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Kuwait faces dilemma over taxing expatriates

Syria forces in deadly raids, Red Cross visits jail

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SHAWWAL 8, 1432 AH

Pakistani tech wiz harnesses Internet for the poor



Nadal collapses after win at scorching US Open



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Iraq says dispute over Kuwaiti port resolved Zebari: Technical report removes fears of Mubarak port

Inflation seen staying muted DUBAI: Kuwait’s annual inflation eased to an 11-month low of 4.6 percent in July and edged up only slightly from the month before on higher food and transport prices, data showed yesterday, and analysts said they expect price pressures to stay muted. Inflation in the Gulf, the world’s top oil-exporting region, is expected to creep higher this year on robust global commodity prices, a weak dollar and increased government spending following political turmoil across the Arab world. In Kuwait, inflation had been hovering above 5.0 percent since reaching almost a two-year high of 6.0 percent in December 2010, though it subsided to 5.0 percent in June. On the month, consumer price growth slowed to 0.1 percent in July from 0.2 percent the previous month, data from the Gulf Arab country’s Central Statistics Office showed. “The July reading confirms a very benign inflationary situation, with prices essentially unchanged compared with June,” said Liz Martins, senior MENA economist at HSBC in Dubai. “The August number could come in higher, thanks to the Ramadan effect, but the underlying picture is of very low level price growth,” she said. Food prices usually rise during the holy month of Ramadan, which ended in August, as families enjoy more elaborate evening meals after fasting during the daylight hours. Kuwait has one of the highest annual inflation rates in the Gulf, second only to Saudi’s 4.9 percent in July, although price growth remains well below a record high of 11.6 percent seen during an oil-fuelled boom in Aug 2008. Analysts polled by Reuters in June expected average inflation in the world’s No. 6 crude exporter to reach 5.1 percent in 2011 after 4.0 percent last year. In July, food costs, which account for 18 percent of Kuwait consumer expenses, rose by 0.2 percent on a monthly basis after a 0.6 percent drop in the previous month, the data also showed. Transport and communication prices rose 0.1 percent month-on-month, cooling down from a 1.0 percent jump in June. Housing costs, which make up 27 percent of the basket, were unchanged for the fourth month in a row in July. “There is significant oversupply in housing in both the UAE and Qatar that is helping subdue inflation. But in Kuwait they don’t have that kind of oversupply in the housing market,” said Shady Shaher, senior economist at Standard Chartered in Dubai. Kuwait’s Central Bank governor was quoted in June as saying interest rates were at a suitable level, and a dinar peg to a basket of currencies was helping to curb inflation, mostly driven by rising import costs. Slowing global economic growth and sovereign debt problems in the euro zone are affecting bigger economies like Italy and Spain, while emerging markets are also struggling to contain inflation. “The main risk for Kuwait would be an exogenous factor which would be a double-dip recession that would subdue demand for oil,” Shaher said. The $131 billion economy of Kuwait, which abandoned its dollar peg in 2007 to rein in soaring inflation, is seen growing by 4.4 percent this year helped by robust crude prices and increased government spending after an estimated 3.0 percent growth in 2010. — Reuters

KUWAIT: MP Falah Al-Sawwagh holds a placard which reads in Arabic “Why Medvedev?” and another one bearing a manipulated picture of the Russian president with an Adolf Hitler mustache and a swastika during a demonstration outside the Russian embassy yesterday against Russian support for President Bashar Al-Assad’s regime in its deadly crackdown on pro-reform protests. (Inset) MP Waleed Al-Tabtabaei holds a placard in Arabic reading ‘“Why O people of Russia?” and another in Russian at the protest. — Photos by Yasser Al-Zayyat (See Page 3)

Session for illegal bank deposits eyed for Sept 22 Barrak asks about embassies importing liquor By B Izzak KUWAIT: The Reform and Development Bloc said yesterday it had prepared a request to call for an emergency parliamentary session on Sept 22 to discuss the issue of multimillion-dinar deposits as several MPs allowed the Central Bank to examine all their

Settlers torch W Bank mosque QUSRA, West Bank: Jewish settlers set fire to a mosque in the occupied West Bank yesterday, Palestinians said, in reprisal for Israel’s dismantling of three buildings in an unauthorised settlement outpost hours earlier. Abdel Azeem Wadi, a member of the village council in Qusra near the Palestinian city of Nablus, said settlers threw burning tyres into the mosque, damaging the entire first floor. Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad denounced the attack as an act of terrorism. “These acts are what threaten to pull A man looks down at a Star of David spray the region into a cycle of violence,” Fayyad’s Continued on Page 13 painted on a wall of a mosque. — AP

in the

bank accounts. MP Faisal Al-Mislem called on MPs to sign the request from today to submit it to the speaker on Thursday. At least 33 MPs must sign the request to force the emergency session because the Assembly is currently in recess until Oct 25. The session was called to debate press reports claiming that Continued on Page 13

Max 45º Min 27º Low Tide 11:25 & 23:08 High Tide 03:47 & 18:10

BAGHDAD: Iraq’s top diplomat says a dispute over a planned Kuwaiti port has been resolved and that the facility will not disrupt Iraqi shipping in the Arabian Gulf. Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari said a technical review shows the Mubarak Al-Kabeer port that Kuwait is building on the Gulf “won’t affect our navigation”, as had been feared. In an interview aired late Sunday, Zebari said the review “removed the fears of the Mubarak port”. Construction of the facility on Bubiyan island off Kuwait’s coast raised new tensions between the two nations this summer. Iraq initially objected to the port and feared the country would be cut off from the lucrative Gulf shipping trade just as it regains its economic footing. Zebari said the report submitted by a technical team, which visited Kuwait recently to be briefed over the project, dispelled fears about the construction of the mega port. “The report was very clear and has brushed aside fears about possible negative impacts resulted from the construction of the port,” he said in the interview with the official Iraqiya channel. But he stopped short by saying that “the decision over this issue will not be technical but political, and there are still differences in views within the (Iraqi) government.” Zebari noted that the government had discussed the report thoroughly. He said the foreign ministry’s job was to solve problems, not to create them. The ministry, he added, was working to get Iraq out of Chapter VII of the UN Charter “but this will not happen without honoring a bundle of commitments with the Kuwaiti side”. He said Iraq was working to overcome these disputes “through technical work and not by statements”. Zebari said the report indicated that Mubarak AlKabeer port would consist of three phases and would not include a wave breaker “because there is no technical need for it”. Iraq, he added, would need a long time to know the possible environment impacts of the port. Zebari said Iraq should quickly carry on with the construction of the Faw port. Iraq “will not allow any harm to fall against it and it has to quickly build the big Faw port,” he said. — Agencies

Gaddafi bastion waits as talks fail SHISHAN, Libya: Anti-Gaddafi fighters played a waiting game yesterday outside the besieged town of Bani Walid, as reports from Niger said prominent officials of the old regime had fled across the border. They included Muammar Gaddafi’s internal security chief Mansour Daw, who was earlier reported to be in Bani Walid with at least two of the fallen strongman’s sons, a Tuareg source in Libya’s southern neighbour said. China meanwhile denied a Canadian press report that it had offered masses of arms to Gaddafi during the final months of his regime and held secret talks on shipping them through Algeria and South Africa. Continued on Page 13

Scuffles at Mubarak trial Wall built around Israeli embassy CAIRO: A top police witness at the trial of Hosni Mubarak said yesterday he was not aware of any order to fire on protesters who ousted the Egyptian president, as scuffles erupted inside and outside the courtroom. But General Hussein Saeed Mohamed Moussa told the court police were given guns and live ammunition to protect the Interior Ministry from attack, a decision he said was issued by a senior officer, Ahmed Ramzi, who is one of the defendants. Mubarak is charged with involvement in killing protesters and “inciting” some officers to use live ammunition against them, in the first trial of an Arab leader in person since street unrest erupted across the Middle East early this year. About 850 people died in the protests that erupted on Jan 25 and ended Mubarak’s three decades in office on Feb 11. CAIRO: An anti-Mubarak protestor flashes a victory sign during Continued on Page 13 clashes with pro-Mubarak demonstrators yesterday. — AFP

news 200 Shiite inmates on hunger strike

Giant croc captured alive in Philippines

DUBAI: More than 200 Shiite Bahrainis jailed for their role in a month of pro-democracy protests in the Sunni-ruled kingdom have joined a hunger strike, a rights and opposition activist said yesterday. The strike was started last week ago by 12 doctors arrested in the wake of a mid-March deadly crackdown on the Shiiteled protests, said Nabeel Rajab, the head of the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights. He said the number of prisoners on strike has climbed to more than 200, adding that some of the medics have been hospitalised. Despite the heavy-handed clampdown by security forces in March, which was followed by mass arrests and dismissals from jobs for thousands of Shiites, the majority community has taken to the streets again.

MANILA: Villagers and experts have captured a oneton saltwater crocodile which they plan to make the star of a planned ecotourism park in a southern Philippine town. Mayor Cox Elorde said yesterday that dozens of villagers and experts ensnared the 6.4-m male crocodile along a creek in Bunawan township in Agusan del Sur province after a three-week hunt. It is one of the largest crocodiles to be captured alive in the Philippines in recent years. Elorde says the crocodile killed a water buffalo in an attack witnessed by villagers last month and is also suspected of having attacked a fisherman who went missing in July. Elorde said putting the huge crocodile in a tourism park will turn it “From a threat into an asset.”

MALKIYA, Bahrain: A woman shouts anti-government slogans through a compressed-air horn during a protest against the Bahraini monarchy late Sunday in this western Shiite village. — AP

BUNAWAN, Philippines: Mayor Cox Elorde pretends to measure a huge crocodile captured by residents and crocodile farm staff along a creek in Bunawan late Saturday. — AP



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A taxing time up for Kuwait? ‘Introduction of tax may cap career prospects’ By Lisa Conrad

KUWAIT: His Highness the Deputy Amir Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad AlJaber Al-Sabah received at Al-Seif palace yesterday, Sheikh Salem Abdul Aziz Al-Sabah Governor of the Central Bank of Kuwait. HH the Deputy Amir also received the Italian ambassador to Kuwait, (above) on the occasion of completing his tenure. HH the Deputy Amir received Head of HH the Crown Prince’s Diwan, Sheikh Mubarak Al-Faisal Al-Saud Al-Sabah and Chief of the National Security Apparatus Sheikh Mohammad Al-Khaled Al-Hamad AlSabah. Later, the Deputy Amir received MP Mubarak Al-Khurainej and MP Askar Owaid Al-Enezi. — KUNA

KAC chief Al-Falah denies suspension, allegations KUWAIT: Kuwait Airways Chief Hamad Al-Falah denied being suspended over allegations of mak ing derogator y remarks against followers of the Shiite sect. Al-Falah spoke to reporters as he greeted Salem Al-Othaina Minister of Communications who welcomed wellwishers on the occasion of Eid Al-Fitr. This was his first public appearance since a local newspaper claimed to be in possession of a voice recording of the CEO of the Kuwait Air ways Corporation. He reportedly insulted Shiite staff members and admitted to lobbying for their release. Aside from denying that he was suspended, Al-Falah opted to refrain

from making comments on the subject, and indicated that negotiations are yet to take place on extending his tenure which originally expires on September 26. Al-Falah’s term will not be extended given the current KAC privatization plans. However, the recent scandal paves the way for many to speculate that he was ousted for inciting sectarianism or political pressure, reported Al-Qabas. He also noted that he would file a lawsuit against the newspaper which leveled these accusations, on the grounds that his constitutional rights and privacy were invaded “to serve personal interests,” reported Al-Watan.

Kuwaiti MPs in Luxembourg to boost cooperation LUXEMBOURG: A delegation of Kuwaiti parliamentarians is currently in Luxembourg on a four-day official visit aimed at strengthening political, parliamentary and economic ties and enhancing overall cooperation between the two countries. The six-person delegation is led by the Mubarak Al-Khurainej, President of the KuwaitLuxembourg inter-parliamentary friendship group, and chairman of the parliamentary foreign affairs committee. Three of the delegates arrived in Luxembourg yesterday, with two other MPs expected to arrive later and Al-Khurainej set to arrive today. Speaking to KUNA on his arrival at Luxembourg Airport, Dr Daifullah Buramya said that the aim of the Kuwaiti MPs’ visit is to learn from the experience of their Luxembourgish counterparts and to strengthen the friendly ties between the two countries. During the trip, the Kuwaiti MPs will meet with Luxembourg government officials and visit financial and educational institutions and exchange views, he said, noting that Kuwait, which is working on a number of major development projects, can profit from Luxembourg’s know-how and expertise. “We will focus on the economic side because relations between countries are strengthened on the basis of economic cooperation. We hope that our visit will lead to further expansion of our relationship,” added Buramya. Fellow MP Saad al-Azmi, meanwhile, said that this is the Kuwaiti lawmakers’ first visit

to Luxembourg to examine how the country’s parliament function, adding, “Relations between Kuwait and Luxembourg are good and such exchange visits between the two countries will deepen ties.” Another of the Kuwaiti delegates, MP Saifi Al-Saifi told KUNA that the parliamentary friendship group’s visit is aimed at strengthening relations between the two countries and learning more about Luxembourg. Al-Azmi noted that relations between Kuwait and European nations are good and Kuwait enjoys good and close relations with Luxembourg, which is a member of the European Union. The two Kuwaiti parliamentarians who were set to arrive later yesterday are Khalid Bin Essa and Khalaf Al-Enezi. The Kuwaiti MPs were welcomed in Luxembourg by Chargé d’ Affaires Abdullah Al-Shatti and Mubarak Al-Hajri, another senior official at the Kuwaiti Embassy in Brussels. Kuwait’s Ambassador to Belgium and Luxembourg Nabila Al-Mulla was also set to arrive in Luxembourg later yesterday evening. During their stay in Luxembourg, the Kuwaiti MPs are set to visit the parliament, as well as the Chamber of Commerce, to meet the minister of economy and trade Jeannot Krecke, and to hold talks with high level representatives from the country’s Islamic banking sector. Luxembourg, an important international banking centre, is attracting growing interest from the Islamic banking sector globally. — KUNA

KUWAIT: “Oftentimes expatriates are hired because they add to the competitiveness of an organization. Scaring them off with tax would only reap negative consequences, especially for the private sector,” according to Mohammad, a human resources manager at a major company in Kuwait. The possible introduction of income tax in Kuwait has sparked controversy amongst expatriates and Kuwaitis alike. Many expatriates flock to the Gulf for work because the combination of a taxfree, higher range salary offers greater financial stability than they would otherwise have in their home countries. However, a recent Kuwait Times poll showed that 43 percent of expatriates would leave Kuwait should income tax be introduced. There is an extremely large expatriate community in Kuwait, made up of individuals working in various fields. The first, and largest, sector is made up by domestic staff, construction personnel and other unskilled workers. Given the extremely low wage bracket that they’re in, it’s safe to assume that they won’t be reaching the reported KD 30,000 minimum income required to qualify for tax payment. The sector that may well be affected, however, is made up of the considerable workforce of skilled expatriates in the private sector. From engineering to banking, psychology to marketing, Kuwait has a large number of skilled expatriates working in a range of fields. The Kuwait Times’ poll suggests, however, that the lack of tax is a major incentive for them and that should this incentive be removed, they may move elsewhere. British expatriate Michael J. said, “Kuwait is the ideal choice for many because it is tax-free and it’s known that you can save here. Dubai becomes expensive, and so does Qatar because there are so many distractions and ways to spend your entire salary each month. Kuwait isn’t like that though, it’s more family oriented.” He added, however, “Of course, the introduction of tax would kind of cap career prospects, because once you go over that threshold,

it’s not so profitable anymore. Then Dubai would become a better option, because that money you’d lose in tax here could be better used in Dubai.” The tax-talk comes at a time when the issue of increasing local labor levels is being highlighted and debated. For example, Deloitte’s white paper ‘Never mind the reserves, what about the people?’ claimed

tions to consider regarding the possibility of expatriates being deterred by the introduction of tax. Firstly, if expatriates leave, will it prompt the government to push local initiatives to encourage the uptake of local expertise in fields currently dominated by expatriates? Secondly, given that expatriates currently make up such a considerable proportion of the work-

KUWAIT: In this file photo, a man is seen withdrawing cash from an ATM machine. The image is used for illustrative purposes only. — Photo by Joseph Shagra that the Middle East is facing a shortage of local talent in the energy and utilities sector. Kenneth McKellar, partner and Middle East Energy and Resources leader at Deloitte Middle East, wrote, “The scarcity of Middle Eastern nationals in meaningful

force in key areas, such as the energy and utilities sector, what would the consequences of their departure be? Kenneth McKellar had noted that expatriates tend to be ‘transient’ and are prone to moving if a better offer arises, and given the difference that paying

If the expatriates leave they won’t be replaced by locals; in all likelihood they’ll be replaced by more expatriates who don’t mind the tax. But keeping them when there are taxfree opportunities elsewhere will not be easy. employment in the energy and utilities sector is beginning to be urgently addressed by governments in GCC countries. They compel organizations to reserve minimum quotas of nationals and funding educational and vocational programs to provide a stream of future talent for the industry.” Tax or no tax? There are two major implica-

tax would make, other offers could appear more appealing. Mohammad, a Human Resources manager with a major company in Kuwait, said, “If the expatriates were to leave, we would have problems. Firstly, Kuwait is a small country aiming for large development goals. You need experienced professionals for such goals, and Kuwait’s workforce needs more time to grow

and develop more expertise. Even then, Kuwait has a small population still and not all women work.” Khalid, an engineer within the energies and utilities sector, had a similar viewpoint: “There is a huge reliance on expatriates, especially in the oil sector,” he said. “They aren’t at the top with regard to titles, but they are with regard to workload and responsibility.” The possibility of a reduction in expatriate employees’ numbers spark ing an increase in local employment is unlikely, according to Mohammad: “It’s not something that happens overnight. The idea is for there to be an increase in local employment, not to replace the expatriates.” He added, “Kuwait’s development goals reflec t many of those from countries that have already achieved them or even set precedents for them. Hiring nationals from those countries means that you have people trained and educated in the systems being aspired to, which adds to competitiveness.” Meanwhile, Khalid pointed out, “Locals are already encouraged to join our [energy and utilities] sector. The problem isn’t the lack of opportunity, it’s the lack of interest. If the expatriates leave they won’t be replaced by locals; in all likelihood they ’ll be replaced by more expatriates who don’t mind the tax. But keeping them when there are tax-free opportunities elsewhere will not be easy. Unless they are of a lower caliber, I guess. But that’s not really a good solution, is it?” The debate over taxes doesn’t look like it’s going to die down any time soon, and it ’s still unclear whether or not expatriates would really jump ship if it came down to it. However, Lebanese expatriate Noura who has been in Kuwait for seven years, is sure of one thing: “I wouldn’t have applied at all had I known tax would be introduced. I wouldn’t leave Kuwait now - it’s a hassle to relocate after having been here for so long. But I think Kuwait will be less appealing to apply to in the first place, with the most experienced hunting for the country that will reap them the best financial returns.”

Al-Afasi to head delegation at Istanbul forum KUWAIT: Kuwait’s Minister of Social Affairs and Labor Dr. Mohammad Al-Afasi yesterday headed to Istanbul, where he will be heading a delegation participating in the 19th World Congress on Health & Safety at Work, which is scheduled to take

place from September 11-15. Al-Afasi, who is also Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister of Justice, said in a press release announcing the Kuwaiti delegation’s participation in the event that the congress will focus on chal-

lenges facing the career and economic worlds, adding that the event will also touch on the social requirements for jobs. Kuwait will also be participating in a number of workshops taking place on the sidelines of the main

event, which have been organized by the Arab Labor Organization. The 19th World Congress on Safety and Health at Work will work on measures to better improve the quality of the workplace and careers. — KUNA

KUWAIT: Al-Awwash and Al-Roudhan (right) sign the agreement by which Kuwait Radio will launch its cooperation with the private sector. — KUNA

Kuwait Radio to broadcast jointly with private firm KUWAIT: Kuwait Radio is due to broadcast the first joint program with the private sec tor in October in line with guidelines of His Highness the Amir to enhance role of this sector. Mohammad Abdul Mohsen Al-Aw wash, the information assistant undersecretary for the radio station affairs, said in a

statement to KUNA yesterday that the radio station had drawn up an accord, the first of its kind, with a private media company, to broadcast a three-hour talk show, in accordance with the policy to encourage the Kuwaiti companies and spur creativity in the domain. The agreement has been

worked out in implementation of the desire of HH the Amir to transform Kuwait into a business hub, and for encouraging the private sector. The program, to be aired on the FM, would cover various cultural, social, sports and artistic issues, Al-Awwash said. Khaled Al-Roudhan, the gen-

eral manager of the company, affirmed necessity of such cooperation for sake of realizing aspirations of His Highness for boosting development. The Ministry of Information has formed a special team to follow up on development affairs and promote government activities. — KUNA



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Blocs back KPC workers’ demands

Amir meets Mongolian leader ULAANBAATAR, Mongolia: H is Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah AlAhmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, who is currently visiting Mongolian’s capital Ulaanbaatar, yesterday received the Mongolian President, Tsak hia Elbegdorj, at his temporar y resi-

dence there. The two leaders held cordial talks which mirrored the excellent and deep -rooted relations between Kuwait and Mongolia, with the discussions touching on how to further enhance bilateral cooperation in var-

ious fields. During the meeting, which was also attended by the Deputy Chief of Kuwait’s National Guards Sheikh Meshal Al-Ahmad AlSabah, HH the Amir extended an invitation to the Mongolian leader to visit Kuwait. — KUNA

KUWAIT: Two political blocs have announced support for the demands put forward by the Kuwait Petroleum Corporation’s labor union which prepares to hold a strike on September 18. I stated that the KD 183 million required to be spent in pay rises remain ‘less costlier’ than the expected KD 350 million daily loss that will be incurred as a result of work stoppage. “The KPC labor union only resorted to staging the strike after reaching a dead end in convincing officials to agree with their demands,” said MP Musallam Al-Barrak of the Popular Action Bloc (PAB). They further insisted that more incentives are needed to make the oil sector which provides all but a small percentage of the Gulf state’s national income - more appealing to citizens. Meanwhile, MP Dr Faisal AlMislem of the Development and Reform Bloc (DRB) announced support to the KPC labor union’s “right-

ful demands,” acknowledging the efforts made by labor forces “who managed to tackle obstacles and increase operational capacity of oil refineries despite the lack of financial incentives.” His fellow bloc member MP, Dr Waleed Al-Tabtabae accused the government of failing to implement a resolution that is approved by the Supreme Council of Petroleum. In other news, Popular Action Bloc (PAB) is reportedly preparing to revive attempts to pass a legislation according to which the five electoral constituencies would be merged into a single constituency. According to officials, bloc leader MP Ahmad Al-Saadoun has already begun drawing up a draft law to adopt a single constituency electoral system. It has already been submitted to the Parliament’s Interior and Defense Committee. The veteran lawmaker is reportedly coordinating to help pass the legis-

lation during the next parliamentary session which starts October 25. Plans have been made to cooperate with other lawmakers in the hope of ensuring that a PAB member is elected to the Interior and Defense Committee, reported AlRai. Separately, MP Adel Al-Saraawi submitted a proposal to assign a parliament member to “inspect financial procedures at the Ministry of Finance and other state departments,” and ensure that these fall in line with regulations. The National Action Bloc (NAB) member’s statement was made as he commented on a case pertinent with suspicious multi-million dollar deposits made to two MPs’ bank accounts, which he described as “an example of legislative corruption.” He further rejected the notion of a Cabinet or a parliamentary resignation over the scandal, saying that this option “provides protection to the recipient and bribe payer.”

Interior denies Iraqi spy reports KUWAIT: The Ministry of Interior (MoI) yesterday denied news reports which claimed that an Iraqi spy working for the Iraqi intelligence services had been arrested in Hawally, insisting that the man arrested was simply being held in connection with violating the Gulf state’s residence permit laws. “The Iraqi expatriate was arrested after discovering that his commercial visa had expired,” read an official statement from the MoI’s Security Media Department, adding that the suspect is a fugitive who has been blacklisted for living in the country illegally. Furthermore, the statement said that during interrogation, the man admitted that he had destroyed his Iraqi passport, and falsely claimed to be a Bedoon (stateless) resident. The ministry further dismissed speculation that the suspect was a spy for Iraq, calling it ‘baseless.’ They urged media outlets to confirm the veracity of their information before publishing articles on such sensitive issues. Al-Anba newspaper claimed on Sunday that the State Security Department had apprehended a spy with connections to the Iraqi intelligence service, who it said had also attempted to recruit a citizen to provide vital information. The same newspaper published a report the following day quoting articles which it said were related to the results of the investigation into the suspect. The paper stated that the man had been living in Kuwait ever since entering the country with the invading Iraqi Army in 1990, adding that he had been working in the telecommunications sector for the past seven years. Officials also claimed that the suspect offered an unemployed Kuwaiti man KD 2,000 per month to cooperate with him, reported Al-Anba. In other news, an Iraqi lawmaker continued to condemn Kuwait over the Mubarak Al-Kabeer Port controversy, claiming that Iraq should appeal against the United Nations resolution which divided the Khor Abdullah strait between the two countries. Khor Abdullah is a narrow waterway that separates Iraq’s outlet to the Arabian Gulf with Kuwait’s Warba and Boubyan island. UN Resolution number 833 split the strait equally between the two countries. This year, Kuwait launched a project to build a mega-port, located to the east of the Boubyan Island, facing the eastern bank of the waterway where Iraq plans to build a mammoth port of its own on the Fao peninsula. On Sunday, Iraqi MP Aliya Nassif of the Iraqiya White Party argued that the entire Khor Abdullah strait belongs originally to Iraq, arguing that the previous Iraqi government was forced to agree to the split resolution “due to its weak state and desperate attempt to stay in power,” following Kuwait’s liberation in 1991. “If Kuwait considers a part of Khor Abdullah as its own, then why didn’t they act when Iran occupied the waterway in 1986?” Nassif argued, referring to the incident in which Iranian army vessels blocked access to the strip during the eight-year Iran-Iraq war during the 1980s. “Why did Kuwait leave Iraq alone to clean the waterway in 1988 after the ceasefire [with Iran] was declared?” she added, while further insisting on “Iraq’s right to appeal against [UN Society Council] Resolution 833.”

forum on boosting democracy ends KUWAIT: A Kuwaiti official who participated in the first sessions of the second forum on the role of Information Technology in strengthening democracy said yesterday that the recommendations issued during the sessions should be implemented as soon possible. “Kuwait took part in the recommendations committee through [Kuwait’s] representative Jassem Al-Khattaf,” explained Ahmad Barrak Al-Haifi, the head of the Kuwaiti delegation and the Assistant Undersecretary for Parliamentary Affairs with the Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs’ office. The three -day event, organized by the Arab Administrative Development Organization (ARADO), began last Friday in the Malaysian capital and concluded on Sunday evening. Delegations from Kuwait, the UAE, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Iraq, Oman, Egypt, Morocco and the Arab League participated in the forum. During the final session, Al-Haifi urged Arab governments to adopt a philosophy of sound governance fortified by IT. The forum focused on the events of the ‘Arab Spring,’ with particular regard to the central role of modern technology, in particular online social networks, in promoting democracy, along with the part played by the government in this sphere.— KUNA

KUWAIT: MP Waleed Al-Tabtabaie speaking to a police officer during the peaceful protest held yesterday near the Russian Embassy. (Right) Kuwaiti MPs Falah Al-Sawagh (second left) and Waleed Al-Tabtabaie (right) hold up placards accusing Russia of “taking part in the killing of Syrian people” during a demonstration outside the Russian Embassy in Kuwait yesterday. — Photos by Yasser Al-Zayyat

MPs protest at embassy against Russia’s support for Assad ‘These regimes are imitations of the communist regime’ By Nawara Fattahova KUWAIT: MPs Walid Al-Tabtabaie and Falah Al-Sawagh staged a peaceful protest in front of the Russian Embassy yesterday, during which they presented the Russian Ambassador in Kuwait with a letter addressed to Russian President Dmitry Medvedev. According to a member of the embassy staff, the two MPs met with the Russian Ambassador, although the employee refused to give any details or official statement to the Kuwait Times as the conversation took place after the embassy closed for the day. “Further information and an official statement about this meeting will be given today [Tuesday]” the official said. The letter presented by Al-Tabtabaie and Al-Sawagh included the following text: We present this letter representing the Kuwaiti nation, in the hope that the close friendship between Kuwait and Russia and their two nations will let you accept our advice regarding your government’s action towards the political situation in Syria and the dictatorial

regime’s oppression of the Syrian nation. “Our friend the Russian nation suffered from the oppression of the Communist regime for many long years; it also suffered from the occupation and destruction of the country by Nazi forces. This make the Russians the nation most able to understand the suffering of the Arab nations at the hands of their regimes, as these regimes are imitations of the communist regime and its ignoring of human rights for freedom, dignity, and social equity. “This is a reason to expect that the Russian regime will be the fastest to support the Arab Spring revolutions and to stand with these oppressed nations against their tyrant rulers. Unfortunately we have seen the opposite action, with Russia presenting political and diplomatic cover for some of these governments on different occasions, especially at the UN Security Council. These actions delayed the efforts spent to put pressure on the government and prevent them from using violence against those demonstrating nations. “On the Syrian issue, currently,

Moscow is putting the first obstacle in the way of the international community’ action to put pressure on Bashar AlAssad’s regime to stop the bloody repression against the Syrian people, who have been demonstrating since more than five months demanding their right to freedom. Although they used peaceful means, the regime confronted them with heavy weapons and repression that have caused more than 50,000 victims who are dead, injured, arrested, missing or refugees. “This price is increasing every day with the continuous violence practiced by the regime against the justified demands. “Your Excellency, Russia’s responsibility for the suffering of the Syrian nation is greater than the responsibility of any other government. Russia is the Syrian regime’s main source for weapons, which are used in the horrific crimes committed against the Syrians. Russia is also the main source of military, security, and political advice for Bashar Al-Assad’s regime. “All these factors give Russia more ability to put pressure on the Syrian regime to stop committing the

Bosnia seeks ‘strategic partnership with Kuwait’ SARAJEVO: The Serb member of the Bosnian Presidential Council, Neboisha Radmanovic, has praised Kuwait’s support for the peace process in his country saying this approach reflected keenness of the leadership on bolstering stability in his country. The Bosnian leadership highly values the sincere and just stance of the State of Kuwait toward Bosnia-Herzegovina and its people, said Radmanovic, in a meeting with the Kuwaiti Ambassador to Bosnia-Herzegovina, Mohammad Fadhel Khalaf, held at the Presidential Palace.

Radmanovic, whose remarks were partly broadcast by the Bosnian Television, expressed his aspiration to see the KuwaitiBosnian ties develop into a longterm strategy of partnership. He also indicated that he and the local leaders wished to examine the Kuwaiti diplomatic experience that enabled the country occupy a high-esteem status on the map of the world, praising the good reputation of Kuwait — fruit of a sagacious foreign policy based on rationality and balance. The Bosnian Serb leader called for maintaining the contacts

between the two friendly countries for sake of establishing a strategic partnership to serve the two sides’ interests. For his part, the Kuwaiti diplomat expressed appreciation of Radmanovic’s remarks, affirming keenness on preserving the good ties with the friendly BosniaHerzegovina. Moreover, he noted Kuwait’s desire to maintain the cooperation with the country at the political, economic and social levels. He also affirmed the approach of adopting a balanced policy with all political parties in the European nation. — KUNA

Consideration of natural elements vital in pre-construction KUWAIT: The consideration of the surrounding natural elements is vitally important before embarking on any kind of construction, said a Municipal Council technical advisor yesterday. Architectural engineer Abdullatif Al-Stath told KUNA that it is crucial, for example, to test the levels of groundwater to ensure that the structural foundations can withstand natural elements. Water as an element can be extremely problematic whether caused by natural or artificial forces, said the official, stressing that selecting

the right material for use in construction is paramount in reducing water’s possibly harmful effect on buildings, such as damp rot. Water in the form of atmospheric humidity poses another problem that plays an important part in the construction equation, said Al-Stath, stressing that the need to use the appropriate materials should always be taken into consideration given these factors. He also called for routine maintenance of buildings to ensure their stability and continuing elegant appearance. — KUNA

terrible crimes, but Moscow is not carrying out this role. Instead it is protecting Al-Assad’s regime as it did in the Libyan case, or it is at least postponing any sanction that can be taken against this regime, and this delay has a very high price in Syrian blood. “The Arab nations will remain, while the regimes will leave and end. There is no doubt that Russia has the right to protect its interests in the Arab countries, but these interests resist and develop with the friendship of the nations, and will disappear if it were connected to the tyrannical regimes. “For all of these reasons and to ensure the continuity and strengthen the friendship between the Russian nation and the Arab nations, and for the continuity of these joint interests, we hope that your Excellency will intervene to correct the actions of the Russian government in the Syrian issue. In the name of the Gulf Union for Solidarity with the Syrian Nation, we call upon you to use all effective pressure on the Syrian regime in Damascus to stop it from continuing with its crimes against the unarmed nation.”

Ex-MP denies Wikileaks cable accusations KUWAIT: A former Kuwaiti lawmaker denied information mentioned in a recently leaked Wikileaks document which claims that he accused the government of paying money to two of his opponents which helped them win seats in the 2003 parliamentary elections, during a conversation with then-United States Ambassador Richard Jones. “I don’t blame Wikileaks, but I find the US Embassy guilty of recording everything that they hear and reframing it the way they wish,” said MP Mubarak AlDuwailah, who failed to win a seat in the 2003 elections in which he was beaten by Daifullah Buramia and Mohammad Al-Fajji, after which he announced that he would not be running again for parliamentary elections. The document which the Wikileaks site claims to have obtained from the US Embassy in Kuwait indicates that AlDuwailah told then US Ambassador Richard Jones during a meeting at his office on July 16, 2003 that the Kuwaiti government paid KD 500,000 to his rivals in order to foil his bid

to make it to the parliament. “I can issue an assurance that throughout his tenure in Kuwait, Ambassador Jones never visited me in my office, but we met periodically at my diwaniya during my weekly open meeting with citizens,” said Al-Duwailah in a statement made available to the press. Whilst rejecting claims that he had ever accused the government of making suspicious payments, Al-Duwailah explained that he believes that businessmen or even “members of the ruling family” could have used their own money to support certain candidates in previous elections. Al-Duwailah also denied the Wikileaks document’s claims that his brother had appealed against the 2003 election results, insisting that he accepted the results as soon as they appeared and quickly congratulated his rivals who won seats in the election. He also refused to accuse MP Buramia and former MP Al-Fajji of receiving payments from the government, insisting on the “good relations” between him and his former rivals. — Al-Rai



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kuwait digest

The unexpected foodie haven

Government’s ineptness By Nawaf Sulaiman Al-Fazie

By Lisa Conrad


orruption is rampant in the country because of the government’s inefficiency. It has refused all the 37 recommendations put for ward by a state -sponsored committee. Ironically, this government plans to put an end to corruption! It has also turned a blind eye on the violations committed in the construction of the Al-Shadadiya University. After the country’s liberation from Iraqi forces, the Kuwait Airways has lost $3 billion. Its budget “has been spiraling out of control, without being supervised by the National Assembly Council.” Al-Shadadiya University rose from one billion to three. After one of the companies withdrew from the project, university officials arranged it. The university project is supervised by university administration. What about the year 2007 generator issue? And the industrial loan for the coal project, Jaber bridge, Mubarak port, internet companies and many other stories? After all this, the government does not want to pass financial declaration law for high ranking officials of the country! This law should be applied on consultants and their children and first degree relatives. A consultant plays big role in taking over government-owned land in Aridiya industrial area. Another consultant, who

Al-Shadadiya University rose from one billion to three. After one of the companies withdrew from the project, university officials arranged it. The university project is supervised by university administration. was an ex-minister said that his investment was restricted to a leased house. Within ten years, it transforms into a great palace! Ask the undersecretary who belongs to a poor family whose salary does not exceed KD 6,000. The construction of his house exceeds KD 1.5 million? The above mentioned individuals are living people that do not need to be documented. What drove people crazy is the house of the government officials. Ordinary public wait for 15 years to receive a housing unit. An Ex-undersecretary brought a handbag for his wife that cost KD 19,000. He did that because he covered up prices violation, and remained silent. He was paid in return for it. We are not only deeply mired in corruption but we cannot imagine any status worse than the present one. Corrupt undersecretaries, MPs, consultant and projects! Bribes helped disconnect power to a high-rise building until owners paid KD one million to a woman who managed to delete official government records! Today, we find that the government is waging a war against corruption and refuses to enforce the wealth declaration law. These steps backfire in the long run. — Al-Aan


kuwait digest

The West’s true colors By Dr. Hassan Abbas


s the West really glad to see the Arab Spring? Are they really happy to witness Arab people revolting against their tyrannical regimes and seeking freedom and democracy? Do Western countries find themselves compelled to support the right of Arab citizens to live in a society where these principles are protected? In my opinion, I believe the West has basically found themselves in front of a new reality that is changing at a fast pace which they need to keep up with before the situation brings unexpected results. Firstly, we have to acknowledge the fact that the Arab Spring wouldn’t have been successful if it weren’t for former Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali’s handling of the revolution in his country. While Al-Bouazizi’s infamous self-immolation is widely considered to have sparked the Tunisian revolution, this uprising would not have stood a chance if Ben Ali didn’t quit as unexpectedly as he did. Let ’s face it; the majority of people in the Arab World thought that the Tunisian government would continue as normal, using excessive force to control the public insurgencies regardless of how many protestors were killed, after which the protestors would grow desperate and eventually lose the fight. What happened, though, much to the surprise or the entire Arab world, was that the Tunisian tyrant was quick to surrender and flee the country, leaving behind the triumphant protestors to set an

‘What happened in Tunisia sparked a similar quick revolution in Egypt which swiftly eliminated yet another tyrant before the West could comprehend what was truly going on in the Middle East and the fact that it is being swept aside by a crushing wave of change’ example for the Arab region on how to reject a tyrant’s rule. What happened in Tunisia sparked a similar quick revolution in Egypt which swiftly eliminated yet another tyrant before the West could comprehend what was truly going on in the Middle East and the fact that it is being swept aside by a crushing wave of change. The rapid changes prompted Western countries to act similarly as fast, and they quickly rushed to aid Libyan revolutionaries through a UN Security Council resolution to launch military action against Gaddafi and his troops. By their military intervention, the Western countries could attempt to claim responsibility for the fall of the third Arab tyrant since the beginning of this year, stealing the spotlight from the people’s revolutions that toppled decades-long rules to the east and west of Libya. Moreover, this victory allows the West to assure the ‘political loyalty ’ of the future Libyan government, in addition to

continued control over the country’s oil wealth. Arab revolutionaries must remain suspicious of the Western intentions, and Western governments’ ability to alter their colors in accordance with changing events. I am not saying that the Arab revolutions were made by the West, but the West has great experience in ‘stealing the show.’ Western countries did almost nothing to help protestors in Tunisia, and desperately tried to help the protesters in Egypt but to no avail. Eventually, they were able to aid the Libyan protesters and then claim the victor y as their own. They are currently trying to do the same in Syria. The fact of the matter is, the West isn’t thrilled about the Arab Spring as much as it is concerned about pursuing its own interest. If those governments were truly committed to the principles they espouse, they would have rushed to aid Somalia which has suffered horrendously from decades of poverty, piracy and civil war. — Al-Rai

kuwait digest

The worsening sectarian divide

kuwait digest

Prepare for a dark future By Khalifa Al-Khurafi

By Rashid Al-Radaan


t is disturbing to learn that Kuwait faces an unprecedented wave of sectarian tension. This is a form of social and political relapse due to several reasons: Firstly, there are those who believe that sectarianism strengthened in the absence of liberal, national parties that have a progressive ideology. There are no strong competitors to the Islamic faction, represented in the past by the Muslim Brotherhood, that was a formidable force during the eighties. Secondly, the spread of the Salafist ideology, and MPs who belong to these sects banned involvement in politics and later changed their minds to enter politics with force. It made sectarian activity stronger between extremists belonging to Sunnis and Shiite sects. Thirdly, the Hamad Al-Falah incident has simply added fuel to a raging fire, the voice recording attributed to Al-Falah has him hurling insults against those that grow long beards. Her also been accused of not hiring Shiites to certain posts, in addition to insulting them. Also, the problem is that sectarianism has reached a general stage, and includes the entire sect. This is because of the action taken by one or two persons! Whatever the reasons, there are some people who benefit from the sectarian separation and are interested in continuing this situation. This is because he lives there and believes it is the bridge that will lead him to the Parliament. The government has also contributed towards strengthening this divide because of its “sectarian” bias. This is a sad situation — Al-Watan


here have been mixed reactions in the Gulf region to reports that Jordan and Morocco are to be invited to join the Gulf Cooperation Council, as many people don’t buy the pretext of strengthening the GCC against threats from Iran, which is accused of creating troubles in the six GCC nations as part of its rivalry with the United States. Most GCC countries have security agreements with major countries, and host military bases for these countries. Geographical and demographic aspects are strong reasons to suggest that a country such as Yemen, which doesn’t have much to add to the region’s military strength, can be invited to join the regional organization despite having no outlet to the Arabian Gulf. However, the feel among GCC nationals is that the organization’s six countries are not sufficiently desperate for military support to request help from two Arab kingdoms whose citizens suffer from harsh living conditions. In fact, many believe that it would make more sense to assume that Jordan and Morocco where invited to join the GCC because they are the only remaining monarchies in the Arab world outside the Gulf region. What the GCC countries really need is to start preparing for an unknown

future in which oil isn’t the commodity in the greatest global demand. In fact, this reality might be closer than we think. It doesn’t make sense that the GCC would invite Jordan and Morocco with little to zero preparation, and would make such a massive decision so swiftly without even consulting people in either the GCC countries or the two other Arab monarchies. GCC nationals today fear a very gloomy future which will be as dark as a moonless night in an empty desert if no commercially feasible alternative for oil is discovered. Should that happen - and it could happen any day the chances are that pover ty and famines would quickly come to dominate the region; this can only be avoided through the adoption of economically, administratively and politically revolutionary policies by the governments of the GCC states. The people of the GCC nations have put their confidence in their leaders for many, many years. However, they are growing frustrated these days as they patiently await reform whilst witnessing widespread and snowballing corruption on a daily basis. They are not losing hope, however, in their leaders’ commitment to achieving justice for all the region’s citizens. — Al-Qabas

aris, London and New York are all renowned for some of the best gastronomic delights in the world. Each enjoy being home to Michelin star restaurants as well as quaint eateries, each satisfying the same desire of the public: Great food. Tiny cafes line the streets, providing passersby with a few minutes to refuel and enjoy a light snack before setting off again. Kuwait, however, has turned out to be an unexpected foodie haven in its very own way. Paris, London and New York have specific details that set them apart and keep them as firm favorites with foodies. Kuwait, I have noticed, also has a trait that eateries strive toward. This trait is a hybrid of originality and perfection. Dishes are tweaked and changed and modified until they reach a level of flawlessness that even the most scrutinizing foodie would have a hard time criticizing. The market here is hard to please, and the efforts that restaurants go to show how competitive it really is. While in Kuwait, I’ve had better fish and chips than I ever had in England, better pancakes than I ever tasted in the US, and better pasta than I tried in Italy. These dishes are all relatively simple, which is why I chose them as examples: it’s extremely easy to ruin, yet incredibly hard to perfect, a simple dish. In these cases, even the most simplistic of dishes I’ve enjoyed in Kuwait have had one defining feature that set them apart from their originals. What it was exactly, I don’t know, but the difference was evident. The demand for quality is so

Kuwait, I have noticed, also has a trait that eateries strive toward. This trait is a hybrid of originality and perfection. high here that chefs reach above and beyond the usual standards that one expects. Even the chain restaurants here seem to be at a higher standard than they are elsewhere - including their countries of origin. Some of the best, however, are those created in Kuwait. The restaurants here, that you can’t find anywhere else, are what really set the country apart. Interpretations of American, Italian and even French cuisine result in some of the most delectable dishes I’ve come across. Whether or not they’re authentic means very little when the quality and flavor is at such high levels. Plus, who said authenticity was the sole criterion to judge appetizing food by anyway? As well as fusion of other cuisines, Kuwait also has a delicious cuisine all of its own. Restaurants offering Kuwaiti food are often full, with expats and Kuwaitis alike waiting in queues for a table. The food is somewhat of a hybrid in itself: a mix between Middle Eastern and Indian cuisine create a mouthwatering array of specialties. Food in Kuwait never fails to please and should be taken advantage of - in precise balance with the frequency of gym use - as the best tasting foods are also the most sinful.



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IMF report exaggerated against money laundering Suspicious transfers or deposits are monitored By Lisa Conrad KUWAIT: An experienced local banking industry professional has condemned last week’s International Monetary Fund (IMF) report concerning what it claimed is the need for regulatory improvements in Kuwait to protect against money laundering. Speaking to the Kuwait Times on condition of anonymity, the banking insider claimed: “We do write reports for the Central Bank regarding transfers, both locally and internationally. If there are suspicious transfers or deposits we do monitor them. Any deposits over around KD 3,000 require the presentation of civil ID. If a new, or somewhat inactive, customer deposits large amounts of money, we request a receipt showing where the money came from.” The insider added: “The bank also has a department monitoring possible money laundering. If something is suspicious, we do an internal investigation. However, if the customer fails to provide any evidence required, we then send the report to the central bank.” The information provided by the insider strongly contradicts the IMF’s report, which the insider claims greatly exaggerates the issues. “I think the IMF report was exaggerated,” the insider said. “A flaw may be down to an individual, not an organization. They should attach evidence to their report to verify whether or not their findings are accurate. I would certainly question its accuracy in being applicable to Kuwait.” The IMF report not only highlighted the need for further development within Kuwait’s banking industry to combat the risks of money-laundering, however, but also warned against the possible financing of terrorism. The IMF has demanded stronger laws and more efficient imple-

mentation of them across all levels, whilst the source is defending that the current procedures are protection enough. The IMF report focuses on Kuwait’s compliance with international standards and regulations regarding tackling mon-

Whilst noting that to date records of terrorist activity in Kuwait have been minimal in their severity with no reports of major terrorist activities, the report continues, however, by stating that the country’s 2002 anti-money-laundering legislation does not criminalize the

KUWAIT: In this file photo, a bank official is seen counting a large quantity of cash. The photo is used for illustrative purposes only. — Photo by Joseph Shagra ey-laundering and combating the financing of terrorism. The report warned that although there is no current evidence of significant levels of money-laundering in Kuwait, the rapid growth of the country’s financial sector may put it at risk of criminal exploitation. The growth in banking sector assets could potentially create opportunities for the proliferation of money-laundering activities and the financing of terrorist organizations.

financing of terrorism, and despite an updated draft being referred to parliament in 2007, no further action has been taken in this regard since its submission. The IMF regards the current legislative situation in Kuwait as being heavily flawed, suggesting that the existing legislation would not prevent money-laundering and has weaknesses in terms of implementing preventive measures. Furthermore, the report concluded that senior administrative staff was found to

be lacking in the necessar y powers needed to identify or monitor activities concerned with money-laundering or terrorism-funding. The failure to establish the previously mooted Kuwait Financial Intelligence Unit is a key factor in this weakness, suggested the international body, further recommending that Kuwait not only establish such a unit, but that it ensures the protection of the information held by it and encourage the publication of reports regarding money laundering and the financing of terrorism. The IMF proposed various other measures for Kuwait, but focused most of its criticism on the lack of specialist knowledge in the field of combating money-laundering or the funding of terrorism. Key measures proposed by the international organization in the report include criminalizing the financing of terrorism; allowing the confiscation of the proceeds of crime; establishing, enforcing and protecting the aforementioned financial intelligence unit; encouraging investigation of alleged financial improprieties, and providing the Central Bank of Kuwait with powers to revoke the licenses of bodies under its jurisdiction. The IMF further suggested that increased resources and a focus on reliable statistics were other key amendments vital to improve the existing system in Kuwait. The banking insider who spoke to the Kuwait Times insisted, however, that the regulations currently in place are fully complied with and that the existing system is effective, saying, “Last year the Central Bank of Kuwait launched a campaign to make sure that information was sought from customers to find out their sources of income and obliged the banks to comply, which we have been. Claims that we’ve been doing otherwise are false.”

KUWAIT: Assistant Undersecretary of the Ministry of Interior for Traffic Affairs Maj. Gen Mustafa Al-Zaabi speaking to officers during a tour yesterday to main streets and school areas to ascertain the situation of traffic before the start of the new school year. — KUNA

MoI inspects roads around schools KUWAIT: A senior official from the Ministry of Interior’s (MoI) traffic department yesterday toured a number of streets around local schools to observe traffic conditions there in order to help ensure that the department can reduce congestion in these areas as much as possible. Lieutenant General Mustafa Al-Zaabi, the Assistant Undersecretary for Traffic Affairs, explained that the traffic department is working closely with other Ministry of Interior and Ministry of Education (MoE) departments to design a working plan to be put in place at the beginning of the new school term, which starts in the next couple of weeks, in order to ensure that the roads around schools are safe and congestion during the busiest periods at the start and end of the school days is minimized. Lt. Gen. Al-Zaabi explained that traffic department officers will be patrolling these areas to monitor the traffic levels and deal with any emergencies, as well as dealing swiftly with any accidents which could worsen congestion levels The senior MoI official urged parents taking their children to and from school, as well as other drivers, to decide on the route they wish to use before setting off and to use alternative routes whenever possible in order to minimize traffic congestion levels. He emphasized the importance for parents of not blocking streets around schools in order to avoid causing congestion, as well as stressing the need to concentrate on the road and not use mobile phones whilst driving in order to avoid accidents. Lt Gen. Al-Zaabi stressed the importance of ensuring that all passengers, as well as the driver, are using seatbelts, urging motorists to comply with traffic regulations in order to ensure their own and other road users’ safety. He warned that traffic officers will issue citations to all drivers found to be breaking the law in order to keep Kuwait’s streets safe. The senior official further explained that traffic lights have been programmed according to the differing volumes at traffic at their locations in order to facilitate smooth movement of traffic, warning motorists against the potentially fatal, as well as illegal, risk of driving through red lights; doing so, he stressed, could result in serious injury or even death to the occupants of one’s own or other vehicles, as well as being an offence that could lead to a jail term. Lt. Gen Al-Zaabi stressed that the department will be cracking down heavily on major traffic violations, as well as calling on able-bodied drivers not to use parking spaces reserved for disabled motorists’ vehicles, warning that any able-bodied motorist caught doing so would face severe legal penalties. In conclusion, Lt. Gen Al-Zaabi urged all motorists to set off on journeys early so as to give themselves plenty of time to reach their destinations, and wished all road-users a safe and happy journey.

Visit visas no longer transferred KUWAIT: The Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor has officially stopped transferring visit visas to residence permits, Mohammad Al-Kandari, Undersecretary at Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor announced. He added that illegal residents can no longer legalize their stay and that stringent measures will be taken to nab offenders. Also, domestic workers’ visa cannot be changed to Visa number 18. He added that the ministry has provided a number of equipment to those companies contracted with the government, in addition to supplying more staff members. A coordination has been reached with the Civil Service Commission to place new employees. He went on to say that that the director of Farwaniya Administration has been referred to legal authorities owing to tardiness. Meanwhile, a new report has condemned the silence of the Public Authority for Civil Information (PACI) over reports that multiple ID cards have been issued in more than 30,000 individuals’ names in the past six months. In the new ‘Transparency’ report, the authors challenged the PACI to either confirm or deny the reports, stressing the possible dangers of such oversights, such as possible misuse in National Assembly Council, Cooperative Society management board or sports club board elections. The authors also pointed out that the wrongly issued cards could be used to fraudulently claim government services or to obtain benefits such as extra amounts of the free food distributed to Kuwaiti citizens. The ‘Transparency’ report also alleged that massive regulatory violations are being perpetrated by the owners of businesses based in the Shuwaikh Free Zone, pointing out that one business owns or is a majority shareholder in more than half of the properties in the area. — Al-Shahed

CSC to meet on outstanding files KUWAIT: A meeting of the Civil Ser vice Commission (CSC) management board is set to take place tomorrow, with the board reportedly wishing to prioritize finishing work on a number of outstanding items. The meeting, being held at the request of acting CSC chairman Sheikh Ahmad AlHumoud Al-Sabah, who is also a Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister of Interior, is scheduled to begin at 8:30 am, said a CSC insider, “as we’ve had many files outstanding for a long time which require action to be taken on them.” Given the amount of work to be done, the insider said, “we expect the meeting to be a long one.” Asked which issues would be taking top priority during the meeting, the insider said that almost all the issues to be discussed are priorities for those concerned with them, adding that the board members would do their best to finalize all the files. Amongst the issues under discussion, the insider said, are issues concerned with the oil sector, requested amendments to pay and conditions for public sector legal officials along with consideration of new job titles for these officials, unspecified requests from the health and education ministries, and the reappointment of a number of previously suspended Assistant Undersecretaries at various public sector bodies. — Al-Anba



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Woman makes fake robbery accusation to flee family Hunt on for sex pests

Minister of Awqaf holds talks on imams suspended from their jobs at local mosques. — KUNA

Suspended imams can resume work: minister KUWAIT: Imams suspended recently from their jobs at local mosques can return to work once they submit letters of undertaking to the Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs’ (MAIA) religious employment committee, said minister Mohammed Al-Noumas yesterday. Al-Noumas, who is also the Minister of State for Housing Affairs, affirmed that the clerics can resume their duties once they have submitted the documents promising that there will be no political

content in their future sermons. Speaking during a reception held to welcome well-wishers following the Eid Al-Fitr holiday, Al-Noumas indicated that “nothing new has occurred regarding this issue.” On a separate issue, the minister indicated that the MAIA has received approval from the Saudi authorities for a number of Bedoon (stateless) residents to perform the Hajj pilgrimage this year. — KUNA


in brief

KU to extend working hours KUWAIT: The Ministry of Higher Education has approved a proposal to extend the Kuwait Universityís working hours by three more hours. This move will allow more lectures to be held, especially those that are necessary to help the stateís only university cope with an overcapacity problem. According to a senior ministry official, teaching staff members will be required to work three shifts instead of two, starting from the upcoming academic year. This measure will be taken so as to provide more lectures to students. However, the same official who spoke on condition of anonymity admitted that the KU’s teaching staff shortage problem will make it difficult for the university to implement new stipulations, indicating that professors will be required to “put in double the efforts” when compared to previous years, reported Al-Jarida. Four MSAL dept heads laid off Four veteran department heads in the Ministry of Social Affairs and Laborís (MSAL) labor directorate who have each served for more than 30 years in their position have been forced to take retirement. The ministry is retaining the services of nine other veteran department heads with the same length of service, however, since their specialist skill is felt to be irreplaceable by any other officials who might take their place. The move comes as a complete overhaul of the organizational structure of the MSAL’s labor division is expected to begin in December in order to help boost productivity levels there. — Annahar Cell service transfer project The Ministr y of Communications (MoC) has admitted that it will not be able to launch the cell phone number transfer service for customers as

planned within the next few months, with the project set to be delayed until next year. The ministr y had signed a contract with the National Technology Enterprises Company (NTEC) — the Kuwait Investment Authority subdivision assigned to implement the project — in April of this year, saying at the time that the infrastructure and equipment necessary to get the new system up and running would be set up by this month. On Sunday, however, a senior official from the MoC’s communications division said that the project ñ which would see phone-users able to transfer their accounts from one service provider to another without switching numbers — would be delayed for some time due to setbacks in installing the necessary equipment. Low-cost homes The government has not attempted to amend the low-cost homes law, confirmed a senior official from the Public Authority for Housing Welfare, in response to MPs’ concerns that the decision could’ve been made without consulting with the Parliament. A member of the parliamentary housing committee Naji Al-Abdulhadi, had announced on Sunday that Mohammad Al-Numas Minister of Housing Affairs will be invited to a future meeting to answer inquiries pertinent with the Cabinet’s decision to create a tender to build low-cost homes. It was previously suspended due to a lack of feasibility. AlAbdulhadi suggested that the government make changes to the stateís housing laws so that the project is more feasible. “Minister Al-Numas directly told [PAHW] officials that the Cabinet does not intend to amend the law,” said the insider who preferred to remain anonymous.

