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Going nuke?! By Badrya Darwish or the first time in a long time the news I heard is too good and too big to be true. I received a short piece of news that Mr Ahmed Bishara, Secretary General of Kuwait’s National Nuclear Energy Committee - in all honesty I did not know that we in Kuwait had a nuclear energy committee - announced that Kuwait is planning to build four nuclear reactors for electricity purposes. I tried to trace the news and get more details about this mega plan/project, however, I found nothing. How could such great news about Kuwait come from Tokyo and not from inside Kuwait? How come such a big advanced step in science in Kuwait is announced from Japan? The plans, according to the news, is that the nuclear power reactors will be used for electricity purposes. Each reactor is supposed to provide 1,000 megawatts and will be completed by 2022. Don’t we always pass things through parliament first? Where is parliament’s role in all this? Do our MPs know about this project? Or is building nuclear plans a small project which should not pass through parliament? Or did it pass and I didn’t know about it. If this is the case, accept my apologies. Or is such a plan as simple as repairing a small part of a street pavement or building a grocery shop or a small coffee shop at a hospital or a ministry entrance? Suppose the news is true. And we are imitating our neighbors. Excuse me, guys, don’t nuclear energy plans need local scientists hand-in-hand with experts from outside who have the knowhow and the experience? We all know that Iran has scientists and they have received a lot of help from Russia. What about us? Are we going to import everything from abroad? How much would that cost if it is only for electricity purposes? Isn’t it cheaper to build proper power plants instead, especially that we are a petrol country. Industrial countries who opt to build nuclear power stations for electricity invest in nuclear energy because it is cheaper as they do not have oil. Kuwait, a small country with no industry and so much of oil, ranks fourth in the world amidst the oil exporting countries. As it is, we are worried about our neighbor’s nuclear plans and our government has already expressed concerns about Bushehr’s proximity in case of a nuclear leak. I am supportive of plans to build nuclear plants for other purposes. We are a small country and we need to defend ourselves. Even in this case, we should have at least 50 percent local knowhow. Please, enlighten me if I am wrong.


OPEC chief says members need to look beyond oil VIENNA: Members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries need to wean themselves from oil revenues in the future, OPEC chief Abdalla El-Badri said yesterday ahead of the group’s 50th anniversary. “Oil is a finite product,” the secretary general told dpa at OPEC’s Vienna headquarters. “I think we need, after 50 years, to find another source of income. I’m not saying they should abandon oil, but they should use oil to find another source of income,” be it from industry, tourism or alternative energies. Half a century after OPEC was founded in Bagdad on Sept 14, 1960, many of its original members and countries that joined later are still heavily dependent on oil exports as a source of revenue. This is especially true for Arab members, with Saudi Arabia’s oil exports accounting for 43 per cent of its gross domestic product, according to OPEC data. For Libya, the rate is 47

per cent. El-Badri said his group had not shifted enough to other forms of revenue yet because the 12 countries had started from a very low levels of development. The producer’s group, which objects to being called a cartel, was formed because Western oil firms had been taking all the profit, and the countries where oil was pumped wanted a bigger say, El-Badri explained. “OPEC was created because they were getting nothing from their resources,” the former Libyan oil and energy minister said. El-Badri said that at present, the producer’s club was not reacting to the current high stock levels of oil, in order not to hamper the global economic recovery. “We are not moving. We don’t want to rock the boat,” he said. On the other hand, too low prices would lead to supply shortages because investment in the oil industry would drop, El-Badri said. Some experts say that OPEC has

lost a lot of its power to shape prices directly by raising or throttling supply since the oil shocks of the 1970s, but that markets still react to its announcements. ElBadri called for trading of future contracts of oil to be regulated to some extent, to avoid another price spike like the one of summer 2008, when crude hit $147 per barrel. Although experts say that there were also other factors driving up prices, such as high demand from China, they agree that future trading played a role. This so-called paper market for oil banks on market expectations rather than physical barrels. “At that time it was like a casino in Las Vegas,” El-Badri said. Looking to the future, the secretary general identified environmental issues, new technologies and shortage of skilled experts as challenges for OPEC. But he made clear that “fossil fuel will be the dominant energy source for the forseeable future.” — dpa

BAGHDAD: A file handout photo taken on Sept 10, 1960 shows the head of Kuwaiti delegation Ahmed Sayed Omar speaking during a meeting of the world’s five main petroleum producers - Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Kuwait, Iran and Iraq. After four days of tough talks they founded the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). — AFP

15 dead as Kashmir seethes Violence poses challenge to Indian govt • Christian school, govt buildings set alight SRINAGAR: Indian forces fought Kashmiri demonstrators in street battles yesterday that killed 15 people - including one police officer - in the deadliest day in a summer of violence challenging Indian rule in the disputed territory. Reports of a Quran desecration in the United States intensified the anger, with activists chanting “Down with America” and burning an effigy of President Barack Obama in a rare antiUS protest here. The violence, the worst since separatist protests erupted in June, came as Indian officials debated whether to ease harsh security regulations to try to ease tensions in the disputed territory. Despite a rigid curfew clamped across the region, tens of thousands of protesters took to the streets, throwing rocks, torching government Continued on Page 13

Iran diplomat eyes asylum in Finland Another official defects too HELSINKI: An Iranian diplomat who quit his job at his country’s embassy in Finland said yesterday he will apply for political asylum there. Hossein Alizadeh said he stepped down as the embassy’s No. 2 because of the Iranian government’s crackdown on citizens protesting the re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad last year. “I cannot accept, tolerate this fraud election. Continued on Page 13

the town centre. While the kingdom is famous for its oil reserves, date production has been on the rise for years, as the industry in former major exporter and neighbour Iraq has been ravaged by violence. The Gulf Arab kingdom is now the third largest dates producer after Egypt and Iran, based on 2008 figures by the UN Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO). Annual production has risen to 986,000 metric tonnes, a third more than ten years ago, it said. Qassim is one of the most conservative pockets of Saudi Arabia and home to an austere version of Sunni Islam, and analysts say many young men from the region joined Osama bin Laden’s Al-Qaeda in Yemen or militant groups in Iraq. While most of arduous date picking from palms is done by foreigners, Saudis have started joining the industry. “More Saudis are demanding work. The number has been rising every year,” said Abdul-Aziz al-Twergy, general manager of local date producer Hadhim, which plans to expand production to 16,000 tonnes a year in coming years, up from currently 5,600 tonnes. About half of the 3,000 people involved in the market - traders, farmers, administrative staff or drivers - are Saudis, he estimates. The slated electronic market will only employ Saudi citizens and one plant now has a section for women willing to work. The Buraidah initiative is part of a broader government push to lower dependency on oil and build up industries to find jobs for 18 million Saudis 70 percent of whom are under 30. Developing food firms is one focus, along with petrochemical companies Continued on Page 13

Hossein Alizadeh

Chlorinated pools can lead to cancer

Saudis hoping date trade will enliven remote town BURAIDAH, Saudi Arabia: In a farflung corner of Saudi Arabia, a dusty town where life is harsh and beliefs are rigid hopes to turn itself into a new trading hub for an ancient desert commodity: the date. Officials hope that expanding the palm date trade in Buraidah, which lies in the remote inner province of Qassim, will help improve the economy of a region less developed than other parts of the world’s biggest oil exporter. “The date market has a huge importance for the region and helps Saudi young people to find jobs,” said Khaled al-Qaidat, a local official who is overseeing the market’s expansion, as farmers unloaded their dates from pickup trucks for auction. Saudi Arabia’s unemployment rate hit 10.5 percent last year and regions such as Qassim have few industries offering jobs. Finding jobs for the fastgrowing native population of 18 million is a key challenge for the kingdom’s leaders. Unlike other Gulf countries, such as Kuwait where citizens are entitled to state jobs, many Saudis have to work as security guards or taxi drivers. But in Buraidah, things are looking up: Every day up to 1,500 pickups arrive full with dates from farmers or traders from across the kingdom or neighbours such as Jordan, Kuwait or Qatar, according to Qaidat. The authorities plan building a warehousing complex to allow year-round trading, now limited to the AugustOctober season and there are even plans to introduce electronic trading to reach buyers in Europe and Asia. The growing number of visiting date merchants means a Moevenpick luxury hotel has set up shop, and the government is building another large hotel in

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SHAWAL 5, 1431 AH

SRINAGAR: A young Kashmiri boy shouts slogans during a protest on the outskirts of Srinagar yesterday. — AP

Clerics vow death for defilers

TEHRAN: An Iranian man holds a Holy Quran as another holds an anti-US and Israel poster during a protest in front of the Swiss Embassy yesterday. — AFP

TEHRAN: Two top Iranian clerics said anyone desecrating the Holy Quran must be killed, Fars news agency reported, as hundreds of people protested yesterday outside the Swiss embassy in Tehran. “From the point of view of Islamic jurisprudence, strong objection to such thoughts is mandatory and necessary and killing the people who have committed this act is compulsory,” Ayatollah Hossein Nouri Hamedani said as quoted by Fars. His view was echoed by Ayatollah Naser Makarem Shirazi who added that such a response must be taken after consulting a “religious judge”. “The blood of the person who burns the Quran can undoubtedly be shed. But in this issue, no action should be taken without the permission of a religious judge,” Makarem Shirazi told Fars. Continued on Page 13

MADRID: Swimming in chlorinated pools can cause an increased risk of cancer in bathers, Spanish researchers said yesterday. Researchers from the Barcelona-based Centre of Research in Environmental Epidemiology (CREAL) and Research Institute Hospital del Mar studied changes in indicators of mutagenicity permanent mutation of the DNA - among a group of swimmers in an indoor chlorinated pool. “The evidence of genotoxic effects were observed in 49 healthy adults after swimming for 40 minutes in a chlorinated indoor pool,” CREAL said in a statement yesterday. Researchers found indicators of an increase in cancer risk in healthy subjects as well as potential respiratory

effects from the cholorine used as a disinfectant, the statement said. The study was published on Sunday in the US journal Environmental Health Perspectives. The co-director of CREAL, Manolis Kogevinas, said the findings should not put people off swimming. “The positive health impacts of swimming can be increased by reducing the levels of these chemicals,” he said. “In no case do we want to stop swimming, but to encourage the reduction of chemicals in swimming pools,” said Kogevinas, who suggested the problems caused by a reduction in levels of disinfectant could be offset if swimmers showered before taking a dip, wore bathing caps and refrained from urinating. — AFP

Petra wall paintings emerge from smoke PETRA, Jordan: Conservation experts almost gave up when they first saw the severely damaged wall paintings they had come to rescue in the ancient city of Petra. Cloaked for centuries in grimy soot from bedouin camp fires, the blackened murals appeared beyond repair. But three years of restoration revealed intricate

and brightly-coloured artwork, and some of the very few surviving examples of 2,000-yearold Hellenistic wall painting. “It has actually been quite nerve-racking. We didn’t actually realize that we could clean this painting and when we started we thought that would be impossible. Continued on Page 13



KUWAIT: A woman is pictured while shopping with her daughter.

Sales of gold, luxury items sluggish in Eid Customers cut back on treats, saving for school expenses By Ben Garcia KUWAIT: Sales of gold and other luxury items slowed down during the 2010 Eid Al-Fitr holiday as they did in the same period in previous years. According to one shop owner, this year’s sluggish sales were related to the holiday falling so near the start of the 2010-2011 school year and rising costs of school items. Although some of Kuwait’s schools opened on September 5, most are set to resume their official class schedules on September 14 or 19 as both private and public schools prepare to begin the school year after a long summer break which coincided with the Ramadan fasting month and the Eid Al-Fitr holiday. According to the owner of a gold shop in Kuwait City and sales staff in other outlets, business, especially during the Eid holiday, has been quite slow compared to last year. “Our sales were far better last year. Maybe it’s because Eid this year falls at a time of expected higher school expenses like tuition fees and buying uniforms and other school supplies.” he told the Kuwait Times yesterday. “So, instead of buying unnecessary gift items, like gold, or other expensive items, shoppers are buying school supplies instead.” Owners and sales staff in gift shops

downtown agreed that there had definitely been a change in customers’ attitudes compared to last year. “Customers aren’t buying expensive items; I noticed this in my store this holiday - they tend to choose cheaper items. It could be related to school expenses,” said one gift shop owner. Restaurants, toy shops and amusement centers have apparently remained the busiest retail outlets during the Eid Al-Fitr holiday. “We hit our target sales projection of about double (store sales) compared to ordinary weekends,” said one restaurant manager. “We have been waiting for the Eid period because during Ramadan our business is traditionally slow and we compensate with the three-day Eid holiday.” With the school reopening date fast approaching, stationery suppliers have also proved to be among the most popular outlets during the Eid AlFitr period. Stationery shop owners in Kuwait City said that they had been welcoming a greater than usual number of customers in recent weeks, especially during this holiday. “Many shoppers came in and purchased school supplies during the Eid break,” said one book shop owner. “Compared to ordinary days there has been an increase of about 50 percent in customers; it is all about buying school supplies too.”

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Kuwait goes nuclear

MAIA keen to establish ‘cultural dialogue center’

Fourth Gulf state to announce nuke program

200 imams and muezzins needed

KUWAIT: Kuwait will build four nuclear reactors over the next 12 years, a national nuclear energy official has said. Ahmad Bishara, secretary general of Kuwait’s National Nuclear Energy Committee (KNNEC), said that Kuwait is planning to build four 1,000 megawatt reactors by 2022. Speaking to press in Tokyo, Bishara said construction will begin as early as January. The move would make Kuwait, the world’s fourth largest oil exporter, the fourth Arab state to announce plans to build nuclear reactors for energy, after Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia. “This is typical of the region,” Dr. Theodore Karasik, director of security and defense studies at the Gulf Research Center told Media Line. “Kuwait is following suit behind Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates.” “They need to do something,” Karasik said, pointing out that Kuwait faces an energy growth rate of some seven percent a year. “They will have to figure it out as they go along.”

Bishara, secretary general of Kuwait’s nuclear committee, said the country would be able to afford nuclear development so long as the price of oil remains relatively stable. “Our initial analysis indicates that nuclear is viable as long as oil is above $45 to $50 a barrel,” he said in Tokyo on Friday, adding that it was not yet clear how nuclear energy “fits in the energy mix of Kuwait for the next 20 years.” Tomoko Murakami, a nuclear analyst at the Institute of Energy Economics, told journalists in Tokyo that Kuwait faces a greater energy crises than its Arab neighbors. “Kuwait’s need to develop its power infrastructure is greater than other Arab countries” Murakami said. “Summer power shortages are severe.” The Kuwaiti government has been taking a number of steps over the past few months to boost there alternative energy capacity. In April, Kuwait signed a nuclear cooperation agreement with France. This week, Bishara signed an additional cooperation agreement

with Japan to enlarge Kuwait’s long term nuclear capacity. The agreement will bring with it lucrative contracts for Japanese firms. Kuwait is the second Arab country over the past year to sign a nuclear deal with an Asian state, following a deal signed between the United Arab Emirates and South Korea last December. Arab countries have taken a number of initiatives in recent years to expand their alternative energy sources. Saudi Arabia made plans in July with two firms in the United States and one from Japan to begin construction on what will be the nation’s first nuclear power plant. Following suit, in August Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak announced the site of Egypt’s first nuclear power plant along the Mediterranean coast. Oil exporting nations have a vested interest in finding alternative sources of energy so as to maximize their oil exports. By investing in alternative energy now, Arab states hope to see gains in oil exports in the future. —The Media Line

Govt urged to suspend TV SMS service KUWAIT: The recent meeting between the parliamentary negative phenomena committee and a number of government representatives focused on the issue of protecting national unity and preventing the media from any intervention which might damage it, according to

one of the committee members. Talking to Al-Anba on condition of anonymity, the MP said that the committee had asked the information minister to enforce the existing legislative penalties against any media which broadcast or published material that could potentially disrupt

Spoilt carcasses destroyed KUWAIT: Officials from the Capital Governorate branch of Kuwait Municipality ordered the destruction of the carcasses of 634 sheep, which were found to be unfit for human consumption. The sheep carcasses, supplied by an Indian livestock importation firm, were discovered to have gone off during shipment as they were transported, in two consignments, without being refrigerated beforehand. The suppliers were immediately contacted and informed that both shipments had been declared unfit for human consumption and would be destroyed. Jaza AlDaihami, the food supervisor at the municipality branch, told AlRai that tests are carried out on all shipments of foodstuffs to assess their fitness for consumption.

social unity. During the meeting, the committee members presented a number of instances in which they said local TV channels had violated these regulations, broadcasting potentially inflammatory and divisive materials. The MPs put forward a number of recommendations, including a suggestion to suspend the SMS service used by some local TV stations which they said was used to broadcast provocative and potentially subversive messages, as well as profane ones. Pointing out that a number of these messages directly contradict Kuwaiti custom and tradition, the committee member said that the government representatives had promised to study all the recommendations put forward during the meeting and to take the necessary action.

KUWAIT: The Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs (MAIA) is keen to see practical action in the establishment of the proposed ‘cultural dialogue center,’ which it is hoped will strengthen interfaith communication, as well as boosting the message of moderation and coexistence and combating fundamentalism and extremism. The center, part of the ministry’s planned projects for 2010-11 under the government’s development plan, is set to cost $5 million. It will be a joint project between the MAIA and other local and international bodies, including the foreign and information ministries and the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor, the International Center for Moderation, Kuwait University and the United Nations. The center will feature a comprehensive database of Islamic work, research and study which it is hoped will offer practical support for strengthening moderation and national unity, as well as helping to produce imams who follow the moderate form of Islam, reported Al-Rai. The facility will also help in preparing official foreign missions to showcase Kuwait’s positive role in supporting various issues of interest in the Muslim world. In another development, a senior Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs (MAIA) revealed on Sunday that the ministry requires an additional 200 imams and muezzins (prayer callers) to fill vacancies created by recent resignations and to work in a number of new mosques currently under construction. MAIA Assistant Undersecretary Walid Al-Shuaib told Al-Anba that a recruitment committee of ministry staff would be travelling to Yemen on October 15 to interview a number of candidates for the positions.

kuwait digest

Independent ministries By Mohammad Al-Muqatea rticle 128 of the constitution obliges all ministers to work with other ministers as a team in order to run the country’s affairs. This includes supervising public firms, evaluating the work of other ministries and their respective ministers. The article does not allow a minister to work individually, especially when it comes to work that involves the rest of the Cabinet. It also gives the prime minister full authority over members of his cabinet. Based on this notion, ministers should refer to the Cabinet for approval of any decision regarding: setting executive policies in their respective ministries, the financial obligation of projects that exceed the budget for a given ministry, appointment of undersecretaries and other top officials in


their ministries and making any decision affecting the legislative and judicial authorities. This could include approving an invitation to a committee meeting or answering unusual parliamentary questions. Looking at the current situation though, we find that the regulations mentioned above are neglected by ministers. They are mostly concerned with matters regarding their own ministries. They refrain from addressing the general policy of the Cabinet, which they deem the responsibility of the prime minister. They make sure not to talk about issues connected to other ministries, expecting other ministers to do the same. By following this approach ministries have become more independent, like private companies minding their own business. This is not only the wrong approach but also violates an article of the constitution. —Al-Qabas

Sri Lankan artisanship celebrated Ambassador hosts food carving, card making event By Ben Garcia

With deep sadness

Kuwait Times Marketing & Advertising Director announces the death of his dear

KUWAIT: Food carving, cake and card making were the highlights of an hour-long workshop that was held at the Sri Lankan Ambassador’s residence on the third day of Eid Al-Fitr. The event was attended by Sri Lankan friends from the diplomatic fraternity, spouses of Asian ambassadors, Kuwaiti Women’s League (KWL) and distinguished personalities from the Sri Lankan community in Kuwait. The Sri Lankan Ambassador’s spouse, Ramanika Dissanayake hosted the event where she demonstrated how a greeting card is made from recycled materials. Dissanayake was lauded for her talent that was shared with guests. “I learnt how to make a card from our diplomatic postings. I want to share these (skills) with everybody, and so I thought the only way to share was to organize a small

Ramanika Dissanayake event which showcased talents,” she said. “Card making is easy and can be very

South Surra - Salam Area - Block-6, Street-608, House-65, first floor. Moulina Ahmed

rewarding when you see the final outcome,” she added. Dissanayake added that little information and knowledge, if shared with others can go a long way and could surely make a difference to a family, a community and a nation as a whole. Another presenter was Moulina Ahmed. She demonstrated her talent in food carving - made from vegetables and fruits. “When you present delicious food, it will be more appetizing when it is served with a little design,” she said. “It adds appeal to the eyes and so even before eating, you already have some beautiful feelings about partaking the food,” she said. Mumtaz Fareen also demonstrated her skills in cake making. A highly respected home-chef in her own right, Fareen shared a simple but an artistically much-attractive cake preparation. The event also witnessed the unveiling of a Sri Lankan magazine called ‘Seva Vanita Unit’, a magazine dedicated to Sri Lankan community that was complete with all the events that had taken place during the past year. The Sri Lankan Ambassador to

Kuwait Sarath Dissanayake thanked visitors for their interest, most importantly, sharing their time during the busy third day of Eid Al-Fitr.

Mumtaz Fareen


Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Iran’s nuke plant built near fault line KUWAIT: A Kuwaiti geologist has warned that the recently-opened Bushehr nuclear reactor in Iran is situated in an earthquake zone, saying that any radiation leak from the plant in the event of a major earthquake could cause catastrophic results similar to those of the

Scientist raises alarm, quake could cause catastrophe Chernobyl disaster for the whole region. The expert also warned that since the reactor is only 276 kilometers across the Gulf from Kuwait, this puts Kuwait at serious risk if a

radioactive leak should occur, reported Al-Qabas. In a press release issued on Sunday, Dr Jassem Al-Awadhi, a Professor of Geology and the

Environment at Kuwait University’s science faculty, said that the Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research’s seismological center has detected daily seismic activity in the coastal

area of western Iran bordering the Gulf. This is caused by this site being the meeting point of three continental plates - the Arabian, African and Eurasian plates, he

explained. Dr Al-Awadhi asked whether or not the standards laid down by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) for the construction of such facilities had been followed in the building of the Bushehr plant, most particularly in ensuring that it was

NA to see new bloc, more coordination KUWAIT: The upcoming period will witness coordination between parliamentary blocs on listing priorities, as well as the creation of a new political bloc, according to a parliamentary insider. The period between the end of Eid and the reopening of parliament on October 26 will offer a genuine chance for the parliamentary blocs to put their priorities in order so that they can work together with the government on agreeing on the most important issues to be tackled and approve the important bills in front of them, some of which have been deferred for some years, the insider explained. It is hoped that this coordinated approach will expedite the resolution of various longstanding problems, reported Al-Shahed.

designed in such a way as to ensure that it could withstand earthquakes. The prominent geologist further warned that the northwesterly winds which are predominant in the region throughout much of the year would also mean that any radiation leak would quickly affect Kuwait.

in the news Iraqi official’s visit KUWAIT: Iraqi Prime Ministerial Advisor Dr Hamid Khalef has paid a visit to the injured Iraqis who are receiving treatment in Kuwaiti hospitals, wishing them a speedy recovery and passing on the best wishes of the Iraqi government and people to them. After the visit, Dr. Khalef expressed his thanks and gratitude to His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah for his gesture, saying that Kuwait has supported Iraq greatly ever since the liberation from the rule of former dictator Saddam Hussein, reported Al-Anba. The prominent Iraqi political figure emphasized that Kuwait and Iraq are linked by history as well as geography, voicing hope that the relationship between the two countries would be strengthened further, with both recovering from all the grievous wounds perpetrated by Saddam Hussein’s regime and love and peace prevailing between and in the two nations.

In order to overcome the differences in opinion between the parliament and government, a number of bills agreed upon by both parties but not yet finalized are to be prioritized for action in order to conclude work on them and accelerate the pace of parliamentary work. Discussion of a number of controversial issues, meanwhile, has been postponed to a later date. It’s also been reported that attempts by some MPs to form a hardline conservative bloc have run into difficulties due to differences among the prospective members over the bloc’s political agenda. One of the MPs involved said that despite these and other obstacles, the parliamentarians are still keen to form the bloc.

Pay raise for NCOs KUWAIT: Non-Commissioned Officers (NCOs) with Kuwait’s four security services - the Army, Police, National Guard and Kuwait Fire Services Department (KFSD) - are set to receive pay raise, according to a military insider. The expected pay rises come as part of a raft of measures increasing salaries for servicemen, reported Al-Rai, with the bill raising their wages having been approved by the government and submitted for parliamentary study and endorsement. The salary increases approved, which exceed the original amounts recommended by the Supreme Council of Defense, are reportedly being introduced in part to encourage more young Kuwaiti men to enlist in the country’s armed forces

kuwait digest

The potential political parties By Meshal Al-Thufairi


he country’s current deteriorating political situation gives the impression that politicians are working without a guideline. This explains their chaotic approach. In my humble opinion though I believe that our politicians know exactly what they are doing and follow a precise plan; to merge all the constituencies into a single constituency and pave the way for political parties. I believe that Kuwait is still not ready to have an elected prime minister because we still have yet to fully mature politically. After all, even the principles that Kuwaiti society has known for a long time have been affected by the actions of parliamentarians who have no trouble violating the constitution or damaging the country’s reputation for the sake of personal gains. In order to save the country from having its fate determined by a group of irresponsible politicians, citizens should take a stand during the next election and stop this political mayhem. The Parliament’s political blocs only care about their personal benefits and will do anything to achieve political gains. Our local politicians have been able to use conflicts within the ruling family for their own benefit. Realizing that respect is determined by how much money is in our bank accounts, politicians have focused their efforts on making money in order to solidify their public image. Even religious figures have realized this and have sought fortunes in an attempt to gain political success. A lot of Kuwaiti families have faith in the Sabah family and believe that they can save them from the worst troubles at the end of the day. Should this belief disappear, the country’s national unity will be seriously threatened. Therefore, Sheikh Saud Al-Nasser Al-Sabah should focus his efforts on the public instead of a bunch of untrustworthy politicians. —Al-Rai

MEW tender rejected KUWAIT: The Central Tenders Committee (CTC) rejected a tender proposed by the Ministry of Electricity and Water (MEW) worth approximately KD 1.8 million. Bidding offers failed to meet minimum requirements that are set by the Audit Bureau (AB). The tender, which has already been awarded to a company before it was rejected, dealt with replacing chargers for batteries and renovation work at the south Zour plant, reported AlQabas. In other news, the MEW requested that a tender awarded to a company to install a central air conditioning unit at the Parliament’s building be cancelled. The company failed to commit to the conditions and technical specifications that are mentioned in the contract.

Educational programs to shun sectarianism KUWAIT: The Mubarak Al-Kabeer educational zone plans to implement a number of projects that help strengthen social values among students. It plans to create programs that oppose sectarianism and fundamentalism as well as shun school violence. The programs which are listed as part of the social and psychological syllabus for the academic year 2010/2011, will also raise awareness among younger students on protecting the environment, while focusing on fortifying the relationship between them and their teachers, reported Al-Qabas. It will also contains additional assistance programs that help struggling students achieve more academic success.

Kuwait targets Internet and WiMAX services MPs express disappointment over children’s rights KUWAIT: The Parliament’s public facilities committee will discuss a draft law to establish a shareholding company to provide Internet and WiMAX services in Kuwait. According to officials, the committee hopes to finalize the draft law for discussion at the Parliament at the start of its next term, along with other draft laws that concern communication. In a separate development, two MPs recently expressed disappointment at the Cabinet’s failure to address proposals that were put forward by MPs on children’s rights. MP Dr Maasouma AlMubarak said that after reviewing child protection draft law, the Parliament’s legislative and legal committee would refer it to the Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs for a review. However, the ministry failed to provide any reply which means that the law will not be passed when the Parliament resumes its sessions. Al-Mubarak further announced that she is run-

ning for membership at the legislative and legal committee during the next term, and will work if she makes it there to push the draft law as soon as possible. Meanwhile, MP Dr Aseel Al-Awadhi accused the committee of delaying child protection law by referring it to the ministry and failed to attend to the issue for a month, instead of discussing it during meetings. She further asserted that she would introduce another draft law during the next term, reported AlQabas. “We face certain obstacles created by a group of ideologies that seek to stop such laws,” Al-Awadhi said. “However, we will keep facing such actions until we reach our goals.” Al-Awadhi further explained that the women and family committee is unable to refer to the Cabinet with the subject due to the fact that the legislative committee did not review the draft law. She also blamed the committee on the lack of seriousness on the matter.

Pensions increase

Sports ‘grilling motion’ may turn into reality

KUWAIT: MP Saad Al-Khanfour has called upon the government to include increases in the pensions of those soldiers who retired more than five years ago in the coming pay rises for servicemen. The MP insisted that one must be fair to those included in this group, who should be included among those to receive pay raise. The salary increases had been introduced to correct a longstanding injustice, Al-Khanfour said, adding that the current wages for servicemen are insufficient to buy anything, particularly given the steadily rising prices, which go up constantly, especially during major occasions like Ramadan, Eid and the upcoming reopening of the country’s schools.

by several steps that forms the foundation for such an approach to be adopted. That includes adopting a political party system for a while, before going ahead with a single constituency system, reported Al-Rai. Regarding justification which state that a single constituency will help eliminate sectarianism and election based on tribal affiliations, Al-Awadhi said that the five constituencies system was adopted for that main purpose in the first place. It eventually failed to achieve this goal, indicating that a single constituency system is likely to fail as well.

KUWAIT: The chairman of the Social Reform Society has announced that the society is to print 50,000 copies of the Holy Quran for distribution in Florida, USA, following recent tensions there after one pastor announced that he would burn copies of it. The pastor subsequently backed down on his threat. SRS head Humoud Al-Roumi also revealed that the donations given to the society during the Ramadan and Eid Al-Fitr period had been excellent, with the monies being distributed amongst the poor and needy, in coordination with other charity organizations and the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor.

KUWAIT: As part of his field trips to check on servicemen at the country’s borders, the Ministry of Interior’s undersecretary assistant for borders security affairs, Maj Gen Sheikh Mohammad Al-Yousuf Al-Sabah visited the key posts that are located around the country’s coastline as well as its territorial waters’ border.

KUWAIT: The National Action Bloc (NAB) is keen on implementing sports regulations, and may proceed with threats to file an interpellation motion. Committee member Abdurrahman Al-Anjari said that a deadline was given to the Minister of Social Affairs and Labor to enforce the regulations that were passed by the Parliament, “However, what happened is that some appointments were made at the Public Authority for Youth and Sports (PAYS) which is unacceptable.” Meanwhile, Al-Anjari who serves as the rapporteur of the

Parliament’s financial committee said that the committee has not received executive regulations that concern the insolvency fund, which may be issued following the end of the Eid holidays. He also noted that the amendments, which were agreed upon by both cabinet members and MPs, are expected to be received positively in the Parliament. It is unlikely that a draft law to write off the loans of insolvent citizens will be passed, in case it is reintroduced. On another subject, Al-Anjari said that a comprehensive study

should be conducted before proceeding with merger of five electoral constituencies into a single constituency, expressing his support towards this approach “which will help eliminate elections based on sectarianism.” Separately, MP Dr Aseel AlAwadhi commented on this subject by announcing her opposition towards adopting a single constituency-approach at this point, owing to the lack of a law to organize the formation and publication of political parties. Al-Awadhi went on to say that merging the constituencies into a single one should be preceded

Quran distribution



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Eid holiday a solemn remembrance for some By Hussain Al-Qatari KUWAIT: It has become habitual for Hani, 35, to wake up every Eid morning and call his mother and wish her a happy Eid. Due to a sudden cardiac arrest that took her life few days before Eid, things are going to be different this year. The holiday, which is usually celebrated with family and friends has turned into an event to remember the deceased. “We can’t go out and celebrate this Eid. My

mother’s presence was fundamental in all our family events. She took care of all the Eid arrangements. She made breakfast and she called me and my siblings one by one in the afternoon to confirm that we go to her house for lunch on the second day of Eid. It’s not easy to celebrate without her. One day, she was all that mattered to all of us on Eid, surrounded by all her loved ones. Now she’s dead, and we’re all trying to figure out a way to do this without

her,” he laments. Families usually mourn their deceased for three days after their death. However, some choose to extend the mourning period to seven days, while others choose to extend it for 40. In some traditions, families don’t hold any celebrations until a full year passes on the death of their loved ones. Ghalia, 27, says she’ll delay her wedding party for a few months and will have a small family dinner instead. Ghalia lost

her aunt a week into Ramadan. “We usually went out, my mother and sisters, my cousins and my aunt and I, to have breakfast at a restaurant on the second or third day of Eid. This year we might just not go at all; my aunt, may she rest in peace, was such a character. Always fussing about the food they bring to the table, saying funny comments about our makeup and clothes. It won’t be the same without her,” she noted. Ghalia’s aunt had complications after a liver transplant.

Her case deteriorated, and she was hospitalized for over a month until she passed away. Happy occasions bring nostalgia to those whose loved ones have passed away. Khadija, 58, used to visit her father every Eid in the morning to have breakfast with him. Ever since his death in 2001, she has been visiting his grave in the cemetery every Eid. “It’s difficult to forget and let go; I feel much better after visiting the cemetery. I celebrate Eid, but in the morning I have to go

to the cemetery and say hello to the deceased. My father, my brother, my mother, my nephews and my niece. They all mattered to me so much when they were alive, and they still matter now that they’re dead,” she says. Khadija doesn’t think you should stop your celebrations and not enjoy your life after a close one dies. “They loved you and they love to see you happy, so enjoy your life but remember them when you can,” she concludes.

KUWAIT: A driver sustained serious injuries and was rushed to the Mubarak hospital after his car overturned at the Fahaheel highway. The accident took place during morning time at the first day for the Eid Al-Fitr holiday.

Liquor bottles, light weapons seized KUWAIT: Authorities arrested 19 young men and one young woman for driving under the influence of alcohol in Salmiya, reported Al-Watan. A number of liquor bottles as well as light weapons were found in their possession. They were referred to the proper authorities. In a separate incident, an 18-yearold citizen was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol and insulting police officers, reported Al-Watan. She was referred to the proper authorities.

KUWAIT: Two Kuwaitis were badly injured in a car crash that took place at the Khalid bin Abdulaziz Street near Mubarak Al-Abdullah area. They were hospitalized at the Mubarak hospital.

Fugitive nabbed Hawally police arrested a Jordanian fugitive who was wanted for failing to pay a KD 32,000 debt, reported Al-Watan. The arrest occurred in Salmiya and the fugitive was released in exchange for accepting to pay the fine. In another incident, police failed to arrest a fugitive after he was helped to escape from authorities by his family members in Thahar, reported Al-Watan. The incident occurred while the man was being chased by authorities. He was assisted into a house by six of his family members and later emerged with a gun and threatened to harm police. The officers retreated to the local police station and considered further options. Youngsters stabbed Two youngsters suffered stab wounds while fighting with a group of young men in a park in Hawally, reported Al-Watan. Paramedics brought the youths to Mubarak Hospital while the

police arrested the other brawlers. A case of attempted murder was opened. Failed kidnapping An Ethiopian woman escaped from an attempted kidnapping by throwing herself from her kidnappers’ vehicle, reported Al-Watan. The woman was kidnapped while waiting for a taxi when she was approached by two men dressed up as police officers. They demanded to see her identification and convinced her to enter the vehicle. Soon after realizing that she had been kidnapped, the woman opened a car door and jumped out while the vehicle was driving down Fahaheel Highway. She suffered several injuries and reported the incident to police after being treated. Domestic dispute A Kuwaiti woman in her fifties informed police that her teenage son physically assaulted her after she failed to give him money during Eid. She said that she tried to explain to her son that she has other financial obligations but that he fled the house after beating her. She refused to press assault charges against her son but did issue a missing person’s report. Police are looking for the 16-year-old.

KUWAIT: First Lieutenant Abdullah Al-Mas is pictured in this photo after he was released from the Bahar ophthalmology medical center where he received treatment for an eye injury that he sustained while taking part in a fire fight operation that broke inside a building in Farwaniya recently.

Home robbery A citizen discovered that he was robbed of KD 4,000 cash and several electrical appliances when he returned home from a family vacation, reported AlAnba. A case was opened.

MEW set for heavy consumption levels

KUWAIT: Two traffic police officers were injured when their patrol vehicle was struck by a car carrying an Egyptian family after the driver crossed the red light. —Photos by Fouad Al-Shaikh

KUWAIT: The Ministry of Electricity and Water is fully prepared for the potential heavy power consumption levels, which are standard in the period after Eid Al-Fitr as Kuwaiti and expatriate parents prepare for schools reopening at the end of the summer holiday season. Ali Al-Wazzan, the MEW’s Assistant Undersecretary for Supervision, Control and Information Systems, announced that the ministry has put a plan in place to deal with the expected increase in demand. The senior MEW official further told Al-Rai that the steadily falling temperatures as autumn approaches, leading to declining levels of air conditioning usage, would also help the ministry to cope with the challenge. Al-Wazzan indicated that all Kuwait’s power plants are currently working satisfactorily, with no problems.

KUWAIT: A Kuwaiti man narrowly escaped death, managing to flee his car shortly after it caught fire as he was driving along the Seventh Ring Road near the Thahar turnoff. Firefighters were quickly at the scene, putting out the blaze. Subsequent investigations revealed that the fire was caused by an electrical short circuit. — Photos by Fouad Al-Shaikh


Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Human capital ‘very important’ for development plan By Ahmad Saeid KUWAIT: The argument about funding the development plan is less important than the real driving factor for development - human capital - said the official in charge of Kuwait’s International Labor Organization. In an exclusive interview with the Kuwait Times, Thabet AlHaroun talked about a number of laborrelated issues in Kuwait, from the implementation of the newly passed labor law to domestic labor and privatization. K T : It has been six months since the new Labor Law was published in the official gazette, how would you describe the implementation of the law and its impact on the ground? How is the issue of establishing a general authority for recruitment to replace the sponsorship system developing? How far did the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor move on this regard, considering that the ILO is a key consultant on the matter? T A : The ILO is not only a consulting authority in the matters of labor. We also follow up on the implementation of labor-related legislation. When any country issues labor-related legislation the organization follows up to make sure that the law is compatible with international labor standards. Kuwait is one of the countries that have signed basic labor agreements and the labor law was an important demand for the ILO. Now that the law is issued, we feel that the Minister of Social Affairs and Labor has the desire to take the articles of the law and its applications seriously. This is very pleasing for us. What is remaining is (to establish) a public authority for labor recruitment. In my opinion, it would have been better to form a joint committee from specialists in the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor, the Fatwa and Legislation committee, and legal experts in addition to related entities like the Chamber of Commerce and Kuwait’s labor union. The job of this joint committee has to be to create a foundation and system for a public authority for labor recruitment. We are suggesting that because we don’t want the result to be contradicting or unsatisfying for the demands of the labor market in Kuwait. The ultimate goal of the whole legislation is to fight against the bad aspects of the current system. The biggest problem the current system is still suffering from is visa traders. K T : You said that you are satisfied with the seriousness with which the minister is tackling the implementation of the law, how satisfied are you with the law itself? T A : We have already discussed, on more than one occasion, the negative aspects of the law. There are parts in the law that contradict international labor standards. At the same time, we have to say that every country has the right to adopt its own legislation, entitling it to carry out its own development. Especially considering that it took 35 years to develop. Issuing a law with a few shortfalls is much better than not having it at all. Also, we need to consider that this law was drafted for Kuwaiti workers as well. Although we are happy with the progress that took place, the legislation does not resolve all the issues that we expected to resolve. Among the biggest concerns in the new labor law is that it excludes domestic laborers. The argument we frequently hear is that they are a special case. We are often told that a domestic laborer is considered part of the family; they live with the family, know all their secrets and they are treated like family. This argument can be accepted by some but not by us in the ILO, especially considering the fact that domestic labors still have no legal protection. Frankly speaking, there are many people who attack the United State’s annual report on human rights. If Kuwait is low ranked, then a wave of anger starts in Kuwait. We need to understand that law is what regulates the relation between people. Maybe there are Kuwaitis whose rights are being violated by domestic workers. A law needs to be put in place so that it will preserve the rights of both the employer and employee, the right of the housemaid and the right of the sponsor. If you don’t have legislation it will be

‘Many Kuwaitis are being sacked from privatized sectors’ chaos. We are always accused of supporting housemaids and workers against their sponsor or employer. We say that our stance is for the best of both parties. K T : Why do you think people always try to prevent their servants from having more freedom. Ever since the dawn of Islam, when masters where asked to have a separate day for prayer because they didn’t want to pray alongside their slaves, to the civil war in America and until now, there seems to be a pattern of resistance to reduce the power of a master over the servant. Why do you think this keeps happening? T A : It’s human nature I believe. The world we are living in does not have distinguished differences and classes any more. Especially with all the mediums of communication that we have at present. When news from Kuwait is published we are contacted by organizations abroad and asked for a comment within hours. Everyone in the world now has the responsibility to be a humanitarian. I am saying this as a Kuwaiti first and as an ILO official second. We have moral obligations that need to be met. We need to find our shortcomings and resolve them without the need of external pressure. Why do we need to wait for pressure from the UN or the ILO or different Human Rights organizations to start adopting legislation to fix our problems. There is an internal demand before an external one. I will give you an example. There are all of these talks about the development plan. I feel sad when I hear the arguments about where the funding should come from without paying attention to the fundamentals of the development plan; the human factor. There needs to be human resources capable of carrying out this development plan successfully. How can all of these great projects and objectives be achieved without human development? I didn’t see anyone ask if there are people capable of carrying out this responsibility, or performing these great duties. Is this acceptable logic? K T : Apart from the recent amendments to the labor law, and the way they are implemented, how do you see the general situation of the foreign laborers in Kuwait who make up about 2.5 million residents? Do you think that the unrest in Jleeb Al-Shuyoukh is unlikely to be repeated? Do you think the situation is stable? How would you evaluate it? T A : Unfortunately, Kuwait never fixes the problem, it fixes the symptoms. When a protest or strike takes place in a company or corporation they look to the reason for the protest and find a solution for it but the main problem remains. For example, the Labor Law was issued because there was so much visa trading and Kuwait was accused of being a crossroad for human trafficking. Companies exploit their employees and withhold the wages of their employees. An international buzz was created about Kuwait and that’s why the Labor Law was adopted; to resolve the issue of migrant workers in Kuwait. When it comes to national laborers working in the private sector, the law is not being implemented. The government is going ahead with their privatization plans and this requires additional legislation besides the Labor Law. Now there are corporations firing Kuwaiti employees. Terminations are taking place as a result of the privatization. Companies that were earlier privatized in the oil sector are causing a problem now. Fuel station employees signed a contract with their companies that obligated their employers to apply the same conditions of employment that the government did, for five years after privatization. This period is ending on November 11. Just recently we were informed that around 30 Kuwaitis are going to be fired. The question here is not only about the 30 workers. Other companies are going to be privatized, like the Kuwait Airways Corporation for example, It is a huge corporation with more than 1,000 employees. There will be privatization in other government sectors in the future. If we don’t find a way to deal with these 30 employees we will have a

serious problem when we are faced with the termination of larger numbers. Kuwait has followed a bad model. In some countries that started down the privatization path, employees didn’t have any other solution than to sleep in front of their country’s parliament and wait for a resolution. Now I think there will be people camping in front of the National Assembly. Can Kuwait, with all its ambitions to transform into a financial and commercial hub, afford to maintain this view, this mentality, and this strategic outlook? I think not. Yes the labor law was passed, yes there are important and appreciated efforts, but it is not enough.

Thabet Al-Haroun K T : You were talking about the government’s role in finding a solution for those who were fired from their jobs in the private sector. We all know that there is ‘disguised’ unemployment in Kuwait. In every government department, there are more employees than the actual work requirement. This is basically because the government is obliged to provide work for its citizens. Corporations on the other hand do not do so. They pay money in exchange of work. Why would they want to keep extra employees in newly acquired corporations and give them money just like that? T A : First of all, we at the ILO defending the rights of all sides - government, employers and employees. What I say is that it is important to have a qualified work force by training qualified experts so that they are profitable to the private sector. The private companies care about profit, and if there are qualified workers, the (private) sector will be happy to employ them. Young people in Kuwait proved themselves during the Iraqi occupation, and they worked in jobs no one thought they would be employed with. Kuwaitis are like any other nationals, you give them opportunity, instruments and motivation to be productive and they will be so. But now, there is no proper training and qualification, and the education levels are below average. In addition to that, the private sector is free from social responsibilities. It should take part in development, not only in terms of how much they will benefit, but also on how much they can contribute. In Europe and the US, those corporations that take active part in social and economic welfare of the nation receive tax exemptions, so the private sector has to fulfill national responsibility. As part of it, more nationals should be recruited, not only invite whatever workforce is cheaper to work, and not give opportunities for citizens to learn and acquire experience. K T : Do you think that the government is taking the easy way by delegating the responsibility of running ‘losing’ sectors to the private sector, instead of providing employees with proper training to be competitive and creative, and bring innovative reforms to the government sectors? T A : I think that it is shameful that we try to blame the government for all the mistakes. There are other responsible parties, in the whole society, and the society is not just a government. We always say that we are a country of institutions, we have a constitution, we have an elected parliament, we have NGOs, we have unions, all of them are responsible. I also think that privatiza-

Kuwait working to cancel the ‘sponsorship’ system A new procedure in the offing KUWAIT: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and several other government bodies are working on a comprehensive report in response to a report from the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), rebutting the UNHCR’s criticisms and explaining the new procedures to be introduced which will protect the rights of workers and prevent violations.

The foreign ministry’s report will also list the serious measures to be taken in order to eliminate Kuwait’s current sponsorship system, commonly known as the ‘kafeel’ system, reported AlQabas. It is believed that replacing this system with another more reliable one will help to eliminate the arbitrary violations committed by some sponsors against their employees, as well as help-

ing eradicate the illegal trade in residency visas. Among the procedures to be listed in the foreign ministry’s report are plans to establish shelters for workers arbitrarily dismissed from their jobs, as well as legislation banning the employment of juveniles and steps to improve the living standards of bedoon (stateless) residents.

tion should go in accordance with a strategic plan. The government needs to see what sectors are making profit and what sectors are not, and address this issue carefully. Kuwait needs to think if it is in its own interest to privatize some vital and strategic government sectors. The state needs to start reconsidering its employment policy. Countries can no longer afford to pay a big portion of their revenues as salaries. This is not something that ILO, IMF or any other organization believes, this is what the whole world thinks now. The private sector is also benefiting a lot with billion KD tenders and projects. What is it giving back to the country? The issue of giving a percent of jobs to Kuwaitis, that end up as bogus contracts, is not good. It is true that there is an Audit Bureau, but more important than the Audit Bureau is the Supervisory and Inspection Authority, to monitor companies and ensure that bogus jobs are detected. In general, there needs to be a set of legislations to address this issue, and there is an opportunity now. As there is a multi-billion KD development plan, there is a chance to legislate and to consider the human resources as well. Other than that, it will be just profiteering for people who do not even deserve it , and do not produce anything that can help in the development of the country. Those people simply take the money and invest it outside the country. Inside, Kuwait remains the same with bumpy and stinking roads, shortage of water and electricity. K T : The issue of unpaid overtime wages in Kuwait, how often do you receive complaints about that? T A : It is not a matter of unpaid overtime wages. It is the working hours actually that we hear about a lot. For example in Kuwait Oil Company, there are those who work for 12 hours, and then they are supposed to rest for 12 hours, especially those that work in far away fields. The company instead places them on stand-by for another 12 hours. These stand-by hours are unpaid for, even though they have to be ready for work, and be present inside their work location, prepared to respond on short notice. We received a complaint from some employees in the company. And we are talking about Kuwaitis here, so we are in the process of trying to find a solution for this issue.

For non-Kuwaitis there are some payments, but it is not like the one that is recognized by the ILO, and they do not meet the international standards of labor. I must say that there are those whose rights are being violated. They are okay with that. We as an ILO, must say that we are not happy with this. We do not agree that the employer exploits the employee. At the same time, we do not agree that employees exploit their employers. We try to balance the rights of both parties, the rights of both employers and labors. K T : According to your own experience, how would you describe this balance of rights between employers and employees in Kuwait? T A : Unfortunately yes, there is a sort of imbalance for the benefit of employers. K T : Do you think that foreign diplomatic delegations and embassies in Kuwait are doing enough to protect their citizens who work in Kuwait? T A : Embassies are diplomatic entities, and the diplomatic norms are always present in their jobs. I will tell you frankly, if I were a non Kuwaiti I wouldn’t be able to say all of this. But what I say is for the benefit of Kuwait, my own country, not for my own benefit. When I point out at a wrong behavior, my goal is that it be fixed, for the interest of the Kuwait labor market and Kuwait’s reputation. Many people always misunderstand that I am always concerned about the international aspect. For me that comes in the tenth place. I am mainly concerned about the local aspect and the implications of these mistakes in Kuwait. When I talk about human development I am talking about my own destiny, about the destiny of my children and grandchildren, and this is a righteous thing. In addition to that, when I ask for equality between Kuwaitis and non Kuwaitis, I bear in mind that nothing ever stays the same forever. I personally remember when we were poor, and we were living on minimum and Allah gave us all of this fortune. So, you never know how life is going to change in the future. Kuwaitis need not think of themselves as angels who have come down from heaven. No one does. You need to give the rights of others so that Allah will give you your rights. If you can’t have this mindset, and are not mature

enough to understand that, all the treasures of the world will not make you rich, and will not be enough for you. I do not expect embassies to do more than what they are doing. There are obligations on both parties, exporting and importing countries. Exporting countries also need to take care of those people that they send. If a man comes to work at an electrician’s shop and he does not know anything about electricity, there will inevitably be problems between him and his employer. Now it is starting to happen. Qualifying schools open where foreign workers learn about professions they engage in, as well as the traditions and culture of the host countries. So you cannot just say that exporting countries only aiming to profit from citizens, and do anything to help them. You also cannot place all the blame on Kuwait or other receiving countries. The obligations fall on both parties. There needs to be more communication and more co-ordination between those in charge in both countries. These countries benefit from their laborers abroad and they need to put some effort. Officials need to do more visits to see what the situation is like for their citizens in host countries, and to see where the shortage and errors lie and try to rectify it. K T : Do you have a final word? Are there any future activities that the ILO has committed that you can tell us about? T A : The deliberation and co-operation with regard to the labor law continues. The important thing after passing a law is to qualify experts who can carry out this legislation. There will be a number of workshops and other activities that come soon, in cooperation with the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor. In addition to that, there is the issue of professional safety, which is an extremely important issue. The ministry has announced its intention to set up a center for professional and workplace safety. It will contribute towards raising awareness about the importance of this issue. About the implementation of the labor law, there will be more cooperation with the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor, and the Kuwaiti Institute for Judicial Studies - to hold workshops for public prosecutors and judges. This is to learn the best practices that assure that implementation of labor law is in tandem with the international standard for labor practice.



KUWAIT: A number of Boubyan Bank staff recently volunteered to visit child cancer sufferers currently receiving treatment in different public and private hospitals across Kuwait. The visits, which were organized in cooperation with the Kuwaiti Association for the Care of Children in Hospitals (KACCH), were made as a goodwill gesture on the bank’s part to share the joy of Eid Al-Fitr with the children.

Special offers see cellphone customers throng shops at Eid By Nisreen Zahreddine KUWAIT: The latest technology has been leading the choice of presents this Eid. In the forefront of this is the continuing BlackBerry fever, along with a similar eagerness to acquire the recently-launched iPhone 4. Young people who got money from their parents or relatives for Eid spent a good proportion of it on new mobiles. Nowadays people change their increasingly sophisticated mobile handsets as often as they buy new clothes, rushing to mobile shops to buy new mobile phones for Eid — an excuse to spend and to update their handset. Mobile shops weren’t slow

to cash in on the opportunity, launching many offers for Eid which customers rushed to take advantage of. For instance, one of the fastestselling packages was the easy-payment offer for BlackBerrys if the handset was purchased during Eid. One customer, Ahmad, told the Kuwait Times that he had wanted to buy a BlackBerry previously, but had decided to wait until Eid so that he could take advantage of the offer to get a bargain. Another customer, Reem, explained that she wanted to buy the new model iPhone as an Eid gift for her sister who is about to start university. Reem said that as a special treat for such a big occasion she wanted to get her sister a really

sophisticated phone; she was disappointed, however, to discover that there were no special offers on the new iPhone. Reem said that while local mobile shops had introduced a number of special offers for Eid, handset prices were still high. Another shopper, Fatma, said that she’d just spend KD 170 on a new mobile, only to find out that during Eid the price had been reduced to KD 120. She explained that while she’d wanted to buy the particular phone model for some time, she hadn’t been able to afford it previously given the high prices in summer, saying that on the whole she appreciates the lower prices offered by local mobile phone outlets during the Eid Al-Fitr period.

Al-Najjar and the Fantasy World cartoon characters

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

NBK PR officer, Yaqoub Al-Baqer and Talal Al-Turki are seen with one of the children

Jammoul shares the happy moments of Eid with the children

NBK shares Eid moments with kids at NBK hospital KUWAIT: The NBK Public Relations team and some NBK staff paid a visit to the NBK Hospital at the Sabah Medical district that accommodates children suffering from permanent and incurable ailments with the objective of sharing with the residents of the hospital, happy moments of Eid Al-Fitr, comfort their sufferings and present them with felicitations, gifts and Eid tips. The NBK Public Relations Officer, Yaqoub Al-Baqer said that NBK staff family in general and the PR team in particular have always devoted a considerable part of their time to demonstrate the bank’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) towards the sick children residing at NBK hospital on major social and religious occasions like Eid Al-Fitr. “Sharing the happy moments

of Eid Al-Fitr and other similar occasions with the beloved children at NBK hospital is a compassionate and support gesture on the part of NBK. Such activities constitute an integral part of NBK’s commitment to shoulder its Corporate Social Responsibility which was the basic motive that led NBK to build its children’s hospital at Sabah Medical district many years ago,” Al-Baqer added. NBK’s visit to the hospital was emotional and overwhelming for both the children and NBK Team. NBK’s visits to hospitals and care centers reflect the bank’s high sense of duty and responsibility towards all those in need from different sectors of society. It is a well-rooted tradition that has been religiously carried out by NBK each year in its efforts to continuously have an active role in Kuwait society.

NBK PR and Marketing team pose with the children

Children take part in an event with cartoon characters

Jassem Al-Shumais

Special Eid event at Fountain Park KUWAIT: Visitors to the Fountain Park enjoyed a great time during Eid Al-Fitr holidays as part of a program that was organized by the ‘Fantasy Show’ band and conducted by host Mustafa AlNajjar. The Head of the Parks and Ice Rink Department of the Touristic Enterprises Company (TEC) Jassem Al-Shumais, said that the program was held to celebrate the occasion. The familyfriendly programs were enjoyed by visitors of all ages, noting that the entrance ticket was priced at KD 1 per visitor. The event featured several competitions and a show by larger-than-life versions of cartoon characters and musical shows.

