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New Zealand prime minister shocks nation with sudden resignation

first_img Monday 5 Dec 2016, 7:08 AM New Zealand prime minister shocks nation with sudden resignation Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull sent John Key a short message: “Say it ain’t so, bro.” Short URL Dec 5th 2016, 7:08 AM 23,679 Views 18 Comments Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article New Zealand Prime Minister John Key Image: Manish Swarup/AP Photo New Zealand Prime Minister John Key Image: Manish Swarup/AP Photo By Associated Press Source: The Top Story/YouTubeKey was a successful currency trader before turning to politics. He was elected to the nation’s parliament in 2002 and enjoyed a quick rise, becoming leader of his center-right opposition party in 2006. He won his first general election and became prime minister in 2008.He won subsequent elections in 2011 and 2014 and retained unusually high popularity ratings. His party was a clear favorite to win the most votes at next year’s election, at least until his announcement today.Key said that steering the country of 4.7 million through the economic crisis of 2008 and on to improved fortunes was a proud accomplishment.“Very few countries are in the financial position we are in,” Key said. “We’re strong, we’re in surplus, we’re growing, we’re creating jobs, we’re doing well.”New Zealand is enjoying relatively robust annual GDP growth of over 3 percent and the unemployment rate has fallen below 5 percent, thanks in part to growth in tourism and construction.Key also talked about the importance of standing beside the people of Christchurch after an earthquake in 2011 killed 185 people.“Simply put, it has, for me, been the most remarkable, satisfying and exciting time of my life,” he said. “But despite the amazing career I have had in politics, I have never seen myself as a career politician.”He said the role came with costs.“For my wife Bronagh, there have been many nights and weekends spent alone,” he said. “My daughter Stephie and my son Max have transitioned from teenagers to young adults while coping with an extraordinary level of intrusion and pressure because of their father’s job.”He said he wasn’t sure what life after politics would bring, other than he would probably take up positions on a couple of company boards and accept international speaking engagements.He said he would remain on as a member of parliament long enough that he wouldn’t force a special election ahead of next year’s general election.“All I can say is that I gave it everything I had,” he said. “I left nothing in the tank.”Read: ‘I made sure my wife and 2-year-old were safe’: All Black stars turn thoughts to home after earthquakeRead: Up to 100,000 landslides in New Zealand as rescuers airlift stranded tourists NEW ZEALAND’S POPULAR Prime Minister John Key stunned the nation today when he announced, in a breaking voice, he was resigning after eight years as leader.Key had been widely expected to contest his fourth general election next year. But he said he wanted to ensure he didn’t make the mistake that some other world leaders have done, and instead wanted to leave while he was on top of his game.Speaking in a shaking voice, Key said he had made personal sacrifices for the job and the role had taken a toll on his family.Key said his National Party caucus would meet 12 December to decide on a new party leader and prime minister, and that he expected to formally submit his resignation to the Governor-General that same day.He said he would back his deputy Bill English to take over. English said he would likely decide in the next day or two if he would seek the role.The New Zealand dollar fell by nearly 1 percent on the news and was trading at $0.71 U.S.Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said he’d sent Key a short message: “Say it ain’t so, bro.”“John Key is one of the most outstanding national leaders in the world today,” Turnbull told reporters. “He has done an extraordinary job for New Zealand. He is somebody that all of us, right around the world, leaders in countries large and small, draw inspiration from.”New Zealand’s opposition leader Andrew Little said the decision had taken everybody by surprise.“He is entitled to be recognised for what he has done for New Zealand,” Little said. “He’s been there through some pretty difficult times.” Share77 Tweet Email1 last_img read more

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Four men arrested for greyhound theft released without charge

first_imgFour men arrested for greyhound theft released without charge A garda spokesperson said a file had been sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions. Share14 Tweet Email By Sean Murray Image: Steven Paston EMPICS Sport Dec 8th 2016, 2:04 PM Short URL 17 Comments File photocenter_img 9,468 Views File photo Image: Steven Paston EMPICS Sport FOUR MEN ARRESTED in connection with the theft of a champion greyhound have been released without charge.Clares Rocket was stolen last Monday from the kennels of Irish Derby winning trainer Graham Holland. It has an estimated value of  €1 million.The greyhound was then found safe and well, and four men were arrested in connection with the theft. Two were detained at Tipperary garda station, while the other two were held in Clonmel garda station.A Garda spokesperson told that all four had been released without charge, while a file has been sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).Speaking to Seán O’Rourke on RTÉ Radio 1 yesterday, Holland described the incident as “a bit of a fairytale – it’s a bit unreal that it’s happened, you think you’re living a bad dream but it’s turned out very well for us”.Holland added that the incident brought to mind the horse Shergar, the prize-winning horse infamously stolen from Ballymany Stud in 1983.Prior to the robbery, Clares Rocket had been listed as one of the favourites for the English Derby. To date, he was won in excess of €53,000 through racing.Read: ‘It’s unreal that it happened’: Four men arrested as stolen greyhound found safe and wellRead: Theft of €1 million racing dog ‘is Shergar story of greyhound industry’> Thursday 8 Dec 2016, 2:04 PM Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlelast_img read more