Cops disgraced over liquor lorry heist By Hanan Al-Saadoun KUWAIT: Two police officers have been referred to the Public Prosecution Service (PPS) over their attempted theft of an illicit truckload of imported liquor, which they apparently planned to sell on the black market, while their superior officer has been referred for administrative investigation on charges of negligence. The move was announced yesterday following an investigation of the incident by the General Department for Drug Control (GDDC), a branch of the Ministry of Interior. According to a security insider, the two security officials, a non-commissioned officer and a corporal, both from the detectives’ department, had been notified that the illegal shipment of alcohol was bound for an unnamed African nation’s embassy. On learning of the intended delivery, they apparently hatched a plan to steal the potentially valuable illegal cargo and sell it on the black market, believing that the embassy would not report the theft of the illegal liquor. Their plan went awry, however, when the truck, which they stole after holding it up at gunpoint, subsequently broke down in an empty area of Arifjan, leading them to abandon the lorry and flee the scene, planning to return later to fetch the shipment of liquor. They were further thwarted when an Asian passerby discovered the abandoned vehicle and reported it to the police, who quickly determined the

illicit nature of its cargo. The disgraced policemen’s scam was quickly uncovered and they remain in custody pending trial. Conman caught Detectives have arrested a Kuwaiti man who conned hundreds of fellow citizens and expatriates out of money, making around KD50,000 out of his fraudulent scheme. The fraudster apparently published a number of bogus commercials advertising chalets for sale at competitive prices, taking down payments from unsuspecting wouldbe buyers and using forged receipts and the services of a number of equally unaware mandoubs (fixers) to help him in swindling people. According to one police insider, the conman defrauded his targets out of around KD50,000 in total before he was caught. Four hurt in car accidents A 19-year-old Kuwaiti man was rushed to Adan Hospital yesterday after sustaining serious injuries to his head and shoulders, as well as suffering a heart attack, in a car crash near the northern border. In a separate incident, a 70-year-old Palestinian man was also taken to Adan Hospital after suffering multiple injuries when he was hit by a car whilst crossing a street in Mangaf. Meanwhile, a 45-year-old Pakistani man suffered spinal injuries and concussion in a car crash near the Ministry of Information headquarters. He was taken to Amiri Hospital.

KUWAIT: A Kuwaiti woman falsely accused her abusive father and brother of plotting a bank robbery, in order to escape their custody. Police officers headed to a bank in Mubarak Al-Kabeer where employees reported a woman screaming that her brother and father had guns and planned to rob the bank, shortly after the three arrived together. The two male suspects fled before police arrived at the bank, after which the woman was escorted to the area’s police station for questioning. There, the woman explained to detectives that she was being mistreated by her father and brother, and had often been imprisoned by them in the family home for long periods, sometimes for months. She further indicated that she had been forced to go to the bank in order to transfer money from her bank account to her father ’s against her will. She admitted making up the robbery accusations in a bid to escape from her family’s abuse. The father and brother were later summoned to the police station, where they admitted the abuse allegations. The investigation into the case is continuing. Three suicide bids A 15-year-old Kuwaiti girl was rushed to Jahra Hospital in a critical condition on Sunday after attempting to kill herself by slashing her wrists and consuming a large quantity of prescription medication. The girl was found by family members barely conscious and bleeding heavily from her

wrists and rushed to hospital, where she was immediately admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). Police are waiting for her condition to stabilize before questioning her over the reason behind her actions. Meanwhile, a Japanese expatriate was saved from the drowning in the waters off Sharq Beach the same day after apparently jumping in an attempt to end his life. Rescuers were quickly at the scene after a quick-thinking Kuwaiti bystander called the emergency services hotline to report the incident, with the drowning man being pulled from the water before paramedics successfully resuscitated him and took him to the Amiri Hospital. Police have filed charges of attempted suicide against the man, who admitted after his condition improved that he had leapt into the water in a bid to end his life. In a separate incident, a 34year-old Indian man was rushed to the Adan Hospital after swallowing a large amount of medications in an attempt to end his life. After recovering, the man told officers that he had attempted suicide after learning from his brother that the woman back home who he was in love with is set to marry another man next week. Psycho ex A Kuwaiti man is facing battery charges after brutally assaulting his girlfriend when she ended their three-year relationship. The victim also pressed sexual harass-

ment charges against her possessive ex, after which a warrant was released for his arrest. During questioning, the man denied the sexual harassment accusations, but admitted to hitting his ex, saying that he lost his temper after she told him of her plans to break up with him. He remains in custody during the ongoing investigation. Bootleggers busted Police arrested two Asian men who used an apartment in AlMangaf as a distillery where they brewed homemade liquor and sold it to customers. One of the suspects was caught in the area following a short car chase which ensued after he ignored patrol officers’ orders to pull over for speeding. He was arrested after police found 20 bottles of liquor in the car, and subsequently led officers to the apartment where his accomplice was also arrested, with 230 bottles of liquor, along with distilling equipment being recovered from the property. The bootleggers were referred to the relevant authorities to face charges. Hunt on for sex pests Police are looking for two thugs who sexually harassed a female shopper in the parking lot of a Salhiya mall. The 21-year-old Kuwaiti woman was preparing to leave after doing some shopping when two young men parked their car near hers and began harassing her. When she ignored them, the men got out of their car and touched her inappropri-

ately, before fleeing when she screamed for help. The woman reported the case at the area’s police station, and provided officers with the license plate number of the suspects’ car. Meanwhile, a Filipina woman has brought charges against an Egyptian man whom she accused of attempting to rape her in the elevator of a Jahra apartment building. The woman explained that the suspect fled when she screamed for help after grabbing her violently and attempting to rip off her clothes. The search for the suspect is ongoing. Booze, drugs busts Two citizens of another Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) country were arrested on the coastal road in Ahmadi governorate. Police originally pulled the two men’s vehicle over for reckless driving, but subsequently found that both were extremely inebriated, as well as being in possession of heroin and narcotic tablets. The dozy duo were taken into custody. In a separate incident, this time on King Fahad Road in Abu Halifa, patrol officers arrested a Bedoon motorist after pulling him over for reckless driving, only to find that he was also extremely drunk. Also in Abu Halifa, two Kuwaiti men were arrested after police conducting a stop-and-search operation found a bottle of imported liquor in their vehicle. —Al-Rai, Al-Anbaa, Al-Qabas, AlWatan

Over half of Kuwaiti marriages end in divorce KUWAIT: Over half of Kuwaiti marriages end in divorce, according to a new report from the Ministry of Justice (MoJ), whilst 17 percent of Kuwaiti divorcees claim that they were subjected to domestic violence by their husbands during their marriages. According to the new MoJ report, most of the former couples cited disagreements over finance, health-related issues or sexual factors as being behind their decision to seek a divorce. Thirty-six percent of the divorced couples surveyed said that they believed they had hastily rushed into marriage, while most of the women surveyed blamed their former husbands’ weak characters or the unwanted intervention of their in-laws as being behind the breakdown of their marriages. On the possible reasons behind the high divorce levels, Dr. Fahad Al-Nasser suggest that the traditional arranged marriages which were once the norm in the Gulf are proving unsuitable for the modern age, whilst psychologist Dr. Khedr Baroun said that Kuwaitis’ luxurious lifestyle had made divorce easier than it once was. — Al-Qabas

Court upholds religious activist’s prison sentence By A. Saleh KUWAIT: The Appeals Court yesterday upheld the one-and-a-half-year prison sentence issued by a lower cour t against religious activist Mubarak Al-Bthali for insulting the Shiite faith and MP Saleh Ashour. In other news, Jordanian news site ‘Baladna News’ reported yesterday that “Kuwait will offer Jordan $1 billion, based on a Gulf agreement, with Saudi Arabia to give $2 billion to support the Jordanian treasury and help its economy.’ The news site also claimed that Kuwait is to provide Jordan with a daily allocation of 120,000 barrels of oil. Meanwhile, MP Musallam Al-Barrak said yesterday that MPs are set to begin gathering signatures today (Tuesday) to support a bill to be put forward during the upcoming parliamentary term to increase teachers’ salaries. Al-Barrak instructed education minister Ahmad Al-Mulaifi “not to exert any efforts over teachers’ bonuses” since a parliamentary request to collect sufficient signatures to ensure the bill’s success means that it will be passed during the October 25 session.

KUWAIT: In this recent photo, an athlete exercises at the seaside. —Photo by Joseph Shagra

Wearing right sportswear for a healthy work-out By Nawara Fattahova KUWAIT: The key to a good and healthy workout lies in the type of footwear chosen. According to Yaser Dhawi, Manager of a health club, the footwear should be of good quality and be suitable for the sport practiced. It also depends on the kind of terrain where it is practiced. Using ill-fitting trainers may affect the body negatively, “Wearing the wrong kind of shoes could affect the joints, especially if the heels are unsuitable. Also, the size of shoes have an effect on the athlete. The wrong size can affect the nerves of the feet, the brain, which signals to the limbs that it does not feel comfortable, so its move becomes limited,” Yaser Dhawi said. An Arabic adage expresses this fact; it says that the comfort of body begins from the feet, “ The shoes used on a treadmill should be made from good quality rubber. Some treadmill machines are not very good, and they differ according to the country of origin,” he said. A German treadmill is different from an American or Chinese one. The rubber shoes deflects the pressure felt on the knees,” he added. “Poor quality shoes will include inferior quality wood, which then negatively affects the foot. Also it affects the performance,” he further added. According to Yaser, medical shoes,

which are more expensive are better than ordinary ones, “The medical shoes are more expensive, but they are much better and do not cause any harm to the feet. There are some kinds of good sports shoes that are aerated and hygienic. This system provides more comfort,” he explained. Yaser advises against buying cheap sports shoes, “The price of shoes depends on the material, brand, and kind. It’s not good to save on sportswear, people should take care of their sports shoes. Bad shoes may also corns on the feet. In the end, good shoes make the whole body feel comfortable,” said Yaser. Many people who practice sports are well-versed about what the most appropriate footwear is, “I wear very light Nike sports shoes with holes for air circulation. I jog and run and I feel hot even during winter; I choose light sportswear of good quality that aerates my feet. My shoes are light and easier to run with. I don’t like the heavy ones that hurt my feet eventually,” explained Susan, a 24-year-old employee. Susan likes to change her sports shoes regularly, “I try to change them every six months. I have been told that one should change sports shoes every six months as they lose the support after a while or after a certain distance has been covered. It’s not good to use worn out sports shoes for running or jogging as they may hurt the spine,” added Susan.

Courts investigated 26 money-laundering cases KUWAIT: A total of 2,330 finance-related cases were heard in Kuwait’s courts in 2010, including cases of money-laundering and misuse of public funds. Some 2,309 of these cases were referred to the courts after investigations showed evidence of financial irregularities taking place. The statistics were revealed on Sunday by Saud Al-Sane’a, the Acting Direc tor of the Public Funds and

Commercial Affairs Prosecution Department, who revealed that the cases in question included 26 instances of money-laundering and 97 cases involving the misuse of public funds. The vast majority of the cases - 1,882 - involved the issuing of bogus cheques, with the next largest finance-related category being forgery, with a total of 325 counterfeiting cases being heard in 2010.

On a related note, a Public Prosecution Department insider revealed that no cases involving money-laundering were brought against senior officials in 2009. Speaking on condition of anonymity, the insider explained that despite investigations into 28 allegations of money laundering, detectives found no evidence to substantiate the claims and the cases were dropped. — Al-Qabas & Al-Watan


Knox trial resumes in Italy, enters final stretch

Pakistan detains 3 Al-Qaeda suspects Page 11

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Syria forces in deadly raids

DAMASCUS: A photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA shows Syrian soldiers as they carry the coffin of a comrade killed in recent violence in the country, during his funeral procession at the military hospital in Damascus yesterday. The agency did not say where Ramez Bahaa Kafiri (portrait) was killed. —AFP DAMASCUS: Security forces yesterday launched deadly raids on the central cities of Hama and Homs, activists said, as the Red Cross gained access to a Damascus jail for the first time in Syria’s uprising. Activists said troops shot dead six people in assaults on the central cities of Homs and Hama, and that at least two more people were reported killed near the Turkish border. The latest bloodshed came as International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) head Jakob Kellenberger ended a visit to Syria, where rights groups say 10,000 people have been arrested since antiregime protests erupted in mid-March. The ICRC said Kellenberger met President Bashar alAssad before winding up his visit, a day after the organization was for the first time granted access to a Syrian detention centre. Its delegates visited Damascus central prison in Adra suburb on Sunday. “Initially, we will have access to persons detained by the ministry of the interior, and we are hopeful that we will soon be able to visit all detainees,” Kellenberger said in a statement. “This is an important step forward for our humanitarian activities in Syria,” he said. The ICRC said Kellenberger “welcomed the progress made in terms of access to areas affected by the ongoing violence. He emphasized one of his main concerns now is to ensure that the wounded and sick are able to obtain medical care.” His meeting with Assad also covered “the rules governing the use of force by security forces in the current situation and the obligation to respect the physical and psychological well-being and human dignity of detainees,” it said. On the ground, “more than 30 military vehicles and security forces raided Hama this morning and heavy gunfire was heard in the city,” said Omar Idlibi, spokesman of the Local Coordination Committees (LCC), The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said 80 people were arrested in the Al-Khalidiyeh district of Homs, while the LCC spokesman said a sniper in the Idlib region killed a man who was trying to cross the border into Turkey. A Turkish local source in touch with the Syrian community on the other side of the frontier said two people were killed and five wounded in an assault by Syrian troops on Ain al-Beida. Another village, Khirbet al-Joz, was also attacked and some 700 people were seen fleeing to the border, the source said. The governor’s office in the southern Turkish province of Hatay sent ambulances to the border to pick up wounded people from the incident, Turkish NTV television said, without specifying the number of injured. More than 2,200 people have been killed in Syria since the almost daily mass protests began, according to the United Nations. Assad’s regime says it is fighting foreignbacked “armed terrorist gangs.” Amnesty International has said the number of deaths in Syrian prisons rose sharply in 2011. “No less than 88 such deaths have been reported to Amnesty International as occurring during the period from April 1 and August 15,” including 10 children aged between 13 and 18, the human rights group said at the end of August. For at least 52 of them, Amnesty said there was “evidence that torture caused or contributed to the deaths.” Kellenberger’s three-day mission is to be followed by Arab League chief Nabil al-Arabi, who said Sunday that Damascus has agreed to a visit which he announced a week earlier after the 22-member bloc met on the Syria crisis.”I will express Arab concerns and I will listen,” he said. Syria said an August 27 statement passed by Arab League foreign ministers on the country’s deadly unrest contained “unacceptable and biased language,” leaving Arabi to await a green light to visit. The Arab foreign ministers at an emergency meeting called for an “end to the spilling of blood and (for Syria) to follow the way of reason before it is too late.” Russian news reports said members of Syria’s opposition will travel to Moscow this week for talks with a top official aimed at putting more pressure on Assad. — AFP



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Iran ‘undecided’ on Kurdish rebel ceasefire TEHRAN: Iran has yet to decide on a call by Kurdish rebels for a ceasefire in a major offensive it launched along the Iraqi border last week, the elite Revolutionary Guards said yesterday. The Party of Free Life of Kurdistan (PJAK) announced earlier it would observe a truce from yesterday and called on Iran to reciprocate to prevent further bloodshed. “The heavy fire has prompted this terrorist group to call for a ceasefire, but Iran has yet to make a decision in this regard,” Guards operations officer Colonel Hamid Ahmadi told Fars news agency. “More than 30 PJAK rebels were killed and 40 wounded until noon (0730 GMT ) yesterday according to our reports,” he said, adding the full death toll could well be higher as Iranian forces did not have complete access to the targeted areas. Ahmadi did not specify whether any

Iranian ground forces had crossed the border during the offensive. He said any truce with the PJAK would be “meaningless” unless the rebels first withdrew from border areas to pave the way for talks, “if necessary”. PJAK spokesman Sherzad Kamangar told AFP in neighboring Iraq earlier yesterday the group had “made an initiative to cease fire for a specific time to start negotiations with the Iranian side, so we can solve the problems between us.” He did not specify how long the ceasefire would last. A statement posted on PJAK’s website on Sunday night said that “if Iran does not agree to the ceasefire, (it) will be responsible for any response” from PJAK fighters. “The latest events prove that the war will not solve our problems, but rather will increase them and make them deeper,” the statement said,

adding the ceasefire would take effect yesterday at 0900 GMT. An Iraqi Kurdish official said Iranian shelling had killed a woman civilian on Sunday. “Last night, Iran shelled several areas along the border in the Sidakan area... and the artillery fire killed one woman, Hamin Sadiq, and wounded two others,” said Karmanj Izzat, mayor of Soran district, which includes Sidakan. Izzat added that “heavy shelling” was continuing in the Sidakan area yesterday afternoon. “The situation for people there is very bad; a large number of them left their houses,” he said. PJAK rebels have clashed repeatedly with Iranian forces in recent years, drawing retaliatory bombing of their rear-bases in mountainous border districts of Iraqi Kurdistan. In July, Iran launched a major offensive against the rebels, shelling border districts for

weeks. Commanders said they had halted operations during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan to give the rebels a chance to pull back from border areas but they had failed to do so, prompting the launch of the current offensive on Friday. Human Rights Watch said last week it had evidence Iran may have deliberately targeted civilians. It accused Turkey too of failing to take adequate precautions to protect civilians in its campaign of shelling and air raids against suspected rear-bases in northern Iraq of the rebel Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). Ankara announced the resumption of operations against PKK rear-bases in mid-August. The group, which has links with the PJAK, has been fighting for Kurdish self-rule in southeastern Turkey since 1984. —AFP

Iran offers ‘full’ nuclear supervision if sanctions lifted EU insisted Tehran meets international obligations

PARIS: File picture dated October 28, 2010 shows Lebanese Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri after talks with French President Nicolas Sarkozy at the presidential Elysee Palace in Paris. Berri, a seemingly unshakeable ally of the powerful Shiite Hezbollah, drew pleasure from Israel’s deadly raids on the militant group in 2006, suggesting the conflict was an opportunity to deal a serious blow to the Iranian- and Syrian-backed group, leaked US diplomatic cable said. —AFP

Lebanon speaker pleased with 2006 Israel raids: Leak BEIRUT: Lebanon’s parliament speaker, a seemingly unshakeable ally of the powerful Shiite Hezbollah, drew pleasure from Israel’s deadly raids on the militant group in 2006, a leaked US diplomatic cable said. The July 2006 cable, classified confidential and released by whistleblower website WikiLeaks last week, said speaker Nabih Berri suggested the conflict was an oppor tunity to deal a serious blow to the Iranian- and Syrian-backed group. “Berri condemned the ferocity of Israel’s military response but admitted that a successful Israeli campaign against Hezbollah would be an excellent way to destroy Hezbollah’s military aspirations and discredit their political ambitions,” read the cable, filed by former US ambassador to Lebanon Jeffrey Feltman, now an undersecretary of state. Berri, a veteran Shiite politician who has held the post of parliament speaker uninterrupted for almost two decades, responded to the cable yesterday by saying his Amal Movement remained a staunch ally of Hezbollah. “The Amal Movement was and remains a fundamental ally of Hezbollah,” said a statement from his office. “We have demanded the US State Department provide us with the original cable through its embassy in Lebanon to determine whether WikiLeaks or Feltman is the liar.” In his cable, Feltman indicated that Berri’s comments appeared to be motivated by the fact that Hezbollah holds unrivalled command over Lebanon’s Shiite Muslim community. “We are certain that Berri hates Hezbollah as much, or even more, than the (Western-backed) March 14 politicians; after all, Hezbollah’s support... is drawn from the Shiites who might otherwise be with Berri,” read the cable. Feltman described Berri as having had “remarkably high” spirits during the meeting, which came a few days into the month-long war between Israel and Hezbollah that summer, at one point throwing his head back in “riotous laughter”. The US diplomat also said Berri felt betrayed by his fellow Shiite, Hezbollah commander Hassan Nasrallah, who had promised stability in Lebanon. “We can never sit down at the table with him (Nasrallah) again,” Feltman quotes Berri as saying in the cable. “We think he lied to us.” The 2006 war between Israel and Hezbollah was sparked on July 12 by the cross-border kidnapping of two Israeli soldiers and ended on August 14, three days after the UN Security Council adopted a resolution calling for a ceasefire. The fighting destroyed much of Lebanon’s major infrastructure and killed more than 1,200 Lebanese, mostly civilians, and 160 Israelis, mostly soldiers. —AFP

TEHRAN: Iran offered yesterday to grant the UN nuclear watchdog “full supervision” of its atomic program for five years if sanctions are lifted, as the EU insisted Tehran first meet its international obligations. “We have proposed that the agency keep Iran’s activities and nuclear program under full supervision for five years, providing the sanctions are lifted,” Iranian nuclear chief Fereydoun Abbasi Davani told ISNA news agency. He neither said when the offer was made to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) nor what he meant by “full supervision.” Iran is targeted by four sets of UN Security Council sanctions over its refusal to suspend uranium enrichment amid fears in the West that it seeks to build a nuclear bomb-a charge it vehemently denies. Much of Iran’s nuclear activities are already under the control of the IAEA, including uranium enrichment-a process which can produce the fuel for a nuclear reactor and also the fissile material for an atomic warhead. The IAEA said in a confidential report, a copy of which was obtained by AFP on Friday, it is “increasingly concerned about the possible existence in Iran of past or current undisclosed nuclear related activities involving military related organizations.”

These included “activities related to the development of a nuclear payload for a missile”, according to the report, which is due to be discussed by the IAEA’s 35member board of governors at a September 12-16 meeting. But Abbasi Davani insisted such allegations were “baseless and fabricated,” and advised IAEA chief Yukiya Amano against “mentioning the alleged studies (in his reports) until he has discussed them with Iran.” If Amano can demonstrate that the IAEA is “not influenced or pressured by hostile countries, we can have more cooperation with the agency,” he said. Yesterday, the European Union reacted to Abbasi Davani’s latest remarks, saying that the Islamic republic must first reestablish confidence for any sanctions to be lifted. “Iran still has to comply with its international obligations, despite today ’s announcement,” Michael Mann, spokesman for EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, told AFP. Ashton has made a “concrete proposal” to Iran aimed at building confidence over the aims of its atomic program, Mann said. “Unfortunately, so far, Iran has not taken up this offer to enter into meaningful talks.” “Existing UNSC (UN Security Council) resolutions foresee the lifting of sanctions once confidence has been re-estab-

lished,” he said. The UN watchdog has for years criticized Tehran for refusing to answer a number of controversial questions about its nuclear program, and for denying access to certain sites, including the heavy water reactor Iran is building in the central city of Arak. Iran says the Arak facility-whose commission has been delayed several times-is being constructed by domestic contractors using indigenous expertise, and will house a 40-megatt research reactor. Progress at the site allegedly been slowed down by sabotage from abroad. Abbasi Davani, who survived a November 29 assassination attempt which Iran blamed on arch-foes the United States and Israel, also said there had been a rise in Western attempts to sabotage the nuclear program. “We have witnessed a rise in acts of sabotage against Iran’s nuclear facilities,” he said. “They continuously seek to harm our nuclear facilities through viruses or sales of faulty equipment.” Tehran has blamed Israel and the United States for the unexplained disappearances of several of its military officials and nuclear scientists, and for a computer virus attack by the Stuxnet malware in the summer of 2010 against its centrifuges, the uranium enriching device. —AFP

Turks, Israelis claim harassment at airports JERUSALEM : The fallout from the IsraeliTurkish diplomatic rift over a deadly military raid on a Gaza-bound protest ship has sparked a spat over airport security, with Israeli air passengers complaining they were harassed and intimidated yesterday at Istanbul airport and Turkish air passengers making similar claims about their treatment in Tel Aviv. Late last week, Turkey expelled the Israeli ambassador after Israel refused to apologize for the botched raid that killed nine Turks last year. Israel expressed regret for the loss of lives. A UN report released last week called the Israeli raid “excessive and unreasonable,” but also said Turkey and flotilla organizers contributed to the deaths. The dispute has brought relations between the once-close allies to the verge of collapse, and injected a new element of instability into an already volatile region. Yesterday, a Turkish Foreign Ministry official said that Turks flying back to Turkey from Tel Aviv complained about being mistreated in Israel, prompting Turkish customs police to “retaliate” with more stringent security measures against Israeli passengers. The official said police “searched the Israelis’ passport more rigorously and delayed the procedures as much as possible.” He said police acted on their own initiative. The official spoke on condition of anonymity in line with ministry regulations that bar officials from speaking to journalists without prior authorization. Also yesterday, the state-run Anatolia news agency reported the Turkish Foreign Ministry summoned the deputy head of mission of the Israeli embassy to relay Turkish decisions regarding relations with Israel. The report did not elaborate. Reports of airport harassment first emanated from Turkey, where media reported that Turkish passengers on a Turkish Airlines flight from Tel Aviv to Istanbul said they were singled out for

particularly thorough searches and questioning. Eyup Ensar Ugur, a Turkish tour guide on the flight, told AP media reports were exaggerated. “ They questioned us repeatedly and searched our bags and bodies in detail but any harassment is out of question,” Ugur said in an interview. “I was asked to remove my top, my pants were on but had to unzip it. One official searched my body by hand and a detector,” Ugur said. The plane made an emergency landing in the Mediterranean city of Antalya to leave a passenger who felt sick, he said. There, he said, one Muslim Turk and another Turkish Jew argued with some other Turks about the necessity of the strict security check. That led to a scuffle in the airport that Turkish police quelled, he said. Later yesterday, dozens of Israeli passengers on flights between Tel Aviv and Istanbul reported that Turkish security officials at Ataturk International Airport briefly took their passports and questioned them, a passenger and the Israeli Foreign Ministry said. A woman who identified herself as a newlywed named Alina told Army Radio her passport was taken away and she was taken to a dark room by security officers who spoke only Turkish. There, she was forced to strip to her underpants to be searched by a female officer. After being allowed to redress, she was directed to a corner where all the Israelis were told to sit, allowed to board only moments before the doors closed. Ahmet Aydin, the director of Ataturk International Airport, denied any passengers had been mistreated. He added it has long been the practice to subject Israeli passengers to the same close scrutiny Turkish passengers experience in Israel under what he called “the principle of reciprocity.” AP writer Selcan Hacaoglu contributed from Ankara, Turkey. —AP

NABLUS: A Palestinian fire fighter tries to put out flames in a field, after arsonists torched an olive grove in the West Bank village of Burin, near Nablus yesterday. —AP

KHARTOUM: Sudanese students hold a demonstration outside the Republican Palace in Khartoum, Sudan, yesterday. Students gathered to protest the attack carried out by Sudan People’s Liberation Army on the city of Damazin and some nearby villages in Blue Nile State. The Arabic writing on the banner is unreadable. —AP

Air strikes on Yemen town kill 7 civilians ADEN: Yemeni air force jets hit an AlQaeda stronghold town in the south of the country yesterday, killing seven civilians when they mistakenly struck a mosque, a local official said. “The Yemeni air force accidentally shelled a mosque in Jaar, killing seven people and wounding five others,” the official told AFP, on condition of anonymity. “The air force hit the Grand Mosque in Jaar whereas the target was a small mosque held by suspected Al-Qaeda militants,” situated on the edge of the town, said the official. A medical official in Al-Razi hospital in Jaar confirmed the toll and witnesses said that another raid targeted the hospital, wounding two more people. Later yesterday, the army targeted the hospital again, killing two Al-Qaeda suspects and wounding another two, the head of Jaar’s local administration Naser alMansari told AFP. The shells hit the hospital’s entrance and its northern wing where the power generator is located, witnesses said. A doctor from Al-Razi hospital contacted by AFP said: “The medical staff fled from the hospital after the first strike. We don’t know what happened now.” Air strikes also targeted the town’s court and a police station while Al-Faruq school was completely destroyed, witnesses said. Local official Mohsen Salem Saeed said the death toll had risen and confirmed the hospital bombing adding that the air force attacked Mount Jaar, where the armed extremists have taken refuge. “The raids were randomly launched, leaving casualties among civilians and Al-Qaeda militants alike. It is a humanitarian catastrophe,” he said. Jaar, home to around 30,000 people, lies 12 kilometres (seven miles) north of Abyan province’s capital Zinjibar, most of which was seized in May by Partisans of Sharia (Islamic Law), an organisation linked to the AlQaeda network. In another Abyan town, Loder, tribesmen arrested a suicide bomber yesterday as he was planning to blow himself up in a local market, a tribal

source said. The bomber, who was wearing an explosive belt, admitted that he was planning to attack the market in Loder, said the source, adding that the man was linked to Al-Qaeda. The tribesmen took him to an army camp where the explosives were neutralised, when he alleged that two other bombers were still at large in the town centre, according to the same source. The town centre was evacuated and armed tribesmen deployed to hunt down the two other suspected bombers, witnesses said. On Thursday, a bombladen car was found and neutralised in the Loder market, tribal sources had said. Tribesmen said in July that they had cleared the town of Loder of Al-Qaeda members, as south Yemen tribes turned against the militants. A suicide car bomber killed three Yemeni soldiers in an attack on an army post at the gates of the southern city of Aden on Saturday, a military official told AFP. Seven soldiers were also wounded in the attack, the official and a medical source said. The lawless southern and eastern provinces of Yemen have provided safe havens for Al-Qaeda militants to regroup, especially over the past seven months of mass protests across the country against President Ali Abdullah Saleh. He has been recovering in Saudi Arabia for more than two months from bomb blast wounds. The international community has expressed fears that the power vacuum in the impoverished country could play into the hands of AlQaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, the local branch of the network. AQAP was behind several attacks, including the failed Christmas Day attempt to blow up a US airliner over Detroit in 2009. Yemen has been gripped by political turmoil since the uprising against Saleh’s 33-year-old rule. Hundreds have died in battles between security forces and protesters, and between security forces and AlQaeda fighters. —AFP



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Weakened Lee still poses flood threat in US South New Orleans levees doing their job MISSISSIPPI: The massive Lee storm system dumped more than a foot (30 centimeters) of rain in New Orleans and spawned tornadoes elsewhere before it weakened to a tropical depression, but forecasters warned yesterday that slow-moving rain clouds pose a flooding threat to inland areas. Lee’s remnants were expected to continue to march to the northeast. Areas of Alabama, Louisiana and Mississippi near the coast reported scattered wind damage and flooding on Sunday, while New Orleans levees and pumping system were doing their jobs. National Hurricane Center specialist Robbie Berg said Lee’s flash flood threat could be more severe as the rain moves from the flatter Gulf region into the rugged Appalachians. Closer to the Gulf, the water is “just going to sit there a couple of days,” he said. “Up in the Appalachians you get more threat of flash floods.” The threat of tornadoes spawned by Lee’s remnants was diminishing early yesterday, said Fred Zeigler, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service. But he said coastal flooding would remain a concern. No deaths had been directly attributed to Lee, though a body boarder in Galveston, Texas, drowned after being pulled out to sea in heavy surf churned up by Lee. The Coast Guard was also searching Sunday for a teenage boy swept away by rough surf off Gulf Shores, Alabama. A man in Mississippi also suffered non-life-threatening injuries when authorities said he was struck by lightning that traveled through a phone line. The vast, soggy system spent hours during the weekend hovering in the northernmost Gulf of Mexico before its center finally crossed into Louisiana west of New Orleans, pelting a

wide swath of coastline. On Sunday night, the National Hurricane Center said Lee’s center was about 55 miles (90 kilometers) westnorthwest of McComb, Mississippi and moving east-northeast at 7 mph (11 kph). Some of the damage on the Gulf Coast, where tropical storms are an almost yearly event, appeared to come from spinoff tornadoes that touched down in southern Mississippi and Alabama. Elsewhere, Hurricane Katia gained force as it moved across the Atlantic Ocean. By late yesterday morning, Katia’s maximum sustained winds had increased to 110 mph (177 kph). That makes Katia a strong Category 2 storm, and the US National Hurricane Center

LOUISIANA: A couple hold hands as they walk through flood waters on Sunday in Crown Point, Louisiana. —AFP

Obama to spend Labor Day at union rally WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama is previewing his ideas for job creation and economic growth at a Labor Day rally with union members in Detroit. Obama’s speech at the annual event sponsored by the Metropolitan Detroit AFL-CIO was serving as a dress rehearsal for the jobs address he’s delivering to a joint session of Congress on Thursday night. The president’s appearance follows last Friday’s dismal jobs report, which showed that employers added no jobs in August. It was the first time since 1945 that the government reported a net job change of zero. The unemployment rate, meanwhile, held steady at 9.1 percent. The disappointing report sparked new fears of a second recession and injected fresh urgency into efforts by Obama to help get millions of unemployed people back into the labor market - and help improve his re-election chances. Polls show the economy and jobs are the public’s top concerns. Public approval of Obama’s handling of the economy hit a new low of 26 percent in a recent Gallup survey. The unemployment report also gave Obama’s Republican critics, including those who want to challenge him in next year’s presidential election, fresh ammunition to pound him with. Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney called the report disappointing, unacceptable and “further proof that President Obama has failed.” Romney is scheduled to outline his own job-creation plan in a speech Tuesday in the battleground state of Nevada. In the speech to Congress, Obama is expected to call for a mix of individual and business tax credits and public works spending. He will also press lawmakers for swift action on those proposals. “These are bipartisan ideas that ought to be the kind of proposals that everybody can get behind, no matter what your political affiliation might be,” Obama said last week. “So my hope and expectation is that we can put country before party and get something done for the American people.” Labor Secretary Hilda Solis said yesterday that both political parties should get behind Obama’s efforts to improve the hiring picture. “We do need everyone to be on board,” she said on NBC’s “Today” show. Solis said Obama “is very

in Miami says it’s possible Katia will get even stronger as the day goes on. Hurricane specialist Todd Kimberlain says it’s looking less likely that Katia will hit land but that wind from the storm could still affect the US East Coast as it moves north. Kimberlain also says the Mid-Atlantic and New England regions should still keep an eye on Katia. Katia is centered about 540 miles (869 kilometers) south of Bermuda and is moving northwest near 13 mph (21 kph). Associated Press contributing to this report were Mary Foster and Janet McConnaughey in New Orleans; Holbrook Mohr in Jackson, Mississippi; and Greg Bluestein in Atlanta. —AP

mindful of what the needs and concerns are of those individuals who have been out of work for so long.” But she also said the jobless have a responsibility to seek training in new skills, if necessary, to better prepare themselves for the kinds of jobs available in today’s economy. Obama spent part of the holiday weekend at the Camp David presiden-

MARYLAND: US President Barack Obama walks across the tarmac with US Air Force Col. Kenneth R. Rizer, Commander of the 11th Wing and Joint Base Andrews, to board Air Force One yesterday at Andrews Air Force Base, in Maryland. Obama is heading to Detroit to address a Labor Day event. —AFP tial retreat in Maryland “putting the finishing touches” on the proposals and the speech, said spokesman Jay Carney. “That process continues over the next few days, but he’s very far along,” Carney said. In Detroit yesterday, Obama was also expected to tout his efforts to save the auto industry and millions of jobs by providing federal bailouts in 2009 for General Motors Corp. and Chrysler Group LLC. The AFL-CIO rally was being held in a GM parking lot. Obama won Michigan in the 2008 presidential election and the economically challenged state is crucial to his re-election prospects. The state unemployment rate was 11.9 percent in July, above the national average for that month. The Detroit-area jobless rate was even higher, at 14.1 percent in July. —AP

Tea party bulling its way into Republican race NEW HAMPSHIRE: The tea party is shaping the race for the Republican presidential nomination as candidates parrot the activist conservative movement’s language and promote its agenda while jostling to win its favor. That’s much to the delight of Democrats, who are working to paint the anti-tax, pro-small government tea party and the eventual Republican nominee as extreme. Mitt Romney, a leading Republican candidate in the race to challenge President Barak Obama in the 2012 election, recently defended the activists he’s done little to woo until now in an interview with a New Hampshire newspaper. “The tea party isn’t a diversion from mainstream Republican thought. I t is within mainstream Republican thought,” he said. The former Massachusetts governor is starting to court the tea party more aggressively as polls suggest he’s being hurt by weak support within the movement, whose members generally favor rivals such as Texas Gov. Rick Perr y and M innesota Rep. M ichele Bachmann. Romney highlighted an outsider image at a Tea Party Express rally Sunday night in Concord. Romney may have run for office multiple times, but he has only won one election. “I haven’t spent my whole life in politics,” he said. “As a matter of fact, of the people running for office, I don’t know that there are many that have less years in politics than me.” Romney ’s shift is the latest evidence of the big imprint the tea party is leaving on the race. Such overtures come with risks, given that more Americans are cooling to the tea party’s unyielding tactics and barebones vision of the federal government. After Washington’s debt showdown this summer, an Associated Press-GfK poll found that 46 percent of adults had an unfavorable view of the tea party, compared with 36 percent just after last November’s election. It could give President Barack Obama and his Democrats an opening should the Republican nominee be closely aligned with the tea party. Yet even as the public begins to sour on the movement, Romney and other Republican candidates are shrugging off past tea party disagreements to avoid upsetting activists. That includes Perry, who faced a tea party challenger in his most recent election for governor and who has irked some tea partyers so much that they are openly trying to undercut his candidacy. Instead of fighting back, Perry often praises the tea party. In his book “Fed Up!” Perry wrote: “We are seeing an energetic and important push by the American people - led in part by the tea party movement - to give the boot to the old-guard Washington establishment who no longer represent us.” There’s a reason for the coziness. Voters who will choose the Republican nominee identify closely with the movement. A recent AP-GfK survey showed that 56 percent of Republicans and Republican-leaning people identified themselves as tea party supporters. — AP

SANTIAGO: People gather to honor Chilean television personality Felipe Camiroaga outside TVN Chile Internacional TV headquarters in Santiago, Chile, Sunday. —AP

Chile declares national mourning after plane crash SANTIAGO: Chile on Sunday declared two days of national mourning as officials said some bodies from the 21 people on board an air force plane that crashed off Robinson Crusoe island in the Pacific may never be found. The tragedy has prompted nationwide grief, and the discovery of more human remains beyond the four bodies recovered earlier added to the trauma that has enveloped Chile since the CASA 212 turbo-prop plane went down late Friday during a failed attempt to land. The search continued on Sunday but the government said there was no hope of finding survivors as all on board the plane, believed to have been thrown off course by strong winds, would have died on impact. President Sebastian Pinera said mourning yesterday and today would allow people to express solidarity with the families of victims, who included one of the country’s best-known television personalities. Defence Minister Andres Allamand, who is on the island, said the condition of more remains recovered on Sunday had indicated that some victims may never be reclaimed. “We must prepare for the possibility that we will not find some of the bodies,” said Allamand. On Saturday he told reporters that the air force plane had made two abortive attempts to land before radio contact

was lost. Thousands gathered at state broadcaster T VN to remember daily morning talk show host Felipe Camiroaga, who was traveling to the island with a crew to report on reconstruction efforts after a massive earthquake and tsunami caused devastation last year. “I cannot imagine the morning without Felipe,” said one devastated female fan in tears outside the television station, whose headquarters has been deluged in flowers, stuffed animal toys, candles, and messages of condolence. Robinson Crusoe, the island which is believed to have been the setting for the famous novel by 18th century British author Daniel Defoe, is the main island of the Juan Fernandez archipelago, which lies in the Pacific some 700 kilometers (435 miles) west of the South American coastline. Prior to the recovery of the latest remains, air force chief of staff General Maximiliano Larraechea said Sunday the search would continue “until we find each one” of the 17 missing. The Chilean navy is using sonar equipment to try to locate the fuselage of the aircraft, where the remaining crash victims are likely to be found. “Yesterday, the bodies of some victims surfaced fairly rapidly, which leads us to believe that the rest are with the fuselage,” Larraechea said. — AFP



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Ex-French leader faces corruption trial PARIS: As Jacques Chirac’s corruption trial resumed yesterday, his lawyers said the former French president will not be able to attend it because he is suffering severe memory lapses possibly related to his stroke. The final decision will be up to the judge, but after hearing the most detailed public information yet about Chirac’s health, the prosecution said it would not object if he skipped the trial. The Paris judge has several options, including suspending the proceedings to await further medical expertise, proceeding without 78-year-old Chirac in the courtroom, or throwing out the case. France’s first trial involving a former head of state since World War II is to run through Sept. 23. It was suspended shortly after it began in March so a higher court could rule on an

appeal by one of the co defendants. Judge Dominique Pauthe read from a letter by Chirac lawyers saying the expresident wanted to be heard because it would be “useful for our democracy” and show that “all people are equal under the law.” The letter, Pauthe said, came accompanied by 4 pages of medical records, including a Chirac brain scan in April. Chirac lawyer Jean Veil told the court that Chirac suffers from “severe memory lapses” linked to an “irreversible condition.” He said Chirac’s condition was not a sickness but a “symptom” possibly linked to his 2005 stroke or “other origins.” Chirac’s legal team had sent a letter to the tribunal on Friday arguing that Chirac “no longer has the full capacity to participate in court proceedings” - and ask-

ing that he be allowed to skip them. The lawyers included in the letter the results of a neurological exam, though Jean Veil, one of Chirac’s lawyers, declined to give details to The Associated Press. It’s not unusual for defendants in France to ask to skip their trials for medical reasons. Chirac’s wife, Bernadette, denied rumors earlier this year that he had Alzheimer’s disease, but she acknowledged he was experiencing problems that were either linked to a 2005 stroke or his age. The trial involves two cases centering on the alleged creation of more than twodozen fake City Hall jobs used to fund Chirac’s conservative party while he was mayor of Paris from 1977 to 1995. He enjoyed immunity from prosecution during his subsequent 12 years as

head of state. Chirac has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing, and his lawyers said previously that he was welcoming the chance to make his case in court. On trial with Chirac are two of his former chiefs of staff at City Hall and seven others said to have benefited improperly from the graft. If convicted, he would face up to 10 years in prison and ?150,000 ($215,000) in fines. The case is among many scandals to hound Chirac over his years as mayor including claims that he and his family improperly ate some ?2.1 million worth of food from 1987 to 1995 at the city’s expense. Those cases were rejected either for lack of evidence or because they had surpassed the statute of limitations. Many critics have decried the trap-

pings of presidential immunity. “This is without a doubt a two-track justice system,” Eva Joly, leader of the Green Party and a former high-profile judge, said on France-Info radio yesterday. “Having to wait a decade for a verdict isn’t right.” While Chirac has retired from day-to-day politics, he remains a huge presence in the political landscape. The party of Nicolas Sarkozy, Chirac’s successor as president, has its roots in the political machine that Chirac built. The popular, avuncular former president made headlines in June after appearing in public with Socialist presidential hopeful Francois Hollande, and saying that he would vote for him - which resonated as a dig against Sarkozy. Chirac’s office later said it was a joke. —AP

Knox trial resumes in Italy, enters final stretch Appeals verdict expected by month-end

MOGADISHU: A Somali from southern Somalia, lowers the body of a dead child into grave in Mogadishu, Somalia yesterday. Famine has spread into one more region of Somalia and hundreds of Somalis are dying every day, according to the United Nations. —AP

Hundreds dying daily as famine spreads in Somalia NAIROBI: Famine has spread to six out of eight regions in southern Somalia, with 750,000 people facing imminent starvation, the United Nations said yesterday, and hundreds of people are dying each day despite a ramping up of aid relief. “The entire Bay region has now been declared a famine area,” said Mark Bowden, the UN ‘s humanitarian coordinator for Somalia. Bay is the sixth region of Somalia to slip into famine since the UN ‘s initial declaration of famine in the war-torn country in July that has left 4 million Somalis, or 53 percent of the population, unable to meet their food needs. Hundreds of people are dying each day and at least half of them are children, the UN ‘ Grainne Moloney said, adding she expected the remaining regions of southern Somalia to slip into famine by the end of the year. “The rate of malnutrition (among children) in Bay region is 58 per cent. This is a record rate of acute malnutrition,” said Moloney, the chief technical advisor for the UN Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit. Aid agencies are only able to get food aid to 1 million of those in need because the al Qaeda-affiliated rebel group, al Shabaab, which controls much of the south, will not allow food shipments in. Instead, agencies are using food and cash vouchers which hungry families can exchange for commodities in local markets. “Focusing on the access that people have to food will help to stabilise the situation more than just looking entirely at food distributions as a solution,” Bowden said.

Somalia is at the epicentre of a hunger crisis in the Horn of Africa region which is affecting over 13 million people. While a small harvest is expected in January, following rains in October, the situation is unlikely to improve until main harvest of August 2012 and the rains are not without their risks. “This crisis is not going away any time soon and we are still looking at, over the next 12 months, acute numbers of population in need,” said Moloney. “The rains unfortunately bring with them increased risk of disease. Cholera, malaria and measles could dramatically increase death rates amongst an already weakened population,” said Bowden. Aid agencies say they are still short an estimated $1 billion in emergency funds and Bowden blamed donors for not responding fast enough to the crisis. “In terms of funding, I’m not sure that we still have adequate resources to address the issue of communicable diseases,” Bowden said. “Part of the reason we are facing the situation that we are in now is that we didn’t get the money at the beginning of the year when we warned of the famine,” he said. The African Union held a muchdelayed donor conference late last month which was shunned by most heads of state and raised $351 million, $300 million of which came from the African Development Bank to be spent over a four-year period. Kenya, where parts of the country are facing the most severe drought in decades, is hosting a regional summit to discuss the food crisis on Sept 8-9. — Reuters

Tony Blair is godfather to Rupert Murdoch child LONDON: Former prime minister. Middle East envoy. Now Tony Blair is also revealed as godfather to one of Rupert Murdoch’s daughters. A person close to Blair confirmed yesterday that the former British leader was the godfather of Grace Murdoch, now 9, when she and her younger sister Chloe were baptized at the River Jordan last year. British media reported that the October issue of Vogue, which carries an interview with Murdoch’s wife Wendi Deng, disclosed Blair’s role in the ceremony. The report of Blair’s involvement in the baptism was not attributed to her. Vogue declined to release a copy of its story but referred a reporter to The Daily Telegraph’s account. Blair hadn’t been shown or mentioned in extensive coverage of the baptism in Hello! magazine at the time. Vogue interviewed Wendi Deng, the wife of the News Corp.

chairman and chief executive. News Corp. had no comment. Blair hadn’t been shown or mentioned in the 18 pages of coverage of the baptism in Hello! magazine at the time. Among those reported to have attended what Hello! called “the magical baptism” were Jordan’s Queen Rania, actors Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman, and Donald Trump’s daughter Ivanka. Blair’s presence at the event on the banks of the river - claimed to be the place where Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist underlined the political influence of Murdoch and News Corp., to which all British prime ministers since Margaret Thatcher have been attentive. Murdoch’s British newspapers endorsed Blair ’s Labor Party in three consecutive elections, but switched support last year to David Cameron, the current prime minister, and his Conservative Party. — AP

PERUGIA: The appeals case of Amanda Knox, the American student convicted of killing her British roommate, resumed yesterday with lawyers questioning independent experts who cast doubt on the evidence used in the first trial. The 24-year-old from Seattle who has been behind bars since the November 2007 murder was in the Perugia courtroom, as was her co-defendant and onetime boyfriend, Raffaele Sollecito. Ahead of the hearing, the first after the summer break, the sister of victim Meredith Kercher issued a letter asking the appeals cour t to assess “every single (piece) of evidence” so that justice can be done. “My sister, a daughter brutally and selfishly taken from us nearing 4 years ago - and yet not a single day goes by that we can grasp any peace or closure,” Stephanie Kercher wrote. The appeals trial picked up where it left off before the summer recess in late July: with questioning of independent experts who have reviewed the collection and analysis of DNA evidence used to convict Knox and Sollecito. The two were convicted in Dec 2009 of sexually assaulting and killing Kercher in the apartment Knox and the 21-year-old Briton shared while studying in Perugia. Knox was sentenced to 26 years in prison; Sollecito to 25. Both deny wrongdoing, and have appealed. The hearings will continue through the week, with the parties expected to sum up their cases. After rebuttals later in September, an appeals verdict is expected by month-end. Knox’s defense received a boost after the independent experts questioned much of the evidence that was collected in the original investigation, saying procedures to obtain it fell below

international standards and may have led to contamination. They especially focused on some traces of DNA linking the defendants to the crime, and concluded that due to the risk of contamination and the low amounts of DNA used for the testing it was

impossible to extract a genetic profile with any certainty. “ There were aspects of the case that needed to be addressed, they were addressed, and now there’s nothing left of the case,” Knox’s stepfather, Chris Mellas, told the AP. Mellas, who

PERUGIA: US defendant Amanda Knox (R), who was sentenced in December 2009 to 26 years in prison for the grisly murder of her British roommate Meredith Kercher in Perugia, arrives at the court before the afternoon session of her appeal trial in Perugia’s courthouse yesterday. —AP

Cyprus president: Not told of munitions danger NICOSIA: Cyprus’ president said yesterday that he was never told just how dangerous seized Iranian munitions were before they detonated and killed 13 people, triggering an economic and political crisis. Dimitris Christofias refused to take personal responsibility for the July 11 blast, testifying before an investigating committee that the incident was the result of a “failure of the system,” but did acknowledge some responsibility as head of government. He spoke to an investigating committee, set up to determine accountability for the blast. A second, police-led criminal probe is also being conducted concurrently. Christofias said the risk the munitions posed was initially “underestimated by all” and that subordinates never told him how unstable they had become inside 85 containers left exposed to the elements at a naval base for more than two years. The munitions - mostly gunpowder and some nitroglycerine - were seized in Feb. 2009 from a Cypriot-flagged ship suspected of transporting it from Iran to Palestinian militants in Gaza through Syria. The United Nations had ruled that the ship had breached a ban on Iranian arms exports. The explosion, which also wrecked the island’s main power station that supplied more than half of electricity demand, gravely hobbled Christofias’ presidency and sapped public trust amid continued calls for him to resign. Christofias said that few hours after the explosion, he expressed

his “anger and disappointment” at being kept in the dark about the seriousness of the problem despite early assurances by some senior military officers that the munitions were safe. He also said he was unaware of warnings issued by senior military officials five months before the blast about the possibility that the munitions could spontaneously ignite as a result of their long exposure to extreme temperature swings. Military officials were also aware that some of the munitions inside one container may have detonated a few days before explosion, but he wasn’t informed about that either, Christofias said. Christofias told the committee he had complained to his defense minister that “he felt like the husband who had been cheated on and was the last to know.” — AP

NICOSIA: President Demetris Christofias at the public hearing before the one-man investigative committee in Nicosia yesterday into the case of an arms cache that blew up in July killing 13 people and wrecking the island’s main power plant. —AFP

attended the session yesterday, described Knox as “happy that we’re back in court again, and I think a little bit anxious, not wanting to get her hopes up.” “Every break is difficult - you want this thing to continue on until it ’s done,” he added. Prosecutors have questioned some of the independent experts’ findings, and maintain the evidence should stand. The Kercher family insisted they still had faith in the Perugia police, investigators and the court. “ We ask that the Cour t of Appeal assess ever y single (piece) of evidence, both scientific and circumstantial, as well as any witnesses who have taken the stand independently of any other information or media,” Stephanie Kercher said in the letter. The Kercher family has kept a low profile throughout the media-hyped case. The letter, released through the family’s lawyer Francesco Maresca, represented a rare break in their silence. Pointing her finger to the “media frenzy” surrounding the case, Stephanie Kercher lamented that “Meredith has been forgotten because she is no longer with us, yet this should be about her and what really happened on that tragic evening.” Knox has been the center of attention since her arrest on Nov. 6, 2007 - four days after Kercher’s body was found in a pool of blood at the apartment. Knox has been described both as an angelfaced but ruthless killer and as an innocent girl caught in a judicial nightmare. A third person, Rudy Hermann Guede of the Ivory Coast, also has been convicted of murder in a separate proceeding. Italy’s highest criminal cour t has upheld Guede’s conviction and his 16-year prison sentence. Guede denies wrongdoing. —AP

Rights chief urges probe of CIA detention centers BRUSSELS: Europe’s human rights chief urged Lithuania, Poland and Romania yesterday to investigate the roles their governments allegedly played in the CIA’s program of “secret detention and torture” of terrorism suspects. “CIA rendition, detention and interrogation practices gave rise to the most serious categories of human rights violations on European soil,” said Thomas Hammarberg, the Council of Europe’s rights commissioner. “The governments concerned have favored concealment and cover-up,” he said in comments emailed to The Associated Press. Hammarberg alleges that officials in those countries lied to parliaments, made false statements to international organizations, and used judicial channels - including the invocation of state secrecy - to keep the most damaging revelations out of the public domain. In the 1990s, hundreds of covert “extraordinary rendition” flights shuttled prisoners between CIA-run overseas prisons and the U.S. military base at Guantanamo Bay. In a 2007 probe, Swiss politician Dick Marty accused 14 European governments of permitting the CIA to run detention centers or carry out rendition flights over their territories between 2002 and 2005. Although the governments involved promised to thoroughly investigate the issue, their efforts have been halfhearted at best, Hammarberg said. “There are no grounds for complacency,” he said. “If we fail to account for these practices that systematically contradicted our common values and standards, then what is to prevent governments in future from resorting to the same abusive tactics?” Among the interrogation techniques authorized by the U.S. government were forced nudity, shackling in stress positions, extended sleep deprivation, dietary manipulation, slapping, and waterboarding, Hammarberg said. “The CIA’s interrogation methods routinely crossed the threshold of cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, and in many cases constituted torture,” he said in a separate statement released yesterday. The Marty report alleged that Poland, Romania and Lithuania were particularly involved in the CIA program in total secrecy. — AP



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Pakistan detains 3 Al-Qaeda suspects CIA, Pakistan ties improving

PAKTIKA: An Afghan National Army (ANA) soldier an M24 sniper rifle during a sniper training session by 1st Platoon of Task Force 3-66, Bravo Company of the 172nd Infantry Brigade at Forward Operating Base (FOB) Kuschamond in Paktika province yesterday. —AFP