The Fountain Park A child receives a prize after winning a competition

A family poses for the camera

A child receiving a gift

Singer Eyad

Singer Husam Jamal

Tuesday, September 14, 2010



UN body, Iran clash over barred inspectors Inspector dispute worsens strains in IAEA-Iran relations VIENNA: The head of the UN atomic watchdog accused Iran yesterday of hampering its work in the country by barring experienced nuclear inspectors, but Tehran flatly rejected the charge. The dispute has deepened international concern about Iran’s nuclear program, which Western powers suspect is aimed at developing atomic bombs. Iran denies this, saying it is enriching uranium only for generating electricity. Iran says two inspectors it banned from

TEL AVIV: In this photo taken on Monday, Aug 23, 2010, a child of foreign workers eats a hot dog during an event for first grade in Tel Aviv, Israel.—AP

Israel divided on deporting children of illegal migrants TEL AVIV: Israel will begin deporting families of illegal migrants in coming weeks, officials say, as an emotional debate rages over the ballooning numbers of foreign workers that some fear could threaten the country’s Jewish identity. A decade ago, Israel began bringing in foreign workers in an effort to reduce its dependence on cheap Palestinian laborers. Now tens of thousands of migrants from Asia and Africa who entered the country legally but have since overstayed their visas have developed strong ties to Israel and have no intention of returning home. How to deal with the migrants hits on two of the most charged issues in Israel. On one hand the fear is that their growing numbers will dilute Israel’s Jewish majority, while others warn that deporting them from a country born partly as a refuge for Jewish victims of the Holocaust is immoral. But it is the fate of the migrants’ children that has really ignited the national debate: Their advocates point out that they are educated in Jewish schools and speak flawless Hebrew, they just aren’t citizens or Jews. “What about the Jewish heart and Jewish compassion and Jewish morality?” pleaded Elie Wiesel, the Nobel winning Holocaust survivor, speaking out against the deportations. Wiesel, who is not Israeli, said he found the issue so disturbing that he felt compelled to speak out on local affairs. Others fear that scenes of Israeli forces deporting children will do no good to the country’s already tarnished image following last year’s war in Gaza and the deadly attack on a Turkish aid flotilla in May. Interior Minister Eli Yishai, who oversees immigration policy, dismissed migrant sympathizers as “bleeding hearts” in a recent television interview. “Nobody is worrying about ... the Jewish identity of the state of Israel.” Israel grants automatic citizenship to Jews but doesn’t have an immigration policy for non-Jews. To control the influx, the government said in August it would issue permanent residency visas to children of migrants, but the criteria are so tough that most may still be deported. The children must have parents who entered Israel legally, be in school, speak Hebrew and have resided in Israel for at least five years. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said at the time his government wanted to “take into our hearts children who grew up here and were educated here as Israelis,” but he warned against creating an incentive for illegal migrants “to flood the country.” So far, some 600 families have registered with the Interior Ministry. Another 90 families were rejected, while the families of another 1,000 children didn’t even apply, because they didn’t meet the criteria, said Sigal Rozen, a migrant activist. Those families may be deported, she added. Interior Ministry official Roi Lachmanovich said deportations would begin by the end of September, after a series of Jewish holidays and would proceed on an individual basis , there would be no mass deportations. Since the government announcement, anxious immigrant parents have been rushing to government offices to apply for residency. Sounding very much like an Israeli, 15-year-old

Demet, who is Turkish, said at an advocacy office for migrants that she hoped to join an Israeli army combat unit when she turns 18. Meanwhile, other children nagged their parents in Hebrew, some wearing necklaces with the Star of David. “They cannot evict my daughter,” said Florence, a 39-year-old from Nigeria who overstayed her tourist visa to work in Israel 10 years ago. “She was born here.” Florence, who whispered to her six-year-old in Hebrew, declined to give her full name for fear that it would endanger her pending application. Like many living in Israel illegally, Florence had believed an Israeli-born child would allow her to stay, precisely the fear of many Israelis. But the migrants have gained some powerful allies, including Cabinet ministers on the left and right of Israeli politics and a group of Holocaust survivors. The prime minister’s wife has spoken out against the policy, and Israel’s kibbutz movement has vowed to hide the children in the country’s 280 kibbutzim to thwart their deportation. “This is not the Jewish state I know if it deports children,” Industry Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer shouted during a Cabinet debate. Israel was founded as an agricultural society but as it has industrialized and abandoned its one-time commitment to “Jewish labor,” it has increasingly relied on workers from outside. Originally, Palestinians from the territories Israel occupied in the 1967 Mideast war filled that need, but with the uprising of 2000, Israel turned to foreign labor. Fearing attacks, Israel tightly restricted work permits for Palestinians from the West Bank and Gaza, shrinking their numbers from 200,000 in the late 1990s to about 32,000 today, and replacing them with Chinese construction workers, Thai farm hands, Philippine caregivers and others. The visas were meant to last for just five years, but nearly 120,000 foreign workers stayed on, according to government statistics, lured by steady work, good money, and in many cases, needing to pay off the steep fees from the employment agencies, which could run up to $13,000. Several thousand tourists are also believed to have overstayed their visas and are working illegally. Israel also has around 17,000 African asylum-seekers who fled violence and economic hardship. Between the migrant influx and the much higher birthrate of Israel’s Arab population, some here fear Israel’s Jewish majority will gradually be eroded. Currently Jews make up roughly 80 percent of a population of 7 million. The government is now cutting back on foreigners entering the country. Last year, about 27,000 came to work in Israel , the lowest number since 2004, according to government statistics. Migrant activists say the government should shrink that number even more dramatically if they don’t want to grapple with the burgeoning problem of foreigners and their Israeli-born children. “If the government doesn’t want anymore children, then they should stop bringing in their parents,” said Rozen. “It’s as simple as that.” — AP

US handover puts Iraqi prisoners at risk: Amnesty LONDON: The United States has released several thousand Iraqi prisoners into Iraqi custody despite documented evidence that Iraqi security forces have abused detainees, Amnesty International said yesterday. The handover of prisoners occurred after a bilateral security agreement came into force last year, ending the US military’s right to detain Iraqis, and formally concluded in July with the transfer of the last US detention centre. “Iraq’s security forces have been responsible for systematically violating detainees’ rights and they have been permitted to do so with impunity,” said Malcolm Smart, Amnesty’s director for the Middle East and North Africa. “Yet, the US authorities, whose own record on detainees’ rights has been so poor, have now handed over thousands of people detained by US forces to face this catalogue of illegality, violence and abuse, abdicating any responsibility for their human rights.” An Iraqi official disputed Amnesty’s assertions. The Amnesty report documents thousands of arbitrary detentions and beatings of detainees to obtain forced confessions. The Iraqi judicial system is based on securing convictions through confessions rather than evidence. It estimated 30,000 people were being held without trial in Iraq and 10,000 of those were transferred from US custody over the past year and a half. “This report is baseless and inaccurate. We respect the law and observe human rights norms,” said Iraq’s Deputy Justice Minister Busho Ibrahim. Abu Ghraib “We welcome anyone to visit our prisons and see how detainees are treated,” Ibrahim told Reuters, adding that all prisoners were detained on valid judicial warrants.

Amnesty said it believed several detainees had died, possibly as a result of what it described as torture and other ill-treatment by interrogators and prison guards. In one case, a former member of the Iraqi Special Forces died in February as a result of internal bleeding following interrogation, Amnesty said. “His body was handed over to his family several weeks later. The death certificate gave his cause of death as ‘heart failure’,” it said. During the handover ceremony in July for Camp Bucca, the last US prison, US military officials said they were confident no maltreatment would occur under Iraqi supervision. At the request of the Iraqi authorities, US wardens continue to guard about 200 detainees, including al Qaeda militants and henchmen of ousted dictator Saddam Hussein. The United States itself has come under fire over prisoner abuse. Disclosures in 2004 that US jailers had abused and sexually humiliated Iraqis at Abu Ghraib prison on Baghdad’s outskirts outraged many Iraqis and may have contributed to a growing insurgency at the time. Amnesty said methods of torture used in Iraqi jails included beating with cables and hosepipes, electric shocks to sensitive body parts and removal of finger and toenails. It said several of the detainees held in one secret prison said they were detained on the basis of false information obtained by Iraqi forces from secret informants. It said: “They had been held without any access to the outside world and some were tortured or otherwise ill-treated during interrogation, apparently to make them confess to involvement in bombings or other crimes that could incur the death penalty.”— Reuters

Ali Asghar Soltanieh, Iran’s ambassador to the IAEA, told reporters: “I categorically reject this statement.” But the US envoy to the IAEA said the barring was a troubling development with the potential to “send a chill” through the ranks of nuclear inspectors. It may also send a message that “if they do their jobs, if they repeat what they see ... they might be taken out and shot at dawn, metaphorically speaking,” Glyn Davies told reporters on the sidelines of the IAEA board meeting. Signalling a desire for continuity at the IAEA at a time of increasingly strained ties with Tehran, Amano named a senior Iran expert and IAEA insider as its new top investigator at the closed-door board meeting. Herman Nackaerts, who now oversees inspections in Iran and elsewhere in the Middle East as well as south Asia and Africa, will succeed Olli Heinonen as head of the IAEA division which verifies that nuclear work in member states worldwide is not being diverted for military use. Heinonen, a Finn, resigned as deputy director-general in charge of global nuclear safeguards in July for personal reasons after nearly 30 years at the Viennabased body. Nackaerts, 59, from Belgium, will take up the top inspection job in the midst of the public row over the barred inspectors. Apart from those barred in June, Tehran cancelled access for a high-ranking Middle East inspector in 2006 and has objected to a number of other inspector designations in the past. “I learned with great regret about Iran’s decision to object to the designation of two inspectors who recently conducted inspections in Iran,” Amano said. He said he had full confidence in their professionalism and impartiality, according to a copy of his speech given to the 35nation governing board. “Iran has not provided the necessary cooperation to permit the Agency to confirm that all nuclear material in Iran is in peaceful activities,” the veteran Japanese diplomat said. Soltanieh, who criticized the IAEA’s latest report on Iran as unbalanced and as damaging to its credibility, said the IAEA had more than 150 inspectors at its disposal for Iran. “The problem is not the number of inspectors but the quality and experience,” Amano told a news conference. His report showed Iran was pushing ahead with its nuclear work in defiance of tougher sanctions, and expressed growing frustration over what the IAEA sees as Iran’s failure to address concerns about possible military dimensions to its activities. Relations between Iran and the IAEA have deteriorated since Amano took over as head of the agency in December. He has taken a sharper approach on Iran than his predecessor Mohamed ElBaradei, saying in reports to the board since then that Iran could be trying to develop a nuclear-armed missile now, instead of only at some point in the past. Iran has accused Amano of issuing misleading and politicized reports about its nuclear program.—Reuters

entering the country in June had provided false information about its nuclear work, citing its right to refuse certain inspectors under its non-proliferation accord with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). “Iran’s repeated objection to the designation of inspectors with experience in Iran’s nuclear fuel cycle and facilities hampers the inspection process,” IAEA DirectorGeneral Yukiya Amano told the UN agency’s board.

VIENNA: Iran’s Ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency, IAEA, Ali Asghar Soltanieh ckecks his papers prior to the start of the IAEA’s board of governors meeting at the International Center, in Vienna, Austria yesterday. —AP

Egypt protects water stations from Nile spill LUXOR: Authorities have blocked off water purification stations along the Nile in southern Egypt to prevent some 100 tons of diesel oil that leaked from a barge from polluting drinking water, officials said Sunday. The vessel was docked in Aswan, some 700 miles (1,100 kilometers) south of Cairo, when low water levels caused it to tilt, partially submerge and leak 110 tons of diesel fuel into the Nile on Saturday. Aswan Governor Mustafa al-Sayed told the MENA news agency that sites along the

Nile that feed river water to purification stations have been blocked off as a precautionary measure to prevent polluted water from entering filters. Egypt gets much of its drinking water from the Nile. Luxor Governor Samir Farag said the small slick fragmented as it passed through an area of dense grass. Farag said samples of water would be tested regularly as the spill approached Luxor, which is down river from Aswan. A senior Luxor official, Hussein Ali, said the slick is 60

yards (meters) wide and 1.2 miles (2 kilometers) long, but is shrinking and is not expected to affect water supply stations. Earlier Saturday, the barge’s captain, Yasser Hussein, told police that a drop in water levels caused his vessel to tilt and submerge, allowing the diesel fuel to leak into the river, a security official said. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media, said the barge was unloaded to refloat it.—AP



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

54 wounded in Guinea weekend political violence CONAKRY: Guinea’s interim government is to decide yesterday when campaigns can resume after weekend violence between political rivals left one person dead and at least 54 wounded just days before the country’s historic presidential runoff vote. Telecommunications Minister Talibe Diallo said the government and the two presidential candidates facing off in the vote sched-

uled for Sunday were to meet at the prime minister’s office. “For now I see no reason why the election cannot go ahead (on Sunday),” the telecommunications minister said. Many hope the vote will mark a turning point for the troubled, mineral-rich West African country, which has known only authoritarian rule since winning independence from

France in 1958. Supporters of leading presidential candidate Cellou Dalein Diallo had feared that the interim government would use the weekend’s clashes as an excuse for delaying the presidential runoff, which has been postponed multiple times since the first round in June. His supporters had vowed to descend into the streets in protest if authorities attempted to delay the vote

again. On Saturday, political rivals began hurling rocks at each other. The violence spread to multiple neighborhoods, including the street leading to the home of Alpha Conde, a longtime opposition leader who placed second in the first round of voting. The violence resumed again Sunday, the telecommunications minister said. Tension between the two presidential candidates is

rooted in Guinea’s ethnic divide. Diallo is a Peul, the country’s largest ethnic group, which has never had one of its own in power. Last year, the Peul were explicitly targeted during an army-led massacre of opposition supporters inside the national soccer stadium last September that left more than 150 people dead. Although Conde spent decades as an icon of the oppo-

sition, he is a Malinke _ a group heavily represented in the army, as well as in the junta blamed for the massacre. Guinea’s people are among the poorest in Africa, despite the fact the country hosts one of the world’s largest reserves of bauxite, the raw material used to make aluminum, and billions of dollars worth of iron ore, diamonds and gold. — AP

France: Arson suspected at Afghan refugee camp 9 tents in refugee camp set ablaze PARIS: Authorities are investigating a suspected case of arson at an Afghan refugee camp in northern France in w hich a makeshift mosque and several tents burned dow n, a state prosecutor said yesterday. Nine of 13 tents in an “illegal, but tolerated” refugee camp w ere set ablaze in at least four places Sunday, said prosecutor Eric Bouillard of the English Channel port city of Cherbourg.

ROME: Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi has a picture taken with a supporter at the end of his address at the People of Freedom party meeting in Rome, Sunday. — AP

Berlusconi to women: Seek rich guys like me ROME: Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi has opened his big mouth once again , advising young women to follow the money when looking for a partner, saying women like him and “I’m loaded.” Berlusconi, who was embroiled in a sex scandal last year and is known for his gaffes, also raised eyebrows with a joke about Hitler’s followers urging him to return to power. The billionaire businessman appeared at a convention Sunday of the youth wing of his People of Freedom party. When questioned by one of his Cabinet ministers , a woman , he joked about marriages of convenience, saying women were lining up for him because “I’m a nice guy” and “I’m loaded.” He also recalled a much-criticized TV interview he once gave, when “I said to a girl to look for a wealthy boyfriend. This suggestion is not unrealistic.” He also claimed women favor older men, thinking that “he’s old. He dies and I inherit.” The 73-year-old Berlusconi was engulfed in a sex scandal last year centering on his purported dal-

liances with young women, including an escort. Berlusconi’s wife Veronica Lario said last year she was seeking a divorce. They are now separated. The media baron has said he is “no saint” but denied ever paying for sex. In Italy, a divorce can only be sought after three years of separation. Media reports this summer suggested that Berlusconi’s wife has rejected his early proposals for a financial settlement. Berlusconi often gets criticized for his earthy sense of humor, and this time an opposition political demanded he apologize to Italy’s Jewish community for his Hitler joke. Before telling it, he said “I already know I am going to be criticized.” Berlusconi, who claims prosecutors have led corruption investigations against him because they are left-wing, also appeared to be poking fun at himself when commenting on the loss of his AC Milan soccer team on Saturday. He contended the referee robbed the team of three goals and that Milan often gets “leftist referees.” — AP

in the news France’s Le Monde: Spies used to target source PARIS : The French daily Le Monde is filing a lawsuit accusing President Nicolas Sarkozy’s office of using counterintelligence services to identify a source leaking information about an investigation into the finances of Europe’s richest woman. Sarkozy’s office denied the accusations. Le Monde said in a front-page article yesterday that it is suing for “violation of the secrecy of sources.” The law on protecting sources forms a pillar of French media freedom. Le Monde’s suit didn’t target anyone in particular, which is common in France. Le Monde says Sarkozy’s office asked the DCRI intelligence agency to identify a journalist’s source and stop leaks in a scandal surrounding L’Oreal heiress Liliane Bettencourt. A presidential aide said Sarkozy’s office had never given instructions to any intelligence agency. The aide spoke on condition of anonymity because of presidential policy. The scandal around Bettencourt’s finances, including allegations

of tax evasion, has also embroiled Sarkozy and his labor minister, Eric Woerth. French investigators are probing claims that Bettencourt’s financial adviser gave cash illegally to Woerth while he was treasurer of Sarkozy’s conservative political party, during Sarkozy’s 2007 campaign for the French presidency. Sarkozy and Woerth have denied wrongdoing. Bulgaria: 2 arrests in chemical smuggling case SOFIA: Bulgarian police say they have arrested two Croatians accused of trying to smuggle 13 tons of a chemical that can be used to make heroin. The Interior Ministry said a truck driver, 52, and his 50year-old accomplice were arrested early yesterday at the Kapitan Andreevo border crossing between Bulgaria and Turkey. The chemical they were allegedly smuggling to Turkey is acetic anhydride, and there was enough of it to make five tons of heroin. The operation was coordinated by the European Union’s crime

fighting agency Europol and conducted jointly by Bulgarian, Serbian and Romanian police. Germany: Demjanjuk trial meets after summer break MUNICH: Evidence presented at John Demjanjuk’s trial suggests Ukrainian guards faced possibly deadly consequences if they attempted to flee Nazi death camps after agreeing to serve the SS. In a 1943 letter from Auschwitz to the Trawniki camp, where the guards were trained, read aloud yesterday in court, officials report 15 Ukrainian guards attempted escape. Six succeeded, but one was recaptured and eight were killed. Ukrainian-born Demjanjuk is being tried on 28,060 counts of accessory to murder on accusations he served at the Sobibor death camp. He denies having served in a death camp. But his attorneys also argue that Ukrainians captured while fighting for the Soviets had little choice but to agree to serve the Nazis and then faced death if they tried to escape.

Judges to rule on UK election corruption case LONDON: A defeated Liberal Democrat candidate yesterday became the first aspiring lawmaker in almost a century to challenge a British election result over allegations of dirty tricks. Elwyn Watkins alleged that Labour lawmaker and exminister Phil Woolas made unsubstantiated personal attacks against him ahead of Britain’s May 6 election to secure his victory. Woolas denies the claim. Woolas, who has served as a lawmaker since 1997, was re-elected to his district in Oldham East and Saddleworth, in northern England, following two recounts. He had a majority of 103 votes. Helen Mountfield, lawyer for Watkins, told a specially convened election court that Woolas and his team used misleading campaign materials, which wrongly accused the Liberal Democrat of winning support from Islamic extremists.

“They set out to attack Mr Watkins personally and say whatever it took to turn the electorate against him,” Mountfield told the court. Watkins is seeking to convince judges to invoke a rarely used section of electoral law, hoping they will declare the result void and force a rerun of the vote. Mountfield said that three election leaflets published on behalf of Woolas included false statements about Watkins. “They falsely stated he had committed criminal offenses by spending more than the law allowed him to on printing election leaflets, and by illicitly channeling funds from a foreign donor,” she told the court. Woolas and his staff took “a series of reckless and irresponsible steps in this campaign _ using doctored photographs, misrepresenting facts, stooping even to fomenting racial divisions and tensions,” the lawyer claimed. — AP

The attack came as France faced condemnation over its recent acceleration of expulsions of Roma, or Gypsies, and amid recent tensions in some places over Islam in Western societies. No one was injured. Cherbourg authorities are temporarily lodging the Afghans, and investigators are looking into possible suspects and motives behind the attack, Bouillard said. One of the tents was a makeshift prayer room, and a Quran was among the items destroyed by the fire, he said. The camp has been used as a departure point for Afghan refugees trying to reach Britain, Bouillard said. About two-thirds of the 31 Afghans affected by the fires have applied for refugee status in France, he said. Afghans arrive in France by the thousands each year hoping to sneak to Britain, which is viewed as an easier place to settle than France. A year ago, police destroyed camps of migrants, mainly Afghans, in English Channel ports. Migrants who reach France via smuggling networks have in the past set up elaborate though squalid camps, with small mosques and shelters made of plastic and bric-a-brac. Some refugees returning to the camp Sunday pored over their charred and smoking belongings, hoping to recover lost items. “This is an unspeakable, deplorable act,” said Paul Gaillard, who heads an advocacy group for refugees. “It’s a disaster and a very traumatizing event for these refugees who lost everything in this fire.”— AP

CHERBOURG: A French firefighter hoses water onto the remains of a makeshift tent in Cherbourg, northern France Sunday. French authorities are investigating a suspected case of arson against an Afghan refugee camp. — AP

Zimbabwe bars South African pop group from performing JOHANNESBURG : A South African pop group known for its World Cup collaboration with Shakira has been barred from performing in neighboring Zimbabwe after releasing a video depicting Robert Mugabe as a chicken, band members said yesterday. Freshlyground singer Zolani Mahola told The Associated Press the band was informed last week by Zimbabwean authorities that work permits for concerts planned next month had been revoked. Mahola said no reason was given, but she believes the spark was the “Chicken to Change” video the seven-member band released earlier this month. Zimbabwean immigration officials have refused to comment on the work permits for Freshlyground, the band that collaborated with international star Shakira on

“Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)” the official anthem for South Africa’s June-July World Cup. It was the first World Cup played in Africa. The video for “Chicken to Change,” which is on the band’s latest album, depicts Zimbabwe’s longtime president isolated in his limousine, uncaring of his people’s suffering. The video’s Mugabe puppet transforms into a fearful chicken as Zolani sings for change in Zimbabwe, a country gripped by economic and political crisis. Ridiculing the president is illegal in Zimbabwe. Even gesturing at his motorcade in a manner deemed disrespectful can result in arrest. It’s common for people to be briefly detained and fined for insulting Mugabe. Mugabe was hailed as a liberation hero when he helped lead Zimbabwe to independence from

Britain in 1980. But he is accused of holding onto power ever since by jailing and beating dissenters. Mahola said the band’s Zimbabwean fans have applauded “Chicken to Change.” “Somebody has said something for them,” she said. “We have to be able to speak. You have to be able to have a voice.” Bandmate Simon Attwell said Freshlyground performed in Zimbabwe in 2008, at a time when ballots were still being counted from an election that had seen widespread violence blamed on Mugabe loyalists. “It felt like change was in the air,” said Attwell, a South African citizen who attended boarding school in Zimbabwe. Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai won that election, but not by enough to avoid a runoff. Tsvangirai dropped out of the runoff, citing attacks

against his supporters. Mugabe was declared the winner, but eventually forced by South Africa and other neighboring countries to form a unity government with Tsvangirai. The unity government has foundered, and there are fears elections expected next year will only bring more violence. Attwell said when Freshlyground returned to Zimbabwe after 2008, “there was a palpable air of dejection.” Some band members have been questioning whether to boycott Zimbabwe, the flutist said. Now the choice has been taken from them. “We wanted to do something that’s funny, that uses humor as opposed to being directly provocative,” Attwell said. Something “couched in humor is a little easier to digest. But evidently not.” — AP

Vatican library reopens after 3-year restoration VATICAN CITY : The Vatican’s Apostolic Library is reopening to scholars following a three-year, euro 9-million ($11.5- million) renovation to install climatecontrolled rooms for its precious manuscripts and state-of-the-art security measures to prevent theft and loss. The library, started by Pope Nicholas V in the 1450s, houses one of the world’s best collections of illuminated manuscripts. It includes the oldest known complete Bible, dating from about 325 and believed to have been one of the 50 bibles commissioned by Emperor Constantine, the first Christian Roman leader. It reopens its frescoed halls to scholars Sept. 20. Library officials took pains to note that the renovation work was completed on time, a rarity in Italy but also an acknowledgment of the inconvenience the threeyear closure caused many scholars who had to suspend their research while its collections of tens of thousands of volumes were in storage. Cardinal Raffaele Farina, the Vatican’s chief librarian, thanked those researchers “who understood the reason for the closure.” “Given the amount of what had to be done , the noise and the intrusiveness of the technical and construction work necessary , we decided the library inevitably had to close,” Farina told reporters yesterday inside the frescoed Sistine Hall. Some 4,000 to 5,000 scholars

are given permission to conduct research in the library every year; access is generally restricted to academics conducting post-graduate level research. None of the items in the library can be checked out, and rules for working inside are strict: No pens, food or even mineral water are allowed in the manuscript reading room. Researchers will now find

improved communications and elevator access to the Vatican’s vast collections, as well as a new tower inside the Vatican’s Belvedere Courtyard to ferry manuscripts from their bombproof bunker to climate-controlled consultation rooms. Inside the bunker itself, fireproof and dust-proof floors and walls were installed to further protect the manuscripts. The

library’s 70,000 books have been outfitted with computer chips to prevent loss and theft, closedcircuit cameras have been installed and new automated entry and exit gates keep tabs on who is coming in and going out. The security measures stem in part from an incident in which an Ohio State University art history professor, Anthony Melnikas, smuggled pages torn from a

VATICAN CITY: A view of the Sistine Hall, part of the Vatican Apostolic Library, Vatican City yesterday. The Vatican’s Apostolic Library is reopening to scholars following a three-year renovation to improve its cataloguing and security measures. — AP

14th-century Vatican manuscript that once belonged to Petrarch. He was sentenced in 1996 to 14 months in prison after admitting he took the pages during a research visit in 1987. The library was started by Pope Nicholas V with an initial 350 Latin manuscripts. By the time Nicholas died in 1455, the collection had swelled to about 1,500 codices and was the largest in Europe. Today, the Vatican Library has about 150,000 volumes of manuscripts as well as the “Codex B” , the oldest known complete Bible. During a presentation and tour of the library yesterday, officials showed off a replica of the illuminated Urbino Bible, produced for the Duke of Urbino in 1476-78 by David and Dominico Ghirlandaio and others. The bible, one of the finest works of art in the 15th century, is said to contain over a kilo of gold in its illustrated pages. Italian cement company Italcement paid a hefty chunk of the §9 million renovation price tag while savings and private donations funded the rest, Farina said. The Apostolic Library is next door to the Vatican’s Secret Archives, which contain centuries of Vatican diplomatic correspondence and papal documentation. Citing frequent Dan Browninspired confusion, officials stressed yesterday that the collections and institutions are different. — AP



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Three Colombian paramilitary suspects nabbed in Venezuela CARACAS: Venezuelan intelligence agents have apprehended three suspected members of a Colombian paramilitary group, including a police officer from a town near the countries’ shared border, and seized a weapons cache, President Hugo

Chavez’s government announced Sunday. The suspects were nabbed last week during a sting operation in Rubio, a quaint town located about 30 miles (50 kilometers) from Venezuela’s border with Colombia, according to a gov-

ernment statement. They are being questioned by prosecutors. The suspects, Luis Arfilio Salcedo Fernandez, a state police officer, Rivera Ardila Enadir, the officer’s wife, and Albarracin Romero Enadir, are

alleged members of a Colombian paramilitary group known as “The Black Eagles,” which operates in several states along the border, the statement said. The group is involved in extortion, kidnappings and drug smuggling, among other illegal

activities. Agents from the Sebin intelligence agency seized two assault rifles, a submachine gun, a revolver, a 12-gauge shotgun and a tear gas canister along with ammunition for the firearms, according to Sunday’s

statement. Authorities are trying to identify others members of the group. The number of paramilitaries and leftist guerrillas operating in Venezuela, particularly the border states of Tachira and Zulia, has increased significantly in recent years,

according to the governors of those states. Some of the paramilitaries and the guerrillas slip over the border from Colombia. Chavez’s political adversaries say the government is cracking down on paramilitaries that cross the border to operate

in Venezuelan territory, but contend authorities largely ignore the presence of Colombian leftist rebels who take shelter in Venezuela. Chavez denies harboring rebels, saying the military does all it can to keep them out. —AP

US lawmakers may block move

Congress to be told of 60bn dollar US-Saudi arms deal WASHINGTON: US President Barack Obama’s administration will soon notify Congress of plans to offer advanced military aircraft to Saudi Arabia in a massive deal worth up to 60 billion dollars, congressional sources said yesterday. The offi-

cials, speaking on condition of anonymity because the transaction has not yet been formally announced, confirmed a Wall Street Journal report about the deal but warned that key US lawmakers would block the move.

WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama smiles as he arrives into the Grand Foyer of the White House in Washington yesterday to deliver remarks at the Historically Black Colleges and Universities reception. —AP

Brazil graft scandal heating campaign BRASILIA: Brazil’s ruling party candidate Dilma Rousseff has come under renewed pressure to defend her wide lead in October’s presidential race after a new corruption scandal surfaced at the weekend. The leading news magazine Veja accused Rousseff’s former aide and current presidential chief of

staff, Erenice Guerra, of involvement in a graft scheme. Veja said Guerra had helped obtain public works contracts for entrepreneurs in exchange for kickbacks to her son’s consultancy. Guerra denied the accusations and said her bank accounts were open for the public to scrutinize, Veja said. At

the time of the alleged fraud last year, Guerra was the assistant to then chief-of-staff Rousseff, who opinion polls show is set to win the Oct 3 election by a landslide. Questioned about the allegations hours before she was to appear on a live TV debate between the leading presiden-

SAO PAULO: Brazilian presidential candidate for the ruling Workers Party (PT) Dilma Rousseff speaks during a televised presidential debate, in Sao Paulo, Brazil on Sunday. Brazil’s general elections will take place on October 3. —AFP

tial candidates, Rousseff flatly denied any such scheme existed under her stewardship. “Negative. It’s not true,” she said. “I won’t speak on this subject. It’s the business of the government, not that of my campaign,” she said. The accusations were baseless and part of a smear campaign by her main rival, Jose Serra of the opposition PSDB party, Rousseff said. “I’m not going to talk about issues that interest my adversary’s negative and slanderous agenda,” said Rousseff. The latest scandal, which featured prominently in all Brazil’s major newspapers on Sunday, is certain to fuel more attacks against Rousseff by Serra, who led by 20 points in opinion polls earlier this year but now trails by that much. For weeks, Serra has been accusing Rousseff’s Workers’ Party over a separate scandal involving illegal access to the tax records of his daughter and other PSDB members. Career civil servant Rousseff has benefited enormously from the support of President Luiz Inacio Lula de Silva, who has become Brazil’s most popular president thanks to his folksy charm and a booming economy. —Reuters

“You can fully expect that a hold will be placed on this deal,” thought to be the largest ever arms sale of its kind, said a senior congressional source. “There is serious concern about some sensitive material which is expected to be included in the deal,” said another source, who told AFP that Obama aides would brief congressional staff on the deal yesterday. A “hold” would come from the chair or ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee or Senate Foreign Relations Committee, which typically must sign off on arms transfers, and could change what is in the package. The Journal, which cited unnamed officials, said the administration was also in talks with the kingdom about potential naval and missiledefense upgrades that could be worth tens of billions of dollars more. The administration sees the sale as part of a broader policy aimed at shoring up Arab allies against Iran, the report said. The 60 billion dollars in fighter jets and helicopters is the top-line amount requested by the Saudis, even though the kingdom is likely to commit initially to buying only about half that amount, the paper said. In its notification to Congress, expected to be submitted this week or next, the administration will authorize the Saudis to buy as many as 84 new F-15 fighters, upgrade 70 more, and purchase three types of helicopters — 70 Apaches, 72 Black Hawks and 36 Little Birds, The Journal said. The notification will set off a congressional review. Lawmakers could push for changes, try to impose conditions or block the deal altogether, though that is not expected, the paper said. Another congressional source confirmed the broad outlines of the Journal’s report but cautioned “the exact dollar amounts in these things is always iffy.” Earlier media reports said that to assuage Israel’s concerns, the Obama administration has decided not to offer Saudi Arabia socalled standoff systems, which are advanced longrange weapons that can be attached to F-15s for use in offensive operations against land- and sea-based targets. —AFP

Trial for hunter who shot husband begins NEWFOUNDLAND: The trial of an American woman who said she shot and killed her husband because she thought he was a bear began in Eastern Canada yesterday. Lambert Greene, a hunting guide, testified at the first day of the trial that Mary Beth Harshbarger became hysterical after the shooting. Harshbarger told authorities that she mistook her 42year-old husband for a bear while the two were hunting in central Newfoundland in 2006. She has pleaded not guilty. Canadian officials have charged her with criminal negligence causing death. They say it was too dark to fire

a gun safely. If convicted, the 45year-old homemaker from Pennsylvania faces four years to life in prison. Greene said that he and Mark Harshbarger were making their way back from the brush toward Greene’s pickup truck when the shot was fired. “Mark proceeded on toward the truck. Then I heard a shot. After the shot, I heard a loud scream,” he testified. Greene said he soon reached Mark lying face down on the ground, his coveralls stained with blood. “There was no sign of life. I got up and I looked towards the truck. Mary Beth was standing up by the side of the truck

then. I called out: ‘Did you shoot your rifle?’ And she said: ‘Yes.’ “I said: ‘What did you shoot at?’ Mary Beth Harshbarger asked Greene where Mark was, he told the court. “I said: ‘Mark is in there.’ She asked me if he was OK. I said: ‘No. He’s dead.’ “ Greene said Mary Beth Harshbarger became “hysterical.” “She danced around the road. ‘I shot my husband. I shot my love.”‘ He said the couple’s little girl, who was four at the time, then got out of the vehicle where she was with her brother. “I guess she heard us talking,” Greene said. “She started crying.

Mary Beth took her in her arms, trying to comfort her.” Greene said he wasn’t sure of the exact time the shot was fired but said it was shortly after sunset. He testified that he saw no bear or other animal in the area. Harshbarger sipped water, looked down and wiped her eyes as Greene testified. Mark’s father, Lee Harshbarger, dabbed his eyes with tissue during the testimony. The prosecution is expected to call 16 witnesses during the trial, which is scheduled for two weeks. Harshbarger surrendered to Canadian authorities after a lengthy court battle against extradition. —AP

PUEBLA: In this photo released by Mexico’s Navy, Navy marines arrest alleged drug kingpin Sergio Villarreal Barragan, alias “El Grande,” center, in Puebla, Mexico on Sunday . —AP

Mexican marines arrest presumed drug kingpin MEXICO CITY : Mexican marines captured Sergio Villarreal Barragan, a presumed leader of the embattled Beltran Leyva cartel and one of the country’s mostwanted fugitives, in a raid Sunday in the central state of Puebla, the government said. The alleged capo known as “El Grande” did not put up any resistance when he was arrested along with two accomplices as they left a residence in Puebla city, according to government security spokesman Alejandro Poire. The raid involved 30 Navy marines, five vehicles and a helicopter. “This is a new and resounding blow by the federal government against crime, given the high rank and dangerousness of this person inside one of the country’s most extensive criminal organizations which has now been deeply weakened,” Poire said in a statement. Villarreal’s capture is the fourth major blow delivered to drug cartels by the government of President Felipe Calderon in the past year. First came the death of Arturo Beltran Leyva, the top leader of Beltran Leyva cartel, in a raid outside Mexico City on Dec. 16, 2009. Then soldiers killed the Sinaloa cartel’s No 3 capo, Ignacio “Nacho” Coronel, on July 29. And on Aug. 30 federal police announced the capture of Edgar Valdez Villarreal, alias “La Barbie.” The two men are not related. Villarreal, “El Grande,” appears on an Attorney General’s Office list of Mexico’s most-wanted drug traffickers, with a reward of just over $2 million offered for his capture. He faces at least seven investigations for alleged drug trafficking and organized crime, Poire said. He is listed as one of the top remaining leaders of the Beltran Leyva cartel follow-

ing the death of Arturo, who was known as the “Boss of Bosses,” and the arrest of “La Barbie,” a former Beltran Leyva hitman and operative. Poire said the Beltran Leyvas “had constituted one of the groups with the largest presence in the country,” conducting operations in 32 Mexican states, including the capital. But trouble began when Alfredo Beltran Leyva was arrested in 2008. Then the death of his brother Arturo the following year splintered the cartel, launching a brutal war for control of the gang, involving mass executions and beheadings in oncepeaceful parts of central Mexico. Carlos Beltran Leyva was arrested a few days after Arturo’s death. The fight for the remains of the cartel pitted Hector Beltran Leyva and Villarreal against a faction led by “La Barbie.” Hector is the last Beltran Leyva brother at large. The Beltran Leyva brothers once formed a part of the Sinaloa cartel, but broke away following a dispute. An indication of the problems they face is that three of the four main blows dealt to drug gangs in the past year involve Beltran Leyva leaders or operatives. More than 28,000 people have been killed in Mexico since December 2006, when Calderon launched a military offensive against the cartels soon after taking office. In the central state of Morelos, police discovered nine bodies in clandestine graves Saturday in the same area where four more were recently found. The Public Safety Department said in a statement that all 13 victims were believed to have been killed on the orders of “La Barbie” in his battle for control of the cartel. On Sunday, the military announced that it

filed charges against four troops for the Sept. 5 shooting deaths of a man and his 15-year-old son along the highway linking the northern city of Monterrey to Laredo, Texas. Authorities have said soldiers opened fire on the family vehicle when it failed to stop at a checkpoint, though relatives who were also in the car say they were shot at after they passed a military convoy. The mother and wife of the two victims was also wounded in the shooting. A captain, a corporal and two infantrymen are in custody in military prison and have been charged with homicide, the Defense Department said in a statement. Mexico’s military was already under scrutiny for this year’s killings of two brothers, ages 5 and 9, on a highway in Tamaulipas, a state bordering Nuevo Leon. The National Human Rights Commission has accused soldiers of shooting the children and altering the scene to try to pin the deaths on drug cartel gunmen. The army denies the allegations and says the boys were killed in the crossfire of a shootout between soldiers and suspected traffickers. The scandal renewed demands from activists that civilian authorities, not the army, investigate human rights cases involving the military. More recently, soldiers killed a US citizen Aug. 22 outside the Pacific coast resort city of Acapulco. In a statement to police, an army lieutenant claimed that Joseph Proctor, who had lived Mexico for several years, shot first at the military convoy on a highway between Acapulco and Zihuatanejo. The Defense Department says it is investigating the claim, which Proctor’s father, William Proctor, says he found hard to believe. —AP

FBI says violent crime fell again last year WASHINGTON: The FBI said yesterday that violent crime reported to police in 2009 declined in the US for the third straight year. The 5.3 percent drop in violent crime was accompanied by a 4.6 percent drop in property crime, marking the seventh consecutive year that nonviolent crime has dropped. Each of the violent crime categories decreased from 2008, as did each of the property crime categories. Murder fell by 7.3 percent, robbery by 8 percent, aggravated assault by 4.2 percent and rape by 2.6 percent. Motor vehicle theft was down by 17.1 percent, larceny by 4 percent and burglary by 1.3 percent. The bureau said victims of property crime, aside from arson, lost an estimat-

ed $15.2 billion during 2009. Data for the FBI’s annual crime report comes from 17,985 governmental units and universities and colleges representing over 96 percent of the nation’s population. James Alan Fox, a criminologist at Northeastern University, said that while the downward trend is encouraging, the economy “could come back to haunt us” because of a nearly 10 percent drop per capita in police budgets in the past few years. “There is a connection between the economy and crime rates, but it’s not that when the economy is bad, people go out and commit crime,” said Fox. “When the economy is bad, there are budget cuts. Less is spent on youth crime prevention and crime control on the street.”— AP



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

S Korea to send rice, other aid to flood-hit North Korea SEOUL: South Korea announced plans yesterday to send 5,000 tons of rice and other aid to flood-stricken North Korea in a sign of easing tension between the divided countries. That would mark South Korea’s first major aid shipment to North Korea since the deadly sinking of a South Korean warship in March that killed 46 sailors. Earlier yesterday, the Defense Ministry’s final investigation concluded a North Korean submarine fired a torpedo that sank the ship, as suspected. North Korea denies the charge. The sinking raised tensions, but there have been signs of a thaw in recent weeks. And a senior U.S. envoy even expressed optimism yesterday that the impasse in negotiations with North Korea over its nuclear weapons program could be resolved soon.

North Korea pulled out of the disarmament talks last year to protest international criticism of its long-range rocket launch. Prospects for restarting the talks were further undermined following the warship sinking. “I’m optimistic that at some point in the not-too-distant future we can be back engaged,” American envoy Stephen Bosworth said during a meeting with South Korea’s Vice Foreign Minister Shin Kaksoo. Bosworth was in South Korea as part of an Asian tour concerning the deadlocked negotiations, which hope to persuade the North to give up its atomic weapons ambitions in exchange for aid. The impoverished North has relied on outside food aid to feed much of its 24 million people since the mid-

1990s, and experts fear the latest flooding exacerbated the North’s chronic food shortage. The worsening economic situation in the North appears to be behind the recent thaw. “North Korea is trying to resolve the difficult situation _ the flooding damage and worsening economic woes _ by improving ties with South Korea,” said Kim Yong-hyun, a North Korea expert at Seoul’s Dongguk University. Better relations with South Korea are also seen as the first step toward the resumption of the nuclear talks, Kim said. South Korea’s government is planning to send 10 billion won ($8.5 million) in relief assistance to help the North recover from heavy flooding that swamped farmland,

houses and public buildings in its northwest last month, the South’s Red Cross chief Yoo Chong-ha told reporters. An estimated 80,000-90,000 people were affected by the flooding and the 5,000 tons of rice can feed about 100,000 people for 100 days, Yoo said. The aid was expected to be delivered within a month, he said. North Korea’s Red Cross agreed to Yoo’s offer to hold talks Friday at the North Korean border village of Kaesong. Discussions will focus on the resumption of a program that brings together families separated by the 1950-53 Korean War, the Unification Ministry said in a statement yesterday. The North proposed such talks over the weekend. More than 20,800 separated families have been briefly reunited through

face-to-face meetings or by video following a landmark inter-Korean summit in 2000. However, the program stalled a year ago as ties between the countries deteriorated. The reunion program is highly emotional for Koreans, as most applying are elderly and eager to see loved ones before they die. In other conciliatory gestures toward Seoul and Washington, the North recently freed the seven-member crew of a South Korean fishing boat and an imprisoned American during a visit by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter. Despite these improvements, it remains unclear whether the six-party nuclear talks will restart anytime soon because American, South Korean and Japanese officials have called on Pyongyang to come clean on the warship sinking and

express a sincere willingness to disarm before the negotiations can resume. “I would emphasize that the U.S. is not interested in talking just for the sake of talking with the North Koreans,” Bosworth said. “So we will be looking for indication that North Korea shares that desire and that determination.” His trip also came amid uncertainty over whether North Korea has begun a rare Workers’ Party meeting believed aimed at giving a top party job to a son of leader Kim Jong Il has begun. South Korean intelligence chief Won Seihoon told a parliamentary committee yesterday he expected the meeting to take place later this week, according to the office of lawmaker Park Young-sun who attended the closed-door briefing. — AP

Indonesian Christians beaten on their way to prayers Prez widely criticized for failing to crack down on hard-liners BEKASI: Indonesia’s president ordered police to arrest the assailants w ho stabbed a Christian w orshipper in the stomach and beat a minister in the head w ith a w ooden plank as they headed to prayers. Neither of the injuries appeared to be life-threatening. Indonesia, a secular country of 237 million people, has more Muslims than any other in the w orld. Though it has a long history of religious tolerance, a small extremist fringe has become more vocal, and violent, in recent years.

GENEVA: Sihasak Phuangketkeow of Thailand, President of the Human Rights Council, delivers his statement during the 15th session of the Human Rights Council at the European headquarters of the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland yesterday. — AP

Thailand blocks news event on Vietnam human rights BANGKOK: The Thai government blocked a planned news conference yesterday on Vietnamese human rights because it feared the disclosures might insult the neighboring country. Two international human rights groups whose report pledged to “shed light on the human rights situation in Vietnam,” were supposed to speak at the conference at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Thailand in Bangkok, the club said. But late last week Thai authorities contacted the club asking it to cancel the event and then refused to allow speakers from the two Paris-based groups to enter Thailand. Foreign Ministry spokesman Thani Thongphakdi said in an e-mailed explanation to the journalists’ association on Friday that the Thai government “attaches great importance to the principles of freedom of expression and diversity of views,” but it also has a “long-standing position of not allowing organizations and/or persons to use Thailand as a place to conduct activities detrimental to other countries.” One of the rights groups and the club denounced the Thai government’s move. “We are dismayed by the Thai authorities’ decision to ban entry on the Thai territory of two wellknown human rights defenders who have been peacefully advocating for human rights in Vietnam for years,” according to a statement from the president of the International Federation for Human Rights. The Foreign Correspondents’ Club, which hosts local and international news conferences,

also lamented the government’s stance. “We feel it is unfortunate that the Thai government has chosen to apply pressure on us in this way,” the group said in a statement dated Sunday. New York-based Human Rights Watch noted that Thailand is the current chair of the UN Human Rights Council and the writers of the report, “From ‘vision’ to facts: Human rights in Vietnam under its chairmanship of ASEAN”, had chosen Thailand because of its reputation for honoring freedom of expression, unlike the communist government of Vietnam and others in the region. “But the actions of Thai officials have betrayed that reputation,” Human Rights Watch said in a statement. The groups’ report on Vietnam alleges a raft of rights violations committed by authorities. “Human rights violations in Vietnam have increased during its chairmanship of ASEAN, with a serious crackdown against freedom of expression, repression of religious communities, stifling of freedom of the press and Internet, widespread use of the death penalty, and abuses of women’s rights,” the report says. Thailand has been criticized recently over its press freedoms as anti-government websites and publications have been censored for allegedly helping fuel deadly political protests. Vietnam strictly controls media, and human rights groups say journalists and others have been arrested, fired and fined for criticizing the government or disclosing information it considers sensitive. — AP

Malaysia prince takes over throne amid feud KUALA LUMPUR: A prince took over a northern Malaysian state’s throne yesterday, allegedly against his bedridden father’s wishes in a bitter succession tussle that has given a rare glimpse into behind-the-scenes court intrigue. Tengku Muhammad Faris Petra was proclaimed the new sultan of northern Kelantan

state following a decision by the Council of Succession, which determines who ascends to the throne, palace official Abdul Halim Hamad said. Faris has been embroiled in a public dispute with his brother, Tengku Muhammad Fakhry, since their father, Tengku Ismail Petra, fell ill more than a year ago. The feud has embar-

rassed one of the country’s most prominent royal households by exposing their previously little-known rivalries. Faris’ ascension to the throne is unlikely to end the power struggle. Ismail’s lawyer Rashid Zulkifli said in a statement issued Sunday that the father would challenge Faris’ installation as being unlawful. — AP

Philippine uncertain on bus hostage deaths MANILA: A Philippine minister yesterday appeared to backtrack in explaining the deaths of eight Hong Kong tourists aboard a hijacked bus last month, saying evidence now pointed to the victims being killed by the hijacker. But Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, speaking to reporters, also said it could not be ruled out that the tourists were killed by gunfire from outside the bus during a poorly-organised attempt by police to rescue them. Last week, de Lima said some of the hostages may have been shot by police during the rescue, as forensic reports showed most of the hostages were not shot at close range. The bid to rescue the tourists, held hostage by sacked police officer Rolando Mendoza, was broadcast live around the world and sparked outrage in China and Hong Kong. “It would now appear, based on survivors’

testimony, that Mendoza shot all the hostages even before the start of the police assault,” de Lima said. However, de Lima said it remained unclear just how the hostages died, as forensic evidence showed there were some 30 shots from outside the bus that were not fired by police snipers. “We cannot be ruling out anything until we have the complete result of ballistic tests and other forensic reports,” she said. De Lima, part of a panel reviewing attempted rescue, said the report commissioned by President Benigno Aquino might not be completed until Friday. Filipino investigators interviewed surviving hostages in Hong Kong last week. The report could recommend civil, criminal and administrative sanctions on civilian and police officials who failed to do their part to peacefully end the hostage-taking. — Reuters

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, who relies heavily on Islamic parties in parliament, has been widely criticized in the media for failing to crack down on hard-liners. But he immediately called on authorities to investigate and hold accountable those responsible for Sunday’s attacks. Police have said they know who the perpetrators were, though they would not comment further. Suspicion immediately fell on the Islamic Defenders Front, Muslim hard-liners who have repeatedly warned members of the Batak Christian Protestant Church against worshipping on a field housing their recently shuttered church. But the front, which is pushing for the implementation of Islamicbased laws, denied involvement in the attacks, ordering its followers to help police investigation, group leader Rizieq Shihab told reporters. The front is known for smashing bars, attacking transvestites and going after those considered blasphemous with bamboo clubs and stones. Perpetrators are rarely punished or even questioned by police. In the last few months, they have thrown shoes and water bottles at church members, interrupted sermons with chants of “Infidels!” and “Leave Now!” and dumped piles of feces on the land. “We’ve questioned nine witnesses and have already identified the perpetrators,” said local detective, Capt. Ade Arie. “But it’s too early to comment or speculate on a motive.” Local Police Chief Imam Sugianto said Asia Sihombing, a worshipper, was on his way to the field when assailants jumped off a motorcycle and stabbed him in the stomach. The Rev. Luspida Simanjuntak was smashed in the head as she tried to come to his aid. “I was trying to help get him onto a motorcycle so we could get him to a hospital,” she told reporters in the industrial city of Bekasi, 25 miles (40 kilometers) east of Jakarta. The Islamic Defenders Front pressured local authorities early this year to shutter the Batak church, located in a densely populated Muslim area, saying the permit was granted without the required approval of residents. The Christian worshippers have refused to back down. Every week, about 20 or so return to the field to pray, defying threats and intimidation. Most people in Indonesia practice a moderate form of Islam and abhor violence. But the Setara Institute for Peace and Democracy, a human rights group, said attacks on religious freedom by hard-liners were steadily increasing. It said there have been 64 incidents, ranging from physical abuse to preventing groups from performing prayers and burning houses of worship, in 2010, up from 18 in 2009 and 17 in 2008. “It’s largely because Yudhoyono’s administration is always so slow to step in,” said Hendardi, a Setara activist, pointing to recent attacks on the Islamic minority sect, Ahmadiyah. “If he doesn’t take immediate steps to address this problem, then the blame lies with him.”— AP

JAKARTA: An Indonesian Muslim man reads the Quran at Istiqlal Grand Mosque in Jakarta on Sunday. —AFP

Japan frees 14 members of Chinese ship TOKYO: Japan freed 14 crew members of a Chinese fishing ship yesterday nearly a week after their vessel and two Japanese patrol boats collided near disputed southern islets. But China lashed out at Tokyo’s decision to keep the captain in custody. Such collisions or close calls in disputed waters have frequently touched off nationalistic protests among the broader population about sovereignty and complicate efforts to improve ties between China and Japan, wary neighbors that are the world’s second- and third-largest economies and major trading partners. Beijing has said the confrontation could damage its relations with Japan, underlining the sensitivity of the territorial dispute in the East China Sea. The dispute has sparked anti-Japanese activists in China and Taiwan, which also claims the islands in question, to sail to the area on their own protest missions, although both governments have sought to rein them in so as not to inflame tensions further. Japanese authorities sought to ease tensions yesterday by allowing the 14 crew members to board a Chinese chartered plane that was sent to pick them up from a nearby Japanese island, said the Foreign Ministry. But Japan continues to detain the captain of the Chinese trawler, Zhan Qixiong. A Japanese court has granted prosecutors permission to keep the captain in custody until Sept 19 to decide whether to formally indict him. Tokyo sees this as its right but Beijing sees as provocation to its claim for sovereignty over the East China Sea islands, called Diaoyu or Diaoyutai Islands in Chinese or the Senkakus in Japanese. Located about 120 miles (190 kilometers) east of Taiwan, the islands are controlled by Japan, but also claimed by Taiwan and China.

“China expresses strong dissatisfaction with and grave protest against Japan’s obstinate decision to put the Chinese captain under the so-called judicial procedures,” said Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu. “Japan will reap as it has sown, if it continues to act recklessly.” The incident has provoked a strident response from Beijing, which said Friday it was postponing talks scheduled earlier with Japan on contested undersea deposits in the East China Sea. On early Sunday, China’s State Councilor Dai Bingguo called in Japanese Ambassador Uichiro Niwa , the fourth time that he has been summoned over the incident. While worried about appearing weak in front of a nationalistic public, China’s communist leadership has also tried to rein in activists to prevent any patri-

otic displays from spiraling beyond its control. On the Chinese mainland, one activist said he abandoned a plan to sail to the islands after being harassed by plainclothes police officers in the port the Jingiang, where the detained boat captain is from. “They followed me around everywhere, so my plans for renting a boat in Fujian to sail to the Diaoyu were scrapped and I left that night,” said Qiu Haitang, the online name for an auto parts industry worker who did not want his real name used, in a telephone interview. “They didn’t tell me I had to leave, but it was definitely the impression they gave by following me everywhere , that I was not welcome there.” In Xiamen, about a dozen other activists said they waited in port for a second day unable to set sail. “On the surface, the

Chinese government is saying that it won’t support or oppose or ban these protest actions organized by civic groups. But they are threatening boat owners so they are afraid of setting sail,” Lo Chau, a Hong Kong activist with the group, told Hong Kong reporters in Xiamen. Activists in Hong Kong are passionate about the issue because they feel the Japanese claim over the islands is an extension of lingering Japanese imperialism that has resisted remorse and reparations for World War II atrocities, said legislator Albert Ho. Meanwhile, three Taiwanese activists set out by sea yesterday to promote Taiwan’s claim to the islands. The Taiwanese coast guard barred six activists from Hong Kong from joining their trip. — AP

ISHIGAKI: In this Sept 8, 2010 file photo, Zhan Qixiong, center, the 41-yearold Chinese captain of a Chinese fishing boat, is led by Japan Coast Guard personnel to disembark from a coast guard boat at a port on Ishigaki island, southwestern Japan. — AP



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

NATO: Airstrikes kill 14 insurgents in Afghanistan NATO troops requests air support KABUL: A series of NATO airstrikes killed 14 insurgents in central Afghanistan after a joint patrol with Afghan soldiers came under fire, the Western military alliance said yesterday. The clash happened Sunday while the patrol was crossing a river in Uruzgan province, a center of the Taleban insurgency, NATO said in a statement. NATO troops requested air support after receiving small-arms fire and concluding there was no danger of civilian casualties, it said. Initial reports indicated no civilian casualties occurred, and members of the joint patrol were unhurt in the attack, NATO said. The number of attacks and clashes are rising amid an allied offensive aimed at suppressing the stubborn Taleban insurgency. The attacks coincide with rising tensions ahead of Saturday’s parliamentary elections. The Taleban has vowed to target polling stations and warned Afghans not to participate in what it calls a sham vote. NATO said yesterday it detained a member of a district Taleban shadow government along with two of his associates in the eastern province of Paktika. The suspect was planning to disrupt the elections and actively participated in Taleban propaganda campaigns, the alliance said in a statement. Two Taleban militants were killed Friday and Saturday after NATO intelligence reports said they were planning to attack voting places. “Afghan and coalition forces are focused on hindering insurgent plans to disrupt the upcoming parliamentary elections,” US Army Col. Rafael Torres said in

Maoist rebels kill 6 in restive eastern India

JALALABAD: An Afghan child lies on a hospital bed after being injured in a rocket attack as a boy looks on in Jalalabad, east of Kabul, Afghanistan yesterday. —AP the statement. The insurgents seek to topple the pro-Western government in Kabul and drive foreign troops from the country. In a separate incident late Sunday, a rocket was fired by militants toward an Afghan army supply base in Jalalabad city, in eastern Nangarhar province,

police spokesman Ghafor Khan said. The rocket missed its target and slammed into a house, wounding nine civilians , including four children , all members of one family, Khan said. According to initial reports, the injuries were not life threatening, Khan said.—AP

CALCUTTA: Maoist rebels in eastern India shot dead four villagers linked to a governing party and attacked a police station killing two policemen, officials said yesterday. The attacks came after the rebels - described by the prime minister as India’s biggest internal security threat - called a 48-hour general strike on Sunday in seven eastern states. The guerrillas, inspired by Chinese revolutionary leader Mao Zedong, have been fighting the government in eastern India for more than four decades, demanding land and jobs for the poor. Their presence has spread as they have tapped into anger among rural dwellers left out of India’s economic gains. In West Bengal state late Sunday, guerrillas ordered four men out of their homes and then shot them dead in Jhargram village before fleeing, said police official Surojit Kar Purkayastha. The victims were supporters of the state’s ruling Communist Party of India (Marxist), he said. In neighboring

Jharkhand state, scores of armed rebels attacked a police station in Bhejji village early yesterday, killing two policemen, a police official said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to the media. On Sunday, the rebels called their general strike and blew up a three-foot (one-meter) section of railway track that disrupted train services across the region, said police official R K Mallick in nearby Chattisgarh state. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh yesterday said his government would deal firmly with the rebels who resort to violence but would also step up development programs in the districts worst hit by rebel attacks. “We have to accelerate our development efforts ... and make our administrative machinery more sensitive and responsive to local concerns,” Singh told a meeting of top army commanders. The rebels are now present in 20 of India’s 28 states and have an estimated 10,000 to 20,000 fighters, according to the Home Ministry.— AP

KARACHI: Pakistani flood-affected people celebrate the marriage of their two fellows at a camp set up for displaced people in Karachi, Pakistan yesterday. —AP

Six weeks on, Pakistan faces new flood threat DADU: Six weeks after the start of Pakistan’s devastating floods, waters pouring into a lake in southern Pakistan are threatening several towns and forcing tens of thousands of people to flee, officials said yesterday. As floodwaters make their way to the Arabian Sea, new towns in Sindh province are being inundated as embankments constructed to protect cities and towns in the traditional flood plains are now channeling water into new areas, including Lake Manchar. Tens of thousands of people have fled towns in the Dadu district of Sindh, and officials said more were asked to leave after water, flowing from a breached embankment, reached a dangerous point in the lake, Pakistan’s largest freshwater lake. “Our entire concentration is now on Dadu district as the water is just a few inches from overtopping the Manchar Lake that could threaten many towns,” Additional Relief Commissioner, Riaz Ahmed Soomro, told Reuters. Officials say several towns around the lake including Bhon and Jhingira are in danger of inundation, threatening an estimated 250,000 people. “All my seven brothers and their families

are now dependent on me as they are all farmers and floods have washed away their lands and crops,” said Abdul Ghani, a school teacher, whose village upstream from Manchar Lake has already flooded. The floods are Pakistan’s worst-ever natural disaster in terms of damage, with more than six million people forced from their home and 20 million people affected. The calamity has killed more than 1,750 people, and aid agencies have warned that millions more are still at risk of death if emergency food and shelter are not provided. The government estimates losses at $43 billion and says the gross domestic product could be around 2.5 percent, from the original target of 4.5 percent for the 2010/11 (July-June) fiscal year. As well as grappling with economic problems, Pakistan faces a new wave of suicide and bomb attacks carried out by pro-Taliban Pakistani militants after a lull during the floods. More than 160 people have been killed attacks on security forces in the past two weeks in the country, whose support is seen as crucial for US efforts to stabilise Afghanistan. — Reuters

Afghan govt disputes NATO finding on attack KABUL: The Afghan government yesterday disputed NATO findings that a top insurgent was killed in an airstrike this month, maintaining that the victims were civilians working for a candidate in next weekend’s parliament elections. NATO said in a statement Sunday that the Sept 2 attack killed Mohammad Amin, a member of the al-Qaida-linked Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan and the insurgents’ deputy “shadow governor” of northern Takhar province. NATO said it could not rule out the possibility that civilians were killed or wounded. The Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan is allied with the Taleban and its fighters are believed involved in attacks on NATO forces in Afghanistan. Afghan authorities said 10 civilians were killed and seven were wounded in the airstrike, including the candidate Abdul Wahid Khorasani.

