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SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

St Louis airport closed after storm, homes flattened

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JAMADI ALAWWAL 21, 1432 AH

New Malaysian metropolis taking shape near Singapore

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Hernandez leaps late to send United nine clear

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Syrians bury dead in new bloody rallies Two lawmakers, mufti resign • Death toll hits 120 over 2 days

Iran on edge as Syria fights for survival CAIRO: When Syria’s president visited Iran late last year, he received a heroes’ medal and spoke about unbreakable bonds in a ceremony broadcast on national television. Now, a nervous leadership in Iran has imposed a media blackout on Bashar Assad’s struggle against a swelling Syrian uprising and Tehran faces the unsettling prospect of losing its most stalwart ally in the region. The Islamic Republic managed to choke off its homegrown “Green Revolution” after the disputed June 2009 presidential election. But now it is being dragged into the uprisings sweeping across the Middle East and stirring unrest in Syria, and unfriendly neighbor Bahrain. On the deadliest day of the Syrian rebellion Friday when more than 100 people were killed by authorities US President Barack Obama accused Assad of seeking Iranian help to use “the same brutal tactics” unleashed against demonstrators almost two years ago. For Iran, its ties with Syria represent far more than just a rare friend in a region dominated by Arab suspicions of Tehran’s aims. Syria is Iran’s great enabler: a conduit for aid to powerful anti-Israel proxies Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in the Gaza Strip. Should Assad’s regime fall, it could rob Iran of a loyal Arab partner in a region profoundly realigned by uprisings demanding more freedom and democracy. “Iran and Syria represent the anti-US axis in the region. In that respect, Iran wants to ensure that Syria remains an ally,” said Shadi Hamid, director of research at The Brookings Doha Center in Qatar. “The problem is that Iran’s foreign policy has become quite inconsistent.” Iran may still have other options in the region. It has ties with Iraq’s Shiite-led government, growing bonds with Turkey and is making overtures to post-revolutionary Egypt. But the uprisings also have sharply boosted hostility toward Iran from the wealthy - and increasingly influential - Gulf Arab states that believe Tehran is encouraging Shiite protesters in Bahrain and elsewhere. Continued on Page 14

MISRATA, Libya: Libyan rebel fighters flash the victory sign as they drive past a heavily-shelled building searching for pro-Gaddafi forces in this besieged city yesterday. — AP

Rebels claim victory in Misrata US launches drone attack TRIPOLI: Government troops retreated to the outskirts of Misrata under rebel fire yesterday and the opposition claimed victory after officials in Tripoli decided to pull back forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi following nearly two months of laying siege to the western city. The Pentagon, meanwhile, said the US Air Force carried out its first Predator missile strike in Libya yesterday, but gave no details. Libyan government officials showed evidence of an airstrike

near Gaddafi’s compound in Tripoli that it said caused no injuries, but it was not clear if that site was the Predator’s target. Opposition forces in Libya’s third-largest city had held firm after being pounded by the government’s heavy weapons for weeks. On Friday, a top Libyan official said troops would be withdrawn and local tribes would take up the fight - a notion scoffed at by rebels. Continued on Page 14

Swiss flock to watch stinking flower bloom GENEVA: Thousands of plant lovers have flocked to the northern Swiss city of Basel to see a giant, stinky flower bloom for the first time. The Basel Botanical Gardens expects 10,000 people to see its amorphophallus titanum, or corpse flower, in full glory before the bloom wilts late yesterday or today. The plant is 17 years old and has never bloomed before. Visitors haven’t been deterred by the strong stench of rotting flesh the flower emits to attract insects for pollination. The 2-m tall flower is native to the Indonesian island of Sumatra and the last one to bloom in Switzerland was 75 years ago. Worldwide, there have been only 134 recorded blooms from artificial cultivation. — AP

DEARBORN, Michigan: Police guard the Islamic Center of America prior to a planned protest by Pastor Terry Jones of the Dove World Outreach Center on Friday. The pastor was later taken into custody. — AFP

Quran-burning pastor briefly jailed in US

BASEL, Switzerland: Visitors look at the ‘arum titan’, the biggest flower in the world, as it blossoms at the Botanical Garden yesterday.— AFP

DEARBORN, Michigan: The US pastor whose burning of a Holy Quran sparked deadly violence in Afghanistan has been briefly jailed in a heavily Islamic suburb after a court banned his protest outside a mosque. A local judge jailed pastor Terry Jones of Gainesville, Florida, and his associate Wayne Sapp on Friday after a court ruled that their planned protest outside the Islamic Center of America in Dearborn, Michigan, could lead to violence. In court, Jones insisted that his right to protest against Islam was protected by the US Constitution. “The First Amendment does us no good if it confines us to saying what is popular,” he said. But Dearborn Police Chief Ronald Haddad testified that his department had received information about serious threats made against Jones from local residents, arguing that his protest could lead to violence if allowed. Prosecutor Robert Moran argued that the protest

had nothing to do with the First Amendment and that the community’s security and peace were at stake. In the end, the jury sided with the prosecution and Judge Mark Somers set bond at the symbolic amount of a dollar each for the two pastors, which they initially refused to pay. Following their refusal, both were escorted to a local jail. But local media reported that they changed their minds after spending about an hour behind bars and posted the bond. Under the judge’s ruling, both Jones and Sapp are now prohibited by the court from going to the mosque for three years. But Jones was quoted by The Detroit Free Press as saying the two “will come back next week” to try to organize a new protest. Dearborn is home to the largest Muslim community in the United States. The 2000 census found the city’s population to be 30 percent Arab-American. Continued on Page 14

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DAMASCUS: At least 13 mourners were shot dead yesterday as Syrians swarmed the streets to bury scores of demonstrators killed in massive protests and two MPs resigned in frustration at the bloodshed. Activists said the death toll from Friday’s nationwide protests could top 100, pending confirmation of a list of names. Two independent MPs from the protest hub city of Daraa, Nasser Al-Hariri and Khalil Al-Rifai, told Al-Jazeera television they were resigning in frustration at not being able to protect their constituents. Daraa’s top religious leader, Mufti Rizq Abdulrahman Abazeid, also quit. Friday’s deaths signalled no let-up from President Bashar Al-Assad, whose forces used live ammunition against demonstrators nationwide, witnesses and activists told AFP. The bloodshed erupted as tens of thousands of people took to the streets for “Good Friday” protests to test long sought-after freedoms a day after Assad scrapped decades of draconian emergency rule. Assad warned a week ago that any further unrest would be considered “sabotage” after he made the gesture of lifting long-hated emergency laws. It was a clear sign that the regime was prepared to escalate an already bloody response, with nearly 300 already dead in more than five weeks. The Syrian Revolution 2011, a driving force behind the protests, marked the tone yesterday by posting on its main Facebook page a black banner with the word “Mourning” in both Arabic and English. Tens of thousands of mourners packed buses and headed for the southern town of Ezreh for the funerals of 18 people killed on Friday, a rights activist requesting anonymity told AFP by telephone. Another activist later said “12 martyrs were buried in Ezreh” and that two men in the funeral cortege heading for the town - Yasser Nseirat and Jamal Qanbar - were shot dead by security forces. Other activists spoke of five mourners killed in Ezreh and outside a hospital in Daraa, with the toll expected to rise. Daraa has been an epicentre of protests against the regime of Assad, who also scrapped the feared state security court on Thursday and signed a decree “to regulate” peaceful protests. Snipers also pinned down mourners in the northern Damascus suburb of Douma, killing at least five more people yesterday, according to a witness and a human rights activist. They opened fire from rooftops as mourners marched from a mosque to a cemetery, Continued on Page 14


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Years

SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

local In My View

Frankenstein you create will ‘haunt you sooner or later’

Chidi Emmanuel

chidi@kuwaittimes.net

F

rom Vietnam to Afghanistan, as years go by, the West still doesn’t get it: ‘The Frankenstein you created will come back to haunt you sooner or later.’ The Mujahedeen and Taleban were armed in Afghanistan to fight off the Soviet forces in earlier wars, but have since turned those arms and expertise against those who armed them (US). In Vietnam it was a similar story. UN Resolution 1973 only authorized the UN member states to take all necessary measures to “protect civilians” under threat of attack in the country, including Benghazi. This same resolution, supposedly passed to implement a no-fly zone, excluded the introduction of a foreign occupation force of any kind in any part of Libyan territory - requesting all signatories to immediately inform the UN Secretary General of any such measures. The resolution did not call for regime change, neither did it call for attacks against the Libyan people, whether pro or anti Gaddafi. To date, however, Western forces have been bombing the Libyan people they are supposedly intending to protect. Tripoli, Benghazi, Misrata have come under heavy attack. Even the Western-backed rebels were not spared. They have been occasionally harmed and killed in ‘friendly fire’ incidents. As if all this were not enough, France, Britain and Italy are now sending what they call ‘military personnel’ to assist the rebels with the blessing of the White House. Call it what you like; there are now western boots on the Libyan soil with alleged CIA operatives all over the country. Meanwhile, as NATO members rally their forces for the Libya operation, Russia, China, India, Germany etc have kept up the pressure on the alliance to adhere to the UN Resolution’s mandate. Old concerns about the lessons of the past (Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iraq) have all been ignored. At a Berlin meeting of NATO foreign ministers, Russia reiterated its stance that the Western campaign against Libya has overstepped its UN mandate through use of excessive force. Russia, which refuses to use its veto power, abstained from UN’s vote that authorized the no-fly zone in Libya. To crown it all, US drones have now entered the fray. The US confirmed yesterday that it had carried out the first drone strike in troubled Libya. President Obama, who won the hearts and mind of the Muslim world by slamming his predecessor President G W Bush’s wars, is now getting ensnared in Libya. No matter how you paint it, history will attest that US under Obama - is fighting in Libya. President Obama has approved the use of unmanned drones (which already have a reputation for massacring people in Pakistan) in Libya - the latest in this conspiracy theory of Gaddafi-phobic. ‘What goes around will surely come around’.

KUWAIT: A partial view of the Arab Youth Forum meeting (left) AMF secretary general, Madhi Al-Khamees (center) speaking at the Youth Dialogue held at the sidelines of the Arab Media Forum. (Right) Kuwait International Bank CEO, Dr Mahmoud Abol Oyoon addressing the meeting. —Photos by Fouad Al-Shaikh

Arab young entrepreneurs exchange expertise at Youth Dialogue Day Kuwait hosts Arab Media Forum By Hassan A. Bari KUWAIT: Organizers of the eighth Arab Media Forum (AMF), which opens officially today at the Kuwait Sheraton Hotel yesterday held a sp ec i al p re - fo r um ‘Youth Dialogue Day’ to discuss the concerns and issues facing young Arab peop le. The event was i nsp ired by t he increasing evidence that young people across the Arab world can play a leading role in Arab societies, particularly in the aftermath of the recent revolutions in Egypt and Tunisia and the ongoing uprisings in various other nations across the region, largely led and driven by young Arab people. The ‘Youth Dialogue Day,’ which took place a day before today’s formal inaugu-

r at ion by H i s H ig hnes s the Pr ime Minister Sheikh Nasser Al-Mohammed Al-Sabah, featured discussion of a wide range of issues of concern to the upcoming generations in the Arab world. Sp eak ing du ring the event, AMF Secretar y General Mahdi Al-Khamees welcomed everyone and stressed the crucial importance of dialogue, especially am o ngst t he you ng, in order to exchange ideas and expertise. A lso inc lude d a mong s t the day ’s ac tivities was a seminar hosted by a group of young entrepreneurs to discuss ideas and exchange obser vations on their experience in a bid to encourage more of their peers to follow in their footsteps. Amongst the topics under discussion at the seminar were the impor-

ect. Another speaker, Khalid Al-Zanki, the owner of the ‘Leader Training Program,’ talked about the challenges and difficulties he had faced in setting up his business, stressing the need to focus on human resources development and training as a major element in achieving success in any business, whether in the public or private sector. “Instead of being a manager, one must become a ‘problem solver’ when running a small business,” said Al-Zanki, emphasizing that adopting this approach was essential in order to get a business going. “Unfortunately, due to the recent financial crisis, the first victim of financial problems in any business is training,” he added, noting that many companies have cut down on training in recent times to save on expenditure.

Sandstorms could continue till November, warns expert KUWAIT: Prominent local astronomer and weather expert Dr Saleh Al-Ujairi predicted on Friday that the spate of sandstorms affecting Kuwait in recent days would last until tomorrow. Even worse, he warned, this year’s sandstorms may not die away completely for another seven months, possibly recurring every couple of days until November. He explained that the current low pressure front over Kuwait has brought higher wind speeds than usual, stirring up large amounts of

sand, adding that during the current period, this is to be expected since this is the Sarrayat season, which brings sandstorms and scattered thunderstorms to the country at the same period every year. He warned, however, that both sandstorms and thunderstorms may hit Kuwait again in the next few days, and that the sandstorms are unlikely to die away as summer arrives, as they usually do, instead possibly recurring every few days for the next seven months until winter

MSAL to prioritize legislation on Co-op, social aid, Kgs

Kuwaitis sacked because of privatization KUWAIT: EQUATE employees are being subjected to a “wave of abrupt terminations,” according to the head of the Kuwait Trade Unions Federation (KTUF), who alleged in a recent press release that Kuwaiti personnel with the petrochemical firm, especially labor activists, are being targeted for layoffs. “The company is going ahead with this operation [laying staff off ] in total disregard of the efforts of the [EQUATE] workers’ union to attempt to stop the dismissals,” said KTUF chairman Fayez Al-Mutairi, further claiming that the dismissals are a result of the EQUATE management team “submitting to pressure from its foreign associates to dismiss a large number of Kuwaiti employees.” Al-Mutairi also drew a connection between EQUATE’s “release of national manpower” and the state’s privatization plans, suggesting that the recent developments are “one of the negative results of the privatization process, which [the KTUF] has always warned against.” — Al-Qabas

tance of media and marketing in developing their businesses and projects. “Media and marketing are the backbone of every business or project, large or small,” said the seminar’s first speaker, the CEO of the Kuwait I nternational Bank, Dr. Mahmoud Abol Oyoon. In his pres enta tion on ‘ You ng People a nd Financial Cu ltu re,’ Dr. Abol O yoon stressed that financial culture could be divided into individual and social categories, and ultimately comes down to individuals’ willingness to learn from their own mistakes through a process of trial and error. The senior banking figure also urged economists to take other aspec ts of financial culture into consideration due to their significant impact on any proj-

KUWAIT: An Afghan who attempted to smuggle 1250 gram of heroin by swallowing capsules full of heroin has been arrested. Security forces said the man landed at Kuwait airport on Friday, and he was apprehended by a team of security officials. He was rushed to the hospital where the capsules were taken out of his stomach. Penalty of such crime is death in Kuwait.

KUWAIT: The Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor (MSAL) plans to prioritize the passage of legislation concerning Cooperative Societies and the provision of social aid, as well as family centers and kindergarten facilities, once the new cabinet is formed, said the caretaker minister Dr. Mohammad Al-Afasi on Thursday. Dr. Al-Afasi said that the draft laws on these subjects had already been discussed by the relevant parliamentary committees and are now only awaiting endorsement to bring them into effect. The minister asserted that the legislation on Cooperative Societies would help to protect the rights of Co-op shareholders and reorganize the management boards’ election process. He added that the social assistance legislation would expand the number of benefits to which recipients are entitled, whilst the new law on kindergartens would help to provide more protection for the rights of children being cared for at these facilities. — Al-Rai

By Hanan Al-Saadoun

Salmiya fall A 35-year-old Filipina maid sustained fractures to both legs, as well as suffering from internal bleeding, when she fell from the third floor of a building in Salmiya. She was rushed to Mubarak Hospital.

News

in brief

Jaber Hospital extension KUWAIT: About 40% of the Jaber Hospital’s extension process is set to be finalized by the end of this year, said the project’s director Ali Nadoum. He noted that expenses are being utilized from the project’s budget as per the schedule. He added that students from the Kuwait University, the Public Authority for Applied Education and Training, the Australian College in Kuwait and other institutes took part in training courses at the project’s site. Teachers’ allowances A joint committee that includes members of the parliament’s Educational and Financial Panels has agreed on a number of amendments presented by the Kuwait Teachers Association, to enforce special allowances for teachers in public schools which exceed those recently granted by the Civil Service Council. According to a statement released by KTS chairman Met’eb Al-Otaibi, joint committee members Dr Mohammad Jowhar, Dr Aseel Al-Awadhi and Dr Jamaan Al-Harbash have approved the KTS’ demands which include a KD150 monthly allowances for general supervisor, and a KD200 monthly allowance for teachers of subjects that are deemed as ‘rare specialties’, which was proposed to encourage Kuwaiti teachers. Al Sur TV channel Political activist Mohammed Al Juwaihal has denied that there is a political decision behind the closure of Al Sur TV channel. The activist said he has decided to close the channel starting from 1st of May, and has taken the decision without any pressure from anyone. “I would like to point that the decision has nothing to do with financing the channel,” he added.

Two dead, seven hurt in road accidents KUWAIT: Two Saudi men, aged 28 and 29, died shortly after sustaining fatal head injuries in a car crash yesterday on Salmi Road opposite the Al-Ghanim Oasis Club. The bodies of the men, who both died at the scene, were removed for autopsy. In a separate incident, a 21-year-old Kuwaiti man and a 45year-old female compatriot were rushed to Amiri Hospital after sustaining serious head injuries in a car accident on the road between Mansouriya and Dhahiat. In a third accident, a 22-year-old Kuwaiti man suffered broken bones in his right hand and a fractured kneecap when he was hit by a car whilst attempting to cross the road in Block 9 of Andalus. He was taken to Sabah Hospital. Meanwhile, a 20-year-old Kuwaiti man suffered a broken thighbone and damage to his teeth in a car accident at around noon yesterday outside the entrance to the Avenues shopping mall. He was taken to Farwaniya Hospital. In a separate incident, a 25-year-old Egyptian truck driver was taken to Mubarak Hospital after sustaining fractures to his right shoulder bone when his lorry collided with another vehicle on the Fifth Ring Road. In another accident, a 48-year-old Egyptian man complained of severe pain in his forehead whilst an 18-year-old Kuwaiti man told paramedics that he felt dizzy following a collision between their vehicles on the road between Rabia and Rehab. Both were taken to Farwaniya Hospital.

returns. O ver the period until November, he predicted, the country is likely to witness at least 100 days of sandstorms, or around half of the total time. Meanwhile, an official from the Directorate General for Civil Aviation (DGCA) said that air traffic entering and leaving the countr y had not been affected by the recent sandstorms, adding that there are emergency plans in place in the event of any severe weather phenomenon affecting air traffic movements.

KUWAIT: Kuwait Medical Emergency on Thursday received a number of autistic students accompanied by their teachers. A tour was organized for the students in the different departments. Trainer Emad Abu Shaheen gave a lecture about first aid with an operational example about dealing with wounds and bleeding and how to call 112 emergency number. The students were acquainted with the ambulance and equipments in it.


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in my view

The companion that never lets you down By Hussain Al-Qatari

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esterday marked the World Book and Copyright Day - an event celebrated by the UNESCO to promote reading and publishing throughout the world. To celebrate the event in alignment with my new year resolution, I decided not to overspend money on getting new books. Instead, I’m setting up a schedule to read all the accumulated books I have purchased throughout the past years. By the next World Book Day- a year from now, I plan to finish reading at least 40 books. Everyone has read at least one book that made them view the world with ‘new eyes’. Designating an hour to read something that you are interested in can really change your life in the long run. By accumulating knowledge, broadening your horizons and learning new things, you are continuously becoming a better person. Despite the known fact that people in this part of the world don’t read much, I have been seeing many signs that suggest otherwise. Over the past five years, I heard about many book clubs established in Kuwait, discussing various genres and subjects. Yesterday morning, I walked into a coffee shop and found a group of six young men sitting down in a circle and discussing a self-development book. Despite the fact that this is not my preferred genre, it was nonetheless a breath of fresh air to see that sight. Reading is becoming, albeit slowly, something of importance to some people even though the majority are known to be too lazy to read a book. There are even several coffee shops that were established by young Kuwaiti entrepreneurs designed especially to promote reading. Equipped with bookshelves, comfortable sofas, quiet areas with library chairs. These coffee shops promote reading to the young generation which is the main target for such establishments. I salute all the young men and women who take some time off their schedule to read a book, and all the teachers who instill the habit of reading in their students. I also salute all the parents who read for their children and encourage them to read, and all the nice and kind librarians who help readers enjoy a good book.

LOCAL

Lawmakers called in for budgets meeting Dr Al-Hmoud ‘not expected’ to return to cabinet KUWAIT: Several lawmakers are scheduled to attend the Parliament’s Financial and Economic Committee meeting tomorrow. The committee will discuss the results of the decisions of the budgets’ committee regarding the balance sheets of state departments for fiscal years starting from 1999/2000 to 2009/2010, in addition to State Audit Bureau notes on those sheets. Some lawmakers have been invited to attend the meeting in order to weigh in on which mechanisms should be taken in addressing those balance sheets while the panel makes their reports, which will be sent to the parliament. “There were some violations and

notes in budgets of certain departments which couldn’t be explained”, said budgets committee member AlSaifi Al-Saifi, adding that MPs’ opinions are important in order to address the subject seriously”. Separately, Islamist MP Mohammad Hayef said that Dr Moudhi Al-Hmoud is “not expected” to return to the cabinet, in the aftermath of an event hosted by a local girls’ high school, which Islamist MPs claim to have included “dancing in front of a male audience”. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Education has clarify that the celebration was just nationalistic. Hayef warned that Al-Hmoud will be facing a grilling motion “if she is reappointed as Education Minister”.

The MP said he had talked with the parents of female students that participated in the event. According to him, the parents were “shocked on what they had witnessed” in the footage recorded by some students and teachers. “Parents entrust their daughters with the administrations of public schools to receive knowledge, not to be engaged in events of intergender performance”, Hayef said. He called for an “urgent and comprehensive” investigation to be opened in this case as well as several other cases which he said featured female students performing in front of an audience containing male ministry officials.

Sheikha Fariha to open Konouz Exhibition KUWAIT: Sheikha Fariha Al-Ahmad AlSabah will this evening open this year’s ‘Konouz’ Jewelry Exhibition at the Raiya Hall in the Cour tyard Marriott Hotel in Kuwait City, with the inaugural ceremony set to take place at 6:30 PM. A number of leading regional and international jewelry designers and producers are participating in the annual event, which ends on Thursday, April 28. Even more participants are taking part in this year’s exhibition than did in the 2010 event, with many elite jewelry names taking part including AlArbash Modern Jewelry Company, AlArbash Jewelry, Al-Khudairi Jewelry, Al-Hind Jewelry Company, Fonoun Jewelr y, Antoine Hakim, Al-Shaar Jewelry Company, Flawless Jewelry Company, Hamad Abdullah Al-Faris Jewelry Company, Madonna Thierry Jewelry, Marie Munier Jewelry, the Marina Galaxy Trading Company of Dubai, Octium Jewelr y, Shawkat Shami Jewelry, Trafalgar Jewelry and Viviane Debbas Jewelry. The exhibition organizers, the Kuwaiti Jewelr y Merchants Association, have extended an open invitation to members of the public to

Sheikha Fariha Al-Sabah attend the inaugural event and the exhibition itself. KJMA head Hussein Al-Arbash indicated that the surge in the number of designers and companies taking part in this year’s Konouz exhibition is a great cause for optimism, indicating that the event is likely to be a tremendous success. Al-Arbash expressed gratitude to Sheikha Fariha for her patronage of the event for a second successive year, as well as thanking the participating companies, both those which took part in last year’s exhibition and those

Kuwaiti envoy visits King Fahad complex MADINA: Kuwaiti ambassador to Saudi Arabia Sheikh Hamad Al-Ali AlSabah has lauded the role of King Fahad Complex for printing the Holy Quran as a great service for Islam and Muslims. Speaking to KUNA yesterday after his visit to the complex, Sheikh Hamad praised the tremendous efforts of this prestigious facility for printing and distributing the Holy Quran to millions of Muslims around the world, under the directives of the Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz. The complex’s Secretary, General Dr Mohammad Al-Oufi showed the Kuwaiti ambassador the complex’s facilities.. The complex prints about 10 million copy of the Holy Quran annually, Al-Oufi added, noting that the holy book is translated into 51 languages for all Muslims. Sheikh Hamad was accompanied by both the Qatari and Iraqi ambassadors to Saudi Arabia to this trip to the complex. —KUNA

Interior panel on security control system KUWAIT: Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sheikh Ahmad AlHumoud Al-Jaber Al-Sabah issued a ministerial decree yesterday on the re-formation of the supreme committee for carrying out the security control system project. The new decision assigns Assistant Undersecretar y of the Ministry of Interior for Information Technology and Communication Sheikh Meshaal Jaber Al-Abdullah AlSabah as the new panel chairman.

SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

The new committee is made up of Assistant Undersecretar y of the Ministry for Support Services Maj Gen Eid Abdullah Abo Sulaib, Director General of the Central Operational Department Maj Gen Jamal Hatem Al-Sayegh, and Director General of Legal Affairs Department Brig. Assad Abdulrahman AlRuwayeh. The project provides for the Ministry of Interior a central security system marked by its flexibility, and

that comes in tandem with a number of governmental bodies, and the civil society organizations in Kuwait. The project also uses state-ofthe -ar t security technology that keeps with the times in what offers a suitable milieu for effectively tackling local events, subsidizing daily tasks of the Ministry of Interior, and c atc hi ng up wi t h p o p ulat i o n increase, and urban and economic expansion as well as Kuwait’s development plans. — KUNA

Hussein Al-Arbash taking part in the event for the first time. The exhibition has seven main sponsors, the Wael Sakkijha & Brothers Company, the Ali & Nasser Al-Sayegh Jewelry Company, Cadillac - Yousef Ahmad Al-Ghanim &Sons Co., the Suhad Perfumes Company, the Nicolas Design & Event Planning Company, and the Delicates Jewelry Company. The Konouz Jewelry Exhibition will be open daily between 10:00 AM and 1:30 PM, and again during the evening between 5:00 PM and 9:30 PM.

KUWAIT: The Kuwait Society for Environmental Protection officials addressing the press conference.

KSEP launches environmental campaign KUWAIT: With an eye on protecting the environment and affording the public an opportunity to exercise a modicum of environmental awareness, the Kuwait Society for Environmental Protection (KSEP) launched here yesterday a campaign themed “One million acts of environmental awareness”, to coincide with a similar campaign that is being promoted worldwide under the banner line “One billion acts of environmental awareness worldwide,” sponsored by the Earth Day Organization, KSEP president Muhammad Al-Ahmad said in a press statement. Taking part in the local campaign are nine governmental, private sector, and volunteer groups which share with the worldwide campaign the imperative that the public become aware of the multiplicity of threats to existential resources as clean water, clean air, and clean surroundings, he said. All individuals and groups taking part in the campaign seek to augment the worldwide one by bringing attention of the public to the work being carried out locally by an array of organizations that keep the environment as a focal point in their daily undertakings, alAhmad said. Some of the activities the local campaign will be pursuing are cleaning beaches and parks, holding awareness seminars in schools and shopping centers and malls, and handing out leaflets and brochures on the merits of a clean environment, he noted. On an individual level, he exhorted the necessity to save water, use public transportation instead of a private car, recycling paper products, and using electricity at home and workplace wisely. KSEP expects the campagin to go on for at least a year and that more than one million acts will be documented, urging interested parties in the campaign to refer to KSEP’s website for information as to how to take part in it. —KUNA


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Years

LOCAL

News

in brief

Justice ministry honors staff KUWAIT: The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) is embarking on a project to upgrade its staff members’ skills. Installing state-of-the-art equipment to assist them. During a ceremony held by the ministry on Wednesday to honor punctual and wellmannered ministry staff, MoJ undersecretary Abdul Aziz Al-Majid, affirmed the ministry’s policy of encouraging healthy competition between employees with the objective of enhancing their performance level. “Punctuality, good manners and perseverance are the criterion set by the ministry for honoring the excellent employee,” he said. Kuwait census commences KUWAIT: The 2011 census, being conducted online and by census takers, began on Thursday, according to an announcement issued by Kuwait’s Central Statistical Office (CSO). In the press release issued yesterday, the CSO called on citizens and expatriates to cooperate with its staff to ensure the success of this national project. The online census covering 352,000 registered people will last until May 5, whilst the field census will last till May 31. The statement highlighted the importance of the census in implementing the country’s ambitious development plan.

Activists oppose politicization of disability issues in Kuwait Cabinet given ‘a last chance’ KUWAIT: A leading Kuwaiti disability affairs activist has urged MPs not to politicize the issue, calling on them not to include it in an upcoming grilling motion against His Highness the Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser AlMohammed Al-Sabah. In an interview with a local daily, Nawaf Al-Suwait, the head of the Kuwaiti Society for Children with Special Needs, said that the cabinet was being given a “last chance” to enforce the disability rights legislation passed by parliament last year. He also revealed that he had abandoned an earlier plan to organize a new lobbying group and had instead decided to form a team representing Kuwait’s disabled community to meet with the premier to discuss disabilityrelated issues. Al-Suwait also demanded that the managing director of the Public Authority for Disabled Citizens’ Affairs, Dr. Jassem Al-Tammar, be ousted from his position over what the disability rights campaigner said was a viola-

tion of the legislation for disabled citizens. Al-Suwait rejected allegations that Al-Tammar was being targeted for taking a stand against those feigning disability in order to benefit from the assistance available to disabled Kuwaitis, pointing out, “There are medical committees which determine who is entitled to disability care and who isn’t,” and adding that Al-Tammar lacks the authority to overrule a medical committee’s recommendations. A member of the national committee for protecting the disability rights legislation, Ali Al-Thuwaini, also opposed politicization of the issue, as well as rejecting calls for a sit-in by disabled Kuwaitis in front of HH the Prime Minister’s residence. Al-Thuwaini said that the national committee focuses on the “humanitarian duty to serve people with disabilities,” stressing that the committee has no political objectives and is unwilling to cooperate with political

figures’ aims in this direction by giving them information for use in any grilling motion concerning the issue. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor’s elderly care department is set to go ahead with the second phase of projects listed as part of the government’s work program. The department’s director, Ali Hassan, said in a press statement that the plan includes four main projects, which are: Renovation of elderly care and service, expanding the care service given to senior citizens, enhancing the mobile service for the elderly, as well as the early intervention program. The second phase, which will go ahead during the 2011/2012 fiscal year of the state’s development plan, will be divided into four stages, the ministry official said, adding at the same time that 95% of the developing projects have already been finished during the 2010/2011 fiscal year. — Al-Rai

Charity ‘illegally using fridge’ KUWAIT: The Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor (MSAL) has urged Kuwait Municipality to remove a fridge in the Shuwaikh Slaughterhouse, which they say is being illegally used by a charity foundation to store food. In a letter sent to the municipality, the head of the MSAL’s charity organizations department, Nasser Al-Ammar, explained that a charity foundation was found to be using the refrigerator to store donated foodstuffs without having obtained a license to use it for this purpose. Al-Ammar demanded that the fridge be removed as soon as possible, noting that similar measures were taken previously regarding a fridge at a meat market in Hawally.

Libyan Transitional Council delegation to meet Amir KUWAIT: A delegation representing Libya’s National Transitional Council (NTC) is set to arrive in Kuwait today (Sunday) on an official visit, during which they are set to meet with His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah and members of the Kuwaiti cabinet. The visit was announced on Thursday by Mahmoud Shammam, the NTC’s information minister. Talking to reporters following his participation in a meeting of the Arab Council for Media Development, Shammam also stressed that Muammar Gaddafi’s regime had lost its legitimacy after he failed to acknowledge the internationally recognized revolution. Shammam asserted that the situation in Libya is “continuously improving,” noting that the freedom fighters there have taken over a strategic passageway connecting Libya with the Tunisian border, which will enable them to transport food and medical aid to some of the areas where these are desperately needed. The senior official also explained that the visits which NTC members are conducting to other Arab countries aim primarily to garner political and diplomatic recognition, although he did not deny that they also concern seeking military support for the freedom fighters. — Al-Rai

National Guard honors sniper course graduates KUWAIT: The Kuwait National Guard yesterday held a ceremony to honor the graduates of a sniper course. The ceremony, honoring the members of the Guard’s anti-terrorism unit who successfully completed the course to upgrade their sniper skills, was attended by the head of the Guard’s Militar y Operations and Training division, Colonel Khalid Shabib Rakan.

Delivering a presentation during the ceremony, the anti-terrorism unit commander, Major Jarrah Fahad AlNasser, reviewed the differing t ypes of sniper weapons used in built-up and open areas, noting that the courses in this field provided to the unit members are amongst the most advanced military science courses currently available, and aim to fur ther

Ninth Gold, Jewelry Expo begins KUWAIT: Kuwait’s ninth Gold and Jewelry Exhibition is set to open today, April 24, at Kuwait International Fairground in Mishref. The opening ceremony for the event, which is being held under the patronage of commerce and industry minister Ahmad Al-Haroun, will be attended by Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MCI) Undersecretary Abdulaziz Meshaan AlKhalidi, with a number of ambassadors, diplomats, leading businesspeople and other prominent figures also expected to attend. The six-day exhibition, which concludes on April 30, will see 82 local and international jewelry companies displaying their latest collections, with some exhibitors travelling from other Arab

nations such as the UAE and Lebanon, whilst others will be coming from as far afield as Italy, Thailand, India, Hong Kong, Singapore, the UK and the USA. According to a press release issued yesterday by the organizers, the Kuwait International Fair Company, thousands of jewelry enthusiasts from Kuwait and across the region are expected to converge on Hall 8 of the fairground where the exhibition is taking place, to see the diverse variety of jewelry on show, including wedding sets, as well as precious stones, pearls and other items. A number of the participating companies have announced that they will be offering size-

CAIT to take part in COMEX 2011 KUWAIT: The Central Agency for Information Technology (CAIT) is to participate in the Fourth Governmental Services Exhibition to be held on the sidelines of the Comex 2011. Comex 2011 exhibition takes place at Oman International Exhibition Center, Muscat, from April 25 to 29. CAIT said in a press statement yesterday that their participation will be through the presentation of projects such as the official portal of the State of Kuwait, Kuwait Information Network and Kuwait Memory. The exhibition aims for visitors to meet face-toface with different ICT suppliers and discover the latest business innovations, products and solutions. It is also an access to the latest technologies and new business ideas on the horizon. The statement pointed to the participation of a group of specialists in the field of technical information from various local and international organizations to display the best technical solutions. The CAIT delegation includes Deputy DirectorGeneral of the Support Services Sector Jassem AlHamad as well as a number of officials and professionals of the Agency. — KUNA

able discounts to encourage visitors to buy, with many exhibiting creative collections designed and made especially for the event. The hall has been lavishly decorated for the event, which is sponsored by the Hassan Jewelry Co., Markeze Jewelry, and Al-Johra Jewelry Co., as well as the Top Real Estate Group, Al-Ahli United Bank and Al-Shayan Perfumes. The MCI also has a stand at the exhibition, where specialist personnel will be inspecting the gold and other items sold to ensure that they meet the proper specifications, whilst Kuwait’s customs authorities have prepared a temporary free zone area to finalize shipment of the goods sold at the event.

Al-Saadoun warned over recent strategy By A Saleh KUWAIT: A number of representatives from liberal parties have met with MP Ahmad Al-Saadoun to express their displeasure over what they see as his recent tendency towards promoting unconstitutional strategies. This has led to increased tension between Al-Saadoun and the more liberal parliamentarians, who have supported him on several occasions previously. An

strengthen the skills and expertise of National Guard personnel. On his part, Col. Rakan encouraged the graduates to further develop themselves with the help of future courses, in accordance with the directives of the head of the National Guard, Sheikh Salem Al-Ali AlSabah. — KUNA

KSSC organizes 2nd Pleasure Boats Race KUWAIT: The Kuwait Sea Sports Club (KSSC) will hold its second annual pleasure boats race on May 7th, with this year’s theme focusing on Kuwait national celebrations- the 50th anniversary of independence, 20th anniversary of liberation and 5th anniversary of His Highness the Amir’s investiture. Abdulqader Al-Najjar, head of the KSSC’s marine committee, explained that citizens and residents are invited to participate using pleasure boats with a minimum length of 21 feet, and with a 250 horsepower mono-engine, while participants must be 18 years or older. More information regarding the race and conditions of subscription can be found at the KSSC headquarters in Ras Al-Salmiya.

Abdulqader Al-Najjar

insider said that the gist of the message relayed to Al-Saadoun during the meeting was, “You are breaking these foundations by following a path that insults the constitution, which brings us together, and destroying development-related programs without justification.” The disgruntled liberals reportedly warned Al-Saadoun, “If you continue down this path, the liberals will reconsider giving you their votes at the next election.”

Egyptian PM delays start of visit by one day By A Saleh KUWAIT: Egyptian Prime Minister Dr Issam Sharif yesterday changed the date of the start of his upcoming scheduled tour of Gulf states. Early in the afternoon he announced that he had decided to postpone the scheduled tour of the GCC states entirely until a later date due to an

unforeseen commitment that prevented him being able to go ahead with the visit to Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Qatar as planned. Later in the afternoon, however, he announced a change in plans, declaring that he would begin his tour from Monday rather than Sunday as was originally planned.

A view from last year’s race


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local

kuwait digest

Resignation of Cabinet By Walid Al-Ghanim

H KUWAIT: The Environmental Voluntary Foundation’s Kuwait Dive Team (KDT) has launched a multimedia campaign to spread awareness of the network of buoys which its members have installed in the country’s offshore waters and their importance in protecting Kuwait’s coral reefs. Walid Al-Shatti, the KDT’s marine operations supervisor, explained in a recent press release that the team has published a number of booklets on its work, as well as uploading a large quantity of video footage to various websites, including material concerning the network of 12 buoys recently installed in the waters around Bnaidar.

Automated passport-reading system installed at airport Number of security personnel may be increased KUWAIT: Passengers travelling through Kuwait International Airport (KIA) will shortly be furnished with an automated boarding service that reads the print on their passports electronically in exchange for a token fee, a security official announced yesterday. Maj Gen Ibrahim Al-Rushaid said that the planned automated gate, to be installed shortly, will electronically read the passenger’s personal data, thereby expending the travel process and freeing up more customs officers. All passengers transiting the airport are subject to inspection, including aircraft crew and VIPs, he affirmed. The only individuals exempted from having to submit their documents for inspection are the heads of diplomatic missions, he added, indicating that

the airport security authorities have requested that the foreign ministry notify all diplomats that they would be subject to the search measures at the air facility. The senior security official also revealed that there are plans to expand the facility and increasing the number of security personnel serving at the airport, noting that there are now 70 female security staff working there. Maj. Gen. Al-Rushaid also explained that the airport is currently in the process of arranging the installation of state-of-art equipment for scanning passengers’ luggage and other belongings. The airport security department has already installed a new system for iris identification through photo-

Kuwait students in UAE insured KUWAIT: Kuwait’s consulate in Dubai has signed a deal to provide medical insurance to Kuwaiti students studying at universities in the United Arab Emirates. Dr. Saleh Al-Yassin, the Chief Cultural Attache at the Consulate, explained yesterday that he signed the deal on behalf of Kuwait, along with Parvaiz Siddiq, the Managing Director of the Emirati Islamic insurance firm Noor Takaful. The deal provides medical insurance for 758 male and female Kuwaiti students, who will receive free treatment at a wide range of hospitals and clinics scattered across the fellow Gulf country.

graphing staff members’ eyes. The airport authorities show the greatest concern at any bomb threat, whether authentic or hoax, he added, underlining the dedication of the security personnel there. Senior security personnel at the airport liaise with their counterparts in other regional states and exchange information about suspicious individuals or items in transit, he revealed. GCC citizens can continue to present their old or new civil identity cards at the airport, the official said, although he added that those travelling to Saudi Arabia should carry smart cards or passports. Maj. Gen. AlRushaid also urged travelers to cooperate with the security authorities and board the aircraft as scheduled to ensure punctual departure. — KUNA

Embassies ensuring Kuwaiti expats’ wellbeing KUWAIT: Kuwait’s embassies in all the nations currently experiencing uprisings and protests have been put on high alert to safeguard the wellbeing of Kuwaiti citizens in these countries should any emergency befall them, according to a diplomatic insider cited in a local news report. The insider was quoted as stating that all the embassies in the affected countries are maintaining constant contact with Kuwaiti residents and students there, whilst taking all the necessary measures to ensure their safe return should the situations in these countries develop negatively. — Al-Qabas

Three held for photographing oil facility KUWAIT: A Kuwaiti man and woman and the woman’s brother, an Iranian citizen, have been arrested for illegally taking photographs of oil facilities in Ahmadi. According to a report from the private Enferaad News Agency, the three detainees were referred for questioning after they were spotted taking pictures of the oil facilities and are being help pending further legal action. The news agency report also stated that the Iranian suspect had recently entered the country on a visitor’s visa. In a separate development, a case has been filed at Mubarak Al-Kabeer police station after worshippers at a local mosque spotted several pieces of graffiti on the wall there insulting senior Muslim figures. Detectives in the area, along with State Security Department officers are investigating the vandalism. —Al-Rai

amad is a recent graduate of Kuwait University who, like all young Kuwaiti men eager to start their careers, applied for employment with the civil service on November 2010 five months after his graduation on June that year. In February this year, Hamad was called for a job interview, and the next month he heard that he had been accepted for a public sector post, in which he would begin work in April. However, following the Cabinet’s resignation, a regulation was introduced through which any job appointments made following the date of resignation, was deemed invalid, creating a major problem for Hamad. Hamad’s just one of a number of Kuwaiti job hopefuls who received notification that their appointments to the public sector jobs guaranteed for Kuwaitis had been canceled. He was left to wonder what wrong he might have committed to have his job offer voided, which only happened after the cabinet decided to resign possibly to avoid having ministers face grilling motions. There’s a question that I’d like to hear an answer for from senior government officials: what does the Cabinet’s resignation have to do, if anything, with the appointment of an employee to a ministry or any other state body? I can understand when such decisions are made following a parliamentary dissolution, because in that case the government might be accused of appointing some job hopefuls to win votes in favor of pro-government parliamentary candidates. I don’t understand, however, when a similar decision is taken in a period when the parliament is staying, and the cabinet is walking away. Also, I urge the Civil Service Commission to look back at previous occasions when the cabinet resigned, and see whether or not there were similar stipulations introduced then about stopping administrative appointments. It’s sad to see the administrative and legal structure of state bodies affected by instability and a chaotic approach. Personally, I don’t think it’s a coincidence that citizens almost never complain whenever the cabinet resigns, while differences always appear among citizens following a parliamentary dissolution. I believe that the cabinet’s resignation was the best decision they’ve taken in the past few years.— Al-Qabas


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LOCAL

Four students in police net for car thefts in Jabriya Pedophile caught in Salmiya KUWAIT: Police have arrested four college students, all in their final year of studies, after discovering that they were stealing and dismantling luxury cars before selling the parts on as spares. The four were tracked down to an apartment rented on a daily basis, which police discovered was owned by a retired brigadier general with the Kuwaiti forces. The arrests followed dozens of car thefts across the Jabriya area. Poultry case Security personnel at Kuwait International Airport (KIA) were recently put on high alert following the discovery of a heavily bloodstained suitcase apparently abandoned in the airport parking lot. On further investigation, the security officers discovered that the case was filled with frozen chicken carcasses which had defrosted, leading to the bloodstains. It was subsequently discovered that the case belonged to an Egyptian resident of Kuwait who had apparently left it accidentally in the airport parking lot after returning from a visit to his homeland.

Kuwait Digest

Doomsday... from Dubai By Mudhhar Abdullah

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missionary group running the Family News International Radio Station recently predicted the end of the world — called ‘doomsday’ by some people — to fall on May 21, 2011, the same day the fourth parliament was dissolved in 2006! This group surely made a big mistake by promoting an idea such as this in a Muslim country. The failure of mankind to be pious stems from the fact that many of us believe they are far from death, which is a very personal experience that can never be foreseen by the living. However, I do sympathize with this missionary group’s reminder of such a horrific day. In Islam, we have already seen minor signs of the doomsday, such as the rise of ‘low class’ people, incredibility and dishonesty in news reporting (take the BBC and most Kuwaiti Satellite TV channels for instance), repeated earthquakes and many other signs. Most of those that commented on the ‘Dubai prophecy’ responded religiously, undoubtedly stressing that only Allah knows when doomsday is. Some others, however, utilized the declaration to start getting ready for the day. Assuming that doomsday will actually fall on the day declared by Family News Radio, this will surely change everybody into hermits and pious worshippers. It will also make all public fund thieves in Kuwait return their loot to the Audit Bureau without even being grilled in parliament. How strange people are; they always believe that they are far from death. Even though Earth is populated with more than 6 billion people they think they will be the last to die. We have two main challenges in this world; we need to stop lying and stop staring at others randomly. I wonder if the Dubai group has taken those two virtues into consideration because if their prophecy proves false they will be the first to go to hell. As for the second virtue; I know for sure that westerners never stare at others and that it is a purely local invention. — Al-Jarida

Kuwait, Tunisia and ICRC discuss Libya TUNIS: The Kuwait Red Crescent, its Tunisian counterpart and several representatives of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) met on Thursday to discuss coordinating efforts on providing further aid to Libya. Speaking to the attendees of the meeting upon his arrival in Tunisia, the Director of the Disasters and Emergency Department at the Kuwait Red Crescent Society (KRCS), Yousif Al-Meraj, stressed the importance Kuwait, represented by KRCS, places on providing aid to the Libyan people. He also highlighted the need for aid organizations to work collectively on the matter. For his part, SecretaryGeneral of the Tunisian Red Crescent, Tahar Cheniti, expressed gratitude for the regional and international role assumed by the Kuwaiti aid organization, adding that Kuwait was one of the first countries to have stepped forward to dispatch medical aid to the Libyan people. The Tunisian Red Crescent had managed-in cooperation with the ICRC-to transport Kuwaiti aid to some of the most troubled regions in the war-torn north African country such as Nalut and Misrata last February. The assistance included 10 tons of medical equipment and aid. Cheniti noted to the deteriorating humanitarian situation on Libya’s western borders with Tunisia, as a result of the influx of thousands of displaced Libyans and other nationals into Tunisia. This has also posed a problem for logistics and the transport of aid in the area, he added. — KUNA

Pedophile caught Following a four-month investigation, Hawally police managed to track down and arrest a middle-aged Kuwaiti man accused of sexually assaulting a minor. After the allegations came to light, the suspect disappeared, with police finally finding him in a Salmiya apartment where they also found drugs and an unlicensed gun and ammunition. The man is being held at Rumaithiya police station pending further action. Jahra fight A young Kuwaiti man was rushed to hospital after sustaining a serious stab wound in a fight in Jahra. Police were able to arrest his assailant, and have mounted extra security around his room at the hospital after his relatives and those of the other man gathered there and began fighting. The investigation into the case is continuing. Problem pregnancy A woman in her twenties was taken into custody along with her stepfather after he beat her upon discovering that she had fallen pregnant by her boyfriend. Police initially went to the flat in Salmiya after the young woman called to tell them that she was being held there against her will

Al-Qataami with Al-Anjari and the rest of the judging panel.

and had been physically assaulted by her stepfather after he discovered that she was pregnant. The young woman and her stepfather were both taken to Rumaithiya police station, whilst the young woman’s boyfriend is also being summoned for questioning over the pregnancy and may face charges related to having sex outside of marriage. ‘Bedoon’ Saudi busted A bedoon (stateless) resident has been held for questioning after traffic police conducting a routine ID check found that he was a Saudi national. The officers had pulled the man over during a routine stop-and-search campaign. He handed them his ID, which showed that he was stateless. On checking his name against the police database, however, officers discovered that he also holds a Saudi driving license. The man is now in custody and is expected to face forgery charges. Woman arrested A European woman was taken to the psychiatric hospital to undergo testing after police found her wandering in a Salwa street telling passersby that her Kuwaiti husband was a terrorist. Police went to the scene after receiving a number of reports from members of the public who the woman had been stopping in the street to tell them that her husband was a member of a proscribed terrorist organization. After psychiatric assessment, the woman is expected to face police questioning over her behavior. Boozers busted Four people were arrested in a Nugra apartment for consuming alcohol, after a fifth individual who they had kicked out of the flat called police to report their activities in revenge. The vengeful fellow drunkard told police when he called that the indi-

viduals in the apartment were hiding an unlicensed weapon there, as well as drinking. After making the arrests, police found out that the caller had made the call in revenge for being ejected from the apartment earlier, although no weapon was found during their search. Driver detained A young Kuwaiti driver was arrested after verbally insulting and threatening to attack patrol officers who were about to impound his vehicle after he committed serious traffic violations. The hot-headed young motorist was detained at Firdous police station pending further action. Drugs bust Two drug dealers - a Kuwaiti and a Jordanian - were taken into custody after being arrested in possession of 12 grams of heroin. The men were caught red-handed in a sting operation whilst selling the drug to an undercover police officer posing as a drug addict, with the transaction and arrest taking place in the parking lot of a local fast food outlet. They have been referred to the relevant authorities. Rice theft A Kuwaiti resident of Jabriya has brought theft charges against two Iranian expatriates who he has accused of stealing a quantity of food which he had entrusted to them to sell on his behalf. The complainant told officers at Sulaibikhat police station that he had given the two men, who run a wholesale food distribution service, 1,046 sacks of rice to sell on his behalf. When he asked them later about how much of the rice they had sold, however, they informed him that it had all been stolen from their warehouse. The complainant was skeptical of their story and lodged a complaint with the police, who are investigating the matter. — Al-Qabas, Al-Watan, AlAnba, Al-Rai.

Layla Al-Ghanim accepts the award on behalf of her mother, Ruquaiya Al-Qataami.

Al-Qataami selected as second ‘Most Inspiring Woman’ in Gulf Al-Omar honors Sadeq Qassem

KFH supports talented youths KUWAIT: Kuwait Finance House (KFH) CEO Mohammed Al-Omar applauded the accomplishment made by Kuwaiti inventor Sadeq Qassem who received two gold and one silver medals during the Geneva International Expo that was held recently and attended by a large number of inventors from around the globe. He noted that KFH supports talented youths as part of its social responsibility programs, which prompted it to sponsor Qassem who participated successfully in the event. He stressed that youths should work hard, especially in the technology field, in order to boost technological development in Kuwait and overseas, since KFH believes in constant development and in the implementation of technology to serve clients. Meanwhile, Qassem, who holds the title of Arab Inventor for year 2010, asserted that KFH’s support allowed him to effectively take part in this event, and dedicated his accomplishment to Their Highnesses the Amir and Crown Prince, in addition to all Kuwaitis. He thanked his family and friends for their support and encouragement. He went on to say that KFH was the only authority that offered him moral and financial support. He thanked all KFH’s employees, especially the Marketing and Public Relations Manager Fahad Al-Mukhaizeem who offered him logistic support and facilitated his participation, including the shipping of equipment that weigh more than a ton. He extended his gratitude to the Kuwait Scientific Club that supports his talent, and to its Chairman Eyad Al-Kharafi. Furthermore, he revealed his participation in three new ideas in the fields of power saving, and protection of children in smart houses. In addition to his first invention the alchemist, which received a gold medal in Geneva, he also invented a device that saves power energy that was awarded by another gold medal, and also received a silver medal for a protection device for smart homes.

