheikh Hasina and Malaysia by its Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Mohn Yassin. Indonesia and Pakistan are represented by ministers. Nigeria, which is one of the world's top oil producers but remains electricity-starved, will be seeking assistance with power generation and distribution, according to the foreign ministry. The Istanbul-headquartered D8 was established in 1997 to promote economic ties and solidarity within the member states.— AFP

MOGADISHU: Fighting between rival factions in Mogadishu killed at least 16 people as chaos engulfed the Somali capital and spurred the war-torn country's neighbors into action, officials said yesterday. Most of the latest victims were combatants killed in several incidents on Monday, as Islamist insurgents continued to close in on the shriveling perimeter controlled by the government but also fought among themselves. "Violent elements attacked government forces in northern Mogadishu, sparking heavy fighting. They were defeated and several of their fighters were killed," government security officer Mohamed Abdirahman said. "Two of our soldiers were also killed as well as three civilians who were caught in the crossfire," he added. Insurgents have been harassing government forces in northeastern districts lately to seize positions from which they can target bases of the African Union mission in Somalia (AMISOM) and disrupt their supplies by striking the seaport. Rebels from the Al-Qaeda-inspired Shebab movement and the Hezb al-Islam group in May 2009 launched a major offensive which President Sharif Sheikh Ahmed's forces and his AMISOM protectors have been unable to repel. Ali Muse, the head of Mogadishu's ambulance services, also said that three other civilians, including two from the same family, were killed when an artillery shell smashed into their home in Halimoheyte district. In a separate incident in the southern Labadhagah neighborhood, six Hezb al-Islam militants, including one of the group's top commanders, were mowed down when gunmen in a minivan intercepted their vehicle, witnesses said. Minutes later, two Shebab fighters were killed outside a nearby mosque where the group's top leaders usually preach, in an apparent retaliation for the earlier executions. "I was sitting at a teashop close to the place where the six were gunned down. I saw the minivan stop the car. They sprayed gunfire on them, all of them died and their bodies were riddled with bullets," Abdullahi Farah said. "It was horrible to see all the dead in a pool of blood. The attackers left the scene but minutes later two Shebab fighters were shot dead near Nasruddin mosque," said Nur Abdiweli, another witness. "I think it was an act of retaliation," he said. The Shebab, who control most of the country, and the smaller Hezb al-Islam are theoretically allied in their push to topple Sharif but have often been at odds, with their differences chronically erupting into bloodshed. Hundreds of Shebab supporters held a demonstration Monday in Suqaholaha, on the outskirts of Mogadishu, to demand the departure of African Union troops, blaming them for civilian deaths. "AMISOM killed my dad" read one placard at the protest, which was organized by the insurgent group. Several fully veiled women could also be seen brandishing assault rifles.—AFP

2005 study, says the tenants put up with the squalor because they need to be close to jobs. They clean or guard office buildings, sell in shops or on the streets, pump gas, collect trash for recycling - not much different to what they did for a living in apartheid times. Low-cost housing has been built outside the city center, but the poorest can't afford the commute. So the inner city that was once off-limits to black residents is now attractive, even if it means squeezing into 193 Jeppe St. The end of the "pass laws" that segregated housing nationwide unleashed vast migrations of squatters from townships into shanty towns and tent camps wherever there might be work. The race war and chaos that white supremacists had predicted never came about, and South Africa remains the continent's most vibrant economy. At its heart lies Johannesburg, a city of 3 million built on gold mines. But Wilson worries that democracy in South Africa is being undermined because the wealth gap is widening, and leaders are losing credibility as they fail to live up to the constitution's promise that "Everyone has the right to have access to adequate housing." Nearly 3 million homes have been built since 1994, and the government

plans to spend about $2 billion on housing this year. Housing minister Tokyo Sexwale has said the target is 220,000 new homes and the upgrading of 500,000 shantytowns. But he acknowledges another 2.1 million homes are needed. Bishop Paul Verryn, a Methodist minister, has turned his large church into a shelter for more than 1,000 homeless. He estimates up to 50,000 people are living in decrepit buildings in the Jeppe St. area. Maara doesn't know how many people live in his building; a room one day will house 20 people, the next 10. Officially, no one has been paying rent since the court order allowed them back, but people who claim control of a room likely take money from roommates. When the tenants returned after their eviction, they found plumbing pipes and electricity wires had been stripped, and interior walls demolished. Scavengers may have been looking for scrap to sell, but Maara thinks it was people who wanted to make sure poor tenants did not come back. "It was pure malice, to make the place uninhabitable," Maara said. Uninhabitable, but affordable. Maara balanced plaster boards on the rubble of what had once been his walls. His front door is missing, so in its place hangs the flag of Brazil, whose World Cup team he supports.— AP

Germany's coalition reaches health deal Health system faces 11 billion euro shortfall BERLIN: German Chancellor Angela Merkel's coalition reached agreement yesterday on how to tackle a deficit in the public health system, an area of bitter dispute that has threatened the unity of her embattled government. The issue had provoked slanging matches inside Merkel's government for many months and the chancellor badly needed a deal to show she still has firm leadership of the coalition after last week's embarrassing vote for the German president. Partners in the centre-right alliance agreed on savings of 3.5 billion euros ($4.7 billion) in 2011 and 4 billion euros in 2012 to help plug a funding gap that had threatened to reach 11 billion euros next year, said Health Minister Philipp Roesler. They also agreed to increase contributions by workers and employers to help cover that shortfall on the revenue side, a measure that the minister, who comes from the probusiness Free Democrat (FDP), had resisted. "We have solved the short-term funding problems for 2011," said Roesler, a 37-year-old doctor born in Vietnam who is a rising star of Germany's centre-right government. The reaction from business and unions was negative. BDA employers federation head Dieter Hundt said it contradicted 2009 election promises to cut the fiscal burden and IG-BCE union's Michael Vassiliadis called it "disappointingly short-sighted". But Roesler said raising healthcare levies meant returning to the levels of before the recession, when they were cut in a series of stimulus measures that now needed an "exit strategy".

'NOT REALLY REFORM' Merkel met her chief allies, Horst Seehofer of the Bavarian Christian Social Union (CSU) and Guido Westerwelle of the FDP, earlier yesterday to thrash out a deal on how to cut costs and finance the funding gap. Last week's struggle to get Christian Wulff elected to the largely ceremonial post of head of state, even when Merkel had a clear majority on paper, underlined growing disenchantment with the leadership of her nine-month-old government. But one analyst said the new healthcare deal appeared to fall short of the deep structural reform Germany really needed. "Look at the healthcare reform efforts, it's going to result in a rising contribution rate but this is not really reform," said BarclaysCapital economist Thorsten Polleit. "It's increasing the fiscal burden on the economy and not addressing the structural problems in the system," he said. Germany's highly regarded health system covers 72 million people via state health insurance and 8.5 million via private schemes, according to health ministry data. It employs 4.3 million people and accounts for 11 percent of economic output. Commentator Hugo Mueller-Vogg wrote in Bild newspaper that healthcare costs were so high because Germans are "world champions at going to the doctor", making 18 appointments a year versus three or four for Scandinavians and seven for the French. Health minister Roesler, from the FDP, had been opposed to increasing the burden on taxpayers and companies by raising social security contributions and wanted to focus on savings. — Reuters

Sarkozy denies illegal party funding report Heiress's former bookkeeper gave statement to police PARIS: President Nicolas Sarkozy yesterday denied allegations that his party had received illegal campaign donations in cash from France's richest woman via the current labour minister, Eric Woerth. The allegation stems from a former bookkeeper for Liliane Bettencourt, main shareholder in the cosmetics giant L'Oreal, and promptly raised pressure on Sarkozy to bring forward a reshuffle of his government, battered by sleaze allegations. The bookkeeper, named only as Claire T, told the news website Mediapart she had been involved in withdrawing 150,000 euros ($200,000) in cash to be given to Woerth in unmarked envelopes as a donation to Sarkozy's 2007 election campaign. Claire T.'s lawyer confirmed that she had given a statement to police on Monday making the allegation. Bettencourt's lawyer could not immediately be reached for comment. At a round-table on public health, Sarkozy said Woerth was a victim of calumny "without the slightest reality" and he wished people would take more interest in big issues such as health care and pensions rather than in "those who create scandals". Woerth, who is treasurer of the ruling centre-right UMP party and was treasurer of Sarkozy's 2007 campaign, denied taking a single euro in illegal donations. Woerth is leading a major pensions reform and is a key ally of the president, whose approval rating hit an all-time low of 26 percent last week amid sleaze allegations against ministers. "I've been treasurer of my party for eight years and I think no one can accuse me of anything. Everything is clear, everything is clean," Woerth told the news channel ITele. "You can always believe any old rumor, but I never received a single euro in politics that wasn't legal," he said, adding that he had no intention of resigning. French law limits donations to parties to 7,500 euros per person per year. Only 150 euros may be given in cash. WEALTH MANAGER Claire T said she had not handed the money to Woerth personally but had given it to Bettencourt's wealth manager, who had told her he would make the handover. Woerth's wife worked for the wealth manager until last month. He has

BRIE-COMTE-ROBERT: French President Nicolas Sarkozy gives a press conference during his visit at the Brie-Comte-Robert hospital yesterday. — AFP already denied any conflict of interest between his roles as party treasurer and budget minister until March. Leading members of Sarkozy's party urged him to bring forward a reshuffle planned for October, and to broadcast to the nation before he goes on his summer holiday on July 14. "The president says he is in control of the timing, but Woerth is more and more under fire. It's becoming politically difficult. Nothing can be ruled out," UMP lawmaker Jacques Myard told Reuters. Another UMP parliamentarian, Marie-Anne Montchamp, said: "We are stuck in a crisis. There needs to be a reshuffle, and a fast one." Mediapart, which last month reported recordings of conversations between Bettencourt and her wealth manager, also quoted the bookkeeper as saying Sarkozy had been one of several politicians who regularly received envelopes of cash directly from the billionairess and her late husband when Sarkozy was mayor of the Paris suburb of Neuilly in the 1980s and 90s. Asked about this allegation, an official in Sarkozy's office said: "That's totally false." — Reuters

Wednesday, July 7, 2010



CIA, Pakistan locked in aggressive spy battles Spy incident underscores US, Pakistan 'schizophrenic ties'

CARACAS: Ecuador's President Rafael Correa (left) and Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez gesture upon their arrival at the National Assembly to commemorate the 199th anniversary of Venezuela's Independence in Caracas on Monday, July 5, 2010. — AP

Caracas slum a lab for Chavez's socialist project CARACAS: While President Hugo Chavez struggles to revive the battered bolivar, in a hillside slum overlooking his palace, die-hard supporters are talking about getting rid of the Venezuelan currency altogether. Welcome to the 23 de Enero barrio, home to about 100,000 people and something of a laboratory for Chavez's nationwide socialist experiment. Here you find dogs named "Comrade Mao", and even a "revolutionary car wash." "We are creating a popular bank and are going to issue a communal currency: little pieces of cardboard," says Salvador Rooselt, a soft-spoken 24-year-old law student and community leader who often quotes Lenin and Marx. Some 20 militant groups sometimes described as Chavez's "storm troopers" run this urban jungle in western Caracas, where hulking concrete buildings daubed with colorful murals- one depicting Jesus Christ brandishing an AK-47 rifle-show off the neighborhood's radical tradition. "We are giving capitalism a punch in its social metabolism," said Rooselt, of the Alexis Vive group, wearing its trademark bandana with the image of guerrilla icon Ernesto Che Guevara around his neck. A deeply-rooted socialist ideology, absolute territorial control and financing from the government have allowed Alexis Vive to put into practice some of the ideas Chavez is struggling to implement in the rest of Venezuela. Socialist stores sell milk and meat from recently nationalized producers at about a 50 percent discount. Residents do voluntary work, kids are encouraged to steer clear of drugs, and some youths have even joined a pioneer organization modeled on similar groups in Communist Cuba. "I'm sure President Chavez supports our initiatives and seeks to implement them at a national level," Rooselt said. Alexis Vive spreads its message via Radio Arsenal, an underground FM station Rooselt says was inspired by Vladimir Lenin's experience with a political newspaper a century ago. They are also turning their hands to urban agriculture and fish farming to feed locals, and say that the future communal bank will extend micro-credit to foster economic independence. 'TENSE ALLIANCE' Despite being a stronghold of the "chavista" movement with a massive electoral muscle that has helped the president win votes for more than a decade, 23 de Enero's radicalism has often proved a political liability for Venezuela's leader. A series of attacks targeting opposition symbols such as the Globovision television station, and even the Roman Catholic Archdiocese, have led Chavez to publicly distance himself from these groups in the pastalthough some neighbors think they still take direct orders from "Comandante Presidente." George Ciccariello-Maher, a social scientist with a PhD from the University of California, Berkeley who has studied Venezuela's radical movements, calls it a "tense alliance" between the president and the barrios.

"Chavez depends on the radical sectors for support, but neither side truly trusts one another ... If he were to destroy them, he would be destroying his own base as well," he said. Gone are the days when local groups proudly displayed their automatic weapons in front of visiting reporters. Militants from Alexis Vive say their armed struggle is over. "Ever since the revolutionary process started there haven't been any weapons. We joined the Bolivarian militias," said Rooselt, referring to a 35,000-strong armed force recently launched by Chavez to defend his socialist revolution. But other more belligerent groups within 23 de Enero appear to be still armed to the teeth. In January, one of the groups released a video to the media showing its members dressed in military attire and brandishing automatic weapons and a rocket-propelled grenade launcher. They called on Chavez to clean his government of corrupt "false socialists." Security in 23 de Enero remains tight. Rooselt's told Reuters he received a call by cell phone the moment two reporters were spotted in the neighborhood. That might explain why crime rates here have dropped by 95 percent, according to the militants, who say they have turned it into one of the safest places in crime-ridden Caracas. 'SPEARHEAD OF THE REVOLUTION' Known in the past as "Little Vietnam," 23 de Enero has a long history of left-wing radicalism. The neighborhood's name refers to January 23, 1958, the date on which military dictator Marcos Perez Jimenez was toppled. The community, mostly made up of rural workers attracted to the capital by Venezuela's oil boom, played a key role in the 1989 riots known as the "Caracazo," which claimed scores of lives when the army shelled buildings in the area for days. Alexis Vive, for instance, honors community leader Alexis Gonzalez, who was killed by the police in 2002. Berkeley's Ciccariello-Maher calls 23 de Enero an example of "alternative sovereignty" beyond the control of the state. "The neighborhood and movements it nurtures represent both the laboratory and spearhead of the Bolivarian Revolution ... It is in 23 de Enero that the most radical forces are located, forces which drive the process forward," he said. The government is finding new ways of supporting 23 de Enero. In a plot behind a local market, neighbors in Che Guevara bandanas are building a state-funded brick factory equipped with Iraniantechnology. Not far from there, a group of former paratroopers who joined a failed coup d'etat by Chavez in 1992 have set up a "revolutionary car wash" next to a wall displaying a huge picture of the late Colombian guerrilla commander Marulanda. "Here in 23 de Enero we are committed to take this process to the very end," said cooperative member Martin Campos, a 38-year-old retired soldier sporting a yellow baseball cap with a red star. "We are chavistas. Red, very red." — Reuters

China rejects criticism of US geologist's sentence BEIJING: China yesterday rejected US criticism of its treatment of an American geologist who was sentenced to eight years in prison for spying and collecting state secrets. The US Embassy issued a statement calling for Xue Feng's immediate release and deportation to the United States after he was sentenced Monday, and US Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman attended the court hearing to show Washington's interest. Xue was punished for gathering data on China's oil industry in violation of vague secrets laws the government uses to restrict business information. During Xue's detention that started in November 2007, Chinese state security agents stubbed lit cigarettes on his arms. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang told a news conference yesterday that Xue's rights were fully guaranteed and the case is China's internal affair. "Do you think we should release him without any charges and then people will say the judicial system is fair and transparent?" Qin asked. "The rights of the defendant were fully guaranteed." He called the case an internal affair that "brooks no foreign interference." Monday's verdict said the 45-year-old, China-born Xue received documents on geological conditions of onshore oil wells and a database that gave the coordinates of more than 30,000 oil and gas wells belonging to China National Petroleum Corporation and listed subsidiary PetroChina Ltd. The Beijing No 1 Intermediate People's Court said that information was sold to IHS Energy, the US consultancy Xue worked for and now known as IHS Inc. Chinese officials have wide authority to classify information as state secrets. Draft regulations released by the government in April said business secrets of major state companies qualify as state secrets. During Xue's closed-door trial, the court's sentencing document said he defended himself, arguing that the information he gathered "is data that the oil sector in countries around the world make public." —AP

ANHUI PROVINCE: In this file photo, Xue Feng poses for photos in Yuexi, Anhui province. American geologist Xue Feng detained and tortured by China's state security agents over an oil industry database was jailed for 8 years on Monday July 5, 2010, in a troubling example of China's rough justice system and the way the US government handles cases against its citizens. — AP

WASHINGTON: A Pakistani man approached CIA officers in Islamabad last year, offering to give up secrets of his country's closely guarded nuclear program. To prove he was a trustworthy source, he claimed he had spent nuclear fuel rods. But the CIA had its doubts. Before long, the suspicious officers had concluded that Pakistan's spy agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence, was trying to run a double agent against the 'them'. CIA officers alerted their Pakistani counterparts. Pakistan promised to look into the matter and, with neither side acknowledging the man was a double agent, the affair came to a polite, quiet end. The incident, recounted by former US officials, underscores the schizophrenic relationship with one of America's most crucial counterterrorism allies. Publicly, officials credit Pakistani collaboration with helping kill and capture numerous AlQaeda and Taleban leaders. Privately, that relationship is often marked by mistrust as the two countries wage an aggressive spy battle against each other. The CIA has repeatedly tried to penetrate the ISI and learn more about Pakistan's nuclear program; and the ISI has mounted its own operations to gather intelligence on the CIA's counterterrorism activities in the tribal lands and figure out what the CIA knows about the nuclear program. Bumping up against the ISI is a way of life for the CIA in Pakistan, the agency's command center for recruiting spies in the country's lawless tribal regions. Officers there also coordinate Predator drone airstrikes, the CIA's most successful and lethal counterterrorism program. The armed, unmanned planes take off from a base inside Pakistani Baluchistan known as "Rhine." "Pakistan would be exceptionally uncomfortable and even hostile to American efforts to muck about in their home turf," said Graham Fuller, an expert on Islamic fundamentalism who spent 25 years with the CIA, including a stint as Kabul station chief. That means incidents such as the one involving nuclear fuel rods must be resolved delicately and privately. "It's a crucial relationship," CIA spokesman George Little said. "We work closely with our Pakistani partners in fighting the common threat of terrorism. They've been

Venezuelans honor ‘hero’ Simon Bolivar CARACAS: South America's 19th century independence hero Simon Bolivar was reunited Monday with his controversial and audacious lover at a graveside ceremony. A coffer containing the symbolic remains of Manuela Saenz, an audacious woman credited with helping Bolivar liberate several South American nations from Spain, was moved alongside Bolivar's tomb in an independence day celebration. The government of President Hugo Chavez is helping redress Saenz's reputation, portraying her as one of the continent's greatest heroines. Scorned as immoral and adulterous by some, Saenz spent the last years of her life destitute and her contribution to South America's independence struggle against Spain was largely forgotten after she died during a diphtheria epidemic in 1856. Her body was burned and dumped, along with those of many other victims, in a mass grave in Ecuador. Chavez and Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa placed earth gathered from the grave where she was buried next to Bolivar's tomb inside the National Pantheon as supporters of the two Latin American leaders cheered outside. A path to the building was covered with rose petals and lined with women soldiers dressed in uniforms like one Saenz once wore. State television broadcast spots stating: "Manuela returns to reunite with Bolivar." Ramon Torres, Ecuador's ambassador to Venezuela, said the two leftist presidents "paid a historical debt" by placing Saenz's remains in the pantheon. Saenz was born in 1797 as the daughter of a Spanish aristocrat in Ecuador. She was forced to marry an Englishman whom she left. She distributed propaganda for the independence movement and later became a highly decorated colonel in the rebel army. Chavez often speaks of an incident in which mutinous officers razed the presidential palace in Bogota, Colombia, one night in 1828, and Saenz helped Bolivar to escape. He also likes to note that Bolivar dubbed his companion "The Liberator of the Liberator." Some historians now consider her a pioneer for women's rights. — AP

vital to the victories achieved against AlQaeda and its violent allies. And they've lost many people in the battle against extremism. No one should forget that." Details about the CIA's relationship with Pakistan were recounted by nearly a dozen former and current US and Pakistani intelligence officials, all of whom spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter. An ISI official denied that the agency runs double agents to collect information about the CIA's activities. He said the two agencies have a good working relationship and such allegations were meant to create friction between them. But the CIA became so concerned by a rash of cases involving suspected double agents in 2009, it re-examined the spies it had on the payroll in the Afghanistan-Pakistan region. The internal investigation revealed about a dozen double agents, stretching back several years. Most of them were being run by Pakistan. Other cases were deemed suspicious. The CIA determined the efforts were part of an official offensive counterintelligence program being run by Gen Ahmed Shuja Pasha, the ISI's spy chief. Pakistan's willingness to run double agents against the US is particularly troubling to some in the CIA because of the country's ties to longtime Osama bin Laden ally Gulbuddin Hekmatyar and to the Haqqani network, a Pakistan-based Taleban faction also linked to Al-Qaeda. In addition to its concerns about Pakistan's nuclear program, the CIA continues to press the Pakistanis to step up their military efforts in North Waziristan, the tribal region where Hekmatyar and Haqqani are based. CIA Director Leon Panetta talked with Pasha about ISI's relationship with militants last year, reiterating the same talking points his predecessor, Gen Michael Hayden, had delivered before him. Panetta told Pasha he had needed to take on militant groups, including those such as Hekmatyar and Haqqani, a former US intelligence official said. But the US can only demand so much from an intelligence service it can't live without. Recruiting agents to track down and kill terrorists and militants is a top priori-

ty for the CIA, and one of the clandestine service's greatest challenges. The drones can't hit their targets without help finding them. Such efforts would be impossible without Pakistan's blessing, and the US pays about $3 billion a year in military and economic aid to keep the country stable and cooperative. "We need the ISI and they definitely know it," said C Christine Fair, an assistant professor at Georgetown University's Center for Peace and Security Studies. "They are really helping us in several critical areas and directly undermining us in others." Pakistan has its own worries about the Americans. During the first term of the Bush administration, Pakistan became enraged after it shared intelligence with the US, only to learn the CIA station chief passed that information to the British. The incident caused a serious row, one that threatened the CIA's relationship with the ISI and deepened the levels of distrust between the two sides. Pakistan almost threw the CIA station chief out of the country. A British security official said the incident was "a matter between Pakistan and America." The spate of Pakistani double agents has raised alarm bells in some corners of the agency, while others merely say it's the cost of doing business in Pakistan. They say double agents are as old as humanity and point to the old spy adage: "There are friendly nations but no friendly intelligence services." "The use of double agents is something skilled intelligence services and the better terrorists groups like Al-Qaeda, Hezbollah, provisional Irish Republican Army and the Tamil Tigers have regularly done. It's not something that should be a surprise," said Daniel Byman, a foreign policy expert at the Saban Center at Brookings Institution. Nowhere is the tension greater than in the tribal areas, the lawless regions that have become the front line in what Panetta described on Sunday as "the most aggressive operations in the history of the CIA." The area has become what's known in spy parlance as a wilderness of mirrors, where nothing is what it appears. The CIA recruits people to spy on alQaeda and militant groups. So does the ISI. Often, they recruit the same people.

That means the CIA must constantly consider where a spy's allegiance lies: With the US? With Pakistan? With the enemy? Pakistan rarely - if at all - has used its double agents to feed the CIA bad information, the former US officials said. Rather, the agents were just gathering intelligence on American operations, seeing how the CIA responded and how information flowed. Former CIA officials say youth and inexperience among a new generation of American officers may have contributed to the difficulties of operating in the tribal regions, where the U.S. is spending a massive amount of money to cultivate sources. After the 2001 terrorist attacks, the CIA dispatched many young officers to Pakistan and Afghanistan to recruit AlQaeda spies. Young officers sometimes unwittingly recruited people who had been on Pakistan's payroll for years, all but inviting Pakistan to use their longtime spies as double agents, former CIA officials said. The Pakistanis "are steeped in that area," Fuller said "They would be tripping over a lot of the same people." Many former CIA officials believe a lack of experience among agency officers led to the bombing in Khost, Afghanistan, last year that killed seven CIA employees. The CIA thought it had a source who could provide information about AlQaeda's No 2, Ayman Al-Zawahiri, who was believed to be hiding in the tribal lands. But the person turned out to be a double agent wired with explosives. Ironically, the CIA steered the source to Khost because officers were concerned ISI would spot him if they brought him to Islamabad for questioning or possibly even arrest him because he was an undocumented Arab. But experience isn't always the problem. One example of how the suspicious relationship constrains operations was the CIA's base in the remote town of Miram Shah in North Waziristan. US military and CIA officers worked with the ISI together there, under the protection of the Pakistani army, which kept the base locked down. The two intelligence agencies sometimes conducted joint operations against Al-Qaeda but rarely shared information, a former CIA officer said. —AP



Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Celebrations and sadness as Dalai Lama turns 75 DHARAMSHALA: The Dalai Lama turned 75 yesterday, a milestone marked by celebrations in his hometown-in-exile but tinged by sadness that his compatriots in Tibet were unable to honor the occasion. Under relentless rain, the Tibetan spiritual leader addressed a packed crowd of 5,000 followers at his temple in McLeod Ganj, a hill station in the Indian Himalayas where he has lived since fleeing Tibet in 1959. In a reminder of the situation in his homeland, where China views him as a dangerous separatist, he expressed regret that his followers there would be unable to pay tribute for fear of reprisal. “The Tibetans in Tibet have a great desire to celebrate my birthday but they are not allowed to,” he said in Tibetan. Staring out at a banner depicting him at various stages over the last three-quarters of a century, he reflected on his work of preaching peace and religious tolerance while keeping the issue of Tibet in the spotlight. “When I see those pictures and see the development, I know my life has not been wasted,” he said.

Tibetan communities in North America, Europe and Australia organized festivities yesterday, but in the Nepalese capital Kathmandu police briefly detained around 200 Tibetan refugees on their way to a birthday celebration. Police said they had only wanted to question the refugees, but Tibetan activists denounced what they described as a clear violation of human rights. Under pressure from China, Nepal has repeatedly cracked down on any political demonstrations against Chinese rule in Tibet. The Dalai Lama favors meaningful autonomy for Tibet under Chinese rule, but Beijing accuses him of inciting unrest with a hidden pro-independence agenda. Decades of on-off negotiations with China have made no tangible progress. Amid the dancing, singing and tributes yesterday, there were frequent reminders of the challenges ahead for the Tibetan exiles, above all the eventual succession of their ageing spiritual leader. The Dalai Lama has been in hospital twice in recent times-in

DHARMSALA: Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama is greeted by people as he walks to watch an exhibition of traditional Tibetan paintings in Dharmsala, India yesterday. — AP

February last year for a pinched nerve and in October 2008 for surgery to remove gall stones. There is concern that his death would damage the cohesion and momentum of the Tibetan movement that has relied for so long on his leadership. “It will be a completely different ball game when His Holiness is no longer with us,” the president of the Tibetan Youth Congress, Tsewang Rigzin said. “We need to be prepared for that day when it comes and that means having a strong government in exile.” China has already indicated it will take a hard line on selecting a successor, with Qiangba Puncog, Tibet’s former governor, insisting in March that final approval lies with Beijing. One senior figure tipped to assume the spiritual leadership of Tibet, the 26-yearold Karmapa Lama, was conspicuously seated next to the Dalai Lama yesterday. The prime minister of the government-in-exile, Samdhong Rinpoche, urged the Dalai Lama to slow down to preserve his energy as his endeavors “are certainly taking a great toll”. “We would like to implore him to

Group demands end to UN war crimes panel

in the news

Sri Lankan hardliners angrily protest UN war crimes probe COLOMBO: A Sri Lankan cabinet minister yesterday led protesters on a march on the UN office, demanding Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon dissolve a panel he appointed to advise him on possible war crimes. Sri Lanka’s gov-

ernment is furious at Ban’s appointment of the three-member panel on June 22, saying it is a violation of its sovereignty and a hypocritical application of double standards by Western governments engaged in the war on terror.

COLOMBO: Sri Lankan protesters wave their national flags and burn an effigy of UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon outside the UN office in Colombo yesterday. — AP

Japan PM in danger of missing election target Democrats and ally could lose upper house majority TOKYO; Japan’s ruling Democratic Party is in danger of missing Prime Minister Naoto Kan’s target in Sunday’s upper house election, the Sankei newspaper said, an outcome that could put Kan’s job at risk and complicate policymaking. The Sankei also said yesterday that the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) and its tiny ally are unlikely to win the 56 seats needed to control the upper chamber, meaning the Democrats might need to seek new allies to implement policies smoothly. The DPJ, which took power last year, will almost certainly run the government regardless of the July 11 result because it controls the powerful lower house. But it needs a majority in the upper chamber to enact laws and implement policies smoothly. Kan, who took over from his unpopular predecessor in June, has put fiscal reform at the centre of the election campaign, including possibly doubling the 5 percent sales tax to curb the country’s huge public debt, nearing twice the size of the GDP. Kan calmly defended his call to debate a possible sales tax rise ahead of the poll, reiterating that it was ordinary people and pensioners who suffered when Greece was hit by a debt crisis. “If state finances collapse, the social welfare system would not work,” Kan, who was jolted by the Greek debt crisis when he attended G7 gatherings as finance minister, told a nationwide TV program. “To avoid such a situation, I would like to cut waste, seek economic growth and debate the overall tax codes,” Kan said, rebuffing criticism from other

party leaders in the program. “I want to propose such a comprehensive approach.” A July 2-4 survey by the Sankei showed that the DPJ may win between 48 and 55 of the 121 seats up for grabs in the 242-member upper house, in line with other media forecasts saying it will fall short of the 60 it needs for an outright majority. About 20 percent of voters are still undecided and the result could shift in the final days before the vote, the Sankei said. Kan, 63, has set a target of winning at least 54

seats, the number his party has up for re-election, but the Sankei said it is unclear if the DPJ can achieve this. A weak showing would undercut Kan’s ability to get backing from other parties to implement policies and could leave him vulnerable to a challenge from within his own party before his term as DPJ head ends in September. Support for the DPJ rebounded after Kan, a former grassroots activist and a fierce debater, took over from his unpopular predecessor in June

but has receded since he floated the possibility of a sales tax hike. In the Sankei survey, 43.6 percent said they support Kan’s government, down 10.7 points from a previous poll in June, while 40.7 percent said they do not support the government. The DPJ kept its lead in voter preference but the gap with its main rival narrowed. Asked which party they plan to vote for, 32.8 percent said the DPJ, down 9.6 points from the last survey, while 19.6 percent said the main opposition LDP, up 2.1 points. — Reuters

Korean spy switches sides SEOUL: A North Korean agent who switched sides and prospered in South Korea was recruited again decades later by Pyongyang after being promised visits to his mother in the North, a prosecutor said yesterday. The 63-year-old surnamed Han was arrested last week over a plot to assassinate a top-ranking defector in the South. “He was recruited again by the North in 1996 and entered North Korea four times until 2007 to see his mother,” the prosecutor said on condition of anonymity, giving more details of a case first reported last week. Han’s twisted fate began in 1965 when he was selected for training as an agent in the communist state, according to news reports confirmed by the prosecutor. On the night of July 20, 1969 Han and a colleague named Cho landed on the southwest coast of South Korea, carrying pistols, six grenades, a radio transmitter and 100,000 dollars in cash. They travelled to Seoul four days later but a resident spotted the pistols in their bags and reported them to police, resulting in their arrest. Han told investigators at that time that their mission was to stir up unrest in the South which was then engulfed by protests against President Park Chung-Hee, who was on a path toward dictatorship. Han shifted loyalties to the South, informed

on other spies and was released the following year. He got a job with a large company, married a South Korean woman and made a fortune through land speculation with the money he received from Seoul in return for changing sides. Despite his successful life in the capitalist South, he still missed his mother in the North. In the 1990s he travelled to Yanbian in China, where separated families from North and South met secretly, in hopes of meeting her. North Korea’s intelligence agency became aware of Han’s desire. In return for allowing him into the North to meet his mother and brothers there, they recruited him back in 1996. Han exchanged coded e-mail messages with North Korea containing information on the whereabouts of Hwang Jang-Yop. Hwang, who was once secretary of the ruling Workers’ Party and a tutor to current leader Kim Jong-Il, defected in 1997 during a visit to Beijing. Han was also told to collect information on other North Korean defectors, and details about how South Korean authorities screen fugitives from the North to identify secret agents. Han’s arrest came after a Seoul court last Thursday handed 10-year prison sentences to two North Korean agents who posed as defectors in a plot to assassinate Hwang. —AFP

kindly see to it that his daily programs do not come in the way of his good health,” he added. At an age when most others are putting their feet up, the Dalai Lama keeps up a globe-trotting schedule that would tire someone half his age, travelling to countries willing to defy Chinese pressure not to grant him a visa. In an average year, he is away from home for about half the time and in the past 12 months has visited France, Switzerland, the Czech Republic, Germany, Poland, the United States (twice), Taiwan and most recently Japan. In McLeod Ganj, people arrived hours in advance to secure prime positions. “This is fabulous, you really need to be here,” said 61-year-old American Jan Owen from California, a member of a tour group put together by a Buddhist leader in the United States. “There’s a lot of good energy here, don’t you think? It’s great fun.” The Dalai Lama urged the crowd to show compassion in their own lives and concluded with some practical advice. “Be careful of the weather. Don’t get ill,” he said, as many shivered in the downpour. — AFP

The panel is to advise Ban if any crimes were committed in the final months of Sri Lanka’s quarter-century conflict with the Tamil Tiger separatists, in which government forces won total victory in May 2009. Engineering Services and Construction Minister Wimal Weerawansa, a firebrand nationalist ally of President Mahinda Rajapakse, led several hundred demonstrators to the entrance of UN headquarters in the capital Colombo. “We will hold a fast unto death until the withdrawal of Moon’s panel,” Weerawansa told the crowd of demonstrators, who had pushed past a small police contingent. The demonstrators chanted “Hands off UN!” and burned an effigy of Ban. A large sign in front of the UN headquarters read “Ban Ki-Pimp: US puppet”. The group said it planned to carry out a traditional exorcism in front of the UN compound. “Sri Lanka will teach him a lesson that he could not learn in Sudan and Afghanistan,” said Weerawansa. DOUBLE STANDARDS? Weerawansa earlier threatened to hold UN staff hostage to force the panel’s dissolution, but the government swiftly said it was not Sri Lanka’s official position. Sri Lanka views Ban’s panel as an affront to its sovereignty and unnecessary, given it has its own commission to investigate possible rights violations. However, Sri Lanka has a four-decade history of commissions tasked with probing abuses that have produced little. Sri Lanka is under pressure from the West, after rights watchdogs took advantage of the anniversary of the war’s end to renew a push for an international probe into what they say are tens of thousands of civilian deaths. The government denies soldiers committed any crimes, and says the casualty numbers are hugely inflated by Tiger supporters who live in the West as refugees and fear they will lose that status now that the war is over. It is also furious that its fight against a group on US and EU terrorism lists for suicide bombings and the use of child soldiers is under scrutiny while none is given to the thousands killed by US forces in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan. On Monday the European Union confirmed Sri Lanka on Aug 15 would lose access to a trade preference, worth about 100 million euros ($125.4 million) annually, after it refused to make written pledges to improve its human rights record. — Reuters

5 murdered in revenge attack BEIJING: A disgruntled man in central China has confessed to stabbing to death five people, including a baby, in the latest grisly knife attack to strike the nation, state media said yesterday. Wang Haiyin said the killings in the village of Shangboshu village in Henan province on Sunday were motivated out of revenge over the refusal of the village chief to dole out a pension and allocate land, Xinhua news agency said. Besides killing village head Wang Chengguo, Wang also stabbed to death four of his family members, including a five-month-old infant, the report said. A six-yearold was also critically injured. It was not immediately clear if the two Wangs were related, but in rural Chinese villages people sharing the same surname are often relatives. The late village head was in charge of public security and presided over petty village disputes, the report said, adding that police were further investigating the circumstances of the attack. China has witnessed a spate of violent killings in recent years, many linked to disgruntled and often impoverished farmers seeking revenge for alleged social injustices. South Korea and US to hold war games SEOUL: South Korea will hold military exercises with the United States after any possible UN action against North Korea over its alleged sinking of a South Korean warship, the South’s military said yesterday. Seoul has asked the UN Security Council to punish Pyongyang over the sinking, which killed 46 South Korean sailors on board. North Korea denies involvement and has warned any punishment would trigger war. South Korea “will conduct the drills by linking them to

the result” of possible UN Security Council action against the North, said Col. Lee Bung-woo, a spokesman for South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff. He did not elaborate on the exact timing and scale of the drills off South Korea’s western coast. The exercises were originally scheduled for last month. Seoul’s announcement came days after China held live-fire drills off its eastern coast in what were seen as a response to the planned joint naval exercises by Washington and Seoul. Successful strike buoys India’s oppn ‘for now’ NEW DELHI: A successful national strike against high prices has rejuvenated India’s opposition, but their disunity may hamper efforts to force the Congress party-led government to go-slow on its reforms agenda. In what was the biggest show of opposition strength in recent years, many parts of the country shut down on Monday to protest raising of fuel prices when inflation was in double-digits. While the strike’s success could see a united opposition disrupt the government push for reform bills in parliament this month, any longterm impact on policy is unlikely primarily because of the opposition parties’ vast ideological differences. Leftist groups and the main opposition Hindu-nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have not allied in more than two decades. “They appear united at this point of time, but this political capital can evaporate very fast given the ideological contradictions within the opposition,” said Sudha Pai, professor of politics at the Jawaharlal Nehru University. India’s opposition has appeared hobbled since last year’s national election, which the Congress-led coalition won decisively. Indeed, Congress’s own parliamentary allies have often proved more of a headache in passing reform bills.

Taking a walk on the wild side near Korea border SEOUL: “Hurray!” a group of students yells exuberantly after cresting a green mountain peak and taking out cameras to snap the scenery. It’s a common sight in South Korea, where hikers in their thousands take every opportunity to flee the congested cities and ramble the mountains. But this particular trail not far from the tense border with North Korea has remained largely untouched for 60 years, since the outbreak of war cemented the country’s division. A four-km-wide heavily guarded Demilitarized Zone runs the width of the peninsula. South of the DMZ is a strip of land which civilians need special permission to visit. Because of the limited access, wildlife has flourished in the border region and officials in Gyeonggi province-which surrounds Seoul and borders the DMZ-decided it was time to

encourage hikers to appreciate it. In early May they opened up 182 kilometers of hiking trails on the fringe of the civilian restricted area. So far some 10,000 people have walked the trails, drawn by a combination of natural beauty, relics of the conflict decades ago and the opportunity to take a peek at North Korea in the hazy distance. There are 12 courses varying in length from eight to 21 kilometers and marked by different colored ribbons tied to trees. The province has a longterm plan to expand the trails all the way from the west coast to the east in cooperation with neighboring authorities. “While they are walking, hikers can think about the tense reality of the Korean peninsula and give a thought to Korea’s unification, especially after the Cheonan incident,” Han BaeSoo, the provincial official in

charge of the project said. The two Koreas have remained technically at war since the 1953 armistice. Tensions have risen sharply since the South accused the North of sinking its warship, the Cheonan, near the disputed sea border in March. Cross-border tourism programs for southerners were shut down as relations soured in recent years. But hikers can catch a glimpse of the North from some of the walks, notably the trial from the Munsu mountain fortress to Aegibong Peak. “This is where people experience both pleasure and sadness because they can see North Korean villages with the naked eye,” says the province’s website, referring to the pain of the peninsula’s division. A large Christmas tree is set up at Aegibong during the season and a Buddhist mass is held on Buddha’s Birthday to stress the need for reunification. —AFP

GIMPO: A picture shows a general view of territory near the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) seen from the Munsu mountain fortress at Gimpo. This area near the DMZ has remained largely untouched for 60 years since the outbreak of war cemented the country’s division. — AFP


Wednesday, July 7, 2010


SRINAGAR: This combination of images shows an Indian Central Reserve Police Force paramilitary soldier pushing a pall-bearer to the ground as he shields a stretcher bearing the body of a youth during a funeral ceremony in Srinagar yesterday. — AFP

3 die in latest bloody protests in Kashmir SRINAGAR: Three people were killed yesterday when security forces opened fire at protesters in Indian Kashmir, police said, the latest in a series of deaths that have stoked public anger. Crowds had poured on to the streets of Srinagar, the summer capital of Indian Kashmir, vowing revenge and chanting "we want freedom" and "blood for blood" after the death of another protester on Monday. Indian police and paramilitary forces struggling to control a wave of protests in the Muslim-majority Kashmir valley have

now killed at least 13 civilians in less than a month. "One young man was killed when security forces opened fire at a very violent rally, and a woman was killed by firing at a different demonstration in Srinagar," a police officer who declined to be named said. The city has been at the centre of furious separatist demonstrations since June 11 when a 17-year-old student died from a police teargas shell. The latest deaths occurred when security forces opened fire to disperse several

demonstrations triggered by the death of a protester who had gone missing on Monday and whose body was later found in a stream. Protesters had thrown stones Monday at a convoy belonging to Nasir Aslam, a senior minister and close aide of chief state minister Omar Abdullah, prompting troops to chase them away. Residents said the man drowned after being chased into the water by security personnel, but no official comment has been issued. No further details were available yes-

terday's two deaths, except that the man and the woman died in firings at separate protests in Srinagar. Each civilian death has sparked a new cycle of violence despite appeals for calm from Abdullah. Thousands of mourners, including women and children, gathered as the coffins of two of the slain protesters were carried through the streets yesterday. Leading moderate separatist Mirwaiz Umar Farooq also led rallies through downtown Srinagar, calling for the end to the "killing of innocent people."

The unrest is a major test for Abdullah, who came to power last year promising to improve human rights. Separatists in Kashmir have fought against rule by New Delhi for 20 years, campaigning for independence or for the Muslim-majority region to join neighboring Pakistan. The insurgency, which India says is fuelled by Pakistan, has claimed tens of thousands of lives. Amnesty International at the weekend urged the Indian government to investigate the spate of deaths. It said that both security personnel and

protesters involved in wrongdoing should be brought to justice, and pushed for the authorities to "avoid excessive use of force." Police imposed strict curfews in most parts of Srinagar but protests continued in defiance of the restrictions. Schools and colleges were closed after activists had appealed to students to hold anti-India protests. India and Pakistan each hold Kashmir in part but claim it in full. They have fought two of their three wars over the region since partition of the sub-continent in 1947. — AFP

Troops kill 23 militants Afghanistan urges Pakistan to act against terror groups

KANDAHAR: Soldiers from the Afghan National Army patrol with soldiers from Bravo Company, 2nd Battalion of the 508 Parachute Infantry Regiment of the 82nd Airborne, near the village of Charbagh in the volatile Arghandab Valley. — AP

Afghanistan’s elite police cadre set up in Kandahar KANDAHAR: There's a new cop in this Taleban stronghold where criminals, insurgents and powerbrokers wield more influence than the Afghan government. Nearly 600 members of Afghanistan's most elite police unit have arrived in Kandahar to help staff new checkpoints - one of the first visible signs of NATO's slow-moving campaign with Afghan forces to ramp up security in the nation's largest city in the south. The Afghan National Civil Order Police, partnered with international forces, are manning 11 new checkpoints around the clock. By August, their numbers will more than double as the so-called ANCOPs form a security perimeter around the city. At the same time, thousands of NATO and Afghan troops are streaming into Kandahar province to pressure insurgents operating in more rural areas. The strategy is to flood the area with police and troops, rout the militants and rush in new governance, development projects and security to win the loyalty of the city's half-million residents. With the temporary, well-trained ANCOPs in place, 500 members of Kandahar's current police force are being deployed for six weeks of training that hopefully will yield a more professional, less corrupt police force. "If we train the police on how they should behave and communicate with the local people, they can help them rather then make problems for them. I hope this training will solve the problem we have with the local people," said Kandahar provincial police chief Sardar Mohammad Zazai. Nationwide, complaints against the police include shaking down travelers for money at checkpoints, skimming fuel, pilfering supplies and demanding bribes, according to a report released last month by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction. Kandahar resident Imran Khan, who works for the local finance department, said the police are overworked because of ongoing violence. "Hopefully, they are going to come back better after their training - that the corruption can be controlled," he said. Nisar Khan, a college student in the city, said the public believes the local police force is rife with corruption. "The people of Kandahar are hopeful that after they get the training, they will know how to treat the people, how to search and it will reduce the amount of corruption," he said. The security campaign has been moving slower than expected because of the Taleban's deep roots in the area, rising crime, corruption and a public that doubts the Afghan government officials can provide needed services or protect them if they turn against the insurgents. The Taleban have shown they won't be easily routed from their spiritual birthplace. Proving their resilience, the insurgents have been carrying out attacks on people allied with the government and coalition forces. Gunmen assassinated the deputy mayor of Kandahar in April as he knelt for evening prayers

in a mosque. In June, a car bomb killed the chief of Arghandab district of Kandahar province. Days before, a suicide bomber killed more than 50 people at a wedding party in the same district. In April, three bombings - one targeting a local police official - shook the city. While such attacks prove the resilience of the Taleban, the poor-performing police force is an equally entrenched problem. "There are two enemies we're fighting in Kandahar - the Taleban and corruption and poor governance," US Sen Lindsey Graham said Monday in Kabul after visiting Kandahar earlier in the day. "As we neutralize the Taleban, we have to replace their control with good governance, honest government, police that are not corrupt, a legal system that works. The people in Kandahar that we met said the Taleban are 30 percent of the problem and poor governance is 70 percent of the problem." On a visit to the sprawling city a few weeks ago, Afghan President Hamid Karzai acknowledged corruption as spoke to several hundred leaders from the province in a steamy hall. He recounted a story of an Afghan National Police officer in Kandahar who used profanity and insulted a local religious cleric. "If we have such people in the police ranks we will not be able to bring security," Karzai said. "If a police officer does not respect a cleric in his house, how will it be possible for the police to respect people in the society? We don't need such police." The newly trained ANCOPS are not only tasked with providing better security in the city, but it's hoped that their professionalism will help change the perception of the Afghan National Police in the eyes of a skeptical public. "We want the population to see their ANCOP out serving them, providing stability so that people can go out to the market, to school and Kandahar can have a bustling economy that it should have," said Brig Gen Anne Macdonald, deputy to NATO's commanding general for police development in Afghanistan. "Right now, the police in Kandahar, unfortunately, have a reputation of being corrupt - certainly not all, but some." As the uniformed police enter their training programs, biometrics information will be obtained from them and they will be drug-tested, Macdonald said. "If they test positive for opiates, methphetamines or other hard drugs, they will be immediately let go," she said. Evidence of marijuana use will be overlooked in the beginning, but they will be retested later to make sure they are not still using the drug, she said. Residents this week got their first look at ANCOPS like Mohammad Toryalai, who was patting down the driver of a car and inspecting what turned out to be empty plastic jugs in the trunk. "We are having our guards search every vehicle," Toryalai said at the checkpoint he was working on the northwest side of the city. At a different checkpoint, another ANCOP, Mohammad Jawaid, patted down a man still astride his motorbike and inspected a three-wheeled rickshaw, decorated with colorful Pakistani artwork. — AP

PESHAWAR: Pakistan's security forces killed at least 23 militants in an exchange of fire during a search operation in the country's troubled northwest, officials said yesterday. The clash took place in remote Kilpani village of Lower Dir, the district where four bombers armed with car bombs and rockets attacked a paramilitary checkpoint killing one soldier early Sunday. A senior military official said that police, paramilitary and army were carrying out a joint search in the village when a group of about 50 insurgents opened fire on them, triggering a gunbattle. "Security personnel killed 23 militants and destroyed three of their hideouts in the village," he added. A senior police official in the area, Khan Razzaq, confirmed the incident and said that militants had managed to escape under the cover of darkness. Pakistan waged a major offensive against the Taleban in Lower Dir and the neighboring Swat valley last year but says the region was back under control. For two years, radical cleric Maulana Fazlullah led thousands of followers in an uprising that paralyzed much of Swat, promoting a repressive brand of Islamic law, opposing secular girls' education and beheading opponents. Pakistani security forces have fought against the Taleban in the lawless tribal belt on the Afghan border and parts of the northwest for years, but deadly clashes break out on largely a daily basis.

