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GCC joint
action review
HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin
Hamad al-Thani yesterday received
a telephone call from Kuwait Emir
Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmed al-Jaber
al-Sabah, related to bilateral
relations and ways to enhance
them. “They also reviewed the
course of GCC joint action and the
Doha preparations to host the 35th
session of GCC summit which is
scheduled to be held in December,”
the official Qatar News Agency
(QNA) said.
Sidra Medical and Research Centre
(Sidra) announced yesterday its
first patent application, to the US
Patent and Trademark Office, for
the first non-invasive technique for
monitoring cancer progression.
The technique, invented by Sidra
researchers Dr Francesco Marincola
and Dr Mohamed Haris, is for the
use of non-invasive Magnetic
Resonance Imaging (MRI) to
detect levels of the Creatine Kinase
(CK) enzyme inside a patient’s
cancerous tissue. Page 3
NIGERIA | Unrest
Suicide bomber kills
47 in school massacre
A suspected Boko Haram suicide
bomber disguised in school
uniform killed 47 students in
northeast Nigeria yesterday, in one
of the worst attacks against schools
teaching a so-called Western
curriculum. Page 12
Latest Figures
HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani meeting with Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh at the Emiri Diwan
yesterday. The minister handed over to the Emir a written message from Iranian President Hassan Rohani on bilateral
relations and issues of common interest.
Qatar makes progress
in п¬Ѓght against diabetes
By Joseph Varghese
Staff Reporter
n what could be termed a significant achievement in its fight
against diabetes, Qatar has
substantially progressed in global
ranking in terms of prevalence of
the disease, according to the latest
ranking of the global diabetes federation.
This was revealed by a top official of Qatar Diabetes Association
(QDA) yesterday at a press conference to reveal the future activities
of Action on Diabetes.
Dr Abdullah al-Hamaq, managing director, QDA, emphasised that
it was a “remarkable achievement”
in the initiatives to counter diabetes in the country.
“According to the seventh edition of the Diabetes Atlas of International Diabetes Federation, Qatar
is at the 10th position in the prevalence of diabetes. Earlier we were
ranked seventh globally,” al-Hamaq
“It shows that our efforts are
paying rich dividends. This will
give us more energy and motivation
in our efforts to contain and counter this dreadful disease. We are going ahead with many initiatives and
Dr al-Hamaq: Qatar Diabetes
Association managing director
diabetes awareness programmes to
reach out to the larger public in the
The official pointed out that
most of the GCC countries were in
the list of high prevalence of diabetes according to the latest ranking.
“Saudi Arabia has the highest
prevalence rate in the Mena region
while Egypt has the highest number
of people suffering from diabetes.
Countries such as Kuwait and Bah-
rain are among the countries with
high prevalence of diabetes.”
Herluf Thomsen, Action on Diabetes senior project manager at
NovoNordisk, highlighted that the
year 2014 had been the best one in
Qatar so far in its fight against diabetes. He pointed out that there had
been significant achievements in
the last three years of joint efforts
by Action on Diabetes.
“This public private partnership
to fight diabetes is a very unique
one in the world itself. During the
entire project in three years, 22,000
people were screened for diabetes
while 14,000 were screened in 2014
alone. At this rate we might even be
able to screen the entire people of
the country, given the size of population.”
However he cautioned that concrete efforts were necessary to
raise diabetic awareness among
the country’s population. “Nearly
a quarter of the population might
turn diabetic by 2030 unless they
are educated well and follow practices such as healthy eating habits
and physical activities.”
So far, some 22,618 school children were educated on healthy lifestyle and 1,092 healthcare professionals were provided with diabetic
education, he added. Page 31
Vol. XXXV No. 9538
November 11, 2014
Moharram 18, 1436 AH
www. 2 Riyals
QU forges
ahead with
college plan
Qatar University’s new College
of Medicine will offer a six-year
programme, leading to a Doctor of
Medicine degree
QATAR | Technique
Sidra seeks patent
for new procedure
QATAR | Diplomacy
In brief
is A R 8
AT 19
Q since
Emir receives message from Iranian president
Entrepreneurs vow
to support govt goals
Compact 2022
World Cup will
create great
says Oliver Kahn
he new Medical College, scheduled
to open at Qatar University (QU)
in September 2015, is to enrol both
male and female students, who will take
some courses in a segregated environment
and others in a co-educational set up.
“Efforts will be made to attract Qatari
students to pursue careers in medicine
with support for also enrolling long-term
expatriates,” QU revealed in a statement
The College of Medicine, the plan for
which was approved by the Board of Regents of QU during its meeting on October 30, will enrol up to 50 students in its
п¬Ѓrst academic year (2015-2016).
It will offer a six-year programme,
which leads to a Doctor of Medicine degree (MD).
Male and female students will attend
general courses in other colleges - such
as biomedical sciences, chemistry and
others - in a gender-segregated environment, while specialised courses and clinical teaching will be offered jointly.
“The design of the new Medical College building will emphasise societal
values by providing gender-segregated
leisure facilities,” the statement said.
During the meeting, the Board also approved the college’s organisational structure, its budget and the appointment of
Dr Egon Toft as vice president for Medicine and Health and dean of the College
of Medicine.
The medical education programme
will combine coursework and clinical
learning. Students will be working with
patients in a clinical setting from the п¬Ѓrst
year while medical sciences coursework
will extend throughout the course of the
study in an integrated way.
Clinical teaching will be arranged in
co-operation with the Hamad Medical
Corporation (HMC), the Primary Health
Care Corporation (PHCC) as well as other
leaders in the healthcare sector in Qatar.
The programme will also benefit from
collaboration opportunities with important partner programmes within QU such
as pharmacy, biomedical sciences, nutrition and public health.
“The establishment of the college addresses the need for Qatar-trained physicians and medical professionals and
will make invaluable contributions to
strengthening the healthcare and education sectors in Qatar overall” Dr Toft said.
“Communication and interactive
programmes will be implemented with
schools in Qatar with the aim to encourage students – in particular, Qatari students - to pursue a career in medicine,”
he explained.
Dr Abdulatif al-Khal, member of the
steering committee for the College of
Medicine at QU and deputy chief of staff
for Graduate Medical Education at Hamad Medical Corporation, said the college aimed to attract highly competitive
students and outstanding local and international academics.
“The classes will be focused on delivering a high quality education leveraging the most advanced learning systems.
Students need to achieve a high standard
that allows them to meet the requirements for moving smoothly in their undergraduate studies and on to residency
or fellowship programmes at HMC and
other healthcare systems in Qatar and
abroad in order to prepare them for their
professional lives as highly competent
and independent physicians.”
Dr Asmaa al-Thani, a member of the
college steering committee and head of
the Department of Health Sciences at the
College of Arts and Sciences and director
of the Biomedical Research Centre at QU,
said the aim was to create a sustainable
source of highly qualified physicians to
serve the needs of the Qatari healthcare
“We need to attract more Qatari students to pursue careers in medicine and
also to support long-term expatriates
interested in pursuing the profession, in
order to contribute to the rising demand
for locally-rooted family physicians. This
will not happen overnight but an important п¬Ѓrst step has been taken and I am
confident that Qatar University has what
it takes to make this promising project a
great success.”
The second phase of the implementation plan for the college begins immediately when the new members will join the
college’s Steering Committee, including
leaders and experts from QU, HMC and
In addition, a new member from the
Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education in the US will be appointed
to QU College of Medicine’s international
advisory board.