“We are very confident that the targeted individual was in the vehicle struck by the air weapons team and was killed. The question remains why an election official or candidate was traveling with a known terrorist,” said Italian Brig. Gen. Luigi Scollo, head of the NATO investigating team. Civilian deaths in NATO military operations are a major source of contention between the alliance and President Hamid Karzai’s government, even though the United Nations says the insurgents are responsible for most civilian deaths and injuries. In response to the NATO statement, deputy presidential spokesman Siamak Herawi said the Afghan government had not completed its own investigation and was uncertain whether “the person that they have named ‘Mohammad Amin”‘ was even in the convoy at the time of the attack. He said one of the dead had a similar name.

“If such person was in the convoy he was not armed, he was not carrying any weapon at the time, so no one has the authority to kill a large number of innocent civilians because of only one suspect in a convoy,” Herawi said. “Coalition forces should have used other options for capturing the suspect person instead of killing civilians.” In its statement, NATO questioned whether the vehicles were even part of a candidate’s campaign. “After reviewing the air weapons system video, the team saw no evidence of political campaign material on the outside of the vehicle. The information that led to this strike was extremely accurate,” the alliance statement said. Khorasani, the candidate, says the windows of the vehicles in the convoy had been plastered with his campaign posters. He angrily dismissed the NATO findings, telling The Associated Press that no one had questioned him in connection

with the investigation. “First of all, I should say that there was no one by the name of Mohammad Amin, whom they claimed was killed during their attack,” Khorasani said. “The only person that I can think of whose name was close was Amanullah who was killed. He was my campaign manager.” Khorasani said like many people, Amanullah may have been linked to the Taleban during the years they ruled in Takhar before the US-led invasion of 2001 but “that is no reason to say he has links with the Taleban.” Khorasani said he believed NATO had been given false information by political rivals. Fears of violence hang over Saturday’s elections. Taleban insurgents have waged a bloody campaign of murder and intimidation against candidates and election workers in hopes of sabotaging the polls for 249 seats in the lower house of parliament. —AP

GUJARAT, INDIA: Christian nuns at the Shishu Bhavan, an orphanage for discarded babies run by the Missionaries of Charity, distribute free rations to impoverished women in Ahmedabad yesterday. Some 300 were handed free rations on the anniversary of the funeral of Mother Teresa who founded the order. —AFP

Afghan poll candidate ‘on the front line of war for women’ HEART: Fawzya Gailani says her husband beat her when she won a seat in Afghanistan’s parliament. He was jealous that she won more than 14,000 votes in the country’s first parliamentary election in 2005, while he only polled 160. “He hadn’t really beat me very often before then,” she told AFP of the man she was forced to marry at age 14. “But he was so jealous that he beat me a few times. I left soon afterwards and I’ve never been back.” Sitting on orange floor cushions in the spacious living room of a relative’s home in the western city of Herat, Gailani cuts a glamorous figure in flowing black robes and silver nail polish on her fingers and toes. A black patent-leather designer handbag holds her ever-ringing phone. She is one of around 2,500 candidates who will contest 249 seats in the lower house of the Afghan parliament, the Wolesi Jirga, in the country’s second parliamentary elections scheduled for September 18. In Herat, the second biggest city after Kabul, 150 candidates are vying for the province’s 17 seats. Gailani is confident of retaining her seat but her victory will have come at huge personal cost. In late August, five of her campaign workers were kidnapped by the Taleban, she

said, and shot dead. Four were relatives-three cousins and a brother-in-law. The Taleban claimed responsibility. The Taleban have been waging an insurgency in Afghanistan for almost nine years and this month said anyone associated with the elections is a target. At least three candidates have been killed since campaigning began in June. Election authorities have said about four percent or around 1,000 polling stations will not open because security cannot be guaranteed. In Herat the Taleban control a number of districts, notably those populated by Pashtuns, Afghanistan’s dominant ethnic group, who make up the bulk of the insurgency. Officials say women are the most vulnerable to Taleban violence, many receiving regular death threats, and New York-based Human Rights Watch said last week: “Women candidates are facing the highest level of intimidation.” While grieving the loss of her team members, Gailani is unwavering in her commitment to the cause that elevated her to political power-that of Afghan women, whom campaigners say are among the most oppressed and abused people in the world. While the post-Taleban constitution guarantees women such rights as education and

KABUL: Robina Jelali, an Afghan candidate for the parliamentary election, speaks with her supporters in Kabul, Afghanistan yesterday. Afghans will go to the polls for parliamentary elections on Sept 18. —AP employment outside the home, in reality many continue to be treated as chattels and slaves in the name of religion and tradition. On the frontline of a war for women’s rights- Anecdotal examples abound of young

women betrothed as toddlers, exchanged for animals or to pay debts, beaten and raped by their husbands, jailed by their families for refusing arranged marriages, murdered for the family’s “honour”, becoming mothers as

soon as their bodies are ready, barred from leaving their homes. The Taleban’s five-year rule, which ended with a USled invasion in 2001, was marked by general repression that was particularly brutal to

women. Girls were not permitted to go to school-and even now are sometimes attacked and their schools destroyed by extremists. Women were not allowed out unless accompanied by a male relative and wearing a burqa.

They were attacked in the street for such perceived crimes as wearing white shoes and rape victims were publicly executed as adulterers. Even today, women who become politically active face death threats and some have been murdered or forced into exile. Gailani likens the fight for women’s rights to a war in which the other side, men and mullahs, have all the firepower. “From the first day I decided to enter politics, I have felt I have been on the frontline of a war for women’s rights,” she said, tears welling. “This is a very emotional issue for me because women in Afghanistan suffer so much. If a woman is killed or kills herself, is locked up by her family or sets herself on fire because things are so bad, it is all the same-she dies. “Being killed is normal for Afghan women. If I am killed because I am a woman politician, it is all the same.” Gailani, 40, was her husband’s second wife and had her “first child at 15 and one every year after that. I had ten children, six are still alive”. During the civil war of the 1980s, her family fled to Iran, where she realised her dream of attending school and decided that education held the key to her future, and that of Afghan women. When she returned to Herat, she

opened a women’s gym and set up literacy, computer and English courses for women before deciding in 2005 to run for parliament so her voice could be raised for all Afghan women, she said. “If I was in another country, I would have a loud voice and people would understand what I am talking about. But here it is difficult to make people understand why I am talking women’s rights,” she said. She shares fears that after nine years of insurgency, President Hamid Karzai’s plans to pursue peace talks with the insurgent leadership could see women’s rights traded for an end to the war. “If the Afghan Taleban accept our constitution, respect the law and equality between men and women, then this will be acceptable. But we know that won’t happen. It is not possible for such animals to suddenly become human beings. “If Karzai wants to play political games, using women’s rights and human rights as his toys, then this will not be acceptable. I do not trust either Karzai or the Taleban and I have said so in parliament,” she said. “My request is that we live like all human beings, that women have the same rights under the law as all people. “It is my duty to keep on fighting, and if I die doing it, then that is just the fate of a normal Afghan woman,” she said.— AFP


Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Turkey on a dual course ISTANBUL: Turks took a step closer to Europe by voting for constitutional changes aimed at bringing the country into line with European standards of democracy. Yet it was also a massive show of confidence in an Islamic-rooted government whose closer ties with Iran and hostility toward Israel have caused dismay in the West. The tension between these strands of Turkey’s world outlook, one pushing west and the other east, reflects the complexity of a country that defies definition and remains a puzzle, an increasingly confident one at that, to its allies. Its biggest city, Istanbul, spans the Asian and European continents. The constitution is secular; the national leaders are devout Muslims. A NATO member with troops in Afghanistan, albeit in non-combat roles, Turkey became a champion of Muslim anger over Israel’s war against Hamas in the Gaza Strip. Turkey has transformed its unique circumstances into opportunity, amassing regional clout on the back of its strategic location between east and west. Now the approval of constitutional change is likely to invigorate a leadership, poised for elections next year, that has tussled for years with traditional power elites that warn Turkey’s secular principles are in peril. In a referendum Sunday, some 58 percent of voters approved a package of 26 amendments to the constitution crafted after a 1980 military coup, making the military more accountable to civilian courts, backing gender equality and other citizens’ rights and lifting immunity from prosecution of the coup leaders. Europe applauded the result, even

though Turkey’s bid to join the European Union has been reduced to a glimmer, dogged by opposition from France and Germany, Turkish skepticism and a dispute over the divided island of Cypr us, an EU member. “These reforms are a step in the right direction as they address a number of long-standing priorities in Turkey’s efforts towards fully complying with the accession criteria,” EU Commissioner for Enlargement Stefan Fuele said in a statement. He said their impact would depend on implementation, and that Europe supported the Turkish government’s plans to work toward an entirely new constitution in the civilian mold. Ger man Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle welcomed the outcome, saying it showed that Turkey was looking toward Europe. He said yesterday that no false promises should be made regarding its EU membership bid, “but nobody should exclude or snub an important country that is visibly on track to modernizing itself.” For all the encouragement, Turkey has grown frustrated since accession talks began in 2005, and its insistence that Iran’s nuclear program is peaceful raised concerns in the West that it was turning away from Cold War-era allegiances. The deterioration of Turkey’s ties with Israel, culminating in the uproar over Israel’s deadly raid on a Gaza-bound aid ship from Turkey, added to the worry. “Turkey has always done its bit for the EU process,” said Nevzat Pakdil, a ruling party lawmaker and deputy parliament speaker. “But certain European countries have adopted a stance against Turkey. However, the EU needs Turkey. Turkey will continue to

fulfill its duties.” Turkey has strong support for its bid from some nations in Europe, including Britain. But key European leaders fear an influx of migrants and wonder about admitting a huge Muslim nation into a bloc that has struggled to integrate its Muslim minorities. Within Turkey, the opposition sought to portray the referendum as part of a creeping plot to suffocate secular institutions, citing amendments that could allow government supporters to appoint judges and prosecutors close to the ruling party. The head of a state body that appoints those officials expressed concern. “We would have wanted that the principle of the supremacy of the law not be harmed, that the judiciary be more independent,” said Kadir Ozbek, the acting head of the Judges and Prosecutors’ Higher Board. “The point we are at today is one that is more backward than yesterday.” Gover nment backers counter that the country is under the yoke of rigid notions of secularism and nationalism that must be sof tened so that democratic rights, including religious freedom, can flourish. Whatever Turkey’s direction, or directions, in the years ahead, the result of the referendum was a hit in at least two arenas of Turkish life on Monday morning. The stock market jumped 2 percent to an all-time high in trading before slipping, indicating investor confidence in the prospect of political stability. And human rights activists petitioned courts in three major Turkish cities to prosecute the elderly engineers of the coup that curbed political chaos but led to a wave of arrests, torture and extrajudicial killings. — AP

Petra wall paintings emerge from smoke Continued from Page 1

LONDON: A Christie’s employee poses for photographs behind a Roman bronze helmet found with the use of a metal detector at the auction house’s offices yesterday. — AP

Roman helmet to be auctioned LONDON: The helmet is topped with a griffin. The face mask features arched eyebrows and an ancient gaze, framed by curls. And it’s up for auction. Considered an extraordinary example of Roman metalwork, the mask was discovered in a field in northwestern England

by a treasure-hunter with a metal detector. It’s scheduled to be auctioned Oct 7 by Christie’s, with a guide price of £200,000 to 300,000 ($242,000 to 363,000). Georgiana Aitken, head of antiquities at Christie’s, called the helmet, which dates

from the late 1st century, “a hugely important discovery.” Christie’s said yesterday it’s one of only three similar examples found in Britain over the last 250 years. Christie’s said it wasn’t intended for combat, but for the Roman army’s cavalry sports events. — AP

Iran diplomat eyes asylum in Finland Continued from Page 1 The situation got worse because ... my people are being killed still,” Alizadeh told reporters in Helsinki. Later yesterday, Iranian opposition members said another Iranian diplomat had defected in Europe - this time in Belgium. The Europe-based Green Wave opposition movement said Farzad Farhangian, press attache at the Iranian Embassy in Brussels, walked out Friday and flew to Oslo. In Norway, former Iranian consular official Mohammed Reza Heydari confirmed that Farhangian “left the embassy after informing the ambassador that he was leaving and he came here without anyone (else) knowing about this.” Three diplomats in Europe are now known to have quit to protest of the Iranian government’s clampdown on dissent. Iranian consular official Mohammed Reza Heydari left his post in Norway in January and was granted political asylum there. Alizadeh announced his defection last

week from the post he had held for two years, saying he was no longer a diplomat but “a political dissident”. The Iranian Embassy in Helsinki declined comment but said in a statement that Alizadeh’s term of office had been terminated on Aug 20. Alizadeh said he has no political ambitions except to be a member of the Europe-based Green Wave opposition movement, “just to be a member standing beside the others”. The movement grew out of unrest that followed the June 2009 disputed presidential election, in which, the opposition says, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was re-elected through fraud. Street protests led to massive arrests and a continuing crackdown. “There are a lot of pro-Green movement diplomats” who had set up a network of “Green embassies” that keep up in contact with opposition members, he said. “Ahmadinejad is not any more the Iranian leader and he doesn’t represent Iran,” Alizadeh said. “Do not take him seriously. He (does) not have any popularity among

the Iranians.” The 45-year-old Alizadeh said that since the Green Wave movement was formed after the 2009 election, he “felt confident that I have been followed and bugged”. He said that his criticism of the regime also gave him cause to worry about the safety of his wife and family who live with him in Finland, including two sons and an eight-year-old daughter. “Using this language puts me in a situation to look for shelter for myself. I am going to request political asylum from the Finnish government, and here are my passports,” he said throwing four of them on a table. “I am going to leave these passports to whoever lets me stay here.” Alizadeh said he could have applied for political asylum in many countries but added that he liked Finland and that it was a “secure country and stable”. About 2,500 Iranian immigrants live in the Nordic country. About 300 were granted political asylum in 2008 and 2009, according to official immigration statistics. — AP

Clerics vow death for defilers Continued from Page 1 Evangelical US pastor Terry Jones had threatened in the run up to the ninth anniversary of the Sept 11, 2001, attacks on the United States to burn hundreds of copies of the Holy Quran at his tiny Florida church. He later relented. But a group of conservative Christians tore up pages of the holy book in a protest on Saturday outside the White House. Iran’s parliament speaker Ali Larijani condemned Washington’s inaction in response to Saturday’s desecration of the Holy Quran, which he called a “brutal” act which shows “barbarism in the modern era”, in comments carried yesterday by ISNA news agency. Top Iranian officials have issued harsh

criticism over the issue, with hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad even saying the US pastor’s bid to burn the holy book was a “Zionist plot” that would lead to the speedy “annihilation” of Israel. “Zionists and their supporters are on their way to collapse and dissolution and such last-ditch actions will not save them, but multiply the pace of their fall and annihilation,” state television quoted Ahmadinejad as saying on Friday. Ahmadinejad has on several occasions questioned the accepted version of the 2001 attacks by Al-Qaeda militants, which killed nearly 3,000 people in the United States. Meanwhile up to 500 people demonstrated outside the Swiss embassy in northern Tehran in protest against the United States over the Holy Quran-burning

issue. The crowd, chanting anti-US and anti-Israel slogans, pelted stones at the embassy and tried to get into the building, but the guards prevented them from entering the premises. Several protesters, carrying copies of the Koran on their heads, set US and Israel flags on fire as they chanted “Death to America! Death to Israel!” The Swiss embassy has managed US interests in Iran since Washington and Tehran have had no diplomatic ties following the aftermath of the 1979 Islamic revolution. Iran is locked in a standoff with Western nations led by the United States over its sensitive nuclear program. Western governments suspect the Iranian nuclear program is a cover for a weapons drive, something the Islamic republic strongly denies. — AFP

Saudis hoping date trade will enliven remote town Continued from Page 1 and banks. On the Saudi bourse, the food and agricultural index has risen 10 percent this year as firms such as Almarai or Savola have become regional players. The date industry contributed only 0.4 percent to 2009 gross domestic product but there is big potential and dates need less water than other products such as dairy,

said John Sfakianakis, chief economist at Banque Saudi Fransi. “Saudi Arabia has a clear and obvious comparative advantage in dates production in all shapes and forms as it falls within the natural climatic and water usage conditions,” he said. And dates on the Buraidah market, which has a daily trading volume of almost $7 million according to dealers, are just the start of an expanding production line -

there is date juice, syrup, sweets, cakes and a local firm makes date ice cream. Buraidah’s date trade is attracting some loyal clients. Struggling to make himself heard over the noisy auctioneering after the last evening prayers, Kuwaiti government employee Sultan Sulail says he tries to come here every time he visits Saudi Arabia. “It’s a nice market. You enjoy buying here.” — Reuters

It only emerged half way through,” said conservation expert Stephen Rickerby, waving his hand at the decorated mural. The spectacular paintings are located in the canyon of Siq Al-Barid in Beidha, known as “Little Petra” about five km from Petra itself. Petra enjoys fame for the carved rock ruins left by the Nabateans, an Arab civilisation that arose centuries before Jesus and survived until Roman legions incorporated it into their vast empire. The Nabateans flourished in the second century BC and dominated the long distance caravan trade that brought incense and aromatics from South Arabia to the Mediterranean. Absorbing artistic influences from across their empire, they adopted Hellenistic styles in many of their cities and their newly restored paintings at Petra are some of the very few - and most detailed - remaining examples. “Most paintings that survived were very simple. This is figurative. It’s real art as opposed to decorative,” said Rickerby, who restored the paintings alongside his colleague Lisa Shekede

from London’s Courtauld Institute of Art. The most visible scenes that cover the vault and the walls of the cave complex are populated by winged putti - or childlike figures - who pick fruits or fight off birds pecking at the grapes, the conservationists said. Petra’s monumental ruins were originally painted, but centuries of exposure to the elements wore them down to reveal the “rose-red” stone for which the site is best known. “Everybody knows Petra for its rock monuments. Very few people do realize that these monuments were painted,” Rickerby said. “We have to imagine Petra as a painted city. This sight now gives us a glimpse of what the whole of Petra was like.” For the Amarin Bedouin of Beidah, the paintings offer hope that tourists will venture beyond Petra’s ancient city centre to explore some of its outlying secrets, many of which remain buried under collapsed buildings and drifting sands. “I think it is going to be a new tourist attraction and it is already attracting more and more people,” Rickerby agreed. The cave where the paintings were found is among hundreds of elaborate tombs and temples, carved into the sandstone cliffs around the

arid valleys of Petra. “What we have accomplished has revealed a painting of stunning beauty and historic value and it tells us a lot about the culture of the Nabateans, their exceptional taste and their use of expensive pigments like gold,” Rickerby said. “We are seeing a high point of Nabatean art at this time.” The naturalistic intricacy of the Jordanian paintings is shown by flowers, birds and insects that can all be spotted. The scenes identify three different vines, grape ivy and bindweed, all associated with Dionysus, the ancient Greek god of wine. “Hellenism is quite strong here ... in the figurative style of the painting and in the naturalism of the representations of the birds and the wines,” Skekede said. Some hope the Petra paintings will help to fill some of the gaps in art historians’ knowledge of the transition from Greek to Roman paintings. “The paintings show a lot of external influences from the ancient world and are as good as, or better than, some of the Roman paintings you see, for example at Pompei,” Rickerby said. “This has immense art-historical importance, reflecting a synthesis of Hellenistic-Roman cultural influences,” he added. — Reuters

15 dead as Kashmir seethes Continued from Page 1 buildings and a Christian school and chanting, “Go India, go back. We want freedom.” Security forces shot at crowds in about a dozen different places, killing 13 people and wounding 45 others, said Kuldeep Khoda, the director-general of the state police. A teenage boy was killed later when troops opened fire in the southern town of Anantnag, according to a police officer who spoke on condition of anonymity as he was not authorized to talk to reporters. While separatists had planned a new round of demonstrations following the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan this weekend, the anger in the streets yesterday was far greater than in previous protests over the summer. They were inflamed by reports on the Iranian state-run channel Press TV that the Holy Quran was desecrated over the weekend in the United States, Khoda said. Though a Florida pastor called off his plans to burn the Muslim holy book, the channel showed footage of a different man destroying a Holy Quran in Tennessee. Most broadcasters around the world did not prominently report on scattered desecration incidents by a handful of fringe anti-Muslim activists in the United States; the Iranian broadcaster carried the footage repeatedly. The protesters chanted “Down with Quran desecrators,” and protest leaders denounced the alleged desecration in speeches to the crowds. There were also shouts of “Down with America” and “Down with Israel” - rarely heard in Kashmir, where anger is normally only directed at India. As the protests worsened, the station was removed from local cable networks at the insistence of Kashmiri authorities. US Ambassador Timothy Roemer said the US government was “dismayed” by reports of the rioting and appealed for calm. He also condemned any Quran desecration as “disrespectful, intolerant, divisive and unrepresentative of American values. The deliberate destruction of any holy book is an abhorrent act.” In New Delhi, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said India was searching for a peaceful resolution to the summer of conflict. “We are willing to talk to every person or group which abjures violence,

within the framework of our constitution,” Singh said in a speech to top army commanders. Singh’s statement came hours ahead of a meeting of top Cabinet ministers that was expected to decide whether to lift the Armed Forces Special Powers Act which gives sweeping powers to security forces in Kashmir - as a goodwill gesture in parts of the territory that have been relatively peaceful. A statement issued after the Cabinet ministers’ meeting did not mention the act, suggesting that no decision was taken on the issue. Some government officials strongly oppose the move as premature, pointing to the flare-up in violence in the Himalayan region over the weekend as justification for intensifying the crackdown. The region has been roiled for months by protests. The demonstrations often descend into clashes with government forces, and though Singh has called for the use of non-lethal force, troops have often resorted to firing on the crowds to quell the unrest. They have now killed at least 84 people this summer - mostly teenage boys and young men in their 20s - with the deaths fueling further protests. In the village of Tangmarg, a town 45 km northwest of Srinagar, troops fired on thousands of rock-throwing demonstrators yesterday, killing five people and wounding at least 50 others, according to police. Earlier, protesters burned at least four government buildings as well as a Christian schoolhouse in the town. No one was injured in the fire at Tyndale Biscoe School. In the western town of Budgam, troops tried to disperse demonstrators with tear gas and baton charges but began firing into the crowd after protesters attacked a police station and the government forces with rocks, police said. Witnesses said crowds in Budgam burned an effigy of Obama. At least four people including a young woman were killed and at least 30 others were wounded, some critically, according to a police officer, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not supposed to speak to the media. A policeman was also killed during the protests in Budgam after he was hit by a vehicle that then sped away, the officer said. At least four other protesters were killed in three other towns, the officer said. A doctor at the main hospital in Srinagar said they

received at least 25 wounded with bullet injuries. Anger at India runs deep in Kashmir, which is divided between India and Pakistan and claimed in its entirety by both countries. The mainly Muslim protesters reject rule by Hindu-dominated India and want independence or a merger with predominantly Muslim Pakistan. The current unrest is reminiscent of the late 1980s, when protests against New Delhi’s rule sparked an armed conflict that has so far killed more than 68,000 people, mostly civilians. Singh said the grievances of the youth of Kashmir have to be addressed. “We have to ensure better delivery of services and generate avenues for economic advancement for the people of that state,” he said. However, Kashmiris main complaints are not over economics, but rather the presence of hundreds of thousands of Indian troops in the region, the use of harsh security laws there and the lack of progress toward independence. Syed Ali Shah Geelani, a key separatist leader, said lifting the security laws would not satisfy Kashmiris. “We want end to Indian occupation here and have already laid out our proposal for initiating a dialogue,” he said. Geelani, who has orchestrated recent anti-India demonstrations, also called for calm and for Christians to be protected. “I urge the Muslims to protect the members of minority community and their religious places. We should at any cost maintain the age-old communal harmony and brotherhood for which Kashmir is known the world over,” he said. In a potential embarrassment for the government, the New Delhi-backed leader of Kashmir state Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, was reportedly under pressure to resign for failing to contain deadly anti-government protests. But there is little risk for the Congress-led Indian government. Most Indians show little interest for what is happening in Kashmir and there is a general consensus in the country that Kashmir should remain part of India. But a new generation of young Kashmiris, who have grown up with house raids, police killings and army checkpoints, feel increasingly angry at Indian rule and champion street protests rather than the violent militancy that characterised the 1990s. — Agencies



Tuesday, September 14, 2010


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Fighting for survival, Serra narrows focus By Stuart Grudgings


wo Brazilian states and 24 days stand between opposition presidential candidate Jose Serra and a political abyss. The former Sao Paulo state governor’s slide in opinion polls ahead of the Oct 3 election has prompted a similar shrinkage of his ambitions. From hoping for a close race against the ruling coalition’s Dilma Rousseff, his priority now is to avoid a humiliating first-round knockout and save his political career. That outcome mostly hinges on him achieving a turnaround in Brazil’s two most populous states of Sao Paulo and Minas Gerais, which explains why he has rarely visited anywhere else in the vast Latin American country in recent weeks. The new strategy is testament to the bites that Rousseff, riding the popularity of President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, is taking out of what should be natural support for Serra’s opposition PSDB party in the relatively wealthy southeast. “Polls show he is losing an electorate that should be PSDB,” said Rafael Cortez of Tendencias consultancy in Sao Paulo. Serra has sharpened his criticism of Rousseff in recent days and hammered her on a brewing scandal over hacked personal data.. He hired an American Internet campaign guru to shake up his online strategy and changed his slogan from “Brazil Can Do More” to the more aggressive “Time For The Comeback.” That is a welcome change for many in the centrist opposition after a stuttering start in which his campaign appeared reluctant to criticize the popular government and even showed Serra cozying up to Lula in a television ad. Noone expected Serra to match Rousseff of the leftist Workers’ Party in the poor northeast, where millions have reason to be thankful for expanded welfare programs and a surge in living standards under Lula’s government. The surprise has come in places like Sao Paulo and Minas Gerais, well-off states that are governed by the opposition, hold about a third of Brazil’s voters and which Serra was counting on to offset losses elsewhere. Polls show Rousseff, a 62-year-old running for her first elected office, winning comfortably in Minas Gerais, a farming state, and winning in Serra’s supposed bastion of Sao Paulo, home to the nation’s financial capital. Serra was born in Sao Paulo and was the city’s mayor for several years. The results suggest that Lula’s former chief of staff is succeeding in changing Brazil’s electoral map winning over higher-

income, southern voters who have traditionally been suspicious of Lula and the Workers’ Party. Getting those voters back on side in the next three weeks is Serra’s best hope of stopping Rousseff winning the 50 percent of votes she needs for an outright win, which would threaten to end the 68-year-old opposition leader’s career. All polls released in the past three weeks have shown her doing just that. “There are no final blows in politics, but this would be very hard to overcome,” said Amaury de Souza, a political analyst at the MCM Associados consultancy. Serra’s confusing early strategy of trying to associate himself with Lula may have cost him among higher-income voters and hurt him in key southeastern states, Cortez said. “If he has any hope, it is to play the role of opposition more strongly,” he said. “The decision to show him alongside Lula was a clear sign of weakness.” PSDB officials remain optimistic in public about turning the election campaign around, but some privately admit that only a political catastrophe for Rousseff could stop her from winning the election. They now hope Serra will be able to force a second round at the end of October, which would boost the opposition’s chances in close congressional and state governor races that will decide the national balance of power. That would also buy the time needed for him to try to chip away at Rousseff’s lead. While ruling coalition candidates have taken every opportunity to use Lula’s voice and image in their advertising, PSDB candidates have reduced or even eliminated Serra’s exposure in crucial TV slots as he has slid in opinion polls. In Minas Gerais and Sao Paulo, Serra’s campaign is hoping to re-boot his profile by forging stronger ties with PSDB candidates making promising runs for state governorships and senate posts. Former presidential candidate Geraldo Alckmin is leading polls for Sao Paulo state governor, while Antonio Anastasias in Minas Gerais has rapidly caught up on the ruling coalition’s front-runner for the governor’s job. But Serra’s chances of a strong showing in Minas Gerais have been hurt by half-hearted support from popular ex-governor Aecio Neves, who had been a contender to run for the PSDB in the presidential race. “Aecio Neves has no love lost for Serra, that’s for sure,” said David Fleischer, a politics professor at the University of Brasilia. “I would give Serra maybe a 10-15 percent chance of getting to the second round.” —Reuters

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Fall fashion’s hottest trend: Faux fur By Paula Moore


f you’d rather go naked than wear fur, you’re in luck. This fall, faux fur is everywhere. Many of the hefty fashion magazines on newsstands this month include spreads spotlighting faux-fur coats and other creations. Designers and retailers from Anna Sui to Uniqlo are selling faux-fur bags, faux-fur jackets, boots trimmed with faux fur and more. Even veteran designer Karl Lagerfeld featured head-to-toe fake fur in his fall collection for Chanel. Whether it’s a sign of a slow economic recovery (fake fur is considerably cheaper than the “real thing”) or a nod to the growing “eco-fashion” movement hardly matters. For the sake of the millions of animals suffering in crowded wire-mesh cages on fur farms, faux fur is one trend that we should all embrace. On fur farms around the world, animals spend their entire lives in small, filth-encrusted cages, often with no protection from the driving rain or the scorching sun. Rabbits’ tender feet become raw and ulcerated from rubbing against the wire mesh of the cage bottoms, and the stench of ammonia from urine-soaked floors burns their eyes and lungs. Video footage taken during undercover investigations of fur farms in China and France shows rabbits twitching and shaking after their throats are cut. In China, which is now the world’s largest exporter of fur, animals on fur farms are bludgeoned, beaten and mutilated - all in the name of fashion. Earlier this year, PETA’s affiliate PETA Asia released footage from its latest undercover investigation of fur

markets and farms in China. The shocking footage reveals that raccoon dogs are beaten with steel pipes and left to die slowly as they writhe in agony in full view of other animals. Rabbits’ necks are broken while the animals are still conscious and able to feel pain. Animals live in barren wire cages - exposed to all weather extremes - as frozen piles of waste accumulate below them. Some are driven insane from the constant confinement and frantically pace and walk in circles in their cages. Says Project Runway guru Tim Gunn, “With so many great alternatives, why would you buy the real thing? Why would you? I just don’t understand it.” For anyone who worries that faux fur may not be as “green” as other options, consider this: Before a fur garment reaches the local mall, it is soaked in a bath of chemicals - including sulfuric acid, ammonium chloride, formaldehyde, lead acetate, sodium perborate and more - to keep it from decomposing in the buyer’s closet. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, one of the chemicals used to dye furs, hexavalent chromium, is a hazardous waste. As designer Marc Bouwer (who uses no fur, leather or wool in his collections) points out, the technology used to produce faux fur will continue to improve. “But death is death.” So when you’re out shopping for clothes this fall, remember that sometimes it’s OK - in fact, it’s preferred - to “fake it”. “Technical advances are so perfect you can hardly tell fake fur from the real thing,” says Lagerfeld. “Fake is not chic ... but fake fur is.” NOTE: Paula Moore is a research specialist for The PETA Foundation – MCT

A fate worse than death By Ingrid E Newkirk


irst, there was the jaw-dropping story of a British woman who was caught on camera tossing an affectionate cat into an outdoor trash bin. Then, it was an Eastern European girl slinging crying puppies into a fast-moving stream. Now, in America, some people have imprisoned a dog inside a box barely bigger than his own body. The box has solid sides, and the dog can only see out if he jumps up and peers over them. He has been locked in the box for months. To add to the mental torture, the dog has worn his teeth down to the nubs from biting at his prison, so his owners occasionally take him out of the box to drill painful holes vertically into his teeth in order to irrigate them. And right there by the side of the box, the dog’s keepers also manually extract sperm from him and use it to breed other dogs to sell. There’s more, but the abuse I’ve already described is enough to make any decent person sick. Take a look at Google Maps and you can look down into the container and see the dog lying there. Why, you may ask, aren’t these people in jail? How is it that the local humane society has not swooped in and seized the dog? Oh, I’m sorry. Did I write “dog”? I meant to write “killer whale”. And the people perpetrating this horror are SeaWorld executives. So why exactly does swapping one intelligent animal for another or swapping an average Joe for rich business executives lessen the horror of this orca’s ordeal or the injustice of the situation? Answer: It doesn’t. Tilikum is the killer whale. He killed a human being - for the third time - earlier this year. Perhaps there’s a reason why killer whales are called “killer” whales. Tilikum didn’t give his keeper, Dawn Brancheau, a little playful toss or misjudge and hold her under water just a second too long for her to survive. He shook her like a rag doll, slammed her into the side of the pool, stopped her from surfacing and tore her body apart. My

bet is that he knew exactly what he was doing. Having seen how he is kept and knowing where he came from, it’s not hard to comprehend the depth of his anger and frustration. Tilikum is 32 years old. When he was just 2 years old, he was caught by marine “cowboys” who kidnap dolphins and orcas to sell to amusement parks. He was taken from his family, his pod, in the open waters off Iceland, and he’s lived in a cement pool ever since, unable to use his echolocation, unable to swim away, to travel the oceans, to hear or see his relatives. He is “trained” to eat what he’s given and do what he’s told. He is also trained to roll over, which allows trainers to masturbate him with a gloved hand and collect his semen in a container. His semen is frozen for later use or used immediately to inseminate female orcas at one of SeaWorld’s parks so as to provide additional animals to use in shows. Life in a tiny concrete tank is no life at all for these animals, as evidenced by the death this week of Tilikum’s 12-year-old son at SeaWorld San Diego. Twelve! This orca would likely have lived to be 50 or 60 in the open sea, his rightful home. After the third human being lost her life to Tilikum, SeaWorld reduced his meager “world” even further. Tilly is now relegated mostly, if not solely, to the “F pool”, a solid-sided concrete pool that measures just 36 feet long and 25 feet wide. Tilikum is 22 1/2 feet long with a big wide orca girth. He weighs more than 12,000 pounds. So he has to scrunch just to turn around. And once turned, there he is again, nose against the other wall. He has been condemned to hang in place in the water indefinitely. PETA is calling on the local humane society and the state’s attorney to free Tilly. After all, cruelty to animals, whether to a dog or to an orca, is illegal in all states. NOTE: Ingrid E Newkirk is the president and founder of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals —MCT

Europe still a distant dream for Turkey By Laurent Thomet


urkey won pats on the back from Europe and the United States for passing key constitutional reforms, but its bid to join the European Union failed to convince doubters among EU states yesterday. Supporters and even opponents of Turkish efforts to join the EU club praised Sunday’s referendum aimed at overhauling the judiciary and curbing the military’s influence. But analysts stressed that opposition in Germany and France, and the feud over the division of Cyprus between a Turkish-occupied north and the EU-recognised Greek Cypriot south, remain major stumbling blocks to Turkey’s hopes. Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos, whose country backs Ankara’s EU accession bid, said the referendum sent a “clear signal of Turkey’s European vocation”. “And although some countries still have doubts and reluctance, I believe that in the end logic will prevail,” Moratinos told reporters ahead of a meeting of EU ministers in Brussels yesterday. Another cheerleader, Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt, said: “This opens the European door, even though it will take time to take that step.” With the referendum, which was approved by 58 percent of voters, Turkey “paves the way for a more open and democratic evolution of the country”. Turkey also earned applause from the United States, a powerful ally which has accused EU states of pushing Ankara away from the West by blocking

Turkey’s President Abdullah Gul casts his vote during a referendum in Ankara on Sunday. —AFP the majority Muslim nation from entry into the 27-nation club. US President Barack Obama said the referendum’s high turnout showed the “vibrancy of Turkey’s democracy”. European Enlargement

Commissioner Stefan Fuele welcomed the referendum as a “step in the right direction” but said it needs to be followed by “other much-needed reforms” regarding freedom of expression and freedom of religion. But Turkey must

still convince Germany and France, founding members of the European Union, that it deserves a seat in Brussels five years after it applied for EU membership. German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said the

“reform of the constitution is another important step by Turkey on the road towards Europe”. But Westerwelle is known to be more open to the idea of Turkish accession to the EU than his boss, Chancellor Angela Merkel, who like France prefers to grant Ankara a “privileged partnership”. Jose Ignacio Torreblanca, an analyst at the European Council on Foreign Relations, said the referendum would not be a game changer. “The positions have hardened in key member states like France, Germany, and very little of what Turkey does could change the situation,” he said. “There is nowadays in Europe a coalition of rightwing, antiIslam parties, who fear Turkey for that reason, and of pro-European parties who fear a dilution of the European project with Turkey joining,” Torreblanca said. “That’s a very negative spiral for Turkey.” The EU, France and Cyprus have blocked 18 of the 35 chapters that Turkey must negotiate for membership, mainly due to the Cyprus issue. “As long as Turkey does not accept that Cyprus is a member of the EU, there will not be any progress on this protocol for Ankara,” said Austrian Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger. Turkey loudly voiced its frustration over the slow pace of negotiations and dismissed alternative offers following a meeting on Saturday between Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu and EU counterparts. “I expressed our dissatisfaction with the speed of the negotiations, I expressed it clearly,” Davutoglu said after the meeting. “Turkey will never accept any replacement or any alterna-


Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Obama victories turn sour before elections By Patricia Zengerle


S President Barack Obama’s two biggest legislative triumphs - a healthcare overhaul and financial regulatory reform - have become liabilities for his fellow Democrats campaigning for the Nov 2 US congressional elections. With the sputtering economy and a 9.6 percent unemployment rate the chief issues for voters, some members of his own party blame Obama for failing to stimulate enough growth to give them an edge in hotly contested congressional races. “The economy trumps any legislative achievement, and so when the public opinion climate is bad because people are worried about unemployment, it casts doubt on every legislative provision that has been passed even if it’s not directly related to the economy,” said Darrell West of the Brookings Institution think tank in Washington. The legislative victories, hard won even with a Democratic majority in Congress, have not translated into short-term relief for ordinary Americans. In the wake of reforms, health insurers have continued to hike rates and recent government projections show that the annual rate of health spending will increase. Despite a government crackdown on banks, consumers are still seeing credit card rates rise and banks remain tight-fisted with lending, even to borrowers with good credit. The revamp of the $2.5 trillion healthcare system passed in March, the most dramatic change in US health policy in four decades, was a long-fought victory over the objections of Republicans and opposition from health insurers. But with years to go before many of its provisions take effect, the overhaul has been a lightning rod for Republicans who blast what they call “Obamacare” as an unwarranted government intrusion in private

US President Barack Obama and Joint Chiefs Chairman Adm Mike Mullen pause for a moment of silence during a ceremony of remembrance at the Pentagon to honor the victims of the Sept 11, 2001 terror attacks on Sept 11, 2010. —AP industry. Opponents have railed against measures like the requirement that everyone must carry health insurance, or charged that the program will ration care, so that, for example, older Americans would be denied life-saving operations. “What I want to do is repeal the ObamaCare and replace it with common sense reforms that will bring down the cost of health insurance and protect American jobs,” House Republican leader John Boehner said on CBS’ “Face the Nation” television show on Sunday. “The Republicans outlined eight or nine ideas, including those that really would bring down the cost of health insurance without

putting the government in charge of our health care,” he said. Some elements of the healthcare law Obama signed in March that might prove popular with voters by lowering costs and making health insurance more widely available will not go into effect for years, so it has been a tough sell to convince voters of their benefits before the election. “This isn’t the kind of bill where you gave tons of middleclass Americans some (immediate) new benefit that they’re going to love. For most Americans, nothing changes,” said Julian Zelizer, a public policy expert at Princeton University in New Jersey. A Kaiser Health Tracking poll

showed support for the bill dropping 7 percentage points in August, down to 43 percent, and opposition rising 10 points to 45 percent. Some Democrats have even run advertisements touting opposition to the healthcare bill as they campaigned for the elections, in which Republicans are expected to cut into, or erase, their majorities in the House of Representatives and Senate. Republicans have vowed to repeal the healthcare reform legislation if they win majorities in Congress. It is a useful political statement as they seek to energize opposition to the plan, but would be almost impossible in November, with only about onethird of seats in the Senate up for

grabs. To repeal healthcare, they would need 60 votes in the 100seat US Senate, where they now have 41. “I put the chances of repeal at as close to zero as you can be,” said David Kendall, senior fellow for health and fiscal policy at the centrist Third Way think tank in Washington. “Obama actually won something significant,” said James Morone, a professor at Brown University in Rhode Island and author of “The Heart of Power: Health and Politics in the Oval Office.” He said Obama might have been better off pushing harder for a stronger healthcare plan, which would have fired up his most liberal supporters. Many on the left were deeply disappointed

when Obama stopped pushing for creation of a broad new government-run health insurance program, often called the “public option”. “But could a more robust government plan - one that fired up the Democratic base - get through Congress? Not likely. But from a political perspective, a more robust plan might actually have worked better by firing up the base,” he said. Most Americans are at best vaguely aware of the financial regulatory overhaul passed in July, the most comprehensive since the Great Depression of the 1930s, but it has cost Obama support and money from Wall Street, and exacerbated his tense relations with the business community. Some business leaders say Obama’s regulatory and fiscal policies have created too much uncertainty, and prompted companies to sit on their cash rather than add jobs or invest. “We’ve never seen a regulatory tsunami of that magnitude, you’re talking about hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of required rule makings - that level of uncertainty becomes a prescription to delay making decisions,” said Bruce Josten, the chief lobbyist for the US Chamber of Commerce. Obama said he did not have a choice, given rapidly mounting healthcare costs and a lax regulatory environment that led to actions at US financial institutions that nearly brought down the global economy. He even seemed to acknowledge why some Democrats would seek to distance themselves from the healthcare plan. “And in an environment where we’ve still got ... (high) unemployment, people are going to make the best argument they can right now. And they’re going to be taking polls of what their particular constituents are saying, and trying to align with that oftentimes. That’s how political races work,” Obama said. —Reuters

Obama to weigh broad changes in White House team By Caren Bohan


he likely exit of top aide Rahm Emanuel gives US President Barack Obama the chance to make broader staff changes as his Republican rivals look set for a resurgence in November’s congressional elections. The prospect of Republicans taking control of the House of Representatives and possibly the Senate in the Nov 2 elections would force Obama to move in a more centrist policy direction as he lays the groundwork for his 2012 re-election bid. Emanuel, Obama’s hard-charging chief of staff, has made no secret that he is considering a run for mayor in his hometown of Chicago, although he has not made a decision yet. Other personnel changes are expected after the November elections, where Democrats fear a disastrous showing amid voter discontent as the United States emerges slowly from its worst economic downturn since the 1930s with unemployment persistently near 10 percent. Democratic sources say White House economic adviser

Larry Summers may leave sometime within the next several months but Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is likely to stay on. “Rahm Emanuel is sort of the keystone that holds the entire team together. You pull that architectural piece out and you’ve got to rearrange the structure,” said Ross Baker, a political scientist at Rutgers University in New Jersey. “Whether they are dealing with enhanced Republican minorities or outright Republican majorities, (Emanuel’s replacement) is going to have to be somebody who is not too ideological, who is willing to pursue a more centrist course and who is willing to work on bipartisan initiatives.” Obama has a tendency to rely heavily on a small coterie of close aides for advice. Many political analysts believe some fresh thinking and a reshuffled staff might help him arrest the slide in his popularity and bolster his relationships with Congress and the business community. “There is an opportunity to bring people in and recharge the White House,” said Christopher Arterton, a political science professor at George

Washington University. Not all of the difficulties can be attributed to management problems, he said, because much has resulted from the state of the economy Obama inherited. Big-ticket legislative items such as healthcare reform and the overhaul of financial regulations have dominated Obama’s first two years in office - with Republicans almost unfailingly trying to block his way. The second half of his four-year term may require more agility as he seeks to work with Republicans on issues such as reining in huge budget deficits and creating jobs while implementing the landmark reforms he has already passed. Emanuel is known as a centrist Democrat but any of the candidates to replace him are likely bring a lower-key style. “He has a combination of coarseness and finesse that can’t be duplicated very easily,” Baker said. As White House chief of staff, Emanuel has a big influence on advancing Obama’s legislative priorities as well as over who works for the president and even who gets to meet with him. Deputy national security adviser Tom Donilon is seen as

a leading candidate to replace Emanuel. Ron Klain, chief of staff to Vice President Joe Biden and senior Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett would also be strong contenders. Donilon is certainly smoother than Emanuel, who is known for his expletive-laced style. Fans of Emanuel say his toughness is part of the secret of his success but others say a less abrasive manner could be a welcome change. Still, Emanuel and Donilon are close. Like the current chief of staff, Donilon is a Washington veteran known as a strategic thinker. He is widely respected among White House staff and Obama thinks highly of him. But Donilon is not part of the circle of four advisers Emanuel, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs, top political aide David Axelrod and Jarrett - among whom much of the power in the Obama administration is concentrated. All except Emanuel have long-standing ties with Obama and were senior aides during his 2008 presidential campaign. “The central question is whether the president will use the opportunity of a staff change for a broadening out of

influence,” said one Democrat who speaks frequently to the White House. A staff change would also give Obama a chance to recruit a prominent member of the business community amid criticism from some that his administration lacks people with that background at the highest levels. Axelrod, who commutes on weekends to Chicago and has long hinted that he planned to stay only a few years in the administration, could be among those who depart after the congressional elections. If Axelrod does go, there is widespread speculation Gibbs might move from the spotlight as the main White House spokesman into a behind-thescenes role as a senior political adviser. There have already been a series of changes on Obama’s economic team. White House budget director Peter Orszag left the administration in July and top White House economist Christina Romer stepped down earlier this month. Their departures leave unresolved a debate within the White House over whether to focus more heavily on deficit reduction or economic stimulus. —Reuters

Horse trading ahead if Jonathan to contest polls By Nick Tattersall


omentum appears to be building towards an election bid by Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan, but the real political horsetrading has yet to begin if he is to carry the whole country with him. Jonathan, in his trademark fedora and traditional caftan-like attire, has kept Africa’s most populous nation on tenterhooks for months, declining to say whether or not he plans to seek re-election in the polls due in January. The stakes are high either way in a country that has seen repeated outbreaks of religious and communal violence, and his reticence is born of wellgrounded caution, observers say. Parts of the Muslim north will feel aggrieved if he announces a bid because, as a Christian southerner, they say he would be breaking an unwritten pact that power rotates between north and south every two terms. But he is the first Nigerian leader from the Ijaw ethnic group in the restive Niger Delta, and a failure to stand would provoke protest in his home region, the heartland of the country’s mainstay oil and gas industry. “Jonathan has continued to tread very carefully as far as making public his plans for the future, as he knows there will be tremendous blowback from his political opponents if and when he announces he will run,” intelli-

gence firm Stratfor said. “It is no secret that Nigeria’s northern elites oppose what they see as a southerner trying to usurp their rightful place in power. The level of protest that leading northerners have sustained so far is nothing in comparison to what it will be if and when Jonathan actually declares his candidacy.” At a late-night meeting in the presidential villa on Tuesday, Jonathan told powerful state governors in the ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP) that he intends to stand, one of the governors who attended the meeting said. Imo State Governor Ikedi Okahim made the remarks in front of television cameras, and his comments were quickly broadcast on both state-run and private stations, leading many analysts to conclude it was a deliberate move to test the waters. “(Okahim) was most likely preparing the ground for a possible formal declaration next week by the president ... to gauge initial reaction,” said Kayode Akindele, a Lagos-based director at financial consultancy Greengate Strategic Partners. “The president will only declare if he is confident of winning the primaries ... There is a feeling of renewed swagger in the recent steps of the president and his close circle but real horse trading of the PDP primaries commences next week.” Jonathan kept his cards close to

This file photo taken on April 12, 2010 shows Nigeria’s acting president Goodluck Jonathan addressing the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington. —AFP his chest in a message to Muslims on Thursday to mark the end of the fasting month of Ramadan, reaffirming his commitment to ensure free and fair elections and pledging to push ahead with reforms. “With your continued support and goodwill, we shall, in the coming months carry forward our plans to further stabilize all sectors of our economy, improve national infrastructure and power supply,” he said. His recent actions have been more telling

than his words. Jonathan replaced the heads of the armed forces, police and state security service on Wednesday, a day after the electoral commission announced the timetable for polls. He named Major General O A Ihejirika as his new chief of army staff, the first time since Nigeria’s 1967-70 civil war that anyone from the southeastern Igbo ethnic group has held the top post in the most powerful branch of the armed forces. Should the rotation agreement

be upheld and the next presidential term goes to the north, the Igbo would feel their turn had come in 2015 when it rotates back to the south. A Jonathan win in 2011 would scupper that hope, and Ihejirika’s nomination is seen by some as a way of ensuring loyalty. The election timetable announced this week says party primaries begin on Saturday and run to the end of October. Jonathan has already been meeting former heads of state and other political

heavyweights including his rivals in recent weeks, such as ex-military leader Ibrahim Babangida and former vice president Atiku Abubakar, both of whom have said they will run against him to seek the PDP nomination. The state governors form a powerful caucus in the PDP and winning their support will be key to Jonathan’s chances of success. Those from his home region have already vowed to back him, but those from the north have stopped short of doing so, saying simply they recognise his right to contest. Several northern governors were absent at Tuesday’s meeting with Jonathan, having travelled to Saudi Arabia to mark the end of Ramadan, This Day newspaper said, without naming its sources. The newspaper said none of those present raised objections to Jonathan’s plans to run, but that they said another meeting should be held next week with all governors attending. “Caution is an instinct that has served Jonathan well in a remarkable political career,” said Antony Goldman, London-based head of PM Consulting and a Nigeria expert. “If he declares publicly, it will be because he is confident of winning and of holding the PDP together. His declaration is already so widely anticipated that any early leak, accidental or deliberate, is unlikely to have a significant impact.” —Reuters


Court gives US time to act on stem cells By Maggie Fox


legal tussle over human embryonic stem cell research has made clear to supporters that legislation is needed, and soon, to encourage federal backing for the work. A US appeals court granted a request by President Barack Obama’s administration to temporarily lift a judge’s ban on federal funding of the research on Thursday. The government quickly announced it would resume its own stem cell work and revive a frozen process to review federal grants. But the reprieve offered by the appeals process is temporary and another federal court could rule permanently against the funding. The judicial back-and-forth shows that one of Obama’s first official acts after taking office, an executive order lifting restrictions on federal funding for the work, was little more than a patch. The only way to ensure the future of the research will be action by Congress. “I think it is quite urgent that we pass legislation,” Colorado Representative Diana DeGette, sponsor of a bill to legalize and encourage human embryonic stem cell research, said in a telephone interview. “We need to pass legislation in September to fix this problem.” With mid-term elections coming up on Nov 2, members of Congress are distracted and unlikely to show enthusiasm for a subject that, so far, does not appear to galvanize voters. One spokesman for the Senate’s leadership said there was no indication such a bill could get on the agenda for the first week back after the summer break. In theory, such a bill should be a slam dunk for Congress, but the use of human embryonic stem cells is an issue that crosses party lines and the abortion divide. Under former President George W Bush, Congress twice passed legislation that would have endorsed the use of federal funds to support human embryonic stem cell work, in defiance of Bush’s limits on the funding. It won the support of anti-abortion Republicans such as Utah Senator Orrin Hatch, who noted that the embryos in question were destined for destruction anyway by fertility clinics. Bush

vetoed it twice. DeGette and her Republican partner, Delaware Representative Mike Castle, tried to resurrect legislation after Obama’s executive order in March 2009. Healthcare legislation, regulatory reform and other issues got in the way, and some people did not see the need for legislation, she said. DeGette has polled the House and Senate and believes there is now enough support for the measure. “Don’t forget that when the bill passed before, it passed by well over 260 votes and in the Senate it had 68 votes,” she said. Connecticut Representative Rosa DeLauro agrees legislation is the only hope for settling the stem cell issue. “Otherwise you are dealing with this year in and year out and you are subject to the whims of individuals rather than the importance of the issue,” she said. Stem cell scientists are desperate for some stability. “Clearly we are in crisis mode, trying to figure out how to best deal with this,” said Dr. Jerome Zack of the University of California Los Angeles. His lab is trying to make immune cells called T-cells from human embryonic stem cells. They hope to genetically manipulate the cells to make them fight the AIDS virus. If federal funding cannot be guaranteed, by court action or legislation, Zack said, “We’ll have to let people go.” At the heart of the legal battle is legislation called the Dickey-Wicker amendment, which forbids the use of federal funds the destroy a human embryo. Dr James Sherley of the Boston Biomedical Research Institute, whose lawsuit prompted the crisis, says that means no use of federal money at all to touch any product of a destroyed human embryo. “If Senator DeGette was successful in revoking Dickey-Wicker all of us should pile up all the biology books in this country and ask her to light the match to burn them,” he told Reuters in a telephone interview. Sherley argues that science supports his position by showing that human life begins at conception. “It’s right there in the biology books,” he says. Democratic Senator Tom Harkin will hold a hearing on the issue next week in the Senate Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations

Do not use the ‘s’ word in Washington By Andy Sullivan


timulus” has become a dirty word in Washington. President Barack Obama hopes to prod the sluggish US economy ahead of the November congressional elections, but he has steered clear of portraying his latest proposal as a second stimulus package along the lines of last year’s $814 billion effort. At a White House news conference on Friday, Obama said he has been working to “stimulate” the economy, but declined to portray his package of tax cuts and construction spending as a “stimulus”. “There is no doubt that everything we’ve been trying to do is designed to stimulate growth and additional jobs in the economy,” Obama said, when asked whether his latest package was a second stimulus. The dreaded “stimulus” label may mean the difference between success and failure in Congress. Voters also think that last year’s stimulus package, a combination of tax cuts, aid to states and construction spending, has failed to blunt the impact of the worst recession in 70 years. Only one quarter of Americans surveyed by CBS News in July thought the stimulus had made the economy better. More Americans now place a higher priority on reducing the budget deficit than spending to help the recovery, according to a July survey by the Pew Research Center. However, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office says the stimulus package put millions of people to work and raised national output by hundreds of billions of dollars. “When you put all the things we’ve done together, it has made a difference,” Obama said. “Three million people have jobs that wouldn’t have them otherwise had we not taken these steps. The economy would be in much worse shape.” As voters grow increasingly

anxious about record budget deficits, Democrats have largely abandoned the argument that short-term deficit spending will help boost the economy. Several stimulus efforts foundered this year in the face of Republican opposition, and economists say it is now too late to move the needle before the Nov 2 elections. With the unemployment rate still stuck near 10 percent, Democrats are finding it hard to argue that the unemployment rate would be several points higher without last year’s stimulus package. Economic concerns could cost Democrats control of the House of Representatives and the Senate, and Republicans say spending is out of control. “Americans want to know that Washington is going to stop the reckless spending and debt, the burdensome red tape and jobkilling taxes,” Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said in a statement shortly after Obama’s speech. In the face of this, Democrats appear to have lost their appetite for ambitious deficit spending, let alone anything carrying the “stimulus” tag. Obama’s latest proposals hew more toward the business tax breaks that Republicans favor, instead of New Dealstyle public works programs backed by liberals. His plan would allocate $50 billion for infrastructure upgrades, permanently extend the research and development tax credit, and allow businesses to accelerate their tax write-offs of new capital investments. He is also pressing Republicans to drop their opposition to a $30 billion bill that would encourage lending to small businesses. Democrats expect that they will be able to pass the smallbusiness bill as soon as next week, but say they probably won’t be able to tackle the infrastructure spending until next year without Republican cooperation. —Reuters



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

MLB results/standings Results from the MLB games on Sunday: Minnesota 6, Cleveland 2; Detroit 6, Baltimore 2; Toronto 5, Tampa Bay 4; Philadelphia 3, NY Mets 0; Pittsburgh 3, Cincinnati 1; Florida 6, Washington 5; Houston 7, LA Dodgers 4; Ch’go White Sox 12, Kansas City 6; Milwaukee 2, Chicago Cubs 0; Texas 4, NY Yankees 1; Colorado 4, Arizona 2; LA Angels 3, Seattle 0; Boston 5, Oakland 3; San Francisco 6, San Diego 1. American League Eastern Division W L PCT GB NY Yankees 87 56 .608 Tampa Bay 86 56 .606 0.5 Boston 79 64 .552 8 Toronto 73 70 .510 14 Baltimore 55 88 .385 32 Central Division Minnesota 85 58 Chicago White Sox 79 64 Detroit 72 72 Kansas City 58 84 Cleveland 58 85

.594 .552 .500 .408 .406

6 13.5 26.5 27

Texas Oakland LA Angels Seattle

Western Division 80 63 .559 71 71 .500 70 73 .490 55 88 .385

8.5 10 25

Philadelphia Atlanta Florida NY Mets Washington

National League Eastern Division 83 61 82 62 73 69 70 73 60 83

.576 .569 .514 .490 .420

1 9 12.5 22.5

Cincinnati St. Louis Houston Milwaukee Chicago Cubs Pittsburgh

Central Division 81 62 74 67 68 75 66 76 62 81 48 94

.566 .525 .476 .465 .434 .338

6 13 14.5 19 32.5

San Diego San Francisco Colorado LA Dodgers Arizona

Western Division 80 62 .563 81 63 .563 79 64 .552 71 73 .493 57 86 .399

1.5 10 23.5

NEW YORK: Philadelphia Phillies’ Shane Victorino hits an RBI single off of New York Mets’ Mike Pelfry in the eighth inning of a baseball game.—AP

Giants punish Padres, Rockies down D’backs SAN DIEGO: Tim Lincecum won his third straight start following a career-high, fivegame losing streak and had a two-run single as the San Francisco Giants punished San Diego Padres ace Mat Latos to win 6-1 Sunday. The win cut the struggling Padres’ lead to less than one percentage point atop the National League West. The Giants won three of four games after having lost nine of their first 11 against the Padres this year. The teams will meet in a season-ending series at San Francisco Oct. 1-3. San Diego (80-62) leads San Francisco (81-63) by .5634 to .5625. Colorado is just 1 1/2 games back. Rookie Buster Posey hit a two-run homer off Latos (14-6), who allowed five runs and seven hits in four

innings, his worst start since April 26.