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The walls talk Dublin city is getting a new tenement museum this

first_img A corridor in the building. Image: John Ryan via 14 Henrietta Street ‘The walls talk’ – Dublin city is getting a new tenement museum this summer 14 Henrietta Street will showcase the long and pockmarked history of Dublin’s tenements. By Cormac Fitzgerald 21 Comments Saturday 18 Feb 2017, 9:00 PM 25,367 Views A corridor in the building. Short URL It would be no easy task.The last families left the No 14 Henrietta Street in 1979, by then the building had fallen into disrepair.“Effectively the tenement history ended at that point,” says Duggan. 14 Henrietta Street in 1977 Source: 14 Henrietta Street via FacebookRestorationNo 14 Henrietta Street is due to officially open this summer as a museum charting tenement life in Dublin.The old four-storey Georgian building has a long and interesting history, and conservationists hope it will be the ideal location for an interactive museum experience charting Dublin’s past.“The museum seeks to deepen the understanding of the history of urban life and housing in Ireland and more specifically in Dublin through people and memory,” says Duggan, who has been one of the key people behind the project.Historical exhibitions, re-creations of individual flats, recorded testimonies and collected belongings of people who have lived in the building will all be used to paint of picture of tenement life in the building. Over 200 new balusters had to be made for the back stairs during the restoration. Source: 14 Henrietta Street via Facebook“Our collection is the building and the memories that are contained in it,” says Duggan.The museum will also use No 14 as a jumping-off point to explore the social history of Dublin more broadly in the period covered.Much of the original building still remains along with fittings and fixtures that have been added throughout the centuries. Things like the floorboards and the wallpaper tell the story of the building in different time periods. Layers of paint on the walls built up over generations. Source: 14 Henrietta Street via FacebookCharles points to one example of how lifting the original 18th century floorboards uncovered a wealth of historical objects.“We lifted all of the original floorboards from the house as we had to do a huge amount of structural work to the floors themselves to make them safe for museum use.And we found a huge number of objects that peopel had just discarded over time and that just fell between cracks of the floor.A betting slip from the 40s, a Christmas raffle ticket from 1927, somebody’s old Maths homework, lots Guinness bottles and shoe polish are just some of the objects found which tell the story of the building.It’s just incredible the amount of material we have just found accidentally under the floorboards.Restoration The road to opening the museum has been a long and difficult one, with the building requiring years of painstaking work to bring it up to where it is not.Following the last families moving out in the late-1970s, the building went into the disrepair. The rear of 13-15 Henrietta Street from Henrietta House grounds taken in 1979 Source: 14 Henrietta Street via FacebookDue to the historical importance of the building and the street, Dublin City Council were prompted to put a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) on the building and acquired ownership of it in 2001.From there, a conservation report was published for the entire Henrietta Street area due to its important historical and cultural heritage. Henrietta Street is known as one of the first Georgian Street in Dublin and possess a heritage and importance because of this.Emergency works undertaken by Charles and his team involved completely dismantling the basement and rebuilding it, repairing the roof structure, cutting a repairing rot in the walls and more. Works being carried out on the roof. Source: 14 Henrietta Street via FacebookThe design of the museum was undertaken by Shaffrey Associates and it is curated by Dr Ellen Rowley.Charles says that the goal of this work has always been The purpose of this work has always been “to do as much as necessary and as little as possible” with the building.The work has been documented via photographs and video and the work can be followed on the 14 Henrietta Street Facebook page.“It’s a privilege to work on and when the museum opens that’s really just the beginning of our story,” says Charles.“The hope is that people who do have connections to tenement life in Dublin will come forward and help inform us in how we develop further exhibitions down the line.The walls talk, is term we’re using about the building, but they only talk so much.Read: “The street was my playground”: A journey back to the tenement daysRead: How a Norwegian street musician crashed her van in The Liberties, bought a horse, and was embraced by the community Share1719 Tweet Email7 SEVENTEEN FAMILIES ONCE lived at Number 14, Henrietta Street in Dublin’s north inner city.The old Georgian building was first converted into a tenement in the late-1800s. The large spacious rooms were partitioned into smaller ‘compact 3-roomed flats’.These ‘flats’ commanded hefty rents at the time, and entire large families would all live in each one. In one case 13 family members lived in one flat in the building.The 1901 and 1911 census records show 100 people living in the building.There were two toilets between these 100 people to use. The building had no internal plumbing and there was just one water supply for tenants in the basement.“Imagine living on the top floor and having to bring a basin of water up to wash clothes or do anything,” says Charles Duggan, heritage officer with Dublin City Council. Image: John Ryan via 14 Henrietta Street Feb 18th 2017, 9:00 PM Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlelast_img read more

