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Foodstuffs, cosmetics, seized in municipality raid

360 Mall plays host to GulfRun car show, raffle



NO: 14972

150 FILS


SAFAR 13, 1432 AH

11 fishermen missing in bad Philippine weather


United hold on to unbeaten EPL record


Gunbattle at Tunisian palace as crisis looms Ali’s security chief arrested • Tension runs high amid power shift

Max 16 Min 04 Low Tide 04:37 & 15:17 High Tide 11:27 & 20:55


conspiracy theories

How awful!

Panel to continue probe By B Izzak

By Badrya Darwish


hat happened in Tunisia was the choice of the Tunisian people following so many years of suppression, deprivation, hunger and dictatorship. When the people starved to death, they started the revolution. When unemployment reached a beyond-logic level and hunger spread everywhere, Mohamed Bouazizi ignited the revolution by burning himself to death in protest. After 30 years, the Tunisian people said: Enough is enough and they kicked Zine El Abidine Ben Ali out. Good luck to them and congratulations! The shocking resonance in Kuwait came from a handful of MPs who shamelessly compared the situation in Tunisia to Kuwait. Without naming them, more than five MPs reacted in the most shocking manner. They called on the government to step down and learn from what happened in Tunisia. That, to me, was more shocking than what happened in Tunisia. Shame on you, guys! How dare you compare the situation in Tunisia to Kuwait! I find this absolutely awful! Either these people are blind and deaf and they know nothing or they just want to spread chaos in the country; or they have their own agenda. Either way their words are irresponsible and God help us. Let’s be commonsensical. On average, which Kuwaiti is hungry and has no food on his plate? Actually, we in Kuwait donate food to those less privileged. Just visit the mosques in Ramadan and you will get my drift. Who among us is deprived of education because he cannot afford it? We all know that schools here are free. Which Kuwaiti was deprived of healthcare? Even if the healthcare here sucks, the government sends people abroad for treatment if necessary. Which Kuwaiti pays for his medicine? Mind you, even the most expensive medicines for complicated and serious diseases are free of charge for citizens? Who is the Kuwaiti who pays for MRI or dental care? In every country this costs a fortune. Which country provides free dental care? Even in the most powerful and richest country in the world, the US, people who do not have serious dental insurance have to pay a lump sum for treatment. In actual fact, it is the MPs who have been shouting at the government to stop sending patients abroad for certain treatments calling it ‘luxurious’. Name me one graduate who wants to continue his education in a field that is not available in Kuwait and he is refused a scholarship to study abroad. Name me one Kuwaiti who does not have a car or a house. If he is a fresh graduate and he rents a flat, the government will provide a rent allowance. The allowance starts from KD250 onwards. A doctor for example, could cash for rent as much as KD500. Name me one Kuwaiti family who doesn’t have a maid, at least part time. Even if one of our girls or boys chooses to work in the private sector they are supported with an extra KD 410 from the government. I can go on and say ‘name me’ a hundred times. We, in Kuwait should say, Hamdulillah (Thank God). People outside Kuwait envy us and say we are a pampered nation. When it comes to democracy and freedom, compared to the others in the Middle East, we are one of the best. The biggest testament to this, I think, was the open grilling of ministers and the prime minister which has become a regular affair. Read the media columns, watch satellite TVs and see what we write and what we talk? Isn’t that freedom? There are many countries in the Gulf and in the Middle East who are against the government. Unfortunately, I have to sign off because my editor won’t allow me more space. Should I continue I can further challenge you, Mr X and Mr Y and so on. All I can say to you is: Shame on you! The next grilling in parliament should be for those handful of MPs.

TUNIS: Soldiers stand guard near a tank on a street of Tunis yesterday. Heavy gunfire was heard in the centre of Tunisian capital with security forces exchanging fire with people inside buildings, journalists said. — AFP TUNIS: Tunisian authorities struggled to restore order yesterday, arresting the top presidential security chief and trying to stop gunfights that erupted across the capital. One clash broke out around the deposed president’s palace on the Mediterranean shore, another near the headquarters of the main opposition party. Observers worldwide were looking to see which way the North African nation would turn as its new leadership sought to tamp down the looting, arson and random violence that has taken place since autocratic President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali fled to Saudi Arabia on Friday. The nation was in the midst of an unprecedented power shift for the Arab world. Tensions appeared to be mounting between Tunisians buoyant over Ben Ali’s departure and loyalists in danger of losing major perks. Tunisian police made dozens of arrests, some for drive-by shootings on buildings and people in the capital, Tunis. The security chief Ali Seriati and his deputy were

charged with a plot against state security, aggressive acts and for “provoking disorder, murder and pillaging,” the TAP state news agency reported. To cheers and smiles, some residents of Tunis tore down massive portraits of Ben Ali that were omnipresent during his reign, hanging on lampposts and billboards, gazing down over shops and hotels. Some stretched several stories high. Police stopped vehicles as the city remained under a state of emergency. More than 50 people were arrested on suspicion of using ambulances, rental cars and government vehicles for random shootings, a police official told The Associated Press. A crowd of 200 in Tunis cheered one such arrest yesterday. A few gas stations and stores reopened yesterday morning, and calm returned in some residential areas. But a gunfight broke out in the afternoon between security forces and unidentified attackers in front of the Continued on Page 14

KUWAIT: Rapporteur of the committee formed to probe the death of a Kuwaiti citizen in a police station MP Marzouk Al-Ghanem said yesterday that the panel will continue its work until it submits its finding to the National Assembly within two weeks. Speaking after the committee’s second meeting yesterday, Ghanem said the committee will continue in its assignment regardless of the interior minister resigns or not or if his resignation is accepted or not. He added that the committee’s probe will not be affected by threats from MPs to file to grill Interior Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Khaled Al-Sabah. The committee heard testimonies of MPs during its second meeting yesterday and plans to continue with other meetings. Ghanem said that all sides have been cooperating with the committee so far. The committee was formed on Wednesday by the Assembly following a stormy debate on the death under torture of Kuwaiti citizen Mohammad Ghazzai Al-Mutairi at Ahmadi police station. MPs claimed that they have information the man was systematically tortured by detectives for six days until he died. Continued on Page 14

Saudi plane evacuates 8 Kuwaitis from Tunis TUNIS: A group of Kuwaiti citizens were yesterday evacuated by a Saudi airplane from Tunis to Jeddah, Kuwait’s Embassy said. Charge d’Affaires Talal AlHajeri said eight Kuwaitis have boarded the Saudi Arabian airplane flying to Jeddah, ahead of returning home. He told KUNA the airlift had taken place in line with instructions of Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Sheikh Dr Mohammad Al-Sabah and in coordination with Foreign Undersecretary Khaled AlJarallah and Ambassador Fahad Al-Awadhi. It also took place in coordination with Saudi authorities and Kuwaiti Consulate General in Jeddah, ahead of arranging their trip to Kuwait. — KUNA

SOUTH VOTES FOR SUDAN SECESSION JUBA, Sudan: Southern Sudan’s president yesterday offered a prayer of forgiveness for northern Sudan and the killings that occurred during a two-decade civil war, as the first results from a weeklong independence referendum showed an overwhelming vote for secession. Exhausted poll workers who counted ballots overnight and deep into yesterday morning posted returns at individual stations, and an Associated Press count of a small sample showed a 96 percent vote for secession. Sudan’s south ended its independence vote on Saturday, a vote most believe will split the large country in

two at the divide between Sudan’s Muslim north and Christian and animist south. The two sides ended a more than two decade civil war in 2005 in a peace deal that provided for last week’s vote. If everything stays on track, by July Southern Sudan should be the world’s newest nation. At a church service yesterday, Southern Sudan President Salva Kiir — a stoic man not known for showing emotion — smiled, gently clapped and swayed during a service that took on a jubilant and celebratory air. “For our deceased brothers and sisters, particularly

those who have fallen during the time of the struggle, may God bless them with eternal peace and, like Jesus Christ (PBUH) on the cross, forgive those who have forcibly caused their death,” Kiir said. There were scattered attacks in Southern Sudan before polling began and in the contested region of Abyei, but the vote was peaceful, earning the praise of international observers and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon. US President Barack Obama congratulated Sudan on the peaceful vote, in a statement issued yesterday.

Continued on Page 14

Etisalat extends offer to zain ABU DHABI: UAE telecom operator Etisalat said yesterday it has stretched the deadline for its proposal to buy a majority stake in Kuwait’s Zain worth about $12 billion after not completing due diligence on time. “ The parties do continue to work towards the announcement of a definitive transaction,” said Etisalat in a statement released in Abu Dhabi. Etisalat had said in November that its purchase proposal would terminate if the two parties fail to enter a definitive transaction by January 15. “The parties have not made sufficient progress towards completion of the Proposed Transaction in order to meet that deadline due to unforeseeable delays in Zain providing access to all relevant information which is required for Etisalat to complete its due diligence process,” it said. Stakeholders will be informed about the progress “in due course,” the statement said, without setting a new deadline. Kuwait’s Kharafi Group, which signed the preliminary accord with Etisalat, yesterday confirmed through its representative, National Investment Co, that the deadline has been extended. “We have been informed by our client (Kharafi) that the parties involved in the deal will continue in talks until a definitive transaction was achieved,” NIC said in a statement posted on Kuwait Stock Exchange website. The statement carried no new deadline. — AFP

—Photo by Joseph Shagra

Major blaze At Agility Warehouse By Hanan Al-Saadoun KUWAIT: A major fire broke out in a warehouse of Agility in Sulaibiya area yesterday causing extensive damage to goods and property. The warehouse that covers an area

of 20,000 square meters contained foodstuff and furniture. Fire centers from Ardhiya, Kuwait City, Mishref, Military and National Guard dispatched their forces to battle the blaze that was still raging at the time of going to press.



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Thirteen Zodiac sign calendar most accurate: Astrologer By Ben Garcia KUWAIT: A local astronomer confirmed the accuracy of the new Zodiac Calendar which suggests adding a new sign to the old, but traditional, 12 Zodiac sign calendar. According to Adel Saadoun, a well-known Kuwaiti meteorologist and astronomer, the new calendar has been debated throughout the world of astronomy but has not been accepted because it would cause chaos and confusion for astrologists. “It’s been debated in the world of astronomy but the 12 Zodiac signs stayed because we only have twelve months in a year,” Saadoun explained. According to the scientist, looking at it from a real astronomical point of view the new Zodiac Calendar follows accurate mathematical calculations. “I know it is true,” he continued, “There are thirteen signs in the constellations and I added Ophiuchus 10 years ago on my own calendar. Believe me, it’s the most accurate.” Saadoun, who has published his own calendar annually since 2000, said that people who do not believe in the new zodiac calendar may not be knowledgeable of the proper mathematical calculations or may follow astronomers that are committed to believing that there are only 12 zodiac signs. “At first I didn’t believed that it was possible but when I studied the constellations and stars, with my own instruments, I found that it was indeed true. I based my study on the suggestion that Scorpio only has seven days. I critically examined and studied it carefully and I can attest to it; Scorpio only has seven days. The mathematical calculations are true, they are not lying,” he asserted. Until now, the


Postpone the celebrations for Tunisia By Sami Al-Nisf


Ophiuchus holding the serpent, Serpens, as depicted in Urania’s Mirror, a set of constellation cards published in London c.1825.

debate has raged between whether to accept or throw out the assertion made most recently by Parke Kunkle, a US astronomer who suggested that the traditional zodiac calendar we all know, and dates back thousands of years, may be all wrong. A US newspaper quoted Kunkle as saying that, “Astronomers knew about this information 2,000 years ago. This is not new news. I have no idea why it went viral this time. Almost every astronomy class talks about it.” With the addition of Ophiuchus as the thirteenth Zodiac sign, many zodiac calendar followers have been left completely confused. An Australian living with her diplomat husband in Kuwait said, “I will forever be a Scorpio. I cannot accept this new calendar that has me jump back two zodiac signs to a Virgo! It’s ridiculous! There’s no way I can

allow anyone to change my Zodiac. My three sons’ Zodiac signs were also changed. No way, I don’t think they are reliable astrologers.” Ruben, a Filipino dental technician only laughed and said he was sorry for some Zodiac sign believers. “The moral lesson of this new development is to not believe in something that tries to tell you about your own personality. It is always about you and nothing else,” he said. “Now that its real inaccuracy is revealed people should reject believing in these things.” Ahmad, a Palestinian English teacher said he was stunned to find out that his Zodiac sign was changed from Aries to Pisces but added that he does not care that much. “All I know is that I was born Aries and I love being an Aries. If they changed that, it’s okay, I don’t mind. I am not a

The old zodiac signs

Zodiac fanatic anyway,” he said. A 52-year-old Syrian man that was originally born a Capricorn said he does not want to have his new sign be the Ophiuchus. “After 52 years now I’m an Octopus? What was the name again, Octopus? No way, I cannot be Octopus, I was born Capricorn and I will die Capricorn,” he said, confusing the new sign Ophiuchus with the word octopus. The new Zodiac calendar, which Adel Saadoun also subscribes to, is as follows Capricorn: Jan 20 - Feb 16, Aquarius: Feb 16 March 11, Pisces: March 11 - April 18, Aries: April 18 - May 13, Taurus: May 13 - June 21, Gemini: June 21 July 20, Cancer: July 20 - Aug 10, Leo: Aug 10 - Sept 16, Virgo: Sept 16 - Oct 30, Libra: Oct 30 - Nov 23, Scorpio: Nov 23 - Nov 29, Ophiuchus: Nov 29 - Dec 17, Sagittarius: Dec 17 - Jan 20.

FACTS ABOUT OPHIUCHUS Ophiuchus (pronounced offee-YOO-cuss) represents a man with a snake coiled around his waist. He holds the head of the snake in his left hand and its tail in his right hand. The snake is represented by the constellation Serpens. Character, personality traits: • Many people are envious of the Ophiuchan because he or she progresses well through life. • A seeker of wisdom and knowledge. • A flamboyant sense of style that favors bright colors. • Looks good in a positions of authority. • Would make a great architect. • Ophiuchan’s lucky number is 12. • Likely to have a large family and will be successful at a young age.

hile Arab people were celebrating Barrak Obama’s election to the presidency of the USA, I wrote several articles suggesting that we should look to the past in order to discover what might happen in the future. The ‘Godfather’ of the current US administration and the man who best represents the ideology of the American left is Zbigniew Brzezinski, the United States’ National Security Advisor to President Carter between 1977 and 1981. Brzezinski supported the overthrow of a number of right wing leaders, including the Shah of Iran, who was refused entry to many US-allied nations until finally ending up in Egypt where he later died and was buried. In the UK, tabloid newspaper the Daily Mail has suggested that the recent overthrow of the Tunisian regime is the first significant consequence of the secret information leaked via WikiLeaks, with the revelations from US State Department officials about the corruption in Tunisia leading to the country’s people taking to the streets. Those who have been so quick to voice their delight at events in Tunisia should wait and see what comes next. The only change acceptable and allowed in this region is from bad to worse, and in his many books Brzezinski wrote in depth about the turmoil that followed the dismantling of states in Eurasia and the Middle East, with the worst troubles being in areas where unusual means were used to bring about this change. I predict that the referendum in Sudan, widely known now as ‘the new Yugoslavia,’ will not end at the country’s partition into two states, but expand to other areas of the nation which will demand independence, with the same thing happening in and spreading across the already-ablaze Middle East thereafter. — Al-Anba

I saw police torturing Al-Mutairi, claims witness By Nawara Fattahova KUWAIT: A friend of Mohamed AlMutairi, the Kuwaiti man recently allegedly tortured and killed in police custody, has come forward to state that he witnessed Al-Mutairi’s torture and was subjected to further torture himself by the same officers at the same time. Lawyer Faisal Al-Rashidi, representing Sayyah Al-Rashidi, the man who claims to have been present during AlMutairi’s murder and to have undergone torture alongside him, yesterday released details of his client’s statement, adding that it has been submitted in full to the Public Prosecutor. The lawyer demanded that his client should be fully medically examined for further proof of what took place, and insisted that the full incident should be exhaustively investigated, with the necessary action taken. In the letter submitted to the Public Prosecutor, the lawyer said that after being arrested “my client was transferred to the Andalus Police Station by police officers with different names. He was then transferred to the General Department of Criminal Evidence without knowing what he was accused of. My client was brutally tortured in a murderous fashion. The torture included cutting his right nipple using nail clippers, breaking his nose, and beating him on his feet, head and back. There is

also evidence that he was hung from the ceiling by handcuffs or chains.” Al-Rashidi is currently being held in Central Prison, where he has been sentenced to one year’s imprisonment over an earlier fight in 2008 in which he was involved. He insists that, although the police officers allege that Al-Mutairi was arrested for selling alcohol and attacked the officers with a knife and wooden club, in reality he and Al-Mutairi were tortured solely for attacking police officers and fleeing arrest after they were stopped for no reason. Al-Rashidi said that the saga began when detectives in an unmarked black vehicle pulled their car over, with one plainclothes officer taking their ID cards and driving licenses and insulting them verbally. When the officers gave the men their ID cards back, Al-Rashidi and Al-Mutairi attacked the officers and fled the scene. Al-Rashidi was subsequently surprised to be arrested, along with a friend, Anwar Al-Azmi, at a private apartment in Hawally. He then discovered that the police had already arrested Al-Mutairi, discovering Al-Rashidi’s location from checking Al-Mutairi’s cell phone. Al-Rashidi said that he was then taken to the same police station as AlMutairi where they were both beaten. He also accused the Ahmadi police of fabricating the accusations of alcohol trading they made against Al-Mutairi.

Foodstuffs seized in municipality operation By Hanan Al-Saadoun KUWAIT: A quantity of illegally imported foodstuffs and cosmetics were recovered yesterday by municipality officials from the basement property in Ahmadi where they were being prepared for sale, with four violations being issued against the owners of the property. A total of 1.14 tons of meat, chicken, fish and soya seeds, as well as 3,600 rotten eggs were confiscated from the property, along with quantities of falsely labeled cosmetic creams. State security officers who accompanied the municipality inspectors took the traders responsible into

custody. Fahad Dughaim, the director of Ahmadi Municipality, said after the unannounced operation that his officers would be continuing with similar spontaneous inspections as part of their ongoing crackdown on corruption and fraud in order to safeguard consumers. Dughaim said that among the illicit practices discovered in yesterday’s operation were a number of individuals conducting commercial activities without licenses, numerous workers without the necessary health certification, and a failure to observe basic health and safety standards in food

preparation. Other violations recorded in yesterday’s crackdown included the use of substandard food preparation equipment, the presence of large num-

bers of insects in some kitchens, and the false labeling of cosmetics and other goods to suggest that they were of well-known international brands.

4,807 traffic tickets issued during weekend campaign KUWAIT: Nearly 5,000 traffic citations were issued by affiliated divisions of the Ministry of Interior’s general traffic departments throughout the country over the weekend, reported Al-Qabas. The traffic campaign was carried out as instructed by the Undersecretar y Assistant for Traffic Affairs, Major General Mahmoud AlDousary. A ministry source speaking anonymously indicated that the 4,807 traffic tickets were issued in three days, 387 vehicles were confiscated and 16 people were arrested for racing their cars on public roads. The source added that the report reveals that the Hawally Governorate featured the highest number of citations, followed by Farwaniya, the Capital, Al-Ahmadi, Jahra and Mubarak Al-Kabeer. The source also said that the ministry installed a new traffic monitoring camera designed to catch drivers using emergency lanes illegally. He noted that 5,000 such violations were detected in the first 12 days that the cameras were operational.



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PM offers interior minister ‘full powers’ to remain in his post Reshuffle after national celebrations? KUWAIT: His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser Al-Mohammed Al-Sabah has reportedly informed Interior Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Khalid Al-Sabah that he is willing to grant him ‘full powers’ if he will remain in his post rather than go through with his resignation. Sheikh Jaber Al-Khalid had made it clear that he was only willing to remain in the post if he were given full authority to “clean the ministry.” Speaking to the press on condition of anonymity, a cabinet insider also Condemned threats from a number of MPs to file interpolation motions against the premier if he fails to accept the interior minister’s resignation over the death in police custody of a Kuwaiti man, Mohammed Al-Mutairi.

A number of police officers are being questioned over accusations that they tortured the man to death. Several MPs have already made it clear that they intend to grill the Prime Minister if he refuses to accept Sheikh Jaber Al-Khalid’s resignation. While the Cabinet is expected to discuss the issue during today’s weekly meeting, it’s been widely rumored that the minister is likely to step down after he made a statement during a parliamentary session held after Al-Mutairi’s death in which he contradicted the investigators’ report into the incident which found evidence of foul play. Meanwhile, another Cabinet insider revealed that a Cabinet reshuffle is likely following the conclusion of next month’s major national celebrations. The high-level source indicated that by the middle of March six ministries could see new ministers, naming these as the ministries of infor-

mation, social affairs and labor, justice, Awqaf and Islamic Affairs, and of finance, in addition to the interior ministry. The parliament is scheduled to break up for a one-month recess on February 9, reconvening on March 8, to coincide with the upcoming celebrations of the fiftieth anniversary of the country’s independence and the twentieth of its liberation from the Iraqi invasion and occupation, as well as the fifth anniversary of the Amir’s ascent to the throne. This will see the sessions scheduled for February 22 and 23 postponed until March 8 and 9. Meanwhile, the interior minister’s resignation is not expected to affect the investigation being carried out into Al-Mutairi’s death by the parliamentary committee formed especially for the purpose, said the committee’s chairman MP Dr. Ali Al-Omair. MPs are currently drafting a series of bills

to provide prison inmates and detainees with greater protection from abuse. MP Khalid Al-Sultan reveals that there are plans to present a series of legislative amendments that would help to prevent abuse of inmates during questioning, as well to ensure greater autonomy from the interior ministry for different bodies such as the General Department of Criminal Evidence and the Criminal Investigation Department, which he suggested would help to maintain their impartiality. Fellow MP Abdurrahman Al-Anjari revealed similar plans to present a draft law which would place the GDCE under the control of the judicial authority rather than the interior ministry, while two other parliamentarians, Dr Faisal Al-Mislem and Adnan Abdulsamad, voiced their support for the introduction of such measures. — Agencies

KD5,000 gift per Kuwaiti family for national anniversaries? KUWAIT: Argentinean President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner and an accompanying delegation of senior officials and ministers arrived here yesterday on a two-day visit, during which she will hold talks with His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah AlAhmad Al-Sabah. The Argentinean leader was received at Kuwait International Airport by HH the Amir, Their Highnesses the Crown Prince Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah and the Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser Al-Mohammed Al-Sabah, the Speaker of the National Assembly Jassem Al-Khorafi, and other senior officials.

in my view

The state and the use of violence By Fouad Al-Obaid


s it ever justifiable for the state to use violence against unarmed citizens? While answering such a question, we need to go back to the root of the Westphalian State System by which our modern world is governed. We are in a system whereby it is the duty of the state via a centralized government to ensure that full control of the national territory is maintained. Furthermore, the State needs to secure the monopoly on the use of force both in times of war and peace. If it fails to ensure these two basic functions of the state a country will be prone to great instability and will be hindered by its inability to thrive as a country for any significant period of time. The monopoly of violence and the means of war have been dealt with differently in various societies. From history to our contemporary era, tribes, nations and empires have all been regulated and subjected to these two issues during times of war and peace. What has changed today is the threshold of violence and the tolerance for the use of violence on the part of the state by the citizens of various countries. The stated threshold varies. Nevertheless, all civilized countries have seen a decrease in the tolerance of unjustified state aggression against citizens and fellow countries unless such use is legitimately justified. People are no longer willing to accept the death of people for mundane causes. Conversely, freedom and liberty are still issues that the common man is willing to die for. The lack of liberty seems to be synonymous with death. This has lead to various uprising against authorities the world over. History has witnessed many uprising by citizens against better equipped militias, police forces or armies; their only weapon being their determination. The rise and fall of governments and civilizations is based on the ability of the ruling elite to balance the need to sustain the rule of law and order, the threshold being what citizens are willing to accept before they rebel. Our Arab societies are a part of the world we are living in and are perhaps disproportionately ruled by either pacifist leaders concerned with the wellbeing of their citizens or leaders that ascend to the helm of power via force and ensure their sustainability by terrorizing their citizens into obedience. Transitions toward a more ‘democratic’ means of government are hard. It is worth mentioning that a wise monarch that is in no hurry is the best sort of head of state when surrounded by qualified leaders because sustainability is the only way countries in our part of the world can achieve development.

Chance of further showers on Wednesday KUWAIT: Rain showers are expected to return to Kuwait on Wednesday morning, with temperatures likely to remain chilly for the next few days, according to local meteorologist Essa Ramadan. Ramadan revealed that an average of 2mm of rain was recorded at Kuwait International Airport (KIA) following the rain showers that hit Kuwait over the past couple of days, reaching as much as 3mm in southern parts of the country.

KUWAIT: The government has reportedly received a number of suggestions for gifts to be presented to Kuwaiti citizens to mark the upcoming major national anniversaries, including a present of KD5,000 per Kuwaiti family or individual gifts of between KD500 and KD1,000 per citizen. Next month will see Kuwait celebrating the 50th anniversary of the country’s independence, the 20th of the liberation

from Iraqi occupation and the 5th anniversary of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah’s ascent to the throne. Speaking to Annahar on condition of anonymity, a government insider said that senior officials would determine the amounts to be disbursed after consultation with the relevant ministers, stressing “These suggestions are not yet finalized.”



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Daily contact with family a must to reduce the worry Australian flooding hits a personal chord By Wendy Clayton KUWAIT: As the death toll rises and the devastation increases for Australia’s northwestern state of Queensland, the panic and worry for Australian expats in Kuwait living so far away from family increases. With three children and five grandchildren living in and around Queensland’s state capital of Brisbane I have a personal interest in the reports coming out from a country that has been in the grip of drought for years. Now what was once dry land has been inundated by flood waters caused by two normally unconnected weather phenomena.

Dealer busted at KIA By Hanan Al-Saadoun KUWAIT: The alertness of sharp-eyed customs staff at Kuwait International Airport (KIA) resulted in the arrest of an Afghan drug smuggler, who was attempting to smuggle 48 heroin-filled capsules into the country after swallowing them in the hope that this would ensure they were undetected. The suspicious behavior of the culprit, who had arrived on a flight from the UAE,

drew the attention of customs officers and he was referred to the General Department for Drugs Control (GDDC) for questioning. Once in custody, he admitted that he had swallowed the capsules, containing approximately 500 grams of heroin in total, and medical staff were called to help him evacuate the items. It was also discovered that the drug dealer was in possession of a valid Iqama (work permit) for Kuwait. He has been referred to the relevant authorities.

NBK hosts leading energy expert at international symposium KUWAIT: National Bank of Kuwait (NBK), the leading bank in Kuwait and the highest rated in the Middle East, will host foremost energy expert and Pulitzer Prizewinning author Dr. Daniel Yergin as a speaker for its International Symposium series. Dr Yergin is a highly respected authority on energy, economics and international relations. He is Chairman of IHSCambridge Energy Research Associates and his bestselling book, The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money and Power won the 1992 Pulitzer Prize and has been translated into 17 languages. Dr Yergin plays a leadership role in the global energy industry, serving as a board member, trustee or visiting fellow to such prestigious institutions as the Brookings Institute, New America Foundation, Yale University, US Energy Association, US National Petroleum Council and the Singapore International Advisory Panel. Dr Yergin is also Global Energy Expert for CNBC, the US-based cable news channel. NBK has a long tradition of bringing some of the world’s leading experts to speak in Kuwait. The International Symposium series serves to encourage understanding and debate on the spectrum of economic, energy and political issues shaping the GCC region and the world. Previous speakers include former US Presidents George HW Bush and Bill Clinton, former Prime Minister of

Reports suggest that the combination of the seasonal ‘La Nina’ from the east and the monsoon rains from the northwest have caused the flooding that has devastated much of Queensland. While it seems that the worst has passed, the floodwaters have left death and destruction in their wake. Luckily my family are all safe, however, they have felt the effects of the rising water to a small degree. My eldest daughter is seven months pregnant. She and her partner took no chances as the flood waters raced through Brisbane city. Currently residing in the inner suburb of New Farm, they took no chances; packing a bag, they went to stay with family members living on higher ground who were unaffected by the rising waters. My second-oldest daughter lives in a rural area to the north of Brisbane. Surrounding roads there have been flooded, though not badly enough to be completely cut off. With three children, the youngest only six months old, she and her husband stocked up on essential items for the children and food. However, due to the roads being blocked there is a severe shortage of items on supermarket shelves and no bread in sight. The last of my children is my son Charlie who recently visited us here in Kuwait. After spending three weeks here he flew back into Brisbane a week before the flooding hit Brisbane city. Fortunately, he and his father live in a northern suburb that is on high ground. Being on high ground doesn’t seem to help in some cases, however, as the township of Toowoomba located approximately 50km west of Brisbane, found out when it was inundated by what’s been called an ‘inland tsunami’. One of the most tragic and brave stories of Toowoomba has been that of 13-year-old Jordan Rice, who was trapped in a car with his mother and 10year-old brother. Young Jordan told rescue workers, “Save my brother first.” As his brother was pulled to safety, strong currents swept Jordan away. In a desperate effort to save her older son, Jordan’s mother let go of the car and was also swept away. Jordan’s father John Tyson was quoted as saying,

Suburban street under flood in outer suburb of Brisbane. “He won’t go down with any fanfare or anything like that - I don’t think anyone will even wear a black armband for him - but he’s just the champion of all champions as family hero”. Many more heroic stories are coming out of Australia, of those staying behind to be with loved ones who couldn’t be moved, of volunteers rescuing others in distress, of Good Samaritans distributing food to those without, offering shelter to those made homeless and pledging donations to relief funds. Australia’s Tim Cahill, who is currently in Qatar with the Socceroos competing in the Asian Football Cup, has been sending the message out from the field to call in and make a donation to the telethon. The Australian forward, who also plays

Family front yard partially flooded. Photos by Amanda Gordon for English Premier League side Everton, has donated a prize to the telethon over eBay, offering two people, anywhere in the world the chance to bid for an opportunity to watch a football match at Everton’s home ground from his own private box. Also included in the impressive prize is dinner and the chance to watch a training session, as well as great souvenirs in a signed pair of boots and a jersey. This Australia Day, set to fall on January 26, will be a somewhat somber affair as we head into the clean-up period and the realization of the tragedy that has occurred not only to a state but to a nation. In true Aussie spirit, the people of Australia will rally together and rebuild their lives.

Kuwait flag tells story dating from 17th century

Dr Daniel Yergin

Singapore Lee Kuan Yew, former US Secretaries of State Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice, Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs and Minister of State for Development and Housing Affairs Sheikh Ahmed Al-Fahad Al-Sabah, Mohamed El-Erian, CEO and co-CIO of PIMCO, the world’s largest bond investment house and Nassim Nicholas Taleb, author of the highly acclaimed book, The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable. Dr Yergin will give an address on energy issues, geopolitics and their implications for the Gulf Cooperation Council countries. The premier event will be held Wednesday, 2 February 2011 at the Arab Fund for Economic and Social Development headquarters in Shuwaikh.

KUWAIT: The flag of the State of Kuwait in current form and with its four colors was adopted on Nov 24, 1961; it entails a lot of symbolic significance that date back to the 17th century. The idea of the flag originates with Safyeddin Al-Helli, a 17th century poet, who wrote: “White our deeds, black our positions, green our pastors, red our past,” said Ahmed Ben Bargas , a Kuwaiti historian, in statements yesterday. In 1746, during the era of late Amir Sheikh Abdullah I Ben Sabah, the Kuwaiti ships, mainly based in the western shores of the Arabian Gulf, used to hoist what was called ‘Al-Salimi Flag’ - red one with a white serrated ribbon. The flag was replaced by the Ottoman flag in 1871 which remained in place until 1914, Ben Bargas revealed. The harassments by the Ottoman navy that targeted the Kuwaiti vessels during the rule of late Amir Sheikh Abdullah II Ben Sabah in quest for high customs fees forced changing the flag. After sealing a protection treaty with

ters. On Sept 14, 1914, Sheikh Mubarak adopted the first official national flag of Kuwait, it was in a red triangle form with the name of the country in the middle; it remained in place until Nov 23, 1961, Ben Bargas recalled. In March, 1940, Kuwait Amir Sheikh Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah adopted four flags concurrently; two of them had serrated edges, the third carried the phrase “No god but Allah; Mohammad is the Messenger of Allah” and the fourth had the name of Kuwait. On June 19, 1961, late Amir Sheikh Abdullah Al-Salem Al-Sabah revoked the pro tection treaty signed with Britain in 1899 and announced Kuwait a fully sovereign state. In September, 1961, he issued an Amiri decree on the new flag to assert the country’s independence; the flag is in four colors - red, green, white and black. The decree took force on Nov 24, 1961. On May 14, 1963, Kuwait joined the United Nations and the country’s then foreign minister Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah raised the flag on the UN office in Kuwait. —KUNA

‘Fishermen responsible for death of coastguard’

Kuwait Digest

Turning a blind eye

KUWAIT: Security officials in Basra, Iraq have said that they hold a number of Iraqi fishermen involved in the incident that resulted in the death of a Kuwaiti coastguard official fully responsible for both the official’s demise, and the sinking of their boat which happened during the confrontation. Speaking at a press conference on Saturday, Lieutenant General Mohammad Huwaidi, the Operations Commander for the southern Iraqi province of Basra, said that the incident which took place last week happened after nine Iraqi fishermen - four of whom are currently detained by Kuwaiti authorities - had knowingly strayed outwith Iraqi territorial

By Dina Al-Essa


recently received the following story through e-mail from a dear friend. I liked it and would like to reproduce it without changing a single letter: “A man left his wife and kids to a battlefield in defense of his country. After the war, while on his way back home, the man learnt that his wife had contracted smallpox, completely disfiguring her face as a result. The man was heartbroken. The following day, fellow soldiers saw him blindfolded; he apparently lost his sight during combat. They walked him home and he carried on with his life. He led a normal family life for fifteen years till his wife passed away. It was only then that everybody astonishingly realized that he could still see. He lived blindfolded for fifteen years to avoid injuring his wife’s feelings. He deliberately blindfolded himself to preserve the last beautiful image of his wife and keep recollecting the image when ever needed. It was done to maintain a good marriage for as long as possible when the beautiful wife lost her physical charm.” This story could be an anecdote or even a piece if fantasy. We should ask ourselves whether we deliberately turn a blind eye toward others’ faults and mistakes to avoid injuring their feelings. —Al-Watan

Britain in 1899, the Kuwaitis started consultations to choose a replacement to the Ottoman fag, he pointed out. The endeavor came to the fore as the Ottoman Empire started fading away, the World War I reputed, and the Kuwaiti vessels hoisting the Ottoman flag were targeted by the British navy. After ‘Al-Rasif’ (the pier) battle in 1901, the British government blocked the bid by the Sheikh Mubarak Al-Sabah to adopt a new fag on the grounds that the move could herald an early declaration of independence and contradicted the provisions of the protection treaty. In 1903, the British Viceroy of India and Foreign Secretary Lord Curzon of Kedleston visited Kuwait and met Sheikh Mubarak. The late two men agreed on a new flag for Kuwait to replace the Ottoman one; it was red and carried the phrase “We rely on God.” In July, 1905, Kuwait got a new flag carrying a crescent and a star which was replaced in September, 1906 by another one carrying the name of Kuwait in white bold Arabic let-

MOE staff awaits special allowances

KUWAIT: A ceremony at Hawally Fire Station yesterday saw several firefighters presented with awards in recognition of their heroic rescue efforts during several recent incidents in which they saved the lives of numerous Kuwaitis and expatriates. The head of Hawally governorate’s Kuwait Fire Services Directorate department, Col Fahad Al-Saqar and the director of the directorate’s Public Relations and Information department, Lt Khalil Al-Amir attended the ceremony.

KUWAIT: Employees in the education sector are looking forward to hearing the Ministry of Education’s announcement regarding the dates distinguished teachers, administrators and employees will be awarded their allowances for the 2009 2010 school year, reported Al-Qabas. Official sources indicated that the ministry received lists of personnel worthy of the allowances from all the public schools. The source explained that the lists were referred to their respective educational zones and need to be forwarded to the ministry’s public education department for further review. The sources added that the lists need to be submitted to the ministry’s financial department where orders will be made for the allowances to be given to deserving staff members. According to the sources, the financial department still has yet to receive the list of names despite the fact that a KD 5 million budget was allocated by the government for these allowances. It’s feared that the budget will be held until the next fiscal year if the allowances are not paid before the end of March, the end of the current fiscal year. Meanwhile, it is believed that errors may have been detected while reviewing the names of teachers recommended for bonuses. Some speculate that the reason for the delay may be because unworthy staff members may have been recommended for the bonuses.

waters in the Arabian Gulf. Lance Corporal Abdurrahman Al-Enezi was shot dead last week, shortly after confronting one of the Iraqi fishermen’s vessels in Kuwaiti waters. Kuwaiti forces responded to Al-Enezi’s murder by sinking one of the fishermen’s boats as they attempted to escape and apprehending four of the men; although another two fishermen managed to make their way back to Iraqi territorial waters, Iraqi coastguards quickly apprehended them. Since the incident, Iraqi security services have banned fishing for a week in an attempt “to introduce a system that protects fishermen’s safety.”



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CEO and founder of GulfRun Ahmed Al-Mudhaf presents a check to Hayat4Cancer Treasurer Mona Al-Ghanim (left). Cars competing in GulfRun in Bahrain.— Photos by Yasser Al-Zayyat

360 Mall plays host to GulfRun car show, raffle By Wendy Clayton KUWAIT: The 360 Mall on Saturday evening hosted GulfRun’s annual car show prior to the car-racing team leaving for GulfRun6 at the Bahrain International Circuit at the end of the month. The two-day event ended with a raffle draw, with all the proceeds going to Hayat4Cancer. Ahmed Al-Mudhaf, the CEO and founder of GulfRun, said, “GulfRun is not just a unique car race but also dedicated to raising social awareness and social responsibility”. GulfRun began five years ago to promote safe and responsible driving in a safe environment, with the number of cars participating growing in that time from 12 to 50. The team will head to Bahrain for the two day event on January 27 and 28. Drivers will have the opportunity to test their driving skills and push their cars to the limit in a safe and secure environment. In conjunction with the car show, GulfRun raffled off a Polaris Razor RZ800 from Seas & Deserts, two Can-Am DS450 ATV’s from Al-Ghanim Marine and a Mercedez Benz All-Terrain Mountain Bicycle from Abdul Rahman

Al-Bisher & Zaid Al-Kazemi. All the money raised raised from the raffle went to Hyatt4cancer. Abdullah Al-Othman was the lucky winner of the first prize of a Polaris Razor RZ800, while the second prize of a Can Am 450 went to Abdulmohsen Al-Nafisi and the third prize of another Can Am 450 went to Noura AlGhanim. The Mercedes Benz All-Terrain Mountain Bike went to Hamad Al Rifae. Al-Mudhaf presented the Treasurer of the Hayat4Cancer foundation, Mona Al-Ghanim, a check for 13,5000 Kuwaiti Dinar. The Hayat4Cancer foundation was established in 2003 to offer support and medicine for cancer patients, although the history of helping cancer patients through charitable events in Kuwait began many years before with Um Qaiss, who created handmade pieces and sold them at charity bazaars. All the profits from Um Qaiss were donated to the Hussain Makki Jumma Cancer Centre to help expatriate cancer patients. The association focuses on providing free chemotherapy to expatriate residents of Kuwait, assisting them with both medical and moral support.

Joint meeting discussed amendments on some draft resolutions: Al-Khaled SHARM EL-SHEIKH: Director of economic department at the Kuwaiti Ministr y of Foreign Affairs Ambassador Sheikh Ali Al-Khaled AlSabah said yesterday that the joint meeting of permanent representatives and senior officials aimed to prepare for the meeting of the Economic and Social Council to prepare for the 2nd Arab economic summit discussed the agenda of the summit, with some amendments introduced to the draft resolutions. In a statement here on sidelines of his participation in this meeting, AlKhaled added that these amended

draft resolutions would be lifted to Ministers of Finance and Foreign Affairs who, in turn, would refer them to the summit. He said that this meeting was chaired by the Arab Republic of Egypt after taking over the presidency from the State of Kuwait, former Chairman of the first summit. He pointed out that the summit would discuss a number of pressing development issues, mainly the introduction of the initiative of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah AlAhmad Al-Sabah related to the support of small and medium enterprises


in brief

Khairan new town KUWAIT: The planned Khairan Town area will take eight more years to complete at a cost of KD 6 billion, according to a Public Authority for Housing Welfare (PAHW) official. The official told Al-Watan that the area will feature residential and commercial buildings, a free zone, industrial units, government facilities, and educational, health and recreational services. The new community, the largest new town yet to be build in Kuwait, will provide housing for around 35,000 people currently on the PAHW’s waiting list who applied prior to 2006, the official revealed, with at least 70 percent of the homes there being at least 600 square meters in size.

Civil society forum KUWAIT: The Union of Kuwaiti Women Association will be taking part in the Arab League’s second forum on civil society held in Sharm El-Sheikh, a statement by the union said yesterday. It added that the forum will be held by the league’s Secretariat General on Jan 18. It will touch on civil society’s role in raising awareness on the first Arab Economic, Development and Social Summit’s goals, held in Kuwait last year. The league aims at highlighting the role of civil society in boosting Arab joint action, through holding the forum on the sidelines of the second Arab summit which will kick off on Jan 19. The forum will also tackle supporting the civil society on regional and international levels. A number of social institutions, NGOs along with development experts will be taking part in the event.

Interior appeal KUWAIT: Interior Ministry announced yesterday that “out of the ministry’s keenness on the security and safety of citizens and to preserve the security and stability of the country, it once again calls upon everyone to avoid congregating in public squares or holding demonstrations or marches or processions in violation of applicable laws in force”. In a statement, the Ministry appealed to citizens to cooperate with it in the performance of its functions to maintain security, protect the lives, honor and money, saying it is fully confident that citizens are keen on the security and integrity of this beloved country. The ministry confirmed it would not flinch from doing its duty in maintaining security and public order in the country.

into effect. He stated that during the summit, a boost to maritime transport between Arab countries would be given, in addition to discussion of initiatives of the World Bank aimed to strengthen the capacity of small and medium industries in the Arab region. He noted that a number of informal meetings would be held on the sidelines of the summit including a Business Forum, a Civil Society Forum and a Youth Forum tomorrow which aim to emphasize the importance of the role played by these sectors in the process of improving the lives of Arab citizens and their future. — KUNA

CTC rejects 16 MEW purchase orders KUWAIT: The Central Tenders Committee (CTC) has reportedly refused to approve 13 purchase orders proposed by the Ministry of Electricity and Water (MEW) until the ministry offers them for public tender, as well as rejecting a further three orders priced at KD 244,000 over their high cost. According to C TC insiders, the committee did approve another 34 purchase orders put forward by the MEW for spare parts and equipment, as well as a number of amended tenders, at a total cost of slightly less than KD 39 million in total, reported Al-Qabas. Meanwhile, the MEW announced that it is carrying out out further maintenance work on a number of secondary electricity transformers across the country, starting yesterday and concluding on Saturday January 22. The ministry warned that this would see scheduled power cuts of up to four hours between 7:30 AM and 11:30 AM in some areas, including Salmiya, Salwa, Sharq, Shuwaikh and Sulaibiya.

Kuwait Digest

Cohesive Cabinet against corruption By Saud Al-Samakah The ministry of Interior is one of the ministries that is expected to offer services that coincide the most with the public’s interest. Meanwhile, the ministry is well known for having been infiltrated by corrupt MPs for a long time. Some of these MPs use ministry personnel to pass illegal transactions for the sake of increasing their popularity among voters. Upon taking over the interior ministry, Sheikh Jaber Al-Khalid Al-Sabah took a firm stance against this trend and has been successful in completely changing the situation of law enforcement. He has shut the door in the face of many MPs, which has resulted in making Sheikh Jaber Al-Khalid their number one enemy. They believe he must be moved out of the picture because he is a serious threat to their political ambitions. For that reason, targeting the minister became the subject of their continuous complaints because they realized that their contributions to the parliament are not enough to maintain their political positions. The incident where a citizen died while in police custody is being used as a weapon by corrupt officials to take revenge against the minister who bravely acknowledged his political responsibility for the incident by resigning from his position. While expressing a deep condemnation for the use

of force by police officers who torture a suspect in custody and demanding that any police officers convicted of torturing the citizen to death be given a firm punishment, I also believe that this incident - during which the interior minister showed a great deal of transparency and adherence to his political responsibility - should not be a reason for the country to lose such a person who has proved his skills both militarily and administratively. The minister has always remained committed to cleansing the ministry of corruption. I hope that His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser Al-Mohammad Al-Sabah realizes the schemes made by corrupt politicians against the interior minister. I urge His Highness the Prime Minister to stick with the interior minister through this sensitive case that the whole country is suffering through. This moment requires the kind of official that will stand bravely in front of the schemes of corrupt parliamentarians. Other ministries should be urged to follow in the footsteps of the interior minister regarding his commitment to fighting against corruption. If they did so MPs would find a cohesive Cabinet committed to the firm enforcement of the law. —Al-Qabas



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Gulf national dies of drug overdose in Sulaibiya Kuwaiti held for drug possession KUWAIT: A Gulf Cooperative Council (GCC) national was found dead in Sulaibiya as a result of a drug overdose, reported Al-Watan. Police found the victim face down and unconscious on the ground and pronounced the man dead upon their arrival. An autopsy was ordered for the body to determine the exact cause and time of the man’s death and an investigation was launched.

Prosecution receives autopsy report on Al-Mutairi’s death KUWAIT: The Ministry of Interior (MoI) yesterday referred the autopsy reports on the death of Kuwaiti man Mohammed Al-Mutairi in police custody to the Public Prosecution Service for review. The reports are very likely to reveal a substantial amount of facts regarding the controversial incident at an Ahmadi police station. It has been reported that the documents would establish whether or not the deceased died due to being tortured. The prosecutors will also discover whether or not the 26-yearold victim died due to being brutally beaten or as a result of heart disease, with the latter cause of death being suggested by the officers accused of killing him.

The documents handed to the prosecution service reportedly include a report giving details on the coroner’s examination of the victim’s rectum following claims that a stick was inserted in a sensitive part of his body. The prosecution service has continued its questioning of the accused Criminal Investigation Department officers and is attempting to assemble all the key elements of the case in order to obtain a full picture of the incident, reported AlWatan. In another development, a police official dismissed reports that the Ahmadi police station had been attacked by the victim’s brother. The MoI has also issued a new

statement confirming that the three-man forensic commission, formed by the ministry to look into the circumstances surrounding AlMutairi’s death, had begun its activities. The MoI statement noted that after reviewing all the evidence, gathering information and interviewing all those concerned, the ministry had referred the accused to the prosecution, handing over all the related documentation. The ministry stressed that the commission is closely investigating the incident and will ensure that anyone proven to be involved in AlMutairi’s death is referred to the concerned authorities for legal action.

Suicide case A Nepali woman committed suicide inside her sponsor’s home in Abdullah Al-Mubarak by hanging herself to death, reported Al-Watan. Police and paramedics responded to the emergency after being informed of the incident. The victim was pronounced dead inside the ambulance on her way to the hospital. Meanwhile, a middle-aged man killed himself in a building in Hawally, reported Al-Watan. Police were informed of the incident when the 49-year-old Egyptian was found hung from a wire attached to the ceiling inside the building’s basement. An investigation was launched to determine the motive behind the suicide. Thieves held Jahra police arrested seven Asians for providing illegal international phone call services, reported Al-Watan. The men used a garage in the industrial zone to carry out their illegal activities. The men were arrested after authorities received information on the men’s illegal activities. They were referred to the proper authorities. Drug possession A citizen was arrested on King

Fahad Road for being in possession of drugs, reported Al-Watan. The man was arrested after officials pulled him over for driving recklessly and discovered that he was intoxicated. An investigation of his vehicle revealed that he was in possession of heroin and seven illegal drug pills. He was referred to the General Department of Drug Control. Man found dead An Iraqi senior citizen was found dead inside his car in Salmiya near a private hospital, reported Al-Qabas. Authorities responded to the scene of the incident and identified the man as an Iraqi in his 80s who likely died as a result of natural causes. An autopsy was ordered for the body. Teacher deported An Egyptian teacher who works at a school for students with special needs was arrested by authorities for sexually harassing two teenage boys with mental disabilities, reported Al-Qabas. Police were approached by the father of a 13year-old child with mental disabilities who reported that his son refused to go to school. He added that his son told him that his teacher forces him to engage in inappropriate sexual activities. When questioned, the teacher admitted to harassing the student as well as another school student. The families of the harassed students requested that he be deported from the countr y. He was referred to the proper authorities. Shop robbed A baqala in industrial Shuwaikh was robbed at knifepoint by three men, reported Al-Qabas. The report was filed with local authorities by

the store’s Iranian owner who explained that three men disguised as police officers robbed the store of KD 400. Police gathered a description of the culprits and launched an investigation in search of them. H1N1 symptoms At least 100 Central Jail inmates were quarantined and tested for showing potential H1N1 symptoms, reported Al-Rai. A decision was made to isolate four wards when preliminar y medical checkups revealed that inmates were suffering from symptoms similar to those of the H1N1 virus. Salmi shooting Authorities placed two cousins under arrest for being in possession of unlicensed weapons and shooting in public, reported Al-Rai. Police responded to a campsite in Salmi where the two got into an argument and started firing their weapons at each other. They were arrested on Jahra Road after they initially tried to escape from authorities. They were referred to the proper authorities. Officials assaulted Police arrested four young men for consuming alcohol and assaulting police officers on duty, reported Al-Anba. The young men were arrested in Nuzha after a police patrol pulled the vehicle over for running a red light and discovered that each of the youths were under the influence of alcohol. While being arrested the youths tried to assault the two police officers and were arrested when additional police units responded to the situation. Four bottles of imported liquor were found in the car.