Consumer sentiment in Qatar �highest’ in Mideast
N-talks �fail to make progress’
onsumer sentiment in Qatar
is the “highest in the Middle East” with a peak score of
97.2, according to a new survey.
Consumers in Qatar are “extremely optimistic” about all five
indicators measured in the MasterCard Consumer Confidence Index,
a release said yesterday.
When compared to the previous
edition of the survey released last
year, consumers are more optimistic about the stock market (97.8 vs.
91.7), regular income (97.5 vs 95.7)
and quality of life (97.3 vs 97.2).
Consumers also remain very optimistic about employment (95.5 vs
99.4), despite a slight decrease in its
score when compared to the previous edition of the index.
The indicator for economy remained same as last year with a
score of 98.
The latest findings also indicate
that male respondents are more optimistic than the female ones about
the coming months (97.5 vs 96.9),
and that consumers below the age of
30 years (98.2) are more optimistic
than older respondents (96.2).
“We are delighted to note that
consumer confidence of the Qatari populace is now highest in the
Middle East,” said Raghav Prasad,
general manager (Gulf Countries)
The MasterCard Consumer
Confidence Index is based on
a survey conducted between
July and August this year
“Consumers are most optimistic
about the stock market, and this
outlook reflects the stability of the
Qatari economy and the investment
opportunities that the government
is creating by diversifying the economy.”
Across the Middle East, the consumer confidence level remains
“very optimistic” with positive
scores for all five indicators, despite
slight declines when compared to
the previous edition of the index released six months ago.
Consumers are most optimistic
about regular income (86.2 vs 83.9)
and employment (83.6 vs 80.9),
whereas results indicate a decline in
consumer’s confidence about quality of life (74.0 vs 78.1) and the stock
market (75.6 vs 78.1) their sentiment in relation to the economy has
remained the same, at 80.3.
The Middle East’s aggregate score
of 78.5 remains higher than that of
Asia/Pacific (63.3) and Africa (78.1),
as was the case in the previous survey.
In the Middle East, Qatar (97.2)
overtakes Saudi Arabia (96.3) as the
market leader with the highest level
of consumer confidence, followed
by the Oman (94.6), Kuwait (92.6),
the UAE (88.7), Egypt (78.6) and
Lebanon (12.4).
The MasterCard Consumer Con-
fidence Index is based on a survey
conducted between July and August
this year and involving some 12,205
respondents aged 18-64 in as many
as 27 countries within Asia/Pacific,
Middle East and Africa.
This is the 42nd survey of Consumer Confidence conducted since
Respondents were asked five
questions pertaining to their six
month outlook on the economy,
employment prospects, the local
stock market, their regular income
prospects and their quality of life.
The results of their responses
were converted in five component
indexes, which were averaged to
form the MasterCard Index of Consumer Confidence (MWICC) score.
The MWICC Index score and the
five component index scores range
from 0-100 where 0 represents
maximum pessimism, 100 represents maximum optimism and 50
represents neutrality.
he latest nuclear talks in Oman
between Iran and Western powers ended yesterday without any
progress, a senior Iranian negotiator
“We can no longer talk about
progress in the negotiations, but we
are optimistic that we can reach an
accord” before the final November 24
deadline, Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi said, quoted by
Isna news agency, after two days of
talks between Iranian, US and EU officials.
A US official said earlier that the
talks in Oman, which ran into an unexpected second day between world powers and Tehran, were “tough, direct and
State Department spokeswoman
Jen Psaki said the US remained “very
focused on making progress and see-
ing if we can get a deal done before the
“There’s still time to do so,” she told
reporters in Washington.
US Secretary of State John Kerry and
Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohamed Javad
Zarif met on Sunday and again yesterday in Muscat with the EU negotiator
Cathy Ashton.
The talks will now move to a lower
level between political directors from
Iran and the group called the P5+1 Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and the US.
They will meet in Oman “for a yet to
be determined amount of time”, Psaki
The talks had initially been set to
only take place on Sunday, but Kerry’s
schedule had been planned to allow for
additional time “if we thought there
was a reason for him to stay a little bit
Kerry “wouldn’t have stayed had he
felt it wasn’t productive to continue to
stay”, she added. Page 10
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Sidra seeks US patent
for new technique
idra Medical and Research Centre (Sidra)
announced yesterday
its п¬Ѓrst patent application,
to the US Patent and Trademark Office, for the п¬Ѓrst
non-invasive technique for
monitoring cancer progression.
The technique, invented
by Sidra researchers Dr
Francesco Marincola and Dr
Mohamed Haris, is for the
use of non-invasive Magnetic Resonance Imaging
(MRI) to detect levels of the
Creatine Kinase (CK) enzyme inside a patient’s cancerous tissue.
CK is an enzyme found
in the heart, brain, skeletal
muscle and other tissues.
Patients suffering from
cancer tend to have higher
levels of CK; measuring the
presence of which helps
determine existence or progression of cancer.
Sidra’s new procedure has
both diagnostic and patient
management implications.
The MRI-based technique
requires patients to receive
an injection of phosphocreatine solution, which is
visualised by an MRI, helping doctors get a clear image
of what is happening inside.
It will help assess whether a
tumor is benign or aggressive without the need for a
This will have a significant
impact on the treatment and
recovery times of patients as
it has the potential to help
them embark on required
treatment programmes faster - particularly if CK expressions determine tumor
malignancy. Using diagnostic markers determined
through this technique will
also help in drug design;
enabling clinicians to see
Dr Marincola and Dr Haris
which drug combinations
are most effective, as well
as in monitoring patients’
medication intake.
“Today marks what we
hope will be the first
of many cutting-edge
breakthroughs and
milestones that the
research arm of Sidra
will bring to enhancing
patient care in Qatar”
“Detection of CK expression in vivo, meaning
inside the patient’s tissue
without the need for sample
removal, provides a definite diagnostic marker for
tumor malignancy, as well
as response to treatment.
Our invention will allow
for routine examinations of
cancer patients and improve
the ability to track cancer
progression by increasing
detection sensitivity and
delivering a high-resolution
image of what’s happening
inside,” said Dr Mohamed
Haris, principal investigator, Sidra.
“We are looking forward
to embarking on the next
phase – clinical trials - so
that all the measures and
protocols are in place before this new technique is
ready for launch. While
there is a possibility that
further trials and research
can take time, we are excited to showcase that Sidra
is a serious contender in the
research genre.This patent
is testament to the commitment and dedication of
the Sidra research team and
our efforts to bring pioneering research capabilities to
Qatar,” said Dr Francesco
Marincola, chief research
officer, Sidra.
“Today marks what we
hope will be the п¬Ѓrst of
many cutting-edge breakthroughs and milestones
that the research arm of
Sidra will bring to enhancing patient care in Qatar.
Innovation in patient care is
at the heart of Sidra’s mission and the new technique
demonstrates Sidra’s commitment to being a leading provider of world-class
care,” said Dr Mohamed
Fathy Saoud, vice-chairperson of the board of governors and chairman of the
executive committee, Sidra.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11 , 2014
Qatar-Uganda ties reviewed
HE the Minister of Labour and Social Affairs Dr Abdullah Saleh Mubarak al-Khulaifi holding talks with Uganda’s Minister
of State for Youth, Labour, Employment and Industrial Relations, Mwesigwa Rukutana, in Doha yesterday. They
discussed bilateral relations and the means to enhance them as well as a number of issues of joint interest.
Three expatriates get
jail sentence for theft
he Criminal Court
has jailed three Asian
expatriates who stole
electricity equipment from
a house under construction,
reported Arrayah newspaper.