Bodies of missing Germans found: Afghan governor KABUL: The bodies of two Germans who went missing nearly three weeks ago while hiking in the Hindu Kush mountains were found in sacks under a boulder in eastern Afghanistan yesterday, a governor and a police general said. Abdul Basir Salangi, the governor of eastern Parwan province, said the men were found under a large boulder about 2 1/2 miles (four kilometers) from the south end of the Salang Pass, where they began their hike on Aug. 19. He had no other details. Police Gen. Rajab, who like many Afghans goes by only one name, said the two bodies were inside cloth sacks. He did not know exactly how they died. A spokesman for the German Foreign Ministry in Berlin, speaking on condition of anonymity in line with ministry rules, confirmed that two bodies were found in Parwan province but said he could not give any further details until they had been identified beyond a doubt. The deputy provincial police chief, Ziaul Rahman, said the bodies were very high up on the mountain and he had requested a helicopter to get them down. In unrelated incidents, a roadside bomb and a suicide bomber killed eight people and wounded 20 in two separate attacks around the country, the Interior Ministry said. Five civilians were killed yesterday when a roadside bomb detonated next to their vehicle in western Afghanistan’s Faryab province. It added that in another

incident late Sunday in southern Kandahar city, a suicide bomber in a car killed three Afghan private security guards and wounded another 20. The guards were part of a convoy and had stopped for evening prayers when the attack occurred. The ministry provided no other details on either incident. The region where the Germans went missing is not a Taleban area, and last month Afghan police speculated the two men could have gotten lost in the high mountains or may have been the victims of a crime. The agency they were working for has not been named. German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said on Aug 23 that German and Afghan officials were searching for the pair and could not rule out kidnapping. The day they went missing, the two traveled to the south end of the Salang Pass, north of Kabul, around 8 am and told their driver they were going into the mountains. They promised to return at 4 pm and the driver waited until 6 pm before contacting local authorities, and the search began. The Salang Pass is a major route through the Hindu Kush mountains that connects the Afghan capital, Kabul, with the northern part of the nation. Germany has been a major contributor to the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan and currently has some 5,200 troops stationed in the country, largely in the north. —AP

ISLAMABAD: Working with the CIA, Pakistani spies arrested three members of Al-Qaeda, including a top operative alleged to have been tasked by Osama bin Laden with targeting American economic interests around the world, Pakistan’s army said yesterday. The arrest of Younis al-Mauritani close to the Afghan border is another blow to Al-Qaeda, which is still reeling following the deaths of bin Laden on May 2 in an American raid and the organization’s second-in-command, Atiyah Abd al-Rahman, in a CIA missile strike last month. It is also a sign that ties between the CIA and Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency are improving after a torrid few months due to tensions sparked by the operation that killed bin Laden and US suspicions that the agency - which has historic ties to militants - was playing a “double game.” The statement said the arrests took place in the southwestern city of Quetta, a large city long

India’s low-caste ‘hero’ sent jet for sandals: US NEW DELHI: A powerful Indian politician who styles herself as saviour of the country’s downtrodden “untouchables” sent her private jet to pick up a pair of sandals, according to leaked US diplomatic cables. Mayawati, who uses only one name, is the chief minister of the massive state of Uttar Pradesh and head of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), as well as being a member of an “untouchable” (Dalit) caste herself. US embassy cables from 2007 to 2009 released by the WikiLeaks website in recent days describe Mayawati, 55, as “a first-rate egomaniac” who “is obsessed with becoming prime minister”. They said Mayawati celebrated her birthday each year by receiving millions of dollars in gifts from “sycophantic party members, civil servants and business people” while officials vie for a chance to feed her cake. “When she needed new sandals, her private jet flew empty to Mumbai to retrieve her

Police arrest Indian mining baron in anti-graft crackdown NEW DELHI: Police arrested a powerful opposition politician and mining baron in India’s mineral-rich Karnataka state yesterday over illegal iron-ore production, the latest high profile arrest as a beleaguered government seeks to dig out deep rooted corruption. Federal agents took G Janardhana Reddy from his home early yesterday, raided his properties and also arrested his cousin Srinivasa Reddy, who is the managing director of the family-owned Obulapuram Mining Company (OMC). “Charges are conspiracy, cheating and irregularities under the mining act,” said a Central Bureau of Investigation spokeswoman in New Delhi. She declined to provide further details. The national opposition party Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which rules Karnataka, said the arrests were “vindictive action” by the ruling center-left coalition led by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Parliament has been almost totally absorbed by the issue of corruption since last year as opposition parties see the

chance of weakening the government. A near-two week hunger strike in August by 74-year-old social activist Anna Hazare brought the nation to a standstill until parliament agreed to tougher anti-corruption legislation. The legislation has still to be passed by parliament. That paralysis may now be hurting the $1.6 trillion economy, with investor confidence dipping as much needed reforms in retail, land and taxes are put on hold. Singh in particular has been under increasing criticism for failing to deal with multi-billion dollar scandals in telecommunications, spor ts and mining that have helped trigger the biggest protests in decades and paralysed his government. Topping the scandals is a charge a telecoms minister rigged the 2007/08 issuance of lucrative telecoms licences, at a cost of $39 billion to state coffers. The minister, since fired, is in prison along with several executives pending trial. The mining scandal hits in the only state run by the opposi-

HYDERABAD: Karnataka state lawmaker and former minister G. Janardhan Reddy, center, is brought to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) office after he was arrested in Hyderabad, India yesterday. —AP

known for its militant connections, but did not say when. The fact that all three men were captured alive means they could give valuable information to interrogators. “This operation was planned and conducted with technical assistance of United State Intelligence Agencies with whom InterServices Intelligence has a strong, historic intelligence relationship. Both Pakistan and United States Intelligence agencies continue to work closely together to enhance security of their respective nations,” the statement said. The statement said al-Mauritani was mainly responsible for Al-Qaeda‘s international operations and was tasked by bin Laden with focusing on hitting targets of economic importance in America, Europe and Australia. It said he was planning to target US economic interests including gas and oil pipelines, power generating dams and oil tankers by using explosive-laden speed boats in international waters. It named the other two

tion BJP in southern India, and it may deal a blow to the party’s election prospects in a state once seen as a springboard for its electoral growth across the populous south. Police said yesterday’s arrests were related to allegations of illegal mining in the state of Andhra Pradesh where Reddy’s company Obulapuram also operates. Obulapuram did not respond to requests for comments. G Janardhana Reddy was among those implicated in a July probe by an independent anti-corruption ombudsman that exposed an alleged $3.6 billion scam affecting iron ore exports from Karnataka, which is also home to India’s outsourcing and IT hub, Bangalore. Links between Karnataka politicians and mining were described by the ombudsman as a “mafiatype of operation,” and the arrest is seen by some as striking a blow at provinces’ traditional power structures. “It is significant in the sense that a well known political personality has been caught for alleged corruption, it gives the impression that the government is now very serious,” said DH Pai Panandiker, head of Delhi think-tank the RPG foundation. The Reddy family are major figures in mining in India and have for years also held high government offices in Karnataka, the second largest producer of iron ore in the country. The state’s chief minister BS Yediyurappa, also implicated in the report, was forced to resign in July. Karnataka accounts for about a quarter of iron ore shipments from India, the world’s No. 3 supplier of the steelmaking raw material after Australia and Brazil. The political crisis is seen delaying expor ts, much of which go to China, and could put fur ther upward pressure on global prices. The case is embarrassing for the BJP, which has aggressively gone after the federal government on corruption issues. “Naturally, the party is worried. We only hope and pray that Mr Reddy will come out clean and he would be in position to convince the court that he has not committed anything wrong,” Dhananjay Kumar, a senior BJP leader told a television news channel. — Reuters

preferred brand,” a cable dated October 23, 2008 reported, adding she employed food tasters to guard against poisoning. “She constructed a private road from her residence to her office, which is cleaned immediately after her multiple vehicle convoy reaches its destination,” the cable said in an analysis of her “eccentricities, whims and insecurities”. It added an account of Mayawati making a state minister do sit-ups in front of her as punishment for a minor protocol error, and reported it cost $250,000 to run as a BSP parliamentary candidate due to “institutionalized corruption”. Mayawati and the BSP performed below expectations in national elections in 2009, winning just 21 seats in the 543-seat parliament, but she retains strong support among poor, low-caste Indians across the north of the country. — AFP

detainees as Abdul-Ghaffar Al-Shami and Messara Al-Shami. US officials were not immediately available for comment. Since the Sept 11, 2001, attacks, Pakistan’s spy agency has cooperated with the CIA to arrest scores of Al-Qaeda suspects, most of whom were handed over to the United States. But there have been fewer high-profile arrests in recent years. Many top Al-Qaeda commanders are still believed to live in Pakistan, and getting Islamabad’s cooperation in cracking down on the network has been a top American goal since 2001. But there have been persistent suspicions that the country was protecting militants. The fact that bin Laden was killed in an army town close to the capital, Islamabad, led to fresh doubts over Pakistan’s commitment. US officials have recently claimed AlQaeda‘s capabilities have been seriously weakened due to drone strikes and arrests in recent years. —AP

Monsoon kills more than 100 in Pakistan KARACHI: Monsoon rains in Pakistan have killed more than 100 people in a month and destroyed crops and houses in the flood-prone south of the country, provincial government officials said yesterday. Some 2.2 million people have been affected and 300,000 displaced, said Sajjad Haider Shah, an official at the disaster management authority in the southern province of Sindh. He said that most of the victims were killed as a result of falling roofs, drowning in flood waters and water-borne diseases. “Since August 11, when the first spell of rains started, 46 people were killed while 90 more have died since August 27,” Shah said. “The victims include women and children whose details are being gathered,” he added. Two senior Sindh government officials confirmed that more than 100 people had died as a result of the rains. The first spell of rain mainly affected seven southern districts of the province, while an ongoing second spell has hit the entire province, except its capital Karachi, said Shah.” We are providing tents and food to the people and our supplies are getting better everyday.” The meteorological office forecast more rain this week. Last year, the worst floods in Pakistan’s history affected 21 million people and killed an estimated 1,750. Charities have accused Pakistan of since failing to invest in flood prevention measures. —AFP



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China confirms visit from Gaddafi representatives BEIJING: China confirmed yesterday that representatives of Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi visited in July in a bid to buy arms, news that could further damage Beijing’s relations with the new opposition government in Tripoli. Although China insists no weapons were delivered, a spokesman for the Libyan opposition said there is evidence that Chinese companies shipped weapons through Algeria to Gaddafi’s forces after the outbreak of the uprising in violation of a UN arms embargo. Rebel military spokesman Abdel Raham Busim said documentation was still being collected and the new government was considering bringing legal action against Beijing, possibly at the United Nations. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said Gaddafi’s officials met with representatives from Chinese companies but insisted that no contracts were signed and no weapons were shipped. She said China strictly adheres to a United Nations ban on supplying arms to the toppled regime and backed the role of

the UN in a post-conflict Libya. “Chinese companies have not provided military products to Libya in any direct or indirect form,” Jiang told reporters at a regular briefing. Although there was no indication that the government played a role in the contacts, the fact that the meetings were held could deliver a further blow to Beijing’s ties with Libya’s rebels while reinforcing the belief that China may have been trying to play both sides of the conflict. Busim said an invoice has been recovered from Libyan government files dating from July that lists $200 million worth of Chinese weapons including pistols, missiles and rocket launchers. He said it wasn’t clear whether any of the weapons had been paid for or shipped, but that other evidence shows Chinese weapons were either shipped to Gaddafi’s forces via Algeria or taken from Algerian stockpiles that China later resupplied. He said that had cast a pall over relations with China and called on Beijing to work to repair its image.

“It is not nice to have enemies. Maybe there could be a way that the situation can be resolved, but that will depend more on the Chinese government,” Busim said. China abstained from the UN resolution authorizing force against the Gaddafi regime and has yet to formally recognize the opposition National Transitional Council. Although Beijing belatedly opened up contacts with the rebels, it hosted Gaddafi’s foreign minister in Beijing at the same time. China and Russia had earlier questioned whether the supplying of weapons to rebels breached the terms of the UN ban. The head of the transitional council has in recent days accused Beijing of holding up the release of frozen Libyan funds held overseas, allegedly in order to first guarantee the safety of billions of dollars in Chinese investments in Libya. While the NTC has said it will honor contracts made with Gaddafi’s government, its officials have indicated they regard China as being in a separate category from the transitional govern-

ment’s strong backers such as France, Britain and the United States. Asked whether China was obstructing the release of Libyan funds, Jiang said China had no problem in principle with turning them over, but wanted first to ensure there was adequate supervision of their use. Jalal El-Gallal, a civilian spokesman for the Libyan rebels, said he was aware of the reports of the Gaddafi delegation’s visit, but that the new government acknowledged the importance of friendly ties with China, one of five permanent veto-wielding members of the UN Security Council. “China is a superpower,” el-Gallal said. “We have to take that into consideration. We hope they will assist us to succeed. We need the Chinese to be on our side, irrespective of what has taken place.” While Gaddafi obtained weapons from a number of sources, China has built a strong position as provider of small arms to many African nations, including those suffering internal conflict such as Sudan and Zimbabwe.

China also sold weapons to both sides in the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq War, apparently with no damage to its relations with their leaders. The Canadian newspaper The Globe and Mail reported last week that Gaddafi’s officials negotiated to buy weapons and ammunition from Chinese arms makers China North Industries Corp., China Precision Machinery Import and Export Co., and China Xinxing Import and Export Co. It based the report on discarded Libyan government documents that opposition sources believe are authentic. Representatives of the Chinese companies either could not be contacted or said no spokesman was available to speak with the media. Li Weijian, a scholar with Shanghai’s Institute of Foreign Studies, said such contacts likely took place without government authorization, adding that Beijing was confident of establishing good relations with the new Libyan government. “I don’t think the relations of the two countries will be affected by the incident and both sides should look to the future,” Li said. — AP

North Korea says Seoul plotting to destroy it strategy aimed to disable North’s nuclear deterrent

PHNOM PENH: This file photo taken on July 12, 2007 shows Vann Nath (L), a Cambodian survivor of Khmer Rouge’s prison S-21, pointing to his painting exhibition which draws from his life in the prison at the Bophana Audiovisual Resource Center in Phnom Penh. —AFP

Vann Nath, survivor of Khmer Rouge prison, dies PHNOM PENH: Vann Nath, an artist who was among only seven people to survive Cambodia’s most notorious prison of the 1970s Khmer Rouge regime and who later depicted the facility’s horrific torture, has died, his daughter said yesterday. He was 66. Vann Nath, who had been ill for several years, died yesterday after falling into a coma in late August, his daughter Vann Chan Simen said. Vann Nath, whose death leaves only two surviving inmates of the notorious Tuol Sleng prison, was the first of the survivors to testify before a UN-backed tribunal that is trying members of the Khmer Rouge regime on war crimes charges. “We are saddened by the news of the death of Mr Vann Nath, who gave a voice to victims,” tribunal spokesman Lars Olsen said. Vann Nath in recent years had chronic kidney disease requiring regular dialysis treatment. In April 2010, he was hospitalized in critical condition with a hemorrhaging ulcer. His widow, Kith Eng, blamed his illnesses on the torture he suffered at Tuol Sleng, telling The Associated Press in August that he would have lived a long and healthy life had it not been for his year spent there. Born in 1946, Vann Nath trained as an

artist, but was later forced to work at a cooperative farm after the Khmer Rouge seized power in April 1975. He was accused of being an enemy of the regime in 1978 and imprisoned at Tuol Sleng, also known as S-21, and kept there until January 1979 when the regime fled ahead of invading Vietnamese troops, who found only seven inmates alive at the prison. Between April 1975 and the late 1978 up to 16,000 people were tortured at the former school before being taken to the killing fields outside the capital and executed, most often with a blow to the back of their neck. Vann Nath was spared because he was ordered to paint and sculpt portraits of the late Khmer Rouge leader Pol Pot. He would later paint images of torture such as waterboarding at Tuol Sleng and write a memoir of his year spent there. The regime’s radical policies left about 1.7 million people dead through overwork, disease, malnutrition and execution. In June 2009, Vann Nath testified before Cambodia’s war crimes tribunal against Kaing Guek Eav - better known as Duch who was in charge of S-21 from 19751978. Duch, now 68, was sentenced to 35 years in prison for war crimes and crimes against humanity in July 2010. —AP

Japan FM: China should play fair under world rules TOKYO: Japan’s new foreign minister said yesterday that the international community should encourage China to observe global rules and play fair rather than become a threat. Koichiro Genba said the Asia-Pacific region is a center of growth but also a source of instability. Tokyo has expressed caution over China’s increased military spending and more assertive stance in territorial disputes. Ties between the two Asian rivals deteriorated to their worst level in years last September when a Chinese fishing trawler collided with Japanese patrol vessels near islands controlled by Japan but claimed by both countries in the East China Sea. Genba acknowledged that Japan’s southwestern waters have grown unstable. “China has overtaken Japan in terms of GDP and is now boosting its self-confidence. In order not to allow China to become a threat, Japan and the rest of the world must make sure China plays fair as part of our common rules and principles,” Genba said in an interview with a small group of journalists including The Associated Press. While growing in military strength and assertiveness, Beijing denies threatening or aspiring to dominate the region, calling such speculation a sign of “Cold War thinking.” Genba, Japan’s youngest foreign minister at

age 47, took office last Friday as part of new Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda’s Cabinet. He said relations between Japan and China are extremely important and they should be good neighbors. He vowed to achieve “a win-win situation” through a mutually beneficial strategic partnership. — AP

SEOUL: North Korea accused capitalist South Korea yesterday of plotting to destroy its socialist system and said the policy was pushing relations to the brink of war. According to a statement on Pyongyang’s official news agency, relations have become so confrontational they are on “the brink of war” because of the Seoul government’s policy of “unification through absorption”. The statement, from a spokesman for the foreign ministry ’s Disarmament and Peace Institute, said Seoul’s conservative rulers had reneged on previous agreements in principle to reunify under a federal system. The current strategy aimed to disable the North’s nuclear deterrent, “force it into opening and destroy it in the end,” the spokesman said. It was prompted by the Seoul government’s “sinister intention” to see its neighbour’s system collapse. The statement, using language often employed by Pyongyang, said Seoul’s efforts to win international support for unification through absorption are “a declara-

tion of a war” against the North. The South’s conservative President Lee Myung-Bak has stressed the need to prepare for reunification of the peninsula, which has been formally divided since 1948. He has proposed a tax in the South to prepare for such an event. In June, Lee said unification “won’t take such a long time” but did not elaborate. Ties have been frosty since Lee took over in 2008 from a left-leaning administration that practiced a “sunshine” policy of aid and engagement. They turned icy when Seoul accused Pyongyang last year of causing two deadly border incidents. Yesterday a private group of some 100 South Koreans announced a plan to open a satellite entertainment television station targeting North Koreans to promote unification. They said Unification TV would offer dramas and entertainment shows for people in the isolated communist state to watch secretly. “South Koreans and North Koreans, having been divided for 60 years, have become vastly

Thai citizen accused of insulting king on Facebook BANGKOK: Police have arrested a Thai computer programmer on charges of insulting the nation’s revered king on a Facebook page, his lawyer said yesterday. The charges carry a penalty of up to 15 years in prison. Surapak Puchaisaeng, a 40-year-old Bangkok resident, was also accused of violating the Computer Crime Act for the alleged defamatory comments, his lawyer Lomrak Meemuean said. Surapak denied insulting 83-year-old King Bhumibol Adulyadej. Police confiscated his desktop and laptop computers, his lawyer said. Cases involving insults to the monarchy, known as lese majeste, have skyrocketed in recent years, but Friday’s arrest of Surapak is the first since a new government took power in August, according to the activist network Freedom Against Censorship Thailand. Deputy Prime Minister Chalerm Yubumrung, who oversees national police affairs, last month said cracking down on anti-monarchy websites is high on his agenda. “Websites with monarchy-insulting content ... cannot exist under this government,” Chalerm said, adding he would set up a “war room” to closely monitor the situation. The lese majeste law covers anyone who “defames, insults or threatens the king, the queen, the heir to the throne or the regent.” The 2007 Computer Crime Act, which prohibits circulation of material that jeopardizes national security or causes panic, carries a maximum jail term of five years and a fine of 100,000 baht ($3,300). Critics say the lese majeste law is frequently used as a weapon against political opponents. Almost any critical comment touching on the monarchy can be construed as disloyalty to the institution. —AP

Philippine rebels meet Norway envoy to break impasse

TOKYO: Japan’s new Foreign Minister Koichiro Genba speaks during an interview in Tokyo yesterday. Genba is urging the international community to encourage China to play fair under global rules and not become a threat. —AP

different in sentiment, culture and lifestyle. We need cultural exchanges to narrow the differences,” the group said in a statement. “TV broadcasts are the most effective way to reduce differences and unite all Koreans together, while they laugh and cry together at the same TV show.” The group said the service will help people in the reclusive North feel closer to their southern peers and find more ways to relate to each other emotionally. Hwang Kyu-Hwan, a former CEO of Seoul-based satellite TV station SkyLife, said the group aimed to begin broadcasting next year by raising at least five billion won ($4.6 million) from the government and private companies. The unification ministry said it has no plans at present to fund the planned new station. North Korea has battled for decades to exclude foreign news sources and culture. But pirated DVDs and music CDs smuggled in from China have made the South’s pop culture popular. —AFP

MANILA: Philippine communist rebel negotiators met a special Norwegian envoy yesterday in a fresh bid to reopen stalled peace talks to end a four-decade war with the government, aides said. The rebels’ chief negotiator Luis Jalandoni met the envoy at the embassy in Manila but details of the talks were not disclosed, the insurgent secretariat said. Government negotiator Alexander Padilla told AFP he would meet the Norwegian envoy today but he did not know if the rebel negotiators would be at the talks as well. Norway, which has been brokering the on-off talks, sent the envoy, Ture Lundh, to the Philippines after negotiations stalled over the demand of the National Democratic Front that the government free 13 captured comrades. The two sides hope to seal a peace accord by June 2012 but the new impasse has soured ties, with the government accusing the NDF of bad faith for kidnapping a town mayor and four jail guards recently. Meanwhile, recent US embassy cables leaked by the anti-secrecy site WikiLeaks revealed splits within the insurgent leadership, with self-exiled rebel founder Jose Maria Sison losing influence. — AFP

WAKAYAMA: Vehicles are piled on top of one another on muddy ground after Typhoon Talas caused flash flooding in the town of Nachikatsuura, Wakayama prefecture, in western Japan yesterday. —AP

Killer typhoon brings more misery to Japan TOKYO: Rescuers and search parties scoured central Japan yesterday as the death toll from the worst typhoon to hit the country in seven years climbed to 26, adding more misery to a nation still reeling from its catastrophic tsunami six months ago. Typhoon Talas, which was later downgraded to a tropical storm, lashed coastal areas with destructive winds and record-setting rains over the weekend before moving offshore into the Sea of Japan. In addition to the 26 dead and 52 missing, thousands were stranded as the typhoon washed out bridges, railways and roads. The scenes of destruction from the typhoon were another unwelcome reminder of Japan’s vulnerability to the forces of nature as the country tries to recover from the March 11 earthquake and tsunami. In one of his first acts in office, Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda sworn in just one day before the storm made landfall - vowed the government would provide as much assistance as quickly as it could. His predecessor, Naoto Kan, was forced out in large part because of public anger over the response to the tsunami, which left nearly 21,000 people dead or missing and touched off the worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl. “We will do everything we can to rescue people and search for the missing,” Noda said. The typhoon was believed to be the worst to hit Japan since 2004, when 98

people were killed or reported missing. It caused most of its damage on the Kii Peninsula in central Japan southwest of Tokyo and hundreds of miles (kilometers) from the country’s tsunami-ravaged northeastern coast. The extent of damage from the typhoon was still emerging yesterday. Rescuers and reconnaissance teams spread out over the worst-hit areas to look for survivors or people stranded in flood zones, which though far smaller in scale were reminiscent of the debris-ridden, mud-caked wasteland created by the tsunami. Television footage showed washed-out train bridges, whole neighborhoods inundated by swollen rivers and police using rope to pull frightened survivors out of homes awash in the murky waters. The government’s emergency headquarters put the death toll at 26 as of yesterday morning. Evacuation advisories remained in place for about 100,000 people, although the storm itself was no longer over land. Most of the dead were in Wakayama prefecture (state), said local official Seiji Yamamoto. He said 17 were killed there and another 28 missing. “There are so many roads out that it is hard to count them all,” he said. “Hundreds of homes have been flooded.” Rains and wind were recorded across wide swaths of Japan’s main island, but no significant damage was reported in the tsunami-ravaged northeast. — AP



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Scuffles at Mubarak trial as police testify Continued from Page 1

RAMALLAH: Palestinian soldiers stand behind the tomb of late leader Yasser Arafat and a symbolic Palestinian UN chair yesterday in this West Bank city. The chair is set to tour Arab countries and Europe to raise support for a Palestinian bid to join the UN when the General Assembly meets in New York this month. — AFP

Settlers torch W Bank mosque Continued from Page 1 office said in a statement, adding that the Palestinians themselves would not revert to violence. An Israeli police spokesman said police and army personnel had entered the village to inspect the damage to the mosque and that the investigation was ongoing. Earlier yesterday, Israeli authorities enacted a court order and demolished three houses in Migron, a Jewish hilltop outpost. The names of Migron and a second outpost were written in Hebrew on the mosque walls. Some settlers have threatened to exact a price on Palestinians in response to Israeli government actions against unauthorised settlements. Nabil Abu Rudeina, spokesman for Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas, said the attack was “proof of Israel’s rejection of peace” and called on the international community to pressure the Jewish state over the attack and similar incidents. Last month, the Supreme Court ruled that Israel must evacuate the entire Migron outpost by the end of March 2012, a spokeswoman for the court said. Six people who scuffled with police during the demolition were arrested, police said. Migron is one of about 100 small out-

posts that settlers built without government approval on land that Israel captured in a 1967 war and which Palestinians want for a future state. The World Court deems all Israeli settlements illegal under international law - a ruling that Israel rejects. Settler-related incidents resulting in Palestinian injuries and damage to property are up more than 50 percent this year, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, which documents violence in the Palestinian territories. Palestinian authorities say settlers have attacked at least six mosques in the West Bank in the past two years. Fayyad’s office criticised the Israeli police for failing to track down those behind previous such violence. “The prime minister holds Israel completely responsible for the continuation of these terrorist acts because of its failure to pursue the perpetrators of this type of attack on previous occasions and bring them to account,” its statement said. Settler and military officials said last week that Israel’s military has been training Jewish settler security units to cope with any eruption of Palestinian protests alongside a planned bid for statehood at the United Nations this month. — Agencies

Gaddafi bastion waits as talks fail Continued from Page 1 Negotiations for the surrender of Bani Walid southeast of Tripoli broke down late Sunday, Abdullah Kenshil, the chief negotiator for Libya’s new government, the National Transitional Council (NTC), said. “I am leaving the military commander to resolve the problem,” he said, but there were few signs that an assault was imminent yesterday, as fighters fretted about the fate of civilians inside the oasis town. “We’re still awaiting the decision of the NTC,” operational commander Abdulrazzak Naduri told journalists at Shishan, north of Bani Walid. “They don’t want any more bloodshed.” Naduri said the Gaddafi loyalists, put at some 60 to 80 with no senior officers, were weak. “But some of them are hiding in local families they are using as human shields. We’re afraid for the families in the town.” Kenshil said civilians were being held hostage in the centre of the town, in administrative buildings and in five or six nearby villages. “Gaddafi’s soldiers have also closed the gates of the town and are not letting families leave,” he added. “That worries us, we don’t want to kill civilians in the attack.” Local officials said most of the senior people had fled with Gaddafi’s most prominent son, Seif al-Islam, who according to Naduri left a few days before for Sabha, further south, which is still in the hands of loyalists. Two other sons of Gaddafi, Saadi and Mutassim, were also reported to be in Bani Walid. But Daw and some 10 others who were not identified were said Monday to be in the northern Niger town of Agadez, having been brought across the border by a top Tuareg leader allied to Gaddafi. Kenshil said however that Gaddafi spokesman Mussa Ibrahim had remained in Bani Walid, adding,

“We know where he is.” Kenshil said Gaddafi himself, his sons and much of his family had been in Bani Walid, without specifying when. Saadi Gaddafi said the talks’ failure was the fault of his brother Seif al-Islam, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court along with their father for suspected crimes against humanity during the uprising. Saadi told CNN in a telephone interview that an “aggressive” speech broadcast by his brother a few days ago had led to the breakdown of the negotiations. Saadi said he was “a little bit outside” Bani Walid but had been moving around, CNN reported late Sunday. He said he had not seen his father or brother for two months. Saadi said he is “neutral” but remains “ready to help negotiate a ceasefire,” CNN added.”Saadi is looking after number one which is a good sign. It means cracks are appearing,” Jalal Al-Gallal, an NTC spokesman, told AFP. The NTC had last week announced an overall truce until Sept 10 in a bid to negotiate the surrender of the remaining strongholds of Gaddafi forces. Those include Gaddafi’s hometown of Sirte and the southern oases of Sabha and Al-Jufra as well as Bani Walid. In Beijing the foreign ministry admitted that Libyan officials had visited China in July for talks with “interested companies” but insisted that no arms contracts had been signed or exports made. “Chinese companies have not provided military products to Libya in any direct or indirect form. Chinese companies did not sign arms sales contracts and they did not export military products to Libya,” spokeswoman Jiang Yu told journalists. China “does not allow any actions that contravene UN resolutions,” she added in Beijing. Citing secret documents it had obtained, The Globe and Mail reported that state -controlled

Chinese arms companies were ready to sell weapons and ammunition worth at least $200 million to Gaddafi in late July. It said the papers did not confirm that anything was actually delivered, but senior NTC members said they reinforced their suspicions about the recent actions of China, Algeria and South Africa, the report said NTC military spokesman Abdulrahman Busin told AFP that legal advice was being sought as the matter is investigated further. Meanwhile, a senior commander in the new regime demanded an apology from Britain and the United States after seized documents suggested both countries were complicit in a plan that led to his detention and torture. Files unearthed from Gaddafi’s intelligence archives documented the capture by the CIA of Abdelhakim Belhaj in Bangkok in 2004 and his forcible repatriation to Libya, where he had fought the old regime. He was then jailed in Tripoli’s notorious Abu Slim prison for seven years and maintains he was questioned there by British intelligence officers. Belhaj, now military commander of Tripoli, told the BBC: “What happened to me was illegal and deserves an apology.” Britain’s Guardian newspaper yesterday quoted him as saying he was considering suing both governments. “I was injected with something, hung from a wall by my arms and legs and put in a container surrounded by ice,” he said of his time in prison. “They did not let me sleep and there was noise all the time. I was regularly tortured. I’m surprised that the British got involved in what was a very painful period in my life,” he added. A British inquiry into alleged complicity in the mistreatment of suspected terrorists said yesterday it would look into claims that foreign spy agency MI6 was involved in rendition to Libya. — AFP

Session for illegal bank deposits eyed... Continued from Page 1 around KD 25 million were deposited into the accounts of two lawmakers within a short period of time, which was linked to political crises in the National Assembly. The government and the Central Bank have said that they have not been informed by the public prosecution of any suspicious bank deposits whether into accounts of MPs or others. Under Kuwait ’s anti-money laundering law, banks are required to report any suspicious movements in accounts to the public prosecution which in turn informs the Central Bank. Assembly speaker Jassem Al-Khorafi said on Sunday that he supports holding the emergency session but called for preparing well ahead of setting the date. The session will be open-ended until MPs debate and pass a string of anti-corruption laws including the wealth disclosure bill. But several MPs anticipated such a law and wrote to the Central Bank allowing it to examine their accounts and accounts of their wives and children in a bid to clear their names from the deposits scandal.

So far eight MPs have signed a joint letter to the Central Bank originally prepared by MP Mohammad AlMutair, who called on the Central Bank to check his and his relatives’ accounts inside and outside Kuwait. Meanwhile, at least 17 MPs have already signed on a special webpage created by activists declaring that they are not linked in any way to the scandal of the KD 25 million in illegal bank deposits. The legal and legislative committee is due to meet on Sept 11 to review and approve several anti-corruption draft laws in order to be ready for voting during the emergency parliamentary session. On Sunday, six opposition political groups strongly blasted the government for failing to perform its duties regarding the illegal bank deposits. The groups called on the Central Bank to take the necessary action to clamp down on the illegal deposits and expose those who received the deposits and those who paid. In another development, opposition MP Musallam AlBarrak asked the foreign ministry if they have allowed a number of foreign embassies to “import” liquor. He also demanded a list of embassies that are allowed to import the beverages, which are totally banned in Kuwait.

Mubarak, 83, hospitalised since April, was wheeled on a gurney into a metal defendants’ cage in the court for the third session of his trial and the first to take witness testimony. “In my 30 years of experience with state security, I have not heard of any incident where an order was given to use live ammunition against protesters,” Moussa, head of communication in the state security service, told the court. Moussa was earlier identified on state television as Mursi. Live television cameras were barred from the court after the first two sessions on Aug 3 and 15 were broadcast live. Moussa, who was in the police operations room during the uprising, said he heard Ramzi and other officers saying they did not have reinforcements to protect prisons and the Interior Ministry, prompting the decision to issue live ammunition. He said he believed that decision was taken by Ramzi. Asked if there were orders to fire live ammunition at the Interior Ministry, Moussa said there were “very clear” orders to protec t the ministr y. He added that weapons were ferried by ambulances as police vehicles were targeted. Many police stations were stormed and burned down during the height of the violence in the 18-day revolt. Many police vehicles were also attacked, overturned and torched. Mubarak is being tried alongside his two sons, Gamal and Alaa, former Interior Minister Habib Al-Adli and six senior police officers, including Ramzi. The court proceedings were delayed by a fight in the chamber when a Mubarak supporter lifted up a photo of the former president, angering relatives of victims of the uprising. Lawyers for plaintiffs also entered the fray. Police stepped in to separate them, those in court said. The agitation prompted Judge Ahmed Refaat to call a recess. Outside, supporters chanted: “He gave us 30 years of protection, Mubarak hold your head up high.” Nearby, anti-Mubarak protesters hurled stones at police lines and some officers threw rocks back. At one point police with shields and batons charged a group of demonstrators. Crowds held posters of slain protesters and shouted, “To die like them or to get their rights.” One held a hangman’s noose and demanded Mubarak’s execution. Some set fire to pictures of Mubarak, while chanting, “The people want to execute the butcher.” “He has to be hanged. We don’t want any more delays in the court session,” said Mohamed Essam, who had travelled to Cairo from the Nile Delta town of Kafr El-Sheikh. A man with blood on his face shouted: “I call on the free Egyptian people, the youth of the revolution, to see what state security is doing with the revolutionaries.” Many Egyptians are furious at police for their tactics in the uprising. Witnesses said police used tear gas, water cannon, rubber bullets and live ammunition. Moussa described events on Jan 28, one of the most violent days, when he said police were ordered to prevent protesters reaching Tahrir Square, the centre of the protests. “The orders were to deal with the protesters as the situation mandated and the free-

dom was left to them to deal with protesters in a manner that they saw fit,” Moussa said. Wael Bahgat, a lawyer representing the family of a victim, told reporters outside the court during a break that the term “‘in a manner they saw fit’ means shotgun cartridges, live bullets, water and tear gas.” Lawyers also said Moussa’s testimony conflicted with statements during earlier questioning. “I am reassured after hearing the witness account today, even though his accounts contradict what he said at the prosecution,” said Hesham Mahfouz, also representing plaintiffs. Three other senior police officers were also called to give testimony yesterday. Separately, Egypt has walled off Israel’s embassy in Cairo after tensions between the two countries sparked a series of angry protests that reached a climax last month when a demonstrator scaled the building and removed the Israeli flag. As work began on the wall a few days ago, many Egyptians gathered nearby to show their displeasure. Some sprayed “The people want the fall of the wall” onto its smooth concrete. Later yesterday, state TV showed footage of construction workers painting the wall in the colors of the Egyptian flag and writing on it “Egypt at all times”. Egyptian officials said the mainly concrete barrier, roughly 2 1/2 m high, was to protect other residents of the high-rise embassy building, not the Israeli mission. “The goal ... is to protect the lower floors of the building and prevent tensions between protesters and residents,” daily newspaper Al-Masry Al-Youm quoted local governor Ali Abdel-Rahman as saying. Egypt’s relations with Israel have cooled since the overthrow of President Hosni Mubarak, a staunch US ally, in a popular uprising in February. A diplomatic row broke out last month when five Egyptian security personnel were shot dead on the border as Israeli troops repelled militants who killed eight Israelis. Egypt threatened briefly to withdraw its ambassador from Tel Aviv, said the deaths of the Egyptians breached its 1979 peace treaty with the Jewish state and demanded a joint inquiry. That was not enough for some Egyptians. Thousands protested angrily for days outside the embassy to demand a sterner response from their government, in scenes that would never have been allowed during the Mubarak era when political demonstrations were usually crushed by riot police. The protester who clambered up the high-rise embassy building was rewarded by an Egyptian provincial governor with a job, a new home and a commemorative shield, newspapers reported. The governor for Giza, where the embassy sits close to the banks of the Nile, denied the wall was designed to protect the embassy, a claim met with disbelief by some observers. “It is obvious that the reason behind building the wall is to prevent protesters in the future from reaching the embassy and to protect it,” said political analyst Mustapha Al-Sayyid. “Why would we protect a state that is killing our people? This is wrong, unfair and irritating,” one man told Egyptian radio during a night live program on Sunday evening. — Agencies





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Factory-like mills feed NY heroin market By Tom Hays n many ways, the reputed drug dealers on Grandview Place were good neighbors. Their two-storey, red-brick home in the New York City suburb of Fort Lee, New Jersey, looked perfectly ordinary with its white trim, gable porch and manicured shrubbery. Neither noise nor sketchy visitors were an issue, authorities say. The only sign that something was amiss was the rented van that would disappear into a lower-level garage each day. The driver’s job: To deliver immigrant workers from the inner city to package heroin in thousands-upon-thousands of glassine envelopes stamped with catchy logos like “LeBron James” and “Roger Dat.” The Fort Lee operation represented the new, more serene face of the ever-thriving heroin trade in the New York City area, the drug’s national epicenter, according to the Manhattan-based narcotics investigators who shut it down. “It can still be a violent, dirty business, but it’s changed,” said Bill Cook, a veteran investigator with the Office of the Special Narcotics Prosecutor for New York City. Absent are scenes out of films like “American Gangster,” with kingpins flaunting their wealth, settling turf wars with brazen gunplay and serving a clientele of strung-out junkies queuing up to buy low-grade product. The new business model calls for more discretion and discipline, and better branding and quality control. The heroin is purer and the users more mainstream, including college students and professionals who snort rather than shoot up. Many have seamlessly transitioned to heroin after first getting hooked on prescription painkillers belonging to the same opiate family. Compared to past eras marked by images junkies cooking the drug with a dirty spoon, heroin “doesn’t have the same stigma attached to it”, said John Gilbride, head of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s New York office. Authorities say more abuse by a broader customer base has taken a devastating human toll that’s difficult to measure. Rehab centers have told them that more people are seeking treatment, and there have been recent reports of fatal heroin overdoses by teenagers in New York suburbs. That hasn’t discouraged retailers - mainly Dominican immigrants supplied with Colombian heroin by Mexican cartels - from steadily expanding their operations throughout the city and its suburbs. “There are more mills, and they’re better at what they do,” Cook said. Recent raids by the special prosecutor, DEA, New York Police Department and New York State Police have resulted in multiple arrests and larger and larger seizures. They’ve also given colorful insight into current operations. One mill was located in a newly renovated apartment in midtown Manhattan that rented for $3,800 a month and was mere blocks from Times Square and Broadway theaters. Workers there used coffee grinders to cut the drug. They then filled glassines stamped with the brand names “Jersey Boys” - title of a hit musical - and “95 South” - a reference to the interstate served by the nearby Lincoln Tunnel. In another mill on an 18th-floor apartment in upper Manhattan a sign read: “Clean Up After Yourselves - The Management.” The wall of yet another Bronx mill displayed its menu of brand names, including “Lady Gaga” and “Charlie Sheen”. Farther north, a mill was discovered across the street from Manhattan College in a Bronx apartment building where students lived. Workers there wore school sweatshirts to try to blend in. One heroin ring used an unlikely location for transactions: a Brooklyn neighborhood populated by young families living in renovated brownstones. A dealer riding a three-wheeled motorcycle and a helmet emblazoned with the heroin brand name “Sin City” would direct customers to an exact block - code-named “the office” - then pull up alongside their cars in the middle of traffic and exchange glassines for cash. Authorities say a dramatic spike in the amount of drugs seized during the investigations shows that suppliers are working overtime to the meet the escalating demand and maximize profits. “They’re very savvy businessmen who have one thing in mind ‚Ä” making money,” said Bridget Brennan, the special prosecutor. In the past two years, Brennan’s office has brought drug-dealing charges against at least 200 people associated with the mills. Many face deportation if convicted. The DEA has seized about 93 kg of heroin in New York City and the rest of the state so far this year, a pace that would eclipse the 126 kg total last year and the 77 kg in 2009. — AP


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Cheney defends Iraq war, skips failures By Steven R Hurst ick Cheney’s autobiography presents a robust defense of his push for the U.S. invasion of Iraq without critically examining two issues central to America’s near-failure in the war: The Bush administration’s decision to disband the country’s army and banish all members of Saddam Hussein’s Baath Party. Cheney has said that “In My Time” would cause “heads to explode” in Washington, and it is juicy reading for its harsh criticism of two secretaries of state, Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice, and one defense secretary, Robert Gates. Not surprising was Cheney’s adulation of Gates’ Pentagon predecessor, Donald H Rumsfeld, the vice president’s political mentor. Cheney’s parting shot after decades of public service comes in the run-up to the 10th anniversary of the Sept 11 attacks. The book has rekindled debate over the rationale to attack Iraq in 2003 and the cost in American lives and dollars. It also has focused attention on whether the war diverted US attention from catching AlQaeda leader Osama bin Laden and eradicating the group’s hideouts in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Cheney and former President George W Bush had said invading Iraq and removing Saddam was imperative after Sept 11. They insisted Saddam was working with bin Laden and that Iraq had amassed weapons of mass destruction to use against its neighbors or to give to Al-Qaeda for use against America. But the bipartisan Sept 11 commission, which Congress created, found “no credible evidence that Iraq and Al-Qaeda cooperated on attacks against the United States”.


Despite that and other solid evidence to the contrary, Cheney insists that Iraq was a nexus of terrorism and Saddam was working hand-in-glove with bin Laden. Confronted by the failure to find weapons of mass destruction, Cheney does accept that Saddam did not have such armaments, an error that Cheney blames on faulty US intelligence. Some critics say he carefully selected intelligence material that made the case for Saddam having those weapons while ignoring evidence on the other side. Cheney virtually ignores the conduct of the war effort to the point where the Bush administration began to realize that the US was on the verge of failure in 2006, three years after the invasion. Sectarian violence between Sunni and Shiite Muslims raged. It was not uncommon in late 2006 and into 2007 for authorities to find as many as 100 dead bodies in the streets of Baghdad each morning after a night of savagery. Al-Qaeda linked fighters had flooded into the country and were inflaming the Sunni insurgency. Iran was deeply involved in arming, financing and encourag-

ing Shiite radicals. The proximate causes of that chaos were the lack of a national organization to keep order and an interim government to put an Iraqi face on political decision-making. Cheney deals with this in a single paragraph. “There were also some things we failed to anticipate. Based on intelligence reports, we believed we would be able to rely on the Iraqi police to keep the peace and prove security. That turned out not to be true. The Iraqi police were among the least trusted, most infiltrated institutions in Iraqi society. We also thought that once we removed the top Baathists leaders from Saddam’s government, we’d be able to get things up and running relatively quickly, but we discovered that many people were so accustomed to acting only on orders from the top that they were paralyzed without them.” Cheney says nothing about disbanding the military. He doesn’t detail the wholesale banishment of Baath Party members not just government figures - from positions of leadership and authority. Membership in the party was key to career

advancement in Iraq, much as was Communist Party membership in the former Soviet Union. It did not necessarily prove political beliefs. Without a viable military, the job of policing an alien culture fell to US forces, trained to fight wars but not enforce civil order. Without an interim government that had support from both Shiites and Sunni Muslims, the country was under the oneman rule of American L Paul Bremer. He ran the occupation until June 2004 and then was involved in a long and destabilizing struggle to elect a government and write a constitution. The Sunnis, the heart of the insurgency, felt sidetracked in the new power structure and were angry. While a minority of Iraq’s population, they wielded power under Saddam. The Shiites majority had been brutalized by Saddam and wanted revenge. Cheney deals with the crisis tangentially as he details the political back and forth when Bush, with his vice president’s full backing, was deciding to send even more American forces into Iraq, beginning in early 2007. Before that, the administration had been running a policy that was headed toward a reduction of US troop strength in the midst of unimaginable violence, brutality and a near-civil war. Once additional troops were decided upon, Bush put Gen David Petraeus, the new CIA director, and his US Ambassador Ryan Crocker in charge. In time the gamble paid off and The Associated Press was among the first American news organizations to report declining violence. But as many as 100,000, perhaps many more, Iraqis had already died and the death toll among American forces continues to rise. It now stands at 4,474. — AP

Berlusconi pressured over austerity mess By James Mackenzie taly’s chaotic efforts to pass a new austerity plan already included disputed figures, policy U-turns and cabinet rows even before Silvio Berlusconi’s latest brush with scandal added prostitutes and wiretaps to the mix. European partners have looked on increasingly aghast as the 74 year-old premier’s stumbling centre-right government has squabbled over a promised series of measures aimed at bringing down its Ä1.9 trillion ($2,726 billion) debt mountain. “We’re seeing a really striking demonstration of unpreparedness,” said Luca Ricolfi, a professor of political science at Turin University and one of Italy’s leading political commentators. “We’ve known for years that something like this could happen, that our public debt is vulnerable and that speculative attacks are possible,” he said. “But these people are improvising. They’re meeting in the evening and trying to do things in 24 hours that require two years of work and preparation,” he said. For the past few weeks, the European Central Bank has offered Rome a breathing space from the market attacks which had threatened to drive its borrowing costs out of control, buying Italian debt to hold bond yields to sustainable levels. However there has been clear frustration at the confusion surrounding the austerity package, which has seen a series of tax and pension proposals picked up and discarded within days as different government factions fought among themselves. Berlusconi’s PDL party and its Northern League coalition partners have been deeply at odds over the package and Economy Minister Giulio Tremonti has been attacked by


other ministers, tired of his abrasive manner and rigid grip on spending. A tax on high earners, the abolition of small town councils and later retirement ages for some university graduates have all been proposed and immediately abandoned, with vague promises of a crackdown on tax evaders offered to fill the funding gap. A VAT hike has been mooted by Berlusconi and rejected by Tremonti while in the latest switch, the government has even backtracked on plans to move some public holidays to Sunday and thus deprive Italians of their beloved long weekends. ECB President Jean-Claude Trichet has called repeatedly for swifter action to fulfill promises of a balanced budget by 2013 and there have been growing questions over how long the central bank will remain patient and keep up its intervention. Italy’s leading daily, the Corriere della Sera, said on Sunday the ECB’s intervention had acted like morphine, “a sweet opiate which has deluded us into thinking our illness has been miraculously cured”. However Italian bonds have come under mounting pressure in the past week, with yields now up at 5.2 percent and getting closer to the 7 percent lev-

el seen as being unmanageable. Any retreat by the ECB would cause “huge problems”, the head of Confindustria, Italy’s main employers federation said on Sunday. A Greek-style financial emergency in the euro zone’s third largest economy would have unknown but undoubtedly disastrous consequences for Europe and the global economy but decisive action has been impossible in Rome’s feverish political climate. At the Ambrosetti forum, Italian industry’s annual showcase gathering at Cernobbio on the shores of Lake Como at the weekend, the mood among business leaders was bleak. “This is a problem about the credibility of our country,” Confindustria head Emma Marcegaglia told reporters. As if to complete a picture of frivolous distraction, Berlusconi has been dragged into a new prostitution scandal, this time involving allegations that he paid more than half a million euros in hush money to a would-be extortionist. Both he and Giampaolo Tarantini, the businessman at the

centre of the allegations, deny there were any illicit payments. Tarantini told investigators the billionaire premier had helped him out when he was in financial difficulty. However the affair has added to doubts about the government’s discipline and focus. Berlusconi’s government has long boasted of keeping Italy out of the financial crisis, despite having one of the world’s highest public debt levels at 120 percent of gross domestic product and one of its most sluggish growth rates. Groups as varied as Confindustria and the hardline CGIL union have all condemned the chaos and the centre-left opposition has repeated its regular calls for the prime minister to resign and make way for a new government. Berlusconi has lashed out, accusing the opposition of being anti-Italian “criminals” and repeating his regular attacks on what he says are politically motivated magistrates out to destroy him. In one of the wiretaps revealed following the arrest of Tarantini on extortion charges last week, the premier added to his long list of memorable sayings, describing Italy a “shitty country” and saying he planned to leave within a few months. How seriously such a remark should be taken is unclear. It is a commonly heard expression in Italy and was taken from a private telephone conversation in July. But it has added to a feeling that Berlusconi has become more and more detached and increased speculation that the government may not survive until the next election in 2013. For the moment, he has a safe parliamentary majority but tensions with the Northern League or even a final breakdown with Tremonti could easily trigger a government crisis. “It’s going to be very hard for them to go on like this,” Ricolfi said. — Reuters




Gaddafi leaned on Arab allies to stay in power By Maggie Michael uammar Gaddafi’s dictatorship likely wouldn’t have survived for more than four decades without the sea of dictators all around, protecting one another and working together to silence dissident voices. Gaddafi himself saw collapse was inevitable as Arab unity frayed, and he pointed to the fall of Iraq’s Saddam Hussein as a sign of things to come. “Your turn is next,” he warned fellow leaders in a scathing speech at the 2008 Arab League summit in Damascus. Back in 2008, Gaddafi’s listeners laughed. Now, besides Gaddafi, longtime autocrats have been swept from power by popular uprisings in Tunisia, where the Arab Spring began, and Egypt. Syria’s Bashar Assad and Yemen’s Ali Abdullah Saleh are also under fierce pressure. Ties with autocrats stretch back to the early days of Gaddafi’s regime, historians have written. The night Gaddafi - then a junior officer who would later promote himself to colonel - ousted King Idriss, the first planeload of official visitors to land in Tripoli was from Egypt. Gamal Abdel Nasser sent veteran journalist and top adviser Mohammed Hassanin Haikal to take the measure of his neighbor’s new ruler. Gaddafi told Haikal he would seek Nasser’s guidance. Haikal promised Egypt’s support. Only four months after Gaddafi’s coup, two members of his Revolutionary Command Council turned against him. Egyptian intelligence officers tipped off Gaddafi that he faced a coup, according to historians. Shortly after that, King Idriss’ nephew Abdullah Al-Abid AlSenoussi, also known as the Black Prince, led a force of 5,000 mercenaries from Chad and planned to arm tribes loyal to the king to fight against Gaddafi. This time, it was Tunisians who are believed to have tipped off Gaddafi. In a recent interview, Gaddafi’s former Foreign Minister Abdel-Rahman Shalqam, who defected during this year’s rebellion, told the pan-Arab newspaper Al-Hayat that Gaddafi used to pay former Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali a monthly salary, and that TunisianLibyan cooperation was “at the highest level”. The exchange of security and intelligence information was the only successful sphere of cooperation among Arab governments, asserted Fathi AlBaja, a Libyan political scientist and top political leader for the Libyan rebels. “This is the only thing they could do,” he said. Gaddafi even paid the editors of state-owned newspapers in Egypt, Syria and elsewhere to run “propaganda glorifying him or at the very least to block any channels between the opposition and


public opinion”, said Fayez Jibril, a Cairobased founder of the National Front for the Salvation of Libya, Libya’s oldest opposition group. Gaddafi’s pursuit of his opponents included televised executions of students, professors, clerics and others in public squares and on university campuses. In the worst instance of repression, more than 1,200 prisoners, includ-

governments.” He accused Shalqam of “trying to clear his record by accusing others”. In 1980, Morocco handed over a well-known former member of the Gaddafi-led Revolution Council, Omar AlMehishi. Al-Mehishi had fled first to Egypt and then to Morocco after his failed attempt to oust Gaddafi. In his interview with Al-Hayat, Shalqam said

Kikhia “was alive, he would have become the leader of new Libya”. “ We lost a prominent political leader who meant a lot to us,” he said. Jaballah Matar, father of acclaimed Libyan author Hisham Matar, disappeared in Cairo in 1990. Matar was a Libyan diplomat who resigned from his post in New York in the 1970s to protest

he village of Votbari is a tiny island of India surrounded by a sea of Bangladesh. A victim of absurd map drawing during the 1947 partition of the Indian subcontinent, the enclave has been all but abandoned by both nations. It has no paved roads, electricity, hospital or schools. Its destitute residents get no aid from either side. Years of regional tensions have kept it in limbo. “There is nobody to look after us,” resident Jober Ali said. “We have no country ... I do not have any identity. I am nowhere.” Indian Prime Minister Manmohan’s Singh’s visit to Dhaka starting Tuesday could end the suffering for tens of thousands of people trapped in dozens of such enclaves on both sides of the border. With India’s ties with rival Pakistan to the northwest frozen in enmity, it has turned its attention toward smoothing out its bumpy relationship with its northeastern neighbor. The two nations are expected to tackle tensions over water resources, trade barriers and transit links. They also plan to resolve disputes over their 4,096-km border - and with it, the enclave conundrum. There are 111 Indian enclaves inside Bangladesh and 51 Bangladeshi ones inside India, with a combined population of 51,000, according to a recent survey jointly conducted by the two governments. The residents of the enclaves have been compared to stateless people, without any of the services offered in either country and no one to take responsibility for them. “We’ve lived here for decades. But nobody bothered about us. We are human beings, they do not keep that in mind,” Ali said in an interview conducted over a borrowed cell phone from Votbari. Bangladeshis living in enclaves surrounded by India suffer a similar fate. Ali, 58, has no land for farming, no educa-


Islamist videos, populists stir German worries By William Maclean erman-language Islamist propaganda is fuelling militancy among a small number of socially-alienated Muslim youths in Germany, say security experts, who worry that Europe’s biggest economy may be a growing target for attacks. The spread of an ultraconservative brand of Islam and the emergence of populist preachers who oppose the integration of minority Muslims into wider society are compounding the impact of the online videos and discussion forums, they say. Despite the prominence of Germany in the story of Al-Qaeda due to Hamburg’s role as a base for three Sept 11 suicide pilots, its indigenous militant scene is much smaller than that in Britain or France and has taken longer to become active. But security officials say it is growing, albeit on the far fringes of Muslim communities, citing a string of attacks and thwarted plots in recent years and an outflow of youths to training camps in Pakistan since 2006. On Wednesday, a 21-year-old Kosovo Albanian confessed to shooting dead two US airmen and wounding two more at Frankfurt airport in March, telling a court he was swayed by Islamist online propaganda he now realised was “lies”. The expansion of Islamist militancy in Germany reflects the growing variety of Europe’s militant community, analysts say. European converts, and Europeans of Turkish, Kurdish, central Asian and West African background are joining a movement once dominated by Britons of Pakistani ancestry or Frenchmen of north African heritage. Across Europe, school drop-outs and ex-convicts now mix with the more educated activists who once predominated. In Germany, militant youths increasingly read German-language Internet propaganda, an online world once dominated by Arabic, Urdu, Pashto and English, much of it expressing opposition to Germany ’s military presence in Afghanistan. Populist preachers of the Salafist school of Islam, a brand of the religion that has its roots in Saudi Arabia, increasingly speak at public meetings, not just in mosques. “They used to hide in the mosque but now they are encouraged to be public. They show their opinion,” Manfred Murck, head of the Hamburg branch of Germany’s domestic intelligence service, told Reuters. “The tradition of terrorism is more or less a tradition of groups. But now we see that the group is not always necessary and that the Internet functions as a kind of virtual group.” The combined effect of the online propaganda and of preachers speaking in person to audiences “makes the whole scene of jihadists in Germany more cohesive and assertive”. Security experts point to the likes of Islamic preacher Pierre Vogel, a former professional boxer who later converted to Islam and studied in Saudi Arabia and has voiced strong objections to integrating Muslims into German society. Another convertturned-preacher is Denis Mamadou Cuspert, a former rapper called Deso Dogg, who now sings Muslim religious chants and believes Islam is under attack from the West. Yet another is Turkish-German cleric Mohammed Ciftci. Experts say the expression of such views, intentionally or not, can facilitate a tolerance of violence among listeners. “Deso Dogg is so important. He can really captivate you. These hymns can support a radicalisation process,” said Guido Steinberg, an Islamic studies expert at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs think-tank. “The jihadism scene in Germany has become a movement of the urban riff-raff. That may sound a little harsh, but it’s fair in the sense that they are not accepted by society - although they are by the Salafists.” The surge in German online propaganda seen since 2007 comes from North Waziristan, a Pakistani tribal region known for Al-Qaeda and Taleban activity and which remains the preferred destination for German militants seeking paramilitary training. Many of its authors are German-speaking members of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, a Central Asian jihadi movement with ties to Al-Qaeda and which actively recruits in Europe. “We’ve seen dozens and dozens of messages from this area,” said Peter Neumann, Professor of Security Studies at the War Studies Department of Kings College in London. He said militants from Europe who prove unfit for the battlefield were put to work producing propaganda or were sent back to Europe to try to enable attacks there. Concern over Islamists poses a delicate political test for German authorities amidst a raucous national debate about Islam and integration of Germany’s 4 million Muslims, mostly of Turkish origin, in a population of 82 million. Long considered as migrant workers who would eventually go back to their ancestral homes, these Muslims are now an established minority pushing for equal rights. Akif Sahin, a Hamburg-based Turkish youth worker, said the radical preachers’ views went against the grain of many mainstream Muslim communities who since 2005 had been working to become part of wider German society. Salafism was growing in popularity, said Sahin, and this had to do with propagandists like Vogel. Mainstream Muslim communities had tried to “get these extremists to quieten down because they are very aggressive about trying to extend their influence. But it’s not clear whether this mainstream effort is succeeding”. Sahin said Salafis excelled at fundraising and using online social networks. Good language skills often made them better at communicating with alienated youths than imams in a large Turkish statesupported network of mosques in Germany. Murck, Head of the Hamburg State Office for the Protection of the Constitution, said young Muslims found the new breed of outspoken activists to be “a kind of idol because they are seen as tough enough to speak out in public. When Vogel spoke here (in Hamburg recently) there were about 500 followers, or at least ‘inquiring persons’, listening. This was new for us.” —Reuters


In this March 29, 2008 file photo, (from left) Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir, Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, Syrian President Bashar Assad and Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali stand during the opening session of the Arab Summit in Damascus. — AP ing many political detainees, were gunned down at the notorious Abu Salim prison in 1996. Little of that made it into the Arab press at the time. Magdy El-Daqaq, former chief-editor of Egypt’s state-run magazine October, acknowledged Gaddafi might have paid journalists in Egypt and elsewhere in the Arab world to avoid writing about such abuses. But he said he did not believe the leaders of Egypt or other Arab countries were involved in hunting down Gaddafi opponents. “The Libyan intelligence acted unilaterally in assassinating and liquidating its opposition in different Arab and European capitals,” El-Daqaq said. “Egypt didn’t play this game under (Hosni) Mubarak or any of the former

Gaddafi gave the Moroccan government $200 million for surrendering Al-Mehishi and then ordered his rival to be “slaughtered like a sheep”. Shalqam also told Al-Hayat that Gaddafi once bought a plane for the now-deposed Mubarak, and that the Libyan leader’s top agent in Egypt was former intelligence chief and Mubarak strongman Omar Suleiman. Egyptian security authorities have long been suspected of kidnapping prominent Libyan opposition figure Mansour Kikhia when he came to attend a human rights conference in Egypt in 1993. Kikhia was said to have later been killed and his body melted down in a steel plant. Fathi AlBaja, the Libyan political scientist, said if

the Gaddafi’s regime practices. He eventually ended up in Egypt as a member of the opposition’s National Front for the Salvation of Libya. Matar’s family has set up a website on which it said it received two letters from Matar saying that he was kidnapped by Egypt’s secret police and handed over to Libyan authorities. Hisham Matar, whose semi-autobiographical novel about childhood in Muammar Gaddafi’s Libya, “In the Country of Men”, was shortlisted for the 2006 Man Booker Prize, believes his father was held in Tripoli’s Abu Salim prison and is alive. But Jaballah Matar has not been heard from in the chaos as rebels took Libyan capital and freed Abu Salim’s prisoners. — AP

India, B’desh to help people stuck in enclaves By Julhas Alam


tion and no hopes of a permanent job. His family of 13 squeezes into a single straw hut because they have no extra land to build another home. He supports them with irregular work as a day laborer. The village of 3,000 has almost no infrastructure save for a few narrow, muddy roads - plied by bicycle rickshaws - that Bangladeshi authorities built for

from,” he said. The situation is worse at the border of their own countr y, India, 1.2 km away. There, Ali said, Indian guards open fire at them if they tr y to cross. Human rights groups have accused Indian forces of routinely shooting those trying to enter illegally from Bangladesh. While there are a smattering of similar enclaves scattered

ation is rooted in 18th Century fighting between the kingdom of Cooch Behar and the Mughal Empire. A treaty set boundaries, but some feudal lords in Mughal territory remained loyal to Cooch Behar and vice versa, leading to the enclaves. When the subcontinent fell under British rule, this quirk didn’t matter much. But when the region was par titioned

An Indian border Security Force soldier watches villagers commute on a three wheeler at Tinbigha corridor that leads to the Dahagram enclave near the India Bangladesh border, India on Sunday. — AP them as a humanitarian gesture. Officially, Votbari residents are not allowed to leave their village and enter Bangladesh without a visa. But there is no fence and since they have never even been given Indian passports, Bangladeshi authorities look the other way and let them pass. They do their shopping in Bangladesh, use Bangladeshi currency and rely on Bangladeshi hospitals in case of emergencies. Asir Uddin, 60, said he often sneaks out of the village to find work as a day laborer. “We cannot give our identity. We lie to people when someone asks where we’re

about Europe, central Asia and the Middle East, the IndoBangladesh ones are by far the most extensive, and the most convoluted, according to a 2002 paper by Brendan R Whyte, of the University of Melbourne. Some have small counter enclaves inside them, Whyte wrote. There is even one tiny Indian enclave inside a Bangladeshi enclave inside an Indian enclave inside Bangladesh. According to popular legend, the enclaves were created when two chess-playing royals gambled away villages from their kingdoms. But Whyte and other historians say their cre-

between India and Pakistan at independence in 1947, the border kingdom of Cooch Behar joined India, leaving thousands of its now-Indian subjects trapped in East Pakistan and thousands of Pakistanis trapped in India. After India helped Bangladesh secede from Pakistan in the 1971 war, the two nations developed close ties and signed a 1974 treaty that would have resolved the problem. But India never ratified the treaty and independence leader Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was assassinated in a 1975 military coup, torpedoing the plan and ushering in an era of icy relations.