Meanwhile, Afghanistan's national security adviser has called on the Pakistani government to "take serious measures" against Islamist groups launching attacks on Afghan targets from secure havens inside Pakistan. Rangin Dadfar Spanta spoke to AFP in an interview a week after the Al-Jazeera television network said Afghan President Hamid Karzai had met the man who runs the Al-Qaeda-linked Haqqani network in talks mediated by Pakistan. Afghanistan, Pakistan and the Taleban have all denied any such meeting. Spanta's comments signal an about-turn by the Afghan government after months of overtures to Islamabad in efforts to prompt Pakistan to deal with militant groups, including Al-Qaeda and the Taleban based along the Afghan border. Spanta said that Afghanistan had "tremendous evidence" that Pakistani authorities allowed Al-Qaeda and other terror organizations to operate on the country's soil and had presented it to Islamabad "many times". Islamabad had failed to act against the groups based in Pakistan's tribal areas on the Afghan border, he said. "My expectation is that Pakistan after nine years-because theoretically Pakistan is part of the anti-terror alliance-they have to begin to take some serious measures against terrorism," he said. "They have to hand over the leadership of the terrorist groups, they have to give a list of the people they have arrest-

ed and are holding in the detention centers in Pakistan." Afghan officials have blamed a number of major attacks on Pakistani-based groups whom they say are supported by Pakistan's intelligence and military. Such militants were blamed for blowing up the Serena Hotel in Kabul in 2008, attacking the Indian embassy, other Indian targets and a UN guesthouse in October that led to a mass withdrawal from Afghanistan of UN staff. Pakistani officials were not reachable for comment, but the military consistently denies supporting militant groups and points to the losses of more than 2,000 Pakistani soldiers fighting homegrown Taleban since 2002. "We have evidence that the terrorists from Pakistan are involved in daily attacks against our people and international 'jihadi' groups are active here. They have their base and sanctuaries behind our border and this is a serious problem," Spanta said. "We have to address the menace of terrorism." Relations between Kabul and Islamabad have been traditionally marked by distrust, but there had been growing signs of rapprochement. Karzai had been seen as trying to reach an arrangement with Pakistan-possibly including a power-sharing deal with the Taleban - that would help bring an end to the war in Afghanistan, now in its ninth year. This was also seen as a way of giving Pakistan a stake in Afghanistan's future, despite broad opposition among Afghan politicians and the public. Karzai's

spokesman said Spanta's comments were a reiteration of Kabul's position that Pakistan must be involved in the process of "bringing peace and stability not only in Afghanistan but also in Pakistan and in the region". Reaching peace would not be possible, Waheed Omar told reporters, "without an active and honest role by the Islamic Republic of Pakistan". Spanta-a former foreign minister and the senior cabinet-level advisor to Karzai on security issues-said senior Pakistani military and intelligence officials had visited Kabul in recent months on goodwill visits. "I hope we can begin a constructive dialogue with a serious agenda during the next meeting in Islamabad, or in Kabul... maybe next month," he said. Spanta said Pakistan had failed to act against Al-Qaeda, the Afghan Taleban leadership known as the Quetta Shura, the Haqqani network, the minor Hekmatyar group, Hizb-u-Tahrir, as well as "Uzbek and Chechen terrorist groups". He denied Karzai had met Sirajuddin Haqqani, who runs the Haqqani network, which often launches attacks in Afghanistan, or the Taleban, "through mediation of Pakistan forces or otherwise". Pakistani security officials indicated last month on condition of anonymity that they were planning to help broker peace efforts in Afghanistan by acting as a bridge between the Kabul government and powerful Haqqani network. — Agencies

Pakistan police struggle to battle militants in Punjab LAHORE: In Pakistan's heartland of Punjab, the front line force against the surge in Islamic militant attacks is a poorly equipped, incompetent and corrupt police. And that's only part of the problem. Police complain powerful Pakistani intelligence agencies fail to share crucial information, while the province's government remains reluctant to act against influential militant groups. Taleban fighters along the Afghan border orchestrate attacks in Punjab by teaming up with local militants who were once supported by the Pakistani government to fight in Kashmir and Afghanistan. They have turned against their former masters because of the country's close alliance with the United States. Lahore, the provincial capital and Pakistan's second largest city, is increasingly targeted. Just two years ago it was rarely blighted by bombings. In the last month alone, attacks have killed at least 135 people, including 42 who died last week when two suicide bombers detonated their explosives among thousands visiting the famous shrine of an 11th century Sufi saint. The strength of the police is critical for combating that violence because the government cannot rely on the military to battle militants as it has done in the rugged, northwestern tribal areas. While police have sometimes been commended for extreme bravery in the face of suicide attacks, their reputation is generally poor. Police often extract bribes from citizens, and Transparency International says they are the most corrupt public sector agency in Pakistan. In addition, they are often poorly trained in carrying out investigations and regularly use torture to elicit confessions, Hassan Abbas, a Columbia University professor who previously worked with the Pakistani police, said in a recent report. Even the Punjab police chief admits the force is struggling. "It was a strain to handle traditional crime like theft, murder and property disputes," Tariq Salim Dogar said. "The present dimension is totally new for all members of the police and other branches, with car bombs, suicide attacks and militants targeting law enforcement agencies," he said. The issue has raised concerns in Washington, prompting the US to budget millions of dollars in aid for the first time to boost police capabilities in Punjab, Pakistan's most populous province and the key to stability or chaos in this nuclear-armed nation. Thursday's shrine bombing also drew attention to a lack of coordination between security agencies, with police complaining they lack actionable intelligence to prevent attacks. That was echoed by the party that governs Punjab, which is in opposition to the national government and often bickers with it over who is to blame for failing to stop militant violence. "We are not getting good intelligence from the intelligence agencies, especially the Intelligence Bureau and others under the Interior Ministry, which I think is important if we have to fight terrorism," said former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, the country's main opposition leader, whose brother is the chief elected official for Punjab. Interior Minister Rehman Malik denied any problems with intelligence sharing and said that his ministry warned the Punjab government a few days before the latest attack that a mosque or shrine might be targeted. — AP

BALTAL, Kashmir: Hindu pilgrims begin their journey from Baltal Base Camp to Srinagar's Amarnath Cave Shrine at 12,729 ft (3,880 m) altitude. Thousands of Hindu pilgrims are trekking along slippery trails to reach a shrine high in the mountains of Indian Kashmir despite violent protests in the Muslim-majority region. — AFP

Hindus brave violence to reach Kashmir shrine SRINAGAR: Thousands of Hindu pilgrims are trekking along slippery trails to reach a shrine high in the mountains of Indian Kashmir despite violent protests in the Muslim-majority region. Strikes and demonstrations have paralyzed the Kashmir valley over the killing of 11 civilians in the last month by Indian police and paramilitary forces struggling to control separatist rallies. However, the annual Hindu pilgrimage to the Amarnath caves in the Himalayas has still attracted tens of thousands of devotees to see the natural ice formation that is worshipped as a symbol of Shiva, the god of destruction. By Monday, the sixth day of the two-month pilgrimage, more than 50,000 Hindus-including scores of ash-smeared holy men-had made the grueling climb to the shrine, which is set 3,900 meters above sea level. Authorities expect 500,000 people to visit this year and security is tight. The pilgrims have to travel through the curfew-hit town of Anantag to reach the base camp at Nunwun, 100 kilometers south of the Indian Kashmir summer capital Srinagar. Separatists leading the recent unrest

have welcomed the devotees, despite most Kashmiri Muslims resenting that the region is ruled from New Delhi as part of Hindu-majority India. "They are our esteemed guests and they should be looked after very well," said Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, a senior separatist politician. Most of the pilgrims prefer the traditional Nunwun route, which takes five to six days to complete the return journey-compared to a oneday trip via the steeper Baltal route. From Nunwun, the pilgrims start a 50-kilometre trek up treacherous mountain paths to reach the shrine. "Thousands of devotees are reaching the base camp every day for their onward trek," said Tara Chand, Kashmir's deputy chief minister. The pilgrimage has previously been the target of Islamic militant groups battling Indian rule in Kashmir. At least 32 pilgrims were killed in 2000 and 10 more died the following year when militant gunmen opened fire. Authorities have deployed thousands of police and paramilitary forces to guard the devotees, though the risk of militant attack has fallen dramatically in recent years. — AFP



Wednesday, July 7, 2010


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Cut in Turk-Israeli relations unlikely By Burak Akinci


urkey's threats to sever relations with Israel are unlikely to materialise as both countries need each other and Ankara cannot afford new tensions with the West, analysts said Monday. Stoking up a simmering crisis, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Monday that Turkey would cut diplomatic ties unless it gets an apology over a May 31 raid on Gaza-bound aid ships in which nine Turks were killed. But analysts said Davutoglu was compelled to issue the warning mostly because Israel's vocal refusal to apologise for the raid threatened to make the Turkish government lose face at home. "If Israel had made a little effort, the Turkish government would have responded with even greater willingness," Bahadir Dincer from the International Strategic Research Organisation in Ankara told AFP. "Turkey and Israel need each other on the diplomatic chessboard of the Middle East," he said. Serdar Erdurmaz, an expert at the Strategic Analysis Centre, described Davutoglu's remarks as an attempt to win political capital at home but added that Ankara had actually relaxed its conditions for reconciliation. Turkey has until now insisted on an international probe into the raid, but Davutoglu told the Hurriyet

daily Monday that an inquiry by Israel alone would be also acceptable if it resulted in an apology and compensation for the victims' families. "Despite all the tensions, the two countries have displayed willingness to put relations back on track," Erdurmaz said, pointing to secret talks on Wednesday between Davutoglu and Israeli trade minister Benjamin Ben Eliezer in Brussels. Analysts argued that splitting with Israel would poison ties with Washington at a time when Turkey's Islamist-rooted government is already under fire for its close ties with Iran and scrambling to debunk charges that it is taking NATO's sole mainly-Muslim member away from the West. "Severing relations with Israel does not seem possible to me. There is serious US pressure" on Turkey and Israel to mend fences, Oytun Orhan from the Middle East Studies Centre said. "Ties with Israel are not separate from Turkey's pro-Western orientation, which remains its main foreign policy peg... Turkey cannot position itself as a country in full confrontation with Israel like Iran or Syria," he said. But Turkey, the analyst stressed, may opt to "gradually increase pressure" on Israel - by extending an overflight ban on Israeli military aircraft to civilian planes for instance - while keeping dialogue channels open. — AFP

Israel has more to lose if ties are cut By Jean-Luc Renaudie


srael would be the big loser in case of a break in relations with former strategic ally Turkey because of its refusal to apologise to Ankara for a deadly naval raid, analysts warn. "In this tug of war, Israel has more to lose than Turkey," said Ofra Bengio, an Israeli university professor and author of the book "The Turkish-Israeli Relationship: Changing Ties of Middle Eastern Outsiders". "Turkey is a member of NATO and has close links with Muslim countries. It can give us up easily. We are a small, isolated country in this region," she said. The two countries have been at loggerheads ever since Israeli commandos on May 31 raided a Turkish-owned ferry with hundreds of activists on board aiming to break the blockade of Gaza, killing nine Turks. Turkey has repeatedly demanded a formal Israeli apology, compensation and an international investigation into the operation. Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, in comments published on Monday by Hurriyet newspaper, warned that relations could be broken, but Israel said it would not apologise for defending its security. Turkey has already closed its airspace to all Israeli military flights in reaction to the raid, Davutoglu said, adding that it could be extended to civilian flights. A key feature of TurkishIsraeli relations has been the military cooperation agreement they signed in 1996, to the fury

of Arab and Muslim countries. Under the deal, Israeli military industries won numerous contracts to sell weapons to the Turkish armed forces such as M60 tanks and upgrade their current arsenal, including F-4 and F-5 fighter jets. The two countries have carried out joint military exercises and Israeli troops have been allowed to train on Turkish territory. "Turkey is the only Muslim country with which we had strategic military ties - even if Ankara would never have allowed Israeli warplanes to use its air space to attack Iranian nuclear sites," said Bengio. But Amir Rapapport, a military analyst at Israel's Begin Sadat Centre for Strategic Studies, said the biggest loss would be the joint drills which "allowed the Israeli air force to practice for long-distance attacks". "Israel using Turkish airspace had a deterrent effect on Iran, Iraq and Syria. Now that is lost," agreed Efraim Inbar, a political analyst from Bar Ilan University."The loss of Turkey is a serious strategic loss. Turkey is a very important country with huge influence in the Middle East," said Inbar. Ankara recalled its ambassador immediately after the raid, scrapped plans for three joint military exercises and said economic and defence links would be reduced to a "minimum level". Zvi Elpeleg, a former Israeli ambassador to Turkey, believes his country "is paying for Europe's refusal to allow Turkey to join the EU". — AFP

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.

Sudan faces split into two one-party states By Andrew Heavens


n internationally brokered peace deal that was supposed to transform Sudan into a unified democracy could be about to split Africa's largest country into two oneparty states. In six months time, people from Sudan's oil-producing south are due to vote in a referendum on whether they should secede and form Africa's newest nation - a plebiscite promised under a 2005 accord that ended decades of north-south civil war. Most analysts say south Sudan's poverty-stricken population, traumatised by the conflict and years of perceived northern exploitation, are likely to vote 'yes' for independence. Many are already looking beyond the referendum to work out what an independent south - and a newly separated north might look like. The political prognosis is not good, particularly following elections in April when opposition groups say the main northern and southern parties stamped out competition with intimidation and fraud. Campaign group

Human Rights Watch said it collected reports of harassment, arbitrary arrests and attacks on opposition figures, activists and journalists during and since the elections on both sides of the north-south border. "The actions of the two main parties (in the north and the south) do not bode well for democratic governance after the referendum," said group researcher Tiseke Kasambala. The domination of the two main parties was confirmed in the April elections - the north's National Congress Party (NCP), led by president Omar Hassan Al-Bashir, took most seats in Khartoum's national assembly while the south's Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM), won almost every seat in the semi-autonomous southern parliament. Both parties last month strengthened their hold still further when they announced new cabinets in Khartoum and the southern capital Juba including only a handful of largely token opposition voices. The results came as a reality check to the ambitions set out in the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement.

Under the accord witnessed by Washington, London and other powers, both sides promised to campaign to make unity attractive to their populations and to bring about the "democratic transformation" of Sudan through elections and reforms. "Sudan is now better classified as a two-party state where democracy takes a back seat to the authoritarian regimes that control their respective regions. Opposition parties throughout the entire country now hold less than five percent of the seats in the National Assembly," academic Marc Gustafson wrote in an analysis of the results on the blog Making Sense of Sudan. If all goes as expected in the referendum, that two-party state would become two one-party states. Both parties say their election victories, were built on genuine popular support. "The cabinet was formed according to the result of the election," said NCP official Rabie Abdelati. "The majority of southerners are convinced that it was the SPLM that brought them the referendum. It is the only

organisation that can take them to the referendum," said senior SPLM official Yasir Arman. He said the party was investigating reports of abuses and did lose a number of seats to opposition figures in the poll. But opposition parties say the poll was rigged. "They are not interested (in sharing power). In particular the NCP. Both of them, they are looking after their own interests," said vice president of the opposition Umma group Fadlalla Burma Nasir. There is more at stake than the principle of multi-party politics. There are also implications for the security of the country and the surrounding region. Sudan has long been plagued by rebellions and civil conflicts, most of them launched by marginalised groups in the country's peripheries most recently Darfur in the west - challenging the dominance of the central power. Many of those fights have spread to destabilise Sudan's neighbours and disrupted companies working in the oil sector. Oil could be one of the main flashpoints after a north-south split. Most of

Sudan's proven oil reserves are found in the south, but are funnelled through northern pipelines to reach Port Sudan on the Red Sea. Northern and southern leaders have still not reached an agreement on how revenues would be divided. Both parties will have to make serious reforms in they want to avoid a repeat of the conflicts of the past, said Fouad Hikmat of the International Crisis Group. "They (the NCP and the SPLM) have to look into political pluralism ... There needs to be serious political reform in the north and the south if they want to be stable." And stability is no small thing for a country possibly heading towards separation. The historical precedents are far from encouraging. "In history there are so many examples of the separation of a united country resulting in war," said Ibrahim El-Senoussi of the Islamist opposition Popular Congress Party, whose leader was released from a sixweek detention last week. "Pakistan and India and Bangladesh, Eritrea and Ethiopia and other countries. The same is going to be repeated." — Reuters

Widows grim legacy for postwar Iraq By Hamza Hendawi


hree decades of wars, massacres and sectarian killings have left Iraq with as many as a million widows, by Iraqi government count. Hameeda Ayed is one of them. At 45, with three children, she is part of a vast sisterhood in a tortured land, and for the more than 100,000 who lost their husbands in the US-led invasion and violent aftermath, the struggling postwar government is of little help. Ayed is entitled to 150,000 dinars (about $130) a month from the government, plus 15,000 dinars (about $12) for each of her children. But after two years of chasing after official papers and signatures on her application, having no friends in high places to grease the wheels for her, she says she is giving up; the endless standing in line was making her neglect the children, aged 10, 12 and 15. So she makes ends meet by selling snacks and sodas from her home in a Shiite enclave of southern Baghdad where she moved from a Sunni area after her husband died in the tit-for-tat killings of 2007. "Our life has been turned into misery and desperation," she said. "This is what we got from occupation and the dreams of democracy: orphans, widows, homeless, displaced and fugitives." Nahdah Hameed, the government's point person on women's social affairs, puts the number of widows at about 1 million, and even though the post-invasion violence has wound down, sporadic shootings and bombings continue to widow Iraqi women. Besides the invasion, this nation of 27 million has gone

through the 1980-88 war with Iran, the 1991 Gulf war, and Saddam Hussein's brutal campaigns against the Shiites and Kurds in the 1980s and 1990s. The widows gather in dusty cemeteries. They squat on the dirt by their husbands' graves, sobbing and murmuring remembrances under a merciless sun. Children sit in their shadows, clinging to their mothers' flowing black robes. Back in the cities, the women have to focus on their own survival and chase after benefits that fall short of what they need to stave off destitution. In interviews, several

others describe predicaments similar to Ayed's. "We have a disastrously high number of widows," said Jinan Mubarak, head of a nongovernmental organization that works to educate women and train them for jobs. "It has a serious social dimension and there are also the orphans to worry about." The question of how to provide for those widows with no source of income has become a major concern for groups like Mubarak's as well as the authorities. In 2008 the government set up the Directorate of Social Care for Women that is now

gradually taking over the payment of stipends from the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, which was widely accused of inefficiency and corruption. However, Hameed, the directorate's chief, complains that she lacks the funds to efficiently serve areas beyond the capital and lacks the authority to introduce reform and eradicate corruption in the ministry departments handling widows. The post-2003 widows make a sharp contrast to those who lost husbands in previous wars. Saddam, flush with oil money,

lavished plots of land, cars and generous pensions on the widows of the Iraq-Iran war, in which half a million Iraqis and Iranians died. But the widows of the tens of thousands who died in Saddam's internal wars on Shiites, Kurds and political opponents in general usually were left struggling. Mubarak and other women's activists say poverty is driving some Iraqi women into prostitution, both in Iraq and in neighboring Jordan and Syria, home to the Arab world's largest Iraqi refugee communities. "Many of Iraq's neighbors are exploiting

In this photo taken on June 12, 2010, Iraqi widows and their children visit the Valley of Peace cemetery in Najaf in southern Iraq. — AP

Iraqi women," said activist Suzan Kazim Kashkoul. Also, she and other advocates say, the post-US invasion violence has shrunk the pool of potential husbands for widows as well as single women over 30, and in the sectarian-charged postwar atmosphere, SunniShiite marriages have become rare. The economy is in trouble yet the housing market is hot, making housing unaffordable for many. "The economic crisis is the core cause of all the women's problems in Iraq," said Mubarak. Iman Kazim, a 40-year-old mother of three, lives in Baghdad's Shiite district of Hurriyah where some of the worst sectarian violence raged. Kisrah Al-Hassani, the retired textile worker to whom she was married, was killed by a mortar explosion in Jan 2007 as he walked home from a food market. Al-Hassani had two wives, and Iman was his second, living with his brother and his family. After Al-Hassani was killed she married a baker more than 10 years her junior, but the union turned out badly - he beat her and her children - and she now wants a divorce. Yet she is one of the lucky ones. She has managed to get a monthly pension of about $90 because her late husband worked for a state-owned textile factory, and she has a job as a school janitor, which brings in $190 a month. About $60 a month goes to buy electricity from a privately owned generator because the city experiences power cuts of up to 18 hours or more. Rent is high, and with three mouths to feed, she says she can afford to buy only "what is absolutely necessary". — AP


Wednesday, July 7, 2010


Polish PM weighs reform costs after win By Gareth Jones


olish Prime Minister Donald Tusk can speed up market reforms now that his party has captured the presidency, but he risks hurting his chances in parliamentary elections next year if he cuts the budget deficit too painfully. Tusk's centrist Civic Platform (PO) no longer faces the threat of vetos after its candidate Bronislaw Komorowski won Sunday's cliffhanger presidential election. The late President Lech Kaczynski, killed in a plane crash in April, blocked health and pension bills put forward by PO. But after Komorowski narrowly beat Kaczynski's twin Jaroslaw, a populist rightwinger, Tusk could upset key voter groups if he pursues painful reforms. "The political logic will be to avoid painful cuts this fall (for the 2011 budget cycle)," Preston Keat of Eurasia Group, a London-based risk consultancy, wrote in an analysis. "The political logic of incrementalism will prevail for at least the rest of 2010, unless outside factors come into play," he said, adding that criticism from the European Commission or credit ratings agencies may force swifter fiscal consolidation. Poland's main economic problems are a budget deficit equal to 7 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) - twice the European Union's ceiling and public debt. Although low by west European standards, public debt is nearing 55 percent of GDP and if that level is breached, this would trigger deep spending cuts under Polish law. Tusk is banking on a strong revival of economic growth to help to rein in the deficit and debt levels. The economy, the only one in the 27-strong EU to avoid recession in 2009, is forecast to grow 3 percent in 2010 after 1.8 percent in 2009. Analysts say Poland remains a rare economic bright spot in Europe and rule out the kind of budget crisis that hit Hungary and Greece. However, failure to tackle the deficit aggressively could spell more pain for Poles later. "The relatively poor business climate and large public sector could impede sustained high economic growth rates

Birmingham 25 years after riots By Chris Arnot


Parliament speaker and acting president Bronislaw Komorowski holds flowers and a paper heart in Polish national colors as he greets supporters after acknowledging the exit polls of the presidential election runoff in Warsaw on July 4, 2010. — AP over the medium term unless addressed with structural reforms," David Heslam, a director at Fitch ratings agency, told Reuters. "The measures to be implemented to bring the budget deficit down to below 3 percent of GDP in 2012 have yet to be detailed by the government. A failure to implement measures to reduce the deficit ... and stabilise the general government debt ratio would increase negative pressure on Poland's sovereign credit rating." Economists say Poland needs to raise its retirement age, eliminate pension privileges for farmers, policemen and other groups of workers, slash generous disability benefits and shake

up its creaking public health system. Polish liberals lament a lack of debate on issues such as luring immigrant workers, providing incentives to women to have children and bureaucratic burdens on business. In the annual Doing Business report for 2010, Poland ranked 72nd of 183 countries, below Rwanda and Belarus. It was 23rd among the EU's 27 member states on the list. In a lacklustre presidential election campaign, Komorowski and Kaczynski barely touched on such concerns, preferring to trade insults instead over their opponent's alleged plans to privatise health care or to abolish farm subsidies. "It seemed that

both candidates were rather unaware of the seriousness of the situation when it comes to the fiscal deficit or public debt matters," said Maciej Reluga, chief economist at Bank Zachodni WBK in Warsaw. The unexpectedly strong result for Kaczynski, the Polish politician with the highest negative rating before his brother's death, is another factor likely to quell the government's reform appetite. Komorowski, a loyal Tusk ally, won 53 percent of votes on Sunday while Kaczynski won 47 percent. "I think they (PO) are to some extent shocked by Kaczynski's result ... (PO) may choose now just to be passive and follow a

wait-and-see strategy. I don't believe in some 'big bang' of reforms," said Adam Balcer of the DemoEuropa think-tank. Other analysts predicted only modest steps such as trimming administrative costs along with possible personnel changes in the government to give an impression of activity. Balcer said Kaczynski's election strategy of moving to the middleground, toning down his customary nationalist rhetoric and promoting media-friendly aides within his entourage would serve him well in the countdown to the 2011 parliamentary poll. Analysts say his Law and Justice party (PiS), which despite its conservative Catholic

stance on moral and social issues tilts to the left on the economy, is also trying to build bridges to Poland's main leftwing party after its candidate did better than expected in the first round of voting on June 20. "In a sense (Kaczynski) 'won' the presidential election before the vote even happened yesterday the fact that PiS was even in a close race with PO highlighted the success of the PiS makeover," said Eurasia Group's Keat. "They are no longer stuck in the nationalistpopulist cul-de-sac. This puts a new type of pressure on PO, and as result the political downside of fiscal reform just got bigger." — Reuters

Euro policymakers, markets further apart than ever By Paul Taylor


arkets abhor a vacuum, and the perception gap between euro zone policymakers and financial professionals is almost certainly at its widest since the single European currency's launch in 1999. That is one reason why southern European countries' bonds remain under almost as much pressure as they faced before the EU agreed on May 2 on a 110 billion euro bailout for Greece and a week later on a giant financial safety net for euro zone countries. It also helps explain why interbank lending has dried up in some areas of Europe, with Iberian and Greek banks particularly dependent on the European Central Bank for refinancing. Bankers and investors increasingly believe Greece is likely to default on its debt in the next three to five years, and many want Europe's authorities to create an orderly restructuring process to share out the losses and avoid market panic.

Policymakers, on the other hand, believe any talk of default or restructuring is dangerous because it amplifies market panic, undermines the credibility of the currency area and may prevent Greece implementing the radical fiscal adjustment it has accepted. That was a key dividing line between policy officials, academic economists, international financial veterans and market participants at a forum conducted under ground rules that preclude indentifying speakers. In one forthright exchange, an investment manager said no investor with fiduciary duties would invest in a country like Greece that is forecast to have a debt of 150 percent of gross domestic product in 2012 and will need to convert a budget deficit of 13 percent of GDP last year into a 5 percent primary surplus to put its debt on a downward trajectory. Markets were pricing in up to a 50 percent "haircut" on Greece's sovereign debt, implying significant losses for the ECB and euro zone member states that have lent it

money. "We have 18 months to come up with a European debt restructuring mechanism before this problem is going to hit," the investment manager said, accusing the ECB and the European Commission of ignoring the problem in their proposals. A euro zone government policymaker responded that EU leaders had been clear that debt restructuring was "not on the table". "Maybe we are in denial, but suicide is not a good way to do business either," he said. Policymakers from the ECB, the European Commission and euro zone governments see the key to overcoming the euro zone crisis and restoring confidence mostly in strengthening and widening Europe's fiscal rules and economic surveillance. The likely outcome, one of them said, was that the euro zone would "muddle through" with adapted rules. By contrast, market players, academics and international experts said the crisis had exposed fundamental design flaws in European Monetary Union

which have to be addressed for the euro to retain credibility as an international reserve currency. Among the flaws highlighted were the absence of a fiscal or economic union, the way cheap credit was allowed to fuel real estate and consumer booms in countries like Spain, Portugal and Ireland, and the failure of euro zone countries to think or act as a bloc in social, welfare or labour policies. Speakers noted that Spain and Ireland, two of the countries hardest hit by the crisis, had respected all the EU's fiscal rules until their real estate and credit bubbles burst in 2007. Another big difference between market participants and the policymakers concerned the timetable for overcoming the euro zone's turmoil. European policymakers argued that turbulence should abate within weeks, once the European Union has begun to implement austerity measures, conducted transparent stress tests on its top 100 banks and shown that the European Financial Stability Facility

backstop is up and running. But several of the bankers and investors warned it would take years for confidence to return, once there was a clear mechanism for resolving the debts of insolvent states, a recapitalisation of banks found to be at risk and a longer-term backstop for euro zone debt. Veteran former policymakers from the United States, Latin America and Japan were more optimistic about the euro's survival and growth as a reserve currency than some European investors. But they also expected the crisis to trigger bolder steps in European economic and fiscal integration than seem politically feasible in today's Europe. A Latin American central banking veteran of financial rescues, arguing against any early move to restructure Greece's debt, likened the euro zone's challenge to building a hospital. "If you want patients to have confidence, you don't start by building and showing off the morgue," he said. — Reuters

Japan voters' yen for change could hurt PM party By Linda Sieg



apanese voters longing for change propelled the Democratic Party to power for the first time in a historic election last year. Now, that same desire could deprive the party of the decisive win needed to avoid policy deadlock. Media surveys show the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) and its tiny ally may well fall short of the 56 seats they need to win control of parliament's upper house an election next Sunday, forcing them to seek new allies to implement policies smoothly. More damaging for Prime Minister Naoto Kan and hopes of avoiding messy post-vote manoeuvring, the DPJ may miss Kan's target of keeping the 54 seats it has at stake in the election, at which half of the chamber's 242 seats are up for grabs. That would leave Kan, Japan's fifth premier in three years, vulnerable to a challenge from inside his party while also making it harder to lure opposition lawmakers into a coalition. Domestic media and some analysts are making much of Kan's call to debate a rise in the 5 percent sales tax to rein in public debt as a key reason for the DPJ's fading fortunes. Support for the government has dropped about 20 points to below 50 percent since the premier floated the idea. Some experts, though, point to a fundamen-

tally different problem: Kan's party is losing its lustre as an agent of change. "They haven't done anything to convince voters that they are a

party o f change they can believe in," said Jeffrey Kingston, director of Asia studies at Temple University's Japan Campus. "The drop

of 20 points is not an indication that people are against raising taxes per se ... It's his waffling on the issue." The Democrats swept to power in an August 2009 general election with promises to slash wasteful spending, take control of policymaking away from bureaucrats and focus spending on consumers rather than companies and vested interests. Many voters were less impressed with the DPJ's spending pledges, some of which have been scaled back already, than hopeful it could perk up the country after two decades of stagnation under the long-dominant Liberal Democratic Party (LDP). But eight months of indecisive leadership by Kan's predecessor, Yukio Hatoyama, and a funding scandal dogging DPJ powerbroker Ichiro Ozawa eroded support for the novice party. A sharp ratings rebound after Hatoyama and Ozawa resigned in tandem last month has also proved short-lived. "People want something different

to happen - that's why they voted for the DPJ, but nothing's happening," said Kiyoko Okubo, a 59-year-old store manager in Tokyo. "Nothing gets done. People want something new." That kind of disappointment is boosting support for the tiny Your Party, formed by LDP defector Yoshimi Watanabe last year, although the ousted LDP itself may also do surprisingly well. Watanabe wants waste-cutting and slashing government payrolls to precede any tax hike -an echo of the Democrats' stance last year - while also urging deregulation to boost growth. "The reason why Minna no To (Your Party) looks good is they are promising the same kinds of change the DPJ has been promising," said Chuo University professor Steven Reed. "They (the Democrats) haven't stopped promising and doing things, but expectations about how quickly things happen and what can be done are totally unrealistic." Analysts fault Kan less for broaching the sales tax topic than for failing to package his proposal in a way to win votes. Talk of a sales tax has traditionally been fatal for the ruling party at the polls, but recent surveys show more voters are willing to swallow higher taxes to curb debt and bolster the social security system needed for a fast-ageing society. "I think support for a consumption

tax increase is substantial and you can pull it off, but Kan has not handled it well," said Columbia University professor Gerry Curtis. Some critics say Kan should have thought out his proposal more clearly, not just float an LDP plan to raise the tax to 10 percent. Others say he blundered by mentioning details too soon. But most agree the Democrats should be stressing commitment to cutting waste as a prerequisite to higher taxes - a point Kan makes, but not forcefully enough. "They've got a proper policy. What they need is a spin doctor," said Chuo University's Reed. With less than a week left before voting day, the Democrats have added a new message to their campaign, urging voters to hand the party victory to avoid policy deadlock and confusion. "The choice is between choosing stability and moving forward with policies, or again returning politics to confusion," DPJ Deputy Secretary-general Goshi Hosono told Reuters this week. But that appeal may not convince sceptical voters. "Kan is trying to remind people why they voted for the DPJ last summer, but basically, they lost that trust," Temple University's Kingston said. "I don't think that message will work, because from most people's perspective, the government hasn't shown itself to be resolute." — Reuters

or two nights running, Wazeem Zaffar looked out from his bedroom window to see flames rising from shops that had been petrol bombed. He could hear shouts, screams, the smashing of glass and the wailing of sirens. "My father forbade me to set foot outside the door for two days," he recalls. Zaffar, now chairman of Handsworth Neighbourhood Forum, was five at the time - the late summer of 1985. For the second time in his short life (he was a baby during the disturbances of July 1981), Handsworth and adjoining Lozells in inner-city Birmingham, in central England, were branded into national consciousness as combustible centres of discontent. Another 20 years would pass before Lozells erupted again. This time the immediate cause was nothing to do with allegations of heavyhanded policing. Instead, there was an unfounded rumour, put out on a pirate radio station, that a black teenage girl caught shoplifting had been raped by up to 25 Pakistanis. But the underlying issue was all too familiar. It was the friction that sometimes sparks in areas of high unemployment and low incomes, between people from different cultures who live alongside one another, often in overcrowded and substandard housing. "And don't forget the criminal elements coming in from outside, intent on stirring things up," insists Zaffar. Zaffar, who has a degree in logistics from nearby Aston University, still lives in the house in Lozells where he was brought up. His father, former shopkeeper, taxi driver and community leader, died not long ago. "There were thousands of people at his funeral," he reflects with filial pride. His eyes, which have clouded over for a moment, flash with passion as he adds: "This is a fantastic, diverse yet closeknit community. I have more African-Caribbean friends than Pakistani." Nearly a quarter of a century on from the riots that kept him awake as a child, Zaffar sits alone in what a couple of months ago was the bustling election headquarters for the local Labour MP, Khalid Mahmood. Zaffar is a Labour activist, but he admits: "There would have been cuts (financial cutbacks) whichever party won." What worries him now is that the depth of the cuts demanded by the coalition (government in London) will undermine the work done in the five years since the last local disturbances - on improving housing stock, employment training and relations between communities. Specifically, he is concerned for the future of Urban Living, one of 10 "housing market renewal pathfinders" set up in 2003 to take on the sort of long-term challenges of improving properties in areas that the private sector would shy away from. "This was always meant to be a 15-year program," says Peter Latchford, chair of the northwest Birmingham and Sandwell pathfinder. "If you withdraw early, then you are showing disrespect to the people you are supposed to be serving." Funding is in place only until next March. Urban Living has invested £16m in Lozells alone. Alongside the police and the city council, it has worked through neighbourhood forums to find out what local people want. Neighbours here have their roots in very different parts of the world. I take a short stroll down Lozells Road and come across a mini-market offering Polish, Iranian, Kurdish, Turkish, Caribbean and pan-Asian food and drink. English too, although white English people are a minority, representing less than 20 percent of the population. Polish mechanics service Pakistaniowned taxis and Vietnamese do tai chi in a garden close to the St Francis Centre, an organisation with its roots in Irish Catholicism that harbours a boxing ring in its basement. Across the road is the Sisters of Mercy drop-in cen-

tre for vulnerable women of all religions and races. People from 169 different countries have arrived in Lozells and its immediate environs since 2004. "Population churn," as Latchford calls it, is one of the ongoing complexities. And, in the time-honoured way of immigrant communities, many of those who make money move out. Saeed Haque, the son of a Bangladeshi imam, welcomes me to another of the neighbourhood forums that Urban Living has invested in to help residents air their grievances and strengthen links. This one is sited above the Bangladeshi youth forum. Both share a building with Lozells Methodist church, where predominantly elderly AfricanCaribbeans have recently been joined by incoming worshippers from Congo. "We try to give each other space and respect," says Haque, 31, whose family arrived in Lozells just before the riots of 1985. Twenty five years on, he has a degree in sociology from Birmingham University and is doing a master's in public service commissioning. "I like the idea of holding agencies to account for how they spend public money," he says. He remains passionately committed to the area where he grew up. "If there was a tourist board for Lozells, I'd be the CEO," he grins before adding: "We've done a lot of work here since the disturbances of 2005 and the worry is that, without a strong investment program in jobs and housing, it will go into reverse." Like Zaffar, he is full of praise for the work instigated by Urban Living and the efforts made by the police to build better relationships in the neighbourhood. "Policing with consent gets you information," he emphasises. Nobody knows that better than Inspector Danielle Corfield, dubbed the "sector inspector" by the regional West Midlands police. "We've tried to get out there, engage and listen," she says. With funding from Urban Living and Birmingham city council, she has brought in coaches from the Football Association to work with up to 100 local youths. "We've also had support from Aston Villa (professional football club)," says Corfield. "They've supplied not only coaches but also provided tours of the ground (stadium) and free tickets." One consequence is that youths from Lozells have been prepared to cross boundaries into Aston - a short journey geographically yet significant socially in a city where postcode violence (violence between people from different areas of the city) is not uncommon. Corfield concedes that the incarceration of some of the most notorious gang leaders has helped, but she is understandably proud that the latest recorded figures on gun crime are 57 percent down on seven years ago. However, she is as aware as anyone else that providing gainful employment is the best way of keeping young men out of trouble. The Greenspring Centre offers training in bricklaying and woodwork for 14- to 18-yearolds, as well as one-to-one classes in numeracy, literacy and IT skills. There are courses for would-be mechanics, too, using cars that have been "recovered" by the police that would otherwise have been crushed. There are about 120 trainees at the moment, some excluded from school, some with special needs and some low achievers who are doing a more practical curriculum. The centre's manager, Beverlie Weston-Brown, the daughter of Jamaican immigrants who has lived in Handsworth all of her 44 years, says: "I sometimes hear residents complaining about the latest incomers, be they from Somalia or Poland, and think to myself that we have to step back. This is what previous generations said about our parents." And are there racial tensions at Greenspring? "Everybody mixes well most of the time. But as soon as there are problems outside, tensions resurface. — Guardian



Wednesday, July 7, 2010

GI charged over Iraq shootings video leak BAGHDAD: An American soldier suspected of leaking video footage of a US Apache helicopter strike in Iraq in which around a dozen people were gunned down in broad daylight has been charged, the army said yesterday. The video of the attack in a Baghdad street on July 12, 2007 was posted on the Internet, causing international outcry over an action in which civilians were killed after being wrongly identified as insurgents. It also provoked anger and renewed demands for compensation from the victims’ families, as well as acute embarrassment at the Pentagon and the White House. Private First Class Bradley E Manning, currently being held in a military jail in Kuwait in connection with the attack, faces two charges of misconduct, the US army in Baghdad said in a statement. WikiLeaks, a whistleblowing website, released in April the video that showed several people, including two Reuters news agency employees, being killed. As well as releasing the video, Manning, 22, is accused of illegally downloading more than 150,000 diplomatic cables, 50 of which he is alleged to have transmitted unlawfully to the danger of US national security. The first charge against Manning is for violating army regulations by “transferring classified data onto his personal computer and adding unauthorised software to a classified computer system,” the statement said. The second charge says the soldier, who has been in custody since May 29, according to his charge sheet, is also accused of “communicating, transmitting and delivering national

defence information to an unauthorised source.” WikiLeaks at the time said it obtained the video “from a number of military whistleblowers” and decrypted it. It posted the video at The gun camera footage of the attack included audio conversations between Apache pilots and controllers in which they identified the men in Baghdad as armed insurgents and asked for permission to open fire. Two of the men were later identified as Reuters employees Nameer Nuraddin Hussein, a 22-year-old photographer, and Saeed Chmagh, 44, a driver. Their families, who said they have until now received no compensation for the incident, have demanded that the Americans responsible should stand trial. After the leaked and graphic footage was released the White House described the incident as “tragic,” insisting that US forces in war zones take pains to avoid civilian casualties. At least two individuals in the video seemed to be carrying weapons but most were unarmed. The Apache pilots also appeared to mistake a camera carried by one of the Reuters employees for a rocket-propelled grenade launcher or RPG. At one point, the Apache pilots told controllers they had spotted “five to six individuals with AK47s” and asked for permission to “engage”. The Apache pilots then opened fire with the helicopter’s cannon, with one of them then saying there are a “bunch of bodies lying there”. “Look at those dead bastards,” one said in the recording, to which another replied: “Nice.” Shortly

after the initial shooting, a van arrived to pick up the dead and wounded and it was fired upon by the Apaches. Two children in the van were injured and later evacuated by US ground troops. A US military official in April did not dispute the authenticity of the video but said it “doesn’t give new information, it just gives footage”. “We had insurgents and reporters in an area where US forces were about to be ambushed,” the official added. “At the time we weren’t able to discern whether (the Reuters employees) were carrying cameras or weapons.” According to the army, Manning was charged on Monday with 12 counts of misconduct in breach of both US military and criminal law. WikiLeaks, on their Twitter feed @wikileaks, said: “Private Manning charged with disclosing iraqslaughter video. Trigger happy Apache crew remain uncharged.” Former computer hacker Adrian Lamo of Sacramento, California, said he alerted the military after Manning confided in him online that he had leaked the video in addition to 260,000 classified diplomatic cables. Lamo, who first provided his account to, told The AP last month that he agonized over the decision. “I turned him in because, for the rest of my life, I’d wonder if something he leaked would have cost a human life,” Lamo said. In 2004, Lamo had pleaded guilty to breaking into The New York Times’ computer system and still owes $62,800 in federal restitution. He said he has received no financial benefit from turning in Manning and that the money he owes was never discussed. — Agencies

FOGGIA, Italy: In this picture taken Monday, highway workers collect euro coins after a truck carrying some €2 million ($2.5 million) in coins overturned in southern Italy, unloading its contents onto the highway. —AP

Motorists steal € 10K in coins ROME: Money makes the world go round - or in this case brings an Italian highway to a halt. A truck carrying some €2 million ($2.5 million) in coins overturned in southern Italy, unloading its contents onto the highway and leading motorists to hit

the brakes and dig in. Police in Foggia, where the accident occurred Monday, said yesterday it was impossible to establish how much money had been stolen, as many of the €1 and €2 coins remained in piles on the highway. But motorists acting

quickly before police arrived made off with at least €10,000 ($12,500). Police said the truck’s driver and one passenger had suffered minor injuries. The truck was carrying the money from the Italian mint to local banks. — AP

believed in bringing different viewpoints together between Sunni and Shiites,” said Omar Al-Kaissi, a Sunni Muslim from Morocco, who was at the funeral. Hussein Taher, a Lebanese living in Nigeria, said nobody would be able to replace Fadlallah as a guide and mentor. Several Lebanese officials and Sunni and Druze clerics also took part in the funeral. A weeping Zahra Omeish, 65, braved the heat and crowd to pay respect to the spiritual leader of Lebanon’s Shiite community. “He was our father, our brother, our friend,” she said, leaning on a walking cane and trying to keep the pace with the crowd as it inched its way behind Fadlallah’s casket, amid tight security. “I would see him every Friday at prayer and he would sometimes come and sit with us afterwards,” she told AFP. “The father of all orphans, the father of the poor, is gone,” she said. Condolences poured in from across the region, including from Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. British Ambassador Frances Guy also paid tribute to Fadlallah, whose funeral service was not open to the public or the media. “When you visited him you could be sure of a real debate, a respectful argument and you knew you would leave his presence feeling a better person,” Guy wrote on her blog. “The world needs more men like him willing to reach out across faiths, acknowledging the reality of the modern world and daring to confront old constraints.” Known for his staunch anti-American views, Fadlallah was described by Western media in the 1980s as a spiritual leader of the Lebanese militant Hezbollah - a claim both he and the group have since denied. He supported the Islamic Revolution in Iran in 1979, but distanced himself from the key principle advocating

the leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini as a supreme, undisputed spiritual leader for the world’s Shiites. Ahmad Jannati, a representative of Iran’s supreme leader, as well as Ali Al-Adeeb, an aide to the Iraqi prime minister, attended the funeral along with other prominent foreign officials. The stocky, gray-bearded cleric with piercing brown eyes below his black turban, was known for his bold fatwas, or religious edicts, including one that gave women the right to hit their husbands if they attacked them and another that banning so-called “honor killing” of women. Fadlallah was born in Iraq in 1935 and lived in the country’s Shiite holy city of Najaf, where he was considered one of the leading clerics. He moved to Lebanon at the age of 30 - his family hailed from the southern Lebanese village of Ainata - and began lecturing on religion. In the ensuing decades, he would prod Lebanon’s Shiites, who today make up a third of the country’s population of four million, to fight for their rights. During Lebanon’s 1975-90 civil war, he was linked to Iranian-backed Shiite militants who kidnapped Americans and other Westerners, and bombed the US Embassy and Marine base in Lebanon, killing more than 260 Americans. Fadlallah repeatedly denied those links but argued such acts were justifiable when the door to dialogue is locked shut. With age, Fadlallah’s views mellowed and he lost much of his 1980s militancy. His sermons, once fiery diatribes denouncing American imperialism, took on a pragmatic tone as he urged dialogue among nations and religions. Along with Nasrallah, Fadlallah’s name appeared on a US list of “Specially Designated Terrorists”. — Agencies

Fadlallah laid to rest Continued from Page 1

PAMPLONA, Spain: A band parades through the crowd during the ‘Chupinazo’, the official opening of the 2010 San Fermin fiestas, yesterday. — AP

Obama, Bibi mend fences Continued from Page 1 Netanyahu and Obama talked in the Oval Office as protesters gathered across the street in Lafayette Park and chanted “No More Aid, End the Blockade”, referring to Israel’s blockade of the Gaza Strip. The meeting between Obama and Netanyahu was their first since a troubled White House meeting between them in March after Israel’s surprise announcement of plans for new construction in east Jerusalem as Vice President Joe Biden was in Israel and preparing for dinner with the prime minister. It was a warmer welcome this time for Netanyahu. As journalists filed into the Oval Office, the two leaders sat side-byside, leaning toward each other, chatting and smiling. Netanyahu on Sunday endorsed the US call for direct talks between the Israelis and Palestinians, just days after White House officials said Obama would push during the Oval Office session for those negotiations to get under way sooner rather than later. Addressing his cabinet on Sunday, Netanyahu said the “time has come” for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to get ready to meet with the Israelis “because there is no other way to advance peace. I hope this will be one of the results of the visit to Washington”.