The Criminal Court
convicted three Nepalese
expatriates for their involvement in the theft of
electricity equipment from
the new house of a citizen
and another house belonging to his brother. However,
the paper has not reported
what the stolen equipment
was. The court awarded a
one-year sentence to the
п¬Ѓrst and the second accused
while awarding a 6-month
jail sentence to the third accused.
The judgment includes a
directive for the deportation
of the three from the country after the completion of
their jail period.
The Al Rayyan police investigated the case after
the citizen lodged the complaint. The contractor who
undertook the construction
informed him that equipment were stolen both from
the new house and also from
the house of the citizen’s
brother which is in the immediate neighbourhood.
The security person on
duty at the compound informed the house owner
that he had seen the accused
at the place at the time when
the robbery took place.
On being questioned, the
п¬Ѓrst and second accused admitted to their involvement
in the theft and it led to the
arrest of the third accused
who purchased the stolen
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Qatar, Myanmar set
up diplomatic ties
joint panel
Presidents of Brazil and Benin
to arrive in Doha today
he Qatari-Ethiopian
joint mini-committee
for bilateral co-operation held a meeting yesterday at the Foreign Ministry.
It was co-chaired by HE
the Assistant Foreign Minister for International Cooperation Affairs Sheikh
Mohamed bin Abdurrahman bin Jassim al-Thani and
Ethiopian Minister of State
for Foreign Affairs Berhane
Presidents of Brazil and Benin, Dilma Rousseff and Thomas Boni Yayi,
respectively, will arrive in Doha today.
HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani will discuss with the two
leaders ways to enhance bilateral relations in various fields.
The meeting reflects the
importance of bilateral
relations between Qatar
and Ethiopia
HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani yesterday endorsed
Cabinet Decision No. 59 of 2014 enforcing the rules of Law No. 24
of 2002 on retirement and pensions of Qatari employees with the
following companies:
CH2M Hill International B V Company, The Investors Group Company,
Event ICOM Capital Management Bank Qatar, Al-Rayan Brokerage
Company, and Al-Rayan Investment Company.
he flag of Qatar was
hoisted yesterday over its
embassy’s headquarters
in Myanmar, marking the beginning of diplomatic relationship
between the two countries.
On the occasion, the Acting
Charge d’Affaires at the Qatari
embassy in Yangon, Abdul Aziz
bin Abdullah al-Haj, held a reception ceremony which was attended by a number of officials
at the Ministry Foreign Affairs
of Myanmar and heads of diplomatic missions accredited to the
country along with representatives of Arab and Muslim communities in Yangon.
Al-Haj welcomed the attendees expressing his pleasure over
development of relations between the two countries, hoping
this step would be a beginning
of a new phase of co-operation,
promotion of bilateral relations
and developing them in order
to serve the interests of both
countries and their peoples in all
Acting Charge d’Affaires at the Qatari embassy in Yangon, Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah al-Haj, attending the
flag-hoisting ceremony yesterday.
Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah al-Haj with guests at the reception ceremony.
In a statement to the Qatar
News Agency (QNA), Sheikh
Mohamed said that the
meeting reflects the importance of bilateral relations
between Qatar and Ethiopia, adding that during these
meetings the two sides will
follow up the official visits
exchanged between the two
The meeting discussed
agreements that had been
signed between the two
countries in addition to exchange of views on prospects
of co-operation in agriculture, culture, tourism, mining
and energy sectors, he added.
He said that they agreed
on creating opportunities for
co-operation between the
Ethiopian and Qatari companies along with adopting
some projects on the basis of
partnership between the two
Emir to attend opening of
Advisory Council session
HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani will attend the opening
of the 43rd ordinary session of the Advisory Council today.
Emir issues amendment law
HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani yesterday issued law
No. 20 of 2014 amending some provisions of law No. 25 of 2005 on
commercial registration.
The law is applicable from the date of issue and is to be published in the
official gazette.
Emir endorses Cabinet decision
Two new decrees issued
HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani issued Emiri Decree
No. 48 of 2014 yesterday endorsing a memorandum of understanding
for co-operation in the field of meteorology between governments of
Qatar and Saudi Arabia, signed in Riyadh on 1.3.2011.
The Emir also issued decree No. 49 of 2014 endorsing an agreement
between governments of Qatar and Sweden on the exchange of
information pertaining to custom issues and its attached protocol,
signed in the city of Paris on 6.9.2013.
Instruments of ratification
HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani issued the following
instruments of ratification yesterday:
1. Approving a draft agreement between the United Nations and the
government of Qatar on hosting the 3rd United Nations Congresses on
Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, signed in the city of Vienna on
2. Approving the ratification of an agreement on economic and trade
cooperation between governments of Qatar and Brazil, signed in the
city of Brasilia on 20.1.2010
3. Approving the ratification of the statute of the GCC Emergency
Management Centre.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Qatargas holds career guidance
programme for QU students
atargas has met with
students at Qatar
University’s College
of Business and Economics as part of Hayyakum, a
recruitment-oriented outreach programme launched
earlier this year that specifically targets nationals.
The programme aims
to meet students at their
place of study and respond
to their questions regarding a specific discipline
and assist them by providing them with information
to enable them to make decisions about their future
Representatives of the
company delivered pres-
Qatargas �Hayyakum’ campaign.
entations on topics such as
investment and п¬Ѓnancial
market and institutions to
male and female students
Qatargas has enhanced
the campaign to focus on
specific skill sets – finance
in this case. The focus on
a specific discipline allows
students to have a clearer,
in-depth understanding of
the qualifications and skills
required for jobs within that
area and provide them with
an insight into the roles and
responsibilities undertaken
within the discipline, the
company said.
Qatargas has a National
Graduate Development Programme that provides every
graduate with an Individual
Development Plan (IDP),
consisting of on-the-job
learning and formal training.
Graduates have the opportunity to develop their
behaviuoral competencies
with focus on areas such as
communication and information sharing, planning
and organising, teamwork,
job knowledge and problem
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Badr al-Meer and Philippe Anric at the official opening of The Airport Hotel.
Airport Hotel set to offer
travellers �best experience’
amad International Airport
(HIA) has officially unveiled
two of its latest facilities —The
Airport Hotel and Vitality Spa.
Located in the south node of the airport, the 100-room The Airport Hotel
and Vitality Spa offer passengers passing through HIA a range of services and
flexibility, depending upon their travel
needs and schedules, according to a
Whether travelling on business or
for leisure, with family or without, The
Airport Hotel is designed to meet the
needs of all global and regional travellers, who can book a room package
for as long or as short a stay as they
require. They can also just drop in to
the Vitality Spa for a swim in the 25m
swimming pool or enjoy a massage, the
statement said.
Badr al-Meer, chief operating officer
of HIA, said: “The opening of The Airport Hotel and Vitality Spa is another
important milestone for Hamad International Airport. We are delighted
that we can now offer our passengers
this sophisticated facility that has been
designed with careful consideration of
their requirements while they are our
guests in Doha.”
Philippe Anric, The Airport Hotel
general manager, added: “Our focus at
the hotel is to offer the very best hospitality experience to all our guests,
whether they are staying with us for
one hour or one day. We look forward
to welcoming passengers to The Airport Hotel.”
Guests can choose from superior,
deluxe and executive rooms or executive suites, which can be booked for
0-3, 3-6, 6-12 or 12-24 hours, giving
them the opportunity to rest in between flights or use the room as a base
while they explore the boutiques and
restaurants spread over 40,000sqm
at HIA.