KUWAIT: Kuwaiti philanthropist Ruqaiya Al-Qataami was recently awarded ‘the second finalist’ in a competition held to select the most inspiring women in the Gulf Cooperation Council countries, after coming behind the chairman of the women’s club for hearing disabilities in Jeddah, Faiza Natto, and ahead of Lula

Lopez from the United Arab Emirates. The ‘Inspire Others’ competition is an annual event held in celebration of the World Women’s Day, and celebrates the achievements of women which had the most influence on the lives of others, with the winners determined by the audience voting. Al-Qataami’s distin-

guished result came following her ongoing efforts in taking care of cancer patients, which is pinnacled by her establishment for the ‘Hayat’ committee for the care of cancer patients. Meanwhile, Kuwaiti activist Nabilah Al-Anjari was selected as part of the judging panel, given her long political

experience since she started as a director for tourism, and throughout her successful parliamentary candidacy campaign. Currently, Al-Anjari is the head of the Leader’s Group for Consultations and Training; a private firm which helps individuals reach what they aspire for in their works.

PAYS signs Sulaibikhat Club swimming pools’ contract KUWAIT: The acting director of the Public Authority for Youth and Sport, Sheikh Talal Al-Fahad Al-Sabah, signed the contract for building a swimming pools complex at the Sulaibikhat Sports Club. The project is worth approximately KD2.803 mil-

lion, and the execution process is estimated for two years. AlSabah said that this process comes as part of the state’s plans to renovate its sports facilities. Meanwhile, deputy director for constructions and maintenance affairs at the PAYS, Essam

Jaafar revealed a number of upcoming projects that PAYS is set to start executing within the few days, which include the contract for the Bowling Club, as well as the arenas complex in Al-Arabi Sports Club.


SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

France launches international search alert for murder suspect Page 10

Tsunami zone is scene of great sorrow: Australian PM Page 12

Saleh says opposition dragging Yemen into war Up to 90 percent of businesses closed in Aden SANAA: An anti-government protesteor, reacts during a demonstration demanding the resignation of Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, in Sanaa, Yemen yesterday.—AP

SANAA/ADEN: Yemen’s president accused the opposition yesterday of dragging the country into a civil war, as Yemenis boarded up their shops and businesses across the country in protest against his rule. Ali Abdullah Saleh, in a speech in the capital Sanaa, called on Yemen’s young people to form a political party according to the constitution and said the Arab state would not accept any tutelage “whatsoever”, without giving further details. “They (the opposition) want to

drag the area to civil war and we refuse to be dragged to civil war,” Saleh said. “Security, safety and stability are in Yemen’s interests and the interests of the region.” Protests in Yemen, inspired by uprisings that toppled the leaders of Egypt and Tunisia, are now in their third month and bring tens of thousands of people onto the streets almost every day demanding an end to endemic poverty and corruption. Scores of protesters have been killed. Acknowledging that Yemeni

students drew on the example of Egypt and Tunisia, Saleh said there was a “huge difference” in Yemen, but that his government would meet students’ demands in the framework of the constitution and the law. Up to 90 percent of shops, markets and schools were closed in the southern port city of Aden, a Reuters witness said. There were few pedestrians in the streets and almost no traffic. Many businesses were also closed for the day in the cities of Taiz, Yemen’s third city and a

centre of opposition to the 69-yearold-president, and Hodeidah on the Red Sea. M eanwhile as many as 6,000 men, women and youths gathered peacefully in the main streets of alMukalla in the eastern Hadramawt province yesterday calling for an end to Saleh’s rule, witnesses told Reuters. “We will come out daily to protest until the regime falls. We can’t go backwards,” said one of the protesters, who declined to be named.

Iraq PM pledges not to ask for US troop extension BAGHDAD: Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki has pledged that Baghdad would not ask US troops to stay in the country beyond a year-end pullout, his office said yesterday. Maliki said that

the decision had been taken despite Iraq’s desire for stronger military ties with Washington, and alluded to political difficulties he would have in getting approval for any extended American

presence. “We are not going to ask for an extension for US forces, in spite of our keenness to continue cooperation with the United States in all areas, including military,” he told a South Korean news organisation, according to a transcript of an April 20 interview released by his office. In a nod to domestic political opposition to any US presence beyond the end of 2011, he noted: “As you know, the process... does not only require the approval of the government, but also a vote in parliament.” Radical anti-US Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr warned on April 9 that his supporters would resume armed opposition if American troops were to stay beyond the end of this year. The transcript of the interview was released a day after the top US military officer warned that Iraq had just “weeks” to decide if it needed American troops to stay, and cautioned that time was running out.— AFP

Yemenis flooded the streets of Sanaa and Taiz on Friday in rival demonstrations for and against Saleh, who gave a guarded welcome to a Gulf Arab plan for a three month transition of power. The proposal of the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) calls for Saleh to hand power to his vice president one month after signing an agreement. He would appoint an opposition leader to lead an interim cabinet charged with preparing presidential elections two months

later, a Yemeni official said on Friday. The plan, presented on Thursday, also gives immunity from prosecution to Saleh, his family and aidesanathema to his foes, who would also have to end protests under the proposal. Saleh’s long-time Gulf and Western allies, concerned that the chaos in Yemen will open more oppor tunities for Al-Qaeda militants, are trying to broker an orderly transition after three months of protests against Saleh’s 32-year rule.— Reuters


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I N T E R N AT I O N A L

Thousands mark holy fire rite in Jerusalem church

BAGHDAD: Iraqis wave Iraqi and Bahraini flags during a demonstration in Baghdad against the Bahraini government’s suppression of protests led by the mainly-Shiite opposition in the kingdom yesterday.—AP

Iraqi Shiites want Saudis to withdraw from Bahrain Iraq’s own sectarian divide remembered BAGHDAD: Hundreds of Iraqi Shiites rallied in Baghdad yesterday to demand the immediate withdrawal of Saudi troops from Bahrain, which has sparked reminders of Iraq’s own sectarian divide. Shiites in Iraq, Lebanon and Iran have expressed anger over the movement of forces from Sunni Arab states into Bahrain to help its Sunni royal family squash pro-democracy rallies by majority Shiites. Protesters in central Baghdad yesterday chanted “no to al-Saud”. Some carried banners which read “Saudi occupation should end” and “ Why is there Arab silence towards the massacres committed in Bahrain?”. “We advise (our) brothers in Saudi Arabia to immediately withdraw from Bahrain,” Hadi Al-Amiri, Iraq’s transportat i o n m i n i s te r a n d h e a d o f t h e Badr O rg a n i z a t i o n , which arranged the protest, said in an address to demonstrators. Badr is the former armed wing o f t h e S u p re m e I s l a m i c I ra q i Council (ISCI), a main faction in

Iraq’s Shiite alliance, which also includes that of Prime Minister Nuri Al-Maliki. Maliki has criticized the inter vention by Gulf states in Bahrain and said it could spark a sectarian war in the region. Like Bahrain, Iraq has a Shiite majo rit y t hat complain ed for decades of oppression under a Sunni ruling class which is dominant throughout the Arab world. Since the 2003 US-led invasion w hich to p p l ed S unn i dic tator Saddam Hussein and enabled the Shiite majorit y to take power, Baghdad has had uneasy relations

with S un n i n eigh bor s. Neighboring Sunni countries have been unnerved by the Shiite-led uprising in Bahrain and Gulf Arab rulers have accused non-Arab Shiite Iran of interfering. Amri criticized Bahraini authorities for suppressing its Shiite population and asked the Arab League and human rights groups to do fact-finding missions in the Gulf Arab k ingdom. “Barbarian ac ts against people ask ing for f re e d o m s h o u l d s to p a n d t h e Saudi occupation is not tolerated a ny m o re,” H a d i a l - G h u ra b i , a Shi’ite cleric said.—Reuters

JERUSALEM: The small doorway to the traditional site of Jesus’ tomb cracked open to reveal a bright flame and tens of thousands of worshippers cheered ecstatically, marking the pinnacle of Easter Week’s holy fire ceremony in the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. The annual ritual has been practiced for at least the last 1,200 years on the day before Easter, which celebrates Jesus’ resurrection. Worshippers of various Orthodox Christian sects packed into the Jerusalem church, Christianity’s most sacred shrine and revered as the site where Jesus was crucified, buried and resurrected. In the ceremony, a flame believed to be miraculously lit emanates from the tomb. “I’m all vibrating,” said Romanian pilgrim Ivan Kurnia. “It’s really, really impressive.” Hours before the ceremony, local Christians and pilgrims from around the world snaked through the narrow alleyways of Jerusalem’s old city and filled the small courtyard outside the church. About a thousand Israeli police officers processed the crowds through police barricades that filtered access to the church’s only entrance. Inside gathered a colorful mix of clergymen and worshippers representing the different Orthodox Christian sects, from Armenian monks in black robes and pointed hoods to Russian Orthodox women wearing turquoise headscarves. People crammed against each other in the dimly lit, cavernous church, and police broke up scuffles. One middle-aged American woman fainted, but she remained standing because people were pressed up against her in the densely packed crowd. Despite the suffocating crowds, the throngs waited in anticipation for the ceremony to begin, clutching bundles of 33 slim candles signifying the years of Jesus’ life. Adorned with a golden crown encrusted with jewels and religious icons, the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem, Theofilos III, entered the Edicule, the small chamber at

JERUSALEM: Christian Orthodox worshippers hold up candles lit from the ‘Holy Fire’ as thousands gather in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem’s old city yesterday.—AP the core of the church marking the site of Jesus’ tomb. Armenian clergymen entered as well, and the door was sealed, guarded by clergymen and an Israeli policeman. Then, the door was opened to reveal candles lit with the holy fire , said to be miraculously lit and interpreted as a message to the faithful from the heavens. The precise details of the flame’s source are a closely guarded secret. The flame was quickly passed on from one bunch of candles to another, and soon the dark church was filled with worshippers holding flickering torches and waving it around their faces. Bells rang and people cheered. “Christos has risen. I feel amazing,” said a Russian Orthodox pilgrim from San Francisco who identified himself only as Igor. “It came from God, from the sky.” Police spokesman Shmuel Ben Rubi said around a thousand police officers were deployed to direct foot traffic and keep the peace. He estimated tens of thousands of worshippers were in the church. Asaf Abras, spokesman for Jerusalem’s firefighting services, said about 10 firefighters with mobile units were stationed around the church in case of emergency. Israeli officials have been worried

Iran leader’s warning appears to rebuke prez TEHRAN: Iran’s supreme leader warned yesterday he will intervene in the government’s affairs whenever necessary in an apparent rebuke to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for challenging the clerical leader’s allencompassing authority. Their most recent confrontation involved Ahmadinejad’s dismissal last week of the country’s powerful intelligence minister, whom Ayatollah Ali Khamenei then quickly reinstated in a slap to the president. Ahmadinejad, who has said in the past that Khamenei was like a father to him, has enjoyed strong support from the supreme leader, especially in the tumultuous period after his disputed re-election in 2009. At times, though, he has defied the country’s most powerful figure. Some have accused the president and his allies of trying to amass more power and challenge Khamenei’s ultimate authority in the run-up to parliamentary elections next year and presidential elections in 2013. “I won’t allow, as long as I’m alive, an iota of deviation of this massive movement of the nation,” Khamenei said in a speech broadcast on state TV yesterday. “In principle, I have no intention to intervene in government affairs ... unless I feel an expediency is being ignored as it was the case recently,” he said, referring to the dispute over the intelligence minister. Khamenei, who was addressing hundreds of Iranian citizens in his residence in Tehran, said he was right and he would stand by his words. “With the help of God, ... I firmly stand by our right stance,” he said. Intelligence Minister Heidar Moslehi was forced to resign last week after apparent disputes with Ahmadinejad. The president publicly accepted his resignation but Khamenei ordered him to remain in the Cabinet. In a sign of mounting tensions, Ahmadinejad has reportedly refused to give in to the order and has not invited Moslehi to the latest Cabinet meeting. —AP

since the late 1990s that a fire could erupt from the church during the ritual. In 1834, pilgrims in the church panicked, a stampede ensued, and several hundred people were crushed or suffocated to death. But the six Christian sects that stake claim to different sections of the church have been reluctant to build an emergency exit or a fire escape. The sects zealously guard their portions of the church and brawls have erupted in recent years when clergymen of one sect encroach on another section, even when only sweeping the floor. None of the sects wants to give up an inch of precious real estate in the church to construct a second exit. After the holy fire ceremony, the flame was immediately taken from the church and past an Israeli military barrier into the Palestinian Authority-controlled city of Bethlehem where it was received at the Church of the Nativity, the traditional site of Jesus’ birthplace. Palestinian Prime Minister Salaam Fayyad attended another holy fire ceremony in a central square in Ramallah, the seat of his government in the West Bank. In the Gaza Strip, about fifty Christian worshippers attended a mass in one of Gaza’s two churches. —AP

Iran seeks brave move from Egypt to resume ties TEHRAN: Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi yesterday called on Egypt to take a “courageous step” towards renewing diplomatic ties with Tehran, the official IRNA news agency reported. “We have said that we are ready to raise the level of our relations with Egypt and we hope that the Egyptian officials... will take a courageous step,” in that direction, Salehi told a group of ambassadors posted in Iran. “The Egyptian officials are capable of overcoming the pressure” exerted on Egypt by Israel and the United States who are opposed to a resumption of diplomatic ties between Cairo and Tehran, Salehi added. Iran broke off diplomatic ties with Egypt in 1980 after the Islamic revolution in protest at Cairo’s recognition of Israel, and the two countries now maintain only interests sections in their respective capitals. Earlier this month, Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil al-Arabi declared Cairo was ready to open a “new page” with Tehran. “ The Egyptian and Iranian people deserve relations which reflect their history and civilisation, provided they are based on mutual respect of state sovereignty and non-interference of any kind in internal affairs,” he said. Under Hosni Mubarak, who resigned in February after weeks of protests, Egypt had worked to check the influence of Shiite Iran in the region amid concerns over its nuclear ambitions and support for the Lebanese Hezbollah movement.— AFP

Pressure mounts for Netanyahu peace plan JERUSALEM: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is under mounting pressure to present his own peace plan rather than be faced with an imposed solution or the unilateral recognition of a Palestinian state. President Shimon Peres, Israel’s elder statesman and a Nobel peace laureate, was the latest to add his voice to the growing chorus, urging Netanyahu to act before events overtake him. “If we don’t want foreign plans, the best way would be a plan of our own, and if we do that, others won’t go ahead with theirs,” Peres said on Friday. Peres was responding to reports indicating that US President Barak Obama was preparing to lay out his own vision for a peace settlement between Israel and the Palestinians. First reported in the New York Times, it said the vision “could include four principles, or terms of reference ... (which) could call for Israel

to accept a Palestinian state based on the 1967 borders” of before that year’s Middle East war. It also suggested the Palestinians could have to forgo the right of return to land inside Israel, that Jerusalem would be the capital of both states, and would also include principles safeguarding Israel’s security. Netanyahu has said he will deliver a policy speech to the US Congress in late May, where he is expected to present his plan. But it’s not just the fear of being pre-empted by Obama and a settlement imposed by the United States that is spurring calls for immediate and far reaching action. Following the breakdown of direct talks last September, the Palestinians have adopted a diplomatic strategy aimed at securing UN recognition of a Palestinian state based on the 1967 borders with Jerusalem as its capital. The move is expected to take place

in September, when the UN General Assembly holds its annual meeting. The Palestinians have already won recognition from several South American nations and on Thursday France said European nations were also considering recognizing a Palestinian state. “Recognition of the state of Palestine is one of the options which France is considering, with its European partners” in a bid to relaunch the peace process,” French ambassador Gerard Araud told a UN Security Council debate on the Middle East. Defence Minister Ehud Barak, one of Netanyahu’s closest allies, has warned that Israel “faced a diplomatic tsunami.” “There is an international movement for the recognition of a Palestinian state within 1967 borders,” Barak said, warning that only an Israeli “diplomatic initiative” could limit the risks to Israel. —AFP


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Tornadoes swipe Missouri, St Louis main airport closes CHICAGO: Tornadoes and high winds tore through the Midwest state of Missouri leaving a swath of destruction and badly damaging St Louis’s main airport forcing it to close, officials said yesterday. Five people were hospitalized late Friday after being hurt by flying glass and debris at the Lambert-St Louis international airport when the storms ripped off the roof of the main terminal and blew out windows and doors. “All operations are closed here today and there are no flight activities until assessments can be made of the damage and what it will take to make the facility safe enough to resume flights,” airport spokesman Jeff Lea told AFP. Airport director Rhonda Hamm-Niebrugge told a press conference she hoped the airport would be able to resume operations today, although she warned it would not be at full capacity. The five injured people had been released from hospital after treatment, she told repor ters. “When you look at the devastation around, it really is a miracle that there were no fatalities and certainly very minor injuries. So, we’re grateful for that,” she added. The storms, and an apparent tornado, struck the airpor t in the early evening Friday, forcing airport officials to herd hundreds of travelers into safer areas. “We had a vacuum effect, when the wind sucked anything that moved down the concourse,” Lea said. The main terminal was badly damaged, with par t of its roof ripped off, and half of the windows of Concourse C have been blown out.

ST LOUIS: In this aerial photograph, debris is strewn around a neighborhood yesterday, in Bridgeton, Mo., following a Friday-evening tornado in the area. —AP Staff spent the night mopping up, but the airport, which handles more than 15 million passengers a year, was still running on its backup generators yesterday. The runways were scattered with debris, such as crushed cars, wrecked signs, while nearby houses had been ripped apart. Carl Lawrence was by the baggage carousel area when the strong wind hit. “It rushed through the door and threw everybody against the wall,” Lawrence told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Missouri

governor Jay Nixon has declared a state of emergency as officials reported some injuries and widespread damage in neighborhoods around St Louis. “ The state of Missouri is ready to assist at every stage of this emergency to keep Missouri families safe and help communities recover,” Nixon said in a statement. Fire officials said about 50 homes in a subdivision just off the Airport Road were damaged. No one was hurt but several people had to be helped to escape their

damaged homes. “It was boom, boom, boom,” Alicia Braggs said, recalling the storm. “It seemed like there was some kind of terrible pressure on my roof, and I could feel the wind.” The National Weather Service has also issued flood warnings for the area, saying the heavy rains will likely cause rivers to burst their banks. Powerful tornadoes struck several southern and central US states earlier this month killing 44 people and reducing whole neighborhoods to rubble.—AFP

In Hawaii, accessing some Obama birth info is easy HONOLULU : Lost in the renewed scrutiny into President Barack Obama’s birth records is the fact that anyone can walk into a Hawaii vital records office, wait in line behind couples getting marriage licenses and open a baby-blue government binder containing basic information about his birth. Highlighted in yellow on page 1,218 of the thick binder is the computer-generated listing for a boy named Barack Hussein Obama II born in Hawaii, surrounded by the alphabetized last names of all other children born in-state between 1960 and 1964. This is the only government birth information, called “index

data,” available to the public. So far this month, only The Associated Press and one other person had looked at the binder, according to a sign-in sheet viewed Wednesday in the state Department of Health building. The sheet showed about 25 names of people who have seen the document since March 2010, when the sign-in sheet begins. Those documents complement newspaper birth announcements published soon after Obama’s Aug. 4, 1961, birth and a “certification of live birth” released by the Obama campaign three years ago, the only

HONOLULU: In this April 20, 2011 photo, the name Barack Hussain Obama II is seen highlighted in a computer generated birth index from 1960-1964 in a Hawaii State government binder held at the State Department of Health in Honolulu. —AP

type of birth certificate the state issues. So-called “birthers” claim there’s no proof Obama was born in the United States, and he is therefore ineligible to be president. Many of the skeptics suggest he was actually born in Kenya, his father’s home country, or Indonesia where he spent a few years of his childhood. Possible Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has repeatedly stoked the birther fires recently, and last month called on Obama to “show his birth certificate.” Trump said he has investigators in Hawaii searching for more information. “Nobody has come in and said they’re investigating for Donald Trump,” said Department of Health spokeswoman Janice Okubo, who acknowledged they could’ve come in without identifying themselves as representing Trump. What the would-be sleuths won’t find is Obama’s “long-form birth certificate,” a confidential one-page document containing his original birth records kept on file in the first floor of the Department of Health. Those original birth records typically include additional birth details, such as the hospital and delivering doctor, said Dr. Chiyome Fukino, the state’s former health director who twice looked at and publicly confirmed Obama’s original long-form birth records. But those documents are state government property that can’t be released to anyone, even the president himself, said Joshua Wisch, special assistant to the state attorney general. Obama would be able to inspect his birth records if he visited the Health Department in person, but original records of live birth are never released, he said. Fukino, who served as the state’s health director until late last year under former Republican Gov. Linda Lingle, said in an interview with The Associated Press she’s convinced the long-form document is authentic. She issued public statements in 2008 and 2009 saying she had seen the original records. “It is absolutely clear to me that he was born here in Hawaii,” Fukino told the AP. “It should not be an issue, and I think people need to focus on the other bad things going on in our country and in our state and figure out what we’re going to do about those things.”—AP

32 more corpses found in Mexico pits, total at 177 MEXICO CITY: Like weathermen announcing the daily rainfall, authorities released another tally of corpses unearthed from pits in the northeastern state of Tamaulipas: 32 bodies discovered in the past week, bringing the monthly total to 177. And that’s only in one region of the country. The killing fields extend to the nearby states of Durango and Nuevo Leon and to the northwestern states of Sonora and Sinaloa, where so far this month authorities have found 68 bodies. They continue to dig for more. The graves are discovered with such numbing regularity that “at this point nothing shocks us,” wrote Miguel Carbonell in a column for the daily El Universal newspaper published Thursday. The drumbeat of dead has prompted scattered marches by outraged citizens and a call by Roman Catholic Cardinal Norberto Rivera to end the “demented” levels of violence in the country. “When will this end, Lord?” Rivera cried during a Holy Thursday Mass, according to the front-page reports of several daily newspapers. “How many innocent people murdered by cowards? How many people kidnapped and extorted, tortured and violated, stripped of their dignity and their freedom, their belongings and their lives?” The latest bodies were found in eight pits in the town of San Fernando, Tamaulipas state prosecutors said in a statement released late Thursday. Authorities began exhuming corpses in San Fernando on April 1 after they were led to the site by suspects who confessed to kidnapping and killing bus passengers traveling through the area. It is the same region where authorities say the Zetas drug gang killed and buried 72 Central American migrants in August. Prosecutors said that 122 of the unearthed bodies could be those of passengers, who began disappearing in late March. The other 53 were killed before the kidnappings, they said. The Zetas are also suspected in the latest massacre. Federal prosecutors have detained more than 60 suspects in the case, including the alleged leader of the Zetas’ San Fernando cell, Martin Estrada. The motive for the bus abductions remains unclear, though prosecutors have suggested the gang may have been force-

fully recruiting people to work for it. Many of those who have disappeared are poor men from the Mexican countryside traveling to northern Mexico or heading to the United States in search for work. Most were never reported missing by their families out of fear. But the widespread coverage of the clandestine graves has prompted 345 people who have missing relatives in Tamaulipas to come forward, state prosecutors say. So far, authorities have only identified one of the bodies from the pits: that of a Guatemalan migrant. They believe most of the victims are Mexican. The harrowing discovery has also led several Mexican states to start keeping tallies of missing people. The Zetas and rival Gulf Cartel have been locked in a vicious fight since last year in Tamaulipas and in neighboring states over lucrative drug transit routes to the US. On Tuesday, federal police rescued 68 people, including 12 Central American migrants, in the border city of Reynosa, across from McAllen, Texas. Some of the victims told police they were taken by members of the Gulf drug cartel from buses heading to Reynosa’s bus station or from the station itself. The route is frequently used by Central Americans seeking to enter the United States without documents. The federal Public Safety Department said the group was rescued after federal agents went to a neighborhood in Reynosa to check on a tip and ran into two armed men, who ducked into a house where the kidnap victims were being held. Eight Guatemalans, two Hondurans, a Salvadoran and a Panamanian were among those freed, the department said. Cartel hit men have been increasingly using clandestine graves to dispose of their victims and their enemies as turf battles rage in several states. Prosecutors in the state of Durango said Thursday they have recovered 37 bodies that were buried at a vacant lot in the state capital of the same name. The grisly Holy Week discovery came just days after police found 10 complete bodies, three headless bodies and four severed heads in a pit in Durango, a state that has become a battleground between the Zetas and Sinaloa drug cartels. Prosecutors did not say whether the bodies were found in small pits or, as in the case of the 177 bodies in Tamaulipas, in mass graves. —AP


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Police use truncheons to stifle Algeria protests ALGIERS: Truncheon-wielding Algerian police yesterday beat hundreds of pro-reform activists outside parliament and prevented another antigovernment rally yesterday, the organizers said. Hundreds of teachers gathered in central Algiers but police beat them back and swooped down on marchers gathered about two kilometres away in another protest called by the National Coordination for Democracy and Change (CNDC). “The police stopped our gathering outside the parliament. The demonstrators received baton blows,” said Mourad Fertaki, the national coordi-

nator of graduate assistants at middle and high schools. Fertaki however said there were no injured and put the number of demonstrators between 2,500 and 3,000. They are demanding higher salaries and a higher grade. In the other protest, some 30 demonstrators turned out on May 1 Square in central Algiers with the intention of marching to Martyrs Square some three kilometers (two miles) away. Police surrounded the demonstrators, who included lawmakers from the Rally for Culture and Democracy and the honorary president of the

Algerian League of Human Rights, Ali Yahia Abdennour, 90. The demonstrators waved Algerian flags and signs calling for “freedom, justice and honor” before dispersing. It was the 11th attempt since January organized by the CNDC to stage a weekly demonstration, along the lines of pro-democracy protests sweeping the Arab world, in defiance of a ban on rallies in the capital imposed in 2001. The group was established after rioting at January 21 protests over the high cost of living left five dead and 800 injured, but has since split

amid differences over the strategy for regime change. Algeria has been shaken by protests at all levels of society with strikes by students, doctors and auxiliary police. Ahead of last Saturday’s demonstration President Abdelaziz Bouteflika proposed reforms including changes to the constitution and electoral law, and enhancement of the role of political parties. But he failed to mention any of the demonstrations in his own country calling for political and social change, and general reactions were critical of the 74-year-old president in power since 1999. — AFP

France launches international search alert for murder suspect Businessman kills wife, four children

ABIDJAN: Sick people wait for treatment at a Medecins Sans Frontier (Doctors Without Borders) hospital yesterday in the Abobo quarter of Abidjan. Ivory Coast’s messy removal of over-staying leader Laurent Gbagbo has left the new government with the daunting task of wiping out remaining pockets of resistance. —AFP

Ivory Coast warlord to disarm his forces ABIDJAN: A renegade warlord in Ivory Coast said yesterday he was ready to lay down his arms as ordered by the new president, but said it would take time to organize. In an interview with The Associated Press yesterday, Gen. Ibrahim “IB” Coulibaly said that one could not just dispose of arms in the streets. He spoke from his heavily armed stronghold within Abobo, a poor neighborhood in Ivory Coast’s largest city Abidjan. He arrived at the interview in a three-car convoy, guarded by a missile launcher set up on the back of a pickup truck. President Alassane Ouattara on Friday ordered Coulibaly, who led two coups in Ivory Coast and commands the Invisible Commando force, to lay down arms or be forcibly disarmed. Ouattara also ordered all combat units back to their barracks, the former rebel forces who installed him in power to their stronghold in the central city of Bouake and troops who fought for former President Laurent Gbagbo to their old military camps. Ouattara said that regular and paramilitary police will be redeployed to take over security. “He said lay down your arms. We will lay down our arms. It is not a problem,” said Coulibaly of Ouattara’s order. When asked why then he has so many arms around his stronghold, Coulibaly said: “You don’t dispose of arms in the street. There has to be a strategy.” Coulibaly, who began the battle against Gbagbo’s troops and militia in Abidjan, said he wants his forces to join the new army but is waiting to be invited. He told the AP that he has 5,000 men under his command. But the number appears under 1,000 from AP assessments at his Abobo headquarters and a college there where his commanders are training recruits. Ouattara tried to distance himself at first from the former rebels fighting in his name when they began a lightening assault that brought them from Bouake and the west to the gates of Abidjan within days. They had been accused of

atrocities during the offensive. But when his pleas for an international intervention to force Gbagbo from power went unheeded, he adopted them as his forces and now calls them the Republican Forces of Ivory Coast, or FRCI by the French initials. Ouattara’s orders to disarm and return to barracks came two days after the former rebels attacked Coulibaly’s Invisible Commando force in his stronghold in Abobo, but were repulsed. Meanwhile yesterday, thousands of people from the mainly Muslim quarters of Abobo cheered when a commander told them the war was over at a gathering called by forces backing Ouattara. Cmdr. Sofi Dosso, leader of the traditional hunters who live in tropical rainforests, said his forces were “ready to help disarm those who disobey the president’s commands.” Despite Ouattara’s call to return to their barracks, Dosso and others still gathered in an area of Abobo near the town hall. Several fighters holding AK47s were also in the crowd. “The war is over,” Dosso said. “We don’t want to hear anymore gunshots in Abidjan.” All groups in a bloody fourmonth electoral conflict are accused of killing civilians, looting, burning homes and extorting money. On Wednesday, former rebel forces turned their guns on each other in the southwest cocoa port of San Pedro, forcing U.N. peacekeepers to intervene when they started launching rockets and mortars in the city’s downtown area. “We are ready to help disarm those who disobey the president’s commands. But right now, we are needed here to help in the disarmament process because we know the many people who are holding arms illegally,” Dosso said. Ivory Coast, the world’s biggest cocoa producer and second largest coffee grower, had been divided between a rebel-held north and government-run south since Coulibaly launched a rebellion in 2002. —AP

Thousands flee clashes in south Sudan oil state JUBA: Thousands of civilians have fled fighting between rebels and south Sudan’s army in oil-producing Unity state, as separate clashes erupted elsewhere in the troubled region yesterday, officials said. “The fighting in recent days has been very fierce, and the people have been running away from the violence to safety,” said Charles Machieng, commissioner of Unity’s Mayom county, the area of heaviest fighting. “Although we have no reports of fighting today (yesterday), assessments show that there are 3,800 civilians who have fled, many who are here in Mayom town because their houses have been destroyed,” he added. Clashes in the soon-to-be-independent south broke out on Tuesday between the army and a rebel group led by former southern army general Peter Gadet, one of at least seven separate militia groups battling the southern government. But just as the violence appeared to subside, separate clashes broke out yesterday morning close to the town of Malakal, between the army and gunmen said to be allied to former militia leader Gabriel Tang, officials said.

Fighting in the Canal area of northern Jonglei state, around 25 kilometres (15 miles) south of Malakal, started at midmorning, said state information ministry official Bartholomew Pakwan Abwol. “Fighting broke out in the vicinity of Canal,” said Abwol, speaking from Malakal. “The fighting is still occurring and we have few details at present.” Tang commanded a pro-Khartoum militia during the devastating 19832005 civil war between north and south Sudan, but agreed to join the southern army late last year. His forces were reportedly waiting to to be integrated into the southern Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) when the fighting broke out. More than 800 people have been killed and 94,000 people forced from their homes in fighting since January, according to UN estimates, when southerners voted overwhelming to forge their own nation in a largely peaceful referendum. No reliable death toll of casualties was available from the fighting in Unity state, with the rebels and the army each claiming to have killed “several” on the other side, and dismissing each other’s reports as lies. —AFP

NANTES: French authorities yesterday issued an international search alert for murder suspect Xavier Dupont de Ligonnes amid evidence that he carefully planned the killing of his wife and four children. The 50-year-old businessman is wanted after the bodies of his wife and children aged 13 to 20 were dug up in the garden of their family home in the western city of Nantes, Brittany, on Thursday. Autopsies done on the bodies showed the victims had been “methodically” shot with a .22 calibre firearm similar to one that Dupont de Ligonnes had used in shooting practice at a Nantes rifle club. Wife Agnes 49, daughter Anne, 16, and three sons were apparently shot several times in the head while asleep, around April 3 or 4, and tests are under way to see if they were drugged first. The missing man was last seen on April 15, when he left a budget hotel at Roquebrunesur-Argens in the Var region on France’s Mediterranean coast, abandoning one of the family cars in the car park. Nantes prosecutor Xavier Ronsin, who announced the international alert, said Dupont de Ligonnes had severe money troubles, with debts of at least 50,000 euros ($57,000) and declared income of just 4,000 euros last year. But on April 12 he stayed at a luxury hotel in the south of France, where staff remember him as having been very relaxed, the manageress said yesterday. “He was ver y well dressed and didn’t appear to have a care in the world,” Sylvie Boucher at the five-star Auberge de Cassagne near Avignon told AFP. Signing in as Xavier Laurent, he took a prestige suite before dining alone, ordering half a bottle of burgundy, she said. “People on their own always stand out a bit more than others, but he stood out because he chatted a lot with the staff. He was very nice with everybody,” she said. “He

showed no signs of worry, on the contrary he appeared ver y relaxed.” Inquiries have revealed that Dupont de Ligonnes had bought ammunition for his gun before the killings, as well as quicklime and sacking similar to that used to wrap the bodies. He also went for shooting practice at a local rifle club, its president Alain Neutre said yesterday-four times in the week before the murders. Club coach Benoit Herault said the fugitive had started with a .22 pistol but in February began bringing a carbine of the same calibre with a 10-round magazine, which he said he had inherited from his father. His older sons, 20-year-old Arthur and 18year-old Thomas, had recently started joining him for lessons, while 13-year-old Benoit had been due to follow, Herault said. On April 1, the last time Dupont de Ligonnes came to the club, “he told me his sons could not make the appointment fixed for April 9, without giving a reason”. The shooting coach said the man had asked him about using a silencer. “I told him it was pointless on a shooting range.” “I saw him firing his rifle with a silencer once,” Herault said, before adding grimly, referring to the murders, “Anyway, to do what was done, no training was needed.” Herault confirmed an earlier statement by Ronsin that shortly before his disappearance Dupont de Ligonnes had made bizarre claims to friends that he was a US secret agent and was leaving to join a witness protection program. He said Dupont de Ligonnes, who had presented the required medical certificate that declared him mentally fit to carry a firearm, had left an impression of someone “not exuberant”. “We talked of music, he liked country and blues. With his son Thomas, who was a musician, we even did a jamming session together,” he said. Local people meanwhile were

NANTES: A picture made available yesterday shows the portrait of suspect in the murder of his family Xavier Dupont de Ligonnes on the registration form of his rifle club where he had carried out shooting practice in the French western city of Nantes. French authorities issued an international search alert yesterday for Xavier Dupont de Ligonnes, suspected of murdering his wife and four children before going on the run. —AFP leaving messages and flowers at the family home in Nantes, hanging them on a metal frame placed outside after investigators removed a black tarpaulin that had shielded them while unearthing the bodies. Roses, tulips, and bouquets of daisies were placed outside the house, along with candles and a stuffed cow toy, as cars slowed down when passing the house. One of the messages, with hearts drawn into a piece of paper, said: “Rest in peace, we love you Anne, Benoit, Thomas, Arthur, Agnes”.— AFP

Nigerian young poll workers under attack LAGOS: Officials tasked the four young college graduates with monitoring election stations during Nigeria’s presidential vote. Then when the poll results unleashed sectarian violence, an angry mob killed them by locking them inside their lodge and setting it ablaze. Dozens of their colleagues in a nearby state narrowly escaped death after rioters torched their hostel too, leaving many with serious burns and few options to go home. Nigeria’s National Youth Service Corps is a mandatory yearlong assignment for all Nigerians who graduate from university before the age of 30. Most serve as teachers during their stint, but the April national elections have brought extra responsibilities — and danger — to their work. Now federal officials are vowing to step up protection for young volunteers in the areas wracked by violence, while worried parents are wondering whether their children can be reassigned away from towns marked by charred bodies and torched buildings. Attahiru Jega, chief of Nigeria’s Independent Election Commission, said the young Nigerians had been targeted “to scare them away from continuing the honorable and excellent work they have been doing during these elections.” “I call on them, their parents and guardians not to allow the perpetrators of violence to scare them away from the noble job they are doing for this country,” Jega said. “I commiserate with all those who have been affected in one way or the other by the violence. Some have paid the ultimate price for democracy and I am sure that I speak the minds of all Nigerians if I say that the nation will be eternally grateful to them.” One 29-year-old volunteer assigned to Kaduna, one of the epicenters of deadly riots, said his family wants him to withdraw, even if it means doing so without permission. The gubernatorial election there has been delayed until Thursday now because of safety concerns. “If security improves between now and then, I will definitely participate,” the volunteer said on condition of anonymity because youth service corps rules prohibit volunteers from speaking to journalists. The punishment for doing so could include having more time tacked on to their assignment. Even for those who don’t fear being penalized for leaving early, getting out of the troubled north could prove difficult. Most taking part in the mandatory yearlong national service corps are posted far from their home communities. Plane tickets are costly and many commercial buses have stopped making trips to the troubled zones. After the attacks on service corps residences, many members are seeking refuge. One 25-year-old corps member in Bauchi is now sharing a room with 59 other people. “If you find any barrack, an army barrack, a police barrack, they’ll find a mattress for you to sleep on,” he said. “You meet people here who have seen terrible things.” Ironically the founders of the program created it in 1973 to promote national unity in a country with more than 150 ethnic groups and to help reconcile Nigerians after a 31month civil war claimed as many as 1 million lives. By encouraging young graduates to explore new parts of the country, the goal was to dispel negative stereotypes. As evidenced by the rioting that erupted after this week’s vote, Nigeria remains deeply divided 38 years later. In a televised address to the nation Thursday, President Goodluck Jonathan condemned the attacks on the young Nigerians. “These young and innocent Nigerians are guests within our communities and are agents of public good and national unity,” he said of the service corps. —AP

MOSCOW: Members of a Russian far right group gather at a rally to demand an end to social payments for Muslim republics in the volatile North Caucasus region, in Moscow yesterday.—AFP

Neo-Nazis rally in Moscow MOSCOW: Hundreds of neo-Nazis rallied in Moscow yesterday to protest the Kremlin’s policies in the violence-plagued Caucasus region and call on forceful expulsion of non-Slavic migrants from Russia. About 300 protesters, including activists from banned or unregistered groups that preach white supremacy, waved red-and-white flags with German Nazi eagles and chanted “Hail Russia! Stop feeding the Caucasus!” The predominantly Muslim, mountainous region hosts at least 100 ethnicities including Chechens, who have waged two separatist wars against Moscow after the 1991 Soviet collapse. Analysts say the Chechen conflict, with atrocities and civilian slayings committed by both Russian forces and militant Islamists, has triggered the rise of xenophobia and neo-Nazism in Russia as well as growing resentment by Caucasus natives to ethnic Russians and Moscow’s rule. After pacifying Chechnya, the Kremlin has spent billions of dollars on restoring the region and funding provincial governments that often include for-

mer warlords and jihadists, including the Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov, who has boasted of killing his first Russian soldier at age 15. In recent years, Islamists and criminal groups have stepped up attacks on servicemen and officials in most of the Caucasus provinces and organized attacks on civilians in Moscow and central Russia. On Friday, unidentified militants killed a police officer and wounded a soldier in the village of Chaumyan in the province of Dagestan that neighbors Chechnya, police spokesman Vyacheslav Gasanov said. Racially motivated attacks, often targeting people from Caucasus and exSoviet Central Asia, have risen in recent years, peaking in 2008, when 110 were killed and 487 wounded, independent human rights watchdog Sova said. The group said ultranationalist thugs have recruited thousands of supporters on Internet forums and chat rooms. About 70,000 neo-Nazis are active in Russia , compared with a just few thousand in the early 1990s, according to the Moscow Bureau for Human Rights.— AP


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2 Afghan police die, NATO chopper crashes in east KABUL: Militants ambushed an Afghan police vehicle, killing two yesterday and a coalition helicopter crashed in eastern Afghanistan with no fatalities, NATO and Afghan officials said. The Afghan Ministry of Interior said insurgents attacked the policemen in Dara Nur district in the northern tip of Nangarhar province. Two others were wounded in the attack, the ministry said. Fighting has escalated in the east as Afghan and coalition forces step up their attacks on insurgents along the Pakistan border and militants retaliate with attacks on pro-government forces and Afghan officials. A suicide attacker on foot detonated his vest packed with explosives Friday afternoon at the entrance to a building used by educa-

tion officials in Jayi Maydan district of Khost province, said Abdul Hakim Ishaqzai, police chief in the eastern province. The bomber died in the attack and four people were wounded, including the district education director and a local principal, he said. The coalition helicopter crashed yesterday morning in Alasay district of Kapisa province, northeast of Kabul. No further details have been disclosed about the crash, which is under investigation. Aziz Rahman Tawab, acting provincial governor in Kapisa province, said the helicopter crashed into the side of a mountain. Taleban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid told The Associated Press in a telephone conversation that Taleban insurgents shot down the helicopter

with a rocket. He claimed other coalition helicopters later flew to the crash site and fired weapons to destroy the wreckage. Aircraft are used extensively in Afghanistan by both NATO and the Afghan government forces to transport and supply troops because the terrain is mountainous and roads are few and primitive. In September 2010, nine American troops were killed in a helicopter crash in a rugged area of Zabul province in southern Afghanistan. Also in the east, the Afghan Defense Ministry said yesterday that eight insurgents were killed and eight others were wounded in a gunbattle with Afghan forces Friday in the Pech Valley area of eastern Kunar province, which borders Pakistan. The ministry

said 12 militants were killed by Afghan and coalition forces Thursday in Yahya Khel district of Paktika province. In the south, two Afghan civilians were killed and a third was wounded when a vehicle hit a roadside bomb Friday in the Naw Zad district of Helmand province, the governor’s office said. The governor’s office also reported yesterday that the Afghan National Police on arrested six armed insurgents the day before, including three wearing police uniforms, driving a police vehicle in Lashkar Gah, the provincial capital of Helmand. To counter possible infiltration into the security forces, the US-led coalition , at the Afghan government’s request , has trained 220 Afghan soldiers to spot

possible Taleban infiltrators, disgruntled soldiers within the ranks and other conditions that could make the force vulnerable to attack, according to the coalition. The plan is to have 445 soldiers trained in counterintelligence by the end of the year. Since March 2009, the coalition has recorded 20 incidents where a member of the Afghan security forces or someone wearing one of their uniforms killed coalition forces. Thirty-six coalition troops have died. It is not known how many of the 282,000 members of the Afghan security forces were killed. The coalition says 10 of the 20 incidents involved the impersonation of an Afghan policeman or soldier; the cause of the other 10 incidents were attributed to combat stress or unknown reasons. — AP

Thai-Cambodian border fighting leaves 10 dead Countries exchange heavy fire for a second day

MINAMISANRIKU: Australia’s Prime Minister Julia Gillard, right, is escorted by Minamisanriku mayor Jin Sato as she visits the town’s destroyed disaster prevention office building in Minamisanriku yesterday.—AP

Tsunami zone is scene of great sorrow: Australian PM MINAMISANRIKU: The first foreign leader to tour Japan’s tsunami-ravaged coast, Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard expressed shock and sorrow at the devastation and visited evacuees at a shelter yesterday, giving toy koalas and kangaroos to excited children. Walking through a fishing village where hundreds of people are dead and missing, she said Minamisanriku looked as if it had been “bombed into oblivion.” Mayor Jin Sato showed her the red skeleton of the disaster management building where he was standing when the mammoth wave ripped off its shell March 11. Exterior stairwells were ripped from the walls. A small shrine of flowers had been created on a mound of rubble. “It’s a scene of incredible tragedy and incredible sorrow,” Gillard said on the last day of a fourday trip here. More than 27,000 people are dead or missing from the earthquake and tsunami. Tens of thousands are living in shelters after an estimated 90,000 homes were destroyed or damaged. Recovery efforts have been complicated by the crisis at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant, where the tsunami wiped out power and cooling systems. Workers have struggled to stop radiation leaks, and the utility says bringing the plant fully under control may take all year. Plant operator Tokyo Electric Power Co. said yesterday that 30 workers at the plant had exceeded the former limit of radiation exposure. That limit, 100 millisieverts a year, was raised amid the crisis to 250 millisieverts. None of the workers had yet reached that limit, the company said. Leaks from the plant reactors have stabilized somewhat since the early days of the crisis, but some interior spaces in the quake- and tsunami-

damaged buildings still have such high radiation levels the workers are not able to enter them. A few hundred workers have toiled in rotating shifts at the plant since the disaster started, most of them middle-age men employed by TEPCO or affiliated companies. TEPCO spokesman Junichi Matsumoto said managers have been instructed to closely watch employees who are nearing radiation limits; measures that might be taken include moving workers from the riskiest tasks, such as clearing radioactive debris, to jobs indoors, such as clerical duties. Workers in the US nuclear industry are allowed an upper limit of 50 millisieverts per year. A typical individual might absorb 6 millisieverts a year from natural and manmade sources such as X-rays. Radiation specialists say cumulative doses of 500 millisieverts have been shown to raise risks of future cancers. Evidence is less clear on smaller amounts, but in theory, any increased radiation exposure raises cancer risks. Radiation sickness, which develops from acute exposure, sets in at 1,000 millisieverts. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting and hair loss. The workers also face health problems due to fatigue and stress of working in the harsh environment, a doctor who spoke to them said this week. He said the workers have insomnia, dehydration and high blood pressure and are at risk of developing depression or heart trouble. Meanwhile, Japan’s railway company announced that bullet train service from Tokyo to the Sendai, the biggest city in the quake zone, would resume on Monday. Parts of the route had been restored earlier, but Monday is the first day the route is fully operational. — AP

SAMRONG: Fierce clashes on the Thai-Cambodia border have left 10 dead and forced thousands to flee the worst bloodshed since a UN ceasefire appeal in February, officials said yesterday. The two countries exchanged heavy weapons fire for a second straight day on their disputed jungle frontier, the scene of a series of deadly gunbattles in recent years. Three Cambodian troops and one Thai soldier were killed yesterday, according to officials in the two countries, a day after three soldiers died on each side. Cambodia accused Thailand of using 75mm and 105mm “heavy guns loaded with poisonous gas” and said in a defense ministry statement that Thai military aircraft flew “deep into Cambodia’s airspace”. Thailand denied the claims, which could not be independently verified. A Cambodian field commander, Suos Sothea, said the gas caused some soldiers who inhaled it to feel weak but did not cause serious injury. He also accused Thailand of using cluster bombs. Thailand recently admitted using controversial Dual Purpose Improved Conventional Munitions during the February fighting but insisted it did not classify them as cluster munitions. Thousands of villagers been have evacuated from nearby areas on both sides since the latest violence broke out. “Most of the people in my village have fled their homes because many Thai artillery shells landed nearby,” 29-year-old farmer Has Pov told AFP at a pagoda complex where he took refugee with his wife and two children in the Cambodian town of Samrong about 40 kilometers (25 miles) from the fighting. “I’m really scared by the shelling,” he added. Villages close to the Cambodian side of the border were emptied as people fled with their belongings. An AFP photographer saw a house apparently dam-

SURIN: A Thai soldier injured in a fighting with Cambodia is helped by his comrades and a nurse after arriving at a hospital in Phnom Dongrak district of Surin province, northeastern Thailand, Friday.—AP aged by shelling in a Cambodian village more than 10 kilometers from the area where the main fighting occurred. As usual, the two countries accused each other of starting the clashes. “All of sudden they fired at us,” Thai Defense Minister General Prawit Wongsuwon told AFP. “It could be that they wanted to internationalize the situation to attract a third country (to intervene). We do not want to fight but have to retaliate when they fire at us,” he said, calling for the resumption of bilateral talks to resolve the territorial dispute. “We have to put pressure on them to go back to the meeting table,” he said. It is the first serious outbreak of hostilities since

February when 10 people were killed in clashes near the 900-yearold Hindu temple Preah Vihear, prompting UN Security Council members to call for a lasting ceasefire. Phnom Penh has called for outside mediation to help end the standoff, but Thailand opposes third-party intervention. The two countries agreed in late February to allow Indonesian observers in the area near Preah Vihear, but the Thai military has since said they are not welcome and they have yet to be deployed. The latest clashes, which saw several hours of fighting on both Friday and yesterday, have taken place near a different group of tem-

Powerful earthquake strikes off Solomon Islands

NATO supplies halted ahead of Pakistan protest PESHAWAR: Pakistan suspended delivery of supplies yesterday to NATO troops in Afghanistan via its land border for three days as campaigners began a sit-in on the supply route over US drone attacks. Supporters of cricket hero-turned-politician Imran Khan’s Tehreek-e-Insaf (Movement for Justice) party were gathering on the Peshawar ring road yesterday for the planned two-day sit-in aiming to block the route used by supply trucks. The party called the demonstration to protest over US missile attacks from unmanned aircraft in Pakistan’s lawless tribal areas, which many feel infringe on Pakistani sovereignty and which locals say sometimes kill civilians. “They (the US) are losing the war-they can never win it,” Khan told a gathering in the northwestern town of Akora Khattak on his way to the protest site in the Bagh-e-Naran neighborhood. “The sit-in will start today and will end tomorrow,” he added. The administration in Peshawar said the NATO trucking service had been halted for three days, and the vehicles ordered to park in other cities on the route from Friday. Organizers said they expected more than 20,000 people to gather locally for the protest, and many more to arrive in the caravan accompanying Khan. In an article in Pakistan’s The News, Khan said that “today we Pakistanis of all shades and convictions need to come together to support our FATA (Federally Administered Tribal Areas) brethren and protest their killing and

displacement. “It is not enough to simply issue statements against US policies and drone killings; we need to act so that the voice of the people becomes a force for the rulers to reckon with,” he said. Banners on Peshawar’s main road bore the message “Stop drone attacks on innocent tribal people,” and images of crossed-out drone aircraft, while posters of Khan and his party dotted the city. Covert missile strikes targeting militants in Pakistan’s lawless border regions, believed to operate with the tacit consent of Islamabad, stoke rampant antiAmerican sentiment throughout the South Asian nation. Public anger rose amid a diplomatic furore between the two nations over a drone attack on March 17, which killed 39 people including civilians. US officials said Friday that the global superpower was considering providing unmanned drones to Pakistan for aerial surveillance, despite tensions between the two countries over measures to combat terrorist activity. NATO supply trucks and oil tankers are the targets of frequent attacks blamed on insurgents attempting to disrupt supplies for more than 130,000 international troops fighting in Afghanistan. Most supplies and equipment required by coalition troops in Afghanistan are shipped through Pakistan, although US troops increasingly use alternative routes through central Asia. Two truck drivers have been killed this week by militants in revenge for transporting goods for NATO.— AFP

ples over 100 kilometers away from Preah Vihear. Indonesia, which holds the rotating chairmanship of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) regional bloc, has called for an immediate end to the violence. Vietnam urged “maximum restraint”. Ties between the neighbors have been strained since Preah Vihear-the most celebrated example of ancient Khmer architecture outside Cambodia’s Angkor was granted UN World Heritage status in July 2008. The World Court ruled in 1962 that the temple belonged to Cambodia, but both countries claim ownership of a 4.6 square kilometer (1.8 square mile) surrounding area.—AFP

MINDANAO: Rescuers search for victims of landslide at a mining camp of Pantukan, Compostela Valley in Mindanao region in southern Philippines yesterday.—AP

Hopes fade for 21 buried in Philippine landslide MANILA: Filipino rescuers who dug by hand to save people buried by a landslide were losing hope of finding 21 still missing in the disaster that killed at least three people in a remote gold mining village, officials said yesterday. One miner pulled from the mountain of mud and rocks said he’s survived three landslides in and around the mines, including one that killed his brother, but he can’t afford to quit his job despite the dangers. The shanties and tents where miners and some of their families slept were buried under about 100 feet (30 meters) of mud, soil, rocks and other debris after they were struck by the landslide before dawn Friday, Compostela Valey provincial Gov. Arturo Uy said.