Aides to Obama sounded a hopeful tone late last week, telling reporters that weeks of shuttle diplomacy between the two sides by George Mitchell, Obama’s special envoy to the Middle East, had paid off and “the gaps have narrowed”. “We believe there are opportunities to further narrow those gaps, to allow the sides to take that next step to direct talks,” added Daniel Shapiro, the senior Middle East director at the National Security Council. Obama and Netanyahu were also expected to discuss Israel’s decision yesterday to significantly ease its blockade of the Gaza Strip to let in most consumer goods. Israel’s ban on exports from Gaza and limits on shipments of construction material remain. Israel came under heavy international pressure, including from Obama and other top US officials, to loosen its 3-yearold land and naval blockade of the seaside territory after Israel’s deadly May 31 military raid on a flotilla trying to break the embargo. At the time, Obama said the situation was “unsustainable”. He called for a narrow blockade to bar weapons that Gaza’s Hamas rulers could use against Israel while admitting items the territory’s 1.5 million Palestinians need for daily living and economic development. Obama and Netanyahu also are likely to discuss efforts to end Iran’s nuclear weapons pursuit, including sanctions

Obama signed into law last week. That legislation followed a fourth round of UN Security Council sanctions against Iran. Yesterday’s meeting was the fif th between Obama and Netanyahu and would make up for a scheduled June 1 session at the White House that Netanyahu canceled to deal with fallout from the flotilla raid. The session follows meetings Obama held at the White House in recent weeks with major Mideast players, including Abbas and King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia. Getting both sides to resume direct talks, which broke off in Dec 2008, is a huge challenge. One big sticking point is Israel’s continued construction of Jewish housing in east Jerusalem, an area the Palestinians claim as part of a hoped-for future state. The Palestinians have refused to sit down with Netanyahu until he agrees to freeze construction in areas they want for an independent state. Israel recently said it has no intention of doing that. Abbas said last week that the borders of a future Palestinian state and security relations with Israel are the two issues on the table. He said direct talks can resume if an agreement is reached on them. Obama has called on Jerusalem to halt settlement construction and on the Palestinians to show progress on security and inciting violence against Israel. — Agencies

Zimbabweans wash dirty dollars Continued from Page 1 year to eradicate world record inflation of billions of percent in the local Zimbabwe dollar as the economy collapsed. The US Federal Reserve destroys about 7,000 tons of worn-out money every year. It says the average $1 bill circulates in the United States for about 20 months - nowhere near its African life span of many years. Larger denominations coming in through banks and formal import and export trade are less soiled. But among Africa’s poor, the $1, $2, $5 and $10 bills are the most sought after.

Dirty $1 bills can remain in circulation at rural markets, bus parks and beer halls almost indefinitely, or at least until they finally disintegrate. Still, banks and most businesses in Zimbabwe do not accept torn, Scotch-taped, scorched, defaced, exceptionally dirty or otherwise damaged US notes. Zimbabweans say the US notes do best with gentle handwashing in warm water. But at a laundry and dry cleaner in eastern Harare, a machine cycle does little harm either to the cottonweave type of paper. Locals say chemical “dry cleaning” is not recommended - it

fades the color of the famed greenback. Laundry worker Alex Mupondi said customers asked him to try machinewashing a selection of bills and the result impressed him. But storekeeper Jackie Dube hasn’t yet taken up advice of friends to cleanse the often damp and stinking US dollars she receives for the garments and cheap Chinese consumer goods she sells in Harare. It’s time-consuming, she says, adding that stinky, unhygienic bills are a problem. “I get rid of the worst of the notes as soon as I can in change,” she said. — AP

Tuesday morning to attend the funeral. The government declared yesterday a national day of mourning and schools and government offices were closed. A sea of people surged forward as Fadlallah’s coffin, wrapped in black cloth with gold Quranic inscriptions, was carried out of his house in Beirut’s southern suburb of Haret Hreik. Many of the black-clad mourners carried his portrait as they marched. Overcome by the heat and emotions, several people fainted and were treated on the spot by paramedics. The massive funeral followed noon prayers. The procession first headed to Imam Rida Mosque in the nearby neighborhood of Bir El-Abed, where Fadlallah used to give his lectures and sermons in the 1980s. It then marched to a nearby spot where Fadlallah escaped a 1985 assassination attempt - an explosives truck that left 80 people dead and that was widely believed to have been the work of CIA agents. US journalist Bob Woodward wrote that the late CIA director, William Casey, ordered Lebanese agents to plant the car bomb to retaliate for terrorist attacks on US interests in the Middle East. Fadlallah was later buried in Haret Hreik’s Imamayn Al-Hasanayn mosque. Many among the crowd held their fists in the air and chanted: “Death to America and death to Israel.” On the eve of the funeral, Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah visited the hospital where Fadlallah died to pray at his coffin. Delegates from across the Middle East including Kuwait, Bahrain, Iran, Qatar, United Arab Emirates and Iraq, as well as many Lebanese from abroad, took part in his funeral. “He was a uniting force and

Cyprus is a familiar stopover in spy lore Continued from Page 1 Was Christopher Metsos of Canada Canada says the identity was stolen - on business or pleasure? Or both? No hard evidence has emerged, though Cypriot authorities plan to look at his confiscated laptop, which is sought by US officials to build their case against the spy ring. There is a strong Russian presence in Cyprus, partly a legacy of the influx of Russian cash after the fall of the Soviet Union that fueled a culture of money laundering. The government has since cracked down on financial wrongdoing. Escorted by police after his June 29 arrest, Metsos paid bail with money from a bank account in Larnaca, according to Cypriot officials. Ten alleged co-conspirators were detained in the United States and face charges including money laundering and acting as unregistered agents of a foreign government. Cyprus was a convenient place for money to change hands in the past. Former CIA agent Harold Nicholson, in a US prison for espionage, recruited his 24year-old son Nathaniel to meet Russian agents in cities around the world from 2006 to 2008 to collect money owed by his former handlers. One of those cities was the Cypriot capital, Nicosia. The island was a high-tech listening post during the Cold War, and colonial Britain negotiated a deal for Cypriot independence in 1960 that allowed it to keep military bases there. British plans to build giant communication antennae at the Akrotiri base once set off riots by Cypriots who feared they would become sick from waves of radiation and saw the bases as an

affront to their sovereignty. The bases served as logistics hubs for the 1991 Gulf war and 2003 invasion of Iraq. Hubert Faustmann, an analyst at the University of Nicosia, described politically stable Cyprus as the “last safe haven” for spies operating in the Middle East. He noted the large American and Russian embassies, a few hundred meters from each other and “way out of proportion,” in his view, to the size of the small island. Today, the fences, border posts and empty buildings pockmarked with bullet holes that divide Cyprus into ethnic Greek and ethnic Turkish sides mirror other Cold War-era fissures - the dismantled Berlin Wall, the Korean peninsula’s (very much intact) DMZ - from the golden age of espionage. The island split in 1974 when Turkey invaded after a coup attempt by Greek Cypriots seeking to unite with Greece. Tensions subsided, but a political settlement remains out of reach. Most spy skullduggery has happened in the Greek Cypriot south, an open society accustomed to outsiders. The Turkish Cypriot north is smaller and less populated. Initial speculation suggested Metsos crossed into the Turkish Cypriot north, which is only recognized by Turkey and has no extradition treaties with the rest of the world. However, he could have escaped just as easily, and perhaps less obtrusively, through the south. Some Larnaca residents wonder if he hopped on a boat at the marina. Authorities are more or less certain of one thing: he’s no longer in Cyprus. On the Larnaca waterfront, the only hallmarks of espionage are kitschy. The “Spy Cafe” serves iced coffee and cock-

tails to customers in sunglasses. Near the amusement rides, a kiosk sells children’s gimmicks - small bottles of invisible ink and “exploding” match books. A placard advertises “Russian Fantasy”, a series of concerts of Russian works by the symphony orchestra of Cyprus. There were times when this easygoing tourist getaway and other Cypriot towns were staging grounds for political killing and subterfuge. In 1985, gunmen killed three Israelis on their yacht in the Larnaca marina, and Israel bombed the headquarters of the Palestine Liberation Organization in Tunisia in retaliation. In 1988, a blast in Limassol port damaged a ship that the PLO planned to use to transport Palestinian deportees on a protest journey to Israel. Suspicion fell on Israel, and the trip was canceled. The event foreshadowed the Gaza flotilla that gathered near Cyprus and was boarded by Israeli commandoes on May 31, sparking clashes that killed nine activists on a Turkish ship. Both sides said they acted in self defense. A key flotilla organizer, the Free Gaza Movement, was based in southern Cyprus. At the Pierides Museum in Larnaca, home to ancient maps, pottery, glassware and sculptures, curator Ashdjian Peter reached deep into history to explain why Cyprus drew conquerors, explorers and spies. “It’s a sensitive location, geographically. That’s why it’s been sought after for all these years,” Peter said. Pondering the elusive Metsos, he added: “If you have the right amount of money, you can move around anywhere you want. You can even do it in America, which has the biggest security in the world.” — AP


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

15 MLB results/standings

ST PETERSBURG: Boston Red Sox’s David Ortiz (right) slides in ahead of the tag by Tampa Bay Rays catcher John Jaso during the third inning of a baseball game.—AP

MLB results and standings on Monday. Detroit 12, Baltimore 9; Chicago Cubs 9, Arizona 4; San Francisco 6, Milwaukee 1; Chicago White Sox 9, La Angels 2; Philadelphia 3, Atlanta 1; Tampa Bay 6, Boston 5; Cincinnati 8, NY Mets 6; Cleveland 9, Texas 3; Florida 6, LA Dodgers 5; NY Yankees 3, Oakland 1; Kansas City 6, Seattle 4. American League Eastern Division W L PCT GB NY Yankees 51 31 .622 Tampa Bay 49 33 .598 2 Boston 49 34 .590 2.5 Toronto 41 42 .494 10.5 Baltimore 25 57 .305 26 Central Division Detroit 44 37 .543 Minnesota 44 38 .537 .5 Chicago White Sox 43 38 .531 1 Kansas City 37 46 .446 8 Cleveland 33 49 .402 11.5 Western Division Texas 48 34 .585 LA Angels 46 39 .541 3.5 Oakland 41 43 .488 8 Seattle 34 48 .415 14 National League Eastern Division Atlanta 48 35 .578 NY Mets 46 37 .554 2 Philadelphia 43 38 .531 4 Florida 39 43 .476 8.5 Washington 36 47 .434 12 Central Division Cincinnati 48 36 .571 St Louis 45 37 .549 2 Milwaukee 37 46 .446 10.5 Chicago Cubs 36 47 .434 11.5 Houston 32 51 .386 15.5 Pittsburgh 30 52 .366 17 Western Division San Diego 49 33 .598 LA Dodgers 45 37 .549 4 Colorado 44 38 .537 5 San Francisco 42 40 .512 7 Arizona 32 51 .386 17.5

Reds sink Mets in NL action NEW YORK: Joey Votto hit two home runs and the Cincinnati Reds took advantage of a rare overturned call by the umpires to beat the New York Mets 8-6 in the National League on Monday. Drew Stubbs and Corky Miller both drove in two runs during a six-run fifth inning, which included everything from a run-scoring triple by rookie pitcher Travis Wood to Mets manager Jerry Manuel getting tossed for arguing with the umpires. Angel Pagan hit a solo homer and Alex Cora added two RBIs for New York, which answered with

five runs in the bottom half of the inning but could not draw level. Cincinnati’s Jordan Smith (2-1) pitched 2 1-3 innings of relief to take the win. Mets starter Mike Pelfrey (103) walked the bases loaded to start the fifth. An inside pitch appeared to graze the Reds’ Scott Rolen, who had checked his swing and started toward first base. Plate umpire Jerry Meals called third strike, indicating a foul tip, even though replays appeared to support Rolen. After a dicussions by the umpires, they

allowed Rolen to first, bringing home the go-ahead run. Phillies 3, Braves 1 In Philadelphia, Roy Halladay pitched his major league-best seventh complete game of the season to steer Philadelphia past Atlanta. Halladay (10-7) struck out seven to record his second straight complete game. The AllStar right-hander outdueled Atlanta’s Derek Lowe (9-7) and needed just 93 pitches to finish. Greg Dobbs hit a two-run homer in the sixth for the

Phillies, giving the hosts a 2-1 lead. Chipper Jones homered for the NL East-leading Braves. Marlins 6, Dodgers 5 In Los Angeles, Florida scored its first three runs on a sacrifice fly, a groundout and a throwing error and went on beat Los Angeles. Marlins starter Nate Robertson (6-6) allowed seven hits in six innings, winning for the first time in three weeks. Dodgers’ starter John Ely (4-6) gave up six runs in 2 2-3 innings —his shortest outing of

the season. He gave up four consecutive hits to open the third, including West Helms’ two-run single. Robertson’s RBI single chased Ely and extended the Marlins’ lead to 6-1. Florida closer Leo Nunez pitched a perfect ninth for his 18th save in 23 chances. Cubs 9, D’backs 4 In Phoenix, Starlin Castro and Geovany Soto drove in two runs each as the Chicago Cubs beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 9-4 in the National League on Monday. Cubs starter Tom Gorzelanny (3-

Rays stop Red Sox ST. PETERSBURG: Tampa Bay rallied from a four-run deficit to beat the Boston Red Sox 6-5 on Monday in a clash of American League East rivals. Tampa’s John Jaso drove in two runs with a bases-loaded single in the sixth that made it 5-5 and ended the night for Boston starter Daisuke Matsuzaka. Jason Bartlett’s sacrifice fly off Ramon Ramirez (0-2) then drove in pinch-runner B.J. Upton for the go-ahead run. Randy Choate (22) struck out the only batter he faced _ bailing the Rays out of a bases-loaded jam in the top of the seventh _ to get the win. Tampa Bay closer Rafael Soriano got the final three outs for his 22nd save in 23 opportunities. Eric Patterson, acquired last month to provide depth for an injury-depleted Red Sox roster, hit two solo home runs. Yankees 3, Athletics 1 In Oakland, Mark Teixeira hit a solo homer to help New York beat Oakland and notch a third straight win. Teixeira got his sixth homer in a month, Curtis Granderson had an RBI triple and Francisco Cervelli added an RBI single for the Yankees, who increased their lead in the AL East to two games over Tampa Bay, with Boston dropping to third. New York starter Javier Vazquez (7-7) ended a three-start winless stretch. Oakland starter Ben Sheets (3-8) has just one win in his past 11 outings. He gave up eight hits in a season-best 7 1-3 innings. White Sox 9, Angels 2 In Chicago, Carlos Quentin hit two late home runs to lift Chicago over Los Angeles. Dayan Viciedo and Alexei Ramirez also homered for the White Sox. It was Viciedo’s first major league homer. Chicago starter Gavin Floyd (4-7) pitched seven solid innings, giving up only one run, and won consecutive starts for the first time this season. He has only allowed six earned runs in his past six starts. Angels starter Scott Kazmir (7-8) lost his third straight start. He was tagged for seven runs.

Giants 6, Brewers 1 In Milwaukee, Aubrey Huff hit a two-run single after another

costly error by Milwaukee shortstop Alcides Escobar and San Francisco won comfortably. Buster Posey added a solo homer in the eighth for the Giants, who won just one of their previous nine. Milwaukee’s Corey Hart extended his hitting streak to 20 games, but the Brewers went 0 for 12 with runners in scoring position. Kameron Loe (0-1) took his first loss in the majors since 2007. San Francisco starter Jonathan Sanchez (7-6) took the win despite walking six and throwing three wild pitches.—AP

Stoudemire agrees to sign with Knicks

Indians 9, Rangers 3 In Arlington, Cleveland’s Matt LaPorta hit a two-run homer, then later took an accidental elbow to the head and left the game as the Indians beat Texas. LaPorta homered in the top of the third, but the first baseman sustained a bruise on his head in the bottom half. LaPorta was down for several minutes. He remained in the game for the rest of the inning and was replaced in the fourth. Jayson Nix homered twice and rookie Carlos Santana also connected for the Indians. Cleveland’s Joe Smith (1-1) allowed two hits in 1 2-3 innings of scoreless relief for his first major league victory. Texas’ Omar Beltre (0-1) lost in his second big league start. Royals 6, Mariners 4 In Seattle, Kansas City’s Yuniesky Betancourt’s broke a 10th-inning tie with a twoout RBI single to lift Kansas City over Seattle. Mitch Maier tripled off Chad Cordero (0-1) with two outs in the 10th, just the fifth extra-base hit for the Royals this month. Betancourt, traded to the Royals by Seattle last season, then singled the winner. Cordero’s wild pitch then allowed Betancourt to advance to second and he scored on Scott Podsednik’s bloop single. Kyle Farnsworth (2-0) worked one inning for the win. Joakim Soria earned his league-leading 23rd save. Russell Branyan had a two-run home run for the Mariners. Alberto Callaspo had two hits and two RBIs for the Royals, while David DeJesus had two hits and scored three runs. Tigers 12, Orioles 9 In Detroit, Brandon Inge drove in four runs and Carlos Guillen knocked in three as Detroit outscored Baltimore early and held on. The Tigers led 8-7 after the third and managed to keep the lead the rest of the way. Inge, Guillen and Johnny Damon each had three of Detroit’s 17 hits. Brennan Boesch was the only starter without one, but became the first Tigers rookie to walk four times in a game since Steve Boros in 1961. Detroit’s Eddie Bonine (4-0) got the win despite allowing six hits, including a homer, in 2 23 innings. Baltimore’s Mark Hendrickson (1-4) allowed three runs in three innings. —AP

5) worked around six walks in five innings to take his first win in seven weeks. The Cubs roughed up Arizona starter Ian Kennedy (3-7) for four runs the first two innings. Kosuke Fukudome led off the game with a homer, while Alfonzo Soriano notched his 800th career RBI with a solo shot in the eighth. Adam LaRoche homered and Kelly Johnson had two RBIs for Arizona.

ATLANTA: Florida Marlin’s Dan Uggla bats during the eighth inning of a baseball game. —AP

NEW YORK: Amare Stoudemire is headed to the New York Knicks, and both sides are hoping he’s not coming alone. The Knicks said Monday they intend to sign Stoudemire to a contract later this week when the free agent moratorium period ends. Stoudemire’s agent, Happy Walters, said the deal is for the maximum allowed, which would be nearly $100 million over five years. Wearing a blue Knicks hat, Stoudemire said he looked forward to rebuilding a franchise and bringing the Knicks back to the top — maybe with a player such as LeBron James or Dwyane Wade with him. “I feel great about being a pioneer and showing my leadership,” he said at Madison Square Garden, where signs throughout the entrances showed the player pictured in a Knicks uniform and reading “Welcome, Amare Stoudemire.” The deal can’t be signed until tomorrow, after the salary cap for next season has been set. It was a desperately needed score in free agency for the Knicks, who spent two seasons clearing enough cap space to afford two top players. They met with James, Wade and Chris Bosh last week and believe they could still land one of them. Stoudemire has already started recruiting, saying he spoke to James’ people and directly to Wade last week. And he said he won’t be affected if those players say no to New York. “Totally comfortable, totally confident that my leadership qualities will uplift all

of us to do something great this upcoming season,” Stoudemire said. “So again, the Knicks are back.” The move reunites Stoudemire with Mike D’Antoni, his former coach in Phoenix. Stoudemire averaged more than 20 points in every season they were together and immediately becomes the best player D’Antoni has coached since leaving the Suns after the 2007-08 season. “He’s a dominant offensive player for sure, in a variety of ways,” D’Antoni said. Stoudemire’s days with the Suns ended late last week when the team agreed to $48 million worth of deals with forwards Hakim Warrick and Channing Frye. The sides had discussed an extension, but the Suns looked elsewhere after they’d reached a stalemate. Stoudemire said he understood owner Robert Sarver’s position and wasn’t disrespected by the Suns refusal to give him a deal that would have paid him millions more. He said he’s always loved New York and wanted to play here since the Knicks passed on him in the 2002 draft. He finally got to Broadway by becoming the first big player in this muchhyped free agent class to change teams. The other top players could announce their decisions later in the week, and perhaps they might take a second look at New York now that there’s another huge piece in place. “No one wanted to make the first move and I feel confident enough to take that first step and hopefully now we can bring a few guys in to join me,” Stoudemire said. —AP



Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Silverstone owners aim to outshine Abu Dhabi SILVERSTONE: Silverstone can become the best Formula One track in the world despite the amount Abu Dhabi has spent on its lavish new venue, the circuit’s owners said on Monday. Managing director Richard Phillips told reporters that the revamped circuit, which expects a 120,000-strong British Grand Prix crowd on Sunday, had qualities that had been built up over decades. “They (Abu Dhabi) build a hotel that lights up in different ways, and that’s absolutely fantastic,” he said. “But have we got a better circuit than they have? Yes, I think we have. Have we got better crowds, a better atmosphere? Yes. We’ve got all those things. “So we’ve got something that they will never have,” added the Briton. “If we can absolutely per-

fect our track, and everything we do build is cutting edge and spectacular, then why wouldn’t people think that we are the best in the world?” Silverstone, a former World War Two airfield owned by the British Racing Drivers’ Club, hosted Formula One’s first championship race in 1950 and now has a 17-year deal for the country’s grand prix. Criticised in recent years by the sport’s commercial supremo Bernie Ecclestone for facilities that have fallen behind glittering statefunded venues in emerging economies like Malaysia and China, the circuit has a major revamp under way. Phillips said a new pit complex was due to be finished by May next year and some 36 or 37 million pounds ($55.86 million) would have

been spent on improvements and new buildings by the end of 2011. Damon Hill, the 1996 world champion who is president of the BRDC, said the new layout for this year’s race-necessitated by the return of motorcycle grands prix to Silverstone-had kept the historic flavour of the venue. “There are some lovely new corners,” he said, later delivering a running commentary for reporters as he powered a Mercedes sportscar around the track with squealing tyres and scorched brakes. “The new Abbey corner I think they (the drivers) are going to love and Farm is going to be really exciting. “It’s retained its traditional high speed format and continues to evolve. And there are some really great new places to watch from,” added the Briton.

“You certainly can’t recreate Silverstone somewhere else. New tracks are being built around the world...but it’s a bit like a tree, it’s grown out of this place, out of Europe. The great challenges for the drivers are what sells the sport. “You want to race at Monza, Monaco, Silverstone, Spa or Suzuka because you have seen great drivers on those circuits and you want to know how you compare.” Meanwhile, Jenson Button declined an invitation to flush his head down the toilet yesterday after saying all bets were off in his Formula One title battle with McLaren team mate Lewis Hamilton. The world champion was left open-mouthed at a British Grand Prix news conference by a cheeky

question posed by 11-year-old Carl Hillis, reporting for the Great Ormond Street Hospital magazine. Hillis, who had a bone marrow transplant two years ago after being treated for Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma since the age of three, asked the drivers whether they had a bet on which would be champion this year. When told they had not, and after Hamilton had suggested the older Briton might want to wager one of the cars in his collection, the Essex schoolboy was asked what he thought the loser should do. “Did you really just say that? ‘Get your head flushed down the toilet’,” asked Button with a laugh when he heard the answer. “Sounds like a good plan, that does. I’m going to get my running shoes on if it doesn’t work out for

me this year,” joked the champion, who famously ran down the final straight after winning last year’s Monaco Grand Prix. The news conference, organised by race sponsor Santander, followed a Formula One fund raising party on Monday night that raised 500,000 pounds ($759,800) for the central London hospital. Hamilton, the 2008 champion, leads the standings ahead of Sunday’s race at Silverstone with Button six points behind in second place. Both have won two races each this season. Bookmakers William Hill have Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel as 11/5 favourite to win on Sunday with Hamilton at 3/1 and Button offered at 13/2. “The betting will be all about the Brits at Silverstone this weekend, but more surprisingly

Button is the most backed,” said Hill’s spokesman Joe Crilly. “Should either of them win however, we will certainly be in the pits.” Although the two Britons finished second and third in the previous race at Valencia, Red Bull showed they still had a clear speed advantage with Germany’s Vettel winning that race to move up to third overall. Championship-leading McLaren are hoping to have a big new upgrade for Silverstone with Button, who has yet to stand on his home podium in more than a decade in F1, saying they needed it to stay out in front. “We do need to raise our game,” he said. “We do need to add performance to the car if we are going to challenge the Red Bulls and a couple of other teams. —Reuters

IAAF clears Semenya to return to athletics

BERLIN: In this Aug. 19, 2009 file photo, South Africa’s Caster Semenya celebrates after winning the gold medal in the final of the Women’s 800m at the World Athletics Championships in Berlin. —AP

Bolt switches to 100m in Lausanne LAUSANNE: Triple Olympic champion Usain Bolt has decided to run a 100 metres rather than a 200 to avoid further injury at Thursday’s Diamond League meeting, organisers said yesterday. The race will be the Jamaican world record holder’s first since he strained his Achilles ten-

don in May. “(He) confirmed he is completely recovered from his injury,” organisers said in a statement. “However, after consulting with Dr. Muller, the doctor who treated him in Munich, the Jamaican decided to run the 100m race rather than the 200m in order to avoid further injuries.” —Reuters

Afghanistan lean on Dad in last-ball win AMSTERDAM: Afghanistan held their nerve to beat Kenya by one wicket off the final ball of their ICC World Cricket League First Division match in Amstelveen on Monday. The one-day tournament for the world’s leading nations below the Test elite saw Afghanistan seemingly down and out against 2007 champions Kenya at 134 for six, chasing 234 for victory. An equation of 100 more runs to win off 19 overs with just four wickets standing did not favor Afghanistan, whose rapid rise up the global cricket ladder saw them competing at this year’s World Twenty20 in the Caribbean. Samiullah Shenwari, with a career-best 82, kept Afghanistan in the contest but when he fell to Nehemiah Odhiambo it seemed Kenya were poised for their first win of the tournament. Mohammad Nabi maintained Afghanistan’s momentum with 47 off 42 balls but there were several twists still to come. Nabi fell to Jimmy Kamande and Afghanistan now needed 13 to win off 14 balls with two

wickets standing. The ninth-wicket duo of Khaliq Dad (18 not out) and Hamid Hassan levelled the scores. But, with one run required off two balls, Hassan was caught off Kamande. However, as the batsmen had crossed, Dad was now on strike and his swept singe off the last ball saw Afghanistan to victory Earlier, Collins Obuya top scored for Kenya with 60 and Thomas Odoyo struck a 33ball 52 to take the Africans to 233 for seven-their highest score of the tournament to date. “It’s very disappointing to lose a game like that especially as we gave it our all,” said Kenya captain Maurice Ouma. “It was the little errors here and there that cost us and another defeat is not nice to take.” Meanwhile, Kevin O’Brien became the second Ireland batsman to complete 1,000 ODI runs as the defending champions beat Scotland by five wickets to make it three wins from three at the tournament. Ireland, chasing a modest 118 for victory, lost five wick-

ets in the process but O’Brien’s unbeaten 41 saw them home in Voorburg. O’Brien, in his 40th ODI, became the second Ireland batsman after Willian Porterfield to score 1,000 runs at this level. “They’re all hard-fought runs against some very good teams around the world,” O’Brien said. “Hopefully, I can just build on it for the future, including the ICC Cricket World Cup next year in the sub-continent.” In Rotterdam, Eric Szwarczynski’s career-best 84 not out was the cornerstone of the Netherlands’s seven-wicket win over Canada that gave the tournament hosts a second victory in three matches but left the North Americans still searching for a first success. Szwarczynski hit seven fours and a six off 121 deliveries as the Dutch, chasing 169 to win, reached their target with more than seven overs to spare. The top two sides from the pool phase will qualify for the final in Amstelveen on July 10 with the third-fourth place playoff in Rotterdam on the same day.—AFP

JOHANNESBURG: Caster Semenya was cleared to return to competitive athletics by the IAAF yesterday with immediate effect, ending an 11-month layoff while she underwent gender verification tests after becoming the 800-meter world champion. “The process initiated in 2009 in the case of Caster Semenya has now been completed,” Athletics’ world governing body said in a statement. “The IAAF accepts the conclusion of a panel of medical experts that she can compete with immediate effect.” Semenya released a statement saying she was happy to be able to race again. She could return to competition at the world junior championships in Moncton, Canada, starting July 19. “I am thrilled to enter the global athletics arena once again and look forward to competing with all the disputes behind me.” Semenya said. Richard Stander of Athletics South Africa, the country’s athletics federation, said ASA was “implementing the IAAF decision with immediate effect” and Semenya would now be considered for South Africa’s team for the world junior championships, pending a fitness test in Pretoria on Wednesday requested by ASA. “Of course we are happy,” Stander said. “When an athlete cannot compete it is frustrating for them and frustrating for us as a federation.” Stander said the African championships in Kenya in late July and October’s Commonwealth Games in India were more realistic targets for Semenya after her long absence from competition. Semenya had earlier spoken to The Associated Press by phone soon after the IAAF’s decision was released. “I don’t feel anything,” Semenya said. The IAAF said the medical details of the 19-year-old South African’s case would remain confidential and it will make no further comment on the matter. Semenya’s lawyers said in a statement that the negotiations with the IAAF had been lengthy and held all over the world. “Our direct negotiations with the IAAF representatives, through the mediator, have been ongoing for 10 months,” said Greg Nott, Managing Partner of Dewey and LeBoeuf’s Johannesburg office. “Meetings have been held in Monaco, Istanbul and Paris, but due to the nature of the matter the parties resolved to keep the negotiations confidential.” Semenya underwent gender tests following her dominant win as an 18-year-old at the Berlin world championships in August. It is still unclear if the runner has undergone any medical procedure or treatment during her lengthy layoff that allows her to keep running as a woman, or what the conditions of the settlement are. “We are delighted that Caster is finally being permitted to compete with other women, as is her legal and natural right,” said Jeffrey Kessler, Dewey and LeBoeuf’s Global Litigation Chairman. “Hopefully, this resolution will set a precedent so that no female athlete in the future will have to experience the long delays and public scrutiny which Caster has been forced to endure.” South Africa’s Olympic governing body SASCOC also welcomed the news with its president Gideon Sam saying it was “heartening” that the “saga” had come to an end. “This will give both her and her coach Michael Seme the opportunity to carry on with their lives, both athletically and privately,” Sam said, “and allow them to be able to plan ahead without having this affair constantly hanging over their heads.” Earlier, Semenya’s father said his daughter had told him on Tuesday morning she was going to be cleared to return to athletics. —AP

EDGBASTON: Pakistan’s Umar Gul claims the wicket of Australia’s Tim Paine during the first Twenty20 international cricket match at the Edgbaston cricket ground on Monday. —AP

Pakistan end their losing streak against Australia BIRMINGHAM: Pakistan beat Australia for the first time in 13 matches across all formats as they won the first Twenty20 international by 23 runs at Edgbaston here on Monday. They were indebted to Umar Akmal’s career-best 64 that helped Pakistan to a total of 167 for eight after they’d been 47 for four. Australia, chasing 168 to win, were bowled out for 144 with offspinner Saeed Ajmal (three wickets for 26 runs off his maximum four overs) and teenage left-arm quick Mohammad Aamer doing the bulk of the damage. Victory put Pakistan 1-0 up ahead of the second and final Twenty20 here late yesterday. “It’s been a long wait,” Pakistan coach Waqar Younis told reporters. “But we got into a position to win and this time we finished it off.” Turning to Umar Akmal, still only 20-year-olds, fast bowling great Waqar added: “He’s probably the most talented (Pakistan) player I have seen in the last 15 to 20 years. He can go all the way to the top.” Australia were 85 for four when Michael Hussey came to the crease. They’d been 62 for four, chasing 192 when the left-hander’s unbeaten 60 off 24 balls saw Australia to a thrilling three-wicket win over Pakistan in the World Twenty20 semi-final in St Lucia in May - the last time the teams met. But Umar Gul, who missed the World Twenty20 through injury, captured the prize wicket of Michael Hussey by bowling him for 18 with a superb reverseswinging delivery. Gul then bowled Tim Paine, going across his stumps, to leave Australia needing 31 off 12 balls. Ajmal-savaged for 22 runs in the last over in St Lucia- finished the match with eight balls to spare by having both Mitchell Johnson and Shaun Tait stumped by wicketkeeper Kamran Akmal. “They played well,” Australia captain Michael Clarke said of Pakistan. “We were a little bit disappointing with the bat and Umar Gul bowled really well at the death and Ajmal is always hard, he spins the ball both ways. “Hopefully, we’ll play better tomorrow.” Australia lost opener Shane Watson for a second ball nought when he was lbw to a brilliant inswinger from Aamer. But the second over, from fast

Scoreboard Scoreboard after the first Twenty20 international between Pakistan and Australia at Edgbaston, England yesterday. Pakistan beat Australia by 23 runs. Australia innings Warner b Saeed Ajmal 41 Pakistan innings S Watson lbw b Aamer 0 Butt c Warner b D Hussey 13 Clarke c Shahid Afridi b Razzaq 5 Hasan c D Hussey b Nannes 0 D Hussey c Shoaib Malik b Shahid Afridi 34 Kamran Akmal run out 23 C White c Shahid Afridi b Aamer 17 Shoaib Malik c Paine b Nannes 21 M Hussey b Gul 18 Shahid Afridi lbw b Smith 0 Smith b Aamer 12 U Akmal b Tait 64 Paine b Gul 1 Razzaq b Tait 7 M Johnson st Kamran Akmal b Saeed Ajmal 3 Nannes not out 0 Aamer not out 11 Tait st Kamran Akmal b Saeed Ajmal 6 Gul run out 10 Extras: (1nb, 3w, 3lb) 7 Extras (1nb, 16w, 1lb) 18 Total: (all out; 18.4 overs) 144 Total (eight wickets; 20 overs) 167 Fall of wickets: 1-2 2-29 3-81 4-85 5-109 6-132 7Fall of wickets: 1-2 2-45 3-45 4-47 5-98 6-137 7-153 134 8-137 9-138 10-144 8-167 Bowling: Aamer 4-0-27-3, Shoaib Akhtar 2-0-34-0, Bowling: Nannes 4-0-41-2, Tait 4-0-25-2, Johnson Razzaq 2-0-15-1, Shahid Afridi 4-0-26-1, Gul 3-04-0-33-0, Hussey 4-0-33-1, Smith 4-0-34-1. 13-2, Saeed Ajmal 3.4-0-26-3. bowler Shoaib Akhtar, went for 20 runs as left-hander David Warner struck fours off all the first five balls from the ‘Rawalpindi Express’, for four. However, Clarke fell for just five when he was well caught by opposing skipper Shahid Afridi at short extra-cover off all-rounder Abdul Razzaq’s second ball. And Australia were four wickets down when Warner, who made 41 off just 30 balls, was bowled by Ajmal’s second delivery as he tried running the ball down to third man. Afridi then held his second excellent catch, to dismiss Cameron White off Aamer, and Pakistan were right back in the match with Australia 109 for five. Umar Akmal’s innings surpassed his previous best of 56 not out, which he’d made twice before including during the World Twenty20 semi-final loss. He faced 31 balls with two sixes and seven fours. Umar Akmal and Shoaib Malik (21) revived the innings with a stand of 51 after Pakistan lost three wickets for two runs in six balls to slump to 47 for four in the eighth over. Umar hoisted left-arm quick Mitchell Johnson for a huge six and pulled him for four off successive balls to go to a 21-ball fifty before he was bowled by Tait to the disappointment of an overwhelmingly Pakistan-supporting crowd. Fast bowler Tait led Australia’s attack with two for 25. —AFP

DAMBULLA: In this June 14, 2010 file photo, Sri Lankan cricket player Muttiah Muralitharan bowls during a practice session ahead of the Asia Cup match against Pakistan. —AP

Muralitharan to quit tests COLOMBO: Sri Lankan Muttiah Muralitharan, cricket’s leading international wicket taker, will retire from Tests after this month’s first Test against India, his manager said yesterday. “Murali took a decision to retire from test cricket during the West Indies series in November but with an unscheduled Indian series coming up he has fast-tracked his retirement from Test cricket,” Kushil Gunasekara said. “The selectors want Murali to consider himself to be available for the 2011 World Cup which Sri Lanka is partly hosting with India and Bangladesh,” Gunasekara

added. The 38-year-old off-spinner is unlikely to play in the one-day TriSeries against India and New Zealand next month but may play one-day internationals in the buildup to next year’s World Cup. Sri Lanka are due to tour Australia in November where they will play three one-dayers and two Twenty20 Internationals and they have five one-dayers against West Indies in December. Muralitharan has taken 792 wickets in 132 tests and 515 wickets in 337 one-day internationals since making his test debut against Australia in 1992. —Reuters

Wednesday, July 7, 2010



Hushovd wins stage over cobblestones

FRANCE: Thor Hushovd of Norway crosses the finish line to win the third stage of the Tour de France cycling race. — AP

Tiger toils again in Ireland ADARE: Tiger Woods failed to match the party atmosphere with his golf as he slumped to a seven-over-par 79 in the first round of the JP McManus Invitational ProAm on Monday. However, any fears the world number one might have had about receiving a hostile reception were put at rest on the opening day of a two-day event that has raised 55 million euros ($73.79 million) for charity since it was set up 20 years ago. A record 40,000 crowd gave Woods-who took a five-month break from the game after admitting in late 2009 a string of extramarital affairs-a rapturous welcome, lining the fairways 10-deep at the luxurious Adare Manor Hotel & Golf Resort near Limerick. Playing with three amateurs in a round that took almost six hours, Woods carded one birdie, six bogeys and a double bogey. The 14-times major winner, who also struggled at last week’s AT&T National in Pennsylvania, left the course without talking to reporters and was ushered away behind the black-tinted windows of an awaiting car. Woods is planning to jet back to the US late yesterday before returning for next week’s British Open at St Andrews. Triple major winner Padraig Harrington said the famous Scottish links was ready-made for the 34-year-old American who also won the Open there in 2005 and 2000. “There is no doubt if Tiger hits form he’s comfortably the favourite to win any of the majors and St Andrews sets up very well for him,” the Irishman told reporters. “Tiger has an advantage that he spins the ball very well. He’s the number one player at getting the ball to finish closest to

where it lands out there and St Andrews requires that because of the firmness of the greens. “He’s very capable of winning without hitting his very best form. Is he about to hit that? I wouldn’t write him off, that’s for sure,” added Harrington. John Daly, the 1995 Open champion at St Andrews, believes Woods needs to find a replacement for Hank Haney, who quit as coach in May, before he can rediscover his best form. “Tiger is a guy that’s always had to have a teacher, those eyes looking at him,” said Daly. “His mum and dad were always looking for the perfect teacher for him when he was a kid. I think he’s gotten used to that.” Pointing to Woods’s share of fourth

place in this year’s U.S. Masters and U.S. Open, Daly added: “Tiger has only had three or four tournaments (this year) where he has not played his best but I thought he played great at the Masters and the U.S. Open. “So, look out. He’ll be back. He’s still the number one player.” Thirteen of the top 17 in the world rankings are taking part in the two-day pro-am here including US Open champion Graeme McDowell. Still coming to terms with his win at Pebble Beach, the Briton said: “Once an hour I have a thought where I still can’t believe it. “When you achieve a dream, and that’s what it was, an absolute dream, it’s quite a surreal feeling and still feels pretty surreal.”— AP

Westwood doubtful for British Open LONDON: World number three Lee Westwood is struggling to be fit for next week’s 150th anniversary British Open at St Andrews. The 37-year-old Briton pulled out of this week’s JP McManus two-day pro-am in Ireland after being hampered by a swollen right calf and ankle at the French Open in Paris which finished on Sunday. “He’s got a slight tear in the muscle close to his calf in his right leg and he’s been told by his doctor to have complete rest this week,” said Martin Hardy, a spokesman for Westwood’s management team.

“He was going to go to St Andrews for a practice round on Thursday but he has now cancelled that and will be going there next Monday. Lee is hopeful (of playing) but they just have to monitor the injury and see how it progresses over the next week.” Westwood has six times finished in the top five at a major championship without achieving a breakthrough victory. His most recent near-miss came when he was runner-up to Phil Mickelson in the U.S. Masters in April. The British Open starts on July 15. — Reuters

IRELAND: Tiger Woods tees off on the 5th hole during the JP McManus Invitational Pro-Am at Adare Manor. — AP

Kleybanova in 2nd round BUDAPEST: Top-seeded Alisa Kleybanova of Russia beat Kazakhstan’s Sesil Karatantcheva 7-5, 6-4 in a tightly-contested first round match at the Budapest Grand Prix yesterday. Kleybanova took a 4-1 lead in the first set on but Karatantcheva responded by playing more aggressively and won four games in a row. The Russian took the set by winning the extended rallies and chasing down long shots to the baseline. In the second set, Kleybanova took a 4-2

lead and control of the match by breaking Karatantcheva’s serve in the sixth game, the longest of the encounter. Kleybanova, who reached the third round at Wimbledon before losing to Venus Williams, will face Switzerland’s Patty Schnyder in the second round. “It was a tough match. I was definitely not playing my best tennis today,” Kleybanova said. “It is hard to adapt from grass to clay as I arrived from London just a couple of days ago.”