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Female cyclist dies after being knocked off her bike by a lorry

first_img Image: Google Maps 54,489 Views Share472 Tweet Email3 Monday 27 Mar 2017, 10:12 PM Female cyclist dies after being knocked off her bike by a lorry in Dublin 6 this afternoon She was pronounced dead at Tallaght Hospital this afternoon. 67 Comments By Garreth MacNamee Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlecenter_img The junction at Templeville and Whitehall Road. A FEMALE CYCLIST has died after being knocked off her bike in the Templeville Road area of Dublin 6 this afternoon.Gardaí said the incident happened at around 2.30pm at the junction between Templeville Road and Whitehall Road.The woman, who was in her 30s, suffered serious injuries when she was struck by a lorry. She was brought to Tallaght Hospital where she was pronounced dead.A garda spokesman said: ” A post-mortem is to be arranged. No other injuries were reported. Templeville Road was closed for a period of time to facilitate garda forensic collision investigators but has since reopened.“Gardaí are appealing for witnesses and anyone with information, particularly those who were in the vicinity of Templeville Road, Whitehall Road and Wellington Road between 2pm and 2.40pm today, to contact them at Terenure Garda Station on 01 666640.Read: ‘All we want is closure’: New appeal for missing Esra Uyrun as her mother battles cancer >Read: Driver’s personal licence plate banned because it would ‘offend women’ > The junction at Templeville and Whitehall Road. Image: Google Maps Short URL Mar 27th 2017, 10:12 PM last_img read more

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Dublin Marathon increased to record 22500 runners

first_img Dublin Marathon increased to record 22,500 runners 2,500 additional entries have been added, it was announced at the Mansion House today. Image: Sportsfile Feb 25th 2019, 12:53 PM Each and every runner that partakes in the KBC Dublin Marathon has an inspirational story behind their journey to the 26.2-mile finish line,” added Lord Mayor Ring added.“The 13 runners who have taken part in all 39 marathons have a unique place in the history of our marathon. It is great to welcome them to the Mansion House today to recognise their achievement and, as a mere 5-time Dublin Marathon veteran, to congratulate them with a certain tinge of envy!”The additional places will go on sale on 1 July, after current entrants are given the opportunity to avail of the refund window between 3-16 June. Subscribe to our new podcast, The42 Rugby Weekly, here: By Ben Blake Dublin Lord Mayor Nial Ring at the Mansion House with the runners who have completed all 39 Dublin Marathons. Image: Sportsfile Monday 25 Feb 2019, 12:53 PM Subscribe Runners at the start of the 2018 Dublin Marathon. Source: Oisin Keniry/INPHOThe announcement was made at the Mansion House today, with Lord Mayor Nial Ring in attendance along with 13 runners who have taken part every year since its inception in 1980.  Share67 Tweet Email6 Short URL A RECORD NUMBER OF 22,500 runners will take part in this year’s Dublin Marathon. The event, which celebrates its 40th anniversary in 2019, sold out the initial 20,000 entries back in December — some 10 months out from the big day. Following an agreement with the key authorities, however, 2,500 additional slots will be added to the 26.2-mile race, which takes place in the capital on Sunday, 27 October. “The success and demand for the Dublin Marathon grows each year,” said Jim Aughney, race director.“I am delighted that the Gardai, Dublin City Council and all key authorities worked with us to facilitate an increase in entries by 2,500. We look forward to celebrating our 40th year with KBC and all the 22,500 runners that line up on the 27 October.” Dublin Lord Mayor Nial Ring at the Mansion House with the runners who have completed all 39 Dublin Marathons. 16,995 Views Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article 23 Comments last_img read more

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Heres What Happened Today Tuesday

first_img Tuesday 19 Mar 2019, 8:58 PM Here’s What Happened Today: Tuesday British Cabinet deciding where next to go with Brexit, two years on from disappearance of Tina Satchwell and terror link explored in Netherlands attack – It’s The Fix. Short URL 10,234 Views Get our daily news round up: Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article No Comments center_img Share3 Tweet Email By Cormac Fitzgerald Mar 19th 2019, 8:58 PM NEED TO CATCH up? brings you a round-up of today’s news.IRELAND  Aoife McGivney – the nurse who saved the life of a bus driver (centre) – pictured at the launch of the Irish Heart Foundation’s new free community CPR training programme, Hands for Life, with others supporting the initiative. Source: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall IrelandSport Ireland has said it is seeking “urgent clarification” surrounding details of a €100,000 loan provided by John Delaney to the Football Association of Ireland (FAI) two years ago.An alleged IRA man went on trial accused of raping two teenage boys in a republican safe house in the 1990s.A former soldier settled his damages action against the State over health problems he claimed he suffered as a result of being prescribed the anti-malaria drug Lariam.Trains were stopped temporarily at Portarlington Station due to a fire in a nearby building.Gardaí renewed their appeal for information about the whereabouts of Tina Satchwell ahead of the second anniversary of her disappearance.Police officers in the North arrested two men in relation to the deaths of three teenagers who died in a crush ahead of a St Patrick’s Day disco.A man jailed for one of the worst cases of animal cruelty in the history of the State moved to appeal against the severity of his three-year prison sentence. Children’s charity Barnardos said it will take a “shift in strategic direction” and, due to financial concerns, has made a “small number” of employees redundant.GSOC confirmed it was investigating a fatal road collision in Co Louth in which two men died.Communications Minister Richard Bruton opened a public consultation on a new strategy to protect individuals, businesses and Ireland’s national security from cyber attacks. investigated how a the IDA‘s top client has deployed an aggressive tax avoidance structure to legally siphon billions in profits through Irish-registered companies to Bermuda, a notorious tax haven.WORLD A group of yellow vest protestors inside the Attorney General’s Office in England today. Source: Nick Ansell#UK: A number of ‘yellow vest’ supporters stormed the British Attorney General Geoffrey Cox’s office this afternoon. #UTRECHT: Police in the Netherlands said they were “seriously” investigating a terrorist motive for yesterday’s Utrecht tram attack because of evidence including a letter found in the suspected gunman’s getaway car. #BREXIT: The British Cabinet met today to discuss how to proceed with Brexit negotiations, after the process was thrown into doubt yesterday by Speaker of the House John bercow. #NEW ZEALAND: New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern promised that the man responsible for last week’s deadly mosque massacres would face “the full force of the law”, as she vowed never to utter his name.PARTING SHOTAoife McGivney – the nurse who stepped in to  save the life of a Dublin Bus driver who suffered a heart attack while driving – hopes her story will encourage more people to learn CPR.She spoke to today at the launch of a new campaign by the Irish Heart Foundation, which aims to train as many as 100,000 people over the next two years in vital life-saving skills – and all for free.You can watch the video below or here. Source: last_img read more