Hotel guests can enjoy more than
70 retail outlets offering a wide selection of designer labels, high street
fashion, electronics and gourmet
foods, as well as over 30 cafes and
restaurants offering a selection of
global cuisine.
Guests and non-staying guests can
benefit from the services provided
at the Vitality Spa, which includes
a 25m swimming pool, full-service
gym equipped with cardiovascular machines and the support of a
personal instructor, as well as two
squash courts.
Passengers can also choose from
a wide variety of treatments at the
Vitality Spa, which have been specially designed to relieve the fatigue
of travelling.
There are three treatment rooms
for men and two for women, and a
hydrotherapy bath is also available in
both the male and female spa areas.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Qapco health
day focuses on
heart problems
Transport infrastructure experts meet at the 7th Annual Bridges and Highways Middle East conference yesterday in Doha. PICTURES: Thajudeen
New road projects will
ease congestion: official
By Joey Aguilar
Staff Reporter
he ongoing construction of bridges, roads and
highways in the country,
which causes traffic snarls now,
would soon contribute to easing
congestion, an official of Qatar’s
Ministry of Transport has said.
Surface transport adviser Abdul Ghaffar A H Chaudhry said
traffic jams usually happen when
massive construction projects
take place in a city such as Doha.
“Surely there are delays expected but all these projects and
mega projects work on achieving
a less congested city,” Chaudhry
said on the sidelines of the 7th
Annual Bridges and Highways
Middle East conference in Doha
He said these challenges can
happen in the next three to
four years until infrastructure
projects are handed over and become operational.
“This will be there for a couple of years until you see the
road scheme п¬Ѓnalising and more
interchanges opening up,” he
Traffic snarls in many parts
of Doha had been the subject of
complaints by motorists especially during peak hours.
In the morning, for example,
it takes 45 minutes to an hour for
commuters reach their destinations: from their homes to offices and schools.
Chaudhry said delivery agencies such as Public Works Authority (Ashgal) and Qatar Rail
are trying their best to provide
the best alternative solutions for
Surface transport adviser Abdul
Ghaffar A H Chaudhry.
these challenges until road and
rail schemes are п¬Ѓnalised.
“These projects stamp out of
how to achieve that very robust
master plan for Qatar and de-
fine what projects we need,” he
However, the official noted
that some priorities are dictated
externally especially in meeting
a deadline imposed by an event
(FIFA 2022 World Cup).
Noting the eventual goal of
the projects is to achieve the
Qatar National Vision 2030,
he stressed the importance
of holding such a conference
which focuses more towards
the planning and delivery of
high quality highways and
bridges on time.
The two-day international
summit has gathered together
officials and representatives
from companies and providers
that are changing Qatar’s urban
landscape with new transport
infrastructure. It features various exchanges on how to create
roads, bridges and other mega
projects that last 120 years or
Chaudhry will be part of the
panel in today’s morning session titled: “Delivering bridge
and highway projects on-time
through effective planning and
stakeholder management.”
The discussion will tackle
some issues such as establishing clear communication strategies to expedite approvals and
reduce project delays; how to
avoid changes in requirements
and scope; managing “the complexity and demands presented
by the use of US and UK codes
for design and construction in
Qatar;” among others.
Experts from other GCC
countries will also address some
key issues in constructing highways and bridges.
ver 250 Qapco employees
participated in a health
awareness day, with special emphasis on cardiovascular
risks and how to prevent heartrelated diseases.
The event, held in connection with World Heart Day, was
organised in conjunction with
Kulluna, the health and safety
national campaign spearheaded
by Hamad Medical Corporation
(HMC) and co-ordinated by Hamad International Training Centre.
On the occasion, the “Kulluna
for a healthy heart” team and its
mobile unit visited the Qapco
plant in Mesaieed. The Arabic
word “Kulluna” means �all of us’.
During the day, Qapco employees were invited to complete
health check-ups that included
tests for Body Mass Index and
blood pressure.
As heart disease remains the
leading cause of death in men
and women in Qatar and around
the world, the Kulluna trained
staff also presented and discussed risk factors for developing
coronary artery diseases, such as
high blood pressure, obesity, the
impact of cholesterol, tobacco
and diabetes.
Overall, the importance of
healthy lifestyles and physical
activities were strongly highlighted as important measure
playing a key role in preventing
the risk of heart-related diseases.
Qapco employees were also
given booklets providing insight
on how to maintain a healthy
heart in order to reduce the risks
of developing heart-related diseases.
Qapco vice chairman and CEO
Dr Mohamed Youssef al-Mulla
stated: “At Qapco, as a responsible organisation, and in alignment with the Qatar National
Vision 2030, we believe in raising
awareness about the importance
of healthy lifestyles and п¬Ѓtness
among our employees and our
“As such, the benefits of the
national campaign �Kulluna for
a healthy heart’ driven by HMC
are evident and benefit the Qatari society as a whole. I thank
the �Kulluna for a healthy heart’
team for having visited Qapco.
Together, we encouraged the
Qapco staff to make more hearthealthy choices.”
Qapco, as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility programme, is investing in projects
that support three key areas:
employee and family welfare,
education, and sports.
Qapco employees participating in the Kulluna event.
Canon’s new DSLR camera features innovative flicker detection
anon Middle East has
launched in Qatar its new
DSLR camera, the EOS
7D Mark II, which builds on the
class-leading performance of
the iconic EOS 7D, and harnesses
technologies found in the flagship, professional EOS-1D X.
Completely rebuilt and redesigned, the EOS 7D Mark II can
capture an incredible 10 frames
per second (fps) without a drop
in resolution, and features a
new 65-point cross-type AF
system and Dual DIGIC 6 processors.
The camera boasts a new 20.2
MP APS-C CMOS sensor with
a native ISO 100-16,000 range,
expandable to ISO 51,200. Together with an advanced highresolution 150k pixel RGB+IR
metering sensor and innovative
flicker detection, the EOS 7D
Mark II ensures beautifully exposed images.
The EOS 7D Mark II’s high
speed of 10fps is due in part to
a newly designed shutter and
mirror drive mechanism, with
200,000-cycle shutter durability.
A new cutting-edge flicker detection feature ensures images
are only shot when light levels are
at their brightest level - intelligently analysing the light source
and detecting flickering light the
eye simply can’t see.
The EOS 7D Mark II builds on
its predecessor’s movie reputation with a new suite of pro-
standard recording features.
Superior AF performance is executed by Canon’s unique Dual
Pixel CMOS AF technology, enabling shooting with smooth, accurate focus.
In a п¬Ѓrst for EOS, both Movie
Servo AF speed and tracking sensitivity can be customised, giving
complete control for pull-focus
effects and transitions between
subjects. The camera captures
every split second of the action in
Full HD quality, with a choice of
frame rates from 24p to 60p for
smooth movement and slow motion effects.
The EOS 7D Mark II has improved weather resistance and a
tough magnesium alloy chassis as well as built-in GPS and a digital compass. As part of the world
renowned EOS System, the EOS
7D Mark II supports a number
of accessories, including a new
battery grip that enables longer,
more stable shooting throughout
the day.
Upgraded Mowasalat
call centre soon: official
The Mowasalat’s upgraded
call centre would be able to
provide better services to
customers soon, a senior
official of the company’s IT
department said yesterday.
Some more advanced features have been added to the
centre and the customers,
mainly those making inquiries on taxis, are expected to
get their services most possibly before the end of this
year, he said.
“We are working on to
provide those services by
the end of this month itself
so that customers would be
benefited at the earliest,” said
the official.