Lessons from Tunisia By Jassem Boodai


he main lesson that can be learned from recent developments in Tunisia is that democracy with all of its flaws can protect a leadership which respects it, while it will eventually lead to the demise of those who suppress it. Despite its deteriorating social situation, Tunisia still had an economy that wasn’t the worst among Arab countries; nor was the political stability there more fragile than that in other countries in the region. Also, extremism and terrorism has been limited in Tunisia compared with other Arab countries, as Tunisia’s antiterrorism policies are considered among the most effective in the Arab World. What was going on in Tunisia, however, was an ongoing war against democracy, public freedoms, human rights and the right of the public to participate in power. The domestic situation in Tunisia can’t even be compared to that of Lebanon, which has long suffered from sectarian disintegration and conflicts, political assassinations and Israeli attacks. Despite all these things, however, democracy and public freedoms are strongly protected in Lebanon which has in turn protected the leadership against coups, despite the delays in construction and development. In Kuwait, democracy protected the ruling system during the time that the entire nation was threatened by an invasion that aimed to wipe it off the map. In the meantime, the regime in a neighboring country was toppled in a matter of days, since democracy there was being crushed along with the people’s rights and dignity. Despite the political tensions in Kuwait, the leadership will always be protected by democracy which helps them to avoid going offcourse since it’s the best way of exposing errors and violations in order for them to be corrected, and to open the door to the public and enable them to join hands with their leadership in building a better future. In his farewell speech to the Tunisian nation, now former president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali announced that his regime has taken several measures to calm public fears, including lifting the monitoring of websites and prosecution of bloggers. In the meantime, Tunisians were already tweeting updates and pictures from their cell phones about the suppression against their protests for the entire world to see. What Ben Ali and his regime failed to understand is that technology doesn’t follow the same rules imposed by security forces, and that it can find a million means to make its way to anywhere. As Tunisians toppled Ben Ali’s regime, they sent a clear message that democracy is no longer a gift, but a basic right. — Al-Rai

KUWAIT: Kuwait Municipality personnel recently conducted a cleaning operation in an area of Kuwait City where several garage-workshops are located. The operation was launched after the municipality received numerous complaints of abandoned cars and waste materials strewn around the area creating an eyesore for locals and passersby. — Photos by Yasser Al-Zayyat

Students participate in ‘GiveKuwait’ campaign with Wataniya Telecom KUWAIT: Wataniya Telecom continues its celebrations Kuwait’s 50th year anniversary where it has launched the biggest social media campaign of its kind called “GiveKuwait” in mid-December giving people a chance to express their creativity and patriotism via pictures, audios and video recordings that are dedicated to Kuwait. All Wataniya customers can participate in the “GiveKuwait” campaign by uploading their pictures audios and videos on Customers can increase their chances to win by encouraging their friends to vote for their entries by sharing them through social networks such as Facebook and Twitter. The campaign will come to an end on Feb 20, marking Wataniya’s initiative as a supportive and encouraging one to all its customers’ unique and valued talents. Wataniya is always keen to share special moments with all segments of the society and that is why it has set up a studio at the University of Kuwait in cooperation the College of Business Administration giving an opportunity for all students

to record their own creative entries and participate in the GiveKuwait campaign. On the occasion, Abdolaziz Al Balool PR Manager of Wataniya expressed: “Preparations for the 50th year anniversary celebrations have been filled with enthusiasm and excitement. Wataniya’s GiveKuwait campaign has witnessed great feedback and high level of interaction from our customers and everyone in Kuwait who is keen to express their love and loyalty to our beloved country Kuwait.” Dean of College of Business Administration Dr Rashid Al Ajmi said: “We are proud to celebrate Kuwait’s 50th anniversary this year, and we would like to dedicate a very special achievement to our beloved countr y. The College of Business Administration recently obtained, and for the first time in Kuwait, the international academic accreditation from The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) and the renewal of this provision for six years to come for all programs to all undergraduate level and postgraduate.

He added announcing the fact that CBA Kuwait ranked 240 of the top 300 colleges in the world in business administration and said: “these achievements are dedicated to Kuwait and the Kuwaiti people and we congratulate everybody. We seek security and stability, progress and prosperity under the wise leadership of His Highness the Amir and HH the

Prime Minister”. Until then, Wataniya is going to give away iPads every week to the winner from each category (picture, audio and video) and there will be Grand prizes such as: Audio winners will get to record a song and a video clip composed by Abdulla Al Quood in addition to a travel package for two to attend an international musical concert.

The grand photography prize is a Digital DSLR and a travel package for two to a world class destination. Last but not the least; the video winner will get a free trip for two to Hollywood and the chance to participate in a cinema production. Join us now in expressing your love to Kuwait by visiting our website:

International MONDAY, JANUARY 17, 2011

Epidemic feared in Brazil Rains death toll still rising

NOVA FRIBURGO: A damaged house surrounded by flooding in seen in an area affected by a landslide in Nova Friburgo, Brazil yesterday.—AP

NOVA FRIBURGO: Rescue workers get on a helicopter as they leave after searching for survivors and victims in an area yesterday—AP

NOVA FRIBURGO: The Brazilian military took advantage of a break in the weather yesterday to send helicopters to remote areas near Rio hit by landslides and flooding that killed at least 610 people. Their priority was to evacuate people in hamlets cut off since Wednesday by rivers of water and mud that carved massive destruction in the Serrana region just north of Rio, a civil defense commander, Colonel Luiz Castro, told reporters. Bodies that were buried under rubble and sludge would have to wait until teams with heavy equipment could get to the communities, something that could take days because roads were destroyed. Although the weather was cloudy and unstable yesterday, it was better than Saturday, when persistent rain reduced visibility and swamped Nova Friburgo, one of the mountain towns hardest hit. Soldiers, civil defense workers, police and rangers were seen gathering in Nova Friburgo, reinforcing teams that so far have pulled 274 bodies from decimated parts of the town. General Oswaldo de Jesus Ferreira, coordinating the military response, told O Globo newspaper that the 500 servicemen sent to the Serrana would not only recover

Lebanon’s Maronite head wants to resign BEIRUT: The head of Lebanon’s Maronite church, Cardinal Nasrallah Boutros Sfeir, tendered his resignation several months ago but the Vatican has yet to accept, the Lebanese news agenc y NNA repor ted yesterday. “After meeting Nasrallah Boutros Sfeir, Labour M inister Boutros Harb announced that the patriarch had submitted his resignation to the Holy See, ask ing to be relieved of his duties,” it said. — AFP

bodies but also clear roads and distribute food. The military had 38 vehicles, including two ambulances, and 11 helicopters based out of Teresopolis, another hard-hit town where 263 people died. Although the toll early yesterday stood at 610 dead, workers transporting bodies said they feared the overall count will rise as rescuers reached outlying hamlets. “I think in the end we’ll see more than 1,000 bodies,” said a funeral worker in Teresopolis, Mauricio Berlim. “In one village near here, Campo Grande, there were 2,500 homes and not one is left standing.” President Dilma Rousseff has declared the three days of mourning, while Rio de Janeiro authorities said their state will observe a full week of mourning starting Monday. Authorities made an urgent appeal for donations of blood, bottled water, food and medicine, and for medically trained people to help out. At least four refrigerated trucks were parked out the front of a makeshift morgue inside a Teresopolis church to take bodies as decomposition and disease became concerns. The disaster, which media called the worst tragedy of its kind in Brazil’s history, struck sleeping families Wednesday

before dawn. Seasonally heavy rains were suddenly intensified by a cold front, dumping a month’s worth of precipitation in just eight hours, causing torrents of water and mud that wiped out everything in their path. Water, food and electricity were still lacking in some areas of the Serrana four days after the disaster, with authorities struggling to deliver supplies over fully or partially collapsed roads. Telephone communications were unreliable though progressively being restored. A municipal official in Teresopolis, Solange Sirico, told Brazilian television there was a risk of epidemics breaking out as bodies decomposing in the tropical heat mingled with water runoff. “Also, in all the mountain region, there is a danger of snakes, scorpions and spiders,” she added. Forecasters warned that the wet weather was likely to last for a few more days. “We are predicting a light but steady rain, which is not good because it could lay the conditions for more landslides,” said the head of the national weather institute, Luiz Cavalcanti. Originally a 19th-century getaway for Brazilian aristocracy, the Serrana region has come to rely on tourism for its livelihood.—AFP

Daughter succeeds dad at French far-right party Page 8



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i n t e r n at i o n a l Iran searching for nuclear bomb materials: Cables OSLO: Iran has been developing contacts in more than 30 countries to acquire technology, equipment and raw materials needed to build a nuclear bomb, a Norwegian newspaper said yesterday, citing US diplomatic cables. Aftenposten said that according to the cables, obtained by WikiLeaks, more than 350 Iranian companies and organizations were involved in the pursuit of nuclear and missile technology between 2006 and 2010. Iran says its nuclear program has purely peaceful aims but the West suspects is designed to develop a weapons capability. “For years, Iran has been working systematically to acquire the parts, equipment and technology needed for developing such weapons, in violation of UN sanctions against the country’s nuclear and missile programme,” Aftenposten said. Aftenposten has said that it has all 250,000 US cables leaked to WikiLeaks, most of which have not yet been published, and is gradually releasing them. It cited sources as saying Iran is racing to

develop nuclear weapons before its already crippled economy succumbs to the sanctions. “A race exists between the bomb and financial collapse,” the daily cited a cable quoting a French nuclear expert. Iran was practically out of uranium, which it needs to enrich for use in weapons, forcing Tehran to look abroad for more radioactive material, cables said. “Iran’s limited domestic supply of uranium makes it practically impossible to supply the nation’s current and future nuclear power plant capacity,” said a US State Department note from February 2009. “Consequently, the Iranians are likely to be forced into dealing with foreign suppliers to get uranium for their domestic nuclear industry,” it added. US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said earlier this month that the sanctions had set back Iran’s nuclear program, giving major powers more time to persuade Tehran to change tack. Tehran is due to hold talks with the major powers on the nuclear program in Istanbul on Jan 2122.— Reuters TOURS: Marine Le Pen reacts after her election as leader of the French far right party National Front during their national congress in Tours, western France yesterday.—AP

Daughter succeeds dad at French far-right party

Israeli PM: Tunisia unrest reflects regional instability JERUSALEM: Israel’s prime minister said yesterday that the unrest in Tunisia over the weekend shows why Israel must be cautious as it pursues peace with the Palestinians. Benjamin Netanyahu told his Cabinet that the violence following the ouster of Tunisia’s longtime president illustrated the widespread instability plaguing the Middle East. He also said it underscored the need for strong security arrangements in any future peace deal with the Palestinians. “We need to lay the foundations of security in any agreement that we make,” he said. “We cannot simply say ‘We are signing a peace agreement,’ close our eyes and say ‘ We did it’ because we do not know with any clarity that the peace will indeed be honored,” he said. Netanyahu, who leads the nationalist Likud Party, has long made security a top demand for any future peace deal with the Palestinians. Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad has spent several years reforming his security forces, which now include hundreds of officers who have received US training. Both US and Israeli officials have praised the progress of the Palestinian forces in cracking down on militants and maintaining law and order in the West Bank. But Israeli officials say the forces are limited in their capabilities. They also note that the Gaza Strip, the other ter-

ritory claimed for a future Palestinian state, is ruled by the Hamas militant group. The Palestinians have refused to negotiate with Israel until Netanyahu renews a freeze on Jewish settlement construction in captured areas claimed by the Palestinians. Israel’s Tunisian-born deputy prime minister, Silvan Shalom, voiced concern that the tiny Jewish community that remains in his homeland could be in danger. Tunisia has experienced lootings, arsons and random violence since autocratic President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali was driven from power Friday. Speaking to The Associated Press, Shalom said it was important that Tunisia’s next ruler remain allied with the West. “What needs to be done these days is to help Tunisia to get over this crisis in order to stick to the moderation and to have good relations with the Western countries,” he said. “For sure there are many Islamic groups that would like to take an advantage ... What needs to be done these days, is to stop them. Israel Radio played an interview with a man who said he was a leader of Tunisia’s 1,300-strong Jewish community. The man, who was not identified because of safety concerns, said Jews were terrified. “We saw the situation deteriorate in seconds,” he said. “The gangs are taking advantage of the fact that there is no government. Nobody is in charge here.”— AP

BAGHDAD: Iraqi security forces inspect a damaged car at the site of a bombing that wounded bodyguards of an official in Baghdad, Iraq yesterday.—AP

Bomb kills 1 at Iraqi militia headquarters BAGHDAD: A bomb planted near offices of the military wing of one of Iraq’s dominant Shiite political parties exploded yesterday, killing one worker and wounding three people, police and hospital officials said. The bomb was hidden outside a fence encircling the Badr Organization offices in a Shiite area in eastern Baghdad, police said. The organization was once one of Iraq’s most feared militias and is linked to the Supreme Islamic Iraqi Council, a Shiite party with close ties to Iran. The blast killed one office worker and injured another, police said. Two passers-by were also wounded. A worker at al-Kindi hospital confirmed the casualties. A motive for the bombing was not known, but the Badr Organization has frequently scuffled with its rival Shiite militia, the Mahdi Army, which is headed by

anti-American cleric Muqtada al-Sadr. The cleric recently returned to Iraq from nearly four years of self-exile in Iran to bolster his political influence. The afternoon bomb followed two earlier explosions in Baghdad that police and health officials said wounded 10 people during the morning rush hour. Seven of the wounded were on a bus in north Baghdad as it carried municipal officials to work. Another blast wounded three bodyguards of the science and technology minister in Jadriyah district. The minister was not in the convoy. Baghdad still suffers from persistent small-scale attacks despite a sharp drop in violence since the height of the war three years ago. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to release the information.— AP

Le Pen wins slightly more than two-thirds of the vote TOURS: France’s far-right National Front party elected the daughter of its founder, Jean-Marie Le Pen, as its new leader yesterday, who says she wants to broaden the appeal of a party known best for its anti-immigration, anti-Islam platform. Le Pen, who has been convicted for minimizing the Holocaust, left the leadership of the party he created 38 years ago by dropping an antiSemitic reference about a journalist at a weekend party gathering. Marine Le Pen, 42, won slightly more than two-thirds of the vote in an election at a National Front convention in the central city of Tours , easily beating the other candidate, longtime party No. 2 Bruno Gollnisch. Her victory, which had been expected, means she is likely to represent the party in the 2012 presidential race. Her father already said he wouldn’t run after five losing bids , and a shockingly strong one nine years ago, when he qualified for the runoff against incumbent Jacques Chirac. With characteristic pique, the 82-year-old party founder took aim yesterday at a reporter from France-24 television who said that he had been roughed up by security staff at the convention the night before. “The person in question believed it was nec-

essary to say that it was because he was Jewish that he was thrown out. That couldn’t be seen either on his (press) card or on his nose , if I dare say it,” Le Pen told reporters. Le Pen has been repeatedly fined and convicted over his long political career, such as for inciting racial hatred by saying France might be overrun by Muslims and calling the World War II gas chambers “a detail” of history. He hit his political peak by defeating the Socialist prime minister and others to reach the 2002 presidential election runoff. The National Front leader lost to Chirac, as mainstream parties of left and right united to defeat Le Pen. A divorced mother of three, Marine Le Pen is widely seen as the kinder, gentler face of a party known for its extreme stances. In an interview with The Associated Press on Wednesday, she said she wanted the party to widen its focus , and reputation , to beyond issues of immigration and security. “I refuse to accept as inevitable the fact that we have been demonized ... that we have to continue to be insulted, consigned to the edge of political life and excluded from the democratic field,” she said. Marine Le Pen’s attempts to widen the base have sowed discord within the party, which has

had financial troubles after a poor showing in the 2007 presidential race. Some members want the party to keep its outsider status. “Marine has charm, charisma, she looks great on TV , but it’s not enough,” said party member Anne-Marie Lacalmette, saying she didn’t believe Marine Le Pen was up to the job. “I am sad. I am very sad.” Others thought the daughter’s tack would widen the party’s appeal. “Marine will allow us to reach another electorate,” said another party supporter, Remi Carillon. “I think we had about 20 per cent of voters. Now I think that we could reach 30 per cent in the coming years.” Meanwhile in Marseille, a Mediterranean port city that is home to many French citizens with family heritage in North Africa, said they regretted the handover from father to daughter. “We all are well aware of her father’s racist ideas about foreigners, Arabs and religious beliefs,” said Jamel Khebir, looking to the 2012 elections. “If people vote for her, it will lead to chaos in France.” Catherine Gaschka in Tours and Jamey Keaten in Paris contributed to this report. —AP

Pope is joyous about beatifying John Paul II VATICAN CITY : Pope Benedict XVI said yesterday that everyone who knew or admired John Paul II shares his joy that he will beatify his predecessor on May 1, a ceremony in St Peter’s Square that could bring 2 million people into Rome. Beatification is the last major step before possible sainthood. The ceremony, a week after Easter, is expected to draw huge crowds, according to Rome authorities rushing to ready the capital for the event. John Paul’s funeral in 2005 saw nearly 3 million faithful flock to the Vatican. “On May 1, I’ll have the joy of proclaiming blessed the venerable John Paul II, my beloved predecessor,” Benedict said from his studio window overlooking the square, where tourists and pilgrims gathered to receive his traditional yesterday blessing. “All those who knew him, all those who esteemed and admired him, cannot help but rejoice with the church for this event,” the pontiff said. Many pilgrims will come from John Paul’s homeland of Poland. Benedict told the Poles in the square that he shares their joy over the announcement Friday of the beatification. “This news was much awaited by everyone” and in a particular way by Poles, because John Paul had been “their guide in faith, in truth and in freedom,” Benedict said. The 1978-2005 papacy of the first Polish-born pope is credited with helping to bring the end in the late 1980s to decades of communist rule in Eastern Europe, particularly through his staunch championing of the Solidarity labor movement in Poland. But John Paul’s long tenure at the helm of the Roman Catholic church also spanned years when shocking revelations of sexual abuse of minors by clergy disgusted many faithful. As the scandal exploded, church hierarchy in many dioceses around the world were accused by the abused of systematically covering up rape and molestation by priests. John Paul’s homeland often embraced the church as a bulwark against communism, and priests were often admired as heroes and patriots, and he has been faulted for his overriding

VATICAN: Pope Benedict XVI waves at faithful at the end of the Angelus prayer from his studio window overlooking St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican yesterday.—AP concern with safeguarding the rights of accused clergy. An international Catholic group, which seeks renewal in the church, described John Paul as a “controversial, contradictory pope.” In a statement yesterday reacting to the decision to beatify him, We Are Church contended that John Paul’s “penchant for spiritual authoritarianism”

contributed to “the greatest tragedy of his tenure as pope: the sexual abuse of thousands of children globally.” “His tragedy lies in the discrepancy between his commitment to reform and dialogue in the world and his return to authoritarianism within the church,” We Are Church said.—AP

African mediators to meet on Ivory Coast crisis ABUJA: Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga will meet Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday to discuss the crisis in Ivory Coast, the latest piece of shuttle diplomacy to try to end an election stand-off. Odinga, sent by the African Union to mediate in the Ivory Coast crisis, will meet Jonathan, chairman of the West African regional bloc ECOWAS, at the pres-

idential villa in the Nigerian capital Abuja, Jonathan’s office said. “The president will be meeting with the prime minister of Kenya on the Ivory Coast crisis this evening,” Nigerian presidency spokesman Ima Niboro said, without giving details. Officials said three West African heads of state who have also been involved in ECOWAS mediation efforts-

Benin’s Boni Yayi, Sierra Leone’s Ernest Bai Koroma and Cape Verde’s Pedro Pines-may also attend the meeting. The United Nations human rights office has said at least 247 people have been killed in violence in the world’s biggest cocoa grower since a disputed presidential election on Nov 28, which risks sending the country back into civil war. In the latest

move in international efforts to persuade incumbent Laurent Gbagbo to quit after an election he is widely held to have lost, the European Union on Saturday froze assets of the country’s ports, its state oil firm and three banks. Gbagbo’s camp brushed off the tighter sanctions and said he still had access to accounts at West Africa’s central bank, even though

regional leaders recognise his election rival Alassane Ouattara as legitimate leader of the country. ECOWAS has said it could use “legitimate force” if Gbagbo refuses to go quietly. Odinga and the three West African heads of state met Gbagbo and Ouattara in Abidjan two weeks ago but failed to persuade Gbagbo to cede power.— Reuters



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Floods hit thousands more Australians Over 1,400 homes waterlogged, 3,500 people flee

ARIZONA: In this photo released by ABC-TV, ABC News correspondent Christiane Amanpour, center, leads a town hall event at the St Odilia Church in Tucson, Ariz, during a taping of “This Week” with Chistiane Amanpour on Saturday. —AP

Arizona shooting victim accused of making threat TUCSON: In an unexpected twist to the Arizona shootings, a man wounded in the attack was arrested and taken for a psychiatric exam after an outburst at a town hall meeting, during which he took a picture of a conservative activist and yelled “you’re dead,” authorities say. James Eric Fuller, 63, was detained on misdemeanor disorderly conduct and threat charges Saturday during the event taped for a special edition of ABC television’s “This Week,” Pima County sheriff ’s spokesman Jason Ogan said. Fuller apparently became upset when Trent Humphries, a local leader of the conservative tea party movement, suggested that conversations about gun control be delayed until all the dead were buried, KGUN-TV in Tucson reported. Authorities said he took a picture of Humphries and yelled “you’re dead.” Ogan said deputies decided Fuller needed a mental health evaluation and he was taken to a hospital, which will determine when he will be released. Fuller, who said he was hit in the knee and back, was one of 19 people shot outside a Safeway supermarket on Jan 8. Six people died and US Rep Gabrielle Giffords remains in critical condition with a bullet wound to the head. Giffords was continuing to progress Saturday, with doctors replacing the breathing tube that connected her to a ventilator with a tracheotomy tube in her windpipe. They could soon know if she can speak, but they didn’t offer a timeframe. Doctors also installed a feeding tube. In its story on the arrest, The New York Times said Fuller reported last week that he had trouble sleeping after he was wounded. The paper said that in an interview last week, Fuller repeatedly

denounced the “Tea Party crime syndicate,” and said he placed some of the blame for the shooting on former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and other Republican leaders, saying he believed they had contributed to a toxic atmosphere. Meanwhile, as Tucson attempted to heal, the Safeway supermarket reopened and a memorial of flowers quickly grew outside. Randy Larson, 57, came by to shop but instead found himself sitting quietly on the curb choking back tears. “I can’t come here and go about my day as usual,” he said. “Why should it be usual for me when it’s not for the victims?” Paramedics on the first three engine trucks to respond to the Safeway parking lot a week ago where Giffords was meeting with constituents recounted the scene that unfolded as they rushed to count and triage the victims. Veteran paramedic Tony Compagno stepped off Engine 30 and panicked people rushed his crew, trying to pull them toward the wounded, while three men desperately gave chest compressions to 9-yearold Christina Taylor Green, who was killed in the attack. Others cried out “Giffords! Giffords!” and pointed to a woman lying unconscious with a gunshot wound to the head. Several other bodies were already covered with sheets. “I started counting and my mind, it was hard to remember what I was counting because of the chaos there was. I counted, I forgot what I was counting, I went back really quick and counted again,” Compagno said. “I have no idea of the time that went by, I have no idea how long it took me.” The father of Christina Taylor Green said some of her organs have been donated to a young girl in the Boston

area. John Green told The Boston Globe in today ’s edition that he received a phone call about the transplant, but said he doesn’t know any other details about the donation. He said the call “really lifted” his spirits and added that he and his wife are proud parents once again of their daughter, “who has done another amazing thing.” Elsewhere in Tucson, an organization called Crossroads of the West held a gun show, one of many it hosts in several Western states. An estimated crowd of 4,000 showed up, though the mood was less upbeat than past shows, organizer Bob Templeton said. Gun enthusiasts mingled in the county fairgrounds building, discussing Second Amendment rights and buying handguns, rifles and other weapons. The Second Amendment of the US Constitution guarantees the right to bear arms. The group considered canceling the event, but decided Tuesday it would go on, said Templeton, adding that the shooting was not about gun rights, but rather “a deranged person who was able to carry out whatever his agenda was.” Also Saturday, Pima Community College released a video first to a Los Angeles Times public records request and then to The Associated Press _ that shows suspected shooter Jared Loughner, 22, giving an improvised nighttime campus tour and rambling about free speech and the Constitution. Loughner’s voice provides an angry narration that includes statements such as, “I’m gonna be homeless because of this school,” and calling Pima “a genocide school.” College officials confirmed that the video, discovered on YouTube, led them to suspend Loughner from school Sept 29. —AP

Canada probes claims of locals training with Qaeda MONTREAL: National police are investigating claims that a dozen Canadians have received AlQaeda training aimed at carrying out attacks in Canadian cities, a police official said Saturday. The Hong Kong-based Asia Times reported that the Canadians arrived in Afghanistan last February and moved to Pakistan after nine months. They received explosives training, the Times reported, but there was no indication of when they would return to Canada. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police said an

investigation was underway “Any information that we receive, we look at assessing its credibility and then taking proper actions to ensure that Canadians and our allies are kept safe,” assistant commissioner Gilles Michaud, head of the national security program, told AFP. “If the conclusion is that the threat is credible, appropriate measures are taken.” The report, citing “well-placed Taleban sources,” said British, Americans and Germans are also receiving militant training.— AFP

Venezuela government demands Soap opera off air CARACAS: A Venezuelan television station has stopped airing a Colombian soap opera after government regulators demanded its removal saying the program was offensive and denigrating to Venezuela as a country. The soap opera “Chepe Fortuna” features an unscrupulous secretary named “Venezuela” who has a dog called “Little Hugo,” an apparent reference to Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. “ What disrespect for Venezuela!” Chavez said in a speech to lawmakers Saturday. “That soap is so horrible!” The private TV channel Televen did not air the program on Friday after regulators demanded the show be dropped from the lineup. “At least Televen agreed,” Chavez said. The character Venezuela, in contrast to her sister

named Colombia, “is repeatedly characterized as associated with illegal activities, meddling and vulgarity,” Venezuela’s telecommunications regulatory agency Conatel said in a statement. Chavez noted the program featured the dog named “Little Hugo” and said it’s disrespectful to the country that the character Venezuela is portrayed as ill-mannered, overweight and “arrogant.” The regulatory agency accused the soap opera of promoting “political intolerance” and notified Televen on Thursday that it should pull it off the air. Televen, whose majority shareholder is Omar Camero Zamora, didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. The channel maintains a neutral stance toward Chavez’s socialist-oriented government.

The channel Venevision, which is owned by Gustavo Cisneros, and Televen both once took hardline stances against Chavez’s government but in recent years have curbed their criticism. The government in 2007 forced another antiChavez channel, RCT V, to halt broadcasts. That left Globovision as the sole stridently anti-Chavez channel left on the airwaves. “Chepe Fortuna” is produced by Colombian network RCN. Miguel Angel Baquero, producer of “Chepe Fortuna,” denied that the soap opera promotes intolerance. Filming of the show began in 2009, when relations between the neighboring countries were at a particularly tense moment. The two governments have since smoothed over tensions and pledged to maintain respectful relations. — AP

SYDNEY: Australia’s flood crisis shifted to the country’s far south yesterday, with more than 1,400 homes swamped by a record deluge as the toll mounted in the reeling northeast amid scenes of devastation. Dozens of towns braced for unprecedented river levels in Victoria state, where emergency officials told AFP more than 1,400 homes were waterlogged and 3,500 people had fled, just days after the flooding emergency peaked in northeastern Queensland. “I would expect that to reach 1,500 by daylight tomorrow,” emergency spokesman Lachlan Quick told AFP. “To put that in perspective it was just a few hundred during September ’s floods statewide, which were some of the worst we had ever experienced,” Quick said, describing the volume of water as unprecedented. Earlier reports had said 14,000 houses had been inundated. Homes were swamped to waist height as waters swept through the southeast, leveling fences and trees and tearing up roads. There were more than 5,000 calls for help, with more than 100 rescues. “It’s shocking, devastating, heart wrenching,” said Charlton resident Peter Gretgrix. “It’s just total devastation, some of the shops in the lowish area are just a mess, windows smashed out, it’s terrible.” “I’ve never seen anything like it, (and) I’m 57,” he added.Devastated by the worst wildfires in Australia’s history which killed 173 people just two years ago, parts of Victoria were now facing once-in-a-century flooding, with some towns having never experienced such inundation. Soldiers were helping people evacuate from their homes while desperate sandbagging was under way in a number of towns, where a season’s worth of rain had fallen in just one or two days, completely submerging some river gauges. It follows a six-week crisis in Queensland, where floodwaters swallowed an area the size of France

QUEENSLAND: This general view shows homes damaged by recent flooding in the town of Grantham yesterday. —AFP

and Germany combined, culminating in the swamping last week of Brisbane, Australia’s third largest city, and utter devastation of towns to its west. Experts have linked Australia’s downpours to an especially strong La Nina weather pattern bringing cooler water temperatures and exacerbating the traditional tropical cyclone season. Five of the nation’s seven states and territories have seen flooding since January 1. The Queensland death toll climbed to 18 since January 10 yesterday, with the discovery of two bodies in the ruined Lockyer Valleya middle-aged man under debris near a creek and an elderly woman in her Grantham home. Queensland Premier Anna Bligh said the house was so damaged police found the woman’s body on only their third search of the rubble. Debris was piled three meters high, three meters wide and 100 meters long in the shattered town. Residents gathered at the Murphy’s Creek pub, one of few buildings still standing, to mourn the dead and pray for 14 people still missing-the first chance for many in the tight-knit community to grieve with neighbors and friends. “There are going to be neighbors that don’t

return home after this aftermath, families that don’t return, there’s going to be empty desks at schools,” said local MP Scott Buchholz. “Words really cannot express what the people of the Lockyer Valley are feeling at the moment.” Soldiers and police combed through buildings and fields in the search for bodies in the Lockyer Valley, where shipping containers were to provide temporary shelter for those whose homes were swept away. As waters receded in Queensland, Bligh said the full scale of destruction was emerging, with the number of flooded homes and evacuations doubling in the past week and the number of properties affected by the waters trebling across an area with a population of 2.1 million. She warned people to stay out of floodwaters where possible, describing them as a “toxic” soup of rotting animal corpses and food, chemicals and debris. Treasurer Wayne Swan toured the ravaged Brisbane suburb of Rocklea with friends hit by the disaster as the federal and Queensland governments pledged Aus$10 million ($9.86 million) each to the relief fund, which has now raised more than Aus$84 million. — AFP



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ASEAN urges lifting of sanctions on Myanmar LOMBOK ISLAND: Foreign ministers from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations appealed yesterday for the lifting of international sanctions against Myanmar, which held its first elections in two decades in November. Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa said ASEAN will also push for reconciliation between Myanmar’s military-controlled government and democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi, who was released from years of house arrest days after the elections.

“We have the same view on the immediate or early removal or easing of sanctions imposed by some countries against Myanmar,” Natalegawa said on the sidelines of a meeting of ASEAN foreign ministers on the resort island of Lombok. Natalegawa said the international community should respond positively to the recent developments in Myanmar to ensure that economic development can take place in the country. He said, however, that ASEAN has been telling Myanmar directly that it

South Korea warship pursues hijacked vessel SEOUL: South Korea has ordered a warship to chase a cargo ship hijacked by suspected Somali pirates, a Seoul official said yesterday, as President Lee Myung-Bak urged “all possible measures” to rescue the 21 crew. The destroyer Choi Young was sent to pursue the Samho Jewelry, a 11,500-tonne South Korean chemical freighter seized in the Indian Ocean, a presidential spokeswoman said. Lee held an emergency meeting yesterday and urged officials to take “all possible measures” to rescue the ship and crew, she said. Samho Jewelry was carrying eight South Koreans, two Indonesians and 11 crew from Myanmar when it was hijacked on its way from the United Arab Emirates to Sri Lanka. All crew members being held by the pirates have been confirmed safe so far, a foreign ministry spokesman said. “The crewmen have been confirmed safe for now, with no unusual signs in their (physical) conditions... the ship’s location has been identified,” the spokesman told AFP. Yonhap news agency said it would

“take at least two days” for the warship, which is carrying more than 300 naval troops including special commandos, to reach the hijacked vessel, citing an unnamed government source. According to the European Union’s anti-piracy mission, Samho Jewelry is owned by a Norwegian company and operated by South Korea’s Samho Shipping, based in the southern port city of Busan. Saturday’s hijacking came two months after a supertanker belonging to the same South Korean shipping company was released by Somali pirates after being held for seven months. The 300,000-tonne Samho Dream and its 24 crew were released only after the pirates were paid a ransom repor ted as a record $9 million. Piracy has surged in the waters off lawless Somalia in recent years, and international warships patrol the area in an effort to clamp down on the problem. After the latest hijacking, pirates now hold 29 vessels and 693 hostages off the coast of Somalia. —AFP

US pomp meant to improve tone of China relations BEIJING: Chinese leader Hu Jintao is being feted in Washington this week with a lavish state banquet at the White House and other pomp usually reserved for close friends and allies, all intended to improve the tone of relations between a risen, more assertive and prosperous China and the US superpower in a tenuous economic recovery. The shaky trust between the United States and China has been eroding recently because of an array of issues , currency policies and trade barriers, nuclear proliferation and North Korea, and both sides seem to recognize the need to recalibrate relations. The US is one of China’s biggest markets, with $380 billion in annual trade largely in Beijing’s favor. Washington increasingly needs Beijing’s help in managing world troubles, from piracy off Africa to Iran’s nuclear program and reinvigorating the world economy. “It is absolutely critical for the two sides to be setting a tone that says ‘hang on a second, we are committed to an effective, positive relationship,”‘ said Center for Strategic and International Studies scholar Charles Freeman, a former trade negotiator in the George W. Bush administration. The state banquet President Barack Obama is hosting will be Hu’s first. In the days before his visit, senior officials from both countries have spoken publicly in favor of better ties. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said in a speech Friday that the countries needed to manage their conflicts but their shared interests were so entwined as to constitute entanglement. “History teaches us that the rise of new powers often ushers in periods of conflict and uncertainty,” Clinton said. “Indeed, on both sides of the Pacific, we do see trepidation about the rise of China and the future of the US-China relationship. We both have much more to gain from cooperation than from conflict.” Chinese officials have emphasized what they see as common concerns while acknowledging the complexity of the relationship. “When the relationship is strained we need to bear in mind the larger picture and not allow any individual issue to disrupt our overall cooperation,” Vice Foreign Minister Cui Tiankai said in a speech Friday. Such maxims, however, don’t apply to issues China defines as its “core interests,” including Taiwan, Tibet, and the overarching authority of the Communist Party. That’s a condition Hu’s visit won’t change. Hu, whose four- day trip star ts tomorrow, is expected to talk up China’s intended peaceful rise in a speech to business leaders and opinion-makers in Washington on Thursday and to highlight the benefits of China’s market and investment when visiting Chicago. Aware of China’s plummeting image in American opinion, Chinese

Foreign Ministry functionaries have in recent weeks been looking for ways to make the usually stiff Hu, and China as a country, appear more human, something akin to reformist patriarch Deng Xiaoping’s donning a 10-gallon hat in Houston in 1979 just after the opening of diplomatic relations. For the protocol-obsessed Chinese leadership, a highlight of the visit will be Wednesday’s state banquet , an honor denied Hu on his last trip to the White House in 2006. President George W Bush thought state banquets should be reserved for allies and like-minded powers and instead gave Hu a lunch. Even worse, a member of Falun Gong, the spiritual movement banned by China, disrupted Hu and Bush’s joint appearance, and an announcer incorrectly called China “The Republic of China,” the formal name of democratically ruled Taiwan. In this visit, no major agreements are expected. Talks over a joint statement ran aground until last-minute negotiations in Beijing last week. But the shared recognition to put things right and the bumpy relations of the last year augur for a better outcome. The recent disputes make the summit more necessary than ever, said Shi Yinhong, professor of international relations at Beijing’s Renmin University. “If you look back to relations over the last year, any progress is significant,” he said. A successful visit also stands to raise Hu’s standing domestically as he heads toward retirement late next year and seeks to place his political proteges in positions of influence. “A demonstration that Hu can handle the US well and show that China is now well respected by Washington should help Hu to consolidate his legacy,” said Oxford University China scholar Steve Tsang. Still more difficult will be stopping the larger drift in relations amid the countries’ changing fortunes. Beijing feels its economic, military and diplomatic strength entitles it to more deference while Washington tries to shore up its superpower authority, forging alliances and ties with other countries amid the changing global order. While the US is weighted down by high unemployment, massive budget deficits and sluggish growth, China has roared ahead, with the economy expanding 9.6 percent in the third quarter of last year. China now holds the world’s largest foreign currency reserves at $2.85 trillion and a major chunk of US government debt. At current rates, economists estimate China will overtake the US as the world’s largest economy within 20 years, possibly by the end of this decade. That transition could be bumpy, with China’s authoritarian one-party communist political system and sense of historical grievance setting it at odds with the democratic West. — AP

should follow up the elections and release of Suu Kyi with a reconciliation process by including her in the political system. “All groups in the society must be part of change in Myanmar, including Aung San Suu Kyi,” Natalegawa said. Suu Kyi was released after the vote from seven years of detention. Her National League for Democracy party said the elections were a sham and did not take part, and was disbanded by the government as a result. The US and some other Western nations have

imposed political and economic sanctions to punish Myanmar’s junta for its poor human rights record and slow move toward democracy. ASEAN has voiced criticism of Myanmar in the past and acknowledged it remains a burden and roadblock to regional progress. ASEAN groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. It admitted Myanmar in 1997 despite strong opposition from Western nations. — AP

11 fishermen missing in bad Philippine weather Weather claims 51 lives in recent weeks MANILA: At least 11 fishermen were missing after fierce winds and waves overturned their boats off the eastern Philippines as bad weather, which has claimed 51 lives in recent weeks, continued to wreak havoc in parts of the country, officials said yesterday. A search was under way for the fishermen from the town of Pandan in Catanduanes province who sailed out to sea late Saturday despite warnings of bad weather, Mayor Resty de Quiroz said. Twenty domestic flights to and from the country’s eastern and central region were canceled or diverted yesterday due to strong rain and wind set off by a cold front, which forecasters expect will continue to affect the country’s weather until early March. De Quiroz said the fishermen sailed out to sea after it calmed following weeks of pounding rain, but the weather suddenly turned nasty, overturning or damaging their boats. “We warned them of the bad weather but we know their families won’t eat if they don’t set out to sea,” said Benito Ramos, who heads the government’s disaster-response agency. About 1.5 million people have been affected by four weeks of intermittent heavy rains, which caused flooding and landslides and

LEYTE: In this Friday photo released from the Malacanang Photo Bureau, an aerial view shows damaged rice fields (most of the brown part) at Barangay Guinsaugon, municipality of Saint Bernard in Southern Leyte, central Philippines. —AP left 51 dead in 16 provinces. More than half a million people have been provided food packs and medicine in emergency shelters or in isolated rural communities, Ramos said.

President Benigno Aquino III has said he is considering a total ban on logging in the country after blaming the recent flooding on illegal loggers. After a visit to flood-hit

Officials investigated in China toll case BEIJING: A judge and two court officials were suspended in a probe into a life sentence given to a Chinese farmer for evading highway tolls, after the heavy punishment triggered a public outcry, state media said yesterday. The court in Henan province sentenced Shi Jianfeng to life in prison last week after finding him guilty of evading more than 3.68 million yuan ($560,000) in highway tolls. Fake military license plates were mounted on two trucks that carried gravel and avoided tolls more than 2,300 times because military vehicles are exempt. The official Xinhua News Agency said the president, deputy president, supervisor and chief judge of the Pingdingshan Municipal Intermediate People’s Court were being questioned for failing to properly investigate Shi’s case and handing down a sentence while lacking evidence. The judge, Lou Yanwei, made the ruling in Shi’s case, the report said. All were suspended from

their posts except for the president, who was given a warning, Xinhua said. The move came after Shi’s younger brother, Shi Junfeng, turned himself in to police and said his imprisoned brother had taken the blame for him, Xinhua said. Shi Junfeng also told police he had offered bribes to officials after his brother’s detention and was promised he would be released soon, it said. After a massive public outcry over the heavy sentence, the court announced a retrial, saying the verdict might change because the defendant had told a new inquiry that he had been manipulated by a relative, Xinhua reported Friday. Chinese Internet users argued in posts and commentaries that the penalty was excessive because shorter sentences were imposed for the more serious crimes of rape and murder. The comments also strayed beyond Shi’s case to popular complaints that highway tolls are too high. — AP

SHANGHAI: Delegates applaud during the opening session of the 4th Plenary Session of the 13th Shanghai Municipal People’s Congress yesterday in Shanghai, China. —AP

Southern Leyte and Agusan del Norte provinces last week, Aquino expressed exasperation that illegal logging has continued in those regions despite a long government crackdown. — AP

North Korea denounces South Korea-Japan military talks SEOUL: North Korea yesterday expressed its anger over efforts by South Korea and Japan to seek closer military ties, repeating calls for Seoul to resume talks with Pyongyang first to defuse regional tensions. The fury came after Seoul expressed doubts about the sincerity of Pyongyang’s repeated peace overtures, and instead sought closer military ties with Japan and longtime ally the US against threats from the North. Regional tensions have also soared after the North in November shelled an island near its disputed maritime border with the South, killing four South Koreans, including two civilians. Yesterday Rodong Sinmun, mouthpiece of the North’s ruling Communist Party, labeled talks held on January 10 between Seoul and Tokyo’s defense chiefs a “new military conspiracy” that hampered regional security by damaging inter-Korea ties. “Japan has worked hard with bloodshot eyes to secure a legitimate pretext for its military overseas expansion,” the newspaper said in an editorial carried by state media. It also denounced Seoul for “paving the way for Japan’s reinvasion” of the Korean peninsula, a reference to Japan’s brutal colonial occupation from 1910-1945. Despite the historical animosities, Japan and South Korea’s defense chiefs pledged deeper cooperation and discussed signing agreements to share military secrets, potentially including those on the North’s nuclear programs. “The recent military talks between the South and Japan will accelerate a military alliance among the US, Japan and South Korea and will create another major obstacle in inter-Korea dialogues and improving relations,” Rodong Sinmun said. It also urged Seoul to set aside “military game plays with foreign aggressors,” stressing that “the door for inter-Korea talks is open.” Pyongyang, in a flurry of peace overtures since the November attack, on January 10 sent its first official proposal for talks with Seoul and said it would restore a cross-border hotline. Seoul has rejected the proposal, saying Pyongyang’s overtures are a cosmetic exercise to improve its international image and get much-needed aid. The North also stepped up separate diplomatic charm offensive towards Japan, welcoming Tokyo’s willingness to resume direct talks and saying it is “ready to meet and talk with countries that are friendly” to Pyongyang. Pyongyang’s state media last week praised Japanese Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara for hinting Tokyo may seek bilateral talks to revive the stalled six-party disarmament talks on the North’s nuclear programs. —AFP



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India ruling party ally shrugs off Congress barb NEW DELHI: India’s food minister, a key ally of the ruling Congress party, made an apparent jibe at Congress scion Rahul Gandhi yesterday, after the powerful son of party chief Sonia Gandhi blamed coalition politics for rapid inflation. India is battling the highest inflation of any major Asian economy, and spiralling food and fuel prices have damaged voter confidence in the Congress-led government and highlighted stresses in the multi-party coalition. Food and agriculture minister Sharad Pawar shrugged off Gandhi’s remarks, Business Standard reported yesterday, as opposition parties attacked the government for a 4.5 percent rise in petrol prices imposed overnight by staterun fuel retailers. “The decisions regarding price rises are taken collectively. The prime minister, his economic adviser, the finance minister, the

home minister, myself and the planning commission’s deputy chairman take periodic reviews,” Pawar was quoted as saying. “Besides, there is an empowered group of ministers which reviews the situation and takes necessary decisions to tackle price rises.” Pawar’s defence of collective decision-making in the coalition government was a subtle admonishment of Gandhi, seen by many as the prime minister-in-waiting despite his lack of cabinet experience. National Congress Party chairman Pawar brings nine seats to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s government. His remarks do not threaten the ruling coalition, but signal frustration with the failure to tame high inflation. R ahul Gandhi, general secretar y of the Congress party, blamed the “compulsions” of coalition politics for undermining New Delhi’s

ability to control rising prices last week. “It was a single party then. Now, it is a coalition and has some compulsions,” Gandhi said with reference to the government of his grandmother and former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. Two days after the government released a list of measures to tackle inflation, state-run fuel retailers raised the price of petrol by 4.5 percent at midnight on Saturday, attracting strong criticism from opposition parties. “This hike is totally unjustified. This is nothing but loot of the common man by the government,” opposition Bharatiya Janata Par ty spokesman Prakash Javadekar told reporters. “Food inflation is at 18 percent while inflation is at 9 percent. This is the worst gift that a government can give to the people in New Year.” Bharat Petroleum Corp raised petrol prices by 2.53

rupees (5.5 US cents) a litre, H industan Petroleum Corp by 2.54 rupees a litre, and Indian Oil Corp , India’s biggest retailer, by 2.50 rupees a litre, in the second set of hikes this month due to high crude prices. Singh’s government, also battling a series of billion-dollar corruption scams, is under pressure for failing to implement major structural reforms to control prices. A recent poll showed voter discontent with the Congress party would result in a loss of 40 seats in a general election, threatening its majority and damaging its ability to form a working coalition government. India’s headline inflation rose an annual 8.43 percent in December, following a 7.48 percent rise in November, as food inflation hit a yearhigh this month before easing marginally to 16.91 percent last week.—Reuters

Bomb kills 9 wedding guests in Afghanistan Children among dead

HYDERABAD: Anjaneya Prasad accompanies the body of his brother-in-law Arvind, on the way to his home town Vijayawada, loaded on an ambulance at the airport in Hyderabad, India yesterday. A stampede of pilgrims was set off Friday night when a group of pilgrims in a jeep drove into a crowd of worshippers walking along a narrow forest path. —AP

PUL-E-KHUMRI: A roadside bomb destroyed a car carrying nine people to a wedding in northern Afghanistan yesterday, killing everyone inside including one child, the provincial governor said. The previous day, six civilians were killed by a roadside bomb in southern Helmand province and another six died after an airstrike by foreign forces in mountainous eastern Kunar, local officials said. Three children were among the dead in the airborne attack on two houses in the Kodagai area which straddles Kunar’s Dangam and Shigal districts, Sultan Sediqi, a member of the provincial council, told Reuters. The NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said in a statement that an air raid in Kunar’s Dangam district had killed “numerous” insurgents, after they were identified as an imminent threat to ground forces. It was not clear if this was the incident referred to by Sediqi. When asked about the

allegations of civilian casualties, a spokeswoman for NATO-led forces said they had not carried out any operations in Shigal and those killed by the air operation in Dangam had been “positively identified as insurgents”. Violence across Afghanistan is at its worst since the 2001 overthrow of the Taliban government, with the insurgency spreading rapidly in previously peaceful areas such as the north, and civilian and military casualties at record levels. A recent string of attacks around the country has helped to dispel expectations of a winter lull in fighting. While insurgents normally target Afghan and foreign troops, civilians often bear the brunt of the attacks as they are caught in the crossfire. Yesterday’s blast in Pul-e-Khumri, the capital of Baghlan province, which lies on the main highway connecting Kabul to the north, killed six women and two men along with the child, said provincial governor Abdul Majid. The roadside bomb in the violent Sangin dis-

trict of southern Helmand province killed six people on Saturday the provincial governor’s spokesman, Dawood Ahmadi, said yesterday. Sangin district is one of the main battlefields in the intensifying fight between Afghan and NATO led forces on one side and the Taliban on the other, in the group’s southern strongholds of Helmand and Kandahar province. The United Nations has said 2,412 civilians were killed and 3,803 wounded between January and October last year-up 20 percent from 2009. On Jan 7, a suicide bomber killed 17 people, including 16 civilians, and wounded 21 others, inside a public bathhouse in neighbouring Kandahar province, the country’s worst attack in nearly six months. A record 711 foreign troops were also killed in 2010, according to monitoring website Afghan forces have been hit even harder. The government has said 1,292 Afghan police, 821 Afghan soldiers and 5,225 insurgents were killed.—Reuters