Schnyder, last year’s runner-up in Budapest, defeated qualifier Lesya Tsurenko of Ukraine 6-3, 6-3. Other seeded players to advance were Anabel Medina Garrigues of Spain, Italy’s Roberta Vinci and Polona Hercog of Slovenia. Wimbledon semifinalist Tzvetana Pironkova withdrew from the tournament with an injury to her right wrist. “I am recovering at the moment and the next tournament in my schedule will be in two weeks,” Pironkova said in a statement. — AP

ARENBERG: Thor Hushovd of Norway won a bumpy third stage of the Tour de France over cobblestones yesterday, while Lance Armstrong was held up by a flat tire and lost time to other title contenders. Switzerland’s Fabian Cancellara, who finished in a five-man group behind Hushovd, regained the yellow jersey that he had ceded just a day earlier to France’s Sylvain Chavanel. Hushovd finished ahead of Britain’s Geraint Thomas and Cadel Evans of Australia in a sprint finish among the leading group of riders. Chavanel wore the yellow jersey for yesterday’s 213-kilometer ride as the race headed from Wanze, Belgium to Arenberg Porte du Hainaut in France. But the Frenchman had to cope with two flat tires, along with a mechanical problem, and lost time on Cancellara. “It’s not bad, I just didn’t have the legs,” said Chavanel, with his face caked in dust. He won Monday’s stage in a breakaway that took a lot out of him. “I had a nice day in yellow, over the cobbles, it’s great.” Frank Schleck of Luxembourg, who won the Tour of Switzerland last month, crashed on the fourth of seven sectors of cobbles. His Saxo Bank team said he was out of the race and taken to a hospi-

tal. Cancellara, who won the opening prologue, was delighted to retrieve the leader’s jersey. “Yesterday I gave it up, today I took it,” he said. “We can call it a good day for Saxo Bank despite the loss of Frank, a great friend.” Defending Tour champion Alberto Contador — whose abilities on cobbles had been in doubt — and last year’s runner-up Andy Schleck — Frank’s younger brother — were among the title contenders who gained time on Armstrong. Andy Schleck was fifth, in the same time as Hushovd: 4 hours, 49 minutes, 38 seconds. Spain’s Contador came in 13th, 1 minute, 13 seconds back. Armstrong was 32nd, 2:08 back. In the overall standings, Cancellara leads second-place Thomas by 23 seconds and two-time Tour runner-up Evans by 39. Contador is ninth, 1:40 back, and Armstrong tumbled to 18th, 2:30 back. The cobblestones stage, which tests bikes and bodies alike, had been billed as the biggest trouble spot of the first week, even after two straight days of crashes on slick roads. It was the first time the biggest race in cycling had covered cobbles since 2004. The three-week race ends in Paris on July 25. —AP

Russia and Argentina cast off favorites’ tag MOSCOW: Russia and Argentina attempted to cast off the favorites’ tag yesterday ahead of their Davis Cup quarterfinal in Moscow. Russia, led by No.6-ranked Nikolay Davydenko, has not lost at home in the Davis Cup since its 1995 final defeat to the United States and has a 3-2 record against Argentina in the event. With Argentina missing star players Juan Martin Del Potro and Juan Monaco, Russia looks to be in a good position ahead of the match but captain Shamil Tarpischev said it would be tight. “We are in an equal position in this tie,” Tarpischev said. “Both teams have the same problems, so we will step on the court and try to do our best. “We always play tough matches with Argentina. We win at home but lose away. Argentina is a team which has many players to choose from and has deserved to win a title for a long time but is yet to win.” Argentina captain Tito Vazquez said Russia had to be the favorite because of its 17-match winning streak in Moscow, which includes a victory over the south Americans in the 2006 final at the Olympic indoor stadium. “A home team is usually a favorite in a tie,” Vazquez said. “And statistically Russia is — it’s unbeaten here in 17 ties. But I’m sure we will play our best.” Davydenko is fit again after a wrist injury and is joined in the Russia team by Mikhail Youzhny, Teimuraz Gabashvili and Igor Kunitsyn. Argentina has called on three players — Horacio Zeballos, Eduardo Schwank and Leonardo Mayer _ that helped it surprise Sweden in the first round in March. The experienced David Nalbandian is also in the team. “We are happy to have David in the team,” Vazquez said of the 28-year-old Nalbandian, who has slipped to No.153 after a series of injuries. “He is playing well and is in good shape. He also can give good advice to his teammates, who have played just one or two matches for the team.” Nalbandian, who has a 29-9 record in the Davis Cup, missed much of last season through injury and has been sidelined with a hamstring problem since April. “The Davis Cup is very important for Nalbandian — he is playing for his country,” Davydenko said. “Two five-set matches will boost his confidence ahead of the next (ranking) tournaments. He is a dangerous player no matter how long he has been sidelined for.” Davydenko, who missed the French Open with his wrist injury, said he was not sure about his current form. “If I wasn’t injured and had played every week, I could have said I was confident and was playing well,” Davydenko said. “But I haven’t played for three months and have just had a couple of matches on grass, which I do not like. So I cannot say right now how I am playing. Only time will tell.” The match will be played on a hard court, which could hand Russia a slight advantage. “The Kremlin Cup is played on this surface, as are most of our Davis Cup ties,” Tarpischev said. “This surface is familiar to our players and they quickly adjust to it. “But all will depend on how we manage to prepare for the match and how we find the best lineup which will help us to win.” The opening singles are scheduled for Friday, followed by a doubles match on Saturday. The reverse singles, if needed, are on Sunday. The winner of the match will face Spain or France in the semifinals on Sept. 17-19. — AP

MOSCOW: Argentinean Davis Cup team members (from left) David Nalbandian, Leonardo Mayer, team captain Tito Vazquez, Eduardo Schwang and Horacio Zeballos, pose after a press conference in Moscow. — AP

Pennetta dumps Anna BASTAD: Top-seeded Flavia Pennetta of Italy breezed through to the second round of the Swedish Open yesterday with a straight-sets victory over Anna Brazhnikova. Pennetta secured a 6-2, 6-0 win against the Swedish wild card as she chases a second title of the year. Fourth-seeded Gisela Dulko of Argentina took little more than an hour to beat another Swedish wild card, 16-year-old Ellen Allgurin, 6-1, 6-3. Sweden had no players left in the singles competition after the country’s No. 1, Sofia Arvidsson, lost 6-2, 6-4 to unseeded Anna-Lena Groenefeld of Germany. “Mentally, I was still in the locker room,” Arvidsson said. “I really wanted to do well here in Bastad but it just didn’t work out that way.” Third-seeded Lucie Safarova of the Czech Republic beat Germany’s Kathrin Woerle 6-2, 60 but sixth-seeded Angelique Kerber had to retire with a shoulder injury when 3-0 behind in the third set to Ana Vrljic of Croatia. Eighth-seeded Barbora Zahlavova Strycova of the Czech Republic hit four aces on the way to a 6-3, 6-0 win over Slovakia’s Zuzana Kucova and 36-year-old Jill Craybas of the United States beat fellow veteran Rossana De Los Rios 6-3, 63. Sloane Stephens of the United States, Spain’s Nuria Llagostera Vives and Arantxa Rus of the Netherlands were also first-round winners. Meanwhile, Japan’s Go Soeda has beaten

Taylor Dent of the United States in the opening round of the Hall of Fame Tennis Championships. Soeda, Japan’s top-ranked player, won 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 on Monday for his second career ATP victory. The other came in Beijing in 2008. The eighth-seeded Dent, still trying to regain his game after three back surgeries in 2008, was steady with his serve until being broken in the final game of the match. “I guess he said before that game, ‘I’m going to go for it’ because that’s what he did,” Dent said. “Everyone out there is good enough to connect for a game if they decide to go for it.” The 25-year-old Soeda was still nervous after winning the match. “I saw the draw — Taylor Dent,” he said. “I can’t believe I won this.” The Hall of Fame tournament, the only grass event in North America, is played in conjunction with the induction ceremony. This year’s class of Gigi Fernandez, doubles pair Todd Woodbridge and Mark Woodforde, and Brad Parks will be enshrined on Saturday. Also in the first round, American Ryan Harrison rolled past Slovakia’s Karol Beck, 6-1, 6-2. Dustin Brown, Jamaica’s top-ranked player, squandered six match points in the second set and one in the third before defeating Germany’s Bjorn Phau 7-6 (3), 6-7 (7), 6-4. “He was hitting a lot of balls on the line,” Brown said. “I’m just happy I got through it.”—AP

Flavia Pennetta of Italy returns the ball to Anna Brazhnikova during the Swedish Open match yesterday.

18 Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Casillas lauds Spain’s teamwork ahead of semi DURBAN: Spain captain Iker Casillas believes that his squad’s teamwork and commitment to attractive football are the reasons why it has made it to the World Cup semifinals, while teams led by superstars Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have not. Casillas captains the European champions in a national record 53rd match - in today’s semifinal meeting with Germany. “We know that the Germany match is the most important in our history,” Casillas said ahead of Wednesday’s game at Moses Mabhida Stadium. “Even more than the Euro 2008 final in Austria.” The image of Casillas raising the trophy after that 1-0 victory over Germany

is engrained in Spanish football history since it ended 44 years without a major triumph for the perennial dark horse. Most importantly, it turned a deeply talented team of creative players from contenders into champions, with Casillas leading the team all the way through. “With a little patience we’ve been able to win the respect of world football,” said Casillas, who saw the decision to entrust an attractive, possession-based game begin under former coach Inaki Saez. “The past two or three years Spaniards have been winning titles at the club level and with the national team and that’s been important for Spanish football.” Earlier yesterday, UEFA president

Michel Platini praised Europe’s three World Cup semifinal teams for promoting young, creative players. “They are all teams that are playing in different ways, who are giving a little bit more than the rest, so they have the right to be among the world’s four best,” said Casillas, who was clear to point out that Spain is different from the rest. “Germany is physical, Holland is quick and Uruguay is the representation of South American football. Spain is the newcomer of these past few years, the team that has won the most praise. Everyone knows Spain now, people have copied us.” Even the Dutch have managed to avoid the usual infighting that had

previously wrecked promising World Cup campaigns. Casillas reasons team spirit has a lot to do with Argentina and Portugal not living up to expectations. “I’m surprised that two of the best players in the world, Cristiano Ronaldo and Messi, didn’t get further,” he said. “It shows you that a team is not just one player. A player can win the tournament for you, like Argentina with (Diego) Maradona. A player can be in great form but, in the end, everything depends on teamwork.” Nicknamed “Saint Iker,” Casillas has been Spain’s first-choice keeper almost exclusively since his debut in 2000. Pepe

Reina and Victor Valdes, likely starters on most other national teams, can only watch on from the sidelines in South Africa. Only the Jules Rimet trophy is missing from Casillas’ impressive resume as he has helped Madrid to a number of domestic, European and international triumphs. Casillas credits his leadership to the long list of former captains he played under. “I’ve had luck. When I started out I had captains like (Fernando) Hierro, Raul (Gonazalez), Abelardo Fernandez — very important Spanish footballers that I could observe and learn from,” said Casillas, who is 17 appearances shy of matching

Germany ready to sink Spanish armada DURBAN: Germany’s abrupt coming of age at this World Cup has caught almost everyone by surprise-everyone that is but their coach Joachim Loew. Written off as too inexperienced in the runup to the finals, Loew’s squad will kick off today’s semi-final against Spain as slight outsiders. But it is testimony to the vibrancy of the per for mances L oew has overseen in South Africa that no-one will regard it as a major shock should they end Spain’s dream of lifting their first World Cup. While outsiders thought they could see significant weaknesses in a Germany squad rejuvenated by an influx of talent from the under-21 s i d e t h a t w o n l a s t y e a r ’ s E u ro p e a n Championship, Loew always felt he would be leading a competitive group into Africa’s first World Cup. “I’ve never doubted this team’s potential or development,” he said. “They’ve shown a thirst for victory that is worthy of world champions.” Australian, England and Argentina-all of whom saw their own World Cup dreams shattered by four-goal thrashings at the hands of the Germans-will testify to that. As well as coaxing some devastating displays from his players, Loew appears to run a happy camp, something that has not always been the case in the past, even with successful German squads. “It’s a nice team,” he said. “They like to learn, they’re very motivated and I’m very proud of them. It has been a great experience, on and off the pitch.” While Germany’s performances have surpassed what was expected of them, Spain have not yet delivered a collective display equal to the sum of the individual talents in their ranks. There is intense pressure, too, on a group of players weighed down by the burden of making up for decades of under-achievement on the international stage by a country whose domestic league has long been one of the strongest in the world. The likes of Xavi, Andres Iniesta and David Villa will be acutely aware that, in terms of pure footballing ability, the unexepected demise of Brazil has left them head-and-shoulders above the other teams left in the competition. They know they will have squandered an oppor tunity that is unlikely to come again should they fail to go on and emulate the West Germany side that followed up their triumph at Euro 72 by becoming world champions on home soil two years later. The Spanish have only once before been this close to World Cup glory. In 1950, in Brazil, where only 13 countries took part, they made it to the final group stage, where a draw with the eventual champions Uruguay and defeats by Brazil and Sweden resulted in them finishing fourth. In the Spanish camp however, suggestions that the intensity of expectation surrounding them could represent their Achilles heel are batted away, and their hope is that Germany will give them the oppor tunity to impose their quick-passing style on the match. “We’ve had tough games against opponents who, above all, wanted to stop us playing,” said head coach Vicente Del Bosque. “I think the semi-final will be different. Both teams want to reach the final. “We know we can play better than we have done so far, hopefully it will be an open match and a good advert for football.” Del Bosque has not changed his line-up for the last three matches and is set to keep faith with misfiring Liverpool striker Fer nando Torres, who has struggled in a lone striker role while team-mate Villa has plundered five goals from a deeper position on the left. Germany though will still be wary of the striker who scored the only goal of the match when Spain beat Germany in the Euro 2008 final. “It’d be nice to do it again, but it doesn’t matter who scores as long as we win,” Torres said. Spain have no injur y concer ns while Germany will be significantly weakened by the loss of outstanding midfielder Thomas Mueller, who is suspended. Loew has to decide between Hamburg attacking midfielder Piotr Trochowski and 20-year-old Toni Kroos as a replacement for a match in which one goal will see striker Miroslav Klose equal Ronaldo’s record of 15 in World Cup finals. Germany have thrived by being able to commit men to attacks in numbers and quickly regain their defensive shape when they break down. It worked well against England and Argentina but the precision of Spain’s passing narrows the margin for error. —AFP

Andoni Zubizarreta’s record 126 for Spain. “I got the best of each group, and there have been many ... Now it’s my turn, I’m the veteran and I try to transmit what I have learned.” That seems to be working as Spain has lost only two games in over three years. “He gives us such great confidence and we know how many times he’s saved us,” said striker David Villa, who leads the tournament with five goals. “Not just on penalties but (in regular play) too.” Casillas even has a more commanding air about him as he dons a beard in South Africa. “People tell me I look more manly,” Casillas said. “But one day I’ll cut it off.” —AP

Del Bosque — the player’s friend, coach

AUSTRIA: A picture taken on June 29, 2008 shows Spanish defender Sergio Ramos (left) fighting for the ball with German forward Miroslav Klose during the Euro 2008 championships final football match. Two years later, Germany will play against Spain a semi-final of the 2010 Football World Cup tournament today. —AFP

Octopus oracle shows Germany red card BERLIN: The eight-legged oracle has spoken: Paul the octopus says Spain will sink three-time champion Germany in their World Cup semifinal. The floppy football (soccer) fan from Oberhausen’s Sea Life Aquarium yesterday chose a mussel from a glass tank marked with a Spanish flag and ignored a tank emblazoned with Germany’s colors, spokesman Daniel Fey said. But there could still be hope for the Germans. The only time the usually-prescient Paul has erred in the past was ahead of the Germany-Spain final at

the 2008 European Championship. Paul picked Germany; Spain prevailed 1-0. “Paul has decided that Spain will win,” Fey said in a phone interview. “But - and that’s a big but Paul got it wrong only one time and that was also a game between Germany and Spain, therefore we think he just simply can’t get it right when it comes to this combination.” Amid intense anticipation of today’s game, the eight-legged expert’s pick was even carried live by two national all-news television stations. Paul, a two-year-old British born octopus with a purple-yellowish complexion and hundreds of suckers,

wrapped himself around a pole between the two tanks, occasionally extending several of his eight legs toward the German glass before moving his whole body onto the Spanish side. “Once he sat on top of the Spanish glass, he opened the lid with one tentacle and grabbed the mussel with another one,” Fey said. He added that analysts are still pondering whether Paul’s forecasts on games between Germany and Spain may have to do with a potential case of color blindness — the German tricolor of black, red and yellow may be hard to distinguish from

the red-yellow-red stripes of Spain Paul’s record at this World Cup has been flawless so far. In the first round of play, he correctly predicted German victories over Australia and Ghana and the country’s loss to Serbia. England and Argentina then produced invertebrate performances in the next two rounds to match Paul’s predictions that Germany would win. If Germany wins the semifinal despite Paul’s prediction, the octopus will be allowed to predict the outcome of Sunday’s final as well, Fey said. Now it’s up to seafood-crazy Spain to prove him right. —AP

DURBAN: Vicente Del Bosque may lack the unpredictability and colourfulness of Luis Aragones, his predecessor as Spanish coach, but to the players he brings a calmness and authority which are imperative when things are not going smoothly. However, the 59-year-old, who casts a lugubrious looking figure on the bench, rejects the notion that he is simply a father figure to a group of players who won the European title under Aragones and are within touching distance of adding the World Cup to it. “To be a father figure is not sufficient in order to do a good job,” said a clearly agitated del Bosque at the 2009 Confederations Cup where Spain failed to win the trophy losing to the United States in the semi-finals. “You have to have other qualities. I have enough experience in order to earn the respect of my players.” This he has in spades as the out of form Fernando Torres attested to AFP. “He (del Bosque) is a ver y good coach, of course,” said the Liverpool star, who scored Spain’s winner in the 1-0 win over Germany in the Euro 2008 final. “He coached Real Madrid for years, with the biggest stars in the world at that time, and the best players. He knows exactly how to deal with players.” Spain’s rampaging rightback Sergi Ramos also professes a great respect for Del Bosque. “We love his philosophy,” said Ramos. “He is a great coach, he is very refined psychologically as well, and very interested in the players’ welfare.” That is not to say that del Bosque who devoted most of his footballing career to Real Madrid making over 300 appearances for them as a defensive midfielder and winning 18 caps - shies away from letting his players know when he is dissatisfied with them as he did after the opening matches at the World Cup finals. Del Bosque was said to be ‘angry’ af ter the opening 1-0 defeat by Switzerland, then ‘not at all happy’ in the manner they beat Honduras 2-0 in their second match. He says, though, that is his way of preventing the players from resting too much on the laurels of their Euro 2008 victory. “Human relations are fundamental,” he said. “My task is to ask the players for daily efforts. But it is not a question of imposing something for the sake of it or just to make it a show of strength that I am the one in command.” This trademark of having good relations with the players served Del Bosque well during his four years in charge of Real from 1999-2003 where he had especially strong relations with Guti, who he had known since he was a child. But it also had a negative effect as he was sneered at for the manner in which Real icons Fernando Hierro and Raul appeared to wield excessive influence over him, criticism that he rejected. That type of balanced regime certainly paid off as with his tr usty homegrown Real players aligned with the g a l a c t i c o s s u c h a s Lu i s Fi g o a n d Zinedine Zidane they collected two Champions L eague trophies and two league titles. H o w e v e r, e v e n t h e a f f a b l e d e l Bosque’s principles were tested to the limit in the manner of his summary dismissal from the Real post by club president Florentino Perez a day af ter he landed them the 2003 league title. Especially hurtful was the manner in w h i c h Pe re z e x p l a i n e d h i s s a c k i n g because a man who had served the club for 35 years apparently did not ‘fit the image of Real...’. “Me also I have my moodswings; sometimes I can’t contain myself and I lose my sangfroid, even if I always try to keep a certain balance,” said del Bosque. Typically, though, of his character he refused to react to the barbed criticisms aimed in his direction by Aragones following the 1-0 defeat by the Swiss. “I will never say anything against my predecessor as coach because there is not a Spain of Luis nor is there a Spain of Del Bosque, there is just one Spain.” —AFP

19 Wednesday, July 7, 2010

World Cup

Photo gallery

Zuma hails WCup benefits as fans mass for semi-final

CAPE TOWN: Uruguay football fans show their support of Uruguay’s striker Luis Suarez before the start of the 2010 World Cup semi-final match between Uruguay and Netherlands. Suarez’s handball at the goal-line during the quarter-final game against Ghana gave Uruguay a second chance. — AFP

CAPE TOWN: A Netherlands supporter cheers prior to the start of the 2010 World Cup semi-final football match Uruguay vs. Netherlands at Green Point stadium. — AP

CAPE TOWN: An Uruguayan fan awaits the start of the 2010 World Cup semi-final football match between Uruguay and Netherlands. — AFP

CAPE TOWN: A Netherlands fan cheers prior to the start of the 2010 World Cup semi-final football match Uruguay vs. Netherlands at Green Point stadium. — AFP

CAPE TOWN: President Jacob Zuma said yesterday the World Cup has brought “priceless” benefits to South Africa, as fans of the Netherlands and Uruguay descended on Cape Town for their semi-final match. With Sunday’s final now just days away, Zuma said the 33 billion rand (4.2 billion dollars, 3.4 billion euros) spent by the national treasury had led to lasting improvements in communications and transport. But the social impact had been even greater, he said, as black and white fans packed into stadiums and fan parks together, 16 years after the first all-race elections ended white-minority rule. “The social benefits are priceless. We have seen remarkable unity, patriotism and solidarity being displayed by South Africans, which has never been witnessed before,” Zuma told an investment meeting. “This augurs well for the consolidation of reconciliation and friendship for this young nation. We intend to build on this achievement.” After nearly four weeks of celebrating football, South Africans are bracing for the time when the spotlight shifts away. “I’m heartsore because the atmosphere is indescribable,” said 18-year-old Jason Brown, among the thousands of fans in Cape Town’s city centre ahead of the match. “Everyone’s jolly and having a great time and it’s nice meeting people from other countries.” Until the World Cup, football was perceived as a black sport in South Africa, but the tournament has seen racially mixed stands and an outpouring of national pride. Sports authorities are expected to announce Wednesday that a rugby test match, traditionally seen as a white sport, will be held in Johannesburg’s Soccer City on the outskirts of the black township of Soweto, in a move to keep the enthusiasm going. But yesterday the focus remained on Cape Town as the city hosted its last game of the tournament at 1830 GMT. Thousands of Netherlands fans paraded toward the stadium behind an orange bus blaring Dutch tunes, with fans singing and dancing in the streets. “It’s really lovely to see everyone have a party,” said Marcel de Weijs, 30, wearing an orange cape with faux fur trim. “I also hope that there will be a big party in the stadium.” The airport reported a surge in charter flights and private jets bringing in fans, and street vendors shoved their blue Uruguay wigs to the back of their stands to cater for the demand for orange. Uruguay is playing their first World Cup semi-final match in 40 years. But af ter a hand ball robbed Ghana of a quarter-final win, on top of Uruguay’s drubbing South Africa in the group stages, many local fans are rooting for Netherlands. Attention turns to Durban today as Germany face Spain in the last semi-final. Preparations for the closing show Sunday remain a closely guarded secret, but the main question is whether Nelson Mandela will be there. South Africa’s first black president cancelled a planned appearance at the June 11 opening, after his great-granddaughter was killed in a car accident. The Nobel laureate turns 92 one week af ter the final and appears in increasingly frail health. His foundation says no decision has been made yet on whether he will attend, and his schedule is prone to change at the last minute. — AFP

World Cup matches (local timings) Spain v Germany ...... 21:30 Al Jazeera Sport +9 Al Jazeera Sport +10

CAPE TOWN: Netherlands’ Giovanni van Bronckhorst (right) congratulates Netherlands’ Wesley Sneijder (left) after he scored their side’s second goal during the World Cup semifinal soccer match between Uruguay and the Netherlands. — AP

‘Tournament team’ ready to win....again CAPE TOWN: England striker Gary Lineker once joked: “Football is a simple game; 22 men chase a ball for 90 minutes and at the end, the Germans win”, but why do Germany always seem to prosper at the World Cup? Spain will be hoping Germany fail to live up to Lineker’s quip in Wednesday’s World Cup semi-final in Durban. However, the facts speak for themselves: Germany have won the World Cup three times (1954, 1974 and 1990), have contested seven finals and finished third three

times. They have reached the last eight at 14 of the 17 World Cup finals they have contested as they did not compete in 1930 and were excluded from the 1950 edition following World War II. Having lost in the 1982 and 1986 finals, they made it third time lucky in terms of successive finals by beating Argentina 1-0 in 1990 and cap their golden era. They exited at the quarter-finals of the 1994 and 1998 editions, but reached the final in

FIFA to keep monitoring Nigeria JOHANNESBURG: FIFA will continue monitoring Nigerian football for political interference despite the government backing down on threats to remove its national teams from competition. FIFA was poised to suspend Nigeria from world football — a move which would also have affected club teams, referees and officials — when a peace agreement was reached on Monday. FIFA spokesman Nicolas Maingot said the Nigerian government had reversed a decision “to withdraw all their national teams from playing in the (African confederation) and FIFA competitions for the next two years.” “This is what we were asking,” Maingot said. “Of course, as usual in such cases, we will continue to monitor the situation closely.” The dispute began when Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan banned the national teams and ordered a probe into alleged corruption at the football federation after the Super Eagles’

first-round elimination from the World Cup. Jonathan’s decree breached FIFA rules which forbid governments intervening in football’s affairs. A FIFA statement noted Monday that “the Nigerian Government also recognizes the currently elected executive of the Nigerian Football Federation.” The federation is scheduled to vote in a new ruling panel at an Aug. 21 meeting in Lagos. Last weekend, it fired its president and vice president in an effort to convince Jonathan to drop the suspension threat. The peace deal was reached Monday after FIFA sent one of its own executive committee members, Nigerian official Amos Adamu, to mediate in Abuja. A government statement said football officials “assured the president of their commitment to evolving an enduring football development program, and grow a new senior national team that will bring glory, rather than consistent embarrassment to Nigeria on the world stage.” — AP

2002 and came third as hosts in 2006. While Portugal, England, France, Italy, Argentina and Brazil all exited before the quarter-finals were over here, a young German squad (the average age is just under 25) has brushed off key injuries to reach the semifinals. “We’re just a compact unit and have proved again that Germany is a tournament team’,” said striker Miroslav Klose. “I think it’s all down to a certain quality, it’s crucial to have self belief and present yourself as a true team on the pitch.” Klose is a good example of a player who has saved himself for the World Cup. Having mostly warmed Bayern Munich’s bench last season, he has four goals in South Africa and needs only two more to beat Ronaldo’s record of 15 in all finals. England’s Wayne Rooney - goalless in two World Cup finals campoaigns - take note. Injured Germany captain Michael Ballack insists that while history weighs heavy on their rivals, German players flourish in the knowledge of past national success. “German teams approach every competition expecting to do well,” wrote Ballack in The Times. “Expectation can create pressure, but we’re inspired by our history, whereas I’ve sensed that England are intimidated by their past. “Individually, England have better players, but I’d rather be in the German team. “We’re one of the fittest sides in the tournament, play good football and have an outstanding mentality. We’re a big country, with a big history, and have to go for it.” Ballack’s mention of fitness gives a clue to Germany’s success. Firstly, the entire squad plays in the Bundesliga which enjoys a four-week winter break in January, allowing players to rejuvenate at the season’s halfway stage. — AFP

Dutch storm into final

World Cup Photo gallery

CAPE TOWN: Netherlands football fans await the start of the 2010 World Cup semi-final football match between Uruguay and Netherlands at Green Point Stadium. — AFP

SOUTH AFRICA: Prince Williem Alexander and Princess Maxima of Netherlands celebrate during the 2010 World Cup semifinal football match between Uruguay and Netherlands at Green Point Stadium. —AFP

SOUTH AFRICA: A Netherlands fan painted in the country’s colors awaits the start of the 2010 World Cup semi-final football match between Uruguay and Netherlands . — AFP

CAPE TOWN: Uruguay supporters cheer prior to the start of the 2010 World Cup semifinal football match Uruguay vs. Netherlands at Green Point stadium. — AFP

CAPE TOWN: The Netherlands stormed into their first World Cup final since 1978 yesterday, beating Uruguay 3-2 to set up a title clash against either Germany or Spain. Two goals inside three secondhalf minutes, from Wesley Sneijder and Arjen Robben, steered the Dutch into the decider and shattered South American hopes. Veteran Dutch captain Giovanni van Bronckhorst gave his side the lead on 18 minutes with a stunning 35-yard strike before Diego Forlan produced an equally memorable goal four minutes before half-time to keep Uruguay alive. Maxi Pereira got one back for Uruguay in injury time but it was too little too late. “It was a hard match, but all that is forgotten now and we are in the final,” said Sneijder as Holland go looking for a first World Cup title. “The most important thing now is to win. We are so close. There is nothing bigger than the World Cup. This is tremendous, fantastic.” Coach Bert van Marwijk said everyone in the Netherlands can be proud of the team. “It’s amazing that we have managed to do this. It’s been 32 years (that the Netherlands last played in a final). It is unbelievable. We can be very proud for such a small country.” Uruguay defender Egidio Arevalo admitted the Dutch had been tough opponents. “After many years together, we wanted to go as far as the final,” he said. “But we were defeated by a very strong side, that’s football.” The last time Holland made it to the final was 32 years ago when they fell at the last hurdle to hosts Argentina 3-1 after extra-time. Despite losing, Uruguay did their small nation proud with coach Oscar Tabarez guiding them to their first semi-final in 40 years. It was a massive achievement for a country with a population of just 3.4 million, and they must now put their disappointment behind them for a third-place play-off on Saturday. The Netherlands came into the match as overwhelming favourites after winning all their games in South Africa to go with the eight wins out of eight notched up in qualifying. Both teams were forced to make changes with players suspended and in chilly conditions at Green Point Stadium it was the Dutch who adapted the best. They had a decent chance as early as the third minute when Robben whipped in a teasing cross which Fernando Muslera punched straight to Dirk Kuyt on the edge of the box, but the Liverpool winger skied his shot. The dangerous pair created another opportunity soon after when Kuyt sent in a cross that the Bayern Munich star headed at the keeper. With the pressure on, it was only a matter of time before the deadlock was broken and it was their hugely experienced captain who did it with a contender for goal of the tournament. The 35-year-old van Bronckhorst picked up the ball some 35 yards out and let rip with a stunning drive that tore into the top corner of the net past the outstretched fingertips of Muslera. It should have been 2-0 on the half-hour when Arsenal’s Robin Van Persie made an excellent turn to pick out Robben on the edge of the box, but Martin Caceres made a timely intervention. Uruguay were struggling to create openings before Forlan produced his own piece of magic with a leftfoot screamer that swerved past keeper Maarten Stekelenburg, who should have done better. Holland looked to up the tempo in the second half but it was Uruguay who nearly took the lead when Khalid Boulahrouz’s back-pass fell short and Edinson Cavani challenged the keeper. Stekelenburg’s clearance hit Cavani and he teed up Alvaro Pereira, but his floated effort was headed away from danger. The match was finely poised with both sides creating chances but it was Sneijder who did the damage with his fifth goal of the tournament. The Inter Milan star unleashed a low right foot drive that took a deflection to put his team in front on 70 minutes. Uruguay were stunned and Robben took advantage of their guard being dropped with another goal three minutes later with a fabulous header from a Kuyt cross. The South Americans threw everything they had at Holland as the clock ticked down and got their reward with Pereira’s goal in the second minute of injury time but by then the match was over. — AFP

CAPE TOWN: Uruguay’s defender Martin Caceres (left) and Netherlands’ striker Arjen Robben fight for the ball during the 2010 World Cup semi-final football match. — AFP

‘Football fever’ grips Germans in Spain SPAIN: German flags are fluttering on the “Bierstrasse” and from balconies in Playa de Palma, where bars and restaurants offer bratwurst, sauerkraut and schnitzel and the only language seems to be German. But this is Spain, and here and there amid the sprawl of bierkellers and grillmeisters, the red and gold Spanish colours are also flying and a few Spanish bars are serving pan amb oli, a traditional appetiser of the Balearic island of Majorca. As Spain prepares to face Germany in the World Cup semi-final in South Africa today, there can be few other parts of the globe where the friendly rivalry between the two countries is more keenly felt than in Majorca. Some 27,000 German residents on the Mediterreanean island, in a population of around 862,000, are joined every year by some four million German tourists-the largest number of visitors from any single country. Some 450,000 Germans arrived last May alone, according to the local tourist authority. Playa de Palma (Palma Beach) outside the island’s capital is the centre of the German community on the island. And this week it seems there’s only one thing people there want to talk about. “I think Germany will win today, and that’s not just because I’m German,” said

Juergen, a tourist in his 50s who is visiting from Cologne with his wife. “The Spanish players are dangerous, but we have the key to unlock them,” he said as he downed a beer in one of the dozens of bars in what is unofficially known as the “Bierstrasse” (Beer Street). At the Deutsches Eck (German Corner) bar and restaurant, manager Uwe said the World Cup results so far “couldn’t have been better” for his business. “We have 150 reservations for the restaurant alone for Wednesday night,” he said. “They’re mostly the same people who came for the other matches.” He has set up seven giant television screens so that all his customers, who also include Spaniards, can watch the game. German flags line the outside of the restaurant, while bunting in the German colours of red, yellow and black stretch from the roof up the facade of the apartment block above. And in the street outside, he also hung some Spanish flags. He says that most Germans in the town will support Spain if it makes the final, and vice versa. “If Germany loses to Spain it won’t be nearly as bad as if we lose to France or Brazil,” said Uwe, who moves to Majorca from Wupperthal five years ago with his family and already feels “a bit Spanish.”

“When Spain beat Germany in the final of Euro 2008, the Germans here were applauding,” he said. “Today, we’ll be setting off fireworks here no matter who wins.” Maria, a 37-year-old who runs a tourist gift shop near the beach, agrees that the Germans are very sympathetic to Spain. “We sell a lot of Spanish flags to the Germans,” she said. But Daniel, a Spaniard who works in the music business, admitted there is “some rivalry” between the two communities in Playa de Palma, where Spaniards also keep holiday homes. “The Germans here think Majorca is part of Germany,” he complained, standing outside a friend’s house near the beach where a huge Spanish flag was hung from the top floor. Whatever the result, there will be a fiesta atmosphere throughout Majorca. “Fussballfieber” (“Football Fever”) screamed the headline yesterday in the Mallorca Zeitung, a newspaper for Germans on the island and which had six inside pages devoted to the World Cup. Its English language equivalent, the Majorca Daily Bulletin, was understandly less excited about the match, with England eliminated. “Hotter start to July than usual,” was the headline there. — AFP

Ghana to honor national team

CAPE TOWN: Netherlands’ Demy de Zeeuw (left) falls after being kicked in the face by Uruguay’s Martin Caceres during the World Cup semifinal soccer match between Uruguay and the Netherlands. — AP

ACCRA: Ghana’s World Cup players will be given national honors and $20,000 each after their quarterfinal performance in South Africa. “You deserved to be honored because you have made Ghana and indeed Africa proud,” Ghana President John Atta Mills said yesterday at a lunch held in honor of the team, which was greeted by cheering fans on its return to Accra on Monday night. “You did not win the World Cup but, through your performance, you carried high the flags of not only Ghana but Africa,” he added. As well as the cash bonus for the players, a government official said members of the coaching team would receive a reward of $10,000 each. Former United Nations secretary general Kofi Annan, who is from Ghana, wrote in a letter to the team that he was one of millions left “heartbroken” after the quarterfinal loss to Uruguay in a penalty shootout. Ghana was denied victory when a blatant hand ball prevented a goal in the final seconds of extra time. Asamoah Gyan missed the resulting penalty and Ghana’s dream of becoming the first African team to make the World Cup semifinals ended when it lost the shootout. “For a moment, my reaction to those last minutes of drama was ‘how unfair’,” Annan wrote in the open letter which was addressed “Dear Black Stars.” “But in fact, while you lost the game, you came out winners,” the letter said. “I wanted to congratulate you not only on a fantastic performance in which you can take great pride, but also for accepting your defeat with dignity. You won because you were such great ambassadors for the game — and for Africa.” Ghana was adopted as Africa’s team during its journey to the last eight of the tournament. The other five countries from the continent all failed to qualify for the second round.— AP

LG Electronics continues its regional expansion


Thailand names new central bank boss

Australia govt under new mine tax attack



Wednesday, July 7, 2010

BP approaches SWFs for strategic alliance Company denies new share issue ● Hayward visits Azerbaijan DUBAI: British oil company BP has approached sovereign wealth funds with a view to securing a strategic investor to fend off takeover bids while it deals with its massive US oil spill, a senior UAE source said yesterday. BP executives have held talks with a number of sovereign wealth funds (SWFs) including Abu Dhabi, Kuwait, Qatar and Singapore, the source told Reuters under condition of anonymity. “BP is seeking a strategic partner so it doesn’t get taken over by other major oil companies such as Exxon and Total,” the source said. “It’s BP that is approaching the sovereign wealth funds not the other way round. They are the ones in need of a partner.” The Gover nment of Singapore Investment Corp (GIC), one of two sovereign wealth funds in the nation, already owns around 0.7 percent of BP via a 122 million share holding, according to Thomson Reuters data. GIC was not available for comment. Temasek, another Singaporean state fund, declined to comment. “It’s normal sovereign funds are looking into it. Most of them are probably not going to buy on the market,” said a Middle East based investment banker familiar with the matter. “They would consider a PIPE investment [private investment in public equity]. BP has 2 choices, either sell assets or raise capital and this is under discussion,” he added. The size of any stake sale would be at least $500 million, the banker said. Another banking source familiar with the matter said talks were still preliminary and that BP had yet to offer blocks of shares to SWFs. For BP, it would be important not to undercut existing shareholders by offering a special deal to SWFs, bankers said. BP had started marketing programs to convince funds that its share price is low enough to encourage them to buy on the market, he said. “If they get a special price they would invest,” he said. “But if they do and it’s not the same deal as for existing shareholders, it would be a PR nightmare for BP.” Existing shareholders on Monday balked at reports that BP was looking to sell a stake, questioning whether it really needed a strategic partner. Libya and China were also among those interested, the second source said. BP shares have lost more than half their market value since the spill in the Gulf of Mexico was unleashed on April 20, the result of an explosion on a drilling rig that caused the undersea well to rupture. Attempts to stop the flow have not worked, with BP pinning hopes on a relief well that should be completed in August. BP has said it hopes to raise $10 billion from asset sales this year as part of its plan to fund a $20 billion clean-up fund set up under pressure from US authorities. Several newspapers reported interest this week among SWFs in buying some of BP’s assets in the Middle East and Asia. Britain’s Sunday Times said BP’s advisers were trying to dr um up interest among rival oil groups and sovereign wealth funds to take a stake of between 5 and 10 percent in the company at a cost of up to 6 billion pounds ($9.1 billion). BP PLC meanwhile said it has no plans to issue new shares to help pay for the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, giving its shares a further boost amid rumors of interest from sovereign wealth funds. BP spokesman Mark Salt said that BP “is always happy to welcome new shareholders or existing shareholders who wish to increase their shareholdings, but there’s no current plans to issue new equity to anyone.” The company’s statement is good news for investors whose own holdings would be diluted by a larger stock base. Recent reports have suggested that a number of Middle East sovereign wealth funds are considering purchasing a stake in BP, helping calm fears of a full takeover. BP declined to comment on “market rumor and speculation.” Shares in the company were trading 2.7 percent higher at 342.35 pence ($5.20) in afternoon trade on the London Stock Exchange. BP’s embattled chief executive yesterday visited oil-rich Azerbaijan in a bid to assuage fears that his company may sell assets in the country to help pay for the clean-up of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. The one-day visit comes a week after Tony Hayward, who has been criticized for his handling of the devastating oil spill, traveled to Moscow to reassure Russia that the British energy company is committed to investments there. While in Baku, Hayward met with President Ilkham Aliyev and “reiterated BP’s commitment to Azerbaijan and continuing successful cooperation” with the government and the stateowned oil and gas company SOCAR, the British oil company said in a statement. Hayward also oversaw the signing of an agreement defining the key commercial principles of a product-sharing deal between BP and SOCAR on two new offshore gas fields in the Caspian Sea. —Agencies

Kuwait’s ALAFCO to lease 7 Boeing aircraft KUWAIT: Kuwait’s Aviation Lease and Finance Co (ALAFCO) said it agreed to lease seven Boeing aircraft to Ethiopian Airlines, China’s Okay Airways and Russia’s Transaero Airlines. Ethiopian Airlines and Okay Airways will each lease three new Boeing 737-800 aircraft for 96 months, ALAFCO said in a statement on the Kuwaiti bourse website yesterday. The market price of each aircraft is $77 million, the firm said. ALAFCO said it also agreed to lease a used Boeing 777-200 for 96 months to Transaero Airlines, at a market price of $60 million. ALAFCO, in which Islamic lender Kuwait Finance House and state-owned Kuwait Airways are the biggest shareholders, said monthly rental charges are 1 percent of the listed prices. —Reuters

Prince Alwaleed to launch TV channel

GULF OF MEXICO: This US Coast Guard handout image shows the M/V “A Whale” conducting a shakedown voyage to evaluate its oil skimming capabilities on open water as part of the Deepwater Horizon response in the Gulf of Mexico. —AFP

RIYADH: The Kingdom Holding company headed by the Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal which says it plans to launch a new Arabic television news channel in partnership with the Fox network. In a statement yesterday, Prince Alwaleed says the 24-hour broadcast channel “will be an addition and alternative” for millions of Arab viewers, competing with the existing channels, Al-Arabiya and Al-Jazeera. He named veteran Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi chief of the new network. He did not say when the network would begin broadcasting. Alwaleed was ranked last year by Forbes as the world’s 19th wealthiest person. He also owns the Arabic media giant Rotana Group. In February, Fox said it was becoming a partner with Rotana by taking over 9.1 percent of its shares. —AP

Abu Dhabi wealth fund not to cut Europe exposure PARIS: The Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA) is not planning to cut its exposure to debt-ridden Europe, saying a stable regulatory, legal and tax framework make it an attractive place to invest. “No, (we) maintain a stable view,” Jean-Paul Villain, strategy unit head at ADIA, told Reuters when asked whether the fund was looking to reduce its exposure in the face of Europe’s debt crisis. “These markets are efficient,” he said.

Sovereign funds, which together manage around $3 trillion of assets, are turning aggressive after cutting back their holdings in 2008 at the height of the credit crisis when they lost billions on banks such as UBS and Citigroup. Speaking to Reuters on the sidelines of the Europlace Financial Forum in Paris, Villain said developed markets still offered attractions. “The legal framework and tax framework is very stable. If you buy an infrastructure asset

in the UK (for example), you have a clear ... structure of regulation,” the former BNP Paribas executive said. ADIA has assets of between $500 billion and $700 billion with investments ranging from Citigroup bonds to a stake in Britain’s Gatwick Airport. State-owned ADIA invests funds generated by the United Arab Emirates, the world’s third-largest oil exporter, into overseas stocks and bonds as a means of diversifying away from the

hydrocarbons sector. In May, China’s sovereign wealth fund said it would not cut its investments in Europe despite the fall in the euro, but would closely monitor how the continent tackles currency and regulation issues. ADIA’s Villain said the fund was constantly looking at diversif ying into Europe, without specifying which assets or sectors. Villain declined to comment on whether it had been approached by

China awaits record bank share sale as books close SHANGHAI/HONG KONG: Agricultural Bank of China, the country’s No 3 bank by assets, has closed the books on its dual Hong Kong and Shanghai share sale and could break all IPO records by raising more than $22 billion. AgBank, which is raising funds to replenish capital after the financial crisis and an industry-wide lending binge, will begin its pricing meeting at 1030 GMT, according to sources involved in the deal. If AgBank’s offering is priced toward the top of the indicated range, and a greenshoe option is exercised to expand the deal by 15 percent, the IPO will likely exceed Industrial & Commercial Bank of China’s recordbreaking $21.9 billion offering in 2006. It will also provide a guide for other Chinese banks planning tens of billions of dollars in similar capital raisings this year and a gauge on the risk appetite of investors hurt by plunging global markets and concerns over economic growth. “Investors have been on the sidelines waiting for the AgBank IPO, but I see volume picking up once again after the listing as the fundraising has already been discounted in the stock prices and pessimism about the global economy tempers,” Mark To, Head of Research at Wing Fung Financial Group, said. Two fund managers expected AgBank to price at HK$3.28, the middle of a new, narrower range that sources said the company had set on Monday. That would value the company at 1.73 times 2010 prospective book value, higher than the 1.5 times book institutional investors told Reuters they were willing to pay in a poll last month. The poll came before cornerstone investors took up a larger than expected $5.45 billion worth of the Hong Kong share offering, leaving fewer shares for the world’s mutual funds. Investor demand appeared robust on the mainland. A source with direct knowledge of the listing told Reuters yesterday that AgBank’s Shanghai offering was about 20

BEIJING: Customers walk in and out of a branch of Agricultural Bank of China in Beijing yesterday. Beijing-based Agricultural Bank, also known as ABC, expects to reap up to US$23.2 billion in the world’s largest share listing. —AP times oversubscribed by institutional investors. One of the fund managers said the bank would price its Shanghai IPO at the top end of the range at 2.68 yuan, a safe bet if history is any guide. The only major China IPO since last June to miss the top of its price range was China First Heavy Industries. An official announcement on AgBank’s pricing is expected today, but details are likely to leak out Tuesday night or early Wednesday morning. A top-of-range pricing plus the overallotment would value AgBank at

around $150 billion, ranking it the fourth biggest bank in the world by market capitalization behind ICBC, China Construction Bank and HSBC. Headed by Chairman Xiang Junbo, an award-winning scriptwriter and war hero, AgBank has 24,000 branches, 441,000 employees and 320 million customers-more than the population of the United States. AgBank is going public because it has finally been able to shed its massive nonperforming loan book, which only a few years ago was around 25 percent. The sale of

the 15 percent stake will complete Beijing’s plans to have its four major banks go public. AgBank’s pricing will also provide a barometer of sentiment for other Chinese banks planning capital raisings; Bank of China and ICBC also have huge fund raisings planned. Its July 15 and 16 debut will also track risk appetite. China’s benchmark stock index has fallen nearly a quarter since midApril and fell sharply last week, partly as investors sold stocks to raise money for the AgBank offer. —Reuters

British oil company BP for financial support. The sovereign fund, known for its secretive nature, provided a rare glimpse into its investment portfolio with its first annual review published earlier this year. North America and Europe accounted for a major chunk of investments, with about 60 to 85 percent going to the regions. Emerging markets constituted at least 15 percent. —Reuters

US service sector posts dismal growth in June WASHINGTON: The key US services sector suffered a sharper-than-expected fall in growth in June, raising further doubts about the pace of recovery in the world’s largest economy. The Institute of Supply Management said its non-manufacturing index declined to 53.8 points from 55.4 in May. Most economists had expected the June figure to be at 55.0 after relatively steady readings in the prior three months. The latest data indicated “continued growth in the non-manufacturing sector, but at a slightly slower rate,” Anthony Nieves, chairman of the ISM’s non-manufacturing business survey committee, said in a statement. The institute said economic activity in the non-manufacturing sector grew for the sixth consecutive month in June based on a survey of the nation’s purchasing and supply executives. Any number above 50 percent indicates growth in the sector that accounts for more than two-thirds of US economic activity. However, business activity and employment components of the index declined while new orders slumped for the third month in a row. “The index still shows modest improvement from earlier in the year, but the June reading does suggest some loss of momentum at the end of the second quarter,” said Aaron Smith, a senior economist for Moody’s “Today’s report on the non-manufacturing activity brought negative news but remains consistent with our scenario of a slowing down (of) economic activity,” said Thomas Julien, US economist for Natixis. The US economy started to grow in the middle of 2009 after a severe recession that struck in December 2007. President Barack Obama said Friday the US economy was headed in the right direction, but not quickly enough, after new jobs figures added to fears the recovery was slowing. The Labor Department reported Friday a net loss of 125,000 jobs last month even as unemployment fell to 9.5 percent, its lowest rate in almost a year. —AFP



Wednesday, July 7, 2010

LG’s Lifestyle Gallery

LG Electronics continues its regional expansion DUBAI: LG Electronics (LG), a global leader and technology innovator in consumer electronics, mobile communications and home appliances has continued its regional expansion by launching its latest LG Lifestyle Gallery, a dedicated LG Electronics outlet, in Doha, Qatar, bringing the total number of out-

lets in the GCC region to four. Since the beginning of 2010, the company has added tw o outlets to its portfolio across the region, in line w ith its plans to reach its customers by allow ing them to experience the products directly in a comfortable, chic and contemporary lounge-style environment. On the sidelines of the launch ceremony for opening of the latest outlet in Doha, Qatar on June 29th, 2010, H S Paik, President of LG Electronics Gulf FZE said: “The GCC market is of paramount importance to LG. We have continued to see an increasing demand for our products across the region despite the current economic conditions. The opening of our latest outlet signifies our dedication to offering our customers an unparalleled customer service experience that is both pleasant, and efficient.” The outlet is one of several in the region that are redefining the shopping experience for consumers by offering a dedicated outlet with a single brand. Visitors to LG Lifestyle Gallery outlets throughout are able to see and feel the product on display. Coupled with impeccable customer service delivered by knowledgeable staff, the consumer can be absolutely certain they are making the best purchase to suit their lifestyle. Products on display include premium TVs, washing machines, mobile phones, laptops, air conditioners, home theatre systems, refrigerators and much more. Customers to LG Lifestyle Gallery can also experience LG HomNet, the total home network solution providing a convenient, secure, joyful and affluent lifestyle anywhere and anytime, with the integration of LG’s cutting-edge digital home appliances.