With the upgrading of the
call centre the customers
would be able to receive
faster services on such
issues as booking of taxis,
their availability and even
on their movement on the
roads, he said.
Right now, apart from
Mowasalat’s Karwa taxis, the
operators and customers of
Capital and Profit taxis are
also using the services of
the Mowasalat call centre.
The bookings and availability of the three taxis are
done through the centre, it is
The official said bus passengers are also similarly served
by the company. “Even while
one is waiting at the bus stop,
he could learn whether his
bus is operating or where its
current location is,” he said.
The arrangement is already
available at 37 bus stops
across the country. However,
the company is not sure if
the facility is made use of by
many passengers, said the
711 entries received for
Katara Arabic novel contest
Katara, the Cultural Village
Foundation’s Arabic Novel
Prize has received some 711
entries until October 31 when
the contest closed.
Dr Khalid bin Ibrahim alSulaiti, the general manager
of Katara, said that such participation is unprecedented.
Further, it indicates the importance of Katara Prize as it is
much needed to enrich the
Arabic literature and Arabic
novel in particular.
The organising committee
received 475 unpublished
novels and 236 published
novels. Dr al-Sulaiti pointed
out that the majority of
entries are from 2014 and a
limited number from 2013.
The entries from 2012 are
not being considered for the
A total of 157 novels were submitted by women from different Arab countries, representing 22% of the overall entries.
The Arab Spring countries
have also the largest number
of entries, with Egypt in the
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Comoros offer
for Kuwait’s
stateless puts
focus on plight
The bidoons numbered
106,000 in 2011, according to
a Human Rights Watch report
based on Kuwaiti government
Kuwait City
Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei meets Iraqi Vice President Nuri al-Maliki in Tehran yesterday.
Tehran �ready to help’ Iraq
in п¬Ѓght against IS militants
ran said yesterday that it
was at Iraq’s disposal to help
its neighbour battle the Islamic State militant group, media reported.
Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri made the pledge during
talks in Tehran with his Iraqi
counterpart, former premier
Nuri al-Maliki.
“In the face of terrorism,
we must use all means... Iran
is ready to place all of its abilities at Iraq’s disposal,” Jahangiri
said, the website of Iranian state
broadcaster Irib reported.
To help counter a lightning
IS offensive launched on June
9, Iran has supplied Iraqi Kurds
with weapons and sent military
advisers to Baghdad, while also
denying it had deployed ground
However, early last month
Iranian television published
a rare picture of its elite Quds
Force chief, Major General
Qassem Suleimani, on an Iraqi
battlefield alongside Kurdish
peshmerga forces.
And in September, a senior
Iranian military official threatened to attack deep inside Iraq
if the militants approached the
border between the two countries.
Tehran, which has refused
to join the international coalition against IS, advocates
regional support for the Iraqi
and Syrian governments, and
says that air strikes are insufficient.
Jahangiri yesterday dismissed
the coalition strikes as a “show”
and criticised the US-led campaign for not taking “concrete
measures to dry up п¬Ѓnancial
supplies” to the militants.
Maliki, meanwhile, said
“wider co-operation and coordination are needed to prevent greater dangers” that lie
Iraq’s ex-prime minister,
who stepped down in August
in favour of Haidar al-Abadi
following a protracted political crisis, also met Iran’s supreme leader.
Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
praised Maliki’s “courage” during eight years in power, and
said his decision to step aside
helped to prevent instability in
In October, Abadi also visited
Tehran to discuss Iraq’s battle
against the IS offensive.
The mainly Shia neighbours
have been close since the
ouster of Saddam Hussain in
the US-led invasion of 2003,
with Tehran’s role becoming
increasingly open in recent
Iraq president’s Saudi visit raises hopes of thaw
raqi President Fouad Masoum will visit Riyadh today,
Saudi state media reported,
raising hopes of a tentative thaw
in relations.
Although Iraqi officials have
visited Saudi Arabia for multilateral meetings on several oc-
casions in recent years, bilateral
talks have been rare since Riyadh closed its Baghdad embassy
in 1990 following Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait.
Since the appointment in August of Haidar al-Abadi as Iraq’s
prime minister, however, Saudi
Arabia has made cautious moves
towards rapprochement, swiftly
sending him a message of congratulations and hinting it may
reopen its Baghdad embassy.
“The Saudis want to give Abadi
more time to see what he is going
to do. They gave him a good welcome when he was appointed and
opened the door. But they understand there is a big struggle inside
the Shia house and are not sure
how far he can deliver,” said Mustafa Alani, an Iraqi security analyst with close ties to the Saudi
Saudi Arabia invited Iraq’s
foreign minister in August to a
meeting in Jeddah which built
a regional coalition against the
Islamic State militant group.
Western countries including the United States believe
Saudi Arabia could play an
important role in persuading
Iraq’s Sunni Arab community
to support Baghdad against
Islamic State.
that tens of thousands of
stateless people will be offered citizenship of the impoverished African nation of Comoros
has highlighted their decadesold plight.
But a representative of the
community whose members demand Kuwaiti citizenship rejected the offer as “totally impractical”.
The stateless people, known
as bidoons, insist they were born
and raised in Kuwait and thus
have full rights to claim citizenship.
Kuwait says a majority of the
bidoons belong to other countries and that only 34,000 of
them qualify for consideration of
citizenship after meeting a set of
stringent conditions.
The emirate insists it has documented evidence to prove its
claims, saying the bidoons are
mainly from neighbouring Iraq
and Saudi Arabia, as well as a few
thousand from Iran, Jordan and
106,000 in 2011, according to
a Human Rights Watch report
based on Kuwaiti government
The п¬Ѓgures show that while
34,000 bidoons qualify for consideration of citizenship, 42,000
are Iraqis, 26,000 are of other
nationalities, mainly Saudi, and
the status of 4,000 is unknown.
The government based its
п¬Ѓndings on secret information
which it refuses to share, HRW
Kuwait says apart from those
eligible to apply for citizenship,
other bidoons or their ancestors
crossed into the country illegally
and destroyed their passports in
order to gain access to generous
A file handout picture released by the official website of Iran’s
defence ministry on September 23 shows a drone
during an unveiling ceremony in Tehran.
US drone replica test
flight successful: Iran
ran said yesterday that
a copy of an American
drone downed over its
territory in 2011 had successfully completed its п¬Ѓrst
test flight, promising to release footage of the experiment.
Tehran captured the US
RQ-170 Sentinel in December 2011 while it was in its
airspace, apparently on a
mission to spy on the country’s nuclear sites, media in
the United States reported.
Iran said it had taken control of the ultra hi-tech drone
and forced it down in the
desert where it was recovered nearly intact.
Washington says the drone
crashed after experiencing a
technical glitch.
In May, a military official
said Iranian engineers had
successfully built a replica of
the American drone and that
it would soon take a test flight.
Images broadcast by state
television at the time appeared to show two nearidentical drones.
“As promised, we have
conducted the flight and a
п¬Ѓlm of it will be broadcast
shortly,” General Amir-Ali
Hadjizadeh, commander of
the Revolutionary Guards air
wing, was quoted as saying
by the corps’ own website.
Apart from a fast-moving
ballistic weapons programme,
Iran has been producing
drones since 2010 which the
defence ministry says are capable of п¬Ѓring missiles with a
range of 1,000km.
Tehran says its weapons programmes are purely
for defensive purposes, but
the United States has often
voiced concerns.