Indian fury after deadly stampede IDDUKI: Indian authorities were heavily criticized yesterday after a religious gathering turned into a scene of bloody mayhem with more than 100 people crushed to death in a stampede. Stampedes are a regular risk in India where policing and crowd control are often inadequate at temples and on pilgrimage routes, where huge throngs of fervent devotees congregate on auspicious occasions. Just three policemen, two doctors and 30 forest officials were overseeing 300,000 pilgrims on Friday evening, the Indian Express newspaper said, citing D Salim Raj, the crime branch deputy superintendent investigating the tragedy. A traffic accident is thought to have triggered panic among worshippers as they crossed mountainous terrain in the dark after visiting the Hindu shrine of Sabarimala in the southern state of Kerala. “Absence of proper roads, communication facilities and a crisis management team on the spot made rescue operations impossible,” the Express said. “How casually the state government handled the pilgrimage centre is evident from the fact that (the site) does not even have a single toilet.” The New Indian Express, a separate newspaper based in the southern city of Chennai, blamed the Kerala government for not preventing hysteria over a “miracle light” that attracts many pilgrims. Under the headline “For God’s sake, let’s end this fraud”, the paper said that stallholders, traders and local businesses promoted the “miracle” to draw in crowds. “Murder charges should be framed against those who conspire to allow this fraud to continue,” it said. “Places of worship are meant to lead the devotees on the right path of a righteous life. The efforts to

make them money-spinning centers are unethical.” In a commentary, the Mail Today said: “Forget about the security lapse and the terrible mismanagement. The fact remains that the government deliberately perpetuates the mystery around the miracle lamp.” Several media reports said that the “miracle” light was actually a burning heap of camphor. It is the second time in recent years that the annual festival has been struck by disaster. In 1999 more than 50 devotees died after a landslide at the site. Recommendations from a probe into that disaster-including a re-routing of pilgrims-were not implemented, opposition politicians said yesterday. “When I was about to reach the narrow pathway, swamis (devotees) started tumbling down on me. Some of them fell like big rocks,” sur vivor Nagendra Kumar told the Hindustan Times. “I fell twice in the rush but managed to get up before getting trampled. Most them weren’t sure what really happened. People started running helter-skelter. Soon helpless wails rented the air.” Stampedes in India are often triggered by rumors of a bomb blast, a collapsed wall or a car crash. Reports from Friday told of frustrated pilgrims overturning an auto rickshaw, crowd barricades preventing escape routes, and children trampled to death underfoot. In March last year, police in Uttar Pradesh blamed lax safety for the deaths of 63 people-all of them women and childrenin a stampede outside another Hindu temple. At least another 10 people died in a stampede at a temple in the state of Bihar in October. The worst recent incident was in October 2008 when around 220 people died near a temple inside Jodhpur’s famous Mehrangarh Fort.—AFP

Lanka mine fears as floods recede COLOMBO: Unexploded mines planted during Sri Lanka’s Tamil separatist war may have shifted during recent floods, officials said yesterday, as residents started to return to their badly-damaged homes and farms. More than one million people were initially displaced in the flooding, with the east of the island worst affected by a week of unusually heavy monsoon rains. The government’s disaster management centre in Colombo said 38 people were confirmed dead with another four missing, as water levels dropped in some areas and residents ventured back home to survey the devastation. “Floods and receding waters may unearth mines and explosive remnants of war and carry explosives from contaminated areas into areas thought to be safe,” the United Nations said in a situation report. It warned that local authorities had advised residents and aid workers to keep alert for shifted mines, and added

that mine clearance agencies were deciding whether areas needed to be resurveyed after the flooding. Years of fierce fighting in the east of the island ended in July 2007 and the army says it has cleared the vast majority of mines from the area, though no exact figures are available. “There is a possibility that undetected mines could have shifted during floods and moved downstream,” military spokesman Ubaya Medawala told AFP. “But we haven’t had any mine casualties in the eastern regions in recent times.” A military offensive finally ended the decades-long war in 2009 when troops defeated Tamil Tiger rebels who had once controlled one-third of Sri Lanka. Both sides often accused each other of indiscriminately deploying mines. Many of the flood victims had only recently been resettled after the war, while some had also seen their livelihoods wrecked by the December 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami.— AFP

DERA MURAD JAMALI: A Pakistani cameraman films burning oil tankers after gunmen attacked a terminal in Dera Murad Jamali southwest Pakistan, Saturday. —AP

Attacks down almost 20 percent in Pakistan ISLAMABAD: The number of suicide bombings and other attacks in Pakistan declined nearly 20 percent last year as a result of Pakistani military operations, better surveillance by law enforcement agencies and the death of key militants in US drone strikes, a think tank said yesterday. But the militant threat remains dire, and the Pakistani government has yet to develop a comprehensive policy to eradicate Islamist militants who continue to plague the country, warned the Pak Institute for Peace Studies. “Better coordination among intelligence agencies, capacity building of law enforcement agencies, curbs on terrorism financing and, most importantly, adequate measures to prevent banned militant groups from operating across the country remained persistently lacking,” said a new report by the group. Pakistan’s anti-terror efforts are a key focus of the Obama administration, which wants the country to do more to target Taleban militants who regularly launch attacks against US troops in Afghanistan. The number of militant, insurgent and sectarian-related attacks in Pakistan declined from 2,586 in 2009 to 2,113 last year. But the number of people killed in attacks only dropped

about 3.5 percent, from 3,021 to 2,913. Despite the general decline, attacks roughly tripled last year in Pakistan’s two largest cities, said the report, a sign that militants are having greater success exporting the fight far from their northwest heartland along the Afghan border. In Karachi, a teeming city of some 16 million that has a long history of religious, political and ethnic violence, 93 attacks killed 233 people last year, up from 24 attacks that killed 65 in 2009. Pakistan’s cultural capital, Lahore, witnessed 44 attacks last year compared to 11 in 2009. But there were fewer casualties in Punjab province, where Lahore is the capital, because the militants carried out a smaller number of suicide attacks in crowded places. Across the country, suicide attacks fell 22 percent, from 87 in 2009 to 68 last year, according to the report. The Pakistani military has launched a series of operations against militants in the northwest. The campaigns have dealt a serious blow but have failed to achieve sustainable peace “due to the less than impressive performance of a weak political administration, which is beset by chronic challenges of poor governance,” said the report. The US also

has concerns about Pakistan’s ability to transition to effective hold and build efforts in cleared areas, according to a White House progress report drafted last year. “This failure results in short-lived military gains that allow militants to regroup in these areas,” said the report. US officials have also expressed frustration with Pakistan’s unwillingness to launch an offensive in North Waziristan, part of the country’s lawless tribal region that hosts a large number of militants who wage attacks in Afghanistan. The Pakistani army says its troops are stretched too thin by other operations in the tribal region. But many analysts believe the military is reluctant to cross militants with whom it has historical ties and could be useful allies in Afghanistan after foreign troops withdraw. The US has responded by more than doubling the number of drone strikes in the tribal region. There were close to 120 such strikes in 2010, most of which occurred in North Waziristan. The US refuses to acknowledge the covert CIA drone strikes in public, but officials have said privately that they have killed several senior Taleban and Al-Qaeda militants over the past several years.—AP





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Iran fuel ban targets NATO, hurts Afghans By Sardar Ahmad by Sardar Ahmad KABUL: Iran’s ban on fuel tankers crossing into Afghanistan over claims they are supplying NATO troops is snaring ordinary Afghans in a complex power game as winter living costs rise, experts say. Some 2,000 trucks are stranded on the Iranian-Afghan border, Afghanistan’s commerce ministry says, in a standoff which has run since early December, heaping more misery on civilians in the war-torn, impoverished country. Behind it all is Iran’s desire to strike out at the international community over its disputed nuclear weapons program and at Afghanistan over efforts to make peace with the Taliban, according to some analysts. NATO insists it does not use fuel which has passed through Iran and that the operations of its troops in Afghanistan are not being affected. But that is cold comfort to ordinary Afghans who, with the first snows of winter on the ground, face paying 40 percent more for fuel than before, plus extra for other day-to-day essentials. The situation has caused a wave of protests outside the Iranian embassy in Kabul, including one last week when angry demonstrators reportedly pelted the building with tomatoes and eggs. Afghanistan’s Commerce Minister Anwarulhaq Ahadi voiced his frustration at a press conference yesterday, saying: “Iran’s reasons and excuses about this problem are not acceptable for us at all.” Explaining the problems ordinary Afghans face, Ali Agha, a 50-year-old dried-fruit seller in Kabul, said: “Dried fruit is one of the main needs for people in the winter and people are bargaining while buying it. All I can tell them is that the fuel has become expensive.” A young chemist, Rahmatullah, added: “Every day, we argue with customers regarding the price of medicine... the medicines are mainly coming from Iran and Pakistan and the fuel price rise has affected prices directly.” Iran first blocked fuel trucks from crossing into Afghanistan last month because, according to Kabul’s deputy commerce minister, it believed their cargo was going to supply US and other international troops fighting the Taleban. Afghan Vice President Mohammad Qasim Fahim said last month he had secured an agreement to lift the ban during a visit to Tehran, and the Iranian government insists the question has been settled. But Faridullah Sherzai, a spokesman for the commerce ministry in Kabul, said only 40 trucks per day were being allowed through from Iran to Afghanistan, while local drivers put the figure at around half that. Sherzai stressed that other routes were available for fuel coming into Afghanistan, through Pakistan and central Asian countries. But it is thought that around 30 percent of Afghanistan’s fuel comes through Iran. Afghanistan has now submitted details to Iran of how much fuel is needed for its civilian population in a bid to resolve the situation. Gran Hewad, a political researcher at thinktank the Afghan Analysts Network, said Iran was pursuing two strategies by implementing the fuel blockade-one international and one regional. “From an international point of view, it’s reacting to the recent pressure which the international community brings on it regarding nuclear weapons and some other transactions,” Hewad said. “In the regional dimension, it’s going to react to the peace process in Afghanistan which it opposes.” Iran has faced four rounds of UN sanctions over its disputed nuclear program, which major world powers fear is disguising weapons ambitions but Tehran insists is for civilian purposes. — AFP

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Tunisia stirs debate on West-Arab ties By William Maclean he wisdom of Western counter-terrorism links to Arab leaders with poor human rights records is under fresh scrutiny after the ousting in Tunisia of a president who portrayed himself as a bulwark against al-Qaeda. Democracy campaigners in the Middle East have long criticized the West for heightening cooperation with Arab security services after the Sept 11 2001 attacks, saying the implicit price exacted by Arab rulers was muted Western criticism of often venal and brutal rule. The West’s perceived willingness to compromise democratic values for the sake of intelligence on Islamist militants has fuelled a resentment in the Arab world that is exploited by opposition groups as well as al Qaeda, analysts say. Civil society groups say that governments friendly towards the United States and Western European nations are some of the most dogged opponents of democracy, repressing peaceful Islamist groups which seek power through democratic elections. Arab leaders have learned that the price for ignoring Western lectures on human rights has been slight. Francis Ghiles, Senior Research Fellow at the Barcelona Centre for International Affairs, told Reuters that while no one expected an early or dramatic change in Western security policy, new thinking was urgently needed. “We have to get this idiotic analysis out of our minds, that its ‘either repression or al Qaeda’,” he said. “The mantra of the battle against Islamist terrorism has meant that, even more than we used to, we have closed our eyes in the last 10 years to what these rulers are up to.” A stable transition to representative rule in Tunisia following the removal of


Zine al Abidine Ben Ali could act as a “laboratory” for Arab political renewal, Ghiles said, offering a powerful example of change that might eventually prompt the West to be more assertive about promoting human rights. In the end, it was not the armed militants of Al-Qaeda or peaceful political Islamists who ended Ben Ali’s rule, but

broken record and we have to transcend it. Brutality and cruelty by Arab leaders are a huge moral liability for the West,” he said. Juan Cole, a professor of Middle East history at University of Michigan, said Tunisia was a reminder that “acquiescence in, and even support of, tyranny, torture, etc., can badly backfire, as happened in (revolutionary) Iran in 1978-79.”

About 1,000 Yemeni students march through the streets of the Yemeni capital Sanaa on their way to the Tunisian embassy yesterday. — AFP ordinary people protesting against poverty and despotism. To expect these facts about Tunisia’s revolt to inspire any early change in Western security policy towards the region “is wishful thinking”, said Larbi Sadiki, Senior Lecturer in Middle East politics at Exeter University, but it was important to recognize there were risks in the status quo. “Western security discourse is like a

The disarray in Western policy was on stark display this week when France refused Ben Ali refuge, a remarkable reversal by a French administration that, like many of its predecessors, had been an admirer of Tunisia’s veteran strongman ruler. The mood was very different when French President Nicolas Sarkozy visited Tunisia in April 2008 and gave a speech dismissing concerns over Tunisia’s

Tunisia Islamist leader to return from exile By Tarek Amara he leader of a banned Tunisian Islamist movement said on Saturday he would return in the next few days from exile in London after Zine AlAbidine Ben Ali, who ran the country for 23 years, was forced out. Tunisian authorities outlawed the Ennahda, or Renaissance, movement in the early 1990s after accusing it of a violent plot to overthrow secular rule. But the movement said it is non-violent and the victim of government repression. “I am going to go back very soon,” Rached Ghannouchi told Reuters in an telephone interview. “I haven’t decided when yet, but possibly in the days to come.” “The reasons that forced me to leave do not exist anymore. The dictatorship has fallen ... There is nothing to stop me returning to my country after 22 years of exile,” he said.


Rashed Ghannouchi of Tunisian Tehrik-e-Islami party addressing the media in Islamabad at the end of a conference of some 20 Islamic parties from around the world. — AFP Hundreds of Ennahda supporters were put on trial in the 1990s and many others fled abroad. As late as last month, a Tunisian court gave jail sentences to seven men found

guilty of plotting to revive the movement. But that approach appears to have changed after Ben Ali fled the country for Saudi Arabia and Mohamed Ghannouchi, asked by the interim president to form a new government, called on opposition figures abroad to come home. Tunisia has had a strong secular tradition since its independence from France in 1956 and Islamist politicians have a much lower profile than in nearby countries such as Algeria or Egypt. There is some backing for moderate Islamist groups in Tunisia, but it is not clear how much because supporters hid their sympathies to avoid arrest. Tunisia is planning to hold a new presidential election no later than two months from now. In the interim, a number of opposition figures who were harassed, marginalized and forced into exile under Ben Ali are expected to try to establish themselves as mainstream politicians. — Reuters

human rights record. He portrayed Ben Ali’s counter-terrorism efforts as a shield against the emergence of a “Talebantype” regime in north Africa. “Who could believe that if tomorrow, or after tomorrow, a Taleban type regime was established in one of your countries in north Africa, that Europe and France could feel secure? I call on everyone to reflect on that,” he said. Michael Willis, lecturer in North African politics at Oxford University, said France was “undoubtedly the Worst” in indulging Ben Ali’s rule, but many other Western nations were complicit. A speech by US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Qatar on Jan 13 pressing for better government in the region has been seen by some analysts as evidence that a rebalancing of US priorities in the region was on the cards. Clinton said states across the Middle East needed to shake up corrupt institutions and reinvigorate stagnant political systems or risk losing the future to Islamic militants. But Roger Cressey, a former counterterrorism adviser to Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush., said he did not expect a wholesale reassessment of security links to Arab states “because the terrorism threat is still so current and urgent.” Western governments had to balance short term tactical imperatives like cooperation against al Qaeda versus the long term policy goals of pushing socio-political reforms. “The US wants both, but the ‘here and now’ terrorism concerns often trump other policy priorities,” he said. Geoff Porter, an independent US specialist on north Africa, said he actually expected a toughening, not a weakening, of existing US and European security ties to Arab states. — Reuters

Koalas and kangaroos victims of Aussie floods by Eric Bernaudeau nakes clung to floating debris, crocodiles lurked near homes and sharks swam the streets in Australia’s epic floods-but many more animals died in the deluge, experts say. The devastating floods that smashed through the nation’s northeast would have drowned wombats in their burrows, trapped and starved kangaroos in waterlogged paddocks, and deprived many other creatures of food and habitat. The rushing waters, which swept away koalas, lizards and frogs and seethed with snakes, could also have a long-lasting impact on the country’s unique wildlife, the Australian Veterinary Association has warned. “The immediate thing is that many would have died,” wildlife expert Robert Johnson told AFP. “But the long-term thing is that the ones that would have survived, they don’t have much of a habitat.” Many animals-particularly young kangaroos and wallabies-will likely die over the coming months after falling prey to parasites as they deal with the stresses of their resting and feeding places being wiped out, he said. The dirty brown floodwaters would have also washed away eggs laid by turtles along the Queensland coast and threatened the habitats of frogs-meaning numbers will be profoundly reduced this year. Torrential rains that have affected an area the size of France and Germany combined over recent weeks, have also washed the nectar off flowers needed by flying foxes to survive, meaning many will be left to fend for themselves as mothers lack the energy to feed them, Johnson added. — AFP





South Sudan in the throes of change Nuba peoples hope their day will come by Simon Martelli stronghold of south Sudan’s former rebels even though it lies north, Kauda in the Nuba mountains is a poor town whose indigenous peoples hope they too may one day be free from Arab rule. Two stone churches on the road leading into town and a litter of pigs running across the path beside a thatched house are just two signs that mark the area as culturally distinct from the rest of Sudan’s mostly Arab, Muslim north. Yunan Al-Barot heads the local branch of the former rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement which led the south to a 2005 peace agreement with the government in Khartoum and a week-long independence referendum whose votes were being counted yesterday. “We in Sudan, we have different ethnic groups, with a wide variety of languages. So the Muslim Arabs in the north, they want to implement sharia (Islamic law). But when (the late SPLM leader) John Garang fought, he fought for a new vision, for a new secular Sudan,” he said. The Nuba branch of the SPLM joined the southern rebels in 1987, just four years into the devastating 22-year civil war with Khartoum, and established Kauda as its headquarters. Sitting on a broken plastic chair outside his pre-fabricated office compound, Barot admitted that the region was badly in need of development. “You saw there was no paved road from


A general view shows the restive town of Abyei on the Sudanese north-south border. — AFP

(the South Kordofan state capital) Kadugli to Kauda. If you see some concrete buildings here, most of them were built by NGOs. There is no electricity,” he added. But like others from the many non-Arab tribes of the region that rub shoulders in Kauda, Barot believes such problems have resulted from decades of neglect by Khartoum and that greater autonomy is the answer. He was speaking just hours before a demonstration on Saturday that saw large crowds chanting anti-government slogans

and waving SPLM flags in a festive atmosphere that could have been a referendum rally of the kind seen in the south earlier this month. South Kordofan and Blue Nile, both in the north but with large non-Arab communities, were accorded special status under the 2005 peace deal that ended the north-south civil war. Like the Nuba mountains, the southern half of Blue Nile has a large non-Arab population and remains under SPLM control. The state as a whole has an SPLM governor, the only one in the north to do so.

Governor Malik Agar said the state’s population had contributed heavily in the southern fight for freedom but stressed that that did not mean that they begrudged the region’s looming independence without them. “What is happening in southern Sudan is not something that is coming out from the blue, they (the people of Blue Nile) have also contributed to it,” he told AFP. “They have been fighting hand in hand with the south in the same trenches, and up to now some of them are still in south Sudan. So there is no surprise that makes people bitter or sour.” Under the peace agreement, both areas are due to hold so-called popular consultations on their status. South Kordofan is also due to hold state elections, now scheduled for April. “We believe the popular consultation is a good mechanism to resolve the rest of the issues of the Sudan, revisiting the establishment of the Sudanese state to suit the diversity of the Sudanese, whether that is religious diversity, whether that is economic diversity,” Afar said. “Of course (when it concerns) the aspiration of the people, the sky is the limit. But what is negotiable is negotiable ... we will see what is reasonable and what is attainable.” In Kauda, mistrust of the National Congress Party of President Omar al-Bashir remains endemic. During Saturday ’s protest, one of at least three in South Kordofan, more than 1,000 people

Haunted by violence, Iraqi Christians flee to Turkey by Nicolas Cheviron errorized by mounting extremist attacks, more and more Iraqi Christians are fleeing in panic to neighboring Muslim-majority Turkey, among them lone minors sent away by desperate parents. In Istanbul, a tiny Chaldean Catholic community has embraced the refugees, serving as their first point of shelter before the United Nations or local civic groups extend a helping hand. The number of arrivals, available statistics show, has sharply increased since October 31 when gunmen stormed a Baghdad church, killing 44 worshippers, two priests and seven security guards, in an attack claimed by Al-Qaeda’s local affiliate. “We saw many newcomers after the attack. We saw they had made no preparation and had no savings,” said Gizem Demirci, an activist at the Association for Solidarity with Asylum-Seekers and Migrants. “Moreover, we began to receive minors... whose families are still in Iraq but had just enough money to send away a son or a daughter,” she added without offering any specific figures. The violence prompted an emergency summit by Iraq’s top Muslim clergy in Copenhagen this week that issued a fatwa Friday that “condemns all atrocities against the Christians,” said Andrew White, a participant and British vicar at St. George’s Church in Baghdad. The Shiite and Sunni religious leaders, who gathered at Denmark’s initiative, urged Baghdad to criminalize


inciting religious hatred and to “put the issue on the agenda of the next Arab Summit” to be held in the Iraqi capital in March, White told AFP in Copenhagen. In Istanbul, among the newest refugees is 21-yearold Sandra, whose family fled Baghdad in midNovember, alarmed by the church carnage and ensuing threats by Islamist extremists. Christians represent less than two percent of the population in Muslimmajority Iraq. “Some of our neighbors were killed in that attack,” Sandra told AFP at the Chaldean Catholic Church in Istanbul. “At any time, it would have been our turn, the turn of our church.” Her father, a cook, made the decision to flee when the family felt the menace had reached their doorstep. “We were at home with my mother and sister. At about 10:30 pm, some men stormed in and made us lie down. They told us: ‘Either you become Muslims or you go. Otherwise we kill you’,” Sandra recounted. In her dreams, Australia is the final destination in a journey to a new life. Going back home is not even an option. “Going back to what? Getting killed?” she grumbled. For Israel Hannah too, Iraq is now a lost homeland after an arson burnt down his grocery, destroying also any remaining resolve he had to stand strong and carry on. The 61-year-old looks forward to a new start, probably in North America or Australia, as he already savors the little joys of tranquil life in Istanbul, where a modest, tiny flat accommodates his five-member family. “You feel free any time. You go to church at any time

on Sundays, or you visit this or that. We feel safe and we are thanking God,” he said, still astonished at having celebrated Christmas in broad daylight, amid Muslim neighbors. The Chaldean Catholic Archbishop of Istanbul is alarmed over the rising number of refugees, stressing they now come even from the country’s relatively peaceful Kurdish-majority north that used to serve as a safe haven. But Archbishop Francois Yakan said some southern Iraqi Christians who had fled to the north no longer feel safe there, either. According to church records, some 150 Christian families, or more than 600 people, arrived in Turkey in December, almost the same as during the whole of 2009. “What worries us is that Christians in northern Iraq too are now scared. There are now people who come from Arbil, Zakho and Sulaimaniyah,” the archbishop said, referring to three cities in Iraq’s Kurdish autonomous region. “These are people who lived in peace previously,” he said. For migrants’ activist Demirci, the October bloodshed at the Baghdad church was the landmark event that fuelled the exodus. “They were scared and left just like that,” she said of the Iraqi Christians. Figures by the Turkey office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees tend to confirm the trend: the number of asylum applications by Iraqi Christians has more than doubled in three monthsfrom 183 in October to 428 in December. — AFP

Struggling Haiti faces crucial week in politics by Sebastian Smith he tears have barely dried from Haiti’s earthquake anniversary and now the deeply troubled Caribbean country faces the urgent task this week of defusing an explosive election crisis. Yesterday was supposed to have been the day Haitians voted in a runoff to chose a new president to lead them through the most challenging period in their history. However, the runoff was postponed after the first round ended in bitter dispute. Instead, candidates, election officials, the government and international experts were spending the weekend debating which candidates should even appear on the ballot. At the center of the debate is a set of recommendations from the Organization of American States, a regional body, that was handed to President Rene Preval on Thursday. The report has yet to be published but a leaked copy revealed that the OAS is pushing for Preval’s preferred candidate, Jude Celestin, to drop from the race. According to the OAS, Celestin’s vote tally in a chaotic first round of the election in November was padded by fraud so that in reality he placed not second, but only third. Reshuffling the results would put his rival Michel Martelly, a popular singer, into second place to challenge on Mirlande Manigat in the runoff. Manigat, a former first lady, garnered 31 percent of the vote among 19 candidates in the first round. Accepting this is thought to be difficult for Preval, who had hoped to see an ally take over his job. In Haiti’s turbulent, often deadly politics, an ex-president needs all the security guarantees he can get. International pressure is mounting on Preval to back the OAS recommendations and for Celestin to quit. “Now it’s time to recognize the consequences of the definitive results of the first round of voting so that they reflect the choice expressed by voters,” French Foreign


Officials in the Haitian capital Port-au-Prince sparked fear, confusion-and some hope-when they began closing down a tent camp for earthquake victims. Evicted families sat on muddy ground in Place St Pierre, next to piles of cooking pots and bundles of clothes. —AFP

Ministry spokesman Bernard Valero said. But in a country with a long history of dictators, coups, and bloody street protests, the will of the voters is easily drowned out. Only hours after the OAS report had been handed in, armed men clashed with police and set fire to gasoline-drenched tires in several parts of the capital Port-au-Prince. Although order was quickly restored, the unrest served as a warning. The coming week could prove pivotal. The head of the OAS mission, Colin Granderson, said talks between monitors and the government “will wrap up early next week and the report will be pub-

lished at that time.” Once the government has finished with the report, it will be passed to the Provisional Electoral Council, which has the authority to decide which candidateCelestin or Martelly-will face Manigat in the runoff. “The CEP should receive this report very shortly,” Councilor Ginette Cherubin told Le Nouvelliste newspaper Saturday. In a long interview, she gave little indication of the council’s position. “The electoral institution will certainly take these recommendations into account,” she said. “How much-all or just partly? That will

only be possible to say after the analysis.” Cherubin said “the CEP is under pressure to find an adequate response.” But in an indication of the defensiveness of Haitian officials in this tense period, she lashed out at “certain foreign partners” for making statements that were “very provocative and with strong neo-colonialist overtones.” The task facing the next president is unenviable. Haiti’s economy and infrastructure, already in tatters before last year’s earthquake, are in desperate condition. Haiti is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere with 80 percent of its population living in poverty. — AFP

marched to the United Nations compound to hand over a memorandum accusing the government of delaying the state election, rigging the registration process and failing to meet its commitments under the peace deal. Walid Ali, 33, runs a community radio station in Kauda funded by USAID and which broadcasts in English, Arabic and Atoro, one of the local languages. “When we talk to people about belonging to the north, they say: ‘No, because we have belonged to the north for 55 years, but nothing has been done for us.’ There is no development here and people are suffering from so many things,” Ali said. “We really feel neglected. Khartoum is like a wonderful world. But here it’s like a village on a hill.” Ali said he was saddened by the looming prospect of the secession of the south, because it will divide Sudan, which he believes will disadvantage the Nuba peoples. “But I am also happy, because when people need something and they get it, that is right. I will be happy for the people of southern Sudan because they have their freedom.” Despite the ambitions of the Nuba people to win freedom for themselves, and for all the foreign aid and UN support, it is hard to see Kauda transforming itself into a prosperous town any time soon. The SPLM’s Yunan al-Barot says if the area is free, prosperity will follow. “When you are free, you can use your own resources to do whatever you want.” —AFP


Miliband struggles at head of British oppn By Nathalie Auriol

aving beaten his higher-profile brother to win the leadership of Britain’s opposition Labour Party, Ed Miliband has made a stumbling start in his first 100 days in charge. When Labour retained its seat in a byelection in northwest England on Friday it was a rare piece of good news for Miliband as he Britain’s opposition struggles to put Labor Labour Party Ed on a new path after Miliband defeat in May’s general election ended 13 years in power. The victory in Oldham and Saddlesworth was “a first step in a long journey for Labour”, Miliband said-and the same applies to him personally. Opinion polls show that the centre-left party once led by Tony Blair and Gordon Brown has overtaken the two parties locked in an unusual coalition, the Conservatives of Prime Minister David Cameron and the Liberal Democrats. But Miliband, who became Labour’s youngest ever leader when he took over in September aged 40, has failed to profit from a backlash against the coalition’s policies of deep spending cuts and tax rises to help reduce a record deficit. One recent poll showed 42 percent of voters thought he was doing a bad job. In a radio phonein, he was assailed by disgruntled callers who accused him of being too laid-back and lacking passion, while one accused him of “treading all over your brother to get to the top”. Miliband was elected thanks to the support of the trade unions-key contributors to the party’s finances-beating his older brother David, who won plaudits in his role as foreign minister in Brown’s last Labor government. The surprise victory only intensified the focus on Ed. “It was kind of an unfortunate start,” said Steven Fielding, politics professor at Nottingham University. “He was painted as being in the pocket of the trade unions and being very left-wing and to be associated with the trade unions is not a very good thing.” Ed Miliband is also closely associated in the minds of many voters with the unpopular Brown, having worked for him as an advisor earlier in his career. Fielding told AFP that Labour are also hampered by the knowledge that they need to attack the government, while bearing in mind that they might need to form a coalition with the Liberal Democrats if they want to return to power. The centre-left Liberals are considered more natural political partners for Labour than the centreright Conservatives, and Miliband reached out to disaffected Lib Dems in a speech Saturday, urging them to work with Labour to defeat controversial coalition policies. Miliband has tried to seize the initiative by promising to carry out a complete review of Labour’s policies over a two-year period, starting with a “blank page”, and has stressed that life in opposition “is a long haul”. But his performance so far has done little to silence those within Labor who want to see a stronger brand of leadership. In the disastrous phone-in on BBC radio, he admitted that when thousands of demonstrators gathered in London to protest against sharp rises in tuition fees for university students, “I was quite tempted to go out and talk to them.” Asked why he did not, he replied: “I think I was doing something else at the time, actually.” In the weekly sessions of prime minister’s questions, Miliband has found it hard to score points over Cameron, who has taunted his opponent over his relatively low profile. — AFP




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Death sentence to Egypt Copt killer

Workers are seen at a new housing development in the neighborhood of Gilo in Jerusalem, yesterday. Israeli authorities said yesterday they are moving ahead with a new proposal to build 1,400 apartments in a contested part of Jerusalem, enraging Palestinians who denounced the plan as another settler land grab.—AP

Plan for 1,400 flats in contested Jerusalem JERUSALEM: Israeli authorities said yesterday they are moving ahead with a new proposal to build 1,400 apartments in a contested part of Jerusalem, enraging Palestinians who denounced the plan as another settler land grab. Palestinians have already broken off peace talks with Israel for refusing to halt construction in east Jerusalem and the West Bank. They claim these areas, which Israel captured in 1967, and the Hamasruled Gaza Strip for a future state. Jewish settlement construction has angered the United States as well. Jerusalem officials confirmed they were aware of the plan, but would not say when the city’s planning committee, which needs to approve such projects, would vote on it. “Jerusalem City Hall continues to advance construction for Arabs and Jews alike according to the master plan,” the spokesman’s office said. “New construction in Jerusalem is necessary to the development of the city.” Israel annexed east Jerusalem after the 1967 Mideast war and claims the entire city as its capital. The international community has never recognized the annexation, and the Palestinians hope to make east Jerusalem the capital of their future state. The latest plan, to build 1,400 apartments in the existing Jewish neighborhood of Gilo, is being promoted by the Jerusalem Development Authority, a joint corporation of the Israeli government and the Jerusalem municipality. Gilo is a sprawling development of some 40,000 people on Jerusalem’s southern edge, built on lands captured in 1967. Although construction would likely not begin for years, the Palestinians said the new plan undermined hopes for peace. “This proves our point that the Israeli government has chosen settlements and not peace,” said senior Palestinian official Saeb Erekat. He urged the US “to hold the Israeli government fully responsible” for the breakdown in peace talks and to

support an upcoming Palestinian initiative to get a UN Security Council condemnation of Israeli settlement construction. Erekat said Palestinian officials would be meeting with European leaders, whom they hope to persuade to support the move at the UN. Word of the plan also elicited a new round of US condemnation. “We find unilateral actions of this sort to be counterproductive in efforts to get sides to negotiate on the core issues,” US Embassy spokesman Kurt Hoyer said. Last week, the US harshly criticized Israel for demolishing a historic hotel in an Arab neighborhood of east Jerusalem to make way for 20 apartments for Jews. If approved, the Gilo project would create territorial contiguity between the Gush Etzion settlement bloc south of Jerusalem and the city itself, said Meir Margalit, a Jerusalem councilman from the dovish Meretz Party. He predicted it would take years to build the project, which would also require Interior Ministry approval, but warned it would nonetheless damage peace prospects. Since talks broke down in September, the US has been trying to find a compromise formula to bring the sides back to the negotiating table. “I hope (the plan) will roil the Americans and shake them out of their coma,” Margalit said. “If there is any chance to bring the Palestinians back to negotiations, then we have to stop this project.” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office refused to comment on the project, noting only that Netanyahu believes Jewish and Arab residents of Jerusalem should be free to live wherever they want in the city. Some 200,000 Jews now live in Israeli neighborhoods that ring east Jerusalem, including Gilo. While Israel considers these areas neighborhoods of the capital, the Palestinians and the international community consider such developments to be illegal settlements, no different from those in the West Bank. —AP

QENA, Egypt: A Muslim man was condemned to death in south Egypt yesterday for the January 2010 slaying of six Copts after Christmas mass, a year before a suicide bomber killed 21 people outside a Coptic church. A Muslim policeman also died when three gunmen in a car raked worshippers emerging from mass with bullets in Nagaa Hammadi, near the southern town of Qena, on January 6, 2010. The court referred Mohammed Ahmad Hossein, also known as Hamam Kammouni, to the country’s top government cleric, a legal formality before the court can announce a death sentence. The Qena state security court said it would also announce verdicts against the two other Muslim suspects, Qorshi Abul Haggag and Hendawi Sayyed, on February 20. All three had pleaded innocent to charges of carrying out the attack. Lawyers and reporters were promptly ushered out of the court after the brief decision was read to the three defendants, who were confined in a large black cage. Alaa Abu Zeid, a lawyer for one of the defendants, said he believed the latest attacks against Copts that raised religious tensions in the country had influenced the court’s decision. “The circumstances Egypt is passing through had an effect on this decision,” he told reporters outside the courtroom. Copts clashed with police and rioted after a suicide bomber killed 21 people outside a church in the northern city of Alexandria after a New Year’s Eve mass at the start of 2011. The protests died down amid appeals for calm by Muslim and Christian officials, but the peace was threatened again when an off-duty Muslim policeman killed an elderly

Copt and wounded five others in a train shooting last week. Kamal Nashed, the father of one of the victims, said he welcomed the verdict, but he had hoped it would have come sooner. “ The decision is fair,” he told reporters outside the courtroom. “I wish it would have come sooner, to prevent the other incidents” by setting an example, he said. Before the Alexandria bombing, the Nagaa Hammadi attack had been the deadliest of its kind since 2000 when 20 Copts were killed in sectarian clashes. Coptic Bishop Kirolos of Nagaa Hammadi welcomed the ruling and said his flock were “satisfied.” A Qena prosecutor charged the three suspects arrested two days after the attack with “premedi-

tated murder, putting the lives of citizens in danger, and damage to public and private property.” The killings near Qena sparked outrage among Egypt’s Copts and led to clashes with police. International condemnation poured in, with the United States protesting at “an atmosphere of intolerance” in Egypt. Egyptian officials denied a sectarian element in the attack, insisting it was a purely criminal act and linking it to the alleged rape of a Muslim girl by a Coptic man. The unclaimed Alexandria bombing against the Copts, who mark Christmas on January 7, led to a diplomatic rift between the Vatican and Cairo, which earlier this month recalled its envoy to the Holy See. —AFP

Qaeda’s Awlaqi renews call to kill Americans DUBAI: US-Yemeni radical cleric Anwar Al-Awlaqi has renewed a call to strike the American government and citizens, the SITE monitoring agency said yesterday. “Both the (US) government and private citizens should be targeted,” he wrote in the latest edition of Inspire, the English-language e-magazine issued by Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), US-based SITE said. “America and Americans are the imams of kufr (leaders of disbelief ) in this day and age,” Awlaqi said. “The American people who vote for war-mongering governments are intent on no good. Anyone who inflicts harm on them in any form is doing a favor to the ummah (Islamic nation),” he added. Awlaqi also said it was permissible to snatch the wealth of the enemy through deception and urged Muslims to use stolen money to fund jihad, or holy war, SITE said. The cleric, wanted in the United States on terrorism charges, in November called for the killing of Americans “without hesitation.” “Do not consult anyone in killing Americans,” Awlaqi said in a 23-minute video posted at the time on jihadist websites. Yemen, the ancestral homeland of Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and headquarters of AQAP, has been under intense pressure from Washington to hunt down Awlaqi. He was charged in October in Yemen with alleged ties with Al-Qaeda and incitement to kill foreigners. — AFP

PRESSURE PILES ON GOVT TO RELIEVE... Continued from Page 1 In the beginning, the interior ministry denied the man had been tortured. Sheikh Jaber on Thursday submitted his resignation to the prime minister after the ministry said that a medical commission established a criminal suspicion behind the man’s death. The ministry also referred an unspecified number of policemen to the public prosecution for investigation before officially pressing charges against them that could be as grave as premeditated murder for which they could receive death sentence. Islamist MP Mohammad Hayef said after the meeting that he asked the committee to summon a Kuwaiti citizen who was detained at Ahmadi police station three months ago and was tortured by policemen there. Controversy continued however over the resignation of the interior minister with the opposition calling

on the Prime Minister to accept his resignation and pro-government MPs saying the resignation should be rejected. The National Democratic Alliance called on the Prime Minister to immediately accept the resignation of the Interior Minister because he is politically responsible for the crime and regardless of taking the legal measures. Liberal MP Saleh Al-Mulla welcomed the minister’s resignation but added that he is politically responsible for the crime and his resignation must be accepted. But pro-government MP Ali AlRashed said Sheikh Jaber is a reformist minister and the leadership should assist him to continue with his reforms and accordingly his resignation should not be accepted. Islamist MP Daifallah Buramia meanwhile warned the interior ministry from trying to manipulate the murder of Mutairi by trying to hold only small policemen responsible for the crime.

He said that all those responsible for the crime must be punished including senior officers. In another development, liberal MPs strongly warned Education Minister Mudhi Al-Humoud against politicizing the appointment of a new university rector. MP Saleh Al-Mulla said he has received information that the minister is under pressure to appoint certain people who do not qualify and warned her against such a measure. MP Aseel Al-Awadhi and Ghanem also issued a similar warnings with Ghanem saying that some corrupt forces were trying to force the appointment of their man to the highest post at Kuwait University. The interior ministry meanwhile warned people against holding gatherings or organizing demonstrations at public places which is illegal under the law as the Fifth Fence group has called for a major gathering in Kuwait City today to press for the resignation of the Interior Minister.

Gunbattle at Tunisian palace as crisis... Continued from Page 1

JUBA: South Sudanese President Salva Kiir, center, hugs Catholic Archbishop Paulino Lukudu following a church service at Juba, Southern Sudan, yesterday.—AP

SOUTH VOTES FOR SUDAN SECESSION Continued from Page 1 “The sight of so many Sudanese casting their votes in a peaceful and orderly fashion was an inspiration to the world and a tribute to the determination of the people and leaders of south Sudan to forge a better future,” the statement said. In Juba, Catholic Archbishop Paulino Lukudu said yesterday: “What we have in front of us is peace.” An AP review of results at 10 sites in the south’s capital of Juba found that almost 96 percent of the almost 30,000 ballots cast were for secession. About 3 percent were for unity and the rest were invalid. That’s only a small sample of the approximately 3.2 million votes cast, but almost all observers believe the south voted for secession. The refer-

endum needs to pass by a simple majority. Results won’t be certified until any appeals are heard in early February. “My reaction is just happiness,” said Okula Thomas, a 24-yearold university student who waits tables at an Ethiopian restaurant. “We are going to get our freedom, we will get development, and life will change.” Sudan’s ruling party in the north said on Friday it was ready to accept southern independence. Border demarcation, oil rights and the status of the contested region of Abyei — the most difficult issue on the table — still have to be negotiated. Mohamed Ibrahim Khalil, the chairman of the south’s referendum commission, said 83 percent of those registered in the south and 53 percent of those registered in the north had cast

votes. Khalil said he believed the referendum would be judged as “a good result by any international standard,” noting that the commission set up the vote in four months. Poll workers at the more than 2,600 stations in Sudan worked overnight and often by candlelight. “We are ver y tired and ver y hungr y,” said Lonyik Roberts, 31, the lead poll worker at one of the Juba stations. “We continued counting throughout the night. We are waiting now for the referendum commission to collect the ballots.” Gonda Keffa, a poll worker at Juba University’s polling site, said his team began counting ballots at 8 pm on Saturday night and finished at 5:30 am on Sunday “We worked throughout the night,” said Keffa, 24. “That’s why you can see we are just feeling giddy.” — AP

main opposition party PDP’s headquarters, said party member Issam Chebbi. A large crowd swarmed the area in central Tunis after the incident and heavy security was deployed. Soon after the clash, repeated volleys of gunfire were heard close by near the Interior Ministry, once feared as a torture site. The battle was the fiercest clash yet this weekend. Before the gunbattle at PDP, police stopped, tackled and arrested a group of men in a taxi in front of the party headquarters, according to a video obtained by the AP. Four people were arrested, two Tunisians and two foreigners, Chebbi said. A rifle was seen in the vehicle. It was unclear if the arrests, the gunbattle at the PDP and the gunbattle near the Interior Ministry were linked. Dozens of people have died in a month of clashes between police and protesters angry about the repression and corruption under Ben Ali-unrest that ended his 23year regime. The interim president, former parliament speaker Fouad Mebazaa, has told the prime minister to create a national unity government and urged him to consult with the opposition, who were marginalized under Ben Ali. Presidential elections must be held in 60 days. Many Tunisians were especially overjoyed at the prospect of life without Ben Ali’s wife Leila Trabelsi and her family. US diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks had discussed the high

levels of nepotism and corruption displayed by her clan. But US State Department spokesman P J Crowley reject any notion that WikiLeaks disclosures led to the revolution in Tunisia, saying yesterday that Tunisians were already well aware of the graft, nepotism and lavish lifestyles of the former president and his relatives. Tunisian media reported one brother-in-law of the president, Imed Trabelsi, was attacked by an angry mob at Tunis airport and died. The reports could not be immediately confirmed. Businesses owned by Ben Ali’s family were targeted by looters, including the Zeitouna bank in Tunis founded by Ben Ali’s son-inlaw and vehicles made by Kia, Fiat and Porsche-brands distributed by members of the ruling family. Ordinary Tunisians concentrated on two key needs yesterday-food and security. Many scoured the capital for food. Most shops remained closed yesterday, others were looted and bread and milk were running short. “We’re starting to feel it now,” said Imed Jaound at the Tunis port, which has been closed since Friday. Fish mongers were selling 2- to 3day-old fish, said Ezzedine Gaesmi, a salesman at the indoor market in Tunis, where numerous stands were empty. “There’s no fresh fish. If it continues for two or three more days, we’ll close,” he said. Overnight patrols were being organized in both wealthy and working-class neighborhoods. Fatma Belaid

stayed up late to serve rounds of coffee to patrols in her section of Tunis. “Everyone participates as he can,” she said. A well-known human rights advocate returned home to the embattled-but in many ways, hopeful-country. Souhayr Belhassen, president of the International Federation of Human Rights, said her long-repressed countrymen appear poised for unprecedented freedoms. “We can start to hope,” agreed Nejib Chebbi, a founder of the opposition PDP party. But he said the key question is whether a new government will be pluralistic or again dominated by Ben Ali’s RCD party. “If the RCD is dominant, we’re not out of the woods,” he said. Hundreds of stranded tourists were still being evacuated yesterday from the Mediterranean nation known for its wide beaches, deserts and ancient ruins. The downfall of the 74-year-old Ben Ali, who had taken power in a bloodless coup in 1987, served as a warning to other autocratic leaders in the Arab world. The self-immolation and death of a despairing, unemployed 26-year-old university graduate last month triggered the protests, and social media like Facebook and Twitter were used to spin general anger into outright revolt. In Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his Cabinet yesterday the unrest in Tunisia illustrated the widespread instability plaguing the region and underscored the need for strong security arrangements in any future peace deal with the Palestinians. —AP



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‘Lion of Vienna’ Lofthouse dies LONDON: Former England international Nat Lofthouse has died aged 85, his old club Bolton announced on their website yesterday. Lofthouse, who scored 30 goals in his 33 appearances for England, died peacefully in his sleep at a nursing home in Bolton, northwest England, on Saturday night, the statement said. Lofthouse — who earned the nickname ‘Lion of Vienna’ for his performance in England’s 3-2 win over Austria in 1952 — made more than 450 appearances for the Trotters, scoring 285 goals for the club between 1946 and 1960, and four years ago was voted Bolton’s greatest ever player. Lofthouse, who was footballer of the year in 1953, captained Bolton in two FA Cup finals — both of them memorable for different reasons. His first was in 1953 which became known as the ‘Matthews final’ as Sir Stanley Matthews - ably assisted by Stanley Mortensen - inspired Blackpool to a stunning 4-3 victory. —AFP

Call to double doping bans MADRID: Spain’s athletics federation (RFEA) has called for bans for drug cheats to be doubled to four years. The federation would “ask the competent authorities and organisations” to modify the rules and extend the ban period for the use or promotion of illegal drugs, it said in a statement yesterday after a meeting of its board. The RFEA also threw its support behind the advent of biological passports for athletes, saying in the statement it would “take the necessary steps, together with the competent organisations, for (their) introduction”. The initiatives come after several

Tendulkar out of ODIs

Spanish athletes and coaches, including world steeplechase champion Marta Dominguez, were implicated in a police investigation into doping dubbed “Operation Greyhound”. Dominguez, who denied any wrongdoing, is suspected of involvement in the trafficking of drugs and crimes against public health and has been suspended from her post as a vice president of the RFEA. Biological passports can help to catch drug cheats by measuring and monitoring selected markers, whose abnormal variations could indicate doping.—Reuters

MUMBAI: India’s Sachin Tendulkar has been ruled out of the last three one-day internationals against South Africa due to a hamstring injury, the Indian cricket board said yesterday. Wicketkeeper Parthiv Patel, who has opened for India in ODIs in the past, will fly to South Africa as Tendulkar’sreplacement, the Board of Control for Cricket in India said in a statement. Tendulkar, who holds almost all of cricket’s batting records, injured his hamstring during his 24-run knock in the second ODI against South Africa on Saturday, which India won by a run to level the five-match series 1-1. On Saturday, the right-handed batsman equalled Sri Lankan Sanath Jayasuriya’s record of 444 ODIs. Regular openers Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir, and paceman Praveen Kumar, have already been ruled out of the series due to injuries. Selectors meet on Monday to pick the 15-member squad for the Feb. 19-April 2 World Cup in India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. —Reuters

NASHVILLE: Goalie Pekka Rinne No. 35 of the Nashville Predators makes a stop against Patrick Sharp No.10 of the Chicago Blackhawks on a breakaway at the Bridgestone Arena.—

Penguins trounce Bruins, Blue Jackets fall BOSTON: Jordan Staal scored in the third period to help the Pittsburgh Penguins beat Boston Bruins 3-2 Saturday and avoid another collapse against the Bruins. Five days after giving up four goals in the final 3:23 to hand a victory to Boston, the Penguins blew another two-goal lead before recovering to win without Sidney Crosby for just the second time in five games. Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 44 shots for his 20th win of the season. Tuukka Rask made 33 saves for the Bruins, and Dennis Seidenberg and Michael Ryder scored 13 seconds apart in the second period to erase a 2-0 deficit. But Staal backhanded a loose puck in front past Rask to make it 3-2. Chris Kunitz and Pascal Dupuis also scored for the Penguins. Red Wings 6, Blue Jackets 5 In Detroit, Johan Franzen scored 45 seconds into overtime to give Detroit a win over Columbus. Drew Miller had a goal and two assists, and Jonathan Ericsson and Kris Draper each added a goal and an assist for Detroit. Joey MacDonald made 24 saves. Rick Nash had a goal and two assists, and Derick Brassard and Grant Clitsome posted a goal and an assist each for Columbus. Steve Mason stopped 28 shots. Canadiens 3, Rangers 2 In Montreal, Roman Hamrlik and Tomas Plekanec scored power-play goals as Montreal blitzed the New York Rangers with three goals in the first period. James Wisniewski assisted on both power-play goals. He set up Hamrlik’s tying goal 13:19 in and Plekanec’s 14th goal, which made it 2-1, at 14:50. Andrei Kostitsyn also scored for Montreal. Carey Price made 31 saves for the Canadiens. Montreal is on a 5-1-1 run. Mats Zuccarello drew the Rangers within one 6:57 into the third. Brian Boyle added his careerbest 15th goal for New York. Henrik Lundqvist stopped 38 shots for the Rangers, who scored just one goal in each of their previous two games. Islanders 5, Sabres 3 In Uniondale, New York, John Tavares scored three goals for his second NHL hat trick, and Rick DiPietro made 40 saves to help the New York Islanders beat Buffalo and end a three-game losing streak. DiPietro played for the first time since he injured a groin during New York’s five-game road trip. Blake Comeau and Michael Grabner also scored for New York, 9-4-2 in its last 15 games. Tomas Vanek, Tyler Ennis and Jochen Hecht scored for the Sabres, who got 32 saves from Ryan Miller. Panthers 3, Devils 2 In Sunrise, Florida, Dmitry Kulikov fired a high wrist shot past Martin Brodeur 3:36 into overtime as Florida topped New Jersey for its third straight win. Dennis Wideman and Evgeny Dadonov scored power-play goals for the Panthers. Former Devils goalie Scott Clemmensen made his second straight start

and stopped 33 shots. Nick Palmieri and David Clarkson scored for New Jersey. Brodeur had 19 saves. Hurricanes 6, Lightning 4 In Raleigh, North Carolina, Jussi Jokinen scored two goals to lift Carolina over Tampa Bay. Jokinen scored on a second-period power play and added an empty-net goal with 7 seconds left. Eric Staal’s 22nd of the season capped a three-goal second period for Carolina, which is 7-2-2 in its last 11 games. Simon Gagne scored twice for Tampa Bay, which has lost four of six. Coyotes 6, Ducks 2 In Glendale, Arizona, Ray Whitney scored two goals and added an assist to help Phoenix beat Anaheim. Lee Stempniak had a goal and two assists, Adrian Aucoin and Sami Lepisto each added a goal and assist, and Taylor Pyatt also scored for the Coyotes, who won their fourth straight. Phoenix is 6-0-1 in its past seven and has risen from 11th place to fourth in the Western Conference. Matt Beleskey and Corey Perry scored for the Ducks, whose three-game winning streak was lost. Stars 6, Thrashers 1 In Dallas, Trevor Daley had his first two-goal game in the NHL as Dallas beat Atlanta. Kari Lehtonen stopped 29 shots in his first appearance against his former team. Lehtonen, the No. 2 pick in the 2002 draft, played for the Thrashers from 2003 until he was traded to the Stars last year. James Neal also had a two-goal game for the Stars, who have won seven straight on the road but are only 2-3-2 in their last seven at home. Andrew Ladd scored for Atlanta, 0-3-1 in its last four. Predators 3, Blackhawks 2 In Nashville, Tennessee, Marcel Goc scored the only goal in the shootout as Nashville rallied from a two-goal deficit after two periods to beat Chicago. Goc took the first shot in the shootout for Nashville, and goalie Pekka Rinne stopped Jonathan Toews and gloved away Patrick Kane’s shot. Patrick Sharp had a last chance, but his shot went wide. Nashville captain Shea Weber and Jerred Smithson scored less than four minutes apart in the third period. Tomas Kopecky scored a power-play goal, and Viktor Stalberg had a goal for Chicago. Sharks 4, Blues 2 In San Jose, California, Dany Heatley broke out of a scoring slump with a pair of goals that helped San Jose end a six-game losing streak with a victory over St. Louis. Joe Thornton also scored and added an assist to move past teammate Patrick Marleau for the top spot in Sharks history with 390. Antti Niemi made those goals stand up with 28 saves, giving last season’s Western Conference runners-up their first win since New Year’s Day in Los Angeles. San Jose had not earned a point in six

games, its longest stretch since the 1995-96 season. The Sharks also had lost six straight home games for their longest drought in nearly 14 years. BJ Crombeen and Erik Johnson scored for the Blues, who lost for the sixth time in seven games. Kings 5, Oilers 2 In Los Angeles, Jarret Stoll scored two goals to lead Los Angeles over Edmonton. Marco Sturm, Anze Kopitar and Drew Doughty also scored and Jonathan Bernier made 24 saves as the Kings completed a 2-6 homestand. Andrew Cogliano and Dustin Penner scored for the Oilers, who have the worst record in the Western Conference. They failed to score on five power plays and are 0 for 33 since Taylor Hall’s goal against the Kings on Dec. 23. Flames 2, Maple Leafs 1 In Toronto, Miikka Kiprusoff stopped 32 shots through overtime and then turned aside two of four shootout attempts to lift Calgary over Toronto. Olli Jokinen scored the deciding goal in the shootout for the Flames. Calgary’s Matt Stajan and Toronto’s Mikhail Grabovski traded third-period goals in the game that was scoreless after 40 minutes. Grabovski tied it with just 12.4 seconds left in regulation. —AP

NHL results/standings Vancouver 4, Washington 2; Columbus 3, Detroit 2 (SO); Calgary 3, Ottawa 2; Philadelphia 5, Atlanta 2; New Jersey 5, Tampa Bay 2. (SO = shootout victory) Eastern Conference Atlantic Division W L OTL GF Philadelphia 28 11 5 152 Pittsburgh 27 14 4 143 NY Rangers 26 16 3 128 NY Islanders 13 22 7 101 New Jersey 12 29 2 83 Northeast Division Boston 24 12 7 130 Montreal 24 17 3 109 Buffalo 19 19 5 118 Toronto 18 21 4 113 Ottawa 17 22 6 101 Southeast Division Tampa Bay 26 14 5 133 Washington 24 14 7 128 Atlanta 22 17 7 142 Carolina 21 16 6 129 Florida



GA 118 107 109 140 135

PTS 61 58 55 33 26

98 105 126 130 139

55 51 43 40 40

142 120 145 131

57 55 51 48

2 116 111


Western Conference Central Division Detroit 27 11 6 151 126 Nashville 23 14 6 113 101 Chicago 24 18 3 142 124 St. Louis 21 16 6 117 124 Columbus 21 20 3 113 136 Northwest Division Vancouver 29 9 6 149 105 Colorado 23 16 6 148 143 Minnesota 21 18 5 109 127 Calgary 19 20 5 120 131 Edmonton 14 21 7 108 143 Pacific Division Dallas 26 13 5 127 118 Phoenix 22 13 9 126 124 Anaheim 24 18 4 124 127 Los Angeles 23 19 1 127 111 San Jose 21 19 5 123 127

60 52 51 48 45 64 52 47 43 35 57 53 52 47 47

Note: Overtime losses (OTL) are worth one point in the standings and are not included in the loss column (L).