Nakheel sees lender deal by next week DUBAI: Nakheel, the property arm of troubled state conglomerate Dubai World, may reach a deal with lenders by next week, the company’s chairman said in a newspaper report yesterday. Nakheel plans to meet with bank lenders on July 14, its chairman Ali Rashid Lootah told the Gulf-based English daily Khaleej Times. “We are meeting with bankers on July 14 and hopefully they will sign the contract,” he said. Under a restructuring proposal issued by its parent Dubai World in March, Nakheel creditors would receive repayment through a mix of 40 percent cash

and 60 percent tradeable security, in the form of an Islamic bond. The company said it began cash payments to trade creditors in a statement issued on June 30. The 40 percent is equivalent to 4 billion dirhams ($1.09 billion), a company spokesman told Reuters. The rest of the payments, in the form of a bond, would be made in coming months, the company said in June. The developer secured in principal 75 percent agreement from trade creditors for the 40 percent cash payment and expected to reach the remainder in a few weeks, a company spokesman told Reuters on June 30. — Reuters

Dubai Holding property arm plans land auction DUBAI: Dubai Properties, part of the business empire of the emirate’s ruler, plans to hold an auction for three beach-side plots of land next month as Dubai struggles under a weight of sovereign and corporate debt. Dubai Properties, part of Dubai Holding, said in an advertisement yesterday that the auction would take place on Aug 29. The global financial crisis has led to a regionwide real estate slump which hit cities like Dubai hard. As a result, commercial and residential property units have remained undeveloped or left vacant. “Dubai Properties Group intends to hold an auction for the lease of three beach club plots at Jumeirah Beach Residence Community on August 29th, 2010 following a pre-qualification process,” the advert said. Interested companies are asked to have at least five years experience in the hospitality sector and be a registered company within the United Arab Emirates. One analyst said any bids were likely to be low. “Investors are wary of buying into any opportunities right now unless they are at distressed levels,” said Saud Masud, head of research and senior real estate analyst at UBS, adding that investor checks indicated appetite for transactions is absent. “Also not convinced that financing woes are

behind us, which adds to the viability concerns of such an auction. This is a way to test the market, which unfortunately is lacking liquidity and conviction,” Masud said. Credit rating agency Moody’s last week downgraded Dubai Holding’s loss-making main operating arm, Dubai Holding Commercial Operations Group (DHCOG), to B2 in its highly speculative category of ratings, taking account of weakness in Dubai’s real estate market and uncertainty over the company’s debt restructuring. DHCOG’s restructuring troubles are the latest blow to the finances of the emirate since its flagship state conglomerate Dubai World suddenly delayed debt payments. Dubai World has since reached a deal in principle with core creditors to restructure some $23.5 billion of debt. Dubai last year got a $10 billion emergency lifeline from its wealthy United Arab Emirates neighbor Abu Dhabi, the largest in the seven member UAE federation. The Gulf Arab emirate, famous for extravagant real estate projects like man-made islands in the shape of palms and a world map, borrowed heavily to fund its transformation into a regional trade and tourism hub. It is estimated to have about $101 billion in total debt, according to a Reuters poll. — Reuters

Oman inflation climbs to 1-year high of 3.2% in May MUSCAT: Oman’s inflation climbed to a one-year high of 3.2 percent year-on-year in May as key items such as food, transport and housing costs edged up, the Gulf oil producer’s data showed yesterday. The global crisis reduced price growth across the Arab Gulf last year from record double-digit peaks in 2008, with the United Arab Emirates and Qatar seeing months of deflation. Inflation in non-OPEC Oman started picking up again in December, when it rebounded from

a low of 0.8 percent the previous month. It reached 3.0 percent in April but is still far away from the June 2008 high of 13.7 percent. Consumer prices rose 0.2 percent month-on-month in May, following the same increase in the previous month, the economy ministry data showed. Oman’s central bank said last week it needed to closely watch inflation in the second half of the year as price pressures in the Gulf state may increase as commodity prices rise

and economic recovery gathers pace globally. It also warned soaring prices my put a pressure on the currency if inflation differential to the United States widened further. Flexibility of Oman’s monetary policy is limited by the rial peg to the US dollar. Food prices, the largest item accounting for 30 percent of the basket, rose 0.2 percent on the month in May, after a 0.3 percent increase a month before. Housing costs grew 0.1 percent,

down from a 0.2 percent rise in April, while transport prices were up 0.2 percent after remaining stable for three months in a row, the data showed. The sultanate’s consumer prices soared in 2008 on imported inflation as a result of the weak US dollar. Oman’s central bank head has said he expected inflation of 4-5 percent in 2010 due to imported price pressures. Analysts polled by Reuters have forecast inflation at 3.5 percent this year. — 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 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 US Dollar Sterling pounds Swiss Francs Saudi Riyals

.2850000 .4360000 .3600000 .2690000 .2700000 .2420000 .0045000 .0020000 .0784650 .7644610 .4020000 .0750000 .7494210 .0045000 .0500000 CUSTOMER TRANSFER RATES .2891500 .4388750 .3626070 .2716740 .2728400 .0486630 .0377520 .2438970 .0371010 .2076750 .0032880 .0062180 .0025530 .0034010 .0042150 .0787630 .7673550 .4089320 .0771450 .7514060 .0062510 TRANSFER CHEQUES RATES .2911500 .4419740 .2735940 .0776370

Al-Muzaini Exchange Co. Japanese Yen Indian Rupees


.2950000 .4470000 .3680000 .2790000 .2790000 .2510000 .0075000 .0035000 .0792540 .7721440 .4180000 .0790000 .7569530 .0072000 .0580000 .2912500 .4419740 .3651670 .2735970 .2747720 .0490070 .0380200 .2456190 .0373640 .2091460 .0033110 .0062650 .0025710 .0034250 .0042440 .0792650 .7722470 .4118280 .0776370 .7561960 .0062950

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

3.395 2.557 3.903 208.980 37.289 4.187 6.246 8.859 0.296 0.310 GCC COUNTRIES Saudi Riyal 77.502 Qatari Riyal 79.846 Omani Riyal 754.980 Bahraini Dinar 771.830 UAE Dirham 79.135 ARAB COUNTRIES Egyptian Pound - Cash 53.116 Egyptian Pound 51.072 Yemen Riyal 1.286 Tunisian Dinar 195.740 Jordanian Dinar 410.280 Lebanese Lira 195.000 Syrian Lier 6.220 Morocco Dirham 33.582 EUROPEAN & AMERICAN COUNTRIES US Dollar Transfer 290.480 Euro 365.710 Sterling Pound 442.400 Canadian dollar 275.080 Turkish lire 185.730 Swiss Franc 274.040 Australian dollar 245.170 US Dollar Buying 289.045 GOLD 20 Gram 240.000 10 Gram 122.000 5 Gram 63.000

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 10 Tola Sterling Pound US Dollar

SELL CASH 249.000 772.230 4.290 277.300 570.200 14.100 49.800 167.800 53.790

366.000 37.830 6.205

410.470 0.195 92.720 3.900 202.900 754.150 3.405 6.245 79.880 77.530 210.030 40.050 2.555 443.000 276.200 9.150 79.130 290.400

GOLD 1,318.390 TRAVELLER’S CHEQUE 443.000 290.400

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

369.500 37.980 6.520 0.038 0.275 0.256 3.410 412.350 0.196 92.720 48.200 4.540 204.400 1.978 46.300 754.330 3.510 6.580 80.310 77.530 210.030 40.050 2.751 445.000 39.000 277.700 6.400 9.310 198.263 79.230 290.800 1.320

SELL DRAFT 247.500 772.230 4.190 275.800

210.000 51.050

Rate for Transfer 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

Selling Rate 290.300 275.025 441.851 366.380 272.392 711.549 768.397 79.018 79.717 77.382 409.655 51.019 6.226

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

3.403 2.558 4.198 6.240 3.300 8.942 6.333

Kuwait Bahrain Intl Exchange Co. Currency 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

Rate per 1000 (Tran) 291.500 3.425 6.245 2.575 4.210 6.315 79.470 77.945 774.900 51.250 443.000 0.00003280 3.990 1.550 414.300 5.750 361.900 282.500

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

Transfer Rate (Per 1000 290.200 367.800 442.850 278.650 3.315 6.210 51.025 2.556 4.182 6.245 3.400 772.180 79.030 77.450

*Rates are subject to change


Wednesday, July 7, 2010


KAMCO’S KSE Monthly Review

Investors on sidelines amid falling sentiment KUWAIT: The absence of new growth drives and lack of confidence in the market led investors to remain on the sidelines during the month, thereby resulting in low liquidity as value traded fell 23.1% to KWD 584 million. As a result, the KSE Weighted and KAMCO TRW Indices continued its previous month negative trend to shed 2.31% & 1.59% respectively during June. Led by the losses incurred on market heavyweights Zain and Agility, the market capitalization of the Services sector plunged 5.60% and weighed down on market performance during the month. Agility witnessed its share price plunge nearly 19.23% (after taking into account the price adjustment for its 2009 annual dividend of KD 0.040 per share) to KD 0.315 mainly over the new fraud accusation charges by the US federal prosecutors against the company. Losses incurred during the month pushed the KSE Weighted Index and KAMCO TRW Index YTD10 gains to drop to 3.0% and 1.9% after recording 5.5% and 3.6% in May-10. However, irrespective of the drop in its YTD-10 gains, the KSE ended as the best performing market as compared to its peers in the GCC region for the same period. Positive announcement by Standard & Poor (S&P) regarding the country’s sovereign credit ratings and outlook boosted investor sentiments as the KSE Weighted Index and KAMCO TRW Index gained 1.12% and 0.83% to close the first three trading sessions of the month on a positive note. Market heavyweight Zain’s announcement that it has concluded the sale of the its African assets to Bharti Airtel failed to boost investor sentiments as the second week of trade witnessed the KSE Weighted Index and KAMCO TRW Index shed 1.17% and 0.83% respectively. During the third week of trade, gains recorded by a majority of regional and international markets coupled with rising oil prices failed to boost investor sentiments as trading on the KSE remained weak. As a result, the KSE Weighted Index and KAMCO TRW Index incurred losses

KAMCO TRW Index Monthly Return & Volatility

of 1.65% and 1.18% respectively. Led by losses incurred by market heavyweight Agility, which witnessed its share price drop 19% to KD 0.320, the KSE Weighted Index and KAMCO TRW Index during the last nine trading sessions of the month

affirmed its ‘AA- / A-1+’ sovereign credit ratings on Kuwait and that the Outlook is ‘Stable’. The ratings are supported by the sovereign’s rich resource endowment, which combined with prudent policies, has enabled the country to build very

A report prepared by KAMCO Research that analyzes the performance of the Kuwait Stock Exchange during June 2010 in addition to assessing the latest key economic and market developments and their effect on the performance of the stock market. shed 0.62% and 0.41% respectively. During the same period, US federal prosecutors accused that Agility may still be overbilling the American government for military supplies. During the month, international rating agency S&P said that it had

strong external and fiscal balance sheet positions in recent years. The Stable outlook on Kuwait balances the government’s strong fiscal position against elevated regional geopolitical risk, increased contingent liabilities and potential impediments to

Strong global oil output to overshadow demand: Poll LONDON/NEW YORK: Global oil output will rise faster than first expected in 2010 with a strong rebound in prices from the depths of the crisis ensuring growing demand will not stretch supplies for at least another year. A Reuters poll of 10 top oil-tracking analysts and organizations found oil demand would rise by 1.5 million barrels per day (bpd) this year to hit 86.1 million bpd, the highest level since 2007. At the same time, the rise in production from outside the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and output of natural gas liquids (NGLs) from OPEC members is seen growing by 1.2 bpd in total. Rising output from the OPEC producer group is expected to keep stocks of crude oil well above the five-year average after they bloated during the crisis. Michael Wittner, head of global oil research at Societe Generale said higher prices meant producers have been able to invest more, slowing declining output from the North Sea and Mexico while output in North America and Russia has expanded. “Company investment bounced back more quickly than we thought,” Wittner said. “NonOPEC supply surprised to the upside in the first half of the year-that’s why we did not get the stock draw we expected. “Based on that, the whole rebalancing process has been delayed. I think it’s still going to happen, but it’s been delayed.” A drop in demand saw oil prices crash from record highs near $150 a barrel on the eve of the financial crisis to around $40 a barrel in late 2008 and early 2009, raising fears prices would spike again if investments in future output were cancelled. But with prices averaging over $75 a barrel since July 2009 the second highest ever over a 12 month period-investment has been maintained, leading some to speculate the ‘boom and bust’ so common over the history of the oil industry has been avoided this time. “Our demand-supply model indicates that, at current production levels, global inventories (the clearest indicator of market balance) will

remain high through 2010 and then decline only slowly through 2011,” said Helen Henton, global head of energy and environmental research at Standard Chartered. “It will be difficult for crude oil prices to gain any upward momentum in the context of a strengthening US dollar and volatile risk appetite, until there is a significant tightening of the underlying balances.” Higher than expected output from non-OPEC members has contributed to a dip in prices from a 19-month peak above $87 a barrel in early May to around $71 currently. Analysts polled by Reuters on the outlook for the oil price have reduced their estimates for the last two months after more than a year of rising expectations. The International Energy Agency, the adviser to 28 industrial countries that has historically been concerned about supplies, has increased its estimate for non-OPEC output by 500,000 bpd since March to 52.3 million bpd this year. Goldman Sachs, one of the biggest investment banks in commodity markets, has also upped its forecast by 1.2 million bpd since March to 52.1 million barrels. Barclays Capital raised its estimate by around 400,000 bpd. “In general, demand has been very strong with growth not just in the developing world but the United States as well, though Europe remains the laggard,” Barclays Capital analyst Amrita Sen said. “Non-OPEC supplies have also surprised to the upside, but there is uncertainty if this will continue in the coming years, with the Gulf of Mexico oil spill likely to see more legislation and costs for producers starting to rise in the medium-term. Booming economies in Asia are expected to provide the vast majority of demand growth. China alone is expected to account for between 700,000-800,000 bpd of any increase this year, though most analysts see the trend moderating in 2011. Early estimates for total global demand growth in 2011 average around 1.4 million bpd, slightly down on this year. — Reuters

Japan Cosmo Oil to cut Qatar crude supply TOKYO: Japan’s Cosmo Oil Co Ltd will slash the volume of Qatar crude oil it purchases in its yearly contract that starts from August, industry sources said yesterday, amid falling demand. The country’s fourth-biggest refiner, which has a contract for about 70,000 barrels per day (bpd) of Qatar Land and Marine crudes for this year, will cut this by more than 20 percent, one of the sources said on condition of anonymity because the informa-

tion is not public. “It’s been cut and the previous contracted amount won’t be extended,” the source, who has direct knowledge of the matter, said. A company spokesman declined to comment on the matter. The move comes after Cosmo Oil announced earlier this year a reduction of 80,000 bpd in its overall refining capacity, joining several Japanese refiners in their efforts to tighten the country’s refined product market.

Oil demand has been declining in Japan for years as the country’s population greys and manufacturers shift operations abroad, with the fall seen continuing as the Pacific nation steps up its efforts to use less and cleaner energy. Demand destruction has led oil refiners in the world’s thirdlargest oil consumer nation to trim volumes from Middle East producers as their contracts for 2010 term crude supplies come up for renewal. —Reuters

growth. During June, market heavyweight Zain announced that it had satisfied all the required conditions precedent to closing of the sale of 100% of its African operations to Bharti Airtel and that the transaction values the company’s African portfolio at $10.7 billion on an enterprise basis. Zain also said that it had received $7.868 billion of cash proceeds from Bharti and is expected to receive an additional $400 million upon certain milestones being achieved over the next six months. The balance of $700 million is due one year from completion as per the original agreements signed on 30 March-2010. In fulfillment of its debts obligations, Zain announced that it has repaid the $4 billion Revolving Credit Facility which the company entered into July-06. On the other hand, Zain Saudi Arabia, in due course of the month announced that it is considering a capital reduction to cover some or all of its accumulated losses which reached $1.6 billion by end of March-2010. Over developments surrounding market heavyweight Agility during the month, US federal prosecutors said that Agility is a “fugitive from justice” that has defrauded the US military and does not have the right to bring a motion in the federal court.

The federal prosecutors also said that it has evidence that the company may still be overbilling the US on military supplies and thereby implicating new fraud charges on the already troubled company. The Banking sector which accounts for 36.9% of the total market capitalization gained 1.4% in its market value to KD 11.21 billion ($39.1 billion) compared to KD 11.05 billion ($38.6 billion) at the end of May-10. During the month, Kuwait Finance House (KFH) witnessed its share price drop 1% to KD 0.980. In due course of the month, the international rating agency Standard & Poor (S&P) announced that it has affirmed its long and short term counterparty credit ratings on KFH at ‘A- / A-2’. The outlook is “Negative”. The rating action reflects S&P’s views about KFH’s strong links and potential support from the State of Kuwait which mitigates the bank’s weakening asset quality and reduced revenue generating capability. The negative outlook reflects the view that the deteriorating asset quality and the bank’s rapid growth could weaken KFH’s financial profile further. On the other hand, the Commercial

Bank of Kuwait (CBK) witnessed its share price surge 25.7% to KD 0.930 over investor expectations that the lender will post better than expected 1H-10 results. The Investment sector which accounts for nearly 8.8% of the total market capitalization shed 7.5% to KD 2.67 billion ($9.3 billion) compared to KD 2.89 billion ($10.1 billion) in May-10. During the month, the Central Bank of Kuwait had set forth new guidelines with regards to the limits on Financial Leverage Ratio, Quick Ratio and Foreign liabilities exposure for investment companies. With regards to the Financial Leverage, the ratio of total liabilities to total equity should not exceed 2:1 while with the Quick Ratio; the ratio of liquid assets due within one month should not be less than 10% of total liabilities. As for the foreign liabilities exposure, the volume of foreign exposure should not be more than 50% of total equity. When further analyzing the investment sector’s financial leverage ratio, out of the 51 listed investment companies in the local stock market as of the end of March 2010, there are only 10 companies that do not comply with the

new requirement due to higher leverage ratios than the 2.0x set by the Central Bank. The law has given these companies a two year period, between June 2010 and 2012, in order to comply with the law which adds significant pressure on these companies to either pay off considerable portions of its debt or increase its equity through raising more capital, a choice that is considered impractical given such tough market conditions. As for the other 41 companies, even though it is in compliance with the new financial leverage requirement, obstacles still exist in light of the high ratio of short term debt obligation and the lack of sufficient liquidity. Total market capitalization during the month dropped 2.3% to KD 30.3 billion ($105.9 billion) at the end of June, down from KD 31.1 billion ($108.4 billion) recorded at the end of May-10. The Real Estate sector shed nearly 5.4% to record KD 1.64 billion ($5.7 billion) while the Industrial sector dropped 3.9% to end at KD 2.56 billion ($8.9 billion). The Services sector incurred losses of 5.6% to KD 8.3 billion ($29.0 billion).


ME markets extend gains as sentiment improves DUBAI: Middle East stocks extended gains yesterday following a turnaround in oil prices and increased risk appetite on world markets. Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Oman each made their largest advances for more than two weeks, but Egypt was the top regional performer, rising 6.7 percent to end a nine-session losing run after Commercial International Bank (CIB) said it would increase its capital with a one-for-one bonus share. This will boost the bank’s lend capabilities and stabilize its balance sheet, while new shares will make Egypt’s biggest private bank more tradable, brokers said. “The market has gone down a lot-it’s normal for it to jump,” said Hashem Ghoneim of Pyramids Capital. “It’s still very low volume and mostly institutional buying. It makes me worry that this rise is not sustainable.” Saudi Arabia’s index gained 1.6 percent as rising oil prices boosted petrochemical stocks, with Saudi Basic Industries Corp (SABIC) rising 4.4 percent to a week high. Analysts said recent declines in Saudi Arabia were down to negative global sentiment, rather than company fundamentals and so stocks were oversold, prompting buyers to come in as fears over the world economy eased for now. Crude was up 2.3 percent at $73.77 at 1438 GMT, having touched a four-week low earlier in the session, while world stocks bounced higher from a recent fiveweek low in a broad risk rally. Dubai’s index climbed 1.5 percent, its biggest gain since June 20. Emaar rose 3.9 percent, Arabtec added 4.8 percent and Dubai Financial Market gained 2.7 percent. This trio are typically the most active stocks and so under- and outperform market movements. “Some institutional clients have been picking up Emaar and Dana Gas for the medium-term, but the quantities are nothing to be overjoyed about,” said Vyas Jayabhanu, head of investments, Al Dhafra Financial Broker. “Investors are not willing to sell at these prices following recent declines - they want to see what Q2 results are like.” Dana Gas ends unchanged on Abu Dhabi’s index. “Dana is in a sector that has escaped the rot and I expect its Q2 numbers to be pretty good,” added Jayabhanu. Kuwait’s Zain climbed 1.9 percent, rising for a second day since Credit Suisse upgraded the telecoms operator by two notches to ‘outperform’. Doha’s index rose 0.4 percent after Standard & Poor’s raised Qatar’s sovereign credit rating. “The index should trade in a flat pattern this month, moving 50 points up or down, but S&P’s upgrade should have a positive impact,” said Mohamed Abu Ghoush, head of equities brokerage at Ahli Bank. “The expectations are for Q2 earnings to be in line with Q1, but outperforming year-on-year. This should give the market a little boost.” Bank Muscat climbed 1.8 percent, helping Oman’s index gain for a fourth day.“A rise in oil prices and positive global markets are lending support to Oman, but a light volume theme continues,” said Gunjan Gupta, head of research at Oman Arab Bank. “With earnings season on the way, value stocks with attractive multiples like Bank Muscat are catching investors’ eyes.” — Reuters

QNB Q2 net profit rises 35%

BATTICOLOA: A Sri Lankan vendor transports a harvest of cucumbers on his scooter through the eastern district of Batticaloa on Monday. Once a hotbed of Tamil Tiger rebels, agriculture industry has resumed in the region after the government ended the 37-year war last May. —AFP

DOHA: Qatar National Bank (QNB), the Gulf state’s largest lender by market capitalization, posted a 35.4-percent jump in second quarter profit yesterday, beating forecasts, as loans and customer deposits grew. Net profit in the three months to June 30 rose to 1.43 billion riyals, according to Reuters calculations, compared to 1.056 billion riyals ($290 million) in the second quarter of 2009. Analysts had forecast net profit of 1.26 billion, up 19.65 percent from a year ago, according to a Reuters survey. Qatar National Bank said it had first half profit of 2.7 billion riyals, in a statement to the bourse. The bank posted net profit of 1.27 billion riyals in the first quarter of 2010, mainly from growth in its Islamic banking business and a surge in lending. QNB, the second-largest lender in the Gulf by market capitalization, is the first major regional lender to report earnings and is closely watched for indications of the sector’s performance. Qatar, which expects double digit economic growth this year, has been active in its support for the banking sector. In March, the Gulf Arab state said it will allow banks to diversify their revenue base and bolster trading income by buying shares of listed companies on the bourse and re-entering brokerage operations. In June, the central bank issued bonds worth 10 billion riyals to local banks with a coupon of 6.5 percent and an eight year maturity, in a move seen as an attempt to mop up excess liquidity. —Reuters



KSE equities pare losses KUWAIT: The Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) ended yesterday’s session on a positive note, as all market sectors were seen bullish except for the Insurance sector. It seems that portfolios are taking actions to lift the market. Global General Index (GGI) increased by 1.98 points (1.11 percent) during yeterday’s session to reach 179.41 points. The KSE Price Index also rose 45.00 points (0.71 percent) yesterday and closed at 6,364.70 points. Market capitalization went down by KD326.54mn yesterday to reach KD29.66bn. Market breadth During the session, 116 companies were traded. Market breadth was skewed towards decliners, as 24 equities retreated versus 81 that advanced. A total of 212 stocks remained unchanged during yesterday’s trading session. Trading activities ended on a positive note yesterday as volume of shares traded on the exchange increased by 50.48 percent to reach 310.24mn shares, and value of shares traded increased by 20.47 percent to stand at KD35.49mn. The Real Estate Sector was the volume leader, accounting for 37.78 percent of total market volume. The Banking Sector was the value leader, accounting for 27.38 percent of total market value. Investors Holding Group Company was the volume leader, for the second consecutive day, with a total traded volume of 54.08mn shares. National Bank of Kuwait (NBK), for the consecutive day, was the value leader with a total traded value of KD4.81mn. In terms of top gainers, Abyaar Real Estate Development Co increased its gains as it took the top spot, adding 11.36 percent and closed at KD0.025. Followed by Manazel Holding Co, increasing by 9.52 percent during the session, and closed at KD0.023. On the other hand, First Takaful Insurance Co was the biggest loser,

shedding 10.99 percent, and closed at KD0.162. Sectors Regarding Global’s sectoral indices, they ended the day on a mixed note. Global Investment Index was the biggest gainer, adding 2.00 percent to its value, backed by Al-Aman Investment Co, up 8.06 percent, closing at KD0.067. Global Insurance Index was the only loser, losing 0.40 percent to its value, backed by First Takaful Insurance Co, down 10.99 percent, closing at KD0.162. Global’s special indices, all ended the day on a positive note, with Global High Yield being the biggest gainer, adding 1.93 percent to its value. Backed by Kuwait Portland, up 5.56 percent

closing at KD1.140. The price of the Kuwaiti crude was down 56 cents in Monday transaction to settle for US$67.64 per barrel (pb) compared to Friday’s US$68.20 pb, said Kuwait Petroleum Corporation yesterday. The fall in crude prices in the international oil market at present is related to the Greek debt crisis and fears of a similar situation in Spain and Italy. Market news Updating its announcement dated May 27,2010, Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) declares that Kuwait Cable Vision (Cable TV) approved raising capital from KD5,724,500 to KD 9,559,500. A total of 38,350,000 shares would be issued at 100 fils par value each with

no issue premium. The increase had been approved by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MOCI) and shareholder meeting held on June 02, 2010. The secondary offering was to run from Tuesday, July 06, 2010 till Tuesday, July 20, 2010, via Kuwait Clearing Co (KCC). New shareholders would subscribe to remaining shares as of Wednesday, July 21, 2010 for one week or to the whole secondary shares, whichever comes earlier. The board would be authorized to dispose of fractions. Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) will be closed on Sunday, July 11 for an Islamic holiday, the bourse said in a statement on its website yesterday.The exchange will re-open on Monday July 12, it said.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Saudi surprises with Aug Arab Lt OSP rise to Asia TOKYO/SINGAPORE: Top oil exporter Saudi Arabia has unexpectedly raised the August official selling price (OSP) of its Arab Light crude oil to Asia, traders said yesterday. Arab Light crude for August to Asia was raised by 5 cents to 15 cents a barrel below Oman/Dubai average, versus cuts of between 5 and 30 cents traders had expected in a Reuters poll prior to the OSP release. The kingdom cut its Arab Heavy crude to Asian customers by 5 cents from July to the Oman/Dubai average minus $3.00 a barrel, while it kept Arab Medium OSP steady at a discount of $1.75 a barrel. These were within the higher end of traders’ expectations. “These are pretty harsh OSPs,” said one trader, who had expected cuts of between 10 and 25 cents for all grades. August-loading spot sour crude market was bearish due to ample sup-

plies and weak demand, with Abu Dhabi’s flagship Murban crude last sold at a deep discount of 35 cents a barrel to ADNOC OSP. But crude demand is likely to rise in September due to improving margins and as spring maintenance comes to a close, while supply will be lower after Abu Dhabi cut August term crude supplies to Asian customers for all of its grades. Margins in the Singapore oil hub for Dubai crude run at a complex refinery were at $5.28 a barrel yesterday, up from an average of $4.80 for the last five days and from an average of $3.43 over the past year. However, refiners were cautiously watching if the rebound in margins would be sustainable. Gas oil cracks have fallen to just under $12.00 a barrel- a three-week low-barely enough to lend support to distillates-rich crude such as Arab Light, as regional

diesel supplies are abundant though demand is healthy in India, Indonesia and Vietnam. Traders said Saudi Arabia might also be tracking the values of rival ESPO Blend crude which was sold at its strongest premium in nearly nine months in late June, after Russia harmonized the grade’s trade schedules with Middle East crudes. Medium sweet ESPO crude has similar product yields compared with medium sour Arab Light. Traders have said Saudi Arabia is trying to secure demand in the Asia-Pacific region and is watching ESPO activity closely, prompting some in the market to hold the view that Aramco would be more persuaded to lower its OSP. The prices to Northwest Europe for all grades were increased, while the prices to the United States for Arab Light and Medium were unchanged. —Reuters

Saudi Arabia’s Jarir expects 15% Q3 net profit growth JEDDAH: Saudi office supplies and electronics retailer Jarir Marketing said yesterday it expects third-quarter net profit to rise by 15 percent after posting a 4 percent rise in the second quarter. “The school season will fall in the third quarter so we expect very good sales in both retail and whole sales.... We expect it to be more than 15 percent,” Chief Financial Officer Mohamed Amin said. The firm also expects “reasonable growth” for its fourth quarter earnings due to promotion activities, Amin told Reuters, declining to be more specific. Jarir made 75 million riyals ($20 million) in the three months ending June 30 compared to 72 million riyals in the same period a year earlier, according to a bourse statement.

Amin said a gain of 2 million riyals from an interest rate swap deal had driven second-quarter profit. Operating profit declined 5 percent in the second quarter to 75 million riyals from 79 million riyals a year earlier, Jariir said, citing a lower profitability of electronic items and lower sales in foreign branches. Electronic sales tend to drive the firm’s growth but analysts have said that these products carry lower margins than the other products that Jarir sells, such as books and office supplies. Earlier this year Jarir said it expected its net profit to increase by at least 15 percent, higher than its profit growth for 2009, as it opens new planned to open new stores. —Reuters

Wednesday, July 7, 2010



Oil rises to near $73 as stocks, euro gain

OPEC oil reserves rise 4% in 2009, income declines LONDON: OPEC’s proven crude oil reserves rose 4 percent in 2009 to 1.06 trillion barrels led by an increase in Venezuela, the group said in its Annual Statistical Bulletin released yesterday. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries also saw the value of its petroleum sales abroad plummet to $575 billion in 2009 from the record $1 trillion in 2008 as recession hit energy demand and prices.

NEW DELHI: Volkswagen Group Board Member Sales and Marketing Christian Klingler (left) and Group Sales India head Neeraj Garg pose next to the newly unveiled Volkswagen Vento in New Delhi yesterday. The 1.6 liter Volkswagen Vento will be launched in India in the last quarter of 2010 in diesel and petrol variants. —AP

Porsche tips VW exec Mueller as next boss FRANKFURT: German luxury carmaker Porsche said yesterday that Volkswagen chief production strategist Matthias Mueller would be Porsche’s next chief executive, as VW tightens its grip on the company. VW, the biggest European automaker, already owns half of Porsche, the manufacturer of 911 sports cars, and is in the process of making it the group’s 10th brand. Porsche’s current head, Michael Macht, is to take up a new post as a VW board member responsible for group production, a separate VW statement said. Mueller, 57, is to take over at Porsche on October 1. Porsche will gain

Mueller’s “exceptional competence in the operation of independent brands within a global, integrated auto group,” Porsche supervisory board president Wolfgang Porsche was quoted as saying. Presented by German media as close to VW boss Martin Winterkorn, Mueller is a trusted insider who knows how VW operates and is thus well-placed to help Porsche’s integration. The sports car maker is expected to collaborate closely with another high-end VW brand, Audi, where Mueller has also worked in the past. VW now owns 49.9 percent of Porsche and expects to own all of the carmaker by 2011. — AFP

OPEC’s growth in oil reserves was mainly due to Venezuela, whose holdings climbed to 211 billion barrels from 172 billion in 2008. Top OPEC exporter Saudi Arabia’s reserves rose 0.2 percent to 264.6 billion barrels. Analysts have questioned the size of reserves in OPEC countries, but several producers, including Saudi Arabia, have denied suggestions that their reserves have been exaggerated. OPEC, which groups 12 countries, pumps more than a third of the world’s oil and straddles almost four fifths of the world’s proven crude oil reserves. Rig activity declined in OPEC countries and worldwide last year. The report said the number of active rigs in OPEC members fell to 300 from 337 in 2008. OPEC’s revenue declined because of sharply lower prices for oil and gas because of the

economic crisis. US crude oil began 2009 at around $46 a barrel and ended the year at $79. Prices had hit a record high of $147 in 2008, when the annual average price was around $99. OPEC members sit on almost half of the world’s

losing 81 cents to $72.14. US markets were closed on Monday for the Fourth of July holiday but were expected to rise. Stocks in Europe and Asia rose while the euro advanced to $1.2578 from $1.2537. Crude traders often follow

Number of active rigs in OPEC members falls by 37 to 300 proven gas reserves. Its natural gas reserves rose 0.4 percent in 2009 to almost 91 trillion cubic metres, the report said. Meanwhile, oil prices rose to near $73 a barrel yesterday, helped by strong gains in stock markets and the euro. By early afternoon in Europe, benchmark crude for August delivery was up 76 cents to $72.90 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract last settled on Friday,

equities as a barometer of overall investor sentiment and a stronger euro makes dollarbased commodities such as oil cheaper for investors holding the European currency. Investor fears of a double-dip recession in Europe and the US later this year have been weighing on stocks and commodities in recent weeks. A weaker than expected June jobs report on Friday added to concern the US economic recovery could peter

HSBC last month sold its 48.9 percent share in British Arab Commercial Bank to Libyan Foreign Bank for 56.7 million pounds ($86.2 million). The licenses will let the winning foreign bidders own 49 percent of the new banks, with Libyan partners holding the rest. All Libya’s banks were state-owned for decades but in the past few years the sector has started to open up as part of tentative steps by the government to reform the economy. Libya has sold minority stakes in three existing banks to foreign investors keen to gain access to Libya’s immense wealth from oil exports. Portugal’s Banco Espirito Santo said in April it had bought a 40 percent stake in Aman Bank. BNP Paribas acquired a stake in Sahara bank in 2007, and a year later Jordan-based Arab Bank took a share in Libya’s Al-Wahda bank. — Reuters

China signals OK for Taiwan FTAs: Taipei TAIPEI: China has signaled it is finally willing to let Taiwan negotiate trade pacts with the outside world, a senior Taipei official said, a move that could give a major lift to the island’s economy. China, which claims the self-ruled island as its own and seeks to stop it from doing any official business with foreign governments, had long used its diplomatic clout to block free trade agreements. But senior policymaker Kao Charng told Reuters that Chinese officials indicated a change of stance when the two sides signed their own historic trade deal. The vice-chairman of Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs

Council said Chinese officials had suggested that as a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Taiwan could pursue pacts with other member economies, sidestepping the issue of sovereignty. “As long as a deal doesn’t apply to political sovereignty, mainland China shouldn’t oppose it,” Kao said in an interview. “I believe they won’t oppose it. They will look at it according to the situation and what’s fair.” Some of Taiwan’s Asian trading partners have expressed strong interest in pursuing trade pacts in light of the economic cooperation framework agreement (ECFA) signed last week between China and Taiwan,

local officials say. Taiwan has already begun courting them via the WTO, Kao said. “The real concern for China is under what title, what form,” said George Tsai, a political scientist at Chinese Cultural University in Taiwan. “The WTO would be OK, as long as Taiwan does not highlight any political implication.” Taiwan wants the FTAs as part of a longer-term effort to stay competitive with regional rivals and help prevent the economy becoming too reliant on China. Taiwan’s parliament, which will start its review of the pact tomorrow is expected to give its support for the biggest ever tie-up between the rival governments. — Reuters

Prasarn Trairatvorakul, president of Kasikornbank, is appointed by the Thai cabinet yesterday as the governor of Bank of Thailand, succeeding Tarisa Watanagase who is retiring at the end of September 2010. —AP

Thailand names new central bank boss BANGKOK: Thailand appointed a new governor of its central bank yesterday to steer the country’s economy as it emerges from the global financial crisis and the worst domestic political unrest in decades. Prasarn Trairatvorakul, president of Bangkok’s thirdlargest commercial bank Kasikornbank, was approved by the cabinet to take the helm of the Bank of Thailand (BOT) when the current governor retires at the end of September. “I expect him to preserve the independence of the BOT and

Egypt real estate attractive, SODIC shines: Deutsche CAIRO: Egypt’s real estate sector is an attractive long-term prospect in an acutely undersupplied market, Deutsche Bank said in an initiation-of-coverage note that placed SODIC top among three main property developers. While warning of regulatory risk and of limits to mid-market affordability due to minimal access to mortgages, Deutsche said a growing population and undersupply would widen the housing shortfall to 11 percent of demand by 2014 from 5 percent now. Deutsche said high-end builder Six of October Development and Investment — also known as SODIC-has a strong balance sheet, a flexible model, minimal land liabilities and a quality landbank that has been highly discounted by the market. “SODIC’s intrinsic value comes from its small but prime landbank entirely in Cairo,” the Deutsche analysts wrote. The bank initiated coverage with a “buy” recommendation and a target price of 112 pounds. SODIC traded 2.8 percent higher at 82.15 pounds by 1113 GMT.

Deutsche started “hold” recommendations on Palm Hills Developments, with a target price of 5.90 pounds, and Talaat Moustafa Group, with a target price of 7.8 pounds. It sees Palm Hills as the most leveraged and risky of its peers but with healthy backlog supporting revenues for at least four years. Its cheaply acquired and diversified landbank should support project development for seven to ten years. Deutsche said regulatory risk was a short-term concern for the industry, referring specifically to Talaat Moustafa’s main Madinaty project. In June, a court revoked the land purchase from a housing ministry body. That body, the New Urban Communities Authority, has appealed and both the company and government say the ruling will not affect building. Talaat Moustafa, Egypt’s largest listed developer, is a strong story, but the likelihood of a negative outcome of the court case was 50 percent. Without that risk, its sum-of-parts valuation was 10.70 pounds, Deutsche said. — Reuters

considerable period.” A stronger-than-usual hurricane season forecast in the Gulf of Mexico this year may also provide a floor for oil markets. “Support for oil prices could come from the new storm developing in the Caribbean, which could set course for the Gulf of Mexico,” said Commerzbank in Frankfurt. “As the hurricane season strengthens, it will probably prevent oil prices from falling below $70, although high inventories provide enough buffer to cushion temporary hurricane-related supply stoppages.” In other Nymex trading in August contracts, heating oil rose 0.97 cent to $1.9252 a gallon, gasoline gained 0.23 cent to $1.9800 a gallon and natural gas jumped 10.4 cents to $4.791 per 1,000 cubic feet. In London, Brent crude rose 98 cents to $72.45 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange. — Agencies

HSBC on track for Libya bank license: Official LONDON: HSBC has a strong chance of winning one of the first international joint-venture banking licenses in Libya, a senior Libyan official said yesterday. “We are waiting for HSBC to win the license very soon, I myself am supporting that,” Abdulmagid el-Mansuri, chairman of the industry ministry’s foreign investment advisory committee, told a Libya trade and investment forum. Libya has set the end of July as the deadline for awarding two new joint-venture banking licenses for which foreigners can bid for the first time, a central bank official said last week. The six banks shortlisted are HSBC, Standard Chartered, UniCredit, Mashreq Bank, National Bank of Dubai and Qatar Islamic Bank. “The result will be decided by the end of the month. Libyans would like to see HSBC win the license, they have large experience,” Mansuri told Reuters on the sidelines of the conference.

CHAMALANG, Pakistan: Pakistani miners use a trolley to exit the Chamalang coal mine about 700 km southeast of Quetta, the capital of resource-rich Baluchistan province. Pakistan, which produces just 80 percent of the electricity it needs, is planning to produce 1,200 MW electricity from coal to control its ongoing energy that causes debilitating blackouts and suffocates industry in the cash-strapped nation. — AFP

out once massive government spending stimulus ends. “Nervousness about the broader ... economy and sustainability of demand keep oil prices under the thumb,” Barclays Capital said in a report. Some analysts are slashing oil price projections despite strong crude demand from emerging economies. Barclays cut its forecast for the average oil price in the fourth quarter to $87 a barrel from the previous estimate of $92 and lowered its prediction for 2011 to $92 from $97. Others were more optimistic. “For the moment, despite the growth jitters, it seems to us that both the US and the global recovery will remain intact, and although growth seems to have clearly downshifted a gear or two, we are not looking for a doubledip,” said Edward Meir of MF Global in New York, adding that he would be “very surprised to see prices stay below $70 for a

NEW YORK: People walk on Wall Street, in New York. Stock futures rose yesterday as investors try to recover some of the big losses that piled up in recent weeks following a string of disappointing economic reports. —AP

to execute the Bank’s missionthat is, to maintain stability and to counter political influence on monetary policy,” Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva told reporters. Harvard-educated Prasarn, 57, was the favorite of four candidates to head the Bank, which has left its key interest rate unchanged at a record low of 1.25 percent since April 2009, citing economic and political risks. Prasarn, who is also executive director of the Thai Bankers’ Association, previously worked at the BOT for nine years from 1983, before spending 11 years at the Securities and Exchange Commission, where he became secretary general. “The reason that Prasarn was chosen is because he had experience not only with the Bank of Thailand but also with the Securities and Exchange Commission, and he was widely accepted at both places,” Abhisit said. The current bank chief Tarisa Watanagase said her successor would have to deal with the fluctuating exchange rate after the world economic crisis. “It will be good as Prasarn has experience with commercial bank credit approval, so he understands and has a different approach,” she said. Tarisa also praised the transparency of the selection process for the job, which was decided by committee rather than the finance minister alone. The Thai economy, in particular its vital tourism sector, has seen its growth stunted by two months of anti-government protests in Bangkok that resulted in several outbreaks of deadly violence. —AFP



Wednesday, July 7, 2010

BOE to leave policy steady despite Sentance dissent LONDON: The Bank of England is almost certain to leave interest rates at 0.5 percent tomorrow, with few policymakers tempted to join last month’s rate-rise advocate Andrew Sentance given the threat to sustained economic recovery. None of the 61 economists polled by Reuters last week expected the central bank to change policy as the scale of budget cuts in the new government’s June budget and similar measures in other parts of Europe raise the risk of sluggish growth next year. The British Chambers of Commerce warned yesterday that the 0.6-0.7 percent

growth it believes occurred over the past three months may mark a high point in Britain’s recovery, and that the spending cuts and tax rises in the Budget risk tipping Britain back into recession. Consumer price inflation at 3.4 percent is still well above the BOE’s 2 percent target, but has fallen from May’s 17-month peak of 3.7 percent in what the central bank expects to be the start of a fairly steady downward path. BOE Governor Mervyn King and most other members of the Monetary Policy Committee have seemed confident that CPI

will fall back to target of its own accord, once past rises in value-added tax and import prices drop out of the annual data. “Most members also seem reassured by the fact that the recent high rates of inflation have not been accompanied by ... any of the traits that would ordinarily be associated with a continuous rise in prices,” said Vicky Redwood of Capital Economics. “Growth of overall broad money, pay and nominal spending are all relatively low,” she said. Nonetheless, policymakers are not totally relaxed about higher inflation. Adam Posen said last week public inflation expecta-

tions were edging up-though not by enough for him to discount the countervailing risk of recession. And minutes of June’s MPC meeting noted that a group of policymakers other than Sentance had doubts about how much of a downward impact on inflation economic spare capacity will have. There are signs that MPC is fragmenting into three camps. King and Sentance appear to be at different ends of the spectrum regarding the ability of CPI to return to target of its own accord, and a group in the middle with varied views on the stickiness of Britain’s consumer prices. However,

observers will have to wait until policy minutes are published on July 21 before they can see if Sentance has convinced any of his colleagues to raise rates. One element of uncertainty stopping the BoE from changing course-the scale of cuts in finance minister George Osborne’s budget-has been resolved since June’s meeting. But any policymakers edging towards Sentance’s view are still more likely to wait until August’s new set of quarterly central bank growth and inflation forecasts before breaking cover, as these figures have been the driving force behind most of the MPC’s

big decisions over the past two years. “Most members still seem prepared to wait and see if the spare capacity in the economy starts to pull inflation back down,” said Redwood. “We doubt that a rate hike is imminent and in fact think that the magnitude of the fiscal squeeze makes a further extension of quantitative easing likely.” It is six months since the BoE last bought government bonds with newly-created money, in what was part of an 11-month campaign to bolster the money supply by 200 billion pounds ($302 billion) and stave off deflation. — Reuters

4.5% growth rate predicted for continent’s economy

Africa making a ‘spectacular’ recovery from recession: ADB JOHANNESBURG: Africa is making a “spectacular” recovery from the global recession thanks to decades of market reform and strong trade ties with China, the chief economist for the African Development Bank said yesterday.