New Delhi complained of millions of illegal Bangladeshi immigrants and accused Dhaka of giving sanctuary to myriad insurgent groups leading violent rebellions against Indian rule in its northeastern states. Dhaka complained of its massive trade deficit with India and accused New Delhi of stealing its water. Singh and Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Rahman’s daughter, have been working to fix this over the past two years. Bangladesh cracked down on the Indian insurgents, a move that forced many of the groups to the negotiating table with India. India offered Bangladesh a $1 billion loan, raised quotas on textile imports and appears ready to resolve the water dispute. “There is a major shift in our relationship,” Indian Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai said yesterday. While India still has major border disagreements with Pakistan and China, it is hoping to resolve nearly all its issues with Bangladesh in time for Singh’s two-day visit. The plan entails each country absorbing the enclaves inside its territory and giving citizenship to the residents or allowing them to move to their home country, where they would be provided new homes, Indian Home Minister Palaniappan Chidambaram told Parliament last month. As Muslims, the villagers in Votbari feel closer to Bangladesh than Hindu-majority India, and many say they will stay right where they are. “We are all united in wanting to be part of Bangladesh,” Ali said. “We are Muslims. They are also Muslims. So they have feelings for us. They are like our brothers.” Nurul Amin, 26, who was forced to start driving a bicycle rickshaw at the age of 12 to support his family, hopes the deal will bring a brighter future for his two daughters, aged 5 and 3. “I want to educate my two children. I don’t want them to live a life like me,” he said. — AP


sp orts Capello: Lampard still a key player for England LONDON: Frank Lampard remains a key player and leader for England despite being left out of the starting line-up in last week’s Euro 2012 qualifier in Bulgaria, coach Fabio Capello said yesterday. Although Lampard came on late in that 3-0 win in Sofia on Friday, it was the first time since 2007 that the 33-year-old had been dropped from the start of a competitive match. Capello, whose team play Wales at Wembley today, said at the time that he felt Lampard was not on top form. Asked yesterday whether the Chelsea midfielder still had an England future, Capello’s reply was immediate: “Absolutely, yes. “Frank Lampard is a really important player,” said the Italian, whose side top Group G with 14 points from six games, three ahead of Montenegro who lost 2-1 to Wales on Friday. “If he’s here, I think he’s ready to play with us. I don’t know if tomorrow he will play.—Reuters

Bangladesh axe Shakib

Argentina, Nigeria clash DHAKA: Argentina coach Alejandro Sabella has dismissed talk of revenge when his side take on Nigeria in a friendly in the Bangladeshi capital Dhaka today. Argentina lost 4-1 to Nigeria in Abuja in June when their former coach Sergio Batista fielded a very inexperienced side. “I don’t think about any revenge, it’s no good for human beings, it’s no good for anyone, we will try to win but I don’t think we will go for revenge,” Sabella told a news conference on Monday. “It’s different game because we came here with a stronger team, but we will see tomorrow,” he said. “I don’t know what they kind of

team they field tomorrow. They play yesterday (Sunday) against Madagascar.” Sabella said referring to Nigeria’s 2-0 win in an African Nations Cup qualifying match. Hundreds of fans cheered the Argentina squad when they arrived at Dhaka airport from the Indian c i t y of Kolk ata where they de fea ted Venezu ela 1 -0 in a friendly on Friday. Twice World Player of the Year Lionel Messi was the centre of attention and the prospec t of watching the Barcelona forward sparked huge excitement in Ba ng lades h, a country ranked only 139th in the world but still very passionate about football.—Reuters

DHAKA: Bangladesh have sacked captain Shakib Al Hasan and his deputy Tamim Iqbal following the team’s dismal tour of Zimbabwe, the Bangladesh Cricket Board said yesterday. Zimbabwe, returning to test cricket after a six-year exile for political reasons, beat Bangladesh by 130 runs in a one-off match. The home side also won the one-day international series 3-2, Bangladesh’s first limited-overs series defeat by Zimbabwe in six years. “Shakib and Tamim and have been removed from their posts as they failed to lead the team to success in Zimbabwe,” BCB spokesman Jalal Yunus told reporters after a meeting of the Board of Directors. Shakib was appointed captain on a permanent basis in February and was due to lead the team until Bangladesh’s home series against Pakistan in December. Earlier he led the side on an interim basis in the absence of injured Mashrafe Mortaza and almost single-handedly guided Bangladesh to an unprecedented 4-0 win over New Zealand in a one-day series last year. —Reuters

Rangers power past Red Sox BOSTON: The Texas Rangers piled on seven runs in the sixth inning and went on to beat the Boston Red Sox 11-4 on Sunday, maintaining their 31/2 game buffer atop the American League West standings. Josh Hamilton capped the big sixth with a bases-loaded triple as the visitors opened a 9-0 lead and ended the night for Boston starter John Lackey (12-11). Ian Kinsler homered, drove in three runs and made a stellar defensive play for the Rangers, who took two of three in a vital weekend series. Texas starter Matt Harrison (11-9) allowed two runs in seven innings. Boston fell 1-1/2 games behind New York in the AL East standings. SAN FRANCISCO: Arizona Diamondbacks’ Ryan Roberts hits a solo home run off of San Francisco Giants pitcher Ryan Vogelsong in the eighth inning. —AP

D’backs stretch NL West lead SAN FRANCISCO: The Arizona Diamondbacks extended their National League West division cushion to a season-best seven games with a 4-1 win over the San Francisco Giants on Sunday. Willie Bloomquist hit a go-ahead tworun triple after Ryan Roberts’ solo homer tied it in the eighth, giving the D-backs a win that all but ended the divisional race with only 22 games remaining. Arizona starter Daniel Hudson (15-9) allowed one run in seven innings and won his third straight start. The Giants looked like getting a crucial win, leading until the eighth, when Ryan Vogelsong (10-6) gave up two runs. He has lost four straight starts. Marlins 5, Phillies 4 In Miami, Mike Cameron drove in the winning run with a two-out, bases-loaded walk in the 14th inning, as Florida edged Philadelphia with the aid of an overturned ruling after a video review. Hunter Pence was ruled out on fan interference in the sixth inning after initially being awarded a double, and the ruling change may have cost the Phillies two runs. They played the game under protest. The lead changed hands four times, and Florida came from behind for the second game in a row to take the series. The Marlins had a hit in all but two innings, but they stranded a franchise-record 23 runners and went 3 for 19 with runners in scoring position. Clay Hensley (3-6) pitched two perfect innings to get the victory. Philadelphia reliever David Herndon (1-3) issued seven walks in 3 2-3 innings. Braves 4, Dodgers 3 In Atlanta, Martin Prado hit a game-ending RBI single in the ninth inning as Atlanta ended Los Angeles’ six-game winning streak. Atlanta avoided getting swept in a threegame series for the first time this season. Jose Costanza set up the win with a single off Blake Hawksworth (2-5). Costanza moved to second on a wild pitch and scored easily when Prado’s liner landed inside the left-field line. Braves reliever Craig Kimbrel (4-2) retired the side in order in the top half to get the victory. Reds 3, Cardinals 2 In St. Louis, Juan Francisco capped a career-best four-hit day with the go-ahead hit in the 10th inning, lifting Cincinnati over St. Louis. The Cardinals fell 91/2 games behind NL Central-leading Milwaukee heading into a three-game series with the Brewers starting late yesterday. St. Louis was 0 for 8 with runners in scoring position and 2 for 20 with men on base. Francisco Cordero went through the heart of St. Louis’ order for his 30th save in 35 chances and 13th in a row, also giving him

seven 30-save seasons. Edgar Renteria hit a two-run homer in the first for the Reds, who won for only the second time in their last eight games. Fernando Salas (5-6) was charged with the loss, and Bill Bray (5-2) got the victory. Mets 6, Nationals 3 In Washington, New York rallied with four runs in the sixth inning to overcome Washington. Lucas Duda hit a long home run to tie it 3-3 and Willie Harris then had a tworun single as the Mets denied Washington pitcher Livan Hernandez a victory in what was likely his final game with the Nationals. Hernandez, who started the Nationals’ home opener in 2005, made his final start of this season, and though he’s indicated a willingness to return as a reliever, the team hasn’t indicated it wants him back. The fans gave Hernandez (8-13) a warm ovation as he walked in to start the game, and a longer thank you when he left during the four-run inning. New York reliever Ryota Igarashi (3-1) got the win. Brewers 4, Astros 0 In Houston, Shaun Marcum pitched seven scoreless innings to steer Milwaukee to a victory that completed a three-game sweep of Houston. Marcum (12-5) struck out eight and walked one, while Ryan Braun homered among his three hits and drove in two runs for Milwaukee, which increased its NL Central lead over St. Louis. Houston starter Wandy Rodriguez (10-10) gave up three runs in six innings. Padres 7, Rockies 2 In San Diego, the hosts ended a nine-game losing skid by defeating Colorado. Jeremy Hermida and Will Venable drove in three runs apiece. Hermida had an RBI single in the first and a two-run single in the third while Venable tripled with the bases loaded in a four-run eighth inning. Mat Latos (7-13) struck out eight in seven innings for San Diego, yielding two runs. Colorado’s Dexter Fowler notched his franchise-record 15th triple of the season. Rockies starter Aaron Cook (3-9) gave up three runs in six innings. Cubs 6, Pirates 3 In Chicago, Randy Wells pitched six strong innings to help Chicago avoid a sweep by Pittsburgh. Wells (7-4) was impressive again after pitching his first career shutout. He allowed one run. Marlon Byrd drove in two runs for the Cubs. Pirates starter Charlie Morton (9-9) allowed four runs in 4 1-3 innings.—AP

MLB results/standings MLB results and standings on Sunday. NY Yankees 9, Toronto 3; Florida 5, Philadelphia 4 (14 innings); Texas 11, Boston 4; Atlanta 4, LA Dodgers 3; NY Mets 6, Washington 3; Tampa Bay 8, Baltimore 1; Milwaukee 4, Houston 0; Cleveland 9, Kansas City 6; Cincinnati 3, St Louis 2 (10 innings); Chicago Cubs 6, Pittsburgh 3; LA Angels 4, Minnesota 1;Oakland 8, Seattle 5; San Diego 7, Colorado 2; Arizona 4, San Francisco 1; Detroit 18, Chicago White Sox 2. American League Eastern Division W L PCT NY Yankees 85 53 .616 Boston 84 55 .604 Tampa Bay 76 63 .547 Toronto 69 71 .493 Baltimore 55 83 .399 Central Division Detroit 78 62 .557 Cleveland 70 67 .511 Chicago White Sox 68 69 .496 Minnesota 58 81 .417 Kansas City 58 83 .411 Western Division Texas 80 61 .567 LA Angels 76 64 .543 Oakland 64 76 .457 Seattle 58 81 .417

GB 1.5 9.5 17 30 6.5 8.5 19.5 20.5 3.5 15.5 21

National League Eastern Division Philadelphia 88 48 .647 Atlanta 82 57 .590 NY Mets 68 70 .493 Washington 64 74 .464 Florida 62 77 .446 Central Division Milwaukee 84 57 .596 St. Louis 74 66 .529 Cincinnati 69 71 .493 Pittsburgh 64 76 .457 Chicago Cubs 60 80 .429 Houston 47 93 .336 Western Division Arizona 80 60 .571 San Francisco 73 67 .521 LA Dodgers 68 71 .489 Colorado 66 74 .471 San Diego 61 79 .436

7.5 21 25 27.5 9.5 14.5 19.5 23.5 36.5 7 11.5 14 19

Yankees 9, Blue Jays 3 In New York, Derek Jeter tied a career high with five RBIs as New York completed a three-game sweep of Toronto. Jeter, Alex Rodriguez and Nick Swisher all homered for the AL East leaders, while C.C. Sabathia (197) struck out 10 in 7 1-3 innings to win his seventh consecutive start against Toronto. One big reason for that success: Sabathia has dominated Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista. The major league home run leader is 0 for 18 with eight strikeouts against the lefty after going hitless in three tries Sunday. Bautista did hit a colossal homer off Rafael Soriano in the eighth. Brett Cecil (4-8) went six innings for the Blue Jays. Tigers 18, White Sox 2 In Detroit, Detroit completed a three-game sweep of Chicago in emphatic fashion. Miguel Cabrera homered and drove in four runs, and Alex Avila had a career-high four hits for the Tigers. Starter Max Scherzer (14-8) threw seven scoreless innings for Detroit, which leads the AL Central by 6-1/2 games heading into a three-game series at second-place Cleveland. Chicago is 8-1/2 back. Mark Buehrle (11-7) allowed seven earned runs in 3 1-3 innings for the White Sox. The Tigers, which trailed 81 in Saturday’s game before winning 9-8, scored 26 unanswered runs over the two games before the White Sox finally scored two in the ninth.

BOSTON: Texas Rangers’ David Murphy and Boston Red Sox catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia watch Murphy’s triple during the second inning. —AP Angels 4, Twins 1 In Anaheim, Joel Pineiro posted his first victory in almost two months, leading Los Angeles to victory in the deciding game of the weekend series against Minnesota. Pineiro (6-6) allowed one run over seven innings. Making his third start since a brief demotion to the bullpen, he turned around his form, having had a whopping 10.30 ERA in his previous six starts. Bobby Abreu homered for the Angels, who are getting little help in their quest to run down Texas. Twins starter Kevin Slowey (0-4) allowed seven hits in seven innings. Rays 8, Orioles 1 In St. Petersburg, Jeremy Hellickson threw a complete game to guide Tampa Bay past Baltimore. Hellickson (12-10) has two complete games this season, both against the

Orioles. Reid Brignac had three RBIs for Tampa Bay, while Sean Rodriguez hit a two-run homer with two outs in the second. Baltimore starter Jeremy Guthrie (6-17) gave up seven runs over five innings en route to his major league-worst 17th loss. Indians 9, Royals 6 In Kansas City, Shelley Duncan had a career high five RBIs with a pair of homers into the gusting wind, powering Cleveland past Kansas City. Duncan hit a three-run homer in the sixth inning and a two-run shot in the eighth for his third career multihomer game. Asdrubal Cabrera returned to the lineup to drive in two more runs while Jason Donald and Jerad Head also had RBIs for the Indians, who notched their 70th win, surpassing last year’s total, as they try to keep pace with Detroit in the AL Central. Indians pitcher Jeanmar Gomez

Lynx cruises past Liberty NEWARK: The Minnesota Lynx showed why they are considered strong favorites to land this year’s WNBA title by cruising past upcoming playoff rival New York Liberty 8668 in a road game on Sunday. Maya Moore scored 19 points while Seimone Augustus had 12 points for the Lynx, who had already clinched home -cour t throughout the playoffs. Minnesota shot 54 percent from the field, including 8 for 18 on 3-pointers. Plenette Pierson scored 17 points for the Liberty.

Athletics 8, Mariners 5 In Oakland, the hosts completed a three-game sweep of Seattle. David DeJesus and Ryan Sweeney each drove in two runs, Hideki Matsui doubled three times, while Kurt Suzuki, Brandon Allen and Josh Willingham also drove in runs for the A’s, who made up partially for the five straight losses heading into the series. Athletics starter Trevor Cahill (1013) allowed one run over five innings. Blake Beavan (3-5) gave up four runs in five innings for Seattle, which has lost four straight.—AP

Watson clings to lead Deutsche Bank event

Fever 88, Sky 80 In Rosemont, Illinois, Indiana kept its nose in front in the Eastern Conference race by beating Chicago. Tamika Catchings and Katie Douglas scored 17 points each for the Fever, who retained their half-game lead on second-place Connecticut in the East with three games to go. Catchings had a threepoint play with 57 seconds remaining that ended a scoring drought of more than 4 minutes and gave the Fever an 82-78 lead. Epiphanny ROSEMONT: Chicago Sky’s Carolyn Swords (left) battles Prince scored 21 points to Indiana Fever’s Tamika Catchings for the ball during lead Chicago. the third quarter of a WNBA basketball game. —AP Sun 79, Mystics 48 In Washington, Tina Charles had 24 points and 15 rebounds to lead Connecticut to a thrashing of Washington. Charles has 21 double-doubles this season, one short of the WNBA record she set last year en route to winning the Rookie of the Year award.Asjha Jones added 16 points and 10 rebounds for Connecticut, which won by its largest margin this season.

(2-2) was effective again in his second start since getting recalled from the minors, allowing only an RBI groundout in 5 1-3 innings. Royals starter Jeff Francis (5-15) couldn’t end his home woes. He allowed four runs - all in the first two innings - and has not won at Kauffman Stadium since May.

Monique Curry led the Mystics with 13 points. Dream 73, Shock 52 In Atlanta, the hosts clinched a playoff spot with a comfortable win over bottom team Tulsa. Angel McCoughtry scored 19 points and Lindsey Harding had 13 points and 10 assists for Atlanta. Tiffany Jackson had 15 points and 11 rebounds for Tulsa—AP

NORTON: Bubba Watson regained his composure after dropping three shots on the back nine holes to grab a one stroke lead after the third round of the Deutsche Bank Championship on Sunday. The American made a birdie at the penultimate hole for a round of one-under-par 70 after losing his advantage with three bogeys between the 11th and 15th holes. He finished the day on 11-under-par, one stroke clear of a group of five players, the two Australians Jason Day and Adam Scott, and three Americans, Jerry Kelly, Brendan Steele and Chez Reavie. “It’s kind of like a box of chocolates. You never really know what you’re going to get,” Kelly said. “If we don’t get any of that rain tomorrow, hopefully we don’t, because I need the fairways to roll.” Britain’s Luke Donald, the world’s number one ranked player, and South Africa’s Charl Schwartzel, the Masters champion, were among another bunch of five players at nineunder on a tightly congested leaderboard. Watson, chasing his third win on the PGA Tour this season, threatened to open up a bigger lead when he made his fourth birdie of the day on the 10th hole to reach 13under par, before he came unstuck. He salvaged a birdie at the 17th to regain the outright lead but missed another opportunity when he only parred the par-5 18th as the chasers started closing on. “It started out with a bad shot on one and a quick bogey but I held it together,” Watson said. “I fought down the stretch and I’m one up going into the last day so I have a good shot at it.” Scott, who shared the overnight lead with Watson and Schwartzel, birdied the last for a round of 71 while Day, who finished tied with his countryman in second place at Augusta in April, birdied the last two and made an eagle at the second in a round of 67. “It was hard to get the ball really close today, the greens were a little bit firmer,” Scott said. “But I’m playing well, hitting the ball well. If I can do that tomorrow I should give myself a chance.” American Phil Mickelson carded the best round of the day, making six birdies and an eagle for a 63, to finish as one of two dozen players within four shots of the lead. “It was a good ball-striking round, one of the best I’ve had,” Mickelson said. The Deutsche Bank tournament is the second leg of the season-ending FedEx Cup playoffs. —Reuters



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Championships close with rule debate raging DAEGU: There were tears and glory, a solitary world record and athletics firsts. There was even a Daegu curse. But for most, the story of the 13th world athletics championships will be disqualifications. Drama, of one kind or another, was ever-present against a back drop of velvet mountains draped in mist. Central to it all, good or bad, was the king showman of the sport-the world’s fastest man Usain Bolt. Athletics’ controversial no-secondchances rule on false starts deprived South Korean fans at the stadium, and millions watching worldwide, the chance to watch the Jamaican compete in the blue riband 100 metres final. Anxiety caused him to burst from the blocks a split second early and that was it. The sport’s biggest draw card left the track and his compatriot and training partner Yohan Blake took his title in an anti-climactic race. Bolt redeemed himself by retaining

the 200 metres title- and then anchoring the 4x100m team to a world record 37.04 seconds in that final-and all he wanted to do was look ahead. “Now I have to come to the Olympics in London, do my extreme best and blow people’s minds,” he told reporters. But it was hard to look too far ahead when it was his expulsion from that earlier race which was splitting opinion down the middle, and sparking a debate which raged throughout the championships. It shows little sign of abating. One camp deems it ludicrous that any sport would happily discard its biggest name from its most prestigious event, and wants the rules for false-starting revisited. The other side of the argument insists, simply, that rules are rules and they are there for a reason. “We have the rules, they’re pretty clear, we don’t play fast and loose with them simply because you get high profile DQs. There is no preordained outcome,” London 2012

Olympics chief and former elite runner Sebastian Coe said. The sport’s governing International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) received a mountain of feedback. “I don’t think anybody was happy to see Usain Bolt disqualified,” IAAF competitions director Paul Hardy told Reuters. “He is by far and away the biggest name in our sport. We need him.” For now, though, the one-false-startand-you’re-out rule would seem to be set in stone certainly for next year’s London Olympics. IAAF president Lamine Diack insists there will be no changing or bending of the rules to prevent big names being disqualified. “No chance,” the (IAAF) president said. “I work for this rule. I like very much this rule, I vote for having this rule. “(In the past) all athletes have the possibility to have one (false start), so you can have eight. Think about television... it was disturbing to have everybody able to make a false start.”

World record-holding 110 metres hurdler Dayron Robles was also disqualified. His crime was bumping Chinese rival Liu Xiang along the blue Daegu track. Diack had no sympathy for him either. “He has to be out... it is the rule.” It would take the hardest of hearts to not find sympathy for double -amputee Oscar Pistorius, however. The 24-year-old was sacrificed in South Africa’s pursuit of a world 4x400 relay medal, despite helping his country to a national record in the qualifying heats. Pistorius, who runs on carbon blades having had his lower legs removed as a baby, was the first amputee to compete at the world championships. “Pretty Guttered” was his brief response on Twitter to being dropped for the final. At some visceral level, though, Pistorius redefined the concept of athletic achievement at these championships.

It was a pity only around 10,000 spectators witnessed him qualify for the 400 metres semi-finals, for those who did were rewarded with a memorable mental postcard. Memorable, too, was the “cover curse” which lurked around the athletes’ village until it was broken by Sally Pearson. The Australian danced a jig on the cover of the world championships’ programme after winning the 100 metres hurdles gold. Pearson had been the cover star on Saturday and therefore supposedly subject to the Daegu curse, which meant the featured athlete has failed to win their event in seven out of the eight days of the championships. Despite claiming such names as Bolt, Robles and pole vault queen Yelena Isinbayeva, it disappeared into the ether as the event wound to a close. Bolt’s face filled the front page of Sunday’s programme. With a world record performance, he once again had the final say.—Reuters

Pakistan crush Zimbabwe

SILVERDALE: Japan rugby national team’s captain Takashi Kikutani (left) stretches out with his teammates after the team’s morning training session. Japan play France in their opening Rugby World Cup game on Sept. 10.—AP

All Blacks confront ‘chokers’ tag AUCKLAND: The All Blacks have worked on their mental preparations ahead of the World Cup after accepting they choked in previous tournaments, centre Conrad Smith told reporters yesterday. The world’s number one ranked side and winners of 10 of the 16 Tri-Nations titles against their traditionally closest rivals Australia and South Africa, the All Blacks have always struggled to bring that success to the World Cup stage. After winning the inaugural event they hosted in 1987, they lost the 1995 final, three semi-finals and four years ago were dumped out in the quarter-finals by France. Accusations of choking have come as each time, despite being overwhelming favourites, the All Blacks failed to bring home the Webb Ellis trophy. “Yeah we had to,” Smith replied when asked if the squad had worked on their mental preparations ahead of the World Cup. “We haven’t won many of these tournaments, in case you hadn’t noticed, and we are determined to change that so we have got to face reality and deal with that.” The New Zealand Herald newspaper ran a ‘choke-ometer’ in their Monday edition and the word ‘choke’ has brought out a wry smile or furrowed brow when used in questions to the All Blacks side this week. “We all need help,” Smith joked when he was shown the ‘choke-ometer’ caption from the newspaper. “The best way to deal with it is deal with it front on which is probably what we didn’t do in the past, (we) sort of swept it away and said ‘we are a different team and its not going to affect us.’ “But it’s something we have to deal with it’s part of our history and hopefully that is the best way to deal with it.” Smith has nailed down the outside centre role for the All Blacks and should start the opener against Tonga at a refurbished Eden Park on Friday.

The 29-year-old Wellington Hurricanes back who played three times in the World Cup four years ago-but not in the quarter-final 20-18 loss to France in Cardiff-said the squad had discussed what they needed to change. “I think the main thing we have talked about is how this (the World Cup) is different, this is unique, we are not just going to roll into this tournament and expect things that have worked for us in the past to work for us again. “We have buried what’s happened and started fresh and we are building up and they’ll be real challenges in the knockout stages and it requires a different mind set than when All Blacks run out to play in test matches.” Smith acknowledged the team’s high standards throughout the four year cycle in between tournaments may have been counter productive in the search for World Cup success. “The All Blacks, to our credit, we perform at a pretty high level all the time and so when we come in to a tournament we have maybe in the past relied on that as it’s won us a lot of test matches. “But other countries are able to step up a notch and maybe that’s what we haven’t done so I think that’s the main thing so we’ve talked about what we want to do in this tournament.” Smith spoke to an ever-growing media pack as kick-off approaches at the All Blacks team hotel in central Auckland after the squad had trained behind screens at Douglas Field amid a heavy security presence. “Little things like that do remind you of the stage you are on. Straight away, I thought of (the team’s World Cup base in) Marseille in 07 as this is probably the first time the screens are around the ground. “Little things like that and the size of the press conferences things like that, it hits home.” —Reuters

BULAWAYO: Pakistan beat Zimbabwe by seven wickets at Queens Sports Club here yesterday, getting the winning runs with seven wickets in hand a few minutes before lunch on day five. They were left needing 88 runs for victory after bundling the home team out for 141 runs in their second innings, although they did lose three wickets in the process. Having been put into bat by Pakistan captain Misbah ul Haq, Zimbabwe reached 412 all out in their first innings before the tourists replied with 466 all out to establish a first-innings lead of 54. There was not much in it at that stage but Zimbabwe’s second effort collapsed to 135-8 at the close of the fourth day, leaving the Pakistanis with the prospect of a routine mop-up operation. Ul Haq said afterwards: “Maybe I was mistaken asking Zimbabwe to bat first. The wicket had green patches. But the bowlers stuck to the task well. “Our batting to follow was excellent, of good quality. I am proud of the youngsters, especially Aizaz Cheema, who took eight wickets in the match. “Zimbabwe are a good side and they will improve with experience and become a strong force in the game I’m sure.” Man of the match was Pakistan’s Mohammad Hafeez, who scored 119 and took four wickets for 31. With one more wicket he would have recorded a ‘viper’ in cricket terms-a century plus five wickets in an innings-but he did not get a bowl in the final session. Zimbabwe’s opening innings score of 412 looked likely to secure at least a draw, which was their prime target in terms of their need to gain respectability in top cricket circles after being readmitted to Tests after a gap of six years. And if they had not dropped seven Pakistan wickets in their first innings, plus a fumbled runout opportunity, the tourists’ response might have been much lower than 466. The Zimbabweans’ batsmen were exposed by both Pakistan seam and spin in the second innings. The wicket had deteriorated and they showed inexperience in dealing with it. Five wickets were

BULAWAYO: Pakistan captain Misbah Ul Haq (left) and Younus Khan hold the trophy after winning the series match against Zimbabwe at Queens Sports Club. Pakistan is still to play one day matches and two T20 matches while in Zimbabwe. —AP

lost before they even got past the 54-run deficit. Only Tatenda Taibu and Kyle Jarvis stood between a single figure total and the 141 runs they eventually managed to scrape together. They put on 66 for the ninth wicket during the late afternoon of the fourth day-not quite a facesaving effort, more a reprimand to their colleagues. However, the Zimbabwe innings lasted only 15 balls on Monday morning, Taibu and last man Christopher Mpofu falling to Cheema. Pakistan lost Hafeez, Tafeeq Umar and Azhar Ali in reaching the winning line, but concentration levels required could not have been of the highest. The first of three one -day internationals will be played here on Thursday, followed by the other two in the series and two Twenty20 matches to round out the Pakistan tour in Harare.—AFP

SCOREBOARD BULAWAYO: Scoreboard at the conclusion of the one-off Test between Zimbabwe and Pakistan on the fifth day at Queens Sports Club on yesterday: Zimbabwe first innings 412 all out (T. Mawoyo 163 no, C. Ervine 49, V. Sibanda 45, T. Taibu 44; A. Cheema 4-79, S. Ajmal 4-143) Pakistan first innings 466 (M. Hafeez 119, Y. Khan 88, Al Ali 75, M. ul Haq 66; G. Lamb 3-120) Zimbabwe second innings (overnight 135-8) T. Mawoyo b S. Ajmal 12 V. Sibanda c S. Ajmal b Cheema 5 H. Masakadza b Cheema 8 B. Taylor lbw b S. Ajmal5 T. Taibu not out 58 C. Ervine lbw b Hafeez 6 G. Lamb lbw b Hafeez 7 R. Price b Hafeez 0 B. Vitori c Umar b Hafeez 7 K. Jarvis not out 25 C. Mpofu c U Akmal b A. Cheema 0 Extras (4b, 1lb, 2w, 1nb) 8 Total (all out, 56.3 overs, 225 mins)141 Fall of wickets: 1-9 (Sibanda), 2-19 (Mawoyo), 3-31 (Taylor), 4-31 (Masakadza), 5-45 (Ervine), 6-61 (Lamb), 7-61 (Price), 8-69 (Vitori), 9-141 (Mpofu)

Bowling: S. Khan 6-1-19-0 (1nb); A. Cheema 11.3-5-24-4 (2w): S. Ajmal 22-452-2; M. Hafeez 15-4-31-4, J. Khan 2-0-9-0. Pakistan second innings M. Hafeez b Price 38 T. Umar c Taibu b Jarvis 8 A. Ali c Lamb b Price 22 Y. Khan not out 14 M. Ul Haq not out 6 Extras 0 Total (3 wkts, 21.4 overs, 88 mins) 88 Fall of wickets: 1-19 (Umar), 2-49 (Hafeez, 3-80 (Ali) Bowling: Jarvis 5-0-17-1; Price 10.4-235-2; Vitori 2-0-15-0, G. Lamb 4-0-21-0. Did not bat: U. Akmal, A. Akmal, J. Khan, S. Khan, S. Ajmal, A. Cheema Result: Pakistan won by seven wickets Man of the match: M. Hafeez (PAK)

Healy and D’Arcy arrive to join up with Ireland squad AUCKLAND: Injured duo Cian Healy and Gordon D’Arcy arrived in New Zealand yesterday to join up with the rest of the Ireland squad ahead of their rugby World Cup opener at the weekend. If fit, prop Healy (eye) and centre D’Arcy (calf ) are cer tain starters on Sunday and the duo’s arrival is welcome news to coach Declan Kidney, who has already lost experienced flanker David Wallace to injury. “The injury has come on fine over the last couple of days and the medical team has been keeping a good watch over it, so I’m just really excited to be finally here and get the chance to get back on the field,” Healy said in a statement released by the Irish Rugby Football Union. D’Arcy was a late withdrawal from the squad’s flight from Dublin last week after straining his calf in a recovery session on the morning before the trip. “We flew in to a little less fanfare then the squad received, but that’s a small price to pay for just getting the chance

to be here and start thinking about our first game against the USA,” D’Arcy said. “There was a terrible sense of dread for me when the calf tightened up that morning and there was a couple of anxious hours before the scans came through and showed that it was not too bad and that it would not rule me out of the tournament.” Ireland had been tipped by many, including former All Black winger Jonah Lomu, as a dark horse to win the Sept. 9Oct.23 tournament but preparation were hit by four losses to Six Nations rivals in August warm-ups and a number of injuries. Flanker Sean O’Brien (knee) and fullback Rob Kearney (groin) were also injury concerns but both came through training on Sunday and should be available for the opener against United States in New Plymouth. Ireland, who have never made it past the quarter-finals at the World Cup, will also face Tri-Nations champions Australia, Russia and Italy in Pool C.—Reuters

Kuwait clinch three medals in World Taekwondo Hanmadang NAMYANGJU: Kuwait earned two gold medals and one bronze medal during their participation in the 2011 World Taekwondo Hanmadang held in Namyangju city in South Korea featuring more than 4,000 contestants

representing 52 countries. The Kuwaiti team, which is affiliated to the Kuwait Sea Sports Club, consisted of black belt holders Ahmad Sultan, Abdullah Abbas and Nasser Al-Shawwaf, who won the two

gold medals and bronze medal respectively in different brick breaking contests. The team is coached by Korean sensei Lee Hye Yung (black belt - 9 Dan), and Kuwaiti sensei Badr Saleh (black belt - 6 Dan).




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Scotland hope to revive 2012 qualification dream GLASGOW: Scotland captain Darren Fletcher has called on his team-mates not to give up on their Euro 2012 qualification dream despite Saturday’s 2-2 draw with the Czech Republic leaving their hopes in tatters. Scotland’s chances of securing second spot and a play-off place behind runaway Group I leaders Spain are hanging by a slender thread after a controversial decision from Dutch referee Kevin Blom in the final moments at Hampden Park. Fletcher scored what looked to be a Scotland winner in the 83rd minute, after Kenny Miller’s opener had been cancelled out by Jaroslav Pasil, that would have got Scotland’s qualification campaign back on track.

However controversy struck in the final minute when Blom pointed to the spot after substitute Jan Rezek went down despite no apparent contact from Danny Wilson. Michal Kadlec expertly converted the penalty which leaves Scotland with an uphill struggle to finish second. Scotland, who face Lithuania on Tuesday, are now five points behind the Czechs with a game in hand and Michal Bilek’s team will secure the play-off place if they beat Spain at home and then Lithuania away in their final two games. But Fletcher is determined to make sure Scotland make it as hard as they can for their rivals and believes there is still a chance they can overtake them,

even if they need to beat World champions Spain in Alicante on the final night of the group to do so. “We can’t finish this group on a whimper,” the Manchester United midfielder said. “The Czechs have got two difficult games but if we don’t do our job then what they do is irrelevant. “We don’t want it to be us not doing our jobs and then find out they have dropped points which meant we could have qualified. “We have got to concentrate on ourselves and make sure we take maximum points and put them under a little bit of pressure. “It is a big task because it’s out of our hands. All we can do is concentrate on ourselves and hope for a bit of

luck in their games. “We have to finish with a bang and not a whimper. We can’t give up, we have to keep battling while there is still hope.” Scotland manager Craig Levein faces major selection headaches for the Hampden clash against Lithuania today. He will be without Miller and Scott Brown who are suspended after picking up bookings against the Czechs while there are injury doubts over Alan Hutton, Charlie Adam and Phil Bardsley and Steven Naismith is on painkillers for a hip knock. Brighton striker Craig MackailSmith has already pulled out the squad leaving Levein with just Naismith and Blackburn Rovers forward David Goodwillie as his only real-

istic striking options. “We’ve got problems but there are some guys who missed out against the Czech Republic who were really unlucky not to be included in the team,” Levein said. “This is an opportunity for them. I’ve banged the drum loud and hard about how the squad is improving and how the amount of players we have available is improving and that will give opportunities to other people in what will be another really important match.” Despite so many injury worries Levein says he doesn’t plan to call up any replacements and will have Rangers utility man Steven Whittaker available after his one match suspension.—AFP

Terry expects Rooney to fire England’s Euro bid

DOHA: Qatar’s player Bilal Mohammed attends a training session in preparation for a 2014 World Cup qualifying soccer match against Iran. —AP

Asian big guns face tricky task Kuwait take on South Korea HONG KONG: Big guns Japan and Australia face awkward away ties in the latest round of qualifying games for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil today. Japan take on Asian Cup semi-finalists Uzbekistan in Tashkent, while the Socceroos face a long journey to play Saudi Arabia in the stifling heat of Dammam. Both sides will be aiming to kick their campaigns into life after leaving it perilously late to snatch winners in the opening games of the third-round group stage on Friday. The Blue Samurai squeaked past a dogged North Korean side thanks to a 94th-minute goal and Australia were just six minutes away from a humiliating draw at home to lowly Thailand when substitute Alex Brosque hit a winner to spare their blushes. Japan reached the last 16 in last year’s World Cup in South Africa and won this year’s Asian Cup, but boss Alberto Zaccheroni has warned his side to expect a tough fight in every qualifier. They will be without talismanic playmaker Keisuke Honda again today, after the CSKA Moscow midfielder underwent surgery on his knee last Thursday. Australia’s coach Holger Osieck said his side nearly paid the

price for poor execution against a Thai side 98 places below them in the FIFA rankings, and the German will expect a marked improvement against the Saudis. South Korea go to Kuwait and will be happy to pick up where they left off on Friday, when a hat-trick from Arsenal new boy Park Chu-Young took them to a thumping 6-0 win over Lebanon. China will be hoping to continue their successful start under new coach Jose Antonio Camacho away to Jordan, after their 2-1 win over Singapore, while the North Koreans face Tajikistan in Pyongyang. Singapore take on 2007 Asian champions Iraq at home and Thailand will look to pick themselves up after the late heartbreak in Brisbane as they face Oman in Bangkok. Lebanon face the United Arab Emirates at home and in Group E, Indonesia host Bahrain and Qatar take on Iran in Doha. Ten teams-winners and runners-up of the five third-round groups-will be drawn into two pools for the round-robin fourth stage, with the eventual top two in each section earning a ticket to Brazil. The two third-placed teams will then face each other for the right to contest an intercontinental play-off.—AFP

Russia prepare for Irish test MOSCOW: Russia prepare to host Ireland on Tuesday in a potentially decisive Euro 2012 group B qualifier with confidence high despite struggling to a 1-0 home win over Macedonia at the weekend. The narrow win allowed Russia to open up a two-point lead at the top of the section, and their Dutch coach Dick Advocaat insists the performance gave him plenty of reason to be optimistic about the clash with an Irish side that Russia beat 3-2 in Dublin last year. “We experienced some problems in the early stages against Macedonia, but after the break we showed that this Russian squad is capable of playing quality football,” Advocaat said. “On Tuesday it will be a completely different match. I think it was tougher to play against Macedonia than it will be against Ireland as the Macedonians had nothing to lose and were completely relaxed on the pitch.” “I don’t expect any surprises from Ireland. They have their own style and I think they will stick to it on today.” Arsenal midfielder Andrei Arshavin also stressed the importance of the win over Macedonia, adding that the synthetic pitch at Moscow’s Luzhniki stadium will give them an extra advantage against the Irish. “It was hard against Macedonia, especially in the first half,” he said. “After the break we regrouped and controlled the game.” “Ireland play a different style of football,” he added. “They are more of a

long-ball team than any of the other sides in our group, and I think they will be uncomfortable on the synthetic pitch at the Luzhniki.” Russia will be without their first-choice goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev today, with the CSKA Moscow man facing at least six months on the sidelines after rupturing the ligaments in his left knee. Zenit St Petersburg stopper Igor Denisov will also miss today’s showdown due to suspension, while Roman Shirokovalso of Zenit-is an injury doubt. Ireland, who relinquished top spot in the group after being held to a goalless draw at home by Slovakia, arrive in Moscow knowing they must win to keep alive their hopes of automatic qualification for next year’s finals. However, their Italian coach Giovanni Trapattoni is adamant that his side are capable of securing what would be a famous victory. “We must think that it is possible to win in Moscow,” he said. “It won’t be easy, but with the right mentality we can get a positive result.” Defender Sean St Ledger performed heroics at times at the heart of Ireland’s defence against the Slovaks, but a late booking in that game means he is suspended for this one. Forward Shane Long has also been ruled out. The West Bromwich Albion player was a late withdrawal for Friday’s game with a calf strain, and the injury has still not healed.—AFP

LONDON: England captain John Terry believes Wayne Rooney is back in the kind of sublime form that could turn his side into serious contenders for Euro 2012. Fabio Capello’s team can take another giant step towards qualifying for the finals in Poland and Ukraine if they defeat neighbors Wales at Wembley today and Rooney will be expected to lead the charge after ending his international goal drought in Friday’s 3-0 win over Bulgaria. Rooney had gone 15 matches without scoring for England before he netted a header from Gareth Barry’s corner and then converted an Ashley Young pass in sink the Bulgarians. As a result of Rooney’s double in Sofia, Terry and company need four points from their last two matches to guarantee qualification as group winners. Terry was delighted to see Rooney transfer his club form onto the international stage and he is confident the Manchester United striker will remain England’s main man for the next 10 years. “Wayne is flying again, he’s been excellent all week and he’s still very much at the forefront of this side,” Terry said. “Everyone has been talking about younger players and older players but Wayne doesn’t really fall into either category. He still has an awful lot to give over the next 10 years, I’m very confident of that. “He’s showed some great early form for Manchester United and just continued that when he linked up with England. “He’s great to have around the camp as well, he never settles for anything less than winning, even in training, and his enthusiasm rubs off on the younger players.” Rooney’s renaissance comes just over a year after his lowest moment in an England shirt when he swore at his country’s

LONDON: England’s soccer team run during a training session at play a Euro 2012 qualifier soccer match against Wales today. —AP supporters after they jeered him from Rooney would be a major and his team-mates following a plus for Capello, who has seen his dour 0-0 draw against Algeria at side fail to win any of their last four matches at Wembley. the 2010 World Cup. Capello is likely to keep faith He insists that bitter moment has been consigned to the past with the starting line-up that beat and now he will set his sights on Bulgaria, which means Chelsea scoring his first England goal at midfielder Frank Lampard will have to settle for a place on the Wembley since September 2009. “What happened, happened. bench again. Wales are ranked 117th in the There’s nothing anyone can do to change it, but I’m sure the fans FIFA rankings and they looked see that when I play I give 110 every bit as bad as that lowly percent every game,” Rooney position suggests when England cruised to a 2-0 victory in Cardiff said. “They were great again in earlier this year. However, Gary Speed’s team Bulgaria and I thank them for their support. “It was a great win finally ended a run of three years and if we can do it again on without a competitive home win Tuesday we have more or less by beating Montenegro on qualified. Wales did us a big Friday, a result which helped favour by beating Montenegro. England but could also prove a We’ve got one foot into the hinderance to Capello’s side if it infuses the Welsh players with finals.” Another inspired performance renewed belief.

Wembley Stadium. England will Speed’s hopes of causing a major upset would have been greatly improved if Craig Bellamy was available but the Liverpool striker will miss the derby clash through suspension, leaving Tottenham winger Gareth Bale and Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey as Wales’s most likely match-winners. “I can’t ask for more from the players because their application has been great for me. But I do want them to be more confident, more arrogant, more horrible so they can get that winning mentality,” Speed said. “They are sometimes too nice, someone said they’re all ideal sons-in-law, they are all really nice boys making their way in the game. “But they’re very good players too and getting that mentality right can be massive for us.”—AFP

Italy on the brink of Euro qualification FLORENCE: Italy are on the brink of Euro 2012 qualification, knowing that victory over Slovenia here today will ensure their place in Poland and Ukraine next year. Friday’s labored and rather fortunate 1-0 victory in the Faroe Islands-the hosts twice hit the woodwork-left Italy with a record of six wins and a draw from their seven Group C games. Following Slovenia’s 2-1 defeat at home to Estonia and Serbia’s victory over Northern Ireland, Italy only need another two points from three games to qualify for the finals. They can ensure progress with a victory against a team they have already beaten 1-0 in Ljubljana earlier in the qualifying campaign. Despite the poor performance in Torshavn, coach Cesare Prandelli is not planning on making many changes to his side. “I won’t change much against Slovenia today. I’m considering changing the full-backs, they used up a lot of energy,” he said. “We’re playing a team that must win to stay in the hunt for Euro 2012 so we should have more spaces available to us and more chances to stretch the game.” With games away to Serbia and at home to Northern Ireland still to come, it seems unlikely that Italy will not qualify for the finals but Prandelli is still not entirely happy with his team. “We’re still not a solid team. We became worried and nervous (against the Faroes) and in the next games we have to learn from this experience,” he said. “I watched the game again, there was a lot of disorganisation after an excellent start. “We weren’t clinical in front of goal. Maybe it was my fault as we tried to play football, as we had insisted on doing in training, but to an excessive degree. “We passed the ball six times in the penalty area without shooting, that’s too much. “And then it was a tough pitch, it was a strange game. They defended with 10 men in 35 metres. “With the maximum respect for

our opponents, we found the same difficulties that teams have in training matches on Thursdays when professionals play against amateurs.” Slovenia have now lost three qualification games and are on the brink of missing out on a play-off spot. All three of their defeats have come at home and with Serbia showing signs of recovering after their own disastrous start to the campaign, in which they lost 3-1 at home to Estonia and then forfeited their match in Italy due to crowd violence, Slovenia are no longer favourites for second place. Serbia are level on points with Slovenia but with a game in hand, while both Estonia and Northern Ireland are also still in contention to finish second.—AFP

Matches on TV (Local Timings) WC2014 Qualifying - Asia Thailand v Oman 10:30 Dubai Sports 1 Aljazeeras Sport 2 Singapore v Iraq 14:30 Al Jazeera Sport 1 Dubai Sport 2 Indonesia v Bahrain 15:00 Al Jazeera Sport Global Lebanon v United Arab Emirates 17:00 Abu Dhabi Sports 1 Dubai Sports 1 Al Jazeera Sport Global Uzbekistan v Japan 17:00 Dubai Sports 2 Qatar v Iran - 19:30 Al Jazeera Sport 1 Kuwait v South Korea 20:00 Dubai Sports 1 Saudi Arabia v Australia 20:30 Al Jazeera Sport Global

FLORENCE: Italy forward Mario Balotelli smiles during a training session of the Italian national soccer team ahead of today’s Group C, Euro 2012 match against Slovenia. —AP



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African minnows keep dreams alive as shock results continue CAPE TOWN: Unheralded Central African Republic and Niger continued a series of shock results in the African Nations Cup qualifiers on Sunday to keep up their hopes of clinching unlikely places in next year’s finals. Niger’s 2-1 win over South Africa and a home draw for Central African Republic with Morocco meant both countries, with little previous pedigree in the game, are one win away from a first-ever appearance at the continental championship. Kofi Dankwa’s 10th minute header and a close-in tap-in just after half-time from Moussa Maazou, Niger’s only

European-based professional, ensured a 2-1 win over South Africa in Niamey and elevation to the top place in Group G. Niger, who have a 100 percent home record, have a one-point lead over Sierra Leone and South Africa but must now keep up their giant-killing run with an away victory over eliminated Egypt in October to make sure of winning the group South Africa, who had not conceded a goal in four previous qualifiers, are still favourites to finish top as they host Sierra Leone in the last round of matches next month, but Niger could still go to the finals as one of two best

runners-up. The same applies to Central African Republic, who had won just a single Nations Cup qualifier in four decades of participation before the start of the 2012 preliminaries. They share top place in Group D with Morocco, both on eight points, with one game to go. Sunday’s results continued a year of upsets which have seen defending champions Egypt eliminated and former winners Algeria, Cameroon, Nigeria and Tunisia all in danger of missing out on the finals next January. Nigeria’s Super Eagles helped their cause with a 2-0 away win in

Madagascar but are still three points behind Guinea in Group B. Veteran centre back Bobo Balde scored just after the half hour as Guinea beat Ethiopia 1-0 in Conakry. Uganda needed only a point from their away match in Angola to qualify for the first time since 1978 but lost 2-0 to secondhalf goals from Manucho and Flavio. Previously unbeaten Uganda, with 10 points from five games, are still one point clear of Angola at the top of Group J and can qualify with a win at home to neighbours Kenya in their final match next month. Ramadhan Agab scored 13 minutes

from time to hand Sudan a 1-0 away win against Congo in Brazzaville that saw them join Ghana at the top of Group I, which will be decided when last year’s World Cup quarter-finalists visit Khartoum next month. Zambia went one point above Libya in Group C after winning 2-1 in the Comoros Islands. Zambia host Libya in their final group game next month. Along with co-hosts Equatorial Guinea and Gabon, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast and Senegal have already qualified. The last round of qualifiers will be played on the weekend of October 79.—Reuters

Temporary contract ends Serie A strike

BUENOS AIRES: Independiente’s Jorge Perez (top) is tackled by Boca Juniors’ Matias Caruzzo (bottom) during an Argentine soccer league match. —AP

Rafaela stay on top in Argentina BUENOS AIRES: Promoted Atletico Rafaela won 1-0 at Union to stay top of the Argentine first division, a point ahead of favorites Boca Juniors, while champions Velez Sarsfield went down to their second successive defeat on Sunday. Velez, seventh with seven points, lost at Olimpo in Bahia Blanca with Paraguayan Nestor Bareiro and fellow striker Martin Rolle, who scored a goal apiece, giving the visiting defence a torrid time. Former Mexico striker Guillermo Franco headed an equaliser before halftime but failed with a chance to put Velez level again when his 80th-minute penalty was saved by Laureano Tombolini. Rafaela, who have 12 points from four wins in five matches in the Apertura championship, scored with an own goal through Union defender Juan Pablo Cardenas, who was sent off near the end for a second booking. Union, another promoted side, could have equalised just after the interval but Jeronimo Barrales’s penalty was saved

by Guillermo Sara. Boca, 1-0 winners at Independiente in the weekend’s biggest match, are joint second with Lanus on 11 points and remain unbeaten. Rolando Schiavi, the 38-year-old defender in his second spell at Boca and captain for the day in the absence of injured midfielder Juan Roman Riquelme, hoofed the only goal home in a melee after a corner early in the second half. With Boca dominant in the second half, winger Pablo Mouche rounded goalkeeper Fabian Assman and looked to have steered the ball home eight minutes later for a second goal but defender Julian Velazquez cleared off the line, although he was hurt crashing into the post and had to be substituted. Hard-core Independiente fans chanted outside the team’s dressing room demanding coach Antonio Mohamed’s dismissal. Lanus beat Estudiantes 2-1 at home on Saturday to keep the ailing 2010 Apertura champions stuck one from bottom with just two points.—Reuters

ROME: The Serie A strike ended yesterday after the Italian players’ association and league signed a temporary collective contract, clearing the way for the season to start this weekend. The new contract expires in June, whereas usually the deals last three years. The players’ strike postponed the scheduled start of Serie A the weekend of Aug. 2728, and both sides wanted to reach an agree ment before the second round begins Friday with defending champion AC Milan facing Lazio at the San Siro. While details were still emerging, the agreement was expected to stipulate that the sides reach a deal over the next 30 days on the last remaining conflict - a clause concerning the rights of players to train with the first team. Clubs want the clause to state they can force unwanted players to train away from the first team or accept a transfer. “It was worth having such a fierce dispute,” said Serie A president Maurizio Beretta. “The clubs obtained a lot of what they wanted. It’s a very innovative agreement.” Changes to the government’s austerity package eliminated the other major conflict, a new solidarity tax that would have applied to high-wage earners like top-division footballers. “The players’ good will in these negotiations should be noted,” players’ association president Damiano Tommasi said. “If Beretta says the clubs obtained a lot, that should mean there won’t be much more to discuss for the new contract that will last beyond this short-term deal.” Both sides were slated to meet with the government later to discuss new stadiums, brand protections and other issues. The conflict between the players and the league has

been ongoing since the last collective contract expired in June 2010. The players set two strike dates during the first half of last season, both of which were avoided with last-minute verbal agreements. The players’ association first proposed a

ROME: Italian soccer players’ association president Damiano Tommasi (left) is flanked by former AC Milan and national forward Gianni Rivera, during a meeting at the Tor Vergata University. —AP one-year temporary contract lasting through June 30 as a last-minute emergency measure to avoid a strike. The clubs rejected the proposal then but accepted it after further review during a league assembly last week. “The most important thing was the will of the league to evaluate our proposal last week,” Tommasi said. “In the meantime, two things happened: The solidarity tax was

Thursday’s big clash with Flamengo. Flamengo, without captain and top scorer Ronaldinho on Brazil duty in London, were stunned by Bahia, who had travelled to Rio in the relegation zone after sacking coach Rene Simoes during the week. Bahia, set to unveil former Cruzeiro coach Joel Santana as their new trainer on Tuesday, made the most of Flamengo’s errors to climb to 15th. Central defender Titi ghosted into the box at a corner to open the scoring in the 23rd minute while Dodo and Souza also enjoyed ample room to add further goals in the first half after Renato’s equaliser. Copa Brasil holders Vasco were upset by bottom side America a week after coach Ricardo Gomes suffered a stroke during their match against Flamengo. Ricardo remains in intensive care in hospital, doctors said. Title holders Fluminense scored three times in the last seven minutes, as they recovered to beat Atletico Goianiense 3-2 on Saturday and climb into seventh place. Former Brazil striker Rafael Sobis scored in the 83rd and 87th minutes and Rafael Moura hit the winner in the 90th.—Reuters

Lecce vs. Udinese; Roma vs. Cagliari; and Palermo vs. Inter Milan. Both sides wanted to get matches in before the Champions League group phase begins next week with Milan opening at defending champion Barcelona, Inter hosting Turkish club Trabzonspor and Napoli visiting Manchester City. The first round of league matches wiped out by the strike will likely be made up at a later date.—AP

Mexico’s Guadalajara go top MEXICO CITY: Guadalajara went top and Santos Laguna fired coach Diego Cocca while most club sides had the weekend off in the Mexican first division championship with the national team playing friendlies in Europe. Mexico beat Chile 1-0 in a friendly in Barcelona with a goal from a free kick by midfielder Andres Guardado 10 minutes

from time having drawn 1-1 with Poland in Warsaw on Friday. Morelia, losing finalists to Pumas UNAM in the Clausura championship at the end of last season, beat San Luis 3-2 away with two goals from Jaime Lozano to steer clear of the relegation zone. Argentine Cocca, who had been in charge since February,

was sacked after Santos, also dangerously close to the drop zone, lost 3-2 at Chiapas on Friday. “After much analysis we have decided to remove (Cocca) and look for another sporting leader who can steer us to the level of excellence the club demands,” Santos president Alejandro Irarragorri told reporters.