Goss wins criterium prelude to Tour Down Under cycle race

ADELAIDE: Lance Armstrong of the US prepares to take part in the 51 km Cancer Council Classic cycling race, part of the 2011 Tour Down Under.—AFP

ADELAIDE: Australian Matthew Goss won the criterium prelude to the Tour Down Under cycle race yesterday while Lance Armstrong started his last professional event outside the United States with a safe 68th-place finish. Goss beat his compatriot and HTC Highroad teammate Mark Renshaw by a second and Robbie McEwen of Armstrong’s Team RadioShack produced a remarkable ride for third after being stopped by a crash 500 meters from the finish. The crash brought down last year’s criterium winner Greg Henderson and disrupted tactical team rides that attempted to set up the race for glamour sprinters Mark Cavendish of Britain and Andre Greipel of Germany, the 2010 Tour Down Under champion. Goss and Renshaw avoided the chaos at the second to last corner that split the field of 133 riders and extinguished the chances of many of the race’s stars. McEwen, a 12-time stage winner at the Tour de France and a three-time winner of the tour’s sprint classification, distinguished his first ride for Armstrong’s team with his recovery from a seemingly impossible situation to share the podium with his fellow Australians. “It was a good result from the position I came from and promising for the rest of the week,” McEwen said. “Had it not happened, I reckon I could have won. But for the first result of the year and considering being stopped with 500 meters to go, it was as good as a win.” The race, over 30 laps of a 1.7-kilometer (1 mile) circuit in parkland near Adelaide’s business district, was led for the first 16 laps by a breakaway group of five riders including Spain’s Markel Irizar, Dane Martin Mortensen, and Alexandr Kuschynski of Belarus. The group stretched its lead to 35 seconds but the breakaway dwindled to three riders by the 17th lap and was eventually claimed by the peloton five laps from the finish. Jurgen Van De Walle and Olivier Kaisen of Greipel’s Omega Pharma-Lotto team and Bert Grabsch of Cavendish’s HTC-Highroad outfit rode boldly at the head of the peloton in the hope of setting up the race for their sprinters. —AP



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Bulls cool Heat, Grizzlies roll CHICAGO: Derrick Rose scored 34 points and Kyle Korver hit a crucial 3-pointer with 25 seconds left Saturday night as the Chicago Bulls withstood a stellar performance by Dwyane Wade to beat the Miami Heat 99-96. Miami, playing without injured LeBron James for a second consecutive game, lost its third straight despite a 33-point performance from Chicago native Wade, who scored 12 in the fourth quarter, including three straight 3-pointers to give the Heat the lead. The Heat’s Chris Bosh added 17, but hurt his ankle in the closing second of the third period when he went to the floor during a scramble for the ball. He returned to the game in the fourth but played only briefly before leaving the game.

HONOLULU: Stuart Appleby of Australia plays a shot on the 4th hole during the second round of the Sony Open at Waialae Country Club. —AFP

Maruyama and Appleby tied for lead at Waialae HONOLULU: Japan’s Shigeki Maruyama birdied four of his last seven holes to end the rain-delayed second round of the Sony Open in a tie for the lead with Stuart Appleby on Saturday. One stroke behind the pacesetting Appleby overnight, the ever-smiling Maruyama fired a five-under-par 65 in soft conditions at Waialae Country Club for a 10-under total of 130. The 41-year-old Japanese held a twoshot lead for much of the day before being caught in the afternoon by late starter Appleby, who finished birdiebirdie-birdie for a 66. Americans Steve Marino (67), Roland Thatcher (65) and Mark Wilson (67) were next best at eight under with U.S. Ryder Cup player Matt Kuchar and Britain’s Justin Rose among a group of six a further stroke back after carding matching 68s. With the scheduled first day’s play washed out by heavy rain on Thursday, organisers hope to finish the tournament with 36 holes late yesterday, giving Maruyama cause for concern. “I’m getting older and 36 holes is going to be a struggle tomorrow,” the three-times PGA Tour winner, who is playing this week on a sponsor’s exemption, told reporters. “So I’m just kind of taking it easy and letting it come. My feet, that’s a problem,” he added with a laugh. “I’ll be drinking a lot of water tomorrow and walking slowly.” Kuchar, who topped the 2010 PGA Tour’s money list, predicted an exciting finish to the rain-delayed tournament. “With 36 holes on Sunday, you can make a big move,” he said. “If you get on the right side of things early, you can move up and gain some big ground. Thatcher agreed, saying: “Anybody who’s made the cut has got a decent

chance to play for the championship tomorrow.” Maruyama, who won the last of his three Tour titles at the 2003 Greensboro Classic, mixed four birdies with two birdies to reach the turn in two-under 33 on Saturday. Although he dropped his third shot of the day at the par-four second, his 11th hole, he finished in style with birdies at the third, fourth, seventh, where he holed out from a greenside bunker, and ninth. “I’ve been lucky enough to play well these last two days,” said Maruyama, who is nicknamed the “Smilin’ Assassin” because of his beaming on-course demeanour. “My putting has been excellent and I’m driving the ball well. My golf game has really come together on both days. This course really fits my game.” Appleby, who opened with a 64 on Friday, was delighted to produce a strong finish for the second day in a row. “I felt like I was playing well but I hit a couple of sloppy shots,” said the Australian, who ended his round on the front nine. “The birdie I made on seven was a horrendous pulled six-iron, probably 100 feet or more from the hole, but I managed to get really lucky and chip it in.” Appleby then knocked in a two-footer at the eighth and a three-footer at the ninth to join Maruyama at the top. Among the other big names competing in the PGA Tour’s first full-field event of the season, American world number six Steve Stricker was at four under after shooting a 67 and 2005 winner Vijay Singh of Fiji at two under after a 68. The cut fell at one-under 139 with former champions Jim Furyk, fellow American Paul Goydos and South Korean KJ Choi among those who failed to advance. —Reuters

Schwartzel retains Joburg title JOHANNESBURG: A superb short game under mid-round pressure steered defending champion Charl Schwartzel to a final-round 67 in the Joburg Open yesterday and a four-shot triumph. The 26-year-old who shared the second and third-round leads pocketed 195,000 euros and became only the third South African after Ernie Els and Trevor Immelman to successfully defend a European Tour event. Garth Mulroy pipped fellow South African Thomas Aiken in the battle to come second, returning a par 71 to finish 15-under and one stroke ahead of his rival who closed with a 72 at Royal Johannesburg and Kensington Golf Club. The outcome meant young Aiken delayed by at least one week a visit to the barber as he has promised to shed his flowing black locks once he wins a tournament. “I had to dig deep after hitting my approach to the ninth too hard and making a bad bogey,” admitted world number 32 Schwartzel from the town of Vereeniging south of Johannesburg. “A lot of hard work has gone into my pitching and bunker practice lately and it rescued me today. My short game and putting earned me a second Joburg Open title. “Thomas (Aiken) and Garth (Mulroy) outplayed me on the back nine by producing some fantastic golf, but I kept managing to get the ball into the hole when it really mattered.” Victory was the icing on the cake for Schwartzel, who

has been consistently superb on the four-tournament South Africa leg of the Road to Dubai circuit, finishing second once and fourth twice before heading for Johannesburg. He entered the final round level on 15 under with Aiken and Mulroy and made a birdie-par-birdie start to take a two-stroke advantage and was one ahead of his playing partners by the turn. The tournament was won and lost over the next four holes as a series of wayward Schwartzel tee shots gave his rivals chances they could not grasp during a round played in light rain until the sun appeared in mid afternoon. After salvaging pars on 10, 11 and 12 by holing pressure putts, Schwartzel steered his bunker shot at 13 into the hole for a birdie three, a three-stroke lead, and never looked in danger of loosening his grip. Scot David Drysdale (77), who began the day just one shot off the pace, blew his chance of topping the leaderboard with a disastrous start that included a double bogey and two bogeys within four holes. Englishman Jamie Elson finished fourth after a closing 71, Frenchman Jean-Baptiste Gonnet fifth despite a one-over 72 and Scot Scott Jamieson sixth thanks to a 65, the best round of the final day. Crowd favorite Darren Clarke of Northern Ireland-outside the world top 100 but with top-50 ambitions-had a 69 to finish 13 strokes behind Schwartzel. —AFP

Grizzlies 89, Mavericks 70 In Memphis, Zach Randolph had 23 points and 20 rebounds, and Memphis ruined Dirk Nowitzki’s abbreviated return by beating Dallas. Darrell Arthur finished with 17 points on 6-of-8 shooting from the field, and Rudy Gay added 16 as the Grizzlies won their second straight and fifth in the last seven. Nowitzki, Dallas’ leading scorer with 24.1 points per game, returned after missing nine games with a sprained right knee. But he managed only seven points before being ejected in the third quarter as the Mavs were held to their lowest point total of the season and lost their fifth straight. Hornets 88, Bobcats 81 In Charlotte, David West had 26 points and eight rebounds as a weary New Orleans took advantage of Tyrus Thomas’ late ejection to beat Charlotte for its fourth straight victory. Chris Paul added 19 points in his return to his home state for the Hornets, who after playing their second straight overtime game didn’t arrive at their Charlotte hotel until 6:15 a.m. Saturday following travel problems. Thomas was ejected for elbowing Emeka Okafor in the face after grabbing a rebound with 2:38 left and New Orleans up 81-77. Okafor and West hit four straight free throws following the flagrant foul to put it away. Rockets 112, Hawks 106 In Atlanta, Aaron Brooks had 24 points and 10 assists, Luis Scola added 20 points as Houston beat Atlanta. Houston overcame a nine-point deficit in the third quarter after rookie forward Patrick Patterson left Philips Arena in an ambulance because of chest pain and congestion. Joe Johnson scored 30 points for Atlanta, which had a 10-game home winning streak ended. Kyle Lowry and Jordan Hill each scored 16 points for Houston, which ended a two-game slide. Magic 108, T’wolves 99 In Minneapolis, Jason Richardson scored 21 points to

CHICAGO: Derrick Rose No. 1 of the Chicago Bulls loses control of the ball as he is fouled by Juwan Howard (right) No.5 of the Miami Heat as Dwyane Wade (left) No. 3 of the Heat follows the action at the United Center. —AFP

NBA results/standings NBA results and standings on Saturday: Houston 112, Atlanta 106; Washington 98, Toronto 95; New Orleans 88, Charlotte 81; Detroit 110, Sacramento 106; Chicago 99, Miami 96; Orlando 108, Minnesota 99; Memphis 89, Dallas 70; Denver 127, Cleveland 99; Portland 96, New Jersey 89. Eastern Conference Atlantic Division W L PCT Boston 30 9 .769 NY Knicks 22 17 .564 Philadelphia 16 23 .410 Toronto 13 27 .325 New Jersey 10 30 .250 Chicago Indiana Milwaukee Detroit Cleveland

Central Division 27 13 .675 16 21 .432 14 23 .378 14 26 .350 8 32 .200

Miami Orlando Atlanta Charlotte Washington

Southeast Division 30 12 .714 26 14 .650 26 15 .634 15 23 .395 11 27 .289

lift Orlando over Minnesota. Dwight Howard had 16 points and nine rebounds and J.J. Redick scored 21 for the Magic, who ended a two-game skid and have now won 10 of their last 12. Corey Brewer had 23 points and five steals and Kevin Love had 11 points and 15 rebounds for the Timberwolves, who committed 12 turnovers in the second half to give away a 15-point lead. Wizards 98, Raptors 95 In Washington, Nick Young had his second big home game in a row, scoring 18 of his 29 points in the third quarter as Washington beat Toronto. Young didn’t match the 43 he posted against Sacramento four nights earlier, but he again ignited a Wizards team that continues to look decent at home and terrible on the road. Washington improve to 11-8 at the Verizon Center, hardly enough to offset its 0-19 mark on the road. Young made 10 of 19 field

GB 8 14 17.5 20.5

Western Conference Northwest Division Oklahoma City27 13 .675 Utah 27 13 .675 Denver 23 16 .590 Portland 21 20 .512 Minnesota 10 31 .244

3.5 6.5 17.5

9.5 11.5 13 19

LA Lakers Phoenix Golden State LA Clippers Sacramento

30 17 16 13 9

Pacific Division 11 .732 21 .447 23 .410 25 .342 29 .237

11.5 13 15.5 19.5

3 3.5 13 17

San Antonio Dallas New Orleans Memphis Houston

Southwest Division 34 6 .850 26 13 .667 25 16 .610 19 21 .475 18 23 .439

7.5 9.5 15 16.5

goals, including eight in a row at one point. He scored the Wizards’ first 13 points of the second half, all jumpers from at least 15 feet, and he went 5 for 6 from the free throw line in the final 18 seconds. Andrea Bargnani had 15 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter for the Raptors. Pistons 110, Kings 106 In Michigan, Tayshaun Prince scored 21 points, Rodney Stuckey added 19, and Detroit beat Sacramento. Detroit lost starting point guard Tracy McGrady to a shin injury in the first quarter, but even with the Pistons down a guard, Richard Hamilton was benched for the third straight game. Will Bynum added 17 for Detroit, which had six players in double figures. Nuggets 127, Cavaliers 99 In Denver, Nene scored 22 points, Chauncey Billups and Arron Afflalo each added 21 as Denver handed Cleveland its 19th

straight road loss. Cleveland kept it close early, even with only eight players available due to a rash of injuries and Ryan Hollins missing the game because of a death in the family. But the Nuggets went on a 4318 run early in the second quarter to turn the game into a blowout. Ramon Sessions scored 21 points and Antawn Jamison added 17 for the Cavs, who dropped their 13th straight game. Trail Blazers 96, Nets 89 In Portland, LaMarcus Aldridge’s 27 points helped Portland defeat New Jersey. Brook Lopez scored 32 points for the Nets, who led by as many as 13 points in the first half but couldn’t fend off the late rally by the Trail Blazers. It was New Jersey’s fifth straight loss. Nicolas Batum had a season-high 23 points for the Blazers, who snapped a three-game losing streak. —AP

Judges get course in shooting events Sheikh Salman Al-Sabah (fourth from left), Aado Maranik (third from left), Duaij Al-Otaibi (second right) and Obeid Al-Osaimi (second left) and other officials.

KUWAIT: President of Kuwait and Asian Shooting Federations, Public Authority for Youth and Sports for its support of the course. Deputy President of the International Shooting Sport Federation He said that the development of the Shooting Sport prompts offiSheikh Salman Sabah Al-Salem Al-Humoud Al-Sabah opened the cials of the shooting associations to develop its technical cadres to International course for judges officiating bullet events (B) at Sheikh reach high levels of this noble sport, and for that KSSF, in cooperaSabah Al-Ahmad Olympic Shooting Complex under the supervision tion with ISSF, organized this training course for officials. Sheikh Salman asked participants to of the ISSF. take advantage of this course, The course will continue which will reflect positively on until Januar y 21, 2011. their associations. Meanwhile President of the Arab Eng. Duaij Al-Otaibi welcomed Shooting Federation and Arab participants and lauded Deputy Chairman of KSSF, the spirit of cooperation member of ISSF among Arab countries and Administration Council thanked Sheik h Salman AlDuaij Al-Otaibi Secretar y Sabah for his suppor t and General of Arab and Kuwait inviting Arab countries to parShooting Federations Obeid ticipate. M nahi Al- Osaimi, and There are 25 trainees from Australian lec turer Aado Algeria, Bahrain, Oman as well Maranik were present duras the National Guard and the ing the event. Disabled Club. The course is Sheikh Salman welcomed supervised by Salem Al-Dahish all participants and the lecand Bader Al-Tannak. turer, he also thanked the Participants during the lecture.



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Pakistan consolidate in reply to N Zealand’s 356 WELLINGTON: Taufeeq Umar and Azhar Ali both stroked patient half centuries after the loss of an early wicket to guide Pakistan to 134 for two in reply to New Zealand’s 356 at the end of play on the second day of the second Test at the Basin Reserve yesterday. Taufeeq blotted his copybook when he was dismissed on the last ball of the day, caught in close by Martin Guptill off Daniel Vettori for 70. Azhar was not out 62 after he and Taufeeq had combined for a 132-run partnership following the early loss of Mohammad Hafeez for one, when he was given out caught by wicketkeeper Reece Young off Tim Southee to leave Pakistan reeling at 2-1. Hafeez was unlucky to be given out as replays raised doubts as to whether he had hit the ball. Taufeeq, however, was the beneficiary of not having the umpire review system in use during the series when he prodded forward to a sharply turning Vettori delivery and Young took a backhanded catch after juggling the ball four times. Television replays showed he had got a large inside edge on to his pad before Young took the catch. It was the sixth possible decision that could have been overturned by the review system and while New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori said he would like to see the system in place, both teams just had to accept it was not being used. “You just get on with it,” said Vettori, whose sixth test centur y guided New Zealand to 356. “I’ve tried to be consistent and say the referral system is good for cricket. “I think 99 percent of people think the same way. Its just a matter of convincing that one percent.” Vettori’s centur y was brought up amongst some tense moments at the Basin Reserve. He resumed after lunch on 79 but accelerated his scoring rate when he lost Southee (one) in the first over after the break and had just Brent Arnel and Chris Martin to come. The New Zealand captain was on 96 when Arnel was trapped in front for one by Umar Gul and tension rose as the crowd wondered if Vettori would achieve the milestone with Martin striding to the crease to face three deliveries. Martin’s lack of prowess with the bat has attained cult status in New Zealand-he only scored his 100th test run in his 60th test and 87th innings last week, however he survived the three deliveries, even deflecting one to the boundary. Vettori managed to sneak to 99 in the next over, leaving Martin to face one ball from Abdul Rehman, which he successfully defended to rapturous applause and

Vettori tickled the first ball of Gul’s next over behind square to bring up his century. He was eventually last man out, caught in the deep by Pakistani counterpart Misbah-ul-haq for 110 off Rehman. “That’s Tommy’s (Martin) situation, he never lets anyone down. I was pretty confident,” Vettori added of Martin’s stoic defence that allowed him to reach three figures. “You loosen up because with three wickets left you maybe don’t quite have that licence. As soon as Brent came out it was just have a crack and see what happens.” —Reuters

Scoreboard Scoreboard at the close of play on the second day of the second test between New Zealand and Pakistan at the Basin Reserve in Wellington on yesterday: New Zealand won the toss and chose to bat New Zealand first innings (overnight 246-6) M. Guptill c Akmal b Tanvir 29 B. McCullum lbw b Gul 2 K. Williamson c Akmal b Gul 21 R. Taylor c Akmal b Wahab 78 J. Ryder c Akmal b Tanvir 0 J. Franklin c Akmal b Rehman 33 R. Young c Akmal b Tanvir 57 D. Vettori c Misbah b Rehman 110 T. Southee c Misbah b Gul 1 B. Arnel lbw b Gul 1 C. Martin not out 4 Extras: (w-10, b-7, lb-1 nb-2) 20 Total (all out, 127.1 overs) 356 Fall of wickets 1-3 2-46 3-98 4-98 5166 6-180 7-318 8-322 9-338 10-356 Bowling: Gul 32-3-87-4, Tanvir 25-593-3 (w-2, nb-1), Younus 1-0-9-0, Wahab 16-3-46-1 (w-3), Rehman 45.111-96-2 (nb-1),Hafeez 8-0-17-0. Pakistan first innings T. Umar c Guptill v Vettori 70 M. Hafeez c Young b Southee 1 A. Ali not out 62 Extras: (w-1) 1 Total: (for two wickets, 49.5 overs) 134 Fall of wickets: 1-2 2-134 Still to bat: Younus Khan, Misbah-ulHaq (captain), Asad Shafiq, Adnan Akmal, Abdul Rehman, Umar Gul, Tanvir Ahmed, Wahab Riaz. Bowling: Martin 12-3-24-0 (w-1), Southee 11-3-37-1, Arnel 8-1-24-0, Franklin 5-1-21-0, Vettori 12.5-1-28-1 Guptill 1-1-0-0.

MELBOURNE: Australian batsman Shane Watson (left) celebrates hitting the winning runs against England with teammate Cameron White during their one-day cricket match.—AFP

Watson fires Australia to victory over England MELBOURNE: Shane Watson blazed a magnificent 161 not out, and clubbed a six to win the game, as Australia scored 297 for four to beat England by six wickets in their first oneday international yesterday. Australia’s score was the highest successful run chase in a one-day international at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG). Watson shared in two century stands, an opening partnership of 110 with Brad Haddin (39) and 103 for the second wicket with captain Michael Clarke (36), though Australia were struggling to keep up with the required run rate by the time Clarke departed. Steve Smith attempted to take advantage of the batting powerplay by swinging at every delivery and while he got away with a bottom edge past England wicketkeeper Steve Davies, his second edge was well caught by Michael Yardy off Ajmal Shahzad. Mike Hussey, however, came in and set about the England attack taking 15 runs off one Tim Bresnan over to ensure Australia were at least up with the required rate as they began their final push for victory. Bresnan had the final laugh, though, when he deceived Hussey with an off cutter that he chipped to Chris Tremlett at square leg to be dismissed for 21 off 15 balls and Australia were again drifting behind the required rate. Cameron White took a few balls to get used to the pitch before taking advantage of a dropped catch by Jonathan Trott in the deep off Tremlett when he was on nine. That got Australia down to a run a ball with just over three overs remaining and four runs from the last over. Watson then smashed the first ball of the 50th over into the crowd

Scoreboard Scoreboard at the end of the first one-day international between England and Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on yesterday: England won the toss and chose to bat England innings A. Strauss c Clarke b Lee 63 S. Davies b D. Hussey 42 J. Trott c Haddin b D. Hussey 6 K. Pietersen run out 78 I. Bell c Clarke b Smith 23 E. Morgan c White b Smith 8 M. Yardy c M. Hussey b Bollinger 9 T. Bresnan c Doherty b Lee 28 G. Swann c Doherty b Johnson 4 A. Shahzad not out 8 C. Tremlett c Haddin b Johnson 7 Extras (w-14, nb-1, b-2, lb-1) 18 Total (all out, 49.4 overs) 294 Fall of wickets: 1-90 2-100 3-131 4-174 5-186 6-236 7-257 8-271 9-278 10-294 Bowling: Lee 9-0-43-2 (w-4, nb-1), Bollinger 90-57-1 (w-5), Hussey 6-0-42-2, Johnson 7.4-0-

over long on for his fourth six to ensure victory. It was his highest one-day international score and fifth century. Australia’s selectors will have been left in little doubt about his form as they pondered the makeup of their final 15-man squad that will seek a fourth successive World Cup next month. Kevin Pietersen and Andrew Strauss had earlier blasted half centuries, while Haddin fluffed three stumping opportunities, as England

53-2 (w-5), Watson 8-0-44-0, Doherty 7-0-40-0, Smith 3-0-12-2. Australia innings S. Watson not out 161 B. Haddin c Shahzad b Swann 39 M. Clarke c Shahzad b Bresnan 36 S. Smith c Yardy b Shahzad 5 M. Hussey c Tremlett b Bresnan 21 C. White not out 25 Extras (lb-6, w-3, 1-nb) 10 Total (for four wickets, 49.1 overs) 297 Fall of wickets: 1-110 2-213 3-220 4-244 Did not bat: David Hussey, Mitchell Johnson, Brett Lee, Xavier Doherty, Doug Bollinger. Bowling: Bresnan 10-0-71-2 (w-2, nb-1), Tremlett 10-0-67-0, Shahzad 9.1-0-51-1 (w-1), Yardy 9-0-53-0, Swann 10-0-42-1, Trott 1-0-7-0. Australia won by six wickets Next match: Second ODI, Jan. 21, Hobart

made their imposing 294 in 49.4 overs. Pietersen top scored with 78 before he was run out just as he was looking to launch a final assault on the Australian bowlers shortly after England had taken the final power play. Strauss scored 63 off 65 balls as he punished anything short of a length in a blistering start with Davies (42) when they rattled up 90 runs inside the first 12 overs. — Reuters

Munaf propels India to dramatic one-run win

SRILANKAN AIRLINES - CAESARS TRAVEL GROUP CONDUCT CRICKET MATCH KUWAIT: The first one-day cricket tournament in aviation arena of Kuwait came to a close on Jan 14 with a friendly match between SriLankan Airlines and Caesars Travel Group. The match marked the beginning of goodwill between the two teams, who did a good job throughout the game though it was a friendly, exhibition match. Winning the toss and batting first, one of the Caesars Travel Teams got off to a rousing start by playing against 8 in-house teams of Caesars Travel Group, finally the winning team played against SriLankan Airlines. SriLankans played a defensive game against Caesars Travel, scored-runs and got the lead. It was a fast and furious game with both of the teams opened with a good start. SriLankans proved that they are a strong team as their batsmen and bowlers, performed well throughout the tournament. As it was organized as a friendly, exhibition match, both teams equally shared the winning titles. Receiving the trophy from Lalith, SriLankan Airlines Sales Manager, PNJ Kumar, General Manager of Caesars Travel Group said, “the platform made by SriLankan Airlines for this cricket

match was a wonderful idea and we enjoyed it. After playing with the SriLankans, we have decided to build a professional team of Caesars Travel Group to enter into such matches and we want to go home by winning such matches too”, he added. By presenting the awards to various players, SriLankan Airlines Sales Manager, Lalith said, “this game is going to be a start between SriLankan Airlines and Caesars Travel Group and we will continue conducting such matches every year which should be the reflection of travel fraternity in Kuwait aviation arena”. By congratulating the entire participants of the match, the Country Manager of SriLankan Airlines, Shiran Pereira said, “this match is supposed to be the best platform between SriLankan Airlines and Caesars Travel Group for not only developing a sports culture among us but to build up a good and humanitarian rappo both in business and the busy personal life which should be adopted by our fellow associates in the travel field for better bondings”. The Man of the Match was awarded gone to Manula Silva from SriLankan Airlines.

JOHANNESBURG: India levelled the one-day series at 1-1 after paceman Munaf Patel clinched a thrilling onerun win over South Africa in the second match at the Wanderers on Saturday. South Africa, chasing a modest target of 191, appeared on track after captain Graeme Smith hit 77. When opener Smith inside-edged Munaf on to his stumps, the home team needed 39 more runs with five wickets in hand. India, though, seized control after seamer Zaheer Khan dismissed David Miller (27) and Johan Botha (4) and Dale Steyn was run out for six. Munaf, who finished with four for 29, then removed Morne Morkel for six and Wayne Parnell for 12 in the 43rd over as South Africa were bowled out for 189. Zaheer picked up two for 37 while spinner Harbhajan Singh took one for 32 in 10 probing

overs. Earlier, fast bowler Lonwabo Tsotsobe claimed his second successive four-wicket haul as India made 190 all out after electing to bat first on a slowish pitch. Tsotsobe produced a telling burst of three for 11 in four overs and received fine support from Steyn and Morkel, who took two wickets apiece, as South Africa took the last seven wickets for 40 runs. Sachin Tendulkar opened the batting and was on 24 when he was bowled by spinner Botha. India slipped to 67 for three before Yuvraj Singh and skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni shared a stand of 83. Tsotsobe then had Yuvraj caught by Steyn at deep mid-off for 53 before clean bowling Dhoni for 38. The third game in the five-match series is in Cape Town on Tuesday.— Reuters

Scoreboard Scoreboard after India beat South Africa by one run in the second one-day international at the Wanderers in Johannesburg on yesterday: South Africa innings India innings H. Amla c Dhoni b Patel 4 M. Vijay c Morkel b Tsotsobe 16 G. Smith b Patel 77 S. Tendulkar b Botha 24 C. Ingram lbw Harbhajan 25 V. Kohli run out 22 A. de Villiers c Dhoni b Nehra 8 Yuvraj c Steyn b Tsotsobe 53 JP. Duminy c Vijay b Sharma 13 M. Dhoni b Tsotsobe 38 Miller c sub (P. Chawla) b Zaheer 27 S. Raina lbw Tsotsobe 11 J. Botha lbw Zaheer 4 R. Sharma lbw Morkel 9 W. Parnell c Yuvraj b Patel 12 Harbhajan c Miller b Morkel 3 D. Steyn run out 6 Zaheer c Tsotsobe b Steyn 0 M. Morkel c sub (Y. Pathan) b Patel 6 A. Nehra c Botha b Steyn 1 L. Tsotsobe not out 1 M. Patel not out 6 Extras (lb-5, w-1) 6 Extras (lb-4, w-3) 7 Total (all out, 43 overs) 189 Total (all out, 47.2 overs) 190 Fall of wickets: 1-21 2-63 3-67 4-150 5- Fall of wickets: 1-7 2-66 3-77 4-120 5152 6-160 7-163 8-177 9-188 10-189 169 6-172 7-177 8-179 9-184 10-190 Bowling: Steyn 9.2-1-35-2 (w-1), Bowling: Zaheer 9-0-37-2, Patel 8-0Tsotsobe 10-2-22-4, Parnell 7-0-43-0 29-4, Nehra 7-1-44-1, Harbhajan 10-0(w-1), Morkel 8-0-32-2, Botha 10-0-35- 32-1, Raina 6-0-27-0, Sharma 2-0-12-1, Yuvraj 1-0-3-0 (w-1). 1, Duminy 3-0-19-0 (w-1).

JOHANNESBURG: Indian Munaf Patel celebrates dismissing South African Graeme Smith during the second One Day International (ODI) between India and South Africa.— AFP



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Packers and Steelers advance to title games

FRANCE: Toulon’s Jonny Wilkinson is tackled by Munster’s Wian du Preez (right) and Paul O’Connell during their Heineken European Cup rugby match. — AP

Toulouse qualify as Glasgow stun Wasps PARIS: Defending champions Toulouse are assured of topping their European Cup Pool 6 after Glasgow stunned former twotime champions Wasps yesterday beating them 20-10. Toulouse - victors over Newport on Saturday — top the pool on 21 points while Wasps, who beat the four-time champions in their first title win in 2004, having missed out on a bonus point have just 15 points ahead of their final match at home to the French side next weekend. Wasps will have to beat Toulouse to give themselves a chance of finishing one of the two best runners-up which gives them a place in the last eight. Wasps took a 10-6 lead into the break having scored the only try of the half, winger Tom Varndell benefitting from a superb solo break by highly-rated scrumhalf Joe Simpson, who had been recalled to the starting line-up. Glasgow stuck to their task, though, and were well in touch at half-time thanks to two penalties by Ruaridh Jackson and the fast rising Scottish fly-half reduced Wasps’ advantage to just a point with another penalty in the 45th minute. The hosts deservedly took the lead in scoring their first try of the encounter in the 50th minute as Wasps fumbled the ball in the centres, and Glasgow ran it back strongly with winger Colin Shaw coming in

off his left wing position to scythe through the defence. However, he selflessly offloaded to the supporting scrum-half Colin Gregor, who ran to touch down for only his second try in 24 European Cup appearances - Jackson fluffed an easy conversion to leave Glasgow leading 14-10. Jackson added another penalty to make it 17-10 but he missed an easy one shortly afterwards which would have seen Wasps lose out on a bonus point and ensure Toulouse topped the pool regardless of the result next weekend. However, Jackson dropped a goal with five minutes remaining after incessant Glasgow pressure to make it 20-10 and the experienced English side, who even had among their number Joe Worsley a try scorer in the two sides first meeting at this level 13 years ago, failed to threaten the hosts and at least salvage a defensive bonus point. The weekend action was due to climax with the clash of the round in France as Toulon hosted two-time champions Munster in Pool 3 where defeat for the Irish province would signal the end of a 13-year run where they have reached the knockout stages. Welsh side Ospreys are away at out of form London Irish and still entertain hopes of topping Pool 3 themselves. — AFP

BUENOS AIRES: Volkswagen’s car driver Nasser Al-Attiyah, from Qatar biting a trophy, poses for pictures as he celebrates during the 2011 Argentina-Chile Dakar Rally podium ceremony. — AP

Court disaster may cost Shabana first English win LONDON: Squash legend Amr Shabana may have missed his chance of winning a title in Britain at long last after players, spectators, and staff, were evacuated during a spectacular emergency at the famous 125-year-old Queens Club on Saturday. The revolutionary new demountable stadium was still considered a risk to life and limb yesterday after gales ripped a hole in the roof the night before the PSA World Series final, threatening the collapse of the giant synthetic structure and emptying the club even of its members. Shabana, the 31-year-old four times former world champion from Egypt, now expects to complete his showdown with Nick Matthew, the World and Commonwealth champion from England, at a much later date. It may also have to take place in another country, as the PSA searches for a venue and a time which fits the schedules of two of the busiest players in the world. “Although it was an extremely unfortunate thing to happen to such a superb and ground-breaking event we are determined to find a way of completing the tournament,” said a PSA spokesperson prior to an emergency de-brief yesterday. Plans to finish the tournament on a conventional court at Queens were apparently scuppered because Shabana had had a flight to New York pre-booked for the Tournament of Champions at Grand Central terminal in five days time.

It left Matthew waiting to learn where and when he would get his chance of winning a third major title in three months and of capturing the title of the PSA Tour’s flagship event for the first time. It also left the PSA to decide what action to take over the destruction of such a high profile, allegedly weatherproof stadium, which was erected alongside Queen’s world famous tennis centre court in a rebranded event costing about a million dollars to stage. The World Series finals were billed as a tournament which is “the new face of squash” and as an event which will lead the sport “into a new era.” Instead it may lead to a period of uncertainty, as the legal, logistical, economic, and promotional implications of the disaster are assessed and addressed. Later the PSA released a statement stating that the final will go ahead but the date and venue would be announced at a later date. “In consultation with all parties involved, the Professional Squash Association has made the decision that the PSA World Series Final will go ahead. “Currently, we are working through the logistics and assessing forthcoming schedules to establish the exact date for when this will take place. “The PSA is committed to delivering a fantastic finale to what has been a worldclass event. We look forward to announcing the date as soon as possible.” —AFP

ATLANTA: The Green Bay Packers took care of the top seed in the NFC, and the Pittsburgh Steelers sent home their archrivals from the AFC North in entirely different manners Saturday. Sixth-seeded Green Bay routed the Falcons 48-21 in Atlanta as Aaron Rodgers threw for three touchdowns and ran for one. The Packers, who won at Philadelphia last weekend, will play for the NFC title next Sunday at either Chicago or Seattle. The Packers lost in the conference championship game three years ago to the Giants. “That’s what you dream about,” Rodgers said. “We have to go on the road again ... this just feels so good right now, to be able to put up an offensive performance like that, it’s just incredible.” The 48 points were the most for the Packers in a postseason game. Plus, Tramon Williams had two interceptions, returning the second 70 yards on the final play of the first half, and Green Bay never punted. Other than a 102-yard kickoff return by Eric Weems in the first half, the Packers (12-6) shut down Atlanta (13-4) when the outcome was in doubt. For the fifth time in 10 years, the Steelers are headed to the AFC championship game. They have a second-half meltdown by the Baltimore Ravens, and some clutch passes by Ben Roethlisberger, to thank for a 31-24 victory in a sloppy but compelling playoff matchup. Trailing 21-7 at halftime, the Steelers (13-4) took full advantage of the Ravens frequent errors. Pittsburgh recovered two fumbles and picked off a pass in the second half, and the Ravens had several drops, including one in the end zone by Anquan Boldin that would have given Baltimore a late lead. Instead, Billy Cundiff’s 24-yard field goal tied it, then Roethlisberger hit rookie Antonio Brown for 58 yards on third-and-19, leading to Rashard Mendenhall’s 2-yard run for the winning points with 1:33 remaining. “I saw the young fella just take off, so I’m

ATLANTA: Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) gets a pass away as he is hit by Green Bay Packers linebacker Desmond Bishop (55) during the first half of an NFL divisional playoff football game. —AP just going to throw it up for you,” Roethlisberger said. Pittsburgh has been in the AFC title game in 2001, ‘04, ‘05 and ‘08, and won the Super Bowl the last two times it got this far. Late yesterday, NFC West winner Seattle is

at NFC North champion Chicago, then AFC East rivals New England, the league leader with a 14-2 record, and the sixth-seeded New York Jets meet in Foxborough, Mass. Both the Jets and Patriots beat the Steelers this season at Heinz Field.—AP

Friends for now, Rafa and Roger warm up together MELBOURNE: Roger and Rafa were behaving like best mates on Rod Laver Arena — high-fiving, hugging, shaking hands and laughing at each other’s jokes on the eve of the Australian Open. Roger Federer and Rafal Nadal at the “Rally for Relief” to raise money for victims of the fatal floods in Australia’s northeastern Queensland state. It’ll be a completely different story if they’re back on the same court two weeks from yesterday. Federer is the defending champion. Nadal has won the three Grand Slam titles in the interim and is aiming to become the first man since Laver in 1969 to win four straight majors. It’s being dubbed the “Rafa Slam.” The pair played on opposite sides of the net, and the played together against Kim Clijsters and Sam Stosur in front of a capacity 15,000 crowd which paid to watch a host of tennis stars in the fundraiser. Novak Djokovic and Andy Roddick wore microphones and joked with the crowd, playing alongside and against the likes of Caroline Wozniacki and Victoria Azarenka in the celebrity hit-and-giggle exhibition. Neither Federer nor Nadal wore microphones when they played a little later. It was mostly smiles but there were glimpses of competitive intensity when they faced each other in mixed doubles. At one point, 16-time Grand Slam winner Federer used his court craft to bring Nadal to the net and then beat with a backhand passing shot. The muscular Spaniard replied next point, leaping high and smashing an overhead winner beyond Federer’s reach. After each of those winners, the two smiled broadly at each other. Nadal also bludgeoned a forehand down the line on the last point of their singles mini-match and then, shaking hands and laughing, the two standout players in men’s tennis joined forces against US Open champion Clijsters and French Open finalist Sam Stosur — Australia’s best hope in the women’s draw. Around their exhibition yesterday, Federer said Nadal has “been playing incredible.” “An incredible run through the French, Wimbledon, US Open — it was incredible to see. Then obviously it’s hard to maintain. But he’s going to be for sure ready for this. I’ll follow it very closely. If I get a chance, I hope I can stop him.” The first major of the year gets underway today with 2008 women’s champion Maria Sharapova playing Thailand’s Tamarine Tanasugarn in the opening match on center court, followed by No. 1 Wozniacki against Gisela Dulko of Argentina and Federer playing Lukas Lacko of Slovakia. Third-seeded Djokovic, the 2008 champion, plays Spaniard Marcel Granollers in the main night match on Rod Laver Arena. Andy Roddick plays Jan Hajek of the Czech Republic on the second showcourt. Following Roddick on Hisense Arena will be fourth-seeded Venus Williams against Italy’s Sara Errani and seven-time Grand Slam winner Justine Henin against Indian qualifier Sania Mirza. With Serena Williams unable to defend her title because of her injured foot, Clijsters is growing in favoritism at Melbourne Park. She faces a challenging opening match tomorrow against former No. 1ranked Dinara Safina, who slumped in the rankings last year due to a back injury and hasn’t reached a Grand Slam final since consecutive defeats in championship matches at Melbourne and Paris in 2009. Clijsters, a threetime US Open champion, has played down talk about favorites. “I really don’t want to waste too much energy on what’s happening on other parts of the draw or what’s being said around us,” she said Sunday. Wozniacki, who has a difficult opening match against Dulko, didn’t think she was handicapped in any way by never having won a major. “I’ve got great results, you don’t become No. 1 by winning small tournaments,” said the 20-year-old Danish player, who has won six of her 12 career WTA singles titles in 2010. “I don’t have to prove anything.” She was as relaxed as she could be on Sunday, when the players combined to help raise more than 1.8 million Australian dollars for the flood victims through ticket sales and donations. Nadal withdrew from his quarterfinal here last year to Murray, who went on to lose the final to Federer. He won’t be in action until Tuesday, when he starts his campaign for the Rafa Slam against Marcos Daniel of Brazil. Debate will no doubt intensify as to the status of the Rafa Slam against Laver’s four in a calendar year will intensify the closer he gets to achieving it. Some pundits consider Nadal’s achievement a match for Laver’s because he’s won on all three surfaces and had tougher competition. Laver, who won on grass at the Australian and US Opens and at Wimbledon and on clay at the French 41 years ago, still believes the true Grand Slam can only be achieved in a calendar year. Federer, who has twice won three consecutive majors but been blocked by Nadal from holding all four, has conceded his main rival deserves to be favorite at Melbourne Park. —AP

MELBOURNE: Switzerland’s Roger Federer and Spain’s Rafael Nadal (right) play together during a charity tennis event, “Rally for Relief” on Rod Laver Arena. — AP

Clijsters aims to stay focused MELBOURNE: There are only a certain number of ways to avoid addressing your chances of winning the Australian Open but Kim Clijsters found yet another yesterday at Melbourne Park. In the absence of last year’s champion Serena Williams and with the 2010 losing finalist Justine Henin returning from injury, the 27-year-old has been deflecting questions about being favorite to win a fourth major crown all week. Defeat in the final of the Sydney International warm-up to China’s Li Na on Friday has not diminished the chatter and the US Open champion was forced onto the back foot again yesterday. “I don’t think players think like that,” she told a news conference. “I think we just really focus on one match at a time. There can be so many surprises anyway in a grand slam. Tough players, new players that you don’t expect to be doing well can be on a great run. So many things can happen. “I really don’t want to waste too much energy on what’s happening on other parts of the draw or what’s being said around us. I think I’ll try to just put all that energy into what I’m here for, and that’s to try to play good tennis.” Before the surprise defeat in the final, Clijsters had looked in ominous form in Sydney and she confirmed yesterday that she had arrived in Melbourne with a clean bill of health. “I feel good,” she said. “No major injuries. I’ve been able to just work through my pre-season without any big problem, so that’s always I think a very important part of your preparation, especially when you come here in Melbourne.” A semi-finalist in 2006 and 2007 before her two-year sabbatical from the game, Clijsters was knocked out 6-0 6-1 in the fourth round by Russian Nadia Petrova last year on her first return after her comeback. Seeded third this year, she faces another dangerous Russian in former world number one Dinara Safina in the first round and is not anticipating an easy ride. —Reuters




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monDAY, JAnUARY 17, 2011

sp orts

Kuyt rescues Liverpool Liverpool 2

Everton 2 LIVERPOOL: Dirk Kuyt’s penalty earned Liverpool a 2-2 draw with Everton after Sylvain Distin and Jermaine Beckford cancelled out Raul Meireles’ goal to leave Kenny Dalglish still looking for a first victory yesterday. Meireles’ power ful shot gave Liverpool a half-time lead but that was erased within a minute of the restart by Distin before Beckford scored Everton’s second five minutes later. Kuyt scored from the spot midway through the second half but Dalglish, who failed to record a victory in his first home game since replacing Roy Hodgson until the end of the season, had to settle for a point. Liverpool and Everton remain on 26 points, sitting 13th and 12th respectively in the Premier League table after a tense derby fixture. Kuyt’s equaliser ensured that David Moyes is still without a win at Anfield in nine visits since being appointed a Everton manager in 2002. Liverpool attacked straight from the kick off with Fernando Torres having a shot after just eight seconds after he was picked out by Kuyt. Ever ton’s young Irish midfielder Seamus Coleman also sent a low shot wide after holding off Jay Spearing, making just his second Premier League start. Torres, making his 100th Premier League appearance, had another chance when Glen Johnson lifted the ball up to the Spanish striker and he shot over from the edge of the area. But the hosts

finally opened Everton up with a fine move. Kuyt clipped down the line for Torres and the Spaniard had too much strength for Distin before hitting a shot against the post, with Kuyt’s follow up deflected off target. But just before the half hour mark, Liverpool took the lead despite some impressive goalkeeping from Tim Howard. The American pulled off a low save from Kuyt ’s header and then blocked the same player’s follow-up but could do nothing about Meireles’ shot from just outside the area. Maxi Rodriguez could have doubled the lead when Howard again denied Torres from a Kuyt cross and the Argentina winger could only produce a wild effort. As the hosts continued to press, Torres had another shot deflected over the bar and Howard was also forced to block from Meireles after the Portuguese burst onto a pass from Kuyt. But 39 seconds after half time Everton pulled level with a goal from Mikel Arteta’s corner. Distin escaped from Martin Skrtel and headed with enough power to beat Johnson’s attempt to clear off the line. Six minutes into the second half, Ever ton pulled ahead when Victor Anichebe beat Martin Kelly in the air and Leon Osman fed Beckford, who beat Reina. The hosts looked short on ideas but were given a route back when Howard tripped Rodriguez in the area. Kuyt sent the American goalkeeper the wrong way with the spot kick to bring Liverpool level. Kelly played through for Torres but the Spaniard failed to hit the target with his chip as tension took over in the final minutes and it finished level. —AFP

EPL results/standings Birmingham 1 (Johnson 49) Aston Villa 1 (Collins 73); Sunderland 1 (Gyan 90) Newcastle 1 (Nolan 52); Liverpool 2 (Meireles 29, Kuyt 68-pen) Everton 2 (Distin 46, Beckford 52); Tottenham 0, Man Utd 0; Played Saturday Chelsea 2 (Ivanovic 57, Anelka 76) Blackburn 0; Man City 4 (K.Toure 40, Tevez 49, 66,

Y.Toure 54) Wolves 3 (Milijas 12, Doyle 68pen, Zubar 86); Stoke 2 (Higginbotham 37, Etherington 63-pen) Bolton 0; West Brom 3 (Odemwingie 37, 87, Morrison 52) Blackpool 2 (Vaughan 11, Taylor-Fletcher 80); West Ham 0 Arsenal 3 (Van Persie 13, 77-pen, Walcott 41); Wigan 1 (Rodallega 57) Fulham 1 (Johnson 86).