Stateless people demonstrate in Jahra, 50km northwest of Kuwait City,
in this January 25, 2013 file photo.
welfare programmes, including
free housing.
The secretary general of the
Kuwaiti Bidoons Committee,
Nawaf al-Bader, said none of
the 34,000 identified as eligible
three years ago have been granted
“Government claims that bidoons belong to other countries
are false and unsubstantiated. If
these claims were true, why has
the government not deported
them,” said Bader, a bidoon himself.
The actual number of bidoons
was much higher than official
п¬Ѓgures, he said, with between
40,000 and 50,000 of them unregistered.
A few years ago, the government established a special agency to resolve the bidoon problem
and named it the Central Agency
for Illegal Residents, the official
name of bidoons in Kuwait.
The government recently
started offering bidoons some
It has started appointing them
as public school teachers and allowing some to seek private sector employment.
It has been paying school fees
for thousands of bidoon children
whose fathers are registered, as
well as issuing them birth, marriage and death certificates.
But Bader insists the services
have not been offered to all bidoons as many remain deprived
and live in “misery”.
Parliament has repeatedly
passed legislation allowing the
government to naturalise 4,000
bidoons each year, but most of
the laws have not been implemented.
Authorities have given no
indication of the potential cost
of the Comoros deal, but activists on social networks claim
it would amount to billions of
But Bader said offering bidoons Comoros citizenship was
“totally impractical” and that
Sunday’s announcement was
met with “anger and rejection”
by his community.
Comoros is an archipelago
state located off eastern Africa and is a member of the Arab
A member of parliament’s human rights committee, MP Faisal
al-Duwaisan, described the
move as “very grave” and vowed
to question the prime minister if
the government implements the
For the past three years, police
have broken up with force bidoon
protests calling for citizenship
and other basic rights.
Hundreds have been arrested
and put on trial accused of illegal
demonstrations and assaulting
Lawmaker Nabil al-Fadhl
in April proposed sending to a
desert camp stateless people
convicted of breaching public security and protesting.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Egypt group backs IS as Iraq probes leader’s fate
he leader of the Islamic
State organisation won
the allegiance of Egypt’s
deadliest militant group yesterday as Iraqi authorities investigated reports he had been killed
or wounded in a US air strike.
Syrian President Bashar alAssad meanwhile said he was
ready to study a UN plan for local
ceasefires in the battle-scarred
northern city of Aleppo.
Egypt’s Ansar Beit al-Maqdis,
which has carried out a string of
deadly attacks from its stronghold in the Sinai Peninsula, said
it was pledging its loyalty to the
self-declared IS “caliph”, Abu
Bakr al-Baghdadi.
Speculation has swirled that
Baghdadi, whose group has
seized large parts of Iraq and
Syria, was killed or wounded in
a US strike on Friday on militant leaders in northern Iraq,
but there has been no confirmation.
In a recording posted on its
Twitter account, Ansar Beit alMaqdis promised its loyalty to IS
and urged other Muslims to do
the same.
“We announce our pledge of
allegiance to the caliph Ibrahim
Ibn Awad... to listen and obey,”
the audio recording said, using
another name for Baghdadi.
“We call on all Muslims everywhere to pledge allegiance to the
caliph and support him.”
It was the most significant
vow of support for IS in the region outside Iraq and Syria, suggesting its influence over militant groups is overshadowing its
once dominant Al Qaeda rivals.
Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, which
means “Partisans of Jerusalem”,
has killed scores of police and
soldiers since the Egyptian army
ousted Islamist president Mohamed Mursi in July last year.
IS declared a “caliphate” in
areas under its control in June,
imposing its harsh interpretation of Islamic law and committing widespread atrocities.
Concerned after it overran large
parts of Iraq from its previous
base in Syria, Washington forged
a coalition of Western and Arab
allies to launch air raids against
the group in both countries.
The US military said yesterday
that the coalition had carried out
23 strikes in Syria and 18 in Iraq
between November 7 and November 10.
The Pentagon said earlier that
strikes late on Friday hit a gathering of IS leaders in areas of
the northern Iraqi city of Mosul,
sparking reports that Baghdadi
may have been killed or wounded there, or in a separate strike in
western Anbar province.
The death of the elusive IS
leader would be a major victory
for the coalition, but US and Iraqi officials have so far been unable to confirm he was targeted.
It is unclear whether officials
even know if he was at the gathering, given the dearth of intelligence from IS-held areas of Iraq
and Syria.
A Pentagon spokesman said
yesterday the US “cannot confirm” Baghdadi’s status, suggesting last week’s strike had hit
lower “tactical level leadership”
of IS.
The battle against IS has in recent months overshadowed the
civil war in Syria, where disparate rebel groups are п¬Ѓghting to
overthrow President Bashar alAssad’s regime.
Clashes there continue to
claim lives every day but Assad
said yesterday he was ready to
consider a plan from UN envoy
Staffan de Mistura to “freeze”
п¬Ѓghting in the northern city of
Aleppo to allow for aid deliveries and lay the groundwork for
broader peace talks.
“President Assad has been
informed by de Mistura of the
main points of his initiative,” the
Syrian president’s office said.
“(Assad) said it was worthy
of study and that work on it is
needed... in order to re-establish
security in Aleppo.”
Nuclear deal
in balance as
US, Iran end
talks in Oman
The US State Department
says the talks have proved
“tough, direct and serious”
while adding “there is still
time” for progress
hard-fought nuclear deal
hung in the balance as
Iran and the United States
ended talks yesterday in Oman,
with signs the haggling will continue until a November 24 deadline.
Over the past two days US Secretary of State John Kerry and
Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohamed
Javad Zarif sought to overcome
deep differences, allay mutual
suspicion and bring 12 months of
diplomatic brinkmanship to the
point of a breakthrough.
As each laid out their demands
in private, warnings came that a
п¬Ѓnal agreement may prove elusive,
but in their only public comments
in over 10 hours of talks neither
man revealed what remains unsolved in the long-running bid for
a comprehensive accord.
Asked if they were making progress, as they appeared
briefly for photographers, Zarif
replied: “We will eventually.”
Kerry said: “We are working
hard. We are working hard”.
US President Barack Obama
said on Sunday that a “big gap”
remained on how the West can
have “verifiable, lock-tight assurances” that Iran cannot obtain a nuclear weapon.
“We may not be able to get
there,” Obama told CBS News.
After the talks ended yesterday, the US State Department
said they have proved “tough,
direct and serious” while adding
“there is still time” for progress.
The Iranian delegation is under
pressure to deliver a quick and
total lifting of US, UN and European sanctions under a п¬Ѓnal deal.
Obama, however, said sanctions
would only be “slowly reduced” if
Tehran meets its obligations.
The key sticking point is
thought to be the number and
type of uranium-enriching centrifuges Iran should be allowed
to keep spinning in exchange for
sanctions relief and rigorous inspections of its nuclear sites.
Iran denies it is seeking a
bomb and says its nuclear programme aims to produce atomic
energy to reduce the country’s
reliance on fossil fuels, requiring
a massive increase in its ability to
enrich uranium in coming years.
The duration of a п¬Ѓnal settlement plan between Iran and
the P5+1 group—Britain, China,
France, Russia and the United
States plus Germany—also remains contested, with Iran
speaking of п¬Ѓve years and world
powers suggesting at least double that.
Some analysts have said a deal
may already be out of reach.
“A full-fledged agreement is
no longer possible before the
deadline. What is still achievable is a breakthrough that could
justify adding more time to the
clock,” said Ali Vaez, senior Iran
analyst at the International Crisis Group.