Guadalajara, also playing a match on Friday pending from earlier in the season, went top of the Apertura standings with a 1-0 win at promoted Tijuana. The Chivas have 16 points after seven matches, two points more than second-placed Cruz Azul with Pumas fifth on 11. Morelia and Santos both have seven points from six matches. —Reuters

Ronaldinho given World Cup hope

Upsets for three of Brazil’s top four favor Sao Paulo RIO DE JANEIRO: Shock defeats for leaders Corinthians, Vasco da Gama and Flamengo on Sunday allowed Sao Paulo to climb to second place in the Brazilian championship. Vasco, who had been in second place, lost 4-1 at America while Flamengo were upset 3-1 at home by Bahia in two surprise victories for teams in the relegation zone while Corinthians went down 1-0 away to Coritiba. Sao Paulo beat Figueirense 2-1 away on Saturday with former Brazil forward Rivaldo scoring the winner. They are two points behind Corinthians. After 21 matches, Corinthians have 40 points, Sao Paulo and Vasco 38 and Botafogo 37 with a game in hand. Flamengo, without a win in six matches, dropped to fifth on 36 points. Corinthians, who had won only three of their previous nine matches, continued with their wayward form after a good start to the championship, full back Jonas heading Coritiba’s late winner. “It wasn’t the expected result. This has to serve as a lesson for our next game, we can’t drop back so much,” Corinthians striker Emerson told reporters looking ahead to

erased and the round-table with the government was set up.” The other matches this weekend are: Cesena vs. Napoli; Juventus vs. Parma, Catania vs. Siena; Chievo Verona vs. Novara; Fiorentina vs. Bologna; Genoa vs. Atalanta;

Brazil’s Ronaldinho jokes during a training session.

LONDON: After rediscovering his form, fitness and passion for football, Ronaldinho has been given hope he can re-establish himself as a permanent fixture in the Brazil team through to the 2014 World Cup on home soil. The two-time world player of the year will play his first game for his national team in 10 months when the Brazilians take on Ghana in an international friendly in London yesterday. A string of impressive displays for Flamengo in the Brazilian league persuaded Brazil coach Mano Menezes to recall the 31year-old Ronaldinho, who is now being viewed not just a supremely gifted player but also a mentor to the country’s new wave of talent. “ This isn’t a temporary solution,” Menezes said Sunday. “It’s important for the Brazilians to have someone like Ronaldinho, with his experience and his history with the Brazil team, with a World Cup coming up. Alongside the younger players, he will try to build the Brazil team so we can get to the next stage (in their development) and then to the World Cup. “Yes, there’s a long time to go yet but a player like Ronaldinho has got the qualities we need. It’s about playing well at this time and he’s been doing that with Flamengo so I do believe he is able to play at the World Cup.” A world champion in 2002, Ronaldinho was one of the best players of the last decade but after a glittering, trophy-laden spell at Spanish giant Barcelona between 2003-08, his career nosedived at AC Milan. Back in Brazilian football and a scorer of 10 goals for Flamengo this season, he is again playing with a smile on his face and Menezes had no qualms in bringing him out of the international wilderness for the match at Fulham’s Craven Cottage ground in southwest London. “He needed time to adapt to being home again and that’s what I was looking for - to see if he could play regularly, play well and enjoy himself,” Menezes said. “Ronaldinho brings a lot. He is a leader, has that technical part to his game and he is a player you can rely on to help with all the

young players coming into the team now.” And Ronaldinho’s teammates are happy to have him back. “As a player, we all know what he is capable of,” said Lucas Leiva, the Liverpool defensive midfielder. “He’s been out of the Brazil squad for a few months but whenever he comes back to the national team, we have a lot of respect because he has such a great history. “We hope he can help the young players develop to a good level. But he wants to keep going and play in the next World Cup as well.” Menezes has turned to Ronaldinho after seeing his team eliminated from the Copa America at the quarterfinal stage, on penalties to Paraguay, and then lose 3-2 to Germany in a friendly last month. In 13 matches in charge of Brazil, Menezes has six wins, three losses and four draws and with the rebuilding job after the 2010 World Cup not going as smoothly as planned, he is starting to come under severe pressure. Outwardly at least, Menezes appears unruffled. “With our team, every game is a must-win,” he said. “I’m not worried about my job and what is being said. I just try to do the best job that I can but in football you never know what might happen.” Robinho is missing for Brazil with a groin injury, the same problem that will deprive Ghana of star striker Asamoah Gyan, who was hurt in Friday’s African Nations Cup qualifier against Swaziland. A 2-0 win not only maintained Ghana’s unbeaten record in the campaign, it also meant the World Cup quarterfinalists have lost just one of their last nine matches, giving them hope they can beat Brazil for the first time. Ghana coach Goran Stevanovic, whose side drew 1-1 with England at Wembley in March, said he would ring the changes after Friday’s match to give some younger players a chance. “Gyan not playing is a big problem for us ... and Brazil will be the favorites,” Stevanovic said. “But we have a chance. Why not? We got a very good result against England and I hope we can get another.”—AP

Terry expects Rooney to fire England’s Euro bid

Pakistan crush Zimbabwe




Championships close with rule debate raging Page 17

NEW YORK: Serena Williams of the US serves during her women’s fourth round match against Ana Ivanovic of Serbia at the 2011 US Open tennis tournament. —AFP

Serena storms into last eight Pavlyuchenkova labors on Labor Day NEW YORK: Serena Williams eased closer to a fourth US Open title yesterday, storming past Ana Ivanovic 6-3, 6-4 to set-up a quarter-final clash with Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, the youngest player left in the draw. Williams, seeded a lowly 28 after a year spent battling injury and serious illness, has yet to drop a set at Flushing Meadows this year and former world number one Ivanovic never looked likely to break that streak. The 29-year-old American raced into a 3-0 lead in the opening set on a windswept Arthur Ashe Stadium before 16th-seeded Ivanovic, who has never got beyond the last 16, hit back to level at 3-3. But a break in the eighth game put Williams on course to take the opener. Another break in the first game of the second set proved the foundation for victory which she secured when Ivanovic went long with a service return. “It was so windy today, it was really tough,” said Serena, who came into the US Open with titles in Stanford and Toronto, her first tournament wins after spending 11 months on the sidelines following Wimbledon in 2010. “I feel so blessed to be back. A couple of months ago I never

expected to be here. I feel so honoured now and every match is a bonus. It’s all so exciting.” With defending champion Kim Clijsters not playing, and with former winner Maria Sharapova, Wimbledon victor Petra Kvitova and French Open titlist Li Na losing before the third round, Williams is comfortably the tournament favorite. Russia’s Pavlyuchenkova battled back to defeat seventh-seeded Italian Francesca Schiavone 5-7, 6-3, 6-4 to reach her first US Open quarter-final in a mistake-plagued last 16 clash. Pavlyuchenkova, the 17th seed, triumphed in a match-up of the youngest and oldest players — 20 and 31 — left in the women’s event. But yesterday’s 2hr 42min match, which opened the programme on Labor Day, a national holiday in the US, was not for the purists with 21 double faults, 16 breaks of serve and a combined 95 unforced errors. “It’s a dream come true for me to reach the quarter-finals here for the first time. I’m so happy about it,” said Pavlyuchenkova, who lost to Schiavone at the same stage last year and in the quarter-finals of this season’s French Open. At Roland Garros, she had squandered a 6-1, 4-1 lead before

losing in three sets to Schiavone, the champion in Paris in 2010. “It was much easier because it was a different situation,” said the Russian, who was the 2006 junior champion in New York. “There I was negative and tired, that’s why I was 5-1 down in the third set very quickly. This time I won the second set, emotionally I felt better and I felt like I could win.” The 20-year-old needed three match points to secure victory after squandering two with a pair of ugly forehands before a booming forehand winner wrapped up the affair. The day’s other last 16 ties see top seed and world number one Caroline Wozniacki tackle 2004 champion Svetlana Kuznetsova, the Russian 15th seed. Wozniacki, still without a Grand Slam title, was the runner-up to Clijsters at Flushing Meadows in 2009, beating Kuznetsova in the fourth round on her way to the final. The Dane has a 4-2 winning record over the 26-year-old Kuznetsova. The winner of that tie will take on either German 10th seed Andrea Petkovic or unseeded Spaniard Carla Suarez Navarro. Petkovic lost the pair’s only other previous meeting at the 2010 Australian Open. The German, who will be 24 on Friday, is

Superb Spain, Serbia and France roll on PANEVEZYS: Holders Spain booked a second stage berth in the European championship with a match to spare and stated their title credentials with an emphatic 91-79 win over hosts Lithuania on Sunday. They were joined by Serbia after the 2009 runners-up eased to a 75-64 defeat of Germany in Siauliai and France, who trailed against Italy for three quarters before putting their foot on the gas pedal to register a 91-84 success. Surprise package Macedonia celebrated their third straight win after edging Finland 7270, while Poland enjoyed a dramatic 84-83 victory over Turkey which left the runners-up of last year’s world championship facing an early exit. Having played in fits and starts in their opening three wins against modest rivals, Spain demonstrated their full repertoire in a breathtaking first half against the Lithuanians, when they romped to a 62-36 lead. Point guard Juan Carlos Navarro scored 15 points in the opening quarter and finished as the game’s top scorer with 22 points, followed by Los Angeles Lakers centre Pau Gasol on 17, Serge Ibaka on 15 and Jose Calderon who had 12. “We were prepared and played very well today but we can still be a better team and need to stay focused,” Calderon told Spanish television. “It’s a long tournament with some very good teams, so we have to take it one day at a time, the good thing is that we got everyone into the game today. “Now that we are through to the second stage, we have to keep working hard because this was just one step forward.” Ibaka added: “It was an easy game for us because we started aggressively in defence and that made scoring at the other end easier than two weeks ago, when we lost to Lithuania in a warm-up match.”

Dirk Nowitzki, who steered the Dallas Mavericks to the 2011 NBA title, was lethal as usual scoring 25 points for Germany but a more resourceful Serbian team contained his team mates with tight defence and incisive passing at the other end. The Serbs, who face France in a mouthwatering clash on Monday, had nine rebounds and eight assists more than the Germans, with point guard Milos Teodosic at the heart of their success with 12 points, nine assists and as many rebounds. Forward Dusko Savanovic led the winners in scoring with 18 points and centre Nenad Krstic added 15, as both teams nailed nine three-pointers from 25 attempts in a fastflowing game. The world’s top point guard Tony Parker had a poor game and scored only eight points for France, who relied on Nicolas Batum and Boris Diaw to claw out victory against the Italians. Charlotte Bobcats forward Diaw hauled 22 points and Houston Rockets hitman Batum chipped in 20 to cancel out a good effort by Italy’s Toronto Raptors centre Andrea Bargnani, who put 22 points on the board but only five of them in the second half. With Parker on the bench, Diaw and Batum led the charge which overturned a seven-point deficit as Bargani failed to score in the final period. Macedonia, who romped to a memorable 72-58 win over former champions Greece on Friday, moved a step closer to their biggest success as an independent nation after coming out on top against the Finns in a game played at frantic pace in Alytus. Roared on by several hundred fans who made the trip to the Baltic, the Macedonians held off a spirited Finnish challenge in the final period as their centre Pero Antic won the man of the match award with 14 points and 19 rebounds.—Reuters

NEW YORK: Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia reacts during her match against Francesca Schiavone of Italy during the US Open. —AP bidding to reach her first US Open quarter-final having made the last eight at the Australian Open and at Roland Garros this year. The remaining women’s quarter-finals line-up was decided on Sunday with Vera Zvonareva, the second seeded Russian and runner-up last year, setting up a clash against Australian Samantha Stosur, the ninth seed. Italian 26th seed Flavia Pennetta will be facing unseeded German Angelique Kerber in the other last eight tie.—AFP

Players left exhausted by heat and humidity

LITHUANIA: Bulgaria’s Earl Rowland (left) challenges for the ball with Georgia’s Tornike Shengelia, during their EuroBasket European Basketball Championship Group D match. —AP

NEW YORK: Rafa Nadal sent shockwaves through the US Open on Sunday when he collapsed during his post-match news conference because of severe cramping in his leg as the first week of the tournament ended in dramatic fashion. The scorching conditions have been a key factor in the 18 retirements so far at the final major of the season, and for a brief moment it appeared the defending men’s champion would join them in an event that has become a survival of the fittest. Italy’s Flavia Pennetta was so overcome by the humidity that she began dry retching during her match against China’s Peng Shuai while Argentina’s Juan Martin Del Potro, the 2009 champion, bowed out after wilting in the sun. “I think I have played better every day,” Nadal said at his news conference. “Today, for moments, I played, in my opinion, at a very, very positive level, very high level.” Moments later, Nadal suddenly stopped talking, then covered his face with his hands and slumped to the floor. Journalists were ordered to leave the room and the lights were turned down as medical staff were called to treat the Spaniard, who slid from his chair on to the floor. He was obscured by a desk but closed circuit television showed a trainer massaging his right leg while another man gave Nadal ice and fluids. The Spaniard remained on the carpet for about 10 minutes before he was eventually helped to his feet. He returned to the conference room shortly after to explain what happened, smiling and playing down the incident. “I just have cramping in my leg. That’s all,” he said. “I just have cramping in front and behind. That’s why. It was so painful. That’s all.” Nadal’s next opponent is Gilles Muller of Luxembourg, who beat Russia’s Igor Kunitsyn 6-1 6-4 6-4. Nadal was not the only player struggling with the heat. Pennetta, who had upset Maria Sharapova in the third round, almost threw up at the back of the court as she was serving for the match in the second set against Peng. Her game started to look as sick as her. She failed to hold her serve then fell behind 6-2 in the tiebreaker. But the 29-year-old Italian regained her composure in the nick of time, reeling off the next six points in a row to win 6-4 7-6 and advance to a quarter-final meeting with unseeded German Angelique Kerber. “I started having the sensation to throw up,” Pennetta said. “But there was nothing inside, so it didn’t come out.” Del Potro lost 4-6 7-6 6-2 7-6 to Frenchman Gilles Simon on a bad day for Argentina. As well as Nalbandian and Del Potro, Juan Ignacio Chela also departed, losing to American wildcard Donald Young 7-5 6-4 6-3.—Reuters



Ramadan, security boost Abu Dhabi hotel stays

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Next ECB head calls for integration Page 25


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BMW ConnectedDrive Displays driver assistance technologies Page 22

FRANKFURT: A trader scratches his head at the stock market in Frankfurt yesterday. European shares slumped in early trading. Britain’s FTSE 100 dropped 2.2 percent to 5,176.06. Germany’s DAX fell 3.2 percent to 5,361.60, and France’s CAC-40 tumbled 3.6 percent to 3,036.17. —AP

Euro stocks plunge on recession, debt risks Euro falls below $1.41, gold jumps above $1,900 LONDON: European stocks plunged by about 5.0 percent yesterday, hit by acute tension over the risk of recession in leading economies and over euro-zone debt. Bonds issued by Greece and Italy fell, and the cost of insuring against default by Italy and France, as indicated by the market for credit default swap (CDS) instruments, rose sharply. German stocks were down by nearly 6.0 percent, while in London, the FTSE index fell by 3.06 percent to 5,129.97 points. The euro fell below $1.41. The price of gold jumped back above $1,900 an ounce on demand for a safe haven investment. The head of the European Central Bank Jean-Claude Trichet warned of an immediate and impera-

tive need for enactment of a second debt rescue for Greece, and for tightened discipline in the management of euro-zone economies. He also spoke of an eventual “confederal” disciplined management of euro-zone national finances. And the head of the International Monetary Fund Christine Lagarde repeated her warning that banks in Europe need extra capital to withstand any contagion from the euro-zone debt crisis. The move against stocks was exacerbated by a decision by US authorities to take legal action against 17 leading international banks over trading in securitized mortgage trading at the heart of the 2008 financial crisis, traders said.

Bank shares fell heavily in Europe. The Frankfurt stock market was showing a fall of 5.55 percent from the closing level on Friday to 5,230.84 points on the DAX index with Deutsche Bank shares down 9.59 percent. In Paris the CAC 40 index was down 5.10 percent to 2,987.96 points and in Milan, the FTSE Mib index was showing a fall of 5.30 percent to 14,263 points. Asian stocks also fell sharply, with the Tokyo market shedding 1.86 percent. The US legal moves are aimed at recouping billions of dollars lost in the financial crisis. ECB data showed that eurozone banks have deposited record amounts of overnight funds with it, a signal of reluctance by banks to lend to each other.

“The banking sector continues to remain under pressure today as it underperforms across Europe,” said Manoj Ladwa, senior trader at ETX Capital. “ The chances of a near-term recovery remain slim as euro-zone debt concerns, structural reform and a lawsuit for allegedly misselling mortgage debt all weigh heavy on the sector,” he added. “The US decided to drop a bombshell on the banking sector ahead of their extended weekend by announcing a $200-billion (141billion-euro) lawsuit across the whole industry for the miss selling of mortgage backed assets, the dreaded subprime loans,” said Simon Denham, head of London-based trading

Labour unrest cuts Maruti production

Oil drop weighs on Saudi, Egypt rises

MUMBAI: India’s largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki said it rolled out just 200 cars from its plant in the north of the country yesterday as a worker dispute rumbled on. The company normally makes 1,200 vehicles a day at its Manesar factory in Haryana state, but assembly has been held up since last Monday when workers were accused of sabotaging cars on the production line. “We are beginning to gather momentum,” a company spokesman told AFP, adding that only 435 cars were made last week. Engineers and frontline managers have been overseeing quality control, vehicle inspection and testing during the dispute, which is the third to hit the plant in as many months. The carmaker, which employs nearly 2,000 people at the Manesar plant, started rolling out cars again last Wednesday with the help of hastily recruited labor. —AFP

MIDEAST STOCK MARKETS DUBAI: Saudi Arabia’s bourse declined yesterday as falling crude prices and worries over the global economy spurred selling, ending an early-week equity rally in the world’s top oil exporter. Regional markets were mixed, with Egypt gaining on optimism that company results would begin to improve after a popular uprising damaged the economy. Saudi petrochemicals led a drop by the 15 top stocks, with Saudi Basic Industries Corp (SABIC) and Yanbu National Petrochemical Co (Yansab) down 1.3 percent each. US crude futures were down 2.6 percent at $84.22 a barrel at 1349 GMT. “The major driver for Saudi is the global macro picture and where oil prices are going,” said Hesham Tuffaha, Bakheet Investment Group head asset management. “If we get a week of calm on global markets, Saudi investors will shift their focus onto third-quarter results.” He forecast profits in petrochemicals and banking would fall quarter-on-quarter, with petrochemical margins tied to oil prices and banks failing to increase lending activity, with local consumption helping retail, construction and food. “These sectors will most likely achieve double-digit growth compared to Q2,” added Tuffaha. World stocks fell yestrday as worries about Greek and Italian fiscal deficits and fears of a renewed US recession prompted investors to sell riskier assets. Dubai and Abu Dhabi extended drops, as Dubai Islamic Bank fell 1 percent and Deyaar lost 2.6 percent. “Our markets are not suffering from high

valuations or a bad economy, but low liquidity and that cannot change without intervention from government or semi-government institutions,” said Mohammed Yasin, CAPM Investment chief investment officer. Dubai turnover, at a six-year low in 2010, is still lacklustre and the index is down 9.3 percent in 2011. The market’s woes come despite an upbeat outlook for the UAE economy, which is forecast to grow 3.7 percent in 2011, according to a Reuters poll in June. . Real estate dominates Dubai’s stock market and is mired in a deep correction as property prices plunged by more than half from 2008 peaks. Egypt’s main index rose 1.2 percent, taking its gains to 5.3 percent since early August’s two-year low. “There are good volumes going through the market,” said CIBC trader Omar Darwish.”(Gains are) mainly driven by pre-earnings as everyone is looking forward to good third-quarter results.” Orascom Construction , due to report results this week, rose 2.3 percent and dominated trading. Kuwait’s index rose for a seventh session in eight since late August’s seven-year low, but a sustained recovery is unlikely, with traders dismayed the oil exporter’s $110 billion development plan revealed in 2010 has come to little. “People had bet on the plan providing the market with some momentum, but it now seems it is on hold and only ever seemed like a vague spending plan, rather than a plan to build the nation,” said a Kuwait trader who asked not to be identified.— Reuters

group Capital Spreads. US firms targeted in the suits included Bank of America, Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, General Electric, Ally Financial and First Horizon. The foreign banks were Deutsche Bank, HSBC, Credit Suisse, Barclays, Nomura, Royal Bank of Scotland and Societe Generale. Traders also continued to digest weak US data from late last week. The jobs data for August were the worst since September 2010, when the economy shed more than twice the number of jobs it created. The pace of job growth remains far below the numbers needed to reduce the high unemployment rate. — AFP

PRAGUE: Gold bars weighing one ton are displayed in a vault at the Czech Central Bank yesterday in Prague. — AFP




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BMW ConnectedDrive displays driver assistance technologies Ali Alghanim & Sons Automotive FutureLab demos at Marina Crescent KUWAIT: Ali Alghanim & Sons Automotive is currently providing a live demonstration of its innovative ConnectedDrive driver-assistance technologies through an especially designed FutureLab that explains BMW’s key innovations through the senses of sight, sound and touch. BMW ConnectedDrive is BMW Group’s philosophy of exchanging information between the driver, the car and the outside world to give the driver and passengers’ information and services to help make their driving experience safer and more comfortable. The display, which will continue till the 8th of this month at Marina Crescent in Marina Mall in Kuwait, was flown in especially from Munich by Ali Alghanim & Sons Automotive, the exclusive importer of the BMW Group in Kuwait. Through this display, visitors are able to go inside the FutureLab and take part in interactive demonstrations of BMW technology in two of the latest BMW models, the BMW X3 and BMW 6 Series Convertible. Commenting on the initiative, Yousef Al-Qatami, General Manager of Ali Alghanim & Sons Automotive said, “As a high-traffic area that is always busy, Marina Crescent in Marina Mall is the perfect venue for us to display this FutureLab for people to see, understand and experience the latest technological advancements that have been incorporated over the last two years into the BMW’s latest product range. These features have all been designed to benefit the driver and passenger from both a safety and comfort standpoint.” The display also highlights the BMW ConnectedDrive function BMW Online, which enables customers, whose vehicles have the required function options, to access emails and their address book from the car, where messages are displayed on the vehicle’s monitor and accessed through the iDrive controller. Customers can also log onto their personal, password-protected BMW Online email account. In addition, passengers can also connect Wifi services to experience onboard internet access through their portable devices such as smartphone’s, laptops and iPads. Available across the entire BMW range

of new models as optional features, the BMW ConnectedDrive elements fall into three categories - Comfort, Safety and Infotainment - under which there is a growing range of innovative and inspiring

Burgan Bank announces Yawmi Account winners KUWAIT: Burgan Bank held its Yawmi account draw announcing a total of 2 lucky daily prize winners, each taking home KD 5000. The lucky winners for the two daily draws took home a cashprize of KD 5000 each. The lucky winners are: 1. Abdulaziz Abdullah Essa Alwazzan 2. Ratna Mohan Prasad Burgan Bank’s Yawmi account was the first in the country to have a daily draw. Burgan Bank encourages everyone to open a Yawmi account

and parking in tight spaces. Internet Access: BMW is the first automobile manufacturer to offer unlimited on-board Internet access. Once the car has safely stopped, you can surf the Web on the control display and use the iDrive Controller as a computer mouse. Bluetooth Office: The main smartphone functions can now be transmitted to the car via Bluetooth Office, so the vehicle acts as a mobile workspace with the ability to call up everything from notes and contacts to emails. BMW Head-Up Display: Derived from the information technology for fighter jet pilots, it helps make driving safer by projecting information about the current speed, route navigation on to the windscreen as a virtual image to ensure the driver’s attention stays on the road. Advanced Emergency Call: In the event of an accident, crash sensors automatically activate the Advance Emergency Call and at the same time precise positioning data for your vehicle’s location is automatically transmitted through your BMW. Park Assist: Allows the vehicle to parallel-park itself, where the driver only needs to operate the accelerator and brake. A sensor automatically scans parked cars for an available space. Once a suitable parking spot is found, the driver is prompted via the Control Display to stop the vehicle in order to start the parking manoeuvre. Collision Warning with Brake Activation: This system uses radar technology to monitor distance to the car ahead and provide warnings wherever necessary. If the driver fails to respond, the system automatically brakes.

technologies, including: Surround View: With Surround View, the control display offers a 270 degree bird’s eye view of everything around the car providing support when manoeuvring

Stewart Lockie, GM, Retail Banking

ABK customers enjoy access to VIP lounges Cards from Al Ahli Bank of Kuwait are a preferred mode of payment, more so as one of the best advantages ABK provides to ABK Geant MasterCard Titanium and ABK Emirates World MasterCard cardholders, is free access to VIP lounges in airports around the world. In addition to Kuwait, Cairo and Dubai airports, clients can now enjoy access to VIP lounges in Riyadh, Jeddah & Dammam airports as well. Stewart Lockie, GM , Retail Banking commented: “ In ABK we are keen to provide services that are exclusive to our clients. Now ABK Geant MasterCard Titanium and ABK Emirates World MasterCard cardholders can enjoy hospitality in luxurious VIP lounges; The First Class Lounges at Riyadh, Jeddah & Dammam airports, the Pearl Lounge at Kuwait Airport, First Class and the Special Services lounges at Cairo Airport and Marhaba Lounge on Terminals 1 & 3 at Dubai Airport. ABK Emirates World MasterCard credit cardholders will eventually gain free access to over 600 VIP lounges in airports around the world distributed in 100 countries and 300 cities, through the Priority Pass Program.” Lockie added: “To enjoy this service all you have to do is show your ABK Geant MasterCard Titanium or ABK Emirates World MasterCard along with your boarding card to the reception at the lounge”. To benefit from ABK’s various offers and services please call Ahlan Ahli on 1899899 , or chat live with our client servicing on Ahli Chat through our website .

Ex-Iceland PM goes on trial for role in banking crisis REYKJAVIK: Iceland’s ex-premier Geir Haarde becomes the first political leader yesterday to be tried over the global financial crisis as judges decide whether he can be held responsible for the collapse of the banking sector. Haarde, who has dismissed the case as a farce, was one of four politicians blamed in a report last year for contributing to the country’s stunning economic collapse, when all its major banks failed in a matter of weeks. But parliament voted last September that he was the only one who should be charged with “gross neglect” and he will thus become the first person to go before the Landsdomur, a neverbefore used special court for current and ex-ministers. Haarde, who is set to present his third request for a dismissal, told AFP

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in an email last week his arguments for throwing out the charges would be published after the hearing, set to begin at 10:00 am (1000 GMT). Holding the trial at the Icelandic Culture House in Reykjavik, chosen because it is large enough to house the proceedings and considered neutral ground, is strange, Haarde confided in AFP in a July interview. The Culture House “was my responsibility when I was prime minister. I have been at numerous events, I have given many, many speeches there, I have received foreign dignitaries there for dinner, and what-not,” he said. When he last appeared there in June, “I was there in front of the judges, many of whom I know from before-you know this is a small country, everybody knows each other ... and then with some spectators

including my family watching. And I thought to myself: it is almost impossible to take this thing seriously,” he said. Haarde, 60, insisted the whole trial was “a political farce motivated by some old political enemies who are cloaking this farce under the cover of a political trial.” Political analysts have criticised parliament’s decision to press charges against the former prime minister. “Unfortunately the Althingi (the parliament) did not move wisely when it decided to press charges,” Gunnar Helgi Kristinsson, a political science professor at the University of Iceland, told AFP. He claimed that personal vendettas by members of the then-opposition lay behind the charges. Current Finance Minister Steingrimur Sigfusson has been one

of Haarde’s toughest opponents and has argued the case is important in principle. “When it became clear we were heading towards catastrophe ... the record shows very little was done to avoid it,” Sigfusson told AFP recently, explaining why he felt the trial was needed. Kristinsson said that while finding Haarde guilty “may well be in accordance with the law ... to single him out and make him alone accountable for the crash is obviously not in accordance with the people’s sense of justice.” Haarde has insisted his government “saved the country from going bankrupt,” claiming that if it had acted differently when the banks failed in October 2008, the economy could have fallen off a cliff. —AFP

EXCHANGE RATES Commercial Bank of Kuwait US Dollar/KD GB Pound/KD Euro Swiss francs Canadian Dollar Australian DLR Indian rupees Sri Lanka Rupee UAE dirhams Bahraini dinars Jordanian dinar Saudi riyals Omani riyals Philippine peso Egyptian pounds US Dollar/KD GB Pound/KD Euro Swiss francs Canadian dollars Danish Kroner Swedish Kroner Australian dlr Hong Kong dlr Singapore dlr Japanese yen Indian Rs/KD Sri Lanka rupee Pakistan rupee Bangladesh taka UAE dirhams Bahraini dinars Jordanian dinar Saudi Riyal/KD Omani riyals Philippine Peso

.2708360 .4392420 .3847360 .3435480 .2747790 .2883320 .0059590 .0024700 .0737670 .7186830 .3830780 .0722420 .7037440 .0064480 .0459040

.2760570 .4477100 .3921530 .3501710 .2800770 .2938910 .0060740 .0025180 .0751890 .7325380 .3904630 .0736350 .7173120 .0065730 .0467890

CUSTOMER TRANSFER RATES .2722500 .2743500 .4415350 .4449410 .3867450 .3897280 .3453420 .3480050 .2762140 .2783440 .0519410 .0523420 .0426260 .0429540 .2898370 .2920730 .0349580 .0352280 .2262150 .2279600 .0035450 .0035720 .0000000 .0060360 .0000000 .0025020 .0000000 .0031550 .0000000 .0037450 .0741520 .0747240 .7224360 .7280080 .0000000 .3880480 .0726190 .0731800 .7074180 .7128750 .0000000 .0065320

Al-Muzaini Exchange Co. Japanese Yen Indian Rupees Pakistani Rupees Srilankan Rupees Nepali Rupees Singapore Dollar Hongkong Dollar Bangladesh Taka Philippine Peso Thai Baht Irani Riyal - Transfer Irani Riyal - Cash

ASIAN COUNTRIES 3.590 5.960 3.137 2.482 3.739 227.410 35.148 3.656 6.480 9.153 0.271 0.273

GCC COUNTRIES Saudi Riyal Qatari Riyal Omani Riyal Bahraini Dinar UAE Dirham Egyptian Pound - Cash Egyptian Pound - Transfer Yemen Riyal/for 1000 Tunisian Dinar Jordanian Dinar Lebanese Lira Syrian Lier Morocco Dirham

73.043 75.261 711.450 727.510 74.585 ARAB COUNTRIES 47.500 45.954 1.253 199.850 386.810 1.838 5.913 35.058

EUROPEAN & AMERICAN COUNTRIES US Dollar Transfer 273.800 Euro 389.070 Sterling Pound 444.380 Canadian dollar 279.250 Turkish lire 157.360 Swiss Franc 349.680 Australian dollar 292.830 US Dollar Buying 272.600 GOLD 337.000 171.000 88.000

20 Gram 10 Gram 5 Gram

SELL CASH 293.500 727.810 3.840 281.200 537.500 36.400 53.700 167.800 46.900 392.000 35.770 6.280 0.034 0.240 0.238 3.660 388.250 0.185 94.260 47.200 4.210

235.100 1.856 52.200 710.810 3.250 6.610 75.710 73.070 228.700 41.240 2.620 447.000 43.300 351.400 5.600 9.540 198.263 74.610 274.000 1.220

233.600 710.830 3.145 6.485 75.280 73.070 228.700 41.240 2.483 445.000 349.900 5.600 9.340 74.510 273.600

GOLD 1,929.950

10 Tola

TRAVELLER’S CHEQUE 446.000 273.600

Sterling Pound US Dollar

UAE Exchange Centre WLL

Bahrain Exchange Company COUNTRY Australian dollar Bahraini dinar Bangladeshi taka Canadian dollar Cyprus pound Czek koruna Danish krone Deutsche Mark Egyptian pound Euro Cash Hongkong dollar Indian rupees Indonesia Iranian tuman Iraqi dinar Japanese yen Jordanian dinar Lebanese pound Malaysian ringgit Morocco dirham Nepalese Rupees

New Zealand dollar Nigeria Norwegian krone Omani Riyal Pakistani rupees Philippine peso Qatari riyal Saudi riyal Singapore dollar South Africa Sri Lankan rupees Sterling pound Swedish krona Swiss franc Syrian pound Thai bhat Tunisian dollar UAE dirham U.S. dollars Yemeni Riyal

SELL DRAFT 292.000 727.810 3.670 279.700

228.600 45.996 390.500 35.620 5.960 0.033

386.780 0.184 94.260 3.740

Australian Dollar Canadian Dollar Swiss Franc Euro Sterling Pound Japanese Yen Bangladesh Taka Indian Rupee Sri Lankan Rupee Nepali Rupee Pakistani Rupee UAE Dirhams Bahraini Dinar Egyptian Pound Jordanian Dinar Omani Riyal Qatari Riyal Saudi Riyal

293.44 281.57 353.24 389.61 444.11 3.61 3.677 5.953 2.487 3.736 3.154 74.47 727.77 46.02 389.26 711.07 75.44 73.05

Dollarco Exchange Co. Ltd Rate for Transfer US Dollar Canadian Dollar Sterling Pound Euro Swiss Frank

Selling Rate 273.400 279.970 444.280 390.930 347.365

Bahrain Dinar UAE Dirhams Qatari Riyals Saudi Riyals Jordanian Dinar Egyptian Pound Sri Lankan Rupees Indian Rupees Pakistani Rupees Bangladesh Taka Philippines Pesso Cyprus pound Japanese Yen Thai Bhat Syrian Pound Nepalese Rupees Malaysian Ringgit

724.875 74.410 75.045 72.870 384.840 45.982 2.482 5.980 3.146 3.658 6.468 670.618 3.655 9.230 5.755 3.820 90.815

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

Rate per 1000 (Tran) 273.600 3.150 5.970 2.495 3.675 6.515 74.545 73.110 727.400 46.010 447.900 0.00003280 3.910 1.550 388.700 5.750 393.100 283.200

Al Mulla Exchange Currency Transfer Rate (Per 1000) US Dollar 273.250 Euro 390.300 Pound Sterling 444.800 Canadian Dollar 279.500 Japanese Yen 3.585 Indian Rupee 5.960 Egyptian Pound 46.000 Sri Lankan Rupee 2.482 Bangladesh Taka 3.682 Philippines Peso 6.470 Pakistan Rupee 3.136 Bahraini Dinar 727.775 UAE Dirham 74.475 Saudi Riyal 72.950 *Rates are subject to change



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Ramadan, security boost Abu Dhabi hotel stays Abu Dhabi occupancy levels rise to 65% in July

The delegation honoring KFH

Islamic Finance Club at GUST honors KFH KUWAIT: The management of the Islamic Finance Club at Gulf University for Science and Technology (GUST ) applauded its cooperation with Kuwait Finance House (KFH), which is evident by the continuous efforts and support of the club’s programs and activities. Such cooperation positively affected objectives of the club’s programs and activities, and merged academic experience with real banking educations. As a result of those efforts, the club honored KFH at the closure of its annual activities during a visit made by members of the club to KFH, where they met with Marketing and Public Relations Department Manager at KFH Fahad Al-Mukhaizeem. It is worth noting that KFH took part in various activities and programs that were organized by the club during the previous academic year. KFH’s efforts include forums and lectures presented by KFH employees, such as the open meeting that was presented by KFH’s

CEO Mohammed Al-Omar with the university’s students, where he discussed KFH’s local and overseas achievements. In addition, Al-Omar also mentioned his experience in the private sector and Islamic banking field. Moreover, the Banking Cards Department at KFH held a forum to reveal its accomplishments in this sector, while the Fatwa Department held another forum to highlight its role. Furthermore, KFH took part in many workshops and conferences, such as the Islamic Finance Week, while the Direct Sales Unit, Al-Salam Hospital, and AlMuthanna Investment Company took part in that event to demonstrate their products and services. During the meeting, the students exchanged their old banking cards with the new transparent cards. Meanwhile, KFH renewed its strategic partnership agreement with the club to support its activities during the new academic year.

Gulf Bank announces winners of Al-Danah weekly draw KUWAIT: Gulf Bank held its Thirty-Third Al-Danah weekly draw on August 28, 2011, announcing a total number of ten Al-Danah weekly prize draw winners, each awarded with prizes of KD 1,000. The 33rd Al Danah weekly winners are: Aqeel Abbas Abdullatif Al-Qattan, Mishari Ibrahim Mohammed AlMousa, Ibrahim Saleh Ibrahim AlKharji, Salah Thaief Salim Al-Shimmari, Maha Ali Saeed Naser, Lulwa Nasser Ghaleb Ali, Adel Abdelrazaq Hashem AlHunayan, Ahmad Omar Mohammed AlHasan, Naeem Masoud Musa and Layla Hassan Said Ali Said Hamza. Gulf Bank encourages everyone in Kuwait to open an Al-Danah account and/or increase their deposits to maximize their chances of becoming a winner in the upcoming weekly (KD1,000 each for 10 winners), and the annual draw (1 million dinars). Gulf Bank’s AlDanah allows customers to win cash

prizes and encourages them to save money. Chances increase the more money is deposited and the longer it is kept in the account. Al-Danah also offers a number of unique services including the Al-Danah Deposit Only ATM card which helps account holders deposit their money at their convenience; as well as the AlDanah calculator to help customers calculate their chances of becoming an AlDanah winner. To be par t of the AlDanah draws, customers can visit one of Gulf Bank’s 55 branches, transfer on line, or call the Customer Contac t Center on 1805805 for assistance and guidance. Customers can also log on to, Gulf Bank’s bilingual website, to find all the information regarding Al-Danah or any of the Bank’s products and services or log on, to find out more about Al Danah and who the winners are.

Mariam Abdullah Qasem Redha wins KD 100,000 in Eid Al-Fitr mega draw KUWAIT: Commercial Bank of Kuwait held the Al Najma Account draw on September 4, 2011. The draw was held under the supervision of the Ministry of Commerce & Industry represented by Abdulaziz Ashkanani.

is the date of the bank’s establishment. With a minimum balance of KD 500, customers will be eligible for the daily draw provided that the money is in the account one week prior to the daily draw or 2 months prior to the

The winners of the Al Najma daily draw are: 1 Mariam Abdullah Qasem Redha— 100,000 2 Nourah Nader Jamaan Al-Azmi — 7000 3 Ali Haider Haji Zeman Haider— 7000 The Commercial Bank of Kuwait announces the biggest daily draw in Kuwait with the launch of the new Najma account. Customers of the bank can now enjoy a KD 7,000 daily prize which is the highest in the country and another 4 mega prizes during the year worth KD 100,000 each on different occasions: The National Day, Eid Al Fitr, Eid Al Adha and on the 19th of June which

mega draw. In addition, for each KD 25 a customer can get one chance for winning instead of KD 50. Commercial Bank of Kuwait takes this opportunity to congratulate all lucky winners and also extends appreciation to the Ministry of Commerce and Industry for their effective supervision of the draws which were conducted in an orderly and organized manner.

DUBAI: The number of hotel guests in Abu Dhabi jumped 38 percent year-on-year in July, boosted by arrivals from Gulf Arab and Middle Eastern countries ahead of Ramadan, the Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority (ADTA) said yesterday. The gains also reflect a rise in hotel occupancy throughout the United Arab Emirates this year as some tourists changed travel plans in response to the unrest that has hit other countries in the region such as Syria, Bahrain and Yemen. Occupancy levels in the hotels and hotel apartments of the oil-rich capital Abu Dhabi rose 9 points to 65 percent in July and revenue was up 6 percent at 271 million dirhams ($73.4 million), ADTA said. “The regional upsurge could likely be attributed to (Gulf Cooperation

Council) travellers opting to spend time in a destination they associate with safety for their families and with more of them choosing to holiday in July ahead of the holy month of Ramadan when they wish to be at home with their families,” said Lawrence Franklin, the ADTA’s strategy and policy director. Ramadan, which this year fell in August, and the Eid holiday that immediately follows it, included shortened working hours and large family gatherings to break the daily fast. Numbers of guests from the GCC region rose by 98 percent. Abu Dhabi accounts for 55 percent of the UAE economy and invests billions of dollars in industry, tourism and infrastructure to diversify away from oil. The emirate hosts many leisure and enter-

tainment events, including a Formula 1 motor racing Grand Prix, as well as major conferences and exhibitions. “Stability is a vital factor to attract tourists to this country,” said Mohamed Amerah, economic adviser at the Ajman Chamber of Commerce and Industry. “Saudis or Kuwaitis used to go to Syria, but Syria is now out of the way, nobody goes there anymore (or) in the foreseeable future.” Year-to-date occupancy levels at Abu Dhabi hotels were up 10 percent to 70 percent, while revenues were up 6 percent reaching 2.53 billion dirhams, the data also showed. The United Kingdom remained the top international source market with a 21 percent increase in guest nights, followed by the United States and India. —Reuters

Last call for entries in Ford Motor conservation, environmental grants Entries will be accepted until Sept 10, 2011


ngoing environmental projects that are looking for funding have until September 10, 2011, to submit their entry to the Ford Motor Company Conservation and Environmental Grants. The Ford Grants, supported by UNESCO, are offering a total of $100,000 to deserving, nonprofit environmental projects that are currently ongoing in the GCC, Jordan and Lebanon. Entry forms are available to download from Larry Prein, Ford Middle East’s managing director, said: “ The Ford Motor Company Conservation and Environmental Grants program has consistently, for more than a decade, provided that vital and much needed funding for environmental projects throughout the region. Through the Ford Grants, we look to help sustain and grow these projects and continue to create an impact and instill environmental awareness across our communities.” Dr. Benno Boer, UNESCO’s Ecological Sciences Advisor in the Arab Region, said: “ The Ford Motor Company Conservation and Environmental Grants is undoubtedly one of the longest running and most commendable programs initiated by the private sector in our region providing additional endowment for environmental projects. Together, we look to identify deserving projects and help them achieve their conservation efforts.” The Ford Grants is part of the company’s efforts to support grass-roots level initiatives that protect and preserve the environment and natural resources in the GCC, Lebanon and Jordan and has awarded a total of $1.1mil-

lion to more than 130 projects since its inception in 2000. Last year’s winners included a broad mix of projects - from coral reef and Arabian Leopard preservation; to a campaign to reduce illegal

trade in wild and endangered species; to beach cleansing using robots and student environmental networks and more. A noteworthy trend for 2010 saw youth spearheading initiatives, with students leading or actively involved in four of the ten winning projects. Since the program’s global launch over a decade ago, Ford has awarded more than $2,000,000 in grants to over 300 high-quality

DNO buys RAK assets for $250m in shares OSLO: Norwegian oil firm DNO International said it would buy oil and gas fields from UAE-based RAK Petroleum for $250 million of DNO stock, after pricing its shares towards the upper end of a previously announced range. The company also said it would next year seek a long-awaited secondary listing on the London stock exchange. DNO, which agreed in July to buy the RAK assets in return for DNO shares, said then that new shares would be issued in a price range of 8.25 to 10 crowns against RAK assets valued at $250 million to $300 million. “The transaction values DNO International at $1.64 billion corresponding to NOK 9.50 per share and RAK Petroleum’s operating subsidiaries at $250 million (before working capital adjustments),” the company said yesterday. DNO is valued at $1.64 billion in an all-share acquisition of oil and gas fields from its main shareholder under the agreement, some two-thirds over its market value. Shares in DNO rose 4 percent to 5.67 crowns by 1114 GMT yesterday. The oil firm, which has a 1.77 billion Norwegian crowns ($327 million) cash pile to invest with, is seeking to grow and diversify and is on the lookout to buy oilfields in the Middle East. The boards of the companies have approved the transaction but it has yet to be voted by an extraordinary general meeting of DNO, due around December. Once it is done, DNO will seek to get listed on the LSE. “There is a lot of preparation work to be done ... Realistically it will be towards the middle of next year,” DNO’s chief executive Helge Eide told Reuters. Oil prices have fallen some 16 percent since early April, with a barrel of Brent crude worth $111 at 1105 GMT. Eide said DNO had no plans to hedge the oil price despite the uncertainty about the prospects of the world economy. “The very clear advice from our owners is that we will not do that,” said Eide. “The reason for them to invest in an oil company is also about taking a bet on the oil price.” DNO produced an average of 45,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boed) as of July, with RAK Petroleum adding an extra 7,500 boed as soon as the transaction is completed, climbing to around 15,000 boed within a year. After the transaction, DNO’s prized possession will remain its massive Tawke oilfield in Iraqi Kurdistan, expected to produce some 53,000 boed in August, but which has the capacity to produce twice as much. —Reuters

projects throughout Asia Pacific, Caribbean, Central America, Middle East and Puerto Rico to further their environmental initiatives. The GCC and Levant Chapter of the Ford Motor Company Conservation & Environmental Grants has seen support from various governmental and non-governmental environmental authorities including the World Wide Fund for Nature, the Emirates Wildlife Society, the Arab Forum for Environment & Development (AFED) and most recently, UNESCO. An independent panel of jurors consisting of academics, as well as experts from environmental ministries and agencies, choose the winning projects in 2010. The panel of judges, which has been carefully selected based on geographical coverage, age and gender equality, looks for initiatives that demonstrate a well-defined sense of purpose, a commitment to maximizing available resources, and a reputation for meeting objectives and delivering planned programs and services. Each year, the Ford Grants make a total of $100,000 available to individuals, community and non-profit groups that have projects currently running in the areas of preservation of the natural environment, environmental education and conservation engineering. The program is open to applicants from Bahrain, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. For enquiries regarding the Ford Motor Company Conservation & Environmental Grants, supported by UNESCO, please write to Application forms can be downloaded from

Ali Abdulwahab Sons & Co opens most modern Home Center in Kuwait KUWAIT: Abdulwahab Sons & Co, the leading and renowned name in the world of furniture, Kitchens and home appliances opened its new specialized home center showroom where you can find a group of world famous brands. This new home center is considered as an exclusive one stop shop for all the needs of elegant and classy homes and this is shown in the unique, individual and lively interior design of the of the new home center where you will enjoy an exceptional shopping experience. The new Home center Showroom, the latest of its kind in Kuwait is located in Shuwaikh Industrial Area, just behind Pepsi Street in a modern new building. The showroom area of 6,450 m2 is divided between 3 floors, a special kid’s area and a parking area, offering the best shopping experience under one roof through a variety of unique products from home appliances to kitchens, home and garden furniture, lighting equipment and accessories from the best well known world brands such as for furniture, Century, Basset, Kingsdown, LA-Z-BOY, for Kitchens Nolte, for home appliances Bosch, Siemens, Kelvinator and more high quality international brands. The new Home Center offers a large selection of special designs for furniture, bedrooms, cupboards and kitchen that are designed according to customer’s tastes and executed by a professional team according to highest international quality standards, & are characterized by modern elegant touches full of degraded bright colors spreading to your house an atmosphere full of happiness, individualism and elegance to each corner of your

house. You can also find a selection of home accessories, decoration items, lighting equipment accessories, mirrors, wall art, lamps, decorative pillows and floor cushions, vases, Bedcovers, Clocks etc.... On this occasion, Ali Faisal AlMutawaa, General Manager- Ali Abdulwahab Sons and Co expressed his extreme satisfaction and pleasure for opening this up to date outlet, an outlet that that will provide a different shopping experience gathering a variety of international brands under one roof. He also said that the opening of this Home Center is the result of the company’s experience over the years in a variety of commercial sectors especially in the sales of furniture and home appliances, the company’s representation of international world known brands, and most importantly the customers trust and confidence in our company generation after generation. We are opening Home Center to satisfy the needs of our up-to-date modern clientele where they can find all their house needs in one shop. Ali Abdul Wahab Sons & Co., is one of the leading local companies in furniture and home appliances and kitchens, the fashion industry, real estate, clothing, sports goods, picnics and camping equipments, not to mention its long experience in the distribution of consumer products and Pharmaceuticals. The Company has worked hard through the years, specifically for more than 90 years to always provide the best products and high quality services to satisfy customer needs and satisfaction.

SMN Power eyes $65m Muscat IPO

BRISTOW: The US Post Office in Bristow, Virginia. The New York Times reported yesterday that the US Postal Service may have to shut down completely if Congress does not take emergency action to stabilize its finances. —AFP

DUBAI: SMN Power Holding, Oman’s largest electricity producer and which is part-owned by Abu Dhabi fund Mubadala , plans to raise 25 million rials ($64.9 million) by offering 35 percent of its shares in an initial public offering (IPO) on the Muscat bourse, a prospectus showed. The company is offering 6.99 million shares at 3.52 rials per share. The offer period opens on Sept. 11 and closes Oct. 10, according to the prospectus. SMN Power is a joint venture

between Mubadala, UAE firm Kahrabel FZE and Oman’s National Trading Co. The company owns two major power projects and has a combined output of 1,343 megawatts (MW). Both Mubadala and Kahrabel will each offload 3.32 million shares in the offering. MDC Industry Holding Co, which owns a 10.9 percent stake in the company, will retain its ownership, the prospectus showed. Bank Muscat is the financial advisor and issue manager for the IPO.

Oman’s primary issuance market is showing some signs of revival after a gloomy year for listings so far. Oman Arab Bank, a unit of Ominvest , has been cleared to float 25 percent of its capital on the local bourse, its chief executive said last month. Bank Nizwa, Oman’s first Islamic bank, may float 40 percent of its capital to the public through an IPO, the sultanate’s central bank governor said in an interview with a local newspaper last month. — Reuters




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KSE stocks end mixed GLOBAL DAILY MARKET REPORT KUWAIT: Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) closed on a mixed note yesterday, with some investors engaging in profit-booking. The market witnessed several sessions of gaining and investors saw that it is time for some profit-booking. Blue -chips edged lower sending market capitalization-weighted indices nor thward. The banking sector was the only loser during the session and that affected negatively on market indices although the advance was broad-based with seven out of the eight sectors edging higher. Global General Index (GGI) ended the day down for the first time after five gaining sessions. The index closed down by 0.17 percent, at 178.85 point. Market capitalization was also down for the day, reaching KD29.27bn. On the other hand, KSE Price Index closed at 5,852.8 point, adding 9 points (0.15 percent) to its previous close. Market breadth During the session, 91 companies were traded. Market breadth was skewed towards advancers as 31 equities advanced versus 30 that declined. Trading activity was up during the session. Total volume traded up by 29.6 percent with 137.14mn shares changing hands at a total value of KD11.39mn (24.6 percent higher compared to Sunday session). Services sector was the volume leader, accounting for almost half of the total volume (47.49 percent of total shares exchanges). Three ser vices stocks made it to the top volume list for the day. Al Safwa Holding Group was the session’s most traded stock with 23.84mn shares exchanged.