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Heres What Happened Today Monday

first_img Onlookers in Paris observe the fire at Notre Dame cathedral this evening. Source: Laine Nathan/ABACA#PARIS: Firefighters in the French capital are tackling a major fire which has broken out at the iconic Notre Dame cathedral causing significant damage to the 13th century structure. #UNITED STATES: Actress Lori Loughlin and her fashion designer husband Mossimo Giannulli are pleading not guilty in the college admissions bribery scam.#JULIAN ASSANGE: Ecuadorian President Lenin Moreno has defended his decision to overturn Julian Assange’s asylum status.PARTING SHOTWith the world’s eyes watching Paris, and the true extent of the damage to Notre Dame still unclear, here’s a history of the cathedral’s iconic gargoyles.  By Cónal Thomas Share4 Tweet Email NEED TO CATCH up? brings you a round-up of today’s news.IRELAND A replica of R2D2 from Star Wars at the opening of the R2D2 road in Malin Head, Co Donegal Source: Niall Carson Here’s What Happened Today: Monday Here’s what made the headlines today. No Comments Short URL center_img 17,629 Views Get our daily news round up: Apr 15th 2019, 8:59 PM The Football Association of Ireland confirmed that John Delaney has offered to step aside from the Association pending the completion of an independent investigation into issues of concern to the Board.A total of 59 candidates will contest the European Parliament elections across three constituencies after nominations closed today. The trial of murder accused Patrick Quirke has heard further closing statements. A judge has ordered the arrest of both the mother and father of a young girl who did not progress into secondary school and has missed every day of first year.A British soldier who shot dead a 15-year-old boy in Derry on 31 July 1972 is to be charged with murder.Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council has said its decision to cancel a drag storytelling event at a library was due to degrading comments made online about the performers and staff. Gardaí investigating a shooting in Drogheda in February have arrested four men in connection with the incident.Dublin-listed property investment trust group Green Reit – which has a portfolio worth €1.5 billiob – went up for sale. INTERNATIONAL  Monday 15 Apr 2019, 8:59 PM Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlelast_img read more

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Greek bikie denied bail

first_imgGreek Australian Hells Angels associate, Peter Zervas, appeared in court in Sydney last week charged with riot and affray over a vicious airport brawl in Sydney’s airport in late March. The brawl led to the murder of his brother Anthony Zervas.The head of a rival bikie gang, The Commancheros, Mahmoud ‘Mick’ Hawi was charged this week with Anthony Zervas’ murder, according to media reports.One week after his brother’s death, Peter Zervas was shot several times outside his mother’s apartment in Lakemba. No suspects have been arrested so far regarding the incident. Seven days after the ambush, Mr Zervas left the hospital but refused to receive police protection. The Herald Sun reported that the mother of Zervas spoke briefly to the media outside the court asking for the public’s assistance. “All I can say is for the public to help, please help the police so we can find out what’s going on with the murder of my son,” Frederika Bromwich said. Potential witnesses should not be afraid of retribution, according to Bromwich. The defence lawyer of Peter Zervas did not apply for bail and his client was remanded in custody.His case will be heard on July 9. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

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Multicultural Network invites young Victorians

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Young Victorians with a passion for cultural and religious diversity are urged to apply for a place in the Multifaith Multicultural Youth Network. Minister assisting the Premier on Multicultural Affairs James Merlino announced last week that young Victorians aged between 16 and 25 could apply for a position on the Brumby Labor Government network that represents culturally, linguistically and religiously diverse young people across Victoria. “The Brumby Labor Government is committed to ensuring all Victorians continue to live together harmoniously with the right to practice different faiths, speak freely, celebrate diversity and live without fear of discrimination and vilification,” Mr Merlino said.“The Multifaith Multicultural Youth Network is a great way for Victoria’s young people to inform Government about key issues they face and in turn, develop youth-led projects which respond to some of these issues,” he added. The Multifaith Multicultural Youth Network was established in September 2007 to advise the Brumby Government on multicultural issues facing young Victorians. “Since then, network members have embraced the opportunity to develop skills in leadership, communication and promoting understanding across diverse faiths and cultures,” Mr Merlino noted.Mr Merlino said the Victorian Multicultural Commission’s selection process will seek young people who: identify with a diverse faith, ethnicity or culture; are newly-arrived or indigenous and/or have a strong interest in issues of equality, diversity, faith and culture; demonstrate established links to community groups and/or networks; can  commit to a 12-month involvement, attend at least four meetings, and are willing to get involved in projects and help develop an annual report to the Premier; and who demonstrate enthusiasm and passion for faith and culture and issues affecting young Victorians. The Multifaith Multicultural Youth Network is voluntary and meets 4-6 times a year. Applications close 16 August 2009. For further information or to apply go to: read more