English Premier League table after yesterday’s matches (played, won, drawn, lost, goals for, goals against, points): Man Utd 21 12 9 0 43 19 45 Blackburn 23 8 4 11 29 37 28 Man City 23 13 6 4 37 19 45 Everton 22 5 11 6 25 27 26 Arsenal 22 13 4 5 45 22 43 Liverpool 22 7 5 10 27 31 26 Chelsea 22 11 5 6 38 19 38 West Brom 22 7 4 11 29 41 25 Tottenham 22 10 7 5 31 25 37 Fulham 22 4 11 7 23 25 23 Sunderland 23 8 10 5 26 23 34 Birmingham 21 4 11 6 21 26 23 Bolton 23 7 9 7 34 31 30 Aston Villa 22 5 7 10 24 39 22 Stoke 22 9 3 10 28 26 30 Wigan 22 4 10 8 19 34 22 Newcastle 22 8 5 9 35 32 29 Wolverhampton 22 6 3 13 24 38 21 23 4 8 11 22 41 20 Blackpool 21 8 4 9 31 36 28 West Ham

LONDON: Tottenham Hotspur’s Michael Dawson (second left) jumps for the ball with Manchester United’s Nemanja Vidic during their English Premier League soccer match. —AP

United stay unbeaten Tottenham 0

Man United 0 LONDON: Manchester United held onto their unbeaten Premier League record despite Rafael da Silva’s red card in yesterday ’s 0-0 draw against Tottenham at White Hart Lane. Sir Alex Ferguson’s side had to play the final 16 minutes with 10 men following Brazilian defender Rafael’s dismissal for two bookings. But United survived with few alarms to extend their undefeated run to 21 league games and return to the top of the table, ahead of Manchester City on goal difference. The leaders were nowhere near their best and have now drawn eight of their 10 away league matches this season but, with two games in hand on City, they remain favourites to regain the title they last won in 2009.

For fifth placed Tottenham there was only frustration as they missed an opportunity to beat United for the first time since 2001 and move back into the top four. David Beckham had hoped United’s visit to the Lane would mark his Premier League return, but Spurs have still to complete their proposed loan deal for the LA Galaxy star so he was reduced to watching from the stands. In the end, former United midfielder Beckham must have left disappointed as neither team were able to hit top form. Only a couple of minutes had passed when Wayne Rooney took Dimitar Berbatov ’s pass and cleverly turned William Gallas before dragging his shot wide. That close shave drew an immediate response from Redknapp’s team. Luka Modric picked out Alan Hutton on the right and he whipped over a low cross towards Peter Crouch. The England forward got in front of Rio Ferdinand and met the ball with a flicked volley but his

effor t flashed just wide from close-range. Rooney forced Heurelho Gomes into action for the first time with a snap-shot from just outside the penalty area. But, while United have proved impossible to overcome in the league, their away form has been far from convincing and once again there was a lack of fluency about the leaders’ attacking play. Rafael escaped with a booking after a wild lunge on Wilson Palacios left the Spurs midfielder crumpled in a heap and in need of treatment. It was an incident typical of a match high on perspiration but low on inspiration. Spurs continued to produce the more incisive breaks and Dutch playmaker Rafael van der Vaar t went close when he headed into the side-netting from Gareth Bale’s cross. United finally threatened twice in quick succession early in the second half. Michael Carrick glanced his header wide from a Ryan Giggs corner before Rooney made

Collins earns Villa a point

Serie A title rivals stay in hunt with late winners

Birmingham 1 ROME: Lazio, Roma and Juventus all snatched late winners to keep their Serie A title hopes alive on a day of late drama yesterday. Libor Kozak struck six minutes from time to earn third-placed Lazio a 1-0 win at home to Sampdoria and draw them level on points with second-placed Napoli, who drew 0-0 with Fiorentina on Saturday. It also closed them to within three points of leaders AC Milan, who travel to Lecce in the day’s late game. Roma left it even later and needed an own goal a minute from time from Maximiliano Pellegrino to steal a 1-0 success at Cesena. Juve gave themselves slightly more breathing space as on-loan Liverpool midfielder Alber to Aquilani netted 11 minutes from the end in a 2-1 defeat of rock-bottom Bari. Roma closed to five points off Milan with Juve a point further back and two ahead of Inter Milan, 4-1 winners over Bologna on Saturday. The Serie A title race had looked to be thinning out until the late drama with Milan appearing to be the big winners but now the pressure is back on them to get a result

in the south east. In Rome Christian Ledesma sent over an outswinging free-kick and Kozak dar ted behind the Samp backline to bag a header from close in. Lazio coach Edy Reja was relieved his side came away with the win following last weekend’s home defeat to Lecce. “Today we didn’t have a good first half which is strange given we normally play worse in the second period, today it was the other way around,” he told SkySport. “But the important thing was to take home three points and find a bit of serenity.” Roma’s winning goal in Cesena was a scrappy affair and owed a lot to persistence and luck. Substitute Marco Borriello took a ball down on his chest in a crowded box and sent a volley goalwards that crashed back off the bar. Fellow sub Adriano, who may have been offside when Borriello shot, looked to have a simple tap-in but goalkeeper Francesco Antonioli made a miraculous save with the ball spinning up and seemingly heading out of play. Simplicio turned the ball back into the danger area, although it looked to have already gone out,

Aston Villa 1

ITALY: Lazio defender Lionel Scaloni, of Argentina (right) challenges Sampdoria midfielder Angelo Palombo during a Serie A soccer match. —AP where Pellegrino inadver tently prodded it in. Roma coach Claudio Ranieri praised his side’s fighting spirit. “Every time we win away from home we say this could be the start of a title charge,” he said. “It wasn’t easy, we’d never won here before. We played particularly well in the first half. “We never gave up, not even a yard and I’m happy when the team keeps fighting to the end.”

Elsewhere Sicilians Palermo’s hopes of qualifying for next season’s Champions League suffered a blow as they fell to a 3-1 defeat away to Sardinia’s Cagliari in the ‘derby of the islands’. Udinese bagged four goals for the second week in a row as they won 4-2 at Genoa to move into Champions League contention. —AFP

Italian League results/standings Cagliari 3 (Matri 23, Nocerino 47-og, Biondini 54) Palermo 1 (Pastore 50); Brescia 2 (Bega 45, Diamanti 88) Parma 0; Catania 1 (Maxi Lopez 29-pen) Chievo 1 (Pellissier 65); Cesena 0 Roma 1 (Pellegrino 89-og); Genoa 2 (Milanetto 45, Destro 57) Udinese 4 (Armero 27, Di Natale 56, ; Sanchez 69, Denis 90); Juventus 2 (Del Piero 43,

Aquilani 79) Bari 1 (Rudolph 57); Lazio 1 (Kozak 84) Sampdoria 0. Playing later Lecce v AC Milan Played Saturday Napoli 0, Fiorentina 0; Inter Milan 4 (Stankovic 20, Milito 30, Eto’o 63, 72) Bologna 1 (Gimenez 77).

Italian League table ahead of yesterday’s late match (played, won, drawn, lost, goals for, goals against, points): AC Milan Napoli Lazio Roma Juventus Inter Milan Palermo Udinese Sampdoria Cagliari Fiorentina

19 20 20 20 20 18 20 20 19 20 19

12 11 11 10 9 9 9 9 6 7 6

4 4 4 5 7 5 4 3 8 5 6

3 5 5 5 4 4 7 8 5 8 7

34 30 26 28 35 29 33 31 20 22 20

17 20 18 24 25 17 25 27 18 21 20

40 37 37 35 34 32 31 30 26 26 24

space for a powerful strike from the edge of the penalty area that Gomes saved well at full-stretch. Even so, Nani remained completely anonymous and it was no surprise when Ferguson hauled the United winger off after an hour. United could have done with a moment of magic from Giggs mak ing the 600th league appearance of his remarkable career - but even the Welsh midfielder found it impossible to unlock Spurs’ defence. United’s task was made even harder in the 73rd minute when Rafael was sent off after earning a second booking with a trip on Benoit Assou-Ekotto. Rafael’s response was to launch a foul-mouthed tirade at referee Mike Dean before stomping down the tunnel, while Rooney was booked for leading the United protests. Spurs had only one real chance to steal the points but Van der Vaart’s curled his shot over after a weak clearance from United substitute Javier Hernandez. —AFP

Chievo 20 5 8 7 20 22 Genoa 19 6 5 8 15 19 Parma 20 5 7 8 19 25 Catania 20 5 7 8 18 25 Bologna 20 6 7 7 20 28 Cesena 19 5 4 10 13 22 Brescia 20 5 3 12 17 26 Lecce 19 5 3 11 18 36 Bari 20 3 5 12 13 30 Note: Bologna deducted three points unpaid taxes and player salaries

23 23 22 22 22 19 18 18 14 for

Matches on TV (Local Timings)

BIRMINGHAM: A James Collins strike salvaged a precious point for Aston Villa as they held derby rivals Birmingham City to a 1-1 draw which did neither side’s survival hopes many favors. Roger Johnson had given Alex McLeish’s team a 49th-minute lead at St Andrew’s when he lashed home from 12 yards. But Gerard Houllier’s team fought back to claim a deserved equaliser in the 73rd-minute when Collins hooked home. It was enough to move Villa out of the relegation zone, albeit merely by courtesy of goals scored, into 17th position while the Blues are equally precariously placed just a place above with one further point. As expected, John Carew was restored to the Villa team for his first start since November, while Alex McLeish handed a debut to loan signing David Bentley, who excelled throughout. Birmingham still appeared to be showing signs of a hangover from their midweek Carling Cup semi-final first leg defeat to West Ham and no-one more so than Ben Foster, who had been at fault for the Hammers’ winner. Less than a minute had gone when Carew capitalised on a poor clearance from the City goalkeeper, feeding Gabriel Agbonlahor before the striker cut inside from the left channel only to blaze over with just Foster to beat. It was a chance which looked easier to score than miss but Villa were undeterred and came

Sunderland hold Newcastle

Asian Nations Cup Sunderland 1 Jordan v Syria ...................... 16:15 Kuwait Sport

Newcastle 1

Al Jazeera Sport 1 Al Jazeera Sport 2 HD Saudi Arabia v Japan........16:15 Saudi Sports Al Jazeera Sport 1 HD Al Jazeera Sport Global

even closer when Norway international Carew flicked an Agbonlahor header onto the crossbar. Slowly but surely the home side got a foothold in the game and a golden opportunity went begging in the 22nd minute when Craig Gardner got the better of Kyle Walker down the City left and crossed for the unmarked Matt Derbyshire, who somehow missed the ball entirely with just Brad Friedel to beat. It was a huge let-off for Villa and seconds later Villa hit the crossbar for a third time when Ciaran Clark’s deep curling cross cannoned off the woodwork with Foster beaten. Birmingham ended the half the stronger and they had two penalty appeals rejected within a matter of seconds shortly before half-time, first a hopeful appeal for handball by Walker and then what looked a more legitimate claim when David Murphy tumbled after appearing to be caught by Marc Albrighton. McLeish’s team picked up where they left off in the second half and they were soon ahead after earning a free-kick for a foul on Alex Hleb by Collins. Bentley teed up Gardner and his driven free-kick was diverted across the area and Johnson reacted quickest to break the deadlock with a low strike. Blues looked the more likely to add to their advantage through Derbyshire but his effort was saved well by Friedel before Walker cleared off the line with Gardner ready to pounce. Blues soon paid the price when Walker got the better of Murphy and teed up Albrighton, whose cross fell kindly for Collins inside the box for the defender to finish clinically. Both sides had opportunities to win it with Foster making a fine fingertip save to push substitute Nathan Delfouneso’s 25-yard drive onto the crossbar before Blues substiute Nikola Zigic’s header floated agonisingly beyond the post at the death. —AFP

LONDON: Sunderland grabbed a last-minute equalizer against fierce local rival Newcastle to draw 1-1 in the Premier League yesterday, making up for a disastrous defeat earlier in the season. Ghana international Asamoah Gyan scored in the fourth minute of stoppage time in the north east derby, forcing the ball into the net from close range after Newcastle goalkeeper Steve Harper failed to hold Phil

Bardsley’s shot. Gyan is Sunderland’s record signing after joining for more than 13 million pounds (then US$20 million) in August. “We are really disappointed today because we know our performance and some of our play deserved to win,” Newcastle manager Alan Pardew said. Newcastle went ahead in the 52nd at the Stadium of Light after Shola Ameobi got up well for a corner by Joey Barton to head the ball down. Captain Kevin Nolan back-heeled the ball into the net for his 10th goal of the season and the first time he has reached double figures in the Premier League. Nolan scored a hat trick at St. James’ Park in October when Newcastle thrashed Sunderland 5-1 in the Premier League — the biggest derby victory for the Magpies in 55 years.—AP

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Penguins trounce Bruins, Blue Jackets fall Page 15

DOHA: Qatar’s defender Bilal Rajab celebrates after scoring his team’s opening goal against Kuwait during their 2011 Asian Cup Group A football match at Khalifa Stadium.—AP

Qatar eliminate Gulf champions Kuwait DOHA: Qatar stormed into the Asian Cup quarter-finals for only the second time in their history yesterday with a commanding 3-0 victory over Gulf champions Kuwait, who were eliminated from the tournament. They went through after Uzbekistan drew 2-2 with China to top Group A, allowing Qatar to finish second and make the last eight for the first time since 2000. Captain Bilal Mohammed got the opening goal on 11 minutes after a blistering start from the 2022 World Cup hosts with Mohamed El Sayed scoring the second five minutes later. Brazilian-born substitute Fabio Cesar put the game beyond doubt four minutes from time with a beautifully weighted freekick that left the goalkeeper stranded. It capped a remarkable comeback by Qatar, who lost their opening match to the Uzbeks 2-0 then rebounded to beat China by the same scoreline before yesterday’s heroics. They now face whoever finishes top in Group B, which will be either Japan, Jordan or Syria, for a place in the semi-finals.

For Kuwait, it was a reality check after they won the West Asian Football Federation Championship in October on their maiden appearance then followed it up by lifting the Gulf Cup of Nations trophy last month. They head home with three defeats out of three, although coach Goran Tufegdzic’s job appears to be safe. Qatar threw down the gauntlet from the opening whistle in a blistering start with Sebastian Soria sending a header wide after just two minutes and Yusef Ahmed troubling the keeper again soon after. Coach Bruno Metsu said ahead of the game that he wanted an early goal and his team threw everything they had at Kuwait with all the action in the visitor’s half. Midfield dynamo Lawrence almost put Qatar in front on 10 minutes with a scorching 30-yard freekick that goalkeeper Nawaf Al Khaldi did well to tip over the bar. But the deadlock didn’t last much longer as Mohammed connected with a cross from Ibrahim Al Ghanim a minute later to head the ball past the flailing arms of Al Khaldi and send the crowd into raptures.

Kuwait were all over the place, barely getting a look in, as Qatar ramped up the pressure and it was 2-0 five minutes later when El Sayed picked up the ball after a goalmouth scramble and buried it in the back of the net. The furious pace eased after the second goal and the game went off the boil, with Kuwait failing to get any significant shots on goal in the opening 30 minutes. Their first chance came six minutes before the break when Bader Al Mutwa sent a halfhearted bicycle kick straight into the arms of Qatari keeper Qasem Burhan. Kuwait started the second period in far more lively fashion but the chances were still elusive with Al Mutwa’s limp 25-yard drive summing up their day. Their frustrations were clear with defender Hussain Fadhel losing the plot and lucky to escape punishment after shoving Bilal Mohammed in the face after the pair collided. With Qatar content to sit on their lead and defend, it turned into a midfield tussle before Cesar hammered the third goal as the clock ticked down.—AFP

Uzbeks reach Asian Cup last eight DOHA: Uzbekistan reached the Asian Cup quarter-finals after drawing 2-2 with China in a topsy-turvy and fiercely contested final Group A game at the Al Gharafa Stadium here yesterday. Having fallen behind early on, Uzbekistan equalised and then went ahead early in the second period through a fine long-distance effort from one-time CSKA Moscow forward Alexander Geynrikh. Schalke midfielder Hao Junmin brought the East Asian champions level with a magnificent free-kick but despite sustained pressure China could not find a winner that would have brought qualification down to head-to-head records. Yu Hai had given China the lead in the sixth minute, in front of a disappointing crowd of just 3,529, with Odil Akhmedov replying for Uzbekistan. Vadim Abramov’s team finish top of Group A and will play the runnersup in Group B, one of Japan, Jordan or Syria. An open start saw both sides threaten, with veteran Uzbek striker Maksim Shatskikh shinning over from six yards and Li Xuepeng drawing a brilliant reaction save from Ignatiy Nesterov at the other end with a glancing header. From the ensuing corner China took the lead. Yang Hao whipped the ball in from the Chinese left and Yu Hai’s flicked header at the near post took a slight deflection off

Akhmedov’s arm that bamboozled Nesterov. Uzbekistan sought an immediate reply, with China goalkeeper Yang Zhi forced into a flying one-handed save to repel Server Djeparov’s free-kick. China had several chances to extend their lead and came close to a glorious second goal when a swerving 25-yard effort from midfielder Zhao

Xuri slammed against the bar. They were made to rue their profligacy on the half hour, as Akhmedov raced onto Djeparov’s slick throughball down the inside-left channel before dinking the ball into the bottom-right corner to level the scores. It took a breath-taking save from Nesterov to prevent China restoring their lead in the 36th minute. —AFP

DOHA: China’s player Yu Hai (right) complaints against Uzbekistan’s player Alexander Geynrikh during their AFC Asian Cup Group A soccer match. —AP

DOHA: Qatari football fans cheer for their team before the start of the 2011 Asian Cup Group A football match.—AP


Saudis look to salvage reputation DOHA: Saudi Arabia are looking to salvage their reputation when they face fellow three-time champions Japan in their final group match today after their humiliating exit from the tournament. “We will exert every effort to perform well,” Saudi Arabia coach Nasser Al Johar said on the eve of the Group B match. “We will also try to think about our destiny, our name and our reputation.” “Our players hope they will use all their potential to do that and restore our reputation again.” Saudi Arabia were stunned by unfancied Syria 2-1 and then bowed 1-0 to Jordan to assure themselves of bottom spot on the group table. After the first defeat, their Portuguese coach Jose Peseiro was fired and the fallout continued after the Jordan loss with King Abdullah removing Prince Sultan Bin Fahd as president of the Saudi Football Federation.

Al Johar refused to comment on the prince’s dismissal with a conference moderator limiting questions to issues directly related to the tournament. It is only the second time in Asian Cup history that Saudi Arabia have not made it to the knockout stages. “We are able to restore our reputation in the tournament. We’ll have to win,” Saudi defender Mohammed Massad said. “Even though we have been eliminated, this is a destiny by God. We’ll prepare ourselves for the coming days.” Japan boss Alberto Zaccheroni, a former AC Milan coach, warned against Saudi Arabia’s potential. “While Syria and Jordan fight by forming blocks, Saudi Arabia have techniques,” he said. “I expect them to fight with a creative and imaginative flair. We cannot afford to loosen up and we must fight courageously.” —AFP


Winner takes all in Jordan-Syria clash DOHA: The winner takes all when neighbors Jordan and Syria do battle today at the Asian Cup knowing a victory for either side will propel them into the last eight. Jordan are in a slightly better position with four points from two games, with Syria on three points in Group B, meaning a draw for Jordan would also be enough for them to seal a place in the knockout stages. Japan, one of the pre-tournament favourites, will be looking to top the group when they play Saudi Arabia, who are already out of contention. A dogged Jordan have impressed in drawing with Japan in their first match the Japanese needing a last-gasp equaliser for a point-before beating Saudi Arabia 1-0 to turf the regional giants out of the tournament. Jordan’s coach Adnan Hamad, who has reportedly had his contract extended until 2015 to take in World Cup qualifying, is hoping for more of the same from his unfancied side, who tend to soak up pressure and play on the break. “We will play to win and we want to finish top of the group,” the Iraqi said. “I have good confidence in the players to achieve the expectations of the fans back home in Jordan and in the stadium.” Hamad said captain and key defender Hatem Aqel, who injured his knee in the Japan draw and missed the Saudi game, would not play again in the tournament. But he was confident nevertheless of pulling off victory and getting into the knock-out stages,

for what would be a major achievement. “I call on the players to focus and concentrate, we need to forget about the last two games now. We are facing a very good and distinguished team supported by a good number of fans,” he cautioned. “But I am very optimistic about the match, even though we are facing a very strong team. The pressure is on us now from the fans.” Syria’s French-speaking Romanian coach Tita Valeriu acknowledged the odds were against his side, who started with a shock 2-1 win over Saudi Arabia before losing by the same scoreline to Japan in controversial circumstances. “We played very well against Saudi Arabia and did pretty well against Japan,” he said. “Jordan are a very good team and play well down the flanks and in the centre of the pitch.” Like Jordan, Syria have surprised in staying in contention in a group that was widely expected to be dominated by Japan and three-times champions Saudi Arabia. Valeriu’s achievement is even more admirable given he was only drafted in at the last moment to take over after the previous coach was fired after just one game. The Romanian, however, has in-depth knowledge of football in the country because he is coach of Al Ittihad of Aleppo, whom he led to AFC Cup glory in November. “I’ve been training the team only about three weeks but I am very satisfied with the players and I have full confidence in them,” he said.—AFP



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CHIBA: A Mercedes SL600 car decorated with 300,000 Swarovski crystals is displayed at the Tokyo Auto Salon 2011 yesterday. The show is the world’s largest auto exhibition with more than 600 custom vehicles on display. — AFP

Abu Dhabi steps in with $5.2bn Aldar support Oversupply, slump in demand weigh on prices DUBAI: Abu Dhabi has stepped in with $5.2 billion of support for struggling developer Aldar Properties, including buying some of its key assets and subscribing to a bond sale. Indebted Aldar, part-owned by the government, will sell assets worth $1.49 billion to the government to meet looming debt obligations. It will also raise $2.97 billion through sales and reimbursements for some of its key assets including its glitzy Ferrari World theme park . A government rescue for Aldar has been seen as a likely option by analysts since the property crash left the market with few private players willing to buy the developer’s assets. “This shows the effect of the slowdown in the real estate market. Selling to

Abu Dhabi was the only alternative for Aldar, as there’s no one else,” Mohammed Yasin, chief investment officer at Abu Dhabibased CAPM Investments said. Real estate companies across the Gulf Arab region have been hit hard by the global financial crisis and the pain is set to continue for Dubai and Abu Dhabi developers, as oversupply and a slump in demand weigh on prices. Dubai’s state-owned conglomerate Dubai World sent global markets reeling in 2009 when it requested a standstill on almost $25 billion of debt. The company secured unanimous approval for its restructuring plan in under a year. Aldar, the largest developer by market value in Abu Dhabi, will hold a shareholder

meeting to seek approval for a $760 million convertible bond issue to state-owned fund Mubadala. The bond will carry a conversion price of 2.3 dirhams a share, Aldar said in a statement. Its shares closed at the same price on the Abu Dhabi bourse Thursday but have fallen more than 50 percent in the last one year. “Aldar has a buyer in the Abu Dhabi government. At the same time, it will ensure not to increase government stake to levels that will scare away private investors,” Yasin said. The Abu Dhabi government currently owns about 31 percent of Aldar. Impairment charge Aldar will also take an impairment charge

Iran self-reliant in gasoline in 2011 TEHRAN: Iran will finally become self-sufficient in gasoline later this year, no longer reliant on imports or “emergency” fuel produced in petrochemical plants, its oil minister said yesterday. Iran said in September it was no longer importing the automotive fuel which had become subject to sanctions and that it was making up the shortfall by producing gasoline in chemical factories. Oil Minister Massoud Mirkazemi told a news conference that Iran, which had previously imported 30 to 40 percent of its gasoline consumption, would start inaugurating new refinery capacity every month, starting from February. “Later in this year, we will become self-sufficient thanks to the gasoline produced by our refineries and will no longer be reliant on either imports or petrochemical units,” he said. Foreign analysts said they doubted the sustainability of the

emergency refining plan and Iranians complained of worsening air quality in major cities, something many people suspected was at least in part due to the sudden use of lower-quality fuel. Mirkazemi blamed Iran’s foreign foes for spreading that idea. “It is a ridiculous claim raised by those countries which believed that by imposing sanction on gasoline, we would face problems.” As well as boosting refinery capacity, Mirkazemi said a cut in state subsidies which pushed up the pump prices by as much as seven-fold in December would help Iran achieve the self-sufficiency goal by suppressing demand. Iran’s daily consumption has fallen to between 52 and 53 million liters, he said, compared with around 61 million before the subsidy cuts. Mirkazemi also said Iran’s gasoline stocks were high. “Our stockpile is at its highest and nothing

would happen if we did not import (gasoline) for a long time,” he said. In another sanction-related development, Mirkazemi appeared optimistic about prospects for resolving a dispute with India over payment for crude oil. India’s central bank said last month payments for Iranian oil imports could no longer be settled using a long-standing clearing house system, a move apparently linked to US sanctions on Iran which it fears is seeking nuclear weapons, something Tehran denies. “The job can be done by changing the banks,” he said. “By changing the methods ... no problem will exist any longer, although we know that India is under heavy pressure from the Americans.” India’s Oil Secretary S Sundareshan said on Wednesday he was “absolutely confident” that the row-which could block imports of 400,000 barrels per day-would be settled in coming days. —Reuters

of $2.86 billion to reflect a sharp drop in the value of its assets, it said. “The impairment recognition reflects the adverse conditions that have affected the real estate market, but is an important step in allowing Aldar to achieve long-term sustainable growth,” said Ahmed Al Sayegh, the chairman of Aldar. The company did not name any specific assets earmarked for its $1.49 billion sale plan but analysts have said these could include properties such as the Yas Hotel and some commercial and retail developments under construction. Aldar has been in the spotlight in the past few months amid speculation that it would receive government support to meet its cash needs. In March last year, Aldar sold

its Formula One race track to Abu Dhabi’s government for 9.1 billion dirhams ($2.5 billion). Of this, 6.5 billion dirhams was in the form of debt forgiveness and the remainder was booked as receivables to be repaid by the Abu Dhabi government over the next seven years. Its shares have fallen more than 50 percent since it sold assets last March, reflecting shareholders’ concerns about the company’s financial health. In 2008, Aldar issued a 3.56 billion dirhams convertible bond to Mubadala that matures in November 2011. Bank of America Merrill Lynch said in a report in November Aldar needed 9.8 billion dirhams ($2.7 billion) by 2011. — Reuters

Dubai slumps to 4-month low MIDEAST STOCK MARKETS DUBAI: Abu Dhabi’s Aldar Properties tumbled to a fivemonth low yesterday after the indebted developer said it planned to take $2.9 billion in impairments and issue a $760 million convertible bond. These are part of a restructuring plan for the state-linked firm, which has made losses for four straight quarters and faces an estimated $3 billion funding gap in 2011. Abu Dhabi’s government will pay Aldar $4.5 billion for various assets. “Equity holders suffer immediate equity impairment and future dilution, but solvency is now assured,” Nomura wrote in a research note. “The stock now looks expensive relative to its peers and that will likely take some time to correct.” Aldar fell 7.1 percent to its lowest close since Aug 12. The firm’s sukuk holders, plus local bank and trade creditors were the winners from Aldar’s restructuring, said Akram Annous, MENA strategist at Al Mal Capital. “There is a good reason most banks and real estate companies trade at huge discounts to book,” said Annous. “Their financials don’t reflect reality. Nobody believes them. After this restructuring, you won’t be able to say that about Aldar. I expect the equity market to slowly warm to this news.” Abu’s Dhabi’s index fell 0.9 percent, while Dubai slumped to a four-month low as property stocks headed losers. “Aldar is a drag on sentiment - it’s not always rational, but this is how the market operates,” said

Tarik Lotfy, Arqaam Capital Head of MENA equities. Egypt’s main index dropped 1 percent as the ousting of Tunisia’s president spurred fears of instability in other Arab countries. Citadel Capital fell 2.1 percent and SODIC dropped 1.6 percent. “It has really affected the political risk in the region,” said Youssef Kamal of Naeem Brokerage. Saudi Arabia’s bank index rose 0.3 percent to a 15-week high after more above-forecast results from lenders. “Banks’ Q4 results have come in better than expected, but that’s because they’ve taken less provisions, not because operating profits have increased,” said a Riyadhbased trader who asked not to be identified. “Banks will have to take more provisions sooner or later, so it’s not really good news and I don’t think we’ll see bank shares taking off because people know there’s more pain to come.” Saudi Investment Bank (SAIB) rose 2.2 percent after it swung into profit in the fourth-quarter, but SABB dipped 1 percent. The latter made a quarterly profit of 397 million riyals ($106 million), but operating income fell. Qatar’s index edged up to a new 27-month high, with foreigners now net buyers on the bourse for 14 weeks running, said Hani Girgis, assistant chief dealer at Dlala brokerage. These investors are likely to hold onto positions at least until companies make dividend payouts for 2010, he added. — Reuters




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GCC region on the road to recovery Oil revenues to sustain fiscal plans in 2011

Joseph Anis

GE focuses on technology at World Energy Summit 2011 ABU DHABI: To support the Middle East in meeting the dynamic energy challenges, GE is once again demonstrating its commitment to smarter, cleaner and more energy efficient solutions towards more reliable energy and water supplies as well as a sustainable energy future at the World Future Energy Summit (WFES) to be held from today till January 21 in Abu Dhabi. Held under the patronage of HH General Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces and hosted by the Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (MASDAR), the theme at this year’s WFES is ‘Enabling Future Energy Solutions’. “GE is leveraging its global capabilities to develop smarter, cleaner and fuel-flexible energy and water technologies that support environmentally compatible economic growth throughout the region,” said Joseph Anis, GE Energy’s region executive for the Middle East. “We understand the needs of the region and are committed to supplying tailored solutions to maximize the use of available resources so as to support the region towards a sustainable energy future.” Mark Vachon, Vice President, GE ecomagination, will be the keynote presenter at the WFES Technology Forum on January 19 at 10:45 am, addressing attendees on the newest initiatives in ecomagination - GE’s corporate initiative to help meet customers’ demands for more energy-efficient products and to drive reliable growth. In 2009, GE invested $1.5 billion on ecomagination R&D, reaching the commitment to double the company’s annual investment by 2010 one year ahead of schedule. GE continues to be committed to unleashing new technology, and in 2010, GE introduced a new commitment to invest an additional $10 billion in ecomagination research and development by 2015. Last year, GE also launched The GE Ecomagination Challenge: Powering the Grid - a $200 million commitment to finding and funding the best ideas for modernizing our power

grid. Additionally, Frank Ackland, Regional General Manager, Digital Energy, GE Energy Services, will be part of a plenary session on January 19 at 2pm discussing smart grid and its role in renewable integration. Ackland will discuss how investments are required today to integrate the variety of technologies needed for generating decentralized energy. While revolutionary energy technologies are developed each day, the way they are applied to modernize and nurture the electrical infrastructure is really more of an evolution than a revolution. Themed “Enabling the Future”, GE’s booth 5320, supports this year’s WFES theme with the company’s representatives on hand to showcase a wide portfolio of advanced power, water re-use and oil and gas technologies, including GE solutions for modernizing the grid to meet growing capacity, sustainability, economic and security needs. The highlights of GE’s participation include: Innovative and fuel flexible energy technologies including GE Energy’s’ Jenbacher biogas and natural gas-fired engines; and GE’s portfolio of high-efficiency gas and steam turbines that offer enhanced operational flexibility and efficiency. Crucial localization initiatives with some of the Middle East’s leading energy and engineering services companies to complement GE’s extensive local and international engineering and service facilities. For example, GE is an anchor partner in Abu Dhabi’s Masdar initiative - a comprehensive response to the need for a global focus on resource conservation and the alternative energy sector. It is designed to ensure in the long term that Abu Dhabi retains and even grows its share of the global energy market. With its global resources and experience, as well as its long and successful regional heritage, GE is well-positioned to understand and respond to the cleaner technology and efficiency needs of the Middle East.

The outlook for the GCC states has improved considerably on the back of the ongoing recovery in the international capital markets and the global economy along with the stabilization in oil prices above $75 per barrel. The strength of the recent economic recovery is largely underpinned by the rebound in oil prices from their low in 2009, which has boosted governments’ revenues. In addition, a sizable and rapid fiscal policy response has played a key role supporting the non-hydrocarbon sector. The GCC state’s combined economy in 2010 and 2011 is forecast to grow in real terms at 4.5 percent and 5.9 percent, respectively following a marginal growth of 0.4 percent in 2009. Higher oil revenues will result in comfortable fiscal position that in turn will permit most GCC states to sustain their fiscal stimulus plans in 2010 and 2011. However, revival in credit growth remains the major challenge for the GCC states in the short term, which similar to many other countries had dropped sharply as a result of the credit turmoil and financial downturn. Moreover, the fundamentals to strengthen the financial system and address the sluggish credit growth have improved as considerable progress has been made in introducing new rules and regulations to the banking system that will protect it from potential financial risks in the future along with corporate debt restructuring, helping shore up market sentiment. Although the financial systems in the GCC region were less impacted by the repercussions of the financial crisis, long-term challenges for regulatory authorities remain to be the enhancement of banking supervision, adoption of more prudential economic policies by diversifying economies away from hydrocarbons, appropriate liquidity management as well as preserving fiscal space to enable an effective policy response to contain damage in times of economic downturn. Hence, tackling these challenges would bring with it large benefits to the GCC states in terms of economic stability, and stronger and sustainable non-oil growth and job creation for the young population. Fiscal stimulus plans fuel economic growth According to IMF estimates, the aggregate GCC GDP is expected to cross $1 trillion by the end of 2010 on the back of a recovery in oil prices, increases in production and increased government spending. The increase in government spending comes with a possible increase in inflation over the region. Inflation in five of the GCC’s six states soared to double-digit figures before the global financial crisis, but then eased with Qatar posting inflation of 15 percent before the crisis and deflation during it. But in recent months, prices have begun to rise again, with Saudi Arabia hitting an inflation rate of more than 5 percent and Kuwait recording 4 percent. Even though the costs of many durables and rents, a significant component in most inflation baskets are decreasing,

Dubai realty draws tenants from neighboring Emirate DUBAI: Well for most of those who are living in rental property in Dubai are now familiar of the effect of falling rents on their improved lifestyle and potential savings. 2010 was really the year when the tables turned on the rentals game in Dubai, and it became a tenant’s market instead of the landlord’s. However, according to recent real estate report, even this year Dubai rental properties will draw the attention of tenants from all over the world and neighboring emirates. Developers of those high-rise residential rentals in Dubai on Shaikh Zayed Road hurtling towards completion have an eye out for potential tenants in Dubai from Sharjah

rising food prices are beginning to feed into inflation numbers. Accounting for around 55 percent of the GCC Nominal GDP, Qatar and Saudi Arabia are expected to lead the regional economic growth during 2011 with aggressive growth forecasts of 24.8 percent and 9.6 percent, respectively, aiding an estimated growth of 10.5 percent for the region. These growth rates come on the back of expected recovery in oil price market along with the massive planned government spending. Credit growth slowly strengthens Following a period of robust growth in 2007 and 2008 that fueled real estate activities and consumers’ consumption and stock markets’ liquidity and return, credit facilities extended by GCC banks witnessed a significant slowdown in 2009 and 2010 triggered by the financial and credit turmoil. Tight conditions in international credit markets and contractions in local consumption and demand, slump in private sector activities (particularly in the real estate and construction sector) along with erosion of individuals’ wealth due to the massive losses incurred by domestic bourses and sharp correction in property prices contributed to the weak credit growth. Banks’ heightened risk aversion and tightening conditions for the extension of domestic credit had also weakened credit growth even further. Growth in total credit facilities extended by banks in the GCC region slowed down to 3.4 percent in 2009 following a significant growth of 30 percent and 35.5 percent in 2007 and 2008, respectively. Total credit facilities recorded $662 billion at the end of 2009 versus $640.7 billion at the end of 2008. The slowdown in credit growth was witnessed across all GCC states with uneven rates. In Saudi Arabia, credit contracted by 1.1 percent to $196.5 billion (representing 29.7 percent of total credit facilities) while credit growth in Bahrain remained muted at $15.6 billion. Credit growth in Qatar is among the strongest in the GCC region, supported by a solid sovereign balance sheet and robust economic growth. Qatar witnessed the highest credit growth in 2009 with credit facilities growing at 11.5 percent to $74.3 billion fueled by the massive capital spending by the government on infrastructure projects and the expansion of its LNG production base, and related industries in the upstream and downstream subsectors. Also significant increase in international borrowing is contributing to this robust growth. Moreover, credit growth in Kuwait and Oman slowed down to 6 percent in 2009 to record $89.3 billion and $25.5 billion, respectively. Credit facilities of UAE banks which control around 39 percent of GCC banks’ loan portfolios or around $261 billion, witnessed a slowdown in 2009 with an annual growth in credit recording 3.7 percent. Dubai credit crisis, slump in oil prices, severe correction in real estate prices along with contraction in private

sector activities and flight of international capital together contributed to credit growth slowdown. Official figures released by the monetary authorities in the GCC states indicate that credit growth started to strengthen slowly in 2010. We expect credit growth of 5.5 percent in 2010 to reach $699 billion by the end of the year and to strengthen gradually in 2011 to 9 percent, driven by the pick-up in domestic demand. We expect the strongest growth In Qatar with credit facilities estimated to grow at 19 percent to reach $88.7 billion by the end of December-10 fueled by the massive spending on infrastructure and LNG projects and the surge in international borrowing by sovereign-entities. So far, most of the borrowing has been directed to the development of the LNG sector and financing real estate and infrastructure projects. In 2011, credit is expected to sustain its 2010’s level in line with the expected economic growth in the country. In Saudi Arabia, we expect a rebound in credit growth underpinned by the robust economic growth (fuelled by a rally in oil prices), positive developments in the property market and the fiscal stimulus plan implementation by the Kingdom to boost economic growth. Thus, we expect credit to grow 6.5 percent in 2010 to reach $209 billion and then will strengthen further to 9 percent in 2011 when banks resume lending to the private sector. In the UAE, despite the economic boom in Abu Dhabi driven by the government’s capital spending, Dubai’s debt crisis is still weighing on the credit market. Thus credit growth remains sluggish in 2010 and is forecast to grow at 2.8 percent then by 5 percent in 2011. Robust growth expected in MENA economies The aggregate nominal GDP of the MENA region witnessed a contraction of 6.4 percent during 2009 to record $784.6 billion following a significant growth of 26.5 percent in 2008. Growth in MENA economies is expected to remain robust in 2010 and 2011 as members of this group managed to weather the financial turmoil relatively well, mainly due to relatively limited exposure to global financial markets, real activity in their economies and the slight impact of movement in oil prices on public finance. Looking forward, MENA region economies are forecast to grow at corresponding rates of 14.7 percent and 9.0 percent in 2010 and 2011 to reach $899.7 billion and $980.7 billion respectively. This growth comes mainly on the back of aggressive growth forecasts for Egypt and Algeria, the largest two economies, which account for a significant 42 percent of the selected group’s GDP. In the medium term, however, the possibility of heightened economic and financial turbulence in the Euro zone would expose MENA economies to a significant downside risk as Europe is the largest partner for these countries.

Special discounts for ABK Visa cardholders

and Abu Dhabi. The lifeline provided to Dubai’s rental market by those working in the capital yet preferring to live here is still very much there. And the great migration continues. Current reports say, “People are moving around the emirates, particularly those from Sharjah to Dubai and out of Abu Dhabi to Dubai Marina”. Apart from Dubai Marina, the Jumeirah Lake Towers cluster is another out to attract white-collar workers from Abu Dhabi. Given Dubai’s looming residential oversupply, landlords are not going to be very concerned about where their tenants are coming from. As long as they keep coming, they are out to make the best of what they can deal with.

KUWAIT: Al-Ahli Bank of Kuwait, in collaboration with Visa International announced a special promotion to offer ABK Visa credit cardholders and debit cardholders special discounts at the Kuwait Airport Duty Free. This was in keeping with the Bank’s initiative at constantly upgrading their client services, and offering as many value added options as possible. Stewart Lockie, General Manager (Acting), Retail stated, “We do our best to create and develop value added banking advantages to benefit our clients and give them something extra.

Stewart Lockie

With this offer all ABK Visa credit and debit cardholders can get 10% off on their purchases from branded perfumes and watches like Chopard, Rado, Mont Blanc, Givenchy, TAG Heuer, Baume & Mercier, Gucci and Versace that are available at the Kuwait Airport Duty Free. The special offer extends from the 15th of January till the 15th of March.” This new offer with Visa is par t of numerous promotions offered by ABK to its clients which were all well received amongst customers and helped the Bank in establishing its position as a leading retail bank.

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

.2750000 .4410000 .3720000 .2890000 .2800000 .2740000 .0045000 .0020000 .0761760 .7421590 .3920000 .0730000 .7275550 .0045000 .0480000 CUSTOMER TRANSFER RATES US Dollar/KD .2796000 GB Pound/KD .4436830 Euro .3742450 Swiss francs .2901920 Canadian dollars .2824240 Danish Kroner .0502520 Swedish Kroner .0420180 Australian dlr .2765940 Hong Kong dlr .0359650 Singapore dlr .2170980 Japanese yen .0033710 Indian Rs/KD .0000000 Sri Lanka rupee .0000000 Pakistan rupee .0000000 Bangladesh taka .0000000 UAE dirhams .0761440 Bahraini dinars .7418410 Jordanian dinar .0000000 Saudi Riyal/KD .0745800 Omani riyals .7264220 Philippine Peso .0000000

Al-Muzaini Exchange Co. Japanese Yen Indian Rupees Pakistani Rupees Srilankan Rupees Nepali Rupees Singapore Dollar Hongkong Dollar Bangladesh Taka

ASIAN COUNTRIES 3.426 6.200 3.280 2.531 3.887 218.790 36.149 3.953

.2840000 .4510000 .3790000 .2960000 .2890000 .2830000 .0075000 .0035000 .0769410 .7496180 .4100000 .0780000 .7348670 .0072000 .0560000 .2817000 .4470160 .3770550 .2923720 .2845450 .0506290 .0423340 .2786720 .0362350 .2187280 .0033960 .0062600 .0025490 .0033040 .0039960 .0767160 .7474130 .3984440 .0751400 .7318780 .0064390

Philippine Peso Thai Baht Irani Riyal - Transfer Irani Riyal - Cash

6.357 9.265 0.271 0.273

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

GCC COUNTRIES 75.945 77.221 730.160 746.460 76.533

Saudi Riyal Qatari Riyal Omani Riyal Bahraini Dinar UAE Dirham

ARAB COUNTRIES Egyptian Pound - Cash 52.100 Egyptian Pound - Transfer 48.475 Yemen Riyal 1.318 Tunisian Dinar 197.010 Jordanian Dinar 396.880 Lebanese Lira 186.700 Syrian Lier 6.041 Morocco Dirham 34.260 EUROPEAN & AMERICAN COUNTRIES US Dollar Transfer 280.930 Euro 380.240 Sterling Pound 449.490 Canadian dollar 288.730 Turkish lire 182.300 Swiss Franc 296.340 Australian dollar 280.230 US Dollar Buying 280.745 GOLD 260.000 132.000 68.000

20 Gram 10 Gram 5 Gram

SELL CASH 281.400 746.900 4.240 287.500 551.600 14.100 51.200 167.800 51.900 379.700 38.810 6.490


396.960 0.189 94.360 3.900 217.400

Sterling Pound US Dollar

293.500 6.100 9.410 76.530 280.800

TRAVELLER’S CHEQUE 447.400 280.800

Dollarco Exchange Co. Ltd

SELL DRAFT 279.900 746.900 3.950 286.000

219.400 48.473 378.200 36.660 6.195

Rate for Transfer US Dollar Canadian Dollar Sterling Pound Euro Swiss Frank Bahrain Dinar UAE Dirhams Qatari Riyals Saudi Riyals Jordanian Dinar Egyptian Pound Sri Lankan Rupees

Selling Rate 280.750 287.470 446.400 378.395 290.878 743.079 76.415 77.093 74.836 396.594 48.485 2.531

Indian Rupees Pakistani Rupees Bangladesh Taka Philippines Pesso Cyprus pound Japanese Yen Thai Bhat Syrian Pound Nepalese Rupees

6.195 3.284 3.963 6.342 688.677 3.485 9.289 6.223 3.952

Kuwait Bahrain Intl Exchange Co. 729.340 3.290 6.350 77.260 74.990 219.380 43.660 2.532 447.400

GOLD 1,458.860

10 Tola

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

0.032 0.262 0.251 3.500 398.840 0.190 94.360 46.000 4.400 218.900 1.910 48.300 729.520 3.390 6.680 77.960 74.990 219.380 43.660 2.675 449.400 41.900 295.000 6.100 9.620 198.263 76.630 281.200 1.360

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

Rate per 1000 (Tran) 280.800 3.295 6.210 2.540 3.955 6.400 76.540 75.085 746.500 48.470 452.250 0.00003280 3.910 1.550 398.900 5.750 381.600 289.100

Al Mulla Exchange Currency Transfer Rate (Per 1000) US Dollar 282.000 Euro 369.500 Pound Sterling 443.000 Canadian Dollar 287.000 Japanese Yen 3.410 Indian Rupee 6.260 Egyptian Pound 48.740 Sri Lankan Rupee 2.543 Bangladesh Taka 3.945 Philippines Peso 6.325 Pakistan Rupee 3.297 Bahraini Dinar 748.900 UAE Dirham 76.820 Saudi Riyal 75.260 *Rates are subject to change




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Outlook for US economy bright in 2011 Australian job surge lower than expected United States Last week, there was a trend reversal in the foreign exchange market as it focused mainly on the euro zone crisis pressuring the dollar against a basket of currencies. The euro was among the biggest gainers rising to a one-month high against the greenback following solid bond sales by Portugal and Spain as well as a warning of inflation risk from the ECB President. The single-currency reached a high of 1.3456 from a low of 1.2871 earlier during the week. The sterling traded at a one-month high against the dollar reaching a high of 1.5888 helped by speculation that the UK interest rates might rise sooner than expected. The yen continued to trade in a narrow range between 82.40 and 83.30. The Swiss Franc range traded between 0.9600 and 0.9785. The Australian dollar traded between 1.0019 and 0.9800 levels. Finally, the Canadian dollar reached a two and a half year high against the greenback to trade at 0.9840. Bernanke’s speech The Federal Reserve Chairman, Ben Bernanke said in a meeting last week that the outlook for the US economy has brightened and expected it to strengthen further in 2011. The Fed anticipates the economy would expand in a range of 3 to 4 percent this year. However, he warned that growth might not be strong enough to reduce unemployment at the pace policy makers would like it to. Trade gap shrinks The US trade deficit narrowed unex-


US jobless claims rise US jobless claims jumped unexpectedly last week to their highest level since October, suggesting the labor market is still under pressure despite signs of improvement in the economy. The number of Americans filing for firsttime unemployment benefits rose to 445,000 from 410,000 in the previous week. It was the biggest one-week jump in about six months and against markets’ expectations for a small drop to 405,000. The rebound occurred following the holidays’ massive hiring, which may have hindered the real picture last month.

December, led by higher fuel and food prices, while other goods and services showed the smallest annual increase on record. The Consumer Price Index (CPI) increased 0.5 percent, more than the 0.4 percent forecast of economists. Excluding the volatile components that are food and fuel prices, the so-called Core CPI rose 0.1 percent, in line with expectations.

developments. President Trichet said prices need to be monitored very closely after euro zone inflation jumped last month to 2.2 percent, the first time in two years it has risen above the central bank’s target of just below 2 percent. His comments drove expectations that the ECB could raise interest rates sooner than expected, despite the debt fears which continue to engulf the euro zone.

Stronger retail sales US retail sales rose 0.6 percent in December, marking the sixth straight monthly increase, as consumers bought more goods from online retailers, drug stores and building-supply companies. The figure was below expectations of a 0.8 percent rise. Excluding the volatile automotive sector, retail sales rose 0.5 percent, the Commerce Department reported last week. For all of 2010, retail sales rose 6.6 percent compared to 2009.