Uy said landmarks that could help rescuers locate bunkhouses and tunnel entrances also were destroyed when tons of rain-soaked debris cascaded down a mountain in the village of Kingking in Pantukan township in the country’s south. Soldiers, police and miners used shovels and their bare hands to dig out 11 survivors. “Honestly, I believe it would be very hard to find survivors,” Uy said yesterday. Regional civil defense officer Lisa Maso said, “Only a miracle can save them.” Jay Celades was teary-eyed recalling his third time surviving a landslide. The 26-year-old said he, his younger brother and two others banged on the steel rails for six hours inside a mine shaft, knowing they would eventually be heard by

rescuers. By midday Friday, workers dug through about 20 feet (six meters) of debris that blocked the tunnel opening to free them. “All we could do was hope, but I prayed and prayed hard to come out alive,” he told The Associated Press. “And for the third time, God heard me.” He said another younger brother was killed when they were trapped in a mine shaft in 2009, and he was trapped again a year later. Still, he said he will continue working in the mine until he finds a better job that pays as much as the about 15,000 pesos ($345) he now brings home monthly. Pantukan Mayor Celso Sarenas said a backhoe and a bulldozer negotiated a narrow mountain road and reached the site yesterday to help dig faster.—AP

WELLINGTON: A powerful earthquake struck in waters off the Solomon Islands in the South Pacific yesterday, but there were no immediate reports of injuries or damage, and no tsunami was expected. The magnitude-6.9 quake struck about 100 miles (160 kilometers) southeast of the Solomon Islands’ capital, Honiara, at a depth of 50 miles (80 kilometers), the US Geological Survey said. The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said a tsunami was not expected. “We haven’t had any information about damage or anything of that kind,” National Disaster Management Office director Lote Yates told The Associated Press from Honiara. The quake was felt widely in the capital and “was quite scary,” Yates said. “It went on for a minute or two. It was not a one-off jolt , this one went on and on. It seemed forever.” The Solomon Islands is a country of nearly 1,000 islands that lie on the “Ring of Fire” , an arc of earthquake and volcanic zones that stretches around the Pacific Rim. — AP


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Drones in Libya a boost, but no ‘magic bullet’ By David Brunnstrom he arrival of US killer drones in Libya is a psychological boost for rebels fighting Muammar Gaddafi and for European NATO allies but no “magic bullet” to break the stalemate in the war. President Barack Obama’s decision to send armed Predator drones was significant in showing Washington being drawn back reluctantly into the front line after European powers France and Britain showed their limits in leading the NATO air campaign. While a boost to Western capabilities against Gaddafi’s forces, the deployment also shows how unwilling NATO allies are to risk casualties among their forces by employing low-flying manned aircraft that could tip the balance in the conflict. Shashank Joshi of London’s Royal United Services Institute said their deployment reflected U.S. reluctance to provide low-flying manned aircraft, such as the A-10 Tankbuster and the AC-130 gunship, that France in particular had pressed for. “It’s a way of satisfying the French and the British. And it draws the Americans back in further than Barack Obama and (U.S. Defence Secretary) Robert Gates wanted because their ideal point was merely to support European forces and facilitate NATO without taking the lead role,” Joshi said. “But it’s a recognition that with only six other members of NATO conducting air strikes and resource constraints, they are providing something the British and French couldn’t.” Deadly in the clear skies of Afghanistan and Pakistan, the Predators made an uncertain debut in Libya. General James Cartwright, vice chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the first two dispatched on Thursday had to turn back because of bad weather. Cartwright’s boss, Admiral Mike Mullen, sought to manage expectations downwards, saying that while Western airstrikes had destroyed 30-40 percent of Muammar Gaddafi’s ground forces, the conflict in Libya was “moving towards a stalemate”. “Predators are not going to be a magic bullet - in a military context, it’s very difficult to have a single magic bullet,” said Douglas Barrie, a military aviation expert at London’s International Institute for Strategic Studies. “But putting unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) into the operation in a bigger way will provide the coalition with a persistent presence over areas of interest and will help cover the relative shortfall of strike aircraft.” Tim Ripley, a military expert at Jane’s Defence Weekly, said there was a clear psychological motive to the announcement, given that the Pentagon had said earlier this month that two unarmed Predators and a larger “Global Hawk” drone were taking part in the Libya operation. “It’s being pitched as a ramping up of the air war, so it’s capitalising on the mystique and terror potential of these weapons to put pressure on the Libyan regime and to placate Western domestic opinion (worried) that the war is stalemating.” Joshi said the Predators would not on their own be enough to break the seven-week-old siege of the city of Misrata, the last rebel stronghold in western Libya. “A lot of people will be suggesting that this is yet another instance of intervening powers trying to effect serious military change from thousands of feet in the air rather than takes risks with their own personnel,” he said. Drones have some advantages over helicopters and low-flying attack planes as they can stay over a battlefield longer and hit ground targets with comparative impunity, but in the numbers envisaged for Libya, there are limits to what they can achieve. The Pentagon said the US deployments involve two patrols of Predators - each of which can carry two Hellfire missiles. Analysts say this would mean a total of perhaps sixto 10 aircraft, or which only two to four might be over Libya at any one time, compared with the 50 patrols employed in Afghanistan and Pakistan - a smaller land area than Libya. “You’d want more UAVs if they were available,” said Barrie, noting there were limits to how many could be deployed without affecting missions in Afghanistan and Yemen. “The Predators have the potential to change things, but only in a limited area,” said Ripley. “They are only going to have two patrols, so that means a very narrow area. So it’s more of a tactical operational thing than a strategic impact.” The psychological impact on Gaddafi’s forces could be significant, discouraging them from venturing into the open, but Predators could not fully replace lower-flying aircraft. “Helicopters are far closer to the action and pilots can see what’s going on and say hunt down a street,” Ripley said. Barrie said drones has been effectively employed in Iraq against insurgents in Sadr City, but then they were backed by US attack helicopters. The worry for Western forces discouraging such a combination in Libya is Gaddafi’s strength in shoulder-fired anti-aircraft weapons, which are difficult to detect and counter. “They have a significant number of manportable surface-to-air missiles and some very modern Russian vehicle-mounted systems, so there’s a genuine and credible low-altitude threat,” Barrie said. — Reuters

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Assad torn between repression and reform By Samia Nakhoul resident Bashar Al-Assad is in a quandary as the challenge to his autocratic rule grows in the streets of Syria: more concessions could signal weakness, but harsher repression risks radicalising a growing opposition. While some analysts believe Assad can contain the revolt through bold reforms, others believe he missed the chance to open up Syria’s dictatorship when he inherited the presidency from his strongman father, the late Hafez Al-Assad, in 2000. “The regime is in trouble. People have been repressed for 40 years but suddenly the wall of fear has crumbled and they are no longer frightened,” Sarkis Naoum of Beirut’s an-Nahar newspaper told Reuters. “Each time the regime makes new concessions, the people get bolder and ask for more. They see it as a sign of weakness. The regime doesn’t know how to respond - it’s like an old grudge people have been waiting to avenge.” Close observers of Syria argue that - as in the Tunisian and Egyptian revolutions that ousted Hosni Mubarak and Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali - citizens are rebelling not just against a lack of freedom and opportunity. They are also enraged by suffocating corruption that has enriched the elites while one-third of Syrians live below the poverty line. “It was a combination of repression, corruption, incompetence and the degeneration of the system”, says analyst Jamil Mroue. “It became combustible and people suffocated.” While crackdowns continued against activists who challenged Baath party rule, economic reforms since 2005 created lucrative new monopolies controlled by senior officials and Assad family insiders, among them his billionaire cousin Rami Makhlouf. “The Baath Party is ancient, outdated and obsolete. The decisions are being made by the security forces and services who play a fundamental role in the country. They are the real force,” said Talal Salman, publisher of Beirut’s as-Safir daily, traditionally sympathetic to Syria. A caste of army officers and clans of the

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dominant Alawite minority has sprung up, using its clout to suppress dissent and extort kickbacks, often demanding a share of the profits private business generates, observers said. “The essential spark was ignited by the privatising and franchising of corruption, which along with repression violated the fabric of society,” Mroue said. As with their Arab peers from Egypt to Yemen and Libya, young Syrians’ aspirations have risen in tandem with their access to satellite TV, mobile phones, Facebook and the Internet. The regional explosion that began in Tunisia and Egypt propelled people to seek a new way of life. What adds an edge to Syria’s crisis is the heavy-handedness of one-party rule, the sectarian rift between the ruling Alawite minority and the Sunni majority, and the brutality and impunity of the security forces. Facing the most alarming challenge of his 11 years in power, Assad has juggled repression, economic handouts and calibrated concessions in an attempt to quash a month of protests. Yet the unrest, which rights groups say has cost more than 200 lives, shows no signs of going away without radical change. On Thursday, ahead of mass protests that broke out again on Friday, Assad ended a draconian state of emergency, in place for 48 years, that

allowed blanket repression with impunity. “President Assad might be able to overcome this crisis and contain the situation but the cost may be high... He has to change the regime or the people will force him to,” said Salman. Analysts say toppling the system is harder because Syria’s power structure differs from that of Egypt and Tunisia, where senior generals refused to open fire on demonstrators. Alawite loyalists occupy the key positions in the Syrian military and Assad family insiders run the crucial security bodies, tying senior officers closely to Assad’s own fate. Yet the bulk of the army is Sunni and there have been persistent but unconfirmed reports of soldiers refusing to fire on protesters. “There is a big possibility that the army will split or they won’t accept to take part in a crackdown, if ordered. It is not easy to bring the regime down but it is easy to divide the regime,” An-Nahar’s Naoum said. Nearly 30 years ago, the elder Assad ruthlessly put down an armed Islamist uprising, killing tens thousands of people in the city of Hama in a bombardment cloaked from international view. That level of brutality would be harder to get away with today, when Syrians, despite state curbs on media, use mobile phone cameras to post instant images of protests on YouTube. “Bashar’s father killed 20,000 to 30,000 people in Hama... If Bashar wants to do another Hama in the first two hours the whole world will rise up,” Naoum

said. While holding Assad responsible for failing to enact sweeping reforms, some analysts say issues beyond his control played a role, although he should have addressed them faster. The country has been plagued by drought for several years, slowing its rise as a middle income economy. Syria has 20 million people with a population growth rate of 2.4 percent. But entrants to the labour market are increasing at double that pace due to a faster birth rate in earlier decades, that far outstrips the capacity of the economy to create jobs. Per capita gross domestic product languishes at $2,500 a year. The official unemployment rate stands at 10 percent but independent estimates are double that, with about a quarter of a million youngsters arriving in the jobs market every year. Some Syrians believe the protest movement, unthinkable a few months ago, has now gained an irreversible momentum. “There isn’t anything impossible any more after Egypt and Tunisia,” said a Syrian who refused to give her name. “Seeing Syrians defying the security forces on the streets while knowing that they might be shot dead is something beyond imagination. “Do you think these people are willing to die just for some reforms or for an increase in wages? These people want the Assad regime out,” she added. Even if Assad, 45, concedes far-reaching democratic reforms, activists and protesters will want proof that he is making a real break with the past, testing the president’s power over his own family and the Baathist elite. “Assad has to carry out a white coup to clean his entourage of corrupt figures linked to the regime,” Mroue said. “He has to show people that there is dramatic change, that there will be elections in a few years, that he won’t be president for life, that it is no longer a dynasty.” Such a high-risk course would entail confronting his own entourage and ditching a structure in place for 40 years. No one knows what might come next - a peaceful transition of power, a military coup, prolonged instability or civil war. “Either he will opt for transformation of the regime or it will be torn apart,” Mroue said. — Reuters

Sadr militia threat a worry to fragile Iraq By Waleed Ibrahim oqtada Al-Sadr’s recent threat to unleash his Mehdi Army could revive radical elements in Iraq and pit the once-feared militia against both Iraqi and US troops. Sadr’s warning, issued on April 9, the eighth anniversary of the day US forces toppled Saddam Hussein’s statue in Baghdad, reveals a delicate balancing act by Sadr and the new, Shiite-led government he played a major role in forming. The anti-American Shiite cleric said he would escalate military resistance and “unfreeze” the Mehdi Army if US troops remain in Iraq after Dec 31, when they are scheduled to depart under a security pact between Washington and Baghdad. “He (Sadr) is aware of what he is saying and has the ability to live up to his promises. But I think he put himself in front of difficult choices,” Shiite lawmaker Adnan Al-Shahmani said. “If he does what he promised, he will be face-to-face not only with US forces but with government forces as well. If not, it means he promised and did not live up to his promise.” Sadr’s threat highlighted the thin line Prime Minister Nuri Al-Maliki is treading. Publicly he has said his forces can defend Iraq and he will not need foreign troops beyond Dec 31. But some of his own commanders and troops have said American forces will be needed long after the deadline. Iraq has almost no air force or navy and is vulnerable to external threats. Any decision to extend the security pact is expected to meet stiff resistance, particularly from Sadr, whose support assured Maliki a second term after an inconclusive 2010 election. “We have many indications that the government will extend

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the pact ... we will use all possible means ... to prevent the extension of this pact,” said lawmaker Bahaa Al-Araji, a senior member of Sadr’s bloc. Sadr’s Mehdi Army fought US troops after the US-led invasion in 2003 and during the height of sectarian slaughter in 2006-07, when tens of thousands of Iraqis were killed. US commanders blamed the militia for much of the bloodshed, which declined when Maliki sent troops to crush Sadr’s forces in 2008. Sadr put a “freeze” on his army and said it would become a humanitarian group. The black-clad fighters have stayed low profile since but Washington still regards them with suspicion. Some Shiite lawmakers said it would be simple enough for Sadr to rearm the militia. “It is true the Mehdi Army wouldn’t be as strong as it was. But the re-arming would not be an issue for Moqtada at all,” one Shiite legislator said on condition of anonymity. “The important issue regarding his source of strength is that there are many of his followers who are ready to sacrifice their souls for his sake,” the lawmaker said. As a sign of Sadr’s ability to flex his muscle, some 5,000 Sadrists marched peacefully in the city of Basra on Thursday. Haider Al-Mulla, a lawmaker with the cross-sectarian Iraqiya bloc, warned that any change to Washington’s current thinking on Iraq should take into consideration the growing influence of neighbouring Iran, where Sadr has lived and studied for years. “It (US) should built its strategy, not only in Iraq but in the whole region, according to the dangerous growth of this influence,” he said. Sadr’s warning came not long after a visit

by US Defense Secretary Robert Gates, who pressed Baghdad to decide if it wants US troops to stay and help fend off a festering insurgency. About 47,000 American troops remain in Iraq. Most Iraqi officials only hint at a possible resolution. Foreign Minister Hoshiyar Zebari told a local newspaper if Iraq needs help, particularly for training, “it will be subject to mutual understanding” with Washington. Maliki’s office said recently that Iraq was “looking forward to future cooperation with the United States in the field of arming and training”. The government had no reaction to Sadr’s threat. But critics say it could open the door to a new phase of sectarian conflict. Violence has receded since its peak in 2006-07 there are still lethal insurgent bombings and other attacks every day. “Sadr’s threat will provide an environment to revive radicals in Iraq again. And we believe that the Iraqi situation cannot tolerate this at all,” Mulla said. More than eight years after the invasion that toppled Saddam, Iraq struggles to improve intelligence and logistics capabilities that could help vanquish the militants. “Frankly speaking, the Iraqi Defence Ministry has not reached the level where it can secure Iraq alone,” said Saleem AlJibouri, a Sunni lawmaker. “Things could be out of control at any moment and it will be very difficult to control it again.” But Jibouri suggested Sadr’s warning was more about politics than a serious move to resurrect the militia. “This threat may pre-orchestrated with some parties in the government” he said. Sadr’s real play if American troops remain on

Iraqi soil next year may be political, not military, analysts said. “He is the cornerstone of this government,” Baghdad University professor Hakeem Mezher said. “If he walks out on this fragile alliance, it will encourage other blocs to do the same. Such a step will definitely collapse the government, or at least it will be considered illegitimate to sign any new pact.” — Reuters


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VLASENICA: Bosnian Muslim clerics say prayers during a funeral ceremony in this Bosnian town 100 km northeast of Sarajevo. A funeral ceremony was conducted for 18 Bosnian Muslims, killed by Bosnian Serbs at the beginning of the Bosnian war in 1992. All of the bodies were found and exhumed from mass grave sites near Vlasenica. — AP

Rebels claim victory in Misrata Continued from Page 1 A rebel activist in the Misrata questioned how much suppor t Gaddafi had among the local tribes. “ This whole move is just to buy time,” he added, expecting further attacks. For now, however, most of the city of 300,000 people was calm, with rebel forces taking over several key buildings that had been filled with government soldiers, including snipers. An eight-storey insurance building - pockmarked by shells and scorched around the windows - had been used by snipers because it was the tallest in central Misrata and commanded a view of the city. “After they heard the news, people began breathing freely. The women were making ululations and they went onto the streets beeping their car horns,” said the activist, who asked to remain anonymous for fear of reprisal. The only fighting yesterday was on the eastern outskirts of the city, where about 150 pro-Gaddafi soldiers trying to withdraw were fighting rebels, he said, adding that ambulances were picking up dead and injured. Deputy Foreign Minister Khaled Kaim sought to portray the move as a decision by tribal leaders to give the army an ultimatum to step aside if it cannot retake control of Misrata. The tribal leaders would fight the rebels if the opposition forces don’t surrender, Kaim said late Friday night. “We will leave it for the tribes around Misrata and the Misrata people to deal with the situation in Misrata,”

Kaim told reporters. However, Misrata is not known to have very large or dominant tribes, further casting doubt on how effective they might be in fighting the rebels. Hundreds of people have been killed in clashes between rebels and government forces in the city. In the capital of Tripoli, two missiles apparently fired by NATO warplanes struck near Gaddafi’s sprawling compound in the early hours of the morning, causing no injuries. Reporters were taken to an unpaved plot next to the Bab Aziziyeh compound and shown two craters, apparently from the missiles that had pierced through thick layers of reinforced concrete, laying bare what looked like a bunker system. Libyan officials said the space was a parking lot but a series of olive-colored metal boxes near the crater suggested it was being used for military activities. It was not clear if the site was hit by missiles from a US Predator drone. A Pentagon spokesman, Navy Capt Darryn James, said the first drone airstrike occurred yesterday but gave no details. In the east of the country, NATO strikes yesterday smashed more than two dozen sedans and pickup trucks belonging to government forces about halfway between Ajdabiya and Brega, said rebel battalion commander Col Hamid Hassy. The front in the east has been stalled between the strategic oil town of Brega and Ajdabiya for weeks. On Thursday, Defense Secretary Robert Gates said President Barack Obama had approved the use of

armed Predator drones to improve the precision of strikes on Libyan government forces. Predators had previously been used in Libya only for sur veillance. The low flying Predators have been used in Afghanistan to kill militants and are suited for urban combat. NATO stepped into the Libyan fighting in mid-March, unleashing airstrikes against Libyan military targets as part of a UN mandate to protect civilians. Meanwhile, an Italian-owned tugboat was released after being held in Libya for weeks, the ship owner and the Italian Foreign Ministry said yesterday. The Asso 22 left Friday night was expected home today in Italy, with its crew of eight Italians, two Indians and a Ukrainian unharmed, according to Naples-based Augusta Offshore SrL. The ship had been occupied by Libyan military officers since midMarch and had for the most part been docked at Tripoli. After it left, the Italian vessel made contact with an Italian navy ship in the Mediterranean as part of the NATO operations in Libya, Augusta said. Ship owner Mario Mattioli of Augusta told Sky Italia that no ransom had been paid and that diplomacy “at the top level” had helped resolve the case. The Foreign Ministry expressed satisfaction. It wasn’t clear if the seizure amounted to Libyan retaliation for Italy’s participation in enforcing the UN-mandated no-fly zone over Libya. Italy, Libya’s former colonial ruler, has allowed use of its bases by coalition aircraft and has offered its own jets for missions. — AP

Iran on edge as Syria fights for survival Continued from Page 1 Iran’s ambitions to expand its influence in the region could suffer a “critical backward step” if Assad’s regime is toppled, said Theodore Karasik, a regional affairs expert at the Dubai-based Institute for Near East and Gulf Militar y Analysis. “Egypt’s revolution could be considered a strategic loss perhaps for the West,” he said, “but a change in Syria would seriously rearrange the security order in the core of the Middle East and could leave Iran with an even bigger loss.” Assessing Iran’s strategy on Syria is difficult. The ruling clerics have banned domestic media from mentioning the revolt. There have been no open debates in Iran’s parliament and leaders - including outspoken President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad - have been extremely cautious in their remarks on Syria. Iran has used its mouthpieces to the rest of the world as forums to address Syria’s battles and promote Tehran’s positions. State -run English-language Press TV offers straightforward coverage with comment sections that include a mix of both pro-Assad messages and calls for his regime to go. Iran’s Arabiclanguage Al-Alam television yesterday quoted the foreign ministry spokesman, Ramin Mehmanparast, as rejecting Obama’s claim of Iranian aid to Assad in his time of

crisis. In a speech yesterday, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei praised the “Islamic awakening” around the region - a reference to Iran’s frequent claims that the rebellions draw inspiration from Iran’s 1979 Islamic Revolution. He did not mention Syria, but instead pointed to other uprisings in Libya, Yemen and Bahrain. And, in doing so, Khamenei underscored Iran’s policy dilemma. Iran’s leadership has harshly denounced the crackdown by Bahrain’s Sunni monarchy against the island kingdom’s majority Shiites, calling a Saudi-led Gulf force that went in to back the rulers a Sunni “occupation.” Protests in Tehran have included students hurling firebombs at the Saudi embassy earlier this month. In response, the Gulf’s six-nation political bloc warned Iran to stop meddling in Arab affairs, and Bahrain’s foreign minister said the Gulf troops will remain indefinitely to counter Tehran’s “sustained campaign” in Bahrain, home of the US Navy ’s 5th Fleet. Iran “cannot remain indifferent and passive onlookers in the face of oppressive engagement of arrogant powers with the people” of Bahrain, Khamenei told the crowds. But no such calls have been made on behalf of Syria’s protesters, who again faced deadly gunfire by security forces yesterday that killed 13 more people.

Iran is not the only nation balancing interests against demands for change. The US has backed calls to oust Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, but has been far more muted with the revolts in strategic allies Yemen and Bahrain. Iran also is desperate to keep its image from sustaining further blows among Arab neighbors. “The Iranians are worrying a lot about Arab public opinion,” said Hamid. “ The mood in the region is shifting against Assad and Iran could be stuck on the wrong side of that. They are sort of trapped.” There is a way out, however, some say. Iran is likely to open talks with opposition groups if it appears that Assad is doomed, said Meir Javedanfar, an analyst on Iranian affairs based in Israel. Iran has too much at stake in Syria to risk being cut out if Assad is ousted: huge Iranian investments in Syrian projects such as an auto assembly plant and a cement factory and possible loss of influence over Hezbollah and Hamas. “When it comes to looking after its own interests, the Iranian regime is very pragmatic, especially since they know that Assad would do the same to them if the shoe was on the other foot,” said Javedanfar. “When it comes to choosing between friendship and its own interests, to Iran’s rulers the former is easily expendable.” — AP

Quran-burning pastor briefly jailed in US Continued from Page 1 Hundreds of local residents who rallied in front of Henry Ford Centennial Library late Friday denied they tried to silence free speech and called on residents to remain peaceful. “We come here today not as Christians, not as Muslims, not as Jews, but as Americans,” said Osama Sablani, publisher of the Dearborn-based Arab American News and one of the organizers of the rally. “We have only one flag, and it is the American flag.” Cea Noyes, a sociology and anthropology professor from Olivet College who took part in the rally, said Jones was trying to divide American. “What he is doing is just appalling,” she said. Dawud Walid, the executive director of the Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said Jones and Sapp should have been allowed to demonstrate outside the mosque to show that Muslims in Dearborn would not have rioted in response. “Mr Jones has been made as a martyr for

free speech,” Walid said. Jones and Sapp made international headlines after their ceremonial “trial and execution” of the Holy Quran by burning the holy book on March 20 at his Florida church that led to deadly protests in Afghanistan. Seven UN staff were killed during one protest in the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif on April 1. Overall, more than 20 people have been killed. Following the killing of UN peacekeepers, the evangelical pastor said he and his supporters demanded action from the United Nations. He said that Muslimdominated countries could no longer be allowed to spread their hatred against Christians and minorities. “They must alter the laws that govern their countries to allow for individual freedoms and rights, such as the right to worship, free speech, and to move freely without fear of being attacked or killed,” he stated. Jones had long threatened to burn the Holy Quran despite warnings that it would put American troops and others in Afghanistan in danger. —Agencies

Syrians bury dead in new bloody rallies Continued from Page 1 the sources said, adding that tens of thousands of people took part. Activists also reported at least three people shot dead by security forces in the Barzeh district of Damascus. The state-run SANA news agency said two members of the security forces shot dead on Friday by “armed criminal groups” in Homs and Madamiyah near Damascus were buried yesterday. It said mourners affirmed “the need to preserve national unity and defend Syria’s security and stability to foil the plot to harm the country.” Meanwhile, Daniel Saud, head of the Committees for the Defence of Democracy, Freedoms and Human Rights in Syria, was arrested at his home in the northwestern city of Banias, lawyer Khalil Maatouk told AFP. “This signifies that the security services are continuing to act” as they did before the emergency law was lifted, Maatouk said. A group called the Committee of Martyrs of 15 March Revolution issued a list of 82 names of people it said were killed on Friday, but said the toll from the “massacre” could reach 100 as it tried to confirm more deaths. Amnesty International, citing Syrian activists, said at least 75 peo-

ple were killed when the “government launched its deadliest crackdown yet on demonstrators” seeking reform. Friday’s toll compared with killings on March 23 in the southern town of Daraa, when activists said 100 people died, Amnesty said. Officially, Syria has blamed “armed gangs” for Friday’s bloodshed, and SANA said security forces intervened using only tear gas and water cannon to prevent clashes between protesters and passers-by. Eight people were killed on Friday in Ezreh and 20 others wounded “including security forces in an attack by criminal gangs,” SANA said, adding that two policemen had died in Damascus and the central city of Homs. The crackdown drew an international outcry. Russia, France, Germany, Italy and Greece joined the chorus of condemnation from Washington, Paris, London, Brussels and UN headquarters in New York. US President Barack Obama blasted Syria’s “outrageous” use of violence, accusing Assad’s regime of seeking Iran’s aid in the brutal crackdown on the pro-democracy movement that erupted in Damascus on March 15. “Instead of listening to their own people, President Assad is blaming outsiders while seeking Iranian

assistance in repressing Syria’s citizens through the same brutal tactics that have been used by his Iranian allies.” But a senior official in Damascus, quoted on SANA, said Obama’s condemnation was “not based on an objective vision of the reality on the ground”. Iran also denied any involvement in putting down the protests, but at the same time criticised the use of force against demonstrations, without naming Syria. UN chief Ban Ki-moon said Assad’s government must “respect international human rights” and called for an independent probe into the killings, as France urged Syria to launch a “political dialogue without delay”. Russia, the first of Syria’s allies to speak out, urged Damascus to accelerate “broadscale political, social and economic reforms,” saying Moscow views Damascus as its “friend.” Thousands of protesters chanting “freedom, freedom,” and calling for the fall of the regime swarmed cities across Syria on Friday from Qamishli in the northeast to Daraa, witnesses said. Protesters have said Thursday’s decrees were insufficient, insisting on the release of political prisoners and dissolution of Syria’s security apparatus. —Agencies

IZRAA, Syria: Syrian anti-government protesters hold a bloodied national flag during a funeral procession for slain activists yesterday. — AP


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Soccer star jumps to death

India coach Houghton quits MUMBAI: India’s national team coach Bob Houghton has resigned after racism charges levelled against him were dropped, the country’s soccer federation said yesterday. Houghton, who took over in 2006 and had a contract running to 2013, described as “nonsensical” a report claiming he had made a racist remark to a match official during India’s friendly against Yemen last year. The All India Football Federation (AIFF) conducted internal investigations and found no concrete evidence against the 63-year old Englishman, who has also coached the national teams of China and Uzbekistan among others. “...The AIFF feels that in the absence of any definitive and concrete evidence the allegations against Mr. Houghton cannot be sustained and therefore the AIFF agrees to withdraw all charges and allegations made against him,” an AIFF statement said. “However, Mr. Houghton, for his personal reasons, does not wish to continue working in India and in his position as the head coach of the Indian football team.”—Reuters

SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

HONG KONG: One of Hong Kong’s best known soccer stars jumped to his death after an argument with his wife, reports said yesterday, as tributes poured in from the city’s soccer community. Cheung Sai-ho, 35, was named the city’s most valuable player in 2003 and was a holder of a world record-scoring for the Hong Kong youth team 2.8 seconds after the start of a match in the Portsmouth Cup in Britain in 1993. The talented midfielder, who retired from the sport in 2008, jumped from the window of his

Malinga quits Test cricket

36th floor flat after an argument with his wife, police said, according to the South China Morning Post and Chinese-language Apple Daily. He was declared dead at the scene. Police reportedly said the couple fought over their relationship and money. “He had good vision with good reading powers of the game. He could have been a good coach,” former Hong Kong coach Tsang Wai-chung told the Post, adding “his death is a loss to the soccer community.” Cheung made 56 appearances for Hong Kong, scoring eight goals.—AFP

MUMBAI: Sri Lanka fast bowler Lasith Malinga, whose unique slinging roundarm action brought him 101 wickets in 30 tests, retired from test cricket on Friday in order to prolong his limited overs career. Malinga, 27, who is currently playing for the Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League (IPL), said he was fit to play one-day cricket but needed to carefully manage a “long-standing degenerative condition in my right knee”. He had made himself unavailable for Sri Lanka’s forthcoming tour of England which prompted his board to ask him to return from the IPL to undergo rehabilitation. In a statement Malinga said he had sustained a chronic knee injury in Australia in February, 2008, which prevented him from playing one-day cricket for 16 months. “The injury was a career-threatening injury and my orthopaedic surgeon was of the opinion that given his experience with other professional athletes in Australia I was very fortunate to play again,” he said. “I have since been advised by the national team physiotherapist and my orthopaedic consultant that my condition will deteriorate when fielding or bowling for prolonged periods.—Reuters

Rangers knock down Royals

Co-operation between Trump Organization and Golf Me

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he candidate for the next presidency of the United States of America 2012, CEO of Trump Organization, Donald Trump, welcomed in his main office in New York, Ali Mohammed Al Jazzaf, Managing Director of Golf Me Company. Trump praised the efforts of Golf Me and its insistence and determination to seize the opportunity to establish the first golf company in Kuwait and develop it to become one of the top four golf companies in the Middle East and North Africa. The Golf Me company is one of the leading companies specializing in the sport of golf. The game of Golf has become an integral part of the global tourism and real estate development, which includes hotels, housing communities and golf courses. The Trump Organization is one of the leading family owned businesses and it is

recognized globally in the area of golf and tourism. With the game of golf recently accepted into the Olympic Games, there is a greater increase and awareness of golf and its associated industries worldwide. The Middle East and North Africa regions are a fertile area for the sport of golf and it enjoys an attractive atmosphere to catch the attention and potential of international tourism. The will of both companies, Trump Organization and Golf Me, has met to further develop the sport of golf in the Middle East and North Africa regions by investing for the establishment of tourist attractions with golf courses to host international and world-class golf tournaments. The Trump Organization has acquired 13 golf courses around the world promoting and expanding the game of golf.

ARLINGTON: Mike Napoli, Ian Kinsler and David Murphy were among five Rangers with homers and Texas beat the Kansas City Royals 11-6 on a windy Friday night. Kinsler’s two-out solo shot in the fourth put the Rangers ahead for good after the Royals tied it with five runs in the top half. Murphy’s two-run blast in the fifth made it 8-5, and Adrian Beltre went deep with the bases empty in the sixth to give Texas a four-run cushion. Mitch Moreland added a two-run homer in the seventh for Texas. Texas starter Derek Holland (3-1) struck out nine and gave up five runs and seven hits over seven innings. Kansas City starter Jeff Francis (0-2) was knocked around for six runs - five earned - and nine hits in four-plus innings. Tigers 9, White Sox 3 At Detroit, Justin Verlander pitched seven impressive innings through a misty rain, and Ryan Raburn drove in four runs. Verlander (2-2) allowed four hits, including two home runs by Carlos Quentin and another by Paul Konerko. He finished with eight strikeouts — including the 1,000th of his career — and no walks. Raburn hit a two-run homer for the Tigers, who have won seven straight over the White Sox. Chicago has lost eight of its past nine overall. Mark Buehrle (1-2) went 5 2-3 innings, allowing six runs and eight hits. He struck out five and walked two. Blue Jays 6, Rays 4 At Toronto, John McDonald hit a two-run homer in the bottom of

ARLINGTON: Texas Rangers left fielder Nelson Cruz dives late into second as Kansas City Royals second baseman Chris Getz fields the throw in the fifth inning during a baseball game.—AP the 11th inning to give the Toronto a 6-4 win over Tampa Bay. Juan Rivera hit a one-out single in the 11th off Cesar Ramos and Adam Russell (1-1) came on to face McDonald, who homered to left. Marc Rzepczynski (2-0) got the win as the Blue Jays handed the Rays their second straight defeat. Toronto’s Jose Bautista hit his fifth home run of the season and went 3 for 3, walked twice and scored four runs. Mariners 4, Athletics 0 At Seattle, Rookie Michael Pineda threw six shutout innings for his third straight victory. The burly right-hander gave up just three hits in his first five innings

and when Pineda (3-1) faced trouble in the sixth, got Kurt Suzuki to line out to left field and a ground ball from Mark Ellis to end the threat. Oakland has now gone 18 innings since last scoring and was shut out in consecutive games for the first time since May 2008. Seattle got just seven hits themselves, but took advantage of seven walks allowed by the A’s. Adam Kennedy scored on Jack Wilson’s two-out single in the second off Oakland starter Tyson Ross (1-2), then drove home a pair in the fifth. Red Sox 4, Angels 3 At Anaheim, California, Jon Lester allowed only four hits over six scoreless innings, and the

Boston Red Sox overcame a shaky performance by their bullpen. The Red Sox improved to 8-5 following a season-opening six-game losing streak, making manager Terr y Francona’s 52nd birthday a happy one. Lester (2-1) struck out eight, walked two and departed with a 40 lead after throwing 111 pitches. Boston’s starters have allowed no more than two earned runs in any of the last seven games, with a 1.19 ERA during that stretch. Dan Haren (4-1) allowed four runs, two earned, in six innings. The right-hander struck out six and walked three en route to his first loss in 13 starts.—AP

Marlins rout Rockies

David Haye

Haye banks on power, speed to defeat ‘boring’ Klitschko WASHINGTON: Helped by Muhammad Ali’s former trainer, Britain’s heavyweight WBA champion David Haye believes his speed and power will bring him victory in his unification bout with Wladimir Klitschko on July 2. Haye will take on Ukrainian Klitschko, the WBO, IBO and IBF champion, in Hamburg’s football arena in a long-awaited showdown. “I’ve got very quick feet, quick head movement and my punches are very rapid,” the 30-year-old Englishman, nicknamed ‘The Hayemaker’, told Reuters on Friday. “I’ve got the type of speed he will not have had to encounter as a professional. I’ve been working on my speed. I feel light and my punches are freakishly hard. “I’ve always been able to knock people out with either hand, so if I catch him at any time, he’s going to sleep.” The London fighter has been training in Miami’s famed Fifth Street Gym, where Angelo Dundee trained Muhammad Ali, and he said the veteran cornerman has given him welcome words of wisdom. “He came by yesterday and we had a good chat. He still knows his stuff,” Haye said. “He was giving me some good advice, some tactics to implement when I get in the ring. I had a great game plan before, but Angelo’s tweaked it.” Haye, who has a career record of 25-1

with 23 knockouts, predicted that Klitschko (55-3, 49 KOs) would try to make their mega-fight in Hamburg ugly and boring. “He’s someone who can jab you to death for 12 rounds and is happy to do that,” the Londoner said. “He doesn’t let his right hand go, he doesn’t really pull the trigger. “I think he’s going to come unstuck with that tactic when he fights me. I’m going to have to force him to fight.” A Haye-Vladimir Klitschko clash has been on the cards for two years but twice the two sides failed to finalise a deal after disagreeing on how to split revenues. Haye and Klitschko appeared to have struck a deal for the July 2 fight in early January, only for talks to fall apart when Klitschko insisted on taking an interim bout with Britain’s Dereck Chisora on April 30. When Klitschko cancelled that fight, citing an injury, the meeting with Haye was swiftly re-arranged. Haye was confident the difficulties in putting the fight together will be long forgotten once the bell rings. “As long as I k nock Wladimir out, nobody’s going to care how long the fight took to put together, who got what percentage, what the ticket sales were,” he said. “That’s all irrelevant. The only thing that matters is when we’re both in that ring and the first bell rings and we go to war.”—Reuters

MIAMI: Anibal Sanchez held the Colorado Rockies hitless Friday night until Dexter Fowler led off the ninth inning with a broken-bat single. Sanchez then got the final three outs for a one-hitter and the Marlins won 4-1. Sanchez (1-1) had a career-high nine strikeouts. He threw a no-hitter for Florida as a rookie in 2006, and his one-hitter was only the second this season. Dan Haren of the Los Angeles Angels had one in a 2-0 victory over Cleveland on April 12. The hit off Sanchez came on his 116th pitch, and the first of the ninth. Fowler pulled a single to right field past second baseman Omar Infante, ending the no-hit bid. Fowler was doubled off first on a lineout by Jonathan Herrera. When Carlos Gonzalez grounded out, Sanchez had the fourth complete game of his career and first since July 29. Gaby Sanchez and Chris Coghlan homered for the Marlins, who won their fourth consecutive game. Rockies starter Jhoulys Chacin (3-1) allowed four runs in five innings. Sanchez walked three, including Fowler to lead off the game. He was unfazed when a two-out fielding error by first baseman Gaby Sanchez allowed Fowler to score. Mets 4, D’backs 1 At New York, Ike Davis hit a tworun homer to lead the New York Mets to a come-from-behind victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks. Shut down by Joe Saunders for six-plus innings, Davis hit a drive to straightaway center field off Esmerling Vasquez (0-1) that hit above the orange line on the black wall for a two run score. Mike Pelfrey (1-2) gave up just five hits and a run in seven innings. He walked two and struck out four. Dodgers 12, Cubs 2 At Chicago, Juan Uribe hit a tworun homer, Andre Ethier extended his major league-best hitting streak to 19 games and the surging Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Chicago Cubs. Uribe also had a run-scoring single in the Dodgers’ six-run third inning and a sacrifice fly in the sixth, giving him nine RBIs in his last three games and 12 this year. Pinch-hitter Marcus Thames added a two-run drive in the ninth as Los Angeles set a season high for runs and hits (14). Chad Billingsley (2-1) made the most of all that run sup-

MIAMI: Florida Marlins second baseman Omar Infante (13) prepares to tag Colorado Rockies’ Dexter Fowler (24) at second for the double play during the ninth inning of a baseball game.—AP port, pitching into the seventh in his second straight solid start. He also capped Los Angeles’ biggest inning of the year with an RBI single for his first hit in 2011. The Dodgers have won five of six, including three straight since Major League Baseball seized control of the team. Brewers 14, Astros 7 At Milwaukee, Ryan Braun hit a go-ahead three-run homer in his first game since signing a $105 million, five-year contract extension to lift the Brewers over the Houston

Astros. Milwaukee scored in every inning but the first and eighth. Brewers ace Yovani Gallardo hit a solo home run off starter Nelson Figueroa (0-3) and Carlos Gomez added a three-run shot in the seventh. Gallardo (2-1) labored for a third straight start despite getting plenty of run support over his six innings. Both manager Brad Mills and pitching coach Brad Arnsberg were ejected in the second inning as the Astros fell to 0-13 when allowing four or more runs.

MLB results/standings Results and standings from MLB games on Friday. LA Dodgers 12, Chicago Cubs 2; Baltimore, NY Yankees (Postponed); Detroit 9, Chicago White Sox 3; Pittsburgh, Washington (Postponed); Toronto 6, Tampa Bay 4 (11 innings); Florida 4, Colorado 1; NY Mets 4, Arizona 1; Texas 11, Kansas City 6; Milwaukee 14, Houston 7; Minnesota, Cleveland (Postponed); St. Louis 4, Cincinnati 2; Philadelphia 2, San Diego 0; Boston 4, LA Angels 3; Seattle 4, Oakland 0; Atlanta 4, San Francisco 1. American League National League Eastern Division Eastern Division Philadelphia 13 6 .684 W L Pct GB Florida 12 6 .667 .5 New York 10 6 .625 Washington 9 9 .500 3.5 Toronto 9 10 .474 2.5 Atlanta 9 12 .429 5 Tampa Bay 9 11 .450 3 New York 7 13 .350 6.5 Baltimore 8 10 .444 3 Central Division Boston 8 11 .421 3.5 St. Louis 11 9 .550 Central Division Milwaukee 10 9 .526 .5 Cleveland 13 6 .684 _ Cincinnati 10 10 .500 1 Kansas City 12 8 .600 1.5 Chicago 9 10 .474 1.5 Detroit 10 10 .500 3.5 Pittsburgh 8 11 .421 2.5 Chicago 8 12 .400 5.5 Houston 7 13 .350 4 Minnesota 7 12 .368 6 Western Division Western Division Colorado 13 6 .684 Texas 12 7 .632 San Francisco 10 9 .526 3 Los Angeles 12 8 .600 .5 Los Angeles 11 10 .524 3 Arizona 8 10 .444 4.5 Oakland 9 11 .450 3.5 San Diego 8 12 .400 5.5 Seattle 8 13 .381 5

Phillies 2, Padres 0 At San Diego, Cole Hamels held his punchless hometown Padres to four hits in eight innings and the Philadelphia Phillies won, handing San Diego its second straight shutout and third in five games. The Padres have gone 21 scoreless innings since Wednesday night’s win in a split doubleheader at Chicago. San Diego has been shut out a major league-leading six times in 20 games. It was Philadelphia’s major league-leading fifth shutout. Hamels (2-1), who went to San Diego’s Rancho Bernardo High, got all the support he needed when Ryan Howard hit a two-run triple off Clayton Richard (1-1) with two outs in the third. Hamels struck out eight and walked three. Braves 4, Giants 1 At San Francisco, Chipper Jones hit a two-run double, Jason Heyward and Freddie Freeman each singled in runs during a decisive four-run third inning for Atlanta to topple the defending champions. The Braves knocked Madison Bumgarner (0-3) out early and showed no signs of fatigue following a 5-3, 12-inning loss at Los Angeles on Thursday. Tommy Hanson (2-3), who had a no-decision in Game 2 of the NL divisional playoffs against the Giants last season, struck out seven and walked one in seven strong innings as the Braves won for just the second time in their last six games. Cardinals 4, Reds 2 At St Louis, Kyle McClellan (3-0) worked six-plus innings after the St. Louis Cardinals guessed correctly and used a substitute starter before a lengthy rain delay in a victory over the Cincinnati Reds. Albert Pujols had two RBIs and Ryan Theriot had three hits and scored twice for the Cardinals against a collection of relievers for the Reds, who burned ace Edinson Volquez after pre-game warmups followed by a delay of 2 hours and 10 minutes and ended up with Matt Maloney (0-1) as a substitute starter. St. Louis stand-in starter Miguel Batista opened with a fourpitch walk to Drew Stubbs and threw two more pitches to Brandon Phillips before a fierce storm prompted tornado warning sirens at least three times and brought the game to a halt. —AP


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SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

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Donald sets Heritage pace HILTON HEAD ISLAND: Britain’s Luke Donald edged closer in his bid to become world number one for the first time when he opened a one-stroke lead in The Heritage second round on Friday. Donald, who will take over at the top of the rankings if he triumphs at Harbour Town Golf Links on Sunday, fired a six-under-par 65 to take control of the PGA Tour event. The rock-steady Englishman, who claimed his maiden victory on the US circuit at the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship in February and finished no worse than joint 10th in his next three starts, posted a 10-under total of 132. American Garrett Willis, the firstround leader, was alone in second place after carding a 69. Asked if he was playing like a world number one, Donald told reporters: “Not yet.” However, he is fully aware of what success at Harbour Town on Sunday would mean. “I guess it’s always in the back of your mind,” said world number three Donald, who would leapfrog second-ranked fellow Briton Lee Westwood and top-ranked German Martin Kaymer with victory here. “It’s hard to get away from knowing that with Twitter and Facebook and the media and everything. You obviously know what’s at stake. It would certainly be an honour and a

great achievement to accomplish.” However, Donald has a lot more to worry about at Harbour Town than the rankings with a strong quartet of players in close pursuit. Colombian Camilo Villegas (68), Australian Jason Day (65), defending champion Jim Furyk (66) and fellow American Chad Campbell (69) trail by two with Briton Ian Poulter (66) and American Ben Crane (66) a further stroke adrift. Yet Donald could be considered due a victory at Harbour Town, having tied for third last year and second in 2009, albeit 10 strokes behind winner Brian Gay. “Any time you play a course well, you approach it with a little bit more confidence,” Donald said. “You start hitting in the right places continually and that’s where you expect to hit it.” Furyk also knows what it is like to flourish at Harbour Town. Prior to his win last year, he posted two runner-up finishes and a fourth in his five previous appearances and will not surrender his title here without a fight. Furyk, who opened with a 68, made a fast start for a second successive day with birdies on his first three holes-the 10th, 11th and 12th where he holed putts from 15, six and 12 feet. “I kind of cooled off both rounds

afterwards, but I felt like I played a very good round of golf today,” Furyk said after taking advantage of another calm morning at Harbour Town. The 40-year-old picked up further shots on the two par-fives on his back nine, the second and fifth, to climb into a share of the lead. “Overall I really felt a lot more comfortable today with my ballstriking and with my putting,” Furyk said. “I played well and I kind of gutted it out.” Day, 23, continued his strong play from the Masters, where he birdied Augusta National’s final two holes to tie for second place on his debut at the season’s opening major. “To know exactly what I did out there (at Augusta) in the last round, taking what I did out there and applying it to each round helps a lot,” Day said after a six-birdie display. Others likely to be in the title hunt over the weekend included Americans Brandt Snedeker (67), Mark Wilson (70) and DJ Trahan (67), who were knotted at six under. The cut fell at one over with 2009 US Open champion Lucas Glover, five-times Heritage winner Davis Love III and former world number one Ernie Els among those failing to advance. —Reuters

NEW ORLEANS: Los Angeles Lakers center Andrew Bynum (17) shoots next to New Orleans Hornets center Emeka Okafor (50), Los Angeles Lakers forward Pau Gasol, of Spain, (16) and New Orleans Hornets forward Carl Landry (24) during the second half of game three of a first-round NBA basketball playoff series. —AP

Celtics on target for series sweep NEW YORK: The Boston Celtics edged closer to the Eastern Conference semifinals with a 113-96 victory over the New York Knicks on Friday, taking a 3-0 series lead. Paul Pierce led with 38 points, Ray Allen added 32, and Rajon Rondo had a Celtics’ playoff-record 20 assists in his triple-double. Rondo had 15 points and 11 rebounds for the Celtics, who pulled through two close games in Boston but never trailed in this one, dominating the first playoff game at Madison Square Garden in seven years. Carmelo Anthony had 15 points and 11 rebounds but shot 4 for 16 for the Knicks. Chauncey Billups was sidelined again with a knee injury and Amare Stoudemire was limited by back spasms and was 2 for 8 for seven points. Game 4 is in New York today.

Hawks 88, Magic 84 At Atlanta, Jamal Crawford scored a 3-pointer with 5.7 seconds left to cap a brilliant second half and lead Atlanta to a 2-1 lead in their Eastern Conference playoff series. Zaza Pachulia of Atlanta and Jason Richardson of Orlando were ejected with 2:22 remaining after a confrontation under the basket. The teams swapped the lead four times after that near-brawl until Al Horford put the Hawks ahead for good with 46.6 seconds remaining. But Crawford, who scored 18 of his 23 points after halftime, hit the biggest shot of all. With the shot clock winding down, he put up a jumper over Jameer Nelson that struck high on the backboard and went in. Game 4 is Sunday night in Atlanta.

Lakers 100, Hornets 86 At New Orleans, Kobe Bryant scored 30 points, Pau Gasol added 17 points and 10 rebounds, and the Los Angeles Lakers took control of its first-round playoff series. Andrew Bynum added 14 points and 11 rebounds and Lamar Odom had 13 points for the two-time defending champs, who took the lead for good when Ron Artest made a layup as he was fouled to make it 13-10. The victory gave the Lakers a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven series, with Game 4 in New Orleans on Sunday. Chris Paul had 22 points and eight assist for the Hornets, who managed to stay within single digits for long stretches of the game but never truly threatened to take the lead. —AP

Jose first Indian player to get WNBA tryouts CHENGDU: Nicolas Colsaerts of Belgium lines up the ball during the 2011 Volvo China Open Golf Tournament. —AP

Colsaerts leads China Open CHENGDU: Nicolas Colsaerts eagled the first hole and went on to shoot a 6under 66 yesterday to take a one-shot lead after the third round of the China Open. The Belgian added five birdies to go with a single bogey for an 18under total of 198 at the Luxehills International Country Club in the southwestern city of Chengdu. “I’m pleased the way I played and it is always nice to get off with an eagle start,” said the 28-year-old from Brussels, who regained his European Tour card last year.