Mthuli Ncube, presenting the annual economic forecast of the multilateral bank dedicated to alleviating poverty and boosting growth in Africa, predicted a 4.5 percent growth rate for the continent’s economies this year.

TOKYO: A man passes by the electronic stock board of a securities firm in Tokyo yesterday. The benchmark Nikkei 225 stock average lost 85.00 points to end the morning session at 9181.78 as Asian stock markets fell in early trading yesterday on growing worries over the global economic recovery following data showing Europe’s service growth slowed for a second month. —AP

Bulgaria to go ahead with Russia’s South Stream SOFIA: Bulgaria will push ahead with Russia’s planned South Stream gas pipeline, which would transport gas under the Black Sea and bypass Ukraine, and will sign a roadmap agreement this week, its prime minister said. Bulgaria and Russia have agreed on ownership of the pipelines of the Gazprom-led link on Bulgarian territory, Prime Minister Boiko Borisov said after talks with Russia’s First Deputy Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov. Borisov’s centre-right government has been reviewing Russian-backed projects since coming to power last July, saying it needs to check again whether they meet the national interest and European Union agenda. The two countries will launch a feasibility study for the 900-km pipeline, which would pump 63 billion cubic metres of Russian gas to Europe per year and become operational in 2015. “At the moment there are no outstanding issues between Bulgaria and Russia on South Stream. We will sign the roadmap and launch a feasibility study,” Boiko Borisov said yesterday. “This project will be very beneficial for Bulgaria”. Borisov said the agreement for South Stream could double or even triple the profit for the Balkan country. Bulgaria has agreed with Russia that Moscow will continue to pump gas to Turkey and Greece through existing

pipelines that are owned by Bulgaria, while the new pipes for South Stream will be jointly owned. Sofia will wait until September to decide on the fate of the planned Belene nuclear power plant, he also said. Borisov hopes the government will have a better idea by then of the price of the 2,000 megawatt plant, its financing and investor interest. “By September the first

reactor will be ready and then we will have to decide whether to pay for it or start legal actions,” he told reporters. His government has put on hold Belene, for which the previous administration has contracted Russia’s Atomstroyexport in a 4.0 billion euro deal, saying Bulgaria needs to reconsider the benefits of the project. Borisiov has repeatedly said that Bulgaria would like-

ly abandon another Russianbacked project-a planned oil pipeline aiming to carry Russian crude through Bulgaria to Greece, bypassing the congested Bosphorus waters. Zubkov said Moscow was ready to give it up if an international environment assessment, which has already been commissioned, shows the pipeline endangers nature. He said he did not expect environmental hurdles. —Reuters

ECB slams Romania over central bank pay cuts FRANKFURT: The European Central Bank, which urges countries to curb deficits and backs wage moderation, has reprimanded Romania for cutting central bank staff pay by 25 percent, a spokesman said yesterday. In a letter published on Monday, an ECB’s opinion on the Romanian decision stressed the Romanian National Bank’s (BNR) independence and said: “No third party should be able to exercise direct or indirect influence” over it. A direct transfer of savings from the measure to the Romanian state “can be assimilated to monetary financing which is clearly prohibited under Article 123 of the Treaty” on the Functioning of the European Union, the ECB added. Another test over central bank pay could occur in Hungary, where ministers have submitted a bill which would cut the pay of central bank governor Andras Simor to about $8,550 (6,800 euros) a month, one quarter of its current level, the Financial Times reported on Tuesday. Simor is also under pressure to resign over former offshore investments, the FT

said. Neither Hungary or Romania is a member of the euro-zone but each is planning to join the 16-nation bloc, and Romania is currently trying to reach a deficit target of 6.8 percent of output agreed with the International Monetary Fund. The ECB has called several times for governments to curb soaring deficits and for wage moderation, but framed its response to Bucharest on the principle of the central bank’s independence. It recalled Romania’s “obligation to ensure that any amendment to the legislative provisions relating to the determination of the remuneration of the employees of BNR is decided in cooperation with BNR, taking due account of the views of BNR.” ECB president Jean-Claude Trichet has also battled for his own bank’s independence from political influence, a position called into question when the ECB decided in May to begin buying debt issued by eurozone member states. Trichet’s own annual pay increased by 2.5 percent in 2009 to 360,612 euros, according to the bank’s annual report. -—AFP

The bank looks ahead to more than 5 percent growth next year and soon back to the average of about 6 percent Africa enjoyed between 2006 and 2008. Growth was just 2.5 percent last year. But Ncube says recovery could be threatened if Europe — to which many African economies are closely linked — fails to bounce back. Other threats include the possibility of political or social tension and problems created by years of poor investment in infrastructure. Ncube’s assessment is one of several to take note of how a continent usually associated with poverty and economic collapse has weathered the international crisis. A report last month from the consulting firm McKinsey & Company concluded that “global business cannot afford to ignore the potential” of Africa, and lauded its governments for acting in recent years “to end political conflicts, improve macroeconomic conditions and create better business climates.” A recent World Bank assessment also concluded Africa was rebounding from the global crisis, and poverty was slowly decreasing after “a decade of improvements in governance, favorable commodity prices, better macroeconomic policies, higher investments in human development, health care and education.” The optimism about Africa comes amid concerns recovery is still fragile in Europe and the United States. The African Development Bank’s Ncube, a Cambridgetrained former investment banker, said that because of years of reforms, African governments had budget surpluses they were able to use to respond to the global crisis. He also cited a move from rigid to more flexible stances on exchange rates. “There’s been a spectacular recovery,” he said. “Africa ... is the fastest growing region out of the crisis.” He said the crisis had underlined the vulnerability of countries that depend on exporting commodities like oil and minerals. Oil-rich Angola and diamond-rich Botswana were hit hard. Ncube called East Africa the continent’s growth engine, and celebrated innovative ideas there like using cell phones to transfer capital to entrepreneurs in Kenya and transmitting world prices to coffee growers in Ethiopia by setting up TV screens in rural areas. On China, he acknowledged concerns about an authoritarian power working closely with African dictators. But he said China has been a strong trade and investment partner for Africa, and that its growing consumer market will be important to global growth. “China is giving Africa what it needs,” Ncube said. “China is giving the world what it needs.” —AP

SYDNEY: Australian Opposition Leader Tony Abbott (right), with Shadow Treasuer Joe Hockey (left), speaks at a press conference in Sydney. Abbott said the upcoming federal election would be a referendum on tax and was speaking after the government had just backed down on a hefty 40 percent tax on mining. —AFP

Australia govt under new mine tax revenue attack SYDNEY: Australia’s opposition accused the government yesterday of misleading voters over billions of dollars in lost tax revenue, reigniting a row over a politically-damaging mining tax ahead of an expected election. Prime Minister Julia Gillard ended a threemonth dispute with global miners last Friday by announcing a watered-down tax, but revelations the new tax revenue was based on higher commodity forecasts put the tax back in the public spotlight. The Labor government said it would lose only A$1.5 billion ($ 1.26 billion) in revenue, but the conservative opposition said the loss could be A$4.5 billion under commodity forecasts for the original tax. “There has been a misstatement of a magnitude of three times by the government of the effect of these (tax) changes,” Liberal Senator George Brandis told local television. Economic management is traditionally a major election issue in Australia and Gillard is trying to salvage voter support ahead of expected August elections. Labor is on course for a narrow victory, but the opposition has vowed to repudiate the tax if elected. Greens Senator Bob Brown, whose party is expected to hold the balance of power in the next upper house Senate, said he would demand parliament review the financial details of the new mine tax, flagging changes to the tax. “It is not my intention to block it but to make it better,” Brown told local television.

The tax revenue issue is not expected to resonate long with voters, as the government continues to say the revenue will not impact on its budget, and as the economy and jobs grow. “You still get robust (mining tax) revenue over the forward years and beyond,” said Small Business Minister Craig Emerson, citing the government estimate of A$10 billion in revenue. Figures released yesterday showed Australia’s trade surplus swelled to the third highest on record in May as exports of gold, wheat and coal surged, a dramatic turnaround that should help insulate economic growth. “It’s a big tick in the box for stronger growth in the second half of the year,” said Brian Redican, a senior economist at Macquarie. “It’s good for our current account deficit; for company profits and for foreign investment sentiment on Australia.” Economists said any discrepancy in projected 2012 mine tax revenue was too far in the future to cause concern now, citing China and India continued hunger for Australian minerals. “Talking about revenue estimates two years from now, a lot can change in that space of time,” said Craig James, chief economist at CommSec. “The focus nowadays is Asia and emerging nations, rather than developed nations. The China story and India story is very much in its infancy.” BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Xstrata all signed off on the new tax and none has commented on the reported revenue shortfall. — Reuters

IMF raises S Korea growth forecast SEOUL: The International Monetary Fund yesterday raised its growth forecast for South Korea for this year to 5.75 percent, pointing to an impressive recovery from the global crisis. Asia’s fourth-largest economy will grow 5.75 percent this year and 5.0 percent next year, the fund forecast after a regular review of the country’s economy. The projection compares with the fund’s previous forecast in April of 4.5 percent expansion this year and 5.0 percent next year and is in line with Seoul’s own prognosis of 5.8 percent growth. South Korea has staged an “impressive” recovery since early 2009 thanks to supportive macroeconomic and financial policies and normalization in global trade, the IMF said in a statement. “In particular, the recovery is expected to be led by the rebound in fixed investment and the turning of the inventory cycle,” it said. South Korea boasted a rapid recovery from the 2008-09 global financial crisis faster, boosted by low interest rates and other expansionary measures. The strong recovery fuelled debate about the right time to raise the key interest rate, which has been frozen at a record low 2.0 percent. The IMF suggested South Korea start raising its monetary policy rate gradually “to avoid falling behind the curve” and called for a “carefully calibrated exit” from supportive macroeconomic policies. South Korea’s vulnerability to the potentially destabilizing effects of volatile interna-

tional capital flows remains significant, it said. “For an export-dependent economy with an open capital account, the best line of defense remains a flexible exchange rate to avoid generating expectations of one way bets.” The crisis has exposed the risks of relying on exports, the IMF said, adding that

strengthening domestic sources of growth would reduce vulnerability to economic downturns elsewhere in the world. “Reducing the policy bias towards exports and bolder reforms to increase productivity in the non-tradable sector would be welcome,” it said. — AFP

PARIS: French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde gestures during an interview with AFP journalists in the gardens of one of her ministry’s offices on Monday in Paris. —AFP

Wednesday, July 7, 2010



Buyers say they do it for their customers

Tech customers question industry's takeover spree SAN FRANCISCO: The world's largest technology companies have been on a buying spree, spending billions to snap up smaller companies. And often the buyers say they're doing it for their customers, businesses, hospitals, schools and government agencies. As tech companies get bigger and bigger, they say, they can offer a broader variety of products and make it easier for their customers to

TOKYO: Visitors look at Toyota Prius hybrid vehicles on display at Toyota Motor Corp.'s showroom in Tokyo yesterday. —AP

Quiet hybrids: An end to their sounds of silence? WASHINGTON: The age of the silent hybrid may be coming to an end. Gas-electric hybrids, propelled by electric motors at low speeds, are wellknown for their quiet ride and great mileage. But their silence isn't always golden. Some researchers and safety groups say that quiet operation — "hybrid creep" , can pose risks for unsuspecting pedestrians and the blind, who use sound cues. Advocates for the blind have sought the addition of artificial noises in hybrids for several years, concerned that the expected sales growth of hybrids could lead to more pedestrian fatalities and injuries. Hybrids account for about 2 percent of new car sales each year but auto companies are expected to boost production in advance of tougher fuel efficiency standards this decade. "This is an example of too much of a good thing," said John Pare, executive director for strategic initiatives with the National Federation of the Blind. "Cars got quieter, that was good. Suddenly they got to be so quiet that it added an element of danger." The government's auto safety agency said in a research report last year that hybrid vehicles are twice as likely to be involved in pedestrian crashes at low speeds compared with cars with conventional engines. The study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration examined circumstances in which the vehicles were slowing down or coming to a stop, backing up or entering or departing a parking space. More than 4,300 pedestrians were killed in 2008, according to the most recent data available. The government has been researching the safety risks that hybrids and electrics could pose for pedestrians, particularly the blind, along with the elderly and children, for vehicles traveling at 20 mph (32 kph) or less. When a car is going faster, the friction between the tire and the road's surface makes the vehicle louder. The quiet hybrid phenomenon already has its place in pop culture. In an episode of NBC's "The Office," paper salesman Andy Bernard uses his stealthy blue Toyota Prius to sneak up on Dwight Schrute and pin his bitter rival against a hedge. One concerned co-worker, watching the unfolding drama, says "the Prius is silent if he keeps it under 5 miles per hour (8 kph)." Congress is heeding the warnings, adding sound performance requirements for hybrids and electric cars to an auto safety bill being considered after the massive Toyota

recalls. Lawmakers could consider the changes this summer and car companies most likely would have to have the sounds ready to go three years after the release of new government rules. Automakers helped develop the proposal in Congress and are moving forward with new artificial sounds that will be emitted from electric cars and future hybrid models. Nissan Motor Corp. has produced distinct sounds for the Leaf, the electric car expected to go on sale this year, when the vehicle accelerates or moves in reverse. When the Leaf speeds up to 20 mph, it automatically will use a soft whirring sound that changes pitch as the car accelerates. When the Leaf backs up, an intermittent bell will ring to warn those nearby. The Japanese automaker consulted with acoustic psychologists and Hollywood sound designers to find a tone that addresses drivers, pedestrians and the community. "It was kind of like peeling back an onion. The more we worked on it, the more issues came up, the more of a balancing act it became," said Andy Christensen, a manager with Nissan's North American Technical Center near Detroit. Nissan plans to use the sounds on the Infiniti M35 hybrid to be released in 2012. General Motors Co. wanted a more subtle chirp on its Chevrolet Volt, so it chose an alert horn that lets the driver warn an unknowing bystander. "We didn't want to blast the horn at them and figuratively smack the people in the nose," said Doug Moore, a vehicle performance engineer for the Volt project. "We just wanted to tap them on the shoulder and say, 'Hey I'm here."' Other automakers are hard at work, too. Toyota Motor Corp., which makes the top-selling Prius hybrid, is studying artificial sounds for hybrids when the vehicle is propelled by its electric motor at low speeds. Ford Motor Co. is working to bring external sounds to future hybrids and electrics, including its Focus electric car, expected in 2011, and a next-generation hybrid and plug-in hybrid vehicle planned for 2012. Nancy Gioia, Ford's director of global electrification, said car companies should consider standardizing tones from future hybrids and electrics to avoid a cacophony of confusion on the streets. "It can't be like cell phones where we all select our own sound and we tune out everybody else's but our own," Gioia said.—AP

Sony to introduce new PS3 with bigger memory TOKYO: Electronics giant Sony said yesterday it will introduce an upgraded PlayStation 3 videogame console in Japan at the end of July, with a bigger memory and a new white version on offer. The company will sell a 160-gigabyte model for 29,980 yen (341 dollars), the same price at which the Tokyo-based company had previously offered its 120-gigabyte console, it said in a statement. It will also introduce a 320-gigabyte model for 34,980 yen. Both models will be available from July 29 in Japan. Sony did not indicate worldwide release plans in the statement. The move comes amid heightened competition between Sony and gaming rival Microsoft, with both giants looking to release motion-sensing controllers later this

year in response to the runaway success of Nintendo's Wii. PlayStation Move wands will hit the market in time for the year-end holiday shopping season in the United States. The devices let PS3 play be controlled with swings, jabs and other natural movements instead of toggle-and-button commands that have been trademarks of play on PS3 and rival Xbox 360 consoles by Microsoft. Microsoft's Kinet technology will use a 3-D camera and gesture recognition software to let people play videogames using natural body movements instead of hand-held controllers. Sony shares closed 1.33 percent higher at 2,361 yen in Tokyo yesterday.—AFP

In other words, the tech consolidation of the past few years could turn out to have wasted shareholders' money. "The demand is not coming from the customers," says Gopal Khanna, who oversees a $600 million technology budget as chief information officer for the state of Minnesota. "On the contrary, I'm best served when there's a phenomenal amount of innovation happening. ... Sometimes creating behemoths slows down that innovation engine." Technology companies have spent more than $350 billion buying other companies worldwide over the past 3 1/2 years, according to Capital IQ, a division of Standard & Poor's. Hewlett-Packard Co., the world's biggest information-technology company by revenue, has been one of the most active, in a hunt for more profit in markets other than printer ink. So has Oracle Corp., which wants to sell more types of business software and now makes computer servers after its $7 billion pickup of Sun Microsystems Inc. IBM Corp. plans to drop $20 billion over the next five years on acquisitions to strengthen its services and software divisions. The companies making these deals say they want to give their customers more options, better prices, and smarter service. It's somewhat like buying Internet, cable TV and telephone service from one company instead of three: You'll save money by buying the bundle, and when you need things fixed you have only "one throat to choke," in tech-industry parlance. The flip side is that a customer accustomed to dealing with a specialty maker of software or hardware often gets worse service after that supplier is taken over. Larry Bonfante, chief information officer of the United States Tennis Association, started battling recently with one of his suppliers, which supports USTA's computer applications and runs its help desk.

Bonfante won't name the company but says it was bought a year ago by a large, publicly traded company. "Our service and our relationship with that company since then has gone absolutely into the tank," Bonfante says. Bonfante used to be able to call the supplier's CEO with problems. After the takeover, Bonfante's contact became a lower-level staffer, and USTA employees had trouble getting their questions answered. Bonfante says he's dumped suppliers three or four times in his nearly 30-year technology career because their service suffered after an acquisition, and he has considered jettisoning this supplier, too. Service improved after he put the company on notice, but he says he's still watching the situation closely. "When the smaller guys are gobbled up by bigger guys, in theory it's supposed to be better, but in our experience it's been worse," he says. "It's certainly not something that I'm really excited about. It has the potential to be a positive experience, but my experience has told me that more times than not, it's problematic." Rob Ewing, senior vice president of systems and technology for InterCall, which sells conference-call services, says his company stopped buying new licenses from a provider of database software just six months after it was acquired. The main problem: The support staff was cut. "Resolutions to issues went from less than a day to more than a week," Ewing says. "It was very frustrating." Tech acquisitions aren't the only ones that often go bad. A seminal study by Harvard Business School professor Michael Porter examined 33 large US corporations over a 36-year period and found that that they sold off many more acquisitions than they kept. Companies with acquisition strategies reduced, instead of created, shareholder value. Porter's findings were first published in

do one-stop shopping. Yet if you ask the customers, you hear a different story. Often they get new headaches with multibillion deals by the likes of Oracle, IBM, SAP, Dell and Hewlett-Packard. When you add the challenges that come with any corporate acquisition, it's not hard to envision a reverse trend eventually building: a drive to split up tech companies that have grown too large. 1987, but recent studies have reinforced the conclusion. Deals in technology can be even riskier than average because of the complexity of the industry's products. Although acquisitions can offer short-term financial boosts for the buyer, technology ages quickly, and acquired companies require substantial investment to keep their edge. "When technology companies merge, you often have a two plus two equals three equation," says Michael Cusumano, a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Sloan School of Management. Undoing the poor results can be costly. VeriSign Inc. spent more than $20 billion bulking up on acquisitions in a spree started during the dotcom days. The Internet technology company got too unwieldy, and it has spent the last three years selling most of what it bought. VeriSign has gotten less than $1 billion selling off such acquisitions. It can take years for an acquired tech company to be fully integrated with its buyer, which is one reason history is peppered with examples of acquisition flameouts that repelled customers. One of the most famous was Compaq Computer's 1998 takeover of computing pioneer Digital Equipment Corp., known as DEC. Like many frustrated DEC customers, Robert Rosen, who at the time was director of information management for the Army Research Laboratory, bailed on DEC because the company's performance deteriorated under Compaq. The lab replaced its DEC servers with machines from IBM and Sun Microsystems. Rosen, now chief information officer of the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases of the National Institutes of Health, says he learned to try to pick computing suppliers that aren't likely to be acquired. "I sit here and I think: What mergers have really benefited everybody, both the companies and the customers? And there

aren't a whole lot. There are a lot more that go bad than are successful," says Rosen, a former president of Share Inc., an organization of IBM customers. "I have never seen a merger that saves the customer money." IBM and several other large, acquiring companies declined to comment or connect The Associated Press with customers who are happy about the industry's consolidation. Hewlett-Packard, which also declined to comment, referred the AP to one customer, Christopher Rence, chief information officer of Fair Isaac Corp. That is the company behind the "FICO" consumer credit scores, and it often relies on tech suppliers for custom software that can help Fair Isaac accomplish specific tasks. Rence says most acquisitions among his suppliers have worked out for his company. Still, he worries that consolidation leaves him with less negotiating leverage. He also says he and other tech buyers he knows worry about "getting hit out of left field" by an acquiring company eliminating product lines. "When they consolidate, you're always going to lose something _ that's just reality," he says. "But I guess I look at it as: When a big company acquires something, they've got the pockets to go invest in some of those areas and whatever they invest in, it's definitely going to benefit me." Resigned to the idea that the industry is consolidating, many tech buyers try to plan accordingly. Leo Collins, chief information officer of Lions Gate Entertainment, says smart tech buyers look for suppliers that are the likeliest to stick around over the long haul. If a supplier starts to struggle, he tries to move away from it before it is bought, which reduces the risk of being stuck with outdated or unsupported technologies. Failure to do that, he says, could leave a customer "isolated in technology backwaters."— AP

Google, Bing search engines turn to music DENVER: Internet search engines pride themselves as being neutral providers of information. But as competition mounts to own the connection between fans and online content, tech behemoths like Microsoft and Google increasingly are turning to their search engines to help drive their entertainment content strategies. In June, Microsoft launched a new entertainment vertical to its Bing search engine, which among other things aggregates full-track streaming from Zune, details on upcoming tours and buy links within the results for any artist, album or song search. Google put together a similar package last year and is now building a music download service of its own that would be tied to its search engine and Android mobile operating system. Given the high volume of entertainmentrelated queries that the search engines handle, it was only a matter of time before they took bold steps into the space. According to Microsoft, 10 percent of all Internet search queries are entertainmentrelated, with music lyrics alone accounting for 70 percent of those searches. With the Bing upgrades, Microsoft is trying to position itself as a better entertainment discovery tool than Google. While both Google and Bing have links to stream full songs found in search results, Bing has the more complete package with additional details on tour dates, lyrics and buy links. However, all that may change once Google gets its music act together. Sources confirm that later this year Google will launch a music download service that's tied to its search engine. Currently, music searches on Google link to full-song streams provided by MySpace Music, as well as Twitter feeds and other information, which it launched late last year. Exactly what Google has planned is unclear, but a hint was given during a developers conference for the company's Android mobile platform in May. At the event, Google announced the acquisition of Simplify Media, a content-synching technology that the company demonstrated can be used to automatically synch and stream music purchased online to any Android phone containing the technology. Whether this is an interim step toward an eventual streaming subscription service is unclear, and Billboard hasn't confirmed any additional details on this point. Potentially interfering with both plans is an increasingly aggressive effort by the recording industry to have search engines remove links to infringing material. BPI, the trade group representing UK record labels, raised the stakes in June by issuing a takedown notice to Google, demanding it remove links to 17 songs from third-party websites it deems infringing, such as RapidShare and MegaUpload. Google hasn't yet responded, but its next steps will be telling. Should Google comply, it would set a precedent that will almost certainly result in a flood of additional takedown notices from every music label and publisher eager to eliminate pirate links on the world's most popular search engine. If it refuses, there could be another court fight coming as big if not bigger than the $1 billion lawsuit Viacom brought against YouTube-which itself is heading to appeal after Google recently won a summary judgment to dismiss the case. As for Bing, Microsoft senior VP of online services Yusuf Mehdi assures the music industry that it will comply with any takedown requests, but has no plans to alter the search algorithm that determines search results. "We're pretty true to the algorithmic ranking in the Web results," Mehdi says. "We're obviously not going to surface that kind of stuff in the Bing box, but the algorithm that determines relevancy of search results we'll stick with." While Bing's moves are interesting, it's Google that has the market-moving leverage. According to the most recent data from information services firm Experian Hitwise, Google's search engine in May led the pack with 72 percent US market share, with Yahoo second (14.4 percent) and Bing third (9.2 percent). But when it comes to music, all of them stand in the shadow of Apple, which still commands 70 percent of digital music download sales in the United States, according to NPD Group. While Apple has no presence in online search (yet), both Microsoft and Google are competing with Apple on the rapidly growing mobile platform-Google with Android and Microsoft with the new Windows Series 7. Successfully tying together a cloud-based music service with an online search and discovery system and a path to mobile phonesnot to mention advertising around it all-is the digital content battlefield of the immediate future.—Reuters

BANGALORE: In this file photograph taken on October 30, 2009, an Indian laborer pulls a sackful of circuit boards after dismantling a computer in a scrap computer workshop in Bangalore. Few statistics are known about the informal "e-waste" industry, but a United Nations report launched in February 2010, has described how mountains of hazardous waste from electronic products are growing exponentially in developing countries. —AFP

China's Uighurs face web blocks one year after riots URUMQI: For Ruzmammat, the Internet is a crucial way of keeping in touch with his Uighur friends in China's Xinjiang region-a lifeline that was denied to him for 10 months following deadly ethnic riots. Authorities cut off the web in Xinjiang in the aftermath of violence that erupted a year ago in the regional capital Urumqi between mainly Muslim Uighurs and majority Han Chinese, leaving nearly 200 dead and 1,700 injured. Access to dozens of websites, largely government-run or national web portals, was restored earlier this year, and most others came back on stream in May. But three major portals used by Uighurs for news and discussion remain blocked-a reality which is hindering efforts by members of the Turkic-speaking minority to preserve their culture, experts say. "If something big happens outside (Urumqi), that's how we communicate," said Ruzmammat, a 22year-old web cafe employee in a mainly Uighur quarter of Urumqi, sitting at a computer as other men played games or chatted online. "But we also use the sites for other stuff like finding jobs," he said. Authorities accused Uighurs inside and outside China of using the Internet to orchestrate the unrest last year and analysts say foreign Uighur-language websites remain inaccessible in the region as a result. Such sites are "important for Uighurs wishing to be in contact with each other and with the outside world, and for the propagation of the Uighur language and culture," said Michael Dillon, a Xinjiang expert based in Britain. When the regional government announced the general restoration of Internet access in May, it warned that "anyone transmitting harmful information will be dealt with in accordance with the law". According to Ilham Tohti, an outspoken Uighur

professor and blogger who lives in Beijing, many people who operated Uighur websites "have been thrown in prison or have disappeared" since the July 2009 unrest. The Chinese government has further upped the stakes by requiring many website operators to register their names and claim responsibility for their content, creating a climate of fear, he told AFP in an interview in Beijing. "Under this situation, many people involved in websites face great obstacles and a lot of pressure," Tohti said. He added that before the unrest in Urumqi, there had been a "lively" online discussion among Uighursdeemed crucial amid tight restrictions on other publications such as magazines-but people were now scared to say much. "With many websites closed, this has closed off our ability to debate, to exchange opinions," he said. China has long maintained an extensive nationwide system of Internet censorship, known as the "Great Firewall", aimed at filtering out information deemed politically sensitive and harmful. But the shutdown in Xinjiang went far beyond that. Paris-based media watchdog Reporters without Borders described it as the "longest ever case of government censorship of this kind". The government also cut text messaging services and international phone calls over fears of more unrest, isolating Xinjiang even further. These were only restored in January. Despite this, people in the region still found ways to communicate within Xinjiang and with the outside world, according to Dru Gladney, an expert on Uighurs at Pomona College in California. "They cut mobiles off for a while, but people used landlines and public phones, and they also smuggled out videos and photos on memory sticks," he said. — AFP



Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Teens benefit from later school day, study shows CHICAGO: Giving teens 30 extra minutes to start their school day leads to more alertness in class, better moods, less tardiness, and even healthier breakfasts, a small study found. “The results were stunning. There’s no other word to use,” said Patricia Moss, academic dean at the Rhode Island boarding school where the study was done. “We didn’t think we’d get that much bang for the buck.” The results appear in July’s Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine. The results mirror those at a few schools that have delayed starting times more than half an hour. Researchers say there’s a reason why

even 30 minutes can make a big difference. Teens tend to be in their deepest sleep around dawn , when they typically need to get up for school. Interrupting that sleep can leave them groggy, especially since they also tend to have trouble falling asleep before 11 p.m. “There’s biological science to this that I think provides compelling evidence as to why this makes sense,” said Brown University sleep researcher Dr Judith Owens, the study’s lead author and a pediatrician at Hasbro Children’s Hospital in Providence, Rhode Island. An Archives editorial said the study adds to “a growing body of evidence

that changing the start time for high schools is good for adolescents.” The fact that the study was in the exclusive setting of St. George’s School in Middletown, Rhode Island, doesn’t necessarily weaken the results. Owens acknowledged that there might be more hurdles to overcome at poorer, public schools, including busing schedules, parents’ work hours and daycare for younger siblings. While these issues have killed many proposals elsewhere, some public high schools including those in Minneapolis and West Des Moines have adopted later starting times. Mel Riddile, an associate director at the National

Association of Secondary School Principals, favors later class times for teens but said most districts oppose it. “It’s about adult convenience, it’s not about learning,” he said. “With budget cuts, it’s going to make it more difficult to get this done.” Many parents and teachers at St. George’s were opposed but reluctantly agreed to the study after a presentation by Owens, whose daughter was a junior there. Overall, 201 high school students completed sleep habit surveys before and after the nineweek experiment last year. The results were so impressive that the school made the change permanent, Moss said. Starting times were shifted from 8 to 8:30.

All class times were cut 5 to 10 minutes to avoid a longer school day that would interfere with after-school activities. Moss said improvements in student alertness made up for that lost instruction time. The portion of students reporting at least eight hours of sleep on school nights jumped from about 16 percent to almost 55 percent. Reports of daytime sleepiness dropped substantially, from 49 percent to 20 percent. First-period tardies fell by almost half, students reported feeling less depressed or irritated during the day, health center rest visits dropped substantially; and the number of hot breakfasts served more than doubled. Moss

said the healthier breakfast probably aided classtime alertness. Recent graduate Garrett Sider, 18, used the extra time for sleep. He noticed kids took part more often in morning classes with the later start time. “It was a positive thing for the entire school,” he said. The study was designed to look at changes in sleep habits and behavior and didn’t examine academic performance. It also lacked a control group of students who didn’t experience a change in school start times , another limitation. Still, the researchers said the results show delaying school starting times is worthwhile. —AP

UK health body rejects costly Herceptin for gastric cancer Rebuff means around 500 patients a year will lose out

HYDERABAD: Pet lovers return home in an autorickshaw after vaccinating their dogs on World Zoonoses Day in Hyderabad, India yesterday. —AP

Response Media appointed partners to Kuwait Medical Tourism Exhibition KUWAIT: Universal Conferences and Exhibitions, recently announced the official appointment of Response Media, Kuwait, as exclusive media partner for their upcoming 1st Kuwait Medical Tourism Conference and Exhibition. The exhibition, which is slated to take place from Oct 7 - 9, 2010, at the Convention Center in Hotel Movenpick, Shuwaikh, is the first of its kind in the country and is expected to offer a comprehensive overview of current status and future trends in the healthcare industry globally and in Kuwait. The exhibition which is being held under the patronage of the Minister of Health Dr Hilal Al-Sayer, will have more than 100 participants from around the world and is expected to draw thousands of visitors seeking medical advice from world renowned experts. Speaking on the appointment of Response Media to exclusively handle all media related work for the upcoming prestigious

exhibition, Dr Naser Al Enezi, General Manager of Universal, said, “I am pleased to announce the appointment of Response Media as our exclusive media partner and to have found in them a partner who shares our dedication to the exhibition.” Elaborating, he added “our choice is a reflection of the professionalism of Response Media and their commitment to ensuring the success of Kuwait’s first ever medical tourism exhibition. Having evaluated several potential media partners against specific criteria including their past experience, quality of work and dedication to the project, I am pleased to say, that on all these metrics, Response Media were found to be highly competent.” Response Media, a full-service vertically integrated marketing communications company, have proven their proficiency in providing customers with solutions that go beyond their expectations. “We are excited to join forces with Universal and, as their exclusive media

Dar Al Saha: Gulfmart free health check-up KUWAIT: Dar Al Saha Polyclinic, in association with leading supermarket chain, Gulfmart, is running a free health check-up promotion from June 17 to July 15, at their premises located in Abbassiya, near the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan School. The free health check-up for cholesterol, blood-sugar and blood-pressure, also includes free consultation with specialists of Dar Al Saha Polyclinic. The free health service, available exclusively to shoppers at Gulfmart, Abbassiya Branch, can be availed of by producing the leaflet distributed through Gulfmart, Abbassiya. Following the check-up, customers also stand the chance of winning various prizes, including LCD TVs and mobile phones through Scratch & Win coupons. Dar Al Saha Polyclinic, which is actively involved in several social health projects across the country, offers affordable and quality healthcare to the residents of Kuwait providing them expert medical treatments through specialized departments. Dr. Philip Varghese, Clinical administrator at Dar Al Saha Polyclinic, said “We are pleased to associate with Gulfmart in promoting the services of our clinic and we hope to continue serving society in the future with more such free medical projects.” Speaking on their association with Dar Al Saha Polyclinic, T A Remesh, Country Manager for Gulfmart added, “As a leading supermarket chain in the country we have a social responsibility to the community and are committed to ensuring our active participation in worthy causes that benefit society. We always look forward to working with organizations like Dar Al Saha Polyclinic to promote the health and well-being of the community we live and work in.”

partner, we look forward to the prospect of making the 1st Medical Tourism exhibition in the country a grand success, said Reaven D’Souza, Managing Director of Response Media. “Our team of professional designers, copywriters and editors are committed to creating communication solutions that not only draw out desired responses from audiences, but will also make this event known to a wider public and provide great coverage throughout the event,” he added. Noting that every year Kuwait spends billions of dollars on medical treatment abroad, Dr Naser said that it was important to leverage various media sources to raise awareness among the public about the relevance of this important exhibition, which will provide citizens with the prospect of interacting directly with healthcare providers from around the world. “We have

appointed Response Media as our exclusive media partner so that we can have a one-source outlet for all our media briefings, awareness campaigns and publications regarding the upcoming exhibition,” said Dr Naser. “We ensure the success of every project entrusted to us by translating the media requirements of our customers into attainable objectives through strategic plans that we then successfully implement,” said D’souza. The Exhibition, which will feature some of the world’s leading experts in the field of medical tourism, international hospitals, medical insurance companies, medical tourism providers and facilitators among others, is expected to be a huge draw with the general public. The exhibition will provide an unprecedented opportunity for people who plan on traveling abroad, for medical diagnosis and treatment, and they will able to evaluate many of these services under one roof.

LONDON: Britain’s health cost watchdog has rejected Roche’s cancer drug Herceptin for patients with stomach cancer, which means they will not get the drug paid for by the country’s taxpayer-funded National Health Service (NHS). The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) said on yesterday it was rejecting the drug, whose generic name is trastuzumab, for gastric cancer “due to the uncertainty surrounding the extent to which it can extend life”. Herceptin only works in cancer patients whose tumors have high levels of a protein called human epidermal growth factor receptor 2, or HER2, and is not suitable for others. It was approved for NHS funding for the early treatment of women with HER2-positive breast cancer in June 2006 after a long battle by cancer campaigners for NICE to recommend it. “Although clinical trials suggest that trastuzumab can extend life for patients with HER2-positive metastatic gastric cancer, there is considerable uncertainty about the data on how long this extension would be,” NICE Chief Executive Andrew Dillon said in a statement. He said the drug’s manufacturer, Roche, and other parties would now have an opportunity to resolve this uncertainty by providing more information to NICE’s appraisal committee. According to NICE, gastric cancer affects around 8,200 people in the United Kingdom every year, around 500 of whom would be eligible for treatment with Herceptin. The drug, which is given by injection, works by attaching itself to the HER2 protein to stop the cancer cells from growing. A 150-mg vial of Herceptin costs around 407.40 pounds ($630), and according to NICE, the total cost of Herceptin per patient is around 10,185 pounds ($15,750). -—Reuters

Mother’s diet, genes raise birth defect risk, study finds LONDON: Mothers who eat a high fat diet before and during pregnancy may be putting their offspring at risk of birth defects, scientists said yesterday. British researchers studying mice found that a pregnant mother’s diet may interact with the genes her unborn baby inherits and influence the type or severity of birth defects such as congenital heart disease and cleft palate. “These are very important findings as we have been able to show for the first time that gene-environment interactions can affect development of the embryo in the womb,” said Jamie Bentham of the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics at the Oxford University, who led the study. “We know that poor diet and defective genes can both affect development, but here we have seen the two combine to cause a much greater risk of developing health problems and more severe problems. We are excited by this as it suggests that congenital heart defects may be preventable by measures such as altering maternal diet,” he said in a statement

about the findings. Congenital heart disease is the most common form of birth defect, and previous studies have shown that children born to mothers who have diabetes or who are overweight have an increased risk of it. It is also known that certain genetic changes-such as deficiency in Cited2 — can give rise to congenital heart disease, but until now scientists did not know if external factors such as a mother’s diet could interact with genetic changes to affect their babies. The British researchers, whose findings were published in the journal Human Molecular Genetics, compared healthy mice with those lacking a gene called Cited2. Cited2 deficiency results in heart defects in mice and in humans and can also lead to a serious type of heart defect called atrial isomerism, where the left-right asymmetry of the heart is disturbed. Researchers fed the mice a high fat diet before and during pregnancy and then studied the development of their babies using magnetic resonance imaging. The results were compared

to mice from a second group who were fed a balanced diet. Among offspring mice that were deficient in Cited2, the risk of atrial isomerism more than doubled, the researchers found, and the risk of cleft palate increased more than seven-fold when the mothers were fed a high fat diet. The changes did not happen in the genetically normal offspring of mothers who had a high fat diet, suggesting that it is the combination of high fat diet and the genetic defect that is responsible, they said. Jeremy Pearson, associate medical director of the British Heart Foundation charity, which partfunded the study, said the findings could shed light on human birth defects. “This research shows that diet during pregnancy can directly affect which genes get switched on in unborn offspring. The study was with mice, but a similar link may exist in humans, leading to some cases of congenital heart disease.” He said the research reinforced the need for pregnant women to have a balanced diet and avoid eating too much fatty food. — Reuters

Salmiya Medical Lab gets ISO Accreditation KUWAIT: Kuwait’s oldest and largest independent private laboratory, Salmiya Medical Lab (SML), has announced receiving its ISO 15189:2007 accreditation certificate under the Laboratory Accreditation Programme of Dubai Accreditation Department. SML belongs to the Medsol laboratory network, a part of Gulf Healthcare International. It is the first of Medsol’s Kuwait laboratories to receive international accreditation. Medsol operates a total of fifteen branded labs across the Middle East and North Africa. In Kuwait Medsol independently operates SML, Al Hamra Medical Laboratory, the Specialized Clinic Centre and two medical centres British Medical Centre and German Medical Care. Ravi Dhir, VP of Kuwait Operations, Medsol said; ‘’SML’s accreditation is a testament to the

efforts of the team to ensure that quality results are delivered to our clients. We intend to see the other Kuwait labs accredited in the next six months. ‘’Our vision is to have labs that conform to the best quality standards and deliver value to our clients and partners. Medsol is at the forefront of pathological testing in the MENA and the group’s intention has always been to implement the best international practices into the region’s diagnostic sector. We are pleased to say this is another step forward in that direction.’’ The ISO 15189:2007 standards test requirements for competence and quality, specific to medical laboratories. With this achievement, SML is recognised locally and internationally for its testing, qualifications and quality under the accreditation’s standards.

SCHWERIN, Germany: A small goat stands next to a dozing rhino at the zoo in the eastern German city of Schwerin on Monday. —AFP

Wednesday, July 7, 2010


Food body sets rules for bagged salad, melamine use Codex bans animal manure for ‘ready to eat’ vegetables GENEVA: An international food safety body set new rules yesterday on preparing bagged salads and said the chemical melamine that tainted Chinese milk is acceptable only in tiny amounts in infant formula and food. The Codex Alimentarius Commission decided at its meeting in Geneva that animal manure should not be used to fertilise lettuce and other fresh vegetables sold “ready to eat” to avoid dangerous diseases. Contaminated water must also be kept away from bagged produce that is not heat-treated, the Codex experts said, fixing new benchmarks that could change production and harvesting norms across the world. “The problem is global,” said Jorgen Schlundt, director of food safety and zoonoses at the World Health Organization, who linked the use of animal manure in farming to disease outbreaks in the United States and elsewhere. “It makes sense in a number of different production systems but when you are pro-

ducing fresh salads that will be treated without heat treatment there is a problem,” he said. Codex, a joint venture of the World Health Organization and the Food and Agriculture Organization, establishes food safety rules for importers and exporters. In its discussion on melamine, the panel agreed that minute levels of melamine, the chemical used in making plastics, fertilizers and concrete, could be safe for human consumption, and set upper limits of 1 mg per 1 kg of powdered infant formula and 2.5 mg per 1 kg of other food and feeds. WHO food safety expert Angelika Tritscher said melamine can be released in small quantities from a certain pesticide or when food comes into contact with hard plastic dishes, table-tops or some food processing machinery. The human body can tolerate this “natural contamination” of melamine in small doses,

unlike the intentional addition of the compound to Chinese milk that killed at least six children in 2008 and made some 300,000 ill, she said. “Intentional addition of melamine to food to fortify protein content is by no means acceptable at any level,” she said. “The purpose of these limits is to allow for the occurrence of natural contamination through approved uses.” The 2008 melamine crisis damaged the reputation of China’s dairy industry and further sullied the made-in-China brand after a string of health and product-safety scares. China executed two people for their role in the scandal. A Codex ruling on ractopamine could set a benchmark for the World Trade Organization to use to review countries’ adherence to international trade agreements on food safety and sanitation, and help it arbitrate trade disputes over the growth hormone. — Reuters




Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Embassy information 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 non-immigrant 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 petitionbased, including B1/B2 tourist and business visitor visas and all student and exchange-visitor visas, will pay a fee of $140. Applicants for petition-based 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.

Al-Adsani wins NBK trip to 2010 FIFA World Cup finals


ational Bank of Kuwait (NBK), the leading bank in Kuwait and the Middle East brought the passion and excitement of the 2010 FIFA World Cup to its Visa credit cardholders through a Visa credit card promotion. NBK Visa

credit cardholders had chances to win a package for 2 persons to witness one of the 7 finals matches of this spectacular event in South Africa. Omar Al Adsani, the winner of a trip for 2 persons to the 2010 FIFA World Cup,

said that the FIFA World Cup campaign launched by NBK is one of the most exciting promotions offered by the bank adding that he had never imagined that he will be a winner of such a fabulous prize. Al Adsani indicated that it is not unusu-

al for NBK, with its unyielding and multifaceted social responsibility approach, to support and promote sporting spirit amongst ordinary citizens”. I feel that I am really lucky to win this big prize but moreover I am luckier to be an NBK customer”.