Higher inflation US producer prices rose more than expected in December as energy and food costs surged while underlying inflation remained subdued. Prices climbed 1.1 percent following a 0.8 percent rise in November. However, producer prices excluding food and energy rose only 0.2 percent in line with expectations. The cost of living in the United States climbed more than forecast in

Europe ECB keeps rate at 1 percent The European Central Bank kept its main interest rate on hold at a record low of 1 percent for the twentieth month in a row, as widely expected by economists. The ECB President JeanClaude Trichet said at a press conference following the decision that the Euro zone faces short-term inflationary pressures largely owing to commodity price

Successful euro zone bond auctions Investors showed strong appetite for Portugal, Spain as well as Italy’s bonds last week at their debut debt auctions for 2011, easing concerns about an escalation of the euro zone debt crisis. Portugal sold 1.249 billion euros in two-bond maturities while Spain sold 3 billion euros of its five-year bonds, both at the top end of their Treasury’s target range. In the same token, Italy also sold 6 billion euros in 5 and 15-year bonds. The successful sales helped cool down speculation that the crisis, which forced Greece and Ireland to take bailouts last year, might also engulf both Portugal and Spain.

pectedly in November as expor ts climbed to the highest level in more than two years. The trade gap dipped to $38.3 billion from $38.4 billion in October, against analysts’ expectation to widen to $40.5 billion. The deficit was the lowest since January 2010.

United Kingdom BoE keeps rates steady at 0.5% The Bank of England’s monetary policy committee kept interest rates at a record low of 0.5 percent last week, a decision widely expected by analysts due to the risk of a slowdown in Britain’s economic

recovery. Interest rates were kept on hold since the depths of the recession in March 2009 despite the rising inflationary pressures. British consumer price inflation was at 3.3 percent in November, and is forecasted to reach 4 percent in the coming few months, due to higher food and fuel cost and the rise in sales tax. Financial markets predict that the BOE will be forced to take action to fight inflation and are pricing in a strong chance of an interest rate hike as early as May. Trade balance The UK trade deficit widened more than expected in November, rising to 8.73 billion pounds from October’s 8.59 in October and beating expectations of a drop to 8.33 billion. This was the biggest trade gap since 1980. Australian job surge lower than expected Australian employers added fewer workers than economists’ forecast in December as a stronger currency and higher borrowing costs slowed the economy. The number of people employed rose by 2,300 from November, against forecast for a 25,000 increase. The jobless rate fell to 5 percent from 5.2 percent last month, partly because some people stopped looking for a job. This report adds to the case that the Reserve Bank of Australia would hold rates unchanged at 4.75 percent this quarter. Kuwait The Kuwaiti dinar opened at 0.28015 yesterday morning.

BEC Gold Bonanza 2011 January Draw winners SL # 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60

PRIZES 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar 5 Gms Gold bar

COUPON NO 259554 211828 304808 428775 127522 485778 388839 158416 390683 238173 0036802 221377 400429 184430 72532 416153 239310 370162 53923 66581 50690 307857 266639 0011350 0001477 69027 385674 420574 66777 422695 338732 317991 0029188 120437 71312 452140 241787 76290 274281 0007638 344834 306580 59075 365851 0038991 386966 328617 81602 183434 264628 50164 258590 441276 294346 438904 403941 484792 195969 343407 78018

WINNER’S NAME B Jayaram Satheesh Kumar M M Sirakdheen Charley Pia A R Korupail Mohammed Shafi Erarita Monosy S Manikandan M Asanga Peter Emaila Nisansala Rajesh Kumar Ghatin Vinod Jacob Ephraim Jacuban Fatma Ali Akbar A R Jamal Mohammed Siby Alex Mohd Mahmoud Ibrahim A M M Sufriz Shibu P S Nurul Islam Nabha Bader H Vincent Vaz C Malayara Sur Razack Sahib Shaikh G Kumaresani Ismail Kamaluddin Shyra Nasa Daisy Dineda S Abdul Wahab Smaralili Aboobacker Karat S Elangovan Anwar Abdullah Mutawa Islam Kamrul Alam Noel Castelino Osman K Harshakumar Muhammed Ismail Abdulaziz Abdulnaser Manoj A M Esam Farookhy Din Islam Md Murafsar Rajesh Mathew Alamgir T Mohan Dhas Praveen Muhammed Navas Juanito Abrenica Juindhias Rhena J saleem Jamsheed p P M H N Irshad Mamanur Rashid Shefis D S

REFR NO 3488675 9181567 9200546 1039393 9176080 9026104 80099427 3444366 9007479 9022641 31007630 90159860 2482619 38137820 1030970 919407 173890 90099095 8626726 901111 9181588 B 56985 8363668 39765889 9002847 90089154 9189695 9100543 9015691 80074309 1036781 9190848 9176383 38931719 39768841 9041278 1034959 9092474 0178926 3426782 9099062 38941238 38930238 9174051 3428735 9174125 9021013 9025538 90160399 1078653 3431982 9184764 3486776 1034983 1638760 39788479 18183713 985198 9099042 3438906

Extra Names SL COUPON NO EXTRA NAMES REF. NO 1 199254 K sridharan 3451212 2 454837 Caitano Costa 38948188 3 491304 Sulaiman 3493108 4 445865 S Peer Mohammed 39760066 5 61112 Jamal Nader Moosa 9123286 NOTE: If any of the above 60 Winners are not available to receive their prize on time,

Subaru titled ‘Better Safe Car’ in 2011 The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) recognized Subaru as the only automotive manufacturer for two years running with a 2011 Top Safety Pick winner in every vehicle class in which it competes. The test results cap a year in which Subaru is poised to announce its best-ever sales record. “We know our customers take their safety very seriously and so we are very pleased that IIHS has recognized us again as the only manufacturer with a Top Safety Pick winner for all its models”, said Tom

Doll, executive vice president and COO, Subaru of America, Inc. “This is an outstanding success and a tribute to the engineering that goes into our products. The IIHS reinforces to our customers that Subaru maintains the highest standards to produce vehicles that are fun-to-drive, durable, reliable as well as safe.” The Top Safety Pick recognizes vehicles that, in IIHS testing, do the best job of protecting people in front, side, rear, and now rollover crashes based on ‘good’ ratings in each category. The IIHS ranks in

terms of Good, Acceptable, Marginal and Poor, with ‘good’ as the top rank possible in Institute tests. Winners also must have electronic stability control. “Subaru is the only manufacturer with a Top Safety Pick winner in every vehicle class in which it competes”, said IIHS president Adrian Lund. “The vehicles that earn this designation are the cream of the crop for protecting people in the most common kinds of crashes, and they have electronic stability control for helping drivers stay out of many crashes altogether.”

KCIC, investors acquire AG&P KUWAIT: KCIC, an investment firm specializing in invest- an enhanced oil recovery (EOR) Services Company in ments in Asia, yesterday announced that the company China, which has recently been listed on the stock and a consortium of investors have acquired a Philippine- exchange. The company has patented and exclusively based engineering and construction company Atlantic licensed EOR technologies enabling it to benefit from Gulf & Pacific (AG&P) for PHP1.75 billion (equivalent to Chinese oil majors’ increased need for improving oil output at aging fields. $39.7 million). On the Philippines economy: The consortium comprised of high profile international and Filipino investors, including key investors with a ● 2010 growth rate: The Philippines is the secondwealth of experience in the oil and gas industry and inter- fastest growing economy among the “ASEAN-5” in 2010, national finance. with a forecasted growth rate AG&P is one of the oldest of 7 percent and most experienced engi● 2011 growth rate: The neering and construction International Monetary Fund companies in Asia. It is a expects the Philippines econleader in steel fabrication omy to grow at 4.5 percent and modular construction ● Economy position: In market, and has two main Asia (excluding Japan), the divisions: Heavy Fabrication Philippines ranks as the 8th and Overseas Manpower. biggest economy (with an The company has a global expected total output of footprint and serves some of $168 billion in 2010) and is the most important clients the fourth most populous in the world’s energy and nation (with about 92 milAhmad A Al-Hamad mining sector, including: lion people according to 2009 estimates) ● Aramco Overseas Corporation (KSA), ● Rising foreign investments: The Philippines witnessed rising foreign investments in recent years (up 25 ● Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd (Japan), percent since 2007), due to the country’s economic ● Kellogg Brown & Root (US), strength and high growth potential ● Krupp Industrieteknik GmbH (Germany), ● Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd (Japan), ● Economic stability: The Filipino government has taken important steps towards economic and political stabil● Esso Production Malaysia, Inc, ity since the Asian crisis in 1998. Today, the country ● Hitachi Works, Hitachi Ltd (Japan), enjoys low inflation, stable interest and foreign exchange ● Technip (France), and rates, and a relatively high output growth (since 2001, ● Snamprogetti (Italy) KCIC Managing Director Ahmad A Al-Hamad said: “This economic growth has averaged 4.5 percent per year) in a acquisition is a major milestone in KCIC’s strategic invest- politically stable environment. ment plans. It represents the first private investment in ● Solid fundamentals: The economy weathered the Emerging Asia’s energy sector and the first investment in 2008-2009 global recession better than its regional peers the Philippines. We look forward to working closely with due to a minimal exposure to securities issued by trouAG&P’s management in helping them penetrate the bled global financial institutions; a resilient (nearly 75 growing oil and gas sector in the Gulf and the broader percent of the output comes from consumption) domesregion.” tic demand, supported by large remittances (a vital The acquisition comes in line with KCIC’s strategy to source of income for the Philippines, remittances constiinvest in the growing energy sector in Asia, and AG&P is tute nearly 10 percent of total output); a lower dependwell positioned to provide a direct access to the sector, ence on exports (a stark difference if compared to other which requires new infrastructure and additional services Asian economies which are largely export dependent); to support its growth. AG&P has high exposure to the sec- and a growing business process outsourcing industry. tor, servicing global oil and gas firms in four key Asian Main exports are semiconductors, electronic products countries and across the globe. and textiles, while main imports are fuel and other raw The acquisition follows KCIC’s strategic investment in materials.

Warba Insurance introduces Education Plus KUWAIT: Every caring parent wishes to give their children the chance to achieve the highest and best education level so they may pursue their dreams and enjoy bright future. However, increasing cost of education due to inflation and other factors may deprive many children the dream of becoming a doctor or engineer or business school graduate or any other specialized Professional. Hence, parents need to make a long term sound financial plan to meet the rising cost of education by starting the savings today. Education Plus offered by Warba Insurance Company has been already proved to be the best solution to large number of caring parents who wish to secure their children’s bright future. Education Plus, helps the parents to make regular savings as per their need and budget so that they can support their children to meet cost of university/professional education at the crucial time. In addition to guaranteeing desired sum of money at the age of 18 of the child, Education Plus also provides risk cover so that in case of any unfortunate event of the parent, the child gets monthly income till the age of 18 years. Further, without any premium payment during the term, the full sum is payable at age 18 of the child for their higher studies. Warba Insurance Company’s individual life department provides various savings, investment and protection plans for individuals and families to enable them to secure their future. The division provides personalized assistance for the parents based on child’s age and the education planning.



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kuwait equities remain mixed


Focus on commodity driven inflation fears

GLOBAL DAILY MARKET REPORT KUWAIT: Kuwaiti stocks ended yesterday’s session on a mixed note. Global Large cap index was lifted up by gains in banks stocks, whilst Global small cap index closed unchanged.

By Ole S Hansen


Market indices Global General Index (GGI) closed 0.51 points up (0.23 percent), at 223.80 point as the market capitalization decreased reaching KD36.40 million. On the other side, Kuwait Stock Exchange Price index closed in the red zone shedding 13.40 points (0.19 percent) from its value and closed at 6,922.9 point. Market breadth During the session, 108 companies were traded. Market breadth was skewed towards decliners as 27 equities advanced versus 41 that retreated. Daily trading activity Volume of shares traded on the exchange decreased by 22.58 percent to reach 163.33 million shares, the value of shares traded decreased by a 55.56 percent to stand at KD20.42 million. The services sector was the volume leader yesterday, accounting for 40.57 percent of total shares and the services sector was the value leader, with 31.96 percent of total traded value. Company-wise, AlSafat Energy Holding Company was the most actively traded stock, with 29.24 million shares exchanged. The scrip shed by 1.39 percent. Top gainers and biggest decliners In terms of top gainers, Real Estate Trade Center Co was the biggest gainer for the day, adding 6.67 percent and closed at KD0.400. On the other side, Gulf Insurance Company came in

as the biggest decliner, dropping by 7.58 percent and closed at KD0.610. Sectors wise The advance was broad-based with three out of the eight sectors moving nor thward. The Global Banking Index led the pack of advancers, with a 0.73 percent climb. Ahli United Bank 2.70 percent climb bolstered the sector’s performance. It closed at KD0.760. Elsewhere in the banking sector, National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) and Kuwait Finance House (KFH) saw their share values appreciate by 1.41 percent & 1.64 percent respectively. On the other side of the spectrum, Insurance stocks led the pack of

decliners, as highlighted by a 2.50 percent drop in the Global Insurance Index. Gulf Insurance Company recoiled by 7.58 percent yesterday. In other news, Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) announced that an auction will be held tomorrow, to sell a total of 19,360,000 shares, or 20 percent of AlMowasat Health Care Company. Shares will be initially priced at KD0.350 each, totaling KD6,776,000. Al-Mowasat Health Care closed unchanged at KD0.112. Corporate news Kuwaiti China Investment Co, (KCIC) along with a consortium of investors, acquired 98.2 percent

of the Philippines-based Atlantic Gulf Pacific (AGP) for PHP1.75bn ($39.7 million). KCIC accounted for 25 percent of this consortium. AGP is one of the oldest and most experienced engineering and construction companies in Asia. It has a pioneering position in steel and construction unit manufacturing. AGP is divided into two basic segments; heavy materials and overseas labor force. Oil news The price of OPEC basket of twelve crudes stood at $93.96 a barrel on Thursday, compared with $94.23 the previous day, according to OPEC Secretariat calculations.

nflation worries are beginning to attract attention, after a week where stocks and commodities rose while euro zone debt fears receded on successful bond auctions from some of the zones most economically fragile members. The four percent surge of the euro versus the dollar, which up until Thursday mostly looked like a short covering rally, gathered additional speed following ECB presidentJean Claude Trichet’s tough inflation remarks. They seem to have increased the chance of a rate rise much earlier than the market may have been anticipating. European inflation rose to 2.2 percent in December, the fastest pace since 2008 and is now above the ECB’s ceiling of 2 percent. The leading Chinese stock market index erased the gains for the year after an announcement from the People’s Bank of China of another bank reserve rate hike. This will be one of the themes that could dampen the expectations for higher commodity prices in 2011. China’s consumer prices rose to 5.1 percent in November, the highest since 2008, on surging food costs. Commodities, of which many had seen retracements during the first week of January, got back in gear with the Reuters Jeffries CRB index racing ahead and almost reaching a fifty percent retracement of the 2008 to 2009 sell off. Strong rallies among agricultural and energy products left the index 2.3 percent higher at the time of writing this report. Energy prices recovered from the bout of selling during the first week of January on the back of various supply disruptions. A report on the Gulf of Mexico leak last year could herald a new and more expensive era for offshore drilling with some projects being delayed as a consequence, thereby reducing supplies to the US market. European Brent crude looks set to be the first to test the 100 dollar level as it continues to trade at a steep premium over WTI crude. This week it touched 98.85 per barrel with the premium over March WTI rising to six dollars. Supply disruptions and cold weather in Europe com-

Ole S Hansen bined with high inventory levels at Cushing, the delivery hub for WTI crude, has caused this dramatic widening. Discussions are ongoing about whether the price of Brent crude is a better reflection of the current global demand situation with WTI crude’s status as the global benchmark being increasingly threatened. What seems to be clear is that global demand rose strongly during the last quarter of 2010 and projections for growth in 2011 still point towards a global increase in demand. With excess capacity OPEC is in no hurry to turn up the tap and holds the key on how the price will behave over the coming months. The ninety dollar level continues to be the pivot for WTI crude with the recent highs at 92.60 providing resistance while support can be found at the December and January lows at 87.10. Silver and gold have struggled to gain some traction during the last couple of weeks. Reduced sovereign debt concerns, stock market gains and a shifting focus toward cyclical commodities, such as energy and base metals, have removed some of the strong support seen during the previous six months. The speculative long position in both metals has seen a continued reduction over the past three months while investments through ETFs have also seen a reduction, albeit a small one.




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Wataniya Airways appoints new CCO KUWAIT: Wataniya Airways, Kuwait’s premium ser vice airline, has announced the appointment of John Morgan as the company’s new Chief Commercial Officer. Morgan has over twenty years experience in senior commercial roles in the international civil aviation sector, including more than three years in the Gulf region. George Cooper, Wataniya Airways Chief Executive Officer, said: “I am delighted that John Morgan has agreed to join our team. He is an inspirational and dynamic manager who has achieved a lot in his career to date. He brings a wealth of commercial aviation experience that will help Wataniya Airways continue its successful development as one of the Middle East’s leading airlines.” Morgan said “Wataniya Airways has an enviable reputation for quality and service and I am proud and excited to be joining the management team at such an exciting time in the airline’s development. I am looking forward to the challenges of this role

and the opportunity to contribute to Wataniya Airways’ growth as Kuwait’s premium airline and being involved in the next chapter of the Wataniya Airways’ success story.” Morgan has held senior marketing, sales and commercial positions in some of the world’s most prestigious airlines. He began his airline career with British Airways in 1988 as a regional business manager, being promoted to general manager for business sales before moving to BMI (British Midland) as director of sales and marketing. He has also worked in a number of senior roles in Europe and the Gulf region, most recently as senior vice president EMEA of Eos Airline Inc, based Dubai and as Vice President overseeing commercial activities for Royal Jet in Abu Dhabi. Morgan is originally from Wales, UK. He holds a Bachelors of Science degree with honours in Business Management from University of Aston, Birmingham.

Made in China porcelain for British royal wedding BEILIU: A Chinese porcelain manufacturing company has won the order to make the official tableware to be used at the British royal wedding of Prince William and his fiancee Kate Middleton. Guangxi Sanhuan Group, based in Beiliu, a city in China’s southern Guangxi province known locally for its ceramics and porcelain ware, said they came out tops over more than 500 companies bidding to produce royal wedding porcelain, fighting off stiff competition from manufacturers around the globe. The company is now taxed with producing some 16,000 porcelain tableware products to be used at the wedding. Company officials said the products are divided into five categories including a dining plate, a coffee cup and saucer set, a commemorative mug and a souvenir plate. They will be either used at the wedding or given to wedding guests as souvenirs. The design is generally a uniform one featuring a photograph of Prince William and Kate Middleton inside a heart shape with the words “William

and Catherine” written below. “When we won the order, our company bosses were very happy and excited,” said Gary Qiu, a marketing manager for the Guangxi Sanhuan Group. “They paid great attention to it. The entire production process including its preparation was worked on a very tight schedule. Also, we used one of the most advanced kilns in China to make these products.” Established in 1987, Guangxi Sanhuan is a modern Chinese success story-a once state-owned company that has now gone private, tailoring a reputation of being a quality manufacturer for ceramics and porcelain over the last decade. It employs more than 8,000 and is known for producing high-end table and dining ware for export to Europe, the United States and Southeast Asia. Qiu said a special high-fire glazing technique is being used to manufacture the wedding porcelain, with the plates and mugs being set at temperatures of more than 1600 degrees C in the kilns. —Reuters

Indonesia carrier gets IPO show on the street Scheduled listing expected to raise $1.1bn JAKARTA: Its symbol is Garuda, the winged steed of Vishnu in Hindu mythology, but Garuda Indonesia’s fortunes more closely resemble the Phoenix, which rose from the flames to fly again. This, at least, will be the stor y Indonesia’s national carrier takes to potential investors this week as it touts its Initial Public Offering (IPO) around Hong Kong, London and New York. Its scheduled listing on February 11 may raise up to 10.3 trillion rupiah ($1.1 billion) through the sale of 9.32 billion shares, or 36 percent of its capital, at between 750 and 1,100 rupiah each. At that scale it is likely to be the biggest listing on the Indonesian share market-which soared 46 percent last year-in 2011 and one of the largest in what is expected to be a busy year for underwriters across Asia. Under the stewardship of former banker Emirsyah Satar, the airline has fixed the safety concerns that saw it banned, along with every other Indonesian airline, from European skies in 2007. The ban was lifted in 2009 and Garuda is now hoping to cash in on investors’ appetite for emerging market assets to pay off some of its debts and fund an aggressive expansion strategy including new planes and routes. “We will use the funds from the IPO to expand our Garuda fleet, and some of them will be used to expand our subsidiaries,” Satar said at the IPO’s launch in Jakarta. “Our domestic passenger growth is promising. Indonesia still has low penetration of airline passengers compared to our neighboring countries.” More Indonesians can afford to fly, Satar said, adding that the geography of the Indonesian archipelago means travelers depend on air or sea transport. Garuda posted a net profit of more than 100 million dollars in 2009 and was named the world’s most improved airline last year by London-based research company

JAKARTA: This photograph shows an Indonesian Garuda Airline plane landing and another preparing to take off at Soekarno-Hatta Airport. — AFP

Skytrax. Its last fatal crash was in Yogyakarta in March 2007, when 21 people were killed. The airline is well-placed to take advantage of Indonesia’s booming economy with growth racing along at around six percent last year despite the global downturn-and large population. Most Indonesian still rely on ferries, buses and motorbikes to traverse the archipelago’s 17,000 islands, but as incomes rise they will quickly switch to the convenience and speed of flight. “With a population of more than 230 million people and a growing GDP, we have ample room for growth,” Satar said. “The growth of airline passengers in a country is usually about 1.5 to two times its GDP growth. If the economy grows six percent, multiply it by 1.5 to two times, then passenger numbers will grow from nine to 12 percent.” He said this burgeoning domestic market would help offset hiccups to inbound traveler numbers, such as occurred after the 2002 Bali bombings or the

US automakers attract big crowds at Detroit auto show DETROIT: Sharp designs with pizazz, power and elegance helped pull in crowds during the public opening Saturday of the North American International Auto Show, with US automakers doing their best to impress consumers looking for signs of the industry’s recovery. Thousands of people from around the world filed from exhibit to exhibit inside the sprawling Cobo Center in Detroit. They perused the newest models from General Motors, Ford Motor Co and Chrysler, as well as top competition from Europe and Asia. “ The last two years, people would come and look. But now, they are sitting in the vehicles and asking questions,” said 43year-old Sherry Fedewa, a manager in an auto parts company. “People can actually afford to buy something.” New car and truck sales came in last year at 11.6 million, up 11 percent from 2009. December sales rose to 1.14 million, an 11 percent leap from a year earlier. The annual auto show often gives consumers and car enthusiasts their first close look at the new vehicles, engine upgrades and gadgets coming off the assembly line each year. Amid renewed optimism in the American auto industr y, organizers expect higher attendance than last year’s 714,000 visitors - and auto companies worked to convince them that the industry and region were recovering. Beneath massive video screens, under banks of bright lights and parked on plush carpeting or tiles of various colors were vehicles of all kinds, from ultra-small SMART cars to ultra-large sport utility vehicles. The mix included minivans, striking subcompacts and top-of-theline luxury vehicles. “We love the auto show. It’s nostalgia,” said Alissa McCoy, who drove about 80 miles (128 kilometers) from her home in Lansing. “It’s what you do when

DETROIT: Chelsey Smith, 24, of Fenton, poses for pictures next to a Ferrari 458 Italia, during the opening day of the North American International Auto Show, Saturday, Jan 15, 2011. — AP

you’re from Michigan.” GM’s corner appeared to be drawing the biggest crowds Saturday afternoon, with dozens of people circling the company’s sport utility vehicles and sportier models. But the latest models from Ford and Chrysler also garnered interest. Fedewa was among those ogling the new Chevy Volt, an electric car with a base sticker price of $40,280. In December, GM sold between 250 and 350 of the cars, which the company said can travel about 40 miles (64 kilometers) on battery power before needing a charge but come with a backup gas engine to extend that range to 375 miles (600 kilometers). GM predicts it will sell 10,000 in 2011, and between 35,000 and 45,000 in 2012. “It just stands out from the rest of all the smaller cars,” said Fedewa. “I like the style of the tail lights. The design looks so sleek.”

A disc jockey kicked out music near GM’s new Sonic subcompact - aimed at younger drivers including one in a dazzling orange. Ford displayed its Mustang GT CS in “grabbier blue” and a striking “yellow blaze” Mustang 5.0. It all made for a better show than in past years, said David Gilhula, a field engineer for a natural gas company. “ There are more vehicles and displays - some of the high-end cars like Ferrari and Maserati,” said Gilhula, of Kitchener, Ontario. Gilhula, 61, said he owns a Cadillac DTS and is impressed by GM’s progress. The Detroit automaker filed for bankruptcy in 2009, but made $4.2 billion in the first three quarters of last year and is expected to post a fourth-quarter profit in the coming weeks. “Three or four years ago, I figured GM - the name - was gone,” he said. Tim Holton, a utility inspector from Detroit, said any

rebound is due to car companies finally paying attention to car buyers. “They are actually listening to us instead of their boards of directors,” Holton, 37, said. “We could care less about their quarters. We care about getting my kids to soccer games and how many times I have to fill up the gas tank.” With gas prices again on the rise and over $3 per gallon in the Detroit area, Holton sized up a 2011 Chevy Tahoe Hybrid. He wants something with good mileage but with enough room for his three young children. In about six months, Ron Tate expects to buy a new car. He looked at the Chevy Malibu, but spent a lot to time in the Toyota exhibit. “I want something very dependable ... that will keep running for a couple hundred thousand miles,” said Tate, a project manager from Flint, Michigan. This year’s auto show runs through Jan 23. — AP

recent eruption of Mount Merapi volcano. “When the Bali bombing occurred, the number of inbound passengers declined compared to the years before. But Indonesia’s domestic passengers still had high mobility to support us,” Satar said. It should be an easy sell, given the massive inflows of foreign capital into Indonesia share and bond markets last year. Shares in Krakatau Steel, the country’s biggest steelmaker, were nine times oversubscribed and soared 49 percent within hours of debuting on the market on November 10. But Garuda’s road to riches has not been without obstacles. The IPO was initially due to take place last year but was delayed by three months, and there have been reports of last-minute doubts over the correct share price. In November it was forced to issue a public apology for three days of flight chaos caused by the loss of crew rotation data during a switch to a new operating system at Jakarta airport. More than 700 passengers were affected by flight delays and

cancellations which Satar blamed on someone failing to plug in a cable during the software switch. Indeed, the press conference to launch the IPO on Wednesday was delayed by several hours without clarification. On the same day, the model of strong demand for low-cost domestic air travel took a blow when budget Indonesian carrier Mandala was forced to suspend operations and seek urgent talks with creditors. The share market, meanwhile, has stumbled in the first weeks of 2011 amid concerns over rising inflation, and there are also worries about fuel prices, analysts said. “The timing isn’t perfect. Garuda should have launched its IPO last year when the market was significantly bullish,” Ciptadana Security analyst Syaiful Adrian told AFP. But none of this is clipping Satar’s wings as he jets around the world drumming up support. “In 2010 we received four stars from Skytrax. We hope we can receive five stars in 2013. In the world, only six airlines have obtained five stars,” he said. — AFP

Getting organized is top Arab resolution DUBAI: As life resumes to its normal pace after the holiday season, getting organized is the number one resolution for people in the Arab world according to a new sur vey from Yahoo! Maktoob Research. Interestingly, long-time pledges such as losing weight and quitting smoking did not even make it among the Top Five, with 2011 resolutions instead focusing on personal time management and the desire to have fun. The online survey, which polled 2,900 people from across the region, saw being better organized as the top priority for a whopping 18 percent of regional respondents, with saving more money and getting out of debt both garnering 10 percent of the vote. Not forgetting to stay amused, nearly 15 percent of voters said that they were going to try to enjoy life more as their New Year resolution, followed by a desire to learn something new with 11 percent of the vote. Quitting smoking and shedding kilos were the number one and two resolutions in other Yahoo!-sponsored polls in places like the United States, but came to a lowly 11th and 7th place respectively among respondents to the pan-Arab survey. While opinions are varied, one of the most surprising results was that the respondents’ answers were generally uniform across age groups, genders and countries. Of the results that did stick

out, a notably higher percentage of those in Morocco and Egypt wanted to be better organized, with a larger proportion of respondents in Iraq and Libya not making any New Year resolution. “Having dedicated research to understand regional attitudes and preferences is always interesting. It also gives us very relevant information for our readers that fits within Yahoo! Maktoob’s aim to provide millions of internet users in the Arab world with personally relevant content, making Yahoo! Maktoob the center of their online lives by connecting them to the people and things that matter to them,” said Tamara Deprez, Head of Yahoo! Maktoob Research. A host of related opinion polls and surveys can be found through the Yahoo! Maktoob research community Arab Eye (, accessible online through the new Yahoo! Maktoob homepage for the Middle East ( presented in both English and Arabic. The online survey was carried out from December 19 - 31 of 2010 among 2,900 residents of GCC, Levant and North Africa countries. Questionnaires were distributed through Arab Eye, the Yahoo! Maktoob Research community, with email invitations in both Arabic and English languages and panel members in receipt of the invitation were selected at random.

Below are the detailed results of the survey ranked in order of most popular: Get organized Enjoy life more Learn something new Save more money Get out of debt I do not have a resolution Help others Lose weight Spend more time with family & friends Other Travel more often Get into a habit of being fit Quit smoking

18 percent 15 percent 11 percent 10 percent 10 percent 6 percent 5 percent 4 percent 4 percent 4 percent 3 percent 3 percent 2 percent




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monDAY, JAnUARY 17, 2011


Venezuela says no threat from higher oil prices $100 barrel is ‘fair’ price CARACAS: Rising oil prices do not threaten the global economic recovery and there is no need for an emergency OPEC meeting to consider increasing supply, Venezuela’s Energy Minister Rafael Ramirez said on Saturday. Brent crude prices rallied this week to around $98 a barrel while US oil futures were at about $91, well above the $70-$80 range that OPEC’s top exporter Saudi Arabia says is comfortable for both producers and consumers.

MUMBAI: Reliance Group Chairman Anil Ambani speaks during a press conference yesterday. Ambani clarified that Securities Exchange Board of India has not banned Reliance Infrastructure and Reliance Natural Resources Limited from capital markets. —AP

Cannes Lions 2011 opens delegate registrations LONDON: Delegates wishing to attend the 58th International Festival of Creativity, to be held in Cannes 19-25 June 2011, can register online at Delegates can select a three-day, four-day or full registration package, providing access to over 50 topical seminars, 20 educative workshops, screenings, exhibitions, four award ceremonies, two galas and the greatest networking opportunity the industry has to offer.

NEW: For the first time ever, alongside the shortlist exhibitions, delegates will also be able to view all the entry videos for all shortlisted entries across all categories, if supplied, which will be screened in the Palais des Festivals in Cannes. This will provide a better understanding of the creative entries and is an invaluable experience for anyone working in advertising and communications.

Venezuela often calls for higher prices to maximize its revenue from a sector that is the linchpin of an economy that has diversified little from reliance on oil in the last century and has been battling recession for the last two years. “ The price is approaching the fair value of $100 per barrel,” Ramirez told Reuters, reiterating the stance of two other OPEC members, Libya and Ecuador, which say prices need to be higher to help producing nations maintain output. Analysts are divided between those who see fundamental strength as the world economy recovers, driving up fuel consumption, and those who focus on differences between today’s relatively well-supplied market and that of 2008, when oil prices raced to an all-time high of nearly $150 a barrel. OPEC often says it will act to address any supply shortages, but not to tackle price rises that

it says are caused by speculators. The group’s Secretary General Abdullah Al-Badri repeated that position on Saturday. The group has held its supply target steady since a decision in December 2008 to implement a record cut in production levels of 4.2 million barrels per day (bpd) to bolster prices after the global financial crisis. Ramirez said Venezuela, South America’s biggest crude producer, was not concerned by the current situation. “We don’t think it (the price rise) impedes the recovery of the global economy,” he said. “ Venezuela does not consider that an extraordinary or emergenc y OPEC meeting is necessar y.” Ramirez also told Reuters that Venezuela’s proven oil reserves had increased to 297 billion barrels by the end of 2010, 41 percent higher than the year before. Focus on Brent spread Ramirez said the differential

between Brent crude prices and US oil futures showed the need for a measurement based on a basket of currencies instead of just the US dollar. “We have contracts that are linked to the Brent price. A currency basket for oil transactions is necessary for stability,” he said. “The spread shows the weakness of the dollar, which is a structural problem of the US economy.” The spread between the two grades widened to as much as $7.66 this week, the widest premium the London grade has held to the United States’ WTI prices since February 2009. Strength in price, trading volumes and the market structure of Brent crude has helped lure some big investment money that typically favored US oil futures-a trend that analysts say is likely to gather momentum. Asked about US appeals that Venezuela stop doing business with Iran, Ramirez said no action would be

taken as a result. “We are sovereign,” the minister told Reuters. “They cannot dictate to us in this manner.” President Hugo Chavez ’s socialist government has actively sought to promote ties with fellow OPEC member Iran, with which it shares distaste for US global power. Venezuela had said it was sending 20,000 bpd of gasoline to Iran-but that it had stopped in recent months because Tehran no longer needed the shipments. Last month, Venezuelan lawmakers approved the creation of a joint venture between state oil company PDVSA and Iran’s Petropars Oil and Gas Co to develop an oil and gas field in the South American countr y. The Venezuelan government also said in Oc tober that PDVSA would work with Petropars to help develop the Middle Eastern nation’s giant South Pars natural gas field. —Reuters

Europe meets under pressure to boost fiscal crisis fund BRUSSELS: Eurozone finance ministers head into a meeting today under pressure to ramp up the firepower of a debt rescue fund even after markets backed off pressure on vulnerable nations. Europeans are divided over how quickly they need to act and how much added muscle they should give to the financial safety net that was created last year to provide cover to weak countries, following a huge bailout of Greece. European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso, who heads the European Union’s executive arm, urged leaders to take a decision by their next summit on Februar y 4 to appease markets nervous about the fate of Portugal and Spain. The EU’s rescue mechanism was used to pull Ireland from the abyss last November after a banking disaster, but analysts have repeatedly warned it would be too small to rescue Spain if it ever needs a bailout. Belgian Finance Minister Didier Reynders called this week for the safety net to be doubled to 1.5 trillion euros ($2 trillion) and said he hoped to raise the issue at the eurozone ministers’ monthly meeting in Brussels. “I think that doubling the resources would be a reasonable objective,” Reynders told AFP in a telephone interview. But German counterpart Wolfgang Schaeuble, whose countr y has the biggest commitment in the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF), the

main component in the rescue mechanism, said a debate on increasing the size of the pot was “not realistic.” The rescue mechanisms combine the 440-billion-euro EFSF, plus 250 billion euros from the IMF and another 60 billion euros from the entire EU. Germany and other countries have noted that only 10 percent of funds have been used so far to help Ireland. But the EFSF’s effective lending capacity is estimated at only 250 billion euros as the fund, backed by guarantees from eurozone members, borrows money on the markets and, in order to secure a top rating and low interest rates, it must keep part of funds raised in reserve. Schaeuble indicated that increasing the EFSF’s lending capacity may be necessary. Bringing it up to 440 billion euros would mean an increase in loan guarantees from eurozone states. “Even if the German government is officially still reluctant to change the ‘rules of the game,’ an increase in the size and scope of the EFSF has become likely,” ING banking group said in a note to clients. If Portugal taps the EFSF, then the fund would not have enough funds to cover Spain, which would need support of around of around 300 billion euros, ING estimated. Portugal and Spain managed to raise funds from the markets this week. But analysts warned that the countries’ successful bond issues

were likely a temporary reprieve as the rate of returns they had to offer investors were still high and could yet rise to levels that would require bailouts. The head of the Luxembourg-based EFSF, Klaus Regling, said in an interview with German newspaper Bild Zeitung that “there is no urgency” to modify the fund. French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde said Friday it was “premature” to put a new figure on the fund but admitted that increasing its size was among several options being debated. She confirmed one idea would be to enlarge the EFSF’s toolbox to allow it to buy the debt of troubled eurozone members on the secondary market, taking over a role that the European Central Bank has reluctantly taken. European Central Bank president Jean-Claude Trichet has repeatedly called for the eurozone rescue system to be strengthened. A note by Royal Bank of Scotland said growing talk of changes to the rescue mechanism was “encouraging” but “one should not rule out possible disappointments before a clear policy plan is announced.” “We would think that an increase in the size of the EFSF only would prove insufficient to stop contagion,” the bank said. “Policy responses that would include a significant decline in interest rates charged to the borrowers and/or the purchase of sovereign debt would be far more meaningful.” —AFP

4,000 Kuwait BlackBerry users participate in ‘Happy Thursday’ KUWAIT: Research In Motion (RIM) and Caribou Coffee have wrapped up a very successful “Happy Thursday” promotion, which saw BlackBerry smartphone users receiving free coffee and accessories at selected branches across Kuwait. The campaign was RIM’s way of saying “Happy Thursday ” to its BlackBerry smartphone community in Kuwait, and 4,000 of them took up the offer to enjoy free coffee, donuts, and BlackBerry accessories. In addition, a raffle took place each week with a representative from the Ministry of Trade and Commerce present at the Caribou Avenues Mall branch to announce the names of the lucky winners, who received the latest BlackBerry smartphones, including the BlackBerry(R) Torch 9800 and the BlackBerry(R) Pearl 9105 smartphones.

KUWAIT: Winners receive their new BlackBerry smartphones.

KUWAIT: Children are seen participating in the draw.

KARACHI: A Pakistani laborer pulls his cart laden with goods on a street. US President Barack Obama offered to look at new ways to help Pakistan’s troubled economy as he showed support for President Asif Ali Zardari at a White House meeting, officials said. —AFP

What Germany could get for supporting bailouts FRANKFURT: European heavyweight Germany might back a revamped eurozone rescue fund, but demand a stiff price from partners in the form of tighter economic controls, media and analysts say. “First the government needs to make up its mind,” ING senior economist Carsten Brzeski told AFP as reports from Berlin suggested it was in the midst of an internal debate on bolstering the European Financial Stability Facility. Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said last week the EFSF, which can raise funds on the bond market for debtladen eurozone countries, should have a bigger lending capacity, but that its overall size should not be altered. Schaeuble told media in Berlin the eurozone needed a “comprehensive package, so that we don’t find ourselves in a situation every few months in which we have to start discussions all over again.” The EFSF’s nominal size is 440 billion euros ($590 billion) but because funds must be kept in reserve to maintain a top credit rating and obtain low interest rates, its effective capacity is more like 250 billion euros. Even with money from the European Commission and International Monetary Fund, the eurozone could come up short if countries like Portugal and Spain follow Ireland’s lead in tapping the facility over the next two years. A replacement, the European Stabilisation Mechanism (ESM), is to take over in 2013 but powerhouse Germany, which would in theory be called upon to pay the lion’s share of bailouts, is thus positioned to press for long-sought eurozone reforms. Berlin has resisted an EFSF

increase but could relent if eurozone reforms met its specifications, the daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ) said. Belgium’s finance minister wants an overall EU/IMF fund wor th 1.5 trillion euros, while Barclays Capital put funding needs for Ireland, Portugal and Spain at 414 billion euros through mid-2013. The figure leaps to more than one trillion euros with Italy, another country that could face financing problems, and Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso has urged eurozone members to move quickly on the issue. But EFSF head Klaus Regling, who is German, said Saturday in the popular daily Bild “there is no emergency” that would force “hasty changes to the European rescue fund.” German finance ministr y spokesman Mar tin Kreienbaum told reporters: “We will examine the various different mechanisms ... and see which screws could or should be turned so that the real amount of loans is higher.” A key question is what Germany would want for signing off on an increase. Berenberg Bank chief economist Holger Schmieding told AFP he thought it would include “much stricter adherence to the Stability Pact in the future.” The EU’s Stability and Growth Pact was supposed to underpin Europe’s single currency but its terms have been violated by most eurozone members, including Germany. Berlin might also seek a “financial markets transactions tax or some other measure” to ensure that the bank ing sector contributed to EFSF or ESM capital, Schmieding said. As for closer coordination of

economic policies, often mooted as a possible reform, he thought it likely only “along the German idea of setting standards for structural reforms, and then nudging countries to move towards such best practice standards. “A bit like the old Lisbon agenda, but with teeth,” he added in reference to a failed EU plan to make its economy the most competitive in the world by 2010. Brzeski agreed that Germans would be happy to review others’ budgets but would reject “a new policy in which the Commission or other eurozone countries can tell Berlin to get rid of some tax subsidies, change Hartz IV (unemployment benefits) or introduce a minimum wage.” He mused half in jest that Berlin could press again for central bank chief Axel Weber to become the next head of the European Central Bank or revive its demand for a eurozone sovereign default mechanism. Another possibility would be to require debt sustainability analyses for countries seeking EFSF aid, Brzeski said, which could lead to commercial banks, including German ones, taking losses on their sovereign debt holdings. In fact, the economist concluded, “there is nothing Germany could really get from increasing the EFSF, it’s not tangible, I don’t see a tit for tat.” In addition, Germans are often bad negotiators on EU matters, Brzeski said. “They give something instantly but what they get in return is always risky.” But with events nonetheless playing into Berlin’s corner, he joked, maybe “in a year from now we’ll have a stricter Pact, the default possibility and Axel Weber as ECB president.” —AFP




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Russian firm builds web empire at home and abroad MOSCOW: It’s a company with a stake in Facebook, the leading position in one of the world’s fastestgrowing Internet markets and a listing on the London Stock Exchange. But this is not a firm from Silicon Valley or a hightech Asian economy. It is from Russia, in recent years not a place known for cutting-edge corporate innovation. While President Dmitry Medvedev ploughs on with his state-sponsored drive to modernise Russia, the privately-owned and its sister holding firm DST have grown with breathtaking speed. Like other countries with a distinctive culture and non-Latin script writing, the Russian net market has allowed local web sites to expand alongside established international players like Facebook and Google. With penetration of broadband Internet now finally growing fast in Russia, has the capacity to expand its domestic email, gaming and networking empire and set its targets high abroad. “ The Internet sector in Russia is one of the fastest-growing in the world,” analysts at the Renaissance Capital brokerage in Moscow said in a report on this week. “The Internet run has quite a way to go.” Russia’s Internet penetration rate is still only 45

percent, compared with 84 percent in Britain, but broadband Internet access is now expanding fast, it said. can boast full ownership of Russia’s number one email provider,, its number two social networking site Odnoklassniki (Classmates) and number three Moi Mir (My World). But it has also acquired a holding of 32.55 percent in Russia’s top social networking site, Vkontakte (In Contact), and also 2.38 percent in Facebook itself, which still lags behind homegrown competitors in Russia. According to Renaissance Capital, Facebook is only the number four social networking site in Russia with 5 million users, compared with 21 million for Vkontakte and 17 million for Odnoklassniki. “To date cultural factors in Russia-as in other countries such as Japan, China and South Koreahave favoured strong local incumbents and this is unlikely to change immediately,” it said. also has a minority stake of 1.5 percent in US online games firm Zynga and 5.1 percent in dealof-the-day portal Groupon. and DST Global were created last year after the split of what had been a single firm-Digital Sky Technologies (DST) — into an Internet company and investment vehicle. The two firms are owned

by private shareholders including Internet tycoon and chief executive Yury Milner and Alisher Usmanov, a billionaire oligarch who also owns a stake in Arsenal football club. Meanwhile, also has new media giant Naspers as a shareholder and enjoyed a hugely successful IPO last November on the LSE in an IPO that valued it at 5.7 billion dollars. DST Global also has its own stakes in Zynga, Groupon and Facebook and according to some reports the company now controls 10 percent in the US social networking giant. The group also recently invested an additional 50 million dollars in Facebook, adding to a 450-milliondollar injection from Goldman Sachs.Milner is one of Russia’s lowest-key tycoons whose avoidance of publicity is a stark contrast to the attention-hungry oligarchs who dominated Russian business in the 1990s. But in a rare interview with Russian business daily Vedomosti last month, he made no secret of the company’s global ambitions. “We have chosen a strategy to have a global expertise in a very narrow sector,” he said. He said the company was “fully and unconditionally” focused on consumer Internet and in particular social Internet.

Ilya Ponomaryov, a member of the lower house of parliament and a prominent commentator on the Russian high-tech sector, said DST marked itself out from other Russian companies by its aggressive strategy coupled with the financial support from Usmanov. “Other companies are more diversified whereas DST from the start has invested in the Internet. They have a great potential.” He said that compared to other Russian high-tech firms its management was “aggressive and impudent”. “They went for the IPO a year earlier than they should have done from the point of view of maximum revenue but in the end they were the first movers and opened up this market for Russian companies.” The success of the home-grown group contrasts with Russia’s reputation for losing its best technical minds to work abroad in a well-publicised brain drain. The co-founder of Google, Sergey Brin, was born in the Soviet Union but emigrated to the United States with his parents at the age of six. The joint winners of the 2010 Nobel Physics prize, Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov, were born and educated in Russia but then left the country for Western Europe to conduct their research work. — AFP

Facebook legal battle Why two heads of Winklevoss twins weren’t better than one see that the Winklevoss twins (or the Winklevii, as Mark Zuckerberg calls them) were back in court last Tuesday. For readers to whom this means nothing, I should explain that they are the two Harvard alumni (and Olympic oarsmen) who claim that they created Facebook only to have Zuckerberg steal it from under their noses. Some years ago, in company with Divya Narendra, another Harvard alumnus who had worked with them on the original concept, they launched a lawsuit against the Facebook founder that resulted in two things: a $65m legal settlement in which the Winklevii got $20m in cash and $45mworth of Facebook shares; and a major Hollywood movie - The Social Network - which tells the story in colourful terms. Facebook was quite a phenomenon when the settlement was reached in 2008. But since then it has gone ballistic, to the point where apparently sane men in suits, or at any rate employees of Goldman Sachs, say it is worth $50bn. And as they tracked its rise, the Winklevii came to the conclusion that they had been taken for a ride. Their case was that the number of Facebook shares they acquired was based on a false valuation: they thought the shares were worth $35 apiece, whereas internal Facebook deliberations put them closer to $9. So the actual value of the stock they were offered was closer to $11m than $45m. Accordingly, in 2010 the Winklevii went back to cour t under the age-old banner “we wuz robbed”. They asked a judge


All the Internet could soon exist on our eyeballs. — Guardian

Facebook leaps into future as smartphones prepare to get smarter NEW YORK: Alvin Toffler, the prophet of the digital revolution, wrote in his seminal book Future Shock in 1970: “Dealing with the future, it is more important to be imaginative and insightful than to be 100% right.” Toffler compared the futurologist’s role to that of the ancient mapmakers, approximating the danger and promise of an unknown world. As technology redefines and remaps our world virtually, the consumer firms driving its development are the new mapmakers. Companies like Facebook are feverishly searching the potential of interaction on the web. So far, that has primarily meant entering text into a search box - dipping into a pool for the fish we know we want. Google, which has a 90% share of the UK search market, has already built a $197bn business on the back of advertising related to those text searches. So far, so profitable. But the next generation of the web, so Facebook wants us to believe, will be navigated through our social graph, our network of contacts and friends; it will be their recommendations that will prompt us to dip into the water. Though the social web is well established, the business model around it is not. This is the new horizon. And the volume and reach of data produced by Facebook’s users - and the promise of the future of the social web - has investors so excited that they have just valued the company at $50bn. Toffler was on to something. Where is Facebook taking us? For now its priority is to keep growing its nascent advertising revenues ($2bn last year, by one estimate) and its user numbers, put at 633 million monthly users globally for October, according to comScore. But it is also laying the foundations for some powerful ways of extending the site. Last August it introduced Places, which allows users to share their location with friends, and in December announced that photo uploads would soon be scanned with facial recognition technology. Already, one-third of Facebook’s traffic is generated by mobile, and as these devices become ubiquitous we will become less reliant on a fixed screen. Often described as the next generation of the web, mobile’s real breakthrough has been the success of apps in the past two-and-a-half-years. Not only are these devices always on and always with us, but they offer more forms of interaction than desktop computers, including movement sensitivity, camera and a web connection. These location features provide the platform and possibility of a world that, not so long ago would have belonged in an ambitious work of science fiction. Augmented reality (AR) is a technique of overlaying information on an image of the real world, usually through our phone’s camera. Despite the current clunky incarnations, augmented reality

may well become the principal way that the digital world is presented to us. Freed from screens, information will float, contextually, accompanying the user and imparting - probably via a pair of augmented reality glasses - the time of the next bus, messages from a friend in a nearby pub, or a local match from your dating site. Everything you do now at your desktop will be superimposed in real time in the world around you. Claire Boonstra, co-founder of the Netherlands-based augmented reality mobile app Layar, believes this type of interaction between the real world and the world of information will become a mass medium. “Augmented reality is in a similar position to the earliest years of television, where shows were just radio with an image attached,” she said. “By 2015 augmented reality glasses will be mass market, so you won’t walk around holding your phone up to things. With one gesture, you could show that you like a pair of shoes you see someone wearing and could buy them online. And you could switch on the sun on a rainy day. It’s totally immersive.” Layar’s general manager, Maarten Lens-FitzGerald, says that ultimately this technology will become invisible, and suggests our own vision could be augmented. “The computer at Bletchley Park [Tommy Flowers’s Colossus computer] was the size of a room, yet now there are computers in every hotel room door. It shows how far we have to explore. Brainwaves are interpretable, but that is far off. Instead, next year there could be an iPad with a binary interface; you don’t have to touch to turn the page, you just have to think about it.” Lens-FitzGerald anticipates Facebook moving into the AR space, though Layar already enables this by integrating with Facebook Places. Where AR meets commerce, he says, “every moment could be turned into a buying moment”, with everything we see potentially one gesture away from a purchase, every note of enthusiasm or disdain recorded by a marketing database and every street preloaded with a thousand opportunities to advertise something we’ve recently searched for, looked at or even thought about. Facebook already holds swaths of that information about us and serving discreet targeted ads at the side of our profiles is just the beginning. Whether Facebook will be the company to fully exploit that future is up for debate. Lens-FitzGerald believes the company is at its peak and that its greatest period of innovation is over. “Like Google five years ago and Microsoft at the end of the 90s, Facebook is coming close to the point where they have too much to protect to truly innovate. It’s a natural progression for monolithic companies,” he said. “The next thing will be more about location, context and time a service that helps you navigate their information.” —Guardian

Back in court: Cameron (left) and Tyler Winklevoss have reopened their lawsuit against Facebook. — Guardian to unwind the 2008 settlement on the grounds that they were given fewer shares than they were entitled to. The judge refused. So the boys appealed, which is how they came to be facing a trio of appeal judges on Tuesday. If the exchanges in the courtroom are anything to go by, the Winklevii face an uphill task. One of the judges obser ved, for example, that the twins were sophisticated enough to understand the deal they had settled for. “ The founders are pretty smart people themselves,” he observed. “ They also had five lawyers from two firms sitting there with them. The twins also have a father from Whar ton school, who is very bright. It was-

n’t like an individual without help. If you have all of those people there to advise you, isn’t it a little difficult to say this is one of those things in which they were taken advantage of?” The twins’ lawyer, Jerome Falk, appeared to concur with this. “I agree,” he said, “that my clients were not behind the barn door when brains were passed out.” So my guess is that the Winklevii will have to be content with their 2008 settlement. But their case raises an intriguing question: what would have happened if they had never heard of Zuckerberg? They had had the idea for a social networking site called Harvard Connection and had enlisted a fellow student, Sanjay Mavinkurve, to build the

site. But when he left to join Google, and the next programmer they enlisted also quit, they were stuck - which is how Zuckerberg came to be involved, on the basis of an oral agreement. But suppose that Mavinkurve had stayed with the project, and built the site. Would we now be looking at a social networking service with 600 million users? My hunch is no: we’d be looking at something more like MySpace, for which Rupert Murdoch paid $580m in 2005 and which last week laid off 500 workers and had only 54.4 million users in November. In other words, a neat idea that rose and fell because its owners lacked the imagination to make it sustainable. — Guardian

Is iPhone about to lose its mojo? growing number of tech experts are predicting that the iPhone is in danger of losing the “smart phone wars” to an upstart operating system from Google, in a dramatic reversal of fortune for one of the world’s coolest hi-tech products. For many people the iPhone is still the last word in digital chic. Its sleek style and touch screen changed the way many used their mobile phones. Next month Apple’s device will be launched on a second phone network in the US, making it available to millions more customers. The news has created a huge buzz and some have whispered that Apple might one day become the first trillion-dollar company in the world. So this should be a great time for Apple’s irascible chief executive Steve Jobs. Or it would be if not for the growing commerical clout of Google’s Android. “Too late for the iPhone,” read one headline last week in a Daily Beast column by tech writer Dan Lyons. Many experts agreed. “Android has taken over from what I can see,” said Will Sullivan, founder of the website Journerdism, which is studying the mobile technology industry. Some commercial statistics bear that out. Android phones are now outselling iPhones in the US. Latest figures from the US show the Android and iPhone neck and neck in market share - but with 40.8% of new smart phone sales in the six months to November going to Android and 26.9% to iPhones. Critics say that the iPhone’s launch on the Verizon network is too late and that it relied too long on the patchy service provided by AT&T. That has allowed Android to take off at such a speed that it has left the


A Tokyo shopper brandishes his iPhone 4 following the product’s launch in June 2010. — Guardian

once cutting-edge iPhone in its wake. “It was almost comical how much people said they hated AT&T,” said Rob Jackson, editor of Phandroid, a tech website that tracks the Android market. But the greater problem lies with the real differences between iPhones and Android. While the iPhone is the whole package of network, technology and phone, Android is an operating system that many different phone models can use. That gives users of Androids a huge variety of choices about how complex (or not) they want their phone to be. Meanwhile, iPhone users are essentially bound to what Apple alone allows them to do and buy.