“I don’t mind going out in the lead because any advantage you have over the other guys always helps, but there will be some more low scoring out there on the final round, so we’ll see what happens.” South Korean teenager Han Chang-won was one stroke back after chalking up seven birdies on his way to a bogey-free round of 65. “I’m a little surprised to be where I am after such a short time as a professional, but I am very pleased to be in a position to win my first pro title,” Han said. Peter Lawrie of

Garcia stays in hunt to end trophy drought CHENGDU: Former world number two Sergio Garcia carded a second bogey-free round in a row to stay in the hunt for victory at the halfway stage of the China Open on Friday. The Spaniard, whose last victory came at the 2009 European Tour’s HSBC Champions in Shanghai, shot a 67 to complement his flawless 66 in the opening round and leave himself two shots behind leader Jamie Donaldson. Garcia’s brother Victor Junior is carrying his bag at the Luxehills International Countr y Club in the absence of the player’s regular caddies. “It’s been good fun. He’s doing a good job. We are just enjoying it out there and we are hoping we can keep doing the same thing,” Garcia told reporters at the $3 million event, co-sanctioned by the European and OneAsia Tours. “It’s been good for the first two days and hopefully we’ll keep it going.” Welshman Donaldson fired a brilliant 11-under-par 61 to open up a one-shot lead over seven players at the halfway stage for a total of 13-under 131. With preferred lies in play, the round did not break any records but he scorched the course with a flawless display including five birdies on the outward half and six coming home. “That was a special one. I didn’t do anything wrong today. I t was a great round,” Donaldson said. There was disappointment for major champions Padraig Harrington and South Korean Yang Yong-eun who failed to make the cut. —Reuters

Ireland and France’s Gregory Havret both shot a 68 to lie another shot back in a tie for third, followed by overnight leader Jamie Donaldson of Wales, who shot a 70. China’s top player, Liang Wenchong, had a disappointing round of 72 to end eight back at 206, while the event’s 2003 winner, Chinese veteran Zhang Lianwei, remained in contention after a round of 70 at 209. Spain’s Sergio Garcia shot a third round 72 to sit at 205, while 2005 U.S. Open winner Michael Campbell was 15 off the pace at 213. —AP

Trump rolls into quarters SHEFFIELD: Giant killer Judd Trump secured his passage to the quarter finals with a 13-6 win over Martin Gould at the world championships here yesterday. The Englishman, winner of this month’s China Open who knocked out defending champion Neil Robertson of Australia in the opening round, led Gould 11-5 overnight, and duly picked up the two frames he required to book his last eight place. “The last month has exceeded my wildest expectations,” said the in-form 21-year-old. He added: “I have to bring myself back to reality sometimes. I’ve only won two games, so it’s nothing that special. I’ve still got a long way to go. There’s a lot of tough players out there to beat.” Trump, who faces last year’s runner-up Graeme Dott next, believes this could be his year. “I always knew if I brought a decent game with me I could go out and win it, and I still feel that,” he said. Gould agreed. “If he scores like he has been and keeps potting the long ones like he does, then who knows, his name could be on the title,” said the world number 22. “We’ve all known Judd for many a year, and we all know what he can do.” Trump won the opening frame yesterday’s morning session after a break of 67, with Gould, who defeated Marco Fu in the opening round, winning the next, only for Trump to seal the win with a break of 69. Both players pinpointed a respotted black in frame 13 on Friday as key to the outcome of the match. Trump potted it to lead 8-5, and pulled away. “He found another gear,” Gould said. —AFP

CHENNAI: Indian basketball is set to take a big step forward this month when Geethu Anna Jose becomes the first player from her country to attend tryouts for the American professional league. The 25-year-old center will have training sessions with WNBA teams Chicago Sky, Los Angeles Sparks and Saint Antonio Silver Stars in the space of eight days in what could be a history-making moment for the sport in her country. “ There is pressure and high expectations,” the 6-foot-2 (188-centimeter) Jose told The Associated Press. “The Indian basketball community is excited, but then, it is also my dream and I am going to go out there and give it my best shot.” Jose, who hails from the southern state of Kerala, is easily the biggest draw in Indian basketball and was the top scorer in the previous two FIBA Asian championships. In the last edition held in India in 2009, the center averaged 22 points per game to help her team stay in the Elite Level 1 group. India finished sixth in the 12-team competition. Jose is looking to draw from her experience of playing as a professional for three seasons for Ringwood Hawks in Australia’s Big V Basketball as she eyes an WBNA breakthrough. “Inside game is very hard outside India,” Jose said. “The players there are really tough. My three years in Australia have given me a lot of confidence and I’d think it was there that my dream of playing in the WNBA was born.” Jose’s Australian opportunity came after she caught Hawks head coach Tim Mottin’s eye during the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, she said. It was in that tournament she first had a chance to play against Australian center and WNBA star Lauren Jackson, who has been her inspiration since. “She’s simply astonishing. I just love her game,” Jose said. “For one who is 6-foot-5, she covers the court with amazing speed and can score from almost anywhere. Against us, she was on court for just 20 minutes and scored 40 points.” Her encounter with Jackson also served as eyeopener for what it takes to play in the WNBA. “I have watched some of it on television and it’s really advanced,” Jose said. “Scientific coaching, profession-

CHENNAI: In this photo taken Friday, April 21, 2011, Indian basketball player Geethu Anna Jose takes a shot during a practice session in Chennai. —AP al approach. Also possibly, they start dribbling the ball at 3 years of age when I started at 13!” Troy Justice, the director of basketball for NBA India, helped set up Jose’s tryouts as part of the league’s efforts to promote the game in the nation of 1.2 billion people. “Her skill set is very advanced,” Justice said. “Her approach, her professionalism puts her in a position where she is the type of person we want in the WNBA.” According to the Basketball Federation of India, an estimated 4.5 million people play the game in India. On the men’s side, the Asian

country has high hopes for 15-yearold Satnam Singh Bhamar, who is already 7-2 and is touted as the player who can be the focal point of Indian basketball in the same manner Houston Rockets star Yao Ming has been for China. If Jose earns a spot on one of the WNBA teams, “I think it will bring national exposure to the sport of basketball,” Justice said. “It will create a new awareness to many more in the country, create a landmark and represent a new opportunity and a new idea that others could do it also,” he added.—AP


SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

S P ORT S

Delhi survive Marsh blitz

SPAIN: Rafael Nadal of Spain returns the ball Ivan Dodig of Croatia during their semifinals Barcelona Open tennis tournament. — AP

Nadal faces Ferrer in Barcelona final BARCELONA: Rafael Nadal and Spanish countryman David Ferrer will meet in their second final in two weeks at the Barcelona Open. Both cruised through their semifinals yesterday, Nadal beating the only nonSpaniard in the last four, Ivan Dodig of Croatia 6-3, 6-2, and Ferrer topping Nicolas Almagro 6-3, 6-4. Nadal won his 28th straight match in Barcelona, including five straight titles from 2005-09. He missed last year because of injury. He defeated Ferrer in the Barcelona finals of 2008 and 2009, and in last weekend’s final of the Monte Carlo Masters. Nadal leads their head to head 12-4. “I like to look at stats that favor me,” Nadal said. “But every game is different and David is having a great beginning to the year.” A Spaniard will feature in the Barcelona final for the 15th straight year, and win it for an eighth year in a row. Ferrer, Spain’s second highest-ranked player after Nadal, hopes to add his name to the honor roll. “I am very happy (to be in the finals),” Ferrer said. “Barcelona is the tournament that most motivates me, it is the tournament I most want to win. “I know that it is going to be complicated with Nadal there, but I am in the final and I want to enjoy it.” Nadal made a commanding start when he slapped Dodig’s approach shot down the middle as he reeled off eight straight points to break his unseeded challenger. The feisty Dodig, who upset Robin Soderling

in round two, broke Nadal back in the fourth game when the Spaniard’s forehand sailed long, and then held his serve to go ahead 3-2. Nadal forced the Croat into hitting wide with a deep cross drive to record his second service break in the seventh game, and Dodig then hit a pair of double faults as Nadal closed out the first set. The second set began just like the first with Nadal breaking Dodig’s opening service game and with the underdog breaking right back. But this time Nadal dominated the rest of the set for the 500th win of his career. He’s the second youngest after Bjorn Borg to post 500 wins in the Open era. “This is the consequence of years of hard work,” said the 24-year-old Nadal. “The only negative thing is that I have already been on the circuit nine years.” Earlier, an almost error-free Ferrer took advantage of an inconsistent Almagro to win their first set. “David is playing spectacularly well right now,” said Almagro, who lost to Ferrer in the final of Acapulco in February. Ferrer hit three drops shot on his way to breaking Almagro in the fifth game of the second set, and kept ser ve to advance to his fourth straight final. “He had the answer to all my weapons,” said Almagro. “You always have to play one ball too many that he ends up winning.” Ferrer extended his unbeaten record to 7-0 against Almagro, who will enter the top 10 when the rankings are updated tomorrow. — AP

ANAHEIM: Nashville Predators defenseman Kevin Klein scores past Anaheim Ducks goalie Ray Emery during the first period of Game 5 of a first-round NHL Stanley Cup playoff hockey series. — AP

Sabres take series lead PHILADELPHIA: Tyler Ennis scored off a rebound 5:31 into overtime Friday night to give the Buffalo Sabres a 4-3 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers and a 3-2 lead in the first-round series. Mike Webber’s shot hit Michael Leighton’s pad, before Ennis swooped in from the right side and scored his second goal of the game. The Sabres survived despite blowing a 3-0 lead, after Ennis, Thomas Vanek and Marc-Andre Gragnani had scored in the first period. Ryan Miller made 36 saves. James van Riemsdyk and Andrej Meszaros scored in the second period, before Danny Briere tied it for Philadelphia at 3:36 of the third period. Game 6 is today in Buffalo. Predators 4, Ducks 3 At Anaheim, California, Jerred Smithson’s goal 1:57 into overtime moved Nashville to the brink of win-

ning a playoff series for the first time, with a 3-2 series lead over Anaheim. Captain Shea Weber tied it on a long slap shot with 35.3 seconds left for the Predators, who had never even won three games in a series before their dramatic comeback stunned the Ducks. Both teams scored two goals apiece in a thrilling third period, with Anaheim blowing two leads. Bobby Ryan scored a spectacular goal early in the third in his return from a twogame suspension, but Joel Ward tied it with 8:40 left. Jason Blake put Anaheim ahead on his second goal with 5:44 left. Defenseman Kevin Klein scored his first career playoff goal and Pekka Rinne made 23 saves for the Predators, who had never won an overtime game or a Game 5 in their brief playoff history. Game 6 is today in Nashville. —AP

NEW DELHI: Kings XI Punjab’s Shaun Marsh smashed 95 off just 46 balls, but failed to stop Delhi Daredevils from posting a 29-run win in an Indian Premier League match yesterday. The Australian hit six sixes and nine fours as Delhi stopped Punjab at 202-6 after scoring 231-4 — the highest total of this year’s tournament-for their second victory in five matches. Punjab’s hopes of achieving a stiff target in the tall-scoring game receded after the dismissal of Marsh, caught by skipper Virender Sehwag off South African paceman Morne Morkel in the 18th over. Marsh added 72 for the second wicket with skipper Adam Gilchrist, who hit four successive fours off seamer Ajit Agarkar during his 33-ball 42. It was Punjab’s second defeat in five games of the Twenty20 tournament. Delhi were earlier indebted to Australian David Warner and Sehwag for setting a challenging target, with each scoring 77. Sehwag, without a half-century in the previous four games, returned to form with a 35ball knock which contained four sixes and eight fours while Warner hit seven boundaries and four sixes in his 48-ball knock. Hosts Delhi made a spectacular start as Sehwag and Warner plundered 146 off 11.4 overs, much to the delight of a sizeable crowd at the Ferozeshah Kotla ground. It was the highest opening-wicket stand of the ongoing tournament. Sehwag once punished Australian spinner David Hussey, hitting three successive sixes

NEW DELHI: Kings XI Punjab captain Adam Gilchrist (right) celebrates with teammates after the dismissal of Delhi Daredevilsí Virender Sehwag during an Indian Premier League cricket match. —AP

before being caught in the deep while attempting another big shot off the next delivery. Warner matched his partner shot for shot, reaching his half-century with a six over midwicket off seamer Paul Valthaty. Venugopal Rao then helped Delhi cross the 200-mark

with a 15-ball 28 not out. Brief scores: Delhi Daredevils 231-4 in 20 overs ( V. Sehwag 77, D. Warner 77. V. Rao 28 not out) beat Kings XI Punjab 202-6 in 20 overs (S. Marsh 95, A. Gilchrist 42, D. Hussey 20; A. Agarkar 2-48) by 29 runs. — AFP

Highlanders rearguard halts Crusaders charge WELLINGTON: The Otago Highlanders produced a superb defensive effort and made their chance count to upset the Canterbury Crusaders 26-18 in their Super rugby match at Trafalgar Park yesterday. The Crusaders had crushed the Highlanders 44-13 five weeks ago and were expected to comfortably account for their southern neighbors as both sides rotated their squads to rest some front-line players. “Both sides made changes and those guys who came in really wanted to have big games. It’s a testament to the culture we have got in our squad,” Highlanders captain Jamie Mackintosh said in a televised interview. “It just shows that if we keep that good culture then guys can step up and play well and it’s enjoyable.” Matt Berquist and Tony Brown traded early penalties to open the scoring in a high-paced match before Zac Guildford finished a brilliant

try, sparked from deep inside their own half, and converted by Berquist. The Highlanders dragged themselves back into the game with tries to wingers Siale Piutau and James Paterson after some determined defence and counter-rucking at the breakdown, which disrupted the Crusaders’ quick attacking platform and forced Berquist to slot a drop goal between the two Otago tries. Brown, who at 36 has been brought back because of Colin Slade’s broken jaw, converted Paterson’s try but missed a late penalty as the visitors went into the break with a surprise 1513 lead. Paterson grabbed his second try of the match straight aftert the kickoff when the Highlanders attacked from a scrum on halfway and recycled several quick phases for Brown to cross-kick to Paterson, who was waiting unmarked on the wing.

The Crusaders then had a purple patch, demolishing the Highlanders scrum, but were also heavily penalised and unable to breach the defence. The home side got a slice of luck when the Highlanders turned the ball over while on attack and centre Adam Whitlock scooped up the ball and sprinted 50 metres for a try. Berquist missed the sideline conversion that would have levelled the score at 20-20. Brown then slotted two penalties in quick succession to give the Highlanders a 26-18 lead with 15 minutes remaining and they then spent the rest of the time defending their advantage. “Their defensive line was up real quick and they really slowed down our ruck ball and all credit to them, it won them the game,” Crusaders lock Chris Jack said. “We didn’t perform that well but we were beaten by a better side on the day.” — Reuters

O’Connor kicks Force over Bulls PERTH: Australia utility back James O’Connor slotted six penalties to give the Western Force an upset 26-21 win over champions Bulls in their Super rugby clash yesterday. O’Connor, who was sinbinned in the first half for a dangerous tackle, missed only one shot at goal. Willie Ripia slotted a penalty while O’Connor was off the field and Cameron Shepherd scored a second-half try for the Force. Bulls’ flyhalf Morne Steyn kicked three penalties and a conversion while Chiliboy Ralepelle and Bjorn Basson scored tries for the South Africans, who have now lost three successive games. “Not good enough, I thought we played well in the first half but in the second half we could not keep the ball,” Bulls captain Victor Matfield said in a television interview. The champions, at the end of a four-week road trip, lacked their normal polish but did manage to score the first try, after O’Connor slotted an early penalty, when Ralepelle was on hand to pick up the ball from an attacking surge and flop over. O’Connor got the lead back for the Force with his second penalty, but then almost immediately was sinbinned for a dangerous tackle

on Bulls fullback Zane Kirchner. The Bulls took advantage with Basson scoring a try, which Morne Steyn conver ted, though Ripia managed to slot a penalty for the home side, and took the full minute he was allowed to lessen the impact of O’Connor’s temporary absence. Steyn added a penalty before O’Connor returned but the Wallabies utility back reduced the gap to 15-12 by the break when Bulls prop Dean Greyling was penalised for a high tackle. Steyn extended the lead in the second half with his second penalty, though two more penalties by O’Connor levelled the score at 1818 with 20 minutes remaining. The Force managed to snatch the lead when Ripia got his hands free in a tack le to find an unmarked Shepherd who dived over in the corner. O’Connor gave his side an eight-point advantage with his sixth penalty with just under four minutes remaining, before Steyn reduced the deficit again and gave the Bulls a chance of snatching a late victory. “I thought our defence tonight, for 70 minutes of that game, was absolutely outstanding,” Force captain Nathan Sharpe said. “ The boys are enjoying it.” —Reuters

PERTH: Nathan Sharpe of the Force wins a line out against the Bulls of South Africa during their Super Rugby match.— AP

Smit leads Sharks to big win DURBAN: John Smit took advantage of his first start as a hooker this season as he led the Coastal Sharks to a 40-24 bonus point win against the Wellington Hurricanes 33-24 in a Super 15 southern hemisphere rugby clash at King’s Park yesterday. Smit scored his team’s first try and impressed in the tight-loose to show that he remains a strong candidate to lead the Springboks in the defence of their Rugby World Cup crown in New Zealand later this year. Sharks coach John Plumtree had picked Bismarck du Plessis ahead of Smit in the team’s first eight matches of the season, with Smit having to slot in as a prop, but an injury to Du Plessis opened the way for Smit to return to his specialist position. The Hurricanes led 13-3 early in the

match despite being down to 14 men after lock James Broadhurst was yellow carded. It was 13-13 at half-time and the New Zealand team regained the lead at 18-13 when replacement flank Faifili Levave scored a try in the first minute of the second half. But Mvovo scored his first try four minutes later and although flyhalf Dan Kirkpatrick kicked two penalty goals to put the visitors ahead again the Sharks dominated the last 25 minutes of the match with a stiff breeze at their back. Centre Meyer Bosman burst through two tackles to score a try and Mvovo ran half the length of the field to score an intercept try which gave the Sharks a bonus point. All Black centre Ma’a Nonu, who set up both his team’s tries, scored by fullback Cory Jane and Levave, was yellow carded 11 min-

utes from time following an illegal steal, effectively killing off the Hurricanes’ chances. A late try by eighthman Ryan Kankowski sealed the win for the Sharks. Smit praised his team’s second half performance, which enabled them to move one point ahead of the Stormers at the top of the South African conference, although the Stormers have a game in hand. Smit said the Sharks were now looking forward to a ‘massive’ game against the Stormers in Cape Town next Saturday. Hurricanes captain Andrew Hore admitted: “They wore us down.” He said his team needed to improve ahead of their home match against the top- of-the -table Queensland Reds in Wellington next week. “We’ve got to get the full package right,” he said. — AFP


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SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

sp orts

Real follow Cup win with 6-3 drubbing of Valencia

ITALY: AC Milan midfielder Kevin Prince Boateng (left) of Ghana, challenges for the ball with Brescia defender Gaetano Berardi, of Switzerland, during their Serie A soccer match. —AP

Milan home in on title ROME: AC Milan need four points from their final four matches to be crowned Italian champions for the 18th time following yesterday’s hard-fought 1-0 win at Brescia. They lead reigning champions Inter Milan by eight points but due to their better head-to-head record, need only another win and a draw to lift the scudetto crown. Inter moved above Napoli into second spot as the former beat Lazio 2-1 and the latter lost by the same score at Palermo. Napoli are now nine points back in third and must concentrate on hanging onto that place to ensure they go straight into next season’s Champions League group stages. Robinho scored the only goal of the game for Milan eight minutes from time on a counter-attack as Brescia’s defence went AWOL, allowing Antonio Cassano to pick out the Brazilian to slip the ball home. Cassano had missed three glorious opportunities for a wasteful Milan while Alessandro Diamanti had hit the bar for the hosts, who remain second from bottom and five points from safety. Napoli coach Walter Mazzarri admitted his side doesn’t have the character to win the scudetto. “When we get close to an achievement some horses stay calm because they’re used to it and others are worn out by nerves,” he said. “Those who know football know this. There are those who have been fighting for certain things for years and know how to manage their emotions. “We’re very young, I know my team’s strengths and weaknesses, we need to stay serene and not start making lists.” Napoli were handed a gift after just two minutes when Mattia Cassani inexplicably handled the ball in the box. Edinson Cavani made no mistake from the spot, unlike last week against Udinese, as he scored his 26th Serie A goal of the season to move level with Udinese’s Antonio Di Natale at the top of the league scoring charts. But Palermo, buoyed by their Italian Cup draw away to Milan in midweek, hit back and Cassani made amends by crossing for Federico Balzaretti to thrash home a crisp finish from the left. And the hosts took the lead on the

stroke of half-time in bizarre and controversial fashion. Giulio Migliaccio burst into the box past two Napoli players only to flop to the ground under apparent contact from Christian Maggio. Antonio Nocerino crashed home the loose ball but the referee had already signalled a penalty. It made no difference, though, as Cesare Bovo put the Sicilians in front from 12 yards. Inter’s faint title hopes may have all but ended in last week’s defeat at Parma but Leonardo’s team proved against Lazio that they’re still going to fight to the end. “Nothing is over in the league, having seen the results anything can happen,” said the eternally optimistic Inter coach Leonardo. Inter looked headed for a disastrous afternoon when goalkeeper Julio Cesar brought down Mauro Zarate for a penalty midway through the first half. Although Andrea Ranocchia had got back onto the line, the referee dismissed the Brazilian shot-stopper and Zarate added injury to insult by slotting home from the spot. With a goal and man advantage, Lazio looked set to leapfrog Inter into third place courtesy of a better head-to-head record, but instead the champions showed their mettle. Wesley Sneijder curled home a sumptuous free-kick five minutes before the break and then after half-time Samuel Eto’o pounced on a slip by Giuseppe Biava to round Fernando Muslera in the Lazio goal and shoot home. The referee then evened up the numbers by showing a straight red card to Lazio captain Stefano Mauri for what seemed a minor foul on Inter’s Japanese full-back Yuto Nagatomo. Udinese failed to capitalise on Lazio’s slip as the lost 2-0 at home to Parma while Roma closed to four points off Lazio with a 1-0 victory against Chievo. At the bottom, Bari were relegated to Serie B following their 1-0 defeat at home to Sampdoria, who moved out of the drop zone due to their better headto-head record with Lecce, 4-2 losers at Genoa.—AFP

Blackpool, Newcastle in drab draw Blackpool 1

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BLACKPOOL: Blackpool’s hopes of prolonging their stay in the English Premier League suffered a setback yesterday as they could only draw 1-1 with Newcastle at Bloomfield Road. With the worst home record in the league — with nine losses suggesting the Seasiders could rename their ground Gloomfield Road — the hosts were driven on by the knowledge that anything less than a win would leave them perched perilously on the edge of the drop zone. Newcastle themselves arrived having only managed two of their past 13 games since the departure of Andy Carroll to Liverpool although their goalless draw in midweek at home to champions-elect Manchester United had gone some way to lifting morale on Tyneside. And the visitors drew first blood when Peter Lovenkrands, set up by Joey Barton, put Newcastle ahead in the 17th minute. But fit again skipper Charlie Adam, returning from a foot injury, helped get the hosts out of jail as from his inswinging corner DJ Campbell equalised, bundling in from close range just after

the half hour mark. That galvanised Blackpool, just one win now in 14 matches, desperate to avoid a first home loss to the Magpies since April 1971. That year the Seasiders finished bottom and only ended their long exile outside the top flight by gaining promotion via last season’s playoffs. Blackpool piled the pressure on after the break, Adam hitting the woodwork with stand-in keeper Tim Krul beaten in the 65th minute. With Newcastle offering little creative threat after the break and seemingly content to hold on for a point it was Ian Holloway’s hosts, driven on by Adam and fellow midfield dynamo David Vaughan, returning after a hip problem, who were increasingly running the show. Newcastle had welcomed back skipper Kevin Nolan after a two-match suspension, but he had one of his quieter games as the initiative remained for the most part with Blackpool. Only some poor finishing and another impressive showing in the Newcastle goal from Tim Krul, who impressed in midweek against Manchester United and who deputised once again in place of the injured Steve Harper, prevented Blackpool from securing only a fifth home win as they allowed two precious points to slip away. With four games remaining they are just one goal better off than Wigan, who currently fill the third and final relegation slot.—AFP

MADRID: Real Madrid followed its Copa del Rey victory with a 6-3 drubbing of third-place Valencia while Lionel Messi’s 50th goal helped Barcelona beat Osasuna 2-0 yesterday to remain on course for a third straight Spanish league title. Gonzalo Higuain scored a hat trick, Kaka scored twice and Karim Benzema added to the tally as Madrid returned to Mestalla Stadium three days after hoisting its 18th domestic cup and first trophy in nearly three years with a 1-0 extra-time victory over Barcelona. Madrid became the first visiting team to notch six goals at the Mestalla to maintain pressure on Barcelona, which failed to sparkle but did enough to stretch its unbeaten league run to 31 games thanks to goals either side of the half from David Villa and Messi. Spain striker Villa scored his 18th of the season and first in 12 games in the 24th minute after stabbing home Jeffren Suarez’s perfectly curled cross at the far post. Messi, who replaced Villa in the 58th, rolled home his league-leading 31st goal with three minutes to play to become the first Spanish league player to reach the half century mark in a season. Barcelona maintained its eight-point advantage over Madrid with just five games to play. Like Madrid, Barcelona opted for a team made up mostly of regular substitutes after Wednesday’s grueling final. The Spanish rivals are playing four times in 18 days and meet again on Wednesday for the first leg of their Champions League semifinal. “It’s a competition we’re not favored to win so after winning a trophy the team won well by playing spectacular football,” Madrid coach Jose Mourinho said. “We can finish off the season strongly with the feeling that we can win at any ground. “Now let Barca win the league on points because we’re not going to gift it to them.” Goalkeeper Iker

SPAIN: Real Madrid’s Gonzalo Higuain from Argentina celebrates after scoring against Valencia during a Spanish La Liga soccer match. —AP Casillas and defender Ricardo Carvalho were the only holdovers in Madrid’s starting 11 and Valencia’s players adhered to tradition and honored the cup champion with a passage of honor as the teams entered the field. Madrid showed none of the bruising, physical play that carried it to victory over Barcelona as Benzema scored a deserved opener in the 23rd minute. The France striker patiently picked his spot between defender Markus Stankevisius and the near post after goalkeeper Vicente Guaita was caught out for failing to intercept Higuain’s cross. Higuain intercepted Jeremy Mathieu’s nervous back pass to slide the ball under Guaita in the 31st for his first goal since November. The Argentina striker — who missed four months after back surgery — found Kaka inside the box for the third in the 39th. Brazil playmaker

Kaka returned the favor four minutes later as he spotted Higuain, who scored his 10th league goal from a near identical play. Kaka again found Higuain with a short pass in the 53rd for the Argentine to secure his hat trick, and the Brazilian answered Roberto Soldado’s goal on the hour mark with an individual effort in the 62nd. Mourinho introduced regulars Cristiano Ronaldo and Xabi Alonso late but, with the game already out of reach, Valencia managed to improve the scoreline as Juanma Mata found Brazilian striker Jonas to slot home in the 80th before Jordi Alba added the host’s third goal with five minutes left. Mourinho was tired of talking about Barcelona, with which Madrid drew 1-1 in the first of its “clasico” marathon. “I’ll think about that game on Monday,” the Portuguese coach

said. “Football is now over for me this weekend.” Madrid, which is 17 points better than Valencia, had the record for biggest victory at the Mestalla with a 5-1 victory during the 2007-08 season. Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola held over four players in his starting 11 mostly due to injuries and a much shorter bench then Madrid’s. Defender Gerard Pique watched from the stands accompanied by pop singer and girlfriend Shakira. The Catalan side failed to show its usual verve with the patchwork of players but Jeffren’s and Villa’s understanding was apparent for the opener at the Camp Nou. Andres Iniesta and Xavier Hernandez also entered in the second half with the latter in after defender Gabriel Milito looked to have injured his leg. Until Messi sealed the victory, the three made little impact.—AP

Albion dent Spurs’ push for top four Tottenham 2

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LONDON: Tottenham’s bid to overhaul Manchester City in the race for the Champions League suffered a blow as West Bromwich Albion snatched a 2-2 draw at White Hart Lane yesterday. Harry Redknapp’s side could have moved up to fourth in the Premier League table with a win over the Baggies. However, Simon Cox’s late equaliser for the visitors leaves Spurs one point behind City, who can increase that lead when they play Blackburn tomorrow. After a fairytale run in the Champions League, Spurs are desperate to take part in the competition again next season, but their hopes are dwindling after this result. They went into the game on a high after showing tremendous character to come back from 3-1 down to draw 3-3 with Arsenal in their last match. But, despite their ambitions of a top four finish, Spurs kicked off with a record of one win in their last six matches. Since Roy Hodgson replaced Roberto Di Matteo as Albion boss in February, he has steadied the ship so well that the team are virtually assured of their survival in the Premier League. Hodgson has to take the credit for the Baggies’ revival yet striker Peter Odemwingie has also been instrumental. He proved to be a pivotal figure once more as he capitalised on a slip-up by Benoit Assou-Ekotto to curl past Heurelho Gomes in the fifth minute. It was an excellent counter-attacking move by West Brom and a pass from Carlos Vela to Odemwingie was crucial. There was more bad news for Tottenham as Assou-Ekotto suffered a groin strain trying to stop the Nigeria international and had to be substituted. Tottenham pressed for an equaliser and they came close to getting it when William Gallas headed over from Rafael van der Vaart’s 17th minute free-kick. Yet they did pull level 10 minutes later. This time West Brom were caught unaware as Chris Brunt failed to clear the ball. His error allowed Roman Pavlyuchenko to hammer home from the edge of the box. It was a well-taken finish from the Russian striker, who had not scored since March 6. After the break, Odemwingie thought he had given West Brom the lead once again when he connected with Nicky Shorey’s cross. But the striker was denied by an excellent fingertip save by Gomes. Spurs were struggling to find a way through a resilient West Brom midfield, despite all the excellent work by the impressive Sandro. Aaron Lennon was introduced to add more pace yet it was Defoe who scored the next goal in the 67th minute. The striker netted his 100th Premier League goal with a fine low finish from the edge of the box. There was still time for another twist as substitute Cox curled home from the edge of the box with only nine minutes remaining. —AFP

GERMANY: Moenchengladbach’s Mohamadou Idrissou of Cameroon (left) celebrates with Marco Reus on his back after scoring during the German First Division Bundesliga soccer match. —AP

’Gladbach stun Dortmund STUTTGART: Relegation-threatened Borussia Moenchengladbach shocked leaders Dortmund 1-0 yesterday to ensure a tense finale to the Bundesliga title race. With second-placed Bayer Leverkusen winning 2-1 at home to Hoffenheim earlier in the day, Dortmund’s lead has now been cut to five points with three games left before the season ends on May 14. The title race will now come down to the next few weeks with Dortmund playing Nuremberg yesterday, Bremen in a fortnight and finishing against Eintracht Frankfurt. Leverkusen are at Cologne yesterday, then host Hamburg and finish against Freiburg. ‘Gladbach, meanwhile, climbed off the bottom of the table for the first time since November thanks to Cameroon striker Mohamadou Idrissou’s first half winner. Bayern Munich’s hopes of playing in the Champions League next season remain on a knifeedge after they needed a last-gasp goal to secure a 11 draw at struggling Eintracht Frankfurt. After Hanover 96 leapfrogged them with a 3-1 win at Freiburg on Thursday, Bayern failed to reclaim third spot which leaves them out of the places for Europe’s top domestic competiton with three games left. Frankfurt midfielder Sebastian Rode put his side ahead in the 54th minute. Bayern were furious when a late call for a penalty was turned down after US midfielder Ricardo Clark appearered to handle the ball in the area. But the referee did point to the spot after Czech striker Martin Fenin fouled Luiz Gustavo and the league’s top-scorer Mario Gomez blasted home the spot kick in the 89th minute to secure a share of the points for the struggling German giants. The draw left Frankfurt just above the relegation zone in 15th-but with a five-point cushion-while Bayern are fourth, a point behind Hanover. “We are very disappointed,” said Bayern caretaker coach Andries Jonker. “In this situation, we simply had to win and when you travel to a relegation candidate like Frankfurt, you have to take three points. “We really raised our game in the last 20 minutes to force the draw, but overall we had no right to claim three points.” Schalke 04’s hopes of a morale-boosting win before

Tuesday’s Champions League semi-final with Manchester United were dashed in a 1-0 home defeat to Kaiserslautern. Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer, who on Wednesday told the Royal Blues he will not renew his contract which expires at the end of next season, was beaten in the 42nd minute by Srdjan Lakic. VfB Stuttgart, the 2007 champions, pulled away from the bottom three with a 2-0 win at home to Hamburg to go 13th. Werder Bremen’s 3-1 win over St Pauli means they are almost certain to stay up. The defeat left St Pauli at the bottom of the table on goal difference behind ‘Gladbach and VfL Wolfsburg who also have 29 points each.—AFP

Matches on TV (Local Timings)

English Premier League Bolton v Arsenal Abu Dhabi Sports HD 3 Abu Dhabi Sports HD 5

18:00

Spanish League Racing v Malaga Al Jazeera Sport +9

18:00

Hercules v Deportivo Al Jazeera Sport 1 HD

18:00

Sporting Gijon v Espanyol 18:00 Al Jazeera Sport +6 Mallorca v Getafe Al Jazeera Sport +5

18:00

Atletico v Levante Al Jazeera Sport +2 Al Jazeera Sport 2 HD

20:00

Sevilla v Villarreal Al Jazeera Sport +2 Al Jazeera Sport 2 HD

22:00


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Soccer results/standings English Premier League results Aston Villa 1 (Bent 43) Stoke 1 (Jones 20); Blackpool 1 (Campbell 32) Newcastle 1 (Lovenkrands 17); Chelsea 3 (Lampard 44, Torres 84, Malouda 90) West Ham 0; Liverpool 5 (Rodriguez 7, 66, 73, Kuyt 23, Cole 86) Birmingham 0; Manchester Utd 1 (Hernandez 83) Everton 0; Sunderland 4 (Gyan 55, Henderson 66, 77, Sessegnon 73-pen) Wigan 2 (Diame 52, Di Santo 90); Tottenham 2 (Pavlyuchenko 27, Defoe 66) West Bromwich 2 (Odemwingie 5, Cox 81); Wolverhampton 1 (Fletcher 22) Fulham 1 (Johnson 80) Playing today Bolton v Arsenal Playing tomorrow Blackburn v Manchester City English Football League results Championship Cardiff 2 QPR 2; Derby 2 Burnley 4; Hull 2 Middlesbrough 4; Millwall 4 Preston 0; Portsmouth 0 Swansea 0; Sheffield Utd 3 Bristol City 2; Watford 1 Barnsley 0. Played Friday Coventry 1 Scunthorpe 1; Doncaster 0 Crystal Palace 0; Leeds 0 Reading 0; Nottingham Forest 3 Leicester 2. Played Thursday Ipswich 1 Norwich 5 Division One: Brighton 1 Southampton 2; Bristol Rovers 2 Charlton 2; Rochdale 2 Carlisle 3; Swindon 1 Notts County 2; Walsall 1 Sheffield Wednesday 1; Yeovil 2 Bournemouth 2. Played Friday Brentford 1 Colchester 1; Dagenham and Redbridge 0 Plymouth 1; Exeter 2 Oldham 0; Hartlepool 1 Tranmere 1; Leyton Orient 2 Peterborough 1; Milton Keynes Dons 1 Huddersfield 3. Division Two: Accrington Stanley 3 Bradford 0; Aldershot 1 Burton 2; Cheltenham 0 Macclesfield 1; Gillingham 2 Barnet 4; Hereford 0 Shrewsbury 2; Oxford 0 Chesterfield 0; Port Vale 1 Stockport 2. Played Friday Bury 1 Lincoln 0; Crewe 2 Morecambe 1; Northampton 2 Rotherham 2; Southend 1 Stevenage 0; Torquay 0 Wycombe 0.

Playing tomorrow: Hamilton v Aberdeen; St Johnstone v Inverness CT. Scottish Football League results First Division: Dunfermline 2 Raith 1; Partick 2 Morton 0; Queen of the South 2 Cowdenbeath 2; Ross County 0 Dundee 1; Stirling 1 Falkirk 2. Second Division: Airdrie 2 Livingston 4; Alloa 1 Stenhousemuir 2; Brechin 0 Forfar 1; Dumbarton 1 Ayr 2; Peterhead 0 East Fife 2. Third Division: Arbroath 4 Montrose 1; Berwick 1 Clyde 1; East Stirlingshire 2 Elgin 1; Queen’s Park 2 Albion 1; Stranraer 1 Annan 1. Spanish League results Valencia 3 (Soldado 60, Jonas 80, Alba 85) Real Madrid 6 (Benzema 23, Higuain 31, 42, 53, Kaka 39, 62). Barcelona 2 (Villa 24, Messi 87) Osasuna 0 Playing later Barcelona v Osasuna; Athletic Bilbao v Real Sociedad Playing today Sporting Gijon v Espanyol; Hercules v Deportivo La Coruna; Racing Santander v Malaga; Real Mallorca v Getafe; Atletico Madrid v Levante; Sevilla v Villarreal. Playing tomorrow Real Zaragoza v Almeria German League result Schalke 04 0 Kaiserslautern 1 (Lakic 42); Bayer Leverkusen 2 (Kadlec 40, Vidal 51) Hoffenheim 1 (Sigurdsson 28); VfB Stuttgart 3 (Cacau 6, 88, Gentner 78) Hamburg 0; Eintracht Frankfurt 1 (Rode 54) Bayern Munich 1 (Gomez 87-pen); St. Pauli 1 (Bartels 29) Werder Bremen 3 (Thorandt 50-og, Pizarro 73, 74) Borussia M’gladbach 1 (Idrissou 35) Borussia Dortmund 0. Playing today VfL Wolfsburg v Cologne; Nuremberg v Mainz 05 Played Thursday Freiburg 1 (Rosenthal 79) Hanover 96 3 (Abdellaoue 24, Schlaudraff 31, Rausch 58)

Scottish Premier League results Dundee Utd 4 (Severin 25, Goodwillie 38, 47, Conway 49) Kilmarnock 2 (Silva 70, Pascali 87); Hearts 3 ( Thomson 26-pen, Skacel 36, Stevenson 52) Motherwell 3 (Sutton 55, 88, Hateley 59).

Italian Serie A results Roma 1 (Perrotta 4) Chievo 0; Bari 0 Sampdoria 1 (Pozzi 59); Bologna 0 Cesena 2 (Giaccherini 48, Malonga 84); Cagliari 1 (Cossu 47) Fiorentina 2 (Cerci 45, 50); Genoa 4 (Floro Flores 10, 62, Palacio 42, 54) Lecce 2 (Di Michele 3, 30); Inter Milan 2 (Sneijder 40, Eto’o 53) Lazio 1 (Zarate 24-pen); Palermo 2 (Balzaretti 38, Bovo 45-pen) Napoli 1 (Cavani 2-pen); Udinese 0 Parma 2 (Amauri 13, 90); Brescia 0 AC Milan 1 (Robinho 82).

Playing today Rangers v Celtic; Hibernian v St Mirren

Playing later Juventus v Catania

English Premier League table English Premier League table after yesterday’s matches (played, won, drawn, lost, goals for, goals against, points): Inverness CT 32 9 11 12 41 40 38 Man Utd 34 21 10 3 71 32 73 Hibernian 33 10 6 17 36 52 36 Chelsea 34 20 7 7 64 27 67 St Johnstone 33 8 10 15 18 39 34 Arsenal 33 18 10 5 66 34 64 Aberdeen 33 9 4 20 34 54 31 Man City 32 16 8 8 50 30 56 St Mirren 33 7 7 19 31 54 28 Tottenham 33 14 13 6 49 41 55 Hamilton 33 3 10 20 20 55 19 Liverpool 34 15 7 12 51 39 52 Everton 34 11 14 9 47 42 47 Scottish Football League tables Bolton 32 11 10 11 46 43 43 First Division: Newcastle 34 10 11 13 49 48 41 Dunfermline 34 18 10 6 61 31 64 Sunderland 34 10 11 13 39 49 41 Raith 34 17 9 8 47 31 60 Aston Villa 34 10 11 13 43 55 41 Falkirk 34 17 7 10 57 37 58 West Bromwich 34 10 10 14 49 64 40 Partick 34 11 11 12 39 36 44 Fulham 33 8 15 10 37 36 39 Morton 34 11 10 13 37 38 43 Stoke 33 11 6 16 40 43 39 Q of South 33 12 7 14 50 52 43 Birmingham 34 8 14 12 34 51 38 Dundee 34 18 12 4 51 29 41 Blackburn 33 9 8 16 40 54 35 Ross County 33 6 14 13 25 34 32 Blackpool 34 9 7 18 48 70 34 Cowdenbeath 34 8 8 18 40 69 32 Wigan 34 7 13 14 34 57 34 Stirling 34 3 8 23 29 79 17 W’hampton 33 9 6 18 37 57 33 - relegated West Ham 34 7 11 16 39 61 32 Note: Dundee deducted 25 points for going into administration. English Football League tables Championship: Second Division: QPR 43 23 15 5 67 29 84 Livingston 34 24 6 4 75 31 78 Norwich 43 21 14 8 77 54 77 - promoted as champions Cardiff 43 22 10 11 74 50 76 Ayr 34 17 5 12 59 53 56 Reading 43 19 16 8 73 47 73 Forfar 34 16 7 11 48 47 55 Swansea 43 21 8 14 59 41 71 Brechin 34 13 12 9 59 44 51 Nottingham 43 17 15 11 58 47 66 East Fife 34 13 9 12 72 57 48 Leeds 43 17 15 11 78 68 66 Airdrie Utd 34 13 8 13 49 55 47 Burnley 43 18 12 13 63 58 66 Dumbarton 34 11 5 18 51 69 38 Millwall 43 17 13 13 60 44 64 Alloa 34 9 9 16 47 65 36 Hull 43 16 15 12 50 46 63 Stenhousemuir 34 9 8 17 42 56 35 Watford 43 16 13 14 74 62 61 Peterhead 34 5 11 18 46 71 26 Leicester 43 17 9 17 67 66 60 - relegated Ipswich 43 17 8 18 57 59 59 Portsmouth 43 15 11 17 51 57 56 Third Division: Bristol City 43 15 9 19 55 62 54 Arbroath 34 20 6 8 77 53 66 Coventry 43 14 11 18 51 54 53 - promoted as champions M’brough 43 14 11 18 60 67 53 Albion 34 16 9 9 53 38 57 Barnsley 43 13 12 18 50 62 51 Annan Athletic 34 15 11 8 55 43 56 Derby 43 13 10 20 55 64 49 Stranraer 34 14 12 8 69 56 54 Doncaster 43 11 13 19 52 75 46 Queens Park 34 16 5 13 51 42 53 Crystal 43 11 11 21 42 65 44 Berwick 34 12 12 10 58 51 48 Scunthorpe 43 12 5 26 40 79 41 Elgin 33 11 6 16 45 57 39 Preston 43 9 12 22 50 75 39 Montrose 34 9 7 18 43 57 34 Sheffield Utd 43 10 8 25 39 71 38 East Stirling 34 9 4 21 31 59 31 Clyde 33 7 8 18 36 62 29 Division One: Brighton 43 28 9 6 81 35 93 Spanish League table - promoted as champions Barcelona 33 28 4 1 88 17 88 Southampton 42 24 8 10 75 36 80 Real Madrid 33 25 5 3 79 26 80 Huddersfield 43 23 11 9 68 41 80 Valencia 33 19 6 8 57 41 63 Peterborough 43 22 8 13 97 71 74 Villarreal 32 17 6 9 49 36 57 Keynes Dons 43 21 8 14 63 57 71 Athletic Bilbao 32 15 3 14 49 46 48 Bournemouth 43 18 13 12 70 49 67 Sevilla 32 13 7 12 48 47 46 Rochdale 43 17 13 13 58 49 64 Atletico Madrid 32 13 7 12 50 43 46 Leyton Orient 43 17 13 13 66 58 64 Espanyol 32 14 3 15 40 45 45 Exeter 43 18 10 15 63 68 64 Levante 32 12 6 14 36 42 42 Carlisle 43 16 11 16 60 56 59 Mallorca 32 11 6 15 33 45 39 Brentford 43 17 8 18 50 54 59 Sporting Gijon 32 9 11 12 30 37 38 Colchester 43 15 13 15 52 57 58 Real Sociedad 32 12 2 18 42 55 38 Charlton 43 14 13 16 59 63 55 Deportivo 32 9 11 12 27 40 38 Hartlepool 43 15 10 18 45 61 55 Getafe 32 10 7 15 43 51 37 Sheffield Wed 43 15 9 19 62 63 54 Santander 32 9 10 13 31 47 37 Oldham 43 12 16 15 49 57 52 Osasuna 33 9 8 16 37 41 35 Yeovil 43 14 10 19 48 62 52 Malaga 32 9 6 17 42 62 33 Tranmere 43 13 11 19 46 58 50 Zaragoza 32 8 9 15 31 45 33 Notts County 43 14 6 23 43 56 48 Hercules 32 8 6 18 29 50 30 D & Redbridge 43 11 11 21 48 63 44 Almeria 32 5 11 16 32 57 26 Walsall 43 11 11 21 52 71 44 Bristol Rovers 43 11 11 21 45 77 44 German League table Plymouth 42 14 7 21 48 66 39 Borussia Dortmund 31 21 6 4 62 19 69 Swindon 43 8 14 21 47 67 38 Bayer Leverkusen 31 19 7 5 62 41 64 Note: Plymouth deducted 10 points for going into Hanover 31 18 3 10 45 41 57 administration. Bayern Munich 31 16 8 7 67 37 56 Mainz 30 15 3 12 44 37 48 League Two: Nuremberg 30 13 7 10 45 38 46 Chesterfield 43 23 13 7 80 47 82 Hamburg 31 12 7 12 44 48 43 - promoted Freiburg 31 12 5 14 39 47 41 Bury 43 22 11 10 75 42 77 Hoffenheim 31 10 10 11 46 44 40 Shrewsbury 43 20 12 11 68 49 72 Schalke 31 11 7 13 35 35 40 Wycombe 43 19 14 10 61 48 71 Werder Bremen 31 9 11 11 43 57 38 Accrington 43 17 17 9 69 53 68 Kaiserslautern 31 10 7 14 41 48 37 Torquay 43 17 16 10 70 47 66 VfB Stuttgart 31 10 6 15 55 55 36 Stevenage 43 17 14 12 58 40 65 Cologne 30 10 5 15 40 57 35 Gillingham 43 16 17 10 63 50 65 Frankfurt 31 9 7 15 30 41 34 Rotherham 43 16 14 13 70 56 62 Wolfsburg 30 6 11 13 34 44 29 Port Vale 43 16 14 13 47 45 62 M’gladbach 31 8 5 18 44 64 29 Crewe 43 16 11 16 80 62 59 St. Pauli 31 8 5 18 33 56 29 Southend 43 16 11 16 60 52 59 Oxford Utd 43 16 11 16 54 54 59 Italian Serie A table Aldershot 43 13 18 12 48 50 57 AC Milan 34 22 8 4 60 23 74 Morecambe 43 13 11 19 50 63 50 Inter Milan 34 20 6 8 60 38 66 Macclesfield 43 13 11 19 54 70 50 Napoli 34 20 5 9 54 34 65 Burton Albion 43 12 12 19 51 65 48 Lazio 34 18 6 10 46 32 60 Cheltenham 43 12 12 19 53 75 48 Udinese 34 18 5 11 59 37 59 Bradford 43 14 6 23 39 61 48 Roma 34 16 8 10 52 47 56 Hereford 43 12 14 17 47 63 47 Juventus 33 14 10 9 50 40 52 Lincoln City 43 13 8 22 44 74 47 Palermo 34 15 5 14 52 55 50 Northampton 43 9 18 16 57 68 45 Fiorentina 34 11 13 10 40 36 46 Barnet 43 11 11 21 54 72 44 Genoa 34 12 9 13 38 39 45 Stockport 43 9 12 22 45 91 39 Cagliari 34 12 8 14 42 42 44 Bologna 34 11 10 13 34 46 40 Note: Torquay deducted one point for fielding an ineliChievo 34 9 12 13 32 35 39 gible player; Hereford deducted three points for fieldParma 34 9 11 14 34 45 38 ing an ineligible player. Cesena 34 9 10 15 32 45 37 Catania 33 9 9 15 31 45 36 Scottish Premier League table Sampdoria 34 8 11 15 27 39 35 Rangers 33 26 2 5 72 28 80 Lecce 34 9 8 17 40 60 35 Celtic 32 25 4 3 70 18 79 Brescia 34 7 9 18 28 44 30 Hearts 34 18 8 8 50 34 62 Bari 34 4 9 21 20 49 21 Dundee Utd 34 15 10 9 48 43 55 Note: Bologna deducted three points for unpaid taxes Kilmarnock 34 13 8 13 49 45 47 and player salaries Motherwell 34 13 6 15 39 46 45

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S P ORT S Fulham keep Wolves in relegation pack Wolves 1

Fulham 1

LONDON: Andy Johnson stopped Wolverhampton escaping the relegation zone with a late equaliser for Fulham in a 1-1 draw at Molineux yesterday. The substitute striker scored for the visitors in the 80th minute, just seconds after coming on the pitch, to cancel out S cotland for ward Steven Fletcher’s 22nd-minute header for the hosts. Wolves would have moved out of the bottom three with a vic tor y. Thir teenth-placed Fulham are five points clear of the drop zone on 39 points, while Wolves are in deep trouble on 32. Cottagers boss M ark Hughes watched the end of the match from the stands after reacting angrily to a booking. His Fulham side started brightly, with Carlos Salcido bringing a good save out of the hosts’ goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey. Moussa Dembele then tried a shot from distance that flew over before USA midfielder Clint Dempsey missed two good chances for the Cottagers. Wolves punished them for the misses when Fletcher jumped to head in a cross from captain K arl Henr y. The hosts thought they had a penalty when Richard Stearman tumbled in the box under pressure from Dempsey, but he was ruled offside in any case. Jamie O’Hara was guilty of a wild miss but hit the post in first-half stoppage time after turning in the penalty box. After the break, former Barcelona striker Eidur Gudjohnsen, making his first Fulham start, broke into the box but scooped his shot over the crossbar. When Brede Hangeland was booked in the 56th minute for a challenge on Fletcher, Hughes was incensed and referee Michael Oliver sent him to the stands for his remonstrations with the officials. Gudjohnsen set up Dempsey for a chance before being replaced by Bobby Zamora, while Johnson came on for Dempsey in the 79th minute. The latter substitution had an instant impact, with Zamora playing a part. Zamora beat Christophe Berra to the ball in penalty box and it broke for Johnson, who fired past Hennessey to salvage a point for the west London side. —AFP

LONDON: Liverpool’s Portuguese midfielder Raul Meireles (right) vies with Birmingham City’s English defender Roger Johnson (left) during the English Premier League football match. —AFP