The prize is for two persons and consists of round trip airline tickets, 5 star hotel accommodation for 3 nights, match tickets and transportation to the venue, exclusive Visa FIFA merchandise and more.

Lofat Juniors launches ‘Healthiest Kid Competition’


Kuwait Awqaf sponsor the AWARE Center ohammed Al-Jalahma, Kuwait Awqaf Public Foundation Deputy Secretary General, announced that Kuwait Public Awqaf Foundation has reached a decision to sponsor the Advocates for Western-Arab Relations Center, (AWARE) with an amount of 94,000KD. This contribution is offered after careful study of the mission and goals of AWARE in promoting positive relations between Westerners and Arabs by organizing social activities and information services related to Arab and Islamic culture. The Kuwait Public Awqaf Foundation, after careful consideration, believes in the values of AWARE which abides by the Arab Islamic values and ethics as well as its moderate approach in all its activities. Al-Jalahma added that AWARE provides opportunities for Westerners to interact with local residents, not only to enrich their cultural experience but also to break down barriers and clear misconceptions on both sides. Al-Jalahma further expressed that programs and activities supported by Amana are to sustain the following projects: 1. Strategies that include wise and intellectual discourse about the way of life of Muslim followers 2. Professional Arab instructors to teach Arabic Language; reading, writing and proper pronunciation 3. Cultural Information that allows visitors to obtain information about Kuwaiti, Arab and Islamic culture. 4. Social Awareness Projects which share the rich and diverse Arab and Islamic culture 5. Publications in English related to the Muslim traditions and Arab cultures Al-Jalahma announced that creative and dynamic work in a variety of programs is considered an essential part of the path that Kuwait Public Awqaf Foundation is built upon. From the time of establishment, efforts have been based on achieving the true charity-waqf; islamically and legally according to the rules of waqf. In this contextual frame-work, Amana stretches its generous care to social work organizations which take into consideration the social and ideological programs and activities or the scientific and cultural programs that help to further develop belief and strengthen ties between Muslims and non-Muslims. Kuwait Public Awqaf Foundation also believes in programs and activities related to intellectual discourse of Islam as well as social and humanitarian relief that strengthen social support-both of which are important principals that the Arab and Islamic society are founded upon. Amana supports many NGO organizations, among which AWARE, whose efforts focus on bridging the cultural gap between the West and Arab in order to clear the misconceptions held about Arabs and Muslims.


ofat Juniors, a division of Lofat Group (, announces the launch of the “Healthiest Kid Competition” in Kuwait. Lofat Juniors is Kuwait’s first diet center to cater to children and adolescents from the ages of six to 16 years. Lofat Juniors aims to provide young clientele with delicious, nutritious, pre-packaged meals to help them tackle obesity, fight disease, and improve the quality of their lives. Lofat Juniors programs are designed to enhance a child’s overall physical and mental well-being while developing their self-esteem during their formative years. It is no secret that the rise of obesity among Kuwaiti youth, especially the adolescent sector, has reached alarmingly shocking proportions. Recent surveys indicate that over 40% of Kuwaiti youth are overwhelmingly obese. Furthermore, a significant percentage of the adolescent sector suffers from serious medical conditions such as Diabetes Type 2 - a direct reflection of poor eating habits and sedentary lifestyles. The “Healthiest Kid Competition” is unique in its approach. The competition will provide children with a friendly

and supportive environment that is conducive to losing weight. The competition will take place from early July to late August of 2010, under the guidance of qualified dietitians. Parents are encouraged to register their children today and benefit from Lofat Juniors’ promotional offer. Bundled as a competitive monthly package, each registrant (child) will receive four daily meals and two complimentary snacks tailored to their Body Mass Index (BMI). Registrants’ weights will be monitored on a weekly basis and at the end of the competition the child who loses the most weight will receive a grand prize; Apple’s latest interactive gadget, the IPAD! About Lofat Group Lofat Group is a leading organization that specializes in providing healthy dietary solutions to people of all ages in Kuwait. Consisting of two primary divisions, retail and wholesale, the Lofat Group has developed a dynamic approach to tackle obesity. With a growing network of casual dining outlets as well as diet centers dedicated to adults and youth alike, the Lofat Group is a strong advocate for adopting a holistic approach to living a healthy life.

KAS opens its doors for its Grand Summer Camp Registration


o you want to offer your kids a fun, exciting and educational summer in Kuwait but you are not sure where to take them? Now with Kuwait American School’s (KAS) Grand Summer Camp you will find your ultimate destination where you can keep your kids entertained while making sure they are improving their English skills and being more productive during the summer vacation. The KAS grand summer camp offers the kids Young Learners English (YLE) course; a certified English course from Cambridge University in which it strengthens the student’s English language and teaches them new skills in a more fun and enjoyable manner. In addition to the YLE course, the students can register to one or all of the following classes: Swimming, Music, Art, Ice skating, Table manners, Personality development tips and enjoy a variety of Trips. “We have worked on different schemes and came up with

the best variety of classes and learning environment to offer the students enrolled in the grand summer camp an opportunity to learn while having a good time,” Mrs. Ali from KAS expressed. Mrs. Ali also added: “We are trying our best to help parents in Kuwait to find the best options to keep their kids entertained during the summer. At our summer camp we pay attention to details and make sure we provide the kids with a fruitful and unforgettable experience.” The grand summer camp is for the age group 5-15 years old and starts on July 8th and ends August 8th for five days a week from 9:00 AM to 12:30 AM. Registration process is very easy and simple; we are available from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM at the Kuwait American School located in Salmiya, Blajat Street, Block 3 on Street 3. Please visit our website for more information or call us on 25720920. Or hotline 67656460.

Newly appointed manager of Silk Road Restaurant at Regency Hotel


he Regency Hotel welcomed Mohamed Hafez, The Silk Road Restaurant newly appointed Manager. Hafez boasts of a rich experience profile in Hotel, Restaurants & the hospitality industry, not to mention an impressive personality skills and extreme innovation capabilities. Hafez was born in Egypt and graduated from Cairo University, major in hotel and tourism. In 1989 Hafez started his career working at Isis & Novotel Hotels in Egypt, then he moved to Libya in 1992 & later to Tunisia where he joined the Diplomatic Village as a Guest Relation Officer. Back again to Egypt, Hafez worked in Hilton Cairo, Sonesta Beach Resort & Marriott Sharm Elshiekh, after that he moved to Kuwait to join Sheraton Hotel,and then Marriott Hotel as an Assistant Restaurant Manager in charge of banquets & operations. In 2006, Hafez was appointed as a Restaurant Manager at the Movenpick Kuwait (Free zone), he was responsible for controlling food &

beverage par stock and inventory besides managing any restaurant reservation and hotel event program, also he was handling and supervising the wedding Ballrooms Launching. Later, Mohamed Hafez Joined Marina Hotel as a Room services & Restaurant Manager where he was involved with Restaurant Operation Developments as well as improving services skills in the F&B division. While expressing his pleasure on being appointed as Restaurant Manager, Hafez was quoted as saying, “I feel very privileged to join the Regency Hotel and I will do my best to contribute to the development of the Restaurant with the help of my highly efficient team. We will provide distinguished services to further gain the trust of our customers and enhance our leading position in the market”.

EMBASSY OF BANGLADESH The Embassy of People’s Republic of Bangladesh in Kuwait will remain closed on Sunday, 11 2010 on the occasion of Holy Shab-e Me’raz. EMBASSY OF INDIA 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 THE KENYA The Embassy of the Republic of Kenya wishes to inform the general public that the Embassy will remain closed on Sunday 11th July 2010, on the occasion of Isra Wal Miraj anniversary. Normal office operations will resume on Monday 12th July 2010. 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 TURKEY The Embassy of the Republic of Turkey announces that Turkish language course will restart at the Embassy’s Tourism, Culture and Information Office 4 October 2010. The lessons will be held on Mondays and Wednesdays from 6:00 - 8:00 pm. For further details and registration please contact. * The Embassy at Tel: 22531785 (only from 9 am to 3 pm) * Or fill the application form on and send it to the email:



Wednesday, July 7, 2010

HH the PM and former British PM Tony Blair listen to a demonstration about the facility.

Al-Anjari welcoming HH the PM and his guests.

PM hosts Queen Ntombi, Blair at Sahara Resort


H the Prime Minister recently hosted the visiting Queen Mother of Swaziland, Queen Ntombi, and the visiting former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, in a lunch banquette held at the Sahara Kuwait resort. The guests were welcomed by the general manager of the Kuwait Real Estate Company Nabeelah Al-Anjari, who took them on a tour across the resort. After the banquette, the two guests planted a couple of trees at the resort.

Al-Anjari gives an explanation about the resort’s features to the visitors.

Tony Blair planting a tree as well.

Football Referee’s Coaching Classes with Audio Visual Aids ootball Referees’ Coaching Classes for New Recruits and Refresher Classes for Active Members will be conducted by the Indian Football Referees’ Association (IFRA) Kuwait from 9th July 2010 at the Indian English Academy School, (Don Bosco) Salmiya from 9:30 am onwards. Audio Visual Aids will be used to enhance the understanding of the Laws of the Game better. All new candidates desiring to qualify as Football Referees are requested to contact Sarto Baptista on Tel: 25611621 (after 6 pm), Junifer Rodrigues on Tel: 25633261 (after 5 pm) and also C O John on 66274017 (Mangaf/ Fahaheel/ Ahmadi Area) for more information.


Queen Mother of Swaziland, Queen Ntombi plants a tree at the resort.

Hobbies & activities KAYAKING Kuwait Surf-Ski Kayak Club 99706742 Sea kayaking is one of the fastest growing water sports in the world today. MOTOR SPORTS Kuwait 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).

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. 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.

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.

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

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..

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.

NETBALL Kuwait Netball RUGBY Kuwait Nomads The rugby season in Kuwait runs from September to May. Men, ladies and minis rugby are played


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.

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.

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 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! SCUBA DIVING 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

Shooting Range Complex 2475 9999 Off the 6th Ring road and drive past the Hunting and Equestrian Club.


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 Kuwait Squash Federation2263 4618 Sheikha Squash www.

Gallery picks of the week Bousharhri Gallery is located in Salmiya on Baghdad street, building 36, in front of Al-Laheeb Mosque. For more information call: 25621119. Dar Al-Funoon is located in the Behbehani Compound, house No. 28. For more information call: 22433138. Sultan Gallery, located in South Subhan, Block 8, Street 105, building 168. For more information call: 24714325 ext. 110

Scientific Center launches annual membership program


he Scientific Center has announced their annual membership program, through which visitors can subscribe for free entrance during the summer for as low as KD13. The membership allows subscribers to have unlimited visits to the aquarium, the discovery hall and two IMAX shows free of charge, in addition to other privileges. The membership includes four categories: ● Students membership (KD13) : for visitors from three to twenty one years of age. ● Adults membership (KD19): for visitors over twenty one years of age. ● Couples membership (KD32): for married couples. ● Family membership (KD59): for two parents and three children. For subscription or enquiry, visitors can call the center’s subscription center at: 22240309



Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Orbit / Showtime Listings 07:00 I-Ex 07:30 I-Ex 08:00 Tread Bmx 08:30 Tread Bmx 09:00 Tread Bmx 09:30 Tread Bmx 10:00 Tread Bmx 10:30 Tread Bmx 11:00 Wicked Wheels 11:30 Wicked Wheels 12:00 Untracked Series 2 12:30 Untracked Series 2 13:00 Winter Dew Tour 09/10 14:00 Gumball 3000:2008 14:30 Gumball 3000:2008 15:00 Wicked Wheels 15:30 Wicked Wheels 16:00 Untracked Series 2 16:30 Untracked Series 2 17:00 Tread Bmx 17:30 Tread Bmx 18:00 Tread Bmx 18:30 Tread Bmx 19:00 Tread Bmx 19:30 Tread Bmx 20:00 Untracked Series 2 20:30 Untracked Series 2 21:00 Wicked Wheels 21:30 Wicked Wheels 22:00 Winter Dew Tour 09/10 23:00 Fight Girls Series 2

00:00 Ugly Betty 01:00 Psych 02:00 ER 03:00 CSI Miami 04:00 Psych 05:00 Dawson’s Creek 06:00 Bones 07:00 Ugly Betty 08:00 House 09:00 Supernatural 10:00 ER 11:00 Dawson’s Creek 12:00 Bones 13:00 CSI Miami 14:00 ER 15:00 Inside the Actors Studio 16:00 House 17:00 Supernatural 18:00 Ugly Betty 19:00 Bones 20:00 Lie to Me 21:00 Law & Order 22:00 Sons of Anarchy 23:00 Janice Dickinson

00:45 Animal Cops South Africa 01:40 Untamed & Uncut 02:35 Pit Bulls and Parolees 03:30 All New Planet’s Funniest Animals 03:55 All New Planet’s Funniest Animals 04:25 Cats 101 05:20 Wildlife SOS 05:45 Gorilla School 06:10 SSPCA: On the Wildside 06:35 Vet on the Loose 07:00 Animal Crackers 07:25 Meerkat Manor 07:50 All New Planet’s Funniest Animals 08:15 All New Planet’s Funniest Animals 08:45 Cats 101 09:40 Wildlife SOS 10:05 Africa’s Super Seven 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 Africa’s Super Seven 16:25 All New Planet’s Funniest Animals 16:50 All New Planet’s Funniest Animals 17:20 Cats of Claw Hill 17:45 Cats of Claw Hill 18:15 The Animals’ Guide to Survival 19:10 Lions and Giants 20:10 Animal Cops South Africa 21:05 Untamed & Uncut 22:00 The Animals’ Guide to Survival 22:55 Animal Cops Phoenix 23:50 Lions and Giants

00:35 Hotel Babylon 01:30 Doctor Who Confidential 01:45 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 Tellytales 07:10 Tweenies 07:30 Teletubbies 07:55 Me Too 08:15 Tellytales 08:25 Tweenies 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 17:30 Eastenders 18:00 Rough Diamond Sd 18:55 Mine All Mine 19:45 Doctor Who Confidential 20:00 The Weakest Link 20:45 Doctors 21:15 Eastenders 21:45 Inspector Lynley Mysteries 22:30 Doctor Who Confidential 22:45 Casualty 23:35 Casualty

00:00 Masterchef Goes Large 00:25 James Martin’s Brittany 00:50 What To Eat Now - Summer 01:15 Fantasy Homes By The Sea 02:00 The Home Show 02:50 Come Dine With Me 03:40 Hidden Potential 04:00 Cash In The Attic Usa 04:20 Bargain Hunt 05:05 James Martin’s Brittany 05:30 What To Eat Now - Summer 05:55 Masterchef Goes Large 06:25 Masterchef Goes Large 07:00 Cash In The Attic Usa 07:20 Antiques Roadshow 08:10 Living In The Sun 09:00 Bargain Hunt 09:45 Hidden Potential 10:10 Cash In The Attic Usa 10:35 James Martin’s Brittany 10:55 What To Eat Now - Summer 11:25 Fantasy Homes By The Sea 12:10 The Home Show 13:00 Come Dine With Me 13:45 Antiques Roadshow 14:35 Living In The Sun 15:30 Bargain Hunt 16:15 Fantasy Homes By The Sea 17:05 The Home Show 17:55 Antiques Roadshow 18:50 Come Dine With Me 19:40 Masterchef Goes Large 20:10 The Hairy Bikers’ Cookbook 20:35 Trish’s French Country Kitchen 21:00 The Home Show 21:50 Home For Life 22:40 Come Dine With Me 23:30 Masterchef Goes Large

01:00 Death In Love-R 03:00 Things To Do In Denver When You’re Dead-18 05:00 Amalia-PG15 07:00 Xanadu-PG 09:00 What Rats Won’t Do-PG15 11:00 Farrah’s Story-PG 13:00 CJ7-PG 15:00 Looking For Richard-PG15

Tropic Thunder on Show Movies 17:00 Jump Tomorrow-PG15 19:00 Who The #$&% Is Jackson PollockPG15 21:00 Charlotte Gray-PG15 23:00 The Baader Meinhof Complex-18

00:00 Rampage! 01:00 Street Customs 02:00 Dirty Jobs 02:55 Industrial Junkie 03:20 Industrial Junkie 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 Wreck Rescue 08:20 Street Customs 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 Prototype This 22:00 Breaking Point 23:00 Mythbusters

00:30 Mighty Ships 01:20 Ecopolis 02:10 Discovery Project Earth 03:00 Beyond Tomorrow 03:50 Junkyard Mega-Wars 04:45 How Stuff’s Made 05:10 Weird Connections 05:40 One Step Beyond 06:10 Mighty Ships 07:00 Junkyard Mega-Wars 08:00 Ten Ways 09:00 Ultimate Power Builders 09:55 Ultimate Power Builders 10:50 Ultimate Power Builders 11:45 Ultimate Power Builders 12:40 Eco-Tech 13:35 Eco-Tech 14:30 Eco-Tech 15:25 Eco-Tech 16:20 How Stuff’s Made 16:50 Brainiac 17:45 Mythbusters 18:40 How It’s Made 19:05 How It’s Made 19:30 Engineered 20:20 How It’s Made 20:45 How It’s Made 21:10 Mega World 22:00 How It’s Made 22:25 How It’s Made 22:50 Engineered 23:40 Mega World

00:15 Suite Life On Deck 00:35 Jonas 01:00 Sonny With A Chance 01:25 Hannah Montana 01:50 Hannah Montana 02:15 Jonas 02:35 The Suite Life of Zack & Cody 03:00 The Suite Life of Zack & Cody 03:25 FAIRLY ODD PARENTS 03:50 Replacements 04:15 Phineas & Ferb 04:40 Hannah Montana 05:05 Kim Possible 05:30 A KIND OF MAGIC 05:55 FAIRLY ODD PARENTS 06:20 Replacements 06:40 STITCH 07:05 Wizards of Waverly Place 07:25 Hannah Montana 07:50 Sonny With A Chance 08:10 FAIRLY ODD PARENTS 08:35 Phineas & Ferb 09:00 TIMMY TIME 09:10 SPECIAL AGENT OSO 09:35 HANDY MANNY 10:00 IMAGINATION MOVERS 10:20 Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 10:45 JUNGLE JUNCTION 11:00 FAIRLY ODD PARENTS 11:25 Phineas & Ferb 11:50 Wizards of Waverly Place 12:15 Sonny With A Chance 12:40 Hannah Montana 13:00 Hannah Montana 13:25 Jonas 13:50 Sonny With A Chance 14:15 Wizards of Waverly Place 14:35 SUITE LIFE ON DECK 15:00 FAIRLY ODD PARENTS 15:25 Replacements 15:50 Phineas & Ferb 16:15 Hannah Montana 16:40 Kim Possible 17:05 A KIND OF MAGIC 17:30 FAIRLY ODD PARENTS 17:55 Replacements 18:15 STITCH 18:40 Wizards of Waverly Place 19:00 Hannah Montana 19:25 Sonny With A Chance 19:45 FAIRLY ODD PARENTS 20:10 Phineas & Ferb

20:35 Suite Life On Deck 21:00 Wizards of Waverly Place 21:25 Hannah Montana 21:45 Jonas 22:10 Hannah Montana 22:35 Hannah Montana 23:00 Hannah Montana 23:25 Hannah Montana 23:50 Hannah Montana

00:15 Leave It To Lamas 00:40 Dr 90210 06:00 15 Most Shocking Political Sex Scandals 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 THS 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 Kendra 14:30 Dr 90210 15:25 THS 16:15 Behind the Scenes 16:40 Behind the Scenes 17:10 Giuliana & Bill 17:35 Giuliana & Bill 18:00 E! News 18:25 The Daily 10 18:50 Wildest TV Show Moments 19:15 Pretty Wild 19:40 THS 20:30 E! Investigates 21:20 Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane 21:45 Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane 22:10 E! News 22:35 The Daily 10 23:00 Keeping Up with the Kardashians 23:25 Kourtney & Khlo√© Take Miami 23:50 Pretty Wild

00:00 Saab Salomon Mountain-X Race 00:30 Saab Salomon Mountain-X Race 01:00 Winter Dew Tour 09/10 02:00 Fight Girls Series 2 03:00 Gumball 3000:2008 03:30 Gumball 3000:2008 04:00 Untracked Series 2 04:30 Untracked Series 2 05:00 I-Ex 05:30 I-Ex 06:00 I-Ex 06:30 I-Ex

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

00:30 A Haunting 01:20 FBI Files 02:10 Deadly Women 03:05 Deadly Women 04:00 Forensic Detectives 04:55 Amsterdam Vice 05:20 Dr G: Medical Examiner 06:10 Ghosthunters 06:35 Ghosthunters 07:00 Forensic Detectives 07:50 FBI Files 08:40 Final Days of an Icon 09:30 Diagnosis: Unknown 10:20 Forensic Detectives 11:10 FBI Files 12:00 Solved 12:50 Real Emergency Calls 13:15 Real Emergency Calls 13:40 Royal Inquest 14:30 Forensic Detectives 15:20 FBI Files 16:10 Final Days of an Icon 17:00 Diagnosis: Unknown 17:50 Forensic Detectives 18:40 FBI Files 19:30 Solved 20:20 Real Emergency Calls 20:45 Real Emergency Calls 21:10 Royal Inquest 22:00 I Almost Got Away With It 22:50 Murder Shift 23:40 Dr G: Medical Examiner

00:30 Banged Up Abroad 01:30 Cruise Ship Diaries 02:30 Graham’s World 03:00 Amazing Adventures Of A Nobody Europe 03:30 Bondi Rescue 04:00 Banged Up Abroad 05:00 David Rocco’s Dolce Vita 05:30 Lonely Planet- Roads Less Travelled 06:30 Banged Up Abroad 07:30 Cruise Ship Diaries 08:30 Graham’s World 09:00 Amazing Adventures Of A Nobody Europe 09:30 Bondi Rescue 10:00 Banged Up Abroad 11:00 Take Away My Takeaway 11:30 Lonely Planet- Roads Less Travelled 12:30 Banged Up Abroad 13:30 Banged Up Abroad 14:30 Banged Up Abroad 15:30 Bondi Rescue 16:00 Banged Up Abroad 17:00 Take Away My Takeaway 17:30 Lonely Planet- Roads Less Travelled 18:30 Banged Up Abroad 19:30 Banged Up Abroad 20:30 Banged Up Abroad 21:30 Bondi Rescue 22:00 Banged Up Abroad 23:00 Take Away My Takeaway 23:30 Lonely Planet- Roads Less Travelled

00:00 The Office 00:30 Will & Grace 01:00 The Daily Show with Jon Stewart 01:30 The Colbert Report 02:00 Late night with Jimmy Fallon 03:00 Party Down 03:30 The Book Group 04:00 South park 04:30 George Lopez 05:00 Yes dear 05:30 Late night with Jimmy Fallon 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 George Lopez 09:30 The Drew Carey show 10:00 Everybody Loves Raymond 10:30 Eight Simple Rules 11:00 Frasier 11:30 Seinfeld 12:00 Late night with Jimmy Fallon 13:00 The Drew Carey show 13:30 Tyler Perry’s House of Payne 14:00 George Lopez 14:30 The Fresh Prince of Bel Air 15:00 The Office 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 Seinfeld 18:30 Eight Simple Rules 19:00 Community 19:30 Rita Rocks 20:00 Late night with Jimmy Fallon 21:00 The Daily Show with Jon Stewart 21:30 The Colbert Report 22:00 Cleveland Show 22:30 The Book Group 23:00 South park 23:30 Seinfeld

00:00 The Martha Stewart Show 01:00 10 Years Younger 01:30 10 Years Younger 02:00 Jimmy Kimmel Live! 03:00 The Monique Show 04:00 The Tonight show with Jay Leno 05:00 GMA (repeat) 07:00 GMA Health 07:30 What’s the Buzz 08:00 The Martha Stewart Show 09:00 10 Years Younger 09:30 10 Years Younger 10:00 Jimmy Kimmel Live! 11:00 The View 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 18:00 Look A Like

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

01:05 Body of Evidence 02:45 Born Romantic 04:20 Straight out of Brooklyn 05:40 Betrayed 07:45 Fatal Instinct 09:15 Jiminy Glick In Lala Wood 10:45 The Spikes Gang

15:00 Taking A Chance On Love-PG15 17:00 Captain Drake-PG 19:00 Monsters Vs. Aliens-PG 21:00 The Boat That Rocked-PG15 23:15 Mr. Woodcock-18

01:10 The Screening Room 01:40 Songwriter 03:15 The Screening Room 04:00 Across The Wide Missouri 05:20 Casablanca 07:00 Little Women 09:00 The Big Sleep

The Longshots on Super Movies 12:20 The Cutting Edge 14:00 Madison 15:35 Man in the Moon 17:10 Mr. Accident 18:40 Untamed Heart 20:20 The Winter People 22:00 100 Films & A Funeral 23:25 The Madness Of King George

00:00 The Life Before Her Eyes-PG15 02:00 45 R.p.m.-PG15 04:00 Call Of The North-PG 06:00 Meet Bill-PG15 08:00 Gracie-PG15 10:00 Saving God-PG15 12:00 Motherhood-PG15 14:00 Ghost Town-PG15 16:00 Gracie-PG15 18:00 College Road Trip-PG 20:00 Tropic Thunder-18 22:00 Glorious 39-PG15

01:10 Ice Twisters-PG15 03:00 The Dark Knight-PG15 05:30 Along Came A Spider-PG15 07:10 Nightfall-PG15 09:00 Resident Evil: Degeneration-PG15 11:00 Ice Twisters-PG15 13:00 Twins Effect 2-PG15 15:00 Resident Evil: Degeneration-PG15 17:00 Circle-PG15 19:00 Red Sands-18 21:00 X-Men Origins: Wolverine-PG15 23:00 In Bruges-18

00:00 I’m Not Rappaport-PG15 02:30 Real Time-PG15 04:00 Rrrrrrr!!!-PG15 06:00 King’s Ransom-PG15 08:00 Clueless-PG15 10:00 Adventures Of Power-PG15 12:00 Parenthood-PG15 14:00 The Coneheads-PG15 15:30 I’m Not Rappaport-PG15 18:00 Mystic Pizza-PG15 20:00 Forgetting Sarah Marshall-PG15 22:00 Pineapple Express-18

00:00 Pocahontas II: Winter Of The Rocky Mount-FAM 02:00 Space Buddies-PG 04:00 Zeus And Roxanne-PG 06:00 House Arrest-FAM 08:00 Barbie Of Swan Lake-FAM 10:00 Zeus And Roxanne-PG 12:00 Scruff A Christmas Tale-FAM 14:00 Space Buddies-PG 16:00 Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything-PG 18:00 How To Eat Fried Worms-FAM 20:00 Mucha Lucha! Return Of El Malefico-FAM 22:00 Scruff A Christmas Tale-FAM

Nightfall on Show Movies Action

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 Lost 15:00 Lost 16:00 Survivor 17:00 Dawson’s Creek 18:00 Emmerdale 18:30 Coronation Street 19:00 Grey’s Anatomy 21:00 Private Practice 22:00 Survivor 23:00 Dawson’s Creek

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

00:00 AFL Highlights 01:00 NRL Full Time 01:30 NRL Premiership 03:30 World Hockey 04:00 International Rugby Union 06:00 World Sport 06:30 Futbol Mundial 07:00 NRL Full Time 07:30 NRL Premiership 09:30 World Sport 10:00 NRL Premiership 12:30 NRL Full Time 13:00 Live State of Origin 14:30 Triatholn 15:30 PGA EuropeanTour Highlights 16:30 Sea Master 17:00 ICC Cricket World 17:30 Futbol Mundial 18:00 NRL Full Time 18:30 World Match Racing Tour 19:30 European Tour Weekly 20:00 AFL Highlights 21:00 Sea Master 21:30 Mobil 1 The Grid 22:00 Masters Football

00:00 Futbol Mundial 00:30 Brazil League Highlights 01:00 World Hockey 01:30 AFL Premiership 04:00 Masters Football 07:00 AFL Highlights 08:00 World Sport 08:30 PGA European Tour Highlights 09:30 NRL Full Time 10:00 NRL Premiership 12:00 Futbol Mundial 12:30 AFL Highlights 13:30 Super League 15:30 Masters Football 18:30 NRL Full Time 19:00 State of Origin 20:00 Super League 22:00 Brazil League Highlights 22:30 European Tour Weekly 23:00 Mobil 1 The Grid 23:30 PGA European Tour Highlights

00:00 UFC The Ultimate Fighter 01:00 UFC Wired 02:00 UFC Unleashed 03:00 UFC Unleashed 04:00 Red Bull X-Fighters Highlights 05:00 FIM World Cup 05:30 UFC All Access 06:00 UFC Unleashed 07:00 WWE Vintage Collection 08:00 Red Bull X-Fighters Highlights 09:00 FIM World Cup 09:30 Mobil 1 The Grid 10:00 V8 Supercars 11:00 V8 Supercars 12:00 WWE NXT 13:00 FIA GT1 World Championship 14:30 V8 Supercars Extra 15:00 WWE Vintage Collection 16:00 V8 Supercars 17:00 V8 Supercars 18:00 WWE NXT 19:00 WWE SmackDown 21:00 UFC Wired 22:00 UFC Unleashed 23:00 UFC Unleashed

01:00 A Number-PG15 02:30 The Missing Person-PG15 04:45 Sins Of The Mother-PG15 06:45 Tennessee-PG15 09:00 Captain Drake-PG 11:00 Living Out Loud-PG15 13:00 The Longshots-PG15

10:50 The Prize 13:00 Ride The High Country 14:30 Casablanca 16:10 Boys’ Town 17:40 Across The Wide Missouri 19:00 Nicholas And Alexandra 22:00 The Dirty Dozen

00:30 Dogfights 01:20 Battles B.C. 02:10 Ice Road Truckers, 3 03:00 World War II: Lost Films 03:55 Hell’s Battlefield 04:50 Battle 360 05:40 Battle Stations 06:30 Dogfights 07:20 Battles B.C. 08:10 Ice Road Truckers, 3 09:00 World War II: Lost Films 09:55 Hell’s Battlefield 10:50 Battle 360 11:40 Battle Stations 12:30 Dogfights 13:20 Battles B.C. 14:10 Ice Road Truckers, 3 15:00 World War II: Lost Films 15:55 Hell’s Battlefield 16:50 Battle 360 17:40 Battle Stations 18:30 Dogfights 19:20 Battles B.C. 20:10 Ice Road Truckers, 3 21:00 Russia: Land of the Tsars 21:55 Lost Worlds 22:50 Cities of the Underworld 23:40 Egypt: Land of the Gods

00:00 Dr 90210 01:00 Millennium Fashion: The Year In Fashion 02:00 Split Ends 03:00 How Do I Look? 04:00 Millennium Fashion: The Year In Fashion 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 Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane 15:00 Dr 90210 16:00 Whose Wedding Is it Anyway? 17:00 Jerseylicious 18:00 Jerseylicious 19:00 Split Ends 20:00 Clean House 21:00 How Do I Look? 22:00 Tacky House 23:00 Clean House: Search For The Messiest...

01:04 French Only 01:45 Playlist 02:00 Urban Hit 02:45 Playlist 05:04 Focus 06:04 Playlist 08:04 Hit US 09:00 Code Compilation 09:24 Playlist 13:04 Urban Hit 13:50 Playlist

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

33 Flight Schedule Airlines

Arrival Flights Wednesday 07/07/2010 Flt Route

Wataniya Airways Wataniya Airways Wataniya Airways Wataniya Airways Gulf Air Turkish Wataniya Airways Ethiopian Air Arabia Egypt Egypt Air Jazeera DHL Emirates Etihad Qatari Falcon Jazeera Jazeera Kuwait Jazeera British Jazeera Kuwait Kuwait Fly Dubai Kuwait Kuwait Kuwait Kuwait Kuwait Emirates Arabia Qatari Iran Air Etihad Saudia Iran Aseman Jazeera Falcon Gulf Air Wataniya Airways Middle East Alnaser Wataniya Airways Jazeera Syrian Air Mahan Air Jazeera Gulf Air Egypt Air Kuwait Oman Air Saudia Wataniya Airways United Jordanian Egypt Air Wataniya Airways Fly Dubai Jazeera Wataniya Airways Kuwait Saudia Kuwait Jazeera Cargolux Nas Air Jazeera Qatari Kuwait Kuwait Egypt Air Nas Air Egypt Air Bahrain Air Etihad Rovos Emirates Gulf Air Wataniya Airways Saudia Jazeera Jazeera Arabia SriLankan Wataniya Airways Kuwait Yemenia Wataniya Airways Kuwait Kuwait Kuwait Kuwait Jazeera Jazeera Kuwait Kuwait Kuwait Kuwait Indian Wataniya Airways Jazeera Fly Dubai Middle East Rovos Jet A/W Egypt Air Wataniya Airways Wataniya Airways DHL Gulf Air Jazeera Emirates Qatari United Jazeera Lufthansa Jazeera Jazeera Egypt Air Shaheen Air KLM India Express Egypt Air Wataniya Airways Pakistan

188 306 434 408 211 772 322 624 551 614 267 370 853 305 138 201 637 503 412 527 157 529 382 302 053 676 352 284 344 362 855 121 132 603 301 9397 6791 425 203 213 182 404 711 102 165 1073 5066 171 219 610 672 645 508 432 982 800 621 4001 057 257 422 562 500 552 481 792 745 525 134 546 544 3923 703 2126 344 303 061 857 215 402 510 239 493 125 227 304 166 824 106 542 502 618 786 497 177 614 674 774 102 575 202 261 061 402 081 572 618 642 404 372 217 459 859 136 981 449 636 185 429 612 441 0447 393 606 108 215

Bahrain Cairo Damascus Beirut Bahrain Istanbul Sharm El Sheikh Addis Ababa Alexandria Cairo Beirut Bahrain Dubai Abu Dhabi Doha Dubai Aleppo Luxor Manila/Bangkok Alexandria London Assiut Delhi Mumbai Dubai Dubai Cochin Dhaka Chennai Colombo Dubai Sharjah Doha Shiraz Abu Dhabi Jeddah Mashad Bahrain Dubai Bahrain Bahrain Beirut Baghdad/Najaf Dubai Dubai Damascus Mashad Dubai Bahrain Cairo Dubai Muscat Riyadh Damascus Washington DC Amman Assiut Cairo Dubai Beirut Amman Amman Jeddah Damascus Sabiha Luxembourg Jeddah Alexandria Doha Alexandria Cairo Marsa Alam Riyadh Cairo Bahrain Abu Dhabi Baghdad Dubai Bahrain Beirut Riyadh Amman Jeddah Sharjah Colombo/Dubai Cairo Paris/Rome Sanaa/Doha Dubai Cairo Beirut Doha Jeddah Riyadh Dubai Bahrain Dubai Riyadh New York/London Chennai/Goa Jeddah Beirut Dubai Beirut Baghdad Mumbai Alexandria Vienna Beirut Bahrain Bahrain Damascus Dubai Doha Bahrain Doha Frankfurt Dubai Bahrain Cairo Lahore/Karachi Amsterdam/Bahrain Kozhikode/Cochin Luxor Dubai Karachi


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

Departure Flights on Tuesday 07/07/2010 Airlines Flt Route

Jazeera India Express Indian Lufthansa Pakistan Turkish Ethiopian Air Arabia Egypt Egypt Air DHL Emirates Etihad Qatari Wataniya Airways Jazeera Wataniya Airways Jazeera Jazeera Gulf Air Wataniya Airways Jazeera Jazeera Wataniya Airways British Jazeera Kuwait Fly Dubai Kuwait Kuwait Kuwait Kuwait Wataniya Airways Kuwait Kuwait Arabia Emirates Wataniya Airways Qatari Etihad Iran Air Iran Aseman Saudia Gulf Air Wataniya Airways Falcon Middle East Wataniya Airways Rovos Kuwait Jazeera Jazeera Alnaser Syrian Air Kuwait Kuwait Kuwait Mahan Air Gulf Air Jazeera Egypt Air Oman Air Wataniya Airways Jordanian Wataniya Airways Fly Dubai Egypt Air Saudia United Jazeera Wataniya Airways Kuwait Jazeera Kuwait Kuwait Nas Air Saudia Jazeera Kuwait Cargolux Qatari Kuwait Egypt Air Nas Air Rovos Egypt Air Bahrain Air Etihad Wataniya Airways Emirates Gulf Air Arabia Jazeera Saudia Jazeera SriLankan Wataniya Airways Wataniya Airways Yemenia Jazeera Jazeera Kuwait Kuwait Fly Dubai Kuwait Middle East Jet A/W Egypt Air Wataniya Airways Gulf Air DHL Kuwait Kuwait Emirates Jazeera Falcon Qatari Kuwait Kuwait Jazeera Jazeera United Jazeera Kuwait Egypt Air


528 390 994 637 206 773 625 552 615 371 854 306 139 101 480 4002 164 422 212 181 524 256 431 156 170 545 054 543 177 671 117 421 551 561 122 856 641 133 302 602 6792 2097 214 401 204 405 303 062 541 238 492 712 1074 103 501 785 5065 220 260 611 646 105 801 201 058 622 509 982 176 403 673 496 617 547 746 501 458 773 792 135 613 3924 704 082 2127 345 304 305 858 216 126 184 511 448 228 407 107 824 428 266 283 361 062 331 403 571 619 187 218 373 801 675 860 612 102 137 203 301 526 636 981 502 415 613

Assiut Mangalore/Kozhikode Mumbai/Chennai Frankfurt Lahore Istanbul Addis Ababa Alexandria Cairo Bahrain Dubai Abu Dhabi Doha Dubai Sabiha Cairo Dubai Bahrain Bahrain Bahrain Alexandria Beirut Damascus London Dubai Alexandria Dubai Cairo Frankfurt/Geneva Dubai New York Amman Damascus Amman Sharjah Dubai Vienna Doha Abu Dhabi Shiraz Mashad Medinah Baghdad Beirut Baghdad Beirut Cairo Najaf/Baghdad Cairo Amman Jeddah Najaf/Baghdad Damascus London Beirut Jeddah Mashad Bahrain Beirut Cairo Muscat Dubai Amman Jeddah Dubai Assiut Medinah Bahrain Dubai Beirut Dubai Riyadh Doha Sharm El Sheikh/Luxor Jeddah Jeddah Damascus Riyadh Hong Kong Doha Bahrain Marsa Alam Medinah Baghdad Cairo Bahrain Abu Dhabi Cairo Dubai Bahrain Sharjah Dubai Riyadh Doha Dubai/Colombo Beirut Dubai Sanaa Bahrain Beirut Dhaka Colombo Dubai Trivandrum Beirut Mumbai Alexandria Bahrain Bahrain Bahrain Cairo Dubai Dubai Lahore Bahrain Doha Lahore Mumbai Alexandria Aleppo Washington DC Dulles Luxor Kuala Lumpur/Jakarta Cairo


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

ACCOMMODATION Sharing accommodation available in fully furnished flat for bachelors in Salmiya, B.No. 24, flat No. 1 near Bestow supermarket. Please contact: 66737466. Email: (C 2453) Sharing accommodation one room in central A/C flat completely furnished with all facilities available from 0108-2010, interested please contact: 66212821. (C 2450) Room for rent in Maidan Hawally with Sri Lankan family. Preferred 1 person only, water and electricity free. Tel: 94068316. (C 2451) 6-7-2010 Sharing accommodation available for bachelors or family. Please call 66332653. Salwa block 10, 1 big room, separate entrance, attached toilet and kitchen, good for family or two single persons. Also 1 big room for single person or couples (only Indians). Call 99468765. (C 2446) Hall portioned room available with Kerala family in Mangaf block-3 for nonsmoking executive decent bachelor and working ladies, rent KD 65. Contact: 67008764, 99468018. (C 2447) 5-7-2010

FOR SALE Lancer 2005 1600cc, 60000 km, KD 1,750, excellent condition. Contact: 97980216. (C 2448) Household items for sale: 3-door cupboard, IKEA TV rack, sofa cum bed, IKEA bunk bed, dining table, dressing table. All items in very good condition. Tel: 99437398. 6-7-2010


Immediately available experienced M.Com accountant, well versed in preparing trial balance, profit and loss A/C, balance sheet, L/C, bank dealings, bank reconciliation, secretarial works, with Arabic experience. Salary expected KD 275. Please call 97664236/24315927. (C 2449) 6-7-2010 Male Secretary is looking for immediate placement, 12 years Kuwait experience, complete secretarial/ documentation works, tendering/ quantity survey works/ office administration & independent correspondence (Transferable residency). Call 66597087/ 24349364. (C 2433) 5-7-2010

MATRIMONIAL Proposals invited from good looking and fair Christian girls for a 27- year-old (174 cm) Marthomite, MBA graduate working in a reputed shipping co in Kuwait. (Preferred post graduate, professional deg holders, BSc nurses). Contact: (C 2445) 4-7-2010

No: 14782



Wednesday, July 7, 2010



Aries (March 21-April 19) There are many opportunities to make practical decisions today. Your ideas run deeper than superficial issues in which an interest in depth psychology could evolve. Your sense of responsibility is so well developed that you always end up managing most situations. You are disciplined, work hard and are good at getting others to work with and for you. You like to do things with care and enjoy being discriminating and exact. Your critical faculties are excellent and you can always pick what is worth saving and what is not. You appreciate a caring attitude and are service-oriented. The people with whom you work will enjoy a little time out to laugh. He who refreshes others will himself be refreshed. Enjoy a romantic evening. Taurus (April 20-May 20) This is a great time to be with others, in any sort of group situation. If you are working, the day should go quickly. You have a sense of true understanding and real sacrifice to devote toward worthwhile projects. Dedicated to long-range goals, you are future-oriented. You are intuitive and have an inner drive for all that is psychological, religious and mystical. You may find yourself, not necessarily an advisor, but a gatherer of people's experiences. You listen, as usual, to all sorts of information regarding relationships, progress and positive outcomes. Since you are artistic, you might consider the paintings of Norman Rockwell. Be careful of quick responses this afternoon--you may misconstrue someone's meaning. Laughter is a good thing.

Pooch Cafe

ACROSS 1. Hormone released by the hypothalamus that controls the release of thyroidstimulating hormone from the anterior pituitary. 4. United States writer of poems and plays about racial conflict (born in 1934). 10. Being one hundred more than two hundred. 13. A plant hormone promoting elongation of stems and roots. 14. East Indian tart yellow berrylike fruit. 15. 10 hao equal 1 dong. 16. Make attractive or lovable. 18. A member of an agricultural people of southern India. 20. The seventh month of the Moslem calendar. 21. A spot that is open late at night and that provides entertainment (as singers or dancers) as well as dancing and food and drink. 24. A lack of vitality. 32. A genus of Ploceidae. 35. Title for a civil or military leader (especially in Turkey). 36. A loose sleeveless outer garment made from aba cloth. 37. Being one hundred more than three hundred. 38. An Indic language. 40. European freshwater fish resembling the roach. 43. A small ball with a hole through the middle. 44. Any member of Athapaskan tribes that migrated to the southwestern desert (from Arizona to Texas and south into Mexico). 47. A landlocked federal republic in central Europe. 54. How a result is obtained or an end is achieved. 55. A set of questions or exercises evaluating skill or knowledge. 58. An adult male person (as opposed to a woman). 59. A lyric poem with complex stanza forms. 60. A complex inorganic compound that contains ammonia molecules. 62. An agency of the United Nations affiliated with the World Bank. 63. A crystalline rock that can be cut and polished for jewelry. 64. The abode of God and the angels and the souls of those who have gained salvation. 65. An associate degree in applied science. DOWN 1. A relative position or degree of value in a graded group. 2. Type genus of the Ranidae. 3. A pilgrimage to Mecca. 4. Divulge information or secrets. 5. A river in north central Switzerland that runs northeast into the Rhine. 6. A radioactive gaseous element formed by the disintegration of radium. 7. A very poisonous metallic element that has three allotropic forms. 8. Cubes of meat marinated and cooked on a skewer usually with vegetables. 9. According to the Old Testament he was a pagan king of Israel and husband of Jezebel (9th century BC). 10. A human female who does housework. 11. An enclosure made or wire or metal bars in which birds or animals are kept. 12. An outer garment that has sleeves and covers the body from shoulder down. 17. Worn or shabby from overuse or (of pages) from having corners turned down. 19. Informal or slang terms for mentally irregular. 22. A heavy brittle diamagnetic trivalent metallic element (resembles arsenic and antimony chemically). 23. A soft silvery metallic element of the alkali earth group. 25. (Babylonian) God of wisdom and agriculture and patron of scribes and schools. 26. (Babylonian) God of storms and wind. 27. (British) A waterproof raincoat made of rubberized fabric. 28. Relating to or characteristic of or occurring in the air. 29. The emotion of hate. 30. Title for a civil or military leader (especially in Turkey). 31. A sudden short attack. 33. A woman hired to suckle a child of someone else. 34. Being or occurring at an advanced period of time or after a usual or expected time. 39. In bed. 41. The first light of day. 42. Generic term for inflammatory conditions of the skin. 45. (Judaism) A Jewish festival (traditionally 8 days) celebrating the exodus of the Israelites from Egypt. 46. The branch of computer science that deal with writing computer programs that can solve problems creatively. 48. Give over. 49. A complex red organic pigment containing iron and other atoms to which oxygen binds. 50. A primeval personification of air and breath. 51. Type genus of the Amiidae. 52. A quantity of no importance. 53. Type genus of the Anatidae. 56. Being one more than thirteen. 57. Used of a single unit or thing. 61. A state in New England.