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Juncker snubs Tsipras

first_imgSYRIZA MP Dimitris Papadimoulis has labeled as an “insult” Eurogroup chief Jean-Claude Juncker’s decision not to meet with leftist leader Alexis Tsipras during his visit to Athens. SYRIZA put in a request to the Luxembourg embassy in Athens last week for a meeting but the leftist party was told that the country’s prime minister would not have time to meet Tsipras during his visit. “This is a major institutional indecency and an insult to democracy,” Papadimoulis told Skai TV. “The leadership of the European Union prefers to only talk with the people it finds convenient.” SYRIZA sources told Kathimerini on Tuesday that the party suspects officials in the Greek government or troika had urged Juncker not to hold talks with Tsipras, whose party is the second largest in Parliament. “We won’t accept a democracy where you can pick and choose,” said Papadimoulis. It is customary for visiting officials to meet with the leader of the main opposition party when they come to Athens. However, Tsipras also turned down in July a request from troika representatives to meet with them. Source: Kathimerini Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

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Greek producer ensures contestants vote

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Big Brother contestants will be given a chance to vote in the upcoming Federal Election says producer Alex Mavroidakis.The contestants still don’t know a Federal Election has been announced as they were already in lockdown when Prime Minister Kevin Rudd announced the September 7 election.Mr Mavroidakis says the leaders of each party have been offered the chance to record a message which will be played to the housemates and included in the broadcast.last_img read more

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Government guns for deal with troika

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras briefed Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and his coalition deputy Evangelos Venizelos on Thursday night following the resumption of negotiations between government officials and troika inspectors as sources said they were determined to reach a deal by Sunday.Although several points of contention remain, a source at the Finance Ministry said there had already been some progress since the talks resumed yesterday and remarked that the troika was just as keen to wrap up the negotiations, which have dragged on for seven months, as the Greek side. “Time is an issue for both sides,” the official said, adding, “It’s not only us that have something to lose, they have too.”A key reason that both sides want to finish by Sunday is the possibility that an emergency summit of European Union finance ministers will be held on Monday to discuss the steps being taken to create a European banking union.Once a deal is reached with the troika, the government is keen for all the so-called prior actions to be wrapped up into one multi-bill to avoid having several votes in Parliament that could be a strain on the fragile coalition. Legislation regarding the recapitalization of Greek banks would be included in that multi-bill, sources said.The troika auditors arrived at Thursday’s meeting with Stournaras armed with a revised version of the memorandum, ministry officials said, noting that the document formed the basis for talks even though much of its content remains to be settled.The most contentious issue in the negotiations is still a series of structural reforms – chiefly aimed at lifting barriers to competition – that the troika is keen for Greece to enforce. The reforms are listed in a report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) which has been dubbed the “Toolkit.” The government has embraced some of the proposed reforms but is resisting certain demands including that supermarkets should be given the right to sell non-prescription medicines. Also, as regards troika demands for an extension to the shelf life of milk, Athens has said it will not agree to reforms that harm the interests of Greek producers.last_img read more

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Samaras seen ruling out deal with opposition

first_imgPrime Minister Antonis Samaras is set to reject any attempts for a last-minute deal between the government and the opposition over the election of Stavros Dimas as president, preferring instead to go to snap elections if the coalition fails to get the minimum 180 votes needed on December 29.Four independent MPs have prepared a proposals for a government of national responsibility to be formed, which would include SYRIZA, to banish the prospect of snap polls. Former Prime Minister George Papandreou has also called for a similar solution. This comes on top of another proposal put together a few days ago by eight independent and Democratic Left deputies for there to be an agreement between New Democracy and SYRIZA on a date for early elections next year, allowing a president to be elected now.However, the prime minister’s camp has indicated that it would not accept such a solution and there are doubts whether it would be accepted by Deputy Prime Minister Evangelos Venizelos and PASOK. Instead, Samaras believes that it would be better for elections to be held to clear the air if his bid to elect ex-European Commissioner Stavros Dimas as president this month fails.Samaras also made it clear last week on three separate occasions that he has no intention of swapping Dimas for another candidate before the last round of voting if it appears that the New Democracy man has little chance of gaining the required number of votes following the first two ballots on December 17 and 23.The government has set a target of gaining at least 165 votes in the first ballot on Wednesday. At the same time, it is hoping that there will be fewer than 121 “no” votes, which means that it will only have to focus on winning around those who voted “present,” cast blank ballots or failed to vote at all.Samaras and Dimas have begun contacting the 24 independent MPs to sound them out on their voting intentions. However, the coalition will also have to persuade at least a few of the lawmakers at Democratic Left and Independent Greeks to join them if a president is to be elected at the end of the month.Source: Kathimerini Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