Rodriguez’s hat-trick leads Liverpool romp Liverpool 5

Birmingham 0 LIVERPOOL: Maxi Rodriguez hit a brilliant hattrick to fire Liverpool to an emphatic 5-0 victory against Birmingham at Anfield yesterday. Rodriguez’s impressive early opener was followed by Dirk Kuyt’s seventh goal in his past six Premier League games to set Liverpool on their way. Rodriguez scored two more after the break and a late fifth from Joe Cole gave Liverpool their biggest victory since Kenny Dalglish returned as manager. The home side were without injured duo Fabio Aurelio and Andy Carroll who both pulled up with complaints in the 1-1 draw with Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium last Monday. But the way Liverpool turned on the style showed how spirited and confident they have become since Dalglish returned as manager in January. Anfield legend Dalglish only has the job until the end of the season but it only seems a matter of time until he is appointed as the Reds manager on a full-time basis. Liverpool’s style and attacking mentality since Dalglish returned has revitalised a season that appeared to be dead and buried at Christmas and this fine victory ensured that only Manchester United and Chelsea have gained more points than the Reds in the time that Dalglish has been back. Rodriguez gave Liverpool an early lead as Ben Foster failed to hold on to a Jay Spearing blast and he was on hand to pounce from close range and

clip past the Birmingham goalkeeper. Birmingham attempted to get back into the game but they had little success against a Liverpool backline superbly marshalled by Jamie Carragher and Martin Skrtel. And as the half progressed, Liverpool did get on top and began controlling the game as their dominant midfield over-ran the visitors. A second goal always felt inevitable and so it proved when Luis Suarez showed impressive power and pace to charge through on goal and although Foster made two fine quickfire saves, the ball eventually fell to Kuyt who swept in from 12 yards out. That effectively ended the game as a contest as Birmingham never showed the poise or adventure required to get back into the game, although they were not helped when Foster had to go off before the break with an injury. Liverpool spent the remainder of the first half pressing ever harder for a third goal and went close on several occasions. Dalglish’s side emphatically confirmed their superiority with 25 minutes left as they scored a fine team goal. A long ball was picked up by Suarez, who was played onside by Stephen Carr, and his run and superb cross was brilliantly volleyed home by Rodriguez. The Argentine’s amazing afternoon was not finished there either as he then grabbed the match ball as Birmingham fell to pieces at the back. His long-range shot was well stopped by Colin Doyle but the rebound fell nicely for Rodriguez and he could not miss as he tapped into an open goal to seal his hat-trick. With five minutes remaining and the game firmly in the bag, Liverpool brought Cole off the bench and he rewarded Dalglish with a fifth goal as his low shot squirmed in. —AFP

Henderson lifts Sunderland spirits plete control despite losing Phil Bardsley, Danny Welbeck and Gyan through injury. Henderson gave them a 66th-minute lead and he struck again after Stephane Sessegnon scored his first goal for the club from the penalty spot. Wigan 2 Black Cats boss Steve Bruce went into the game bemoaning the injury list he believes is the root cause of Sunderland’s recent slump. By the SUNDERLAND: England midfielder Jordan time the 26th minute had elapsed, the casualty Henderson eased Sunderland’s relegation fears as count had increased once again. his double-strike inspired a 4-2 win over fellow Full-back Bardsley was carried off the field on a strugglers Wigan yesterday. stretcher having been given oxygen and taken Henderson, 20, has been in poor form since straight to hospital after an early clash of heads earning his first England cap in a friendly against with team-mate Nedum Onuoha. France in November, but he scored twice in the But if there was no legislating for Bardsley’s second half as the Black Cats came from behind misfortune, Welbeck’s departure was depressingto win for the first time in 10 league games and ly predictable with the striker having spent the plunge Wigan back into the relegation zone. last week battling a hamstring problem before Although Mohamed Diame put Wigan ahead being declared fit to start. early in the second half, Roberto Martinez’s side Diame put Wigan ahead in the 52nd minute crumbled after that. when he took Charles N’Zogbia’s pass and Ghana striker Asamoah Gyan levelled with a smashed a 25-yard drive past Mignolet. That lead close-range header and Sunderland took com- lasted just three minutes as the Black Cats got themselves back into the game. Steed Malbranque’s cross was perfectly weighted for Gyan to rise and power home a close-range header. Gyan’s joy was shortlived as he left the field on a stretcher within nine minutes having pulled up clutching his hamstring. The resulting reshuffle saw Sessegnon pushed up front, but it was local boy Henderson who fired his side in front for the first time when he controlled substitute Sulley Muntari’s cross on his chest before drilling a left-foot half-volley into the top corner. Sessegnon got his big chance with 17 minutes remaining when he was barged to the ground by defender Antolin Alcaraz inside the penalty area and referee Lee Probert pointed to the spot. The Benin international sent Ali Al Habsi the wrong way to wrap up the win, although he was not finished for the afternoon. Four minutes later, he picked out Henderson in the space inside the box and the youngster finLONDON: Sunderland’s captain Lee Cattermole (right) ished with aplomb once again. vies for the ball with Wigan Athletic’s Tom Cleverley (left) Substitute Franco di Santo’s lastduring their English Premier League soccer match at the minute strike provided little consolation. — AFP Stadium of Light. —AP

Bent salvages draw

Sunderland 4

Aston Villa 1

Stoke 1

LONDON: Aston Villa manager Gerard Houllier was given something to cheer from his hospital bed as Darren Bent’s goal salvaged a 1-1 draw at home to FA Cup finalists Stoke yesterday. The French manager, who was rushed to hospital with chest pains on Wednesday, was not well enough to take his place at Villa Park to see the England striker continue his excellent run of form. Trinidad and Tobago striker Kenwyne Jones put the visitors ahead with a 20thminute header, but Bent equalised for the Villains on 43 minutes. Stoke had lost their last seven away games in the English Premier League. They had not won on their travels in the league this year, their last victory on the road coming in a 2-0 win at Blackburn on December 26. But buoyed up by their 5-0 thrashing of Bolton in last Sunday’s FA Cup semifinal, setting up a final against Manchester City, the Staffordshire side ended their miserable away run with a creditable draw. The result left Villa 11th in the Premier League table on 41 points, two points ahead of Stoke in 14th place. The Potters are five points clear of the relegation zone. Villa’s assistant boss Gary McAllister, deputising for Houllier-a heart attack victim while managing Liverpool-named an unchanged side. Stoke manager Tony Pulis made one change, recalling Asmir Begovic in goal. Villa goalkeeper Brad Friedel had to be alert to tip over an early half-volley from Robert Huth, then produced a fine reflex dave to keep out a Jones header from a corner. Indeed the Potters had six corners in three minutes but the Villa defence held out under pressure. However, they were soon undone by the familiar danger of a Rory Delap long throw. —AFP


Liverpool slam five past Birmingham

Jose first Indian player to get WNBA tryouts

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Real follow Cup win with 6-3 drubbing of Valencia Page 18

United march towards title Man United 1

Everton 0

LONDON: Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney (right) fights for the ball against Everton’s Diniyar Bilyaletdinov during their English Premier League soccer match at Old Trafford Stadium. —AP

Torres end Chelsea goal drought Chelsea 3

West Ham 0

LONDON: Fernando Torres scored his first Chelsea goal in his 14th appearance for the club as Carlo Ancelotti’s side secured a 3-0 victory over West Ham to remain six points behind Premier League leaders Manchester

United. Frank Lampard had given the reigning champions a 44th minute lead and, after Torres broke his duck, Florent Malouda completed the win with a stoppage time strike at Stamford Bridge. It was Torres’s goal that triggered the loudest cheers as the Spaniard finally found the net for the first time after 733 minutes of action following his British record £50 million transfer from Liverpool in January. The striker had again been left on the bench but his impact when he appeared as a 76th minute substitute

ensured West Ham’s chances of clawing their way back into the game disappeared and with it their hopes of lifting themselves off the foot of the table. The games played earlier in the day had been kind to neither team with United’s victory over Everton denting Chelsea’s hopes of stepping up their title challenge and Wolves’ home draw with Fulham sending West Ham bottom. The Hammers were also forced to come into this game without their two senior players after injuries ruled

out Matthew Upson and Scott Parker. Attention immediately before kick-off focused on the pre-match handshake with Chelsea captain John Terry and West Ham full back Wayne Bridge due to confront each other for only the second time since last February’s allegations about the nature of the relationship between Terry and Bridge’s former partner. Once again the two players avoided contact and the sideshow over, Chelsea reacted immediately by creating the first opening of the game in the second minute.—AFP

MANCHESTER: Manchester United closed in on a record 19th league title after Javier Hernandez struck in the final minutes to earn a vital 1-0 win over Everton yesterday. Tim Howard looked to have earned Everton a hard-earned point after a string of fine saves against his former club at Old Trafford. But Everton could not stop Mexican striker Hernandez heading home in the 83rd minute as United opened up a ninepoint lead at the top of the Premier League table. United will now win the title if they win their next two matches against Arsenal and Chelsea. Sir Alex Ferguson clearly had one eye on next week’s Champions Leage game in Germany as Patrice Evra and Nemanja Vidic sat out the game ahead of the semi-final first leg at Schalke. Everton’s last win at Old Trafford was back in 1992, but the Merseyside club arrived at Old Trafford with an outside chance of finishing fifth in the table after winning five of their previous seven games. And despite the abence of key players Tim Cahill and Mikel Arteta from the starting line-up, the visitors settled quickly. Leon Osman was allowed space on the edge of the area to test Edwin van der Sar in the eighth minute, but it was Van der Sar’s opposite number who was responsible for Everton going in goalless at half time. The United States international produced two fine saves to deny Hernandez in the space of six minutes. Hernandez looked certain to increase his goal tally to 19 from

an acute angle before the Everton stopper turned the ball behind in the 25th minute. And Howard again frustrated the United forward by keeping out his first time shot after the move of the game involving Antonio Valencia and Wayne Rooney. Everton’s bright start was a distant memory as United continued to dominate yet the hosts struggled to find the all important breakthrough. Hernandez went from being his side’s most dangerous attacking threat to becoming Everton’s 38th minute savior. After Valencia had got the better of leftback Leighton Baines, the United winger teed up Nani, whose low drive was heading for the corner of the net before it was deflected wide by Hernandez. Everton manager David Moyes responded to his team’s first half showing by making a double change at the start of the second-half. Cahill, who has been struggling with injury, was introduced along with striker Victor Anichebe in place of the ineffective Jermaine Beckford and Diniyar Bilyaletdinov. And the substitutions seemed to have an immediate impact. Anichebe went sprawling after a nudge by Ferdinand inside the United penalty area but referee Peter Walton waved away Everton’s shouts for a penalty. And Jack Rodwell showed why Manchester United are monitoring his progress as the young midfielder forced a great 69th minute save from Van der Sar with a low 20-yard drive which took a slight deflection. But after Sylvain Distin almost put through his own net, United took a huge stride towards claiming another Premier League crown double when Hernandez pounced from close range after connecting with Valencia’s cross—AFP


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KSE forges ahead amid profit-taking

New Mercedes-Benz CLS arrives in Kuwait

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JAPAN: A Japanese man watches a construction machine dismantling a house, left, in the area devastated by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in the port town of Kesennuma, Iwate Prefecture, Japan.—AP

Japan rebuilding slows on careful searching Damaged neighborhoods hazardous maze of tottering buildings KESENNUMA, Japan: Sakuji Funayama watched intently as a giant steel claw tore chunks off the remains of his two-story home, ripped open like a dollhouse by last month’s tsunami and washed up onto a pile of debris. Suddenly, he spied something, waved his arms and pointed. The claw froze and a half dozen construction workers scrambled into the wreckage, emerging a few minutes later with a battered backpack that belonged to Funayama’s son, who moved away years ago. He set it off to the side. The race to clear the destruction from Japan’s March 11 earthquake and tsunami so rebuilding can begin is a delicate process, with workers taking precautions not to damage bodies buried in

the rubble. But the work has been further slowed by clearance crews who feel duty bound to help survivors search the rubble for lost possessions, precious mementos of their former lives. “Everyone has been very nice. They all stop whenever we see anything,” the 77-year-old Funayama said. With more than 10,000 people missing or suspected dead across Japan’s eastern coast, demolition crews and teams of soldiers are trying to search through and clear the rotting debris summer’s heat and humidity begin in about a month. More than 90,000 homes were destroyed or heavily damaged in the disasters, according to police. Entire towns were smashed into miles of wreckage, and the government estimates that 250 square

ALAFCO net profit rises to KD 25.4m in H1of 2011 KUWAIT: ALAFCO Aviation Lease and Finance Company released its financial results for the first half of the current fiscal year ended 31 March 2011. Net profits rose five times to KD 25.4 million versus KD 5 million in the previous year. Earnings per share increased five-fold to 32.63 fils as compared to 6.23 fils in the previous year. Total revenue during the first half jumped 39% to KD 25.9 million against KD 18.6 million earned during the same period last year. The company’s total assets increased by 25% to KD 574.3 million and shareholders’ equity increased by 22% to KD 121.7 million during the period. Chairman and CEO, Ahmad A Alzabin, said in a statement released to the press after a meeting of the Board of Directors that the results were in line with projections. The ALAFCO Chairman and CEO marked increase in profit in the first Ahmad A Alzabin half as compared to last year is attributed to amendments to some contracts that contributed additional onetime revenue of around KD 20 million. Alzabin said the company met its aircraft delivery obligations to airline customers during the first half by delivering on schedule two Airbus A320-200 aircraft to Saudi Arabian Airlines, three new Boeing B737-800 aircraft to Ethiopian Airlines and two new Boeing B737-800 aircraft to Okay Airways in China. The aircraft were acquired with financing from local and international banks in the amount of $266 million. He also said the company plans to increase the size of its leased aircraft portfolio to 100 by 2015 and continue its expansion regionally and globally. Alzabin said he has confidence in the company’s ability to achieve its goals and deliver high returns to the shareholders. ALAFCO is a Kuwait-based aircraft leasing company and has been listed on the Kuwait Stock Exchange since October 2006. The company leases Airbus and Boeing aircraft to various airlines in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East.

miles (650 sq. kilometers) were flooded along the coast. The damaged neighborhoods are a hazardous maze of tottering buildings, twisted metal and puddles of murky liquid. Heavy wrecking equipment is in constant use and large dump trucks race along the roads. Officials said it could take a year to remove the debris, which will be moved to a site for processing and disposal, a project that will take an additional two years. Cleanup crews have tried to respect the feelings of the survivors by telling them when they are beginning work on their neighborhood, said a disaster management official from the Miyagi prefecture, who only gave his last name, Osamune.

“We try to notify residents whenever we can so that they can oversee the operation,” Osamune said. “They can stop the crew whenever they spot anything valuable, so that people can recover things before everything gets wiped out.” Crews also try to pick up photos and valuables they find and send them to a lost-and-found center for survivors to sift through, he said. In Kesennuma, the tsunami lifted houses and buildings from their foundations and piled them in great heaps against inland hills. Six weeks after the disaster, teams a dozen strong work alongside cranes with claw attachments to comb through the vast expanses of rubble. Emergency worker Katsuya Sasaki said his main concern is finding bodies; he’s been told

about 1,200 people are still unaccounted for here. When a body is found, work stops completely and special teams of troops or firefighters are called in to carefully extract, cover and carry it to a waiting vehicle. “If we brought in some heavier machinery and just cleared the whole thing out, we’d be done by now,” said Sasaki, whose team has been working on the same plot for over a week, pausing throughout the day for residents to claim belongings from the wreckage. “But we’re all human beings, even if this does slow things down.” Eager to clear the wreckage but unsure of the legal implications, local governments in the disaster zone sought advice from the central government on how to proceed. Last

month, the Environmental Ministry issued guidelines saying destroyed or badly damaged homes can be cleared without their owners’ permission. But officials in hard-hit areas say that respect for those who have lost their homes come first, especially when they are looking for the bodies of lost loved ones. All along the coast, it is common to see residents wandering their former streets with masks and long sticks, poking among the debris that has yet to be carted away. Hiromitsu Iwama, an official in the local roads and parks department overseeing debris removal in coastal Natori, saw nothing wrong with this. “There are still about 1,000 bodies that haven’t been found yet here. It’s a kind of an unspoken decency,” he said. —AP

New Malaysian metropolis takes shape near Singapore JOHOR BAHRU, Malaysia: A new metropolis three times the size of neighboring Singapore is taking shape in the foothills of southern Malaysia, where officials and investors have equally huge ambitions for the city. Dust billows across the horizon as sun-scorched construction crews lay roads, drainage canals, street lamps, power stations and other key installations for a development known as Iskandar Malaysia. Rolling terrain once covered with palm oil plantations and bush has been bulldozed to make way for theme parks, luxury homes, international schools, hotels, hospitals, a movie studio and a business district by 2025. In short, a new Singapore is being built in an area covering 2,217 square kilometres (887 square miles) in Johor state. Iskandar, one of five “economic growth corridors” Malaysia is developing, was launched in 2006 and will integrate existing towns, seaports and an airport with the new projects being built from scratch. But instead of pitting it as a rival to the rich city-state, Malaysia is asking Singapore investors to take part in the project. “We see ourselves as collaborating because both countries realize that in order to create more wealth and better distribution of the wealth, we need each other,” said Ismail Ibrahim, chief executive of the Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA). “Investors see Iskandar as something that is believ-

able, something that is working,” he told AFP. From his 33rd-floor office in Singapore’s financial district, Keith Martin exuded the same optimism.“It’s really positive that the momentum is picking up massively,” said Martin, chief executive of Global Capital and Development (GCD), an Abu Dhabibacked consortium tasked to develop a prime portion of Iskandar called Medini. “Our strategic advantage is to ride the wave of Singapore. Singapore is all grown up and lacking space to

build, business costs are escalating,” he said. Asia’s strong recovery from the 2008-2009 global recession and the improved bilateral ties between Singapore and Malaysia have made the environment more conducive to promote the Iskandar region to investors, analysts said. Singapore was ejected from the Malaysian federation in 1965 and ties since then were often testy, but new leaders who have emerged over the past decade have made an effort to promote coopera-

ISKANDAR: A visitor looking around a luxury home at Iskandar district in southern state of Johor Bahru. A new metropolis three times the size of neighbouring Singapore is taking shape in the foothills of southern Malaysia, where officials and investors have equally huge ambitions for the mega city.—AFP

tion and resolve irritants. Because of its size, Iskandar-which covers Johor state’s capital Johor Bahru-will be developed in phases, with plans to improve rail, sea and air connections to Singapore and facilitate easier immigration clearance. Malaysia is offering generous incentives, including corporate and personal income tax perks, 100 percent foreign ownership of businesses and unrestricted hiring of foreign “knowledge” workers. IRDA’s Ismail said investor concerns over crime in Malaysia were being addressed by a strong police presence, more guards, surveillance cameras and creative urban planning. Investor response has been encouraging so far, and the first wave of projects aimed at spurring more investment are due for completion in the next 18 months. “I’ve been there with my muddy boots on and I’ve got my construction knowledge so they can’t fool me on the progress,” Martin, a veteran of Asia’s construction business, said when asked if the development was on track. By the end of 2010, investment commitments in Iskandar totalled 69.5 billion ringgit ($23 billion), surpassing its target by 48 percent, with more than 40 percent coming from overseas, Ismail said. The US-based Chelsea Premium Outlets chain-known for nofrills suburban shops selling luxury brands at discounted prices worldwide -will open an outlet in the Iskandar region in November.—AFP


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Boubyan Bank announces KD2.1m net profit for Q1 Profit growth rate of 30% as compared to Q1 2010 KUWAIT: Boubyan Bank announced a net profit of KD 2.1 million for the 1st Q of 2011 compared to a net profit of KD 1.6 million for the 1st Q. of last year at a growth rate of 30%. Chairman of Boubyan Bank, Ibrahim Al-Qadhi, said in a press release yesterday that these results represent the Bank’s operating profits net of general and precautionary provisions totaling KD 6.8 million made to reinforce the Bank’s financial position.

Vice-Chairman and MD Adel Abdul-Wahhab Al-Majed

Chairman of Boubyan Bank Ibrahim Al-Qadhi

Al-Qadhi added that realization of such profits is a continuation of the Bank’s successful march and regaining profitability which started last year indicating that many supporting factors promote this trend; key among which is the Bank’s clear strategy and objectives, expansion through distinguished products and services, professional management team as well as the NBK’s ownership of a major share of its capital. Al-Qadhi noted that among the noticeable favorable indications is the increase of net financing income that reached KD 8.9 million for the 1st Q. of 2011 compared to KD 6.3 million in for the 1st Q. of 2010, i.e. at a growth rate of 41%, in addition to an increase in clients’ deposits, which recorded KD 1,036 million for the 1st Q. of 2011 compared to KD 714 million for the 1st Q. of 2010, i.e. at a growth rate of 45%. Meanwhile, the Vice-Chairman & MD, Adel Abdul-Wahhab Al-Majed mentioned that the Bank’s total assets as at the end of the 1st Q. of 2011 amounted to KD 1,424 million compared to KD 1,132 million as at the end of the 1st Q. of 2010, boosting up by 26%. In addition, he stated that the Bank’s total equity increased to KD 240 million compared to KD 213 million and, hence, the Bank’s Capital Adequacy Ratio boosted to 25.8% against 12%, being the minimum required ratio stipulated by the Central Bank of Kuwait. Al-Majed stressed that the evident growth in all the Bank’s main indicators during the 1st quarter of the present year proves once again its sound directions and the success of its strategic plans for expansion in the Kuwaiti market.

KFH announces 10 new winners Promotion for banking cards users ends KUWAIT: Kuwait Finance House (KFH) conducted its last monthly draw for its campaign concerning KFH’s banking cards (credit-prepaid-ATM). The campaign began in February and ended at the end of March, where it allowed clients to win every month during February and March KD 20,000 in awards after using KFH’s cards in Kuwait and overseas. The winners of the final draw are Hajer Abdul Aziz, Najah Al-Saeedi, Sabeeka Al-Weqayyan, Saad Al-Ajmi, Abdul Razzaq Al-Obaid, Salem AlBarrak, Ali Salem, Hajer Al-Sharqawi, Mohammed Al-Kandari, and Abdul Aziz Al-Ahmad. Deputy Manager of the Banking Cards Department at KFH Salem AlDoweisan stated that the new promotion campaign is another step in KFH’s policy that aims to offer best services and products for its clients, and to encourage them to take advantage of its services and products.

He stressed that the campaign managed to accomplish its objectives, which are boosting commercial business in the local market, and increase sales through tools offered in the campaign, which was positively reflected in KFH’s banking cards’ market share. Moreover, he noted that the campaign gave KFH card holders the opportunity to win KD 40,000 in awards during the past two months through using their banking cards, where each user who used his card through points of sales machines at stores and shops, had the opportunity to be a winner every month during the draw for every KD 50 purchases or its equivalent in other currencies, and then having 10 clients every month win KD 2000. He revealed that KFH will continue offering its clients innovative marketing campaigns, especially during summer.

Salem Al-Doweisan

Sheikha Nouf Salem Al Ali Al-Sabah

Al-Tijari to hold 8th Hobbyist Exhibition KUWAIT: Commercial Bank of Kuwait will organize “AlTijari 8th Hobbyist Exhibition” for CBK staff and their families during the period 28 - 30 April 2011. This move comes to confirm the Bank’s role towards community service and its communication with the different segments of society, particularly CBK staff for supporting their activities and enhancing their various hobbies. On this occasion, Sheikha Nouf Salem Al Ali Al-Sabah - Head of Advertising & Public Relations Dept. said that CBK endeavors constantly to organize this annual Exhibition which realizes more success every year and expressed her happiness for the increasing number of participants in the Exhibition this year. Sheikha Nouf emphasized that the Exhibition provides participants a chance to present their art-based thoughts and experience through a special Exhibition featuring the name of “Al-Tijari Hobbyist Exhibition” which includes a wide variety of popular designs, an assortment of accessories, various household items, artificial jewelry, marvelous paintings and other crafts. Sheikha Nouf added that the organization of this Exhibition and its correlation with Al-Tijari stands as a clear manifestation of the Bank’s efforts to support the diverse hobbies of its staff members. Sheikha Nouf concluded her press statement by stating that the Exhibition is a special occasion where all the Bank staff and their families meet and this in turn boosts the social relationships among all staff members in addition to CBK support to the artistic, cultured and innovative talents of the staff members. It is worthwhile to mention that such event comes within the Bank’s corporate social responsibility towards its employees. The Exhibition will be held at the Dar of His Highness Sheikh Salem Al Ali Al-Sabah located at Qurtuba. The Exhibition will be held for three days and shall receive its visitors on Thursday and Friday on an evening shift from 5:00 pm to 9:30 pm, and on Saturday on two shifts from 9:30 am to 1:00 pm and from 5:00 pm to 9:30 pm.

The sky is the limit for Africa: flydubai CEO KUWAIT: flydubai, one of the world’s fastest growing airlines, further expanded its presence in Africa today by inaugurating its seventh route to the continent. Flight FZ647, scheduled to fly three times a week to Ethiopia’s capital city, Addis Ababa, touched down at Bole International Airport at 19:15 (Ethiopia time) from Dubai’s Terminal 2. Ghaith Al-Ghaith, CEO of flydubai said: “The sky is the limit for Africa - it has emerged into a dynamic global force over the past decade and the increase in the number of our routes is testament to the trade, cultural and political links that exists between the Middle East and Africa. As one of the gateway cities into the rest of the continent, Addis Ababa is representative of the industry, energy and ambition that characterizes the region and we look forward to supporting the African tourism industry and larger economy with our new route.” Addis Ababa is flydubai’s seventh destination

in Africa, with the airline first venturing into the continent in September 2009 with flights to Djibouti. The low-cost carrier has since added Alexandria, Sohag, Luxor, Por t Sudan and Khartoum to its network. With expanding trade and tourism between UAE and Africa, the launch of the new route is part of the carrier’s plan to increase connectivity between the two regions. Ethiopia’s strong trade links to the UAE currently rest on the import-export of agricultural produce and oil, but with the diversification of both economies, more partnerships are expected to come into play, promoting travel between the two nations. A one-way fare to Addis Ababa from Dubai starts at AED 900, including 20kgs of checked baggage, one piece of hand luggage weighing up to 7 kg and one small laptop bag or hand bag. A seat with extra leg room costs AED 100. Flights from Addis Ababa to Dubai start at AED 935. Flights between Dubai and Addis Ababa can

be purchased from flydubai’s website (www.flydubai.com), its call centre (+9714 301 0800) and through travel partners. Seven facts about Addis Ababa to mark flydubai’s seventh African route • Addis Ababa means “New Flower’ in Amharic • In keeping with Dubai’s diversity, the city has as many as 80 nationalities, speaking 80 languages • With a population of around 3.4 million, it is the largest city in Ethiopia • It has the status of both a city and a state • It is the political capital of Africa as it houses the African Union • Sister cities: Beijing (China), San Francisco (USA), Leipzig (Germany), Chuncheon (South Korea) • Celebrated Addis natives: Liya Kebede, Ethiopian supermodel and Haile Gebrselassie, long distance runner

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

.2710000 .4475000 .3965000 .3060000 .2875000 .2910000 .0062330 .0020000 .0748350 .7290950 .3840000 .0710000 .7147450 .0045000 .0440000

.2810000 .4570000 .40440000 .3150000 .2960000 .2970000 .0063530 .0035000 .0755870 .7364220 .4040000 .0780000 .7219290 .0072000 .0550000

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

CUSTOMER TRANSFER RATES .2756500 .4498190 .3986310 .3083330 .2896400 .0534550 .0447920 .2934160 .0354410 .2222980 .0033280 .0000000 .0000000 .0000000 .0000000 .0750780 .7313610 .0000000 .0735260 .7161600 .0000000

.2777500 .4532460 .4016680 .3106820 .2918460 .0538620 .0451330 .2956510 .0357110 .2239920 .0033530 .0062770 .0025250 .0033100 .0038850 .0756500 .7369330 .3928570 .0740860 .7216160 .0064590

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

3.439 6.234 3.273 2.505 3.907 224.180 35.567 3.896

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

6.391 9.234 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 73.704 75.948 717.940 733.960 75.250

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

ARAB COUNTRIES 48.000 46.406 1.265 204.140 390.340 183.300 5.967 36.070

EUROPEAN & AMERICAN COUNTRIES US Dollar Transfer 276.300 Euro 406.440 Sterling Pound 460.370 Canadian dollar 294.090 Turkish lire 182.140 Swiss Franc 317.400 Australian dollar 296.690 US Dollar Buying 275.100

GOLD 10 Tola

GOLD 20 Gram 10 Gram 5 Gram

278.000 140.000 72.000

SELL CASH 300.000 734.440 3.990 293.300 542.400 14.100 54.900 167.800 47.190 406.000 36.220 6.510

1,558.360

Sterling Pound US Dollar

SELL DRAFT 298.500 734.440 3.790 291.800

225.100 46.456 404.500 36.070 6.235

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 Indian Rupees

0.032

390.320 0.186 93.870 3.910 223.600

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

Selling Rate 276.800 292.345 453.255 400.600 308.720 732.607 75.339 76.008 73.783 391.007 46.496 2.506 6.239

3.283 3.806 6.397 678.972 3.437 9.341 6.038 3.943 91.033

Kuwait Bahrain Intl Exchange Co. 717.120 3.290 6.410 75.970 73.730 225.110 43.630 2.502 458.500 314.100 5.900 9.430 75.250 276.100

Currency

Rate per 1000 (Tran)

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

TRAVELLER’S CHEQUE 458.500 276.100

Dollarco Exchange Co. Ltd

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

0.033 0.247 0.243 3.470 391.790 0.187 93.870 47.800 4.330 225.100 1.872 52.800 717.300 3.360 6.600 76.400 73.730 225.110 43.630 2.687 460.500 45.600 315.600 5.900 9.570 198.263 75.350 276.500 1.230

276.800 3.290 6.250 2.530 3.810 6.440 75.465 74.020 735.900 46.520 458.900 0.00003280 3.910 1.550 393.300 5.750 404.000 296.000

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

Transfer Rate (Per 1000) 276.550 400.800 453.800 289.700 3.375 6.245 46.530 2.504 3.793 6.390 3.285 736.500 75.400 73.900

*Rates are subject to change


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SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

BUSINESS

NBK’s Qatar Equity Fund ranked first among peers Rating for the second quarter in a row

Layal Mohammed receives the prize from Head Office Branch manager Abdulla Al-Hougal.

Layal Mohammed wins NBK’s top Jawhara prize KD125,000 KUWAIT: National Bank of Kuwait (NBK), the leading bank in Kuwait and the highest rated bank in the Middle East, recently announced the names of the Al-Jawhara Draw prize winners for the month of April 2011 which was conducted at NBK’s Head Office. The first prize of KD 125,000 went to LAYAL MOHAMMED TORMOS, while the second place winner ALI MOHAMAD ALI ALSALEH received KD 7,500. The third winner ABDULLA HUSAIN FOULAD HOUSAIN was awarded KD 3,000 and the remaining 97 winners were awarded KD 400 each. Al-Jawhara’s grand prize winner received her prize from Head Office Branch Manager Abdullah Al Hougal. Layal Mohammed said: “I was truly surprised and very excited when I first heard the news of winning the grand prize. I received a call from an NBK officer informing me that I had won which is something I have always dreamed of. Thank you Sr.# 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 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 99 100

Cert. No. 31162479 18139922 5082439 16462491 28158245 45058504 40302350 62110063 51240025 39110524 786578 51049481 2109220 62147994 45162387 812250 9336532 12159891 4096983 51226014 47428198 18187684 18324266 51225980 27350622 1429868 53076729 35233052 13321900 100257550 23352671 917257 60007192 47378069 11301767 17042348 65001850 64012905 40100855 39566684 55084168 39537579 2240025 11187271 19216998 12140554 32114184 48050563 39591417 2375583 58079327 40164721 37297791 76004473 4842219 39499669 32865775 39680150 51282046 47482591 7408986 39453030 9976175 18344666 21373795 39083829 51044277 7378815 27337065 8289735 39432149 65092945 100428061 5362504 23191589 51145197 43084087 17007127 5347793 43044646 9392033 55018041 39298450 23327588 62054074 100064388 102074690 28188403 102424713 48103195 102237131 74010034 18180744 26157020 39063488 38946 73008389 100710352 39143341 100393209

NBK”. She added that “NBK has always provided unique and rewarding offers, promotions, and great customer service. NBK is indeed the best bank in the Middle East.” AlJawhara account offers numerous benefits to NBK customers. It is not only an interestfree account with regular deposit and withdrawal privileges, but also automatically entitles account holders to enter the monthly Al-Jawhara draw. Each KD 50 in an AlJawhara account entitles the customer to one chance at winning any one of the 100 prizes allocated for each draw. All prizes are automatically credited to the winners’ accounts the day after the draw. The more money held in your Al-Jawhara account, the greater your chances of winning. Al-Jawhara accounts are available for both Kuwaitis and non-Kuwaitis and can be opened at any one of NBK’s branches around Kuwait. For further information kindly visit www.nbk.com, or call Hala Watani at 1801801.

AL JAWHARA WINNERS APRIL 2011 Name of Customer Layal Mohammed Tormos Ali Mohamad Ali Alsaleh Abdulla Husain Foulad Housain Ibtesam Jabbar Sadkhan Khalda Ahmad Abdulla Almohorfi Bader Ali Ayaad Almuteri Mohammed Jamal Alrafai Abbas Mohd Karam Altattan Fayza Naser Theyab Alturki Ali Husain Ali Hassan Hassan Mousa Hassan Alramadhan Jasem Fahad Jasem Alderia Mohammed Ali Sarhan Min Abdullah Ayedh Mohamed Alazmi Awad Shebram Juhel Abdullah Yousef Hussain Dashtti Manahel Naser Saleh Alhnedi Iman Mohamad Ali Muqaddas Ahmad Hassan Reda Dashti Maali Nasser Fhaid Mohamed Ali Fouad Mohammed Nassrallah Abeer Hashem Sayed Mandani Ramadan Saqer Ali Shaheen Alghanim Saad Dhaher Sadon Alreshidi Mussa Mohamed Alantably Aysha Hamad Abdulla Al Sabah Min Joud Saleh Abdurhamn Alghunaim Marzoqa Ali Dahlos Alkrebani Abdulkarim Abdulwadood Abdulmajid Alsanea Fadhel Mahmoud Abdulhussain Safar Sethi Ram Kaur Singh &/Or Sethi Aurdaman Kaur Stephen J Lubrano Abdulaziz Ali Mohd Alqattan Salim Ali Min Hussin Ali Hussin Bonashi Majed Mohamad Abdulla Alshatti Fedaa Qablan Mahfouz Bader Riyadh Abdulhamid Almesafer Shafeeq Ahmad Alsayed Mohd Alsayed Omar Osman Eltohami Elmekki Hessa Faisal Abdulmohsin Al Mutair Min Musa Abdulaziz Ahmad Ali Naser Khames Mahmoud Alzaabi Adnan Mahmoud Alatri Nizam Rachid Hage Salah Abdulhamid Ismail Alhamar Abdullah Farhan Owayed Shayma Ibrahim Jassim Ismaeil Kamal Riham Sulaiman Mohammed Alshibani Abdullaziz Mohammed Jassim Alyousef Baldah Attaualla Marzouq Mehsen Khaled Khalifa Mubarak Alsaif Abdulaziz Soud Turki Almuradhi Fayez Awad Dakhen Alenizi Noura Sulaiman Mubarak Alqassar Salwa Halem Alshalabi Menawer Rashed Hmoud Alhejaylan Hamed Bahador Khalaf Kamel Manea Alshemeri Hamza Abbas Maniaawi Mobarak Jaber Matar Abed Sabah Dawoud Jemaan Alawad Hanadi Mohamed Belal Sulaiman Shaikha Omar Ali Khraibet Reem Ibrahim Abdulrahim Marouf Waleed Jawad Ahmad Alatiya Majeed Mansour Abdulla Almewail Ahmed Jasem Hedair Ebrahim Altamimi Nafea Hammad Myyah Alshimiri Eid Jasim Mohammed Jaber Abdulla Eisa Abdulla Kakoli Tarek Abdel Rahim Sroor Abdulalem Ahmad Ahmad Ali Saad Kayed Rashed Alanezy Sharifa Hasan Ali Alqattan Abdulwahab Mohamed Abdulwahab Alrabea Yousef Ali Mohammed Algabandi Jamal Aldin Elaiwah Ali Mohamad Mohammed Saleem Ahmad Nawaf Ahmad Majed Al Shahin Bassam Jassem Mubarak Aljassem Sadiya Abdulhameed Abdulghani Alqadi Mahmoud Hameed Abdulrasoul Alqallaf Sana Husain Naser Aldean Min Sh Ruqaia Sabah Salem Alsabah Min Mohammed Nasser Haji Al Mutairy Maha Bader Salem Alsubah Mohammed Suliman Ahmad Boukuhail Hashim Sayed Mousa Sayed Hasan Almousawi Bader Adel Yeteem Alenzi Mohammed Fawzi Mohammed Redha Al Sayegh Musaed Faleh Shamran Ajeel Zakariya Yahya Alsayed Hashem Alshmaa Hani Shukri Fares Eskaros Samia Abdulhadi Ali Alebrahim Hamad Nasser Yousef Al Abduljaleel Shaikh Mohamed Hussain Sadeq Ali Heirs Of The Late/ Ibraheem Abdulkareem Al Saffar Mishari Abdulla Mohd Alsanuosi Rabab Abbas Alqattan

Prize 125000 7500 3000 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400 400

KUWAIT: NBK Capital announced that its NBK Qatar Equity Fund was ranked as best Qatar equity fund for the second quarter in a row according to the latest Fund Ranking by Zawya, the leading source of financial information in the Middle East. The ranking process is based on four components: fund returns, fund volatility, fees, and compliance. NBK Qatar Equity Fund was established in 2006 as a result of an extensive study of regional markets and of NBK’s belief in the future of Qatar’s economy which has seen remarkable growth in the past few years. The Fund seeks to increase the value of capital over the long term by investing in the shares of the State of Qatar. Nabil Maroof, Managing Director of Asset Management at NBK Capital, stated, “achieving a 32.6% return for 2010, and now being named as top Qatar equity fund by Zawya for two quarters in a row is a result of to the Fund’s successful strategy, which focuses on the detailed analysis of different equities and their expected returns in the long run. This strategy is a reflection of the company’s strategy which seeks to provide the

Nabil Maroof, Managing Director of Asset Management at NBK Capital best services and products to customers.” In addition to the excellent returns for 2010, the fund has achieved a 5.38% return year to date up to April 14th. This Zawya

Funds Ranking is announced on a quarterly basis and includes funds investing in the Doha S ecurities M arket. The rank ing excludes funds that are less than US$15 million and funds that have not completed the minimum period for evaluation, which is three years of historical data. NBK Qatar Equity Fund is one of three local and regional equity funds managed by NBK Capital, which include the NBK Kuwait Equity Fund and the NBK Gulf Equity Fund, which achieved a return of 42.5% and 15.56% during 2010, respec tively. Subscription and redemption to NBK Qatar Equity Fund is on a weekly basis and the minimum investment is $100,000. NBK Capital was established in July 2005 as a subsidiar y of the National Bank of Kuwait (NBK),one of the region’s oldest and highest rated banks. NBK Capital focuses on four principal lines of business: Alternative Investments, Asset Management, Brokerage & Research and Investment Banking. With offices in Kuwait, Dubai, Turkey, and Cairo, NBK Capital’s team of more than 170 professionals offer superior products and services to clients and investors.

Group Parts MNSS 2010 ‘outstanding’ customer service excellence award and record sales performance celebrations KUWAIT: Group Parts division of Mohamed Naser Al-Sayer & Sons has organized a celebration on the occasion of achieving the 2010 “Outstanding” Customer Service Excellence Award from Toyota Motor Corporation, as well as achieving the highest

ever record sales registered by parts division in the month of March 2011. Mubarak Al-Sayer (CEO), Pa u l Reynolds ( CO O ) , Mohamed Ali Hilal (GM Parts), Ibrahim A l - Fo u z a n (GM Service) and all parts staff

attended the ceremony. Mubarak Al-Sayer presented the outstanding CSEA award to M ohamed Ali H ilal and he appreciated the continuous efforts of Group parts team in extending the best customer service to Toyota/Lexus owners

in Kuwait. Also Paul Reynolds and M ohamed Ali H ilal addressed the audience. Saied Al-Shourafa (Sr. Manager Parts) proposed vote of thanks. The program was held on 12th April 2011 at Swiss BelHotel Plaza, Kuwait City.

LG vows to turn up the heat in looming 3D TV format war KUWAIT: LG Electronics (LG) has announced its intention to take advantage of its technology lead over its closest rivals in 3D technology in an upcoming release of its new CINEMA 3D TV range, a diverse line-up of TVs equipped with LG’s next generation CINEMA 3D T V technology. LG is look ing to take the fight to the market in a looming technology format war around 3D technology and welcomed comments from director James Cameron, as he spoke of his preference for polarized glasses because they would “accelerate adoption of 3D into the home,” Cameron, speaking last week at the 2011 National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Show in Las Vegas, USA, is the mastermind behind Avatar, the 3D movie

that earned nearly USD 3 billion worldwide to become the highest grossing movie of all time.

H S Paik, President of LG Electronics Gulf FZE said, “Right now there’s a battle growing between the producers of 3D

James Cameron and Vince Pace In reference to the benefit of LG’s CINEMA 3D TV technology that relies on polarized glasses,

display technologies that rely on expensive active shutterglass displays against those

that offer Film Patterned Retarder, or FPR, screens. LG’s consumers are looking for the most comfortable, enjoyable and social experience when watching 3D content in their homes. LG’s CINEMA 3D TV is free from the problems associated with competing devices as LG’s technology relies on polarized film attached to the screen instead of bulky and expensive glasses that need to be recharged between uses. LG’s CINEMA 3D TV technology is not only more comfortable and convenient for consumers, but the displayed image is brighter, clearer, Flicker-Free with less Crosstalk.” The next generation of 3D TVs powered by LG’s CINEMA 3D T V technology is set to make its debut in the UAE in mid-May, 2011.

Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid opens second phase of GCC Grid Interconnection project KUWAIT: Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid AlMaktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, has inaugurated the second phase of the GCC Grid Interconnection Project, at a total cost of over AED 5 billion including UAE’s contribution of about AED 800 million. During the inauguration ceremony, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed said that the strategic and economic integration of the GCC region is the key to the well being and promising future of its citizens; it also represents the shared vision of GCC leaders. The project aims to connect the electricity grids in GCC countries to one another. This would provide a platform for energy trade and exchange, while improving the reliability of existing energy systems and lowering electricity reserve requirements on GCC countries.

In addition, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed said that the joint project sends out a clear message to all GCC nationals as to the serious commitment of all GCC countries to join GCC projects, while highlighting the positive outcomes of such projects on everybody in the region. After all, the project will save up to AED 18.4 (approximately $ 5 billion) and will lay the foundation for a common energy market among the GCC countries. The project will also enable the achievement of a major strategic goal, which is providing GCC countries with sustainable energy supplies to support the national economies and drive sustainable development in the GCC region. GCC energy ministers and board members of the GCC Interconnection Authority (GCCIA) attended the inauguration ceremony. GCCIA

will undertake implementation of the project as well as maintenance and network operation, while playing a key role in energy trade in the region. In his speech at the ceremony, engineer Essa Al-Kawari, Chairman of GCCIA, praised the UAE’s role in the project. He also praised the joint vision of GCC leaders in bringing this project to reality. Al-Kawari presented an overview of the different stages of the project, which included extending electrical lines above the ground, along with an underwater cable in the Arabian Gulf. The network has been also used to extend fiber optic lines in order to strengthen the IT and networks infrastructure in the GCC countries and provide investment opportunities for companies operating in the telecommunications sector.


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SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

BUSINESS

New Mercedes-Benz CLS arrives in Kuwait Abdul Rahman Albisher & Zaid Alkazemi Co holds launch ceremony KUWAIT: The Mercedes-Benz new CLS was launched at a press conference held at Abdul Rahman Albisher & Zaid Alkazemi Co’s Shuwaikh Showroom on April 21 in the presence of directors and management from the company and the members of the media. “The new CLS is a perfect example for our claim “The best or nothing”, for it not only thrills with its emotional exterior form - its interior, too, which has been created with perfect craftsmanship, will set car-lovers’ hearts beating faster,” said Michael Ruehle, General Manager Albisher and Alkazemi Co - Kuwait. Outrageous proportions: a long bonnet, narrow-look windows with frameless side windows, dynamic roof sweeping back at an angle towards the rear. In 2005 the fourdoor CoupÈ was born: and the Mercedes-Benz CLS immediately established itself as a new style icon. The proportions have stayed the same - and yet everything is different: the second generation of this design trendsetter has adopted a completely new look. What immediately strikes the eye is the innovative front design, which is reminiscent of the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG. Visually, the radiator grille is not integrated into the bonnet but is formed separately. This highlights the long, sporty bonnet even further. The grille is dominated by the large central star, which underlines the car’s relationship to the other coupÈs of the brand and strengthens the brand identity. The large, elongated dark air inlets with black grilles also add to the vehicle’s athletic appearance. Another distinguishing feature comes in the form of the LED High Performance headlamps, which are the world’s first to offer all of the regular dynamic light functions using LED technology. And with its exciting design and refined sportiness, the new edition of the CLS also benefits from the fact that we are a whole generation ahead of the competition with our four-door Coupe. Lightweight construction and aerodynamics: important contributions to efficiency The CLS is thus the first vehicle from Mercedes-Benz to have frameless, all-aluminium doors. These are made from deep-drawn aluminum panels with extruded sections, and in comparison with conventional steel doors, are some 24 kilograms lighter. Apart from the doors, the bonnet, front wings, boot lid, parcel shelf, various support profiles and substantial parts of the suspension and engines are all made of aluminium. Aerodynamics plays an important part in the outstanding efficiency of the Mercedes-Benz CLS. Although the new model is wider than its predecessor and thus presents more

frontal area to the wind, it was possible to reduce wind resistance by up to ten percent. This is thanks to the Cd value of 0.26, which has been improved by 13 percent. LED High Performance headlamps: greater visibility and full functionality The CLS is the first passenger car in the world to offer LED High Performance headlamps, which combine the exciting colour elements of LED technology -similar to those of daytime running lamps - with the performance, functionality and energy efficiency of today’s bi-xenon generation (as an optional extra). This new light system provides, for the first time ever, the Intelligent

Active Blind Spot Assist warns the driver if - with the assistance of short-range radar sensors - it detects that there is a danger of collision if the vehicle is about to change lanes. Should the driver ignore the warnings and the vehicle come dangerously close to the next lane, Active Blind Spot Assist will intervene. By applying braking force to the wheels on the opposite side of the vehicle via the Electronic Stability Program ESP(r), a yaw movement is created which counteracts the collision course. Active Lane Keeping Assist is now also linked to ESP(r) for the first time. This system kicks into action if the Mercedes vehicle inadvertently

around effect of the cockpit: The central display has also been integrated harmoniously into the upper part of the instrument panel. As a design trendsetter, the CLS sets new standards in interiors with its wide variety of individualisation options. Five interior colours, five trim designs and also three qualities of leather are available to choose from. As a result, each CLS is a one-off piece and can be configured individually between warm naturalness and cool modernity. Handcrafted perfection is reflected in details such as the stitched seat covers or the so-called sewn covering for the dashboard. The interior is given an

wheel which has a flattened wreath in the lower half. Both steering wheel options have 12 multifunction keys to control the infotainment functions. The highlight of the exclusive CLS instrumentation is the all-colour, three-dimensional TFT display in the middle of the speedometer, measuring 109 millimetres in diameter. The mileage and trip odometer appear in the lower area of the display, the top displays - amongst other things information from the driver assistance systems. A three-dimensional image of the vehicle appears when getting into or out of the CLS.A large colour display in 16:9 format, elegantly integrated into the upper part

Light System already proven in Mercedes models fitted with bixenon headlamps in combination with LED technology. The headlamps, with their 71 LED lamps in total, look exciting; and they serve to underline the unmistakable appearance of the CLS. New driving assistance systems: greater safety More than a dozen driving assistance systems on the new CLS help to prevent traffic accidents and reduce the severity of an accident. The Active Blind Spot Assist and the Active Lane Keeping Assist are new.

drifts over a solid line to the right or left of a lane. In this case, Active Lane Keeping Assist uses the ESP(r) to gently brake the wheels on the far side and thereby bring the vehicle back on course. A display on the instrument cluster warns the driver at the same time. The interior: design brings quality to life The interior of the CLS is also distinguished by a timeless design which combines straightforward elegance with innovative details and handcrafted perfection. An eye-catching feature is the wrap-

even more progressive look with the addition of piano lacquer or AMG carbon-fibre trim elements. Luxurious surrounds: Stylish cockpit In addition to the “wrap-around effect” of the instrument panel support, the newly-designed multifunction steering wheel in the 3-spoke design in Nappa leather is particularly eye-catching. The steering wheel is available in black or almond beige; a wood-and-leather finish is also available as an optional extra. In the optional AMG Sports package there is a particularly sporty steering

of the instrument panel support, gives information on all the infotainment functions. The ultimate in seating comfort allowing adjustments to suit individual ergonomic needs Refined sportiness - this philosophy applies also to the seats, as they combine the ultimate in seating comfort with sporty lateral support. Four different front seat types are available to choose from: ● The standard seat itself meets the highest ergonomic standards. ● The shape of the optional multicontour seat can be individually

adjusted by and for the driver and passenger to fit their anatomy or to suit their personal wishes with regard to comfort. ● The active multicontour seat offers the same comfort functions and additionally has high-speed piezo valves in the air chambers which adjust the charging pressure and volume of the air chambers in the side bolsters of the seat backs, depending on the steering angle, lateral acceleration and vehicle speed, to provide both the driver and front seat passenger with even greater support. It also has the highcomfort head restraint and additionally, a massage function. . ● Climate comfort is further enhanced by the optionally available active climatised front seats, which are available as an optional extra. Two individual seats in the rear provide a particularly comfortable experience in the second row. These seats are well-liked for their extensive lateral support which comes from the contouring. For the first time Mercedes-Benz is offering the CLS with ISOFIX, the international standard securing system for child seats. The mechanism is fitted as standard and comprises two retaining brackets in each rear seat position, in the gap between the back rest and seat cushion, as well as an additional third anchor point above the backrest, the socalled top tether. Car radio, CD player and Bluetooth interface as standard Nowadays, nobody wants to miss out on the news, the telephone, route guidance or music listening pleasure when in the car. For this reason Mercedes-Benz has equipped the new CLS with state-ofthe-art infotainment facilities, which stand out for their high performance capability, but above all for their ease of use. They are called the Audio 20 CD (supplied as standard), Audio 50 APS and COMAND APS (supplied as optional extras). Features of the Audio 20 CD system, fitted as standard, include a CD player (with MP3 capability), a dual tuner for FM/MW/LW/SW, automatic station search, RDS function (FM reception) and a 4 x 20-watt amplifier. The AUDIO 50 APS infotainment system is an all-in-one device featuring a combination of car radio, DVD player and navigation system. The COMAND APS multimedia system developed by MercedesBenz includes a DVD player for audio and video as well as a navigation system whose data are stored on a 40-gigabyte hard drive, allowing extremely fast access to the navigation data and, compared to DVDbased navigation, even faster route calculations.