“What is needed is a courageous political decision that neither side appears compelled to
take until the 11th hour.”
The talks have already been
extended once—when a July 20
deadline was missed. Despite
the logjam, neither side has indicated it would walk away from
the table.
The meetings in Muscat followed the revelation that Obama
reportedly wrote to Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali
Khamenei to push for a deal, arguing the Islamic Republic and
the West have shared regional
This apparent reference to
the п¬Ѓght against Islamic State
militants in Syria and Iraq was
played down by Kerry, however,
with the US diplomat saying
“there is no linkage whatsoever”
with the nuclear talks.
Domestic politics are also a
factor, given the loss in midterm elections of the Senate
by Obama’s Democrats to the
Republican party, members of
which have consistently bridled
at the White House’s negotiations with Iran.
If talks go sour in the coming
weeks it is thought the US Congress may respond with fresh
sanctions on Iran.
Obama has the power to veto
them, but the prospect of new
penalties could push already
protracted deal-making towards
being untenable for the Iranian
Exhibition visitors look at the screaming pots of artist Babak Golkar in Tehran.
Art exhibition in Tehran is
something to scream about
contemporary art gallery in central Tehran is
giving Iranians a chance
to let out their frustrations by
screaming into clay pots sculpted by a Vancouver-based artist,
exhibiting in the country of his
ancestors for the п¬Ѓrst time.
The earthen pots, some of
which resemble traditional
water jars, are designed not for
containing liquids but to relieve the stresses of urban life
- noise, traffic and pollution - if
only for a moment.
“When logic fails to explain,
it becomes natural to scream.
The (pots) reflect many conditions that we are faced with,
gypt’s parliamentary elections will be held before
the end of March 2015,
President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi
told a visiting US business delegation yesterday, his office said.
Electing a new parliament
is a key step in a road map announced by the army after it
ousted Mohamed Mursi, Egypt’s
п¬Ѓrst freely elected president, on
July 3, 2013.
“Egypt will achieve its third
milestone announced in the
post-July 3 road map... of holding its parliamentary elections
before an international economic conference scheduled in the
first quarter of 2015,” Sisi was
quoted as telling the US delegation, according to a statement
issued by his office.
The planned economic conference aims to attract foreign
investments to kick-start the
country’s battered economy.
Sisi, then army chief, ousted
Mursi and announced a political
road map that envisaged adopt-
ing a new constitution, to be followed by presidential and parliamentary elections.
While the new constitution
was adopted in January 2014, the
presidential election, which Sisi
won, was held in May.
The Supreme Electoral Commission announced in June the
start of preparatory procedures
for holding the parliamentary
The commission recently said
the date for the parliamentary
polls will be п¬Ѓxed after a law п¬Ѓnalising the constituencies was
Egypt’s first parliament after
the 2011 uprising that toppled
veteran autocrat Hosni Mubarak
was dissolved after a court ruling
in June 2012. Since then, Egypt’s
presidents have enjoyed both
executive and legislative powers.
The US business delegation,
comprising representatives from
more than 60 п¬Ѓrms, is visiting
Egypt to discuss investments in
the country.
The nearly 160-member delegation is thought to be the biggest
such US business group to visit
Egypt since the 2011 uprising.
He, like many contemporary
artists who have departed from
traditional mediums such as
painting and sculpture, had difficulty finding a place to work
with experimental and performance-based mediums until
Sazmanab, a privately funded
art centre founded by Kashani,
stepped in.
Kashani, a self-taught artist
and curator, set up the centre
in 2009 to counter the “dearth
of contemporary art studies” in
Iranian universities.
The art centre is one of dozens of privately owned galleries set up in the last 10 years in
Tehran, mostly in the northern,
wealthier parts of the city of
about 8mn.
downtown, close to Iran’s uni-
versities and the former embassy of the United States.
“We want to reach people that aren’t just in the art
scene,” Kashani said. More
than 500 people, including
students, artists, industrial
workers and their families
visited Sazmanab to see the
Screaming Pots exhibition
which runs until Friday.
Much of Iranian art conforms
to Iran’s political and religious
narratives and it is commercially risky for artists to strike
out on their own, even though
some do.
“Iran’s art scene, I felt, is at
a crossroad where engaged and
critical artists seem to be frustrated with its art market and
are wanting to go beyond that,”
Golkar said.
US blacklists Saleh,
rebel commanders
Parliamentary polls
by March-end: Sisi
often unexplained with logic,”
artist Babak Golkar told Reuters by e-mail from Canada last
week, shortly after his exhibition opened.
Kashani said it has been packed
with stylish Iranians screaming
into vessels of various shapes
and sizes. Some are designed to
amplify sound, some to mute,
but all made with the same clay
that is typical of parts of Iran.
Golkar said he had decided
the time was right to return to
Tehran after years of avoiding
exhibiting there.
“I was physically gone for a
long time but mentally never
left. To come back and engage
actively and not as a passive
tourist was a true privilege,” he
A man pulls a suitcase past demolished huts set on fire, as he
leaves Taghyeer (Change) Square in Sanaa yesterday. Authorities
had deployed riot police and used bulldozers to demolish the huts
set up by pro-democracy protesters when they had camped in
the square to demand a regime change in 2011. These temporary
shelters had not been removed from the square after protesters
vacated it last year. It was not immediately apparent who had set
the demolished huts on fire.
he United States hit Yemen’s former president Ali
Abdullah Saleh and two
Houthi rebel commanders with
sanctions yesterday, two days
after Saleh walked out on the
new government.
The US Treasury said it was
blacklisting Saleh, Abdullah
Yahya al-Hakim and Abd alKhaliq al-Houthi “for engaging
in acts that directly or indirectly
threaten the peace, security, or
stability of Yemen”.
The US action followed Saturday’s UN Security Council
sanctions on the three men, for
threatening peace in the impoverished country.
The UN sanctions prompted
Saleh to pull his General People’s
Congress party out of the justformed unity cabinet, plunging
the country back into political
crisis after months of attempts
to foster a peace deal between
Saleh: hit with sanctions
Saleh, the Houthi insurgents
believed allied to him, and their
political rivals.
The Treasury said the three
men “have, using violence and
other means, undermined the
political process in Yemen and
obstructed the implementation of its political transition,
outlined by the agreement of
November 23, 2011 ... which provides for a peaceful transition of
power in Yemen.”
The sanctions freeze any assets the three might have in US
jurisdictions and forbids Ameri-
cans from doing business with
Saleh was the turbulent country’s president from 1990 to 2012
before he was forced to step down
following nationwide protests.
The US Treasury said that
since then he has “reportedly
become one of the primary supporters of violence perpetrated
by individuals affiliated with the
Houthi group”.
Hakim, the Treasury said, was
implicated in plotting a coup attempt against Yemen President
Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi as
the Houthi forces sought to take
over Sanaa.
The Treasury added that
Hakim remained in Sanaa in
September “to organise military
operations so as to be able to
topple the Yemeni government”
if peace efforts failed.
Rebel commander al-Houthi
was behind several attacks and
attempted attacks on the Yemen
government and foreign diplomatic facilities over the past
year, the Treasury said.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
UN sets up
Gaza war
Israeli soldier,
woman killed
in Palestinian
knife attacks
The attacks come as Israel
struggles to contain a
growing wave of violence
which has spread from East
Jerusalem to Arab towns and
villages inside the country
n Israeli soldier and a
woman were killed and
two others wounded yesterday in two separate Palestinian knife attacks as months
of unrest in Jerusalem spread
across Israel and the occupied
West Bank.