The same sector was the value leader, having 28.53 percent of total traded value. Qurain Petrochemical Company was the most active in terms of value traded, with KD1.09mn worth of shares traded. In terms of top gainers, Ajial Real Estate & Enter tainment Company was the top gainer for

spearheaded The advance was broad-based with 7 out of 8 sectors closing in positive territory. Food stocks spearheaded advancers, clocking 1.08 percent in sector gains. Danah Al Safat Foodstuff Company added 2.94 percent to its share price, whilst Kuwait Foodstuff Company (Americana) added 1.35 percent.

3.08 percent and 8.20 percent, respectively. On the down side, Global Banking Index was the only loser for the day, shedding 0.77 percent from its value. Five out of the nine listed Kuwaiti banks closed lower, while Burgan Bank was the only gainer in the sector, adding 1.10 percent to its share

the day, adding 17.53 percent to its share value and closing at KD0.114. On the other hand, Gulf Petroleum Investment Company shed 6.25 percent and closed at KD0.030, making it the biggest decliner in the market.

Insurance stocks inched higher by 0.65 percent. Kuwait Insurance Company was the only gainer in the sector ended the day up by 3.64 percent. Investment sector continue the upward momentum for the second session in a row. Global Investment Index closed up by 0.56 percent. Kuwait Projects Company (Holding) and Global Investment House closed up by

value and closing at KD0.460. Ahli United Bank was the major loser in the sector, shedding 3.26 percent and closing at KD0.890.

Sectors The advance was broad-based with 7 out of 8 sectors closing in positive territory. Food stocks

Oil news The price of OPEC basket of twelve crudes stood at $110.37 a barrel on Friday, compared with $111.21 the previous day, according to OPEC Secretariat calculations.

Brent falls below $111 on US recession fears LONDON: Brent crude oil fell below $111 a barrel yesterday, as fears of another US recession slowing fuel demand overshadowed concerns that a tropical storm may shut down some US offshore oil production. US employment growth ground to a halt in August, reviving recession fears and piling pressure on President Barack Obama and the Federal Reserve to provide more stimulus to aid the frail economy. Brent futures for October fell $1.80 to a low of $110.53 a barrel, and by 0733 GMT were trading around $110.90. US crude futures were down $1.50 at $84.95 a barrel, after settling $2.48 lower on Friday at $86.45. Volume was relatively light with US markets closed for Labor Day. “Oil is falling on worries over weak demand, unemployment and talk of a double-dip recession,” said Eugen Weinberg, head of commodities research at Commerzbank in Frankfurt. “Prices are still being supported by speculation that the Federal Reserve may launch a third round of quantitative easing (QE3), but I think the market may be too optimistic on that. The first two rounds of easing did little to support the economy, so why should a third round be of any more help?” Stock markets followed Wall Street lower yesterday, after the US Labor Department said employers added no net new jobs last month and July’s total was revised lower.Compounding fears of a recession in the United States, Europe faces a string of political and legal tests this week that could hurt efforts to resolve its sovereign debt crisis. In China, the services sector grew in August at the lowest pace on record, a private survey showed, as new orders ebbed and tightening measures to rein in an

exuberant property sector started to pinch. Brent will fall to $109.01 per barrel, while US crude oil is also expected to fall to $84.20 per barrel, according to Reuters market analyst Wang Tao. Providing some support for prices was oil companies’ shutdown of more than half the crude production in the US Gulf of Mexico due to Tropical Storm Lee, which is hindering efforts to restaff and restart oil and gas platforms in the basin. Lee reached Louisiana’s coast early on Sunday, but was moving inland very slowly. High winds grounded helicopters on standby for oil and gas companies that would have otherwise ferried workers out to do post-storm assessments and restaff facilities. Another storm, Hurricane Katia, intensified over the open Atlantic on Sunday, bulking up to a powerful Category 2 storm, the US National Hurricane Center said. The Miami-based hurricane center said it was still too soon to gauge the potential threat to land or to the US East Coast with any certainty. But most computer models showed the storm veering on a northeast track out to sea after moving safely west of the mid-Atlantic island of Bermuda later this week. The European Union imposed a ban on purchases of Syrian oil on Saturday and warned of further steps unless President Bashar Al-Assad’s government ended its crackdown on dissent. In Libya, forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi refused on Sunday to give up one of their last strongholds without a fight, raising the prospect of an assault on the town of Bani Walid. The EU has lifted sanctions on Libyan ports and oil firms, but few expect the country’s normal oil production-around 1.6 million bpd-to be restored soon, after a civil war halted its oil sector this year. —Reuters

KD stabilizes at 0.272 vs dollar KUWAIT: The Kuwaiti dinar (KD) exchange rate against the US dollar stabilized to KD 0.272, and down KD 0.386 per euro, the state’s official monetary body, the Central Bank of Kuwait (CBK), said yesterday. The Kuwait dinar decreased against the Sterling pound at KD 0.441, and kept to KD 0.003 per Japanese yen, whereas it increased at KD 0.345 per Swiss franc, the daily CBK bulletin said. —KUNA




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Next ECB head calls for integration as yields rise PARIS: The euro-zone needs a “quantum” leap toward economic integration, the incoming chief of the European Central Bank said yesterday, as the bond yields of countries with shaky finances, like Greece and Italy, jumped amid increased investor tensions. Mario Draghi told a conference in Paris that among the common currency’s problems is a lack of coordinated fiscal policies and that the solution was more integration. He dismissed the idea of eurobonds debt issued jointly by the euro-zone countries. Some have argued this would help weaker countries borrow more easily because they wouldn’t have to pay such high interest rates, which in turn make their debts bigger. But stable countries like Germany would likely see their rates rise. Instead, Draghi suggested the euro-zone should adopt rules that would require more budget discipline. There is already a proposal that would require all euro-zone countries to balance their budgets.

Profligate spending during boom times funded by cheap debt is one of the root causes of the current crisis. Market tensions increased yesterday in Europe due to about the ability of some countries to fix their debt problems and a global financial sell-off triggered by worries that the US economy may slip back into recession. The difference in interest rates between the Greek and benchmark German 10-year bonds, known as spreads, spiraled to new records, topping 17.3 percentage points in the early afternoon yesterday. Yields on the Greek bonds were above 18 percent. High yields make borrowing more expensive for Greece, making it even harder to reduce its debt load. In fact, its yields are so high that Greece has been relying since last year on funds from a €110 billion ($157 billion) package of bailout loans from other European Union countries and the International Monetary Fund. On July 21, European leaders agreed on a sec-

ond bailout, worth an additional ?109 billion. Italy’s own 10-year bond yields jumped to 5.45 percent amid signs that the government in Rome is wavering in its commitment to enforce its austerity program. ECB chief Jean-Claude Trichet in recent days has called on Silvio Berlusconi’s government to push through with the deficit-cutting measures promised in August. Italy’s stability is of particular concern to traders because it would be too expensive to rescue for the euro-zone bailout fund. In an effort to steady the yields, the ECB has been buying Italian and Spanish bonds in recent weeks, driving down the interest rates. Trichet said yesterday that the debt crisis had revealed the weaknesses of the euro-zone and that one solution would be to eventually create a central finance ministry for the continent. Speaking at the same conference as Draghi, Trichet noted that one of the hallmarks of the crisis has been

that while the euro-zone economies are linked by their common currency, each country creates its own budget. That will need to change,

he said. “In the future, we can imagine a confederation ... with a minister of finance with responsibilities includ-

PARIS: European Central Bank president Jean Claude Trichet (right) listens to Bank of Italy Governor and Incoming European Central Bank president Mario Draghi as they attend a session of the Institut Montaigne in Paris yesterday. —AFP

ing the regulation of the solvency of the euro-zone,” he said. In the heyday of the boom, several European countries allowed their budgets to run larger deficits than the rules allowed. Countries like Greece and Portugal eventually came close to bankruptcy and were saved only by international rescue packages. Now their debts are threatening the entire euro-zone, with the large countries forced to bail them out. New legislation that would give those rules more teeth has been floundering for months as the European Parliament and EU member states have failed to agree on more automatic sanctions. Trichet called yesterday for those rules to be strengthened further as he has in the past. He has said that even the new legislation is not strong enough for the 17 euro countries, since states could still override penalties for overspenders. Elena Becatoros in Athens and Gabriele Steinhauser in Brussels contributed to this report. —AP

Swiss bank lobby bids to reassure on asset seizure Some wealthy Middle East clients scared off ZURICH: The Swiss Bankers Association is working with the government to give investors more legal certainty over asset seizure after some were alarmed by Swiss moves to freeze the accounts of ousted dictators, its head said yesterday.

MOSCOW: Russia’s President Dmitry Medvedev chairs a meeting on budget in the Gorki residence outside Moscow yesterday. —AFP

Ukraine, Russia give no sign of gas dispute end MOSCOW: As a new natural gas dispute bet ween Russia and Uk raine brews, the countries’ foreign ministers are giving no signs that a resolution is close. Ukraine last week announced that it wants to renegotiate a contrac t it signed in 2009 for Russian natural gas, saying the price is ruinous for the Ukrainian economy. Ukraine relies on Russian gas for its heavy industries and long had benefited from below-market prices. The latest contract roughly doubled the price for Ukraine; it now pays about $355 per 1,000 cubic meters. The dispute is likely to raise alarm in Europe, where memories of unheated homes in the depths of winter during a 2009 pricing war between Moscow and Kiev are still fresh. Customers across Europe experienced energy supply

interruptions after Russia cut off gas supplies to Ukraine, whose pipelines carry Russian gas westward. Ukrainian Foreign Minister Konstantin Grishchenko, after meeting yesterday with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov, said Ukraine hopes for a solution through talks rather than taking the matter to international arbitration. Lavrov in turn said “we are guided by the universally accepted principle of respect to international obligations, including contracts and inter-government agreements.” Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov said last week that the 2009 contract, signed by his predecessor Yulia Tymoshenko, contradicts a 2004 interg ove rnmental agreement between Moscow and Kiev and thus must be revised. —AP

Trichet calls for urgent action on Greek rescue PARIS: The head of the European Central Bank Jean-Claude Trichet called yesterday for urgent application of the latest debt rescue measures for Greece. Trichet also spoke of an “absolutely imperative” need to tighten up the monitoring of economies in the euro-zone, in a speech against a background of renewed concern over the Greek and wider euro-zone debt crisis. Trichet said that EU and national legislations enacting much tighter monitoring of national budgets, and which were due to be adopted within “a few days” were “clearly absolutely imperative.” He also said it was urgent to apply the EU

decisions taken on July 21 to provide Greece with a second debt rescue. “There also we have an immediate and imperative need for all of the decisions to be enacted,” he told the Institut Montaigne. Trichet spoke against a background of sharply renewed concern about the state of Greek finances and the wider euro-zone debt crisis. On Friday an audit mission from the EU, ECB and International Monetary Fund cut short its latest study of Greek finances, on which depends the next release of money from the first rescue, saying that Greece had more work to do on its crash program to reduce the public deficit. —AFP

“Switzerland has no interest whatsoever to have the wrong monies invested within its borders,” Swiss Bankers Association head Patrick Odier told a news conference. “But Switzerland has all the interest in making sure that Middle East or any other type of investors will find in Switzerland the state of law that protects them before accusing them,” he

said. In March, wealth managers said London is gaining in the battle for rich Middle Eastern families seeking shelter from political unrest at home, as its private banks and top end property sector tempt them away from Switzerland. “Switzerland wants to continue to attract these important countries where wealth creation is at its most,” Odier said. Keen to

clean up its image as a haven for ill-gotten gains, Switzerland has in recent years frozen the assets of numerous deposed leaders including the former rulers and their entourages of Tunisia, Egypt and Ivory Coast. In its annual report published yesterday, the Swiss Bankers Association said the government’s moves had resulted in a degree of legal uncertainty

among investors and said better coordination and communication were needed. The group is working with the Swiss government to draft a formal legal basis for blocking such assets to replace the emergency legislation used in the past. “ We are in discussion with government to develop a law that will protect investors,” Odier said. —Reuters

FTSE 100 plunges over lawsuit fears

NEW DELHI: World Trade Organization (WTO) Director-General Pascal Lamy (left) and Indian Commerce Minister Anand Sharma attend the inauguration of the WTO regional trade policy course centre at the Indian Institute of Foreign Trade in New Delhi yesterday. —AFP

Euro-zone retail sales up unexpectedly in July FRANKFURT: Retail sales in the 17 countries that use the euro unexpectedly rose 0.2 percent during July despite darkening forecasts about European growth, according to official data released yesterday. Compared with July last year, retail trade was down only 0.2 percent, the EU statistics agency Eurostat said. Both the monthly and annual figures were better than many analysts had expected. Some had foreseen a drop of as much as 1.0 percent from the year earlier. The uptick in July comes despite downbeat headlines about euro-zone leaders’ struggles to contain a crisis over too much debt in several euro-zone

countries. The volume of bad news has not only shaken financial markets but is also beginning to frighten businesses and consumers and weigh on production and consumption. Weakening growth indicators have led many observers to rule out further interest rate increases by the European Central Bank, which holds its monthly policy meeting this week, with an announcement on Thursday. The July figures follow an increase of 0.7 percent in June from the previous month, revised down from 0.9 percent, and an annual drop of 0.7 percent, revised from a decrease of 0.4 percent. —AP

LONDON: London’s leading shares index plunged into the red yesterday as shares in Britain’s banks were hit by fears over a lawsuit launched against them in the United States. Royal Bank of Scotland and Barclays both lost more than 7 percent while HSBC shed more than 1 percent after the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) filed claims against them and 14 other banks over the subprime mortgage scandal, dealers said. The wider FTSE 100 Index, still reeling from a dismal jobs report in the US on Friday and following a weak session in Asia, fell by more than 1 percent in early trading, they pointed out. The FHFA claims the banks misrepresented the quality of billions of dollars of home loans sold to America’s state-backed mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. RBS has said the allegations are unfounded and it will defend them vigorously. Lloyds Banking Group, which is not on the FHFA’s target list, fell more than 3 percent as sentiment in the banking sector weakened. RBS, HSBC and Barclays could be forced to pay out more than 5 billion pounds in damages, according to reports. There was more gloom for the banking sector in a report by forecasters at the Ernst & Young ITEM Club. The financial services sector in the UK faces sluggish growth, the ITEM Club warned, threatening the recovery prospects of the wider economy. The worst US employment data for nearly a year, showing the number of people employed in August was flat, fuelled fears of a new global recession. The renewed concerns over growth hit the heavily weighted mining sector, sending shares in copper giants Kazakhmys and Antofagasta to the bottom of the FTSE 100. Meanwhile, Oil prices were also damaged by the concerns over global demand with Brent crude in London dropping nearly 1 percent to $111.58 per barrel. The retail sector was also on the back foot after accountancy firm BDO said the high street recorded its worst sales in two years in August as the riots that shook the UK had taken a heavy toll. —KUNA

UK services PMI suffers biggest drop in decade LONDON: Activity in Britain’s dominant services sector slowed at the fastest pace in a more than a decade last month, and firms’ confidence in future business weakened to a one-year low, adding to evidence of a stalling economic recovery. Sterling slipped to a one-anda-half month low versus the dollar after the data, and gilt futures rose to their highest in more than two weeks, as investors bet the figures increased the chance of monetary easing by the Bank of England. The Markit/CIPS services purchasing managers’ index (PMI) fell to 51.1 in August from 55.4 in July. This was the second biggest fall on record, and confounded forecasts for a gentler drop to 54.0, although the index stayed above the 50 mark that divides growth from contraction. The only time there was a bigger one -month fall in the

index was during the foot-andmouth disease crisis in April 2001, which hammered the agricultural sector and hurt tourism. “This survey really rings the growth alarm bells,” said Howard Archer, an economist at IHS Global Insight. “Even allowing for any impact from the riots and a correction after a surprise spike up in services activity in July, this is a hugely disappointing sur vey.” Companies cited economic uncertainty and slower growth in new business as the main reasons for weaker expansion last month. Survey compilers Markit said that riots across England in early August played only a minor role in depressing activity. Mark it economist Chris Williamson said the numbers pointed to a near-stagnation of the economy in the third quarter. “Forward-looking indicators

also suggest that the economy could weaken further at the end of the quar ter, raising the prospect of a slide back into contraction in the fourth quarter — if not the third-and will provide ammunition for those seeking a further injection of stimulus into the economy by the Bank of England,” he said. “The all-sector PMI is at a level which has always triggered interest rate cuts in the past,” he added. The figures confirmed expectations that the Bank of England (BoE) will leave interest rates at 0.5 percent this week and ignited speculation the central bank will consider injecting more stimulus into the economy later this year. “I t cer tainly helps nudge them that way,” said RBS economist Ross Walker. “I’m not convinced we’re going to see a polic y change this month, but

November certainly becomes quite interesting. A lot will depend on financial market conditions.” Last week, PMI surveys suggested that UK manufacturing was contracting at its fastest pace in more than two years, while construction activity grew at its slowest rate so far this year. Scotia Capital economist Alan Clarke said he believed August’s PMI figures pointed to gross domestic product shrinking by 0.25-0.50 percent in the third quarter, even though the data averages above the 50 level which generally separates growth from contraction. Companies’ input costs continued to surge, although at a slightly slower rate, but the prices they charged barely rose, suggesting demand was not strong enough to allow them to pass rising costs onto customers. —Reuters

HONG KONG: A woman walks with flowers past an RMB (renminbi) poster outside the Bank of China in Hong Kong yesterday. Hong Kong had 553.6 billion in yuan deposits by the end of June, up 517 percent compared with the same time last year. —AFP




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Deutsche says EU crisis could kill weak banks FRANKFURT: Europe’s sovereign debt crisis will stunt bank profit for years and could kill off the weakest, Deutsche Bank chief executive Josef Ackermann told industry bosses, amid intense scrutiny of the sector’s finances. “Prospects for the financial sector overall ... are rather limited,” the CEO of Germany’s top bank said yesterday. “The outlook for the future growth of revenues is limited by both the current situation and structurally.” Ackermann was speaking at Frankfurt’s annual Banks in Transition conference against a backdrop of gloom in the capital markets, where fears some eurozone countries could default on their debts have sent investors scurrying for shelter. Shares in the banks that hold much of that debt dropped, with the STOXX Europe 600 banking index falling nearly 5 percent to its lowest in 29 months. Fears about how the crisis will play out have halted the takeovers and stock market listings that are the lifeblood of the bloc’s investment banks as slowing global economic growth puts the prospect of recovery further into the future.

“ The chances of a near-term recovery remain slim as euro-zone debt concerns, structural reform and a lawsuit for allegedly mis-selling mortgage debt all weigh heavy on the sector,” said Manoj Ladwa, a senior trader at ETX Capital. Deutsche stock slumped 7.5 percent, as did shares in Swiss rival Credit Suisse , while Royal Bank of Scotland and Societe Generale lost around 8 percent. A US regulator sued 17 large banks and financial institutions on Friday over losses on about $200 billion of subprime bonds, adding to the sector’s woes. The European bank index has lost a third of its value this year and is the worst-performing sector. Despite his gloomy outlook for profits, Ackermann rejected calls for urgent recapitalization. International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde called in August for mandatory capitalization of European banks to prevent a world recession. A forcible recapitalization would “threaten to send the signal that politics has lost faith in the ability of existing measures to succeed,” said the boss of Germany’s

biggest lender. The chairman of French rival BNP Paribas also told a conference in Paris that most banks did not need to be recapitalized. “The stress tests

“haircut” on their sovereign debt holdings that has been proposed in some quarters. “It’s stating the obvious that many European banks would not survive having to revalue

resolution of the European sovereign debt crisis. The crisis has kept banks hostage to market concerns about their capital strength and access to funding,

FRANKFURT: Deutsche Bank chairman Josef Ackermann speaks during a congress yesterday in Frankfurt. —AFP that we carried out in Europe ... lead one to think that it’s not obvious today that the banking system needs to be recapitalized, (although) some banks do, without a doubt,” Michel Pebereau said. Ackermann also warned that many European banks could go under if they had to accept the

sovereign debt held on the banking book at market levels,” he said. Deutsche, Germany ’s largest lender and global investment banking player, has already warned that reaching its goal of 6.4 billion euros ($9.1 billion) in pretax profit for this year was becoming more difficult and required a quick and sustained

concerns that were stoked again last week when a European source told Reuters that the IMF saw a capital shortfall of 200 billion euros ($284 billion) among European lenders. Russian banks could lose around 350 billion roubles ($12 billion) in the event of a serious debt shock in

the euro zone but stress tests show they would withstand the blow, central bank official Sergei Moiseev said in Sochi yesterday. As the prospects recede for a return of confidence, some major lenders, including Barclays , HSBC , Goldman Sachs , Credit Suisse and UBS , have begun to slash tens of thousands of highpaying jobs. The chief executives of Commerzbank , Societe Generale and UniCredit are also due to set out their visions for the way forward in difficult terrain. The CEO of JP Morgan’s investment bank, Jes Staley, will give the view from the other side of the Atlantic. Ackermann may also face questions over a report that securities packaged by Deutsche are among half a dozen deals being examined by Britain’s Serious Fraud Office (SFO). The British bankers attending may be asked about a weekend report that Prime Minister David Cameron wants a watering down of proposals from the Independent Commission on Banking (ICB) to ring-fence the retail arms of top UK banks, over fears they could hurt the economy. —Reuters

Firmer China yuan helps curb inflation: Zoellick China needs to rebalance economy, raise consumption BEIJING: The yuan’s recent gains are helping to tame China’s inflation but it is too early to conclude that Beijing has won its battle to cool price pressures, World Bank President Robert Zoellick said yesterday. Speaking in China where he wrapped up a five-day visit, Zoellick said Beijing needs to rebalance its economy in the long run and boost consumption because it cannot rely endlessly on exports and investment for growth. “In the near term, as Premier Wen Jiabao mentioned, inflation is the most important issue for China. And this is driven in part by food prices,” he said. “And I think the Chinese authorities are sensitive to it because if you look back at greater Chinese history, inflation can be...very destabilizing.” Elevated oil and pork prices

manageable, and that data later this week could show the consumer price index easing to 6.2 percent in August. “It’s hard for me to see (how) a continued reliance on export-led

Zoellick was in Beijing to lead a study that may be ready by December on how China can keep increasing its productivity and per capita national income in coming years.

BEIJING: World Bank president Robert Zoellick (centre-second left) attends a press conference in Beijing yesterday. Zoellick, who wrapped up a five-day trip to the country, said that China and the World Bank are making significant progress on a joint report. —AFP and low comparative year-ago figures pushed China’s consumer inflation to a three-year high of 6.5 percent in July, stirring fears in Beijing that rising prices may stoke social unrest. But many analysts think China’s inflation is

and investment-led growth would work for China over the next 10 years,” Zoellick said. “And that challenge would maybe become even clearer...if developed countries have a hard time resuming their growth.”

But the world’s No 2 economy is not alone in needing a sustainable growth model. Economies in Europe and the United States also need to lay out a future growth path that extends beyond fiscal stimulation or austerity measures.

“ The world economy won’t get out of this hole by simply relying on austerity policies,” Zoellick said. In the case of Europe, its debt troubles also reflect competitive issues in the currency bloc. “If the values of sovereign debt strengthen in Europe, the banks will be stronger,” he said. “If the governments are unable to deal with the sovereign debt issues, it will undoubtedly put stress on the banks.” Premier Wen Jiabao said last week that controlling inflation will remain a top priority in coming months even as the world economy wobbles. The central bank has raised interest rates five times and bank reserve requirements nine times since Oc tober. In addition, it has allowed the yuan to appreciate at a faster pace to help tack le imported inflation. The yuan has now risen 3.17 percent against the dollar so far this year and 6.87 percent since the 2010 depegging. Chinese leaders don’t believe tinkering with the yuan’s regime alone will be enough to achieve economic rebalancing, Zoellick said. Chinese officials have long argued that a firmer yuan is only part of a raft of policy steps to remake China’s economy. All said, Zoellick said Beijing and the World Bank agree on how a revamped Chinese economy should look. “China needs to rebalance its economy, rely more on domestic demand, and increase consumption,” he said. —Reuters

UK’s ICB bank reforms could hit GDP: E&Y LONDON: Plans by a government-appointed commission to get the country’s top banks to ring-fence their retail operations from riskier trading activities could hit Britain’s overall economy, Ernst & Young said in a research note yesterday. A report by the Ernst & Young ITEM club said the Independent Commission on Banking’s (ICB) proposals could impact the economy by some 0.3 percent. “Based on fairly moderate assumptions regarding the likely scope of ringfencing, we believe that the cost of wholesale funding to the investment banking divisions would rise by around 100 basis points, while financial markets would demand a core Tier One Capital Ratio from these divisions of around 14 percent,” Ernst & Young said. “This could result in an increase in the cost of bank lending to large UK corporates of up to 150 basis points. Nonetheless, our analysis suggests that the impact on the wider UK economy is likely to be a reduction of 0.3 percent of GDP (gross domestic product) or less,” it added. The ICB, set up last year to examine reforming Britain’s banking industry after it got badly burnt during the credit crisis, will publish its final report on Sept 12. The report is set to back proposals to ring-fence banks’ banks’ retail arms from riskier trading operations to protect taxpayers from future financial crises. . The ringfencing approach would get banks to form separate subsidiaries for different retail and investment banking operations while keeping the same parent holding company. However, Britain’s “Big Four” banks-Barclays , HSBC and part-nationalized lenders Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds-have consistently warned that excessively tough regulation could harm the UK economy. Shares in those banks were all down sharply in early morning trade. —Reuters

SEOUL: Currency traders monitor exchange rates in a dealing room at the Korea Exchange Bank in Seoul yesterday. South Korean stocks opened sharply lower yesterday as disappointing US employment figures prompted investors to sell off large-cap exporters. —AFP

TOKYO: Journalist look at a redesigned Toyota Camry at a press event marking its sales launch in Tokyo yesterday. Toyota Motor Corp’s 2012 Camry was fully remodeled as a hybrid with improved fuel economy. The new midsize sedan is due to arrive at the dealerships in the United States in early October. —AP

Tax the rich and banks, says Spanish PM hopeful MADRID: Spain’s ruling Socialists’ candidate for prime minister in November elections said yesterday that if he wins he will raise taxes on wealthy people and banks and use the extra revenue to create jobs, especially for young people. Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba, interior minister until a few months ago and the par ty ’ most veteran and prominent member, gave no details in a radio interview but estimated the tax hikes would bring in 2.5 billion euros ($3.6 billion). “We have to ask for an extra effort from those who have most and from the financial sector,” he said. With an unemployment rate of nearly 21 percent, Spain has been struggling to crawl out of nearly two years of recession. The young, in particular, have been having a tough time - the jobless rate for Spaniards under 25 is a stunning 45 percent. A poll released over the weekend said the opposition conservative Popular Party has a nearly 15point lead over the Socialists ahead of the Nov. 20 election. The El Mundo survey had a margin of error of 3 percentage points. Perez Rubalcaba’s main opponent in the race to be prime minister, Popular Party leader Mariano Rajoy, also spoke

of taxes on Monday, but said he would not raise them. In fact, he would lower them for people starting up new businesses. He noted that the Socialists in 2008 eliminated the wealth tax - a levy on a person’s net worth beyond a certain level - as a stimulus measure when the economic crisis was in full swing, and suggested the Socialists now appear to be contradicting themselves. “I have no plans to raise taxes, but rather to encourage economic growth and undertake reforms so the government takes in more revenue,” Rajoy said. “I have just one priority, that there be economic activity and for this you have to support entrepreneurs.” Rajoy said he also wants to keep government spending under tight control but without sacrificing basic public services. He has endorsed a whopping 20 percent budget cut announced for next year in the Castilla- La Mancha region, a Socialist stronghold that his party overtook in May regional and local elections. Other regions controlled by the Popular Party have followed suit, suggesting austerity will be key to the conservatives as the campaign unfolds. Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez, who beat Rajoy in the last two elections, is not seeking a third term. —AP

Asian markets drop on US jobs news HONG KONG: Asian markets fell sharply in early yesterday trade and the euro took a beating after a poor US jobs report added to fears that the world’s largest economy is facing a renewed recession. Stocks were down across the board, following Wall Street’s lead, as investors piled into bonds, gold and other safe havens, seeking shelter from the gathering economic clouds. Tokyo opened 1.37 percent lower, Seoul shed 2.58 percent, Hong Kong was 2.06 percent down and Sydney fell 1.70 percent shortly after the opening bell. Shanghai shed around one

percent early on, with traders citing fears about persistent inflation in the Chinese economy and its possible dampening effect on growth. Markets in Asia were taking their lead from Wall Street’s performance on Friday, where the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 2.20 percent to 11,240.26 on dismal August employment figures. A meager 17,000 private-sector jobs were added, down from a revised 156,000 in July. But that was offset by 17,000 jobs shed by government, figures revealed. The Labor Department said the unemployment rate remained

unchanged at 9.1 percent from July. The number of unemployed people was essentially unchanged, at 14 million. The jobs data for August were the worst since September 2010, when the economy shed more than twice the number of jobs it created. The pace of job growth remains far below the numbers needed to reduce the high unemployment rate. “Global growth prospects are in doubt, and nervous investors are likely to dump shares in favor of ‘safer havens’ such as gold and bonds,” said Michael McCarthy, chief market strategist at CMC Markets in Sydney. “This (US jobs report)

is likely to bring further calls for quantitative easing, despite the Federal Reserve’s apparent aversion,” he said, according to Dow Jones Newswires. On Friday in the United States, bond prices surged. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.00 percent from 2.15 percent late Thursday, while that on the 30-year bond dropped to 3.31 percent from 3.51 percent. Bond prices and yields move in opposite directions. Gold started the week at $1,877$1,878 an ounce in Hong Kong, well up on its Friday close of $1,852.00-$1,853.00. —AFP



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Internet briefs

Readmill networks e-book readers BERLIN: With Readmill, readers of e-books have a new social network consisting of a web application and an iPad app. The web application shows which books are currently being read or recommended. It only displays uncopyrighted books stored digitally. All of them can be downloaded thanks to Project Gutenberg, where thousands of books on which the copyright has expired, can be accessed. The app is a comprehensive e-book reader. Pages are turned by the flick of a finger. But, unlike other reader programs, this one notes the time one began reading, how much time was taken and when the book was finished - or when it was put aside. Soon it should be possible to mark bits of text so they can be stored online. Google+ also allows personalized status updates BERLIN: Users of the new Google+ online network are often looking for a way to share information with just one specific person. On Facebook, that’s done with the Messages tool. Google+ only has one tool for messages to both an entire network and only certain recipients. To limit the distribution, type in the names of the addressees. After only a few keystrokes, the software offers up a menu of possible entries, from which one can choose. Get your tablet PC online via your mobile BERLIN: It’s not necessary to have a UMTS module or access to a wi-fi hotspot to get your tablet PC online. That’s because a lot of today’s smartphones can create their own wi-fi network, which can be accessed by a tablet, reports the German telecommunications portal That could save owners of tablets without UMTS modules between 50 and 80 euros (72 to 116 dollars). Tablets usually sell for about 160 euros. But buyers usually have to pay additional money for extras. Pay special attention to display size and resolution, operating system, processor, memory and internet connections. To get a feel for the device’s size, weight and feel, it’s a good idea to look at multiple devices before buying. Microsoft launches new multi-touch mouse MUNICH: Microsoft’s new multi-touch mouse is now available in shops and features a touch strip that, according to the company, makes navigating Windows 7 a breeze. The wireless laser mouse, which comes with a nano receiver for a USB interface, costs around 80 euros (114 dollars) and simplifies on-screen actions like scrolling, minimizing/maximizing, and docking with finger gestures.

Pakistan tech wizard harnesses Internet Program allows SMS to thousands of people at once LAHORE: While many young tech wizards strive to invent the next iPad, Umar Saif is working to bring Internet-style networking to millions of Pakistanis who don’t have access to the Web. He could shake up the country’s politics in the process. Saif ’s efforts recently earned him recognition by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology as one of the world’s top young technology innovators, a significant feat in a country better known as a home to Islamist militants than to cutting-edge researchers. Technological progress faces immense hurdles in Pakistan, with its pervasive insecurity, shoddy public education system, struggling economy and chronic electricity shortages. The country has fallen far behind neighboring India, which has a flourishing tech industry. Given that many Pakistanis still struggle to get enough food and clean water - much less a computer or smart phone - much of Saif’s research in Pakistan centers around giving ordinary citizens new ways to use one thing that many do have: a basic cell phone. The trigger for his research was a 2005 earthquake in Pakistani-controlled Kashmir that killed 80,000 people and caused widespread destruction. The disaster coincided with his return to Pakistan after getting a Ph.D. in computer science from the University of Cambridge. Realizing that rescue workers were having trouble coordinating, Saif, 32, devised a computer program that allowed people to send a text message - or SMS - to thousands of people at once. Users send a

text to a specific phone number to sign up for the program, and then can message all the subscribers, allowing users to engage in the kind of social networking possible on the Internet. It has since blossomed into a commercial enterprise called SMS-all that is used by at least 2.5 million people who have sent nearly 4 billion text messages. “You can do the sorts of things that we do on Facebook and Twitter,” said Saif, now an associate professor at the Lahore University of Management Sciences. The company generates revenue by charging a small amount for each message. Saif has expanded the service to Iraq and Nigeria by working with telecommunication companies there. Roughly 20 million Pakistanis use the Internet, about 11 percent of the country’s total population of 187 million. But there are more than 108 million Pakistani cell phone subscribers. That was Saif’s inspiration. “The thing to do is to bring whatever you have on the Internet on the phone lines, because that is what gets used the most,” said Saif, a fast-talking fountain of ideas. People in other developing countries, especially in Africa, have worked to bring a variety of services to cell phones, such as banking and market prices for crops. In Pakistan, SMS-all has a natural outlet in the tumult of Pakistani politics. The networking power of Facebook and Twitter was seen as a driver of the revolutions that swept across the Arab world this year, especially in Egypt. But Internet penetration in many of those countries is much higher

Motorola mobile phone with touchscreen and keypad BERLIN: Motorola’s latest budget-minded Android smartphone, the XT531 Fire, comes with a 2.8-inch touchscreen over a QWERTY keypad for easy messaging. The XT531 is powered by a 600MHz processor and comes with Wi-Fi and GPS. It runs Motorola’s custom interface on top of Android 2.3 Gingerbread for speedy web access. The phone also features the Moto Switch UI that allows users to easily switch between work and play home screen setups on their phones. The Fire is expected to retail at a price of 189 euros.

LOS ANGELES: Satoru Iwata, global president, Nintendo Co, speaks during a demonstration of the new Wii U at a media briefing. — MCT

Nintendo unveils Wii U LOS ANGELES: Nintendo revealed its new home console dubbed the Wii U - a new high-definition video game system that will use a new touch-screen controller to play games both on and off the TV screen. The Wii U’s white, plastic controller is about the size of some tablet computers and features a 6.2inch touch screen, as well as a standard array of gaming controller buttons. But a tablet the Wii U controller is not. Images displayed on the Wii U’s controller are all produced by the Wii U console itself and the screen is just that - another screen. The display on the Wii U controller can work in a few different ways: as a complement to a game on a TV, adding extra information or control options; as a mirrored screen, displaying the same images as what’s on a TV; or as the only gaming screen, for when a friend may want to watch a TV but a Wii U user might want to keep playing a video game. The screen’s options will allow users to game at home without being tied to their TVs, but because the controller relies on the Wii U console for everything displayed on the screen, it isn’t a true portable gaming system on its own. The touch-screen will also be compatible with a stylus and feature two cameras, one front and one rear, that can be used for augmented reality games or to conduct a video chat session with friends who also own Wii U systems. An accelerometer and a gyroscope are built into the new controller, so motion control (which is a trademark of the current Wii system) will play a role in the new device as well. But the Wii U won’t rely just on the touch-screen controller. The new system will be backward compatible with the current Wii’s motion controllers and other accessories. Nintendo says it will ship the Wii U sometime after April 1, 2012. The company did not offer a price for the new system. — MCT

Umar Saif power in 1999. Now, political parties are using the service, a move that could shake up the political system by allowing smaller groups to compete against the two dominant parties, which have extensive networks throughout Pakistan. An early user is the Tehreek-e-Insaf, or

Movement for Justice party, which was started by Imran Khan, a Pakistani cricket star who is popular across much of Pakistan but has had difficulty translating that support into votes. “If we don’t have offices in every small city in Pakistan, at least through this technology our message can go to every small city in Pakistan,” said the party’s general secretary, Arif Alvi. The party set up a group on SMS-all about a month ago and has already attracted over 300,000 members, said Alvi. “Pakistan is going through a crossroads, and I hope this technology and what we are doing will play a major role in changing the destiny of the country,” said Alvi. One of the two dominant parties, the Pakistan Muslim League-N, has also set up a group on SMSall and has taken out advertisements in local papers asking people to join. Saif is working on several other projects that harness the networking power of the Internet through cell phones. One program, being developed in conjunction with Carnegie Mellon University in the U.S., would create the mobile phone equivalent of an Internet chat room, allowing people to ask questions that could be answered by others. He is coordinating with a local hospital to create such a service for cancer patients. “If you go to these Internet forums for various diseases they are very heavily used, but there is nothing like that in this part of this world because there is very little Internet,” said Saif. — AP

Google doodles playful mix of art, technology

LG mouse doubles as a scanner BERLIN: A new mouse by LG not only carries out the usual tasks of a computer mouse but also doubles as a scanner. The appropriately named “mouse scanner” is simple to use and allows documents and photos up to A3 size to be saved as graphic files. Alternatively, optical character recognition (ocr) software can be used. The scanner has a resolution of 640 x 480 pixels and will retail for 129 euros. HTC launches new EVO 3D smartphone FRANKFURT: Mobile phone manufacturer HTC has announced the arrival of the HTC EVO 3D. Users can enjoy a glasses-free 3D experience on a 4.3-inch HD screen and also switch effortlessly between 2D and 3D. The inbuilt two 5-megapixel cameras are enhanced with new features that allow 3D images to be captured. The HTC EVO 3D is driven by a powerful, 1.2 Ghz dualcore Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, and retails in the region of 699 euros.—dpa

than in Pakistan. In Pakistan, thousands of lawyers used SMS-all to help organize 2008 protests against the rule of then-President Pervez Musharraf, a U.S.-backed leader who seized

ELLENSBURG: Central Washington University geologist Tim Melbourne points out locations of GPS monitors in the Ellensburg, Washingtonbased PANGA network. — MCT

Scientists track motions of plates using GPS sensors SEATTLE: The Pacific Northwest is a restless place. The ground is being shoved by tectonic plates. Snow-capped volcanoes inflate and deflate in concert with the creep of molten rock. Coastlines bulge as tension builds on an offshore fault very like the one that snapped in Japan March 11. Scientists now can track these minuscule motions as they happen, thanks to an expanded network of GPS sensors that covers the region like a blanket and beams back data almost instantly. “If the Pacific Coast or Mount Rainier moves a couple of centimeters, we’ll see it within five seconds,” said Tim Melbourne, director of the Pacific Northwest Geodetic Array, or PANGA. Once the network’s “realtime” functions are fully operational, PANGA will be able to pinpoint some earthquakes more quickly and accurately than traditional seismometers - and eventually issue warnings before destructive shaking hits cities or tsunami waves slam the shore. Scientists use the GPS data to calculate the gradual buildup of strain on faults and identify the places most likely to pop. Dozens of the sensors also sit atop structures such as the Alaskan Way Viaduct and Howard Hanson Dam, on watch for unexpected slumps or jiggles. “ The Northwest is really leading the nation in this right now,” said Melbourne, a geology professor at Central Washington University in Ellensburg, where PANGA is based. PANGA’s instruments are sophisticated variations on consumer GPS units, using the same constellation of satellites to triangulate positions. A decade ago, about 20 instruments were scattered between Oregon and the Canadian border. Each cost $50,000 and delivered data no more than once a day. Today, 450 GPS units span the region, spitting out readings every second. Melbourne and his team are installing an additional 60 units this year. The price tag has dropped to about $8,000 for vastly more precise instruments. Operating in peak mode, PANGA can track ground motions as tiny as one-tenth of a millimeter. A station at Goldendale, Klickitat County, near the Columbia River, records the plateau’s slight rebound every summer as snow melts off Mount Adams, 40 miles away. GPS networks have revolutionized the study of geology by opening a window onto the tectonic forces that shape the landscape and underlie earthquakes and volcanism. When Mount St. Helens rumbled back to life in 2004, researchers relied on GPS to track the magma’s movement and help forecast outbursts. Using a combination of GPS and sonar, Japanese scientists measured nearly 80 feet of slip on the underwater fault that

triggered the quake and deadly tsunami in March. GPS measurements also were key to the recent discovery of “silent” earthquakes that occur roughly every 14 months deep within the fault called the Cascadia Subduction Zone, where the seafloor dives under the continent. Running along the coast from Vancouver Island to Northern California, the fault has unleashed some of the world’s biggest quakes - most recently a magnitude9 in 1700. Melbourne’s GPS maps reveal the way the entire region is moving to the northeast at an average of half an inch a year - roughly the rate at which fingernails grow. But the motion isn’t uniform. Forks, on the coast, moves an inch per year. Seattle shuffles half that much. In Central Washington, the creep slows to one-eighth of an inch. The amounts seem insignificant, but the coast has moved more than 25 feet since the subduction zone last let loose 300 years ago, Melbourne said. “There’s no doubt that fault is locked and loaded and accumulating strain.” The silent earthquakes seem to be adding to that strain. Until now, PANGA’s main application has been for research. But the ability to record motion instantaneously, made possible by a grant from NASA, is turning the network into a tool with practical uses. “It has transformed us into something akin to a seismic network,” Melbourne said. Seismometers measure ground shaking with exquisite sensitivity but can be overwhelmed by large earthquakes, said John Vidale, director of the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network at the University of Washington. It took Japanese scientists nearly an hour to realize the March 11 quake was magnitude-9, not the magnitude-8 their initial readings indicated. Partly because of that delay, the size of the tsunami took coastal communities by surprise. Real-time GPS can measure the actual ground-heaving when a major fault ruptures, which can be translated into the size of the quake. “That will be very useful for earthquakes that are big enough,” Vidale said. But the network can only “see” quakes of magnitude-6 or greater. That’s because churning out quick results drives accuracy down, so the system can’t detect fault slips or other motions smaller than about 2 centimeters in real-time mode. But quickly identifying the size and source of major earthquakes may help save lives by directing emergency responders, said Frank Webb, project manager at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. — MCT

MOUNTAIN VIEW: A tribute to legendary Queen front man Freddie Mercury took center stage at Google in much of the world yesterdayin the latest “doodle” merging technology and art to show the Internet giant’s human side. An animated video crafted into the logo on Google’s search page to honor what would have been the late rock legend’s 65th birthday marked the latest step in the evolution of doodles that started as rudimentary clip art. Google users woke to Mercury everywhere but in the United States, where a Labor Day holiday prompted the doodle to be bumped to Tuesday. “It has a lot of fun, goofy stuff to celebrate what an incredible song writer, fashion icon, and musical innovator he was,” doodle team creative lead Ryan Germick told AFP during a visit to their base at Google’s headquarters in the California city of Mountain View. “Freddy Mercury was an awesome performer, an ambitious creator and pioneered really audacious concept records,” Germick said. “We just love him; we’ve been blasting Queen for the last couple of months and it is always joyful.” The first doodle was posted atop the logo at Google’s famously uncluttered search page by company co-founders Larry Page and Serge Brin in 1998 when Google was just getting off the ground. It was essentially an “Out of Office” note in the form of a Burning Man image from a gathering that Brin and Page were heading to in the Black Rock Desert of Nevada. Brin and Page posted the art to basically tell users “If the servers melt down we will be back in a couple of days-we’re out in the desert,” according to Germick. The notion of a doodle flourished on a Google campus rich with creativity and engineering brilliance. Before long, a couple of “Googlers” eclipsed doodle clip art with beautiful illustrations. “It is a way to humanize the website,” Germick said. “This is an opportunity to express to users that we are here, we are people, and we like the things you like.” After Germick joined the team it began tapping into new Internet technology to add interactivity. A doodle that was a playable Pac-Man videogame was such a hit that it was given its own Web page. Google software engineer Kristopher Hom was enlisted to bring doodles to life. Along with Pac-Man, Hom helped create a Jules

Verne animation that let people captain an animated submarine based on one of the French author’s famous novels, and a playable virtual guitar tribute to Les Paul. “The audio samples were recorded on a Les Paul guitar, and we chose notes that made it easy to play something good,” Hom said. “People were sharing songs and remixing them on YouTube,” he said. “It was amazing how everyone had a little ownership of that doodle.” Custom-made video clips hosted at Google-owned YouTube have been incorporated in doodles including tributes to Mercury, the late Beatle John Lennon and acting legends Lucille Ball and Charlie Chaplin. “For me, a doodle is an opportunity to make someone happy for 10 seconds,” Hom said. “Someone starts the day learning about a person they didn’t know, or gets to see what is possible on the Web in the browser today.” A doodle for sculptor Alexander Calder was a 3D graphic of one of his trademark works of art that Google users could “move” with cursor strokes. Controls for the Verne submarine were synched to “accelerometer” capabilities in new-generation laptops so people could navigate by tilting computers. The doodle team is keen to begin incorporating social components in doodles as technology allows. “We can draw a scene with code, which gives us a lot of opportunities to make the home page a little different for you or let you play with a friend,” Hom said. “Social is definitely an area we are very excited about.” Ideas for doodles spring from sources ranging from suggestions by Google users to personal passions of Germick’s team. “We have a gigantic laundry list of people who have inspired us and things we are excited about celebrating,” Germick said. “I think the DNA of Google having fun is what birthed us,” he said. “Besides the free food, another tremendous perk of being inside of Google is that fun, at the very top of the company, is a value.” Germick describes his team as a handful of artists with thousands of engineers at their disposal. “We are in the middle between geeks and artists,” Germick said. “When we are able to use our logo and infuse technology with art really magical things have happened.” While doodles last only a day at search pages, they have a permanent home online at — AFP

MOUNTAIN VIEW: Doodle Creative Lead Ryan Germick works on an illustration at the Google headquarters. — AFP



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health& science

FDA set to take second look at artificial food colorings Pediatricspecialists prescribe diets sans syntheticdyes

SAN JOSE: Steven Bringas, of San Jose, California, overcame severe social anxiety after undergoing cognitive therapy during a clinical trial at Stanford University. — MCT

Stanford study vanquishes social anxieties without drugs WALNUT CREEK: For most of his life, 24-year-old Steven Bringas so feared humiliating himself if he spoke that only an emergency would get him to enter a store. The few times he shopped, he couldn’t look at the clerk and barely managed a “thank you” when he left. He avoided encountering others, thinking his small talk so clumsy that it would invite ridicule. Dealing with fellow students was so painful that he dropped out of community college. “I was a mess” in college, said Bringas, of San Jose, Calif. Today, he’s unrecognizable from the withdrawn, anxious man he was. While squarely making eye contact, Bringas described how a clinical trial using cognitive behavioral therapy at Stanford University in 2009 all but vanquished his nearly lifelong social anxieties. It isn’t news that the well-known therapy would yield profound changes. But the Stanford study generated a new kind of evidence: Brain scan images revealed the therapy caused dramatic changes in the brain’s inner workings. In the fall, Stanford researchers will start a new, five-year clinical trial to continue their study of non-drug treatments for social anxiety. As with the previous one, the trial will test the effectiveness of cognitive behavioral therapy and mindfulness meditation in calming social anxiety. The disorder affects about 7 percent of US adults in varying severity, from the painfully shy to people deeply fearful of normal social interaction. The behavioral therapy changes distorted thinking about oneself, and mindfulness meditation trains in awareness skills that reduce anxiety. The researchers test one of the two approaches on each subject. MRI scans and personal accounts confirm that mindfulness meditation also reduces social anxiety, said Philippe Goldin, a clinical psychologist and Stanford researcher involved in the studies. The new round of research will directly compare cognitive therapy and mindfulness meditation. Results thus far show the behavioral therapy and the meditation practice each stimulate different neural networks, Goldin said. After the behavioral therapy, the prefrontal cortex - the seat of logical, analytic thinking was more engaged in controlling reactions in the brain region from which emotions arise, the amygdala. Cognitive behavioral therapy challenges patients to reconsider distorted thinking that generates negative self views. Through gradual exposure to anxiety-arousing situations, it builds confidence as they realize their worst fears are unwarranted. “Fear exposure” also breaks hardened cycles of avoiding anxiety-provoking situations. Mindfulness meditation, in contrast, stimulates a brain network in the posterior cortical region that helps us pay attention. The shift directs the mind away from distorted self-perceptions. It also appears to reduce social anxiety by interrupting habitual poor self-judgments and ruminations on self-defined negative traits, among other changes, Goldin said. The discovery that each treatment stimulated a different neural network - hence a different mental approach - is critical, he said, as some people will mesh more easily with one type of treatment. “Just like the same drug won’t help everyone, one form of mental training doesn’t necessarily help everyone,” Goldin said. Brain scans for psychological research could ultimately prove useful in tailoring

treatment approaches, said Judith Rumsey, a program officer with the National Institute of Mental Health who is overseeing the Stanford grant. The institute is funding the $2.5 million, five-year study. “For many years we couldn’t look inside the black box,” she said. “Now we can look at how these different treatments are affecting the brain, and hopefully use that to improve things.” Early psychological research with brain scans focused more on the effect of medications, Rumsey said. The Stanford study is part of a newer focus on analyzing non-drug approaches to mental health treatment. Goldin said finding effective drug-free treatments for social anxiety is a critical motivation for the research. “Medications can be very effective for some people, but they have side effects that most people don’t really like that impact their quality of life,” he said. Those include weight gain and grogginess. The two therapies being investigated by the Stanford team - the behavioral therapy and mindfulness meditation - in effect teach the brain new ways of managing emotional reactions. “Our brain has been sculpted to learn, and medications are not about new learning,” Goldin said. The Stanford research is also intended to raise awareness of the prevalence of social anxiety, Goldin said, which often goes unrecognized even by those suffering from it. “All over the Bay Area, there are thousands and thousands of people with social anxiety sitting alone,” he said. The condition typically arises during childhood, and one study linked it to emotional abuse and emotional neglect, Goldin said. The earlier a sufferer receives quality treatment, the more easily the condition is relieved. “It changes the trajectory of their whole life,” he said. About 40 percent of people coping with social anxiety are in treatment, but only one-third of them receive adequate therapy, according to the mental health institute. It was the non-drug nature of the two treatments that drew Bringas to the Stanford study after a desperate Internet search when his mother’s remarriage triggered a crisis. He hit “rock bottom” in July 2009, when his mother’s plan to move to Germany with her new husband threatened to leave him on his own. The terrified young man’s search for ways to overcome what he thought of as shyness turned up a checklist for social anxiety disorder. He was shocked to learn that his painful condition had a name and that many suffer from it. “Every symptom was there,” he said. “After reading a bit more, I knew I wasn’t alone.” Bringas learned about medications for anxiety. “But I felt that would just be masking the problem. I just wanted to face the fear.” Then he came across the Stanford clinical trial for treating social anxiety without drugs. He’s deeply grateful to the Stanford team members, who opened the door to a new life. With his outgoing girlfriend by his side, Bringas said he’s going to enter San Jose State in the fall to study political science and psychology. “Where I was then and where I am now is just such a huge difference,” he said. And Bringas wants to spread the word that there’s effective help for those still suffering from the agonizing anxiety that once hobbled him. “There could be a rocket scientist who’s just too scared to come out and interact with people,” he said. “So he’s going to sit in his room and live a mediocre existence.” — MCT

NEW YORK: Red No 40 and other artificial dyes have increasingly become scarlet letters (and numbers) to parents who read food labels. Some believe that these common food, drug and cosmetic dyes can exacerbate behavioral disorders in children, as well as possibly contribute to allergies and cancers. The FDA, after long stating that no scientific evidence conclusively links the petroleum-based colorants to hyperactivity and other ills, has agreed to reassess them. A panel of experts will review studies and suggest any policy changes. An outright ban on synthetic dyes is unlikely, though the nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest just petitioned the FDA to outlaw caramel colorings that use ammonium compounds, and in 2008 asked it to revoke approval for several synthetic food dyes. At the time, it requested an interim warning label such as, “The artificial colorings in this food cause hyperactivity and behavioral problems in some children.” For a host of ills in children, pediatric specialists often prescribe diets that are free of synthetic dyes, among other additives. Few doctors single out dyes as the cause of a disorder. Still, the CSPI’s site ( abounds with testimonials of tantrums tamed and focus improved when artificial colorants are avoided. What all could agree on, for now, is that artificial dyes confer no direct nutritional benefits. So one might wonder: Why use them if you can lose them? One big reason is cost.