Rockies 4, D’backs 2 At Denver, pinch-hitter Jason Giambi hit a two-run homer off Sam Demel (1-1) with two outs in the ninth, giving Colorado its 10th straight win. Jonathan Herrera started the rally when he reached on an error by second baseman Kelly Johnson. Colorado’s winning streak is the longest in the NL this season and one game short of the major league best shared by the Chicago White Sox and Texas.

Phillies 3, Mets 0 At New York, Roy Oswalt (12-13) pitched a four-hitter for his second complete game this season as Philadelphia

blanked New York. Raul Ibanez hit a solo homer off Jon Niese (9-8), and Chase Utley and Ryan Howard had RBI singles for the Phillies (8361), who nosed ahead of second-place Atlanta in the NL East by winning for the fifth time in six games.

Pirates 3, Reds 1 At Cincinnati, Andrew McCutchen hit a three-run double in the ninth off Francisco Cordero (6-5), who blew his second straight save chance in Pittsburgh’s loss to Cincinnati. Park Chan-ho (1-1) allowed a walk in the eighth inning to get the win. Joel Hanrahan loaded the bases with two outs in the ninth before striking out Chris Heisey for his fifth save in nine tries.

Cardinals 7, Braves 3 At Atlanta, Albert Pujols hit two home runs to power St. Louis past Atlanta and drop the braves out of first place. Pujols passed Hall of Famer Stan Musial for the most multihomer games in Cardinals history with 38, including five this season. Kyle Lohse (3-7) allowed two runs in 5 1-3 innings to beat Tim Hudson (15-8), who lost his third straight. The secondplace Cardinals gained a game in the NL Central but still trail Cincinnati by six.

Marlins 6, Nationals 5 At Washington, Mike Stanton homered twice off Jordan Zimmermann (0-1) and drove in three runs as Florida completed a three-game sweep of Washington.

Florida won 10 of its last 11 games against Washington to win the season series 13-5. The last-place Nationals have lost five in a row overall, falling a season-high 23 games under .500 at 60-83. Brian Sanches (1-2) won in relief, striking out four in 1 2-3 innings, and Clay Hensley got three outs for his third save.

Astros 7, Dodgers 4 At Houston, Hunter Pence had his team-leading 24th homer among his three hits, and Carlos Lee hit his 21st homer as Houston earned a split of the four-game series with Los Angeles. Gustavo Chacin (2-2) escaped a basesloaded jam with two outs in the fifth to keep the score tied 4-all. He and five

Blue Jays 5, Rays 4 At Toronto, Adam Lind hit a two-run homer off Rafael Soriano in the ninth inning to give Toronto a win over Tampa Bay. With Toronto trailing 4-3, Aaron Hill led off the ninth with a single off Soriano (2-2), who had converted his previous 19 save chances since July 20. After falling behind 0-2, in the count, Lind lined his 22nd home run of the season to right field. B.J. Upton’s ninth-inning sacrifice fly off Kevin Gregg (2-5) had put Tampa Bay ahead following Brad Hawpe’s one-out walk and Desmond Jennings’ hit-and-run single.

Twins 6, Indians 2 At Cleveland, Kevin Slowey earned his first win in nearly a month as the Twins beat Cleveland for its 4,000th win since the franchise moved to Minnesota. Slowey (12-6) gave up two runs over five innings in his second start since being sidelined with a strained right triceps. The original Washington franchise moved to Minnesota after the 1960 season and became the Twins. The AL Central leaders open a three-game series in Chicago against the second-place White Sox today. Minnesota took a 5-0 lead in the first inning on a walk, stolen base, four singles, error, wild pitch and sacrifice fly against Mitch Talbot (912) and emergency reliever Justin Masterson.

Angels 3, Mariners 0 At Anaheim, California, Dan Haren held Seattle to three singles over seven innings and Mike Napoli homered as Los Angeles scored another run on a catcher’s interference call with the bases loaded to complete a sweep of Seattle. The Angels, who are in third place in the AL West after winning three straight division titles,

won the season series 14-5. Haren (3-4) struck out six, walked three and did not allow a hit after Russell Branyan’s leadoff single in the fourth. Jason Vargas (9-10) lost his fifth straight start, allowing two runs - one earned - and seven hits over seven innings with four strikeouts.

White Sox 12, Royals 6 At Chicago, Paul Konerko had a pair of tworun homers and an RBI single and pinch-hitter Andruw Jones hit grand slam in a six-run sixth inning, leading Chicago over Kansas City. Kansas City led 6-0 after a half inning, but Konerko lined a run-scoring single to left to give Chicago its first lead of the game in the sixth. Reliever Sergio Santos (2-0) pitched 1 1-3 scoreless innings for the win, striking out three. Philip Humber (1-1) tossed 2 1-3 innings and gave up four runs and five hits.

Red Sox 5, Athletics 3 At Oakland, pinch-hitter Ryan Kalish hit a go-ahead two-run single in the sixth inning and J.D. Drew had a two-run double one batter earlier as Boston rallied for a victory over Oakland. Josh Beckett (5-4) settled down after a rocky start as Boston avoided its first sweep by the A’s since May 23-25, 2008. Dallas Braden (9-12), still trying to reach double digits in wins for the first time in his career, lost his third straight start. All the damage came in that tough sixth inning. The lefthander also struggled with location, walking four after issuing two or fewer walks in each of his previous 20 starts. Oakland’s Coco Crisp stole six bases in the series against his former team, including his career-high 29th and 30th on Sunday.

Tigers 6, Orioles 2 At Detroit, Miguel Cabrera hit a basesloaded double in a five-run eighth inning that backed Justin Verlander’s 16th win as Detroit beat Baltimore to get back to .500. With the Orioles ahead 2-1, Will Rhymes led off the eighth with a single against Mike Gonzalez (0-3) and took third on Ryan Raburn’s double. Orioles manager Buck Showalter brought in David Hernandez, who got ahead 1-2 in the count to pinch-hitter Austin Jackson before loading the bases with a walk. Cabrera then lined a three-run double into the left-center field gap. Verlander (16-8) struck out 11. He allowed both runs and five hits in eight innings, and walked one. Phil Coke finished with a hitless ninth. —AP

Brewers 2, Cubs 0 At Milwaukee, Yovani Gallardo (12-7) pitched four-hit ball for seven innings to win for the first time in seven starts since Aug. 8, and he doubled and scored on Ryan Braun’s fifth-inning double in Milwaukee’s shut out of Chicago. Casey McGehee homered in the eighth after the Brewers scored their first run of the three-game series. Casey Coleman (1-2) allowed one run and five hits in six innings. —AP

Next America’s Cup to be held in 2013

Rangers sweep Yankees ARLINGTON: Cliff Lee allowed two hits while pitching into the ninth inning in his return from a back injury and Julio Borbon hit a go-ahead single to carry the Texas Rangers to a 4-1 victory over the New York Yankees and a sweep of the series between division leaders. Lee (11-8) didn’t give up a hit for 5 1-3 innings, facing the minimum in that stretch. Both hits and the lone run came in the sixth inning. Neftali Perez struck out the next three batters for his 36th save in 39 chances, completing the first three-game sweep of the Yankees this year. New York lost for the sixth time in seven games but maintained a half-game lead in the American League East because second-place Tampa Bay lost 5-4 to Toronto.

other relievers combined for 4 1-3 innings of two-hit ball. Brandon Lyon pitched a hitless ninth for his 15th save. Houston scored twice against Ramon Troncoso (13) in the fifth.

TORONTO: Tampa Bay Rays’ Desmond Jennings (bottom) loses his helmet while stealing second base as Toronto Blue Jays’ Yunel Escobar corrals the late throw in seventh-inning. —AP

VALENCIA: The 34th edition of the America’s Cup will be held in 2013 using wingsail catamarans in a rejigged format, organisers Golden Gate Yacht Club (GGYC) said yesterday. San Francisco-based GGYC said sailing’s most prestigious event would be reorganised to attract sponsors put off by the bitter legal wrangling that clouded this year’s Cup, won by GGYC’s team BMW Oracle Racing in Valencia in February. Innovations included the new class of boat, shorter races, independent race management with an international jury and cost-cutting measures such as limits on the number of boats, sails, equipment and support vessels, GGYC said. There will also be a World Series event starting in 2011, also using wingsail catamarans, and a Youth America’s Cup aimed at developing the next generation of sailors. “We believe this new format and new boat will put the America’s Cup back at the pinnacle of our sport,” Russell Coutts, chief executive of BMW Oracle, said at a news conference in Valencia. “These changes will give equal opportunity to competitors and long-term economic stability to all teams and all commercial partners,” added the New Zealander. The 33rd Cup was overshadowed by more than two years of legal battles between software mogul Larry Ellison, head of BMW Oracle, and biotechnology billionaire Ernesto Bertarelli, owner of Swiss team Alinghi. The dispute over the hosting rights and race rules resulted in a rare two-boat match without the usual challengers series that had helped increase interest in previous editions, costing millions in potential sponsorship and broadcasting rights. BMW Oracle, racing in a giant trimaran featuring a towering wing-shaped sail like an aircraft wing, beat Alinghi 2-0 in a stunning triumph of superior design and technology. In an effort to avoid a similarly damaging experience for the next Cup, GGYC said it had analysed best practice in other major sports and had undertaken six months of dialogue with teams and stakeholders before coming up with the new format. “We spoke to the teams, to commercial partners, to media and to the fans,” Coutts said. “A clear and compelling vision emerged-that to capture and communicate the excitement our sport can produce we need the best sailors racing the fastest boat in the world.” GGYC has said it will announce the race venue later this year. Ellison’s native San Francisco would be a natural choice if sufficient space and infrastructure are available but there are other possibilities, including a return to Valencia.—Reuters


Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Qatar hoping to prove it can host a cool World Cup DUBAI: Qatar has promised it will keep fans and players cool if it wins the right to host the 2022 World Cup. This week, it will get a chance to prove it. The country will host a FIFA delegation starting today and the highlight is expected to be a tour of a specially-designed stadium for five-a-side football which is supposed to keep temperatures at 27 Celsius (81 F) on the field and in the stands, far cooler than the 41 C (106 F) average in June, July and August. The solar-powered system is designed to continuously pump cool air into the venues, and Hassan al-Thawadi, the CEO of the

Qatar bid committee, has said the technology can be expanded in the coming years to ensure that fan zones and training sites are also kept cool. The heat — the local press reported this was the hottest summer on record and included a July day when the temperature topped 50 Celsius (122 Fahrenheit) — and the country’s strict restrictions on alcohol have emerged as the biggest hurdles for the World Cup bid from this tiny Middle East nation. Most analysts consider it the longshot in a group of bidders containing the United States, Australia, South Korea and Japan,

which all have hosted either a World Cup or an Olympics in the past. While it is the smallest bidding nation, it is among the richest and it is expected to also flex that financial muscle in the coming days. Qatar will present its $4 billion plan to build nine stadiums and renovate three others — all with the new cooling system — as well as some of the $42.9 billion in infrastructure upgrades that it plans regardless of whether it wins the bid. It also plans to make the case that a Qatar World Cup would make history, since it would be the first time that a Middle East

nation has hosted the prestigious tournament. “Qatar has a good chance to win the bid and it is not only Qatar’s bid but that of the whole region. Our aim is to bring the world’s greatest football event to the Middle East for the first time,” Qatar 2022 bid committee communications director Nasser Al Khater said in comments emailed to The Associated Press yesterday. “As a team, we are feeling positive. “I am sure that Qatar has limitless potential and we stand in the first row with other serious bidders.” FIFA president Sepp Blatter earlier this year gave Qatar’s bid a boost when he said the Arab world

Johnson holds nerve to clinch BMW title LEMONT: American Dustin Johnson held his nerve to claim one shot victory at the BMW Championship on Sunday as Briton Paul Casey suffered a back nine meltdown. After watching major wins at the US Open and PGA Championship slip through his fingers on the final day this year, Johnson did not falter a third time. The 26-year-old carded a rock-solid final round two-under-par 69 on a brilliant late Summer afternoon at Cog Hill Golf and Country Club for a winning total of nine-under 275. “It was a great day, to finally get it done, af ter all the things I’ve been through this summer,” a beaming Johnson told reporters. “To get it done on Sunday, I can’t feel any better. “I’ve had a few mishaps but today, to come back and get it done, I’m really proud of myself.” Casey had led by three strokes but watched in horror as his advantage evaporated with three straight bogeys from the 13th and he finished with a 69 and second place. Americans Ryan Moore (73), who held a one shot lead going into the final round, Matt Kuchar (72), the FedExCup leader heading into the season-ending Tour Championship, Kevin Na (70) and South Korean K.J. Choi (69) all finished two shots further back in a tie for third on 278. Despite winning his second title, it has been a season a agonising near misses for Johnson. He came frustratingly close to notching his first major victory at the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach, where he held a three-stroke lead going into the final round before shooting 82. Last month at the PGA Championship, Johnson was left crushed when he was handed a two-stroke penalty for grounding his club in a sand hazard on the 72nd hole, eliminating him from a three-way playoff. His mettle was tested again at the first event of the FedExCup playoff, when playing in the last group on the final day of the Barclays Classic, he faded from contention. “After all the things that have happened, to be back in this situation and finally get it done it’s an unbelievable feeling,” said Johnson, who will also be part of the US Ryder Cup squad that travels to Celtic Manor to take on Europe

vative ways and allow fans to let loose with dancing and drinking in the streets — which has become the norm at World Cups since the advent of dedicated Fan Zones. It also faces political hurdles, over concerns whether it would open its doors to fans and officials who are Israeli passport holders since the two countries don’t have diplomatic relations. It also may encounter an unexpected challenge from China which is considering bidding for the 2026 World Cup. A China bid could weigh on FIFA committee members, who would have to debate whether to vote in favor of an Asian host such

as Qatar in 2022 or wait until 2026. One continent cannot host consecutive World Cups. FIFA’s executive committee will decide on the hosts for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups on Dec. 2. The FIFA inspection team has already visited Japan, South Korea, Australia and the United States. Al Khater said the technical side of the Qatar bid was very sound. “We want to leave a lasting impression on our visitors and we have a comprehensive and exciting program this week,” he said. “The whole bid team is looking forward to showing the inspectors why Qatar would be a great partner for FIFA.”—AP

Tseng overtakes Wie to win Arkansas tourney

LEMONT: Dustin Johnson holds the JK Wadley trophy after winning the BMW Championship golf tournament. —AP next month. “Any time you can come out in the last group on Sunday and shoot a good round and win. It doesn’t get any better.” Johnson was out of the gate quickly with a birdie on the opening hole to join Moore atop the leaderboard but it was Casey who made the power move by dropping five birdies to get to five-under through 12. While Johnson held steady with an error free back nine that included just a single birdie at the 17th, Casey’s round unraveled with an ugly stretch of bogeys at 13, 14 and 15. “Stumbled a little bit on the back nine,” said Casey. “I tried to make some birdies on the last couple of holes and fell short but congratulations to Dustin, he’s gone through a lot the last month or so. “I played one shot worse than Dustin Johnson. That’s the way I look at it. It helps me sleep better at night.” It was

also a disappointing day for Tiger Woods as he saw his PGA Tour season come to an early end after failing to earn spot in the Tour Championship. For the first time in 15-years, Woods finishes his PGA Tour season without claiming a single title but the world number one managed to exit on a positive note firing three birdies on a bogey-free back nine for a final round one-under 70. The back-nine charge, however, was far too little, too late to earn Woods a place in the elite 30-man field for the lucrative season-ending Tour Championship in Atlanta. His one-under 283 total left him in a tie for 15th, well out of the fifth place finish he needed to advance to the final round of the FedExCup. “That’s just the way it is,” shrugged Woods. “I didn’t play well early in the year and I didn’t play well in the middle of the year. —Reuters

Aston Martin targets Le Mans with new LMP1 race car Aston Martin will return to the legendary Le Mans 24 Hour race in 2011 with a new LMP1 race car designed to compete for top honors. The new Gulf Oil liveried car is being designed from the ground up with an Aston Martin open cockpit monocoque chassis and a new purpose-designed race engine. Under the new Automobile Club De L’Ouest (ACO) technical regulations for 2011, Aston Martin now believes it has the opportunity to compete for top honors at the 24 Hour race against tough competition including the diesel-engined competitors. As with all Aston Martins, the new LMP1 will be petrol-pow-

deserves to stage a World Cup. He was instrumental in delivering the World Cup to South Africa for 2010, the first on the African continent. Blatter said Qatar’s successful hosting of the 2006 Asian Games showed it was capable of organizing big international events. Qatar is planning to build a new international airport and an airconditioned public transport system — with all infrastructure scheduled to be finished by 2017. But critics question whether Qatar’s largely untested cooling system will work and many Westerners remain unconvinced that Qatar will change its conser-

ered and designed to make the best use of the ACO’s stringent regulations. Aston Martin Chairman, David Richards said: “Having won the GT category twice at Le Mans in 2007 and 2008 and the Le Mans Series outright in 2009, we still want to achieve our ultimate goal of winning the 24 Hour race overall to bring the title back to Britain. “In recent years, it has been impossible for petrol cars to compete on equal terms with the diesels. However, we now have assurances from the ACO that, with the adoption of the 2011 regulations, they will properly balance the performance of these new cars. Under these circumstances we have been pre-

pared to develop Aston Martin’s first purpose-built racing chassis and engine for more than 50 years. “Even with this new car, it will still be a ‘David and Goliath’ fight against the massive resources of our competitors, but we have become accustomed to this and relish the challenge.” Work on the new chassis and engine has been progressing for several months at Aston Martin Racing’s headquarters in Banbury, UK and the first of a limited number of six cars will run in early 2011. Dr. Ulrich Bez, CEO of Aston Martin said: “Racing is a fundamental part of Aston Martin’s heritage and Le Mans is the race that every true sports car maker

aspires to win. While every aspect of this new LMP1 car has been built purely for racing, we also remain committed to developing race-winning GT cars based on our road cars. We are the only manufacturer to offer a race car for every category from GT1 to GT4.” Aston Martin’s first and only outright victory at Le Mans was in 1959 with the DBR1 of Roy Salvadori and Carroll Shelby. Aston Martin Racing has been at the pinnacle of endurance racing since it was founded in 2004 with multiple factory and customer wins across the globe including two GT1 class victories at Le Mans in 2007 and 2008, and an overall Le Mans series win in 2009.

ROGERS: Taiwan’s Yani Tseng won the Northwest Arkansas Championship on Sunday for her third LPGA Tour victory of the year, shooting a 6-under 65 to rally past second-round leader Michelle Wie. Tseng birdied four of five holes early on the back nine, then held on for a one-stroke victory over Wie with a birdie on No. 18. Tseng finished at 13-under 200. Wie (69) gave up the lead on the back nine — the same half of the course she played in 7-under 28 during a scintillating stretch Saturday. “She’s just so good,” Tseng said of Wie. “I just really play, one shot at a time, but if I don’t make lots of birdies today, I couldn’t win.” Japan’s Mika Miyazato (64) was third at 10 under at Pinnacle Country Club. Tseng has five career LPGA Tour victories, including three majors. She won the Kraft Nabisco Championship and Women’s British Open this year. Juli Inkster, who at 50 was trying to become the oldest player to win on the tour, entered the day tied for second, but shot 72 and finished seven shots back. Inkster was grouped with Tseng and Wie on the final day, with the 20year-old Wie trying for her second straight win. She won the Canadian Women’s Open late last month. Wie led by three strokes after two rounds but fell into a tie with Inkster at 9 under when she three-putted No. 6 for a bogey. Wie responded with a birdie on No. 7 and led Tseng by two strokes after both players birdied the 11th. “Yani played great,” Wie said. “Usually, if you’re 12 under, it’s good enough. I played good today. I had faith in myself, a couple iron shots went a little bit left today.” Tseng kept the pressure on. Although Wie scrambled to make pars on Nos. 13, 14 and 15, Tseng birdied 12, 14 and 15 to take the lead. Wie then bogeyed No. 16 to fall two strokes back, but hit an outstanding tee shot on the par-3 17th and made a birdie, one of only six on that hole all day. That set up No. 18, a 515yard par 5 that Wie had eagled the previous day. Tseng missed the fairway but hit a tremendous second shot from about 200 yards to the fringe, around 20 feet from the hole. Wie then missed the green with her second shot, all but ending her chances. Both players finished with birdies — Tseng’s on a putt from inside 2 feet. Tseng has played well in majors, but she struggled in some of the less prestigious tournaments. Since winning the Women’s British Open, she tied for 45th at the Safeway Classic and missed the cut at the Canadian Women’s Open. “I missed the cut last tournament and then I win this tournament,” Tseng said. “It means so much difference for me — seems like I was really prepared and ready for this tournament.” She’s now firmly involved in the discussion of who might take over the mantle as women’s golf ’s next dominant player after the recent retirements of Annika Sorenstam and Lorena Ochoa. “When I was young, I was watching them play, so I just feel like I really need to win more tournaments, to be really working hard to be chasing them,” Tseng said. —AP

ROGERS: Yani Tseng of Taiwan poses for a photo with her trophy after winning the LPGA’s Northwest Arkansas Championship golf tournament. —AP

The Tiger and Phil show still a ratings grabber LEMONT: Even with no title on the line, the Tiger and Phil Show still pulls in the crowds as the world number one and two proved when they went toe-to-toe in the final round of the BMW Championship on Sunday. Eight shots off the lead and teeing off nearly two hours ahead of the final pairing of Ryan Moore and Dustin Johnson, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson may have been out of contention but they were never out of the spotlight. It marked the 26th time Woods and Mickelson had been paired together and, while the meeting lacked significance, there was no shortage of the electricity and drama that accompanies all great rivalries. “Hey Tiger, what’s up man?” offered Mickelson as the two players appeared on the first tee. “Phil, how’s it going?” Woods replied. With pleasantries exchanged, the two golfers retired to their respective corners, Mickelson setting up on one side of the tee box and Woods the other. While Mickelson and Woods had few words for each other, the galleries had plenty to say. From the Chicago Black Sox to Gover nor Rod Blagojevich, residents of Chicago are no strangers to scandal and the galleries showing Woods plenty of love despite the ongoing revelations of infidelity that resulted in his recent divorce. “I think we’re a little more tolerant here,” said Jack after watching Woods par his opening hole. “This is a very liberal city. We forgive everybody even (President) Clinton.” While Woods enjoyed a slight edge on the applause metre, Mickelson was not without

his supporters in the crowd lined up five deep to catch a glimpse of the world’s two most famous golfers. Coming into the final round neither player had performed even close to their peak form but the presence of Woods spur red Mickelson to his best round of the week, a four-under 67 to level their lifetime series at 11-11-4. “I enjoy it,” said Mickelson. “He certainly brings the best out in me. That wasn’t the case earlier on. “But I love playing with Tiger, I feel like he gets the best out of me now.” Woods did not enjoy the day quite as much, his PGA Tour season coming to an early end after failing to earn spot in the Tour Championship. For the first time in 15-years, Woods finished his PGA Tour campaign without claiming a single title but the world number one managed to exit with three birdies on a bogey-free back nine for a final round oneunder 70. The back-nine charge, however, was far too little, too late to earn Woods a place in the elite 30-man field with for the lucrative season-ending Tour Championship. So while Mickelson will be in Atlanta chasing the $10 million bonus, Woods will be at home practising. “I was looking forward to only getting one week break but now I’ve got two,” said Woods. “It’ll be good because now I can practice at home in peace and away from everybody and put some work in. “It’ll be nice to work on all these little things and concentrate on my game a little bit more.” —Reuters



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

McCaw rides to the rescue of new-look All Blacks SYDNEY: With the Tri-Nations and Bledisloe Cup silverware safely secured, New Zealand provided a glimpse of the next generation against arch-rivals Australia at Sydney’s Olympic stadium. Coach Graham Henry made five changes to the starting lineup who sealed the TriNations title against South Africa, benching old hands, including winger Joe Rokocoko and flanker Jerome Kaino. The reshuffle appeared to backfire as the All Blacks trailed by 13 points with 15 minutes to go. Victor Vito failed to fire at blindside flanker and flyhalf Aaron Cruden struggled with his restarts as the replacement for the injured Dan Carter.

Then Richie McCaw, celebrating his 52nd cap as captain to surpass Sean Fitzpatrick’s record, drifted off the pack near the left corner and turned the game on its head. Detaching from the scrum early, the 29year-old charged over the line for a try that would spark a 23-22 win, a record 10th straight victory over a demoralised Wallabies side and a clean sweep of the TriNations. “I guess when you reflect on most of the milestones, to have a win under your belt certainly makes it nice,” McCaw told reporters. “Yeah, (the record) is something I guess

I’m proud of but you can’t do it without a good bunch around you. “I just love playing for this team and being captain of this team, it’s a thrill every time going out.” Scrumhalf Piri Weepu, who has battled with Jimmy Cowan for the starting scrumhalf slot, slotted all five of his kicks. including the winning conversion of Kieran Read’s try. “Piri kicked magnificently, didn’t he? And he played really well so he’s a very special player,” Henry said after the All Blacks’ 15th straight victory. McCaw, who conjured a 78th minute try to rally the All Blacks to a last-gasp win over last year’s champions South Africa in

Johannesburg, struggled to explain the All Blacks’ ability to get out of jail beyond describing an unshakeable belief within the playing group. “We’ve got a bunch of senior guys now and a lot of players who’ve played a lot of tests and been through a lot of experiences,” he said. “So when you get in situations out there, the key is to be composed and as I said earlier, keep believing in what you’re doing. Henry added: “I think it’s got a lot to do with composure on the field and leadership out there and the senior players, and Richie in particular.” Meanwhile, Argentina, set to play in a

revamped Four Nations from 2012, have moved a step closer to joining the tournament’s governing body SANZAR, former Pumas captain Agustin Pichot said on Friday. The Argentine Rugby Union (UAR), whom Pichot represented at a meeting of SANZAR (South Africa, New Zealand and Australia Rugby) in Sydney that ended om Friday, wants to secure a permanent place in the southern hemisphere’s top competition. “Now, yes, there is only a little further to go to be officially part of Sanzar when everything is signed,” Pichot was quoted as saying on the UAR website (

Pichot fought long and hard to obtain a place for the Pumas, who he led to the bronze medal at the 2007 World Cup in France, in a top annual international competition. They were the only team in the world’s top 10 not playing in such an event. “It has beem a long, tiring process but I hope that now we have an accord. It has all been agreed and in SANZAR’s hands and they must send the agreed (points to us) in writing one last time,” Pichot added. The former scrumhalf said that with the Tri Nations already an economically successful competition, the challenge now was “to give it added value, not only on the pitch but also off it.” — Reuters

Rain washes out final

NEW YORK: A security guard waits on center court during a rain delay before the men’s championship match at the US Open tennis tournament. Play was postponed for the day due to inclement weather. The finals will be played late yesterday. — AP

USTA defends roofless courts after washout NEW YORK: The US Tennis Association defended their decision to carry on staging the US Open without the benefit of a covered court even as rain on Sunday postponed the men’s final for the third year in a row. The rain forced world number one Rafa Nadal, seeking to become the seventh man to complete a career grand slam, and Serbian third seed Novak Djokovic to wait until late yesterday to contest the last grand slam final of the year. Both the Australian Open and Wimbledon championships have retractable roofs to deal with dodgy weather and French Open officials have discussed the possibility. “It’s technically complex and financially challenging,”USTA spokesman Chris Widmaier told Reuters. “At a cost of more than $150 million, do you spend that on a roof or continue to fund grassroots tennis programs in this country?” Widmaier said $100 million had been spent on improvements at the Flushing Meadows complex in the last five years, with the biggest expense being a new indoor training center. He also said money from the US Open was fun-

neled into player development, grants and scholarships and to improving tennis facilities around the country, which included providing help to resurface 1,100 courts across the United States. Widmaier said USTA president Lucy Garvin is heading a committee that will be make recommendations to the tennis association on future improvements to the National Tennis Center complex and some options being looked at included covering smaller courts at less expense. The tournament’s second court, Louis Armstrong Stadium, seats 10,500 compared to 23,771 at Arthur Ashe Stadium. Four-time US Open winner John McEnroe, now a TV commentator at the championships, said last year he had lobbied USTA officials from the start to put a roof over Arthur Ashe Stadium when it was built to replace Louis Armstrong Stadium in 1997 as the tournament’s main stage. “It seemed like a no-brainer but people at the USTA decided they wanted to build the biggest (stadium),” McEnroe said about the Ashe centre court. “But at the same price they could’ve had a slightly smaller stadium and had a roof.”—Reuters

NEW YORK: Rafa Nadal will have to wait at least one more day for a chance to complete his collection of grand slam titles after persistent rain washed out Sunday’s US Open men’s final against Novak Djokovic. For the third year in a row, the championship decider was postponed until Monday after foul weather ruined any chance of the match proceeding as scheduled. Rain began falling less than two hours before the match was due to begin, forcing a halt to the women’s doubles final that was nearing completion in Arthur Ashe Stadium. About three and a half hours later, with no end in sight to the downpour, tournament officials decided to abandon play and reschedule the men’s final at 4 p.m. (2000 GMT) on Monday. “Due to the continued uncertainty of the weather forecast for the remainder of the evening, and with the desire to be fair to the players and to our fans, the US Open men’s single championship will be postponed until Monday,” tournament organisers said in a statement. More than 20,000 people who had tickets for the match were forced to make a retreat while the delay stalled Nadal’s bid to capture the one grand slam title that has eluded him. The Spaniard has already won the other three major titles during his career and a victory in New York would see him become just the seventh man to win all four grand slams. The world number one was an overwhelming favourite to win the title after cruising into his first New York final without dropping a set. But the delay gives an unexpected reprieve to Djokovic, who was left battling exhaustion after beating Roger Federer in a gruelling five-set semi-final on Saturday. The extra day of rest will give the Serbian a chance to recover after he endured a sleepless night. —Reuters

NEW DELHI: An inside view of the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium and the newly-installed aerostat, a 80x40 m helium balloon to be used for the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2010 Commonwealth Games. The Indian capital is scheduled to host the Commonwealth Games October 3-14, the biggest sporting event in the city since the 1982 Asian Games. — AFP

A triumph for the team, not team orders MILAN: After all the talk of Ferrari ‘team orders’ in the build-up to Monza, Fernando Alonso’s Italian Grand Prix victory at the weekend was a triumph for teamwork at its very best. The Spaniard, a controversial winner in Germany in July when Ferrari were fined $100,000 for ordering Brazilian Felipe Massa to move aside and let the double world champion win, paid tribute to his team. “The team did a fantastic job again with a fantastic pitstop,” Alonso said, his title challenge very much revived. “There was one lap to push and rely on the mechanics. I think the lap was more or less okay, nothing special, but the pit stop was superb.” The pressure on the mechanics was immense, with a nation holding its breath for the red team in their home grand prix as Alonso battled McLaren’s world champion Jenson Button for the lead, but they did not put a foot wrong. Button’s pitstop, a lap earlier, had lasted 4.2 seconds while Ferrari had Alonso’s tyres changed in 3.4. That was fundamental, with the Spaniard emerging barely a car length ahead to take the lead and keep it. Button did not blame his team in a post-race news conference and told Reuters afterwards that he had encountered problems as he entered the pitlane and feared collecting a penalty for speeding. “When I hit the brakes, the rears locked solid and that’s something I was struggling with all race,” he said. “Then

I got anti-stall on the way into the pits and when you have that you can’t see what speed you do on the dash, so it was a bit of a nightmare.” Alonso leaves Monza third in the championship, 21 points behind Red Bull’s overall leader Mark Webber with five races remaining. McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton, who went out on the first lap at Monza, is just 16 points ahead of his former team mate. Red Bull lead both championships, by a few points, and will be the team to beat at the next race in Singapore, but Alonso has the bit between his teeth. The Spaniard has been saying, even at the lowest points of his season, that he can still win the championship and recent results have shown that he is not talking nonsense. Since Germany, when he was gifted victory by Massa, Alonso has scored more points than any other driver. In the last four races, the little Spaniard has taken 68 points to Webber’s 59, Sebastian Vettel’s 42, Hamilton’s 37 and Button’s 32. Ferrari have taken 125 points to Red Bull’s 101 and McLaren’s 69. Alonso has won before in Singapore and at Japan’s Suzuka circuit, as well as finishing on the podium five times in Brazil. South Korea’s new circuit is an unknown for everybody and Ferrari will have plenty of support in Abu Dhabi. Most importantly, as the circus leaves Europe to criss-cross the world for the last ‘flyaway’ races, Alonso has done it all

before. “He’s going to be competitive, but it depends on how competitive the Ferrari is,” said Button. “That is the thing. If the Ferrari is not quick enough, he won’t be in contention. “He’s been in a position fighting for the championship three times before, so he knows how to conduct himself and he is a definite championship contender. But no more than myself, Lewis, Vettel or Webber.” The magic of this season is that, whereas in the past it has usually boiled down to a duel between two rivals, this time there are still five men with a good chance of winning and taking the fight down to the wire. Many pundits had predicted that Monza would see at least one of the five fall by the wayside but instead the battle only got tougher and the quintet more bunched up than ever. Red Bull’s Vettel, the last of the five, is just 24 points behind his team mateless than one win or 10 points in old currency. Hamilton and Alonso were team mates in 2007 when Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen won three of the last four races to come back from a 26-point deficit-and 17 with two races to go-and win the title from the McLaren duo by a single point. “It’s now time to deliver. Five races to go, so let’s try to do our maximum, never give up and we will try, knowing it’s going to be very difficult,” said Alonso. —Reuters

Wrestling chief lauds India’s world meet gold

TOKYO: Kazuhiko Takahashi of Japan throws Ramziddin Sayidov of Uzbekistan during a men’s open category match at the World Judo Championships. Sayidov won the match. — AP

NEW DELHI: India’s top wrestling official said yesterday that a World Championship gold won by their best athlete has boosted the morale of its doping-plagued squad ahead of the Commonwealth Games. Olympic Games bronze medalist Sushil Kumar on Sunday defeated Russian Alan Gogaev 3-1 in the 66-kilogram freestyle final in Moscow to earn India its first ever gold at the world meet. Wrestling Federation of India president GS Mander said “the victory comes at a very important time because everyone is looking forward to India doing well at the Commonwealth Games.” Mander said he was heartened with the result just three weeks ahead of the games, especially after four wrestlers tested positive for a banned stimulant earlier this month. “There have been some setbacks in recent weeks with the

MOSCOW: Indian Kumar Sushil (red) fights for the gold with Russian Alan Gogaev during the 66 kg freestyle final at the World Wrestling Championships. —AFP dope results that forced us to name replacements for four wrestlers,” said Mander. The wrestlers had tested positive for stimulant methylhexanamine in routine tests conducted by the National Anti

Doping Agency. “Though there is no direct bearing on others’ prospects because of those doping cases, Kumar’s victory is a morale booster for the team and shows the kind of form he is

in,” Mander said. India is banking on wrestling to help boost its medal tally at the Commonwealth Games, which are scheduled to be held here from October 3 to 14. —AP


Tuesday, September 14, 2010


FRANCE: Schalke’s players warm up during a training session on the eve of the UEFA Champions League football match Lyon versus Schalke 04 at the Gerland stadium in Lyon. —AFP

Lyon struggling ahead of opener LYON: After a poor start in the French league, Lyon is looking to get things going in the Champions league today when the team hosts German club Schalke. Lyon, which lost to Bayern Munich in last year’s Champions League semifinals, has earned only five points from five games in the French league and is languishing in 16th place in the standings. “To reach the knockout phase of the competition, we need a good start,” Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas said after Saturday’s disappointing 1-1 draw with Valenciennes. “It’s more important to start with a good result in the Champions League than in the league, even if a win against Valenciennes would have boosted our morale.”

Schalke got off to an even worse start than Lyon this season, losing all three games in the Bundesliga. Lyon, the best French team over the last decade, is playing in the Champions League for the 11th consecutive season and has reached the knockout phase in each of the last seven seasons. “I trust my staff and my players. I have an enormous trust in this group and our goals remain the same: to win the league and go as far as possible in the Champions League” Aulas said. “Don’t count on me to turn my back on them. I’m the one who should be blamed.” Lyon thought the signing of France playmaker Yoann Gourcuff would help the team improve, but the former Bordeaux player did-

n’t immediately live up to the high expectations raised by his pedigree. Against Valenciennes, Gourcuff showed he could team up well with striker Lisandro Lopez, who won back a starting spot upfront, but the former AC Milan player is still lacking stamina. “He needs more rhythm,” Lyon coach Claude Puel said. “He’s doing well, but he needs to improve physically.” Lyon’s struggles also coincided with France midfielder Jeremy Toulalan problems. Toulalan, who recently returned to his favored position as a holding midfielder after being used in the back four, was suspended for a match from the France’s national team for his role in the players’ strike at the World Cup and he admitted he is struggling to recov-

er from that trauma. “It’s more psychological than physical,” Toulalan said. Left back Aly Cissokho, the third Lyon player to injure a hamstring this season, is likely to be sidelined for the Schalke game despite his claims he is fit again. “I feel good both mentally and physically,” Cissokho said. “I’m ready to play. I want to show what I can do but I’ve been told I won’t be part of the group. It’s hard to understand, because I have the feeling I’m 100 percent right now.” Schalke goes to Lyon without defender Christoph Metzelder because of a groin injury and Atsuto Uchida, who has a broken toe. “We should not get into a panic now,” Schalke coach Felix Magath said. “It’s a different com-

petition and we have a good chance of doing something there.” Defender Nicolas Plestan, recently signed from Lille, has a bruised nose but will be available. In Group B’s other game, Benfica hosts Hapoel Tel Aviv, which won the Israeli title last season for the first time in 10 years and is one of six Champions League newcomers. Portuguese champion Benfica has made its worst start ever in the domestic league, recording three defeats in four games. And returning to the Champions League for the first time in five years, the team will be without Argentine winger Eduardo Salvio and Brazilian forward Alan Kardec. Hapoel striker Itai Shechter, who scored 22 league goals as the team clinched an historic Israeli league-

and-cup double last season, is set to return to the starting lineup after injuring a hamstring last month. Hapoel is coming off a disappointing 2-2 draw at minnows Hapoel Acre on Saturday, which left it sixth in the standings with only four points from its first three games. However, there was optimism in the squad ahead of the team’s flight to Portugal. “I think it’s about a 50-50 game,” Hapoel’s Nigerian goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama said. “I mean, they are better than us, more organized, a side with more established players. But I think we are going there to represent Israel, we are going there to give a fight, to make this country known in European football.”—AP

Ferdinand back to plug United’s leaky defence

MEXICO: San Luis’ Jaime Correa (right) is fouled by Pumas’ Leandro Augusto during a Mexican soccer league game. San Luis won 1-0. —AP

America defeat Morelia MEXICO CITY: Goals from Matias Vuoso and Miguel Layun gave America a 2-0 win over Morelia and top slot in Group 2 of Mexico’s Apertura tournament on Sunday. America’s sixth straight game without a loss moved it onto 12 points. In Sunday’s other match, San Luis defeated Pumas 1-0 with Tressor Moreno scoring the winner. The victory left San Luis with 10 points in Group 2. Pumas have 10 points in Group 3. Cruz Azul defeated Atlas 3-1 on Saturday to move up to 18 points in

Group 3 — the top point total in the league. Santos and Monterrey lead Group 1 with 15 points. On Saturday, Santos were trounced 5-2 by Queretaro and Monterrey defeated Tigres 1-0. Vuoso scored after only five minutes and Layun got his in the 60th after Morelia goalkeeper Federico Vilar was caught off his line. Horacio Cervantes, Javier Orozco and Christian Gimenez found the net to give Cruz Azul win at Atlas, which is still looking for its first victory. Cervantes opened the scoring for

Cruz Azul with a header in the 15th minute and Orozco added a second in the 34th. Gregorio Torres pulled a goal back for Atlas after a pass from Hebert Alferez in the 75th minute and the game looked to be in the balance when Cervantes was shown a second yellow card and sent off for a tug on Alferez. But Cruz Azul made the game safe when Gimenez broke free on the edge of the box and hit a low diagonal shot past goalkeeper Jose Canales in the 88th minute. —AP

Wounded Barcelona have Panathinaikos in their sights MADRID: Panathinaikos could be on the receiving end of a Champions League backlash from a wounded Barcelona today after the La Liga giants were stunned 20 at fortress Nou Camp by unfancied Hercules at the weekend. Barca host the Greek side for their opening Group D clash (1845 GMT) smarting from a first home defeat in the Spanish league since May 2009, one that defender Daniel Alves said had raised the hackles of coach Pep Guardiola’s players. “Winning is the only thing that matters at this club and when we don’t win we get angry,” the Brazilian said at a news conference on Sunday. “Whatever team we’re facing we’re always motivated to win and Tuesday will be no different. We’ll go out there with the same motivation but we hope that we show a bit more quality.” Barca were denied a second straight triumph in Europe’s elite club competition when they lost out in last season’s semi-finals to Jose Mourinho’s Inter Milan, who went on to defeat Bayern Munich in the final at the Bernabeu. With Portuguese Mourinho now at Barca’s arch rivals Real Madrid, the Catalans will be keen to lay down a marker and kick their latest European campaign off with

a convincing home win. Guardiola’s decision to rest World Cup-winners Xavi, Sergio Busquets, Pedro and Carles Puyol against Hercules backfired and even with Spain striker David Villa and Argentina forward Lionel Messi on the pitch the 2009 winners were worryingly toothless. However, Spain midfielder Andres Iniesta, scorer of the winning goal against Netherlands in the World Cup final in July, said the Barca players would learn from the defeat and move on. “We play a lot of matches and we know that what counts is the day to day,” he told reporters. “This was a lesson for us and that’s that.” Back in the Champions League after an absence of one season, Panathinaikos warmed up for Tuesday’s match with a 1-0 win at Aris Salonika that leaves them in third place after two matches. Their best Champions League performance came in the 2001-02 season when they reached the last eight before losing to Barca. France international Djibril Cisse, who helped Panathinaikos to a Greek league and cup double last season, scoring 29 goals in all competitions, netted the winner at Aris and will likely play as a lone striker at the Nou Camp. — Reuters

MANCHESTER: Rio Ferdinand will return from injury to shore up Manchester United’s defence and striker Wayne Rooney will put aside private turmoil for their Champions League opener against Rangers today. Rooney, who last week appealed for privacy after days of media speculation about his marriage, was left out of the squad for Saturday’s Premier League trip to Everton as manager Alex Ferguson aimed to spare him abuse from fans of his former club. United conceded two goals in stoppage time to draw 3-3, making news of the dependable Ferdinand’s return after knee ligament problems particularly welcome before the all-British Group C match at Old Trafford (1845 GMT). “I think Rio will play on Tuesday night,” local media quoted Ferguson as saying of the England defender who has been out of action since hurting his knee during training at the World Cup in June. “It’s a European tie at home and we’ve got to take advantage of that.” For that reason, Ferguson is likely to stick by his suggestion that Rooney, United’s top goalscorer in the competition last year with five goals, will be back in the team after what the striker called an “extremely painful” time. Scottish champions Rangers come into the match on the back of their own last-minute drama after Kenny Miller came off the bench to seal a 2-1 victory over Hamilton Academical on Saturday. The striker said Rangers, who failed to win any of their six Champions League matches last season, will need good fortune against three-times European champions United. “You’re playing against one of the best teams in Europe, if not the world,” he told BBC Scotland. “It’s going to take a lot of hard work and a bit of luck.” Rangers expect Steven Whittaker to be fit after he missed Saturday’s game with a calf injury sustained on international duty with Scotland but fellow defender Kirk Broadfoot is doubtful after limping off at the weekend with an ankle problem. The clubs’ managers know each other well, with Walter Smith having worked as an assistant to Ferguson at United and for the Scotland national team. Ferguson has the upper hand against the club he supported as a boy and who he also played for, with United having beaten Rangers and kept clean sheets in both previous encounters, in the group stage of the 2003-04 Champions League. —Reuters

LONDON: Manchester United’s Dimitar Berbatov (left) during a training session with teammates at Carrington training ground, the day before their Champion’s League soccer match against Rangers. Rio Ferdinand is on the right. —AP

Inter open Champions League defence MILAN: Struggling Diego Milito has looked a totally different player this term to the striker who so emphatically sealed Inter Milan’s Champions League triumph in May but he will still start today’s opener at Twente Enschede. The Argentinian will lead the line as Inter open their defence in Group A because he retains the faith of new coach Rafael Benitez and, more importantly, is one of very few options up front. “Diego will gradually get better and better. We have to work,” Benitez told reporters. “Do we lack an extra striker? I think that with Diego and Samuel (Eto’o) we can do what we have in mind. We must move more on the wings to surprise the opposing team because by now everyone knows how Wesley Sneijder links up with Milito.” Inter owner Massimo Moratti sold forward Mario Balotelli to Manchester City and decided not to replace him, leaving the treble winners weaker on paper than they were last season. Benitez, whose side have been off colour for the start of the campaign, pleaded for new blood but instead has been left with only Milito, Eto’o and Goran Pandev as established forwards. He had been playing all three at once, meaning options on the bench were scant, before surprisingly selecting inexperienced French striker Jonathan Biabiany ahead of Pandev to start Saturday’s laboured 2-1 win over Udinese. The 22-year-old did little and

poses no real threat to Milito, who scored both goals in the Champions League final victory over Bayern Munich having also netted winners in the scudetto-clinching match and the Italian Cup final last May. The early encounters of this season have been very different however and he has not come close to scoring, even missing a penalty in the European Super Cup defeat by

Matches on TV (Local Timings)

UEFA Champions League Kobenhavn v Rubin Kazan 21:45 Aljazeera Sport + 1 Bremen v Tottenham Aljazeera Sport + 10


FC Twente v Inter Aljazeera Sport + 5


Benfica v Hapoel Aljazeera Sport + 8


Lyon v Schalke 04 Aljazeera Sport + 7


Bursaspor v Valencia Aljazeera Sport + 2


Man United v Rangers Aljazeera Sport + 3 Aljazeera Sport + 4


Barcelona v Panathinaikos 21:45 Aljazeera Sport + 9

Atletico Madrid. Left back Cristian Chivu limped out of the Udinese win and is a slight doubt for Tuesday along with Dejan Stankovic while Maicon may recover from a knock. Thiago Motta has a knee injury. Dutch champions Twente beat VVV Venlo 2-1 on Saturday with Bryan Ruiz and Roberto Rosales on target. They stunned the Netherlands by winning their first league title and believe they can cause more surprises against Inter. “It’ll be hard but we have a chance. We always create chances at home,” midfielder Wout Brama told “The most important thing is not to approach this match like it’s a little bonus. It’s the UEFA Champions League and we’re the Dutch champions. We have to show that.” Former Belgium goalkeeper Michel Preud’homme is now the coach, having taken over from former England boss Steve McClaren, who left to manage VfL Wolfsburg. Probable teams: Twente Enschede: 13-Nikolay Mihaylov; 15Roberto Rosales, 4-Peter Wisgerhof, 19-Douglas, 33-Dwight Tiendalli; 6Wout Brama, 9-Luuk De Jong, 8-Theo Janssen; 10-Bryan Ruiz, 21-Marc Janko, 22-Nacer Chadli Inter Milan: 1: Julio Cesar; 13Maicon, 6-Lucio, 25-Walter Samuel, 39Davide Santon; 19-Esteban Cambiasso, 4-Javier Zanetti; Wesley Sneijder; 27Goran Pandev, 22-Diego Milito; 9Samuel Eto’o Referee: Oliveira Alves Garcia (Portugal). —Reuters

McNabb wins in Redskins debut, 13-7 over Cowboys ISTANBUL: USA players display their trophy on the podium after beating Turkey in the final of the World Basketball Championship. —AP

Classy Durant ends US 16-year long wait for title ISTANBUL: World championship favourites the United States ended a long wait by beating Turkey 81-64 in the final on Sunday to win their first title in 16 years thanks to inspirational forward Kevin Durant. Still only 21 and coming off his third professional season, the Oklahoma Thunder prodigy won the tournament’s Most Valuable Player award with a series of majestic performances. Easing past his markers to score from a wide range of positions, Durant racked up 28 points in the final, including 20 in the first half after the hosts had taken an early 17-14 lead. Durant buried one three-pointer after another to give the US a 42-32 lead at halftime and his Oklahoma team mate Russel Westbrook provided excellent support with 13 points, six rebounds and three assists. “I am happy to come home with a gold medal and I was blessed for such a coach as Coach K,” said Durant, referring to U.S. coach Mike Krzyzedwski who also steered the Americans to the 2008 Olympic gold medal. “I was put in a great position to come here and be one of the main players, I took the challenge and it was a tough task to prepare for the international game. “Calling us a B-team was great motivation because it (that label) was coming back from the United States,” added Durant, who emerged as the team leader through the absence of household names such as Kobe Bryant and Lebron James. Los Angeles centre Lamar Odom chipped in with

15 points and 11 rebounds as the United states dominated in all departments, collecting 42 rebounds and forcing 14 turnovers. Phoenix Suns forward Hidayet Turkoglu, who limped to the dressing room after a first-half collision, returned with his strapped knee to lead Turkey with 16 points and seven rebounds. Although they were outclassed by an athletic US team superior in individual skill and ability, the Turks still had plenty to cheer about after securing a maiden podium finish in their third world championship. They got a standing ovation from the passionate home fans in the Sinan Erdem Dome, which had put the wind in their sails in every match during their 80 run leading up to the final. But the Turks had no answer to Durant and seemed sapped of energy after Saturday’s dramatic semi-final win over Serbia, when they scored on the buzzer to turn looming defeat into victory. “No one expected us to get this far when the tournament started and I was proud to be the captain of this team as I was honoured to be a part of it,” said Turkoglu. “We weren’t at our best tonight or last night against Serbia but I told the guys to just relax and enjoy the game because, win or lose, that’s the most important thing,” he added. Lithuania, brushed aside by the US in the other semi-final, bounced back to win the bronze medal with a 99-88 win over Serbia earlier on Sunday. Versatile forward Linas Kleiza shone with 33 points for Lithuania, who will host next year’s European championship.—Reuters

Storm shatter Dream SEATTLE: Sue Bird made a tiebreaking jump shot from the foul line with 2.6 seconds left as the Seattle Storm beat the Atlanta Dream 79-77 in Game 1 of the WNBA finals on Sunday. Angel McCoughtry had a last-second try for the Dream, but her long 3-pointer from the left side bounced off the far side of the rim at the buzzer. The best-of-five series resumes Tuesday night in Seattle. Bird also hit a key shot in the Western Conference finals, making a 3-pointer with 2.8 seconds left to give the Storm a 91-88 victory against Phoenix in the clinching game. “I was able to get a real good look, and it was a pull-up, which is what I like, and swish,” Bird said Sunday. “It’s just something that, situations like this, I was put into at a very early age. At this

point in my career, it’s something I enjoy. Those situations are fun — especially when they go in.” League most valuable player Lauren Jackson of Australia had 26 points and eight rebounds for Seattle. Bird finished with 14 points, and Camille Little had 18 points and 11 rebounds. McCoughtry and Iziane Castro Marques had 19 points apiece for Atlanta. Sancho Lyttle added 10 points and 14 rebounds. Jackson made a 3-pointer late in the third to give Seattle the lead for good at 52-49 and the Storm carried a six-point advantage into the final period. After shooting just 2 of 7 in the first half, Jackson went 5 of 8 in the third, scoring 14 points. “We talked at halftime about how we wanted to go through her and play through her,” Storm coach Brian Agler said. “Even if she doesn’t score, we wanted her handling the ball.”—AP

Rodriguez regains Tour of Spain lead COTOBELLO: Spanish rider Joaquin Rodriguez regained the overall lead of the Tour of Spain after yesterday’s mountainous 16th stage, won by his compatriot Mikel Nieve. The Katusha rider, who finished the stage third, has a lead of 33 seconds over Italy’s Vincenzo Nibali, who cracked on the final climb of the 181.4-kilometre ride from Gijon to Cotobello to slip to second place overall. “It was important for me to regain the jersey again today. I will try to lose as little time as possible. Every second will count going into the final weekend,” said Rodriguez who took the leader’s red jersey for the first time on the 10th stage. “I ended the stage dead. I don’t think there has been any stage as hard as this one,” added the 31year-old, a stage winner at the Tour de France in July. Nieve dashed away from a breakaway group on the final climb up the Alto de Cotobello and soloed to victory in four hours, 51 minutes and 59 seconds, one minute and six seconds ahead of Luxembourg’s Frank Schleck of Saxo Bank. “I can’t believe it,” the 26-year-old said. “I attacked from far away, we had nothing to lose, the team gave everything it could for me.” Nieve dedicated the stage win to his Euskaltel teammate Igor Anton, who crashed out of the Tour of Spain after suffering injuries in a crash inside the last 10km of the race’s 14th stage on Saturday. “He (Anton) deserves it without a doubt. He was the best rider in the Tour, he was sure to win it,” said Nieves. “We were doing a great job, working for Anton to win this Vuelta. Everything fell apart for us, but we came back to fight again.” Anton boosted his profile during the Tour of Spain by wearing the red jersey for five days and

LANDOVER: DeAngelo Hall returned a fumble 32 yards for Washington’s only touchdown, and Donovan McNabb completed 15 of 32 passes for 171 yards in his Redskins debut in a seasonopening, 13-7 win over the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday. It was also the Redskins’ curtain raiser for Mike Shanahan, and the longtime Denver Broncos coach watched his defense keep the Cowboys at bay when it mattered. With 3 seconds left, and the ball at the 13-yard line, Tony Romo scrambled to find Roy Williams open in the end zone. But Alex Barron was called for holding, negating the winning touchdown. Romo completed 31 of 41 passes for 282 yards. Miles Austin caught 10 passes for 146 yards and scored the game’s only offensive touchdown.