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Akinci wins Turkish Cypriot elections

first_imgA left-wing moderate has won the presidential election in Turkish-occupied northern Cyprus, in a move that many see as a major breakthrough in the stalled reunification talks.Mustafa Akinci, the 67-year-old former mayor of the Turkish half of Nicosia, was returned last weekend by a large majority, gaining more than 60 per cent of the vote compared to less than 40 per cent for the outgoing conservative Dervis Eroglu.During his election campaign, Akinci promised to do his utmost to end four decades of division on the island. Commentators have declared the result a significant boost for the chances of moving the stalled UN-brokered negotiations forward.Dr Michalis Michael, deputy director for the Centre of Dialogue and senior research fellow at La Trobe University, told Neos Kosmos that Akinci’s elevation to being the leader and chief negotiator for the Turkish Cypriots offers the best hope for resolving ‘the Cyprus problem’.“Without a doubt, Akinci is one of the most pro-solution and pro-reconciliation politicians in Cyprus, and with his Greek Cypriot counterpart, Nicos Anastasiades, there appears to be a real synergy – a meeting of minds – at least at a leadership level, to break the deadlock,” said Dr Michael.“While a solution may not exclusively depend on personalities alone – as we witnessed during the Christofias-Talat period – Akinci’s election constitutes a strong sign from the Turkish Cypriots to reach out to the Greek Cypriots and forge together a common destiny within the EU, and away from their dependency on Ankara. “For all those who truly wish to see a re-unified, prosperous and peaceful Cyprus, including here in Australia, now is the time to lend their support and contribute in a positive way to the reinvigorated peace process.”On the eve of the election Mr Akinci described UN negotiations – planned to start again next month – as holding “a possibility for all sides to win”.Cypriot president Nicos Anastasiades congratulated Akinci on the result and called him personally last Sunday. In a statement to the media, government spokesman Nicos Christodoulides said:“The Republic of Cyprus welcomes the choice of Mustafa Akinci as the leader of the Turkish Cypriot community, a man who through his public discourse and declarations, has referred to the need for reunification of the country.”Meanwhile the Anastasiades government will be looking for immediate gestures of goodwill to back up Akinci’s words. The Republic of Cyprus has made long-standing requests for Varosha, a resort town in the north (under the control of the Turkish army since 1974) to be opened up. In return for Varosha, the government has said it would allow direct flights into the north and open up Famagusta port to international traffic. Such actions would reduce the global isolation Turkish Cypriots have felt since their 1991 unilateral proclamation of independence.Increasing colonisation of the island’s north by Anatolians has prompted complaints by the 120,000-strong Turkish Cypriot community, particularly over perceived ‘Islamisation’ under the governing AKP party in Turkey.With 35,000 Turkish troops in northern Cyprus, moderates in the community have also voiced grievances about militarisation. They will look to Akinci to make real his vow that both communities “must heal our wounds together”. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

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Greek PM tweetslams Turkey over air space violations – then deletes tweets

first_imgWe are in the same neighborhood and we have to talk honestly so we can reach solutions #EUTurkey— Alexis Tsipras (@tsipras_eu) November 29, 2015 Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Source: Statista Several twitter followers were astonished when Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras took to the platform to harshly criticize Turkey, some were even proud he said that. The tweets, however, were shortly afterwards removed, sparking hundreds of negative comments for the Greek PM. Tonight’s twitter shenanigans by #Tsipras only point towards diplomatic amateurism & lack of foreign policy direction. There’s no plan.— The Greek Analyst (@GreekAnalyst) November 29, 2015 The needling four tweets were after Davuloglu’s replies replaced with a more diplomatic version, as you can see below: On November 26, Greek media reported that six Turkish fighter jets violated Greece’s national air space in the northeastern Aegean Sea, quoting Greek defence officials.Mock dogfights between aircraft from the two neighbouring counties have been going on for years and only last year Turkey violated Greek airspace over 2244 times.Late on Sunday 29 November, several tweets were sent from Alexis Tsipras’ account as president of the SYRIZA party, instead of the official account used by Greek prime ministers addressing Ankara and Turkish prime minister Ahmet Davutoglu. As it happened: The tweets came after the Brussels summit, also attended by Davutoglu, during which the EU agreed to offer Turkey $3.2bn and political concessions in return for handling the refugees from war-torn countries on its territory. Davutoglu replied to the third tweet, urging his Greek counterpart to “focus on our positive agenda”: “Comments on pilots by @atsipras seem hardly in tune with the spirit of the day. Alexis: let us focus on our positive agenda.— Ahmet Davutoglu (@Ahmet_Davutoglu) November 29, 2015″With Tsipras saying:4/4 We have the most modern aerial weapons systems–and yet, on the ground, we can’t catch traffickers who drown innocent people #EUTurkey — Alexis Tsipras (@tsipras_eu) November 29, 2015last_img read more