Near term impact seen in GCC-Japan two-way trade NBK GCC BRIEF KUWAIT: On March 11, 2011, a devastating earthquake and tsunami hit the northeastern part of Japan. While the pain is of course felt most in the human loss, the overall toll and consequences of the tragedy that hit the world’s third-largest economy are still being assessed. For the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), Japan is one of the region’s major trading partners, and so we look at how Gulf countries might be affected in the aftermath of this natural disaster. How will oil demand and prices, nuclear power programs, manufacturing and production lines, and the Japanese yen react? What effect will that have on the GCC-Japanese trade balance? GCC Exports to Japan According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), in 2009, five of the six GCC countries were among the top 15 exporters to Japan (as a share of their gross domestic product, GDP). Furthermore, according to UNCTAD, 17% of GCC exports go to Japan, or almost 10% of the GCC’s GDP. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is the largest Gulf exporter to Japan and accounts for 36% of GCC exports to Japan, followed by Saudi Arabia at 30%. However, 40% of Qatar’s total exports go to Japan and account for 15% of Qatari GDP, making Qatar the most dependent of the GCC countries on such exports. Of course, the earthquake caused enormous damage to some of Japan’s nuclear power plants. Apart from worries about radioactive pollution, another area of concern is the

effect on the country’s nuclear power supply. The oil crises in the 1970s had enormous repercussions for the Japanese economy; according to the Institute of Applied Energy (IAE), Japan depended then on oil for 80% of the country’s energy supply. Since then, Japan has adopted a policy that sets energy security through the development of nuclear power as the highest priority, reducing dependence on oil. As a result of this drive, oil’s share of Japan’s energy consumption fell to 47% in 2006. As the chart reveals, Japan’s oil imports have been declining. Total world oil exports (barrels/year) to Japan fell 25% between 1995 and 2009. During the same period, GCC oil exports to Japan also fell a remarkable 19%. Japan’s oil imports and energy consumption Sources: UNCTAD and BP. Given Japan’s reliance on nuclear power for energy consumption, a potential reduction in nuclear energy opens the door for increasing use of alternative fuels, including oil and gas. Over the medium term, this could increase demand for hydrocarbons and increase pressure on prices. However; the initial reaction to the earthquake was a drop in oil prices as fears of economic disruption and slowdown in activity mounted. A larger portion of the lost energy is likely to be replaced by gas, of which there is an ample supply. GCC countries could benefit not only from potentially higher oil prices but also from an increase in real demand for the commodity.

According to UNCTAD, historically, oil and gas made up 99% of the Gulf’s total exports to Japan. Japan imported $92 bn worth of oil in 2009, 72% of which came from the GCC. For every 1% increase in Japan’s demand for oil, GCC oil exports would roughly gain $1.0 bn per year, or 0.1% of the region’s GDP. GCC Imports from Japan In 2009, 7% of GCC imports came from Japan. As table 2 shows again, the UAE was the biggest GCC trade partner and accounted for 36% of the region’s imports from Japan. However, this was only 5% of UAE’s total imports. In contrast, at 12% of total imports, Oman is the most dependent of the GCC countries on Japanese goods. Japan’s exports in 2009 accounted for 5% of total global exports. Different sources estimate that the quake areas account for 8% of Japan’s GDP. The implications for Japan’s manufacturing and production capacity in the aftermath of the quake have yet to be assessed, though some disruptions have been reported worldwide, in auto and electronics production. Japan also produces parts that are used in production everywhere, including Europe, the US, and China, which could cause bottlenecks and/or higher prices. Eighty-four percent of all GCC imports from Japan are manufactured goods. In fact, 47% are classified as “road vehicles.” If manufacturing lines and supply chains are disrupted for a time, Japanese goods could feel some pressure given that

most imported Japanese goods are not essential commodities and have many ready substitutes. Depreciation of the yen Following the earthquake, repatriation of assets from abroad to finance reconstruction or replacement of lost physical assets drove the Japanese currency up, posing yet another threat to the tragedy-stricken nation’s recovery. However, recent intervention by Japan and its G7 partners has proven successful so far in holding back the currency. The Japanese-European intervention began on March 18th, and the yen has fallen 3% against the US dollar since. So far, the impact has been very small, and the yen is still higher than its 2010 average (US$=88Y). Once the effect of repatriation dissipates, markets expect the yen to fall further, and if sustained, the depreciation of the yen would make Japanese goods cheaper abroad. On the other hand, GCC exports should not be hugely affected by a weaker yen as they are mostly essential energy commodities. (However, higher oil prices and potential manufacturing supply disruptions might further exacerbate upside inflation risks worldwide). In short we would expect small and temporary disruptions to Japanese exports to GCC. On the oil front, short term disruptions/reassessments of nuclear power are bound to add to the pressure on oil prices, while the longer term impact will await the final reports and lessons from Fukushima.

KGL Logistics KSC (closed) holds its ordinary and extraordinary general assembly meeting on Thursday.

KGL net profits for 2010 reach KD7.4m Logistics firm reports 53% profit growth KUWAIT: KGL Logistics KSC (Closed) held its Ordinary and Extraordinary General Assembly Meeting on Thursday at 12:00 noon, at the Kuwait and Gulf Link Holding Company headquarters located at the Shuwaikh Industrial area, for the approval of its financial results for the year ended December 31, 2010. The Board of Directors’ Report outlined the achievements of the company during the year 2010, whereby the revenues for the year 2010 have reached the amount of KD 21.5million compared to KD 16.2 million in the year 2009, thereby reflecting a growth of approximately 32% from the previous year, whereby the total amount of expenses reached KD 14.1 million for the year 2010 in comparison with KD 11.5 million in 2009. Accordingly, net profits for the year 2010 stood at KD 7.4 million in comparison to KD 4.9 million in 2009, reflecting a growth of 53% from the previous year. Moreover, the shareholders’ equity increased from KD 37.7 million in the year 2009 to KD 45 million in 2010. In terms of dividends distribution, the General Assembly approved the recommendation of the Board of Directors to distribute bonus shares at a rate of 20% of the

paid-up capital and cash dividend of 5 fils per share for the financial year ending on December 31, 2010. The distributions shall ‘include all shareholders registered on the date of convening the General Assembly. During the General Assembly, the Board of Directors also highlighted the company’s plan of expanding its role in the local market by promoting its participation in local tenders and Kuwait Government Development Projects while emphasizing on its regional growth in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Countries, in general, and in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Qatar in particular. The company shall additionally diversify its set of services to expand its market share and pave the way for additional future expansion. Additionally, KGL Logistics’ assembly approved in its extraordinary meeting the increase of its paid-up capital, reflecting thereby the distributed bonus shares, to become KD 27,600,000/-. In conclusion, KGL Logistics Chairman Jafar M Ali lauded and thanked the shareholders, customers and partners of KGL Logistics for their endless support and confidence in the company’s continued improvement and success.


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20% of GCC firms get research coverage during 1Q11 MARKAZ RESEARCH REPORT KUWAIT: Equity markets witnessed the same level of attention in 1Q11, compared to the previous quarter. Eighteen brokers published 245 research notes on 134 companies during 1Q11, compared to the 243 research notes on 127 companies published in 4Q10, according to a recent report by Kuwait Financial Centre “Markaz” on GCC Equity

40% “Hold” calls, and 7% “Sell” calls. The market cap of researched companies in Oman accounted for 95% of the domestic market capitalization. This was followed by Qatar (87%), Saudi Arabia (86%), Kuwait (66%), UAE (48%) and Bahrain (35%). Qatar and UAE were the most preferred equity markets in 1Q11, with 60% of the

Research Statistics. During this quarter, 20% of all GCC companies received research coverage, representing 75% of the total market cap. Saudi Arabia, which continued to attract the most attention, accounted for 42% of research notes and 34% of the companies covered. A Positive to Neutral sentiment prevailed in GCC markets, with 52% “Buy” calls,

reports receiving “Buy” ratings in each country. On the flip side, Kuwait had a majority of “Hold” calls, at 54%. Saudi Arabia accounted for maximum number of “Buy” ratings. The proportion of “Buy” ratings in KSA increased from 53% in 4Q10 to 57% in 1Q11. Bahrain too saw an increase in proportion of “Buy” ratings from 33% in 4Q10 to 50% in 1Q11.

Kuwait Financial Centre ‘Markaz’, with total assets under management of KD1.03 billion as of December 31, 2010, was established in 1974 has become one of the leading asset management and investment banking institutions in the Arabian Gulf Region. Markaz was listed on the Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) in 1997.

Shanghai offers fee cuts to defuse drivers’ strike Government says all ports operate normally

ATHENS: Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou announces Greece’s decision to request activation of a joint euro-zoneInternational Monetary Fund financial rescue plan, from the main port of the remote southeast Greek Aegean island of Kastellorizo. — AP

Year after Greek debt bailout, markets remain unconvinced ATHENS: It’s an anniversary few are celebrating. A year ago yesterday, with its faltering economy days away from bankruptcy, Greece ended months of speculation and requested bailout loans. Prime Minister George Papandreou chose the remote island of Kastelorizo, and its tranquil seaside backdrop, to announce the “urgent national need to formally ask our partners to mobilize the support mechanism.” International solidarity, he said in a televised address, would “send a strong signal to markets that the European Union is not to be toyed with, and it will protect our common interests and our common currency.” Twelve months on, there’s little indication that that signal has been received. Greek bonds have been axed to junk status by the three major ratings agencies. And sky-high borrowing costs have roughly doubled, along with the price of insuring debt. Greece would currently have to pay out 15-percent interest on a 10-year bond, compared with the German benchmark of 3.27 percent. At least 160,000 more people have lost their jobs since April 23, 2010, with government austerity accelerating layoffs and business failures. And the national debt is forecast to exceed the emergency level of 150 percent of gross domestic product in 2011. “At the moment we have a very, very difficult situation which requires a rapid response and tough measures,” economic analyst Vangelis Agapitos said. “Of course the markets also realize that there is political fatigue and political cowardice to fully take the tough measures that are necessary.” Despite daily government denials, 47 percent of Greeks now believe the country will have to restructure its debt, while just 24 percent think it won’t be necessary, according to an opinion poll due to be published Sunday. The survey by the Alco research company for the weekly Proto Thema newspaper used data from 1,000 people interviewed April 15-19. No margin of error was quoted but it would normally be around 3 percentage points for a survey of that size. Support for Papandreou’s Socialists has sunk from 34.7 percent to 21.5 percent in the past 15 months, the poll found, though he still maintains a slim lead over rival conservatives. After Papandreou’s call for help from Kastelorizo, a rescue deal was put together in nine days, just ahead of a critical refinancing deadline. Euro-zone countries and the International Monetary Fund agreed to lend Greece 110 billion euros — equivalent to nearly half the country’s annual output — through 2013. In return for the bailout loans, Papandreou’s Socialist government slashed §14 billion off the budget deficit in 2010 using salary and pension cuts and a raft of unpopular measures aimed at reducing waste in the public sector and protective market rules. His government has promised debt inspectors that it will start generating a primary surplus in 2012, but fiscal targets have begun slipping this year due to the ongoing recession. And the sharp rise in public discontent is in growing contrast to calls by Greece’s central bank and analysts for bolder cost-cutting measures. “The (national) debt is 150 percent of GDP and rising. Had it been half that amount, maybe these (austerity) measures would suffice,” Agapitos said. “The number of measures is unprecedented. So in a way, Greece is proving that the effort is there. However, the expectations are much higher and keep rising, because of the mess that Greece is in.” Papandreou is unlikely to get much respite this Easter, with school and hospital closures planned this year and a massive privatization program prompting a general strike on May 11. Many of his countrymen, however, are looking forward to a break from the national gloom this holiday weekend. “I just can’t watch the news anymore — it’s so depressing,” said window cleaner Stratis Dervendlis, who is planning a series of day-trips in and around Athens on his days off. “The bad news is constant. It’s like reminding someone in hospital that they’re sick all the time. Instead, they should be giving us courage and telling us how we’re going to get better.” — AP

SHANGHAI: The government of the Chinese city of Shanghai is cutting some fees to defuse striking truck drivers’ anger over high fuel prices, an official spokesman said yesterday, after days of confrontation earlier last week disrupted the world’s busiest port. The Shanghai government’s promised steps, which include “lowering standard fees and removing non-standard fees,” came after the strike made global headlines amid worries the strike could disrupt trade flows in China’s biggest commercial hub. Shanghai is actively taking measures to respond to the strike, the official Xinhua news agency reported early on Saturday, citing an unidentified Shanghai government spokesman. All ports in Shanghai were operating normally, the spokesman added. Separately, the Shanghai Municipal Transport and Port Authority said on Saturday it would cancel certain fees, such as fuel surcharge, while lowering a few other fees for the container road transport sector. The new measures, which also specified how certain fees should be charged and promised help to companies facing operational difficulties, were aimed at “easing rising inflation and cost pressures on transport companies,” the port authority said in a statement on its website (http://www.jt.sh.cn/index.html), without mentioning the strike by

the truck drivers. Up to now, Shanghai officials have not commented publicly about the strike, a boldly public demonstration of anger over rising consumer prices and fuel price increases in China. The Xinhua report about the Shanghai government’s steps was in English, and China’s tightly controlled state media has otherwise made scant mention of the unrest. On Friday, a crowd of about 600 people milled about outside an

office of a logistics company near the Baoshan Port, one of the city’s string of ports. Some threw rocks at trucks whose drivers had not joined the strike, breaking the windows of at least one truck. The situation appeared calm in the Baoshan area on Saturday, with no organized activity by the drivers and only a small security presence. Some drivers said they had heard about the city government’s offers while many complained they did not have enough information and

vowed to continue the strike unless concrete results were achieved in negotiations with the authorities. “There is still a strike on. There are supposed to be organizers in talks but I won’t believe it until I have the money in my hand,” one driver from Henan province who wouldn’t give his name, said. “If I earn 10 yuan, and it costs me 11, what’s the point?” he said. Another driver named Li said he was confident that the government would have to take measures to

SHANGHAI: A container with a protest slogan which was painted out stands near a port where a protest was held yesterday.—AP

resolve the situation. “If the situation doesn’t change there won’t be any truck drivers left here. We’ll all go back and find other jobs,” he said. “It’s not that I’m striking. I just can’t continue to do a job where I end up losing money,” he said. Authorities would meet representatives of the truck drivers on Monday for talks aimed at ending the strike, a policeman told the striking drivers on Friday when security officers tried to disperse the crowd. Text messages containing threats of violence against drivers who do not take part in the strike were still circulating among drivers yesterday. The government is struggling to contain inflation, which hit 5.4 percent in March, magnifying the ruling Communist Party’s long-standing jitters about the potential for public resentment over prices, taxes and fees to escalate into protest. The Party leadership is especially jumpy about threats to social stability following online calls for “Jasmine Revolution” protests inspired by anti-authoritarian uprisings across the Arab world, and has detained dozens of dissidents. Many of the strikers at the ports in Shanghai are independent contractors who haul goods to and from the port, and they have demanded that the government do something about rising fuel costs and what some called high fees charged by transport firms. — Reuters

Vietnam’s controversial EU not ruling ‘dictator’ cuts red tape out new Greek DANANG, Vietnam: He has been called a dictator and is dogged by rumors of corruption but many agree that Nguyen Ba Thanh has rare talents in a country choked by bureaucracy: He gets things done. As Vietnam looks to retool its economy, some foreign investors say the city of Danang, where Thanh is the local Communist Party leader, could be an example for the rest of the country. “I think it should be the model,” said Peter Ryder, chief executive officer of Indochina Capital, which invested about $300 million to develop beachfront properties and a downtown highrise in the city. Ryder said Thanh, 58, has an “enormous footprint” and deserves a lot of credit for Danang’s popularity among investors, partly thanks to its dynamic political culture. “He’s a pioneer,” agreed Takafumi Matsumoto, secretary general of The Japan Business Association in Danang. An index supported by the US Agency for International Development, based on a survey of 7,300 private Vietnamese businesses, placed Danang first among the country’s 63 cities and provinces as a place to do business in 2010. The index is based on various criteria including how long it takes to start a business, the amount of “informal” or corrupt charges paid, the time firms waste on bureaucratic compliance, and the initiative level of local leadership. In contrast, Vietnam’s business hub Ho Chi Minh City ranked 23 in 2010

while the capital Hanoi came in at 43. In the quarter-century since communist Vietnam began to turn away from a planned economy to embrace the free market, Vietnam has enjoyed economic growth that has been the envy of many other Asian nations. But excessive bureaucracy remains a top complaint for foreign investors, along with corruption, a shortage of skilled workers and an under-developed infrastructure including roads, electricity and ports. The ruling Communists have pledged to carry out reforms long sought by foreign businesses, but the

wheels of central government grind slowly and other parts of Vietnam are seen as lagging behind Danang in key infrastructure. The city of about 900,000 people has progressed since 1997 when it broke away from a neighbouring province and Thanh, a native of the city, took on top leadership roles. In contrast to the staid image of a communist cadre, foreign business sources described Thanh as “a character” and a “benevolent dictator”, while one said “he’s right off the set of ‘ The Sopranos’.” —AFP

HOCHIMIN CITY: Residents washing dishes amongst demolished houses close to Ho Chi Minh city’s financial district. The fast ongoing development on urbanisation southern Vietnam’s economic hub has changed its skyline. — AFP

debt measures ATHENS: The European Union has not ruled out new measures to ease Greece’s intractable debt problem, the European Commission’s chief representative in Athens said in an interview published yesterday. “The analysis of the Greek debt will be made by the EU, the International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank at the next review of the recovery plan in May,” Panos Karvounis told the daily To Vima. “According to the conclusions of that review, the analysis could lead to an adaptation of the measures foreseen in the financial recovery plan,” he added. A representative of the participants in the Greek bailout will be in Athens early next month to review the government’s plans with regard to the payment of the fifth installment of the 110-billioneuro three-year loan granted by the EU and IMF. The plans include wholesale privatizations and selloffs of state assets over the period 2012-15, but analysts fear that it will not be enough, prompting feverish speculation that a debt restructuring is in the offing. Greece has reacted angrily to the persistent rumors that it is about to seek easier repayment terms from its creditors on a soaring 340 billion euro ($485 billion) debt that has put markets on watch. The rate of return on Greek benchmark 10-year government bonds has jumped above 14 percent for the first time since the eurozone was created, reflecting deep-seated doubt that Athens can stabilise its finances. The Greek finance minister insisted Wednesday that the debt is “viable” and that Athens still intends to raise money on markets early next year despite currently exorbitant rates. Greece has already secured one repayment extension on the EU-IMF loan, and Karvounis warned, “The implementation of the economic recovery plan dictated by the EU and IMF and accepted by the country in 2010 is the condition for Greece to return to the markets in 2012.” — AFP


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TECHNOLOGY

Microsoft bumps pay to keep ‘top talent’

Sony’s Ohga, credited with developing CD, dies

Skilled tech workers’ market gets very hot SAN FRANCISCO: Microsoft said it was raising pay for employees to retain “top talent” in the fiercely competitive market for skilled technology workers. “Through our history, we have been THE place people came when they wanted to

make a difference in the world through software, hardware and services,” Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer said in a statement. “This is as true today as it has been at any time in our history, and the changes we’re rolling out today will help ensure Microsoft

continues to be the place that top talent comes to change the world.” A Microsoft spokesman would not disclose the amount of the wage hikes or how they were being doled out. The raises come as Internet titans and fledgling startups compete for software and hardware engineers. Microblogging service Twitter said it was taking new hires on weekly. Google has awarded nearly $9 million in bonuses and another $50 million in equity to four top executives, ccording to a recent filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. The Internet giant announced in January that it will hire a record number of people this year, taking on more than 6,000 workers “across the board and around the globe.” Google added more than 4,500 “Googlers” to its employee ranks in 2010 and plans to easily eclipse that figure this year, senior vice president of engineering and research Alan Eustace said in a blog post. — AFP

SpaceX aims to put man on Mars in 10-20 years NEW YORK: Private US company SpaceX hopes to put an astronaut on Mars within 10 to 20 years, the head of the firm said. “We’ll probably put a first man in space in about three years,” Elon Musk told the Wall Street Journal Saturday. “We’re going all the way to Mars, I think... best case 10 years, worst case 15 to 20 years.” SpaceX is one of the two leading private space companies in the United States and has won $75 million from the US space agency NASA to help its pursuit of developing a spacecraft to replace the space shuttle. The California-based company last year completed its first successful test of an unmanned space capsule into orbit and back. “Our goal is to facilitate the transfer of people and cargo to other planets, and then it will be up to people if they want to go,” said Musk, who also runs the Tesla company which develops electric cars. The US space shuttle program is winding down later this year with final flights of Endeavour set for next week and Atlantis in June, ending an era of American spaceflight that began with the first

space shuttle mission in 1981. When the shuttle program ends, the United States hopes private industry will be able to fill the gap by creating the next generation of spacecraft to transport astronauts into space. “A future where humanity is out there exploring stars is an incredibly exciting future, and inspiring, and that’s what we’re trying to help make happen,” Musk added in the interview. Earlier this month SpaceX unveiled what Musk has called the world’s most powerful rocket, the Falcon Heavy, which will have its first demonstration flight at the end of 2012. The launcher is designed to lift into orbit satellites or spacecraft weighing more than 53 metric tons, or 117,000 pounds-more than twice the capacity of the Space Shuttle or Delta IV Heavy launcher. SpaceX, short for Space Exploration Technologies Corporation, is one of two private companies that NASA has contracted to transport cargo to the International Space Station. Musk, a South African who made his fortune in the Internet, created SpaceX in 2002. — AFP

If a man were to go on Mars, it would also be good for understanding life that lived there before. There have been many images stating there is life on Mars.

Amazon wrangling with online hosting woes SAN FRANCISCO: Amazon was still wrangling with troubles at its Web hosting service used by Foursquare, Quora, Reddit and other popular websites. Amazon EC2 was being slowly restored a day after the onset of disruptive problems, but it may take a while to fully recover, according to updates on the service’s online status dashboard. “When a service that is heavily redundant, like this one is, goes out of band this long, they have a serious problem and they don’t have their arms around it,” said analyst Rob Enderle of Enderle Group in Silicon Valley. Websites hosted by Amazon EC2 were sluggish or knocked offline on Thursday and the company has yet to disclose a cause. “These things are supposed to be incredibly bulletproof so it would take something serious to cause a problem like this,” Enderle said of datacenters designed to host websites or software in the Internet “cloud.” “If it was something simple, by now they would have told us what it was.” Cloud datacenters such as those at the heart of EC2 are built with redundant systems so loads can be shifted in the event of trouble such as a computer server failing. A problem disrupting the entire service could range from a flawed update pushed system-wide to sabotage by a disgruntled employee with high-level access to the network, according to Enderle. Amazon is best known as an online retailer but the Seattle, Washington-based company is also a major provider of cloud-computing services, renting out space on its powerful servers to customers around the world. Global technology companies are investing billions of dollars in cloud computing, which involves hosting information on the Web and providing it to customers on demand. “This won’t derail the shift to the cloud,” Enderle said of Amazon EC2 troubles. “It will just remind people the cloud isn’t bulletproof and you need redundancy, either into another cloud service or your own proprietary systems.” — AFP

TOKYO: Former Sony president and chairman Norio Ohga, credited with expanding the company from electronics hardware to software and entertainment and developing the compact disc, died yesterday at age 81. Ohga, who led the company from 1982 to 1995, died of multiple organ failure in Tokyo, Sony said. Some decisions made during Ohga’s presidency, such as the $3.4 billion purchase of Hollywood studios Columbia Pictures, were criticized as unwise and costly at the time. But Ohga’s focus on music, films and video games as a way to enrich the electronics business helped create Sony’s success in his era. “We are always chasing after things that other companies won’t touch,” Ohga said in a 1998 interview with The Associated Press. “That is a big secret to our success.” The flamboyant music connoisseur steered his work through his love of music. A former opera singer, Ohga insisted the CD be designed at 12 centimeters (4.8 inches) in diameter — or 75 minutes worth of music — to store Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony in its entirety. Shattering the stereotype of the staid Japanese executive, the debonair Ohga was never shy, his hair neatly slicked back, his boisterous mannerisms exuding the fiery yet naive air of an artist. His persona added a touch of glamour to Sony’s image at a time when Japan had global ambitions. “It is no exaggeration to attribute Sony’s evolution beyond audio and video products into music, movies and game, and subsequent transformation into a global entertainment leader to Ohga-san’s foresight and vision,” Sony Corp. Chairman Howard Stringer said Saturday using

Former president and chairman of Sony, Norio Ohga, holds a Sony Mini Disc in New York. Sonysays Ohga, credited with developing the compact disc, has died yesterday. He was 81. —AP

the Japanese honorific. The company star ted amid the destruction and poverty after World War II and built itself on the popularity of transistor radios, the Walkman, the Trinitron TV, the CD — shaping the history of modern electronics. Sony has encountered difficulty in recent years, as it fell behind in flat-panel TVs to rivals like Samsung Electronics Co. of South Korea, as well as in digital music players to Apple Inc. Sony remains unique in having a Hollywood studio, a music recording business, and the PlayStation videogame unit, despite some critics’ complaints that it has never fully realized the benefits of owning both electronics and entertainment divisions. Since about 2000, Ohga stopped being involved in Sony’s day-to-day business. He is survived by his wife, Midori. Sony said a private wake will be held later. — AP

Twitter makes new nest in San Francisco SAN FRANCISCO: Twitter on Friday said it has inked a deal to move into a new nest in a chronically downtrodden part of downtown San Francisco that local officials are eager to rehabilitate. “Happy to say that Twitter is staying in San Francisco,” spokesman Ali Rowghani said in a message fired off at the popular microblogging service. “We’ve signed a lease to move our HQ to the Central Market area.” San Francisco leaders recently approved a payroll tax break aimed at keeping Twitter in the city and encouraging the startup, and other tech-

nology firms, to roost in a section of downtown that has long resisted economic revitalization. Companies in what are referred to locally as the Mid Market Street and Tenderloin areas will not have to pay any payroll taxes on new hires for the first six years. Twitter is undergoing a major growth spurt, with new hires coming on board weekly. Twitter had talked of moving to another northern California city with no payroll tax, but promised it would settle into a vacant Market Street building if the measure was approved. — AFP

Suspect to plead not guilty in webcam death TORONTO: The man accused of killing a Chinese student, attacked in her apartment as her boyfriend watched through a webcam, will “absolutely” plead not guilty, his lawyer said. “ We want to put together a strong defense and I anticipate that on behalf of my client,” Steven Krys, who is representing 29-year-old Brian Dickson, told The Associated Press on Friday. The body of York University student Liu Qian, 23, of Beijing, was found last Friday in her Toronto apartment a few hours after her boyfriend witnessed what appeared to be the beginning of the attack before the webcam was shut off. Liu was found naked from the waist down but there were no obvious signs of sexual assault or trauma severe enough to kill her. An autopsy on Liu’s body was inconclusive, and police say it may be weeks before the results of toxicology tests are known. Liu’s distraught mother Zheng Yaru and

father Liu Jianhui visited the coroner’s office on Thursday after meeting with police. Tears streamed down Zheng’s face and she was assisted by others as she left the morgue. Police refused to release any details about the crime or its possible motive. Dickson lived in an apartment in the same house as Liu, a police source said on condition of anonymity because the source wasn’t authorized to speak publicly. Liu was chatting with her boyfriend, Meng Xianchao, by webcam at about 1 a.m. Friday when a man knocked on the door, police said. Meng reported seeing a struggle break out between the two before Liu’s webcam was shut off. Meng contacted other friends in Toronto who in turn called police. “I think she trusted him,” Meng told broadcaster CTV News. “If it were someone she didn’t trust she wouldn’t have let him in.” Dickson stood Thursday before the court in a wrinkled white shirt and blue jeans as a charge

of first-degree murder was read. He did not enter a plea and his case was held over until April 26. The justice of the peace imposed a publication ban on nearly all other details. Dickson was arrested Wednesday. Toronto spokesman Tony Vella said Dickson was known to police but would not elaborate. Police searched Dickson’s family residence in the east end of Toronto and confiscated a computer. Police only announced his name and age on Wednesday and asked the media not to publish any photos of Dickson, saying it could compromise the investigation. Vella declined to elaborate on the request. Police released no motive or details about Dickson. Lorne Hiro, a neighbor of Dickson’s family, said he seemed like a good guy. “I know that there are some other people that actually did know him a lot more in the last few years and they mentioned that they were unsettled with him at times,” Hiro said. “I saw his parents last night just to give

them my condolences. They are in really rough shape now. It’s a very embarrassing situation for them to be in and heartbreaking,” he added. One acquaintance also described the Toronto man as an aspiring actor. Patricia Tomasi, a Facebook friend of Dickson’s, said she acted in a play at a local theater in Toronto with Dickson in 2007. “He doesn’t seem like the type but that’s what they always say,” Tomasi said of the allegations. “He’s tall with boyish good looks. I don’t know much about him except that he wanted to be an actor.” Dickson attended York University where he studied global politics, but did not earn a degree from there. He later worked for the Atlantic Council of Canada, a NATO-affiliated think-tank where he served as an assistant to the president Julie Lindhout. According to his biography on a newsletter from the Atlantic Council of Canada, Dickson has also been a running instructor

and has been involved with Developments in Literacy, a Pakistani aid organization that raises money for children in Pakistan. A statement from the Atlantic Council of Canada on Thursday said it was not council policy to comment on staff, but it confirmed that Dickson had been an intern with the council from September 29, 2008, until March 27, 2009. Liu Jianhui said his daughter studied at Beijing City University before moving to Canada. Liu Jianhui is the research director of Communist Party history at the Party School of the Central Committee of CPC, which trains party officials. Liu Qian’s laptop computer, webcam and mobile phone were taken from the apartment the night of the attack, police said. Police said the online chat was on a live streaming camera and was not recorded, though investigators were trying to figure out if there was any way they could recover it. — AP


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Expanding India faces big problem Obesity, diabetes on the rise MUMBAI: Indian housewife Sujata Budarapu was shocked when she was told that her two sons were on the verge of developing Type 2 diabetes. “It had never even occurred to me that this could happen. I had heard that outside India this happens to other people’s kids but I never thought it would happen to my own,” the 38-year-old from Mumbai told AFP. Sujata’s children are not exceptional cases, even in a country more traditionally associated with malnourishment and chronic food shortages than overeating and weight-related illness. India still struggles to feed all of its 1.2 billion population but childhood obesity and diabetes have become an increasing problem among the middle classes, who have largely benefited from a decade of rapid economic growth. “Childhood obesity has definitely increased in the last couple of years,” said Dr Paula Goel, from the Fayth Clinic in Mumbai, which runs a weight loss programme for adolescents. “This is mainly because... they’re not playing on the fields and they’re spending so much time on sedentary activities that come with the affluent lifestyle. Visiting the malls over the weekends, eating junk food, it’s bound to cause obesity.” At 12 years old, Sujata’s youngest son, Saiprasad, watches three hours of television every day and weighs 66 kg when he should be between 52 and 58 kg. Her eldest boy, Sairaj, 15, tips the scales at 89 kg - more than 30 kg overweight. Both boys love eating oil-

rich and fast food and are on medication to control their sugar levels. They have been attending Goel’s clinic for the last three months. Anoop Misra, president of the Center for Diabetes, Obesity and Cholesterol Disorders in New Delhi, says India has the highest number of diabetics in the world at just under 51 million people. But that number could increase by nearly 150 percent in the next 20 years, he warned. The high number of cases among South Asian people has been attributed to genetic factors, including a predisposition to storing more fat. Socio-environmental factors, though, are now seen as playing an increasing role in the rising number of cases of Type 2 diabetes. The condition, which occurs when the body cannot effectively use the insulin it makes, largely as a result of excess body weight and physical inactivity, was previously

MUMBAI: Young Indian diabetes sufferers exercise in a gymnasium at The Fayth Clinic in Mumbai on Jan 8, 2011. – AFP

seen mainly in older people. High-fat, highsugar, fast food outlets proliferate in Indian cities, catering for a hard-working, time-poor population eager to spend its new-found cash, with Western brands often chosen as a visible sign of wealth. “All over the world, except India, people love bland, less spicy food,” said Himank Doshi, a medical student tucking into a takeaway from a stall on Mumbai’s Chowpatty Beach. “They love the boiled food and all for the nutrition. But Indian people are less concerned about nutrition. They first focus on the spice of the food, the taste.” That mindset, plus a decline in physical activity through increased car use and a lack of open spaces for exercise, is a dangerous combination. A study of 4,000 Indian children in 15 cities published in August last year indicated that almost a quarter (23 percent) of five to 14 year olds in urban schools were overweight, while nearly 11 percent were obese. Overweight children with diabetes are at greater risk of developing heart disease and heart attacks, deteriorating eyesight, kidney failure, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Many of Goel’s young patients already have mild depression because of their size. The stakes are high - and not just for the nation’s health: India spent about $40 billion dollars on treating diabetes last year. For Misra, prevention - from better health education to weight-loss clinics - is more cost-effective. “If we prevent one case we’ll be saving so much more money, rather than treating this for the lifetime,” he added. “So for a developing economy like India, it makes 100 percent sense to prevent something rather than treating it with expensive insulin and so on.” Sujata realises that life in modern India is partly to blame for her children’s predicament -and that change isn’t always for the better. “If you look at the previous generation we never went out to eat, we just ate home food. Everything was made at home. Now there’s more money and more illness because we’ve started to eat out more,” she said. — AFP

Branson gets flak over lemurs MIAMI: British billionaire businessman and adventurer Sir Richard Branson has plans to fly commercial passengers into space, but his terrestrial scheme to relocate endangered Madagascar lemurs on a Caribbean island he owns is getting flak from some conservation experts. The Virgin Group founder, who has combined a meteoric business career with round the world balloon flights and philanthropic initiatives, has announced he will resettle lemurs collected from zoos on 120-acre Moskito Island, part of the British Virgin Islands archipelago. He wants to create a new island sanctuary for lemurs, primates native to the Madagascar and Comoro islands off Africa which are threatened by the rapid destruction of their natural habitat due to unchecked farming, hunting, mining and logging. The bright-eyed furry-faced creatures are favorites with children at zoos and figured, as animated recreations, in the popular DreamWorks movie “Madagascar”. British Virgin Islands officials have approved the Branson plan, but some conservation experts say that, while apparently well-intentioned, it could be an ecological disaster. “I do think it’s a bad idea ... we have experience over and over and over again that when you transplant organisms from one part of the Earth to another

part of the Earth the results are usually bad,” Anne D. Yoder, a lemur expert and director of the Duke Lemur Center in North Carolina, told Reuters on Friday. She said that Branson, instead of trying to set up a new island home for the lemurs on Moskito, would do better to donate resources to trying to protect and preserve their natural but severely endangered habitat on Madagascar. “Everything in Madagascar is pretty unique to Madagascar, so there are no parallel universes on planet Earth ... that’s part of the problem. That’s why the solutions need to be implemented in Madagascar not in other places,” Yoder said. She said she understood that Branson, like conservationists around the world, was probably feeling “desperation” to try to help the endangered lemurs, but she believed his resettlement plan was not the answer. “There’s so much good that could be done and this is not it,” she said in a phone interview. Branson, whose US-based Virgin Galactic has been selling tickets to customers for rides in a suborbital spaceship it is developing, has defended his lemur conservation idea. He says Moskito’s rainforest environment, uninhabited by humans, is ideal for the shy lemurs, and has told reporters he has been consulting South African primate experts. Vets would help with

the animals’ acclimatization in their new home. Yoder said she doubted the Caribbean habitat could sustain the lemurs and the plan risked harming local flora and fauna. “Either way, it’s a disaster, because if the lemurs do supremely well, they’re going to outcompete the native biota (plant and animal life),” she said. “If the lemurs are introduced and can’t survive ... that’s a disaster, so it’s just hard to see a good solution here,” she added. Lemurs mostly eat leaves and fruits, and sometimes insects, and Yoder said the more than 230 examples of 19 different species at her Duke Lemur Center in North Carolina required a high level of care and attention. “Every lemur is checked every day ... they all have very specialized diets,” she said, adding that the center employed two full-time veterinarians and a staff of 30 people. “To see someone say ‘Oh, I’m just going to release them on this island’, we know that just doesn’t work,” Yoder said. Branson’s plan, and reactions to it, has generated lively debate on media and environmental websites. “Why doesn’t Branson just buy x thousand acres of Virgin Madagascar rainforest to preserve it for the lemurs?” read one recent posting on a BBC website. “I wish a similar plan would put elephants and cheetahs in North America’s Mojave Desert again,” read another in response to a recent New York Times article. — Reuters

YULI, Taiwan: Ison Lin, a hunter-turned ranger at Taiwan’s Yushan National Park, displays the rifle he used to hunt animals when he was young, on March 2, 2011. – AFP

Hunter becomes bear guardian YULI, Taiwan: When he was young, Taiwanese aboriginal hunter Lin Yuan-yuan became a legend after he killed two ferocious Formosan black bears. Now he has devoted his life to saving the endangered species. The 55-year-old is still revered by his tribe, the Bunun mountain people, as a guardian of the island’s biggest land animal as it struggles to survive poaching and continued degradation of its traditional habitat. “When I see an animal, I no longer want to shoot it. I want to film it,” Lin said. “I feel happy every time I’m in the mountains,” he added, caressing the camera he uses to capture images of animals he encounters in Yushan National Park, one of the bears’ two major natural habitats in Taiwan. Now a ranger, Lin is in a four-member team that patrols the park regularly, covering 40 percent of its 105,000 hectares on foot every month. The transformation into a government employee has not been easy for a person who was born into an aboriginal family and taught hunting skills from early childhood. Lin, better known to his Bunun people by the name of Ison, killed his first bear on a winter day when he was just 19 years old. “I saw two animals in the woods,” he said, remembering the incident in the eastern Taiwan mountains that made him a local hero 36 years ago. “At first, I thought they were wild boars. So I fired at one of them and only then did I realise they were actually bears.” The bear, a male of about 70 kg, was only 15 m away from him, roaring with pain for about a minute before collapsing on the ground, he said. Lin and his cousin had to stay in a shelter on the mountain for two days to prepare the animal for transportation down to the village -skinning the bear, cutting up the meat and roasting it. When he arrived in the village, Lin was greeted in accordance with age-old tradition, welcomed as a true son of the Bunun tribe with ceremonies and celebrations. His status as a brave hunter against the island’s most dreaded animal was further consolidated after he killed a second bear two years later.

Not long after its establishment in 1985, he joined the Yushan National Park. The job allowed him a stable income and 13 years later it paved the way for a dramatic change in his life. As a ranger familiar with the bears’ habitat, he was approached in 1998 by Hwang Mei-hsiu, a scholar who had dedicated herself to research into the endangered species. She needed help for a field study which required capturing bears in the wild, fitting them with radio transmitters and releasing them to monitor their movements. For the first time the study was able to lay bare the dangers confronting Taiwan’s indigenous bears, using concrete scientific evidence. Despite a ban on hunting, Hwang’s study proved that poaching had been rampant as eight out of the 15 bears they captured in the two years to 1999 in one specific area had lost a paw or several claws when recaptured. “The bears had fallen victims to hunters’ traps, and they were hurt, even though the traps might not necessarily target the bears,” said Hwang, who is nicknamed “Bear Mother” by the aborigines. Killing a bear may bring hunters an illegal profit of Tw$150,000 ($5,200) through the sale of the bear’s paws, a delicacy, and bile, an ingredient in traditional Chinese medicines, she said. To protect the island’s endangered species, the authorities in 1989 enacted a law under which poachers of bears and other rare animals may face a jail term of up to five years and a fine of up to Tw$1 million. Some biologists estimate there may be hundreds of Formosan black bears, largely at elevations of 1,000 m to 2,000 m in the Yushan park and the neighbouring Shei-Pa National Park. They are elusive, but if anyone is capable of finding them it is Lin, using his hunting skills for new, less lethal purposes. “Lin has always taken us to places where he thought bears might show up,” Hwang’s assistant Lin Kuan-fu said. “He is so familiar with the eastern part of the national park that he doesn’t even need a map,” he said. — AFP

Repackaged TANG to increase market share If you have grown up in the GCC, you would undoubtedly have grown up with TANG, the popular powdered fruit flavoured beverage that comes in a variety of unique flavours. With GCC being the world’s third largest market for Tang, and with the lion’s share of the powdered beverage market share in the region, TANG enjoys an iconic status amongst consumers. Arab consumers in particular see the brand as a must-have in their households, especially during Ramadan and festivities. Now after more than 50 years in the region, TANG reinvents itself with a bold, fresh new look and revamped format that offers increased convenience, while encouraging increased frequency of consumption amongst a wider segment of consumers For over five decades, TANG in the GCC has been sold in tins and glass jars. The tins were what set TANG apart from the rest of the competition, mak ing the brand instantly recognizable for consumers all over the region. Now, widemouthed and easy-grip airtight plastic containers have replaced the tins, thereby eliminating the need for can openers and other k itchen utensils, while enabling easier handling. In addition, the TANG glass jars, which were also popular amongst consumers, have been redesigned to sport a curvy new look that allows for easy grip.

“ Tins have been the single biggest packaging format for TANG in GCC, contributing to over 65 percent of total TANG sales. With TANG competing in the broader and more competitive non-carbonated fruit flavoured beverage categor y dominated by juices, it was time to innovate and refresh the brand image, thereby maintaining our relevance and appeal amongst consumers. The new packaging and format is expected to drive increased sales as it will appeal to a wider segment of consumers who look for convenience, variet y and excitement in the beverages they consume”, said Vishal Tik ku, Managing Director, Kraft Foods GCC.

The revamp exercise of TANG also called for a new state-of-the-art production line to be installed at the Kraft Foods plant in Bahrain, where TANG is manufactured for distribution within the GCC. Being one of the largest campaigns for Tang outside of Ramadan, TANG has also embarked on one of its biggest inte grated marketing campaign across the GCC. It involves the biggest outdoor advertising drive, a new television commercial, in-store and in-mall media suppor t and social media. I n addition, TANG also offered its consumers an exciting promotion to win home makeover experiences wor th over AED 500,000! Consumers had to simply enter into a lucky draw and stand to win one of 100 Home Center vouchers worth AED5,000 each!

YULI: Hwang Mei-hsiu, a biologist from Taiwan’s National Pingtung University of Science and Technology and who is nicknamed “Bear Mother” for her dedication to the study of the endangered species, shows a confiscated bear paw being kept at her office on March 1, 2011. – AFP

German baby survives record premature birth BERLIN: A German baby born after only 21 weeks and five days in the womb has equalled a world record for surviving premature infants, the hospital said yesterday. When Frieda was born on Nov 7 she measured 28 cm and weighed only one 460 gm. “In the specialist literature, other premature babies have been lighter than her at birth, some even less than 300 grammes, but there is no mention of a premature baby even younger than Frieda,” the clinic in western Fulda said in a communique. A baby was born in Ottawa in 1987 at exactly the same stage of its mother’s pregnancy, the statement said. Frieda was discharged on Wednesday weighing 3.5 k ilos and measuring 50 cm, the clinic said. Her twin brother Kilian died a few days

after being born. Professor Reinald Repp, director of the paediatric clinic, could not be reached yesterday, but a doctor on duty told AFP that “there is no foreseeable risk of after-effects for the moment” and that the little girl “should develop normally like any other child”. Generally babies born before 22 weeks have no chance of surviving because their lungs, heart and brain are not sufficiently developed. “Frieda was kept in a completely sterile environment, with her breathing assisted and fed through her navel,” Repp told the mass circulation Bild newspaper. Any baby born before eight months of pregnancy is considered premature. Very premature babies (less than 32 weeks) are considered at high risk of suffering developmental problems. - AFP


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Drill off Alaska coast? Gulf mess renews debate WASHINGTON: A year after the disastrous Gulf of Mexico oil spill, the prospect of a major accident in oil’s next US frontier - the icy waters off Alaska’s north coast - has experts even more concerned. With no roads connecting remote coastal towns, storms and fog that can ground aircraft, no deepwater ports for ships and the nearest Coast Guard station about 1,000 miles 1,600 km away - it would be nearly impossible to respond on the scale that was needed last year to stop the runaway oil well and clean up the mess. That means the burden to respond would rest to an even greater degree on the company doing the drilling. Like a backcountry camper, an oil company drilling off Alaska would have to bring all the equipment needed to the isolated drilling site. And the federal government, at least in the early stages, would be far away from the scene. Unlike the Gulf, where tens of thousands of oil wells and runoff have tainted the waters for decades - and where rigs once again are probing the depths for oil - a spill in the Arctic risks tainting a pristine and sensitive landscape, one that has not been as well studied and where drilling in federal waters is limited. That makes it harder to determine what toll a spill would have on the endangered polar bears and migratory whales that make use of the oil-rich seas. The accident in the Gulf last April highlight-

ed shortcomings in spill preparedness. In the aftermath, experts such as Thad Allen - the government’s point person on the Gulf spill and the presidential oil spill commission have questioned whether companies, and the government, are adequately prepared to overcome the challenges of responding to an Arctic spill. “We ought to be extremely careful about the Arctic, because we know that spill response and the Coast Guard cannot get to the Arctic very well,” Cherry Murray, a member of the presidential oil spill panel, told a committee on ocean energy safety earlier this week. “And cleanup is going to be considerably more difficult.” Despite lessons learned from the massive response to the Macondo well blowout on April 20 a year ago, many of the techniques deployed - skimming, burning and the application of chemical dispersants - either wouldn’t work in the frigid seas and stormy skies off Alaska or would be diminished in effectiveness. Booms, depending on the degree of ice cover, can freeze. Ice can also clog the suction devices used to mop up the spill, diminishing how much oil can be collected. Depending on the time of year a spill occurred, even daylight can be scarce. “The problem is on what order of magnitude are you prepared to respond, and I don’t really think we know that,” said Allen, now a

with every heart beat

senior fellow at the Rand Corp. “That doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t proceed, but everyone needs to know that’s a very, very difficult place to operate.” Allen, in an interview with AP, listed the challenges: The largest city anywhere close to the drilling, Barrow, has extremely limited motel space; there is no hangar for aircraft, a must in stormy and variable weather, and the shallow water means no port. “One has to wonder, at the height of the Macondo spill, we engaged over 45,000 people and thousands of thousands of boats,” Allen said. “Depending on the type of problem you might encounter there, the lack of infrastructure, lack of forward operating bases, austerity of the environment, plus the distance to port is problematic.” The renewed focus on the obstacles to spill response off Alask a comes as the Obama administration is under increasing pressure to boost domestic oil production as a means of tempering high gasoline prices. President Barack Obama last month set a target of reducing foreign oil imports by a third by 2025. To reach that goal, he will need the oil and gas off Alaska, where an estimated 27 billion barrels of oil lies beneath the ocean floor. That’s 2.5 times the amount produced in the entire Gulf of Mexico since 1990. Yet despite these huge reserves, the costs of drilling in the Arctic, along with permitting delays and law-

suits have resulted in fewer than 100 wells being drilled in federal waters off Alaska. Only about three dozen of those are in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas off of Alaska’s northern and northwest coasts. In December, in part because of concerns about responding to an oil spill, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar canceled the sale of new oil and gas leases in the Arctic. And a federal court recently ordered the agency to go back and analyze the risks of a large oil spill for a 2008 Chukchi lease sale, including how it would be handled. While the department said it would honor existing leases, delays in permitting have caused the only company that was seeking to drill a new exploratory well in federal waters off Alaska to delay those plans until 2012. That company, Shell Oil Co, says it will be fully prepared to handle a worst-case spill, in the unlikely event that one occurs. Peter Velez, Shell’s oil spill response manager, told the AP that equipment would be stationed offshore with the drilling rig and could start skimming oil within an hour of a spill. The company also will have onsite back-up blowout preventers, the valve tower on the sea floor that is supposed to shut a well in the event of a blowout. The one on the Deepwater Horizon rig in the Gulf failed to halt the flow of oil. And in another difference from the Gulf dis-

aster, a new capping and containment system that under construction could reach its target within days or weeks. In BP’s case in the Gulf, the equipment that eventually contained the spill before the well was killed needed to be built from scratch. “ We will have enough equipment at each of the locations to meet, and in most cases exceed, the worst-case discharge,” Velez said. In the spill last April, the worst seemed to happen - a super-deep well in about 1.6 km of water and nearly 5.6 km below the ocean floor erupted, spilling as much as 9 million liters of oil into the Gulf each day. A spill of that magnitude is much less likely in the Arctic, according to experts, where drilling would occur in very shallow water, where oil and gas are not as deep underground and where pressures are much less than what is found in the deepwater Gulf. Ice, which can be an obstacle to clean up, can also act as a natural barrier to a spill. And the frigid water means the oil would be slower to degrade, buying more time to apply dispersants, burn off oil and use other clean-up techniques - though potentially exposing wildlife to more toxins. Exploratory drilling, as Shell points out, would be limited to the open water season from July-October, making the timing of a spill important. If one were to happen toward the end of the season, ice would be coming in, complicating cleanup efforts. — AP

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SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

W H AT ’ S O N Announcements Al Taalib Scholarship 2011 Al Taalib Scholarship is a financial aid scheme for the under privileged school students in Kuwait, sponsored by the Ministry of Awqaf in association with Islam Presentation Committee (IPC), Friday Forum and Pakistan Kuwait Welfare Association. These scholarships were given to the needy students irrespective of their religion or nationality. The process of Al Taalib Scholarship for the current academic year, 2011-12, has begun for all Indian and Pakistani Schools in Kuwait. In order to avail this scholarship, applicants are requested to collect the Application Form from Al Taalib Office located in CAMS, Ahmed Al Jaber Street, Darwaza, Near Warba Insurance Co., Int’l Islamic Charity Organization Building, 2nd Floor, Al Sharq. The duly filled application form shall be submitted to Al Taalib office on or before 10th May 2011 along with all supporting documents specified in the Application Form.

GUST celebrates first official ENGLISH DAY

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he Gulf University for Science and Technology (GUST) celebrated its first official ENGLISH DAY. The main purpose of this event is to encourage more interest in the English language, its history and its many aspects. The event launched with great success, a big audience welcomed by characters from some of the most famous written pieces of all time. And as such, the events theme was “A Journey Through Time.” All the professors from the English Department as well as many students dressed up from prominent characters of famous stories such as Beowulf, Alice in Wonderland, Chuckles the Clown, The ghost of the Lady in Black and Charley Chaplin. And that was just the beginning. Dr Piers Smith inaugurated the event and thanked the sponsor (AlYasra) as well as all the faculty and GUST departments that helped make this event a success. Nicolas Woodgate, a representative from the British Embassy in Kuwait expressed her enthusiasm about the event and not-

ed the important relationship between Kuwait and the UK and said on behalf of the Ambassador Mr. Frank Baker: “It is a pleasure for me to support GUST’s first English day. I also hope that it becomes a tradition, celebrating a great language and history. We hope that some of you will come to the UK and see for yourselves. I would encourage you to make the most of this wonderful opportunity and more importantly enjoy it.” Dr Robert Cook, Vice President of Academic Affairs, said: “This is an important event. English is the key to success at GUST. Every day we help our students learn how to express themselves in the language to allow them to move forward and succeed. GUST appreciates this initiative by the English Department and hopes that this tradition will keep going every year.” GUST halls were decorated with booths and flowed with buzz and activities involving knowledge of the English language and the stories it has made known with help from different

student clubs, including scavenger hunts with the Ruwwad Club “Fill It Up game and an Alice in Wonderland Tea Party Never Ending Story Game, a Twitter Triathlong, among others for the students to participate in and learn from. The piano was set out in the hall where anyone was allowed to play the pieces they know, which created a nice atmosphere in the university of calmness and put a smile on everyone’s faces. The day’s activities did not end there. Students both majoring in English and non-English majors participated in a full schedule of poetry, short story and drama skits, a reading from “Near Open Water,” screenings of the movies Plagiarism, The King’s Speech and Alice in Wonderland. The concluding event of the day was a riveting debate between GUST’s Debate team and teams from Kuwait University, Australian College of Kuwait and the American University of Kuwait. The day was enjoyed by everyone on campus from students to professors as it

NAFO to present Soorya’s ‘Sangamam’ National Forum Kuwait (NAFO Kuwait) is all set to bringing a spectacular, well conceptualized, a jewel in crown super cultural show ‘Sangamam’ for the art lovers of Kuwait, according to a press release. Indian Ambassador Ajai Malhotra will inaugurate the first of its kind super show, scheduled for the evening of Friday, May 13, 2011 (6.00 PM) at the American International School Auditorium, Maidan-Hawalli. was a nice take and theme on a subject that can be mistake as non-entertaining. But, GUST English Department succeeded in proving that wrong with their successful event.