Texans 34, Colts 24 At Houston, Arian Foster ran for a team-record 231 yards and scored three touchdowns to lead Houston over Indianapolis. Foster, an undrafted rookie who spent most of last season on the practice squad, had 33 carries in gaining the most yards by a Colts’ opponent. He had the NFL’s second-best opening weekend rushing performance since 1933, topped only by Buffalo’s OJ Simpson’s 250 in 1973 against New England. Foster also surpassed Domanick Davis’ team record of 158 yards rushing, set in 2004 at Jacksonville.

Packers 27, Eagles 20 At Philadelphia, Aaron Rodgers threw a pair of touchdown passes and Mason Crosby kicked a team-record 56-yard field goal as Green Bay won despite a vintage performance by Philadelphia’s Michael Vick. In their first game since trading Donovan McNabb to Washington, the Eagles started with Kevin Kolb and finished with Vick. Kolb left with a concussion at halftime, so Vick played meaningful snaps for an extended period for the first time in nearly four years. Vick, a three-time Pro Bowl quarterback during six seasons in Atlanta, finished with 175 yards passing and ran for 103, but could overcome a 20-3 deficit.

Bears 19, Lions 14 At Chicago, Jay Cutler threw for 372 yards, including a 28-yard TD pass to Matt Forte with 1:32 left as Chicago held on against Detroit. The Lions, who lost quarterback Matthew Stafford with a right shoulder injury late in the first half, nearly pulled out the win but Shaun Hill’s 25-yard pass to Calvin Johnson in the end zone with 25 seconds left was ruled incomplete after a review. Two incompletions later, the Lions walked off the field with their 21st straight road loss.

Seahawks 31, 49ers 6 At Seattle, Matt Hasselbeck threw for two touchdowns and ran for another as Seattle gave new coach Pete Carroll a winning start. Carroll left Southern California after last season and is back coaching in the NFL for the first time in 11 years. The Seahawks trailed 6-0 and ran just seven plays for 11 yards in the first 11/2 quarters, then outscored San Francisco 31-0 the rest of the way.

Cardinals 17, Rams 13

SPAIN: The pack rides during the Tour of Spain. —AFP winning two stages before he was forced to bow out. The riders will enjoy the second rest day of the 21-stage race today. The Tour of Spain resumes Wednesday with a time trial in the town of Penafiel. “The time I have now on Nibali gives me a little margin going into the time trial, but it’s not enough to win this Vuelta,” said Rodriguez. “I know I will lose time against him there. I need to try to limit the losses and attack again Saturday.” The Tour of Spain, the third of the Grand Tours after the Giro d’Italia and Tour de France, wraps up in Madrid on Sunday.—AFP

At St. Louis, Larry Fitzgerald caught a 21-yard touchdown pass for the go-ahead score late in the fourth quarter, helping Arizona spoil a solid debut by No. 1 pick Sam Bradford. Derek Anderson hung in the pocket despite taking a pounding from the St. Louis pass rush, going 22 for 41 for 297 yards in his first start as the replacement for the retired Kurt Warner. Steve Breaston caught seven passes for 132 yards and Tim Hightower and LaRod StephensHowling combined for 103 yards rushing for an offense without Beanie Wells (knee).

Buccaneers 17, Browns 14 At Tampa, Florida, Josh Freeman returned from a threeweek layoff because of a broken thumb on his throwing hand and

LANDOVER: Washington Redskins wide receiver Anthony Armstrong (13) misses a pass in the end zone while being defended by Dallas Cowboys cornerback Mike Jenkins (left) during the second half of an NFL football game.—AP tossed a pair of touchdowns to help the Bucs overcome an 11point deficit. Freeman threw a 3-yard TD pass to Mike Williams late in the first half. Freeman kept the goahead drive alive with a key third-down completion, then found Micheal Spurlock in the end zone for a 33-yard score that put Tampa Bay ahead 17-14 with just under seven minutes to go.

Patriots 38, Bengals 24 At Foxborough, Massachusetts, Tom Brady threw two of his three touchdown passes to Wes Welker to lead New England. The seasonopening victory came just three days after Brady was unhurt in a two-car crash then agreed to a contract making him the NFL’s highest paid player. Chad Ochocinco and Terrell Owens combined for 19 receptions for 212 yards and a touchdown for the Bengals.

Giants 31, Panthers 18 At East Rutherford, New Jersey, the New York Giants opened their new $1.6 billion home by beating Florida with a big second half. Trailing 16-14 at halftime, the Giants surged behind secondyear receiver Hakeem Nicks, who caught his third touchdown pass from Eli Manning. Ahmad Bradshaw set up his own 4-yard TD run in the fourth quarter with a 39-yard romp that provided the cushion New York needed to get some revenge on Carolina.

Jaguars 24, Broncos 17 At Jacksonville, Florida, David Garrard threw three touchdown passes and two to tight end Marcedes Lewis as Jacksonville won a game the team called one of the most important in franchise history. Garrard completed 16 of 21 passes for 170 yards. A big chunk of those went to Mike Thomas, who caught six passes for 89 yards. Maurice Jones-Drew ran for 98 yards.

Steelers 15, Falcons 9 At Pittsburgh, Rashard Mendenhall ran 50 yards for a touchdown 2:35 into overtime as Pittsburgh overcame a shaky start by replacement quarterback Dennis Dixon and a missed field goal attempt late in regulation. With the Steelers leaning heavily on their running game and defense without suspended star quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, Mendenhall carried 22 times for 120 yards and the game’s only touchdown. Hines Ward made six catches for 108 yards in his club record 26th career 100-yard game.

Dolphins 15, Bills 10 At Orchard Park, New York,

FOXBOROUGH: Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer is knocked out of bounds by New England Patriots cornerback Devin McCourty during the second half of an NFL football game. —AP linebacker Karlos Dansby and Miami’s new-look defense provided the Dolphins with the quick start they were looking for. Dansby, Miami’s top offseason free-agent addition, had a sack and eight tackles in helping Miami limit Buffalo to 166 yards on offense. Ronnie Brown scored on a 1yard plunge and Dan Carpenter hit field goals from 32 and 43

yards in allowing Miami to open the season with a win for the first time in five years. Chad Henne completed 21 of 34 passes for 182 yards for the Dolphins.

Titans 38, Raiders 13 At Nashville, Tennessee, Chris Johnson ran for 142 yards and two touchdowns, and Vince Young threw for two TDs and

Javon Ringer had a TD as Tennessee avoided any comparisons to last year’s 0-6 start with a season-opening rout. Oakland led 3-0 early after a Young fumble. Tennessee answered with 24 straight points to take control. The Titans also sacked new Raiders quarterback Jason Campbell four times and forced two turnovers they turned into 10 points.—AP

NFL result/standings Miami 15, Buffalo 10; Chicago 19,Detroit 14; Tennessee 38, Oakland 13; New England 38, Cincinnati 24; NY Giants 31, Carolina 18; Pittsburgh 15, Atlanta 9 (Ot); Tampa Bay 17, Cleveland 14; Jacksonville 24, Denver 17; Houston 34, Indianapolis 24; Seattle 31, San Francisco 6; Green Bay 27, Philadelphia 20; Arizona 17, St. Louis 13; Washington 13, Dallas 7. American Football Conference AFC East W L T PF PA New England 1 0 0 38 24 Miami 1 0 0 15 10 Buffalo 0 1 0 10 15 NY Jets 0 0 0 0 0 AFC North Pittsburgh 1 0 0 15 9 Cleveland 0 1 0 14 17 Cincinnati 0 1 0 24 38 Baltimore 0 0 0 0 0 AFC South Tennessee 1 0 0 38 13 Jacksonville 1 0 0 24 17 Houston 1 0 0 34 24 Indianapolis 0 1 0 24 34 AFC West Denver 0 1 0 17 24 Oakland 0 1 0 13 38 San Diego 0 0 0 0 0 Kansas City 0 0 0 0 0

PCT 1.000 1.000 0 0 1.000 0 0 0 1.000 1.000 1.000 0 0 0 0 0

National Football Conference NFC East NY Giants 1 0 0 31 18 Washington 1 0 0 13 7 Philadelphia 0 1 0 20 27 Dallas 0 1 0 7 13 NFC North Green Bay 1 0 0 27 20 Chicago 1 0 0 19 14 Minnesota 0 1 0 9 14 Detroit 0 1 0 14 19 NFC South New Orleans 1 0 0 14 9 Tampa Bay 1 0 0 17 14 Atlanta 0 1 0 9 15 Carolina 0 1 0 18 31 NFC West Seattle 1 0 0 31 6 Arizona 1 0 0 17 13 St. Louis 0 1 0 13 17 San Francisco 0 1 0 6 31

1.000 1.000 0 0 1.000 1.000 0 0 1.000 1.000 0 0 1.000 1.000 0 0

3D TV: Biggest breakthrough to hit home theater


EU, ECB inspectors review Greek economic plan


Schwarzenegger on China trade missions


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Mideast SWFs show resilience to crisis: Fitch Median GDP growth seen rising to 4% this year DUBAI: Fitch Ratings says in a new report that the global financial crisis has had a relatively muted impact on Middle East sovereign creditworthiness overall. All the region’s sovereign ratings remain on Stable Outlook. Median GDP growth slowed to 3% in 2009 from 4.5% in 2008 and will rise to 4% this year. However, oil and non-oil producers fared very differently. The large oil producers - Abu Dhabi (‘AA’/Stable), Kuwait (‘AA’/Stable), Libya (‘BBB+’/Stable) and Saudi Arabia (‘AA’/Stable) - were hardest hit as oil prices and production fell sharply. Non-oil exporters, on the other hand, fared much better than expected, especially given their strong trade links with Europe. Despite the adverse oil impact, all four large oil producers had substantial external assets and negligible debt, putting them in a strong position to address the challenge. Abu Dhabi and Saudi Arabia injected substantial fiscal stimulus, the former including support for Dubai. By contrast, stimulus measures in Kuwait and Libya were minimal. But in all cases, nonoil sectors continued to grow. Oil prices in this year’s $70-80/barrel range are comfortable for these countries, and all will record fiscal and current account surpluses this year, allowing them to maintain spending programs. By end2010, none will have suffered any material reduction in foreign assets as a percentage of GDP, compared to 2007. Bahrain - a much smaller oil exporter was in a weaker position, with external assets less than its larger oil producing neighbors. However, it too had room for fiscal stimulus given its small debt burden. It recorded the strongest growth of the rated GCC oil producers last year, both in the non-oil sector and overall, and still recorded a current account surplus. Its budget deficit will narrow sharply this year, and although debt will continue to rise, it remains below peer group medians. Financial sectors saw the most damage as external funding declined, credit growth ground to a halt and property prices went into reverse. Banks in the UAE and Kuwait suffered most and required infusions of official capital. By contrast, Saudi Arabia’s banks emerged largely unscathed. Bahrain’s retail banks did not require solvency support either, although wholesale banks needed support from foreign parents, often other GCC sovereigns. But the legacy of the crisis will be felt in subdued lending growth for a prolonged period, making the recovery more dependent on government infrastructure programs. Recent events confirm the relatively high macro volatility of the oil producers, especially compared with rated peers. This is mainly due to fluctuating oil prices and production. But in the run-up to this crisis, USD pegs dictated strongly negative real interest rates which played a part in the lending and house price boom and subsequent bust. With US interest rates likely to remain low for a prolonged period, and inflation ticking up, especially in Saudi Arabia, that policy conflict may re-appear relatively soon. Among non-oil producers, Egypt’s (‘BB+’/Stable) growth of 4.7% in 2009 and 5.3% in the year to June showed its increased resilience after recent reforms. It too found room for fiscal stimulus, a testament to its reduced debt burden. Nevertheless, the debt burden remains high and with growth momentum increasing, attention is re-focusing on fiscal consolidation. Morocco (‘BBB-’/Stable) and Tunisia (‘BBB’/Stable) approached the crisis with a manageable debt burden, also leaving room for fiscal stimulus. However, desired economic growth will be harder to achieve with EU trading partners growing slowly. Lebanon (‘B’/Stable) fared extremely well, with its banks attracting strong nonresident deposit inflows, triggering a virtuous circle of rising reserves, improved confidence, strong growth, and improved debt dynamics, explaining the rating upgrade in February. Risks for the oil exporters are renewed oil price weakness and for the non-oil exporters, a weaker-than-expected global economic outlook, especially in Europe. It should be noted that the region’s oil producers are more dependent on Asia than Europe and oil price dynamics are now driven as much by emerging market as developed country demand.One risk that has not been manifest recently is geo-political risk. However, it has not gone away. Tensions between Israel and Lebanon have risen this year; the Israel/Palestine issue is no closer to resolution; the threat of terrorism is ever present; and there are no signs of rapprochement between the west and Iran over its nuclear program. All these issues have the potential to flare up with little warning and weigh on the region’s ratings. —Reuters

Commodities market update

CRB performance hides volatility By Ole S Hansen


HAMBURG: Container being loaded on ships in the harbor of Hamburg, Germany. Growth in Germany - Europe’s largest single economy - was strong in the first half of the year. —AP

Basel eases bank capital raising fears, shares rise AMSTERDAM/LONDON: New bank capital rules agreed by global regulators brought relief to the world’s banks yesterday although one of the architects said the sector would eventually have to raise hundreds of billions of euros. The new requirements, known as Basel III, will demand banks hold top-quality capital totaling 7 percent of their risk-bearing assets, but a long lead-in time eased fears that lenders will have to rush to raise capital. Europe is the most likely region for banks to need to raise funds, notable in Germany, Spain and other weak spots. The new capital ratio represents a substantial increase from the current requirement of 2 percent, but is significantly lower than what banks had feared earlier this year and comes with a phase-in period extending in part to January 2019. The framework could free strong

banks with excess cash to return some to investors or look at acquisitions, analysts and investors said, although there remains the threat that larger international banks face a capital surcharge. “It will be hundreds of billions (of euros),” European Central Bank Governing Council member and head of the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision Nout Wellink said of total capital-raising needs. “Partly they will have to retain profit for years which they cannot use to pay shareholders or bonuses. For another part, this will vary from bank to bank, they will have to get it from the capital market,” Wellink, who heads the Dutch central bank, told Dutch NOS Radio 1 Journaal. European bank shares rose 2 percent and the euro jumped 1 percent versus the dollar as the prospect of a rush to raise cash receded. Banks will not be required to

meet the minimum core tier one capital requirement, which consists of shares and retained earnings worth at least 4.5 percent of assets, until 2015. An additional 2.5 percent “capital conservation buffer” will not need to be in place until 2019. “The message is that authorities have agreed and realized they need to let the banks recover first and start to lend to participate in the recovery,” said Guy de Blonay, who co-runs fund manager Jupiter’s 1.4 billion pound ($2.2 billion) Financial Opportunities Fund. Top German lender Deutsche Bank is seeking a headstart on rivals such as Commerzbank by announcing plans to raise almost 10 billion euros to bolster its capital. It said it would meet the Basel III rules by the end of 2013. Credit Suisse analysts said they would now regard 7 percent as the bare minimum for core Tier 1 capital, 8 percent as the market stan-

dard for adequately capitalized banks and 10 percent as the level at which surplus capital could be identified and potentially returned to investors. Banks in Asia also rose, including Japan, whose banks have some of the lowest capital levels in the region. Analysts at Macquarie estimate Japanese banks have on average a common equity ratio of 6.3 percent, just shy of the 7 percent requirement, suggesting little need to raise capital. “It’s no big bang for banks, not with a phase-in arrangement of five years,” said Commonwealth Securities analyst Craig James. When regulators issued an initial consultation document last year the new rules were expected to come into force by the end of 2012, but banks urged delay, citing worries that a speedy introduction would hit a fragile economic recovery. —Reuters


UAE banks rally after Dubai World debt deal DUBAI: Bank shares were among gainers as Dubai’s index hit a 16-week high yesterday, the first day’s trade since Dubai World reached an agreement with all but one of its creditors to restructure $24.9 billion in debt. Although largely priced into stocks, the Dubai World deal helped boost sentiment for lenders in the United Arab Emirates because it includes full repayment so banks should not require new provisions, analysts said. “(This will) limit greatly the negative impact of Dubai World’s restructuring on UAE banks’ equity,” said analyst William Mejia at Goldman Sachs in a note to clients. Emirates NBD climbed 5 percent, while Abu Dhabi-listed lenders also advanced. Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank added 3.7 percent and First Gulf Bank gained 4.8 percent. Dubai World’s deal will also lessen investors panic should other government-linked institutions fall into similar trouble, said Haissam Arabi, chief executive and fund manager at Gulfmena Alternative Investments. “It sets a precedent to follow for any future restructuring,” he said. “It adds to positive sentiment and shows this issue is truly behind us and we can focus on micro rather than macro factors.” He tipped Emaar Properties, which climbed 2.7 percent, to outperform as stocks that were oversold because of worries over Dubai’s debts rebound. “Emaar is a proxy for the market, is well diversified and trading at forward PE of 5-6, which makes it cheap compared to global peers,” added Arabi. Dubai’s index climbed 2.4 percent to reach its

highest finish since May 24 in its sixth straight gain. “We need to see prices around current levels for a week or two to build a solid base and allow for a rally towards the end of the year,” said Samer Al-Jaouni, General Manager of Middle East Financial Brokerage Co. “Movement in prices will

US debt fund shuns Dubai World deal DUBAI: US-based distressed debt fund Aurelius Capital Management is the only creditor to have not signed on to Dubai World’s $24.9 billion restructuring deal, the Financial Times said yesterday citing people close to the talks. The company, which bought $5 million of debt in the secondary market, could still approve the deal, people close to the matter told the paper. But by missing the Sept. 9 deadline to vote on the deal, Aurelius Capital will not receive the incentive fees paid to creditors that signed up in time. State-owned conglomerate Dubai World reached an agreement with over 99 percent of its creditors by value to restructure its almost $25 billion in liabilities, the Dubai government said in a statement on Friday. Dubai World said in a separate statement it was well positioned to close the restructuring in coming weeks. A Dubai World spokesman was not immediately available for comment. —Reuters

not be as aggressive as those of the past week.” The index is down 9.6 percent in 2010, making it the worst performing Gulf Arab benchmark as Dubai’s debt mountain, continued declines in property prices and lackluster bank lending weighed on stocks. Abu Dhabi’s index rose 1.4 percent to a 14-week high. “A lot of people in the UAE are playing a shortterm post Ramadan trade-for us, we are playing wait-and-see,” said Robert McKinnon, ASAS Capital chief investment officer. UAE banks are also in a comfortable position to meet with new banking capital requirements, known as Basel III, analysts said. These are significantly tougher, but still below investors’ expectations, who feared a new wave of capital raisings. “Currently the capital adequacy for banks in the Middle East and North Africa is high across the region,” said Radwa El-Swaify, banking analyst at Beltone. “The banks’ capital was already beefed up to offset the spike in NPL’s (non-performing loans) so they are not under any tremendous pressure to raise capital.” In Egypt, Arab Cotton Ginning (ACG) rose 15.2 percent after reporting annual net profit of 205 million Egyptian pounds ($36 million), up from 29 million a year earlier. Among peers, Arab Polavara climbed 6.9 percent and Kabo gained 1.7 percent. National Real Estate Bank rose 6.7 percent, taking its gains to 30 percent this month since joining the EGX30 benchmark as index-tracking funds buy the stock. Egypt’s index climbed 1.8 percent, its biggest rise since July 6. —Reuters

lobal markets are still in a stranglehold by the uncertainty about the future direction of major economies. Macroeconomic releases being the short term driver with many not willing to enter into trades with a longer horizon while sentiment continues to shift between hot and cold. The Reuters Jefferies CRB index which is unchanged over the past month and 3.5 percent down on the year hides some major changes in the underlying with volatility in some markets at elevated levels. The best performers have been sugar, corn and coffee while cocoa, natural gas and crude has been pulling the index in the opposite direction. Investors who stayed loyal towards gold during the correction phase have been rewarded with a nine percent rally since the July lows. This week we reached but failed to breach the old USD 1,265 record from June as some long overdue profit taking kicked in. During this recent rally it showed the longest track of gains for nearly 40 years and it is heading for its tenth annual increase. The IMF Friday announced that Bangladesh had bought 10 tons of gold at a price of 1,259 bringing central bank purchases to a total of 222 tons since the 403 million tons sales program was announced a year ago. An additional 88 tons has been sold to other parties leaving just 93 tons left with the proceeds being used to fund low income countries. Investment holdings in gold ETFs are back to record highs with total holdings exceeding 2,000 tons. The driver behind the latest move higher can be found in the clouded economic outlook, very low global interest rate environment and a recent spike in the price of silver, which reached 20 dollars per ounce, on the back of robust industrial demand. The trend is still pointing higher but it probably needs additional bad news to take it up into new territory. The biggest threat near term is still the risk of large scale profit taking from ETF investors but given the current outlook that risk seems limited. A break above 1,265 will initially target 1,280 while support is located at 1,218. Crude oil continues to trade in an 11 dollar wide range sitting just a few dollars below the average for 2010 at 77.50. The weekly inventory data showed that U.S. petroleum inventories rose to the highest level since 1990 putting some pressure on the front month contracts. OPEC left its forecast for oil demand growth unchanged for both 2010 and 2011 at one million barrels a day. The forward curve or Contango has steepened recently with spot month being under relatively higher pressure due to the continued overhang of supply. Some of this supply has come from crude moving on shore from floating storage. This has had an adverse impact on the price that operators can charge for shipping crude with the benchmark route from Saudi Arabia to Japan now only paying $8,500 per day, a ten month low, compared to $20,000 a month ago. The above mentioned widening of the Contango could actually help beleaguered owners of VLCCs (Very large crude carriers) as the combination of low tanker rates and higher forward prices of crude could trigger another round of buy and hold plays with VLCCs being used to store crude off shore. Technically the current range looks set to prevail with some upside momentum currently in place after the lows was rejected once again recently. Look for support around $70.65 while resistance can found at $77.50 ahead of $80.00. The price of near month corn continue to recover relatively to wheat jumping to the highest level since October 2008 as attention turns to growing conditions in the US with recent heat wave in the Midwest having raised the risk that the corn crop might get hurt. Friday the US Department of Agriculture will update its yield and production forecast for corn and other crops and at the time of writing the worry is that heat wave has hurt crop more than the government will forecast. Meanwhile Russia, still struggling to come to terms with the worst drought in half a century, announced that they would use state stock piles should prices continue to advance into 2011. Wheat production for 2010 is now expected to be between 60 and 65 million tons compared with a pre drought expectation of 97 million tons. The export ban currently in place until end 2011 very much depend on the outcome of the winter wheat production which is currently being planted. The Russian agricultural ministry has indicated that a production between 85 and 90 million tons in 2011 is required to ensure sufficient domestic supply. Near term price movements will very much depend on the outcome of the above mentioned US report on crop developments. Sugar has been the high jumper this past month rallying an astonishing 26 percent as Brazil, the world’s largest producer, has experienced increase bottlenecks at its major ports due to adverse weather. Rain has delayed the loading of sugar, with more than 100 ships now waiting to load, causing tightness in the market as there are very few places where it otherwise would be available. Humidity ruins the sweetener hence making loading very difficult while rainy conditions persist. The recent advance of the price of copper came to a halt this week despite China imports rising by 11 percent, the second monthly increase. Worries about future demand from the world’s two largest consumers still lingers as US slowdown is well documented while worries about additional tightening in China keeps the market guessing about the future demand situation. Reduced stockpiles at LME warehouses and in Shanghai has been the main driver behind the rally during the past couple of months. The size of the Ivorian Cocoa crop has surprised to the upside and wrong footed the market. Being the largest producer of the cocoa bean news that the 2010-11 production might reach 1.3 million tons has been the main reason behind the 11 percent drop in prices this past month. Finally growers of oranges in Florida will be keeping a close eye on tropical storm Igor which is approaching and if turning into a hurricane could damage citrus groves in the Sunshine State. Futures prices have risen the most in eight months on the back of this risk. —Saxo Bank



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Kuwait equities rally on renewed optimism KUWAIT: Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) witnessed another positive week with the index closing in green for the tenth week supported by the increase in the biggest three sectors in the market. Investor interest was notably shifted towards large capitalization stocks ahead of the Eid El-Fitr holiday, which was evidenced by the high volume and value traded in the banking and services sectors. Kuwait Stock Exchange ended last week up by 2.09 percent at 208.31 point, its highest closing since May 3, as measured by Global’s weighted General Index. On a year-to-date basis the market gains rose to 11.85 percent. On the other hand, Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) price index was also up by 53.90 points (0.80 percent) and closed the week at 6,757.1 points. Total market capitalization rose to KD34.44bn. While, the market breadth skewed towards advancers with 61 stocks advancing against 53 declining out of 135 shares traded last week. Trading activity was mixed. Volume traded dropped by 24.72 percent reaching 522.07mn shares changing hands at a total traded value of KD159.06mn (9.08 percent increase compared to the week before). The trading volume was high on the services sector, which accounted for 27.65 percent (144.35mn shares) of the total market traded volume with four services companies showing on the top volume list. The banking sector came second accounting for 22.55 percent of the weekly volume traded. Kuwait International Bank came on top of the list last week with 38.13mn shares being traded. On the value side, the banking sector witnessed the most value traded with KD77.63mn exchanged, accounting for 48.80 percent of the total market traded value. Kuwaiti banks continue to dominate half of the top ten companies in value. National Bank of Kuwait led with KD22.75mn traded on its share. Sector-wise, Global Banking Sector Index was the biggest performer, adding 3.08 percent with four banks managing to conclude the week with gains. National Bank of Kuwait and Kuwait Finance House (KFH), the biggest two banks, added 4.23 percent and 7.27 percent to their share prices, respectively. Global Services Sector Index was the second biggest gainer last week, with an increase of 2.18 percent. Kuwait & Gulf Link Transport Company and National Cleaning Company topped the gainers list with an increase of 18.28 percent and 17.98 percent, respectively in their share prices. Global Investment Sector Index came third with an increase of 1.34 percent. On the other hand, Global Food Sector Index and Global Insurance Sector Index were the only losers last week, shedding 1.14 percent and 0.08 percent respectively. Global’s special indices closed on mixed note as well. Global Large Cap (Top 10) Index ended the week up by 2.94 percent while Global Small Cap (Low 10) index lost 0.50 percent of its value. Global Islamic Sharia Index was up by 3.68 percent. Macroeconomic news The Central Bank of Kuwait (CBK) issued KD15mn ($52.08mn) in twoyear treasury bonds with a coupon of 1.375 percent on Wednesday, September 8. Bids reached KD35mn,

its 10 percent rights issue will start on October 5. The subscription period for the issue, which was approved by the bank’s shareholders in March, will end on October 21. The issue is at a price of KD0.500 per share including premium. The bank said that the capital increase is intended to support expansion plans. Gulf Bank, on behalf of its client, Safwan Trading and Contracting Company, has successfully auctioned 8.645mn shares (17.29 percent of the company’s capital) for a total price of KD2.64mn (KD0.305 per shares) to Ali Abdulwahab Sons and Company. The auction was held on August 31 at Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE). The Malaysian unit of Kuwait Finance House (KFH) is having ‘strategic alliance’ negotiations in Japan. ‘(The Malaysian bank) is negotiating with institutions in Japan regarding a strategic alliance to finalize several Islamic banking deals in Hong Kong, Thailand, India and Indonesia. The report said that KFH Malaysia is interested in China, particularly after making profits from investing $275mn in a real estate project last year.

central bank data showed last week. The central bank sold a one-year paper worth KD40mn on August 25. Oil related news Price of Kuwaiti crude oil reached $71.94 per barrel (pb) on Monday, September 06, an increase of $0.43 increase per barrel compared to Monday, August 30, Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC) said. Kuwait oil prices took on a seesaw trend in recent weeks due to daily speculations on the oil market, as well as geo-political effects. The current price of Kuwait’s oil is in line with OPEC targeted level. Kuwait has notified at least three Asian buyers it will supply OctoberDecember crude at 5 percent below contracted volumes, tightening supplies versus the third quarter. For the July-September quarter, Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC) gave mixed allocations on supplies to Asian buyers, with some receiving full volumes and some others receiving 5 percent less than the contracted amount. KPC also said it will keep restrictions on its operational tolerance policy by not allowing customers the ability to load up to 5 percent above contracted supplies on cargoes, one source said. The ban has been in place since late December 2008. Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC) has offered 74,000 tons of naphtha for October loading, traders said last week, at a time when sentiment is sliding on ample supplies. The state-owned refiner is offering the fuel, comprising of 50,000 tons of full-range and 24,000 tons of light naphtha, in a tender that closes on Tuesday, September 7. Traders said KPC has in the past sold more than they had issued tenders for, with September delivery volumes in the spot market reaching around 300,000 tons. State-run Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC) sold 80,000 tons of gas oil to Vitol for September by tender, traders said. Kuwait has diverted cargoes originally destined for Pakistan which declared force majeure on taking delivery of at least two gas oil cargoes following the country’s devastating floods. KPC offered two cargoes 40,000 tons of 500 ppm sulfur gas oil for September 17-18 loading and the same amount of 0.2 percent gas oil for September 15-16, traders said. KPC sold 0.2 percent gas oil at a premium of $0.30 a barrel to Middle East spot quotes on a free-on-board (FOB) basis. It sold 500 ppm at a premium of $1.95 a barrel to Middle East spot quotes on a free-on-board (FOB) basis, one trader said. The tender closed on August 31. Kuwait National Petroleum Company (KNPC) announced signing a contract to establish an acid-gas removal plant with Italy’s Tecnimont S.p.A. The state’s refiner, controlled by the Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC), said that the project will be executed on a Lump-Sum Turnkey contract basis for KD117mn and expected to be completed by 2014 in Al-Ahmadi port. Other local news Kuwait’s Finance Minister Mustafa Al-Shamali said that Kuwait’s inflation is not a concern this year but a planned increase in the government’s spending


may raise price pressures in the future. Inflation in the world’s fourth largest oil exporter climbed to a nearly one-year high of 3.4 percent year-onyear in June, fuelled by a jump in housing costs. Al-Shamali said that he is not worried about accelerating consumer price growth this year. In February, Kuwait’s parliament approved a KD30bn ($104.3bn) four-year development plan aimed at decreasing the Gulf Arab state’s dependence on oil.

Kuwait’s Central Bank Governor Sheikh Salem Abdul-Aziz Al-Sabah said in April he saw the IMF’s 2010 inflation forecast of 4.8 percent as quite reasonable. Shamali also said Kuwait’s economy had recovered from last year’s crisis and liquidity in the banking system was good. Kuwait National Petroleum Company (KNPC) Chairman Farouk Al-Zanki has been chosen as the new chief executive of Kuwait Petroleum Corporation. Zanki,

who will replace Saad Al-Shuwaib, is expected to start ‘within these days’, the source said. The appointment will not change Kuwait’s oil strategy, he added. Value of the Kuwaiti investments in the real estate sector in Egypt is estimated at $10bn, according to a released last week. Ali Al-Sherbani, the Board Chairman of the Egyptian Tabark Holding, said in the report released by the company’s branch in

Kuwait that the Gulf investments, namely the Kuwaiti enterprises, would grow further in the Egyptian market as a result of tremendous opportunities offered by the Egyptian real estate firms. The Egyptian companies have been offering various incentives namely competitive prices, facilities and prospected earnings. Kuwait Stock Exchange National Bank of Kuwait said that

Highlights of the week The Moroccan government approved last week a commercial cooperation agreement with the State of Kuwait, signed in Rabat last June. Government spokesman Khaled AlNaseri, said that the agreement aimed at further boosting commercial relations and diversifying trade exchange, in addition to cooperation in tourism. The Moroccan and Kuwaiti governments will form a joint committee to follow up the implementation of the agreement, said Al-Naseri. The committee, he added, will also address difficulties facing the implementation of the agreement and further expanding trade relations. A US judge said that US prosecutors failed to follow the correct process when they indicted Kuwait logistics company Agility for alleged fraud over multibillion dollar contracts. Magistrate Alan Baverman released a 91-page report on pretrial motions on September 7 and both sides have 14 days to file objections before a US District Judge rules on the issues. Agility, the main food supplier to the US army in Kuwait and Iraq, welcomed the report. Kuwait & Gulf Link Transport Company (KGL), a freight company, said that the US Defense Logistics Agency will choose the main supplier of a US contract after it receives and reviews KGL’s offer. KGL received a letter from the US body last week which stated that the US government started ‘correction measures’ and that negotiations on the offer initially submitted have been reopened, KGL said. Commercial International Bank (CIB) will be delisted as of September 16, 2010. This step follows the decision taken by the lender’s extraordinary shareholder meeting held on March 17. The lender declared that shares will continue trading on The Egyptian Exchange (EGX), London Stock Exchange (LSE) and New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). CIB also said that it will guarantee the payment of any liabilities including dividend distributions for previous years, in coordination with Kuwait Clearing Company (KCC).

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

.283000 .4400000 .3650000 .2810000 .2710000 .2580000 .0045000 .0020000 .0779500 .7594460 .4020000 .0750000 .7445050 .0045000 .0500000

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

CUSTOMER TRANSFER RATES .2871500 .4425630 .3676540 .2836580 .2729270 .0493860 .0393610 .2604590 .0369320 .2129010 .0034110 .0061750 .0025580 .0033680 .0041610 .0782190 .7620570 .4061090 .0766220 .7472850 .0064160

US Dollar Sterling pounds Swiss Francs Saudi Riyals

TRANSFER CHEQUES RATES .2892500 .4456890 .2856670 .0771110

Al-Muzaini Exchange Co. Japanese Yen Indian Rupees


.2930000 .4490000 .3730000 .2890000 .2790000 .2640000 .0075000 .0035000 .0787340 .7670790 .4180000 .0790000 .7519870 .0072000 .0580000 .2892500 .4456890 .3702510 .2856670 .2748600 .0497360 .0396400 .2622980 .0371940 .2144090 .0034350 .0062180 .0025760 .0033920 .0041910 .0787180 .7669160 .4089850 .0771110 .7520510 .0064620

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

3.365 2.557 3.885 215.110 37.143 4.153 6.527 9.346 0.296 0.310 GCC COUNTRIES 76.972 79.310 749.920 766.650 78.604

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

ARAB COUNTRIES 52.150 50.576 1.374 194.430 407.610 193.600 6.218 33.628

EUROPEAN & AMERICAN COUNTRIES US Dollar Transfer 288.530 Euro 371.050 Sterling Pound 450.110 Canadian dollar 282.180 Turkish lire 190.260 Swiss Franc 286.110 Australian dollar 265.790 US Dollar Buying 287.845 GOLD 20 Gram 245.000 10 Gram 124.000 5 Gram 64.000

Bahrain Exchange Company COUNTRY Australian dollar Bahraini dinar Bangladeshi taka Canadian dollar Cyprus pound Czek koruna Danish krone Deutsche Mark Egyptian pound

SELL CASH 271.700 767.850 4.340 283.000 567.000 14.100 50.200 167.800 52.190

SELL DRAFT 270.200 767.850 4.154 281.500

216.800 50.670

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

373.000 37.850 6.450 0.038 0.281 0.252 3.530 409.870 0.195 95.570 46.100 4.520 213.700 1.967 48.000 750.040 3.540 6.670 79.860 216.820 42.700 2.749 448.500 40.600 287.400 285.900 6.400 9.740 198.263 78.790 289.100 1.390

371.500 37.700 6.220 0.038

4080140 0.194 95.570 3.900 212.200 749.860 3.380 6.575 79.430 77.090 216.820 42.700 2.560 446.500 6.400 9.560 78.690 288.700

GOLD 1,359.490

10 Tola Sterling Pound US Dollar

TRAVELLER’S CHEQUE 446.500 288.700

Dollarco Exchange Co. Ltd Selling Rate US Dollar Canadian Dollar Sterling Pound Euro Swiss Frank Cyprus Pound Bahrain Dinar UAE Dirhams Qatari Riyals Saudi Riyals Jordanian Dinar

288.850 273.657 445.790 367.907 282.547 707.989 764.553 78.622 79.319 76.995 407.606

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

50.697 6.150 3.379 2.558 4.171 6.362 3.421 9.213 6.301 3.851

Kuwait Bahrain Intl Exchange Co.



Rate per 1000 (Tran)

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

288.500 3.375 6.200 2.570 4.155 6.580 78.650 77.140 766.900 50.570 450.000 0.00003280 3.890 1.550 409.800 5.750 371.500 283.500

Al Mulla Exchange Currency Transfer Rate (Per 1000 US Dollar 288.000 Euro 367.900 Pound Sterling 446.700 Canadian Dollar 279.000 Japanese Yen 3.475 Indian Rupee 6.195 Egyptian Pound 50.540 Sri Lankan Rupee 2.556 Bangladesh Taka 4.143 Philippines Peso 6.530 Pakistan Rupee 3.364 Bahraini Dinar 765.000 UAE Dirham 78.480 Saudi Riyal 76.900 *Rates are subject to change


Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Oil rises above $77 on US crude pipeline leak Supplies to US Midwest disrupted

3D TV at home The biggest breakthrough to hit home theater in years KUWAIT: With the recent developments in 3D technology it’s clear to see that 3D has come a long way since its last inception in the 90’s. People’s fascination with this new technology after experiencing 3D in cinemas was a big success and had created a demand to enjoy the same experience at home. From sci-fi to sports, documentaries to kids’ flicks, 3D is the next big thing for the world of home theater. HDTV may make your image look brilliant, but only 3D promises explosions that make you jump back and landscapes that seem to be rolling into your TV. The way 3D TVs work is by displaying a slightly different image to each eye. The TV shows two separate pictures for each frame, one for the left eye and one for the right eye. These pictures are slightly offset which creates the illusion that you’re seeing something from more than one angle, portraying it in real depth. The 3D glasses then synchronize this display, providing the most vivid 3D image available. “Samsung has backed the 3D revolution. With its new premium C9000 3D LED TV, we’re talking about the clearest, most dazzling 2D pictures seen to date, all from a TV that’s incredibly slim at just 7.98mm, and delivers 3D effects that are simply aweinspiring,” said Justin Shaw, General Manager, Digital Media Business, Samsung Gulf Electronics. If you remember when you purchased your first HD TV, you soon realized it was a worthwhile investment as more and more HD content from various sources became available. Well, it’s the same with 3D. So far, the success of digital 3D has been overwhelming. Movies such as James Cameron’s Avatar, Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland, the Disney sequel step up 3D and many more like Chicken

Little, Beowulf, Hannah Montana and U2 3D have already been released. Not everyone is swayed by such blockbuster movies. However, with the introduction of 3D channels, events like football matches and motor racing will be significantly improved and matched with superior sound - all in the living rooms of sports fans ready to be a part of the experience again. The FIFA World Cup 2010 was the first major global sporting event broadcast in 3D across the region by Al-Jazeera Sport. The sports network is in the process of building two 3G (3Gbps) studios that are designed to facilitate better transmission of HD and 3D signals, pointing towards a new dimension in sports viewing. The amount of material available in 3D will inevitably increase over time and eventu-

ally a large percentage of new programs will be available in 3D while Blu-ray remains the perfect vehicle for delivering 3D to the home given its high capacity and ability to carry 2 high-quality Full HD video streams. “In addition, Samsung’s new line-up includes innovative 2D to 3D conversion; one of Samsung’s must have features in its new line-up. With some powerful processing and smart algorithms Samsung 3D TVs are able to convert the 2D content into a 3D Stereoscopic effect, all in real time,” said Justin. “What most consumers may not realize is that Samsung 3D TV’s are first and foremost high performance 2D televisions, displaying outstanding images, whilst still offering a wealth of the latest high tech features such as Internet @TV, Samsung All Share (DLNA) and 3D functionality that make them future proof, allowing consumers to enjoy the 3D experience as more content comes on stream,” said Justin. 3DTV has been available from a number of manufacturers since Spring; and the content will follow quickly. This content is going to arrive much faster than HD did and that’s what will spur the 3D movement. “Of course, as with all new technology, not everyone will be an early adopter, but as more content becomes available and with movies like Avatar, Alice in Wonderland, Toy Story 3 or Clash of the Titans it is clear that 3D is here to stay,” added Shaw. “As consumers naturally replace their televisions and adopt 3D television, 3D gaming also plays an ever increasing role in driving revenue for the sector. It won’t come overnight, but in time finding a non-3D TV will be like finding a black and white TV,” concluded Shaw.

NEW YORK: Oil prices jumped above $77 a barrel yesterday, extending gains for a second trading day after a leak forced the closure of a Chicago-area oil pipeline and disrupted supplies to US Midwest refineries. By early afternoon in Europe, benchmark crude for October delivery was up 72 cents to $77.17 a barrel at late afternoon Singapore time in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose $2.20 to settle at $76.45 on Friday. Repair crews are closing in on the source of a leak but haven’t found it yet, Sam Borries, onscene coordinator for the US Environmental Protection Agency, said on Sunday. The 670,000 barrel per day pipeline run by Enbridge Energy Partners carries crude from Canada to the upper Midwest, and the supply disruption has caused a sharp spike in gas prices across that region. “Markets tend to push higher amidst uncertainty in the process of discounting a worst case scenario until definition is forthcoming,” Ritterbusch and Associates said in a report. “We still view a significant selloff as likely once the pipeline problem is resolved.” Oil traders took heart from accelerating Chinese industrial production, a sign the world’s second-largest economy is expanding. Manufacturing rose 13.9 percent in August from a year ago, faster than the 13.4 percent growth pace in July, China said over the weekend. “The market sentiment has strongly improved, while solid gains in the global equity markets provide further support to the oil prices,” said a report from Sucden Financial Research in London, adding that the pipeline closure could push prices toward $80 a barrel. Analysts at Commerzbank in Frankfurt noted that more funds from money managers were going into long positions in oil futures — after four straight weeks of position reductions — a sign that investors expected oil prices to rise. A weaker dollar also contributed to rising oil prices by making crude cheaper for investors holding other currencies. The euro rose to 1.2812 from 1.2718 late Friday in New York, while the British pound was up to $1.5403 from $1.5354. In other Nymex trading in October contracts, heating oil was up 1.2 cents at $2.116 a gallon and gasoline added 1.47 cents to $1.988 a gallon. Natural gas fell 3.2 cents to $3.851 per 1,000 cubic feet. In London, Brent crude rose 28 cents to $78.44 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange.—AP

BAE puts part of US aero unit up for sale LONDON: British defense group BAE Systems has hired advisors to sell some of its US component manufacturing businesses as it looks to shift its focus to support and maintenance operations. “BAE Systems confirms that it has engaged Wells Fargo and JP Morgan to advise on strategic options with regard to the Platform Solutions business, including a possible sale,” the company said in a statement yesterday. Sources told Reuters on Saturday that BAE was looking to sell part of its North American commercial aerospace business in an auction that could generate up to $2 billion. Shares in BAE, which have fallen 10 percent in 2010, were up 0.96 percent at 326 pence by 0850 GMT, valuing the group at around 11 billion pounds ($17 billion). The FTSE All Share index was up 0.8 percent. Platform Solutions, which makes electronic components such as cockpit displays for military jets and digital engine controls for commercial aircraft, is seen as non-core to BAE. “It’s a sensible policy by BAE to clean up their act and move forward into areas they would rather be in-BAE is adapting to changing circumstances,” said BGC Partners analyst Howard Wheeldon. “Bidders would most likely be US companies given that much of the businesses are in North America.” US aerospace suppliers Goodrich Corp, Rockwell Collins Inc , Woodward Governor Co and Moog Inc have been touted as possible bidders, along with US diversified manufacturer Honeywell

International Inc. Private-equity firms, such as Carlyle Group, Warburg Pincus and Greenbriar Equity Group LLC could also be keen, sources said. BAE, Europe’s largest arms contractor, aims to grow its customer support and services business, which covers readiness, sustainment, cyber and security, to offset expected cuts in UK defense procurement programs. Customer support and maintenance accounts for around 40 percent of its business but Chief Executive Ian King wants BAE to expand that in the coming years. Britain is reviewing its defense budget as part of a broader move to cut a record peacetime budget deficit, details of which will be unveiled on Oct 20. Analysts believe a review of defense needs will lead to cuts of up to 15 percent in the defense budget — 36.9 billion pounds for the current financial year-with big procurement programs set to be scaled back. BAE boosted its maintenance operations in May with the $352 million purchase of US ship repair group Atlantic Marine. BAE’s Platform Solutions business, which also produces electrical components for hybrid buses, employs 4,200 people at sites worldwide and is part of BAE’s Electronic, Intelligence and Support (EI&S) division. The business has a base in Kent, south England which employs 1,500 staff. “There can be no certainty that any transaction with respect to the Platform Solutions business will occur,” BAE said. The defense group

last week announced plans to cut 740 jobs at its UK military aerospace business. — Reuters

Spanish economy will contract this year: EU BRUSSELS: Spain’s struggle to escape from recession was highlighted yesterday, with new European Union forecasts pointing to another year of contraction. “Economic activity in 2010 is forecast to decline by 0.3 percent following a fall of 3.7 percent in the previous year,” the European Commission said, by way of contrast with a 1.7 percent rise for the euro-zone as a whole. Citing falling private consumption, weak investment and an “ongoing adjustment in the housing sector,” it warned of falling public investment due to national budget cuts. Spain is just the biggest of those countries in which domestic problems are “masked” by the relatively upbeat aggregate picture, confirming a “multi-speed recovery within the EU.” In stark contrast, it said that Germany’s “strong recovery is becoming more broad-based,” while France’s remains “gradual” based on “subdued” demand, Italy and the Netherlands are posting only “moderate” momentum and non-euro Britain is also due to experience a “slow down.” Poland, however, is again powering forward thanks to its manufacturing sector, with real GDP growth for 2010 expected to hit 3.4 percent, a full 0.75-percent higher than expected. — AFP

REDWOOD CITY: A Costco customer pumps gas at a Costco in Redwood City, California. Oil prices jumped above $77 a barrel yesterday, extending gains for a second trading day after a leak forced the closure of a Chicago-area oil pipeline and disrupted supplies to US Midwest refineries.—AP

US ‘domestic compulsions’ holding up Doha deal: India NEW DELHI: India, which last year spearheaded efforts to revive talks on a new global free-trade pact, said yesterday that US “domestic compulsions” were holding up efforts to conclude the Doha Development Round. US moves to seek greater access to Chinese, Indian and Brazilian markets, while at the same time stepping up protective trade measures has stalled the trade World Trade Organization talks, Indian trade officials say. “For those who thought Doha was going to get done in 2010, it’s not going to get done,” Indian Commerce Secretary Rahul Khullar told a business audience in New Delhi, holding out the possibility an agreement might be concluded next year. “The US is not ready yet whatever be the compulsions-political or economic or

very high unemployment,” said Khullar, the top bureaucrat in India’s commerce ministry. Leaders of the world’s 20 advanced and developing nations had set a target of 2010 to conclude the long-running Doha Development Round but thorny issues such as farm subsidies and market access have stymied agreement. “Right now, it’s (a deal) not happening. At this point of time we should primarily be focusing for the best in 2011,” said Khullar. Washington might be ready to get down to serious negotiations on concluding an agreement early next year but right now the US focus is on November mid-term elections, Khullar said. “When one major trading partner of the world (the United States) is just not there,” it is difficult to conclude an agreement,

Khullar said. India took the initiative in September 2009 to host a meeting in New Delhi to revive the Doha negotiations, which had collapsed the previous year in a bitter row between Indian and US negotiators over subsidy protection for poor farmers. Khullar’s comments came against the backdrop of recent moves by the United States targeting India’s flagship outsourcing industry as it battles near 10 percent domestic unemployment. The state of Ohio has banned sending abroad government back-office jobs to places such as India while a recent US law raised visa fees for skilled outsourcing workers who come to the United States to work on short contracts for clients. India at the weekend slammed the US moves as “regressive.” — AFP

Toshiba refreshes its Full HD CAMILEO camcorder range DUBAI: Toshiba Europe GmbH presents two new digital H.264 camcorders: Both the CAMILEO P20 and CAMILEO S30 come with Full HD resolution and are designed to be as user-friendly as possible: They also both feature a large (7,6cm/3”) touch sensitive screen that displays an easy-to-use graphical user interface. While the CAMILEO P20 offers a photo resolution of 5 Megapixel, the CAMILEO S30 is equipped with an 8 Megapixel CMOS sensor. The two new camcorders will be available in the third quarter 2010 throughout Europe, Middle East and Africa. CAMILEO P20: designed to capture unforgettable fun A walk in the city, a party with friends or a day at the seaside: everyone wants to save those memorable times - quickly and easily. Designed for the early-adopting, young and fashion-conscious, the trendily deep blue coloured CAMILEO P20 offers high quality and reassuring reliability at an affordable price. With a weight of only 151 g the pistol-type camcorder can be carried on a hand strap and is always at hand to capture those spontaneous magic moments. CAMILEO S30: the smart companion, always ready for adventure At only 19mm thick, Toshiba’s CAMILEO S30 is the ideal handy companion for travelling and sports, for active and adventurous young people, as well as being ideal for capturing precious family memories. The CAMILEO S30 will be available in deep blue, burgundy red, raspberry and silver. With ease-of-use being top of the list, the CAMILIEO S30 offers a choice of eight scene support selections designed to achieve perfect results even in difficult light conditions, these include “skin”, “night”, or “back light” to name just a few. High photo and video quality CAMILEO P20 and CAMILEO S30 both are fully equipped high-quality camcorders and digital still cameras. A 10x digital zoom allows for far-off shots in video and photo mode. For perfect shudder-free

Toshiba Camileo P20

shots, the camcorders offer an embedded video stabilisation. The embedded software can even interpolate the photo resolution up to 16 Megapixels. Capture the moment... To easily share clips and photos the CAMILEO P20 and CAMILEO S30 offer a broad range of connectivity tools: Via HDMI, miniUSB.2.0 or composite video they can be quickly and easily connected to TV sets and other digital devices. Plus, they come with a card slot for SD / SDHC / SCXC cards with a capacity of up to 64GB. Thanks to the user-friendly upload functionality, users can easily upload their videos to video sharing sites such as YouTube(tm) and share their photos with friends on websites like Picasa(tm) Web Albums.

Toshiba Camileo S30



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Clouds linger over US, Europe, Japan NEW YORK: Alan Greenspan coined a memorable phrase or two in his day, but Federal Reserve chief Ben Bernanke may have outdone his predecessor when he described the US economic outlook recently as “unusually uncertain.” It doesn’t lodge in the memory banks the way Greenspan’s “irrational exuberance” remark did, but it’s a frighteningly accurate summation of both the US economic recovery and the sense of economic and political drift felt in developed economies. More than a year into recovery, the Fed, the European Central Bank and the Bank of Japan have acknowledged their economies still need help and have taken steps to keep interest rate policy loose. Economic data has been mixed

at best, particularly in the United States, which still suffers from high unemployment and sluggish job growth, while politics across the developed world have grown increasingly fractious. Japan’s prime minister faces a party leadership vote today as the yen strengthens, the economy struggles and public debt mounts. European countries face restive populations as they prepare to cut spending and reduce deficits. “There’s policy uncertainty, there’s economic uncertainty and there’s market volatility. All three are intricately linked right now,” said Marc Chandler, global head of currency strategy at Brown Brothers Harriman in New York. The G7 share of the global economy has declined in recent years

GLOBAL MARKETS OUTLOOK but is still crucial to sustaining global growth. To that end, the US outlook remains most important of all. Economists were pleasantly surprised recently by a batch of betterthan-expected reports on employment and manufacturing, but the trend remains toward slower growth. The economy grew at a 1.6 percent annualized rate in the second quarter, down from 3.7 percent in the first three months of the year. Reports on US retail sales, consumer prices and industrial production this week will be watched closely for signals of any uptick.

Admitting that progress has been “painfully slow,” President Barack Obama has proposed new measures to boost growth, including infrastructure investment, middle class tax cuts and business tax cuts designed to boost hiring. Economists at Societe Generale described the proposals as “marginally positive for the economy, but unlikely to provide enough of a positive shock to change the direction of the expected recovery over the next 12 months.” What’s more, opinion polls suggest the opposition Republicans will sweep the US midterm election in November, leaving markets brac-

ing for two years of policy gridlock. That, SocGen said, suggests policy will remain highly uncertain at a time when the US economy needs a fiscal boost to supplement central bank efforts to stimulate growth. Ken Mayland, president of Clearview Economics in Pepper Pike, Ohio, refutes Bernanke, though, by saying none of this is particularly unusual in the aftermath of a deep recession. “This really is a common state of affairs,” he said. “People’s views of the future are colored by the recent past, and our recent past has been a very unpleasant one.”

But the Fed chief certainly appears to have tapped into the zeitgeist, and many economists fear it will indeed take a long time for the world economy to return to health this time. Sluggish US growth and historically low yields have caused trouble for Japan by driving the dollar to a 15-year low against the yen. That hurts export-driven Japanese firms and stock prices and, officials fear, pushes the economy even further into deflation. Whether to intervene in currency markets to weaken the yen a tall order that economists say may not work-is one of the contentious issues tearing at the fabric of Japan’s fragile ruling party, which faces a leadership vote today. Europe is another question

mark, and revived worries about debt burdens and the health of euro zone banks with high exposure to sovereign European debt should keep financial markets on edge in the week ahead. Another former Fed chairman, Paul Volcker, said the United States, along with Japan and much of the euro zone, will not return to peak levels of production for several years, even if the US economy grows around 3 percent a year. “I’d like to think of it as a slog ... with every step you take, it takes a lot of energy. You think you’re going backward instead of forwards,” he said. “That’s the way this economy feels at this point. That’s true of the United States, it’s considerably true of Europe.” —Reuters

Athens to receive $11.45bn loan payment

EU, ECB inspectors review Greek plan amid protests ATHENS: International inspectors started a two-week review yesterday of Greece’s efforts to overhaul its debt-ridden economy and plan the 2011 budget as the government faced a new round of protests. The delegation from the European Commission, International Monetary Fund and European Central Bank arrived in Athens as Greece is expected to

receive 9 billion euros ($11.45 billion) from the IMF and other euro countries by today. Meanwhile, Finance Minister George Papaconstantinou embarks on a road show to London, Paris and Frankfurt starting tomorrow, along with high-ranking officials from the three agencies, to meet investors.