“Personally, I prefer Android. I like to change things around to suit my needs. But if I was recommending my mom to have a phone I would recommend an iPhone,” Sullivan said. In his article for the Daily Beast, Lyons was even more succinct about the limitations of the iPhone. “[It] is a bit like the situation you had with Henry Ford’s Model T, where you could have any colour you wanted as long as it was black,” Lyons wrote. Indeed the iPhone has always had critics. Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook, last year took to his own Facebook page to slam the device for having a poor battery and dropping phone calls. — Guardian




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monDAY, JAnUARY 17, 2011

health & science

Children need more meditation and less stimulation If you want your children to feel more relaxed and less stressed, give them silence, not iPods. This unthinkable idea came to mind after listening to Ernie Christie and Dr Cathy Day, two educationists from Queensland, Australia. They were addressing an audience at Regent’s College, London, on the benefits of allowing children to experience regular periods of silent meditation in the classroom. A pilot study in 2005, involving teaching meditation to five- to 17-year-olds, had shown that children are not only capable of meditation, they actually enjoy it. The benefits to children’s wellbeing were so obvious to teachers that it persuaded Cathy Day, director of Townsville Catholic Education Office, to spend precious funds implementing the first Christian meditation programme for all schools in the diocese. The initiative had two important cata-

lysts: a diocesan bishop sympathetic to meditation, Michael Putney, and the input of Laurence Freeman OSB, leader of the World Community for Christian Meditation. Without their help, Day admitted, nothing would have got off the ground. When an almost pathological “busyness” is the norm, valuing stillness and silence is counter-cultural. When our culture trains us to be winners, to compete and to consume, we all sense society’s imbalance, said Freeman. We need to give children an experience of another way of relating to themselves and to others. Deputy director Christie agreed. If children are over-stimulated we rob them of something precious: being allowed to “just be” where children discover their own inner sense of who they are. Hijacked by a “doing” culture that measures everything by what we achieve or possess, meditation helps

children access a deeper part of themselves ñ an inner sanctuary away from a world of incessant activity and noise. They learn to honour their own spiritual life. We all have a spiritual life, irrespective of any faith we hold, said Christie. Meditation can be practised with a diversity of beliefs: children of other faiths take part in the programme. Meditating in a group can give children an early sense of belonging, says Christie. Children with learning or physical disabilities can join in and feel part of the class. But the practice is introduced gradually. The recommended meditation time is one minute per age level; for fiveand six-year-olds, it would be five to six minutes. A video of interviews with teachers, children and parents was admirably honest. Children of varying ages said meditation helped them to feel “relaxed” or

more “peaceful”. One boy said it helped his thoughts “just settle”; one girl enjoyed being “quiet”. A child from an indigenous community said he was able “to be himself ”. Teachers reported improved behaviour in difficult children. Yet no one suggested it was a “cure all” practice. But at a recent awards ceremony in the second largest school in Townsville, the key speech was on the positive benefits of meditation. The health benefits of meditation are well documented: it can relieve stress, lower blood pressure and alleviate depression. Psychiatrist Jonathan Champion said research showed most mental health problems have begun by the age of 14. Giving children periods of quietness and reflection to promote wellbeing could save money on healthcare later. For Day and her team, meditation is an essential part of religious education.

In the foreword to Christie’s groundbreaking book, Coming Home: A Guide to Teaching Christian Meditation to Children, Putney says being “still” is very different from being “quiet”. “Be still and know that I am God.” It is in stillness that God speaks to the heart. Meditation as a way to self-knowledge and self-acceptance is an indispensable first step towards knowledge of God. Teachers hope children will discover a love that accepts them unconditionally and an inner spiritual resource they can draw upon later in life. When religious schools are seen as intolerant of other faiths, the lost “contemplative” dimension of religion that reaches to a divine source beyond individual differences is surely needed. By training teachers in this depth dimension of faith, this remote diocese on the edge of the Australian outback is already creating waves. —Guardian

Vaccinate all children, demands mother of girl killed by swine flu Parents unhappy that govt is ‘picking and choosing’ who receives inoculation

A patient receiving a flu jab. Louise Silverton says it was ‘shortsighted’ not to keep the advertising campaign for at-risk groups. —Guardian

Pregnant women denied flu jabs, say midwives LONDON: Pregnant women were denied the seasonal flu jab in some parts of the UK, before swine flu began claiming more lives, because not all GPs were aware that mothers-to-be had been made a priority group to receive the jab this winter. Louise Silverton, deputy general secretary of the Royal College of Midwives, told the Guardian that a number of pregnant women had been refused the vaccine by family doctors in autumn. “In October, when GPs started telling patients to come for immunisation, some pregnant women got it and some didn’t. GPs sent some of them away because they thought they didn’t need it, because no one had told them that pregnant women had been added to the list of groups of people considered ‘at risk’,” she said. Research shows pregnant women are four times more likely to develop serious complications if they catch H1N1 swine flu, which is the main strain of seasonal flu circulating this winter. There has been concern that takeup of the jab protecting against all three strains of flu has been low among pregnant women. Silverton also criticised the decision by the health secretary, Andrew Lansley, to cancel the usual advertising campaign intended to prompt the 16 million Britons classed as vulnerable to have the jab. “It was short-sighted of the Department of Health not to have the usual campaign, she said. “It was done to save money. I agree with the government’s overall aim of reducing government advertising, but they should have been more selective and kept the campaign for all at-risk groups. “Usually there are posters on buses and all sorts, but this year there was nothing. It was a wasted opportunity not to have the awareness campaign stressing the importance of people in at-risk groups being vaccinated.” A majority of the 50 people to die from flu so far this winter had not had the threein-one jab at least two weeks before falling ill, the Health Protection Agency said. A poll today shows that a majority of doctors believe the NHS has been less prepared to cope with this winter’s flu outbreak compared with last year. Just over half the GPs and hospital doctors who responded said they thought the NHS’s flu preparations were worse. The outbreak has so far claimed 50 lives and left 783 people in intensive care, amid vaccine shortages and low takeup rates of the seasonal flu jab., an online professional network to which most UK medics belong, asked members: “Do you think NHS preparedness for pandemic influenza is better, worse or the same as last year?” Among the 430 respondents, 231 doctors (54%) said it was worse, 126 (29%) said it was the same as last year and just 73 (17%) felt it was better.The results indicate the strength of feeling in the medical community about the NHS’s readiness for a flu outbreak.The main strain circulating this winter is H1N1 swine flu, which is causing serious complications in under-65s, especially those with an underlying medical condition. The poll comes as Lansley’s judgment over the flu outbreak was again called into

question. John Healey, the Labour shadow health secretary, questioned decisions taken by the Department of Health over the Christmas period, such as last week’s decision to make available old stocks of swine flu vaccine to help counter shortages in this winter’s seasonal flu jab. Lansley rejected claims that he had been slow to respond. “It is pretty rich coming from [Healey] to say there are shortages, because the supply was decided by the previous government. The amount is ordered in spring, which was before we entered office,” he told MPs. What the doctors say ● “I’m a great believer that when pandemic flu rolls around it won’t be lack of flu drugs that leads to people dying needlessly, but lack of hospital capacity. Lack of capacity for inpatients. Lack in the emergency departments. Lack of intensive care beds. Because if we are running at 99% capacity all the time during quiet(ish) periods with no reserve capacity that can be brought in quickly, then where will the overflow of sick patients go? Home to die is the answer.” ● “No public information, no information for GPs except from the Royal College of GPs, disbanded health promotion units, no Tamiflu available, no preparation, no surveillance of prevalent viruses and a chief medical officer who, in Jim Callaghan fashion, says: ‘Crisis? What crisis?’.” ● “The behavioural factors (government, healthcare providers and the public) behind the morbidity and mortality that we are already experiencing this season require further investigation. We have seen authorities actively playing down the ‘pandemic that never happened’, mixed with pandemic fatigue in secondary care [hospitals]. I’m sure this will in part explain why we are experiencing a worse wave of activity now. It’s a shame, since historical evidence is quite clear about the possibility of further - often more severe - waves following the emergence of a novel pandemic influenza strain.” ● “Our pharmacist is allowed only to order three courses of Tamiflu a day, because of lack of supply at the wholesaler. Is this preparedness?” ● “The real lack is the ITU [critical care] capacity, and especially oscillators and ECMO [extracorporeal membrane oxygenation] units. Last week all the ECMO beds in the UK were full of swine flu patients. Tamiflu is not going to help those with severe acute respiratory distress syndrome. If you think you’re getting unwell, DON’T go to your local district general hospital, find your nearest cardio thoracic centre with an ECMO bed in it, as unless you’re there you’re never going to get anywhere near one if you need it as there are only 20 in the UK! Maybe instead of spending millions on Tamiflu last year we should have trained more CT ITU nurses, and got more oscillators, and ECMO machines so that we have them when we need them!” ● “ There is undoubtedly pandemic fatigue reflecting the massively overhyped preparation last year. The fact that such efforts went into entirely valueless treatments last year (Tamiflu) has only compounded the general scepticism.” —Guardian

LIVERPOOL: A three-year-old girl died from swine flu within 48 hours of developing symptoms over Christmas, her parents said. Gemma and Zana Ameen, a healthcare assistant and a doctor, released a picture of their daughter, Lana, in intensive care as they called for all children to be vaccinated against the virus, which has killed 50 people this winter and left hundreds requiring critical care. Lana was not eligible for the flu jab under current rules because she had no underlying health problems. She developed what appeared to be a cold on Christmas Eve and was prescribed cough medicine, but woke screaming in the night with a high temperature. Her parents took her to hospital, where she was diagnosed with an infection. Doctors brought her temperature down and sent her home. On Christmas Day she appeared better, managing to open her presents and eat some dinner, the Ameens said, but later began having fits and was taken back to Stepping Hill hospital, Stockport, in an ambulance. Over the next three hours, she was revived three times, her parents said, before being moved to a special care unit at Alder Hey hospital, Liverpool where, on Boxing Day, doctors told the couple she was brain dead and switched off her life support machine. Tests showed she died of swine flu. Ms Ameen, 28, who is three months pregnant, said: “Lana was very healthy. She’s hardly ever been ill, just the odd cold here and there. It can kill young, fit and healthy people in such a short space of time. It’s just about how your body reacts to the virus. Some people can fight it off, and some people can’t. “If everyone can just have the vaccine... it would stop the spread. It should be freely available. You can’t pick and choose who deserves certain medication.

Lana Ameen, the three-year-old girl who died from swine flu in a Liverpool hospital. —Guardian Everyone, even adults, not just children, has a right to protect themselves. The government should not be picking and choosing to say that person doesn’t qualify to be protected against something.” The couple, who live in Birmingham but had been staying with family in Stockport, have complained to Stepping Hill hospital, where they both used to work, about the care Lana received. Dr Chris Burke, chief executive of Stockport NHS foundation trust, said: “The trust sends its condolences to the family of Lana Ameen. Our staff are deeply distressed at her sad death. “The trust has begun a preliminary senior case review of the treatment provided to Lana at Stepping Hill hospital during her two visits to the emergency department. “To date, that review has identified that Lana received appropriate treatment and care in a timely fashion. “ While at Stepping Hill

Hospital, Lana received all the care that could be provided by our own paediatric, intensive care, emergency department staff and the regional intensive care team. “In spite of our interventions, Lana’s health continued to deteriorate until her death at Alder Hey. “We will extend an invitation to the family to meet with senior clinical staff to discuss the treatment provided to Lana and their obvious concerns.” The Department of Health insisted independent expert advice was “absolutely clear” that children who did not have risk factors should not be vaccinated. The advice had been reviewed recently and the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) did not change its recommendation. Mrs Ameen, 28, said: “Rather than just taking facts and figures, they need to start thinking about people’s lives. “It’s not about whether they thought Lana should have been eligible. Obviously she was,

because she died from it. I think all children should be vaccinated and anyone else who is prepared to pay for it.” She went on: “Losing Lana is just awful. It’s just heartbreaking. We just look at different things in the house and see her clothes and toys, the programmes we used to watch, ever ything reminds me of her. It’s like you can still see her there, it’s like we’re waiting for her to come in. I feel like perhaps we’re just having a break and we’re waiting for her to come back.” Tomorrow the department of health will give its weekly update on the number of people in the UK who have died from swine flu or are in critical care in hospital. A DoH spokeswoman said: “The advice from independent experts has been absolutely clear. “ The flu vaccine should be used to protect children from six months upwards who are in atrisk groups and experts do not recommend the vaccination of children who do not have risk factors.” —Guardian

Mental health of women in crisis LONDON: Almost a third of women aged over 18 have taken antidepressants, according to research published today which its authors claim reveals “generations of women in crisis” with mental health problems. According to a survey of more than 2,000 girls and women in England and Wales, around twothirds have had mild to moderate mental health problems, equivalent to 15.2 million girls and women. Penny Newman, chief executive of Platform 51 (formerly the Young Women’s Christian Association), said: “Millions of girls and women are facing mental health problems and they are telling us that they are not getting the support they need.” She added: “Our study reveals generations of women in crisis ... women are often the linchpins of their families and their communities, and if three in five of them aren’t meeting their potential, they lose out, their family and friends lose out and so does the wider society.” At least 13% of women experiencing mental health problems had quit a job while 44% had taken some

time off work; more than a quarter had been off work for at least a week, the research showed. The findings into the extent of mental health problems experienced by girls as young as 12 were reached after the group expanded the medical definition of “common mental health disorders” as defined by the Department of Health. The definition of mental health problems used in the new study includes low self-esteem, poor selfconfidence, and stress. “This term captures the range of feelings and symptoms which negatively impact on girls’ and women’s mental health and which can have more serious consequences if undetected or unaddressed,” said Newman. “What is most striking about these behaviours is that they are often self-destructive and hidden.” About 20% of adult women in England suffered from a common mental disorder - typically depression or anxiety - compared with about 12% of men, according to an NHS report last year.

Almost a third of women over 18 have taken antidepressants according to a research. —Guardian Professor Louise Howard, head of women’s mental health at King’s College London, said the figures were “very interesting and relevant”. She said: “There is evidence that there is under-identification of people with mental health problems that need treatment.” The research includes women with emotional difficulties as well as those with mental health problems, she added. “But any of the stresses that these women are reporting can lead to mental health problems. Depressive symptoms can persist and need treatment but some women will feel that they have to

keep on coping because they have all these people depending on them.” Platform 51 works with 11,000 girls and women in schools, community centres, youth clubs, mother and baby units, and prisons across England and Wales. Its study found those they identified as having mental health problems attempt to cope with their distress in damaging ways. More than a quarter regularly drink too much and many isolate themselves from friends and family: almost a half had not left their homes for a long period and more than a quarter had lost friends. —Guardian



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health & science

New year, new body - but what if the mind’s moved out? Eating disorders are one consequence

TAIPEI: Beef products are displayed at a supermarket in Taipei yesterday. Three shipments of unrelated US beef have been pulled from Taiwan’s shelves after they were found to contain controversial drugs to promote leanness in animals raised for meat, an official said. —AFP

US beef removed from Taiwan markets TAIPEI: Three shipments of US beef have been pulled from Taiwan’s shelves after they were found to contain controversial drugs to promote leanness in animals raised for meat, an official said yesterday. “Now all the US beef that may contain the residue of the leanness drug Paylean has been removed from the shelves,” Chiang Yu-mei, a health official at the Taipei city government, told AFP. She urged consumers not to panic, but local media said 1.5 tonnes of such beef might have already been consumed on the island. The move came after three out of 24 US beef samples taken from three hypermarkets in the capital city were found on Friday to contain Paylean in concentrations up to 2.84 parts per billion. The event sparked concerns from the United States, the island’s leading source of beef imports. The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) said that US beef products were safe and urged Taiwan to lift its ban on leanness drugs, Taiwan’s state

Central News Agency said. Taiwan, China and the European Union ban Paylean because of possible human health risks associated with the ingredient ractopamine, but 26 countries, including the United States, Canada, Australia and Brazil, have declared the product safe. Local media said the shipments’ withdrawal may cast fresh doubt on a proposed Trade and Investment Framework Agreement between Taipei and Washington. Negotiations on the agreement have been dormant since mid-2007, when Taiwan reintroduced a ban on US bovine offal and ground beef amid a scare over mad cow disease. Taiwan banned all US beef imports in December 2003 over fears of the disease, but in 2006 relaxed the rules to permit imports of boneless beef. Taiwan moved in October 2009 to allow US beef on the bone, cow organs and minced beef, but this met with a public outcry and the decision was overturned in January last year. —AFP

It’s the annual ritual. Every new year millions of people embark on a mission to transform themselves. The methods come and go but the mantra is unchanging: a new year, a new body; a new body, a new you. For those of us with bodies and lives toned to something south of perfection, it can seem like a highly seductive prospect. At least on New Year’s Eve. The relationship we have with our bodies is a complex and powerful one. Speaking as a semi-confirmed, if occasionally lapsing, atheist, it seems strange that I can even refer to “my” body, let alone have a relationship with it. Who is this “I” that seems to exist independent of my physical self? As a child, this used to worry me. I used to wonder which bit of me “I” was in. Not my arm, I decided. I could break my arm. That suggested “I” wasn’t my arm. My grandfather had first one and then later the other of his legs amputated. He remained as much my grand-father as he’d been before the operations. So “I” wasn’t in my legs; you could cut off my legs and I would still be me. I remember lying in bed trying to work it out. How much of me was disposable? Which bit of me was me? My head seemed the obvious candidate. But would I still be me if I was just a head, sitting there on the pillow? And what about the rest of my body? Was there none of me in that at all? This philosophical bent occurred around the time of the first heart transplants. Would I still be me with someone else’s heart? Then, when I was 12, I had my appendix removed and convinced myself that “I” had been in my appendix. The appendix was merely a vestige of a former digestive system, they told me; it no longer served any purpose. But I knew better. Without my appendix, I didn’t exist. My body contained no me. I didn’t tell anyone, I sought to conceal my absence as best I could. With its customary dark humour, my body rebelled. It grew. Massively. By 13, I was 6ft

tall - 6ft of nothing is a hell of a lot to conceal. Of course, it didn’t happen quite as I’ve described it. These were feelings and they came and went. Relationships, least of all with ourselves, seldom follow a linear pattern. I don’t know how typical such feelings are, but I certainly know that I am not alone in having struggled to make sense of (and at times to believe in) my physical existence. Indeed, mental health might almost be defined as the extent to which our mental and physical selves can achieve a harmonious (enough) co-existence. Eating disorders are one consequence of a war between mind and body. In Mandy Allison’s fascinating book Dying to Live she describes how, as her anorexia progressed, she lost the ability to read her body’s signals. “It seemed as if my body was speaking a foreign language and I had no idea what its messages meant.” As a result she was frequently confused by the physical signs of her body’s deterioration. People who have depression often describe feelings of emptiness, of feeling hollow inside. In psychosis, the body betrays the mind. The senses start filing false reports. You start seeing, hearing, smelling things that aren’t “there” at all. And while anti-psychotic medication can suppress these symptoms, it can also leave people feeling oddly disconnected from their bodies or else trapped inside a physically bloated version of their former selves. When I broke down, the sense that I didn’t exist took over. I remember the shock I felt on still finding a reflection in the mirror. I began to self-harm in what I now understand was an attempt to reconnect with my body. If I felt pain when I burned myself then it must have been “me” I was burning. My recovery felt like a process of gradually moving back in. And while I’m aware there’s plenty needs doing, it’s good to be home. —Guardian

YULIN: In this Saturday, Jan. 15, 2011, photo released by China’s Xinhua news agency, girls stretch their legs in a dancing room in Yulin, southwest of Beijing, China. —AP




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First annual sports meet of Integrated Indian School


he first annual sports meet of Integrated Indian School was held on 2nd January 2011 in Keifan stadium. Vinod Kumar, First Secretary and Counselor Indian Embassy was the Chief Guest on the occasion. The sponsor Jaber Al- Enezi, the directors Anil Mehrotra, Dr Mrs Anju Mehrotra, Mrs Onika Mehrotra and the principals of various schools also graced the occasion. The Principal Mrs Ritu Mathur delivered the welcome address. The chief guest and other dignitaries unfurled the flags. With the declaration of the Sports Meet open by Vinod Kumar, pigeons and balloons were released into the air to mark the occasion. The splendid March Past was led by Mohd. Tanveer of Class XII followed by four Houses of the School Happiness, Knowledge, Success, Truth House. The Honour lap which is carrying of the Olympic torch featured those athletes who have brought fame and glory to their alma mater in various inter school sports events. Cliff Gonsalves administrated the sports oath. The function comprised spectacular umbrella drill by Class I, Calisthenics by Class II, Integration of Kuwait and India by Class III, Chak de India by Classes IV and V, display on beauty of Maths, Peacock Dance and Pyramid formation by classes VI - X. Various track events were held for the students which saw some tough competition among the athletes. The sponsor and directors gave away the medals and trophies to the deserving winners. The overall championship trophy was won by Success House. The event concluded with Vote of thanks given by Mrs Cathy Thomas. A spectacular show indeed!

Starwood increases long established lead in ME


tarwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is strengthening its long established position in the Middle East as one of the leading luxury hotel operators in the region with a portfolio of nearly 50 existing hotels and a pipeline of 25 new hotels. This growth, primarily in the luxury and upper-upscale segments, represents an increase of nearly 50%. By 2015, the Middle East will become the second region, after North America, to operate all nine of Starwood’s world-class brands - St. Regis, The Luxury Collection, W, Westin, Le MÈridien, Sheraton, Four Points by Sheraton, and the recently launched Aloft and Element - further reinforcing the company’s commitment to the region. As a key emerging market, the Middle East continues to evolve as an international business and leisure travel destination. According to the UN World Tourism Organization, the number of tourists travelling to the Middle East is expected to reach 136 million by 2020 compared with 54 million two years ago. “Reaching out to new frontiers is a key focus for us. With more than 70% of the world’s growth over the decade coming from fast-growing markets such as the Middle East, the region plays a central role in our global expansion and development strategy,” said Frits van Paasschen, President and CEO, Starwood Hotels & Resorts. First Mover Advantage Key to Starwood’s Leadership Role in the Middle East Starwood’s first-mover advantage in the Middle East dates back to 1966 with the debut of the Sheraton Kuwait Hotel & Towers, the company’s first hotel to open outside of the United States. The property was also the first five-star hotel in Kuwait to be managed by an international company. Since that time, Starwood’s portfolio in the Middle East has surged to 47 hotels in ten countries, including: United Arab Emirates (UAE), Saudi Arabia, Syria, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Qatar, Bahrain, Pakistan and Yemen.

Starwood Signs Five New Hotel Deals for the Middle East this Month To mark an auspicious start to the year, Starwood’s most senior global executives - Frits van Paasschen, President and CEO; Vasant Prabhu, Vice Chairman and CFO; Matt Avril, President of Hotel Group; Ken Siegel, Chief Administrative Officer and General Counsel; Simon Turner, President, Global Development and Roeland Vos, President, Europe, Africa, Middle East are currently visiting the region. While in the Middle East, they will sign deals to open five new Starwood hotels in the region. The new Sheraton Sharjah, due to open in 2013, will mark the debut of Starwood in the emirate. Starwood currently operates 20 hotels in the UAE, more than any other region, and will expand its

portfolio with ten new hotels in the country in the next few years. In 2013, the company will add to its portfolio in Muscat with the addition of three hotels under its W, Westin and Element brands. These hotels will add 700 rooms to the capital’s room count when they join the Sheraton Oman which is scheduled to re-open this year following an extensive renovation. This hotel development represents a milestone for the sultanate, which is rapidly developing as a popular tourist destination. In 2014, Starwood will debut its ultraluxury St. Regis brand to Jordan with the St. Regis Amman and The Residences at St. Regis Amman. “Starwood is established as the sector leader in the Middle East and we are dedi-

cated to continued growth and expansion in the region. With 25 hotels set to open in the next few years, this market is integral to our overall growth strategy,” said Roeland Vos, President of Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Europe, Africa & Middle East (EAME). “We are proud to debut our distinct and compelling brands in so many exciting international business and leisure travel destinations.” Eight out of Nine Starwood Brand Flags Fly in the Middle East ● Starwood debuted its iconic Sheraton Hotels & Resorts in the Middle East in 1966 and since that time the brand has grown to 16 hotels located in key business and leisure travel destinations throughout the Middle East. ● Benefiting from Sheraton’s strong

brand awareness, its sister brand, Four Points by Sheraton has six hotels and another five poised to open by end 2013. Global powerhouse Le MÈridien leads Starwood’s portfolio in the region with 18 hotels throughout the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Jordan. The brand will enter Qatar in 2013 with the new Le Meridien Doha. This year Starwood will debut its ultraluxury brand, St. Regis, in the Middle East with the opening of three St. Regis hotels - one in Doha and two in Abu Dhabi. The company plans to open additional St. Regis hotels in Amman and Dubai in the next three years. Also on the luxury front, the UAE’s iconic Al Maha Desert Resort & Spa recently joined Starwood’s Luxury Collection Portfolio. The Luxur y Collection currently has three hotels in the region throughout the UAE and in Kuwait and plans to open two additional hotels in Aqaba, Jordan and Ajman, UAE. Design-led W Hotels made its debut in the Middle East in 2009 with the opening of the W Doha in Qatar. The brand has plans to open four more W Hotels in the region by end 2014 in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Amman, and Muscat. Starwood’s new Aloft brand, which offers style, design and high-tech touches at an affordable price, opened in Abu Dhabi in 2009, marking the debut of the brand in the Middle East. The brand will make its entrance into Saudi Arabia in 2013 with the Aloft Riyadh. Starwood’s newest brand, Element, will soon debut in the buzzing city of Muscat, Oman as part of a trio of Starwood hotels opening in the city. Element is Starwood’s eco-chic hotel brand that blends nature-inspired smart design, inspiring public spaces, and comfortable modern touches.

Rhythm musical program


ato J Jegathesan, a world renowned Malaysian economist and motivational speaker along with his wife Lalita Jagatesan, a motivational trainer conducted a three-day workshop as a part of their philanthropic global effort, to help today’s children, youth and young adults to understand, love and revere the values and respect all teachings so richly embedded in all cultures. The movement called TRAC: Tradition, Reverence, Aspiration and Culture mainly inspires and motivates humanity to lead disciplined, principled, value-driven lives building bridges across humanity. As a part of this program, children staged a musical fusion titled Rhythm to Reignite Humanity and Youth Through Music. The musical extravaganza was directed by Kuwait’s well-known violinist Satish Mavelikara.

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Embassy Information EMBASSY OF BANGLADESH The Embassy of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh in Kuwait has taken up an initiative to update the database of Bangladesh nationals residing in the State of Kuwait. For inclusion in the database all the Bangladesh nationals are requested to collect the Registration Form from the Labour Wing of the Embassy. The forms can also be collected sending request to e-mail address. The filled-in forms can also be submitted by hand, by email or by fax (number 2491-3204). EMBASSY OF CANADA The Embassy of Canada is open from 07:30 to 15:30 Sunday through Thursday. Consular Services for Canadian Citizens are provided from 09:00 until 12:00 on Sunday through Wednesday. The Embassy of Canada is located at Villa 24, Al-Mutawakel St., Block 4 in Daíaiyah. Please visit our website at Canada offers a registration service for all Canadians travelling or living abroad. This service is provided so that Consular Officials can contact and assist Canadians in an emergency in a foreign country, such as a natural disaster or civil unrest, or inform Canadians of a family emergency at home. The Embassy of Canada encourages all Canadian Citizens to register online through the Government of Canada Travel Website at The Canadian Embassy in Abu Dhabi provides visa and immigration services to residents of Kuwait. Individuals who are interested in visiting, working or immigrating to Canada are invited to visit the website of the Canadian Embassy to the UAE at

Kosmos 2011 - Exhibition at ICSK Khaitan


t was a celestial treat from the Kosmos to the students, parents, guests and visitors at The Indian Community School, Khaitan, when the annual science and art exhibition, titled KOSMOS 2011 was held on Friday, January 7th. The exhibition was inaugurated by the chief guest, Vinod Kumar, First Secretary, Education, Indian Embassy and graced by Hon Vice Chairman, Archie Menezes, Hon Jt Secretary, Francis Machado, Hon Parent members on the

board Razak and Sridhar, Parent Council Members, branch principals and vice principals. The objective of the event was to create awareness among the young learners towards development and research in space science and space art. Primary students were dressed up as celestial bodies, extra terrestrials, robots and other objects related to space, during the fancy dress competition. The art competition included

nature paintings created by students of all levels, including nursery. The variety of the exhibits, models, cut outs, and display materials prepared by the students of classes 4 to 11 was simply awesome and highly creative. The topics on which students made models included space crafts, launch vehicles, satellites, rockets, astronauts, galaxy, robots, UFOs, zero gravity, cosmic cartoons and characters from Hollywood. The auditorium had the centre piece of

earth with a window to outer space. The nature paintings of the students adorned the walls of the hall. Kosmos 2011 is a modest attempt from the ICSK Khaitan to inspire and encourage students to take up space science as a career and subject of research and study, with the ultimate dream of producing India’s future scientists and astronauts. KOSMOS 2011 proved to be a small but hugely successful step in that direction.

Blood donation campaign

RAK (Ramapuram Association of Kuwait) conducted their annual meeting with X’mas and New Year celebration. Meeting started after paying homage to the departed leaders Ex Chief Minister & Congress Leader K.Karunakaran & ExMP Congress leader Pala K.M Mathew. Chief Guest Roshy Augustine (MLA Idukki) inaugurated the meeting and the Association President Chessil Ramapuram presided over the function. X’mas celebration was inaugurated by the patrons M.K Kuriakose Manivayalil & Dominic Mathew Earathu by cutting the cake. RAK honored two eminent personalities amongst Indians especially amongst Keralites in Kuwait. Roshy Augustine MLA presented the memento and honored with a “Ponnada” to Thomas K. Thomas (Hi-Dine Thomachan) for his outstanding social services & priceless contribution towards the Indians in Kuwait as well as in India, and Bessy Kadavil who is a poet and a story writer amongst Indians and the award winner of “Pravasi Malayala Shathya Puraskar 2010’. RAK President Chessil Ramapuram presented the memento to the chief guest in gratitude for his presence with RAK for the Annual meeting & ‘X’mas and New Year celebration. Salam Valanchery was given a special

recognition on his sign off from the Pravasi life. Distinguished invited guest Sam Pinamoodu, Adv Thomas Panicker, Sharafudeen Kannethu, Varghese Puthukulangara, Salam Valancherry, Scaria Cherian, Jacob Channapetta, J.Albert, Joy Mundakadattu, Raju Zakaria, Adv. Razak M. Payyoli, and George Kanjamala delivered the felicitation speech. Special invitees Rajan Rawather, A.M Hassan, Abdul Fathah Thayyil, Mohan George, Kishor Sebastian, Suresh K George, Santosh Ellickal, Subin Madukkakuzhi, Basheer Batha, Azeez Thikkodi, Adv Rajesh Sagar, Adv Anas, Iqbal Kuttimangalam, Bincy George, Lalgi George, Tomy, Thomas Mundiyani, Adv. Subin Arackal, Femin Asmin, Abdul Kalam, Abdulla Thrikkaripur, Sanjith, and Jayaraj Bhattiya graced the function with their presence. Patrons M.K Kuriakose Manivayalil & Dominic Mathew Earathu, V.P & Gen.Convener Jomon John also delivered their felicitation speeches. Sunny Joseph Gen. Sec made the welcome speech, Anoop Andrews Gen. Sec. introduced the chief guest, and Jaibe Manuel Treasurer delivered the vote of thanks. Meeting & celebration adjourned with musical program by a professional group and a delicious dinner.



RAK - Annual meeting with X’mas and New Year celebration


blood donation event was organized by Kuwait Emirates Administrative Services (NAS), who is specialized in administrative service in medical claims in healthcare insurance industry. The campaign was successful with the participation of KEAS staff and the willing participation of the other Company staff in the whole building. Salah Al Linqawi, General Manager of KEAS initiated this program as he felt the need of such an event to society. Donating blood is a noble thought and we need to help the society by understanding the need and donating blood whenever possible. Linqawi extended his warm appreciation to all the participants and the blood bank for making this event a success.

AMMA Kuwait health camp on Jan 21

A Happy 5th birthday Vanya...You’re God’s gracious gift to us. Greetings coming from Baba, Mama, Ate Iya, Kuya Omid, Lighthouse Academy classmates, Awana Cubbies & the Elite Vision Center staff.

Happy 12th birthday Omid!!! “You are our life’s answer to our wish & hope.” Greetings coming from Ba, Ma, Ate Iya, Vanie, Smart School classmates & the Elite Vision staff

mma Kuwait in association with Kuwait Medical Association (KMA) and Indian Doctors Forum (IDF) organize free Health Awareness camp on Friday January 21st, 2011. The camp will be conducted at the Indian Central School, Abbasiya from 8.30 am onwards. Specialist from various departments including Diabetic, Dermatology, ENT, Orthopedics, Nephrology, Cardiology, Urology, Neurology, Ophthalmology, Surgery, Internal Medicine, Oncology, General Practitioner and Gynecology will be available for free consultations. Amma Kuwait requests a prior registration in order to facilitate the smooth running of the health awareness camp. Registration to be completed before January 15th. You may register through

EMBASSY OF INDIA On the occasion of the Republic Day of India, a flag hoisting ceremony will be held at the Embassy of India premises at 9 am on Wednesday, January 26, 2011. This will be followed by the reading of the message of the President of India by the ambassador, singing of patriotic songs by Indian school children, and an Open House reception. All Indian nationals in Kuwait are cordially invited to attend the ceremony. ●●●

The Embassy of India has further revamped and improved its Legal Advice Clinic at the Indian Workers Welfare Center, and made the free service available to Indian nationals on all five working days, i.e. from Sunday to Thursday every week. Kuwaiti lawyers would be available at the Legal Advice Clinic daily from Monday to Thursday, while Indian lawyers would be available on Sundays. Following are the free welfare services provided at the Indian Workers Welfare Center located at the Embassy of India: [i] 24x7 Helpline for Domestic Workers: Accessible by toll free telephone no. 25674163 from anywhere in Kuwait, it provides information and advice exclusively to Indian domestic sector workers (Visa No. 20) as regards their grievances, immigration and other matters. [ii] Help Desk: It offers guidance to Indian nationals on routine immigration, employment, legal, and other issues (Embassy premises; 9 AM to 1 PM and 2 PM to 4.30 PM, Sunday to Thursday); (iii) Labour Complaints Desk: It registers labor complaints and provides grievance redressal service to Indian workers (Embassy premises; 9 AM to 1 PM and 2 PM to 4.30 PM, Sunday to Thursday); (iv) Shelters: For female and male domestic workers in distress; (v) Legal Advice Clinic: Provides free legal advice to Indian nationals (Embassy premises; Kuwaiti lawyers 3 PM to 5 PM, Monday to Thursday; Indian lawyers 2 PM to 4 PM on Sunday); and (vi) Attestation of Work Contracts: Private sector worker (Visa No. 18) contracts are accepted at the Embassy; 9 AM to 1 PM; Sunday to Thursday; Domestic sector worker (Visa No. 20) contracts are accepted at Kuwait Union of Domestic Labor Offices (KUDLO), Hawally, Al-Othman Street, Kurd Roundabout, Al-Abraj Complex, Office No 9, Mezzanine Floor; 9 AM to 9 PM, Saturday to Thursday; 5 PM to 9 PM on Friday. EMBASSY OF THE 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 GERMANY The German Embassy wishes to extend and update its information base on German business in Kuwait. Therefore all Kuwaiti companies representing German companies are invited to register at the embassy. For more information on the registration, please visit



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The Ellen Degeneres Show My Own Worst Enemy Good Morning America Alias Dollhouse The Closer My Own Worst Enemy Good Morning America The Deep End Cold Case The Ellen Degeneres Show Criminal Minds Cold Case The Closer The Deep End Live Good Morning America Criminal Minds The Ellen Degeneres Show The Closer Parenthood My Generation Alias

00:50 Untamed & Uncut 01:45 Into the Dragon’s Lair 02:40 Dogs 101 03:35 Weird Creatures with Nick Baker 04:30 K9 Cops 05:25 Whale Wars 06:20 Untamed & Uncut 07:10 Project Puppy 08:00 Meerkat Manor 08:25 Planet Wild 08:50 The Crocodile Hunter Diaries 09:40 Breed All About It 10:10 Cats of Claw Hill 11:05 Jessica the Hippo 12:00 Animal Precinct 12:55 Wildlife SOS 13:50 Animal Cops Houston 14:45 RSPCA: Have You Got What it Takes? 15:10 E-Vets: The Interns 15:40 A Panda is Born 16:30 Breed All About It 17:00 Planet Wild 17:30 Corwin’s Quest 18:25 Project Puppy 19:20 Austin Stevens Adventures 20:15 Escape to Chimp Eden 20:40 Snake Crusader with Bruce George 21:10 Cats 101 22:05 Incredible Journeys with Steve Leonard 23:00 I’m Alive 23:55 Human Prey

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Unforgiven The Jonathan Ross Show The Weakest Link Sahara The Weakest Link Gigglebiz Balamory Tweenies Fimbles The Large Family The Adventures Of Spot Gigglebiz Balamory Tweenies Fimbles The Large Family The Adventures Of Spot Gigglebiz Balamory Tweenies Fimbles The Large Family The Adventures Of Spot Gigglebiz Balamory Tweenies Fimbles The Large Family The Adventures Of Spot Gigglebiz Keeping Up Appearances The Weakest Link

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Inspector Lynley Mysteries Doctors Mastermind 2006 Sahara Keeping Up Appearances Inspector Lynley Mysteries The Weakest Link Doctors Mastermind 2006 Sahara Inspector Lynley Mysteries The Weakest Link Doctors Eastenders Holby City Unforgiven

Coastal Kitchen Beachcomber Cottage Daily Cooks Challenge Mitch And Matt’s Big Fish Bargain Hunt Daily Cooks Challenge 10 Years Younger Cash In The Attic Antiques Roadshow Celebrity Masterchef The Home Show Cash In The Attic Bargain Hunt What To Eat Now - Autumn Celebrity Masterchef The Home Show Cash In The Attic Bargain Hunt What To Eat Now - Autumn Come Dine With Me The Home Show Cash In The Attic Bargain Hunt New Scandinavian Cooking

00:15 Bakugan Battle Brawlers 00:40 Chowder 01:05 Cow And Chicken 01:30 Cramp Twins 01:55 George Of The Jungle 02:20 Adrenalini Brothers 02:45 Eliot Kid 03:10 Ed, Edd N Eddy 03:35 Ben 10: Alien Force 04:00 The Powerpuff Girls 04:15 Camp Lazlo 04:40 The Secret Saturdays 05:05 My Gym Partner’s A Monkey 05:30 Ben 10 05:55 Best Ed 06:20 Samurai Jack 06:45 Cramp Twins 07:10 Eliot Kid 07:35 The Marvelous Misadventures Of Flapjack 08:00 Codename: Kids Next Door 08:25 Cow And Chicken 08:50 Best Ed 09:15 Foster’s Home For Imaginary Friends 09:40 Ben 10: Alien Force 10:05 The Secret Saturdays 10:30 Batman: The Brave And The Bold 10:55 The Powerpuff Girls 11:20 Robotboy 11:30 The Life And Times Of Juniper Lee 11:55 Ben 10 12:20 Chowder 12:45 The Marvelous Misadventures Of Flapjack 13:10 Camp Lazlo 13:35 George Of The Jungle 14:00 Foster’s Home For Imaginary Friends 14:25 Codename: Kids Next Door 14:50 Ben 10 15:15 My Gym Partner’s A Monkey 15:40 Squirrel Boy 16:05 Eliot Kid 16:35 Casper’s Scare School 17:00 Cow And Chicken 17:25 Chop Socky Chooks 17:50 Fantastic Four: World’s Greatest Heroes 18:15 The Secret Saturdays


TV PROGRAMS 18:40 Ben 10: Alien Force 19:05 Hero 108 19:30 Bakugan Battle Brawlers 20:00 Batman: The Brave And The Bold 20:25 Foster’s Home For Imaginary Friends 20:50 My Gym Partner’s A Monkey 21:05 The Powerpuff Girls 21:30 The Marvelous Misadventures Of Flapjack 21:45 Ben 10: Alien Force 22:10 Ed, Edd N Eddy 22:35 Robotboy 23:00 Camp Lazlo 23:25 Samurai Jack 23:50 Megas Xlr

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Soul Food-18 I Dreamed Of Africa-PG15 The Madness Of King GeorgeThe Old Curiousity Shop-PG Fireproof-PG Of Mice And Men-PG15 Shine A Light-PG15 Witness To Waco-PG15 Motherhood-PG15 Barbarossa-PG15 Largo Winch-PG15 Shining Through-PG15

Fareed Zakaria Gps The Best Of Backstory World Sport World Report World Business Today CNN Marketplace Middle East World’s Untold Stories World View Talk Asia Cnngo Future Cities World Sport Business Traveller World Report The Best Of Backstory World Report World Sport World View World Business Today Larry King Live World Report World Sport World Report African Voices News Stream World Business Today International Desk The Brief World Sport Prism International Desk African Voices Quest Means Business World One

00:40 Destroyed In Seconds 01:35 Motor City Motors 02:30 Fifth Gear 03:25 American Chopper: Senior Vs Junior 04:20 How Machines Work 04:45 How Do They Do It? 05:15 Destroyed In Seconds 06:05 Extreme Engineering 07:00 Extreme Explosions 07:50 American Chopper 08:45 How Do They Do It? 09:10 How Machines Work 09:40 Mythbusters 10:30 Cake Boss 10:55 Border Security 11:25 Overhaulin’ 12:20 Ultimate Survival 13:15 Mythbusters 14:10 Miami Ink 15:05 Dirty Jobs 16:00 Overhaulin’

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Ultimate Survival Mythbusters Cake Boss Border Security The Gadget Show How Do They Do It? How Machines Work River Monsters Extreme Fishing Great White Appetite Ross Kemp On Gangs

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

Mighty Ships Mega World Engineered What’s That About? Colony Colony Weird Or What? How Does That Work? The Future Of... Da Vinci’s Machines Cosmic Collisions Sci-Fi Science Stunt Junkies The Gadget Show How Stuff’s Made How Does That Work? Scrapheap Challenge Weird Connections Engineered Nextworld Savage Planet Futurecar Mega World The Gadget Show How Does That Work? Brainiac Mighty Ships Kings Of Construction How It’s Made The Gadget Show The Future Of... Mighty Ships Kings Of Construction

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

Jonas Wizards Of Waverly Place Suite Life On Deck Fairly Odd Parents Replacements Phineas & Ferb Little Einsteins Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Handy Manny Lazytown Jonas Suite Life On Deck Wizards Of Waverly Place Hannah Montana Sonny With A Chance Little Einsteins Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Handy Manny Lazytown Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Fairly Odd Parents Suite Life On Deck Wizards Of Waverly Place Jonas Hannah Montana Sonny With A Chance Pocahontas 2 Fairly Odd Parents Phineas & Ferb Replacements Kim Possible Sonny With A Chance Hannah Montana Jonas Wizards Of Waverly Place Suite Life On Deck Fairly Odd Parents Replacements Phineas & Ferb Famous Five Fairly Odd Parents Jonas Suite Life On Deck Wizards Of Waverly Place Hannah Montana Sonny With A Chance Go Figure Hannah Montana The Suite Life Of Zack & Cody The Replacements Splits Phineas & Ferb Replacements Kim Possible Sonny With A Chance Hannah Montana

07:00 Kid Vs Kat 07:25 Kick Buttowski 07:50 Pokemon 08:15 Phineas & Ferb 09:05 Kick Buttowski 09:30 American Dragon 09:55 Have A Laugh 10:00 Zeke & Luther 10:50 I’m In The Band 11:15 The Super Hero Squad Show 11:40 Suite Life On Deck 12:30 Escape From Scorpion Island (Cema) 13:00 Phineas & Ferb 14:00 Kid Vs Kat 14:55 Have A Laugh 15:00 The Suite Life Of Zack & Cody 15:50 Zeke & Luther 16:15 Suite Life On Deck 16:45 Kick Buttowski 17:10 Have A Laugh 17:15 I’m In The Band 17:40 Suite Life On Deck 18:05 Zeke & Luther 18:55 Phineas & Ferb 19:45 Escape From Scorpion Island (Cema) 20:10 Pokemon 20:35 American Dragon 21:00 Aaron Stone 21:30 Kid Vs Kat 22:00 Phineas & Ferb 22:25 I’m In The Band 22:55 Suite Life On Deck 23:20 The Super Hero Squad Show

Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen on Show Movies

00:40 Style Star 01:05 Style Star 01:30 Ths 03:15 25 Most Stylish 04:10 Sexiest 05:05 Battle Of The Hollywood Hotties 05:30 Streets Of Hollywood