KES under 13 boys volleyball team shine

Voice Kuwait 6th Anniversary Voice Kuwait is celebrating its 6th anniversary “VISWAKALA 2011” on May 20th Friday from 4 pm to 9 pm at Carmel School Khaitan. Voice Kuwait is giving award to its member’s children who got highest mark in last S.S.L.C. either from Kuwait or from Kerala. The students those are eligible should give attested copy of their mark list to Area conveners or sent copy to voicekuwait2004@gmail.com For more information please contact 66950482,94419371. Catholicate College new members Catholicate College Alumni Association, Kuwait Chapter, is enrolling new members. Ex-students of Catholicate College who have not yet become members of the Alumni Association are requested to complete the Membership Forms and submit the completed Forms to the Treasurer, Thomas Mathew (Mobile no. 66025610) to become eligible for participation in Catholicate College Alumni Association’s activities and programmes. Membership Form is available at the Association’s website : www.ccaakwt.com. For more details contact General Secretary (Mobile no. 66232408) or President ( Mobile no. 66864057.

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uwait English School Under 13 Boys volleyball team have become convincing champions, against a spirited TES team who had beaten them 3 times on previous occasions but the KES team were too strong in the final winning 2 - 0 (25 - 17, 25 - 21). The road to the final had not been easy for the KES team but with beating the previous undefeated NES in the last league game and semi final the team took on a new persona and started playing volleyball to a very high standard. The team had great leadership from captain Abdulla Hussain though all players in the squad played their part. Squad members Abdulla Hussain, Hassan Al Saffar, Danilo, Hamad Al Nema, Omar Al Farhan, Salman Boutaiban, Malek Mansour, Suliaman Al Salem, Ali, Abdul Baki, Zenon Kulchitsky, Mark Wissa and Yousef Ashkanani.

Muslim Cultural Center holds press conference

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uwait KMCC is doing great services to the community since last 35 years. Our presence here is our commitment to their efforts in terms of alleviating sufferings of the lay men and deserving people in Kuwait and back home”. Said Sayed Haidarali shihab thangal- president, Kerala state Muslim League while addressing a press conference. State general secretary Kunjalikutty urged the community to avail the great opportunity presented by government of Kuwait in the form of Amnesty. It is in our nation’s interest to legalize our documents and respect Kuwait’s rules and regulations. Kuwait KMCC is helping, propagating and supporting who are in need of any help in this regard. Regarding the status of recent election results to be declared in Kerala he said all the signals are in favor of a UDF come back to power. People in Kerala are looking for a change and this

Arpan’s ‘Kathakali 2011’ Arpan Kuwait, an Indian socio-cultural organization, will present ‘Kathakali 2011’ on Saturday, April 30 at 6.30 pm at the Indian Community School (Senior Girls), Salmiya as part of its initiative to promote Indian classical art and culture in Kuwait. The show ‘Kalyanasougandhikam’, a very popular exotic dance drama, will be presented by renowned Kathakali performers from India Kalamandalam Vasudevan, Sasikala S Vellodi, Kalamandalam Sreekantan and Kalamandalam Sreekumar. A 30-minute demo will also be held by the performers prior to the show for the guests who are not familiar with Kathakali. Kathakali, Kerala’s classical theatre, will be presented as a cross-cultural program before an august gathering comprising diplomats, Kuwaiti guests, dancers and theatre lovers. Arpan is presenting the unique classical art form once again before the Kuwait’s elite audience on popular demand. For details, contact: 99716105, 97277151, 66872372 or 94063428.

Aware Arabic course The AWARE management is glad to inform those interested in learning Arabic that Summer 1 Arabic language courses will begin on April 24 and go on till June 2, 2011. AWARE Arabic language courses are designed with the expat in mind. The environment is relaxed and courses are designed for those wanting to learn Arabic for travel, cultural understanding, and conducting business or simply to become more involved in the community. We cater to teachers, travelers and those working in the private business sector.

Palestinian cultural exhibition this week Monday April 25 - Thursday April 28, 2011

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will be reflected in the elections results. It was always been Muslim league and UDF endeavor to support NRI causes and will continue upon returning to power through government mechanisms including the issue of rehabilitation. He said. K N A Khader, secretary state

Muslim league pointed that NRI voting rights initiated by UPI government could not be utilized in its full potential due to some shortcomings like rules of attestation. UDF will put efforts to fine tune and rectify the situation so that the large community residing in GCC and else-

where will be to cast their franchise in its full potential. The leaders are here to attend “Karunayam (Mercy) 2011” public conference by Kuwait KMCC. The program is designed to propagate and seek support of the public for the organizations charity endeavors.

andicrafts reaffirm the Palestinian national identity and support needy children and families. The Palestinian Culture Center in collaboration with the Women’s Cultural Social Society invite you to its spring exhibition. The exhibition aims to preserve Palestinian handicrafts in order to reaffirm the Palestinian national identify by adapting it harmoniously to the 21st century demands. We display classic designs intertwined with modern uses, colors, and motifs, to showcase some of the creativity of the Palestinian women. Items on sale include: cushions, runners, scarves, shawls, long traditional dresses as well as smaller items. We also have handmade ceramics from Palestine, books, music, and movies. On Monday and Thursday evening there will be a folklore dance by the Palestinian Youth group. Also on Thursday, there will be a bake sale of traditional foods.


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SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

W H AT ’ S O N

Embassy Information EMBASSY OF AUSTRALIA The Embassy encourages all Australians to register their presence in Kuwait through Smartraveller Online (see link below). Australians who are registered are asked to update their details. The information provided will assist us in contacting you in an emergency. www.smartraveller.gov.au Kuwait citizens can apply for and receive visit visas to Australia online at www.immi.gov.au. This usually takes two working days. The Australian Embassy advises that it will be closed today, Sunday 24 and Monday 25 April 2011 on the occasion of Easter Holiday. The Embassy will resume work on Tuesday 26 April 2011.

Kuwait English School KG visits greenhouses

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uwait English School KG children visited greenhouses of the Public Authority for Agriculture and Fish Affairs and the Plant nurseries on the Fourth Ring Road this week. Barbara, Julie and Lorraine’s class saw the prickly cactus house, beautiful lilies in the flower house and exotic papayas and pineapples in the fruit and vegetable house. “We had a lovely day” said Lorraine, thanking Janan. Sarah, Kismet and Doris’s children toured some of the shops selling a huge variety of potted indoor plants and hardy outdoor shrubs and garden accessories. The children looked at the size and shape of the various leaves, and their patterns and textures in shades of green.

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EMBASSY OF ARGENTINA In order to inform that 23rd of October 2011, will be Argentine national election where all Argentinean citizen residents permanently in Kuwait can vote only if they are registered at the Electoral Register of the Argentine Embassy. The procedure of inscription is for free and will be end on 25 of April 2011. To register it is necessary that Argentinean citizens should come personally at the Argentinean Embassy (Block 6, street 42, villa 57, Mishref ) and present the DNI and four personal photos (size 4x4, face should be front on white background). For further information, contact us on 25379211. ■■■■■■■

EMBASSY OF BRITAIN The British Embassy will be closed today 24th and tomorrow 25th of April 2011 on the occasion of Easter Holidays. The Embassy will reopen on Tuesday 26 April 2011. The Visa Application Centre (VAC) will be closed on the same dates above. The opening hours of the Visa Application Centre are 0930 - 1630 Application forms remain available online from the UKBAs’ website: www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk or from the Visa Application Centre’s website: www.vfs-uk-kw.com. And also, from the UK Visa Application Centre located at: 4B, First Floor, Al Banwan Building (Burgan Bank Branch Office Building), Al Qibla area, opposite Central Bank of Kuwait, Kuwait City. For any further inquiries, please contact the Visa Application Centre: Website: www.vfs-uk-kw.com E-mail:info@vfs-uk-kw.com Telephone:22971170. The Consular Section will also be closed on the same dates. For information on the British Embassy services, visit the British Embassy website: www.ukinkuwait.fco.gov.uk ■■■■■■■

Indian ambassador visits ESF

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is Excellency the Indian Ambassador to Kuwait Ajay Malhotra recently visited the English School Fahaheel to view one of Kuwait’s oldest English schools in action. ESF was officially established in 1968. HE Malhotra met with students during the visit including many Indian students studying at the School. He was welcomed by Owner Chairman Ibrahim Shuhaiber, Vice Chairman Jasmin Shuhaiber, Principal George Bowery and Heads of Departments.

The Holy Family Cathedral

Greetings

Schedule of services Today 3:30 am: Easter Mass in Malankara 5:00 pm. Holy Mass in Tamil (HFH) 7:00 am: Holy Mass in English 5:00 pm. Holy Mass in Bengali (VMH) 8:15 am. Holy Mass in English 5:15 pm. Holy Mass in English 9:30 am. Holy Mass in English 6:00 pm. Korean Mass (GSH) 10:30 am: Holy Mass in English (HFH) 6:15 pm. Holy Mass in English 10:30 am: Mass in Syro-Malabar (Cathedral) 6:30 pm. Holy Mass in Tagalog (VMH) 12:30 pm: Holy Mass in Maronite 6:30 pm. Holy Mass in Sinhala ( VMH) 3:00 pm: Holy Mass in Konkani (Trans-HFH) 7:30 pm. Holy Mass in Malayalam 4:15 pm: Holy Mass in Konkani 8:30 pm. Holy Mass in Arabic

Happy birthday to our great twins Carolin & Catherin. May God give you lots of joys & happy moments. Greeting from Mommy & Daddy

Cinemagic Thursday, April 28th at 7:30pm THE HEADLESS WOMAN Director: Lucrecia Martel Country: Argentina Release: 2009 Genre: Drama | Mystery | Thriller Running time: 87 minutes Language: Spanish | English Subtitle Awards: Cannes, in competition, Best film, director, actress Saturday, April 30th at 7:30pm THE GIRL WHO KICKED THE HORNET’S NEST Director: Daniel Alfredsson Country: Sweden Release: 2010 Genre: Crime | Drama | Thriller Running time: 147 minutes Language: Swedish | English Subtitle

EMBASSY OF CANADA The Embassy of Canada is located at Villa 24, Al-Mutawakel St., Block 4 in Da’aiyah. Please visit our website at www.Kuwait.gc.ca. 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 www.voyage.gc.ca. 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 www.UAE.gc.ca. Effective January 15, 2011, the only Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) application form that will be accepted by CIC is the Application for Temporary Resident Visa Made Outside of Canada [IMM 5257] form. All previous Temporary Resident Visa application forms will no longer be accepted by CIC and instead will be returned to applicants. Should old applications be submitted prior to January 15, 2011 they will continue to be processed. To ensure that the most recent version of the Temporary Resident Visa application form is being utilized, applicants should refer to the CIC website. As of January 15, 2011, forms are to be filled in electronically. 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 forms are available on the internet at: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/pdf/kits/forms/IMM52 57E.PDF. A guide explaining the process can be found here: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/pdf/kits/guides/5256E .PDF. ■■■■■■■

Best herbs for indoor gardening

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The Life Abundant International Fountain (LAIF) recently celebrated the birthday of its senior pastor Jonathan Njoku. The event featured lots of activities including praise worship and thanksgiving service. ‘We pray that God will continue to shower His abundant blessings on you. Amen’. Greetings from LAIF, friends and wellwishers.

he AWARE Center cordially invites all those interested to its presentation entitled, “ Best herbs for indoor gardening,” by M ichelle Van De Merwe on Tuesday April 26, 2011 at 7:00pm. Growing your own herbs indoors can be both fun and therapeutic as it is relatively easy and not really expensive. Herbs can be placed roughly into 3 categories: culinary, medicinal and ornamental. Fresh herbs add a wonderful taste to a meal and can add just that right touch to decorate any dish. They can create a beautiful replacement for indoor plants having a multitude of uses - sprinkling on salads, spicing up your salsas, medicinal uses, teas, decoration and fragrance.

EMBASSY OF FRANCE The French Embassy in Kuwait will remain closed today, April 24, 2011 because of Easter holidays. ■■■■■■■

EMBASSY OF NIGERIA The Nigerian embassy has moved its office to Mishref. Block 3, Street 7, House 4. For enquires please call 25379541. Fax- 25387719. Emailnigeriakuwait@yahoo.com or nigeriankuwait@yahoo.co.uk ■■■■■■■

SOUTH AFRICAN EMBASSY On the occasion of Easter Sunday, the South African Embassy will be closed today 24 April 2011. The Embassy will resume its normal working hours on Monday, 25 April 2011, from Sunday to Thursday. Please note that the working hours will be from 8h00 to 16h00 & the Consular Section operation hours will from 8h30 to 12h30.


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00:45 Untamed And Uncut 01:40 Dogs/Cats/Pets 101 02:35 Shark Attack File 03:30 Pit Bulls And Parolees 04:25 Crime Scene Wild 05:20 The Most Extreme 06:10 Cats 101 07:00 Meerkat Manor 07:25 Growing Up...: Orang-Utan 08:15 The Really Wild Show 08:40 Natural Born Hunters 09:10 Michaela’s Animal Road Trip 10:05 Dogs 101 11:00 Animal Precinct 11:55 Wildlife SOS 12:20 E-Vets: The Interns 12:50 Chimp Family Fortunes 14:40 Extraordinary Dogs 15:05 Cats Of Claw Hill 15:35 Natural Born Hunters 16:00 Natural Born Hunters 16:30 Sharkman 17:25 Venom Hunter With Donald Schultz 18:20 World Wild Vet 19:15 Mutant Planet 20:10 Dogs/Cats/Pets 101 21:05 Life In The Undergrowth 22:00 Life Of Mammals 22:55 The Animals’ Guide To Survival 23:50 The Most Extreme

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

Robin Hood The Weakest Link The Weakest Link The Weakest Link Only Fools And Horses Only Fools And Horses Only Fools And Horses Me Too Tweenies Teletubbies Charlie And Lola Me Too Tweenies Teletubbies Charlie And Lola Me Too Tweenies Teletubbies Charlie And Lola Me Too Tweenies Teletubbies Charlie And Lola Only Fools And Horses Only Fools And Horses Robin Hood The Weakest Link Casualty Casualty The Weakest Link The Weakest Link Doctors Doctors Robin Hood Only Fools And Horses Only Fools And Horses Full Circle With Michael Palin Monarch Of The Glen Paradox Conviction Spooks

00:15 Holmes On Homes 01:00 Come Dine With Me 07:10 Glamour Puds 07:30 Design Star 08:15 Daily Cooks Challenge 11:05 How Not To Decorate 14:55 Antiques Roadshow 19:00 Holmes On Homes 20:30 Nigel Slater’s Simple Suppers 21:20 New Scandinavian Cooking With Andreas Viestad 21:45 New Scandinavian Cooking With Andreas Viestad 22:10 Come Dine With Me

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

BBC World News The Doha Debate BBC World News Middle East Business Report BBC World News World Features Newsnight BBC World News World Features Talking Movies BBC World News Dateline London BBC World News The Doha Debate BBC World News Click BBC World News Newsnight BBC World News India Business Report BBC World News Fast Track BBC World News World Features Talking Movies BBC World News World Features Dateline London BBC World News BBC World News BBC World News World Features Africa Business Report BBC World News Newsnight BBC World News World Features Extra Time BBC World News Sport Today Click BBC World News Nature Inc. BBC World News The Doha Debate BBC World News India Business Report BBC World News Africa Business Report BBC World News Sport Today Click BBC World News Talking Movies BBC World News World Features Nature Inc.

00:15 00:40 01:05 01:30 01:55 02:20 Doo 02:45 03:00 03:25 03:50 04:35 05:00 05:35 06:00 06:25 07:00 07:35 07:50 08:15 08:40 09:05 09:55 10:20 10:45 11:00 11:30 13:00 13:35 14:00 14:25 14:50 15:15 Doo 15:40 16:05

A Pup Named Scooby-Doo Tex Avery Looney Tunes Hong Kong Phooey The Garfield Show Scooby-Doo And ScrappyPopeye Classics New Yogi Bear Show Scooby Doo Where Are You! Tom And Jerry Popeye Hong Kong Phooey The Flintstones Help! It’s The Hair Bear Bunch Droopy And Dripple Tom And Jerry Looney Tunes New Yogi Bear Show Paddington Bear The Scooby Doo Show Duck Dodgers The Garfield Show Tom And Jerry Popeye Wacky Races Scooby Cinema The Garfield Show Top Cat The Garfield Show Duck Dodgers The Garfield Show Scooby-Doo And ScrappyThe Garfield Show Pink Panther And Pals

AGORA ON OSN CINEMA

SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

TV PROGRAMS 16:30 16:55 17:20 17:45 18:15 18:30 18:50 19:15 19:35 20:00 20:25 20:50 21:15 21:40 22:05 22:30 23:00 23:25 23:50

The Garfield Show The Addams Family The Garfield Show Tom And Jerry The Garfield Show Droopy And Dripple Scooby Doo Where Are You! Looney Tunes Paddington Bear The Scooby Doo Show Top Cat Dastardly And Muttley The Scooby Doo Show Wacky Races Tom And Jerry Johnny Bravo Dexter’s Laboratory Tom And Jerry Kids Yogi’s Treasure Hunt

00:05 Cow And Chicken 00:30 Cramp Twins 00:55 George Of The Jungle 01:20 Adventure Time 01:45 Eliot Kid 02:10 Ed, Edd N Eddy 02:35 Ben 10: Alien Force 03:00 The Powerpuff Girls 03:15 Chowder 03:40 The Secret Saturdays 04:05 My Gym Partner’s A Monkey 04:30 Ben 10: Alien Force 04:55 Best Ed 05:20 Skunk Fu! 05:45 Cramp Twins 06:10 Eliot Kid 06:35 The Marvelous Misadventures Of Flapjack 07:00 Ed, Edd N Eddy 07:25 Chop Socky Chooks 07:50 Chowder 08:15 Ben 10: Alien Force 08:40 Bakugan: Gundalian Invaders 09:05 Batman: The Brave And The Bold 09:30 The Secret Saturdays 09:55 My Gym Partner’s A Monkey 10:20 George Of The Jungle 10:30 Angelo Rules 10:55 Best Ed 11:20 Eliot Kid 11:45 Skunk Fu! 12:10 Fantastic Four: World’s Greatest Heroes 12:35 Bakugan: New Vestroia 13:00 Ben 10 13:25 Codename: Kids Next Door 13:50 The Marvelous Misadventures Of Flapjack 14:15 The Life And Times Of Juniper Lee 14:40 George Of The Jungle 15:05 Cartoon Network Dance Club 15:20 Ed, Edd N Eddy 15:35 Chop Socky Chooks 16:00 Robotboy 16:25 Squirrel Boy 16:50 Chowder 17:15 The Secret Saturdays 17:40 Ben 10: Ultimate Alien 18:05 Bakugan: New Vestroia 18:30 Angelo Rules 18:55 Best Ed 19:20 Adventure Time 19:45 Cow And Chicken 20:10 The Marvelous Misadventures Of Flapjack 20:35 Courage The Cowardly Dog 21:00 The Powerpuff Girls 21:25 Ed, Edd N Eddy 21:50 Robotboy 22:00 Batman: The Brave And The Bold 22:25 Skunk Fu! 22:50 Ben 10: Ultimate Alien 23:15 Bakugan Battle Brawlers 23:40 Chowder

00:00 00:30 01:00 01:30 02:00 02:30

The Best Of Backstory World Sport World Report Mainsail World Report Inside Africa

03:00 Your $$$$$ 04:00 Piers Morgan Tonight 05:00 The Best Of The Situation Room 06:00 World Sport 06:30 Mainsail 07:00 World Report 07:30 The Best Of Backstory 08:00 World Report 08:15 CNN Marketplace Middle East 08:30 Revealed 09:00 World Report 09:15 CNN Marketplace Africa 09:30 Ireport For CNN 10:00 World Sport 10:30 Mainsail 11:00 African Voices 11:30 Talk Asia 12:00 News Special 12:30 World View 13:00 World Report 13:30 World Sport 14:00 Piers Morgan Tonight 15:00 Fareed Zakaria Gps 16:00 State Of The Union With Candy Crowley 17:00 International Desk 17:30 Inside Africa 18:00 Ireport For CNN 18:30 World Sport 19:00 Prism 19:45 CNN Marketplace Middle East 20:00 International Desk 20:30 Revealed 21:00 World Report 21:30 Mainsail 22:00 Piers Morgan Tonight 23:00 Fareed Zakaria Gps

00:40 Miami Swat 01:35 Mythbusters 02:30 Dual Survival 03:25 Destroyed In Seconds 04:20 How It’s Made 04:50 How Stuff’s Made 05:15 Brew Masters 06:05 Mythbusters 07:00 X-Machines 07:50 Ultimate Weapons 08:45 American Chopper: Senior vs Junior 09:40 Mythbusters 10:30 Gold Rush: Alaska 11:25 Brew Masters 12:20 River Monsters 17:50 How It’s Made 18:15 Gold Rush: Alaska 19:10 Brew Masters 20:05 Time Warp 21:00 Mythbusters 21:55 Get Out Alive 22:50 Dual Survival 23:45 Stunt Junkies

00:30 Nextworld 01:20 The Gadget Show 01:45 The Gadget Show 02:10 The Future Of... 03:00 Sci-Fi Science 03:25 Sci-Fi Science 03:50 How Stuff Works 04:45 Engineered 05:40 How Stuff’s Made 06:10 Superships 07:00 How The Universe Works 07:55 Brainiac 08:45 Head Rush 08:48 Sci-Fi Science 09:15 Weird Connections 09:45 Catch It Keep It 10:35 Eco-Tech 14:45 The Gadget Show 15:10 The Gadget Show 15:35 Patent Bending 16:00 Head Rush 16:03 Cool Stuff And How It Works 16:30 How Does That Work? 17:00 The Future Of... 17:50 Bad Universe 18:40 Human Body: Ultimate Machine 19:30 Mighty Ships 20:20 The Gadget Show 20:45 The Gadget Show 21:10 Through The Wormhole With Morgan Freeman 22:00 Powering The Future 22:50 Discovery Project Earth 23:40 Mega World

00:20 Replacements 00:45 Replacements 01:10 Fairly Odd Parents 01:35 Fairly Odd Parents 02:00 A Kind Of Magic 02:20 A Kind Of Magic 02:45 Stitch 03:10 Stitch 03:35 Kim Possible 04:00 Kim Possible 04:25 Emperors New School 04:50 Emperors New School 05:15 Stitch 05:35 Stitch 06:00 Special Agent Oso 06:25 Jungle Junction 06:45 Handy Manny 07:10 Fish Hooks 07:35 Tinkerbell And The Great Fairy Rescue 08:50 Have A Laugh 09:00 Toy Story 2 10:30 Good Luck Charlie 10:55 Good Luck Charlie 11:15 Suite Life On Deck 11:40 Suite Life On Deck 12:00 Wizards Of Waverly Place 12:25 Wizards Of Waverly Place 12:50 Hannah Montana Forever 13:12 Have A Laugh 13:15 Hannah Montana Forever 13:40 Fairly Odd Parents 14:00 Fairly Odd Parents 14:25 Phineas And Ferb 14:47 Have A Laugh 14:50 Phineas And Ferb 15:15 Good Luck Charlie 15:35 Good Luck Charlie 16:00 Suite Life On Deck 16:25 Suite Life On Deck 16:45 Shake It Up 17:10 Shake It Up 17:30 Hannah Montana Forever 17:55 Have A Laugh 18:00 Hannah Montana Forever 18:20 Sonny With A Chance 18:45 Sonny With A Chance 19:10 Toy Story 2 20:40 Hannah Montana Forever 20:57 Have A Laugh 21:00 Wizards Of Waverly Place

21:25 21:50 22:15 22:40 23:05 23:30 23:55

Jonas La Good Luck Charlie Sonny With A Chance Wizards Of Waverly Place Jonas Hannah Montana Kim Possible

06:00 06:20 06:40 07:05 08:20 Sea 09:25 09:50 10:15 13:15 14:30 14:55 17:30 17:55 20:50 21:15 21:40 22:00 22:20

Kid Vs Kat Kick Buttowski Pokemon Suite Life On Deck S3 Suite Life On Deck - Lost At

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

Suite Life On Deck S3 Zeke & Luther Zeke & Luther I’m In The Band Phineas & Ferb Phineas & Ferb Kick Buttowski Kick Buttowski I’m In The Band Aaron Stone American Dragon Pokemon Pokemon

Kendra Fashion Police Chelsea Lately 20 Hottest Women of the Web E!ES Sexiest Reality Hell Wildest TV Show Moments THS Behind the Scenes E! News Extreme Close-Up THS E!ES THS Behind the Scenes E! News Married To Rock Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane Kendra Kourtney and Kim Take New Kourtney and Kim Take New E! News Chelsea Lately The Soup E! News

00:15 Glutton For Punishment 01:30 M1 Selection 2010 02:20 FIA European Drag Racing 2008 04:00 BMX Megatour 04:50 FIM World Supermoto 2010 06:30 iEX 2009 08:00 IFMXF 2010 09:15 Saab Salomon Mountain XRace 09:40 FIM World Motocross Mx1/Mx2... 10:30 Very Best Of Maverick’s Best Surf 11:20 FIM World Supermoto 2010 12:10 Lucas Oil Motocross Championships 2009 13:00 Winter X Games 14 2010 13:50 Ride Guide Mountainbike 2008 14:15 Ride Guide Mountainbike 2008 14:40 Final Fu 17:10 Fight Girls 18:00 Ride Guide Mountainbike 2008 18:25 Ride Guide Mountainbike 2008 18:50 FIM World Supermoto 2010 19:40 Lucas Oil Motocross Championships 2009 20:30 Winter X Games 14 2010 21:20 Fantasy Factory 22:10 Ride Guide Mountainbike 2008 23:00 Fight Girls 23:50 Glutton For Punishment

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

A Haunting The Haunted Ghost Lab A Haunting A Haunting Amsterdam Vice Murder Shift Mystery ER Forensic Detectives On The Run Mystery ER Real Emergency Calls Real Emergency Calls Fugitive Strike Force FBI Files Murder Shift Extreme Forensics Mystery ER Real Emergency Calls Real Emergency Calls Fugitive Strike Force Forensic Detectives On The Run FBI Files Mystery ER Real Emergency Calls Real Emergency Calls Murder Shift Who On Earth Did I Marry? I Was Murdered I Was Murdered Deadly Women: Face To Face On The Case With Paula Zahn I Almost Got Away With It

00:00 Pressure Cook 00:30 Food Lovers Guide To The Planet 01:00 By Any Means 02:00 Market Values 02:30 Departures 03:30 Market Values 04:00 Don’t Tell My Mother 05:00 David Rocco’s Dolce Vita 05:30 Exploring The Vine 06:00 Pressure Cook 06:30 Food Lovers Guide To The Planet 07:00 By Any Means

FACE OFF ON OSN MOVIES ACTION 08:00 08:30 09:30 10:00 11:00 11:30 12:30 13:00 15:00 16:00 17:00 17:30 18:30 19:00 21:00 22:00 23:00 23:30

Market Values Departures Market Values Cooking The World Weird And Wonderful Hotels City Chase: Argentina Earth Tripping Banged Up Abroad Don’t Tell My Mother Cooking The World Weird And Wonderful Hotels City Chase: Argentina Earth Tripping Banged Up Abroad Don’t Tell My Mother Cooking The World Weird And Wonderful Hotels City Chase: Argentina

00:15 01:45 03:45 06:00 08:00 10:00 PG15 12:00 14:00 16:00 18:00 20:00 22:00

The Ruins-R XXX-PG15 The Day After Tomorrow-PG Star Trek: Generations-PG Ghost Town (TV Movie)-18 Jesse Stone: No RemorseMortal Kombat-PG Ghost Town (TV Movie)-18 Arlington Road-18 Mortal Kombat-PG Midnight Meat Train-18 Ninja Assassin-18

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

Harry Brown-18 Paper Heart-PG15 Messengers-PG15 The Break-Up Artist-PG15 Paper Heart-PG15 Primo-PG15 The Dust Factory-PG15 Green Lantern: First Flight-PG Where The Wild Things Are-PG Agora-18 Adventureland-PG15 Jack Goes Boating-PG15

00:30 The Daily Show With Jon Stewart 01:00 The Colbert Report 01:30 Family Guy 02:00 Saturday Night Live 03:00 Friends 03:30 Parks And Recreation 04:00 Family Guy 04:30 The Tonight Show With Jay Leno 05:30 How I Met Your Mother 06:00 Yes Dear 06:30 The Drew Carey Show 07:00 Late Night With Jimmy Fallon 08:00 8 Simple Rules ... 08:30 Dharma And Greg 09:00 Friends 09:30 How I Met Your Mother 10:00 Yes Dear 10:30 My Boys 11:00 The Drew Carey Show 11:30 The Tonight Show With Jay Leno 12:30 Dharma And Greg 13:00 8 Simple Rules ... 13:30 How I Met Your Mother 14:00 Yes Dear 14:30 Parks And Recreation 15:00 My Boys 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 Just Shoot Me 18:30 Tyler Perry’s House Of Payne 19:00 Seinfeld 19:30 30 Rock 20:00 Two And A Half Men 20:30 Cougar Town 21:00 The Daily Show With Jon Stewart 21:30 The Colbert Report 22:00 Saturday Night Live 23:00 Family Guy 23:30 Late Night With Jimmy Fallon

00:00 01:00 02:00 03:00 04:00 05:00 06:00 07:00 08:00

The Ellen Degeneres Show Sons Of Anarchy The Event Persons Unknown The View Karen Sisco Good Morning America Commander In Chief Emmerdale

08:30 09:00 10:00 11:00 12:00 13:00 14:00 15:00 16:00 17:00 18:00 18:30 19:00 20:00 21:00 22:00 23:00

Coronation Street Karen Sisco The View The Ellen Degeneres Show Persons Unknown The Event Karen Sisco Live Good Morning America Commander In Chief The Ellen Degeneres Show Emmerdale Coronation Street Detroit 1-8-7 Law And Order Criminal Minds Rescue Me Commander In Chief

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

Parenthood Nip/Tuck Sons Of Anarchy The Event Persons Unknown Parenthood The Ellen Degeneres Show The Office Coronation Street The Unit Parenthood The Ellen Degeneres Show The Office Coronation Street The Event Persons Unknown The Unit Parenthood The Office Coronation Street The Ellen Degeneres Show American Idol Law And Order Criminal Minds Nip/Tuck

01:00 02:45 05:00 06:45 09:00 11:15 13:30 15:30 17:45 19:45 21:45 23:15

Deceit-PG15 The Day After Tomorrow-PG El Orfenato-18 National Treasure-PG15 Face Off-PG15 Lost In Space-PG15 Air Force One-PG15 Face Off-PG15 Timeline-PG15 From Hell-18 Blood And Bone-18 Blindness-18

00:00 Jack-PG15 02:00 Down And Out In Beverly Hills-PG15 04:00 G-Force-PG 06:00 Night At The Museum: Battle Of The Smithsonian-PG15 08:00 Chatterbox-PG 10:00 My Bollywood Bride-PG15 12:00 Everything’s Gone GreenPG15 14:00 The Matchmaker-PG15 16:00 Jack-PG15 18:00 Martha Meet Frank, Daniel And Lawrence-PG15 20:00 Miss March-18 22:00 Three And Out-PG15

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

Trainspotting-R Last Chance Harvey-PG15 The Other Man-PG15 Racing For Time-PG15 Cabaret-PG15 Einstein And Eddington-PG15 Stevie-PG15 Sticks And Stones-PG Creation-PG15 In The Electric Mist-PG15 Ishtar-PG15 My Own Private Idaho-R

01:00 03:30 PG15 05:30 07:30 PG15 09:00 11:00

Vanilla Sky-18 G.I. Joe: The Rise Of CobraLove Happens-PG15 The Lizzie McGuire MovieWitness To Jonestown-PG15 Everybody’s Fine-PG15

13:00 15:15 FAM 17:00 19:00 21:00 23:00

As Good As It Gets-PG15 Ponyo On The Cliff By The SeaWitness To Jonestown-PG15 One Hot Summer-PG15 Jake’s Closet-PG15 Funny People-18

00:00 Scooby-Doo! AbracadabraDoo-FAM 02:00 The Princess And The FrogFAM 04:00 Globehunters-PG15 06:00 Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs-FAM 08:00 Beauty And The Beast-FAM 10:00 The Princess And The FrogFAM 12:00 Stuart Little 2-FAM 14:00 Free Willy: Escape From Pirate’s Cove-FAM 16:00 Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs-FAM 18:00 Beauty And The Beast-FAM 20:00 Barbie In A Mermaid Tale-FAM 22:00 Free Willy 2: The Adventure Home-FAM

00:00 The Informers-18 02:00 The Perfect Score-PG15 04:00 Curious George: Follow That Monkey-PG 06:00 9-PG15 08:00 Hey Hey Its Esther Blueburger-PG15 09:45 How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days-PG 11:45 Avatar-PG 14:30 By The People: The Election Of Barack Obama-PG15 16:30 Hey Hey Its Esther Blueburger-PG15 18:15 Easy Virtue-PG15 20:00 Jake’s Closet-PG15 22:00 Up In The Air-PG15

01:00 05:00 09:00 09:30 11:30 15:30 16:15 18:30 23:00

NRL Premiership Live NRL Premiership ICC Cricket World Scottish Premier League NRL Premiership Total Rugby Live Aviva Premiership PGA European Tour Scottish Premier League

01:00 Scottish Premier League 03:00 Aviva Premiership 07:00 Trans World Sport 08:00 Live PGA European Tour 12:00 Live Snooker World Championship 16:00 Live Snooker World Championship 20:30 Futbol Mundial 21:00 Live Snooker World Championship

01:00 03:00 04:00 06:00 07:00 08:00 10:00 12:00 14:00 15:00 17:00 19:00 21:00 22:00

WWE Bottom Line UFC The Ultimate Fighter V8 Supercars Championship UFC Unleashed WWE Vintage Collection Live NRL Premiership WWE SmackDown V8 Supercars Championship WWE Vintage Collection WWE SmackDown Live Scottish Premier League V8 Supercars Championship UFC The Ultimate Fighter WWE SmackDown

02:15 04:00 05:30 07:00 08:40 10:50 12:40 15:00 16:30 18:10 19:45 22:00

The Stratton Story-FAM Son Of A Gunfighter-FAM The Main Attraction-PG Pat And Mike-FAM Action In The North Atlantic-PG High Society-FAM The Prize-PG Boys’Town-PG The Trouble With Girls-FAM That Midnight Kiss-FAM North By Northwest-PG Bite The Bullet-PG


Classifieds SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

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Accommodation available in Abbassiya for 1 Keralite bachelor in C-A/C ďŹ&#x201A;at opposite to Jas Intnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;l Shipping, rent KD 50 elec / water included. Please call 66349475 / 1802255 extn 308. (C 3285)

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Sharing accommodation available for family or working ladies in two bedroom with double bathroom in Abbassiya with Keralite family. If interested call 99509436. (C 3286) 21-4-2011

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Sharing accommodation available for Keralite couples/small family in a 2 bed 2 bath ďŹ&#x201A;at in Abbassiya. Contact: 97544059. (C 3283)

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FOR SALE

ACCOMMODATION

Furnished 800m for a single (M/F) to share with a small family in a central A/C ďŹ&#x201A;at with separate bathroom. Nice location on main road, parking and close to a garden, bus stop. Contact: 67060429. (C 3279) Kwarto. Pinauupahan harap ng sears, likod ng Burger King. C-A/C Farwaniya 97315783. (C 3276) 20-4-2011

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PC Compaq Pentium 4, Intel original Ram 128 MB, HD 20 GB, Windows XP Pro with LCD monitor, excellent condition, price KD 35 only, call 60477518/ 99337034. (C 3288) 21-4-2011 Toyota Cressida in excellent running condition. Transmission, air condition, exterior and interior in superb condition. Worth buying. A reliable car. KD 675, negotiable. Contact: 66559205. (C 3282) Toyota Corolla model 2010, sky color, original paint 24,800 km, done 1.6 engine, cash price KD 3,700 (installment optional). Contact: 66507741. (C 3284) 20-4-2011

MATRIMONIAL Proposal invited for an RC boy, aged 36 from Changanacherry diocese, currently working in Kuwait without family status. Please contact jish15th@yahoo.com (C 3273) 20-4-2011

must have sponsorship possible. Please call 97210568. (C 3290) Maid required (full time basis) for an Indian family with two children living in old Riggae. Indian or Sri Lankan only. Contact: 66821940. (C 3289) 23-4-2011 Needed house driver for a Kuwaiti family, must know all areas and have a transferable visa. Contact: 55220650. (C 3281) 20-4-2011

SITUATION WANTED Indian male MBA (ďŹ nance), B.Com experience - 1-2 years seeking job, ďŹ nance / accounting. Contact: 55210681/ 99581696. Email: harryhlf@gmail.com (C 3287) 21-4-2011 Sri Lankan lady looking for part time job, any English house. Contact: 55680045. (C 3278) 20-4-2011

CHANGE OF NAME

No: 15068

I, Mazhar Pukawala, son of Hakimuddin Pakawala, holder of Indian Passport No: E2780082 change my surname from Pukawala to Pakawala. (C 3280) 20-4-2011 S. Saravanan, son of Subramaniyan, holder of Indian Passport No G9950267 converted to Islam do hereby change my name to S. Sameer Mohamed. (C 3277) 19-4-2011

SITUATION VACANT Live-in Pilipino housemaid wanted for European family. Experience with children

DIAL 161 FOR AIRPORT INFORMATION In case you are not travelling, your proper cancellation of bookings will help other passengers to use seats Airlines

Flt

RJA KAC JZR THY UAE ETD DHX FDB ETH GFA QTR JZR JZR FCX JZR KAC BAW KAC KAC IRA KAC KAC FDB KAC KAC KAC UAE QTR ABY IRA ETD GFA IRC FCX MEA JZR JZR JZR RBG KAC MSR UAL RJA KAC

642 544 267 772 853 305 370 67 620 211 138 207 223 201 555 412 157 206 382 615 302 332 53 678 352 284 855 132 125 603 301 213 6801 203 404 165 121 561 3553 672 610 982 640 774

Arrival Flights on Sunday 24/4/2011 Route AMMAN CAIRO BEIRUT ISTANBUL DUBAI ABU DHABI BAHRAIN DUBAI ADDIS ABABA / BAHRAIN BAHRAIN DOHA DAMASCUS ALEPPO DUBAI ALEXANDRIA MANILA / BANGKOK LONDON ISLAMABAD DELHI SHAHRE KORD MUMBAI TRIVANDRUM DUBAI MUSCAT / DUBAI COCHIN DHAKA DUBAI DOHA SHARJAH SHIRAZ ABU DHABI BAHRAIN AHWAZ DUBAI BEIRUT DUBAI BAHRAIN SOHAG ALEXANDRIA / SOHAG DUBAI CAIRO WASHINGTON DC DULLES AMMAN RIYADH

Time 0:05 0:30 0:35 1:15 2:25 2:55 2:55 3:10 3:10 3:15 3:20 3:55 5:20 5:25 6:10 6:15 6:30 7:15 7:20 7:35 7:50 7:55 7:55 8:00 8:05 8:10 8:25 9:00 9:10 9:25 9:30 9:35 10:15 10:30 10:55 11:10 11:15 12:30 12:55 13:15 13:20 13:30 13:35 13:40

FDB KAC SVA KAC KAC JZR QTR ETD UAE GFA SVA JZR JZR ABY JZR JZR ALK KAC KAC KAC KAC KAC KAC KAC JAI FDB OMA VOS MEA KAC KAC DHX UAE KAC GFA QTR AFG UAL AIC JZR JZR JZR DLH AXB KLM JZR PIA

57 562 500 788 746 257 134 303 857 215 510 777 239 127 213 177 227 166 542 618 786 614 674 102 572 61 647 81 402 552 512 372 859 172 217 136 405 981 981 135 787 185 636 389 447 481 205

DUBAI AMMAN JEDDAH JEDDAH ABU DHABI / DAMMAM BEIRUT DOHA ABU DHABI DUBAI BAHRAIN RIYADH JEDDAH AMMAN SHARJAH DEIREZZOR DUBAI COLOMBO / DUBAI PARIS / ROME CAIRO DOHA JEDDAH BAHRAIN DUBAI NEW YORK / LONDON MUMBAI DUBAI MUSCAT BAGHDAD BEIRUT DAMASCUS TEHRAN BAHRAIN DUBAI FRANKFURT BAHRAIN DOHA KABUL / DUBAI BAHRAIN CHENNAI / AHMEDABAD BAHRAIN RIYADH DUBAI FRANKFURT KOZHIKODE / MANGALORE AMSTERDAM / BAHRAIN SABIHA LAHORE

13:50 14:20 14:30 15:00 15:05 15:10 15:15 16:50 16:55 17:15 17:20 17:25 17:35 17:40 17:50 18:00 18:00 18:40 18:50 18:55 19:00 19:20 19:25 19:25 19:35 20:00 20:10 20:15 20:15 20:15 21:00 21:00 21:15 21:20 21:25 21:35 22:00 22:00 22:05 22:10 22:20 22:35 23:00 23:10 23:35 23:50 23:55

Arrival Flights on Sunday 24/4/2011 Airlines AXB DLH IAC BBC THY UAE FDB DHX ETH ETD QTR JZR JZR RJA GFA VOS JZR BAW IRA FDB KAC KAC KAC JZR KAC KAC UAE ABY QTR KAC ETD GFA KAC IRA IRC FCX MEA KAC JZR JZR JZR KAC KAC

Flt 394 637 976 46 773 854 68 371 620 306 139 560 164 643 212 94 120 156 614 54 171 671 745 256 561 787 856 126 133 117 302 214 773 602 6802 204 405 541 776 212 238 103 785

Route COCHIN / KOZHIKODE FRANKFURT GOA / CHENNAI DHAKA ISTANBUL DUBAI DUBAI BAHRAIN ADDIS ABABA ABU DHABI DOHA SOHAG DUBAI AMMAN BAHRAIN DUBAI / KANDAHAR BAHRAIN LONDON SHAHRE KORD DUBAI FRANKFURT DUBAI DAMMAM / ABU DHABI BEIRUT AMMAN JEDDAH DUBAI SHARJAH DOHA NEW YORK ABU DHABI BAHRAIN RIYADH SHIRAZ AHWAZ DUBAI BEIRUT CAIRO JEDDAH DEIREZZOR AMMAN LONDON JEDDAH

Time 0:15 0:40 0:50 1:00 2:15 3:45 3:50 3:55 4:00 4:05 5:00 5:55 6:55 7:00 7:10 8:00 8:20 8:25 8:35 8:40 8:55 9:00 9:05 9:10 9:15 9:25 9:40 9:50 10:00 10:00 10:15 10:20 10:20 10:25 11:15 11:45 11:55 12:00 12:00 12:05 12:10 12:30 13:30

Directorate General of Civil Aviation Home Page (www.kuwait-airport.com.kw)

RBG JZR MSR RJA FDB UAL KAC KAC KAC SVA JZR QTR KAC KAC ETD UAE GFA ABY JZR SVA JZR JZR ALK JZR KAC KAC JAI FDB KAC KAC OMA MEA DHX UAE GFA FCX QTR KAC KAC JZR JZR JZR KAC UAL KAC

3554 176 611 641 58 982 551 673 617 503 480 135 613 511 304 858 216 128 184 511 786 204 228 134 283 361 571 62 343 351 648 403 373 860 218 102 137 301 205 502 554 530 411 981 415

ALEXANDRIA DUBAI CAIRO AMMAN DUBAI BAHRAIN DAMASCUS DUBAI DOHA MEDINAH / JEDDAH SABIHA DOHA BAHRAIN TEHRAN ABU DHABI DUBAI BAHRAIN SHARJAH DUBAI RIYADH RIYADH DAMASCUS DUBAI / COLOMBO BAHRAIN DHAKA COLOMBO MUMBAI DUBAI CHENNAI COCHIN MUSCAT BEIRUT BAHRAIN DUBAI BAHRAIN BAHRAIN DOHA MUMBAI ISLAMABAD LUXOR ALEXANDRIA ASSIUT BANGKOK / MANILA WASHINGTON DC DULLES KUALA LUMPUR / JAKARTA

13:35 13:40 14:20 14:30 14:35 14:45 14:55 15:10 15:35 15:45 16:00 16:15 16:20 16:30 17:35 18:05 18:15 18:20 18:25 18:35 18:40 18:55 19:10 19:10 20:00 20:20 20:35 20:40 21:00 21:05 21:10 21:15 22:00 22:25 22:30 22:30 22:35 22:45 22:55 23:05 23:10 23:35 23:40 23:40 23:50


34

star CROSSWORD 297

SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

s

STAR TRACK

CALVIN & HOBBES

Aries (March 21-April 19) Status and security goals need rethinking now, to take advantage of changing circumstances. Your career is a focus for this, but your home and family situation are also involved. Finances—purchases, investments and credit in particular—could stand some clear thinking. Getting in over your head where such things are concerned can happen before you know it, so keep an eye on the bottom line. This could mean the purchase of a new home before you are really ready for that responsibility. Careful—the expense of keeping a household running may come very close to the same amount of payments for the house, at least at times. This is an excellent time for study, to attend a lecture or go to a museum. Travel is also favored, especially if it stimulates your mind.

Taurus (April 20-May 20) Arguments may be easy to find today, especially if you or somebody else you live with have not had enough rest. You might feel that some avenues of support have been blocked. This will pass, but you might want to get outside for a while this morning to revive your energies. You may enjoy a bit of work in the yard to beautify your surroundings. You will probably encourage others to do the same and even in an apartment, an herb garden with several pots is possible and fun. Perhaps a full day of working in the yard, repairing summer furniture, planting and weeding will help you to feel more at ease. Your sensitivity to others is strong and you may feel very close to a loved one today. A balance of mind, body and spirit is excellent this evening.

POOCH CAFE ACROSS 1. Herb of the Pacific islands grown throughout the tropics for its edible root and in temperate areas as an ornamental for its large glossy leaves. 5. A harsh hoarse utterance (as of a frog). 10. Anterior pituitary hormone that stimulates the function of the thyroid gland. 13. An organization of countries formed in 1961 to agree on a common policy for the sale of petroleum. 14. Above average in size or number or quantity or magnitude or extent. 15. A flat wing-shaped process or winglike part of an organism. 16. The facial expression of sudden pain. 18. Someone who works (or provides workers) during a strike. 19. A room or establishment where alcoholic drinks are served over a counter. 20. Relating to or accompanying birth. 21. Inclined toward or displaying love. 23. A member of the Siouan people formerly living in the Missouri river valley in NE Nebraska. 26. A loose sleeveless outer garment made from aba cloth. 27. A state in southeastern United States. 29. (Babylonian) God of wisdom and agriculture and patron of scribes and schools. 30. A soft porous rock consisting of calcium carbonate deposited from springs rich in lime. 34. According to the Old Testament he was a pagan king of Israel and husband of Jezebel (9th century BC). 38. A tricycle (usually propelled by pedalling). 40. The sense organ for hearing and equilibrium. 41. An associate degree in nursing. 42. A slippery or viscous liquid or liquefiable substance not miscible with water. 43. Title for a civil or military leader (especially in Turkey). 49. 100 agorot equal 1 shekel. 53. God of death. 56. German chemist who was co-discoverer with Lise Meitner of nuclear fission (1879-1968). 57. A religious belief of African origin involving witchcraft and sorcery. 60. Similar or related in quality or character. 61. Counting the number of white and red blood cells and the number of platelets in 1 cubic millimeter of blood. 62. A port city in southwestern Iran. 64. The compass point midway between northeast and east. 65. Large brownish-green New Zealand parrot. 66. A member of an agricultural people of southern India. 67. Roman goddess of night. DOWN 1. Being or moving lower in position or less in some value. 2. The capital of Western Samoa. 3. (of tempo) Slow adv. 4. English scholastic philosopher and assumed author of Occam's Razor (1285-1349). 5. Being ten more than one hundred forty. 6. The network in the reticular formation that serves an alerting or arousal function. 7. Predatory black-and-white toothed whale with large dorsal fin. 8. Small terrestrial lizard of warm regions of the Old World. 9. Cubes of meat marinated and cooked on a skewer usually with vegetables. 10. A sock with a separation for the big toe. 11. Speaking a Slavic language. 12. Swift timid long-eared mammal larger than a rabbit having a divided upper lip and long hind legs. 17. A feeling of strong eagerness (usually in favor of a person or cause). 22. French filmmaker (1908-1982). 24. Relating to the deepest parts of the ocean (below 6000 meters). 25. The blood group whose red cells carry both the A and B antigens. 28. Wild goose having white adult plumage. 31. The act of using. 32. The federal agency that insures residential mortgages. 33. A river in north central Switzerland that runs northeast into the Rhine. 35. A public promotion of some product or service. 36. All the plant and animal life of a particular region. 37. Aircraft landing in bad weather in which the pilot is talked down by ground control using precision approach radar. 39. An independent agency of the United States government responsible for collecting and coordinating intelligence and counterintelligence activities abroad in the national interest. 44. A rare silvery (usually trivalent) metallic element. 45. Title for a civil or military leader (especially in Turkey). 46. Any plant of the genus Erica. 47. Submerged aquatic plant having narrow leaves and small flowers. 48. A Dravidian language spoken in south central India. 50. Consisting of or made of wood of the oak tree. 51. Massive powerful herbivorous odd-toed ungulate of southeast Asia and Africa having very thick skin and one or two horns on the snout. 52. An addition that extends a main building. 54. A French abbot. 55. A small cake leavened with yeast. 58. Extremely pleasing. 59. A label made of cardboard or plastic or metal. 63. A silvery soft waxy metallic element of the alkali metal group.

Yesterday’s Solution

Gemini (May 21-June 20) Resolving conflicting opinions and deciding between opposing views or different options is a special focus for you. This is a time of decision—a change is needed around your living area. Distinguishing between facts and feelings and giving each its due, are the keys to your best interests. You may be very pleased with the results of your efforts. This afternoon’s events turn this weekend into a relaxed and enjoyable time. Close relationships take on more emotional depth, power and importance. Communication and personal life are emphasized. You do mental work and are in touch with many people that have new information for you. There is some time this evening for communication about family goals and developing more time to be together.

Cancer (June 21-July 22)

NON SEQUITUR

You may find yourself relaxing this morning only to rev up your energies for the afternoon’s paperwork or survey of your personal finances. The king is in the counting house, counting his money, so to speak. Deciding what your purchase power is will help you know where you stand so you can make plans accordingly. It is not advisable to spend excessively until you analyze your financial situation. This afternoon is a great time to work with your friends or family on some fun project. Working well with loved ones will speed up the end result. You may have insights or breakthroughs with regard to your living situation or life circumstances. Others show their appreciation for your insight and positive attitude. Simple things make you smile.