Gemini (May 21-June 20) You feel understanding and accepting and are easily moved by the problems of others. Psychology in all of its forms is a driving force in your life. An understanding into the needs and wants of others and an appreciation for their frailties, as well as your own, makes you more cautious and conservative--pick your battles with care. There is a goal to reach today and your focus is the goal. You are connected to far-seeing visions and group work of all kinds. You may be a bit independent when working with standard policies, however. Your sense of discrimination when it comes to practical issues is excellent. You are quick to compliment good problem-solving techniques in others. You like to work. A loved one needs you tonight.

Non Sequitur Cancer (June 21-July 22) Discovering what you truly believe in--fighting for it, even--is a high personal priority. You may decide to quietly create an opportunity to push a truth-in-lending law or uncover the real story behind a story. Religion, law, politics, travel and higher education are some of the arenas where this may take place. This is a time of testing your limits to see how far you can go. Communicating well is important to you. You will make every effort to be patient and make sure you are understood. You would do well in a career in music, poetry, writing, psychology, philosophy--any realm of the imagination. You can help or teach others by sharing your own understanding. Examining your life is over; living it is now. Leo (July 23-August 22) Things are happening and your career depends upon your own ambition and drive. You are able to use your good thinking process and you feel what is the right thing to do; you enjoy being in control. A management job is in your future. The secret here is to trust in your own judgment. As long as you are looking for the most positive end, you will do well. It is very important to focus on getting any facts straight--there could be trickery at this time. This is a better time to sell than to buy and a time to eliminate the excessive--carpool. There is a need to improve channels of understanding and appreciation. Classes in meditation, problem solving and even dancing can be a great activity for you and your partner or mate--consider. Romance is fun this evening.


Virgo (August 23-September 22) Your thoughts and ideas may not mesh with the plans and methods of someone you meet with today. You have a radical approach to communities and group work. Progressive, with insights into uniting humanity, you understand the true meaning of democracy. Things will work out in your favor if you maintain low tones for now. You would make a great networker and are always working for the benefit of many. Finding the right job may also mean finding the right “niche” where you can express yourself and make a difference. You are very independent when it comes to your own security and family. You may enjoy unconventional-style home or furnishings, or a different approach to sentiment and nostalgia. Libra (September 23-October 22) Career choices and direction seem to indicate a loss of freedom and originality on your part. Do not settle for the first thing that comes along. You could feel stifled and forced to go along if you are not choosy. You may decide that this is the best time to buckle down and secure your career. Your organizational abilities and sense of responsibility guide you and prove successful. Your career could assume a much more determined and solid form when you consider these things. Obtaining and exchanging information takes on importance. Being more involved with neighbors or sibling(s) satisfies a deep emotional need. Communicating by phone, e-mail, snail-mail, etc., is where your attention stays this evening; fun topics.

Mother Goose and Grimm

Scorpio (October 23-November 21) You may find yourself very appreciative of your very own skills today. You might enjoy solving puzzles and problem-solving and finding solutions for others, etc. A renewed appreciation for your work may be apparent to your superiors--in fact, to everybody. A need to be respected is an emotionally charged issue. You develop a knack for organizing things and people, as a sense of ambition and practicality takes hold. Work, achievement and ambition take priority. You are entering into a cycle of mental development that emphasizes the past and your roots in life. Curiosity about such things leads to study and research--perhaps the discovery of a family crest, real estate and/or home and family planning take on greater importance. Sagittarius (November 22-December 21) Your presence and importance in any group, while perhaps not verbalized, are always acknowledged. You can cause others to act, change or react just by being in their presence. Nothing need be said. Yours is the mastery of the physical and the practical. Your energies run effectively toward making yourself felt in the material, tangible outer world. You are an action person who gains the attention of others and is motivating. The circumstances of your life suggest extroversion. You may complain of never having any privacy or time to think. You have a pattern of living that seems to throw you into contact with many people and the outer world. Being an extrovert, you may have difficulty understanding reclusive types--patience.

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

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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 are able to draw a clear picture of your ideas and others will understand your meaning. The events of the morning have the makings for a bright and witty day. You could be seen by others as just the person to be put in charge of some project requiring a conservative mind. This afternoon you are very out-front and candid with co-workers. Your intensity and passionate approach to life are obvious to all who meet you. Your mind cuts right through all the window dressing and gets right down to the quick. Before anyone knows it, you have the important aspect out front for everyone to see. Some may not like this behavior, but you are the first person they run to when personal or business answers are needed. Hug a tree this afternoon.

Aquarius (January 20- February 18) Mental discipline should come easily for you. Problems and obstacles should find easy explanations under your keen examination. Your mind is full of practical ideas, especially related to your job or skills. It is good that you seek new ideas in management. You have practical thoughts and you will make the outcome of present projects work well. Your love of job and practical skills makes you a fine manager and businessperson. You bring a great deal of love to your work. People will value you for your warmth and dynamic qualities as much as for your ideas and you may find it easier to acquiesce with your animal warmth. A strong urge for the social life may find you active this afternoon. Do not forget to buy a birthday present. Pisces (February 19-March 20) You have an inborn ability to guide and lead others through the hurdles of life. You could be very much in demand as a counselor--even if you are not a counselor. Solving problems in the workplace seems easier than usual. There is an instinct to be powerful and in control--pulling the strings. This is a good day to get things done. There is good eye-hand coordination and a sustained effort that will make most any task run well. You may feel like exercising or getting out and about this evening. Perhaps visiting friends or dinner out with a loved one is in order now. Emotions are very present but within control. If you are entertaining this evening, you will not have to fish for compliments. Having everything prepared in advance, you have time to visit.


Wednesday, July 7, 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

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


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24734000 24881201 24726638


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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

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0093 00355 00213 00376 00244 001264 001268 0054 00374 0061 0043 001242 00973 00880 001246 00375 0032 00501 00229 001441 00975 00591 00387 00267 0055 00673 00359 00226 00257 00855 00237 001 00238 001345 00236 00235 0056 0086 0057 00269 00242 00682 00506 00385 0053 00357 0090392 00420 0045 00246 00253 001767 001809 00593 0020 00503 0044

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00240 00291 00372 00251 00500 00298 00679 00358 0033 00594 00689 00241 00220 00995 0049 00233 00350 0030 00299 001473 00590 001671 00502 00224 00592 00509 0031 00504 00852 0036 0034 00354 0091 00873 0062 0098 00964 00353 0039 00225 001876 0081 00962 007 00254 00686 00965 00996 00856 00371 00961 00231 00218 00370 00352 00853 00389



Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Clooney to testify in fraud case


ergie quickly realized her husband Josh Duhamel was ‘The One’. The Black Eyed Peas singer had made a list of things she was looking for in man before she met Josh in September 2004, but her love for the ‘Transformers’ star soon made her forget about her prior expectations. She told Britain’s Cosmopolitan magazine: “At that stage of my life, I don’t think I’d have thought that about anybody. “I’d made my lists of qualities that I wanted, and you can’t find out if someone has those in a week. “It was learning what he was made of that made me fall in love with him.” The 35year-old star also revealed Josh, 37, enjoyed getting his hands on her extra curves after she had to gain 17lbs for her role in musical movie ‘Nine’. She added: “When I came home from filming, he was excited. He enjoys having both - the extra meat to grab when it’s there and the tight stomach when that’s there. He always gives me compliments.”


he ‘Girlfriend’ singer and ‘The Hills’ actor - who began dating in February have decided to show their love and devotion to each other by having each other’s names etched onto their bodies. A source told X17Online: “They may not have been together that long but Avril and Brody are obviously devoted to each other and these tattoos just got to show that.” This is the second matching tattoo Avril and Brody have got. In April, it was reported the pair had the same lightning bolt designs etched onto their bodies. Avril had her tattoo on her forearm, whereas Brody opted for his to be behind his ear. A source said at the time: “They showed up to the opening of Mario Barth King Ink and requested the same tats. “They were really excited about it. They held hands openly.” Although they’ve kept quiet about their fledging relationship, Avril recently drunkenly declared her love for Brody while singing karaoke. The ‘Complicated’ hitmaker - who filed for divorce from her husband, Sum 41 rocker Deryck Whibley, last October grabbed the microphone at the Bank nightclub in Las Vegas last month and wasn’t shy about her feelings. A source said: “They were having a blast. They were taking shots with friends including Olympic snowboarder Shaun White, grabbing the microphone, shouting, ‘Jager shots’ and making the crowd go wild.” The 25-year-old pop star even shouted, “I love you, Brody!” on the microphone.

Winehouse receives royal snub

Lavigne and Jenner get matching tattoos


eorge Clooney is take to the stand in a Milan courtroom later this month. The ‘Up in the Air’ star will attend court on July 16 to testify against three people accused of using his name for a fashion label. The 49-year-old actor is to testify as a civil plaintiff at the fraud trial in the Italian business and fashion capital. And Judge Pietro Caccialanza has ordered extra security to protect the Oscar-winning actor from the huge numbers of fans expected to attend. According to AFP, the judge said “There will be a lot of people, I imagine.” However, Judge Caccialanza promised fans the extra security would not prevent them from seeing the Hollywood star, insisting they would have the chance “to come close to their hero”. The fraud case originally began in April 2008, when three still unnamed people were accused of fraud, forgery and possession of stolen goods while preparing for a fashion show at a Milan hotel. George is a regular visitor to Italy where he has a villa on Lake Como, north of Milan, and is currently dating Italian actress-and-model Elisabetta Canalis.


my Winehouse was stopped from meeting Prince Harry at a music festival - being told by security to stay away. The ‘Rehab’ singer had tried to slip onto the side of the stage at London’s Wireless festival to get closer to the British royal during JayZ’s performance in Hyde Park on Sunday night . But the beehived pop star - who has battled drink and drug addictions - was determined to get the prince’s attention and shouted over security guard’s heads: “Oi Harry. Oi Harry. How are ya love? I only wanted to say hello to Harry.” A group of celebrities in the exclusive area - including Gwyneth Paltrow, Kate Moss, Lewis Hamilton and Jay-Z’s wife Beyonce Knowles - looked stunned as Amy continued to try and get his attention. Girls Aloud star Sarah Harding was also seen giggling at Amy’s attempts to lure the prince into a conversation before organizers told 26-year-old Amy to stay away and be quiet. A reveler told the Daily Mirror newspaper: “Amy was so desperate to get near him. She didn’t care who heard as she yelled.” Although he ignored Amy, the 25-year-old royal was himself snubbed last week - by pop star Pink. Harry is a big fan of the ‘Trouble’ hitmaker and was hoping to catch up with the singer before she performed her set on Friday at the Wireless festival, but her representatives said she was too busy to chat with him. An insider revealed to the Daily Star newspaper: “Harry was hoping to meet Pink before she went on stage but she was too ready to rock to see anyone.”

L’Wren Scott is grateful for her height

Perry made Brand propose telepathically



aty Perry got Russell Brand to propose to her by using telepathy. The ‘California Gurls’ singer - who got engaged to the reformed hellraiser in December after a whirlwind romance - constantly ‘told’ the British comic star she wanted him to pop the question by using the power of her mind. She explained: “I was trying to make him tell me that he wanted to marry me telepathically. Every night we looked into each other’s eyes and I was thinking, ‘Please ask me, please ask me.’ “Then, when we finally talked about the idea of getting married, he admitted he was thinking the same - he’d been trying to tell me that I was the woman he wanted to marry by communicating it with his eyes. “So all the time we’d been sending each other subliminal messages!” The 25-year-old pop star - who previously dated Gym Class Heroes lead vocalist Travis McCoy - also revealed she and Russell like to make up stories about their impending nuptials so their true wedding plans remain secret. She told Britain’s Star magazine: “Russell makes up these really crazy stories about me and our wedding. I make up stories, too - I said he was a ‘groomzilla’. He said I farted a lot, but I’ve never farted in front of him - honestly! “I hear these crazy stories - we are going to get married in latex, underwear, in Spandex, in Japan, in India, in Thailand. But I think all this craziness about my marriage is really funny. “And I don’t set the record straight as I love this chaotic circus of wrong information, because it is not really anyone else’s business beside the people that we have invited and us, of course.”

Lopez opens up on Affleck heartbreak


ennifer Lopez’s break-up from Ben Affleck completely changed her. The singer-and-actress - whose engagement to the movie star ended hours before they were supposed to wed in September 2003 - was left heartbroken by their split and ended up “not quite the same person” she was before they started dating. She said: “I don’t think I had ever been heartbroken in that way before - had so many hopes and dreams on something. This was the first time and it was tough. When you go through that kind of heartbreak in front of everybody you are not quite the same person you were before.” Before Ben, the 40-year-old starlet dated rapper P Diddy in a two-and-a-half year relationship Jennifer now describes as “ugly” and “sordid”. She explained in her ‘Behind The Music’ documentary for VH1: “He was like, ‘I love you’. Right away. It was very fast, but we did have a connection. We did fall in love and we were very close. But my relationship with him was always something I knew would end. “It started out as something very pure and innocent. But it did get ugly - it did get sordid.” After dating the rapper, Jennifer had a brief marriage to backing dancer Cris Judd from September 2001 until they separated in June the next year, when she started dating Ben. Despite her dramatic past relationships, Jennifer is now settled with her long-term friend, singer Marc Anthony - who she briefly dated in the 90s and has two-year-old twins Max and Emme with. They recorded a track together for Jennifer’s film ‘Shall We Dance’ in early 2004, and following a whirlwind romance, they wed on June 5 that year. Jennifer explained: “We make each other better. We reconnected like we had never been apart. It was really the same chemistry and connection we had at the very beginning.” Anthony added: “I couldn’t be more in love. I say it every day - I’m the luckiest man on earth.”

he model-turned-fashion designer - who is dating Rolling Stones legend Sir Mick Jagger says being 6ft 3in tall has taught her to be comfortable with her looks and not worry about what anyone is saying about her. She said: “I think that I have always had composure. I don’t think that you can be 6ft 3in and care if people talk about you. So I think, just from sheer stature, I developed a kind of shield early on.” As well as modeling and fashion designing, L’Wren used to be a stylist to the stars and says it was a privilege to play a big part in someone’s fashion choices. She said: “I always felt honored to be asked, that somebody trusted you to help them with their personal style.” However, she knew that while she was doing it, she never gave up on her dream to become a designer, something she has now achieved. She told Style magazine: “It wasn’t really the fashion focus I wanted. So I kept shifting my focus closer and closer to my objective of being a designer.” —Bang Showbiz


Wednesday, July 7, 2010


ritish singer George Michael has been arrested after his car hit a building on a road in north London at the weekend, police said yesterday. Police were called to the scene at around 3.35 am local time on Sunday. “The man aged in his 40s was arrested on suspicion of being unfit to drive,” a


A file photo taken on May 21, 2010, shows British singer and actress Cheryl Cole as she arrives for the screening of ‘Hors La Loi’ (Outside of the Law), at the 63rd Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France.—AFP

op star Cheryl Cole is in hospital in Britain after apparently contracting malaria while on holiday in east Africa, her spokesman said yesterday. Cole, who recently split from her England and Chelsea footballer husband Ashley, collapsed at a photoshoot Saturday and was taken to an exclusive hospital in London Sunday. The 27-year-old singer is a member of Girls Aloud, one of Britain’s most successful girl groups, and a solo artist in her own right, with hits including “Fight For This Love”. She is also a judge on popular TV talent show “The X Factor”. “Cheryl Cole is currently in hospital, being treated for malaria,” her spokesman said. “Following doctors’ advice, she will be cancelling all work commitments for the next week.”— AFP


By Anthony McCartney ctress Lindsay Lohan was scheduled to appear yesterday in a courtroom for a probation revocation hearing that could end with her either headed for jail or her next movie role. The hearing in Beverly Hills, California, is the culmination of several missteps by the 24-year-old starlet, whose probation for a threeyear drug and alcohol case was revoked in May after she missed a hearing. She faces an increasingly impatient judge who has seemingly grown tired of the actress’ inability to complete the terms of her sentence, or appear in court on time. Lohan’s fate is far from decided though. The hearing yesterday morning was likely to feature testimony and evidence about her conduct and progress with her probation. Los Angeles County district attorney spokeswoman Sandi Gibbons said a prosecutor could still decide not to seek jail time for Lohan. If Lohan is ordered jailed, she will be taken into custody immediately. The length of her stay would be determined by Lohan’s sentence, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Steve Whitmore said. He said inmates serving nonviolent offenses typically serve about a quarter of their sentence, although several factors are considered. Lohan spent 84 minutes in jail in 2007 after she pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor counts of being under the influence of cocaine and no contest to two counts of driving with a blood-alcohol level above 0.08 percent and one count of reckless driving. The plea came after a pair of high-profile arrests earlier that year.


She was sentenced to three years of probation, but had to ask for a yearlong extension in October after she failed to complete her alcohol-education courses on time. Prosecutor Danette Meyers warned Lohan at the time that she would face jail time if she violated her probation. If the actress remains free she could lose a hated accessory-an ankle alcohol monitor that she has been required to wear since late May. Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Marsha Revel revoked Lohan’s probation in May after the actress missed a court hearing to promote a film project at the Cannes Film Festival. Lohan claimed her passport was stolen, but Revel ordered her to wear the alcohol monitor upon her return. She also scheduled the evidentiary hearing that will be held Tuesday morning to determine whether Lohan violated her probation, and to what extent. Weeks later, the monitor issued an alert after Lohan attended the MTV Movie Awards and its after-parties. Revel promptly doubled Lohan’s bail to $200,000. Prosecutors called it an “alcohol-related” violation, but Lohan’s attorney, Shawn Chapman Holley, downplayed the incident. Chapman Holley was not available for comment last week. Regardless of the outcome, yesterday’s hearing won’t be the last reminder for Lohan of the court case and her arrests. She will soon be questioned about her drug use three years ago by civil attorneys representing a woman suing Lohan. The actress’ attorney persuaded a judge to delay that deposition until after yesterday’s hearing so that her answers couldn’t be used against her in the criminal case. — AP

By Jill Serjeant resh faces and veteran players in new roles are expected to grab the spotlight when nominations are announced tomorrow for the primetime Emmy Awards-the highest honors in the television industry. But potential Emmy newcomers, like “Glee” star Jane Lynch and Sofia Vergara of comedy “Modern Family,” along with old hands Julianna Margulies of “The Good Wife” and Edie Falco’s pillpopping “Nurse Jackie” will be joined by actors from Emmy favorites like comedy “30 Rock”, and dramas “Mad Men” and “House” after a strong TV season. The winners of the 62nd Emmy Awards, orga-


By Leila Cobo n 1996, Enrique Iglesias, already a Latin star, was shuttled by helicopter to a live show hosted by romantic station KLVE Los Angeles. As the chopper hovered over Westlake Park, Iglesias looked down in surprise at the crowd of approximately 150,000 that waited below. “I was so shocked,” he recalls. “I thought, ‘Oh, my God, all these people listen to Spanish music on US soil.’” Today, as one of the world’s biggest stars, Iglesias no longer marvels at the possibilities afforded by two languages; he revels in them. Yesterday , Iglesias released “Euphoria,” a potentially trailblazing album for both Iglesias and the Latin market. Whereas most Latin artists will record an album with Spanish-and English-language versions of a particular song (or songs), or record separate Spanish and English albums altogether, Iglesias has chosen a new route: “Euphoria” features six songs written and recorded in Spanish and four completely different songs written and recorded in English. The album will be released in standard and deluxe versions through Universal Music Group. It will be released in every Universal territory-more than 70 countries-with a third, international version with eight English-language tracks specifically designed for markets like the United Kingdom that have small Latin audiences and where Iglesias is a major seller. This has lent itself to an Iglesias sonic wallpaper of sorts. While his current Spanish-language single “Cuando Me Enamoro,” featuring Juan Luis Guerra, has spent four weeks at No 1 on Billboard’s Hot Latin Songs chart-a spot it hit only five weeks after its release-his English-language single “I Like It,” featuring Pitbull and Lionel Richie (who rerecorded parts of “All Night Long” for the song), is scaling the Billboard Hot 100 and currently stands at No. 26. Iglesias was all over iTunes’ real-time charts. As of June 23, “I Like It” was No 14 on iTunes’ Songs chart and No 1 on the iTunes Latino chart, where Iglesias had four of the top 10 songs, including “No Me Digas Que No” (featuring Wisin & Yandel) at No 5, “Cuando Me Enamoro” (featuring Juan Luis Guerra) at No. 6 and perennial favorite “Hero” at No 7. Overseas, Iglesias has been on promotional visits to Mexico, the United Kingdom, Russia, Brazil, Argentina, Finland, Spain and Germany. As of June 22, “I Like It” was in the top 10 on iTunes’ charts in Australia, Belgium and Spain and in the top 20 in Mexico and Norway. In addition, two versions of the “I Like It” video were filmed. The first, made for the US market, features the cast of MTV’s “Jersey Shore” and premiered during the MTV Movie Awards. A second version, minus the reality show stars, is being programmed on channels that don’t air “Jersey Shore.” Releasing an album with distinct English and Spanish


spokesman said. Police do not name individuals when making preliminary statements, but the spokesman was speaking in response to questions about Michael, who is 47. He was taken to a north London police station and bailed to return in mid-August pending further

George Michael

Music & Movies

inquiries. The star, who became famous as part of the band Wham! before launching a successful solo career, was banned from driving for two years in 2007 and sentenced to 100 hours of community service after admitting driving when unfit due to drugs.—Reuters

tracks should be commonplace for bilingual, crossover acts. But actually, this has never been the M.O. for labels, in part because marketing and distributing to Hispanic and mainstream audiences are two different processes. And coordinating two marketing campaigns for two distinct audiences has proved a challenge when a release falls under the jurisdiction of one label. A major drawback is English-language radio: While youth-leaning, Spanish-language stations tend to play big, mainstream hits, only a handful of mainstream stations nationwide, like KIIS-FM Los Angeles and WPOW Miami, will spin Spanish-lan-

the other end of the spectrum is Marc Anthony, whose new Spanish-language album, “Iconos,” doesn’t feature any English songs. Instead, Anthony is planning an all-English release later this year. Although he’s gone down both roads in the past, Iglesias chose not to take either of these paths. “I wanted both (languages) to be on the same album,” he says, even as he acknowledges the dangers of swimming into uncharted waters. “It’s a risk,” he adds, “but it’s a risk I wanted to take. I was sick of coming out with one English album and one Spanish (album). And the market has become a single-unit market where people pick and choose their music.”

Enrique Iglesias guage songs. And then there’s retail. Where does a bilingual album go? The Latin section? The pop section? Both would be logical, if only there was space, particularly when it comes to developing acts that are a challenge to get into big accounts to begin with. As a result of these, and other considerations, standard practice calls for crossover acts to alternate between Spanish-and English-language albums, with the latter often including a Spanish version of the single that is worked to radio by a sister Latin label. Witness Shakira’s English-language album, “She Wolf,” which included the Spanish version of the single, “Loba,” worked to Spanish-language radio. On

The market has also changed from when Iglesias first began recording as a Spanish-language crooner who sold millions of albums in the mid-’90s. Back then, with few exceptions (Gloria Estefan and Jon Secada, among them), the market was firmly compartmentalized by language, until Ricky Martin burst into the mainstream with “Livin’ la Vida Loca” in 1999 and changed the paradigm. Later that year, Iglesias released his first English-language album, “Enrique,” which included Spanish-language versions of three singles. “Enrique” sold 2.1 million albums in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan, and set Iglesias on a path of recording

alternately in English and Spanish. Spelling out exactly what “Euphoria” is boils down to details like the album sticker, which will identify both singles. Each album version, too, is differentiated. The basic, budget version includes six tracks in Spanish and four in English. The deluxe version, which will be sold exclusively at Target, features seven tracks in English and six in Spanish. In exchange for the exclusivity, Target will promote the album in a radio, TV and print campaign in both English and Spanish media. Born to megastar Julio Iglesias in Madrid but raised in Miami, Iglesias has transcended his pedigree, amassing 21 No. 1 hits-more than any other artist in the history of the Hot Latin Songs chart-and selling more than 50 million albums worldwide, according to Universal. In the mainstream, Iglesias’ credentials are less flashy but still impressive, with four top 10 tracks on the Hot 100. In the digital realm, he’s sold 3 million-plus downloads in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan, and he boasts the fourth-best-selling Latin download of all time, “Do You Know? (The Ping Pong Song)/Dimelo.” But Iglesias is self-effacing about his success. Perennially dressed in jeans, hoodie and baseball cap, he still conveys the image of the cute boy next door; if one lives in Miami, there’s a strong likelihood of running into an unguarded Iglesias hanging out with friends. The openness extends to his attitudes toward the music business. He has a reputation for being a shrewd artist who stays on top of minute details in his career and has no qualms about picking up the phone to contact label staffers with concerns. But he’s also an intuitive artist who acts spontaneously and is disarmingly self-deprecating. It was Iglesias himself who personally invited each of the artists on “Euphoria,” an album of uptempo dance tracks and whimsical pop ballads whose collaborations he wrote without specific artists in mind, save for “Heartbeat,” penned for Nicole Scherzinger, a longtime friend and labelmate. Akon, for example, entered the mix after he stopped by the studio to visit and asked if he could record vocals. Iglesias was most worried about Guerra, an idol of his but someone he barely knew. “I didn’t think he was going to say ‘yes.’ And he didn’t,” Iglesias recalls. “He said, ‘I really can’t give you an answer unless I hear the song.’” This in itself was a challenge, as Guerra only records his own songs. But to Iglesias’ surprise, Guerra not only accepted, but also agreed to participate in the video for the song, which was released to radio roughly at the same time as Guerra’s own single. That two such different artists could co-exist in the charts’ upper echelons with such different tracks is a testament to Iglesias’ ability to deliver catchy pop hits with key differentiating factors that help them stand out from the pack. — Reuters

Iggy Pop and the Stooges perform on July 5, 2010 on the Prince’s Palace square in Monaco. — AFP

US rock band ZZ Top performs on July 5, 2010 on the Prince’s Palace square in Monaco. — AFP

nized by the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, will be announced on Aug. 29 in Los Angeles. Jimmy Fallon will host the ceremony. TV insiders hope the nominations will inject fresh blood and excitement into a field which has been dominated in recent years by the same little-watched contenders. In 2009, “Mad Men” was named best drama for a second year, and “30 Rock” best comedy for a third. “This year, there are two serious threats in the race for best comedy series-Fox’s ‘Glee’ and ABC’s ‘Modern Family’- which will revitalize the Emmys, and both have an excellent chance of winning,” said Tom O’Neil of awards website In

the best drama category, “Mad Men” on cable channel AMC, is expected to be challenged by law series “The Good Wife” on CBS-one of the season’s biggest new hits with some 13 million regular viewers-and FX outlaw motorcycle gang series “Sons of Anarchy.” Margulies, the former Nurse Hathaway on hospital drama “ER”, is seen as a certain best actress nominee for her role as the stoic spouse of a disgraced district attorney in “The Good Wife” after winning both the Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild awards earlier this year. Katey Sagal, the former “Married ... with Children” star who plays scheming matriarch Gemma Teller Morrow in “Sons of

(From Left) Prince Albert II of Monaco, front center, with his fiancee Charlene Wittstock, and his sister Princess Caroline of Hanover, right, dance during the open-air concert of American blues rock trio, ZZ Top and American singer Iggy Pop, in front of The Prince’s Palace of Monaco, Monday, in Monaco. — AP

Anarchy”, is seen as overdue for a nomination. “If Katey Sagal does not get nominated ... there is a serious problem in this industry,” Hollywood casting director Cathy Reinking told industry web site Backstage in June. Sci-fi drama series “Lost” is expected to pick up a nomination for its climactic final season on ABC. Showtime’s “Dexter,” starring Michael C. Hall as a crime analyst who moonlights as a vigilante serial killer, is seen as having his best shot yet at beating two-time champion Bryan Cranston of “Breaking Bad” to the best dramatic actor Emmy trophy. One of the biggest dramas, however, could come in the variety show nominations. Both Jay Leno and

Conan O’Brien’s versions of NBC’s “The Tonight Show” have been submitted for consideration, setting the stage for a final showdown in NBC’s disastrous late night talk show wars. Premium cable channel Showtime, which also broadcasts likely nominee “Nurse Jackie” starring ex- “Sopranos” star Falco, and “The United States of Tara”, starring Emmy winner Toni Collette as a woman with multiple personalities, could give rival HBO its biggest challenge yet in total Emmy nominations. HBO is expected to make its mark with TV movies “You Don’t Know Jack” with Al Pacino, World War Two mini-series “The Pacific”, and postHurricane Katrina drama “Treme”. — Reuters



Wednesday, July 7, 2010


By Jenny Barchfield aris was in full bloom on Monday, as Christian Dior designer John Galliano opened the city’s fall-winter 2011 haute couture collections with a hothouse of petal-covered gowns and tulip shaped skirts in a riot of colors. A marvel of technical know-how and unbounded creativity, Galliano’s garden was a sort of haute couture manifesto that put on very ostentatious display the raison d’etre behind the collections of wildly expensive, made-tomeasure garments that only a handful of women in the world can afford. As the number of houses that still produce couture continues to dwindle-with smaller labels that are unable to shoulder the cost not fielding collections this season-the Dior show was a riotous celebration of what couture, at its best, can be. Bouchra Jarrar delivered clean-lined looks in blue, black and ecru for her second couture collection under her signature label. Where Dior was an explosion, Jarrar was all self-restraint and rigor-but her elegance and precision were no less couture than Dior’s creative catharsis. Another emerging French designer, Christophe Josse, looked to the long, lean silhouettes of the early 19th century for inspiration, delivering a nuanced collection in dusty-hued silks, velvets, astrakhan and feathers. Like at Jarrar, there was nary a sequin in sight. Lebanon’s Georges Chakra made up for that, pouring pounds (kilograms) of sparkles onto red-carpet-ready gowns in glimmering metallic fabrics. At Adeline Andre, technicians in white lab coats peeled layer after onion-like layer off one model, assembling what the carrot-topped designer called “suspension dresses” — something like multicolored silk nighties with abbreviated silk panels like midriff tops held at varying lengths by extra-long spaghetti straps-onto other models. Held in a two-room gallery in central Paris, the bare-bones show-cum-performance piece was at the opposite end of the spectrum from big-budget extravaganzas like Dior’s. But what it lacked in financial punch, the Andre show made up for it heart. For his capsule collection-shown on mannequins during a presentation at Paris pastry house Angelique-Alexis Mabille looked to the south of France, showing about half a dozen lace-heavy looks soaked in the primary colors and Catholic culture of Provence. The hottest of the sun-baked looks included a skirtsuit in torero red lace and a feminine tuxedo with a pretty pink shirt. At the end of Day One, the fashion glitteratti migrated to the Chanel Jewelry boutique at the nearby Place Vendome, where Russian ballerina dancers minced about among the glass-topped display cases as the Champagne-downing, blini-chomping crowd looked on. Paris’ haute couture shows move into day two on Tuesday with Giorgio Armani’s Armani Prive label and storied French house Givenchy, which has opted against a runway show and will display the collection to clients and the press in private appointments at its Paris showroom. The label said concerns about the privacy of the clients-the handful of women rich enough to afford couture gowns with price tags approaching that of a nice new car-was behind the decision.


Models present creations by Bouchra Jarrar during the Fall-Winter 2010/2011 Haute Couture collection show. — AP/AFP photos

DIOR Galliano is a man of many skills. Beyond his brilliance as a designer, he’s got erudition, strut and attitude to spare. But a green thumb? Galliano’s just someone you wouldn’t peg as being a master gardener. But his immaculately tended flower garden of a show proved the contrary-at least metaphorically. Full ballerina skirts in baby pink tulle shook like wind-rustled roses, and a rainbow of

applique petals in featherlight chiffon enveloped the nip-waisted Bar jackets. Galliano also fielded cocktail dresses in cream and navy Delft porcelain print, with upside-down tulip shaped skirts in Ceylon blue. Sheath dresses in mohair and boucle were a like a field of wildflowers in bloom. The ballgowns were massive concoctions of petal-shaped tulle, chiffon and droopy lengths of silk-one hand-painted with an oversized peony. The models-their eyes and lips blooming with rich jewel tones-wore cones of colored cellophane, like a bouquet wrapping, on their undulating upswept hairdos. “I loved it, I want to be every flower in Galliano’s garden,” actress Jessica Alba told The Associated Press in a backstage interview. Other A-list guests at Monday’s show-held in a tent in the garden of the Rodin Museum-included Jared Leto and “Gossip Girl” Blake Lively, who covered his collection notes with little sketches of each passing outfit. A future fashion editor, perhaps? Galliano, a British eccentric who each season delivers inspired reinterpretations on the luxury supernova’s storied classic looks, looked to the house’s late, great founder’s tulip line for inspiration for Monday’s sumptuous collection. BOUCHRA JARRAR For a haute couture collection-where sequins are practically de rigeur-the Jarrar show was remarkably short on bling. Slim panels of gold lame were the only thing that shone on the collection, a tour de force of understated elegance. Jarrar, a relative newcomer to the rarified world of Paris’ made-to-measure couture collections, delivered clean-lined sheath dresses with plunging V-necklines and pretty cap sleeves. Short dresses had cutaway vents that exposed a swath of skin or a hidden panel of gold lame. Dramatic V-shaped gold necklaces gave a touch of drama to the graphic collection. In a Spartan palette of ecru, navy and black, the collection felt like it was channeling a crisp, updated Coco Chanel. Jarrar, who cut her teeth at Balenciaga, said that, despite the show’s vaguely 1920s feeling, she hadn’t been inspired by any era in particular. “Really, my only inspiration is the world outside me, the women who surround me,” said Jarrar, who showed her debut couture collection under her signature label last season. “I tried to create a sort of ideal wardrobe with all the elements women now need.” Mission accomplished. — AP

Models present creations by British designer John Galliano for Christian Dior during the Fall-Winter 2010/2011 Haute Couture collection show in Paris, on July 5, 2010. — AP/AFP photos


Wednesday, July 7, 2010


By Jenny Barchfield


onder Woman got a hard-edged makeover Monday at Alexandre Vauthier’s fall-winter 2011 couture show, swapping her unitard for sheath dresses with plunging V necklines and dangling sleeves that were today’s super-heroine’s answer to the cape. Vauthier, a rising talent who’s attracted A-list fans including Rihanna, served up dresses black, white and purple jersey, punctuated by wide gold belts and cuffs. From sharp, square shoulders dangled long ultra-long sleeves that, slit all the way up their undersides, swung with an I’m-about-to-save-the-world kind of jauntiness. Plunging Vs were everywhere, vamping up the sheath dresses and heating up a turtleneck dress in clingy knit with a sexy, triangular cutout panel at the bust. One dress in graphic black and white was made from two oversized triangular panels, with the model literally sewn between the two. Vauthier-who is showing on the margins of the prestigious haute couture displays despite being widely seen as among Paris’ brightest young lights-lived up to his reputation with this collection fit for a super woman. — AP

Models present creations by French designer Alexandre Vauthier during the Fall-Winter 2010/2011 Haute Couture collection show in Paris, on July 5, 2010. — AP/AFP photos

Models present crea tions by Atelier Gus tavo Lins du Couture collection show in Paris, on Ju ring the Fall-Winter 2010/2011 Haute ly 5, 2010. — AP/A FP photos


By Agnes Pedrero

A woman walks past a record store with a large painting on its window shutters in Berlin’s Kreuzberg district on July 5, 2010. —AFP


By Ken Teh uitars strapped to their backs, three trim Afghan youths flash rock star smiles at armed guards who wave them through the steel doors of a private club. High walls and barbed wire protect the neatly trimmed garden inside from Kabul’s troubled streets. It’s here that the young trio, Afghanistan’s first indie rock


is paving the way for a very modest but growing local rock scene. About 100 Afghans and foreigners gather around a makeshift stage with improvised lighting and a sputtering sound system. Baby-faced singer and guitarist Suleman Qardash repeatedly screams “I wanna run away” — the album’s title track-as drummer Mujtaba Habibi ramps up the beat. While the lyrics resonate with an Afghan youth weary of

In this photo taken June 18, 2010, an Afghan man waves his head while dancing during a rock party in Kabul, Afghanistan. — AP band, is launching its debut album. Less than a decade ago, when the Taleban ruled Afghanistan, a concert like this would have landed them in jail. Playing musical instruments was banned. Singing was allowed, but only songs praising Allah or the Taleban. Today, Kabul Dreams, as the band is named,

something from their own country,” bass player Siddique Ahmed says. The band rouses the crowd with another popular number, “Crack in the Radio,” based on a girl who works in a Kabul rock radio station. It’s a song subject that would have been unthinkable under the Taleban. The crowd roars, and some dance wildly, waving their arms to intensifying drumbeats. A few even drink beer, though it is banned by Islam.

(From Left) singer and guitarist Suleman Qardash of Kabul Dreams performs during a rock party in Kabul, Afghanistan. — AP

suicide bombings and Taleban attacks, running away is the last thing on the band’s mind. The trio returned to Afghanistan after temporary exile in Iran, Uzbekistan and Pakistan during Taleban rule. “Young people in Afghanistan like rock music a lot, and we’re providing them with

The band changes the mood with a wistful tune reminiscent of 1990s Britpop. Women in headscarves, sitting on the sidelines, sway demurely to the melodic guitar riffs. “We really want a change here and want to see something new. Many young people here my age really enjoy the songs,” says Hadi Marafat, a 28-year-

By Dominique Ageorges rt, antiques, and even carriages owned by the aristocratic family of Diana, Princess of Wales, went on sale in London beginning yesterday. The three auctions feature items which once belonged at Althorp House, the Spencer family’s country estate in Northhamptonshire, and in


File photo shows Britain’s Diana, Princess of Wales, in 1997. — AP

n exhibition in Switzerland has brought together the genius of modern art contemporaries Pablo Picasso and Paul Klee with an added twist: the first meeting of their two heirs. Picasso and Klee the elders, among the most influential artists of the 20th century, met only twice. Once when Klee (1879-1940) was among a group of artists who visited the ebullient Spaniard’s studio in Paris in 1933. The second time was four years later when Picasso (1881-1973) came to see the pensive German and Swiss painter in the Swiss capital Bern. More than 70 years on, the Zentrum Paul Klee museum in Bern is attempting to draw parallels between them with an exhibition of more than 180 works called “Klee meets Picasso”. And it brought their respective son and grandson for an unprecedented gathering to mull over those artistic ties. “This exhibition is something of a sequel to the meeting between Pablo Picasso and Paul Klee,” said an elated Alexander Klee, heir and president of the foundation that bears his grandfather’s name. Claude Picasso, son and heir of the prolific Spanish painter and sculptor, and 70 year-old Alexander Klee had never met even though they live near each other in Switzerland in the Bern region. Like their renowned forefathers-with whom they bear a striking physical resemblance-both men share a number of pastimes, including photography, as well as enthusiasm for their artistic legacy. Claude Picasso, who was born in 1947, described the exhibition as an “ideal, a dream for art historians.” “It’s a monumental project, a great

Spencer House, their historic London home. Althorp was where Diana’s grew up and became the site of her burial following her death in 1997 in a car crash in Paris. The estate is now occupied by Diana’s brother Earl Charles Spencer. While none of the lots were purchased by Diana, many have been in her family for centuries-including a painting by Peter Paul Rubens, “Commander Being Armed for Battle,” which the Spencer family has owned since 1802. The portrait was painted in 1613 and 1614 and depicts a bearded man, believed to be the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, being fitted with his armor. It is expected to fetch between 8 million and 12 million pounds ($12 million to $18 million) at Christie’s auction house’s Old Masters sale on Tuesday. A second painting, “King David” by Giovanni Francesco Barbieri, is estimated to sell for as much as 8 million ($12 million.) A sale beginning the next day, the “Althorp Attic Sale,” includes important 19th century carriages owned by the family-some with harnesses-as well as saddles, furniture, snuff and cigarette boxes, and military uniforms. A third sale, which starts Thursday, includes works of art and porcelain from Spencer House, which overlooks London’s Green Park. — AP


ood-bur ning stoves, in-room recycling, fine cuisine featuring local produce: from bed-andbreakfasts to five-star palaces, France’s hotel industry is opening its eyes to the lucrative advantages of going green. “Our business involves a lot of water, electricity and rubbish, so our goal is to limit our impact on the environment and considerably reduce our carbon emissions,” said Ber nard Granier, director general of Concorde Hotels, which runs the opulent Le Crillon in Paris and the Hotel Martinez in Cannes. The chic Fouquet’s Barriere, adjoining the eponymous bistro on the ChampsElysees, wants to cut its CO2 output by 20 percent by 2020 — and in the same spirit, it offers guests the use of a hybrid car or an electric scooter. At the stately Bristol, next door to the Elysee Palace, leftovers from its three-star restaurants and kitchens are put through an industrial-sized processor that extracts water used to clean the floors. Outside the French capital, more modest establishments are going beyond the usual norm of installing energy-efficient light bulbs or asking guests to refrain from using too many bath towels. The Temmos group of five three- and four-star hotels in the French Alps is striving to have all its properties bedecked with European Eco-label and international Green Globe certification.

old employee of a nonprofit organization. With Taleban insurgents still holding sway in parts of the country, Kabul Dreams has had to cancel several performances because of security threats. The group sings in English, limiting its appeal at home, but the band says its choice of language will help spread its message to an international audience. In January, the group played at a regional music festival in New Delhi. “We want to show the world that Afghanistan has rock music, it’s not only suicide bombings or attacks,” Qardash says. Newer groups, such as alternative metal band District Unknown, look up to Kabul Dreams as mentors and pioneers. District Unknown, which draws heavily from Western bands such as Metallica and Led Zeppelin, has a much harder edge. Its upcoming single, “My Nightmare,” deals with the frustrations of Afghan youth with few or no prospects in a wartorn country. “We have our own feelings, we have got aggression, depression and we need to speak out for each and every Afghan youngster who needs to speak,” says Lemar Saifulla, the 23year-old lead singer. The band doesn’t perform widely, fearful of threats from religious conservatives. “We don’t want to be called Satanists,” Saifulla says. Rock music has made inroads since the fall of the Taleban. A smattering of music shops sell pirated CDs of Nirvana, Pearl Jam and other bands. Indian and Pakistani groups also are popular among the youth. What is missing are albums by Afghan bands, a gap that Kabul Dreams hopes to fill. After its first album, which had just five songs, it is at work on a full-length successor that would have 12. The new one won’t be about politics, guns or violence, but rather love, relationships and daily life, Qardash says during a short break from a practice session at their drummer Habibi’s home. That prompts bass player Ahmed to chime in: “The fact that our songs don’t have any political message in itself is political.”—AP

For the WWF-World Wide Fund for Nature, every green initiative is “a good thing, so long as it is coherent and not just commercial,” said Mohend Mahouche, a tourism specialist for the environmental

moment in the history of art,” he added, comparing it to “a ballet of love”. “It’s brutal but terribly exciting,” he added, eyeing the works of the two modern masters with fascination. Even before they met, beyond their attraction for similar artistic movements-cubism, expressionism and surrealism-Klee and Picasso the artists even hit on similar subject matter. Picasso’s “La Buveuse Assoupie” (Dozing woman drinker) and Klee’s “Empfindsame Jungfrau mit das Massliebchen” (Sentimental maiden with daisy), share subject, form and perspective. Klee, barely the elder of the two, did not hide his esteem for Picasso’s work, overtly typified in “Hommage to Picasso” in 1914, an abstract patchwork of earthy color. However, while Klee took on elements of Picasso’s trend-setting style, he kept his distance, swaying between admiration and irony. Klee’s naive child-like drawings of “Urchs”-a large bull-mock Picasso’s dramatic portrayals of the minotaur, a contrast the exhibition’s organisers wanted to highlight. In several portraits, Klee softened the asymmetric traits and glaring eyes that Picasso favored even though he stayed in the abstract. In “Girl with Pitchers” (1910) Klee represents his subject with squares of blue-toned color but her face is recognizable. In Picasso’s cubist grey-beige “Femme avec Mandoline” (Woman with Mandolin) her forms are decomposed. Picasso and Klee’s descendants steer clear of the issue of who influenced whom. “Klee was filled with irony but Picasso’s work was something he took very seriously. It’s thought he was slightly afraid of Picasso’s influence,” said Alexander Klee. The exhibition runs until September 26. — AFP

(From Right) Spanish artist Pablo Picasso’s heir Claude Picasso, and Alexander Klee, heir of the Swiss-German painter Paul Klee, pose in front of a Picasso canvas. — AFP

group. “Carbon ratings are good as tools for evaluation, but what you have to look at is the way in which they are used,” added Julia Haake, director for partnership with business at the WWF.

A Fouquet’s employee cleans on July 1, 2010 an electric scooter it offers guests the use on the Champs-Elysees in Paris. — AFP

“For instance, do they take into account how far the guests have travelledespecially if 90 percent of them are foreigners coming from far away?” Olivier Petit of the global consulting firm Deloitte said sustainable development has become “an element of positive discrimination”something of an optional extra that makes a business look better. “In five years, that will no longer be the case,” he said. “On the contrary, to not adhere (to sustainable development) will be a negative factor.” Having recognized how going green can be good for business, the Gites de France network of bed-and-breadfasts has doubled to around 100 its number of certified “eco-gites” with such features as solar heating. More than 200 more are in the pipelin, Gites de France says. “The hotel industry has seen a real acceleration in this area over the past three years,” said Philippe Francois, chair man of Francois Tourisme, a consultancy that specializes in sustainable development for hotels and tourism. But much remains to be done, as many hoteliers think that big investments are needed in order to come across as virtuous vis-a-vis the environment-no small consideration in hard economic times. “In fact, 80 percent of what needs to be done costs nothing, because they involve changes in conduct and attitudes which alone can be profitible in financial, environmental, social and image ter ms,” Francois said. — AFP

7 Jul  

Kuwait Times

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