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How fear of Islam became the biggest threat to Australias multiculturalism

first_imgJulian Burnside AO QC will be the orator at this year’s Walter Lippmann Memorial Oration in honour of the Ethnic Communities’ Council of Victoria’s (ECCV) founding member.Given Mr Lippmann’s advocacy for multiculturalism in Australia, Mr Burnside couldn’t be a more fitting choice.Over the past two decades he has been working as a barrister and human rights advocate – what he has dubbed his “main obsession” – in condemnation of the Federal government’s off-shore processing regime and treatment of asylum seekers. And he is on a mission to set the record straight.“The Coalition government specifically has lied repeatedly about what’s going on,” Mr Burnside told Neos Kosmos.“They call boat people ‘illegal’ – they’ve never committed an offence.”It surely comes as no surprise that a government would be willing to lie to its citizens, but how far they’re willing to go to do so is another matter entirely.When it comes to Manus and Nauru there seems to be no limit, going to great lengths to hide the reality of the horrid living conditions and treatment of men, women, and children.But why play with people’s lives? Well it’s simple says Mr Burnside: there are votes in it.He says the significant link to the Tampa episode in 2001 is overlooked time again, when John Howard, facing an election year, was seeking to regain popularity.“The Tampa Litigation in the Federal Court, the trial judge gave judgement in that case in Melbourne at 2.15 in the afternoon on the 11th of September in 2001, and about eight or nine hours later the attack on America happened, and all of a sudden Muslims are the most terrifying thing imaginable, and all of a sudden all boat people are Muslims, and all of a sudden Howard is calling boat people ‘illegals’, and all of a sudden the public think ‘that’s good, they’re protecting us from criminals’. That’s the way it’s worked. And it’s all so many lies to be absurd, but I guess that’s why I’ve kept on belting away at it,” he says.According to the Refugee Council of Australia, it is estimated 1,534 people are still on Nauru or PNG.In light of recent allegations that former Immigration Minister Peter Dutton intervened in extending the visas of two European au pairs, yet takes such a hard line when it comes to people seeking asylum, Mr Burnside said it only underlines what he has been saying publicly for years: “he’s a hypocrite … because he claims to be a Christian and frankly what he’s doing to boat people is so far removed from what Christian teaching would say that it’s ludicrous,” he says.“I don’t think French and Italian au pairs need a little more tenderness than children held on Nauru.”While the majority of people who arrive to Australia by boat are in fact Muslim, the barrister says that not one has been found to be involved in any terrorist activity in Australia, and are generally underrepresented in crime statistics.Meanwhile when it comes to terrorism as a threat in Australia, the threat is lower than one might think; in fact, the last fatal terrorist attack in Australia took place in 1978, the Sydney Hilton Bombing that saw three people killed.“So what are we fearing?” Mr Burnside poses.“I think it is astounding that so much is spent every year combating terrorism, which has claimed very, very few victims in our history, and we spend much, much less on domestic violence, which claims the lives of about 50 or 60 women every year.“If you want to be scared of someone because they might be a risk to you, be scared of your actual Aussie because they’re more likely to be involved in criminal activity and terrorism.”Immigration policies aside, a federal parliamentary inquiry into Australia’s multicultural policy in 2013 concluded Australia is a great example for other countries.But one of the topics Mr Burnside will be addressing at the oration on Thursday is the lingering threat to that multiculturalism, which he says is undoubtedly the fear of Islam.“I’m absolutely convinced Islambophobia is a threat to multiculturalism in Australia. But it’s easily overlooked that it’s just a repeat of something that’s been around for a long time.”He cites the international conference held in Evian, France in 1938 in response to the large number of Jews fleeing Germany, in need of somewhere to go, where Australia was represented by man by the name of Thomas White.“He notoriously said ‘we do not have a racial problem in Australia and we do not intend to import one’. Now what’s the difference between anti-Semitism then and Islamophobia now?” he says.While there are similarities, a key difference today lies in the way fear is fed, and fuelled.“[Fear], it’s fed by politicians who sort of dog whisper about Islam and it’s also inflamed by the mass media because terrorism and fear … fear sells, and that’s the whole point of terrorism, it’s to make us frightened. And turns out when Australians get frightened they don’t react particularly bravely.”But if history is any guide, attitudes soften over time.Mr Burnside recalls growing up in 50’s and 60’s Melbourne, when the majority of migrants were from England, and Greeks and Italians started to come out post-war.“I remember people of my parents’ generation saying ‘oh they’re too religious, they have too many children, they dress oddly, the women don’t learn English properly, they eat weird food’, and all of this stuff. Bit by bit, and I’m not quite sure when it turned, but suddenly we discovered they were enriching our society. Suddenly we began to value them. So I guess little by little people will adjust to the fact that Muslims are just like the rest of us.”Recently in Scotland to discuss the treatment of refugees, a country Australia could learn a thing or two from with regards to their welcoming of Syrian refugees, he says he came away with the benchmark set high for what we should expect from our politicians.“I said ‘look, we’re doing what we’re doing’ – everyone overseas knows what Australia’s doing – ‘and you’re doing this. How do you account for the difference?’ And do you know what he said? He said ‘these are human beings, they need help’ and I thought ‘wouldn’t it be a wonderful thing if some Australian politician would say those words’.”While Mr Burnside never had the chance to meet the ECCV’s founder in person, he doesn’t doubt for a second which side of the fence Mr Lippman would be sitting on when it comes to today’s refugees.“I wish he was around these days.“I wouldn’t be at all surprised, if Walter Lippmann was alive today, he would be out there fighting for the rights of Muslim refugees, because your religion has got nothing to do with anything. Recognising that other people are human beings that need help, is fundamentally important.” Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