THESSALONIKI: Demonstrators remove police barricades during a protest outside the building where Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou held a keynote speech on the economy in Thessaloniki. —AP

Nigeria’s universal banking model to end in Oct: CB LAGOS: Nigeria will stop issuing universal banking licenses next month and enforce new minimum capital requirements for lenders in a bid to avoid a repeat of last year’s near collapse of several banks. Central Bank Governor Lamido Sanusi, who launched a historic $4 billion bailout of nine banks shortly after taking office last year, has pledged to reform the industry and get credit flowing to the productive real sector and small businesses. Sanusi announced in February that he wanted to separate banks’ core lending business from more speculative capital markets activities-such as stockbroking, asset management, private equity and venture capital-to protect depositors’

funds. But he gave no detailed timeframe then. The new banking model requires lenders to sell all noncore businesses and form a holding company if they intend to carry out insurance, asset management and capital market activities. The guidelines will come into effect in sub-Saharan Africa’s second-biggest economy from Oct. 4, and give lenders 90 days to prepare and submit their plans on compliance to the regulator. “The central bank will discontinue the issuance of universal banking licenses (and) prohibit banks from undertaking non-banking activities while new licenses are to be issued,” the central bank said in a statement. Sanusi’s reforms aim to over-

haul a banking sector until now characterized by swollen institutions concerned primarily with outstripping their rivals’ asset growth at the expense of creating loans and growing their business. The regulator said its primary objective was to ensure banks were effectively supervised and depositors’ funds were safe. In the guidelines, lenders will now operate as regional, national or international banks. International banks would need 50 billion naira minimum capital to operate, regional banks 10 billion naira, while national banks require 25 billion naira. National banks will operate in all of Nigeria’s 36 states, while regional lenders will only operate within 6-12 states. Several of

Nigeria’s banks have already indicated how they intend to comply with the new regulations. First Bank said in April it planned to form a listed holding company which will own the bank and its subsidiaries. Skye Bank said in May it was also considering a holding company structure and that it was confident of reaching the minimum capital for international status. Others have said they plan to spin off subsidiaries but have not yet given details, although bankers have also voiced concerns that the move could have significant tax implications and that many hurdles remain to be crossed before the new structures can be implemented. —Reuters

Basel leaves banks in dark over hybrid bonds LONDON: European banks poised to sell new hybrid bonds in the coming weeks to refinance billions of euros of debt might put these on hold due to uncertainty over what will count under a new bank capital regime, bankers and analysts say. The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision’s new capital plans, unveiled at the weekend, aim to make banks safer and prevent a repeat of the credit crisis. The regime will be phased in stages from Jan. 1 2013, but questions remain over the final shape of new hybrids that regulators want banks to hold. And in the meantime, some banks have hybrids to refinance. Banks have used Tier 1 hybrid bonds in the past to help boost their capital. These instruments have equity-like characteris-

tics, but are cheaper than equity partly because coupon payments have been taxdeductible. Under the new Basel rules, regulators want them to be even more like equity, with more loss-absorbing features, making them more costly for banks to sell to investors who will want higher coupons for taking on the extra risk. There are some 24 billion euros of Tier 1 bonds with redemptions coming up for European banks in 2010 and 2011, according to data from Bank of America Merrill Lynch. These banks will have to decide whether to redeem them and replace them but the regulatory uncertainty will not make this easy. Italian bank Intesa Sanpaolo, for exam-

ple, has a 1 billion euro Tier 1 bond redemption due in November. The Basel Committee has said only bonds issued before Sept. 12 should qualify for its transition arrangements. “It looks to us as though only Tier 1s issued before the weekend will be grandfathered if they don’t meet the new conditions,” said Simon Adamson, analyst at CreditSights. “Instruments issued from now onwards will only qualify for inclusion in Tier 1 if they meet the loss absorbency criteria laid out in the recent proposals and those proposals are open to consultation until the beginning of October,” CreditSights also said in a note. “There is likely to be a hiatus in new issuance of hybrid Tier 1.” —Reuters

Greece has been hit by a severe debt crisis that brought it to the brink of bankruptcy in May, and was rescued by a three-year, 110 billion euros ($140 billion) loan package from the IMF and euro-zone countries. In return, the Greek government is overhauling its economy and implementing strict fiscal control, seeking to reduce the budget deficit from a massive 13.6 percent of annual output in 2009 to 8.1 percent this year. The tough austerity measures, which have included public sector salary cuts, trimmed pensions and tax increases, have angered labor unions which staged six general strikes so far this year. A new wave of protests began yesterday, with truckers declaring a work stoppage and parking hundreds of vehicles along major highways to protest plans to liberalize their profession. Motorists formed long lines at gas stations on Sunday and yesterday, fearing a repetition of a weeklong strike in July that left pumps dry across the country for days. The government had requisitioned fuel trucks to end that protest, ordering the strikers back to work, and because truck drivers are still under the requisition order they cannot declare a total strike. Their unions say, however, that they will organize daily protests instead. Haulers fiercely oppose plans to open their profession — together with notaries, taxi drivers, architects and chemists — to nonunion members, arguing that the move would destroy their future prospects. On Sunday, Prime Minister George Papandreou assured Greeks his government did not plan to impose any new austerity measures, and said the country was on track to meet targets for reducing its deficit by nearly 40 percent this year. “We will not need any new measures,” he said during a news conference in the northern city of Thessaloniki, a day after making his annual speech on the economy on the sidelines of a trade fair. Papandreou reiterated that Athens did not plan to restructure its debt — a move that he said would have been “catastrophic.” Meanwhile, Greece faced fears of renewed fuel shortage as thousands of freight truckers began a new protest against plans to liberalize their sector to help revive the recession-hit Greek economy. Motorists formed long queues at petrol stations in Athens in a repeat of a similar week-long protest in July that nearly starved the country of fuel. The Socialist government wants to open the freight market to full competition within three years to cut transport costs which traders say inordinately push up the price of many goods. No new freight licenses have been issued in Greece for years, meaning that would-be operators can only purchase existing permits at high cost. —Agencies

FRANKFURT: The logo of Germany’s leading bank, Deutsche Bank, is seen at the bank’s headquarters in Frankfurt am Main, central Germany, yesterday. Deutsche Bank, unveiled a record capital increase, saying it would raise around 10 billion euros to take over German retail bank Postbank. —AFP

Deutsche Bank chief spells out Postbank takeover plan FRANKFURT: The head of Germany’s top bank, Deutsche Bank, unveiled yesterday the strategy behind its record capital increase a day after historic new bank regulations were agreed in Basel, Switzerland. Josef Ackermann told a Frankfurt press conference the bank sought to become “the undisputable leader in Germany’s retail banking business and advance to the group of top banks in the European private clients business.” Together, Deutsche Bank and Postbank will have a total of 24 million clients in Germany, he said. On Sunday, Deutsche Bank said it would raise about 10 billion euros to take over German retail bank Postbank, in which it already owns a stake of nearly 30 percent. A decision by central bankers and regulators on so-called Basel III rules for banking capital provided clarity to Deutsche Bank’s strategy, Ackermann said, while stressing the bank was already on track to meet the new standards. “We have absolutely no need for further capital in order to comply with the Basel III regulations,” the Deutsche Bank boss said. In Switzerland, a statement by the Bank for International Settlements said Sunday that banks will have to lift reserves substantially under “landmark” new rules drawn up to prevent a repeat of the recent global financial crisis.

The new regulations would force banks to more than triple their current reserves and would be phased in from 2013, the statement said. Back in Frankfurt, Ackermann outlined Deutsche Bank’s plan to consolidate Postbank, which has the biggest retail network in Europe’s biggest retail banking market. Deutsche Bank did not seek to own all of Postbank however, Ackermann said. “We will pay approximately 6.3 billion euros” ($8 billion) he said, and expected to acquire 21 percent of Postbank with an offer of between 24 and 25 euros per share. Deutsche Bank was taking advantage of a window of opportunity it estimated would save the bank 1.7 billion euros, Ackermann said, and Postbank shares fell sharply in Monday trades on the Frankfurt stock exchange. Ackermann also acknowledged that the timing of its public takeover offer was not a total coincidence with the announcement of an agreement in Basel, which was widely expected. “It was good to have this clarity so we can confirm our strategy, that we comply with with the regulatory requirements,” Ackermann said. In response to market speculation that Deutsche Bank wanted to beat other big banks to the capital markets, he said: “We will be the first mover here that is also very important.” —AFP

DUISBURG: Trucks waiting in front of piling containers at the Container Terminal at the harbour in Duisburg, western Germany. The economy across the EU is recovering faster than expected and will likely grow by a solid 1.8 percent this year. —AP

Norway says green taxes can help jobs, growth OSLO: Green taxes are among ways to spur jobs and economic revival despite less focus on environmental solutions since the UN’s Copenhagen summit in 2009, Norway’s Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg said yesterday. “Green issues are still on the agenda,” he told Reuters during a one-day jobs conference in Oslo that had scant focus on UN calls for a shift to renewable energies such as wind and solar

power to cut unemployment and help end recession. “One of the ways that we can restore public finances is to try to have green taxes,” he said. “One of the problems many countries in Europe are facing is that they reduced taxes during times of high economic growth and now they have problems in financing the public sector,” he said. “We see a very close link

between climate issues and economic recovery. Investments in green technology are part of the solution,” he said. Yet during the conference, Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou stood out among several leaders by stressing greener jobs, for instance via more solar power or building insulation. Few other participants mentioned green jobs. —Reuters


Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Minnesota, California governors on China trade missions SHANGHAI: Two American governors, two completely different messages. As pressure to create jobs heats up ahead of November’s US elections, the volume of rhetoric on trade issues is also rising. Minnesota’s Republican governor Tim Pawlenty, who is viewed back home as a future presidential hopeful keen to burnish his foreign policy credentials, took a critical approach yesterday in Shanghai, where he was leading a trade mission to Asia, likely his last before leaving office. His California counterpart, Arnold Schwarzenegger,

opted to play nice. News last week that China’s trade surplus hit its secondhighest level this year in August, at $20 billion, will likely fan demands by Washington and others for faster changes in China’s currency policies. Some American lawmakers are pushing for sanctions over the issue. “The currency trajectory in trade with China is unsatisfactory. We need to make some progress, short of a trade war,” Pawlenty told a group of American business executives. He said China was moving too slowly with its incremental loos-

ening of controls on its currency, a perennial complaint among those who believe the yuan is undervalued, providing Chinese exporters with an artificial advantage over American manufacturers. “‘Friendly competition’ needs to be fair,” Pawlenty said. “We’re not going to be friends if one of us feels it’s not fair,” he said. Minnesota, with a population of about 5.3 million, logged $1.3 billion in manufactured exports to China in 2009 and $700 million in farm exports. Major state-based companies with big business

interests in China include Best Buy Inc., 3M and Medronic Inc. California reported exports worth $10 billion to China in 2009. Fellow Republican Schwarzenegger, heading an even larger trade delegation to China, Japan and South Korea, focused instead on the importance of more trade, and on praising Chinese leaders for their “extraordinary vision.” Visiting a steel factory where workers are building sections of the Bay Bridge’s new eastern span, Schwarzenegger said his state’s planners should emulate the Chinese leadership in think-

ing ahead for the future. “They think big and that is exactly what I’ve always wanted to do for California.” The goal of the $6.3 billion Bay Bridge project, scheduled to open in 2013, is to replace the bridge, damaged in the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, before the next big cataclysm. Schwarzenegger visited a high-speed rail station in Shanghai as part of a fact-finding effort for his state’s own planning, and afterward said the state-of-the-art facilities were built for the next century — something California also needs to do.

“You have to think ahead, way ahead. The Chinese have that ability,” he said. The Chinese, their economy still growing at a rate of about 10 percent, have invested lavishly upgrading railways, ports and other infrastructure as they fought off the impact of the financial crisis. Both Pawlenty and Schwarzenegger, facing daunting budget shortfalls back home that make such investments more challenging, urged faster action on improving American competitiveness. “I want to see cranes every-

where,” Schwarzenegger said, but he acknowledged that the US politics, with its checks and balances, unlike China’s communist-ruled system, makes such sweeping moves more difficult. “We have a wonderful political system in America but it does have its disadvantages, no two ways about that,” he said. “It’s like going through a slalom gate, looking down a ski slope and seeing a hundred slalom poles out there and you have to navigate through them. “That’s what it is like when you do something in the United States,” Schwarzenegger said. —AP

TUC lashes out at Cameron’s economic policies

British unions to strike against austerity cuts MANCHESTER: Britain’s trade unions voted overwhelmingly to back rare coordinated strikes as they were urged to “stand up and fight” government austerity cuts at their congress yesterday. The opening session of the Trades Union

SHANGHAI: California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (C-L) greets workers during his visit to the Zhenhua Port Machinery Company (ZPMC) in Shanghai yesterday. ZPMC the world leader in port container cranes is also manufacturing the fabricated steel deck and tower for the Self-Anchored Suspension Span of the San Francisco Oakland Bay Bridge. —AFP

Debt ‘tensions’ stunt Europe’s growth: EU BRUSSELS: Fears of a resurgent euro-zone debt crisis are likely to stunt European economic growth prospects this year, with the EU warning of ‘lingering tensions’ in Ireland and elsewhere yesterday. “The global recovery is still expected to be uneven and is surrounded by major uncertainties,” the European Commission said in its autumn forecast, citing “the resurfacing of global imbalances, high debt levels and lingering tensions in sovereign-debt markets.” As Europe braces itself for the impact of a “soft patch” in global demand, it warned of problems closer to home. It said that despite a “partial recovery” since a trillion-dollar backstop emergency facility was agreed in May to help struggling members, the reality remains “tenuous, and adverse effects on bank credit provision to the economy cannot be ruled out.”

Ireland has become the latest country to suffer on money markets, paying more to keep pace with a bottomless pit of bailout funding required for the likes of the failed Anglo Irish Bank and analysts fearing tougher times ahead despite tightened bank funding rules agreed on Sunday. Brussels said that while sovereign-bond spreads in most European countries have “narrowed somewhat” since the Greek debt crisis sowed widespread panic over other weak economies, “they are still significantly above the levels seen at the beginning of the year.” It warned of “historic lows” for benchmark sovereign-bond yields, with “spreads vis-a-vis German bunds widening again in some member states” and the latest research from the European Central Bank providing “evidence of renewed tightening of bank credit standards, at least for enterprises.” —AFP

THESSALONIKI: Truckers drive past the White Tower in Thessaloniki yesterday. Greece faced fears of renewed fuel shortage yesterday as thousands of freight truckers began a new protest against plans to liberalize their sector to help revive the recession-hit Greek economy. —AFP

China bid for Prudential seen hinging on AIA LONDON: A potential bid for Britain’s Prudential from big Chinese investors faces multiple obstacles, and would proceed only if an initial public offering from Asian rival AIA proves too expensive, bankers and analysts said. Prudential shares soared by as much as 4.5 percent yesterday after the Sunday Times said heavyweight Chinese investors who backed Pru’s abortive bid for AIA earlier this year were in the “early stages” of weighing up an offer for the insurer. The investors, who include Go Guangchang, chairman of China’s Fosun International, and Fred Hu, previously chairman of Goldman Sachs in China, plan to keep only Prudential’s flagship Asian division, the paper said. Prudential declined to comment. Analysts and bankers said the biggest hurdle for any takeover would be offloading Prudential’s US and UK divisions at an attractive price. One

banker said Clive Cowdery’s Resolution was the only obvious buyer for the UK business, reducing competitive tension in any eventual sale process. “Such a deal would be very difficult to pull off and we are a very long way from anything happening,” a second banker said. Any bid would also depend on the price of AIA’s planned IPO, seen as a competing investment opportunity for the Chinese investors. “I wouldn’t rule it out, with (Prudential’s) rating being very attractive relative to Asian life companies,” said Berenberg Bank analyst Peter Eliot. “But at the same time, I wouldn’t want to get too carried away. It’s got to be seen in the context of other opportunities, including the AIA IPO.” AIA, led by former Prudential chief executive Mark Tucker, hopes to raise $15 billion from its partial stock market flotation, expected in October or November. —Reuters

Ministers were accused of “taking a chainsaw to public services” and being part of a “demolition government” as delegates backed joint industrial action and a national campaign to make the case against cuts. Bob Crow, the firebrand leader of the Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers Union (RMT) which represents around 80,000 people, spoke in favor of the move, saying the unions would be “fools not to call major action.” “If we stand together, we fight and win and if we don’t fight and we become divided, we lose,” he told the audience in Manchester, northwest England, to loud applause. “The position’s going to be either lay down, or stand up and fight.” On Sunday, Crow-whose union helped bring London to a standstill last week with a 24hour strike on Underground trains-proposed a peaceful campaign of civil disobedience. He suggested the action could include everything from protestors dressed as “Batman climbing up Number 10 (Downing Street) to Spiderman going up Buckingham Palace.” Mark Serwotka, general secretary of the Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) which represents some 300,000 workers, added that industrial action was “inevitable” unless the government changed course. Meanwhile, Matt Wrack of the Fire Brigades Union promised a movement against the cuts “on a scale you’ve never seen before.” The TUC is already set to lobby parliament in October and hold a day of action in March, but the vote signals an intention to take action on a grander scale. Large-scale protests against austerity cuts have already hit other European countries such as Greece and France but are rare in Britain, due in part to more restrictive trade union legislation than in other countries. This year’s TUC has been dubbed “the most important for a generation” by one union boss with delegates furious at the extent of cuts set to be imposed by Cameron’s coalition, led by the centre-right Conservatives. A total of 600,000 public sector jobs could eventually go and ministers have warned government departments to prepare reductions of up to 40 percent. Ministers will give full details on how they intend to reduce borrowing-forecast to hit 149 billion pounds (180 billion euros, $230 billion) in the year to March 2011 — in a spending review on October 20. The cuts will be implemented from April next year. Cameron’s official spokesman insisted Monday that the government wanted a “genuine partnership” with trade unions in dealing with the deficit. The leadership of the TUC is taking a more measured tone on the prospect of strikes than other union leaders, stressing the need to persuade the public of the case against the cuts before resorting to strike action. While its general secretary Brendan Barber called Cameron’s coalition a “demolition government” in his speech and accused it of peddling “insulting claptrap”, he said their program would only be defeated “politically.” —AFP

Congress (TUC) was dominated by angry attacks on Prime Minister David Cameron’s coalition government, which took power in May and plans deep public sector cuts to tackle a record deficit.

Primark slowdown unsettles AB Foods

MANCHESTER: General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress (TUC), Brendan Barber, delivers his opening address at their annual conference in Manchester, north-west England yesterday. —AFP

Dollar Thrifty accepts Hertz’s $1.43bn offer PARK RIDGE, New Jersey: Dollar Thrifty has accepted a new bid of about $1.43 billion from Hertz, which is battling Avis for the rental car company. Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group Inc’s board said late on Sunday that it accepted Hertz Global Holdings Inc’s new $50per-share offer — up from the $41 it offered in April — and amended the companies’ merger agreement. The offer was made in an attempt to thwart a rival $1.3 billion cash-and-stock counteroffer by Avis Budget Group Inc. In pre-market trading yesterday, Dollar Thrifty shares were up 4.1 percent from Friday’s close, to $50. Hertz’s new offer gives Dollar’s stockholders $43.60 in cash for each share they own, which is $10.80 higher than the prior offer. Shareholders will also receive 0.6366 of a share of Hertz common stock and approximately $6.87 per share to be paid by Dollar Thrifty as a special cash dividend immediately prior to the acquisition’s completion. The $44.6 million reverse breakup fee is still in place and Hertz said it has started the process of selling Advantage Rent-a-Car to

A Hertz logo is seen at the counter at a Hertz car rent in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Dollar Thrifty has accepted a new bid of about $1.43 billion from Hertz yesterday, which is battling Avis for the rental car company.— ensure the deal closes quickly. Hertz Chairman and CEO Mark Frissora said in a statement that the Park Ridge, New Jersey, company has already received interest in Advantage from “several unsolicited parties.” Some Dollar shareholders had protested the board’s rejection of the Avis offer, but Dollar Thrifty has said that the Avis proposal did not include deal protection measures or adequately address antitrust concerns. Parsippany, New Jersey-based Avis had offered a deal valued at more than $47 per share, but without the breakup fee that Hertz agreed to pay if it fails to complete its

acquisition. Dollar Thrifty has suggested that Avis runs a higher risk of not winning antitrust clearance for the deal because its Budget Rent A Car division and Dollar Thrifty have similar market shares of airport car rentals aimed at leisure travelers, while Hertz’s Advantage Rent A Car has only a tiny slice of that market. A spokesman for Avis couldn’t immediately be reached yesterday. Dollar Thrifty, of Tulsa, Oklahoma, pushed back a special shareholders meeting meant to vote on Hertz’s proposal to Sept. 30 from Thursday. —AP

LONDON: Discount fashion retailer Primark said sales growth slowed over the summer and margins will fall next year due to higher cotton costs and taxes, hitting shares in owner Associated British Foods. The 204-strong Primark chain, which makes a third of group profit, has grown strongly through the downturn as its cheap chic clothes prove popular with cash-strapped shoppers, but now spending cuts, extra costs and tax rises are clouding the outlook. The retailer, which is expanding into continental Europe, saw like-for-like sales growth from stores open at least a year slow to 4 percent in the three months to mid-September, making the year rise 6 percent after first half growth of 8 percent. AB Foods Finance Director John Bason said the slowdown compared to nearly 10 percent like-for-like sales growth in its previous fourth quarter driven by very good weather in the summer of 2009, and added a cautionary note for next year. “We have to remain cautious for the outlook for the UK consumer,” Bason told Reuters by telephone after the group’s end of year trading update on Monday. AB Foods shares were down 2.7 percent at 1,059 pence by 1210 GMT, to be the biggest loser in a firmer FTSE 100. They have risen 32 percent in 2010 compared to the index’s 2 percent rise. “Given the strong share price performance, we believe the shares are due a pause for breath and move our recommendation from buy to hold,” said analyst Graham Jones at house broker Panmure Gordon, and others were also cautious. “We expect the market to react negatively to slowing likefor-like sales growth at Primark and pressures developing for 2011,” said analyst Andrew Wood at Sanford Bernstein. The company warned higher cotton prices and freight costs and the increases in Value Added Tax implemented in Spain in July and planned for the UK in January will lower Primark margins next year, and Jones forecast margins would shrink 0.8 percentage points to 11.6 percent for the year to Sept 2011. Some of Britain’s biggest retailers, including Kingfisher and Debenhams, are due to report later this week to show how they are coping. Overall, AB Foods said its second half profits will show a “substantial increase” resulting in “very good progress” in year earnings boosted by its Primark, sugar and grocery units. The company, which also markets Silver Spoon sugar, Mazola vegetable oil, Ovaltine drinks and Twining teas, has continued to show a recovery at its sugar and grocery businesses after a period of heavy investment and a steady pick-up in demand. —Reuters



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Asia markets shrug off global banking shake-up

MUMBAI: An onlooker speaks on his mobile phone as he watches the Sensex index on the digital broadcast outside the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) in Mumbai yesterday. India’s main stock market yesterday crossed the key 19,000 points marks to its highest level for more than two years, boosted by optimism about growth in Asia’s third largest economy. — AFP

HONG KONG: Asian banks’ shares rallied yesterday as regulators and investors shrugged off the biggest revamp to global banking rules in decades, confident that regional lenders were already in good shape. The stricter new rules-known as Basel III-were agreed on Sunday at a meeting in Switzerland of international central bankers and regulators, who said they would avert any repeat of the devastating world financial crisis. “This, along with global liquidity standards, will be an important financial reform measure after the financial crisis,” the People’s Bank of China, the country’s central bank, said in a brief statement. The Basel III rules will require banks to substantially raise the amount of capital they hold in reserve-a major change after the 2008 shock revealed inadequate financial buffers when crisis struck. But the tighter rules will be phased in over several years, and

are seen in Asia as a bigger burden for hard-pressed lenders in the West. “I think this will have more impact on European banks, because local banks have a healthy capital adequacy ratio,” Castor Pang, research director at the financial firm Cinda in Hong Kong, told Dow Jones Newswires. Against a backdrop of stricter regulation and a more risk-averse culture, Asian banks in general did not indulge in the orgy of risky bets on a shaky housing market that ignited a banking crisis in the United States and Britain. Outside of sclerotic Japan, banks in the region have not had to go cap in hand for government help, although margins are being squeezed in China as authorities seek higher reserves amid fears about a potential property bubble. Hong Kong-listed shares of global banking heavyweight HSBC closed up 1.83 percent. In Japan, MUFG shares rose 1.99 percent and Mizuho advanced 1.53 percent. “We consider that the capital

reforms are well balanced,” said an official at Japan’s Financial Services Agency. “In that sense, banks in Japan will be able to achieve the standards through their management efforts.” Under the new rules to be phased in from 2013, banks would be required to hold more reserves by January 1, 2015, with their “core Tier 1 capital” raised to 4.5 percent from 2.0 percent now. And banks would be required by January 1, 2019 to set aside an additional buffer of 2.5 percent to “withstand future periods of stress”, bringing the total core reserves required to 7.0 percent. Australian Treasurer Wayne Swan said his country’s banks would “comfortably meet the new requirements”-but warned lenders against passing on any costs to customers. “These reforms will certainly not justify any bank looking to gouge its customers by raising rates above any future movements by the independent Reserve Bank (of Australia),” he said.

“We’ve just seen the major banks all report healthy profits with net interest margins higher than pre-crisis, and their impairment (risky loan) levels continue to improve due to our strong economy.” Stock in Australia’s biggest bank, Commonwealth, ended 1.59 percent higher while in Singapore, DBS was up 0.4 percent in late trade, OCBC rose 0.5 percent and UOB was off 0.3 percent. “The Basel Committee has provided more clarity and the timeline for implementation is also more generous than the original December 2009 proposal,” a spokesman for UOB said. The regulations will be submitted for ratification at a G20 summit in South Korea in November. It was a compromise deal after the United States and Britain had pressed for a faster implementation. “This is something investors won’t have to worry about for several years,” Daiwa Securities Capital Markets analyst Masumi Yamamoto said in Tokyo. — AFP

China an ‘important engine’ for economic recovery: PM Wen opens ‘Summer Davos’ in Tianjin

TIANJIN, China: China’s Premier Wen Jiabao speaks on the opening day of the annual meeting of New Champions 2010 of the World Economic Forum in the Meijiang Convention Centre in Tianjin yesterday. — AFP

Geithner not happy with China progress on yuan BEIJING: US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner has said he is not satisfied with China’s moves to loosen its grip on the yuan, ahead of an appearance before US lawmakers on ways to pressure Beijing. Geithner, who will testify before the US House Ways and Means Committee on Thursday, told the Wall Street Journal in an interview that Beijing had done “very little” since pledging in June to let the yuan trade more freely. When asked in the interview, conducted on Friday and posted on the newspaper’s website yesterday, whether he was satisfied with China’s progress on the issue, Geithner replied: “Of course not.” “China took the very important step in June of signalling that they’re going to let the exchange rate start to reflect market forces. But they’ve done very, very little, they’ve let it move very, very little in the interim,” he said. “It’s very important to us, and I think it’s important to China, I think they recognize this, that you need to let it move up over a sustained period of time.” China made the June pledge following intense pressure from the United States, Europe and other trading partners for a stronger currency. The currency had until then been effectively pegged at about 6.8 to the dollar since 2008. Since then the yuan has appreciated about one percent against the greenback, angering US lawmakers who have been calling for steps against what they see as unfair Chinese trade practices. The People’s Bank of China yesterday set the central parity rate the middle of the currency’s

allowed trading band-at 6.7509 to the dollar, according to The exchange rate can move up or down 0.5 percent on any given trading day. Some economists think the yuan is undervalued by 25-40 percent, giving Chinese exporters an unfair price advantage-but Beijing has called the allegations “groundless”. US lawmakers have been pressing for legislation that would require the Commerce Department to apply punitive sanctions against China and other countries with allegedly undervalued currencies. “China’s currency remains substantially undervalued. It is vital that we hear Secretary Geithner’s views about US policy and how best to proceed,” Ways and Means Committee chairman Sander Levin said in a statement on the hearings. The committee will hold an initial hearing tomorrow before Geithner’s appearance on Thursday. “The large and persistent US trade imbalance with China is a major contributor to global imbalances, costing the United States jobs and economic growth,” Levin said. The US trade deficit with China fell slightly to $25.92 billion in July from $26.15 billion in June, the US Department of Commerce said last week. China said Friday its trade surplus unexpectedly shrank in August to $20.03 billion as imports accelerated-which analysts said would bolster Beijing’s arguments for a limited appreciation of the yuan against the dollar. — AFP

US says Russia ‘closer than ever’ to WTO MOSCOW: Russia is closer than ever to its long-running goal of joining the World Trade Organization (WTO), after more than 17 years of talks, a senior US official said in an interview published yesterday. Russia applied to join the WTO’s predecessor, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade or GATT, in June 1993 but remains the biggest economy outside the trade body and has previously accused the United States of holding up its bid. “I think that Russia is closer than ever before to entry into the WTO,” William Burns, US Under-Secretary of State for Political Affairs, said in an interview with the Interfax news agency that was published in full yesterday. President Barack Obama and his Russian counterpart, Dmitry Medvedev, agreed at a summit in Washington this June to resolve all issues blocking Russia’s WTO bid by the end of September. But the comment from Burns, the State Department’s third-ranking official and its top career diplomat, is the strongest signal yet that Russia and the United States are close to a deal. “Russia has made good

progress,” Burns said. The interview was published in Russian and the US embassy could not immediately provide an English transcript. Obama has sought to “reset” ties with Russia to get Moscow’s help on US foreign policy priorities such as dealing with Iran over its nuclear program and the war in Afghanistan. US diplomats say privately that helping Russia’s WTO is currently the main focus of the so called reset in relations, though some officials say the ambitious timetable set by Obama and Medvedev may not be achieved by the end of September. Diplomats hope there can be a deal within months, paving the way for Russia to join the 153member Geneva-based trade body. Russian officials say talks on WTO are continuing but that they are still waiting for the United States to repeal the Jackson-Vanik amendment, a Cold War-era provision that tied US trade relations to emigration rights for religious minorities. Russia’s powerful prime minister, Vladimir Putin, said in December that Jackson-Vanik was an anachronism which should be scrapped. — Reuters

TIANJIN, China: China’s economy is in “good shape” and has helped power the world’s recovery from the devastating financial crisis that erupted two years ago, Premier Wen Jiabao said yesterday. Wen, speaking at the start of the World Economic Forum’s three-day “Summer Davos” in the northern port city of Tianjin, also pledged to ensure an open and fair environment for foreign businesses operating in the Asian powerhouse. “China’s economic growth has provided major development opportunities for the multinationals and created huge demand for major economies and neighboring countries,” Wen said. “It has become an important engine for the world economic recovery,” the premier said, praising his country’s massive stimulus package as “timely, fruitful, effective and suited to China’s realities”. “China’s economy is now in good shape, featuring fast growth, gradual structural improvement, rising employment and basic price stability,” he said. China’s economy slowed in the second quarter, growing 10.3 percent compared with a blistering 11.9 percent in the first three months, after Beijing introduced a slew of measures designed to avoid overheating. Japanese government data issued last month showed that its second quarter GDP on a nominal basis came in at $1.288 trillion, below China’s $1.336 trillion, although Japan remained stronger over the first half. Wen reiterated that Beijing was “committed to creating an open and fair environment for foreigninvested enterprises”, while noting that foreign firms had “reaped good returns” in China. Surveys by the American and European chambers of commerce in recent months have shown that overseas companies are increasingly unhappy with the way they are treated in China. The European Union chamber said early this month that uneven enforcement of laws and unfair restrictions on foreign investment were deterring overseas companies from expanding their operations in the Asian country. Beijing last month urged officials to implement policies aimed at encouraging foreign investment, in an apparent response to the criticism by foreign governments and firms over perceived unfair policies. — AFP

TIANJIN: A young girl paints Chinese calligraphy inside the Meijiang Convention Centre in Tianjin where the annual meeting of New Champions 2010 of the World Economic Forum is being held yesterday. The meetings are being held from September 13-15. — AFP

Chinese CB welcomes new bank regulations SHANGHAI: China yesterday welcomed a major overhaul of global banking rules, as the Asian nation reportedly considers new moves to strengthen banks’ balance sheets after a post-crisis lending spree last year. Top global central bankers and regulators meeting in Switzerland agreed Sunday on a new set of rules, called Basel III, requiring banks to raise the capital they hold in reserve to prevent a repeat of the world financial crisis. “This, along with global liquidity standards, will be an important financial reform measure after the financial crisis,” the People’s Bank of China, the country’s central bank, said in a brief statement on its website. China powered out of the global crisis on the back of a massive stimulus package partially funded by state-backed bank lending, which saw new loans reach 9.6 trillion yuan in 2009, nearly double the total of the previous year. It has sought to curb rampant lending, urging

banks to replenish their capital base and increase the amount of money they must keep in reserve after the lending spree fuelled fears of a bubble in the property sector and a possible new crop of bad debts. Chinese media said last week the banking regulator was considering a new rule requiring banks to put aside the equivalent of 2.5 percent of their outstanding loans as reserves. The China Business News, citing an unnamed source, reported yesterday that the regulator plans to introduce a new slew of requirements next year to ensure banks have sufficient capital, provisions and liquidity. The government has set a loan target of 7.5 trillion yuan for this year, a 22 percent drop from last year. Chinese banks issued 545.2 billion yuan ($80.5 billion) in new loans in August, the central bank said Saturday-a slight increase from July, and exceeding expectations of economists polled by Dow Jones Newswires. — AFP

SINGAPORE: People walk past the local bank branch of the United Overseas Bank in Singapore yesterday. Banks will be required to lift their reserves substantially under ‘landmark’ new rules drawn up on September 12 by central bankers and regulators seeking to prevent a repeat of the recent financial crisis. — AFP

EU struggles to persuade Italy over Korea trade deal BRUSSELS: European partners scrambled yesterday to convince Italy to drop its opposition to a trade deal with South Korea ahead of an EU summit, as Rome fretted about the impact on its vital auto industry. Italy stood out as the 27-nation European Union’s lone holdout to the free trade pact as foreign and European affairs ministers met in Brussels ahead of the gathering of national leaders on Thursday. Belgian Foreign Minister Steven Vanackere, whose country holds the EU’s rotating presi-

dency, said that he hoped to “see progress” as he headed to the meeting of ministers. “We have been working since the weekend. We’ll see how things happen with the Italian representative,” he told reporters. “If not today I’m convinced that by Thursday it should be possible to make an agreement (on) South Korea,” said Vanackere, who expressed hope last week that a deal would be ready for a summit with Seoul in October. But Italy was only represented by its ambassador to the EU at yesterday’s meeting,


Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Taiwan turns plastic junk to ‘green’ gold TAIPEI: The mountains of used plastic bottles at a recycling station in Taipei emit a faint smell of garbage dump, but soon they will be turned into wigs and clothes that people will wear. From fake hair to football jerseys and building bricks, Taiwan is breathing new life into its massive plastics waste, creating a booming new business at the same time as it aims to go green. The island started recycling plastic more than a decade ago amid growing environmental concerns, and today it boasts about 73 percent recycling rates, according to the cabinet’s Environmental Protection Administration.

Last year, nearly 180,000 tonnes of used plastic were collected and turned into raw materials worth 4.5 billion Taiwan dollars (140 million US), which cut down garbage disposal costs and carbon dioxide emissions, it said. “Recycled plastics can be made into many products such as garments, flower pots, wigs and zippers,” said Ma Nien-ho, a spokesman for the administration’s recycling fund management board. “We are not only protecting the environment but also making money,” he said. Taiwan took pride in the so-called “ecofabric” that was used by local companies to make the jerseys for nine teams competing

in the recent football World Cup in South Africa. Each jersey, made from eight plastic bottles melted and processed into polyester, is 13 percent lighter than traditional fabric and can absorb and disperse sweat more quickly, according to Taiwan Textile Research Institute. “The production process is also more environmentally friendly as it takes less water and energy to dye the shirts when using coloured bottles,” said Alex Lo, managing director of Super Textile Corporation. Super Textile, a leading Taiwanese maker of eco-fabric, started exporting to the United States and Japan in recent years,

which gave a boost of up to 10 percent to its business, Lo said. “The response has been much warmer in the past two years due to rising awareness on global warming and fluctuating cotton prices,” Lo said. “We are optimistic that the World Cup publicity will help stir up more demand.” Taiwan, a small island that consumes about 4.5 billion plastic bottles annually, is seen as having an advantage in manufacturing eco-textiles through lower transportation and recycling costs. Tzu Chi Foundation, one of the island’s largest charity groups, runs 4,500 recycling stations across Taiwan with the help of

about 70,000 volunteers who collected 12,000 tonnes of used bottles last year. The foundation has distributed more than 300,000 blankets made from plastic bottles since 2007 for relief uses at home and abroad, it said. And perhaps in the near future houses built from recycled plastic bottles will mushroom across the island after “Eco Ark”, the world’s first such building, is unveiled in November. “Eco Ark”-a three-storey 24-metre (78feet) high exhibition hall due to debut at the Taipei International Floral Exposition, is built from 1.5 million recycled plastic bottles and cost 300 million Taiwan dollars.

“The bottles are processed to make bricks that can resist earthquakes, wind and fire while providing the building with natural lighting to save electricity,” said its architect Arthur Huang. “The ‘polli-bricks’ are also less expensive than conventional materials like wood and glass so the construction cost is much lower.” Huang said his firm is currently building a luxury boutique hotel and several factories and corporate buildings with the bricks. “Just imagine if we can replace all the steel roofs in the buildings in Taipei with light transparent polli-bricks. That would make the city look more beautiful.” — AFP

Automatically snubs unwanted callers

Mobile phone users enlisting YouMail ‘digital secretary’ SAN FRANCISCO: Ranks of mobile phone users are enlisting the services of a “digital secretary” that automatically snubs unw anted callers, transcribes messages, and gives loved ones special handling. California startup YouMail said yesterday that it has passed the half-billion-call mark and now manages more than 1.5 million calls daily. “The grow th is strong and steady,” YouMail founder and chief executive Alex Quilici told AFP. “It is almost more convenient to not answ er the phone w ith YouMail.”

TAIPEI: This photo taken on August 19, 2010 shows a man looking at a Tshirt made from recycled plastic bottles at a fashion show in Taipei. Environmentally conscious Taiwan is tapping into the market of recycled plastics to build exhibition halls, make clothes and other items in an industry with an estimated annual worth of 140 million USD. —AFP

Apple opens iTunes App Store to programs written in Adobe Flash NEW YORK: Apple is opening up its iTunes App Store - from which people can download apps for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch - so that developers can write programs for it without using Apple’s own software. It also says that it is publishing the guidelines used to review apps before they are approved for the store, which should ease a bone of contention with developers who have been frustrated by the opaque nature of the reviewing system. The move to open the store to software written using nonApple products will forestall the threat of an anti-trust investigation which had looked possible after Apple blocked apps written using Adobe software tools. The two companies have been engaged in a tussle for months over Apple’s refusal to incorporate Adobe’s Flash software, used on many desktop computers, on the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch - collectively known as “iOS devices”. In a statement, Apple said: “We have listened to our developers and taken much of their feedback to heart. Based on their input, today we are making some important changes to our iOS Developer Program license in sections 3.3.1, 3.3.2 and 3.3.9 to relax some restrictions we put in place earlier this year.” Those clauses, altered in April, had effectively banned any app that was not written with Apple’s own iOS development tools, even if they produced computer code which would run on iOS devices. The effect was most marked on Adobe, which had made a significant investment to the latest release of its Creative Suite applications so that they could generate iOS-compatible apps from Flash apps built with the suite. Now, Apple is stepping back

from that ban: “In particular, we are relaxing all restrictions on the development tools used to create iOS apps, as long as the resulting apps do not download any code. This should give developers the flexibility they want, while preserving the security we need.” In April, Steve Jobs published an open letter to Adobe entitled “Thoughts on Flash”, which was critical of Flash’s performance, security, reliability and usability on a touchscreen device. While Jobs has not retreated on Flash, Apple has clearly decided that the threat of antitrust suit - and the similtaneous threat from Google’s Android platform, which powers a growing number of phones that can run Flash - makes it more attractive to allow such “cross-compiled” apps than to try to ban them. The newly-published guidelines - theoretically only available to iOS developers - begins with a number of general points, such as that “if you want to criticize a religion, [don’t write an app,] write a book. If you want to describe sex, write a book or a song, or create a medical app. It can get complicated, but we have decided to not allow certain kinds of content in the App Store.” It also points out that “we don’t need any more Fart apps. If your app doesn’t do something useful or provide some form of lasting entertainment, it may not be accepted.” Other reasons for rejection would include amateurish efforts and “content or behaviour that we believe is over the line. What line, you ask? Well, as a Supreme Court Justice once said, “I’ll know it when I see it.” And we think that you will also know it when you cross it.” There is also a warning: “If

your app is rejected, we have a Review Board that you can appeal to. If you run to the press and trash us, it never helps.” The warning on “pornography” - which Jobs has said before he does not want on the store - is explicit: “Apps containing pornographic material, defined by Webster’s Dictionary as ‘explicit descriptions or displays of sexual organs or activities intended to stimulate erotic rather than aesthetic or emotional feelings’, will be rejected.” And it notes that “Apps that contain usergenerated content that is frequently pornographic (example ‘Chat Roulette’ apps) will be rejected”. Yet some developers have found in the past that press embarrassment has seemed like the only way to put pressure on Apple. The document does not promise any timeline for reviews - which has been another bugbear for developers, who have sometimes seen apps sidelined for weeks without any timescale for review. The move will probably strengthen Apple’s position in the App Store market, where it is battling against Google Marketplace, as well as BlackBerry maker RIM and Nokia, which has its own Ovi store. The most significant threat there is Google, but today’s move is a plus for developers who will now be able to develop for the App Store without concern about their development methods. Apple noted: “With over 250,000 apps and 6.5 billion downloads, the App Store has become the world’s largest mobile application platform and App Store developers have earned over one billion dollars from the sales of their apps.” — Guardian

PHNOM PENH: Customers look at products for sale at laptop booths during an exhibition in Phnom Penh on Sept 11. Cambodia launched the first laptop exhibition of the five brands Toshiba, Dell, Lenovo, Acer and Prolink in a bid to show high-end technology devices to Cambodians. —AFP

YouMail lets users personalize greetings to specific incoming telephone numbers. A spouse whose call is missed might be greeted with recorded words of affection while a boss could be reassured a project is nearly complete. A “DitchMail” feature lets users bash telemarketers, troublesome exparamours, or other unwanted callers in recorded greetings and then have the calls automatically disconnect. YouMail users have an online community that shares digital recordings of greetings tailored for various occasions. Snippets lifted from movies or television shows along with music or official-sounding advisories were among the array of downloadable greetings available at on Monday. “The fingers you have used to dial are too fat, to obtain a special dialing wand please mash the keypad with your palm now,” said a greeting taken from a popular animated comedy television show “The Simpsons.” Another greeting featured a woman calmly advising callers they had reached the devil’s answering service then telling which buttons to hit to sell one’s soul, get directions to hell, or speak with a demon. “When we started YouMail there were no solutions for voice mail that were fun to use,” Quilici said. “We thought we could do a better job by letting people leave personal greetings tailored to each caller.” DitchMail was the Southern California company’s first offering, mobile phone greetings for people users didn’t want to hear from, according to the founder. The list of DitchMail options included recordings titled “Die in a fire” and “Lying, cheating, bastard” along with an “ear-splitting whistle” and an authentic sounding “this number is no longer in service.” Telemarketers that use blocked or private numbers aren’t necessarily

protected from YouMail users’ scorn. Telemarketers phone numbers are shared in the YouMail online community, and the service lets users automatically notify callers that messages from blocked numbers will not be accepted. YouMail has expanded beyond Ditchmall to add categories for holiday, celebrity, political, inspirational, sports, polite, and foreign language greetings. About two years ago, YouMail added machine-based conversion of voice messages to text but found “it sometimes worked wonderfully and sometimes it was completely misleading or gibberish,” Quilici said. “A phone in a crowded bar is a recipe for disaster; you get the dog died instead of the dog tried,” Quilici said of relying purely on machines to transcribe voice messages. YouMail added humans into the equation, having people edit and refine messages transcribed to text. “We thought we could organize messages visually on computers, smartphones, iPads, iPods...true multiplatform visual voice mail,” Quilici said. “Our goal is to provide it on every device.” YouMail saw a boost after Google launched its Voice service that lets people have one number that rings at all of their telephones; converts voice mail or text messages into email, and allows for toll-free calls to the United States and Canada, according to Quilici. Last month, Google added Voice to its free Web-based email service Gmail and logged more than a million calls in the 24 hours after its launch. “A category is being created of better voice mail,” Quilici said. “You will see more carriers offering us as an option.” Basic YouMail is free, but transcriptions are a premium service with a typical monthly plan costing seven dollars and transcribing a maximum of 50 messages from voice to text. Unlimited message transcription can be had for 30 dollars a month. — AFP

BEIJING: A man uses his mobile phone while sitting on a bench in a shopping mall in Beijing yesterday. Cellphone customers in China must provide identification from September 1 to purchase a new number, state media said — the latest step by Beijing to tighten curbs over the world’s largest mobile market. — AFP

New scanning system can digitise book in a minute TOKYO: Japanese researchers said they had developed technology to scan a book as fast as a person can flip through it. A prototype ultra-speed scanner capable of digitising a book in one minute will be built within two years, said the chief researcher of the team at the University of Tokyo’s Graduate School of Information Science and Technology. The “book-flipping scanning” system works with a camera that can take up to 500 photographs per second, enabling it to record about 170 book pages in 60 seconds as a person thumbs through them. The system adjusts for the distortion caused by the curvature of the moving pages by measuring their three-dimensional forms using infra-red beams, so that the images can be electronically “flattened” to look like the original. “We believe this is the world’s fastest (scanning) system as far as the technologies already published are concerned,” said Yoshihiro Watanabe, who leads the research team. “We are considering using robots to turn the pages automatically and more neatly,” he told AFP by telephone. The university researchers teamed up with Japan’s Dai Nippon Printing this month to put the technology to practical use, with the aim of building a prototype scanner within two years. Japanese printing firms are diversifying into e-books, which can be read using hand-

held devices such as Apple’s iPad tablet computer or Amazon’s Kindle. Watanabe said the technology to rapidly capture 3-D images of fast-moving objects could be

used in a variety of applications from robotics to industrial and automotive design. The technology could be used for quality control of industrial products, he said. “You would just scan prod-

ucts that come out of manufacturing lines,” he added. “It could also be used to develop a safer and more comfortable driving system. If mounted on a car, this could take 3-D images of obsta-

cles ahead or dents and bumps in the road to avoid them. “If loaded into the eyes of robots, they would be able to move much faster than humans.” — AFP

TOKYO: This handout picture, released from University of Tokyo’s Graduate School of Information Science and Technology on Sept 10 shows a prototype ultra-speed scanner capable of digitising a book in one minute, develped by Professor Masatoshi Ishikawa of the Tokyo University. The “book-flipping scanning” system works with a camera that can take up to 500 photographs per second, enabling it to record about 170 book pages in 60 seconds as a person thumbs through them. — AFP



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Students form bond with family of a cadaver donor GARY: Dot Purcell always knew she would donate her body to science. Even when young, the doctor’s daughter, a little girl who would grow up to become the mother of 11, would say, “there’s something good in here” that might help others. That death talk made her doting husband squeamish, and Jim Purcell tried to talk her out of it, saying, as they aged, that her body would be too old to be useful. He didn’t want to contemplate losing his beautiful, fun-loving wife, who cherished life but accepted death. When the moment came, after 64 blissful years of marriage, and her wish was carried out, neither of them could have imagined just how much Dot’s decision would help, and heal. Every year, thousands of people donate their bodies to science, becoming an essential part of hands-on medical training. Their gift allows students to study human anatomy and the effects of age, trauma and illness in close-up detail. Yet, despite this intimacy, usual protocol calls for some distance. Donors are anonymous, and while many US schools hold memorial services to honor them, details of what goes on in the dissection lab just are not talked about much, certainly not with the surviving family members. It is all too awkward, too indelicate, too personal. Which is why the story of what happened at Indiana University Northwest, where Dot Purcell’s body ended up, is so unusual. At the tiny medical school, a vibrant oasis in Gary, an otherwise decaying steel town, medical students are told the donors’ names, given their medical records, and encouraged to get to know their families. These cadavers are the students’ first patients, with lives worth knowing, not just for humanistic reasons, but to help students better understand the bodies they dissect. Ernest Talarico, assistant director of medical education at IU Northwest, is the brains

behind the idea. When he was in school, students often gave the unidentified cadavers crude nicknames. “Salty” was the moniker given a cadaver whom Talarico helped dissect, because the man had a nude woman tattoo on his chest. “I found that disrespectful because they had a name and a life, and we should respect that as part of the tremendous gift they give to us,” Talarico said. So last October, a year after Dot’s death at 86, Purcell got a letter from Talarico. Dot’s body, donated to the state anatomical gift association, had been sent to the Gary school, just 10 miles from the family’s home in Munster, and they were invited to meet with the four firstyear medical students who would be working on her. “I was not that eager to meet them,” Purcell said. At 90, the retired public relations executive still is grieving for the woman who ran their busy household and made him feel whole. Dot had been mostly healthy until she was diagnosed in early 2008 with an extremely rare type of melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer. “It was devastating to me and to everyone in the family,” Purcell said with a deep, heavy sigh, “because it just came on suddenly, and then she was gone.” Dot’s diagnosis came several months before she died, but after six decades together, months seem like days and life without Dot was unimaginable to Jim. More receptive to the idea of meeting the students was his son, Mike, ninth out of the 11 kids and more like Dot: an outgoing, glass-half-full kind of guy. He gently tried to convince his dad that it might be a good idea. “The more my dad and I thought about it, we were like, you know what, she’s come home. This is great,” said Mike Purcell, 46. First-year medical student Lucas Buchler had his own trepidations about meeting Dot’s family. He thought the

dynamics of the whole thing were pretty weird. Here were students on an amazing high, starting medical school, for some, fulfilling a lifelong goal, and they would be meeting with families “in grieving mode,” reeling from the loss of a loved one. “It’s a fairly emotional experience,” Buchler, 23, said during a recent interview, a few weeks before starting his second year. For many students, it is the first time they had seen a cadaver, and even medical students get squeamish. But also, they can be overcome by appreciation for the donors and “their ultimate gift.” “We all prepared ourselves for an awkward interaction,” Buchler said. When the day arrived, there were more than just polite handshakes. The businessman in Jim Purcell approached it like interviewing a job candidate, and he grilled the students. “I asked them what brought them into medicine,” Jim Purcell said. For Buchler, a handsome, serious young man with a thick brown buzz cut and an almost Marine-like bearing, it was an intense interest in the human body and how it works, plus a genuine desire to help people, that made him want to be a doctor. He found Purcell’s questions welcoming, not challenging. “I could tell by how he listened to our answers he had a genuine interest,” Buchler said. “It was wonderful for us.” Throughout the semester, while working in the dissection lab, the students kept in touch with the Purcells, gaining an understanding of the family’s deep grief while getting to know who Dot was. She was an uncommon mix of elegant and practical, a buoyant blonde who met Jim while they were in college, he at Notre Dame, she at its sister school, St. Mary’s College. Dorothy - everyone called her Dot - was a former teacher who loved sparkly jewelry and never left the house without her

makeup just so, but wore gym shoes with everything because of chronic foot pain. She helped design the spacious two-story house she and Jim built 50 years ago, with fancy French provincial decor and washer and dryer on the main floor instead of the basement, decades before that became fashionable, to make them more accessible. She loved books and music, going out on the town with her husband and ice-skating with her kids. She had a great sense of humor, and taught her children to challenge everything. Coincidentally, the music Dot’s student team chose to listen to during dissections was the same kind of classical music she loved. “We knew right away that they clicked with my mom,” Mike Purcell said. Buchler, especially, clicked with the Purcells. Since that first meeting, and even after the semester ended, he has been in weekly contact, by e-mail, phone, or personal visits, with Jim and Mike, who also lives nearby. First, it was to fill them in on what he was learning in class; now it is to keep them updated on research he is doing. Buchler says learning about Dot the person has helped what he has learned in the lab make more sense. Along with melanoma, Dot had a blood condition related to leukemia, and doctors had told the family that it was the cause of death. Buchler and his team learned, however, that the melanoma, which had spread to her liver, was the true cause. It is a type of cancer that invades mucous membranes rather than other skin surfaces. There are fewer than 300 reported cases worldwide, and Buchler said research on Dot will improve understanding of risk factors for this rare cancer. The students also discovered that Dot had a bone abnormality called Charcot foot, which explains why her feet were always so

painful and swollen. Although she did not have diabetes, the foot condition is common in that disease, and Buchler says the knowledge he has gained from Dot will help him treat future patients with diabetes. Late in life, Dot developed unusually hard patches of skin on her calves. She never got a diagnosis. Studying tissue samples under the microscope, Buchler’s team found bone tissue had developed deep inside the skin, another extremely rare condition that he will describe in a research paper. All families involved in the program have questions. Most want general information about what killed their loved one, minus graphic details. Students give them updates, explaining that they now are working on the musculoskeletal system, for example, without getting too descriptive. If families’ queries veer into graphic territory, students steer them back “so that things aren’t uncomfortable for them or us,” Buchler said. “We’d say those are details we’d rather not discuss, for reasons you understand.” The Purcells just wanted to know what the students were learning and tried not to think about what goes on in dissections. That became a challenge, though, at the end of the semester, when students hold a memorial service for the donors, in the anatomy lab, with the bodies present and loved ones invited to attend. The cold steel dissection tables where the bodies lie all semester are covered with metal hoods, draped tastefully with cloth and topped with flower bouquets, candles and donors’ photos. But still. “When I first saw that it was going to be in there,” Mike Purcell says, “I had no desire to go in there.” Jim Purcell was particularly hesitant. “All he thought about was all the chopping and cutting,” Mike Purcell says. But the Purcells are glad they attended. They are Roman Catholic but never had a

wake or funeral; donated bodies must be whisked away right after death to be properly preserved. The ceremony in that dissection room helped move them closer to closure. The students read letters of appreciation to the six donors present. And a member of the clergy spoke of God and the afterlife. Like most donor bodies, Dot’s was cremated at semester’s end, her remains mailed back to her family in an unmarked square box. Jim Purcell placed the box, still wrapped in postal paper, in a cabinet in the family living room, on a shelf in between two statues of angels. The box is unopened, Mike says, reflecting his father’s wishes. “He doesn’t want to think of her as being reduced to that.” But in a way, she is not. The knowledge the Purcells have gained about Dot’s death and how it will help these future doctors treat patients has, in a sense, revived her and kept her memory alive, in the service of science. “They have been very thorough in telling me what happened and why, which was very comforting to me,” Jim Purcell said. “They’ve demonstrated to us how valuable it is both to medical people and families to get answers to why your loved one dies.” Says Mike Purcell: “It’s cathartic. It’s great.” The Purcells’ relationship with Buchler goes beyond medical science. As fans, they talk Notre Dame football, and Jim plans to have the students out to his club for dinner. He has vowed to attend their graduation from medical school in three years, God willing. Buchler smiles broadly when Jim says Dot “would have been thrilled with the whole process. She would have loved these students.” Jim, once so opposed to the idea of donating a body to science, says now he is even considering doing the same. Mike chuckles at the thought, thinking of his mother’s continuing influence. “She’s still teaching us,” he said. — AP

Study says cancer prevention steps may be cut

European downturn seen pushing up cancer rates LONDON: The economic dow nturn threatens to raise cancer rates in Europe as lifestyles change, budgets are cut, and private and public sector employers take short cuts on safety, public health experts said yesterday.The number of

deaths from cancer is falling in the region but prevention efforts are lagging behind, w ith new cases up by almost 20 percent to 2.5 million in 2008 from 2.1 million in 2002, the European Cancer Organisation (ECCO) says.