Artificial colors often are cheaper, brighter and more stable than natural plant-based colors, explained Bob Petrich, CEO of St Paul, Minn-based Suntava, which extracts a natural color from a proprietary purple corn. Another reason - whether a vir tue or deception - is that added color can make not just junk foods but also nutritious ones, such as salmon, look more appetizing. Their presence isn’t always obvious. Many yogurts, cereals, fruit snacks and juices contain them even Jell-O vanilla pudding uses yellow 5 and 6. “Artificial colors are in nearly everything, including most prescription and over-the-counter drugs,” said Shauna Young, a naturopath who works with children and adults with autism spectrum and attention disorders ( “I find it particularly offensive that they are so prevalent in chewable vitamins aimed at kids.” In countries that have different dye regulations, food companies routinely substitute natural dyes for artificial ones. The CSPI cites NutriGrain bars. In Britain they contain natural colorants. In the US, synthetic. Here, as suspicions have grown, more products at grocery chains - not just at Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s - are using plant or vegetable colorants such as beet juice, turmeric, paprika, purple corn or annatto (from a tropical tree’s seed). Recently introduced Simply Fruit Roll-Ups, in Wildberry flavor, list juices from carrots and blueberries for color. One shelf away, regular strawberry Fruit Roll-Ups list FD&C red 40,

yellows 5 and 6 and blue 1 as ingredients. That’s how the cookie’s colored Holidays and birthdays might call for a colorfully frosted cookie or cake. We tested India Tree Natural Decorating Colors, $18 ( and, to see if the

results would stand up to conventional food color. The India Tree trio of red (from beet juice), yellow (from curcumin) and blue (from red cabbage) cost more than typical food colors. They delivered spring pinks, yellows and violets to our sugar cookie icing, without adding a discernable flavor. — MCT

Red No 40 and other artificial dyes have increasingly become scarlet letters (and numbers) to parents who read food labels. — MCT

Formulating fitness for regular people

FOLSOM: Kusum Jain holds a picture of herself when she had a full head of hair. —MCT

Women who lose hair struggle with identity SACRAMENTO: Shirley Berger holds a photo of herself taken at Venice Beach, Calif., in 1960. She’s about 20 in the picture and looks like Elizabeth Taylor: the same thick eyebrows and upturned nose. She’s on her stomach, holding a cigarette. A layer of her dark curly hair covers her head. “My hair was so thick, you couldn’t see through it at all,” Berger said. “I had a ton of hair.” At 58, 10 years after she hit menopause, her hair started to thin and fall out. She bought a wig, but she hated how it felt. She goes to the hairdresser once a week now for help hiding the thin spots. At restaurants, she maneuvers herself out of the way when waiters come to the table so they can’t see the top of her head. And she sleeps on satin pillowcases to avoid snagging her hair. “I’m not sure I understand why men can get away with aging,” said Berger, who is now 70. Sitting in her Carmichael, Calif., home, she splays old photos across her kitchen table. A few feature the sky-high ‘do she wore in 1976. “It’s scary because all of a sudden you knew, just looking in the mirror every day, you knew you were aging. ... I would give anything if I had not lost my hair,” she said. Aside from menopause, the American Academy of Dermatology reports that 30 million women in the United States are losing their hair due to genetic factors. Thyroid disease, medication side effects and diet also can cause it. It’s estimated that one in four women experiences thinning hair. “With some, it has to do with dramatic changes in their life: surgery, delivering a child ... having a very severe illness,” said Pamela Prescott, an endocrinologist at the University of California-Davis Medical Center. “Sometimes, it’s what we do to our hair, the styling, dyeing, straightening.” Stress, Prescott said, can have a major effect on hair growth. And for some, losing their hair gives them more reason to stress than the actual medical cause. “It was very traumatic,” said Kristy DeVaney, who lost all her hair after having a negative reaction to the common antibiotic minocycline. “It was very hard to deal with for a very long time. ... I kept

thinking, ‘What do people think of me? What do I think of myself? I’m an ugly bald person.’ It’s probably the worst thing I’ve ever been through.” Maxine Craig, an associate professor in the Women and Gender Studies program at UC Davis, has researched just how much hair means to women. It means a whole lot. “Hair is seen as a marker of gender identity,” Craig said. In most Western cultures, short hair or no hair represents masculinity, and long hair represents femininity. “These are social codes that we all learn and learn deeply,” Craig said. “When a woman loses her hair, she may feel that she is losing something that identifies her as a woman.” Girls who cut their hair short and men who grow their hair out are considered rebels - people who want to resist the social code and be defiant. “Women who do not attempt to confirm to beauty norms are seen as somehow problematic,” Craig said. “Girls start hearing at a very young age that their looks are important ... and women are constantly getting evaluated on the basis of their appearance.” There is, perhaps, no better spokeswoman for the issue of baldness and beauty than Miss Delaware 2010 - and a Top 10 at this year’s Miss America pageant - Kayla Martell. Martell is completely bald, the result of alopecia areata, an autoimmune disease that caused her hair to start falling out when she was 10. “I remember thinking, ‘I probably will never be Miss Delaware now,’” said Martell, who had grown up attending the state pageant every year with her mother. She entered the pageant, and three times she strutted across the Miss Delaware stage sporting what she described as “peach fuzz” on her head. Eventually, a judge pulled her aside and told her that if she wanted to win the crown, she needed to wear a wig. “I was so offended and appalled, I couldn’t believe what I was hearing,” she said. But after talking about it and seeing people at alopecia conferences wearing wigs, she changed her mind. Winning the pageant would give her a higher public platform from which to talk about women’s baldness. — MCT

NEW YORK: A mother-to-be hoists a rubber cylinder overhead. A 70-year-old balances on a wobble board and a firefighter grips a medicine ball while lunging across the gym floor. Called functional training, workouts mirroring the activities of daily life have become a cornerstone of personal training sessions and group fitness classes, even if daily life can encompass anything from lifting a baby to scaling a burning building. “Functional fitness has moved beyond the trend stage, and is simply one of the driving forces for many of the 50 million health club members,” said Meredith Poppler of IHRSA (International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association). It’s basically exercise aimed at improving the quality of life and movement. “Functional fitness is exercise that mimics everyday tasks,” explained Frank Salzone, a trainer with the Equinox chain of fitness centers. “I always put my personal clients through functional training.” Salzone noted that while functional fitness has always been around, it has gained steam since the image of a healthy body shifted away from the bulkier body builder to today’s leaner look. “Body builders tend to use power moves, power lifting. They only do three or four repetitions at a time,” he explained. “Functional training uses higher repetitions with fewer breaks so it boosts cardio vascular levels as well as strength training.” Bootcamp classes, which use light weights or one’s own body weight, he said are among the most popular functional fitness classes. “You can also use medicine balls, resistance balls, dumbbells,” he said. “Any tool can be used in a group fitness setting given the right instruction and set up.” Among the newer tools in the functional fitness arsenal is the ViPR ( Vitality, Per formance, Reconditioning), a rubber cylinder with cutout handles designed to be carried, dragged, flipped, thrown, stepped on and rolled over. It’s functional, according to Salzone, because you can adjust your workout to your goals, “whether you’re a marathoner, looking to gain lean mass or just have an overall full body workout.” Life Fitness, the Illinois-based equipment manufacturer, has put together functional training manuals specific to sports, such as football, basketball and baseball, as well as programs for seniors, youth and firefighters, according to spokesperson Heather Sieker. “Functional training is basically a type of training that improves function,” Sieker said. “It could be function in a specific sport, work, or even function in daily living.” Even absolute beginners can perform functional movements, she said, but they should ask the guidance of a fitness professional to start. “Then as they progress they might incorporate more and more advanced movements,” she said. Salzone recommends starting out with three or four functional training sessions a week, then adding a day as you build strength. “You should be doing four to five times a week for a full body functional workout,” he said. “If you do these workouts nonstop, you’ll be incorporating your cardio as well.” Salzone said you can define fitness in many ways. “My definition of fit is having a healthy, well-working body where you’re able to do functional movements without injuring yourself,” he said. “If you’re running for a bus, you want your heart rate to be able to go higher without risk.” — Reuters




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health& science

‘Stemcell zoo’ could save endangered species PARIS: Scientists said Sunday they had produced the first stemcells from endangered species, a breakthrough that could potentially save dozens of animals teetering on the brink of extinction. “The best way to manage extinction is to preserve species and habitats but that is not always working,” Oliver Ryder, director of genetics at the San Diego Zoo and co-leader of the study, said in a statement. “Stemcell technology provides some level of hope that they won’t have to become extinct even though they have been completely eliminated from their habitat.” That is the case for the northern white rhinoceros, one of the first two animals included in Ryder’s new “stemcell zoo.” Only seven specimens remain in existence, all in captivity and two in San Diego. The researchers also isolated stemcells from a critically threatened primate called a drill, genetically a close cousin to humans. In captivity, drills often suffer from diabetes, a disease scientists are seeking to treat in humans using stemcell-based therapies. Ryder’s team had already collected skin cells and other tissue samples from more than 800 species-stored in a “Frozen Zoo”-

by 2006. That is when he contacted Jeanne Loring, a professor at the Scripps Research Institute in nearby La Jolla and the study’s other lead researcher, about the possibility of using the bank to generate and store stemcells. At the time, scientists seeking to use stemcells to cure human disease had not yet found a reliable technique for turning normal adult cells into stemcells that can give rise to nearly any type of tissue or cell in the body. Today, however, this processcalled induced pluripotency-is routinely achieved by inserting certain genes into normal cells. At first, Ryder and Loring tried to use genes from animals closely related to the target species in order to trigger the transformation, but the experiments failed. Through trial and error, however, they discovered to their amazement that the same genes that induce pluripotency in humans also worked for the drill and the rhino. The process in inefficient, only producing a few stemcells at a time, according to the study, published in Nature Methods. But it was still enough to start the “stemcell zoo”. Perhaps the greatest potential for helping endangered species-

beyond disease treatment-is new reproductive stategies. If adult stemcells can become a sperm or egg cell, for example, scientists could then use skin cells from long-dead animals in the Frozen Zoo to produce the male and female starter kit for new life. Induced sperm cells could be combined with the eggs from living animals through in vitro fertilisation. Alternatively, both eggs and sperm might be generated from stemcells, with the resulting embryos implanted in live host animals, a process the researchers said would likely be much more reliable that cloning techniques. “I think that work would be a lot easier ethically with endangered species than with humans,” Loring said in a statement. “I suspect some people working in this area would love to have our cells for experiments.” Such techniques would also help boost genetic diversity by reaching beyond the small number of living individuals of a dwindling species, she explained. Even if the remaining northern white rhinos reproduced-which hasn’t happened in many years-the tiny gene pool could easily lead to unhealthy animals. — AFP

SOCHI: An albino hedgehog walks in the Zoo of the Botanical Garden (Dendrarium) in the Russian Black Sea resort yesterday. The hedgehog was found at one of the construction sites of the 2014 Winter Olympics. — AFP

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W H AT ’ S O N

Birthday Greetings

Happy birthday Dona! We wish you lots of happiness and good health. May you live long and good life and may God bless you always. Greetings come from your loving daughters Veronica, Christina, and husband Ranjith.

PIC celebrates Eid


he Petrochemical Industries Company (PIC) held their annual Eid Al-Fitr celebration at the Boubyan Club, attended by staff members and their families. The event was supervised by communications and services manager Abdulhadi Al-Hajri, and featured many activities including competitions and a special cartoon characters’ show for kids.

Abdulhadi Al-Hajri

Indian music video to be shot in Kuwait


Malayalam musical album that has song writers from Jnanpith award winner ONV to the popular Rafeeq Ahmad and singers from Hariharan to Sreya Ghoshal, produced by Ragasuthra Music Company and orchestrated by Viswajith plans its launch soon. The 8 songs in the album uses lots of Indian languages in part and the music also is pan Indian. As part of the launch the songs are being visualized. A few songs will be shot in Kuwait since the songs represent the life of Indian expats in Kuwait. Ragasuthra is looking for real talents for their gulf based production of music videos. Talents/Actors: M/F - Age: 14 - 26; -Family combination: M/F Age: 28 - 45; -Supporting character: M/F - Age 10 - 60; Assistant Director: M/F; -Associate Director: M/F; -Assistants: M/F; Training will be given for selected candidates. Serious applicants may send their bio data with recent photographs to

Announcements Tulukoota talent hunt Tulukoota Kuwait will hold a “Talent Hunt 2011” a chance to prove an inborn trait in you that confirms your individuality, uniqueness. So step forward to grab this opportunity to show your caliber and entertain. Dance, music, art or any special talent- now is your chance to showcase it - and be part of this year’s Talent Hunt & Tulu Parba. Talent Hunt event is open to all Tuluvas. For more information and registration form kindly log on to our Website: or visit our facebook page - Tulukoota Kuwait Talent Hunt 2011. You could also email your form request to: or contact our area coordinators mentioned below. Mangaf, Fahaheel, Abuhalifa : Ronald Dsouza- 60035824, Shalini Alva23726164, Suma Bhatt- 97834578 Salmiya & Hawally: Swarna Shetty- 99006934, Kripa Gatty- 66044194 Kuwait City, Jahra, Sharq : Rekha Sachu- 65044521,97862115 Farwaniya, Abbassiya, Shuwaikh & Khaitan: Sathyanarayana- 66585077 Sanath Shetty- 67712409. Pathanamthitta Onam The executive committee of Pathanamthitta District Association has decided to hold 2011 Onam Festival celebrations on Friday October 28, 2011 with a grand public function attended by Member of Parliament from Pathanamthitta Loksabha Constituency, Anto Antony and other prominent dignitaries from Kerala and Kuwait. All residents of Pathanamthitta District and persons of Pathanamthitta District origin are hereby invited to attend this function and friends and families. Art salon Bouhshari Art Gallery Exhibition runs through 15 September. Daily working hours: 10am - 1pm and 5 9pm, except on Friday and on Thursday evening. Konkani musical show Comedian Philip, the 1st NRI Goan comedian, is all set to entertain you with a Konkani music show titled “Ani, Anik Zaiem?” to be presented by the United Friends Club on September 9 at 4pm at the AIS (American International School) Auditorium, Maidan-Hawalli. This is Kuwait-based comedian Philip’s third musical show after the overwhelming success of staging “Tum Vhoir Aum Sokol” and “Hem Kazar Koslem” in Kuwait and overseas. Arpan Onam on Sept 23 Arpan Kuwait will celebrate Onam, Kerala’s harvest festival, on September 23 at the Indian Community School, Salmiya (Senior Girls) from 10 am onwards. Various cultural programs have been scheduled to make the celebration a success. Traditional attractions like athappookkalam, mohiniyattom, kaikottikali, folk songs, dance and songs and skits will be presented by Arpan members. A program committee headed by K Mahadevan is overseeing the preparations. The celebration will come to an end with a sumptuous ‘Onasadya.’ NAFO Onam celebration NAFO Kuwait to celebrate Onam on September 30, 2011 at the Indian Community School (Senior for Girls) auditorium Salmiya. Cultural activities such as dance,skit, nadan pattukal, vallapattukal etc will be held which will be followed by the traditional onasadhya. All NAFO members are requested to make this program a grand success by participating in various activities. Please register your name at the convener of the program Rajasekaran Nair. For details please contact Nandakumar 99559416, Udayakumar 66464577 or Rajasekharan Nair 97824780.

‘Thank You Kuwait’ VCD released in Kuwait


hank You Kuwait,’ a Konkani songs video album by renowned singer and playwright Late Rosary Ferns was released at a function held at Kuwait’s Village Inn Restaurant on Thursday, September 1, 2011. The album produced by Queeny Productions & Publications (Goa) has songs set to music by Maestro Josinho, Goa’s famed musician while the videography and editing works are credited to Ignatius Fernandes. The album comprising the last works of Rosary Ferns before his untimely death in January was released at the hands of Lawry Pinto, an ardent admirer of Rosary among the large Konkani speaking communities of Goans, Mangaloreans and Mumbaikars. Fidelis Fernandes, Rosary’s eldest brother attended the presentation and addressed the gathering. Prominent personalities and media from Kuwait were present at the occasion. Veronica Fernandes, a wellknown Goan writer, social activist and a close friend of Rosary convened the function. In his brief note, Veronica spoke on the greatness of Rosary Ferns who was famous for his remarkable dramas, ‘wisdomatic’ lyrics, and an unparalleled singing prowess. Salvador Dias and Albino Fernandes also spoke on the occasion. Earlier, a minutes’ silence was observed as a mark of respect to the singer. A number of hymns and fond mandos of Rosary were sung in remembrance. Aggie Dias performed one of Rosary’s most touching mandos on the clarinet accompanied by Denis D’Costa on the guitar, while a song from one of Rosary’s audio CD was also played to audience. Rosary Ferns, who died an untimely death on 12th January 2011 while on holidays in Goa, left a permanent legacy and will be remembered for a long time for his contribution towards drama and art in the form of VCDs, CDs and cassettes. Konkan people who were fortu-

nate enough to see Rosary Ferns on stage will perhaps never ever see another star of his calibre - a great playwright, philosophical composer and singer. It should be noted Rosary’s last drama ‘Kuwait Soddun Vetana’ (Whilst Leaving Kuwait) was staged both by the Goan and Mangalorean Community. Rosary hailed from Colva, Salcete, Goa and resided in Kuwait since1985 till his death. Rosary was, in his own way, instru-

Ghorabo Moddlo’ (A House Built, A Home Broken), etc. Rosary was gifted in writing tragic stories and his forte lied in composing tragic ‘cantos’ (songs within the premise of the story narration). Among the expatriate tiatrists Rosary Ferns was the only person who was known to be a vivid composer of traditional ‘Mandos’. Some of his golden, original Mandos feature in his audio albums.

mental in improving the overall standard of tiatr and took the Konkani art to new heights. During his years in Kuwait, he staged 12 tiatros some of them for the cause of charity. In all, Rosary wrote and directed 21 full-fledged Konkani Tiatros. Some of his well received and popular ones include ‘Mhojem Dusrem Ghor’ (My second home), ‘Tumkam Lagon Jielom’ (I lived for you), ‘Sukh Khuim Asa’ (Where is Happiness), ‘Bhurgim Mai Paichem Sukh’ (Children, a joy of parents), ‘Devachea Marak Avaz Nam’ (Justice of the Almighty reigns Silent) ‘Ghor Bandlem

In the year 2009, Rosary created history when his Konkani Drama “Kuwait Soddun Vetana” was staged in Kuwait by the Mangalorean Konkani community in a Mangalorean dialect. The original drama was in Goan Romi Script Konkani which was well received by the Goan audience as one of the classic dramas of the great writer. Throughout his presence in Kuwait, Rosary Ferns strived through Konkani stage and cultural programs to bring about fusion of all the Konkani speaking people in Kuwait, Mangalorean and Goans in particular. He wrote and directed Songit

Sanz (An Evening of Songs) under the banner of Kuwait Konknni Kendr. Rosary also encouraged and promoted young and budding artistes and developed them into full fledged artistes. He is on record to have staged more Tiatros (Konkani dramas) in Kuwait than any other artiste and all of his tiatros have been well attended and appreciated by the audience. Besides tiatrs, Rosary wrote a number of One Act Plays, Operettas, Mandos & Dulpods and countless songs. As a matter of interest Rosary was the first person in the history of Goan-Konkani world to produce the first CD of songs which was made in Kuwait. In all, Rosary has produced 13 Konkani Albums in the form of Audio Cassettes & CDs. ‘Kuwaitche Dinar’ (Dinars of Kuwait), ‘Raag’ (Anger), Dinarcho Valor (Value of Dinars), Sirvis Kor, Bhangarachem Kankonn (Golden Bangles), etc, were some of his famous audio cassettes and CDs. He was known for his powerful solos with a message of good morals, upholding religious doctrines and traditional beliefs in family, friendship and social aspects. Rosary’s last Album ‘Dinaracho Valor’ (The value of Dinar) was his last audio CD. Additionally, he produced 2 VCDs ‘Kanvllo Roddlo Lozen’ (The Crow cried in Shame) and ‘Mogan Tujea Lasota’ (Burning in Thy Love). It is interesting to note that the Tiatr Academy of Goa (TAG) organized two events in the memory of Late Rosary Ferns in Goa, the latest being just a week ago, focusing on the young Goan singer and director, amongst a galaxy of Konkani stage artistes who are no more among our midst. Rosary’s voice will forever remain etched in the memories through his songs and compositions. ‘Thank You Kuwait’ is sure to provide a lasting reflection of the great artiste as a composer-singer for which he became synonymous among the Konkani masses.




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W H AT ’ S O N

Embassy Information 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 ended 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 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: or from the Visa Application Centre’s website: 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: 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: ■■■■■■■

Police Officers Club holds Eid celebrations


he Police Officers Club celebrated the Eid Al-Fitr occasions with a festival held last Wednesday at the club’s building on Abu Al-Hasaniya beach. The event featured a program that included competitions as well as special activities for children.

Probash Bangla Samity holds Dua Mahfil


n observation of holy month of Ramadan Probash Bangla Samity Kuwait hosted as Iftar & Dua Mahfil held at Hasawi on August 26, 2011. The program was presided by Jonab Md Nasir Uddin and presented by Jonab Md Hannan Shah. Chief guest was Jonab Md Abdul Kader Mollah, President of Bangladesh Somaj Kayllan Samity, Jonab Mohd Hanif Bangladesh Shroamic League, Jonab Mohd. Shahjalal Mozumder (Kanon) President of Chowdda Gram Probashi Kallan Somity Jonab Mom Al-Islam.


ICS presents musical program


EMBASSY OF CANADA The Embassy of Canada is located at Villa 24, AlMutawakel St., Block 4 in Da’aiyah. Please visit our website at Canada offers a registration service for all Canadians travelling or living abroad. This service is provided so that Consular Officials can contact and assist Canadians in an emergency in a foreign country, such as a natural disaster or civil unrest, or inform Canadians of a family emergency at home. The Embassy of Canada encourages all Canadian Citizens to register online through the Government of Canada Travel Website at The Canadian Embassy in Abu Dhabi provides visa and immigration services to residents of Kuwait. Individuals who are interested in visiting, working or immigrating to Canada are invited to visit the website of the Canadian Embassy to the UAE at 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: .PDF. A guide explaining the process can be found here:

ndian Cultural Society presents “Parda Hai Parda” with Munawwar Masoom & team on Sept 9, 2011 Friday, at 7 pm sharp. The chief guest for the event will be Ambassador of India, Kuwait and the guest of honor will be prominent personalities from Kuwait. After hosting memorable events, ICS is back with a show with a difference. “Parda hai Parda” will witness old fashion Qawwali, filmi Qawwali, Ghazal and ever green songs by Munawwar Massoom, Poonam Bhatia and special tabla by Surinder Singh. Poonam Bhatia realized her dream of becoming a playback singer by giving voice to actors like Ravina Tandon, Shilpa Shetty, Twinkle Khanna, Juhi Chawala, Mayuri Cango, Suman Ranganathan, Aishwarya Rai etc. She sang for almost all the bollywood music directors right from Anand Raj Anand, Viju Shah, Nadeem Shravan, Anu Malik, to the legendry A R Rahman! Surinder Singh became famous tabla player from TV show Movers &

Shekhar, as icon of comedy. He has versatility in his tabla playing which can be viewed on most of the famous TV channels like Sony, Zee, and Star Plus etc. Surinder is most popular in Comedy Circus & Laughter Challenge. Ustad Munawwar Masoom is the grandson of Ustad Abdul Ghafoor Khan from Mewat Gharana born on Dec 9, 1962 at Bhopal. When he was 9 yrs old, HMV Company recorded his first audio cassette “Tajdaar e Madina Khabar Lijiye” and then there was no looking back. Munawwar is recognized as the first qawwal who launched his own album “Ashiqaana Qawwaliya” which gave him worldwide fame. Young talents from Kuwait will be another attraction of the evening. So, join us for entertainment on Sept 9, Friday, at 7:00 pm sharp at Auditorium Kuwait Medical Association, beside Mubarak AlKabeer Hospital, Jabriya Kuwait.

Memorial service


he National Evangelical Church of Kuwait (NECK) will hold a memorial service for Pastor Jerry on Sept 10, 2011, at 6:30 pm at the NECK Compound, Sanctuary Parish Hall. On Sunday, July 17, 2011 a large family gathering celebrated Pastor Jerry’s graduation to heaven at The Lighthouse Church Parish Hall to celebrate. The Parish Hall was filled to capacity and the ceremony was beamed live on large TV screens to more than 300 members who watched the service from the compound. Jerry Allen Zandstra was born on the May 12, 1939. He began his ministry in 1964 in an inner city ministry. Primarily he was a US Navy chaplain from 1967 to 1973 and served as chaplain for the US Marines in Vietnam. Jerry was also a pastor in Chula Vista, CA for 14 years and went on to establish the Chula Vista Counseling Center. For the past 26 years he called Kuwait his home and was Pastor of The Lighthouse Churchthe English Language Congregation of the National Evangelical Church of Kuwait.

IMAX film program

EMBASSY OF GERMANY The Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany in Kuwait wishes to announce that as of 1 May 2011, the external service provider Al Qabas Assurex is operating a Visa Application Centre in support of the German Embassy. Short-term visa applications for travels to Germany (e.g. for tourism, visits, business) are to be submitted to the service provider Al Qabas who for your convenience will ensure that all relevant documents are included in your application. Your personal appearance at the Application Centre is not required. Address of the Visa Application Centre: Al Qabas Assurex Sanabel Tower (Al-Babtain) Mezzanine (M3) opposite Sharq Mall Kuwait 22924444 Fax: 22924442 Further information are available on the following websites: ■■■■■■■

EMBASSY OF INDIA Embassy of India, would like to inform that application forms for passport/visa services and labour contracts that are on its website,, have been upgraded to include the facility for online data entry. Affidavit forms on the Embassy website have had this facility since May 6, 2009. ■■■■■■■

EMBASSY OF KENYA The Embassy of the Republic of Kenya wishes to request all Kenyans resident in or training through Kuwait to register with the Embassy. We are updating our database. This information is necessary in order to facilitate quick assistance and advise in times of emergency. Kindly visit in person or register through our website The Embassy is located in: Surra Area - Block 6 - Street 9 Villa 3 Tel: 25353362 - 25353314; Fax: 25353316. ■■■■■■■

Effective 4th September 2011 to 10th September 2011 Tuesday Legends of Flight 3D: 10:30am, 7:30pm Born to be Wild 3DL: 11:30am, 1:30pm, 2:30pm, 3:30pm, 4:30pm, 6:30pm, 9:30pm Arabia 3D: 12:30pm Sea Rex 3D: 5:30pm, 8:30pm Wednesday Born to be Wild 3D: 10:30am, 1:30pm, 2:30pm, 3:30pm, 4:30pm, 5:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:30pm Sea Rex 3D: 11:30am, 6:30pm Legends of Flight 3D: 12:30pm

Journey to MECCA 3D: 8:30pm Thursday Legends of Flight 3D: 10:30am, 5:30pm Born to be Wild 3D: 11:30am, 1:30pm, 2:30pm, 3:30pm, 4:30pm, 6:30pm, 8:30pm Sea Rex 3D: 12:30pm; 9:30pm Arabia 3D: 7:30pm Friday Fires of Kuwait: 2:30pm Born to be Wild 3D: 3:30pm, 5:30pm, 7:30pm, 9:30pm Journey to MECCA 3D: 4:30pm Legends of Flight 3D: 6:30pm Sea Rex: 8:30pm

Saturday Born to be Wild 3D: 10:30am, 1:30pm, 3:30pm, 6:30pm, 8:30pm Legends of Flight 3D: 11:30am, 5:30pm, 9:30pm Sea Rex 3D: 12:30pm, 7:30pm Journey to MECCA 3D: 2:30pm Arabia 3D: 4:30pm Notes: All films are in Arabic EXCEPT “Fires of Kuwait” For English, Headsets are available upon request Film schedule is subject to changes without notice. For information call 1 848 888 or visit

EMBASSY OF NIGERIA The Nigerian embassy has its new office in Mishref. Block 3, Street 7, House 4. For enquires please call 25379541. Fax25387719. Email- or ■■■■■■■

EMBASSY OF SOUTH AFRICA The Embassy will resume its normal working hours on Monday, 5 September 2011, from Sunday to Thursday. Please note that the working hours will be from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm and the Consular Section operation hours will from 8:30 am to 12:30 pm.



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00:45 Untamed & Uncut 01:40 Best Bites: 25 Greatest Shark Moments 02:35 Ocean Odyssey 03:30 I’m Alive 04:25 Dogs/Cats/Pets 101 05:20 Animal Cops Houston 06:10 Cats Of Claw Hill 06:35 Cats Of Claw Hill 07:00 Meerkat Manor 07:25 The Really Wild Show 07:50 Animal Crackers 08:15 Safari Sisters 08:40 Breed All About It 09:10 America’s Cutest... 10:05 Dogs/Cats/Pets 101 11:00 Animal Cops Houston 11:55 E-Vets: The Interns 12:20 Wildlife SOS 12:50 Animal ER 13:45 Crocodile Hunter 14:40 Best Bites: 25 Greatest Shark Moments 15:30 Gorilla School 16:00 The Really Wild Show 16:30 Animal Crackers 16:55 Safari Sisters 17:25 Dogs 101 18:20 Breed All About It 18:45 Crocodile Hunter 19:40 Cheetah Kingdom 20:10 Dogs/Cats/Pets 101 21:05 Jaws Comes Home: Return Of The...

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Last Of The Summer Wine The Weakest Link Holby City The Weakest Link Eastenders Doctors Last Of The Summer Wine Tweenies The Roly Mo Show Me Too Jackanory Junior Poetry Pie Poetry Pie Tweenies The Roly Mo Show Me Too Jackanory Junior Tweenies The Roly Mo Show Me Too Jackanory Junior Poetry Pie Poetry Pie Tweenies The Roly Mo Show Me Too Jackanory Junior Poetry Pie Poetry Pie Last Of The Summer Wine Last Of The Summer Wine The Weakest Link Dalziel And Pascoe Doctors Eastenders Holby City Last Of The Summer Wine Last Of The Summer Wine Last Of The Summer Wine Dalziel And Pascoe The Weakest Link Doctors Eastenders Holby City Dalziel And Pascoe The Weakest Link

Gold Rush: Alaska River Monsters Dirty Jobs Ultimate Survival Wheeler Dealers Mythbusters How Do They Do It? How Stuff’s Made

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Dirty Jobs Wheeler Dealers Fifth Gear Gold Rush: Alaska How Do They Do It? Mythbusters Cake Boss Border Security Auction Kings Animal Cops South Africa LA Ink Ultimate Survival River Monsters Sons Of Guns Cash Cab Us Wheeler Dealers Fifth Gear Mythbusters Gold Rush: Alaska Cake Boss Border Security Auction Kings How Stuff’s Made How Do They Do It? Cash Cab Us LA Ink

Smash Lab Superships Mighty Ships Kings of Construction Da Vinci’s Machines How Stuff’s Made Superships One Step Beyond Nextworld Da Vinci’s Machines NASA’s Greatest Missions The Gadget Show The Gadget Show Smash Lab Brainiac Sci-Fi Science How Stuff’s Made Mighty Ships Kings of Construction One Step Beyond Stunt Junkies Superships Weird Connections Da Vinci’s Machines Space Pioneer Sci-Fi Science The Gadget Show Alien Storms How the Universe Works Smash Lab The Gadget Show The Gadget Show Alien Storms How the Universe Works The Gadget Show

Kim Possible Fairly Odd Parents Stitch Replacements Emperor’s New School Stitch Replacements Fairly Odd Parents Emperor’s New School Suite Life On Deck Phineas And Ferb Wizards Of Waverly Place Suite Life On Deck Good Luck Charlie Fish Hooks Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Jake & The Neverland Pirates Jungle Junction The Hive Handy Manny Imagination Movers The Suite Life Of Zack And Cody Phineas And Ferb Good Luck Charlie Phineas And Ferb Suite Life On Deck Wizards Of Waverly Place Sonny With A Chance Good Luck Charlie Hannah Montana Suite Life On Deck


TV PROGRAMS 13:55 14:20 14:55 15:20 15:45 16:10 16:35 17:00 17:25 17:50 18:15 18:45 19:35 20:00 20:25 20:50 21:15 21:35 22:00 22:25 22:50

Wizards Of Waverly Place Suite Life On Deck Good Luck Charlie Shake It Up Fish Hooks Wizards Of Waverly Place Jake & Blake Wizards Of Waverly Place Good Luck Charlie Fish Hooks Shake It Up Suite Life On Deck Good Luck Charlie Wizards Of Waverly Place Jake & Blake Hannah Montana Sonny With A Chance Good Luck Charlie Shake It Up Suite Life On Deck Sonny With A Chance

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

Luke Nguyen’s Vietnam Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives Paula’s Party Chef vs Britain Lidia’s Italy Lidia’s Italy Boy Meets Grill Good Eats - Special Unwrapped Ten Dollar Dinners Paula’s Best Dishes Paula’s Party Barefoot Contessa - Back To Chopped Guy’s Big Bite Everyday Italian Good Deal With Dave Lieberman Ten Dollar Dinners Paula’s Best Dishes Barefoot Contessa - Back To Aarti Party Lidia’s Italy Unwrapped Paula’s Party Everyday Italian Paula’s Best Dishes Good Deal With Dave Lieberman World Cafe Asia Luke Nguyen’s Vietnam Lidia’s Italy Unwrapped Boy Meets Grill Chopped Guy’s Big Bite Barefoot Contessa - Back To Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives Aarti Party World Cafe Asia Luke Nguyen’s Vietnam Good Eats - Special Food Network Challenge Guy’s Big Bite Guy’s Big Bite World Cafe Asia World Cafe Asia Food Network Challenge Barefoot Contessa

01:00 Golf Central International 01:30 Rolex Spirit of Yachting Anatomy of a Team 02:00 MLB: Atlanta Braves at Philadelphia Phillies 05:00 This Week in Baseball 05:30 FEI Equestrian World 06:00 Lucas Oil Motorsports Hour 07:00 Morning Drive 08:00 Playing Lessons - Rich Beem & Don Cheadle 08:30 Top 10 - Generation Now 09:00 Golf Central International 09:30 The Golf Fix 10:00 Major League Soccer Los Angeles Galaxy at Sporting Kansas City 13:00 Golf Central International 13:30 Rolex Spirit of Yachting Anatomy of a Team

14:00 Lucas Oil Motorsports Hour 15:00 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Atlanta 200 16:00 Big 12 Football SMU at Texas A&M 18:00 MLB: Atlanta Braves at Philadelphia Phillies 21:00 2011 American Le Mans Series Baltimore Grand Prix Baltimore, MD

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

The Haunted A Haunting Stalked: Someone’s Watching Who On Earth Did I Marry? Street Patrol Real Emergency Calls Dr G: Medical Examiner Crime Scene Psychics The Haunted Mystery Diagnosis Undercover Forensic Detectives Street Patrol Real Emergency Calls Mystery Diagnosis Disappeared FBI Files True Crime With Aphrodite Jones I Almost Got Away With It Mystery Diagnosis Street Patrol Real Emergency Calls Disappeared FBI Files Forensic Detectives Undercover Real Emergency Calls Mystery Diagnosis Street Patrol True Crime With Aphrodite Jones I Almost Got Away With It Deadly Women Couples Who Kill Dr G: Medical Examiner

01:45 03:20 04:45 06:20 08:05 09:25 10:55 12:35 14:30 16:15 17:45 19:15 20:30 22:00 23:25

The Boost Bloodmatch Until September A Prayer For The Dying Strictly Business Danielle Steel’s Mixed Blessings Escape Clause Comes A Horseman Tennessee Nights Seven Hours To Judgement Danielle Steel’s Heartbeat Just Another Story Killing Mr. Griffin Armed Response Blood Games

00:00 Lonely Planet: Roads Less Travelled 01:00 Don’t Tell My Mother 01:30 Don’t Tell My Mother 02:00 Word Travels 02:30 Market Values 03:00 The Best Job In The World 03:30 Madventures 04:00 Which Way To 05:00 Word Travels 05:30 Market Values 06:00 Lonely Planet: Roads Less Travelled 07:00 Don’t Tell My Mother 07:30 Don’t Tell My Mother 08:00 Word Travels 08:30 Market Values 09:00 The Best Job In The World 09:30 Madventures 10:00 Which Way To 11:00 Word Travels 11:30 Market Values 12:00 Lonely Planet: Roads Less Travelled 13:00 Warrior Road Trip 14:00 Banged Up Abroad 15:00 Going Bush 15:30 Bluelist Australia 16:00 Weird & Wonderful Hotels 16:30 By Any Means 17:30 Earth Tripping 18:00 A World Apart 19:00 Warrior Road Trip 20:00 Banged Up Abroad 21:00 Going Bush 21:30 Bluelist Australia 22:00 Weird & Wonderful Hotels 22:30 By Any Means 23:30 Earth Tripping

00:00 Dangerous Encounters With Brady Barr 01:00 Dragon Chronicles 01:55 Dangerous Encounters With Brady Barr 02:50 The Invaders 03:45 Kalahari 04:40 Dangerous Encounters With Brady Barr 05:35 Great Migrations 06:30 The Living Edens 07:25 Moray Eels: Alien Empire 08:20 Hooked 09:15 Dangerous Encounters With Brady Barr 10:10 The Invaders 11:05 Kalahari 12:00 Super Pride 13:00 Desert Seas 14:00 Monster Fish 15:00 Monster Fish 16:00 Hooked 17:00 The Invaders 18:00 Kalahari 19:00 Desert Seas 20:00 Monster Fish 21:00 Monster Fish 22:00 Hooked 23:00 The Invaders

Menace II Society on OSN Movies Comedy

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Knife Edge-18 The Spirit-PG15 The Final-18 The Bodyguard 2-PG15 The Karate Kid I-PG15 Fast Lane-PG15 Bugsy-PG15 The Karate Kid I-PG15 The Stepfather-PG15 Bugsy-PG15 Mirrors 2-18

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Vinyan-18 The Spy Next Door-PG15 Emotional Arithmetic-PG15 The Lizzie McGuire Movie-PG Flash Of Genius-PG15 How To Train Your Dragon-PG Skellig-PG15 MacHEADS-PG15 My Name Is Khan-PG15 Hachiko: A Dog’s Story-PG15 Crazy-18

00:00 Seinfeld 00:30 The Daily Show With Jon Stewart 01:00 The Colbert Report 01:30 The Ricky Gervais Show 02:00 Tracy Morgan: Black And Blue 03:00 Just Shoot Me 04:00 Dharma And Greg 04:30 The Tonight Show With Jay Leno 05:30 Will And Grace 06:00 Coach 06:30 The Drew Carey Show 07:00 Late Night With Jimmy Fallon 08:00 Dharma And Greg 08:30 Just Shoot Me 09:00 Will And Grace 09:30 Traffic Light 10:00 Cougar Town 10:30 Coach 11:00 The Drew Carey Show 11:30 The Tonight Show With Jay Leno 12:30 Dharma And Greg 13:00 Just Shoot Me 13:30 Will And Grace 14:00 Coach 14:30 Traffic Light 15:00 Cougar Town 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 19:00 Cougar Town 19:30 Raising Hope 20:00 The Tonight Show With Jay Leno 21:00 The Daily Show Global Edition 21:30 The Colbert Report Global Edition 22:00 The Cleveland Show 22:30 The Big C 23:00 The Ricky Gervais Show 23:30 Late Night With Jimmy Fallon

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

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

The Closer C.S.I. Miami Desperate Housewives Cold Case Boston Public Good Morning America Lie To Me Emmerdale Coronation Street Eat Yourself Sexy Huey’s Cooking Adventure The Martha Stewart Show The View The Closer Cold Case Live Good Morning America Boston Public The Ellen DeGeneres Show Emmerdale Coronation Street Grey’s Anatomy Private Practice House Desperate Housewives Lie To Me

Juice-18 Friday The 13th-18 Altitude-PG15 Shinjuku Incident-PG15 Heaven’s Fall-PG15 No Escape-PG15 What Lies Beneath-PG15 Heaven’s Fall-PG15 Speed-PG15 Ninja Assassin-18 Valhalla Rising-18 Burningmoore Incident-PG15

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Shorts-PG The Allnighter-PG15 Dr. Dolittle-PG Dr. Dolittle 2-PG Malibu’s Most Wanted-PG15 Captain Ron-PG15 Old Dogs-PG The Invention Of Lying-PG15 Shorts-PG The Freshman-PG15 When In Rome-PG15 Funny People-18

01:15 03:15 05:45 09:00 11:00 13:00 15:00 17:00 19:00 21:00 23:00

Cat People-18 L’armee Du Crime-18 Spartacus-PG15 Delgo-FAM When We Were Kings-PG15 Not Since You-PG15 The Wronged Man-PG15 Preacher’s Kid-PG Adam-PG15 The China Syndrome-PG Fascination-18

00:45 03:00 05:45 07:30 09:00 10:45 12:15 15:00 17:00 19:00 21:00 23:00

Moulin Rouge!-PG15 2012-PG15 Ghosts Of Girlfriends Past-PG15 Catch That Kid-PG Everybody’s Fine-PG15 The Eclipse-PG15 Avatar-PG StreetDance-PG15 Everybody’s Fine-PG15 It’s Complicated-PG15 Crazy-18 The Joneses-PG15

00:00 Queen Of The Swallows-FAM 02:00 Dennis The Menace: Cruise Control-FAM 04:00 Furry Vengeance-PG15 06:00 Queen Of The Swallows-FAM 08:00 Columbus III: The New World-PG 10:00 The Big Green-PG 12:00 Dennis The Menace: Cruise Control-FAM

Friday the 13th on OSN Movies Action 14:00 Nativity!-PG 16:00 Nanny Mcphee And The Big Bang-PG 18:00 The Big Green-PG 20:00 Ed-PG 22:00 Nativity!-PG

00:00 Fragments-18 02:00 Iron Man 2-PG15 04:15 Daddy Day Care-PG 06:00 Stomp The Yard 2: Homecoming-PG15 08:00 Winning Time-PG15 09:30 A Dance For Bethany-PG15 11:30 Iron Man 2-PG15 13:45 My Bollywood Bride-PG15 15:30 Oceans - Into The Deep-PG 17:00 Winning Time-PG15 18:30 Freestyle (2010)-PG15 20:00 The Wolfman-18 22:00 Get Him To The Greek-18

00:00 WWE Bottomline 01:00 NRL Premiership 03:00 UFC 134 06:00 Trans World Sport 07:00 WWE NXT 08:00 NRL Premiership 10:00 Trans World Sport 11:00 Super League 13:00 Speedway FIM World Championship 14:00 NRL Premiership 16:00 Live Cricket One Day International

00:00 Football Euro 2012 Qualification 02:00 Golfing World 03:00 European PGA Tour Highlights 04:00 Spirit of Yachting 04:30 Rugby Union Currie Cup 06:30 ICC Cricket World 07:00 Rugby World Cup Classics 07:30 Futbol Mundial 08:00 NRL Premiership 10:00 AFL Highlights 11:00 AFL Premiership 13:30 European PGA Tour Highlights 14:30 Rugby World Cup 2007 Review 15:30 ICC Cricket World 16:00 Live Cricket One Day International

00:30 PGA European Tour Highlights 01:30 FEI Equestrian World 02:00 Masters Football 05:00 AFL Highlights 06:00 PGA European Tour Highlights 07:00 Golfing World 08:00 PGA European Tour Highlights 09:00 ICC Criket World 09:30 World Hockey 10:00 FEI Equestrian World 10:30 Spirit of Yachting 11:00 Trans World Sport 12:00 Futbol Mundial 12:30 Rugby World Cup Classics 13:00 Golfing World 14:00 AFL Highlights 15:00 World Hockey 15:30 Rugby Union ITM Cup 17:30 NRL Full Time 18:00 Beach Volleyball 18:30 Masters Football 21:30 Futbol Mundial 22:00 Live Football Euro 2012 Qualification

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Speedway WWE Tough Enough WWE Vintage Collection WWE SmackDown UFC Unleashed UFC Unleashed WWE NXT WWE SmackDown Speedway

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Powerboats F1 Highlights V8 Supercars Extra Modern Pentaholn Modern Pentaholn V8 Supercars Championship V8 Supercars Extra Speedway Le Mans Series Magazine Intercontinental Le Mans Cup Intercontinental Le Mans Cup WWE Vintage Collection UFC Wired UFC The Ultimate Fighter

00:20 02:10 03:50 05:25 07:00 09:05 11:00 12:55 14:25 16:15 FAM 18:50 20:20 22:00 23:40

Alex In Wonderland The Liquidator-PG Soylent Green-PG Each Dawn I Die-PG Action In The North Atlantic-PG The Sandpiper-PG Somebody Up There Likes Me 42nd Street-FAM The Happy Years-FAM The Shoes Of The Fisherman-

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

Conspiracy? Ice Road Truckers Ax Men Lock N’ Load With R. Lee Ermey IRT: Deadliest Roads Ax Men Conspiracy? Ice Road Truckers Ax Men Lock N’ Load With R. Lee Ermey IRT: Deadliest Roads Ax Men Conspiracy? Ice Road Truckers Ax Men Lock N’ Load With R. Lee Ermey IRT: Deadliest Roads Ax Men Conspiracy? Ice Road Truckers Pawn Stars Pawn Stars Pawn Stars Pawn Stars American Pickers Lock N’ Load With R. Lee Ermey

G-Men-FAM To Have And Have Not-FAM Elvis: That’s The Way It Is-FAM The Hunger-18

00:00 Jerseylicious 01:00 Videofashion News 01:30 Videofashion News 01:55 Big Boutique 02:25 How Do I Look? 03:20 Whose Wedding Is It Anyway? 04:15 Whose Wedding Is It Anyway? 05:10 Homes With Style 05:35 Area 06:05 Clean House 07:00 Big Boutique 07:30 Big Boutique 08:00 Videofashion News 08:30 Videofashion News 09:00 Fashion Avenue 09:25 Fashion Avenue 09:55 How Do I Look? 10:50 Whose Wedding Is It Anyway? 11:50 Clean House: Search For The Messiest... 12:50 Clean House 13:45 Videofashion News 14:15 Videofashion News 14:45 How Do I Look? 15:40 Ruby 16:35 Jerseylicious 17:30 Clean House Comes Clean 17:55 Clean House Comes Clean 18:25 Top 10 18:55 Top 10 19:25 Open House 19:50 Open House 20:20 Clean House 21:15 Whose Wedding Is It Anyway?

22:10 Jerseylicious 23:05 Big Rich Texas

00:00 Planet Food 01:00 Essential Specials 02:00 Travel Today 02:30 Essential 03:00 Tall Ship Explorers 04:00 Globe Trekker Special 05:00 Planet Food 06:00 Dream Destinations 06:30 Dream Destinations 07:00 Globe Trekker 08:00 Intrepid Journeys 09:00 Cruising the Spirit of Adventure 10:00 Planet Food 11:00 Dream Destinations 11:30 Dream Destinations 12:00 Globe Trekker 13:00 Flavours Of Peru 13:30 Flavours Of Peru 14:00 Intrepid Journeys 15:00 Essential Specials 16:00 Globe Trekker 17:00 Dream Destinations 17:30 Dream Destinations 18:00 Flavours Of Peru 18:30 Flavours Of Peru 19:00 Globe Trekker Special 20:00 Inside Luxury Travel-Varun Sharma 21:00 Inside Walt Disney Studios - Paris 22:00 Trabant Trek 22:30 Word Travels 23:00 Globe Trekker Special

00:30 01:00 02:00 07:00 10:00 11:00 12:00 13:00 14:00 15:00 17:00 18:00 19:00 20:00 21:00 22:00 23:00

Music For The Masses Greatest Hits VH1 Music Aerobic VH1 Hits Music For The Masses Top 10 Music For The Masses VH1 Pop Chart VH1 Hits 90’s Revolution VH1 Superchart Guess The Year Music For The Masses Then And Now Wild 80’s Cover Power

00:20 Come Dine With Me 00:45 Come Dine With Me 01:10 Come Dine With Me 02:00 What Not To Wear 02:55 Come Dine With Me 03:45 Nigel Slater’s Simple Suppers 04:10 The Naked Chef 04:40 New Scandinavian Cooking 05:05 Sweet Baby James 05:30 Holmes On Homes 06:20 Antiques Roadshow 07:10 Come Dine With Me 08:05 Nigel Slater’s Simple Suppers 08:30 The Naked Chef 09:00 New Scandinavian Cooking 09:25 Holmes On Homes 10:15 Antiques Roadshow 11:05 Antiques Roadshow 11:55 Come Dine With Me 12:45 Daily Cooks Challenge 13:15 Daily Cooks Challenge 13:45 Daily Cooks Challenge 14:15 Daily Cooks Challenge 14:45 Bargain Hunt 15:30 Antiques Roadshow 16:20 Antiques Roadshow 17:10 Come Dine With Me 18:00 New Scandinavian Cooking 18:30 Nigel Slater’s Simple Suppers 18:55 The Naked Chef 19:25 Sweet Baby James 19:45 Come Dine With Me 20:40 Holmes On Homes 21:30 Antiques Roadshow 22:20 Come Dine With Me 23:15 New Scandinavian Cooking With Claus Meyer

Classifieds TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 6, 2011


Sharing accommodation available at Khaitan opp Jamiya/behind petrol pump in a studio flat with a R/C Mangalorean bachelor. Rent KD 25. Contact: 66036893. (C 3601) 2 bedroom window A/C furnished flat available in Farwaniya, block 3, opp Eureka. Contact: 99962456. (C 3604) Sharing accommodation for small family or 2 spinsters or executive bachelor near new Riggai, ready for this month. Contact: 66889615. (C 3602) 6-9-2011 Sharing accommodation available at Abbassiya near Integrated Indian school, Highland supermarket building, Keralite family. Contact: 99379252. (C 3599) 4-9-2011

FOR SALE 2007 model, Chevrolet Captiva, silver exterior, excellent condition. Price KD 3,600. Tel: 66526872.

Toyota Corolla 2009 model, white color, excellent condition, well-maintained, low mileage, lady driver, KD 3,400. Contact: 60951195. (C 3603) 6-9-2011

Secretar y/Secretar y or Tender Executive. Contact: 97669236/ 24315927. (C 3600) 5-9-2011

MATRIMONIAL 99 model Toyota Prado 6 cylinders company paint, accident free, alloy wheels, wood decoration, remote, CD, USB, zenon sensor, 4x4, cash KD 2400. Contact: 60451292. (C 3596) 3-9-2011

Syro Malabar parents and Palai diocese invite proposal for their son 27/171 cm B.Tech engineer, working as

(C 3597) 3-9-2011

programmer with a reputed firm in Kuwait. Email: (C 3598) 4-9-2011 Christian Orthodox girl 33 years BSc nurse, divorced, no liabilities working in Kuwait MOH, seeking alliance from professionally qualified God fearing person with details and photos to:

TRANSPORT Needed transport for a lady from West Mishref to Mangaf at 2:30pm. Five days a week. Contact: 65088143. (C 3605) 6-9-2011

No: 15201 Fridge, cupboards, double bed, dining table, sofa set, T V-2 Nos for sale. All in good condition. Contact: 24340141 / 99818982. (C 3594)

SITUATION WANTED Immediately available Indian Accountant (M.Com) for fulltime/part time having sufficient experience in Kuwait. A few years experience to prepare Trading Account, Profit & Losses A/C, Balance Sheet, Budgets and Budget control, Bank dealings, L/cs, Recoveries & Payments, can write/speak Arabic and having driving license & car. Also can work as Executive



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s ta rs CROSSWORD 430



Aries (March 21-April 19) You will be successful as you work in a group situation today. You may be sought after as just the person for a particular job. Your management and directional abilities are in high focus. New ways to communicate or an easy manner will make conversations and interactions go well. You may find yourself more talkative and able to deal with disturbing issues than in the past. A dialogue with an older person may take place. Your career always seems to get the support you need and this is one area of life that runs smoothly now. You seem to understand what the public wants and mass marketing could be a natural for you. You have an innate ability to guide and lead others through the hurdles of life. You could also be in demand as a youth counselor.

Taurus (April 20-May 20) Getting your message across to others is at a high just now. Your timing should be perfect, and those around you should find you most unrestrained. Work issues are easy to solve. This afternoon you will find that your love life has turned to fast-paced; there is serious progress in your love relationship now. There is a strong need for nurturing where you may feel the need to care for others or to have them care for you—perhaps on a public rather than private level. Community affairs or helping neighbors may be a part of these feelings. You have needs and you sense the needs of others; fitting the two together makes your life easier. Everything comes together to reveal you at your most elegant, particularly in social situations this evening.

POOCH CAFE ACROSS 1. A mark left by the healing of injured tissue. 5. Showing signs of wear and tear. 10. Someone (especially a woman) who annoys people by constantly finding fault. 13. Carbon fuel produced by distillation of coal. 14. Be in accord. 15. A flat wing-shaped process or winglike part of an organism. 16. According to the Old Testament he was a pagan king of Israel and husband of Jezebel (9th century BC). 17. A port in western Israel on the Mediterranean. 18. Used in combination to denote the middle. 19. Prokaryotic bacteria and blue-green algae and various primitive pathogens. 21. Provided with a frame. 23. Cubes of meat marinated and cooked on a skewer usually with vegetables. 26. A group of southern Bantu languages. 27. Mentally or physically infirm with age. 30. A flexible container with a single opening. 32. A member of the Siouan people formerly living in the Missouri river valley in NE Nebraska. 34. Of or relating to alleles. 39. A soft silvery metallic element of the alkali earth group. 40. An accountant certified by the state. 42. Animal food for browsing or grazing. 43. One of the two main branches of orthodox Islam. 45. English writer and a central member of the Fabian Society (1858-1943). 46. 10 hao equal 1 dong. 47. The 2nd letter of the Greek alphabet. 50. An associate degree in applied science. 52. European annual grown for forage. 55. A river in southeastern Australia that flows generally northwest to join the Darling River. 59. A university in Connecticut. 60. Essential oil or perfume obtained from flowers. 63. Plant with an elongated head of broad stalked leaves resembling celery. 64. Wild sheep of northern Africa. 65. Having nine hinged bands of bony plates. 66. On or toward the lee. 67. A Swiss patriot who lived in the early 14th century and who was renowned for his skill as an archer. 68. (Babylonian) God of storms and wind. 69. Type genus of the Alcidae comprising solely the razorbill. 70. A silvery ductile metallic element found primarily in bauxite. DOWN 1. A fraudulent business scheme. 2. Fatty pinkish flesh of small salmon caught in the Pacific and Great Lakes. 3. A Kwa language spoken in Ghana and the Ivory Coast. 4. (Old Testament) Wife of Isaac and mother of Jacob and Esau. 5. The seventh month of the Moslem calendar. 6. Title for a civil or military leader (especially in Turkey). 7. Hormone released by the hypothalamus that controls the release of thyroid-stimulating hormone from the anterior pituitary. 8. An African grass economically important as a cereal grass (yielding white flower of good quality) as well as for forage and hay. 9. Desire strongly or persistently. 10. (Sumerian) Goddess personifying the primeval sea. 11. Not contained in or deriving from the essential nature of something. 12. A cushion on a throne for a prince in India. 20. A rare heavy polyvalent metallic element that resembles manganese chemically and is used in some alloys. 22. Metal or plastic sheath over the end of a shoelace or ribbon. 24. The blood group whose red cells carry both the A and B antigens. 25. The cry made by sheep. 28. A woman hired to suckle a child of someone else. 29. A rare silvery (usually trivalent) metallic element. 31. Fleshy spore-bearing inner mass of e.g. a puffball or stinkhorn. 33. A radioactive element of the actinide series. 35. Hungarian choreographer who developed Labanotation (1879-1958). 36. The syllable naming the sixth (submediant) note of a major or minor scale in solmization. 37. One of the most common of the five major classes of immunoglobulins. 38. The corporate executive responsible for the operations of the firm. 41. Expected hopefully. 42. Hormone released by the hypothalamus that controls the release of thyroid-stimulating hormone from the anterior pituitary. 44. A descent down a nearly vertical surface by using a doubled rope that is coiled around the body and attached to some higher point. 48. (Akkadian) God of wisdom. 49. Small genus of Eurasian aquatic perennial herbs. 51. The capital and largest city of Yemen. 53. Swift timid long-eared mammal larger than a rabbit having a divided upper lip and long hind legs. 54. The twelfth month of the civil year. 56. A public area set aside as a pedestrian walk. 57. An organization of countries formed in 1961 to agree on a common policy for the sale of petroleum. 58. The United Nations agency concerned with atomic energy. 61. A loose sleeveless outer garment made from aba cloth. 62. A unit of absorbed ionizing radiation equal to 100 ergs per gram of irradiated material.

Gemini (May 21-June 20) This is a perfect time to be assertive and to move forward in your career. You have all the drive and energy you could want and it should be easy to channel this energy. The path is open and clear. You will find that this is a lucky day and things open up for you in a very natural way. Opportunities prevail—you may find yourself feeling like you could do almost anything. Now is an important time to think before you decide on a new path. Soon, there could be a period of great material gain; it is a time when material things have a great deal of attraction. If you are thinking about changing jobs, now would not be a good time to get into debt. This evening may be a good time to reevaluate your budget and perhaps combine, transfer and simplify.

Cancer (June 21-July 22)


This Tuesday is a lucky day for making plans or decisions and finding your way through just about any problem you may discover. You feel successful and able to handle difficult situations. Good advice from a guide or older person may be available today—a good day. You will prosper by pursuing your ideals and most deep-seated dreams of how life could be. Don’t be afraid to project your image—make your dreams real. Ideas of group cooperation and communion could further your career. Work and career should be a primary focus during this time. There is an opportunity to make good decisions. You are at your most practical today and what happens now may have a lasting effect on your life direction. Love is a short travel across a room.