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Google investit dans un moteur de recherche communautaire

first_imgGoogle investit dans un moteur de recherche communautaireÉtats-Unis – Google avance d’un pas supplémentaire dans le domaine du Web social. Le géant américain a racheté une start-up équipée d’un moteur de recherche communautaire.Quelques jours après le lancement de Buzz, son nouvel outil social, Google rachète une start-up spécialisée dans le Web communautaire. Aardvark compte près de 90.000 utilisateurs s’entraidant pour trouver les réponses aux questions qu’ils se posent. Près de 3.000 sujets sont ainsi publiés quotidiennement. Aardvark est équipé d’un moteur de recherche communautaire, dont le concept se rapproche de celui de Yahoo! Questions/Réponses. La plupart des utilisateurs de cette plate-forme utilise son mobile pour accéder au site. Ainsi, l’investissement, estimé à 50 millions de dollars, pourrait permettre à Google de retranscrire ce modèle sur les Nexus One et autres smartphones sous Android.Le 12 février 2010 à 13:07 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

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Fréquences 3G Free Mobile Orange et SFR candidats pour les 2 blocs

first_imgFréquences 3G : Free Mobile, Orange et SFR, candidats pour les 2 blocs restantsFrance – L’Arcep (Autorité de régulation des télécommunications) a annoncé mardi la candidature des opérateurs Free Mobile, Orange et SFR pour obtenir les deux blocs de fréquence mobile 3G toujours disponibles sur le territoire français. L’autorité devrait faire part de sa décision d’ici la fin du mois. Le premier tiers de la dernière licence a déjà été attribué à Free Mobile par l’Arcep en décembre 2009. Bouygues Telecom n’a par contre pas répondu à l’offre car il n’a pas besoin d’autres fréquences “dans la bande de 2,1 gigahertz”.La décision se fera selon deux critères : “Le niveau des engagements qu’ils prendront en vue d’améliorer l’accueil des opérateurs mobiles virtuels (MVNO) et le montant financier qu’ils proposeront” selon l’Arcep, cité par l’AFP.Le prix de réserve de chaque bloc est fixé à 120 millions d’euros. Le 12 mai 2010 à 12:08 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

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Cancer quand largent permet de mieux guérir

first_imgCancer : quand l’argent permet de mieux guérirRoyaume-Uni – Une étude du Bureau des statistiques nationales vient de démontrer que les personnes aisées avaient plus de chances de survivre à un cancer que celles issues des milieux défavorisés.On dénonce souvent les inégalités sociales et leurs répercussions sur la vie quotidienne des personnes. On estime notamment qu’un individu issu d’une famille aisée a plus de chances de réussir à l’école. À lire aussiCancer : définition, causes, types, qu’est-ce que c’est ?Des chercheurs se sont pour leur part penchés sur l’impact de ces différences de revenus dans le monde médical. Au centre de leur étude : le cancer, et surtout sa rémission. Au Royaume-Uni, lorsqu’un cancer est diagnostiqué, le patient a aujourd’hui 65% de chances de survivre au moins douze mois à sa maladie. C’est une moyenne et, en fonction des régions, on note de fortes disparités.Un taux de survie à 12 mois qui augmente avec les revenus Ainsi, quelqu’un qui vit dans les quartiers chics de Londres aura 70,3% de chances de survie à 12 mois, quand un habitant de Newham, banlieue défavorisée de la capitale britannique, aura pour sa part seulement 56,3% de chances de survivre à sa maladie plus d’un an.Pour expliquer ces inégalités, le professeur Karol Sikora de l’Imperial College London évoque le comportement des personnes les moins aisées, souvent intimidées au moment de pousser la porte d’un hôpital ou d’une clinique. Elles attendent donc, repoussant le diagnostic qui empire souvent en devenant tardif. En outre, elles bénéficient à un accès à l’information moins important, tant du fait de leur éducation que de leurs relations.   Le 12 septembre 2010 à 18:31 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

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Le prix unique du livre bientôt appliqué au numérique

first_imgLe prix unique du livre bientôt appliqué au numérique ?France – Le Sénat a adopté cette semaine une proposition de loi sur le prix unique du livre numérique. L’objectif ? Protéger les libraires et les éditeurs et ainsi préserver la diversité de l’offre éditoriale.Les éditeurs établis en France auraient alors obligation de fixer le prix de vente au public de leurs livres numériques. Ainsi, ce prix unique devrait être respecté par tous les opérateurs commerciaux. Le texte voté par le Sénat permet également d’étendre cette obligation à toutes les œuvres dont la diffusion vise la France : “Toute personne (…) qui édite un livre numérique dans le but de sa diffusion commerciale en France est tenue de fixer un prix de vente au public pour tout type d’offre à l’unité ou groupée”.Cette loi vise uniquement les livres électroniques issus d’une oeuvre éditée sur papier. Le but est surtout de mettre fin au discount, pratiqué chez les grands groupes comme Amazon, leader sur le marché.La règle française du prix unique du livre papier a été instaurée en 1981 en France, par Jack Lang. Concernant les ouvrages numériques, le texte de loi doit encore être examiné par les députés. Le 29 octobre 2010 à 10:17 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more