06:00 Ths 07:45 Style Star 08:10 Fashion Police 08:35 Extreme Close-Up 09:25 Giuliana And Bill 09:50 Married To Rock 10:15 Ths 12:00 Extreme Close-Up 12:25 Extreme Close-Up 12:50 Fashion Police 13:15 Style Star 13:40 Kourtney And Khloe Take Miami 14:05 Kendra 14:30 Ths 15:25 Ths 16:15 Behind The Scenes 17:10 Kimora: Life In The Fab Lane 18:00 Extreme Close-Up 18:25 Extreme Close-Up 18:50 Style Star 19:15 Style Star 19:40 E!es 20:30 The Soup 20:55 Chelsea Lately 21:20 Married To Rock 21:45 Married To Rock 22:10 Extreme Close-Up 22:35 Style Star 23:00 Fashion Police 23:25 Keeping Up With The Kardashians 23:50 Kourtney And Khloe Take Miami

00:00 I’ll Do Anything 00:50 Eds Up 01:15 Eds Up 02:30 Final Fu 03:20 World Combat League 05:50 Lucas Oil AMA Motocross Championships... 06:40 Lucas Oil AMA Motocross Championships... 07:30 IEX 2009 09:00 UCI Nissan Mountainbike World Cup 2008 09:25 Winter Dew Tour 09/10 11:55 Fantasy Factory 12:20 Fantasy Factory 12:45 Untracked 13:35 Ty Murray’s Celebrity Bull Riding Challa 14:25 Fight Girls 15:15 World Combat League 16:05 Fantasy Factory 16:55 Untracked 17:20 Untracked 17:45 UCI Nissan Mountainbike World Cup 2008 18:10 Winter Dew Tour 09/10 19:00 Winter Dew Tour 09/10 19:50 Winter Dew Tour 09/10 20:40 Untracked 21:05 Untracked 21:30 Ty Murray’s Celebrity Bull Riding Challa 22:20 Carpocalypse 23:10 World Combat League

00:00 Throwdown with Bobby Flay 00:30 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 01:00 Ultimate Recipe Showdown 02:00 30 Minute Meals 02:30 Tyler’s Ultimate 03:00 Iron Chef America 04:00 Barefoot Contessa 04:30 Unwrapped 05:00 Chopped 06:00 Good Eats - Special 06:30 Guy’s Big Bite 07:00 Ultimate Recipe Showdown 08:00 Paula’s Best Dishes 08:25 Good Deal with Dave Lieberman 08:50 Guy’s Big Bite 09:15 Barefoot Contessa 09:40 Everyday Italian 10:05 30 Minute Meals 10:30 Tyler’s Ultimate 11:00 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 11:30 Barefoot Contessa 12:00 Unwrapped 12:30 Paula’s Party 13:30 Good Eats - Special 14:00 Good Deal with Dave Lieberman 14:30 Paula’s Best Dishes 15:00 Barefoot Contessa 15:30 Everyday Italian 16:00 30 Minute Meals 16:30 Guy’s Big Bite 17:00 Chopped 18:00 Barefoot Contessa 18:30 Unwrapped 19:00 Paula’s Best Dishes 19:30 Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives 20:00 Good Eats - Special 20:30 Good Deal with Dave Lieberman 21:00 Ultimate Recipe Showdown 22:00 Barefoot Contessa 22:30 Everyday Italian 23:00 Iron Chef America

00:00 The Cell 2-PG15 02:00 Explicit Ills-PG15 04:00 Skellig-PG15 06:00 Max And Co.-PG 08:00 Will You Merry Me-PG15 10:00 Skellig-PG15 12:00 Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen-PG15 14:30 By The People: The Election Of Barack Obama-PG15 16:30 Will You Merry Me-PG15 18:00 500 Days Of Summer-PG15 20:00 Battlestar Galactica: The Plan18 22:00 Milk-18

01:00 Dog Pound-18 03:00 District 13: Ultimatum-18 05:00 Bitch Slap-18 07:00 The Betrayed-PG15 09:00 Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle Of Life-PG15 11:00 New Town Killers-PG15 13:00 Star Runners-PG15 15:00 Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle Of Life-PG15 17:00 The One-PG15 19:00 The Marine 2-PG15 21:00 The Boondock Saints 2: All Saints Day-18 23:00 The Bank Job-18

Flashbacks Of A Fool on Super Movies

00:00 Futurama: Into The Wild Green Yonder-PG15 02:00 All Night Long-PG15 04:00 McHale’s Navy-PG15 06:00 Slap Shots 3-PG15 08:00 Bustin’ Loose-PG15 10:00 Maneater: Part I-PG15 12:00 Maneater: Part II-PG15 14:00 Anger Management-PG15 16:00 Futurama: Into The Wild Green Yonder-PG15 18:00 A Dog Year-PG 20:00 Who’s Your Caddy?-PG15 22:00 Election-18

00:00 Bugs Bunny 1001 Rabbit Tales-FAM 02:00 Santa Buddies-PG 04:00 Gnomes And Trolls Ii:the Forest Trial-PG 06:00 Rugrats Go Wild-FAM 08:00 Christmas In New York-PG 10:00 Gnomes And Trolls Ii:the Forest Trial-PG 12:00 The Jungle Book II-FAM 14:00 Santa Buddies-PG 16:00 Scooby-Doo! The Mystery Begins-FAM 18:00 Tutenstein : Clash Of The Pharaohs-PG 20:00 Chitty Chitty Bang Bang-PG 22:00 Christmas In New York-PG

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

C.S.I. New York Huge The Martha Stewart Show Warehouse 13 The View Downsize Me Emmerdale Coronation Street Warehouse 13 The Martha Stewart Show Downsize Me Warehouse 13 The View Emmerdale Coronation Street The Martha Stewart Show C.S.I. New York Huge What’s Good For You The View Emmerdale Coronation Street C.S.I. Miami Desperate Housewives Warehouse 13 The View What’s Good For You

02:30 European Challenge Cup 04:30 Scottish Premier League 06:30 World Hockey 07:00 Snooker Masters 10:30 European Challenge Cup 12:30 Squash PSA Super Series 14:00 Futbol Mundial 14:30 Spirit of a Champion 16:30 Snooker Masters 20:00 Futbol Mundial 20:30 Live Goals On Monday 21:30 Scottish Premier League Highlights 22:00 Scottish Premier League

01:30 03:00 06:30 07:00 11:30 12:00 12:30 13:30

Squash PSA Super Series Snooker Masters Futbol Mundial PGA European Tour Futbol Mundial Extreme Sailing Pool World Cup European Challenge Cup

15:30 ICC Cricket World 16:00 Scottish Premier League 18:00 Pool World Cup 19:00 PGA European Tour Highlights 20:00 European Challenge Cup 22:00 Snooker Masters

03:00 04:30 05:00 06:00 07:00 08:00 09:00 09:30 10:00 10:30 12:00 13:00 16:00 17:30 18:00 19:00 22:00 23:00

FIA GT1 World Championship UFC All Access UFC Unleashed UFC Unleashed WWE Bottom Line Red Bull X-Fighters FIM World Cup Full Throttle Air Sports World FIA GT1 World Championship WWE Vintage Collection WWE SmackDown FIA GT1 World Championship FIM World Cup WWE Bottom Line WWE SmackDown UFC Unleashed UFC Unleashed

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

Flashbacks Of A Fool-18 A Number-PG15 Disco-PG Pete Smalls Is Dead-PG15 Ye Olde Times-PG Operating Instructions-PG15 The Sun Also Rises-PG15 The Eclipse-PG15 Living Out Loud-PG15 The Stepfather-PG15 Adventureland-PG15 Inglourious Basterds-18

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

Nostradamus Effect Ice Road Truckers 3 America: The Story of the US Sliced Pawn Stars MysteryQuest Nostradamus Effect Ice Road Truckers 3 America: The Story of the US Sliced Pawn Stars Pawn Stars MysteryQuest Nostradamus Effect Ice Road Truckers 3 America: The Story of the US Sliced Pawn Stars MysteryQuest Nostradamus Effect Ice Road Truckers 3 Sliced Deep Sea Salvage Tales of the Gun Man Moment Machine

00:00 Two And A Half Men 00:30 Til Death 01:00 The Daily Show With Jon Stewart 01:30 The Colbert Report 02:00 Entourage 02:30 Cougar Town 03:00 Saturday Night Live (Uncut) 04:30 Entourage 05:00 Cougar Town 05:30 Malcolm In The Middle 06:00 Hope And Faith 06:30 The Drew Carey Show 07:00 Late Night With Jimmy Fallon 08:00 Til Death 08:30 Malcolm In The Middle 09:00 Hope And Faith 09:30 The Drew Carey Show 10:00 Rita Rocks 10:30 Billable Hours 11:00 Malcolm In The Middle 11:30 Hope And Faith 12:00 The Tonight Show With Jay Leno

13:00 Til Death 13:30 Malcolm In The Middle 14:00 Hope And Faith 14:30 Two And A Half Men 15:00 Billable Hours 15:30 The Daily Show With Jon Stewart 16:00 The Colbert Report 16:30 The Drew Carey Show 17:00 Late Night With Jimmy Fallon 18:00 Til Death 18:30 According To Jim 19:00 Billable Hours 19:30 Two And A Half Men 20:00 10 Things I Hate About You 20:30 It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia 21:00 The Daily Show Global Edition 21:30 The Colbert Report Global Edition 22:00 Comedy Central Presents 22:30 Comedy Central Presents 23:00 South Park 23:30 Billable Hours

00:00 Globe Trekker 01:00 Cruising the Spirit of Adventure 02:00 Hollywood and Vines 02:30 Destination Art 03:00 Inside Luxury Travel with Varun Sharma 04:00 Globe Trekker 05:00 Globe Trekker 06:00 Cruising the Spirit of Adventure 07:00 The Thrillseekers Guide 07:30 The Big Fish 08:00 Globe Trekker 09:00 Inside Luxury Travel-Varun Sharma 10:00 Hollywood and Vines 10:30 Travel Today 11:00 Sophie Grigson in the Souk 11:30 Hollywood and Vines 12:00 Intrepid Journeys 13:00 Globe Trekker 14:00 Planet Food 15:00 Feast India 15:30 Inside Luxury Travel with Varun Sharma 16:30 Hollywood and Vines 17:00 Globe Trekker 18:00 48 Hours In 18:30 Sophie Grigson in the Souk 19:00 Hollywood and Vines 19:30 Feast India 20:00 Globe Trekker 21:00 Exotic Lives 22:00 Nomad’s Land 23:00 Down the Line

00:00 00:30 01:00 02:00 06:00 08:00 10:00 11:00 12:00 13:00 14:00 15:00 16:00 18:00 19:00

VH1 Rocks Smells Like The 90s Music For The Masses VH1 Music Chill Out VH1 Hits Aerobic VH1 Hits Music For The Masses Top 10 Michael Jackson 80s Music For The Masses VH1 Pop Chart VH1 Hits Music For The Masses VH1 Loves

01:00 02:35 04:15 05:45 07:15 08:55 10:35 12:10 13:35 15:10 16:50 18:35 20:20 22:00

The Ambulance Dead Of Winter Palais Royale Crazy Joe Ruby Jean And Joe Nothing Personal Cornbread, Earl And Me Frankie And Johnny Breakheart Pass Captive Hearts Gaily, Gaily Hannah And Her Sisters Trip With Anita Hour Of The Gun

e niv rsar n



Classifieds MONDAY, JANUARY 17, 2011


ACCOMMODATION A room for rent in Jabriya, in a C-A/C flat near Hadi clinic and Sultan Center preferably a couple, working lady or a decent bachelor. Contact: 65135094/ 65923800. (C 3044) Sharing accommodation available one partition room available near Salmiya Church. Contact: 67727639. (C 3045) Room for rent in Jleeb, separate room, family or working ladies with A/C, fridge, landline phone, satellite and all other facilities available. Please contact: 97267254. (C 3042) Room available in Mahboula in a 2 bedroom/ 2 bathroom C-A/C flat, one bedroom vacant, for a decent bachelor or couple, near Mahboula Complex, KFH & ABC building. Contact: 66216713. (C 3043) 17-1-2011 Sharing accommodation available for decent bachelor in Abbassiya, near German Medical Care. Call: 66941892. (C 3036) 15-1-2011 In Abbassiya, near Balansiya bakery, double room flat, hall, furnished room with mini split from Jan 14, one separate room, share with Keralite family, for couples/ executive bachelor or teachers for Keralite only. Contact: 66944127 after 6 on 24334240. (C 3032) 13-1-2011



Car for sale, 99 model, Galant white color, excellent condition. Please contact: 90976848. (C 3038) For sale, dining tables 90x150 cm & 1 m round, 4 chairs, single bed, 36” & 20” TVs (CRT) with stand. Contact: 24889537/ 99535228 between 9am 7pm location Riggai. (C 3039) ‘07 Subaru Legacy 6cyl 3.0R AWD, white full options CD leather, sunroof, 58000km, serviced at agent new tires engine + gear + AC in excellent condition KD 3,050. Tel: 97130879. (C 3040) 17-1-2011 King size bed, American sofa set, music system mini, Sony T V 14”, oil heaters, computer tables, computer chairs, crockery, coffee tables. Contact: 23983631 / 99435795. (C 3034) 15-11-2011

Policy No.633003319-6 issued by the state life insurance corporation of Pakistan Gulf Zone on the life Mr. Azhar Bilal is reported to have been lost. Anyone finding the same or claiming any interest in it should communicate with the manager (PHS) state life P.O. Box No. 11278, Dubai, U.A.E within one month from this date after which no claim will be entertained. Ph: 22452208/9, Fax: 22452207. (C 3041) 17-1-2011

experience in Travel Industry, capable of independently finalizing Accounts, seeks suitable placement. Call: 66019422, E-mail: (C 3037) 17-1-2011 Sri Lankan male having 20 years experience well versed in bookkeeping up to Final Accounts with all

financial and banking work, computer literacy, seeks a suitable position. Please call: 66216353. (C 3021) 15-1-2011 MATRIMONIAL Sunni Muslim girl (divorcee 35 yrs, 5’4” fair, working as a head supervisor, salary KD 450, seeks suitable Muslim

divorced boy age not less than 38 yrs. E-mail: (C 3035) 15-1-2011 Marthomite boy (innocent divorcee 36 yrs, 5’9”, fair, interior designer, business in Kerala returned from Bahrain) seeks suitable alliance from Christian girls. Email: (C 3033) 13-1-2011

No: 14972

Policy no: 633003387, 633000955 issued by State Life Gulf zone on life M. Afazal - Amir Aziz have been lost. Anyone finding please communicate manager & LIC P.O.Box: 11278 Dubai, UAE, within one month. (C 3031) 13-1-2011

SITUATION WANTED M.Com qualified senior Accountant with 15 years

FLIGHT SCHEDULE FOR AIRPORT INFORMATION 161 In case you are not travelling, your proper cancellation of bookings will help other passengers to use seats Airlines KLM JZR GFA WAN WAN THY UAE DHX QTR ETD ETH JZR FCX JZR BAW KAC JZR KAC FDB KAC KAC KAC UAE ABY QTR ETD GFA KAC JZR KAC JZR MEA MSR IRC KAC MSR FDB UAL OMA KAC SVA KAC KNE

Flt 447 205 211 646 306 772 853 370 138 305 620 503 201 531 157 412 555 352 53 302 676 362 855 123 132 301 213 344 151 204 165 404 623 6521 382 610 57 982 645 618 500 552 745


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284 134 550 304 303 857 118 215 402 510 800 777 239 127 227 542 786 614 744 674 575 104 774 61 647 572 179 372 81 104 217 402 136 859 445 502 612 3553 135 981 636 327 802 239


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Time 0:05 0:45 0:45 1:05 1:10 1:25 1:30 2:20 2:40 3:15 3:30 3:45 3:50 4:00 4:25 4:55 6:55 7:10 7:15 8:25 8:55 9:10 9:20 9:40 9:45 10:00 10:20 10:20 11:10 11:45 12:00 12:00 12:10 12:30 12:55 13:30 13:35 13:40 13:55 14:35 15:10 15:15

Directorate General of Civil Aviation Home Page (


982 746 501 178 501 613 773 135 743 103 304 82 216 858 801 321 128 511 266 228 285 305 134 62 331 528 648 571 543 373 218 403 206 102 137 445 301 860 205 502 3554 613 554 411


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STAR TRACK Aries (March 21-April 19) Correct choices, or the best path for you, may be temporarily at odds with your sense of values. Be flexible today. Money matters come to your attention and you will soon be in a position to make some changes that will help bring in a better income. You seem to be looking for ways to enjoy your time away from work and you might enjoy setting up your own table in a flea market with your friends. Perhaps taking turns running a garage sale will give you the opportunity to visit and enjoy each other’s company. Your sense of humor is an important asset to all. Lifting the spirit of others seems to be a natural phenomenon. When you get around to reading the front page of the newspaper today, there is good information in the details.

Taurus (April 20-May 20)

POOCH CAFE ACROSS 1. A bachelor's degree in naval science. 4. 1 species. 10. A humming noise. 13. A former agency (from 1946 to 1974) that was responsible for research into atomic energy and its peacetime uses in the United States. 14. A member of the Siouan people formerly inhabiting the Black Hills of western South Dakota. 15. A constellation in the southern hemisphere near Telescopium and Norma. 16. A German machine gun. 18. A fine powder produced by the anthers of seed-bearing plants. 20. East Indian tree yielding a resin used medicinally and burned as incense. 21. A port city in southwestern Iran. 22. A naturally occuring glyceride of oleic acid that is found in fats and oils. 23. The face or front of a building. 25. A heavy ductile magnetic metallic element. 26. A compartment in front of a motor vehicle where driver sits. 27. A loose sleeveless outer garment made from aba cloth. 30. An ugly evil-looking old woman. 36. The blood group whose red cells carry both the A and B antigens. 37. A particular geographical region of indefinite boundary (usually serving some special purpose or distinguished by its people or culture or geography). 39. (informal) Of the highest quality. 41. A radioactive element of the actinide series. 42. A loose cloak with a hood. 44. An associate degree in applied science. 46. Harsh or corrosive in tone. 47. United States writer of poems and plays about racial conflict (born in 1934). 50. (sometimes followed by `of') Having or showing realization or perception. 54. One-thousandth of an equivalent. 55. A small piece of cloth. 56. Constituting the full quantity or extent. 61. A transuranic element. 62. Jordan's port. 63. An Arabic speaking person who lives in Arabia or North Africa. 64. An agency of the United Nations affiliated with the World Bank. 65. The sound of laughing. 66. A small cake leavened with yeast. DOWN 1. An adult male singer with the lowest voice. 2. A small Asian country high in the Himalayas between India and Tibet. 3. An ordered reference standard. 4. A nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (trade name Lodine). 5. Title for a civil or military leader (especially in Turkey). 6. Very steep. 7. A white soft metallic element that tarnishes readily. 8. Wool of the alpaca. 9. African tree having an exceedingly thick trunk and fruit that resembles a gourd and has an edible pulp called monkey bread. 10. Ground snakes. 11. The chief solid component of mammalian urine. 12. United States educator who introduced reforms that significantly altered the system of public education (17961859). 17. Marked by or showing unaffected simplicity and lack of guile or worldly experience. 19. A boy or man. 24. A dull persistent (usually moderately intense) pain. 28. The cry made by sheep. 29. The elementary stages of any subject (usually plural). 31. A unit of surface area equal to 100 square meters. 32. A colloid in a more solid form than a sol. 33. A sock with a separation for the big toe. 34. Any of a number of fishes of the family Carangidae. 35. A flat-bottomed volcanic crater that was formed by an explosion. 38. (botany) Of or relating to the axil. 40. Any of numerous local fertility and nature deities worshipped by ancient Semitic peoples. 43. Any organic compound formed by adding alcohol molecules to aldehyde molecules. 44. A rare silvery (usually trivalent) metallic element. 45. A winged often one-seed indehiscent fruit as of the ash or elm or maple. 48. Cubes of meat marinated and cooked on a skewer usually with vegetables. 49. Jordan's port. 51. A baton used by a magician or water diviner. 52. Title for a civil or military leader (especially in Turkey). 53. Open-heart surgery in which the rib cage is opened and a section of a blood vessel is grafted from the aorta to the coronary artery to bypass the blocked section of the coronary artery and improve the blood supply to the heart. 57. A Turkish unit of weight equal to about 2.75 pounds. 58. The 19th letter of the Greek alphabet. 59. The syllable naming the sixth (submediant) note of a major or minor scale in solmization. 60. A light touch or stroke. 61. (Akkadian) God of wisdom.

Yesterday’s Solution

A new animal may come into your life today in the form of visitor. This may mean you have found an injured bird or a lost wild thing and find yourself on the phone to the veterinarian or zoo. It could also mean you are just watching over an animal that belongs to a friend. You may find this a good teaching opportunity for the young people around you. This can be a fun adventure and you may decide to take this little visitor out for a walk or teach it a trick. Try to be explicit in your communications and general correspondence as you may be writing a friend about your adventures with this little visitor today. Listen carefully to what others are saying5. Laughter is a good thing! This evening is quiet and you enjoy a book or movie.

Gemini (May 21-June 20) Fondness and appreciation for the past and for your family roots take on a greater importance for you. Making your home situation more pleasant and attractive plays a part in this and the sale or purchase of real estate could bring you much gain before this cycle is completed. You may yearn for family harmony. You can demonstrate great understanding and sensitivity to the needs of others just now and are in a good position to communicate concerning groups and society in general. There are opportunities this afternoon to be with the young people that are in or around your family. You could be teaching them some fun games or doing some art project. This is a great time to enjoy those that are around you and participate in the laughter of the group.

Cancer (June 21-July 22)


You manage to get a lot done today. You could be most persuasive with others as well. Your hunches are right on target, so pay attention. You may talk your loved one, family or friends into the horse and buggy ride across the bridge and into town later today. All of the participants seem willing to stand in line for whatever activity you decide upon. You are naturally sociable and you yearn for high-level fun activities. If the weather is really bad, you might consider a thrilling movie. Emotional security, a sense of belonging and nurturing—these issues are felt instinctively. Your love for your friends and family is just the right connection between people that lasts for a lifetime—a castle against the trials of the world, so to speak.

Leo (July 23-August 22)


You are emotionally ready to go forward and you do not need anything holding you back. You may experience a greater appreciation for things of value. A simple trip to the grocery store to purchase the latest consumer’s magazine may save you money when it comes to buying some product you have had your eye on lately. Through comparison shopping you will make wise choices with some needed purchases. Clear decisions affecting others are easy to make. You enjoy activities that surround young people and you may be able to guide a troubled youngster toward a better direction at this time. Although you have plenty of ups and downs, you also have your good sense of humor to help you avoid getting into too much trouble.

Virgo (August 23-September 22) Your loved one may be talking about travel, more and more frequently now. Get the maps out and talk about the experience you each might want to have. Now is a good time to create funds for travel. For the next few months, your personal equilibrium will be shifting. This is a good reason to create clear communications. Do not take things for granted and do not be afraid to ask questions if you do not understand the communication of others. This will allow you to improve some foggy thinking. You are naturally driven to take control of your life. Healing comes from destroying the roots of any disturbance. You may be advising or counseling someone this afternoon and this will work out in a positive manner. Purchase a few travel magazines for fun.

Libra (September 23-October 22)


You could be shopping this afternoon. The styles of the time may not be what you really wanted. It is not necessary to spend your money on some piece of clothing that will not lift your spirits! You may want to try a different store or ignore the new styles and enjoy updating your current wardrobe. A promise to show up at a costume party this afternoon finds you in costume clothes of long ago—you may be pleased with the attention you receive. Others may find you especially witty and eccentric all afternoon. The evening is full of good feelings. Family, home, relatives and real estate play a big part in the evening. A strong urge for a social life could be enjoyed this evening . . . perhaps a play or concert of some sort.

Scorpio (October 23-November 21) You are good at solving problems and today you will probably be presented with lots of opportunities to be creative. Others recognize your capable mind and enjoy having you on their team. When you have a grasp on how to solve a problem, you express yourself in a way that everyone can understand. You will be pleased at the result of your efforts. Allow yourself space to think. Move into a different direction for a while. This will work to the benefit of everyone before the evening has ended. People seek you out for psychological insight. You are understanding and available to listen when people need a friend. Opportunities are convenient to be with someone you love. General good feeling and a sense of support make this a happy time.

Sagittarius (November 22-December 21) Your partner and friends get along just great. Home-life hums along very well. You could find yourself in a volunteer position, perhaps at a religious gathering. There may be some charity drive and you are compelled to help this afternoon—perhaps a car wash so your group can earn some extra money. Such a busy day still gives you a chance to talk with friends. Speaking of old friends—an old friend has a stunning financial suggestion today. Delay an immediate answer until you can get further information; however, with a little effort your cash flow with this plan could improve, at least short-term. This should be a particularly harmonious day, as you find that you are at one with the universe and the people around you.

Capricorn (December 22-January 19) Today you work around your home to consolidate and organize your affairs or rearrange your living situation. Anything concerning joint contracts need to be read thoroughly. Contracts that involve your money should have legal attention, especially if it concerns real estate. You are close to making an important decision about one particular partnership. If you are not married, this could be the time to make that decision! The focus now is balanced between work and family. Music may play a big part of your afternoon and will aid in creating a light heart. Communicate with hope and love and you will remain your wonderful self. Foreigners or a foreign connection could be very important today. You might brush up on your language skills.

Yesterday’s Solution Aquarius (January 20- February 18) You could find that you are respected for your quick attention to subjects for which others would rather not become involved. Someone understands your needs and may be sympathetic as well as appreciative. This is a great time to gain recognition but you have plenty of talent to accomplish many things. Whatever activity needs accomplishing, everyone could do his or her fair share. If you are working, recognition comes through the proper channels. Your management and directional abilities are in high focus. If you are in a spiritual group, you can be quite clever in the way you organize a group get-together. If you are in your own home, you will achieve whatever you set out to do today. Your sense of humor is a treasure and most active this evening.

Pisces (February 19-March 20)

Word Sleuth Solution

Perfect harmony begins at home! Later today, a hobby or some other involvement away from home moves along in a peace-filled manner. General good feelings and a sense of support and harmony make this a happy time. This is a great time to be with others in work or play. You may be sought after as the person for a particular chore or task. Your directional abilities are in high focus. You may be asked to plan a wedding or baby shower or perhaps a tour of the city for some newcomers to your business or to the neighborhood in which you reside. You can enjoy some family time later today to relay your plans and communicate your ideas. You have good humor and your quick wit will likely take you into a world of light-hearted fun—all day long.



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lifestyle G o s s i p


loves Cole’s style elly Osbourne loves Cheryl Cole’s style. The 26-year-old daughter of Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne - who fronts ‘Fashion Police’ with Joan Rivers - is a huge fan of the singer ’s “funky and casual” look. She said: “I think Cheryl’s really cute and has found a way to wear elegant dresses but also look quite funky and casual too.” Kelly also had some kind words for Cheryl’s fellow judge on UK TV talent show ‘The X Factor’ Dannii Minogue despite being embroiled in a long running public feud with her mother Sharon - praising her “classic” look. She said: “I actually really like the way Dannii did a more classic look - she looked like a lady not like an older woman who was trying to look younger. I do think she looked great but I prefer Cheryl’s style.” However one person whose fashion sense Kelly doesn’t admire is ‘Gossip Girl’ star Taylor Momsen, who also fronts band The Pretty Reckless. She said: “I’m really impressed with Taylor Momsen’s music but I think she’s trying to be something that she’s not. You can’t be Cindy Lou Who and wake up the next day and be Courtney Love. It’s not a genuine transition when you turn yourself into something you’re not with your fashion, that’s when I feel like you should be arrested.”


Owen Wilson he ‘Little Fockers’ star’s girlfriend Jade Duell gave birth to a healthy baby boy who they have named Ford Linton Wilson on Friday in Hawaii. The baby, who weighed 6 pounds, 13 ounces, was reportedly born naturally via a water birth at their oceanfront home in Maui, with Jade’s labor lasting 18 hours. A source told “Owen and Jade are thrilled! Owen has been doing a celebratory hula dance all afternoon! It’s a beautiful boy and everyone is incredibly happy!” Jade’s pregnancy had been a secret until last week, with it only announced on Monday that Jade was pregnant. A source told at that time how first time dad Owen, 42, was “very excited and involved” in the pregnancy, adding: “He has been doing research and learning as much as he can. “He’s


is a dad

super into it and asks a lot of questions to make sure he knows what’s going on every step of the way.” Jade’s uncle, John Duell, has said her whole family is “thrilled” about the news, and it is thought her parents flew to Hawaii to be with her for the birth. Jade and Owen have been dating for over a year, and it is not known if they plan to marry, but Owen has previously given some insight into how he realized Jade could be the one for him. He said: “When you stop talking about yourself and you’re more open to listening to what they’re interested in and what they want to talk, that’s how you know. “Maybe you’re more open to even renting a movie like ‘Steel Magnolias’. Before you know it, you’re getting late fees for ‘Sleepless in Seattle’.”

Arterton wants Aronofsky collaboration


thanks Bigelow

eanu Reeves has thanked director Kathryn Bigelow for making him an action star. The actor got one of his first breaks in the movie industry with his lead role in the director’s ‘Point Break’ in 1991 - which paved the way for him to take the lead role as Neo in ‘The Matrix’ trilogy and he says he owes it to the filmmaker for believing in him. He said: “‘Point’ Break was one of those wonderful surprises. I hear it wasn’t such an easy sell for Kathryn. Her saying, ‘No, really, he can be an action guy. No, really.’ “It was such a leap of faith. Thank you, Kathryn! You changed my life!” The ‘Henry’s Crime’ star also thanked another filmmaker, Bernado Bertolucci, for giving him another break by casting him as Siddhartha in the film ‘Little Buddha’, allowing him to show his depth and help shake preconceptions of him as dumb, because of his slacker character in ‘Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure’. He said: “When Bertolucci called, well, that was a nice day. Yes, indeed. I’ve had a couple of breaks, which is what we all need. You know, we’re just dust in the wind, after all.” Keanu is considering reprising his role as Bill S. Preston Esquire for a third instalment in the ‘Bill and Ted’ franchise, subject to a good script. He confirmed writers are working on the project, adding: “We’ll see what they come up with.”


emma Arterton wants to work with Darren Aronofsky. The ‘Tamara Drewe’ actress cites the director’s ballet thriller ‘Black Swan’ as her favorite movie of the last 12 months and has issued an open plea for her to find a part for him in his next movie. She said: “I loved ‘Black Swan’ and I’ve always loved Darren Aronofsky. It reminded me of ‘Requiem for a Dream’. And Natalie Portman is incredible in it. I really loved it.” However Gemma - who has starred in blockbusters ‘Clash of the Titans’ and ‘Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time’ revealed she finds it difficult to convince her favorite directors to work with her because she is too “mainstream”. When asked if she would like to work with Darren, she said: “Yes, of course! It always makes me laugh because my favorite directors are quite obscure - Darren Aronofsky, Michael Haneke, Lars Von Trier. But I haven’t got to work with them, I suppose because I’m quite mainstream.” Gemma also admitted she was surprised to be nominated for a BAFTA Rising Star Award because she considers herself an “old timer”. She said: “Rising star? I’m a bit of an old-timer now! I only left drama school three years ago so I’m still quite new, but some people might be thinking, ‘Oh no, not her again... “But I do think it’s right that it’s now, because of the movies I’ve had come out in the last year.”




goes on a girls’ night out with MiIler

eira Knightley went on a girls’ night out with Sienna MiIler to help get over her split from Rupert Friend. The ‘Pirates Of the Caribbean’ actress and her partner announced they are parting after five years earlier this week. While the reasons for the love split are said to be mutual, they are both devastated, so Sienna, 29, took Keira, 25, to a karaoke bar on Thursday in a bid to help cheer her up. The pair and friends went for Italian food at Soho restaurant Bocca Di Lupo before they are said to have run up a £500 bar bill at the Lucky Voice bar and Karaoke venue in London’s Soho area. During the evening Keira and her girls sung hits including Pussycat Dolls’ ‘Don’t Cha’, Bon Jovi’s ‘Livin’ On A Prayer’ and Queen’s ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’. A source at the bar told The Sun newspaper: “It was a pretty raucous affair. The girls went really crazy for Cosmopolitancocktails. They weren’t holding back at all. “There were about 12 people in the group, but no diva-like antics. They all got stuck in.” Keira is said to be throwing herself into her work following the love split, and her father, William, said earlier this week that he hopes she will remain close to Rupert. He said: “It wasn’t a decision that either of them took lightly. I know they gave it a great deal of thought. I don’t think there was any one thing that led to their break-up - it was a whole raft of things, I think. “It’s very unfortunate, but Keira is coping well and is focusing on a new West End play that she is opening. She is getting on with things. I know that she and Rupert will remain great friends.” Keira is currently starring in play ‘The Children’s Hour’ in London’s West End. —Bang Showbiz

to reunite

with Affleck


att Damon plans to reunite with Ben Affleck in 2011. The ‘Hereafter’ actor - who has four-year-old Isabella, twoyear-old Gia, and three-month old Stella with wife Luisiana, as well as raising her 11-year-old daughter Alexia from a previous marriage - is desperate to make progress on a venture he and his ‘Good Will Hunting’ writing partner have been discussing for a long time as their family commitments have always got in the way. He said: “We’ve been talking about it for years, so hopefully we’ll get to do it. But we also want to make our own film. We’ve been trying to work together again for 10 years now, but life has taken us in different directions. “Having small kids is big. Most of your energy goes there. Having small kids and living in different cities just means that you don’t see each other a lot.” Matt is a big fan of the work his friend - who has daughters Violet, five, and twoyear-old Seraphina with wife Jennifer Garner - has done, both in acting and directing, and particularly admires the way Ben handles criticism. He added: “When his film ‘The Town’ came out and just did so well I was so proud and happy. He dealt with a lot of s**t for a lot of years that was unjustified and was the butt of a lot of jokes. So to watch all those people who have to eat their words; he was a bigger man about it than I was. I’m petty enough to really care about that stuff and laugh at the demise of all these idiots that just don’t know talent when they see it. “There aren’t many people who the industry views as just being able to pull an idea out of the air: write it, direct it and star in it. So now I’m just looking for a job from him.”


Alicia Silverstone is pregnant he ‘Clueless’ actress is to have her first child with husband, musician Christopher Jarecki, it was announced. The 34-year-old actress has not said when her due date is, but was spotted trying to hide a “considerable” baby bump as she dined in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, on Thursday. Alicia told how she has longed for a baby last year, saying: “I’ve been wanting to have a baby since I was two years old - I’m destined to be a mother.” She also explained how appearing in stage play ‘Time Stands Still’ in


New York last year - where she played a pregnant lady only served to increase her broodiness. She said: “Wearing a pregnancy suit was so much fun. I loved the feeling of pretending to be pregnant and having little arms and legs and this big belly.” Alicia and Chris, 40, wed in June 2005 in California after eight years together. As well as acting Alicia has also written a vegan cookbook ‘The Kind Diet’, and is presently working on three films, ‘Vamps’ ,’Butter’ and ‘Homework’.



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lifestyle Music and Movies

KUWAIT: Photo shows Swedish artist Jose Gonzalez performing on the premises of REUSE at ACK on Tuesday. REUSE is an annual exposition that serves as an opportunity for non-profit organizations, companies, professionals and aspiring creative talents to showcase their accomplishments in the fields of social responsibility and sustainability via a range of artistic mediums and interactive activities for the general public.

nominees for

2011 Golden Globes Best movie - drama: • “Black Swan” • “The Fighter” • “Inception” • “The King’s Speech” • “The Social Network”

Best actress - drama: • Halle Berry, “Frankie and Alice” • Nicole Kidman, “Rabbit Hole” • Jennifer Lawrence, “Winter’s Bone” • Natalie Portman, “Black Swan” • Michelle Williams, “Blue Valentine”

Best actor - drama: • Jesse Eisenberg, “The Social Network” • Colin Firth, “The King’s Speech” • James Franco, “127 Hours” • Ryan Gosling, “Blue Valentine” • Mark Wahlberg, “The Fighter”

Best movie - comedy or musical: • “Alice in Wonderland” • “Burlesque” • “The Kids Are All Right” • “Red” • “The Tourist”

Best actress - comedy or musical: • Annette Bening, “The Kids Are All Right” • Anne Hathaway, “Love And Other Drugs” • Angelina Jolie, “The Tourist” • Julianne Moore, “The Kids Are All Right” • Emma Stone, “Easy A”

Best actor - comedy or musical: • Johnny Depp, “Alice in Wonderland” • Johnny Depp, “The Tourist” • Paul Giamatti, “Barney’s Version” • Jake Gyllenhaal, “Love And Other Drugs” • Kevin Spacey, “Casino Jack”

Best supporting actress: • Amy Adams, “The Fighter” • Helena Bonham Carter, “The King’s Speech” • Mila Kunis, “Black Swan” • Melissa Leo, “The Fighter” • Jacki Weaver, “Animal Kingdom”

Best supporting actor: • Christian Bale, “The Fighter” • Michael Douglas, “Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps” • Andrew Garfield, “The Social Network” • Jeremy Renner, “The Town” • Geoffrey Rush, “The King’s Speech”

Best animated movie: • “Despicable Me” • “How To Train Your Dragon” • “The Illusionist” • “Tangled” • “Toy Story 3”

Best foreign language film: • “Biutiful” (Mexico, Spain) • “The Concert” (France) • “The Edge” (Russia) • “I Am Love” (Italy) • “In A Better World” (Denmark)

Best original song: • “Bound To You,” from “Burlesque.” • “Coming Home,” from “Country Strong.” • “I See The Light,” from “Tangled.” • “There’s A Place For Us” from “Chronicles Of Narnia: The Voyage Of The Dawn Treader.” • “You Haven’t Seen the Last of Me” from “Burlesque”

Best TV series: • “Boardwalk Empire” (HBO) • “Dexter” (Showtime) • “The Good Wife” (CBS) • “Mad Men” (AMC) • “The Walking Dead” (AMC)

Best TV series actress - drama: • Julianna Margulies, “The Good Wife” • Elisabeth Moss, “Mad Men” • Piper Perabo, “Covert Affairs” • Katey Sagal, “Sons Of Anarchy” • Kyra Sedgwick, “The Closer”

Best TV series actor - drama: • Steve Buscemi, “Boardwalk Empire” • Bryan Cranston, “Breaking Bad” • Michael C. Hall, “Dexter” • Jon Hamm, “Mad Men” • Hugh Laurie, “House”

Best TV series - comedy or musical: • “30 Rock” (NBC) • “The Big Bang Theory” (CBS) • “The Big C” (Showtime) • “Glee” (Fox) • “Modern Family” (ABC) • “Nurse Jackie” (Showtime)

Golden Globes to launch Hollywood awards season ollywood’s annual awards season kicked off yesterday as stars and filmmakers gather for the Golden Globes, with British historical drama “The King’s Speech” hoping for a boost toward Oscars glory. Starring Colin Firth as the stuttering King George VI, the movie is nominated in seven categories at the Globes, seen as a key pointer to who will win prizes at the Academy Awards next month. Facebook blockbuster “The Social Network” is also up for top honors at the show, which gathers the multi-billion-dollar industry’s A-listers for their first major gathering of the year in Beverly Hills. The Globes’ organizers, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), suffered a legal blow on the eve of the event when a former publicist launched a lawsuit alleging breach of contract and bribery. The lawsuit underlines the huge business side of the glitzy awards: a Globe this weekend or an Oscar on February 27 can give a huge shot in the arm for marketing the winners whose acceptance speeches are screened live around the world. Hosted this year by British comic Ricky Gervais, the Globes are the first major show in a season that includes the Directors Guild awards on January 29 and the Screen Actors Guild gongs the following night. “ The King’s Speech,” starring Firth and Helena Bonham Carter, is nominated for best picture, director, actor, screenplay, score and supporting actor and actress. The film was the surprise top nominee when the Globes short-listers were announced last month, having only just opened in the United States and taken a tiny fraction of the box office earnings of “The Social Network.” Some suggest this was a wily move by the Weinstein Company, behind the film, letting it slowly impress critics and audiences with a limited opening rather than others’ blockbuster, head-on approach to seeking Oscar glory and fortune. “The Social Network” is tipped for best picture, director and actor for Jesse Eisenberg’s arresting perform-


ance as Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, as well as best supporting actor and screenplay. Best actor nominees for the drama category also include James Franco for Danny Boyle’s latest movie “127 hours,” Ryan Gosling for “Blue Valentine” and Mark Wahlberg for “The Fighter.” In other categories, best director nominations went to Darren Aronofsky (“Black Swan”), David Fincher (“The Social Network”), Tom Hooper (“The King’s Speech”), Christopher Nolan (“Inception”) and David Russell (“The Fighter”). One film’s inclusion in the shortlist triggered smirks around Hollywood. “The Tourist,” starring Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie, was critically panned but nominated surprisingly in the comedy or musical category, in what gossips suggested was a blatant bid to gets its A-list stars to attend. That kind of surprise nomination underlines the questions raised by those behind the lawsuit filed three days before the show. Michael Russell, who worked for the Globes’ organizers for 17 years, wants at least two million dollars in damages and lost wages, accusing them of running a “payola” scheme, according to the lawsuit. The 36page legal document includes allegations that “HFPA members abuse their positions and engage in unethical and potentially unlawful deals and arrangements which amount to a ‘payola’ scheme.” Industry insiders point to the HFPA’s relatively tiny voting body of 81 members, against the Academy Awards’ more than 5,700, alleging that the Globes are too open to undue influence by movie companies. The HFPA dismissed the lawsuit, calling the allegations “completely without merit.” “This is no more than the case of a disgruntled former consulting firm, whose contract was not renewed, attempting to take advantage once again of the Globe’s international stage for their own gain,” it said in a statement. The three-hour Globes show started at 5:00 pm yesterday.—AFP

Best TV series actress - comedy or musical: • Toni Collette, “United States Of Tara” (Showtime) • Edie Falco, “Nurse Jackie” (Showtime) • Tina Fey, “30 Rock” (NBC) • Laura Linney, “The Big C” (Showtime) • Lea Michele, “Glee” (Fox)

Best TV series actor - comedy or musical: • Alec Baldwin, “30 Rock” (NBC) • Steve Carell, “The Office” (NBC) • Thomas Jane, “Hung” (HBO) • Matthew Morrison, “Glee” (Fox) • Jim Parsons, “The Big Bang Theory” (CBS)

Best mini-series of made-for-TV movie: • “Carlos” (Sundance) • “The Pacific” (HBO) • “Pillars Of The Earth” (STARZ) • “Temple Grandin” (HBO) • “You Don’t Know Jack” (HBO)

Best actress in mini-series or made-for-TV movie: • Hayley Atwell, “Pillars Of The Earth” (STARZ) • Claire Danes, “Temple Grandin” (HBO) • Judi Dench, “Return To Cranford” • Romola Garai, “Emma” • Jennifer Love Hewitt, “The Client List”

(From left) Italian director Luca Guadagnino, nominated for the Golden Globe award for Best Foreign Language Film for “I Am Love,” Danish director Susanne Bier, nominated for the Golden Globe award for Best Foreign Language Film for “In A Better World” and Russian director Alexei Uchitel, nominated for the Golden Globe award for Best Foreign Language Film for “The Edge,” pose before speaking at a seminar at the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood on January 15, 2011.—AFP

Best actor in mini-series or made-for-TV movie: Best director: • Darren Aronofsky, “Black Swan” • David Fincher, “The Social Network” • Tom Hooper, “The King’s Speech” • Christopher Nolan, “Inception” • David O. Russell, “The Fighter”

Best screenplay:

• Idris Elba, “Luther” • Ian McShane, “Pillars Of The Earth” • Al Pacino, “You Don’t Know Jack” • Dennis Quaid, “The Special Relationship” • Edgar Ramirez, “Carlos”

Best supporting actress in mini-series or madefor-TV movie:

• Simon Beaufoy, Danny Boyle, “127 Hours” • Christopher Nolan, “Inception” • Stuart Blumberg, Lisa Cholodenko, “The Kids Are All Right” • David Seidler, “The King’s Speech” • Aaron Sorkin, “The Social Network”

• Hope Davis, “The Special Relationship” • Jane Lynch, “Glee” • Kelly MacDonald, “Boardwalk Empire” • Julia Stiles, “Dexter” • Sofia Vergara, “Modern Family”

Best original score:

Best supporting actor in mini-series or madefor-TV movie:

• Alexandre Desplat, “The King’s Speech” • Danny Elfman, “Alice in Wonderland” • A. R. Rahman, “127 Hours” • Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, “The Social Network” • Hans Zimmer, “Inception”

• Scott Caan, “Hawaii Five-O” • Chris Colfer, “Glee” • Chris Noth, “The Good Wife” • Eric Stonestreet, “Modern Family” • David Strathairn, “Temple Grandin”—AFP

Susannah York dies aged 72


ritish actress Susannah York, one of the most memorable film faces of the 1960s, has died from cancer aged 72, British media reported late on Saturday. York was best known for her role opposite Jane Fonda in the 1969 film “ They Shoot Horses Don’t They?” for which she was nominated for an Oscar. “She was an absolutely Susannah fantastic mother, who was York —AP very down to earth,” her son, actor Orlando Wells, told the Sunday Telegraph newspaper. “She loved nothing more than cooking a good Sunday roast and sitting around a fire of a winter’s evening. In some sense, she was quite a home girl.”

A quintessential English rose with her blonde hair, blue eyes and fresh-faced complexion, along with Julie Christie and Sarah Miles, she was one of the most recognizable actresses from films in the 1960s, winning a swathe of male admirers. She achieved international fame in such classic movies as “Tom Jones” and “A Man For All Seasons” and starred opposite the likes of Elizabeth Taylor, Marlon Brando, Montgomery Clift and Peter O’Toole. Her film roles became less notable during the 1970s, although she appeared in the box office smash “Superman”, but she continued to enjoy an extensive stage career. “She was as happy in a pub theatre in Islington as she was in Hollywood,” Wells said. She told Reuters in a 2001 interview that theatre was her real love. “This is where I belong,” she said. Away from acting, York wrote children’s books and was an ardent anti-nuclear campaigner. She vigorously worked for the release of Israeli whistleblower Mordechai Vanunu who disclosed secrets that revealed the Jewish state was building atomic bombs and was in Israel when he was finally set free in 2004 after 18 years in jail.—Reuters



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lifestyle F A S H I O N

Milan menswear looks ahead to a dandy winter


he latest Dolce&Gabbana winter look gives birth to a new style: “drunge.” As eccentric as it is contemporary, the new look is a daring mixture of dandy and grunge, which also sets the scene for the preview showings for the fall-winter menswear 2011-2012 which opened in Milan on Saturday. The Dolce&Gabbana show points to a season where the accent promises to be on esthetics rather than essentials. Later Saturday, Raf Simons for Jil Sander and Christopher Bailey for Burberry offered their takes on the far from macho winter look. “ We don’t impose style, we follow it,” Stefano Gabbana said while chatting with reporters before the show. The duo said they take their cue from the fashion habits of the younger generation. Their designing team includes a number of stylists in their early 20s. The collection opened with the label’s classic pinstriped suit, but with a smaller jacket which got shorter and shorter as the show went on. What at the beginning was a slim trouser, soon became a multipocketed cargo pant with the trademark dropped crotch. The sound track for the fast moving show was by British pop star Bryan Ferry, front row guest at the show in the Dolce&Gabbana headquarters carved out of an ex movie theater in downtown Milan. Although gray and black still prevail, the winter palette includes both red, purple and a few circus bright sequined shades. Color, however, played a much more important role in the other Saturday shows. No Dolce&Gabbana show is complete without a Sicilian “coppola” cap, but the new cocky felt hat was definitely on the dandy side — as were the skinny suspenders. The show finale said it all as a parade of models

Models wear creations as part of Emporio Armani men’s Fall-Winter 2011/2012 collection, at the Milan Fashion Week, unveiled in Milan, Italy yesterday. — AP

marched down the runway in heavy footwear, wearing sleek black velvet tuxedo jackets over distressed jeans. At minimalist Jil Sander, it was all about color, fabric and delicate cut, a look surely not geared to the motorcycle set. A new waffled wool was dipped in as unlikely winter colors as turquoise, raspberry and apricot, for winter T-shirts as well as jackets and duffel coats. Bright twotone shades were also used for knitwear. The soft lines of the tailoring, especially when fashioned in the same bright colors receiving rave reviews during last season’s womens’ collection, lent an elegant, but at the same time slightly precious feel to the show. Dandy comes easy to Britain, where the style was born, so it was no surprise that Burberry’s Christopher Bailey did such a good job of it . Fur was the motif that ran throughout the collection from the foppish caps and collars on double-breasted tweed coats to the all-fur trademark redingote. Colors were also bright at Burberry, lending cheery winter spirit to the whole collection. To make sure that poetic did not entirely drown out practical, Bailey ended his show with a parade of models in transparent plastic hooded ponchos, who walked the runway under a real rainfall, sprinkled from the steel beams above. During the next four days, 87 labels including such leading names in Italian menswear as Armani, Bottega Veneta, Gucci, Prada and Versace will present their winter wears.—AP



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lifestyle F A S H I O N

Models display creations as part of Salvatore Ferragamo Fall-Winter 2011 - 2012 Menswear collection yesterday during the Men’s fashion week in Milan. — AFP

Models wear creations part of Bottega Veneta men’s FallWinter 2011/2012 collection, at the Milan Fashion Week, unveiled in Milan, Italy, yesterday. —AP

Susannah York dies aged 72



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(Above) Djuan Keila Trent, Miss Kentucky, sings in the talent competition. (Left) Alyse Eady, Miss Arkansas, performs a ventriloquist act in the talent competition. (Below) Teresa Scanlan, Miss Nebraska, plays piano in the talent competition.

17 Jan  

Kuwait Times