SURABAYA: Children from a fishing village look at a whale shark washed up on shore during low tide, in Surabaya, East Java, Indonesia, yesterday. — AP

Walking helps keep body and brain young NEW YORK: Everyone knows that walking limbers the aging body, but did you know it keeps the mind supple as well? Research shows that walking can actually boost the connectivity within brain circuits, which tends to diminish as the grey hairs multiply. “Patterns of connectivity decrease as we get older,” said Dr. Arthur F. Kramer, who led the study team at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. “Networks aren’t as well connected to support the things we do, such as driving,” he said. “But we found as a function of aerobic fitness, the networks became more coherent.” Kramer’s walking study, which was published in the journal Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, tracked 70 adults from 60 to 80 years old over the course of a year. A toning, stretching, strengthening group

served as a control against which to evaluate the previously sedentary walkers. “Individuals in the walking group, the aerobics training group, got by far the largest benefits,” he said, and not just physically. “We also measured brain function,” said Kramer, whose team used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to examine brain networks. A group of 20-to-30-year olds were tested for comparison. “The aerobic group also improved in memory, attention and a variety of other cognitive processes,” Kramer said. “As the older people in the walking group became more fit, the coherence among different regions in the networks increased and became similar to those of the 20-yr olds,” Kramer explained. But the results did not hap-

pen overnight. Effects in the walking group were observed only after they trained for 12 months. Six-month tests yielded no significant trends. The findings come as no surprise to Dr. Lynn Millar, an expert with the American College of Sports Medicine. She said while walking might seem like a simple activity, the brain is actually working to integrate information from many different sources. “When we walk we integrate visual input, auditory input, as well as input that’s coming from joints and muscles regarding where the foot is, how much force, and things like that “ said Millar, a professor of Physical Therapy at Andrews University, in Berrien Springs, Michigan. “It’s that old concept: if you don’t use it you lose it,” she said. “In order for something to be beneficial we need to do it

repetitively, and walking is a repetitive activity.” Millar, author of “Action Plan for Arthritis,” said while some changes are inevitable with age, they don’t have to happen as quickly as they do in some people. “We know reaction time gets slower as we age, but activity is a big modifier,” she said, “so if we do trip we’ll be able to get that leg out and catch ourselves.” Kramer, who also works with the military and people with disabilities, continues to work on mediating the negative effects of ageing with lifestyle choices. “We’re interested in understanding brain plasticity but we’re also interested in doing something about it,” he said. “We can wait for that wonder drug or we can do something today.” — Reuters

A study in its European Journal of Cancer found the current financial crisis was likely to damage cancer prevention in various ways, including by increasing exposure to risk factors through work or lifestyle changes. It would also affect occupational safety and influence decisions by governments and companies on funds for research. “Private companies and governments tend to take shortcuts in occupational safety controls during periods of economic hardship,” said Jose Martin-Moreno, a public health and preventative medicine specialist at Spain’s Valencia University. He examined evidence from studies of the impact of recession on a wide range of factors that feed into cancer prevention measures, including smoking, alcohol consumption, diet and exercise, drug research and occupational risk. He found that while some studies have detected a slight decrease in the number of cigarettes smoked, there is little evidence to show that recessions prompt more people to quit. On alcohol, European studies have found that abuse increases among the unemployed and worsens during severe economic downturns. Public donations to cancer research funded by charitable organisations will fall, the researchers said, and governments as well as the pharmaceutical industry are likely to cut research and development budgets. The prospects for disease caused by exposure to carcinogens at work are also likely to worsen in tough economic times. Martin-Moreno cited a Korean study carried out in the 1990s which found a direct link between the reduction of health and safety costs and the ability to avoid bankruptcy. “This exemplifies the terrible choice businesses have to make in times of economic downturnreduced safety for workers or economic ruin,” he said. MartinMoreno’s team set out a series of policy suggestions for governments which they said would help stop cancer prevention measures from being undermined. These included raising taxes on alcohol and cigarettes, adapting public health messages to reinforce economic rewards for healthy changes in behaviour such as giving up smoking, and providing incentives to companies to keep up investment in occupational safety. — Reuters

SYDNEY: Chief researcher Deanna D’Alessandro from the school of chemistry at the University of Sydney displays highly porous three-dimensional solids known as metal-organic frameworks that can filter and capture gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2), yesterday. The researchers from the school of chemistry at the University of Sydney have constructed crystals full of tiny holes that can filter and capture gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2). Chief researcher Deanna D’Alessandro says the molecular sponges are more robust than those used in the past and can sustain the hot wet environment of a power station flue. Power stations are one of the main sources of greenhouse gas emissions. — AFP

Zimbabwe holds 4 health workers over AIDS drugs HARARE: Zimbabwean police have arrested four health workers from the United States on suspicion of dispensing AIDS drugs without a licence, the US embassy said. An embassy statement said the four members of a Christian volunteer health service of the Oakland, California-based Allen Temple AIDS ministry were arrested in Harare on Friday and are expected to appear in court today. The group, which denies the charges, includes a doctor, two nurses and a community volun-

teer, the embassy said. “They operated from two clinics, one in Mutoko and one in Harare, where they worked primarily with AIDS orphans and HIV positive patients for the past decade,” the embassy said.Police officials were not immediately available to comment, but weekend state media reports quoted a spokesman saying the Americans were among a group of six, including Zimbabweans, arrested for operating an unregistered clinic. “We have picked up the six for questioning in connection with practising without a premises’

licence and dispensing medicines without the supervision of a pharmacist,” a spokesman told the state-controlled Herald newspaper. Zimbabwe has one of the worst HIV prevalence rates in the world, although the rate has declined in recent years. A decade-long economic crisis, blamed on President Robert Mugabe’s policies, has paralysed the country’s public health system, highlighted by its failure to cope with a 2008-09 cholera outbreak which killed 4,000 people. — Reuters

Fish and chips to help predict sea life future LONDON: British scientists will implant fish with sensors similar to those used in computer game consoles to better understand their movements under water. Scientists from the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas) are looking to pilot the technology as part of their research into fish habits which will ultimately help with predictions about future fish stocks. The three-axis accelerometer sensors, which can detect movement in any direction just as in Nintendo Wii remote controls, will be used to learn more about the habits of fish by studying how they move about and measuring their metabolic rate. “It is incredible to think that the same technology we use to play computer games could eventually help us in our predictions of future fish stocks,” Fisheries Minister Richard Benyon said in a statement. “This shows the ingenuity of our scientists in striving to improve our

understanding of the natural world.” Cefas have already trialled an electronic tag which can log every time a fish opens its mouth, which they can use to track when a fish is breathing, feeding, coughing or yawning. The tag can also determine the fish’s location. The tags, which cost up to 800 pounds ($1,233) each to produce, work by installing a magnet in the jaw of a fish, with a sensor that reads the changes in the magnetic field as it opens and closes its mouth. The scientists found that the tag was so successful at keeping track of fish activity in its trials that they are now planning to use a full production version to monitor feeding in wild cod in the open seas. The sensors are helping Cefas scientists to get a better picture of fish behaviour-such as when, where and how often they eat-which in turn will help scientists understand more about fish stocks’ sustainability, and the distribution and abundance of their food sources. — Reuters


Tuesday, September 14, 2010


UK charity to test experimental Astra cancer drug LONDON: AstraZeneca has agreed a deal with the commercial arm of a British charity to take an experimental cancer drug into early clinical trials. The experimental compound, called AZD-3965, is one of a new class of cancer metabolism drugs and targets the monocarboxylate transporter 1 (MCT-1) which is essential in cell metabolism. The idea is that by blocking MCT-1 the drug could limit cancer cells’ ability to generate energy, reducing their ability to survive, Cancer Research UK said on Monday. The drug will become the sixth anti-can-

cer drug in the charity’s clinical development partnerships project-a deal allowing drug companies to retain the rights to a potential treatment while the charity carries out early tests. The project was launched in 2006 to increase the number of potential new medicines by taking molecules from drug firms and putting them into clinical trials. The work will be carried out by the charity’s development and commercialisation arm, Cancer Research Technology (CRT). “This clinical trial demonstrates how Cancer Research UK and CRT can work

with industry to develop anti-cancer drugs that would otherwise remain on companies’ shelves,” said Ian Walker, CRT’s licensing manager for clinical partnerships. Under the terms of the agreement, AstraZeneca can decide if it wants to develop the drug further based on the clinical trial data results at the end of the Phase I/IIa trial. If it chooses not to, the rights will be given to CRT to look for another potential partner to take the drug forward. AstraZeneca signed a previous agreement with CRT in February for a three-year

alliance to work on projects aiming to exploit the fact cancer cells use energy differently to normal cells. The aim was to create new drugs that control cell metabolism in order to attack tumours whilst sparing normal tissues, and AstraZeneca has said it will take the most promising projects into pre-clinical and clinical drug development, sharing the risks and potential rewards with CRT. Meanwhile, AstraZeneca took its first significant step into regenerative medicine using stem cells yesterday by signing a deal with University College London to develop

ways to repair eyesight in people with diabetes. Previously, AstraZeneca’s interest in stem cells had been primarily in using them as a drug discovery tool. The three-year research collaboration will see scientists from the drugmaker and the university teaming up to seek new treatments for diabetic retinopathy. Most patients with type 1 diabetes will develop retinopathy and about 20 to 30 percent will become blind. A large number of patients with type 2, or adult-onset, diabetes also develop retinopathy as their underlying

disease progresses. The research work is early stage and will not result in a medicine getting to market for many years but the collaboration is a sign of big drugmakers’ growing interest in the therapeutic potential of stem cells. The deal also emphasises AstraZeneca’s increasing focus on diabetes as a disease area. The Anglo-Swedish company has a recently launched diabetes drug called Onglyza, which was developed with BristolMyers Squibb, and the two partners are also working on a second one called dapagliflozin. — Agencies

Overdiagnosis can lead to unnecessary surgery, radiation

Study findings back screening for men with gene mutations LONDON: Men w ho have a certain genetic variations that put them at higher risk of prostate cancer may benefit from regular screening for the disease, a study by British scientists found. The findings suggest that by narrow ing the

WASHINGTON: In this March 22, 2010 file photo, Nancy-Ann DeParle, director of the White House Office of Health Reform, is interviewed by the Associated Press at the White House in Washington. When a government report found that President Barack Obama’s health overhaul would modestly raise the nation’s total health care tab, the White House responded with a statistic suggesting costs would go down. — AP

China mass measles vaccination plan sparks off popular outcry BEIJING: China’s plans to vaccinate 100 million children and come a step closer to eradicating measles has set off a popular outcry that highlights widening public distrust of the authoritarian government after repeated health scandals. Since the Health Ministry announced the World Health Organization-backed measles vaccination plan last week, authorities have been flooded with queries and Internet bulletin boards have been plastered with worried messages. Conspiracy theories saying the vaccines are dangerous have spread by cell phone text messages. The public skepticism has even been covered by staterun media, which noted the lack of trust was about more than vaccines. “Behind the public’s panic over the rumors is an expression of the citizens’ demands for security and a crisis in confidence,” a columnist wrote in the Chongqing Daily newspaper. “The lack of trust toward our food and health products was not formed in one day,” said the Global Times newspaper.

“Repairing the damage and building credibility will take a very long time. The public health departments need to take immediate action on all fronts.” In recent years, government agencies have dragged their feet or withheld information about the spread of SARS, bird flu and, last month, an outbreak of cholera. China’s slow response to SARS, or severe acute respiratory syndrome, was widely blamed for causing the outbreak that swept the globe in 2003, and led to deep mistrust both internally and internationally. Milk products contaminated with industrial chemicals are still found despite mass recalls and several criminal convictions, including executions, after tainted infant formula sickened 300,000 babies and killed at least six two years ago. Feeding into worries about the measles vaccine were media reports in March that vaccines for encephalitis, hepatitis B and other diseases possibly killed four children and seriously sickened dozens in one province. The health ministry said an investigation showed those vac-

cines were improperly stored but subsequent illnesses were unrelated. Many remain unconvinced. Meanwhile, two Chinese vaccine makers recently said they shut operations after rabies vaccines they produced were found to be substandard. The ministry has tried to calm the public’s anxieties about the 10-day measles immunization drive, which started Saturday. It has busily issued statements, refuted rumors and held briefings to emphasize the need for the vaccine as well as its safety. The campaign, likely the world’s largest, targets all children ages 8 months to 4 or 14 years, depending on locality, and is intended to include remote areas, migrant communities and other places where previous vaccination coverage has been spotty. Yet the publicity is not likely to easily reassure a public increasingly skeptical of reassurances from a government often seen as opaque and unaccountable, especially where public health is involved. —AFP

“Although these are early results, it appears that (prostate cancer) screening is reasonably accurate at predicting potentially aggressive prostate cancer among men at higher risk of the disease due to a genetic predisposition,” said Ros Eeles, who led a research team from Britain’s Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) and Royal Marsden hospital. The study found that the predictive value of screening these men-expressed as the number of cancers detected relative to the number of tissue samples taken-was 48 percent, far higher than the 24 percent achieved in population-wide screening. Screening for prostate cancer is controversial because the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) tests used cannot differentiate between men with aggressive cancer and men who would never have symptoms or need treatment, and this can lead to overdiagnosis. A study in the United States last year found that routine prostate cancer screening had resulted in more than a million being diagnosed with tumours who might otherwise have suffered no ill effects from them. The ICR-led study is aiming to find out whether screening men who have genetic variants that increase their prostate cancer risk could lead to earlier diagnosis. It aims to screen 1,700 men for five years, but results from the first 300 men were published in the British Journal of Urology International. Genetic factors that increase prostate cancer risk include inheritable variations in genes known as BRCA1 and BRCA2. Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men worldwide and kills 254,000 men a year. — Reuters

focus of prostate cancer screening to those w hose genes put them at most risk, doctors w ould catch more cancers early as w ell as reducing the potential for costly and damaging overdiagnosis.

MANILA: Young victims of dengue fever crowd the children’s ward of the government-run Quirino Memorial Hospital in Manila. An upsurge of the viral disease, carried by a mosquito, has killed 501 people in the Philippines between January and August 2010 after striking nearly 70,000 people, double the number of cases over the same period last year. — AFP

China to dispatch team to probe panda death BEIJING: China will send a team to Japan this week to probe the death of a giant panda on loan to a Japanese zoo and could seek 500,000 dollars in compensation for the loss, state press said yesterday. Kou Kou died Thursday of cardiac arrest after failing to recover from an anaesthetic at the Oji Zoo in the western port city of Kobe. Veterinarians had sedated the 14-yearold male as part of a programme to impregnate his partner Tan Tan, and were seeking to extract semen from the male panda when he died. China’s forestry administration has

called on the Japanese zoo to seal up the corpse of the animal and will dispatch a team to Japan to investigate the case, state media said. Chinese experts believe Kou Kou could have died from an overdose of sedatives and were questioning why Japanese veterinarians were extracting semen outside the animal’s mating period, the Oriental Morning Post said. According to the China Wildlife Conservation Association, a breeding agreement with Japan includes a stipulation for 500,000 dollars in compensation should a panda die, the paper said.

Giant pandas, a highly endangered species native to parts of China, are notoriously slow at reproducing in captivity. The death of Kou Kou comes after Tokyo’s Ueno Zoo reached an agreement in July to receive a pair of pandas from China in a deal that will cost nearly one million dollars a year for the next decade. The money is to be spent on wild animal protection in China. There are just 1,600 pandas left in the wild. Nearly 300 others are in captive-breeding programmes worldwide, mainly in China, according to official reports. — AFP



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

IPC - Islamic courses PC is offering Islamic courses in English (for ladies only). 1. Tilawa Surah Al Imran on Tuesday at 5:30-7 pm on October 5, 2010 2. Forty Hadith (Part 2) Tuesday from 7-8:30pm on October 5, 2010 Instructor: Sr. Zeinab Hassan Ashry at IPC Women Section AlRawdah - Area 3 - St. 30 House 12. Call 22512257 97290270.


Arpan Onam celebration rpan Kuwait will celebrate Onam — the harvest festival of Kerala — on October 1, 2010 from 10 am onwards at the Indian Community School (Amman Branch), Salmiya. Arpan officebearers are lining up an array of cultural programs to celebrate the festival that marks the homecoming of the legendary King Mahabali. A variety of programs to be presented by Arpan members and their families will include Mohiniyattom, Onam songs, folk and traditional songs, skits etc. Arrival of Mahabali with the accompaniment of ‘chenda’, ‘arpu’ and ‘pulikkali’ will be the highlight of the celebration. Athappookkalam, to be drawn by the Ladies Wing of Arpan will be an added attraction. The celebration will conclude with the traditional ‘Onasadya.’


Toastmasters Club announcement o you want to overcome your fear of speaking in public? Do you want to sharpen your presentation skills? Do you want to develop leadership skills? Do you wish to attend job interviews with confidence? All of these can be achieved for a nominal fee with unlimited opportunities to practice and develop at the new Toastmasters Club (affiliated to Toastmasters International USA), being chartered in Salmiya. If you want to be part of your own chartered club, join us at Bayan Restaurant, Salmiya (next to Red Tag) at 7:45 pm on Friday, September 3, 2010. For free registration contact Vishwanath at 67735024 or Xavier at 99850173


Tulu Koota merit cum means scholarship


pplications are now being invited for “Tulukoota Kuwait Merit Cum Means Scholarship” to be awarded during Tuluparba 2010 scheduled to be held on 14th & 15th October 2010. The objective of this scholarship is to provide financial assistance and support to deserving meritorious students, to enable them pursue their higher studies. Applications are accepted from minimum one year valid Tulukoota Kuwait member’s children studying either in the State of Kuwait or in India, and scoring high grades in Xth and XIIth standard Board Examination held for Academic year 2009-2010. Copies of marks sheet & proof of income to be submitted along with the application for scholarship to Welfare officer Mr. Ramesh Kidiyoor Tel: 99596457/97204716 Applications will be accepted from 5th September 2010- 30th September 2010. Candidates obtaining high grades but not eligible for merit cum means scholarship shall be honored with Merit Certificate and Medal during Tuluparba 2010, For more information contact: Mr. Ramesh Kidiyoor: 99596457/97204716, Sathyanarayan: 66585077; Chandrahasa Shetty: 55941955.

Aqua Park holds special festival for Eid Al-Fitr A special festival for the Eid Al-Fitr was held at the Aqua Park by the marketing manager Abdullatif Al-Shemmary, which featured several activities and competitions organized especially for this special event. —Photos by Fouad Al-Shaikh


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Embassy information

Announcements Sept 17 Onam Fest 2010: ‘Vanithavedi Kuwait’ a leading women’s association will be celebrating Onam on Friday, Sept 17, 2010, from 9 am - 6 pm at the Indian Community School, Khaitan Branch, the program named as ‘OnamFest 2010’ will have the public meeting followed by various cultural programs. The traditional Onasadya will be served. For the successful conduct of Onam Fest 2010, a program committee has been formed. Dr Vasanthy Nair (general convenor), Valsamma George, Dr Mary (Joint Convenors), Prasanna Ramabhadran (Arts convenor), Tolly Prakash (Food convenor), Shiny Ajith (Raffle convenor), Sumathy Babu (Souvenir convenor), Valsa Sam (Publicity convenor), Syamala Narayanan, (Reception convenor), Sharlette Albert (Volunteer captain). For more details, contact: 24342807, 66428433, 66596625, 24331598. Theater & Music All level music classes: ‘Treasure of Talents’ (est in 1992) music education program invites all level music classes on piano, theory of music, vocal, flute. Academic Level teachers help prepare for international exams, children concerts, yearly ‘Treasure of Talents’ Festival and music competitions. Contact Prof Cezary, Tel. 25320427, 66549009 of Ms Yasmeene - Berlitz Institute Tel: 22542212. 22512533 or email:

Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad poses for a photo with the guests.

✦✦✦ Call to classical music lovers: Are you a lover of music? Would you like to promote the traditional Indian classical music in Kuwait? If your answer is in the affirmative, please write ton more details to in (that is, music underscore karnatic) with your contact details or call 7978286. SEPT 24 NSS Onam: Nair Service Society (NSS), Kuwait will celebrate Onam on Sept 24, at Cambridge School, Mangaf. South Indian film star and acclaimed dancer Lakshmi Gopalaswamy will perform during the function. Ajai Malhotra, Indian Ambassador to Kuwait, will be the chief guest at the Onam celebration on September 24, which will be followed by a full day variety entertainment program depicting the rich heritage and art forms of Kerala. Muraleekrishnan P, President of Nair Service Society, Kuwait (NSS Kuwait) will preside over the function.The Ona-Sadhya (Onam Feast) will be served in the traditional Kerala style on banana leaf on September 24. Nair Service Society (NSS) Kuwait, is one of the largest Socio-Cultural Organization in Kuwait formed in year 2001 and now has more than 3000 Indians as members. For more information, contact Anish Nair, NSS Kuwait 9969-1431. Oct 14 Tulukoota Kuwait announces its “Decennial Parba “on October 14th & 15th. 2010 at American International School Hawally. We invite all Tulukoota Kuwait members to join us for fun filled and exciting events planned to celebrate the milestones throughout Tulukoota Kuwait’s 10 years journey. 14th October Rasamanjari - musical show by Star performer Anuradha Bhatt, Prakash Mahadevan Naveen Koppa & others, Vismaya Jadoo by Mega Magic Star Ganesh Kudroli & troupe. Dr. Mohan Alva Cultural Performances & King of Comedy Navin D Padil presents tulu drama “ Paniyerla aath Panande Budiyerla aath” This is a fun tilled evening for entire family! Join us for a great time. For more information call : Swarna C Shetty 99006934; Pascal Pinto - 9953 1557; Sathya Narayan - 66585077: Suresh Salian - 99161228; Chandrahasa Shetty 55941955. OCT 21 Rendezvous 2010: The Kuwait Chapter of the St. Aloysius College Alumni Association (SACAA KUWAIT) have announced that “Rendezvous” their hallmark event will be conducted on 21st October at Asia Asia Restaurant, Souk Al Watiya, Kuwait City from 8 pm onwards. This year, SACAA Kuwait celebrates five years of its existence in Kuwait. SACAAKuwait has been synonymous with various fund raising initiatives through which they consistently supported various needs of their Alma Mater and its students back in Mangalore, India. Through Rendezvous-2010, SACAA-Kuwait intends to help generate funds for the Poor Students Fund of St. Aloysius institutions where numerous needy students look forward to assistance to subsidize their costs. SACAA Kuwait calls upon all Aloysians, their families and also like minded people to join this noble cause and help make life a little better for those needy students back home. For entry passes and further information, kindly contact - 66731828, 66746425, 66181041, 94093275, 66699857, 66091962.

Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad is welcomed upon his arrival.

Al-Fahad receives a gift featuring a portrait of his father, the late Sheikh Fahad Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah.

Al-Fahad sharing a talk with Baqer.


eputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs, State Minister for Housing and Development, Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah, was invited to a ghabqa that was held by Adel Al-Jassem at his diwaniya during the last day of Ramadan. The event was also attended by several dignitaries, including former minister Ahmad Baqer, MP Adnan Al-Mutawa’a and other guests. —Photos by Fouad Al-Sheikh

Al-Fahad receives a warm greeting.

Ahmad Baqer is seen with other guests during the ghabqa.

EMBASSY OF US 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 petition-based, including B1/B2 tourist and business visitor visas and all student and exchange-visitor visas, will pay a fee of $140. Applicants for 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. EMBASSY OF CANADA Middle East Education Initiative (MEEI) 2010 October 2 to 4, 2010 organized by the Embassy of Canada. Representatives of leading Canadian universities, colleges and other institutions of higher education will be available to meet students, parents, teachers and guidance counsellors to present the advantages of studying in Canada. On October 4, 2010 a “Study in Canada” exhibition will be being held at the Safir Marina Hotel, Salmiya for potential students and their parents to attend. The Canadian institutions will also be visiting local schools to speak to interested students about opportunities to study in Canada. Please contact the Canadian Embassy in Kuwait for additional information. The MEEI tour will also be visiting the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco. 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. The Embassy of India will remain closed on August 23 and September 2, 2010 on account of ‘Onam’ and ‘Janmashtami’ respectively. 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 e-

Kunju Muhammed to receive award


Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad arrives at Al-Jassem’s diwaniya.

Adel Al-Jassem holds ghabqa

A general view of the attendees.

s part of the yearly Prof.V.Sambashivan Memorial award, “Kuwait Kala Trust” of Kerala Art Lovers Association (KalaKuwait) selected P.T.Kunjumuhammed for the award who is a well known director and producer in malayalam film industry. He is a TV anchor as well. His programme “Pravaasalokam” on Kairali TV tries to locate people who went missing in the other Indian states and the Middle East. He received a number of awards for his movies at the national and state levels. His debut film was Magrib. Later he directed Garshome and Paradeshi. These films got critical acclaim and received a number of


awards. He was elected twice to the Kerala legislative assembly as a left independent candidate in 1994 and 1996. Currently he is the state president of NRI’s of Kerala. Kala Trust chairman V.V.Dakshinamurthy announced that P.T.Kunju Muhammed was selected for this award because he has promoted social welfare through his film and cultural works. Kerala literary academy chairperson P.Valsala will present the award to P.T.Kunjumuhammed on September

18th, at 3pm which will be held at Kozhikode N.G.O union auditorium. The function will be inaugurated by M.Bhaskaran, Kozhikode corporation Mayor and M.L.A -A.Pradeep Kumar will give away the educational endowments to the students. C.P.I (M) Kozhikode district secretary T.P.Ramakrishnan, Kerala N.R.I Kozhikode district secretary Badushah Kadalundi, R.Ramesh, trust members Madhu Elamadu and T.T Rasheed will also attend the event. In the press conference, which was held prior to the upcoming event organizing committee members Mayor M.Bhaskaran, A.K.Ramesh, T.T.Rasheed and K.P.Suneer took part.

Al-Fahad and other guests in a group photo.

Konni Nivasi Sangamam celebrates Onam


onni Nivasi Sangamam, Kuwait celebrated Onam 2010 with colorful cultural programmes on 11th September 2010, from 10.30 am at United Indian School, Abbassiya. Celebrations started with prayer song recited by Kumari Greeshma Satheesh and Kumari Shilpa Satheesh, followed by a warm welcome by General Secretary, Soney Daniel. Vice President K.K. Ramachandran in his presidential address conveyed Onam wishes to all KNS members. Patron Raju Varghese inaugurated the function. The song ‘Annarakanna va’ was beautifully sung by Master Tom Soney as part of inaugural meeting. The celebration was filled with various colorful programs. The Skit and ‘Vallamkali’ performed by KNS members

were remarkable. ‘Maveli Thamburan’ was welcomed by KNS members with traditional ‘Thalapoli’, ‘Chendamelam’, ‘Pulikali’and ‘Aarpuvilikal’. Instrumental music concert by Master Athul Thomas and Master Tom Soney, ‘Nadanpattu’ recited by Soman Nair and a song by Master Rigo Mathew were other highlights of the event. The beautiful ‘Onapookkalam’ arranged by our lady members were fascinating and appreciable. Secretary, Anil P. Cherian rendered thanks to all for making the event a great success. The programs were well anchored by Rajan P. George. The cooperation and support rendered by KNS members made the Onam 2010 celebrations a grand success.



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Orbit / Showtime Listings 19:05 Innocent 20:00 The Weakest Link 20:45 Doctors 21:15 Eastenders 21:45 Holby City 22:40 Vital Signs 23:25 The Jonathan Ross Show

00:00 Mercy 01:00 White Collar 02:00 The Philanthropist 03:00 The Invisible Man 04:00 Dawson’s Creek 05:00 In Plain Sight 06:00 Dawson’s Creek 07:00 Mercy 08:00 Dawson’s Creek 09:00 Criminal Minds 10:00 The Invisible Man 11:00 In Plain Sight 12:00 Dawson’s Creek 13:00 Criminal Minds 14:00 The Invisible Man 15:00 Dawson’s Creek 16:00 White Collar 17:00 The Philanthropist 18:00 The Unit 19:00 Defying Gravity 20:00 House 21:00 Supernatural 22:00 Criminal Minds 23:00 Grey’s Anatomy

00:45 Untamed & Uncut 01:40 Your Worst Animal Nightmares 02:35 Into the Lion’s Den 03:30 Animal Cops Houston 04:25 Return of the Prime Predators 05:20 Untamed & Uncut 06:10 RSPCA: Have You Got What it Takes? 06:35 Planet Wild 07:00 Animal Crackers 07:25 Meerkat Manor 07:50 The Planet’s Funniest Animals 08:40 Dogs 101 09:35 Planet Wild 10:00 Into the Lion’s Den 10:55 Monkey Life 11:20 Dolphin Days 11:50 Miami Animal Police 12:45 E-Vets: The Interns 13:10 Pet Rescue 13:40 Animal Cops Phoenix 14:35 Wildlife SOS 15:00 RSPCA: Have You Got What it Takes? 15:30 Into the Lion’s Den 16:25 The Planet’s Funniest Animals 17:20 Cats 101 18:15 Animal Cops Houston 19:10 Surviving the Drought 20:10 Weird Creatures with Nick Baker 21:05 Animal Cops Houston 22:00 Escape to Chimp Eden 22:55 Animal Cops Phoenix 23:50 Surviving the Drought

00:05 Home Again 00:30 The Weakest Link 01:15 Vital Signs 02:00 Last Of The Summer Wine 02:30 Eastenders 03:00 Doctors 03:30 Last Of The Summer Wine 04:00 Last Of The Summer Wine 04:30 Gigglebiz 04:45 Teletubbies 05:10 Tikkabilla 05:40 Gigglebiz 05:55 Teletubbies 06:20 Tellytales 06:30 Tikkabilla 07:00 Gigglebiz 07:15 Teletubbies 07:40 Tellytales 07:50 Tikkabilla 08:20 Gigglebiz 08:35 Teletubbies 09:00 Tikkabilla 09:30 Last Of The Summer Wine 10:00 Last Of The Summer Wine 10:30 The Weakest Link 11:15 Innocent 12:05 Doctors 12:35 Eastenders 13:05 Holby City 14:00 Last Of The Summer Wine 14:30 Last Of The Summer Wine 15:00 Last Of The Summer Wine 15:30 Innocent 16:25 The Weakest Link 17:10 Doctors 17:40 Eastenders 18:10 Holby City

00:10 Daily Cooks Challenge 00:35 Daily Cooks Challenge 01:05 Living In The Sun 01:55 House Swap 02:40 Cash In The Attic 03:25 Come Dine With Me 04:15 Daily Cooks Challenge 04:40 Daily Cooks Challenge 05:05 Come Dine With Me 05:55 House Swap 07:00 Antiques Roadshow 07:50 House Swap 08:35 Bargain Hunt 09:20 Hidden Potential 09:40 Cash In The Attic Usa 10:00 Saturday Kitchen 10:25 Saturday Kitchen 10:50 House Swap 11:35 Cash In The Attic 12:20 Come Dine With Me 13:10 10 Years Younger 13:55 House Swap 14:40 Saturday Kitchen 15:05 Saturday Kitchen 15:30 Antiques Roadshow 16:20 House Swap 17:10 Cash In The Attic 17:55 Daily Cooks Challenge 18:25 Daily Cooks Challenge 18:50 Come Dine With Me 19:40 Celebrity Masterchef Goes Large 20:10 Sweet Baby James 20:35 Coastal Kitchen 21:00 House Swap 21:45 Cash In The Attic 22:30 Come Dine With Me 23:20 Celebrity Masterchef Goes Large 23:45 Celebrity Masterchef Goes Large

01:00 Civilization Of Maxwell Bright-18 03:00 Female Agents-18 05:00 Man On Wire-PG15 07:00 Run Papa Run-PG15 09:00 Fireproof-PG 11:00 The Babe-PG15 13:00 Northern Lights-PG 14:45 Mr. Holland’s Opus-PG 17:15 Brassed Off-PG15 19:00 Barton Fink-PG15 21:00 The Fisher King-18 23:30 Casualties Of War-18

00:40 Street Customs 2008 01:35 Dirty Jobs 02:30 Ultimate Survival 03:25 Mega Builders 04:20 Mythbusters 05:15 How It’s Made 05:40 How Does it Work? 06:05 Dirty Jobs 07:00 Fifth Gear 07:25 Mega Builders 08:15 Street Customs 2008 09:10 Mythbusters 10:05 Ultimate Survival 11:00 Ultimate Survival 11:55 Border Security 12:25 How Does it Work? 12:50 How It’s Made 13:20 Mythbusters 14:15 Miami Ink 15:10 Ultimate Survival 16:05 Dirty Jobs 17:00 Overhaulin’ 17:55 Mythbusters 18:50 Cake Boss 19:15 Border Security 19:40 The Gadget Show 20:05 How Does it Work? 20:35 How It’s Made 21:00 Worst-Case Scenario 21:30 Worst-Case Scenario 21:55 LA Ink 22:50 Police Women of Broward County 23:45 Football Hooligans International

00:30 Nextworld 01:20 The Gadget Show 01:45 Da Vinci’s Machines 02:35 Mega World 03:25 How Does That Work? 03:50 Junkyard Mega-Wars 04:45 Robotica 05:40 Weird Connections 06:10 Nextworld 07:00 Junkyard Mega-Wars 08:00 Sci-Fi Saved My Life 09:00 Da Vinci’s Machines 09:55 Stunt Junkies 10:20 Weird Connections 10:50 Nextworld 11:45 How Does That Work? 12:15 The Greatest Ever 13:10 One Step Beyond 13:35 Da Vinci’s Machines 14:30 Mighty Ships 15:25 The Gadget Show 15:55 Sci-Fi Saved My Life 16:50 The Greatest Ever 17:45 Brainiac 18:40 Green Wheels 19:05 Green Wheels 19:30 Eco-Tech 20:20 How It’s Made 20:45 The Gadget Show 21:10 The Greatest Ever 22:00 Green Wheels 22:25 Green Wheels 22:50 Eco-Tech 23:40 The Greatest Ever

00:15 Leave It To Lamas 00:40 Dr 90210 01:30 Wildest TV Show Moments 01:55 Reality Hell 02:20 E!ES 03:15 Extreme Hollywood 04:10 Sexiest 05:05 Battle of the Hollywood Hotties 05:30 Streets of Hollywood 06:00 THS 07:45 Behind the Scenes 08:10 Behind the Scenes 08:35 E! News 09:00 The Daily 10 09:25 Denise Richards: It’s Complicated 09:50 Leave It To Lamas 10:15 25 Hottest Hollywood Cougar Tales 12:00 E! News 12:25 The Daily 10 12:50 Behind the Scenes 13:15 Pretty Wild 13:40 Keeping Up with the Kardashians 14:05 Kendra 14:30 Dr 90210 15:25 E!ES 16:15 Behind the Scenes 16:40 Behind the Scenes 17:10 Kendra 17:35 Kendra 18:00 E! News 18:25 The Daily 10 18:50 Keeping Up with the Kardashians 19:15 Pretty Wild 19:40 THS 20:30 Kendra 20:55 Chelsea Lately 21:20 Holly’s World 21:45 Holly’s World 22:10 E! News 22:35 The Daily 10 23:00 Chelsea Lately 23:25 Kendra 23:50 Pretty Wild

00:00 Fim World Motocross Mx1/mx2... 01:00 Tread Bmx 02:00 Fim World Motocross Mx3 Championships... 02:30 Fim World Motocross Mx3 Championships... 03:00 Extreme Lives: My Right Foot 04:00 Fantasy Factory 05:00 Iex 2009 08:00 X Games 15 2009 11:00 Abu Dhabi Adventure Challenge 12:00 Fantasy Factory 13:00 Tread Bmx 13:30 Tread Bmx 14:00 The Life And Films Of Alby Falzon 15:00 Abu Dhabi Adventure Challenge 16:00 Fantasy Factory 16:30 Fantasy Factory 17:00 X Games 15 2009

18:00 X Games 15 2009 20:00 Fantasy Factory 20:30 Fantasy Factory 21:00 Abu Dhabi Adventure Challenge 22:00 The Life And Films Of Alby Falzon 23:00 Fim World Motocross Mx3 Championships... 23:30 Rebel Events 2009

00:00 Chopped 01:00 30 Minute Meals 01:30 Tyler’s Ultimate 02:00 Iron Chef America 03:00 Barefoot Contessa 03:30 Unwrapped 04:00 Chopped 05:00 Throwdown With Bobby Flay 05:30 Guys Big Bite 06:00 Food Network Challenge 07:00 Paula’s Best Dishes 07:25 Good Deal with Dave Lieberman 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 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 10:30 Barefoot Contessa 11:00 Unwrapped 11:30 Paula’s Party 12:30 Paula’s Best Dishes 13:00 Good Deal with Dave Lieberman 13:30 Guys Big Bite 14:00 Barefoot Contessa 14:30 Everyday Italian 15:00 30 Minute Meals 15:30 Grill It! with Bobby Flay 16:00 Iron Chef America 17:00 Barefoot Contessa 17:30 Unwrapped 18:00 Paula’s Best Dishes 18:30 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 19:00 Throwdown With Bobby Flay 19:30 Good Deal with Dave Lieberman 20:00 Iron Chef America 21:00 Barefoot Contessa 21:30 Everyday Italian 22:00 Chopped 23:00 Grill It! with Bobby Flay 23:30 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives

01:00 Golf Central International 01:30 The Golf Channel - TBA 04:00 Champions Tour New Songdo City Championship Rd. 1 Songdo, South Korea 06:00 PGA Tour Highlights: BMW Championship 07:00 ACC Duke at Wake Forest 10:00 Big 12 Football Georgia Tech at Kansas 13:00 Golf Central International 13:30 Global Golf Adventure 14:00 Champions Tour New Songdo City Championship Rd. 2 Songdo City, South Korea 16:00 PGA Tour Highlights: BMW Championship 17:00 Boxing Programming - TBA 19:00 Major League Soccer Philadelphia Union v Chicago Fire 22:00 Lucas Oil Motorsports Hour 23:00 The Golf Channel - TBA

00:30 A Haunting 01:20 FBI Files 02:10 FBI Case Files 03:05 Forensic Justice 04:00 Forensic Detectives 04:55 Ghosthunters 05:20 Dr G: Medical Examiner 06:10 Real Emergency Calls 06:35 Real Emergency Calls 07:00 Forensic Detectives 07:50 FBI Files 08:40 Disappeared 09:30 Mystery ER 10:20 Forensic Detectives 11:10 Mystery Diagnosis 12:00 Real Emergency Calls 12:25 Real Emergency Calls 12:50 Diagnosis: Unknown 13:40 Final Days of an Icon 14:30 Forensic Detectives 15:20 FBI Files 16:10 Disappeared 17:00 Mystery ER 17:50 Forensic Detectives 18:40 Mystery Diagnosis 19:30 Real Emergency Calls 19:55 Real Emergency Calls 20:20 Diagnosis: Unknown 21:10 Final Days of an Icon 22:00 True Crime Scene 22:50 Solved 23:40 Dr G: Medical Examiner

01:20 Dancehall Queen 03:00 Board Heads 04:30 Jackson County Jail 05:55 American Ninja 4 07:35 Napoleon 08:55 The Boyfriend School 10:35 The Black Stallion 12:30 Uhf 14:05 The Devil’s Brigade 16:15 The Honey Pot 18:25 Love Field 20:10 In The Heat Of The Night 22:00 Summer Heat 23:20 Love Bites

00:30 Cruise Ship Diaries 01:30 Departures 02:30 By Any Means 03:30 Wild Rides 04:00 Long Way Down 05:00 Bondi Rescue 05:30 Banged Up Abroad 06:30 Cruise Ship Diaries 07:30 Departures 08:30 By Any Means 09:30 Wild Rides 10:00 Long Way Down 11:00 Bondi Rescue 11:30 Banged Up Abroad 12:30 Cruise Ship Diaries 13:30 Lonely Planet: Roads Less Travelled 14:30 Graham’s World 15:00 The Ride - Alaska To Patagonia 15:30 Madventures 16:00 Long Way Down 17:00 Bondi Rescue 17:30 Banged Up Abroad 18:30 Cruise Ship Diaries 19:30 Lonely Planet: Roads Less Travelled 20:30 Graham’s World 21:00 The Ride - Alaska To Patagonia 21:30 Madventures 22:00 Long Way Down

Dog Pound on Show Movies Acton

00:00 Community 00:30 Seinfeld

01:00 The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (Global Edition) 01:30 Colbert Report Global 02:00 Best Late night with Jimmy Fallon 03:00 Monday night Stand Up 04:00 South Park 04:30 Late night with Jimmy Fallon 05:30 Everybody Loves Raymond 06:00 Malcolm in the Middle 06:30 The Drew Carey Show 07:00 Ellen 07:30 Three sisters 08:00 Seinfeld 08:30 Everybody Loves Raymond 09:00 Malcolm in the Middle 09:30 The Drew Carey Show 10:00 Will & Grace 10:30 Brothers 11:00 Everybody Loves Raymond 11:30 Three sisters 12:00 Late night with Jimmy Fallon 13:00 Seinfeld 13:30 Everybody Loves Raymond 14:00 Malcolm in the Middle 14:30 Community 15:00 Brothers 15:30 The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (Global Edition) 16:00 Colbert Report Global 16:30 The Drew Carey Show 17:00 Ellen 17:30 Three sisters 18:00 Seinfeld 18:30 Will & Grace 19:00 The Office 19:30 Community 20:00 Late night with Jimmy Fallon 21:00 The Daily Show with Jon Stewart 21:30 The Colbert Report 22:00 Party Down 22:30 Free Radio 23:00 South Park 23:30 The Office

00:00 The Martha Stewart Show 01:00 Eat yourself sexy 01:30 What’s the Buzz 02:00 The Ellen DeGeneres Show 03:00 Moms Get Real / Now you know / Amplified 04:00 The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (Best Of) 05:00 GMA (repeat) 07:00 Ahead of the curve 07:30 Nature’s Edge 08:00 The Martha Stewart Show 09:00 Eat yourself sexy 09:30 What’s the Buzz 10:00 The Best of Jimmy Kimmel 11:00 The View (repeat) 12:00 The Ellen DeGeneres Show 13:00 The Martha Stewart Show 14:00 GMA Live 16:00 GMA Health 16:30 What’s the Buzz 17:00 The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (Best Of) 18:00 Eat yourself sexy 18:30 Popcorn 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

00:00 Defiance-PG15 02:30 Semi-pro-PG15 04:00 Ponyo On The Cliff By The SeaFAM 06:00 Ocean’s Thirteen-PG15 08:00 Hotel For Dogs-FAM 10:00 Igor-PG 12:00 Four Christmases-PG15 14:00 Far North-PG 15:45 Hotel For Dogs-FAM 17:30 Shine A Light-PG15 19:45 Transformers : Revenge Of The Fallen-PG15 22:15 Four Christmases-PG15

01:00 Dog Pound-18 03:00 Alien Raiders-18 05:00 Ice Twisters-PG15 07:00 Road Of No Return-PG15 09:00 Daylight-PG15 11:00 New Town Killers-PG15 13:00 Shifty-PG15 15:00 Daylight-PG15 17:00 The Objective-PG15 19:00 The Italian Job-PG15 21:00 Taken-18 23:00 Return To House On Haunted Hill

00:00 The War Of The Roses-PG15 02:00 Prelude To A Kiss-PG15 04:00 Mr. Troop Mom-PG 06:00 Beverly Hills Chihuahua-PG 08:00 The Associate-PG15 10:00 The Pink Panther 2-PG15 12:00 Home For The Holidays-PG 14:00 Girl’s Best Friend-PG15 16:00 The War Of The Roses-PG15 18:00 Backseat-PG15 20:00 Two Can Play That Game-PG15 22:00 Jackass: The Movie-18

00:00 Christopher Columbus-PG 02:00 Jimmy Neutron : Boy Genius-FAM 04:00 Genghis Khan-PG 06:00 Bugs Bunny 1001 Rabbit Tales08:00 Gladiators:the Tournament-PG 10:00 Genghis Khan-PG 12:00 Au Pair 3 : Adventure In Paradise14:00 Jimmy Neutron : Boy Genius-FAM 16:00 The Nameless Warrior-FAM 18:00 Welcome Back Pinocchio-FAM 20:00 Little Hercules In 3-d-PG15 22:00 Au Pair 3 : Adventure In Paradise

00:00 The Deep End 01:00 Drop Dead Diva 02:00 Private Practice 03:00 Ghost Whisperer 04:00 8 Simple rules 04:30 Rita Rocks 05:00 Lie To Me 06:00 Emmerdale 06:30 Coronation Street 07:00 Private Practice 08:00 8 Simple rules 08:30 Rita Rocks 09:00 Ghost Whisperer 10:00 Lie To Me 11:00 Private Practice 12:00 Emmerdale 12:30 Coronation Street 13:00 8 Simple rules 13:30 Rita Rocks 14:00 The Deep End 15:00 Drop Dead Diva 16:00 Lie To Me 17:00 Ghost Whisperer 18:00 Emmerdale 18:30 Coronation Street 19:00 Ugly Betty 20:00 Ugly Betty 21:00 Private Practice 22:00 Lie To Me 23:00 Ghost Whisperer

Lovely, Still on Super Movies 17:15 Penelope 18:50 Born Free 20:25 Ride The High Country 22:00 Slaves Of New York 00:00 Goals On Monday 01:00 Scottish Premier League Highlights 01:30 European PGA Tour Highlights 02:30 European PGA Tour 07:00 Goals On Monday 08:00 Scottish Premier League Highlights 08:30 Futbol Mundial 09:00 ICC Cricket World 09:30 Super League 11:30 Scottish Premier League Highlights 12:00 Goals On Monday 13:00 NRL Premiership 15:00 AFL Highlights 16:00 Goals On Monday 17:00 Scottish Premier League Highlights 17:30 Scottish Premier League 19:30 Goals On Monday 20:30 Brazil League Highlights 21:00 Futbol Mundial

00:00 AFL Highlights 01:00 AFL Premiership 03:30 Mobil 1 The Grid 04:00 Goals on Monday 05:00 Scottish Premier League Highlights 05:30 Futbol Mundial 06:00 ICC Cricket World 06:30 World Sport 07:00 World Pool Masters 08:00 Mobil 1 The Grid 08:30 AFL Highlights 09:30 Futbol Mundial 10:00 Premier League Snooker 13:30 Scottish Premier League Highlights 14:00 AFL Highlights 15:00 NRL Full Time 15:30 Aviva Premiership 17:30 NRL Premiership 19:30 Ladies European Tour Highlights 20:30 AFL Highlights 21:30 European PGA Tour Highlights 22:30 NRL Premiership

00:00 WWE SmackDown 02:00 WWE Vintage Collection 03:00 V8 Supercars Championship Series 06:00 UFC Unleashed 07:00 WWE NXT 08:00 WWE Smackdown 10:00 Planet Power Boats 10:30 V8 Supercars Championship Series 13:30 Red Bull X-Fighters 15:00 WWE Bottom Line 16:00 Le Mans Series Magazine 16:30 FIA GT1 World Championship 18:00 UFC The Ultimate Fighter 21:00 UFC Wired 22:00 UFC Unleashed 23:00 UFC Unleashed

01:00 Heart Of Fear-18 03:00 For The Love Of Grace-PG 05:00 Four Extraordinary Women-PG15 07:00 Fab Five : The Texas Cheerleader Scandal-PG15 09:00 Martian Child-PG 11:00 Four Extraordinary Women-PG15 13:00 Lovely Still-PG 15:00 Georgia O’keeffe-PG15 17:00 Love Happens-PG15 19:00 Martian Child-PG 21:00 Ice Castles-PG15 23:00 Phantom Punch-PG15

01:40 The Screening Room 02:05 The Bad And The Beautiful 04:00 Pat Garrett And Billy The Kid 05:55 The Screening Room 06:25 The Screening Room 07:00 Boys’ Town 08:30 Flipper 10:00 The Bad And The Beautiful 11:55 Anchors Aweigh 14:10 The Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight 15:45 Where Were You When The Lights Went Out?

00:30 Ice Road Truckers 2 01:20 Dogfights 02:10 Ancient Discoveries 03:00 Tales Of The Gun 03:55 The Universe 04:50 Ax Men 05:40 Man Moment Machine 06:30 Ice Road Truckers 2 07:20 Dogfights 08:10 Ancient Discoveries 09:00 Tales Of The Gun 09:55 The Universe 10:50 Ax Men 11:40 Man Moment Machine 12:30 Ice Road Truckers 2 13:20 Dogfights 14:10 Ancient Discoveries 15:00 Tales Of The Gun 15:55 The Universe 16:50 Ax Men 17:40 Man Moment Machine 18:30 Ice Road Truckers 2 19:20 Dogfights 20:10 Ancient Discoveries 21:00 Last Voices Of World War I 21:55 Battle 360 22:50 Battlefield Detectives 23:40 Battle Stations

01:00 The Designers 01:30 Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane 02:00 How Do I Look? 03:00 Split Ends 04:00 The Designers 04:30 Stylemaker: Andre Leon Talley 05:00 Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane 05:30 Area 06:00 How Do I Look? 07:00 Millennium Fashion: The Year In Fashion 08:00 My Celebrity Home 09:00 Whose Wedding Is it Anyway? 10:00 Married Away 11:00 Fat Free Fiancs 12:00 How Do I Look? 13:00 Clean House 14:00 Clean House Comes Clean 14:30 Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane 15:00 Jerseylicious 16:00 Peter Perfect 17:00 Most Outrageous Weddings 18:00 Dallas Divas & Daughters 18:30 Dallas Divas & Daughters 19:00 Split Ends 20:00 Clean House: Search For The Messiest... 21:00 How Do I Look? 22:00 25 Most Stylish 23:00 Glamour’s 25 Biggest Do’s and Don’ts

00:15 Top Money 00:17 Playlist 01:00 Rnb 10 01:45 Playlist 02:00 Urban Hit 02:45 Playlist 03:15 Top Sexy 03:17 Playlist 05:00 Guest Star 05:15 Playlist 07:15 Top Mobile 07:17 Playlist 08:00 New 08:30 Playlist 09:15 Top New 09:17 Playlist 13:00 Urban Hit 13:45 Playlist 15:15 Top Fashion 15:17 Playlist 16:00 Hit Us 16:50 Playlist 17:15 Top Gossip 17:17 Playlist 18:00 Urban Hit 18:45 Playlist 20:00 Latina 10

00:00 World’s Greatest Motorcycle Rides 01:00 Planet Food 02:00 Hollywood and Vines 02:30 The Thirsty Traveler 03:00 Food and Wine Special-Varun Sharma 04:00 Globe Trekker 05:00 World’s Greatest Motorcycle Rides 06:00 Taste Takes Off 06:30 Journey Into Wine-South Africa 07:00 Globe Trekker 08:00 Travel Oz 08:30 Distant Shores 09:00 Culinary Asia 10:00 Journey Into Wine-South Africa 10:30 Opening Soon 11:00 Riding Route 66 11:30 Essential 12:00 Globe Trekker 13:00 Taste Takes Off 13:30 The Thirsty Traveler 14:00 Entrada 14:30 Distant Shores 15:00 Culinary Asia 16:00 Globe Trekker 17:00 Travel Oz 17:30 Taste Takes Off 18:00 Journey Into Wine-South Africa 18:30 Opening Soon 19:00 Globe Trekker 20:00 Great Scenic Railways-Australia 21:00 Great Scenic Railways - 175 Years 21:30 Top Travel 22:00 Word Travels 22:30 Culture Shock 23:00 Globe Trekker 23:30 Travel Today

00:00 Music For The Masses 01:00 Greatest Hits 02:00 VH1 Music 05:00 Chill Out 07:00 VH1 Hits 09:00 Aerobic 10:00 VH1 Hits 11:00 VH1 Superchart 12:00 Top 10  A-Ha 13:00 Music For The Masses 14:00 VH1 Pop Chart 15:00 VH1 Music 17:00 Music For The Masses 18:00 VH1 Superchart 19:00 Guess The Year 21:00 The Album Chart Show 22:00 VH1 Pop Chart 23:00 Cover Power

00:05 Cow And Chicken 00:30 Cramp Twins 00:55 George Of The Jungle 01:20 Adrenalini Brothers 01:45 Eliot Kid 02:10 Ed, Edd N Eddy 02:35 Ben 10: Alien Force 03:00 The Powerpuff Girls 03:15 Foster’s Home For Imaginary Friends 03:40 The Secret Saturdays 04:05 Codename: Kids Next Door 04:30 Ben 10 04:55 Best ED 05:20 Samurai Jack 05:45 Cramp Twins 06:10 Eliot Kid 06:35 The Marvelous Misadventures Of Flapjack 07:00 Codename: Kids Next Door 07:25 Chowder 07:50 Best ED 08:15 Chop Socky Chooks 08:40 Ben 10: Alien Force 09:05 Bakugan Battle Brawlers 09:30 Fantastic Four: World’s Greatest Heroes 09:55 Eliot Kid 10:20 My Gym Partner’s A Monkey 10:30 Squirrel Boy 10:55 Robotboy 11:20 Camp Lazlo 11:45 The Powerpuff Girls 12:10 Class Of 3000 12:35 Ed, Edd N Eddy 13:00 Foster’s Home For Imaginary Friends

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

33 ACCOMMODATION An executive (single) looking for sharing accommodation, single room with separate toilet, preferably with Christian family around Salmiya. Please call: 66764062. (C 2657) One independent room available for 1 or 2 decent executive bachelors in 2 BR flat, separate bathroom. Only KD 80, new building, near Shara Amman Street, Opp. Appolo hospital, Salmiya. Call 99761807. (C 2658) 14-9-2010



Arrival Flights on Tuesday 14/09/2010 Airlines Flt Route Jordanian 802 Amman Wataniya Airways 188 Bahrain Jazeera 263 Beirut Kuwait 544 Cairo Wataniya Airways 305 Cairo Wataniya Airways 434 Damascus Wataniya Airways 408 Beirut Gulf Air 211 Bahrain Turkish 772 Istanbul Ethiopian 620 Addis Ababa Egypt Air 614 Cairo Jazeera 267 Beirut DHL 370 Bahrain Emirates 853 Dubai Etihad 305 Abu Dhabi Qatari 138 Doha Air France 6782 Paris Jazeera 503 Luxor Kuwait 412 Manila/Bangkok Jazeera 527 Alexandria British 157 London Kuwait 416 Jakarta/Kuala Lumpur Jazeera 529 Assiut Falcon 201 Bahrain Jazeera 613 Lahore Kuwait 206 Islamabad Kuwait 382 Delhi Kuwait 302 Mumbai Kuwait 332 Trivandrum FlyDubai 053 Dubai Kuwait 676 Dubai Kuwait 286 Chittagong Kuwait 284 Dhaka Emirates 855 Dubai Arabia 121 Sharjah Iran Air 605 Isfahan Qatari 132 Doha Etihad 301 Abu Dhabi Jazeera 425 Bahrain Iran Air 619 Lar Jazeera 497 Riyadh Wataniya Airways 182 Bahrain Gulf Air 213 Bahrain Wataniya Airways 102 Dubai Jazeera 165 Dubai Wataniya Airways 422 Amman Egypt Air 610 Cairo Kuwait 672 Dubai United 982 Washington DC Dulles Jordanian 800 Amman Wataniya Airways 432 Damascus Fly Dubai 057 Dubai Jazeera 521 Alexandria Wataniya Airways 332 Alexandria Wataniya Airways 422 Amman Kuwait 562 Amman Kuwait 512 Tehran Saudia 500 Jeddah Kuwait 744 Dammam Syrian Air 341 Damascus Jazeera 525 Alexandria Qatari 134 Doha Kuwait 546 Alexandria Mihin 403 Colombo/Dubai Etihad 303 Abu Dhabi Emirates 857 Dubai Rovos 095 Kabul/Muscat Gulf Air 215 Bahrain Wataniya Airways 402 Beirut Saudia 510 Riyadh Arabia 125 Sharjah Jazeera 493 Jeddah Jazeera 239 Amman Jazeera 367 Deirezzor SriLankan 227 Colombo/Dubai Wataniya Airways 304 Cairo Kuwait 104 London Kuwait 166 Paris/Rome Rovos 093 Kandahar/Dubai Wataniya Airways 106 Dubai Kuwait 502 Beirut Kuwait 542 Cairo Kuwait 786 Jeddah Kuwait 618 Doha Jazeera 481 Sabiha Jazeera 177 Dubai Air Arabia Egypt 555 Alexandria Kuwait 614 Bahrain Kuwait 674 Dubai Kuwait 774 Riyadh Singapore 458 Singapore/Abu Dhabi Kuwait 552 Damascus Fly Dubai 061 Dubai Indian 993 Chennai/Mumbai Oman Air 647 Muscat Middle East 402 Beirut Wataniya Airways 612 Sabiha Jet A/W 572 Mumbai Egypt Air 618 Alexandria KLM 0443 Amsterdam Wataniya Airways 404 Beirut DHL 372 Bahrain Gulf Air 217 Bahrain Jazeera 459 Damascus Emirates 859 Dubai Rovos 091 Baghdad Qatari 136 Doha United 981 Bahrain AlMasria Universal 1407 Alexandria Lufthansa 636 Frankfurt Jazeera 449 Doha Jazeera 185 Dubai Jazeera 429 Bahrain Egypt Air 612 Cairo Egypt Air 2134 Cairo India Express 389 Kozhikode/Mangalore Pakistan 205 Lahore/Peshawar Wataniya Airways 108 Dubai

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

Departure Flights on Tuesday 14/09/2010 Airlines Flt Route Jazeera 528 Assiut Tunis Air 328 Dubai/Tunis Indian 576 Goa/Chennai Pakistan 240 Sialkot Lufthansa 637 Frankfurt Turkish 773 Istanbul Ethiopian 620 Bahrain/Addis Ababa Egypt Air 615 Cairo DHL 371 Bahrain Emirates 854 Dubai Etihad 306 Abu Dhabi Qatari 139 Doha Air France 6782 Dubai/Hong Kong Wataniya Airways 101 Dubai Jordanian 803 Amman Jazeera 520 Alexandria Jazeera 164 Dubai Jazeera 496 Riyadh Jazeera 422 Bahrain Wataniya Airways 331 Alexandria Gulf Air 212 Bahrain Wataniya Airways 181 Bahrain Wataniya Airways 421 Amman Rovos 094 Dubai/Kandahar Rovos 096 Muscat/Kabul Jazeera 524 Alexandria Wataniya Airways 431 Damascus British 156 London Kuwait 545 Alexandria FlyDubai 054 Dubai Kuwait 671 Dubai Wataniya Airways 421 Amman Kuwait 561 Amman Arabia 122 Sharjah Kuwait 101 London/New York Emirates 856 Dubai Iran Air 604 Isfahan Kuwait 511 Tehran Qatari 133 Doha Etihad 302 Abu Dhabi Jazeera 480 Sabiha Wataniya Airways 401 Beirut Gulf Air 214 Bahrain Iran Air 618 Lar Kuwait 165 Rome/Paris Wataniya Airways 303 Cairo Kuwait 743 Dammam Kuwait 541 Cairo Wataniya Airways 611 Sabiha Jazeera 238 Amman Jazeera 366 Deirezzor Jazeera 492 Jeddah Kuwait 501 Beirut Kuwait 785 Jeddah Egypt Air 611 Cairo Egypt Air 1611 Cairo Kuwait 551 Damascus Jordanian 801 Amman Wataniya Airways 105 Dubai FlyDubai 058 Dubai United 982 Bahrain Jazeera 176 Dubai Wataniya Airways 403 Beirut Kuwait 673 Dubai Kuwait 617 Doha Saudia 501 Jeddah Syrian Air 342 Damascus Jazeera 458 Damascus Kuwait 773 Riyadh Qatari 135 Doha Kuwait 613 Bahrain/Doha Etihad 304 Abu Dhabi Mihin 404 Dubai/Colombo Wataniya Airways 306 Cairo Gulf Air 216 Bahrain Emirates 858 Dubai Rovos 092 Baghdad Arabia 126 Sharjah Jazeera 184 Dubai Saudi 511 Riyadh Jazeera 522 Alexandria Jazeera 448 Doha SriLankan 228 Dubai/Colombo Wataniya Airways 407 Beirut Wataniya Airways 433 Damascus Wataniya Airways 107 Dubai Wataniya Airways 321 Sharm El Sheikh Jazeera 428 Bahrain Air Arabia Egypt 556 Alexandria Kuwait 283 Dhaka Jazeera 266 Beirut Kuwait 361 Colombo FlyDubai 062 Dubai Singapore 457 Abu Dhabi/Singapore Kuwait 343 Chennai Kuwait 351 Cochin Oman Air 648 Muscat Middle East 403 Beirut Jet A/W 571 Mumbai Wataniya Airways 187 Bahrain Egypt Air 619 Alexandria KLM 0443 Bahrain/Amsterdam Gulf Air 218 Bahrain Kuwait 801 Cairo DHL 373 Bahrain Kuwait 675 Dubai Emirates 860 Dubai Falcon 102 Bahrain Kuwait 381 Delhi Qatari 137 Doha Kuwait 301 Mumbai AlMasria Universal 1408 Alexandria Jazeera 526 Alexandria Jazeera 636 Aleppo Jazeera 502 Luxor United 981 Washington DC Dulles Kuwait 411 Bangkok/Manila Egypt Air 613 Cairo

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

CHANGE OF NAME I, Syed Ajmer Ali s/o Syed Akter Ali R/O 17-1181/M/1918, Madannapet, Hyd, A.P. has changed my name as MIR MUSTAFA ALI s/o. Syed Akter Ali. Hence I will be known as Mir Mustafa Ali (B/1011/C09936). (C 2653) 13-9-2010 SITUATION VACANT

Live-in Filipina housekeeper / Nanny required for a European family with 2 children. Good English required and experience with children is a must. Contact: 65887206. (C 2652) 13-9-2010

FOR SALE Expat leaving Kuwait, Toyota Prado 2006 GX, 4 cylinder full option for sale KD 5500. Contact: 97177428. (C 2655) Expat leaving Kuwait, treadmill, dining table with 4 chairs, washing machine, single bed, sofa set, small carpets, micro-oven, fridge, kitchen items for sale. Contact: 97177428. (C 2656) 14-9-2010 2006 Toyota Corolla 1.8 XLI colour white, km done 65000, excellent condition. Cash price KD 2450. Contact: 99934965. (C 2650) 9-9-2010

TRANSPORT A driver to take a lady from Al-Rumaithiya to Salmiya. Tel: 99662391. (C 2654) 14-9-2010



Tuesday, September 14, 2010



Aries (March 21-April 19) Usually you are very patient with the public. Today, you may have to make an extra effort to move away from too deep a communication and just listen to whatever complaint is present at this time. The answer to the problems you come across today may reveal a special talent. You could be standing in long lines or driving on a crowded highway—patience is important. Close relationships have a big impact on your life and old or disgruntled relationships are transformed or perhaps even ended at this time—new ones however, will come on like gangbusters. Those of you who are not involved with a love partner will have many opportunities opening up to you soon. A partner has a mesmerizing impact on you . . . very loving. Taurus (April 20-May 20) Work, achievement and

ambition are the things that mean a lot to you now. You do not mind a little extra work and may discover that a co-worker is willing to lend a helping hand. You show your pride by the way you do your work and by demonstrating certain talents, such as, organizational abilities, problemsolving techniques and negotiating techniques. Expressing these talents now will add a special touch to your work. A meticulous approach to details wins you admiration. A group discussion this afternoon can be especially fruitful in providing information and ideas. Go slow on the cheese just now, you might find that rash on your face and the pain in your tummy disappearing after a few days without cheese. Consider more organic produce.