Leo (July 23-August 22) You could have difficulty getting your ideas across to others today. You may be working with the elderly or the handicapped at this time. Making a difference, doing things that you know will benefit others in positive ways, is a most important thing for you right now. The people you are teaching or guiding at this time may have difficulty with communication skills. Think about how you would explain a particular idea to a much younger person and try again, at a later time. There must be the idea, the reason behind the idea and the projected end result. Enthusiasm picks up this afternoon; you are becoming more efficient and effective. A project, volunteer work or profession demands your attention. Jump in with both feet and enjoy the challenges!


Virgo (August 23-September 22) Once you make up your mind you will have no trouble initiating things and getting them moving. Circumstances can throw you into positions where you must use your mind and deal with communications, service or enclosed hidden interests. If needed, your friends will help you create a more diplomatic sense at this time. Achievement, ambition and authority take on greater importance now. You may deal with others through education, psychology, spiritual enlightenment or teaching principles and techniques. You have more than just the gift of gab. Your words and ideas can transport and enchant listeners, carrying them beyond the world as they know it into the world as they wish it could be. Love is in the air this evening—enjoy.

Libra (September 23-October 22)


Scorpio (October 23-November 21) Challenging authority and rocking the boat will likely play a bigger role in your life now. Perhaps it is time for a change. The new broom sweeps clean; old patterns of organization and power are ripe for an innovative approach. In case you decide to quit your job—do not burn any bridges. Radical and inventive ideas hold the key to realizing your ambitions and advancing your status—a shake-up is in the works. Whatever you do for a living, you have a wealth of creative talents to pull from now. You will find yourself with a growing self-confidence. In summary, from this time forward, expect a more confident, outgoing attitude, for you have brought to close a time of inward examination and learning. Change now is encouraged.

Sagittarius (November 22-December 21) Ambition and the desire for status can get a little out of touch with reality. Inflated expectations could be a problem unless you get a grip on yourself. Still, you may find that you develop a knack for being in the right place at the right time—and that can win you the admiration of others. You could develop a reputation as a prophet of some kind . . . or a hopeless idealist. Take notes on where your goals are and how you are achieving them. This is a very lucky day for making plans or decisions and finding your way through just about any problem you may discover. Others value you for your insights. Family members may find you especially witty and eccentric. You may have insights or breakthroughs in regard to your living situation or life circumstances.

Capricorn (December 22-January 19)


Yesterday’s Solution

You may feel inclined to create new ideas, think in new directions and spot new ways where your company can grow and prosper. This will certainly help secure your job security and is one of the reasons your skills are constantly in demand. Enhance your job skills so that you are not tied to one company. In the future, any change of job would only be of short duration. This afternoon you may be dealing with personal matters. Making peace with the past and coming to terms with karmic debts are some of the issues that confront you as a new phase begins in your life now. Failure to face these things can cause setbacks and put obstacles in your path. Learn to look beyond the narrowly personal. Include a new friend in your activities today.

Your outward seriousness and no-nonsense approach to things is obvious. This deliberate sense of responsibility comes across and is central to the way you relate to other people. Everything is run through your checkpoint to see if it holds up and can pass the test. You can be a stickler with details. This is a good day to accomplish much. You could find that you are appreciated or valued for your feelings or your ability to act and get things done. This afternoon you may find yourself visiting with the young people in your family. Close personal relationships are likely to undergo some testing. This is a time to cement your ties to others and to make sure they are rock-solid—if they are not, future stresses are inevitable. Plan a future party this evening.

Yesterday’s Solution Yester

Aquarius (January 20- February 18) Frustration, especially in getting things accomplished, may set today’s mood. You could fly off the handle with very little provocation, so exercise some control and be ready for a possible emotional overload. A drive to probe and penetrate may find you examining and working through some strong internal changes. Do not stress too much, you may find yourself spinning around and around and going nowhere. This afternoon you may find yourself interested in the problems of young people. You could find yourself devoting one day a week toward the advancement of child protection or children’s educational interests. There is a keen sense of color, of music and all of the arts—the beautiful and the comfortable. Relax this evening.

Pisces (February 19-March 20)

Word Sleuth Solution

You have your energy back today. Professionally speaking, you are energized and ready for the day. Perhaps you have taken up a new exercise program before the workday begins. Being on the go and keeping a finger to the winds of change make you feel in touch. Learning and communicating scratch an instinctive itch and you may find yourself involved in a new project or volunteering to help others with their projects. You may learn about a new financial venture this afternoon. Pay attention to your intuition. A hunch could uncover a very wise investment. You may introduce some of your ideas about your city in a city council or community meeting this evening. Approval is only a step away. This evening is also a good time for games with children.



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Jolie’s fun jewelry line ngelina Jolie created her jewelry line for “fun”. The Oscar-winning actress has her own range of accessories and while she admits it’s never been a huge ambition of hers, she did it because she wanted to design pieces she could wear as well as giving the proceeds to charity. The mother-of-six told Vanity Fair magazine: “Yeah, I did it for fun. The proceeds go to the Education Partnership for Children of Conflict, a foundation I started with Gene Sperling. I like certain types of jewelry I wasn’t finding, big chunky stones with gold. I worked with a designer, saying, ‘If I had an ideal ring, it would look like this.’


Or, ‘I’d love a pair of earrings that look that.’ But I never liked jewelry. Unless I go to a premiere. I’m the worst.” Angelina has previously spoken about the charity, saying: “These are the children who most need a safe place to learn, a place to heal, a place to learn reconciliation, a place to build a better future and a place - to just be children. Yet the education for these children is often forgotten. Tens of millions of children and adolescents in conflict are not in school.”

Justin Timberlake is ‘frugal’


to release new album adonna’s latest cinematic effort, “W.E.,” isn’t exactly wowing the critics, but maybe the singer will have better luck with her return to music. The “Material Girl” songbird announced during a recent interview that her next album-the first since 2008’s “Hard Candy”-will be released in spring 2012. Madonna made the reveal while promoting “W.E.” during an interview with Sweden’s Sveriges Television in Venice, Italy. The singer noted that she’s done “a little bit of work” on the new collection in the studio, but will pick the project back up in earnest when she returns to New York, recording “until the end of the year.” According to the singer, the first single for the album will be released in February or March 2012, with the full album due in the spring. As reported by Billboard, this will be Madonna’s first album since parting ways with Warner Bros in favor of a deal with Live Nation. “Hard Candy” debuted at No 1 on the Billboard 200 chart; its single “4 Minutes,” featuring Justin Timberlake and Timbaland, reached No 3 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart.


shocked by support of Brazilians fan


left £2 million behind my Winehouse was worth just over £2 million at the time of her death. The ‘Rehab’ singer - who passed away at her north London home in July at the age of 27 - had two companies, Cherry Westfield and CW Touring, and the accounts have been published. They revealed Cherry Westfield was worth £2,004,963 at the end of last November, down £20,000 on 2009, while in the same period, the assets of CW Touring shrank from £142,012 to just £8,032. It seems Amy’s fortune had diminished over time as in the 2008 Sunday Times Rich List, she was estimated to have fortunes of £10 million. In 2009, her fortune was estimated at £5 million, the same as in the 2010 list. Following Amy’s untimely passing, her father Mitch Winehouse is planning to set up a rehab charity in her memory, with the headquarters set to be at her £2.5 million home. He said: “It could include help for children in trouble, kids suffering health problems, children’s hospices and more. We want to make a positive difference.” However, Mitch’s plans have been delayed because someone else has already registered his proposed name The Amy Winehouse Foundation. Last month, toxicology results revealed Amy had no illegal substances in her system when she passed away, although she did have alcohol in her body, but it is not known if it contributed to her death. A statement released by her family read: “Toxicology results returned to the Winehouse family by authorities have confirmed that there were no illegal substances in Amy’s system at the time of her death. Results indicate that alcohol was present but it cannot be determined as yet if it played a role in her death. “The family would like to thank the police and coroner for their continuing thorough investigations and for keeping them informed throughout the process. They await the outcome of the inquest in October.”





Ilary Duff was “in shock” when she was greeted by thousands of fans in Brazil yesterday . The pregnant actress felt emotional at the reaction she received at the Rio de Janeiro International Book Fair 2011 - where she was promoting her New York Times best seller adult novel ‘Elixir’ - and was nearly reduced to tears by supporters eager to get a glimpse of her. She posted a picture of the sea of fans on twitter and wrote: “Oh my goodness! Wow I am in shock! Thank you so much for all of this love! Rio fans are amazing, makes me want to cry!!!” The 23-year-old beauty added: “Heading to the book fair biennal. Press for a few hours then going to sign books and meet some fans! It’s all very exciting folks xxo H (sic)” Hilary and her icehockey player husband Mike Comrie revealed on their one-year anniversary last month they were expecting a baby. In a posting on her official website, she wrote: “Hello everyone! This weekend, Mike and I are celebrating our one year anniversary ... I can’t believe it has already been a year, time really flies when you’re having fun! We also want to share the exciting news that BABY MAKES THREE!!! We are extremely happy and ready to start this new chapter of our lives. Thanks to everyone for the continued love and support throughout the years! (sic)”-Bang Showbiz

he 30-year-old star admits he does not like to be careless with his cash and rarely shops, and doesn’t think money can buy happiness. He said: “I will say that I’m pretty frugal. I’ll probably shop for clothes for myself once a year, and that will last me for the rest of the year. “What was it that Prince said, ‘Money can’t buy you happiness, but it can help pay for the pursuit. “It’s nice to have places in Los Angeles and New York. I spend enough time in both that’s it’s nice to have a home. But I don’t need them.” The ‘Friends with Benefits’ actor also reveals he does not have many friends and believes he will die “In a small town”. He added to The Obser ver Magazine: “I grew up in a small town and I could count my friends on one hand, and I still live that way. I think I’ll die in a small town. When I can’t move my bones around a stage anymore, you’ll find me living in a place that’s spread out and rural and spacious.”

wants a world tour


arah Jessica Parker wants to travel the world with her family. The ‘I Don’t Know How She Does It’ actress who has children James, eight and twins Tabitha and Marion, two, with husband Matthew Broderick - would happily give up her career if it meant she could go on an “adventure” with those closest to her. She said: “I often have a fantasy about packing up the family and travelling. If it was an adventure, sure, I’d leave all this behind. But I’d never do it without them.” Despite her successful career, 46year-old Sarah Jessica admits she is not any easier on herself as she has gotten older because having children means life can be tougher. She said: “Having children makes it harder now. When you involve other people who are reliant on you, the stakes are monumentally higher. I don’t mean to be dramatic, it’s also beautiful and filled with meaning.” However, she is happier she waited until she was older to expand her family as it meant she really enjoyed her career. She added to Style magazine: “Am I glad I waited? Yes. Most assuredly, because there were lots of things I wouldn’t have done had I had children at the time. I could work 18 hours a day and love it and maybe act in a way I wouldn’t act now.”


Duhamel and the Black Eyed Peas raise $1 million for flooded hometown

osh Duhamel and the Black Eyed Peas raised $1 million for his flood-ravaged hometown. The actor organized a benefit concert headlined by his wife Fergie’s group in Minot, North Dakota, on Saturday to help rebuild the city after severe flooding damaged over 4,000 homes and made 11,000 residents flee their properties. The ‘Transformers: Dark of the Moon’ star - who met with flood victims and visited a Red Cross shelter over the Labor Day weekend was personally affected by the natural disaster as his childhood home and the house where his sister lives with her family were damaged. A sold-out crowd of 12,000 fans who each paid $100 for a ticket - attended the ‘Minot Rising’ show, which was held at the North Dakota State Fairgrounds, and Fergie paid tribute to residents for their bravery in the face of adversity. On stage she shouted: “This is a beautiful, beautiful vision for us, especially for me because I have family here now ... It might be small, but it has the biggest heart in America. North Dakota, we love you so much!” The singer’s bandmate took to his twitter page to praise Josh for organizing the event and reveal the sum raised. He tweeted: “@joshduhamel thank you for your passion, determination, and vision to do good, and ability to bring people together for a good cause ... Bep had a concert in n dakota & raised 1million dollars for Minot flood recovery (sic)” Josh, 38, also posted a message on the micro-blogging website thanking the Black Eyed Peas for performing. He tweeted: “A HUGE thank you to @iamwill, @TabBep, @apl_de & #Fergie for their incredible act of kindness for doing #MinotRising. North Dakota loves you. (sic)” All proceeds raised from the concert will go to flood victims and the rebuilding effort.



lifestyle Music& Moving

Black opera

stars shine in new South Africa


orld champion soprano Pretty Yende never knew opera existed until a soaring score of an airline commercial came over the television in her South African black township home 10 years ago.The flash of 19th-century French composer Leo Delibes’ classic “Flower Duet” from his opera “Lakme” so moved the teenager growing up without librettas and arias that she asked a high school teacher the next day what the music was.”He told me it’s called opera,” recalled Yende, now a resident at Milan’s renowned La Scala a decade after telling her teacher: “I need to do that.” From Thandukukhanya in eastern South Africa to northern Italy, the 26year-old was recently handed joint top honor in the Operalia world opera competition founded by Spanish maestro Placido Domingo. “All I wanted to do was to sing. All I wanted to do was to know how to sing,” Yende told AFP. “Even now, all I want to do is to sing well.” South African black opera voices have burst onto the international stage, mirroring the country’s shift to democracy, decades after white Afrikaner

soprano Mimi Coertse debuted at the Vienna State Opera in 1956. Experts say their rise is no sudden outpouring of new talent but rather that all-race freedom in 1994 leveled the playing field to allow those with remarkable gifts who were stifled under apartheid to enter the game. “At the moment our best singers are black,” said Virginia Davids, head of vocal studies at the South African College of Music based at the University of Cape Town. South Africans can be found from Tel Aviv to London, with soprano Pumeza Matshikiza performing at Monaco’s royal wedding-where the principality’s Prince Albert II married South African Charlene Wittstock in July-and Swedenbased Dimande Nkosazana taking first prize in a competition in Italy. “Formerly. people were not even allowed on the stage and that’s why it looks as if there is a huge upsurge. But what it is is that suddenly things opened up and people started realizing they could make careers,” said Davids. “These singers have always been there but they have always been ignored. It’s a pity because a lot of wonderful talent has gone miss-

ing in the process because of the situation that we had in this country,” she added. ‘We’re a singing nation’ But local singers are forced to seek international stages, since Cape Town Opera is the only full time troupe in the country and probably the entire African continent with regular productions locally and tours abroad. “It’s sad...simply because there aren’t enough opera companies in South Africa to sustain the employment. Really to make a living as an opera singer you need to go to Europe or to the States,” said the opera’s financial manager Elise Brunelle. South Africa’s past has also inspired local composers who have shaped operas around real-life divas like former president Nelson Mandela’s ex-wife Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, or revamped classics like Bizet’s “Carmen” into a gritty shanty town setting. “There’s so much history and there are so many people here whose lives and whose stories are perfectly suited to the operatic form,” said Brunelle, adding that foreign audiences also respond

well to the local stories. “These are stories and people that can be understood in a worldwide context.” The students often come from impoverished backgrounds and, unlike their European counterparts, did not grow up with pianos and violins. “The voice is the only instrument they have-the only way of making music,” said Davids who was one of South Africa’s first non-white opera singers. She laments the lack of local stages and the talent drain as gifted South Africans head overseas, but hails her opera students here. “They are very focused and they know this is what I want to do. They are willing to put in the time,” Davids said. The aptitude for an art regarded as elitist “Old Europe” in South Africa- where it is not unknown for an informal car guard to break into an aria-also does not surprise soprano Yende. She says she is most at peace when singing and views the stage as home. “We are a singing nation. We are born with a beat. We cry, we sing. We laugh, we sing. We’re sad, we sing. We lose, we sing. We win, we sing,” Yende said. “So song has been part of us from a long time.”—AFP

A picture taken on August 3, 2011 shows South African opera soprano Pretty Yende rehearsing with the Cape Philharmonic Orchestra in Cape Town.—AFP

Italian films tackle immigration at Venice fest I

Dutch actress Famke Janssen poses during the photocall of the movie ‘Bringing up Bobby’ at the 37th American Film Festival, in Deauville, northwestern France, yesterday.—AFP

Still going:

French crooner Aznavour, 87, gears up for tour


e may be 87, but don’t suggest to French crooner and veritable national monument Charles Aznavour that his forthcoming tour is a goodbye. “I have never, ever used the word farewell,” he quickly points out. The legendary singer-songwriter pleased fans the world over when he announced plans for a month-long residency at Paris’ landmark Olympia theatre starting September 7, followed by a nationwide tour. Aznavour’s stint in the capital is a return to the stage that launched his career 55 years ago. Close to 1,000 songs and some 60 films later, there isonce again-speculation that he may choose the moment to announce his retirement. “Some of the press say anything!” he told AFP. “I said that I was going to do one of my last tours. But when (US director) Martin Scorsese presents his latest film, you don’t say he’s not going to make another.” The performer of such hits as “She”, rerecorded by Elvis Costello for the Julia Roberts-Hugh Grant comedy “Notting Hill”, and “Yesterday When I Was Young” said he is embarking on his new tour without first-night nerves-but a bit of anxiety. “I used to get nervous, at the start, when the audience hadn’t come to see me but from the moment they did, it stopped,” he said. Anxiety, on the other hand, “it’s about the set, the songs. Was I right to do this tour? Should I have stopped before?” he said. Born in Paris in 1924 to Armenian origin parents, Aznavour-originally Aznavourian-grew up in the city’s poorer neighborhoods before finding a home on the stage. Starting out in cabaret, he later teamed up with young songwriter and composer Pierre Roche and the iconic Edith Piaf, who would take him to America and a solo career. In 1954 he rose to prominence with his live renditions of “Sur Ma Vie”, followed by one of his biggest hits “Je m’voyais deja” in 1960 — the same year he starred on screen in Francois Truffaut’s “Shoot the Piano Player”, which catapulted him to fame abroad. A couple of years later he took New York’s Carnegie Hall by storm before touring the world and seeing his songs sung by stars from Ray Charles (“La Mamma”) to Liza Minnelli and Fred Astaire. Aznavour-sometimes referred to as the French Frank Sinatra-is not only one of France’s most popular singers but the first French performer to have a recording that went platinum in Europe. He has sold more than 100 million records worldwide. —AFP

Charles Aznavour

mmigration in Italy is a big theme at the Venice film festival this year, with several home-grown movies taking a critical look at how the country’s authorities and its people are struggling to deal with a growing wave of newcomers. The issue could hardly be more topical in a year when tens of thousands of illegal immigrants fleeing political turmoil in North Africa and civil war in Libya have arrived in Italy and hundreds more have drowned at sea. “Terraferma,” or “Mainland,” by director Emanuele Crialese, explores how the lives of a fisherman and his family on a remote island off the Sicilian coast are transformed when they rescue a pregnant Ethiopian woman at sea and hide her in their house. The film, which is in the main competition at the festival, tells a fictional story and does not identify the island, but its cast includes a real-life former migrant who survived the perilous sea journey and could easily be set in Lampedusa-a scrap of Italian land on the southernmost edge of Europe that has borne the brunt of arrivals from Tunisia and Libya. The number of Africans risking their lives to cross the Mediterranean on rickety boats often outnumbered Lampedusa’s population of around 5,000 this year, turning it into an open-air makeshift refugee camp where the migrants were left to fend for themselves and locals felt abandoned by the state. In Terraferma, veteran fisherman Ernesto only knows the law of the seahe feels a moral obligation to help people in rough waters, whatever the authorities might say. But some in his poor family are not so convinced. The in-flow of illegal immigrants is ruining the island’s reputation as a tourist paradise, and the coastguard punishes locals who do not report the migrants to the police by seizing their boats. Crialese decided to make the film in 2009, after reading the story of an African woman who

The cast arrive for the premiere of the movie Terraferma at the 68th edition of the Venice Film Festival in Venice, Italy, Sunday.—AP was one of only five survivors on a crammed boat that spent 21 days drifting at sea without assistance before running aground on Lampedusa. “I was hypnotized by her face, her expression. She had just been through hell, three weeks at sea, with people who saw them, got close and threw them water and then abandoned them again. And she looked as if she had arrived in heaven,” he said. Crialese offered the woman, identified only as Timnit T., the part of the pregnant Ethiopian in Terrafirma, a film which is a clear indictment of the crackdown on ille-

gal immigration by Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi’s government and its ill-preparedness in the face of a humanitarian emergency. “For me the response of the state is totally inadequate,” said Crialese after the film was warmly received at a press screening on Sunday. “To leave people to die at sea is a sign of a great lack of civilization, for a country that proclaims itself civilized,” he said. “There is a great responsibility in this carried by both the state and certain media.” A similar message, albeit in a different

vein, also permeates “Cose dell’altro mondo” (Things from another world), a comedy by Francesco Patierno that imagines what would happen to Italy if its four million immigrant workers suddenly vanished. The film’s answer: the country would grind to a halt, with factories shutting down for lack of personnel, the elderly abandoned on wheelchairs and no one at hand to look after them, hospitals running out of nurses and garbage lying uncollected in the streets.—Reuters

Jury to be chosen for Jackson doctor trial J The cast arrive for the premiere of the movie Terraferma at the 68th edition of the Venice Film Festival in Venice, Italy, Sunday.—AP

Classic Le Carre spy novel gets movie makeover


uthor John Le Carre’s 1974 espionage classic “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy” finally gets the big screen treatment, with Gary Oldman as George Smiley charged with rooting out a mole in British intelligence. Taking on the part comes with extra baggage for any British actor, given the status of Alec Guinness’s portrayal of the same character in an acclaimed 1970s television series. Le Carre, who appears briefly on screen, advised the movie’s producers to choose Swedish director Tomas Alfredson to adapt the notoriously complicated story of betrayal for cinema after seeing his vampire film “Let the Right One In.” “The television series had needed seven episodes,” said Le Carre in a statement. “And slice it how you will, television drama is still radio with pictures whereas feature film these days barely talks at all.” But he added that he believed Alfredson had succeeded in capturing the essence of his story in just over two hours. Oldman shines as the taciturn Smiley, who is sacked from British intelligence after his boss

orders an operation to recruit a Hungarian general which goes badly wrong. But he quickly returns to the cloak-and-dagger world of agents, double agents, deceit and danger when it emerges that the Soviets have infiltrated Britain’s spy agencies. Alfredson seeks to recreate the sights and sounds of 1970s London and Eastern Europe, and explores deception between nations as well as betrayals on a personal, more painful level. The cast includes John Hurt as his boss Control, and Colin Firth, Ciaran Hinds, Toby Jones and David Dencik as the four key spies who could be behind the treachery. ‘Loving hand’ Oldman said he had tried to block out the pressure Guinness’s performance in the original adaptation may have put on him. “I tried not to really think about it,” he told Reuters in Venice, where the movie is one of 22 films so far confirmed in the main competition lineup. A “surprise” 23rd movie is to be screened on Tuesday.—Reuters

added. Murray, the last doctor to treat Jackson, ury selection will begin this week for the is on trial for involuntary homicide in Jackson’s long-awaited trial of Michael Jackson’s death on June 25, 2009 after an overdose of doctor, accused of manslaughter over the the anesthetic propofol, which the singer used pop icon’s shock 2009 death at the age of 50. as a sleeping aid. Jackson’s death, on the eve of The Los Angeles Superior Court will begin veta planned series of ting potential jurors comeback concerts in Thursday, ahead of the London aimed at revivtrial starting later this ing his reputation and month of Conrad Murray, finances battered by accused of killing child sex allegations, Jackson with an overstunned fans around the dose of a powerful sedaworld. His personal doctive. Fans of the selftor is charged with styled King of Pop are administering the powexpected to turn out in erful drug-usually used force to see justice done as an anesthetic-to the at the repeatedlystar and then neglecting delayed trial-although to monitor him closely some warn the outcome enough. Murray’s may lead to disappointdefense team is expectment or even anger. ed to argue that Jackson “Many fans are gave himself an excesexpecting that a convicsive dose of the drug tion will bring closure,” while the doctor was out said Wesley Noorhoff, of the room at the president of the Singer Michael Jackson’s doctor singer’s mansion in the Legendary Michael Jackson Fan Association, Conrad Murray arrives at the Los affluent Holmby Hills Angeles Airport Courthouse in this neighborhood west of which has members in Los Angeles. The trial had over 180 countries.”But I February 8, 2010 file photo.—AFP been due to get underdoubt it will,” he told AFP, way in May, but Judge Michael Pastor agreed explaining that, even if Murray is convicted his to a defense lawyers’ request for more time to maximum sentence will be four years, and in prepare for new prosecution witnesses and any case there will likely be further lawsuits evidence. On Thursday prospective jurors will over money. “I believe the trial is going to be a be brought into court to fill in what the judge big disappointment no matter what the outhas called the “most complete questionnaire come is. “If Murray is convicted there will be disappointment about the maximum sentence that I’ve ever seen,” designed to guard against bias in the jury which will decide Murray’s of only four years ... I can’t even begin to imagfate.—AFP ine what will happen if he is not convicted,” he



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Chicago’s Navy Pier gets $155m upgrade People on Chicago, Illinois’ Wave Swinger twirls in the shadow of Navy Pier’s iconic 15-story Ferris wheel. —MCT photos


avy Pier is not the center of Chicago. Not yet. With the heart and enthusiasm of an oversized teddy bear, it is a gigantic amusement park, tour boat launch and gathering spot. It’s the place for getting sunburned and over stimulated. Snobs may scoff, preferring Chicago’s culturally complex neighborhoods, elegant city parks, museums and the L rumbling overhead. “I can’t imagine why you would want to waste a single second at Navy Pier,” grumbled one reviewer on the consumer travel site TripAdvisor in June. Yet Navy Pier is the most popular tourist attraction in Illinois. Open since 1995, the complex covers 50 acres on a giant Lake Michigan pier. It attracts more than 8 million people annually. And it is getting to be more than just a collection of light diversions. This month, Navy Pier has a new exhibit on the life of Nikola Tesla. No, he’s not a dolt on a bar stool at the new Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville. He was the Serbian-American physicist who invented alternating electric current. Science! Navy Pier also has Tiffany glass. After slurping a giant sno-cone outside, slip in the door to examine a masterwork at the free Smith Museum of Stained Glass Windows. Culture! Yes, Navy Pier has Bubba Gump Shrimp and McDonald’s in the slightly dated Family Pavilion. But there’s also the Chicago Shakespeare Theater, and oh, those amazing views of the Chicago skyline. Food for the soul! Since it opened 16 years ago, Navy Pier has changed little. Now things are shifting. The Pierscape project, announced June 30 by

new nonprofit operator Navy Pier, aims to expand the Chicago Children’s Museum and the Shakespeare Theater. The plan also calls for a boutique hotel on the east end of the pier and for improved traffic patterns, upgraded facilities, and better use of public spaces. Not counting private projects, Pierscape will cost $155 million. The idea is to get more yearround use and more adult use. Last year, an Urban Land Institute study recommended one other cool change-replace the 15-story Ferris wheel with an even bigger wheel like the London Eye. So far, that is not part of the plan. Visit Navy Pier on a summer Sunday afternoon, and you’ll see tourists, yes, but locals, too. In summer, 32 percent of visitors to Navy Pier are from out of state, mostly Wisconsin, Indiana and Michigan, according to Urban Land Institute data. Most visitors spend an average of more than 3 hours on the pier. Three hours? You can’t see it all. Navy Pier has 11 tour and dining boats, an IMAX theater, outdoor concert venues, beer garden, children’s museum, the Ferris wheel, carousel, stained glass museum, exhibition space, dozens of restaurants, shopping, arcade vendors, a funhouse maze and a Wave Swinger ride. Let me catch my breath. Walk all the way to the end of the pier-a spot that many families never even reach-and see the best view of all, the broad expanse of Lake Michigan, three lighthouses and a parade of boats. Near a railing, I see a couple all dressed up, there for a wedding. They are trying

The Ferris wheel creates a halo for Juliet, a statue outside the Chicago Shakespeare Theater.

The Navy Pier in Chicago, Illinois, is always a popular destination. to take a photograph of themselves in their finery, to remember their special day at Navy Pier. “Here,” I say, taking the camera. “Let me.” If you go: Navy Pier is at 600 Grand Ave. at the lakefront in Chicago. Hours: Open 10-10 weekdays and 10-midnight weekends. From Sept 6-Oct 31, Navy Pier is open 10-8 weekdays and 10-10 weekends. Call for winter hours. Getting there: Parking deck for 1,740 cars fills up quickly in high summer; rates are $20 weekdays and $24 weekends. Pedestrians can hop a free trolley that runs between Navy Pier and State Street along Grand and Illinois streets. City buses stopping at Navy Pier are #29, #65, #66 and #124.

Highlights: ● Ferris wheel: 15 stories high. Tickets are $6. Ride lasts 7 minutes; fantastic view from the top. ● Children’s Museum: Three floors of fun for children. Tickets are $12 for ages 1 and up. ● Smith Museum of Stained Glass Windows: Stroll past 150 historic and modern stained glass windows; free. ● Tall ship Windy: Just one of several tour boats, this four-masted schooner offers 90-minute tours, twilight and concert cruises. Prices are $10-$20 for children; $24-$35 for adults., 312-451-2700. ● Chicago Shakespeare Theater: Family-friendly “Adventures of Pinocchio” through Aug 28; Shakespeare season runs Jan.-

June. For full schedule and prices _ or 312-595-5600. Lodging: No hotel on site, but Navy Pier’s official partner hotel is Affinia Chicago, 166 E. Superior., 312-787-6000.) I also like the Hampton Inn at 33 W. Illinois (, 312832-0330) because the free seasonal trolley to Navy Pier stops at the corner. —MCT

The Navy Pier in Chicago, Illinois, is always busy, but there are spots to relax if you take the time.

Pack healthy dips in

school lunches I

s there anything more exciting for an elementary-school child than the purchase of a new lunch box for a new school year? And is there anything more burdensome for parents than filling that lunch box every day with a wholesome-but-pleasing lunch? gests a g I am not so old that I’ve forgotten the lunches my own mother u s n a n d lovingly packed for me. A big sandwich, a piece of fruit, a box of hattm a C s n le e b r u ta a e , W r it e r L w it h ve g for a tasty pretzels and a Devil Dog or Yodel for dessert: Enough food to fuel ip a lo n g h e a lt hy d chips or pretzels of a sand- a longshoreman. Every day, I’d skip straight to the snack cake and in whole gra ool lunch instead race seem dump the rest in the garbage. h G c s y h lt Cara and hea With that memory in mind as I pack my own daughters’ mider nieces s h d n a , h ic day meals, I first of all save the sweets for after school. When to w o h p T —MC there are no Ring Dings, they’re more likely to eat the other stuff. to agree. Since they’re not big on sandwiches (the apples don’t fall very far from the tree, I guess), I’ll often give them a dip or spread instead. It’s healthy food disguised as fun food. To kids, everything, including pureed chickpeas or goat cheese, tastes better on a chip. The following recipes take minutes to prepare and will keep for several days or up to one week in the refrigerator. Make a couple of dips on Sunday night, keep a bag of baby carrots, a box of cherry tomatoes, some celery sticks, baked corn chips and whole-grain crackers or pretzels in the house, and packing several days’ worth of lunches will be a snap. (If your child is big on sandwiches, you can use any of these dips and spreads on a tortilla, supplemented by baby spinach or lettuce, and/or sliced turkey or ham, to make a quick wrap.) Yields will depend on your child’s age and appetite. One recipe of hummus might make four servings for a picky and petite kindergartner who eats lunch at 11 am, or two servings for a ravenous fourth grader who eats lunch after playing kickball at d n a s getable e v recess. h it w ng

dip, alo Edamame chips or pretzels. in whole gra

h ve g along wit els. , s u m m u or pretz utter h Peanut b whole grain chips d n a etables

Peanut butter hummus Pita chips and baby carrots make good dippers for this kidfriendly hummus recipe. 1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed 6 tablespoons water \ cup smooth peanut butter 2 tablespoons lemon juice 1 clove garlic, finely chopped Salt Combine chickpeas, water, peanut butter, lemon juice and garlic in work bowl of a food processor and process until smooth, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary. Scrape into an airtight container and season with salt. The peanut butter hummus will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week. Makes 2 to 4 servings. Edamame dip Rice crackers (I like the ones with sesame seeds) are a good match for this Asian-inspired dip. 1 (12-ounce) bag frozen shelled edamame, still frozen} cup water 1 tablespoon Asian sesame oil 1 tablespoon orange juice

Salt 1. Place edamame and water in a microwave-safe bowl. Cover and microwave on high until edamame are tender, 2 to 3 minutes. 2. Combine edamame, cooking liquid, sesame oil and orange juice in work bowl of food processor and process until smooth, adding more water, 1 tablespoon at a time, if necessary, Whipped goat ch eese, alon to achieve desired consistency. Scrape into an airtight container bles and whole grain chip g with vegetaand season with salt. The edamame dip will keep in the refrigeras or pretz els . tor for up to a week. Makes 4 to 6 servings. Whipped goat cheese spread Pack whole-grain crackers and some cherry tomatoes with this tangy and fresh-tasting spread. Adventurous eaters might like herbs or pesto added to their spread. 4 ounces goat cheese, softened 4 ounces cream cheese, softened 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh basil or 1 tablespoon pesto (optional) 1 tablespoon lemon juice Combine goat cheese, cream cheese, basil or pesto if desired, and lemon juice in a medium bowl and beat with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Scrape into an airtight container. The cheese spread will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week. Makes 2 to 4 servings. Avocado and yogurt dip Avocado an Corn tortilla chips (look for all-natural chips) and raw vegetaetables an d yogurt dip, alon bles are the natural choices for this simple dip with Tex-Mex flag d whole g rain chips with vegvors. Thick Greek yogurt is best here; other yogurts are too thin or pretzels . and watery. 1 (8-ounce) container plain Greek-style yogurt 1 small avocado, peeled, pitted and coarsely chopped \ teaspoon ground cumin \ teaspoon garlic powder [teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional) Combine yogurt, avocado, cumin, garlic powder and cayenne pepper, if desired, in the work bowl of a food processor and process until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl once or twice as necessary. Transfer to an airtight container. The avocado and yogurt dip will keep in the refrigerator for several days. Makes 2 to 4 servings. Pimiento-cheese dip Pimiento cheese calls out for celery sticks (and maybe some whole grain pretzels) for dipping. 4 cups (8 ounces) shredded Cheddar cheese 1 (4-ounce) jar pimientos, drained and finely chopped \ cup low-fat mayonnaise Pimiento c Combine cheese, pimientos and mayonnaise in a medium bles and w heese dip, along w it hole grain bowl and mix. Scrape into an airtight container. The pimiento chips or p h vegetacheese dip will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week. Makes 4 retzels. to 6 servings. —MCT



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lifestyle F a s h i o n

Indianterritory M

uch of what’s out there for fall looks like it could have been ripped from the pages of Cowboys and Indians magazine: arrow print maxi-skirts, blanketstripe ponchos, suede jackets with swinging fringe, cowboy booties and T-shirts with more Navajo patterns than Ralph Lauren’s RRL ranch. calls the trend “neonative,” Les Nouvelles refers to it as “nouveau Navajo,” and at H&M it’s “bohemian style.” It brings me back to the 1990s and my first apartment in West Hollywood, with its Kokopelli lamp and IKEA Ektorp sofa in Santa Fe stripe. The trend’s newest iteration first appeared on the fall runways in New York in February, when Proenza Schouler’s Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez showed gorgeous burn-out velvet dresses, macrame skirts, chunky Peruvian sweaters, zigzag-patterned T-shirts, blanketstriped pants and clutches in vivid shades of turquoise, orange, green and pink-all inspired by a trip to Santa Fe, NM. “I was wowed,” said Bloomingdale’s fashion director Stephanie Solomon. “It was a fresh approach to color and print.” Isabel Marant also went native with her fall collection, showing patchwork jeans, blanket coats and feather-print sweat shirts better suited to a dusty Route 66 highway than a Paris runway. Diane von Furstenberg looked West to the pioneering spirit of 1940s socialite turned Taos, NM, arts patron Millicent Rogers for inspiration for gaucho pants, graphic diamond-patterned wrap tops and dresses, and

amber waves of grain, sweaters that No two pairs are alike. And Lemlem, tall fringed suede boots. resembled patchwork quilts and started by model Liya Kebede, uses In the contemporary market, haute cowboy boots. British designhandmade Ethiopian striped cotton Pendleton Woolen Mills is introducer Christopher Kane’s blanket-croto make boho ponchos, tunics and ing the new fashion-forward chet dresses looked like an upscale scarves. Portland Collection with capes and version of something grandma For Holli Rogers, buying director miniskirts in the brand’s signature would make. for Net-aAmerican Indian-inspired “It’s the search for jacquards. And Ralph Lauren something special, recently launched the new line not mass,” she said. Denim & Supply with a heady “It’s almost anti-fashdose of the same Santa Fe ion.” Some believe chic he helped to popularthat the impulse for ize back in the 1990s. The tribal and handmade men’s and women’s collecis trickling up from tion features Navajo print cormusic festival style duroy jackets and blanketseen at Coachella and striped cross-body bags. elsewhere and docu“It’s an evolution of the mented thoroughly by Americana trend we’ve been street style blogs. “It’s seeing for the past couple of the same way style at years,” said Kathleen Gasperini, Woodstock influenced co-founder of the LA-based firm high fashion,” Solomon Label Networks, which tracks said. Others point to the trends in the youth market. “But popularity of Julia it’s about mixing up the referChaplin’s 2010 book ences and making them your “Gypset Style,” which own-DIY T-shirts in 1980s neon celebrates today’s rich colors with Native American hippies-global nomads patterns, paired with feather who travel around, nevaccessories. The youth market er knowing if they will today is looking at the past be spending the weekthrough old photos and end in Ibiza, Spain, or YouTube clips, so it’s a mishMontauk, NY. mash.” “I’ve seen images from The trend encompasses more than Southwestern design. Denim Pamela Love Navajo Cuff, hammered brass, that book on so many designers’ inspiration & Supply’s “cowichan” cardigans $575.00, is available at Net-A-Porter. boards,” said Katie Hobbs, are manufactured versions of the co-owner of Atlanta-based shopping, the look is about a traditional handmade sweaters from site Les Nouvelles. (This spring, return to arts and crafts. She points the Cowichan Valley on Vancouver Chaplin launched a Gypset clothing to the homespun feel of Rodarte’s Island. Cobra Society, the new LA collection of sarongs and mini-dressfolksy fall runway collection, which based boot line by Alex Davis, incores.) “There were two different moods porates hand-woven Moroccan Kilim captured the romance of the frontier playing in the 1970s, and there are with gowns in prints featuring rug fabrics into the shafts of boots.

In the A

two now,” Solomon said. “You had the rich hippies, like Bianca Jagger and Marisa Berenson, and the more earthy hippies who only had the money to wear tops with Aztec or Navajo patterns and feathers in their hair.” (This fall, pop culture is celebrating both moods. Starting Sept 17, the Phoenix Art Museum is showing the first retrospective of 1960s and ‘70s fashion designer Giorgio di Sant’Angelo, whose clothes were an eclectic mix of American Indian and gypsy style. On Oct 11, Marisa Berenson, the model Saint Laurent dubbed “the girl of the ‘70s,” is releasing her new book, “Marisa Berenson: A Life in Pictures.”) “In terms of the bigger picture, I see why people are going there,” LA designer Cynthia Vincent said of the look. Her fall Twelfth Street line is inspired by Mayan and Aztec symbols and Santa Fe style, with a dash of Sedona, Ariz, mysticism. “When life is chaotic, there is a desire for deeper understanding. At the end of the day, it’s clothing, but there is more to it. Does globalization mean more than being connected electronically? I hope so. I like the idea of a mash-up of tribes.” —MCT

Theodora & Callum Navajo blanket scar f, $175 is available at —MCT photos


nne Hathaway proved to be quite the fashion chameleon at this year’s Academy Awards show. For her role as co-host, she made a total of eight costume changes, including into a Valentino gown, fringed Oscar de la Renta, svelte blue Giorgio Armani and custom-made Lanvin tuxedo. She’s currently costarring with Jim Sturgess in the romantic film “One Day” — which takes her through 20 years of fashion — and her next role involves suiting up in all black to play Catwoman in the film “The Dark Knight Rises,” slated to open next July. Hathaway made a recent “Today” show appearance to promote “One Day” looking like a girl on holiday in a peppermint-candy-striped sheer sleeveless blouse and printed palazzo pants, both by Elizabeth and James. She accessorized with a pair of yellow strappy heels and a large blue and gold ring. Palazzo pants can be intimidating — right perhaps for the tallest of celebrities but either too cute for the rest of us or utterly ridiculous. They may resemble pajama pants in both shape and fabric (typically in a silk or other swoosh-able fabric). But the palazzo pant is meant to be grand — as in, worn with oversized sunglasses and a glass of Champagne in your hand while you frolic on a yacht. And it’s time to get over the intimidation factor. The style was all over the spring runways, looking modern, with Fendi showing a deep purple pair and D&G with a cropped denim version. Whether you’re on a lavish vacation or simply going to meet your friends for lunch, create Get Anne Hathaway’s your own grand entrance in the A/Wear flochunky jewelry look ral print palazzo pant for $73.18 from with the Asos, or, for petites, the Asos petite pleated floral palazzo pant for $29.27. lar cocktail ring with For a bold, mixed print look like cobalt blue enamel for Hathaway’s, pair printed pants with the $14.64 from Rachel Pally Neva top for $77 from For a fun cropped version, get the Striped crop tank for $8.90 from If wearing palazzo pants and mixed prints seems too adventurous, get the more conservative Bar III sleeveless embellished-front sheer top from for $14.99 or the Hinge tie front tank from for $58. Try out your new look with any pair of solid-colored strappy heels or espadrilles and don’t forget to accessorize. Get Hathaway’s chunky jewelry look with the Asos rectangular cocktail ring with cobalt blue enamel for $14.64 from —MCT

Asos petite pleated floral palazzo pant for $29.27.

Asos petite pleated floral palazzo pant for $29.27.

If wearing palazzo pants and mixed prints seems too adventurous, get the Hinge tie front tank from for $58.

For a fun cropped version like Anne Hathaway’s, pair printed pants, get the striped crop tank for $8.90 from —MCT photos

Faux fur, for real: Thanks to new techniques, it looks better than ever A

funny thing happened on the way to the fur salon: The fur was forgotten. Designers instead turned to polymer chemists for a substitute that could please fur-coveting consumers and possibly assuage a few concerns of animal rights activists. This fall, some of the most eyecatching jackets and accessories incorporate realistic fake fur or are made from other materials with textures reminiscent of fur. “It’s really about the tactile nature of the season,” says Colleen Sherin, fashion director of Saks Fifth Avenue, speaking about the fall trend. “We’re even seeing things happening in knitwear where the yarn is cut specifically for a furry effect.” Stores and online sites, including high-end designer brands and mass-market retailers, are full of garments with materials that look like mink, cheetah or beaver. Even at the high end, fake fur is being used widely by designers who note the improved quality and realistic nature of materials coming from Europe and Japan. These imported materials allow for more versatility in design, not to mention lower costs compared with real fur. Consider: Designer Naeem Khan includes a full-length

faux fur mink coat in his line for HSN that sells for about $900. The real thing would cost upward of $10,000. Think of it as high faux. The trend has been bubbling up for a couple of years. Chanel based its fall 2009 show around fake fur, producing getups reminiscent of woolly mammoths that seemed suitable for a dinner party at the North Pole. The Prada fall 2011 runway included a mix of real and faux fur adorning jackets in bold and offbeat colors such as yellow, teal and purple. It’s increasingly difficult to tell the difference between real and fake, says Dan Mathews, senior vice president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, which has opposed the killing of animals and manufacture of fur in high-profile campaigns for many years. Mathews cites a major uptick in fake fur sales over the last several years and says that fewer celebrities are choosing to wear real fur as more high-end designers offer garments made from synthetic material. Still, he is concerned that the look and feel of the new realistic fakes could perpetuate people’s desire for the real thing.

Consumers will encounter the high-faux look on items including boots, bags, coats and vests. At the wholesale level, sales of fake fur reached $250 million in the United States last year and those sales are expected to increase by 30 percent over the next two years, according to Pell Research, a Washington, DC, firm that identifies new markets and trends for major companies. “The fur The Naeem Khan trend in the ocelot printed faux US is toward fur vest is timeless. fake,” says Amy Lechner, —MCT photos an analyst with Pell Research. “The stigma of fake fur is rapidly decreasing.” Indeed, fake fur used to be known for its cheap, matted quality, but today designers are seeing it as a desirable fabric, a category unto itself not solely meant to mimic real fur.

“It’s all about a fashion statement and creating a look, just like you would with any other fabric,” says designer Dennis Basso, who works with real fur in his ready-to-wear line, but also creates a robust faux fur collection for his Dennis by Dennis Basso Collection for QVC. “You’re able to do some things with faux fur you can’t do with real fur. Like, you would never make something in real The Burning leopard or Torch Desert Fox cheetah. Women will buy reversible Faux something in Fur vest is $386. faux not just for how realistic it seems but because of the look and design. It was originally made to imitate fur, but today it stands on its own.” Macy’s is planning to stock more fake fur this fall than in seasons past, including from top-selling brands such as INC and Michael

print across the board is really great for us.” Kors, says Caprice Willard, vice presiKhan’s fake fur collection, which HSN will dent and regional planning start marketing in November, will include manager for the department “mink” coats with shawl collars and store chain. “We’re introduc“cheetah” vests, all made from ing (fake fur) not just in ready fake fur from Tissavel, a to wear, but also with shoes, French manufacturer that boots, belts and handbags,” has been making it since says Willard, who adds that the ‘50s and is known within this season’s garments are the textile industry as having cut to look more modern high-quality fiber and finishand less boxy than tradiing techniques, as well as tional real-fur items. an anti-shed technology to Coats are slimmer, keep “fur” from shedding. waists are nipped in “The impact of how or belted and silmany designers were houettes are more showing (fake fur) in their flattering overall. fall collections was huge,” Faux fur vests and says Anna Lemessurier, accessories have been senior product developer of bestsellers on HSN, accordhandbags for Aldo, which has ing to the direct response used fake fur on boots, bags, retailer’s fashion director, ear muffs, gloves, belts and Lauren Wilner. “Vests do hats for fall. Judging by the really well, as do cropped wide array of fake fur items hitjackets,” she says. ting stores for fall, this “Leopard is the The Dennis by Dennis Basso season faux is the real biggest seller. Collection faux fur jacket runs $190. deal. —MCT Actually leopard

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Black opera stars shine in new South Africa Years



Elephants eat fruit during a buffet as part of the annual King’s Cup elephant polo tournament in the southern Thai resort town of Hua Hin yesterday. The King’s Cup tournament, which is held to promote elephant conservation, is taking place from September 5 to 11. —AFP

Fishy spate of robberies rocks Flanders A photo shows a woman feeding a Koi carp in a pond of a breeding farm near Gent. —AFP photos

A Koi carp swimming in a pond of a breeding farm near Gent.

Koi carps swimming in a pond of a breeding farm.


olice in Belgium admit they are clueless as they hunt thieves targeting prized Japanese koi carp-ornamental fish that sell for many thousands of euros yet are practically un-insurable. Champion Flemish growers with long and painful experience as victims fear ever-more costly security to protect these creatures-beloved by wealthy Japanese and Asian fanatics-that, left in peace, can live to 60 and eat their way to the size of a small pig. “It’s the financial crisis,” Veerle Jakobs of Nippon Koi Garden, a Japanese-themed estate near Antwerp holding up to 6,000 fish in high season, told AFP from her site near one of Europe’s biggest ports. Traders have reported a sudden series of koi robberies in Flanders in recent weeks, and two separate police districts are collaborating on live investigations. A source who could not be identified said Interpol has been called in. But lost stock is only part of the story. Those who have devoted their lives to raising these technicolor-dreamlike fish warn that the crimes-and regular, but botched, raids they blame on economic hard times-also pose a new threat to the carps’ health. There is at least a two-decade history of industrial espionage-theft and poisoning by experienced, organized gangs is an accepted pitfall of the trade. But local knowledge that Flanders is a centre of excel-

play items. Among aficionados, koi are considered lence for decorative fish beloved by specialist collecmoving works of art akin to a Picasso, with the worldtors also provides a new motive-and creates fresh record price being 350,000 euros ($500,000). The challenges for owners. “They took 50 fish from my biggest dealers in Flanders know how Belon, whom tank, but I’ll never see them again,” Herman Belon they characterize as told AFP after his koi were stolen this month in Sint an amateur colNiklaas, in western lector, feels. Flanders. “They’ve stolen He reckons they my fish here before, are already on display and poisoned my in Japanese restauponds-criminal rants that won’t know gangs working to where they came order,” said Jakobs. from. The flesh is con“But now I think it’s sidered too dry to eat, just someone who but the manager of wants a luxury prodthe high-end La Table uct but doesn’t have Du Dragon in the money.” She said Brussels, who has at the thefts “usually least 60 koi on dishappened in the runplay, was shocked Koi carps swimming in a pond of a breeding up to a big trade when AFP told him farm near Gent. show.”“Once we about the robberies. found our koi at a show one year later. Every fish is ‘Going on for 20 years’ individual but when the police compared the phoMillions of eggs produce fish sorted by Japanese tos, they said the black stripe wasn’t the same size so breeders within weeks, and again, like champion studs, at two-years-old. The very best, judged for their they couldn’t do anything! “You never get anything back,” Jakobs sighed. aesthetic qualities, acquire significant value as dis-

“You can’t insure the fish unless at a massive premium, one third of their value. Materials, equipment, staff, yes-but not the fish themselves.”Lloyds of London confirmed to AFP that there are only a select few policies on the market. Another veteran of the trade, Annie Van Alboom of Paradise of Japanese Koi near western Ghent, showed AFP two prize specimen. One is a priceless 37-year-old European Jumbo champion Chagoi 103 centimeters long (more than 40 inches). The other, under heavy security, already sold for 50,000 euros ($72,000) to a Brussels millionaire, she said. “Ten years ago, thieves stole 17 and then the next year another 38 — 75,000 euros worth on that occasion,” she told AFP. “My father-in-law had a heart attack and died when we discovered the second robbery. They got one year in jail and were out in six months. “It’s been going on all through the 20 years I’ve been here,” she said. Van Alboom has invested in state-of-the-art laser alarm systems, and twice a day braves a nightmare chamber of flies and excrement to make sure an underground water purification system keeps working. She and her sons are now suspicious of visitors, and calls the thieves “opportunist”. “People still want luxury items, but they can’t pay for them as easily now,” she said. —AFP

Burning Man anti-consumerism celebration goes non-profit


hen the 50-foot tall effigy known as “The Man” burned to the ground on Saturday night before tens of thousands of screaming people, it marked a new age for the iconic celebration known as Burning Man. This year’s event, appropriately themed Rites of Passage, begins a shift from a for-profit moneymaker into a not-for-profit with a reach that extends well beyond the strip of desert known as “the playa,” Spanish for “beach.” Each year for one week, self-styled “burners” head into the desert of Nevada and build a working city from the ground upincluding an airport, a post office, and a security team- that tries to be devoid of money and consumerism. Burning Man started with an 8-foot structure burning on a beach in California around the summer solstice and has morphed into a sophisticated community with year-round projects including solar energy development and a crisis response network. The only commodities available to purchase are ice and coffee. Organizers point to the absolute lack of corporate logos or brand names anywhere on the playa - in fact many “logos” are (mostly unprintable) plays on well-known brands such as Starbucks. Asked about reports that Google owner Sergey Brin donated thousands of bicycles to the event, organizers were quick to brush off any implication of corporate sponsorship. “It was not Google; It was a private individual,” organizers said. Characterized by massive art projects and the namesake burning figure at its close, Burning Man participants aim to leave the desert with no trace that they were ever there. That is no easy task after tremendous and profitable growth from a handful of dudes on the beach to 50,000 people every day of the fes-

tival. Organizers are now looking to liquidate the Black Rock LLC company and turn it into the not-for-profit Burning Man Project, with a 17-member board and tens of thousands of burners to continue its work. It would seem a little discordant that a private company ran the anti-establishment, corporate-consumer-eschewing festival. “We’ve never called it a festival; we’ve always called it a project, with equal parts play and labor,” said event founder and Black Rock LLC Executive Director Larry Harvey. “‘Festival’ limits it to a party or a vacation, and it hasn’t behaved that way for about ten years. Most festivals don’t forward action.” When it comes time to shift into its nonprofit project, the company will be liquidated with an unnamed payout divided among six owners. The amount will be “profit enough”, but “not enough to make us rich,” Harvey said. The organization does not give annual earnings numbers, but did note in a report that all operational expenditures reached $17.5 million in 2010. When he talks about the “action” by participants in Burning Man, 63-year-old Harvey said he is referring to “coordinated efforts of a group of strangers.” Out in the desert, amid the free spirits, artists and entrepreneurs who trek in from across the globe, hundreds of art installations dot the landscape. They include a bus decorated as a golden dragon, an enormous tree made of silver metal leaves, a lattice work tower, and thousands of colorfully dressed — though terribly dusty — participants traveling by foot or on bike across the white plateau. Many of these projects will be destroyed at the end of the festival this weekend, leaving no trace of their presence, in homage to the fleeting nature of material things. Other projects, the focus of the new nonprofit, are

People gather around the Trojan Horse at it is pulled across the “playa” at the Burning-Man festival in Gerlach, Nev on Friday. —AP photos created with the goal of having some staying power. Burners without Borders formed immediately after Hurricane Katrina when dozens of Burning Man participants decided to head to the disaster zone and put their skills developed in the harsh desert climate to work in disaster response. Their work clearing out and rebuilding damaged homes in Biloxi and Pearlington, Mississippi, was so successful that they continued to do disaster relief in Haiti following the earthquake there, as well as in Peru. A new project called Music Box aims to partner local musicians with the technical expertise of burners who volunteer their time to create songs following disasters. The process also serves as a kind of oral history for the community. Harvey says the goal is to expand

Burning Man’s ten principles-which include communal effort, civic responsibility, selfreliance, radical inclusion, immediacy and leaving no trace-into the greater society. Burning Man sold out the 50,000 per day attendance for the first time this year, and the organization has asked the Bureau of Land Management for a land use permit to increase the number of participants to 70,000 through 2016, said Rosalie Barnes, a Burning Man community relations associate. They expect to have an updated agreement in early 2012. That translates into a lot of cash for the budding nonprofit and nearby community. This year, ticket prices reached up to $360, and that was just what went to the project. The state of Nevada has benefited from Burning Man as well, with more than $10

Katrina Van-Marter of Texas wears makeup and a feather headdress at the Burning Man festival. million fed directly into the economy from participants and organizers, including almost $600,000 donated to community groups, including Gerlach High School, Gerlach Senior citizens, and the Nevada Museum of Art, Barnes said. Despite the influx of funds, not everyone is supportive of the highly-decorated crowds that flood the small highway leading into the desert and absorb all amenities. A gas station attendant who declined to give his name said that traffic for the two weeks surrounding the festival made any local circulation impossible, leaving people who didn’t plan ahead without any access to supplies. “I’m sure it’s good for some people, but I wouldn’t care if they moved it to Australia next year,” he said. Rather than peddle consumerism, groups form to create a

giving atmosphere. At one coffee stop, participants from Australia and Oregon served fresh drip coffee to anyone who showed up with a cup. “We’ve had people bring us all sorts of things in exchange: coffee, cream, whiskey, ice cream,” said 34-year-old Heather Schwartzenberg. Another woman handed out cool orange slices and carried a bin for the peels. People often stand in the streets of the temporary city misting passersby with cool water, offering massages and free meals.—Reuters

6 Sep  

Kuwait Times

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