Leo (July 23-August 22) Your enthusiasm is contagious and before the day is over Anything connected with publishing, advertising or broadcasting requires re-examination: a change of plans or perspective gives you the upper hand. Your ability to rise above the emotions and make decisions shows your capabilities. Not having to work the whole day today, you may decide that this is the perfect time to hang out at some old gathering place with your friends. You enjoy talking about old times and listening to friends tell their stories. You feel healthy and natural. Your hopes and dreams expand and develop. Your positive energies flow best when you are able to come to the aid of friends and family. Rest and relaxation are important this evening—a big day is planned for tomorrow. Enjoy walking before you retire for the evening.

ZITS

Virgo (August 23-September 22) Your energies are high and what you say is clear and to the point. Others will listen to any changes you want to make at work or at home. You may discover insights into problems that will be of great value later. This is a time when you can expect a little boost, some sort of extra support or recognition from those around you. You may feel that you are in touch and in harmony; the lines of communication are open. Life excites you when you feel you make a contribution to the quality of life for yourself and others. What you aspire to be or to accomplish is within your reach. If freedom in a relationship is important to you, it may be the time to have a serious talk with your loved one. Exchange a list of future expectations and then talk.

Libra (September 23-October 22)

MOTHER GOOSE AND GRIMM

Good luck follows you around this Sunday—of course, you are the one to help the day move along in most positive ways. Becoming more practical and conscientious takes on a special importance. Obtaining and exchanging information helps to create a clear path toward your goals. You can demonstrate great understanding to the needs of others just now. Taking care of the necessary underpinnings of life—health and such—becomes a greater preoccupation. Sorting things out and getting them organized to the utmost efficiency keeps you busy. If you are a musician or an artist you could find a long list of opportunities that will show off your talents this afternoon. If you are not performing, you will be enjoying the performance of others.

Scorpio (October 23-November 21) Your personality and mode of living will be in a flux today. Pay attention to the balance of the day. Make sure there is an equal amount of giving as there is taking. This could be a time to make changes in your environment. Your financial success is probably more important to your family than it is to you right now. If you do not mind trusting your money to others, find a good money manager and put your money into the hands of a competent money manager, if possible. Let them know that you will be auditing every six months for their safety as well as yours. You and your family members could then have improved allowances. Communicating with others is at a high. These matters could be quite successful.

Sagittarius (November 22-December 21) Marriage and other close relationships give rise to great expectations—a new period begins. This is a time to enjoy and appreciate your ties to others. You no longer feel that you are at other people’s mercy. There is more self-assertion and personal freedom in your life now. Self-discovery is becoming more obvious. You have made great progress in your psychological growth and how you interact with others. You confidently lend a helping hand to others at this time. A friend may want you to help with a baby or wedding shower for a mutual friend. This is a joy to arrange and you are happy to do whatever is asked of you. One of your future goals at this time may include some sort of volunteer service. Finances will continue to be good news.

Capricorn (December 22-January 19)

To

You are able to increase your earning power now. You may also be realizing the investments you have made are doing very well. There are several aspects moving out of your sign that will be turning things into the positive. Last year was hard work and struggle in many different ways. However, you are on the rise now and you can enjoy this change for the positive for quite some time. A strong need for nurturing is a bigger than usual element in your life now. You may feel the need to care for others or to have them care for you—perhaps on a public rather than a private level which means you will step up on that soapbox of yours and accomplish quite a lot. You have needs and you sense the needs of others. You enjoy helping your friends and family.

Yesterday’s Solution Yester

Aquarius (January 20- February 18) Many different stages in life bring many different experiences. The ways in which you handle your life experiences place you as a mentor to other members of your family. A sibling that may have teased you in the past is now looking at you in a different light. Your instinctive orientation at this time is toward getting down to the most important subject matters. You find lighthearted but meaningful ways to destroy the roots of a disturbance. Today you may be serving an older member of the family in some mental or physical support. Perhaps you will be able to financially help make their life easier. You will have support when you need it today—all you have to do is ask. There is good communication. A social occasion this evening is great fun!

Pisces (February 19-March 20)

Word Sleuth Solution

This morning you make time to complete a project you may have started last weekend. You will find your emotional experiences are likely to be more intense than usual for the next few days—you could be drawn to unusual people and events. Fresh insight comes to you through the news media. You could blurt out the wrong thing after hearing the thoughts of another person. It may not be all that easy to convey what you really intend. Take your time; you will be able to express yourself better after you have given yourself a little time. You may find yourself being put to good use by your friends in the afternoon, as you gather to discuss some new event or plan a party around the night of a concert. Express your love in mellow tones this evening.


A

y

e niv rsar n

Years

SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

i n f o r m at i o n

FIRE BRIGADE

112

Al-Madena

22418714

Al-Shohada’a

22545171

Al-Shuwaikh

24810598

Al-Nuzha

22545171

Sabhan

24742838

Al-Helaly

22434853

Al-Fayhaa

22545051

Al-Farwaniya

24711433

Al-Sulaibikhat

24316983

Al-Fahaheel

23927002

Jleeb Al-Shuyoukh

24316983

Ahmadi

23980088

Al-Mangaf

23711183

Al-Shuaiba

23262845

24812000

Al-Jahra

25610011

Amiri Hospital

22450005

Al-Salmiya

25616368

Maternity Hospital

24843100

Mubarak Al-Kabir Hospital

25312700

Chest Hospital

24849400

Farwaniya Hospital

24892010

Adan Hospital

23940620

Ibn Sina Hospital

24840300

Al-Razi Hospital

24846000

Physiotherapy Hospital

24874330/9

Ministry of Interior website: www.moi.gov.kw For labor-related inquiries and complaints: Call MSAL hotline 128

Hospitals Sabah Hospital

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

Clinics Rabiya

4732263

Roudha

22517733

Adhaliya

22517144

Khaldiya

24848075

Keifan

24849807

Shamiya

24848913

Shuwaikh

24814507

Abdullah Salim

22549134

Al-Nuzha

22526804

Industrial Shuwaikh

24814764

Al-Khadissiya

22515088

Dasmah

22532265

Bneid Al-Ghar

22531908

Al-Shaab

22518752

Al-Kibla

22459381

Ayoun Al-Kibla

22451082

Al-Mirqab

22456536

Sharq

22465401

Salmiya

25746401

Jabriya

25316254

Maidan Hawally

25623444

Bayan

25388462

Mishref

25381200

W.Hawally

22630786

Sabah

24810221

Jahra

24770319

New Jahra

24575755

West Jahra

24772608

South Jahra

24775066

North Jahra

24775992

North Jleeb

24311795

Al-Ardhiya

24884079

Firdous

24892674

Al-Omariya

24719048

N.Kheitan

24710044

Fintas

3900322

22434064 22435865 22544200 22547133 22515277 22616662 25714406 22530801

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

PHARMACIES

AIRLINES

ON 24 HRS DUTY GOVERNORATE

PHARMACY

ADDRESS

PHONE

Ahmadi

Sama Safwan Abu Halaifa Danat Al-Sultan

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

23915883 23715414 23726558

Jahra

Modern Jahra Madina Munawara

Jahra-Block 3 Lot 1 Jahra-Block 92

24575518 24566622

Capital

Ahlam Khaldiya Coop

Fahad Al-Salem St Khaldiya Coop

22436184 24833967

Farwaniya

New Shifa Ferdous Coop Modern Safwan

Farwaniya Block 40 Ferdous Coop Old Kheitan Block 11

24734000 24881201 24726638

Hawally

Tariq Hana Ikhlas Hawally & Rawdha Ghadeer Kindy Ibn Al-Nafis Mishrif Coop Salwa Coop

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

25726265 25647075 22625999 22564549 25340559 25326554 25721264 25380581 25628241

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

22433377 177 22924455 22414400 22423888 22425747 22434940 22420002/9 22418064/5/6 22433388 22425635 22430224 22425566 22438184 22424444 22421578 22421516 22426306 22423073 22422493 22421044 22414427 22416474 22452977/8 22417901/ 2433141 22456700 22412284/5 22453820/1 22404838/9

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

Paediatricians

Plastic Surgeons Dr. Mohammad Al-Khalaf

22547272

Dr. Abd Al-Aziz Al-Rashed

Dr. Abdal-Redha Lari

22617700

Dr. Zahra Qabazard

Dr. Abdel Quttainah

25625030/60

Family Doctor Dr Divya Damodar

23729596/23729581

Psychiatrists Dr. Esam Al-Ansari

22635047

Dr Eisa M. Al-Balhan

INTERNATIONAL CALLS

22613623/0

Gynaecologists & Obstetricians DrAdrian arbe

23729596/23729581

Dr. Verginia s.Marin

2572-6666 ext 8321

Endocrinologist 25340300

25710444

Dr. Sohail Qamar

22621099

Dr. Snaa Maaroof

25713514

Dr. Pradip Gujare

23713100

Dr. Zacharias Mathew

24334282

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

Dr Anil Thomas

3729596/3729581 22641071/2

22655539

Dr. Majeda Khalefa Aliytami

25343406

Dr. Anesah Al-Rasheed

22562226

Dr. Ahmad Al-Khooly

25739272

Dr. Abidallah Al-Amer

22561444

Dr. Salem soso

22618787

Dr. Faysal Al-Fozan

22619557

Dr. Abdallateef Al-Katrash

22525888

Dr. Amer Zawaz Al-Amer

22610044

Dr. Abidallah Al-Duweisan

25653755

Dr. Mohammad Yousef Basher

25327148

Dr. Bader Al-Ansari

25620111

Neurologists

Dr. Adnan Ebil

22639939

Dr. Sohal Najem Al-Shemeri

25633324

Dr. Mousa Khadada

22666300

Dr. Jasem Mola Hassan

25345875

Gastrologists

25728004

Dr. Nadem Al-Ghabra

25355515

Dr. Sami Aman

22636464

Dr. Mobarak Aldoub

24726446

Dr. Mohammad Al-Shamaly

25322030

Dr Nasser Behbehani

25654300/3

Dr. Foad Abidallah Al-Ali

22633135

Soor Center Tel: 2290-1677 Fax: 2290 1688

info@soorcenter.com www.soorcenter.com

Dr. Kamal Al-Shomr 25329924 Physiotherapists & VD Dr. Deyaa Shehab

25722291 22666288

Rheumatologists:

Dr. Fozeya Ali Al-Qatan

Dr. Latefa Al-Duweisan

Dr. Ahmad Al-Ansari 25658888

Dr. Musaed Faraj Khamees

Dentists

Internists, Chest & Heart

25339330

25655535

Dr. Shamah Al-Matar

General Surgeons

Dr. Abd Al-Naser Al-Othman

Dr. Naif Al-Mutawa, Ph.D. 2290-1677 Susannah-Joy Schuilenberg, M.A. 2290-1677

Dr. Adel Al-Awadi

25330060

Dr. Khaled Al-Jarallah

25722290

Internist, Chest & Heart DR.Mohammes Akkad

24555050 Ext 210

Dr. Mohammad Zubaid MB, ChB, FRCPC, PACC Assistant Professor Of Medicine Head, Division of Cardiology Mubarak Al-Kabeer Hospital Consultant Cardiologist Dr. Farida Al-Habib MD, PH.D, FACC Inaya German Medical Center Te: 2575077 Fax: 25723123

2611555-2622555

William Schuilenberg, RPC 2290-1677 Zaina Al Zabin, M.Sc. 2290-1677

Afghanistan Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antiga Argentina Armenia Australia Austria Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia Bosnia Botswana Brazil Brunei Bulgaria Burkina Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands

0093 00355 00213 00376 00244 001264 001268 0054 00374 0061 0043 001242 00973 00880 001246 00375 0032 00501 00229 001441 00975 00591 00387 00267 0055 00673 00359 00226 00257 00855 00237 001 00238 001345

Central African Chad Chile China Colombia Comoros Congo Cook Islands Costa Rica Croatia Cuba Cyprus Cyprus (Northern) Czech Republic Denmark Diego Garcia Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador England (UK) Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia

00236 00235 0056 0086 0057 00269 00242 00682 00506 00385 0053 00357 0090392 00420 0045 00246 00253 001767 001809 00593 0020 00503 0044 00240 00291 00372 00251 00500 00298 00679 00358 0033 00594 00689


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36

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Years

SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

lifestyle G O S S I P

LeAnnRimes marries Eddie Cibrian

daughter obsessed with Bieber ohnny Depp’s daughter is obsessed with Justin Bieber. The Hollywood star has had to start accepting her 11-year-old daughter Lily-Rose is becoming interested in boys and the Canadian pop heartthrob in particular. Johnny first realized she was a ‘Belieber’ when he told her he had met the ‘Baby’ singer. He revealed: “Unfortunately, Lily Rose is now

J

severely interested in boys. That’s horrible for me as her dad. I recently met Justin Bieber at a press conference. When I told her that, she changed her color several times. Jack is like me when I was eight. Totally obsessed with World War II.” The 47-year-old actor - who also has an eight-year-old son Jack with his long-term partner Vanessa Paradis - can’t believe how mature

his daughter is for her age and claims she is already showing she shares her mother’s talent for music. The ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ star added: “She is almost 12 and she’s incredible mature for her age, almost frightening smart. She writes little poems and I can picture her starting to write her own songs soon. She has the voice of her mother.”

Katy B wants Keys duet aty B wants to collaborate with Alicia Keys. The ‘Broken Record’ singer cites the musician as a huge influence on her career and she would love to meet up with Alicia when she performs in London later this year to celebrate a decade since the release of her debut LP ‘Songs in A Minor’ by performing at the historic Royal Albert Hall. Katy said: “My dream collaboration would be Alicia Keyes because she’s so good. When I was 13 I wanted to be her. I can’t believe it’s been 10 years since she released ‘Songs in A Minor’. I’d love to do something with her. Call me Alicia!” Although Katy has been hailed for taking dubstep to a more mainstream audience, she insists her music is a mix of different genres and admitted she was a big fan of Destiny’s Child when she was younger. Katy, 21, told BANG Showbiz: “I’m a mixture of all the UK underground genres, I’m not just dubstep, in my music there are hardcore samples, breaks, house. I started off listening to a lot of Alicia Keys and Destiny’s Child but then as I got older I started listening to more of the neo soul kind of things like Jill Scott. The way Jill Scott writes is she writes about really simple things but she does it really beautifully and that influenced me to make my lyrics a bit more interesting.” Katy performed at London’s MTV Push party, for more information visit www.mtv.co.uk/push

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Gerwig teased by Brand on Arthur set

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reta Gerwig admits Russell Brand made her “blush” all the time on the set of ‘Arthur ’. The actress - who plays Naomi, Russell’s titular character’s love interest, in the movie - admits she was often the butt of the British actor’s jokes, and she admits nothing was out of bounds for risque Russell. Greta told BANG Showbiz: “He made fun of me all the time! Of everything - things I came to the set wearing, things I was doing, but he is still charming when he’s making fun of you. “I think I just blushed a lot and got awkward, which he also enjoyed. But that’s his natural state with women, men, everyone - to flirt, he’s just so magnetic, he can’t help it.” Despite his relentless gags, ‘Greenburg’ actress Greta insists Russell was “really hard working” and great to work with. She added: “Russell never really delivers the same line twice, and I come from a background of improvisation, so I quite enjoyed that and I like keeping it fresh, it’s good, it makes every take different.”

eAnn Rimes married Eddie Cibrian in a small ceremony in California. The country singer - who was married to dancer Dean Sheremet when she met Eddie, who was also married, on the set of TV movie ‘Northern Lights’ - wore a dress by Reem Acra and exchanged vows in a private home in the US state in front of 40 guests. LeAnn’s spokesperson confirmed to People.com: “LeAnn and Eddie were happily married surrounded by their closest family and friends. They thank everyone for their well wishes.” Eddie’s children Mason, seven and Jake, four - from his previous marriage to make-up artist Brandi Glanville - were at the wedding. The37-year-old actor proposed - with a 5-carat diamond

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ring - to the ‘Can’t Fight The Moonlight’ hitmaker over the Christmas period and guests were told they were attending an engagement party to celebrate this weekend, but the couple surprised guests by marrying. LeAnn recently claimed the extra-marital affair between the pair was not done “in the right way” and she admitted things got “really messy”. She said: “I know I didn’t do it the right way. I didn’t have the tools to know how to do it the right way, how to let go the right way. “I’d never been taught that. I have the strength now but I didn’t at the time. So it got really messy, but I have learned a lot from that. And I’m not glad it happened, but I know why it did.”

Rihanna’s Usher date with

Cowell’ s dark moods imon Cowell often gets in “dark moods for no reason”. The 51-year-old music mogul has admitted he has often considered going to see a psychiatrist to deal with “a number of issues” he has, but he thinks he would have to spend hours if he wanted to resolve all of his problems. He explained to Britain’s OK! magazine: “If I ever decided to go to a psychiatrist, it would be a long session. I have always thought that I do have a number of issues that probably need dealing with, because I am quite odd in some ways. “I get

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very dark moods for no reason. I just sit on my own for days. I’m not sitting in a darkened room rocking” Simon - who is engaged to make-up artist Mezhgan Hussainy - confessed he can even find himself not feeling positive about life when things are going really well. He added: “Things might have gone really well and then I torture myself. I have to find something to make me miserable.” The TV star is currently finalizing plans for his new US version of pop star search show ‘The X Factor’.

Gallagher was true love for Meg oel Gallagher was the love of Meg Mathews’ life. The former Oasis guitarist was married to interior designer Meg from 1997 to 2001 and they have an 11-year-old daughter Anais together, and despite their split Meg looks back fondly on their time together. When asked if he was the love of her life, she replied: “Of course. I wouldn’t have married and had a baby with him if he hadn’t been.” Since they split, Noel has had two more children, Donovan, three, and six-month-old Sonny with his new partner, Sara MacDonald, but Meg has never remarried. She was engaged to The Royal College of London Professor Peter Sidell, but she called it off last September and says she is not ready for a relationship at present, but hopes to settle down in the future. Meg added to HELLO! magazine: “I do want to be in a relationship again, just not right now. Do I want to be sitting alone with 10 cats when I’m 65? Absolutely not, and I don’t intend to be.”

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ihanna went on a date with Usher this week. The two singers enjoyed spending time with one another at the Coachella music festival in Los Angeles last weekend and decided to see each other again in New York a few days later. A source close to Usher said the pair have been friendly for a long time and have shared some “passionate kisses”. They told The Sun newspaper: “They had a really good time together last weekend and wanted to

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see each other again somewhere private straight after. They’ve known each other for a long time but it’s always been bad timing. “They’ve had a few long, passionate kisses. There’s definitely a spark between them. “It would have been too obvious to go somewhere in LA and they were both going back to New York for work commitments.” Earlier this year the ‘OMG’ hitmaker declared his musical interest in the ‘S&M’ star, revealing he wanted to record a duet with her. He said: “Of course I’d do a track with her - hold on! We’ve been friends and our teams work together and we’ve talked about working together in the past, but it could potentially happen. “I would love to work with her - I think she’s an incredible artist.”

Hiddleston praises green screen expert Branagh om Hiddleston has praised ‘Thor’ director Kenneth Branagh for masterminding the movie’s green screen scenes. The 30-year-old actor admits it was difficult for him and Chris Hemsworth - who portrays the titular superhero - to shoot the scenes without any sets, but Kenneth steered them through by talking to them through an earpiece. Tom - who plays villain Loki in the film, which is based on the Marvel comic book series - told BANG Showbiz: “The great thing about having Ken is he was always on hand with the micro-

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phone quite often literally painting the picture on our behalf. “So in the ice planet we would be walking along brilliant sets of iceflows, surrounded by green screens and Ken would say, ‘Go to your left there’s an ice tower crumbling into pieces to your right there are shadows; frost giants can come out of there any time, you’re excited, you’re freezing cold, you’re terrified,’ it really helped.” Despite the difficulties post-production CGI effects can cause, Tom insists he loved portraying Loki because he had so many super powers. —Bang Showbiz


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Actress Lindsay Lohan, center, arrives with her lawyer, Shawn Chapman Holley, right, at the LAX Airport Courthouse in Los Angeles, Friday.—AP

Judge sends Lohan to jail in necklace theft case A

ctress Lindsay Lohan was released from a Los Angeles County jail Friday night, just hours after she was sentenced to 120 days for violating her probation by taking a designer necklace. It was a deja vu day for the starlet, who was admonished by a judge — the fourth she’s faced in nearly a year — who said she thought the actress had intentionally taken the $2,500 necklace from an upscale Venice store and shown poor judgment in not trying to return it until police became involved. But by reducing the actress’ charge from felony grand theft to a misdemeanor, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Stephanie Sautner may have set in motion what has become a familiar cycle for Lohan —being sent to jail only to have the sentence cut short due to jail overcrowding. Lohan’s attorney Shawn Holley filed a notice of appeal right before court closed, clearing the way for the actress’ release on bail. She was freed at 9:21 pm local time after posting $75,000 bail,

according to the sheriff department’s website. Deputy District Attorney Danette Meyers, who presented four witnesses who described Lohan’s conduct in the jewelry store and with the necklace, said her office would consider appealing the ruling as well. “We believe there was a clear abuse of discretion,” she said. Sautner agreed with Meyers that Lohan showed intent to keep the necklace, and said that she thought Lohan’s conduct probably warranted a felony. “I see the intent here,” Sautner said. “I see a level of brazenness with, ‘Let me see what I can get away with here.”‘ But the judge said felony grand theft cases involving higher-valued goods are often reduced to the misdemeanor level and thought it was appropriate in Lohan’s case. “I’m going to give her an opportunity,” the judge said. She also said she hoped to give the “Mean Girls” and “Freaky Friday” star a dose of perspective by sentencing her to almost 500 hours of community service, including time at

the county morgue and 300 hours at a women’s shelter. Lohan did not visibly react to the sentence. She cried earlier in the day when Holley told Sautner that Lohan had been punished enough, and recounted the treatment programs the actress has completed since her first arrest for drunken driving in 2007. Her father, Michael Lohan, put his hands over his face at times Friday and bolted from the courtroom after his daughter was led away by sheriff’s personnel. It was the fourth time Lohan has been sentenced to jail, although two of the trips amounted to a few hours. Last summer, she spent 14 days in jail on a 90 day sentence. The actress did not address the court during Friday’s hearing, but frequently conferred with Holley and shook her head when witnesses described some of her actions inside the jewelry store, Kamofie & Co. Lohan has been a courthouse fixture since last May when she missed a hearing in her drunken driving case. Since then, two judges have sent her to jail twice and rehab, also twice. She

In this courtroom sketch actress Lindsay Lohan is seen with her attorney Shawn Chapman Holley during a preliminary hearing at the LAX Airport Courthouse.—AP rejected two plea offers to end the necklace case early, including one in which Meyers was seeking six months in jails, the prosecutor said Friday. Meyers’ witnesses included two police officers who handled the stolen necklace case, including one who received it from Lohan’s assistant after detectives obtained a search warrant — which was never served — to retrieve it from the actress’ home. The investigative detective also testified that she verified the actress wore the necklace days after it was taken and was photographed with it by paparazzi. Lohan made three visits within a week to a jewelry store that accused her of stealing the necklace but never purchased anything before leaving with the item, the shop’s owner testified. Sofia Kaman said she waited a day to report the necklace stolen because Lohan had told her she would return the next day to purchase a ring. The actress never returned. The first time Kaman saw Lohan since the Jan. 22 store visit was Friday. Kaman says she did not have

any agreement with Lohan allowing her to leave the store with the necklace. Lohan was wearing two of her own necklaces when entered the store, and she wore both pieces to court on Friday, taking them off at one point while her attorney cross-examined Kaman.Holley showed Kaman the necklaces and questioned her about why she didn’t notice the actress was still wearing the store’s necklace, even though Lohan’s neck — and by Holley’s description, cleavage — were clearly visible. “I wasn’t looking at her chest,” Kaman said. “I was looking at her face.” It is unclear what effect the sentence may have on Lohan’s next acting role. Producers of the film “Gotti: Three Generations” announced on Wednesday that Lohan had been cast to play the wife of John Gotti Jr in the film. She told The Associated Press afterward she didn’t think her court case would affect her work. “I think in the past, I had a lot of distractions,” she said. “I’ve learned a lot. I’ve lived a lot. When I’m on set, it’s about the film.”—AP

Emma Watson to transfer from Brown A

File: Brian McKnight performs during the Andre Agassi Charitable Foundation for Education’s Grand Slam for Children benefit concert in Las Vegas.—AP

Brian McKnight tells his story through song

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aster balladeer Brian McKnight brings his velvety voice to New Orleans on Saturday for a night of love and laughter as he prepares to open his “Just Me” tour and give fans a taste of what’s to come when his 14th album drops this summer. The show opens with sets by R&B singers Avant and Vivian Green and comedian Lavell Crawford. McKnight said the New Orleans date has been on his schedule for a while and is not a part of the tour, which begins May 12 in Phoenix. “New Orleans is just getting me,” McKnight said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press. “My one-man show. I’m coming to do what people haven’t seen from me. “ I’ll be telling a story, my story, from the beginning until now. People have heard me play with a band for the last 15, 20 years. This will be how I started, with a piano and a guitar.” The tour is a family affair. It will include the a capella, Grammy Award-winning group Take 6, founded by his older brother Claude McKnight, and his

sons, 21-year-old Brian Jr. (known as BJ) and 19-year-old Cole Nicholas (known as Niko), who front the fledgling rock band BRKN RBTZ (broken robots). McKnight, 41, a singer-songwriter who also plays nine instruments, has been honing the acoustic-style show for the past year and takes fans on a trip through his 18-year musical repertoire. He said he was a little skeptical of how the fans would respond, but has been buoyed by their reaction. “I wasn’t sure if people would accept just me,” he said. “People’s senses are constantly inundated by the Internet and I didn’t know if people would be able to sit still and deal with me telling this story this way, but they have.” McKnight’s latest project, entitled “Just Me,” is set for release July 12. He said the new music will give his fans some of his signature, silky smooth sounds, but will also give them a little something different. “For me it’s never about doing the same thing over and over,” he said. “I just do what I do.” McKnight acknowledges

that his voice conjures romantic visions — especially in his female fans — and though most of his songs often tackle romance or the back-andfourth of relationships, that’s not him all the time. “Unfortunately, I am the least romantic man ever,” he said laughing. “I’m a guy’s guy. But I’m not sure most women would want that ‘romantic’ person 24 hours a day anyway. Too much of that would probably not be a good thing.” Still, he said, there’s a time and a place for his type of music. “My voice lends itself to singing a slower song,” he said. “I still believe when you want to get close to someone, it’s my type of music you put on. I doubt if they’re listening to Jay-Z at that moment — not that there’s anything wrong with Jay-Z. He’s great.” McKnight said he believes music these days “has lost its ability to connect emotionally with the listener.” “I’m not sure if that’s the music’s fault or the listener’s fault,” he said. “But I find there’s a trend of not wanting to be vulnerable”.—AP

spokeswoman for Harry Potter star Emma Watson says she will be transferring from Brown University to another university in the autumn. Vanessa Davies denied reports that the 21-year-old actress was “bullied out” of the Rhode Island university, saying there was no truth in reports by a number of online publications who cited classmates and “insiders”. Davies said yesterday that Watson, who plays Hermione in the wizard movie series, has decided to pursue a different course not offered at Brown. She added that the star “has absolutely loved her time at Brown” and made many good friends there. Watson has recently taken time out of her studies to focus on her movie career. She has said that her first days in college were difficult. Davies did not identify the university Watson will be transferring to.—AP

File: Emma Watson arrives for the BAFTA Film Awards 2011, at The Royal Opera House in London.—AP

Royal wedding guest list features John, Beckhams

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ritain yesterday released the list of confirmed guests for the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton, with singer Elton John and David and Victoria Beckham saying they will attend. Sporting stars including Australian Olympic swimmer Ian Thorpe and showbiz figures such as “Mr Bean” actor Rowan Atkinson will also be at Friday’s ceremony, along with veterans of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. St James’s Palace released the seating plan for the service in London’s historic Westminster Abbey, with Queen Elizabeth II and senior royals in

the front row together with Kate’s family on the other side of the aisle. More than 40 members of foreign royal families including Prince Albert of Monaco-who will tie the knot himself on July 1 with South African swimmer Charlene Wittstock-have also confirmed their attendance at the wedding, as well as several heads of state. John-who sang the hit “Candle in the Wind” at the funeral of William’s mother Princess Diana in the abbey in 1997 after her death in a car crash in Paris-will be accompanied by his partner David Furnish. Prince William met footballer Beckham, who will be at

Elton John the service with his fashion designer wife Victoria, as part of England’s failed bid to host the 2018 World Cup, St James’s Palace said. —AFP


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Rediscovering downtown

The Angels Flight funicular railway, built in 1901, has reopened in downtown Los Angeles, California, taking visitors on 25-cent rides between Bunker Hill and the lower downtown commercial area. —MCT photos

If you go

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t’s 5 pm, and already there’s a crowd gathered around the alley entrance to the Edison, a 1920s-styled speakeasy on the edge of what was once Skid Row in downtown Los Angeles. An elegant, reservations-are-amust lounge by night, the Edison nods to budget-conscious Angelenos on Thursday afternoons with a 35-

expanded Los Angeles Center for Digital Art, a Hollywood winery pours chardonnay as people gather around a pile of chocolate-chip cookies stacked in the corner, wondering whether they’re art or edible. Welcome to downtown LA , a once-deserted city center that’s coming to life again after years of neglect. Credit the revival to a boom in city living, lively new arts and entertainment venues and events such as the Art Walk for drawing locals and visitors back to what was an elegant residential quarter and premier shopping and theater district in the early 1900s. Grabbing attention are modern additions such as architect Frank Gehry’s silvery Walt Disney Concert Hall, home to the LA Philharmonic and its popular young conductor, Gustavo Dudamel. But more awaits. “Lofts for Lease” signs hang outside once-abandoned office buildings and hotels, beckoning to young urban dwellers more in tune to bik-

What to do: * Get your bearings on a walking tour with the Los Angeles Conservancy. The group offers Saturday-morning guided walks covering historic downtown, the Broadway theater district, the modern sky-

Th e Lo s dozen Angeles Th eatre is historic Broadw m o ay in d ovie palaces ne of a owntow that lin n. e

cent happy-hour drink special in the refurbished, century-old power plant. A hostess points the way to a flight of stairs leading to a basement boiler room furnished with sofas and antique tables scattered among hulking generators. Silent movies flicker on two large screens as waiters dart about taking orders in the dim light. A few blocks away, gourmet food trucks, selling mac-and-cheese sandwiches and miniature whoopie pies, fill parking lots along Main Street for the monthly Art Walk. Inside the newly

Getting around: The city of Los Angeles is huge, but there’s no need for a car downtown. It’s possible to walk most everywhere, or get around on the Metro subway, light rail or 35-cent Dash minibuses (www.ladottransit.com) that stop at major downtown tourist and business locations. See http://discoverlosangeles.com/getting-around/land/losangeles-public-transit.html. The FlyAway bus connects LAX with Union Station in downtown Los Angeles. Fares are $7. See www.lawa.org/welcome(underscore)LAX.as px?id=292. Lodging: Lots of downtown options, depending on your budget. For a touch of old-school class, look for last-minute specials at the Millennium Biltmore (www.millenniumhotels.com). A recent Internet sale advertised an April rate of $134, with taxes, for a standard double. Rates start at $176 with taxes at the nearby Standard Hotel, popular for its rooftop pool and open-air lounge (www.standardhotels.com). Close to Staples Center and the LA LIVE entertainment complex is the Moroccan-themed Figueroa Hotel (www.figueroahotel.com). Rates start at $168 including taxes. Airbnb (www.airbnb.com) has listings for rooms in private downtown condos and apartments.

G u il le rm a p a r t m o O r t iz h o s t Dollar e nt ato p t h e s g u e s t s in h is Theatr h is t o r ic eb man Sid Graum uilt in 1918 f M il li o n or show an. -

line, Union Station and other destinations. Cost is $10 for nonmembers. Advance reservations required. Use discount code LAARTS11 for a two-for-one offer through April 30. Call 213-623-2489, or see www.laconservancy.org/tours. * Even if you can’t afford a ticket to see celebrity conductor Gustavo Dudamel lead the LA Philharmonic, don’t miss taking a free audio or guided tour of Walt Disney Concert Hall, designed by Frank Gehry who did the EMP in Seattle. See www.laphil.com/visit/tours. * Explore the shops, art galleries, restaurants and cafes in Gallery Row along Main and Spring Streets. Sidewalks are jammed during the Downtown Art Walk, noon to 9 pm on the second Thursday of the month. The area is quieter other times. Most of what’s of interest is along Main and Spring between Second and Ninth streets and the blocks in between. See www.downtownartwalk.com. * Use the Dash buses to explore museums in different neighborhoods. Recommended is the Grammy Museum at the LA LIVE complex (www.grammymuseum.org); the free Motion Picture Costume Design exhibit (through April 30) at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in the wholesale fashion district (FIDMmuseum.org); and the two downtown branches of the Museum of Contemporary Art (www.moca.org), free on Thursday evenings. The Geffen Contemporary in Little Toyko is closed until April 17, when it reopens with “Art in the Streets,” an exhibit on the history of graffiti and street art. — MCT

to a low-income population of Mexicans and Salvadorans. Elaborate 1920s and ‘30s movie palaces, many with marble staircases and ornate balconies, sit idle, or are used for church services or reality-show tryouts. But wander the streets during Art Walk, or on a Saturday morning when the locals gather on the terrace of CoffeeBar, the newest addition to the Spring Street indie coffee scene, and downtown starts to feel like parts of Manhattan or Seattle’s Belltown, gritty in places, but safe, and alive with new energy. Downtown hotel choices range from the high-rise Ritz Carlton and Marriott near Staples Center to the restored Biltmore, adorned with painted ceilings, murals and classic photos from Academy Awards ceremonies in the 1930s and 1940s. Nearby, the Standard Hotel in the former Superior Oil headquarters building attracts a fashionable crowd to its rooftop bar carpeted with astro turf. Working with a $100-a-night budget, I slept in style in the Grand Central Square apartments atop the Million Dollar Theatre, built for showman Sid Grauman (of Grauman’s Chinese, the Hollywood Boulevard movie palace known for the concrete blocks bearing the footprints and handprints of stars). While trolling through Airbnb.com, a global Internet network of accommodations offered by locals, I spotted a listing for “Urban Bed & Breakfast” and rented a sunny guest room with private bathroom from LA native Guillermo Ortiz. Terra-cotta sculptures of bison heads and Texas longhorn skulls decorate the facade of the Grand Central Square apartments, testimony to the amount that reportedly was spent on the building. Offices were converted into apartments. The theater, closed to the public for a decade,

ing or walking to work than long freeway commutes from LA ‘s suburbs. Their days are spent in the office towers on Bunker Hill, LA ‘s mansion district in the early 20th century, now a financial center and hub for the performing arts. Open plazas, fountains and reflecting pools create a traffic-free pedestrian zone leading to the Museum of Contemporary Art and the Walt Disney Concert Hall, a landmark of swirling, stainless-steel opened in 2003. Benefactor Lillian Disney envisioned a “little brick church covered in vines.” Visitors can judge Gehry’s interpretation for themselves on a free, self-guided audio tour. Weekends are for relaxing over breakfast at new coffee bars and diners in the historic cen-

Diners hit food trucks during a festival in downtown.

A rooftop bar caps the Standard Hotel in the former Superior Oil headquarters building.

ter. “It’s the cutting edge of what’s happening downtown right now,” says Pam Taylor, a volunteer who leads downtown walking tours for the Los Angeles Conservancy. “Lower downtown,” as it’s called, is reconnected once again to Bunker Hill by a one-minute, 25-cent ride on the orange and black Angels Flight, a funicular railway built in 1901 to carry residents to and from the shops and theaters, just two blocks away. Angels Knoll, a park next door to Angels Flight, made famous in the 2009 film “(500) Days of Summer,” will be weeded soon by a flock of goats brought in by the Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency. In various stages of restoration are Beaux Arts and Art Deco-style former bank buildings, theaters and hotels, abandoned when people left downtown for the suburbs after World War II. Starting with the opening of Staples Center sports arena in 1999, now part of the LA LIVE mega-sports/entertainment complex, the changes haven’t been without controversy. LA has one of the country’s largest homeless populations. Pawn shops and discount stores along the former Broadway Avenue theater district cater

reopened in 2008 for live performances, film shoots and private parties. Next door, vintage neon signs welcome visitors to the Grand Central Market, a farmers’ market since 1917. “You have to search for places,” Ortiz told me. “Things may not seem like much from the outside, but they’re incredible inside.” Across the street was the Bradbury office building, built in 1893, and a stop on the LA Conservancy’s walking tour. The facade is plainlooking, but the interior reflects mining and real-estate millionaire Lewis Bradbury’s vision of what a building might look like in the year 2000. Visitors are free to roam the sky-lit lobby, and admire the open cage elevators, marble stairs and iron railings. When Ortiz recommended a restaurant inside the faded Alexandria Hotel on Spring Street, I was skeptical, given the seedy bar on the corner. He remembers the Alexandria as a popular spot for quinceanera parties, the elaborate celebrations for Mexican girls turning 15. Today the hotel houses a mix of low-income tenants, loft-dwellers and a theater company that employs downtown residents as actors. The surprise: Gorbals restaurant, hidden behind closed doors off a deserted lobby. —MCT


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A chapter that’s all but forgotten: When the

Civil War came west

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hings hadn’t gone according to plan-do they ever in war? — and now, Lt James Barrett was going to make them right. The cavalry officer and his dozen or so men would rescue his colleague, Capt William McCleave, from those nettlesome rebels hiding near Picacho Peak, and McCleave would be returned to his rightful place with the California Volunteers and regulars. The honor of California, a state that contributed more than 15,000 troops to the Union war effort, was at stake. But more than that, if the Confederates won control of the Southwest, riches from the gold, silver and copper mines would go to President Jefferson Davis and his fledgling nation. The Confederates would have access to the ports of Los Angeles and San Francisco, facilitating trade and diverting Union resources. And perhaps most important, the gray coats would have room to expand their new nation, creating a vast land and possibly winning the support of European nations. If the Confederacy succeeded in building the Southwest into an empire, the Union was finished. Barrett, more than likely, was focused on freeing McCleave, but perhaps he also felt the weight of the nation’s future. And perhaps this is why Barrett, an experienced officer, made the mistake that buoyed the sagging rebel forces in what many consider the westernmost battle of the war. His error was costly but not fatal to the Union. The same could not be said of him. He is still out here, buried, it’s said, by Interstate 10, along with some of the most interesting and underappreciated history of the American Civil War.

Karoline Williamson watches the Civil War in the Southwest re-enactments. In Northern Virginia, where I spent some of my growing-up years, the Civil War is so entwined with day-to-day life that you cannot escape it. If proximity to Manassas, Va, and Gettysburg, Pa, weren’t reminder enough, there is always Abraham Lincoln’s statue, 125 tons of sorrow, at his memorial in the District of Columbia. The ghosts of conflicts past reminded me endlessly of the country ’s schism, but the absence of same in the West had left me feeling untethered. The Civil War defined a nation, but where was California’s bond? Not far away, I discovered. There were battles in these parts, important ones that “should be regarded as one of the decisive campaigns of the war,” Brevet Brig. Gen Latham Anderson, a colonel who was a commander of California Volunteers, wrote after his retirement some years later. My curiosity took me last month to Picacho Peak State Park, about 45 miles northwest of Tucson, to see the site of that alleged westernmost battle. Some dispute the geographic distinction and point to a fight at Stanwix Station, about 80 miles east of Yuma, Ariz; others say that it was too small to count. Picacho wasn’t much larger, they say, not a battle at all but a skirmish. I’ll leave that to historians to argue. What I can’t argue is the shift in perspective that occurred after my Picacho (Spanish for “big peak”) visit to see its Civil War reenactments, conducted annually and attracting

Union soldiers attack the Confederates the re-enactment of the Battle of Picacho Pass at Picacho Peak State Park in Arizona. —MCT photos

about 3,200 visitors. Here I got a look, albeit a re-created one, at three of the West’s important engagements-Valverde and Glorieta Pass, which are actually in New Mexico, and the Battle of Picacho Peak. Looking at the brutal Sonoran Desert, I began to understand what those Californians and other troops faced here. Some things could be seen or felt-the outcroppings of rock that could hide the enemy, the menacing saguaro cactus, ready to inflict its spines on anyone who stumbled into their embrace, the dust from the parched earth and the unrelenting sun. Other elements could only be imagined (thank goodness): the snakes, the scorpions, the black widow spiders, the tarantulas and the coyotes that call this desolation home. And there was one more thing, or, more accurately, one less thing: water. Surviving in these harsh lands meant carrying or finding water for the horses that slurped at least 5 gallons a day, and for the soldiers, who could easily overwhelm one of the infrequent desert wells when they needed to slake their thirst. It was not yet monsoon season-that comes in the summer-so there were no instant minipools of water, no drop visible (but for the jugs of water along the sutlers’ row) and nothing to fight the feeling that every drop of moisture had instantly been sucked from my body. And I was not wearing wool. Who in their right mind would? The soldiers, both then and now, especially the Union troops. (The rebels were often a bit ragtag, so it was harder to classify their clothing.) With average daily highs in the triple digits in June, July and August and nary a shade tree to be found, soldiers in the wool blue uniform of the day-the sack coat, the pants and often the undergarments-faced a desert environment as hostile as their battlefield foes. Ah, yes, the enemy. In this arena, the enemy wasn’t just a soldier’s philosophical counterpart in the War Between the States. It could mean Apaches, who fought everyone, including Pima and Maricopa tribes; it could be Texans, who marched into New Mexico Territory to secure the land for the South. If you were a Texan, it could be the Pima and Maricopa, who generally were allied with the

Union soldiers retreat in a re-enactment of the Battle of Picacho Pass. federal government, growing crops and supplying those troops; and it might be Latinos, who often fought for the North, thus pitting them against the South, and who were despised by the Apaches. “It’s a Civil War because people are all fighting one another,” said Andrew Masich, author of “The Civil War in Arizona: The Story of the California Volunteers, 1861-1865.” The Civil War in the Southwest “is kind of separate from this other war” in the East, said Masich, formerly of Tucson and now president and chief executive of the John Heinz Pittsburgh Regional History Center. With a climate that could kill you and the hatred that simmered among those groups, this war was, Masich said, less about the evils of slavery and more about day-to-day survival. The Californians may have been better equipped to handle the adversity, Masich said. They were “bigger, rougher and stronger,” he said, so much so that their hat and shoe sizes were larger and trouser lengths longer than for troops in the East. Besides the physical differences, there was a mind-set too, especially in those Californians who were from elsewhere, as most were.

The reenactors were gearing up for the Battle of Valverde, played out on a roped-off field slightly larger than a gridiron. Artillery fire began, and viewers clapped their hands over their ears to muffle the sound. Guns fired, and one of the rebels shouted, “ Welcome to Arizona!” The Arizona he spoke of is not the Arizona we know today. In 1848, under the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, Mexico gave the U.S. more than a half a million square miles of land, of which Arizona, New Mexico and California were parts. The Gadsden Purchase, which Congress ratified in 1854, added a far southern slice of land to the Arizona Territory. One of the rebel reenactors, clearly unimpressed with the Union’s effort, yelled, “Is that all you got, Billy?” The Confederates may have been feeling cocky. History says-and the reenactors made it clear-that they were the victors at Valverde, which occurred Feb 20 and 21, 1862, less than a week after Jefferson Davis claimed the Arizona Territory for the South.

Union soldiers line up after the re-enactment of the Battle of Picacho Pass.

Union soldier David Gilliam plays a dead during a re-enactment at the Civil War in the Southwest.

Fans cover their ears during an artillery demonstration at Picacho Peak State Park.

“You need a good deal of self-confidence to take on a jour-ney through 3,000 miles of dangerous territory, whether that’s through the isthmus of Panama or overland,” Masich said. “You need to be strong and fit and believe in your ability to accomplish things. You also might be more aggressive.” A handy trait in the bloodiest war in US history and especially in the West, where the enemy came in many guises.

A little more than a month later, the battle of Glorieta Pass was a different story. It was sometimes called the “Gettysburg of the West,” not for the size of the encounter-the feds’ 1,300 soldiers outnumbered the Confederates’ by about 200 — but for the impact. More artillery fire on the reenactment field, louder this time, and more gunfire. Clouds of smoke (created by flour, a reenactor told me) billowed overhead in the Arizona sky. —MCT


Judge sends Lohan to jail in necklace theft case

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SUNDAY, APRIL 24, 2011

Models present wedding gowns during a show by the M&Y Wedding Design in Beijing yesterday.—AP

Paralyzed bride’s walk down the aisle fulfills a dream

Jennifer Damon and Mike Belawetz stand at the altar during their wedding .—MCT photos

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wo white doors swung open and Jennifer Darmon stood in her wedding dress, smiling and beaming and concentrating hard so she wouldn’t trip and fall. Paralyzed from the hips down after a car accident, Darmon wore leg braces under her strapless white gown and took the first step down the aisle, carefully holding the arm of her father, Alan, and her brother, Kevin. “I’ll take this slow, sweet walk with you,” her uncle Tony Darmon sang, trying to keep his composure through a song written by Edwin McCain. Jennifer Darmon moved slowly

down the 40-foot aisle before 190 friends and family and a throng of news media inside Mackenzie Hall, a historic courthouse in Windsor, Ontario. “My first thought was, I wanted to make sure I wasn’t stepping on my brother’s and dad’s feet,” said Darmon, 28, of Belle River, Ontario, about 30 minutes from Detroit. “That was a big thing. Then, just making sure I would keep my head up and look at everybody. It was very difficult to walk. It’s not easy because I can’t see my feet.” She moved past Liz Richmond, her rehabilitation trainer at Detroit

Medical Center’s Rehabilitation Institute of Michigan, where she first learned to crawl and then moved up to walking with braces. “I’m so proud of her,” Richmond said. “I was crying and used up my tissue.” Richmond had helped Darmon stretch out her muscles before the wedding. “She was a trouper, just like always,” Richmond said. Darmon moved past her physical therapist, Phuong Vu. “It was so emotional to see her accomplish her goals,” Vu said. “She has been working on this for almost a year. We are so proud of her.” Frances Jack of Guelph, Ontario, a

Jennifer Damon and Mike Belawetz answer questions after their wedding. family friend who had seen Darmon’s first steps as an infant — on Jennifer’s first birthday — wiped away tears. “Today was like watching it all over again,” she said. “I’m way beyond happy.” And then, Darmon looked up and saw Mike Belawetz, the love of her life, the man who refused to leave her after the July 27, 2008, car accident that left her paralyzed. “I saw Mike and everything was great after that,” she said. “I kept watching him.” Darmon stood through the ceremony, which lasted about 10 minutes. The Rev Robert J Verkoyen, a pastor at Rock of Help Christian Centre in

Masks of Britain’s royals flying off the shelves

Essex, Ontario, told the bride and groom that they had been “shining examples” of love and commitment. “No tears left the eyes, but it stirred a bit,” Belawetz said. “I knew she could do it. I’m proud of my wife. Her accomplishment. It feels great to be here today.” Alan Darmon sat in the front row, watching his daughter. “It’s been a long journey,” he said. “But I couldn’t be prouder than I am today. It’s Jenn’s character. She does not give up. She will not let anything deter her from her goals.” After the accident, Jennifer Darmon told her father that she was upset that she

would never walk down the aisle. “Today proved that you can achieve anything you set your mind on,” Alan Darmon said. Carla Darmon, Jennifer’s mother, couldn’t hold back the tears: “When it first happened, it was devastating. Today? Top of the world. It’s a great day.” After the ceremony, Belawetz lifted his bride and carried her down the aisle. She smiled and kissed him gently. He said it was his idea to carry her out: “They wouldn’t let her strap strings to her and fly out, so I had to actually pick her up and carry her out.”—MCT

Official royal wedding list, seating plan released

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potted: Kate Middleton running the London marathon! Well, not Kate exactly, but goofy runners in lifelike cardboard masks. Costume masks of Britain’s royal family are flying off the shelves nationwide ahead of Prince William’s April 29 wedding to Kate Middleton. And with Britons taking no pains to, well, mask their excitement about the wedding, the bride-to-be’s face has been popping up in the most unlikely places. On the street. At the gym. In the office. And the stores? They’re struggling to keep the masks in stock. “They’re flying out the door,” said Tony Warner, assistant manager of London’s Escapade party store. “They’re beating (masks of ) Simon Cowell, they’re beating everyone else.” More than 120,000 royal masks have shipped already and Mask-arade, the company behind the phenomenon, is taking orders for 20,000 more each day, according to Ray Duffy, one of its founders. “We thought they were going to be popular, but we underestimated just how popular,” confessed Duffy. “It’s gone absolutely wild.” Wills and Kate are the best-sellers of course, but the other royals on offer — Prince Harry, Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Philip, Prince Charles and his wife Camilla — are not far behind. The success has stunned Duffy and his fellow mask men, forcing the Southam, England-based company to double in size and triple the number of contractors to meet the surge in demand. “We’re at absolute maximum capacity to get the orders shipped,” Duffy said, adding that employees are logging 12-hour days and six-day work weeks. The company has already stopped taking large orders so it can guarantee delivery before the wedding. And it’s not just enthusiastic locals. Mask-arade is shipping British royal faces all over the world — to the United States, Australia, Scotland, even Vietnam. —AP

Jennifer Damon arrives for her wedding on the wheel chair.

Employees pose with face masks of Britain’s Prince William and his fiancee Kate Middleton as they pack the masks for shipping at a production plant in Southam, central England Friday —-AP

he full list of confirmed guests and the seating plan for the royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton were released by the British monarchy yesterday. Many of the 1,900 invitees had already been mentioned in the media weeks ago, including soccer star David Beckham and his wife Victoria, musician Elton John and director Guy Ritchie. But others, like soul singer Joss Stone and Mr Bean actor Rowan Atkinson — a close friend of William’s father Prince Charles — were new. St James’s Palace also confirmed for the first time that Bahrain’s Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa will be attending, despite British concerns about the treatment of activists there. Bahrain’s royal family ordered a wide-ranging brutal crackdown against pro-democracy demonstrators that started in mid-February. At least 30 people have died, including four in custody, and many well-known activists and lawyers have been imprisoned. About 40 other foreign royals from countries including Denmark, Norway, Spain, Thailand and Morocco will be in attendance. Other guests include British government and defense officials, British soldiers who fought in Afghanistan and people who work for William’s charities. Palace officials said that only crowned heads of states are traditionally invited to royal weddings, and that political leaders who are not from the 54-member Commonwealth of nations, such as President Barack Obama or French President Nicolas Sarkozy,

File photo shows Britain’s Prince William accompanied by his fiancee Kate Middleton, as they arrive at Witton Country Park, Darwen, England.—AP weren’t sent invitations. The seating plan for the April 29 ceremony at Westminster Abbey revealed the select few who will witness the ceremony up close. About 1,000 people will sit in the section of the abbey where views of the altar are restricted. Queen Elizabeth II and other royal family members will sit in the front row across the aisle from the Middleton family. They will be closest to the abbey’s sanctuary, where William and his bride will stand. The Middletons will sit with the couple’s friends and Princess Diana’s Spencer family.—AP


24 April