Pooch Cafe

ACROSS 1. A doctor's degree in dental surgery. 4. Harmony of people's opinions or actions or characters. 10. The elementary stages of any subject (usually plural). 13. (informal) Informed about the latest trends. 14. A place of worship that has its own altar. 15. The longer of the two telegraphic signals used in Morse code. 16. (informal) Of the highest quality. 17. Covered or furnished with tiles. 19. A city in east central Texas. 21. Relating to or characteristic of or occurring in the air. 23. A silvery ductile metallic element found primarily in bauxite. 24. A solution containing a phosphate buffer. 26. Toward the mouth or oral region. 29. (Old Testament) In Judeo-Christian mythology. 33. The capital and largest city of Bangladesh. 35. A white metallic element that burns with a brilliant light. 37. A white linen liturgical vestment with sleeves. 38. An agency of the United Nations affiliated with the World Bank. 40. (folklore) A corpse that rises at night to drink the blood of the living. 42. Of or relating to or characteristic of Monaco or its people. 45. Being ten more than one hundred ninety. 46. Cubes of meat marinated and cooked on a skewer usually with vegetables. 47. Having help. 51. A medicinal liquid preparation intended for use in an atomizer. 55. Fallow deer. 56. A loose sleeveless outer garment made from aba cloth. 57. A volcanic island (part of Campania) in the Tyrrhenian Sea at the north end of the Bay of Naples. 61. Devoid of warmth and cordiality. 62. A very small circular shape. 63. (Norse mythology) The heavenly dwelling of the Norse gods (the Aesir) and slain war heroes. 64. A unit of length of thread or yarn. 65. (Irish) Mother of the ancient Irish gods. 66. Having cusps or points. 67. A yearning for something or to do something. DOWN 1. An Indian tree of the family Combretaceae that is a source of timber and gum. 2. A design fixed to some surface or a paper bearing the design to be transferred to the surface. 3. A detailed description of design criteria for a piece of work. 4. A legal document codifying the result of deliberations of a committee or society or legislative body. 5. An intersection or crossing of two tracts in the form of the letter X. 6. City in southwestern Colombia in a rich agricultural area. 7. A segment of DNA containing adjacent genes including structural genes and an operator gene and a regulatory gene. 8. Having any of numerous bright or strong colors reminiscent of the color of blood or cherries or tomatoes or rubies. 9. A metric unit of volume equal to one tenth of a liter. 10. The sixth month of the civil year. 11. A small cake leavened with yeast. 12. Of or relating to or characteristic of the Republic of Chad or its people or language. 18. An informal term for a father. 20. An organization of countries formed in 1961 to agree on a common policy for the sale of petroleum. 22. The syllable naming the fourth (subdominant) note of the diatonic scale in solmization. 25. The cry made by sheep. 27. The act of scanning. 28. A city in southern Turkey on the Seyhan River. 30. A barrier constructed to contain the flow or water or to keep out the sea. 31. American prizefighter who won the world heavyweight championship three times (born in 1942). 32. A master's degree in business. 34. A rapid bustling commotion. 36. Type genus of the Alcidae comprising solely the razorbill. 39. Tall feather palm of northern Brazil with hard-shelled nuts yielding valuable oil and a kind of vegetable ivory. 40. City in southwestern Colombia in a rich agricultural area. 41. Harsh or corrosive in tone. 43. A Kwa language spoken by the Yoruba people in southwestern Nigeria. 44. Belonging to or prescribed for celiac disease. 48. Occurring or done each day. 49. A person who acts as host at formal occasions (makes an introductory speech and introduces other speakers). 50. Israeli general and statesman (1915-1981). 52. Very dark black. 53. A Chadic language spoken south of Lake Chad. 54. A republic consisting of 26 of 32 counties comprising the island of Ireland. 58. System of measurement based on centimeters and grams and seconds. 59. An accidental happening. 60. A condition (mostly in boys) characterized by behavioral and learning disorders.

Gemini (May 21-June 20) By the twenty-third of this month, you will enjoy a return of some easier workdays. For now, you may have to call on that extra energy of yours to complete some detailed tasks. It is possible that you could get a co-worker to help you share the work. You bubble with charm and could talk an Eskimo into a refrigerator. Consider thinning out some of the chores you have after your workday so that you can rest. Your interest in adventures and exercise challenges may bring about some fun discussions on the phone this evening. You and your friends may enjoy planning the next hike through the mountains or the next competitive swimming challenge. You might do some research on the recent supported adventure trips.

Non Sequitur

Cancer (June 21-July 22) Your timing should be perfect and those around you should find you easy going. Most find that you can really make clear choices and think things through. Professionally, you are doing well; you know it and those in control are pleasingly impressed. Discussions about your career may help you to come up with new ideas for the future. You make your way through ideas, concepts and your ability to communicate and express them to others. A strong need for nurturing is a bigger-than-usual factor in your life. You may feel the need to care for others or to have them care for you—perhaps on a public rather than private level. This could involve some performance-oriented hobby or theater group. You make your leisure hours productive. Leo (July 23-August 22) Today, you may feel that you should hurry, hurry, hurry, but getting in a rush will not help to accomplish what needs to be done. Perhaps you could set some things aside and do only the most pressing duties just now. You could be most persuasive with others and may enjoy the art of debate as well as qualifying for the best sales person in your company. Agreements are easily reached today. The situation is a natural for self-expression and lends itself to your particular ideas and thoughts. An outgoing and very expressive cycle has begun for you. There is a yearning to broaden your horizons and further your education. With careful planning and some consideration with regard to your talents, you will do well. See if you can find a good mentor.


Virgo (August 23-September 22) Your friends are many. These friends are at work, as well as in your personal life. Today, you will find that several of your co-worker friends are willing to help you with some project; even if it means a little overtime without pay. Ideas and interaction with higher-ups may be in the works as well. Working with—rather than against—the flow should be easy to do. An eccentric relative attracts some notice. The home and family scene is likely to be in a state of change. This may mean moving, an addition to the family or a late summer cleanup project—perhaps even painting in or outside your house. High-tech equipment invades the domestic environment somehow. This could mean new cleaning equipment, new painting tools or some family project. Libra (September 23-October 22) Your professional activities today excel and you may find yourself teaching others the techniques you use to make your work run along smoothly. Quick answers, great wit and a surplus of insights and solutions are ready. This is a good time to write and communicate with originality. Inventions and breakthroughs are possible. After work today, you may find yourself working with music, color, fabric and the arts—whatever is beautiful. You would make a superb decorator of homes and, in general, all kinds of environments. Your friends may want your advice on these subjects as well. You will enjoy deep conversations with friends today. A young person needs a costume for a party and given only a moment, you create marvelous results.

Mother Goose and Grimm

Scorpio (October 23-November 21) You will be deeply

aware of your own strengths and weaknesses today. This could just mean that you have to call for help when moving furniture or you need to brush up on your typing skills. With little effort, you can find a teacher or get help with the moving of furniture. Do not stay in the problem any longer than necessary. What goes on in your mind is the allimportant motivation in your life. You tend toward mental pursuits and admire intelligence. A problem can be solved or a new subject mastered. Be certain to follow through with travel opportunities. You will communicate with charm and clarity. Take note of new ideas that leap into your thoughts just now. This can be valuable for future development. Sagittarius (November 22-December 21) You can demonstrate great understanding and sensitivity to the needs of others and are in a good position to communicate concerning groups and society in general. You have great organizational skills and could help with plans that are in the works for visiting dignitaries or guests that want to buy land or other products your company produces. Some of the visitors may not be from your city or country. A change in an after-work group activity may bring about an opportunity for you to catch up on chores around your place. This may be the best time to go through closets and get rid of the clothes or items that no longer serve you. Family members mean a lot to you and you enjoy the interactions that occur this evening.

Yesterday’s Solution

Capricorn (December 22-January 19) Mental


Yesterday’s Solution

Aquarius (January 20- February 18) You are up early this morning, cleaning and preparing for company that you expect to entertain when this workday has ended. A trend begins at work now that encourages you to use more authority and become more visible. Someone may compliment you on your tastes or belongings this afternoon as a few friends, perhaps co-worker friends, gather in your home. There is a greater than usual emphasis on emotional security, which is likely to manifest as putting down roots somehow. Home and family matters can play a big part in this: relatives take on greater importance than ever before. Real estate matters can be improved upon and a friend or family member that is into real estate will help you learn if you ask.

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

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

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

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

organization and discipline may fall apart or be challenged today. This is a busy day and the input from others may cause you to change your plans and just follow the flow of activity. You could be most persuasive with a loved one today and find that you enjoy guiding or advising via phone calls throughout the day. Others sense an interest in their welfare when they are near you. You are eloquent in communication skills and it is possible for you to smooth out a difficult situation with your sense of humor. Chances are, your social skills mean that you are popular with almost everyone and the evening may be full of opportunities to be with neighbors, friends or loved ones in a social gathering of sorts. This could be an outdoor barbecue party.

Word Sleuth Solution

Pisces (February 19-March 20) Your strong sense of responsibility, or the actual duties that come your way, may prevent you from fulfilling your own personal ambitions. Those in authority, or older and more experienced, may challenge you and hold you back—so you think. Look at your earning power—it is strong. You will always be able to enjoy a good job if you agree or endorse the product you are either selling or helping to produce. You teach a young person that resentments are a waste of time and the time spent in resentment emotions would cause one to miss a special joy. You have an interest in teaching and helping others. This may lead to a greater interest or experience in healing and investing. There is still time for some great fun activity with loved ones this evening.


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

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

Ministry of Interior website:

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


Amiri Hospital


Maternity Hospital


Mubarak Al-Kabir Hospital


Chest Hospital


Farwaniya Hospital


Adan Hospital


Ibn Sina Hospital


Al-Razi Hospital


Physiotherapy Hospital

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

24874330/9 CLINICS













Abdullah Salim




Industrial Shuwaikh






Bneid Al-Ghar






Ayoun Al-Kibla










Maidan Hawally












New Jahra


West Jahra


South Jahra


North Jahra


North Jleeb














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


PHARMACY Sama Safwan Abu Halaifa Danat Al-Sultan

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

PHONE 23915883 23715414 23726558


Modern Jahra Madina Munawara

Jahra-Block 3 Lot 1 Jahra-Block 92

24575518 24566622


Ahlam Khaldiya Coop

Fahad Al-Salem St Khaldiya Coop

22436184 24833967


New Shifa Ferdous Coop Modern Safwan

Farwaniya Block 40 Ferdous Coop Old Kheitan Block 11

24734000 24881201 24726638


Tariq Hana Ikhlas Hawally & Rawdha Ghadeer Kindy

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

25726265 25647075 22625999 22564549 25340559 25326554


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

25622444 25752222 25321171 25739999 25757700 25732223 25732223

Ear, Nose & Throat (ENT): Dr. Ahmed Fouad Mouner 24555050 Ext 510 Dr. Abdallah Al-Ali 25644660 Dr. Abd Al-Hameed Al-Taweel 25646478 Dr. Sanad Al-Fathalah 25311996 Dr. Mohammad Al-Daaory 25731988 Dr. Ismail Al-Fodary 22620166 Dr. Mahmoud Al-Booz 25651426 General Practitioners: Dr. Mohamme Y Majidi 24555050 Ext 123 Dr. Yousef Al-Omar 24719312 Dr. Tarek Al-Mikhazeem 23926920 Dr. Kathem Maarafi 25730465 Dr. Abdallah Ahmad Eyadah 25655528 Dr. Nabeel Al-Ayoobi 24577781 Dr. Dina Abidallah Al-Refae 25333501 Urologists: Dr. Ali Naser Al-Serfy 22641534 Dr. Fawzi Taher Abul 22639955 Dr. Khaleel Abidallah Al-Awadi22616660 Dr. Adel Al-Hunayan FRCS (C) 25313120 Plastic Surgeons: Dr. Mohammad Al-Khalaf 22547272

22434064 22435865 22544200 22547133 22515277 22616662 25714406 22530801

Dr. Abdal-Redha Lari Dr. Abdel Quttainah

22617700 25625030/60

Family Doctor: Dr Divya Damodar 23729596/23729581

Dr. Dr. Dr. Dr. Dr.

Zahra Qabazard Sohail Qamar Snaa Maaroof Pradip Gujare Zacharias Mathew

25710444 22621099 25713514 23713100 24334282

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

Dr. Amer Zawaz Al-Amer 22610044 Dr. Mohammad Yousef Basher 25327148

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

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

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

25655535 Dentists:

Dr Anil Thomas


Dr. Shamah Al-Matar


Dr. Anesah Al-Rasheed


Dr. Abidallah Al-Amer


Dr. Faysal Al-Fozan


Dr. Abdallateef Al-Katrash


Dr. Abidallah Al-Duweisan


Dr. Bader Al-Ansari



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

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

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

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


Gastrologists Dr. Sami Aman


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


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


Dr. Kamal Al-Shomr


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

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

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

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

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

Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guam Guatemala Guinea Guyana Haiti Holland (Netherlands) Honduras Hong Kong Hungary Ibiza (Spain) Iceland India Indian Ocean Indonesia Iran Iraq Ireland Italy Ivory Coast Jamaica Japan Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Laos Latvia Lebanon Liberia Libya Lithuania Luxembourg Macau Macedonia

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



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

d B e t r o it a v

s in ’

Fir t


best looking

man olin Firth has been named Britain’s best looking man. The ‘Pride and Prejudice’ actor topped a poll of 1,500 women ahead of actors Rupert Everett and Clive Owen, comic Russell Brand and James Bond star Daniel Craig. Sally Allen, of Wizard Jeans which commissioned the survey, said: “A handsome profile may be heaven-sent but looking good is usually a much more down-to-earth process, concerned with grooming and making the most of your natural attractiveness. “I’ve heard girls talking about Colin Firth’s brooding good looks when they are probably referring to his demeanor, grooming and image. And that’s something you can work on. “But it’s unlikely that many men will be able to recreate the magical moment when Mr Darcy came out of the lake, dripping wet - yet positively perfect and sexy - making all the women watching take a very deep breath.” Original James Bond star Sir Sean Connery, was voted ninth, while soccer superstar David Beckham and actor Orlando Bloom narrowly missed out on the top ten coming in at numbers 11 and 12 respectively. Wizard J eans Britain’s Best Looking Man poll top five: 1. Colin Firth 2. Rupert Everett 3. Clive Owen 4. Russell Brand 5. Daniel Craig

Hatcher’s charity swim


Jovovich’s unhandy role M

illa Jovovich’s hands went blue on the set of ‘The Three Musketeers’. The Ukrainianborn beauty - who plays M’Lady De Winter in the reimagining of the classic tale - says her outfits were so tight they cut off the circulation in her body, stopping blood from reaching her digits. She even had to be cut out of her dresses on some occasions to get the blood pumping again. She told website Hollywood Life: “At one point I remember they put all this body make-up on my hands to make me pale and they looked beautiful, but once I got the costume on I came in and the make-up artist was like, ‘What happened to your hands?’ And I was like, ‘What do you mean?’ I looked down and my hands were blue and looked bruised! “We were trying to find all these different color combinations to put on my hands cause all of a sudden my hands were blue and bloated and then we realized the arms of the costume were so tight it cut

off my circulation so we had to cut the costume open to get the blood flowing and they finally went back to normal.” The 34-year-old actress has also revealed she took a slow approach to losing her baby weight following the birth of her first daughter Ever Gabo in 2007. She said: “Basically, I lost 10 pounds a month for four months. Since I was around 200 pounds when I gave birth, losing 40 pounds was just a drop in the ocean. “I put away the cake and pizza. But the weight didn’t slip off. It took me another eight months to get it all off.” She also admits she prefers to be a little curvier now, as being too thin as you get older can leave you looking “like a hag”. She told the Chicago Sun-Times newspaper: “The rule when you get older, it really is a choice between your a*s and your face. “It’s a little cellulite on the booty or you look like a hag. As you get older, you need a little weight on your face to look better and younger.”

Cyrus reunited with former flame Hemsworth Europe earlier in the week, she has acted a bit tired and worn out. With Liam back in her life on Saturday, she acted totally different and, instead, seemed very happy. It looked like Miley and Liam had never been apart, and they were back into their old routine.” Friends of the star recently admitted while Miley is currently too focused on her career to have a relationship, they wouldn’t rule out the couple reconciling in the future. A pal explained: “Miley has been super focused on her work. Liam wanted more, but she’s 17 and has other priorities right now. He’s been a distraction. “She is not ready to settle down, and Liam’s not a happy camper. They’re both young. To say they are done forever would be premature, but it’s safe to say for now they are doing their own thing.”

iley Cyrus has reportedly reunited with former flame Liam Hemsworth. The 17-year-old singer -and-actress - who split from her ‘Last Song’ co-star in August after 14 months of dating - was spotted running errands with the Australian actor in Los Angeles on Saturday. An onlooker told People magazine: “Miley and Liam kept smiling and seemed to really enjoy their afternoon together. They acted like they had missed each other, kept chatting and seemed to be catching up. They definitely seemed like a couple again.” Pals claim that Miley - who has been filming ‘LOL: Laughing Out Loud’ in Paris, France - has relaxed more since reuniting with the 20-year-old star. One source said: “Since Miley returned to Los Angeles from


Pratt arrested, banned from Costa Rica eri Ha tcher completed a charity swim in the Pacific Ocean. The 45year-old actress braved the freezing water to complete a half-mile portion of the Nautica Malibu Triathlon in just 26 minutes, raising money for Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, after being stricken by the plight of three-year-old Sophia Rothman, who has battled blindness and suffered from juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. Teri - who did not compete in the running or cycling parts of the race - told “Even though the water was cold, nothing can compare to what little Sophia is going through. I came out here today to help bring awareness of this disease. Events like this are one of many ways celebrities can bring awareness for different causes. Anything I can do to help, count me in.” After she left the water, Teri was greeted by Sophia and her parents, who were delighted by the actress’ efforts. Sophia’s mother said: “We’re so thankful for Teri and her support. Teri helped save our


daughter’s vision.” Dressed in a skin-tight wetsuit and fuschia swimsuit, the ‘Desperate Housewives’ star joked: “I look good don’t I?” Teri - who has a 12-year-old daughter Emerson Rose with ex-husband Jon Tenney - recently admitted she wasn’t as fit as she had been when she completed the entire event in 2009, but appealed for fans to continue to support her efforts. She wrote on her personal pledge page: “I’m a far cry from the shape I was in back in 2009, a year ago, when I complete the entire Triathlon. “Two broken ribs later and a month of taking care of my dad on the mend from open heart surgery, as well as recovering from Lymes disease picking up my daughter from summer camp and well, being just off the work out train, all I can say is ITS FOR THE CHILDREN. “I may be slower this year, but I wont give up on kids in need. Thank you for supporting 2010 Nautica Malibu Triathlon. Your contribution is greatly appreciated. (sic)” — Bang Showbiz

pencer Pratt has been arrested for possessing illegal weapons in Costa Rica. The 27-year-old reality TV star - who is currently in the process of divorcing ‘The Hills’ co-star Heidi Montag was caught with a “hunting weapon” while in an airport heading back to Los Angeles, but insists he made an “honest mistake”. In a statement, he said: “I’ve spent the last week living alone in the jungle, reflecting on my past transgressions, and working to become a better person. I had to live off the land, and hunt to survive. “As I departed the country this morning to continue my spiritual journey, I mistakenly brought my hunting weapons to the airport. It was an honest mistake, and they sent me on my way.” Spencer has also been banned from returning to the country, though insists it is unrelated to his arrest. He cryptically added: “On an unrelated note, I’m not allowed in the country anymore - but that’s because of the chicken incident.” Spencer wrote on twitter he had spent time in prison over the weekend. He wrote: “Costa Rican jail smells like children’s tears. And soup. Delicious soup. “Thanks to jail, I finally have something in common with Gandhi, Nelson Mandela and that Lohan chick.” Heidi is also in Costa Rica, where she is staying while divorce proceedings with Spencer go through.


Anderson not hot for Brits amela Anderson wouldn’t date a British man. The former ‘Baywatch’ actress - who enjoyed a brief romance with hunky British TV presenter Steve Jones - is friends with lots of guys from the UK but isn’t prepared to get romantically involved with any of them because she lives in the US. Pamela - who has two sons, Brandon, 14, and Dylan, 13, with her ex-husband Tommy Lee said: “I do have a few gorgeous British friends who are wonderful, intelligent, sexy and who are


nice to flirt with, although too far away to get anything meaningful going here. “I’ve been restraining myself and being very choosy as I’m concentrating on my children just now.” Although she isn’t an anglophile when it comes to guys, the 43-year-old sex symbol loves coming to the UK because she enjoys the culture, history and shopping. She said: “It’s wonderful to come here and relax and buy some beautiful lingerie and clothes. It’s gorgeous walking through the streets and visiting museums, galleries and friends.”


Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Music & Movies

Take That’s Williams, Barlow reunite for charity obbie Williams and Gary Barlow performed live together for the first time in 15 years on Sunday, singing their new single “Shame” at a charity concert in London to raise money for British soldiers. The pair were members of the chart-topping boy band Take That before Williams walked out in 1995 to pursue a solo career. The 36-year-old enjoyed initial success, but his fortunes have waned in recent years while Take That, which reformed without Williams in 2005, has flourished. “It’s been 15 years in the making,” Williams told the crowd of around 55,000 people at Twickenham Stadium, including Queen Elizabeth’s grandson Prince Harry, who has served in Afghanistan with British forces. “My wife calls him my


(From Right) British singers Robbie Williams and Gary Barlow perform during the Help for Heroes Concert 2010 at Twickenham Stadium, southwest London, on September 12, 2010. —AFP

‘Slumdog’ director Boyle returns for ‘127 Hours’ By David Germain lumdog Millionaire” director Danny Boyle has delivered another grim crowd-pleaser to film festival crowds. Boyle’s survival tale “127 Hours,” starring James Franco in the real-life story of a wilderness adventurer trapped by a fallen boulder, earned an explosive standing ovation Sunday night at the Toronto International Film Festival. The premiere marked Boyle’s return to the Toronto festival, where “Slumdog Millionaire” won the audience award as favorite film two years ago on its way to boxoffice success and best-picture triumph at the Academy Awards. Boyle thanked the audience for the lift the festival gave “Slumdog Millionaire” and said he and his crew scrambled to make the deadline for a return trip to Toronto with “127 Hours,” which finished shooting just last May. “A lot of people went nuts to get it here,” Boyle said. Due in theaters Nov. 5, “127 Hours” stars Franco in practically a one-man show as Aron Ralston, a climber trapped in a Utah canyon after his arm was pinned under a boulder in 2003. On the fifth day of his ordeal, Ralston hacked off his arm to free himself. Ralston attended the premiere with his wife and sister and joined Boyle, Franco and co-stars Amber Tamblyn, Kate Mara and Clemence Poesy to answer audience questions after the screening. The film was based on Ralston’s best-selling book, “Between a Rock and a Hard Place.” When he first met with Boyle about a film version, Ralston said he preferred telling the story as a documentary, but he thanked Boyle for convincing him that a dramatic adaptation would serve the story better. “As a documentary, it would not have been anywhere near as powerful as that was,” said Ralston, who choked back tears after the screening. Though the story is grave and the audience squirmed and gasped as Franco recreated Ralston’s gruesome self-amputation, “127 Hours” maintains Boyle’s trademark blend of the humorous and horrifying. Franco’s Ralston wisecracks incessantly to keep his spirits up, and the film cleverly weaves in a barrage of psychedelic flashbacks and hallucinations as he struggles to survive. —Reuters

boyfriend, I call him my captain, to you, Mr Gary Barlow,” he added, as his former bandmate took to the stage for a duet which ended years of speculation in the British media and among fans. Williams said last month that he and Take That planned a tour in 2011, although the reunion is expected to be temporary. Williams closed the concert with a rendition of his hit “Angels”. The event was held to raise money for the Help for Heroes charity, which supports soldiers who have been wounded in action. Among the other highlights on the night was Spanish star Enrique Iglesias singing “Hero”, with the crowd providing the chorus as darkness fell. James Blunt, Katherine Jenkins and Plan B were among the other acts to perform. —Reuters

Bollywood star apologizes over Mumbai attacks remark


Bollywood actor Salman Khan, center, gestures during an immersion of an idol of Hindu God Ganesh in Mumbai late September 12, 2010. —AFP

ollywood actor Salman Khan apologized yesterday after sparking criticism for claiming that the 2008 Mumbai attacks attracted widespread publicity only because the elite were targeted. The actorwho with his namesakes Aamir Khan and Shahrukh Khan is one of the Indian film industry’s leading Muslim actors-also questioned Indian claims that the Pakistani state helped plan the atrocities. In an interview recorded three


weeks ago with a Pakistani television channel, widely reported in the Indian press yesterday, he said that “everybody knows” that the Pakistani government was not behind the attacks. “Too much hype has been created around the 26/11 (November 26) attacks because elite people were targeted. Attacks have happened in trains and small towns but no-one talked about it so much,” he said. Instead, he blamed the failure of India’s own security agencies.

Following demands from right-wing Hindu nationalist political groups for a public retraction, and criticism in the newspapers, one of which called him “Khan The Clueless”, the 44-year-old apologized to his fans. “I think I messed up, so sorry guys,” he wrote on the micro-blogging site Twitter yesterday. Khan’s tweeted apology came after he posted a statement on the video-sharing site YouTube claiming his comments had been “twisted around”. “I saw it myself, the way it is

coming across on the TV. It’s sounding insensitive,” he said. “I was just saying that life is equal... it is the same. Some attacks had more media coverage than the others. Why is that? I think every human life is as important,” he added. “I didn’t mean to hurt anybody’s sentiments and if I have hurt anybody’s sentiments, I am really, really sorry.” A total of 166 people died and more than 300 others were wounded in the Mumbai attacks when 10 Islamist

Woody Allen defends his latest find, Bruni-Sarkozy

‘Hereafter’ another strong drama from Eastwood W

By David Germain

By Kirk Honeycutt lint Eastwood continues his search for challenging stories that delve into extreme reaches of the human condition in “Hereafter,” a globetrotting inquiry into the nature of the afterlife. The film also marks an unexpected turn in the screenwriting of Peter Morgan, away from his survey of political personalities in such films as “The Queen” and “Frost/Nixon” and into metaphysical speculation. The film never is less than intriguing, right from its tour de force opening sequence, and often full of insights into why people long for answers, sometimes with great urgency. By now Eastwood has established a reputation for the unexpected, so his admirers-”fans” no longer seems the right word-plus anyone curious about the


Actor and director Clint Eastwood arrives at the premiere of the feature film ‘Hereafter’ during the Toronto International Film Festival. —AP

subject matter certainly will line up when Warner Bros. releases the film domestically Oct. 22. The film should do very well in Europe next year as well. One would expect such subjects as mortality and the afterlife would mean a contemplative, even moody piece. But Morgan has planted a sense of immediacy within these international stories about three people searching for answers. Strange as it sounds, the film reminds a little of old Claude Lelouch movies-and not just because Marthe Keller, looking wonderful, shows up in one sequence-because Morgan’s story plays with fate and destiny as people’s paths eventually cross after incidents in different parts of the world send them on a collision course. A tsunami tears through a tropical beach town, causing a French television news anchor (Cecile de France) to have a near-death experi-

ence. An otherwise normal American (Matt Damon) desperately wants to flee his “curse,” a psychic ability to communicate with the dead. Two twin boys in London are inseparable until they are separated by death, leaving the shyer, more dependent brother (Frankie McLaren) desperate to reach beyond the grave for assurance. Each story has its own subplots and captivating characters. The French woman, something of a celebrity, is in a relationship with her married producer (Thierry Neuvic). The experience has so shaken her that he suggests she take time off to write a political book. She does, but her writing veers off course as she investigates scientists who research the afterlife and the stigma attached to their work. The psychic aches to get out of the “reading” business, but his brother (Jay Mohr) knows a gold mine

oody Allen loves shooting in Paris. He doesn’t care for the gossip about one of his costars, France’s first lady, Carla Bruni-Sarkozy. Allen said he was shocked at gossip column reports that Bruni-Sarkozy was a handful on the set of his romantic comedy “Midnight in Paris” or that he hired another actress to reshoot her scenes and cut her from the film. Reports that it took BruniSarkozy 32 takes to shoot a scene were false, Allen said in an interview Sunday at the Toronto International Film Festival, where his comic drama “You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger” played ahead of its theatrical release next week. “She was no problem at all,” said Allen, who shot “Midnight in Paris” over the summer, his first film made in France. “I was delighted with her.” Allen said he did a typical eight or 10 takes with Bruni-Sarkozy, the same as the rest of the cast, which includes Adrien Brody, Kathy Bates, Owen Wilson, Marion Cotillard and Rachel McAdams. He said Bruni-

Sarkozy was not replaced and that her scenes remain in the film. “This is a hundred percent untrue,” Allen said. “She’s in the picture. Everything she shot is in the picture. I love her. She’s great. It’s not a big part, but it’s a respectable part. Everything was totally made up. —Reuters

Director Woody Allen poses for a portrait while promoting the film ‘You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger’ at the Toronto International Film Festival, Sunday. —AP

gunmen lay siege to three luxury hotels, a popular tourist restaurant, Jewish centre and the city’s main railway station. India accuses the banned, Pakistan-based Islamist group Lashkar-e-Taiba of funding, training and equipping the gunmen with help from elements in the Pakistani military. Khan’s newly released film, “Dabangg” (Fearless), has been critically acclaimed and a box-office hit.—AFP

US actor McCarthy of ‘Body Snatchers’ fame dies merican actor Kevin McCarthy, who starred as a terrorstricken small-town doctor in the acclaimed 1956 science fiction film “Invasion of the Body Snatchers”, died on Saturday at age 96, US media reported. McCarthy appeared in numerous US stage, film and television productions and was nominated for an Academy Award for the movie version of Arthur Miller’s play “Death of a Salesman.” But he earned his most recognition with his memorable performance as a doctor who tries in vain to warn fellow townsfolk about alien “pod people” in “Invasion of the Body Snatchers.” The low-budget film was selected in 2008 by the American Film Institute as one of the top 10 science fiction films of all time and was chosen for inclusion in the US Library of Congress National Film Registry for its importance. The film, directed by Don Siegel, is considered by many experts as a metaphor for the anti-Communist scares of its era. In the plot, residents of a California town


Kevin McCarthy are systematically replaced by emotionless, alien duplicates in bubbling pods. McCarthy, in the film’s best known scene, runs panicked into traffic, shouting warnings: “They’re not human” and “You’re next.” The film also starred Dana Wynter, King Donovan and Carolyn Jones. He later appeared briefly in the 1978 remake of the film, which starred Donald Sutherland. McCarthy earned an Academy Award nomination for best supporting actor in the role of Biff Loman in the 1951 film version of “Death of a Salesman,”. McCarthy appeared in the same role in the 1949 London production of the play. — Reuters



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Swift, West live up to the hype By Nekesa Mumbi Moody e derided himself as a jerk; she told him he wasn’t as bad as his misdeeds. He gave a sarcastic ode to his boorish behavior; she sang of an opportunity to grow from a very public stumble. Both Kanye West and Taylor Swift took the stage at the MTV Video Music Awards in Los Angeles on Sunday and addressed a matter from last year’s VMAs that had refused to die. Their separate but equally emotional performances seemed to provide resolution to the incident, while overshadowing the show’s other moments, including Lady Gaga’s eight VMA wins. This year’s Swift-


West drama was a sequel to 2009’s unscripted debacle in which West interrupted Swift’s acceptance speech to proclaim that her trophy should have gone to Beyonce. The incident left Swift with hurt feelings, but West was the one who was seriously damaged from an intense backlash that took both a personal and professional toll. As this year’s VMAs drew closer, the buzz of a possible Swift-West showdown grew daily. Both were nominated for awards (which they lost), both were expected to perform and each has an album coming out this fall. West increased the potential of fireworks with a recent rant on Twitter in which he again apologized to Swift

fell flat. She did have a few zingers, most of them vulgar. A pre-taped portion of her opening featured the host getting spanked multiple times by show participants in a backstage hallway before running into the recently freed Lindsay Lohan, who also gave her a swat. “Have you been drinking?” Lohan demanded from Handler. “Do you think anyone wants to work with a drunk? Take it from me! They

and talked about how he had suffered emotionally and economically. Then on Saturday, The Associated Press learned that Swift would be singing a song about last year’s most talkedabout moment. But instead of skewering West in song as Swift has done to others, she offered an olive branch with her song “Innocent,” written earlier this year and due to appear on her new album: “Everyone of us has messed up, too ... I hope you remember today is never too late to be brand new.” The 20-year-old’s poignant and powerful ode-which was introduced with a video montage that referenced last year’s ceremony-sympathized with West’s difficult time in the spotlight

don’t!” Later, on stage, Handler implored the all-star audience to get wild. “I want to encourage everybody to be on their worst behavior,” she said. “I want to turn this mother out. ... Get your tongues ready because I want those tongues shoved in places they’re not supposed to be.” But it was a relatively tame night; perhaps, given West’s antics last year, the stars had learned a lesson. —AP

Kanye performs at the MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday, in Los Angeles.

Justin Bieber performs at the MTV Video Music Awards.

The cast of Jackass is seen on stage at the MTV Video Music Awards.

and his own admissions that his ego has often gotten in his way. “Thirty-two and still growing up now; who you are is not what you did,” she sang seriously and softly, adding: “You’re still an innocent.” West’s song, which was preceded by scattered boos from the audience, didn’t seem to address last year’s incident, but talked about the obnoxious behavior that has too often overshadowed his musical talent. “I always find something wrong; you’ve been putting up with my (expletive) for too long,” he sang, before launching into an unprintable chorus, which included the line: “Let’s have a toast to scumbags.” With all that pathos, no other celebrities could really compete. Still, Lady Gaga tried-as the most outrageously dressed-and that’s saying something, given Katy Perry’s barely there outfit and Ke$ha’s garbage bag-dress. Gaga accepted her video of the year award with an outfit sure to anger PETA: a dress and chapeau made of what seemed to be cuts of raw beef, including a meat purse. It was one of her three zany outfits of the evening. She arrived in a spectacular outfit by the late Alexander McQueen: a Victorian-inspired gown and a Mohawk feather headdress atop a long white wig, with monstrous stilettos that made her look like she was on stilts. Later, she changed into a black dress so overflowing she

needed help to get onstage to accept one of her trophies. Cher _ an over-the-top diva from a different era-gave Gaga her bestvideo award and noted she had been raising eyebrows when Lady Gaga “was still Baby Gaga.” Gaga was teary-eyed during her victories, and sang the title of her new album, “Born This Way,” as she accepted the last award. There were few other highlights, despite performances by Usher, Eminem and Rihanna, Justin Bieber and Linkin Park, and appearances by Nicki Minaj and the cast of MTV’s “Jersey Shore.” Host Chelsea Handler gave the show its traditional bawdiness, though her jokes often

Taylor Swift performs at the MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday.

Justin Bieber accepts the best new artist award from presenter Victoria Justice at the MTV Video Music Awards . — AP photos

Lady Gaga the big winner at MTV music awards ady Gaga was crowned queen of the MTV Video Music Awards Sunday, winning eight prizes including video of the year. The flamboyant pop singer tied Norwegian rock group aha, the big winners of 1986, as the second most honored act on a single night. British rocker Peter Gabriel set the record of nine competitive wins in 1987 for his innovative video “Sledgehammer.” Most of L ady Gaga’s Moonman statuettes were for her video “Bad Romance,” a futuristic clip featuring plenty of skin-baring scenes and bizarre costumes. “I was so nervous for tonight that I would let my fans down,” she tearfully said as she accepted the final award for video of the year. The 24-year-old New Yorker, as famous for her outre fashion sense as for her musical sensibilities, led the field with 13 nominations. In each of her three trips to the stage-the other awards were announced off-camera-she wore a different costume, including what looked like a large black trash bag. The only other multiple winner was eight-time nominee Eminem, who won a pair of awards for his “Not Afraid.” The rapper opened the show with a medley of songs, but


hastily exited the Nokia Theatre before accepting his statuettes. Taylor Swif t, who received a single nomination, went home empty-handed,

brushed aside by the Lady Gaga juggernaut. But the country-pop starlet provided one of the show’s more provocative moments, debuting a song that recounted her

on-stage controversy with Kanye West during last year’s ceremony. Teen pop idol Justin Bieber was named best new artist for his “Baby,” featuring rapper

Ludacris. “I come from a little town in Canada, I never thought I’d be in this position,” said the 16-year-old native of Stratford, Ontario. Other winners included actor

Lady Gaga arrives on the red carpet for the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards at the Nokia Theater in Los Angeles. — AFP

Jared Leto’s rock band 30 Seconds to Mars for best rock video (“Kings and Queens”). Muse, the Black Keys, Jay Z + Alicia Keys, and Florence + the Machine won in technical categories. Lady Gaga preview s new album L ady Gaga, whose real name is Stefani Germanotta, announced that the follow-up to her breakthrough album “The Fame” would be called “Born This Way,” and serenaded the crowd with a tidbit: “I’m beautiful in my way because God makes no mistakes. I’m on the right track baby. I was born this way.” In addition to winning video of the year for “Bad Romance,” Lady Gaga took home the prizes for female video, pop video, dance video, choreography, direction and editing. Moreover, her raunchy lesbian prisonthemed video for “Telephone” featuring Beyonce won for best collaboration. Swift’s plaintive ballad appeared to offer an olive branch of sorts to West. The embattled hip-hop star was criticized following last year’s ceremony in which he stormed the stage during Swif t’s acceptance of an award, grabbed the microphone from her and praised Beyonce, who was competing

Lady Gaga accepts the award for best pop video for ‘Bad Romance’. for the same award. President Barack Obama was among those who criticized him. Swift sang that West was “32 and still growing up. ... Lost your balance on the tightrope, it’s never too late to get back.” MTV, owned by

Viacom, was possibly the night’s other big winner. Last year’s ceremony drew 9 million viewers, a 6 percent increase over 2008 and the largest turnout since 2004. The Swift-West drama was expected to boost viewership this year as well. —Reuters


Tuesday, September 14, 2010


at the VMAs Main winners at the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards B est Colla b or a t ion : L a d y G a ga f ea t u r in g B ey on c e K n ow les, ‘Telephone’ Best Female Video: Lady Gaga, ‘Bad Romance’ Best Male Video: Eminem, ‘Not Afraid’ Best Hip-hop Video: Eminem, ‘Not Afraid’ Best New Artist: J ustin Bieber featuring Ludacris, ‘Baby’ Best Pop Video: Lady Gaga, ‘Bad Romance’ Best Rock Video: 30 Seconds to Mars, ‘Kings and Queens’ Best Dance Music Video: Lady Gaga, ‘Bad Romance’ Best Art Direction: Florence and the Machine, ‘Dog Days Are Over’ Best Choreography: Lady Gaga, ‘Bad Romance’ Best Cinematography: J ay Z and Alicia Keys, ‘Empire State of Mind’ Best Direction: Lady Gaga, ‘Bad Romance’ Best Editing: Lady Gaga, ‘Bad Romance’ Best Special Effects: Muse, ‘Uprising’ Best Breakthrough Video: The Black Keys, ‘Tighten Up’ Video of the Year: Lady Gaga, ‘Bad Romance’ — Bang Show biz

Host Chelsea Handler, center, performs at the MTV Video Music Awards.

MTV music awards more about hyping new movies By Leslie Bruce t’s common knowledge that MTV rarely promotes music videos anymore. But on Sunday night, nearly 30 years after the network’s inception, it aired the 27th annual Video Music Awards. What’s the point? A delivery mechanism for promoting soon-to-be released movies appealing to the network’s teen demographic. Two years after MTV said a much-publicized fond farewell to “Total Request Live,” the last of its music video-related programming, the VMAs (this year hosted by late-night comic Chelsea Handler) still attracts a massive audience for its annual tradition of outlandish performances and movie-star guest list. The 2009 show saw a notable boost over the previous year, with about 9 million viewers watching Kanye West paralyze audiences with an impromptu interruption of Taylor Swift’s acceptance speechand Gerard Butler handing out a Moonman while promoting his then-upcoming film “Law Abiding


The “Twilight” franchise got some publicity via award presenter Ashley Greene, as did the upcoming “Unstoppable” thanks to stars Chris Pine and Rosario Dawson introducing Taylor Swift’s awaited performance of her song about Kanye West, who famously interrupted her acceptance speech a year ago. MTV may have killed the video star, but it’s breathing life into movie stars. —Reuters

out.” Sunday’s show proved no different. The original video diva Cher was on hand to present the award for Video of the Year to Lady Gaga. She did so without mentioning Steven Antin’s upcoming musical drama “Burlesque”-starring herself and the absent (and nonnominated) Christina Aguilera-but one can expect to see plenty more of her ahead of the film’s Nov. 24 release. “It’s not necessarily about the VMAs ratings,” a marketing insider for one of the films spotlighted on the telecast told THR. “When you present the video of the year, those photos go everywhere. Magazines and blogs don’t run pictures from press junkets; they run photos from award shows and events. It only makes sense for them to appear.” Also in the house to present awards and cross-promote their upcoming films: Justin Timberlake, Andrew Garfield and Jesse Eisenberg from “The Social Network”; and Emma Stone and Penn Badgley from “Easy A,” which opens on Friday. “It just

(From Left ) Swizz Beatz, Mary J Blige, and Drake perform at the MTV Video Music Awards.

Actor Justin Timberlake arrives at the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards.

upcoming Paramount/MTV Films release. A clip was shown in 2D, however. The following commercial block included ads for “Social Network” and current box office champion “Resident Evil: Afterlife.” As an MTV property, “Jackass 3D” had a key Sunday presence, making it one of the most promoted films of the night. It was represented by two commercials and what was

Host Chelsea Handler is seen on stage. Citizen.” With the fall movie season kicking off after Labor Day, the VMAs come at a perfect time to serve as a promotional platform for Hollywood. “An awards show is a place of high visibility, where an actor can appear onstage and connect the dots between their public persona and the movie,” said Michael Taylor, a professor at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts. “A billboard reaches however many people drive by; an awards show can reach tens of millions of people. It’s just another way to get the message

makes sense,” the insider said. “The MTV audience is the exact audience they’re hoping to reach: high school kids and people on Facebook that will go to see these movies. It’s effortless press.” The insider also said that MTV has developed an unwritten agreement with studios to announce the name of the movie the presenters are there to promote. Remember Sunday’s presenter introduction: “Now please welcome from the film ‘Easy A,’ Emma Stone and Penn Badgley.” (They introduced a Linkin Park performance after

Florence + the Machine performs at the MTV Video Music Awards.

Justin Bieber took home an award.) Easy, indeed. It certainly would seem silly for MTV not to be eager to help promote these films. After all, look at MTV’s advertiser roster for the show. The first Hollywood commercial aired was for Warner Bros.’ presentation “The Town,” with Ben Affleck (which also had the first film ad on the hourlong VMA preshow). A half-hour into the show, film promos picked up as the cast of “Jackass 3D,” led by Johnny Knoxville, handed out the best rock video award after putting on 3D glasses and plugging the

(From left) Tomo Mili evi, Shannon Leto, and Jared Leto, of 30 Seconds to Mars, pose in the press room after accepting the award for Best Rock Video for “Kings and Queens”.

B.o.B. performs at the MTV Video Music Awards.

dubbed a preshow “Jackass 3D””Jersey Shore” mashup. Introduced by the cast, the video also featured a sneak peek and positive reviews from the cast of hit MTV show “Shore.” At the end of it, Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino highlighted the film’s Oct. 15 launch date and said: “Check it out! If you don’t, you got a situation!” Also making ad appearances on the VMAs were Warners’ “Life As We Know It,” in the pre- and main shows; “Easy A,” which aired two commercials; a pair of spots for “Iron Man 2,” by Marvel and MTV

(From Left) Katy Perry and Nicki Minaj are seen on stage.

sibling Paramount, touting a Sept 28 Blu-ray Disc release; and “Burlesque,” with an ad and a preshow “word from our sponsor” in which star Julianne Hough highlighted that the film is about a small-town girl who moves to Los Angeles before she discussed a competition for dancers organized with MTV that will give winners a chance to perform on MTV and earn a cash prize).

‘The path to fame is not easy’ Ajram opens her heart to Kuwait Times By Sahar Moussa ancy Ajram is a multi-platinum Lebanese singer and Goodwill Ambassador for UNICEF. She has captured the hearts of millions of people with her distinctive, remarkable voice in Lebanon. Her vocal prowess catapulted her to fame that has spread across the Gulf region to reach audiences across the world. Ajram’s modesty, innocent eyes, childish smile, easy and simple songs have won her a wide fan base from all age groups. Her children’s songs have proven to be especially popular, turning into hit anthems. Ajram has sold over 30 million records and has been ranked the third best artist in Lebanese history. She has released seven studio albums to date and has appeared in


a number of music videos and commercials. She participated in the most significant Arabic festivals and has won multiple awards, most importantly the 2008 World Music Award as best-selling Middle Eastern Artist, the youngest Arab WMA winner to date. Considered by many as an Arabic music icon of the decade, Nancy was described on the Oprah Winfrey show as one of the most influential personalities of the Middle East region. Nancy Ajram performed at a musical concert on the second day of Eid Al-Fitir that was held in Al-Raya center. The event was exclusively sponsored by the Kuwait Times in collaboration with Nina Koutibashvili Jewelry. Kuwait Times spoke exclusively to Nancy Ajram before her stage performance. She shared the latest news and some personal insights with us. KT: What more does Nancy Ajram dream to do? Ajram: In terms of music career, I dream to maintain the same level of success because I’m satisfied with what I have accomplished already. Regarding my personal life, I wish it will be better and that Mila have brothers and sisters.

KT: How do you feel as you take part in a concert on the second day of Eid Al-Fitr in Kuw ait? Ajram: Let me begin by wishing everyone a happy and prosperous Eid, especially to Kuwaitis. This is not the first time that I have come to Kuwait to share the joy of Eid with Kuwaitis, and every time I receive an invitation to take part in a live concert, at festivals or events I feel very excited and honored. KT: What do you think about the Kuw aiti audiences? How do they respond w ith your songs? How are they different from other fans? Ajram: Kuwaiti audiences love my songs - not only the ‘Khaliji’ ones, they like my Lebanese and Egyptian songs as well. I have a lot of Kuwaiti fans from all age groups to keep track of new songs and news. They send me e-mails which I gladly reply to, and sometimes they call me up. KT: What do holidays mean to you and w ho do you usually spend it w ith? Ajram: Holidays mean spending time with my family. So I always spend time off with them when there are no concerts.

KT: Does charity w ork take time aw ay from you? Ajram: Charity work doesn’t rob my time. I dedicate time toward performing acts of charity and enjoy it. I have been travelling a lot lately with the UNICEF in order to restore children’s rights and campaign against drug abuse.

KUWAIT: (Left) Kuwait Times Editor Sahar Moussa and Lebanese singer Nancy Ajram are seen during an exclusive interview with Kuwait Times. —Photos by Yasser Al-Zayyat positive reviews from people that liked the new songs and the new video clip. KT: What makes your new albums special? Ajram: This year, I have mixed a lot of

tonight? Ajram: I brought two outfits. I’ll be either wearing Roberto Cavalli or Stella McCartney. KT: What about your hair style and makeup? Ajram: The stylist Hussien from ‘Pace e Luce’ will style my hair and makeup artist Rita Birkashi is in charge of doing my makeup. KT: Who is your favorite designer - local or international? Ajram: I don’t wear by a particular designer name. I wear and like a lot of designers.

I would definitely choose family because that is the most important aspect in one’s life. If I were not happy at home, I wouldn’t have had a successful career.

KT: What are your hobbies? Ajram: I like reading and sports, but I prefer swimming and playing with my daughter Mila all day. KT: What is your zodiac sign? Ajram: Taurus.

KT: What do you think about Kuw ait and w hat places do you like to visit? Ajram: Usually, I come here on very short trips. I don’t have time to visit a lot of places, but I like the malls a lot here and some of its restaurants. KT: What do you like the most in Kuw ait? Ajram: The people and its organized system. KT: What is your opinion about singer Hussain AlJ assmi? Ajram: As you know, this is not my first collaboration with Hussien Al-Jasmi and I’m really glad and happy to present this concert with him. I’m sure the concert will be a success! KT: Apart from your popular and w ell-know n songs, are you going to sing something new at the concert? Ajram: Of course, I’m going to sing at least four songs from my new album along with my old popular songs. KT: Can you tell us more about your new album? Ajram: The new album is titled ‘Bil Hadawah’ (Calmly). It was launched on the first day of Eid Al-Fitr. So far, I have received

song or find a voice that blends with mine. KT: What is the secret of your success? Ajram: I love my work and I’m really dedicated to it. The people feel that I’m really close to them. I worked hard to get what I want in my musical journey.

KT: Is the album targeting the teenage audiences as w ell? Ajarm: Not really. Everyone can listen to the album. KT: You w ere missed this year at the ‘Hala Fabrayer’ festivals. Are w e going to see you next year? Ajram: Definitely, God willing. KT: Which designer’s outfit w ill you be dressed in

KT: Given a choice betw een your family and your music career, w hat

w ould you choose and w hy? Ajram: I would definitely choose family because that is the most important aspect in one’s life. If I were not happy at home, I wouldn’t have had a successful career.

but I don’t think I would sing in one yet.

KT: Are you considering having another baby? Ajram: Not at present.

KT: What is your message to the Lebanese community in Kuw ait? Ajram: I would like to tell them not to forget their lovely country, Lebanon.

KT: Who do you attribute your success to? Ajram: My father was the first person to encourage me.

KT: Talking about ‘being a character,’ do you have any future plans to act? Ajram: I don’t think so. I don’t have time. Maybe, if I find more time, I might do it.

path to fame is not easy. It is filled with difficulties and temptations. They should be very careful and smart. If not, they should have someone to help and guide them to the right path.

KT: Do you plan to sing duets w ith any of the ‘Khaliji’ singers? Ajram: There are no immediate plans as of now. I really don’t mind doing one if I like a

KT: How has motherhood changed you? Ajram: Motherhood is a wonderful feeling. I feel more

KT: How is your new music video? Ajram: I really loved it. It has had an impact on me. I liked its story line and was influenced by its character.

KT: If you are offered to perform a song in a foreign language, w ill you accept? Ajram: All my songs have already been translated into several languages.

KT: What is your advice to new artistes? Ajram: Talent is most essential to embark on a musical career. I advise those without it to stay at home. I would like to tell them that the

tunes and styles and focused on different themes. KT: On your new album cover, w e have seen you sporting a ‘grunge’ look. Why did you choose a style that is completely different from your previous look? Who w as the designer? Ajram: I was inspired by ‘Balmain’ this year with his oneshoulder tops and ripped jeans. I wanted to look cool and take on a teenage appearance.

responsible now and the feel the need to protect myself so as to protect my baby.

KT: If you are given a magic w and w hat w ould you change? Ajram: I would like to erase all the ugly practices in this world like cheating, lying and injustice.

KT: Who is your favorite singer? Ajram: I liked to listen to Chris De Burgh when I was young. I also like Julio Iglesias.

14 Sep  

Kuwait Times