Yesterday’s violence began
in Tel Aviv where a Palestinian
teenager from the northern West
Bank stabbed a 20-year-old soldier, who died later in hospital.
The assailant fled but was arrested.
Hours later, another Palestinian attacked three Israelis outside Alon Shvut settlement in
the southern West Bank, killing
a young woman and wounding
two other people before a security guard shot and critically
wounded him.
The bloodshed took place after months of clashes and un-
rest in and around annexed East
Jerusalem which spread to Arab
areas of Israel at the weekend
after police shot dead a young
Arab-Israeli during a routine arrest operation.
Since the summer, Israel has
significantly increased police
presence on the streets in a bid to
rein in the unrest, but has been
unable to stop a growing number
of attacks by lone Palestinians,
most of them in Jerusalem.
But yesterday’s violence was
further afield.
“A car stopped at the hitchhiking stop at the entrance to
Alon Shvut, the driver got out of
the car and stabbed three civilians who were standing there,”
police spokeswoman Luba Samri
said of the incident in the southern West Bank.
A woman of about 25 was
killed and two men were lightly
to moderately wounded, medics
said. Police said all three were
Jewish settlers.
Their attacker, who was
identified as Maher Hamdi alHashlamon, was shot and seriously wounded by the settlement’s security guard. He was
taken to a Jerusalem hospital,
police said.
Palestinian security sources
said Hashlamon was from the
southern city of Hebron.
Earlier, a Palestinian teenager from a refugee camp in the
northern West Bank stabbed an
Israeli soldier outside a Tel Aviv
train station before fleeing the
scene. He was later arrested.
“It was apparently an attack
with nationalist motives. The
suspect is a resident of the Nablus area,” police spokeswoman
Samri said.
The attacker was identified
as 17-year-old Nureddine Abu
Hashiyeh from Askar refugee
camp near Nablus. His father,
Khaled, said he was a painter and
decorator by trade and had left
for Tel Aviv on Sunday.
The attacks came as Israel
struggles to contain a growing wave of violence which has
gripped annexed East Jerusalem for the past four months,
but which has recently spread to
Arab towns and villages inside
the country.
Anger initially erupted in Jerusalem in early July over the
murder of a Palestinian teenager
by young Jewish extremists.
It has been fuelled by religious
tensions at the Al Aqsa mosque
compound, as well as by moves
to expand settler presence in the
United Nations
A forensic policewoman works at the scene of the stabbing attack in Tel Aviv yesterday.
occupied eastern sector of the
holy city.
Since August, there have been
four deadly Palestinian attacks
in Jerusalem—three of which
were “hit-and-run” attacks
which killed five Israelis—and
one attempted drive-by shooting.
All four perpetrators, who acted alone and came from East Jerusalem, were shot dead, sparking further unrest.
Since July, police have arrested some 900 Palestinians
for public order offences in East
Jerusalem and indicted around a
third of them.
But at the weekend, the unrest
spread after police shot dead a
22-year-old Arab-Israeli in Kufr
Kana near the northern city of
Nazareth, triggering a wave of
rioting in Arab areas, some of
which continued until early yesterday.
Police claim the officers п¬Ѓred
warning shots before shooting
directly at him.
But relatives say Kheir Hamdan was killed “in cold blood”,
with CCTV images apparently
contradicting the official version
and showing an officer shooting
at him as he was backing away
from the scene.
Following two days of clashes,
24 Arab-Israelis - 10 of them minors - were in court yesterday on
charges of stone-throwing and
other public order offences, police said.
Prime Minister Benjamin
Netanyahu vowed on Sunday
that anyone breaking the law
would be “punished severely”.
“We will not tolerate disturbances and riots. We will
take determined action against
those who throw stones, firebombs and fireworks, and
block roads, and against demonstrations that call for our
N Secretary General
Ban Ki-moon yesterday
named a retired Dutch
general to head an inquiry into
attacks on UN facilities during
Israel’s recent war against Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip
and the use of UN sites to store
UN spokesman Farhan Haq
told reporters the investigation
would be “an internal and independent United Nations Headquarters Board of Inquiry into
certain incidents that occurred
in the Gaza Strip between July 8
and August 26, 2014”.
The world body has said that
tens of thousands of dwellings
were damaged or destroyed in 50
days of п¬Ѓghting between Israel
and Palestinian militants, and
108,000 people were left homeless in an impoverished, isolated
In one incident, more than a
dozen people were killed at a UN
school during Israeli shelling.
Israel has cited militants’ use of
UN facilities to store rockets as a
reason for targeting them.
Haq said Patrick Cammaert, a
retired Dutch general and former
force commander of the UN
peacekeeping mission in eastern Democratic Republic of the
Congo, will head the investigation.
Other inquiry members will
be Maria Vicien-Milburn of
Argentina, Lee O’Brien of the
United States, Pierre Lemelin
of Canada and K C Reddy of
On the mandate of the investigation, Haq said “it will review
and investigate a number of specific incidents in which death
or injuries occurred at, and/or
damage was done to United Nations premises.”
Arab-Israeli town seethes
with anger over shooting
Kufr Kana, Israel
fter days of clashes, the smell of
teargas hangs heavy in the air in
Kufr Kana, a hilltop Arab town
simmering with resentment after Israeli police killed one of its own.
Although residents of this biblical
town in Galilee are trying to resume
some semblance of normal life, there
is still a great deal of anger over Saturday’s shooting of 22-year-old Kheir
Hamdan during an apparently routine
Israel’s Arab minority, which constitutes just over a fifth of the population, have long complained of being
marginalised. But over the weekend,
decades of frustration exploded in anger following the shooting.
“His only crime was to be an Arab,”
reads a huge banner hung up in front
of the family home, reflecting a sentiment unanimously held throughout
the town and beyond.
Hamdan was shot after attacking a
police van with a knife.
Police claim the officers п¬Ѓred warning shots before shooting directly at
But relatives say he was killed “in
cold blood”, with CCTV images showing an officer shooting at him as he was
backing away from the scene.
“This was a barbaric act,” said Rauf
Hamdan, his father.
“Even barbarians wouldn’t have
done that!”
Hamdan said his son was the victim
of “a cold-blooded execution”.
“They think the Arabs are cockroaches and that their blood is worthless,” he spat.
“Arab blood is worth something and
Israel should understand that.”
Arab Israelis are the descendants of
160,000 Palestinians who remained
on their land when the Jewish state
was established in 1948.
Today, they number 1.7mn and frequently complain of being treated as
second-class citizens.
In Arab areas, unemployment levels
are higher, access to higher education
is complicated and transport infrastructure often underdeveloped, lobby
groups say.
Following Hamdan’s death, some
2,500 people demonstrated in Kufr
Police clashed with angry youths
who threw stones, burned tyres and
waved Palestinian flags, in a show
of anger which drew a sharp retort
from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin
“We will not tolerate disturbances
and riots. We will take determined action against those who throw stones,
п¬Ѓrebombs and п¬Ѓreworks, and block
roads, and against demonstrations
that call for our destruction,” he said
on Sunday.
And he warned he would look into
“revoking the citizenship” of anyone calling for Israel’s destruction—a
threat clearly aimed at Israel’s Arab
Yesterday, his Internal Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch expressed his “full backing”
for the actions of those who shot
His remarks drew a furious response
from Kufr Kana mayor Mujahed Awadeh, who denounced them as “a stain
on Israel’s democracy”.
“If Kufr Kana was a Jewish town, he
would have had to resign,” he said.
“But this is an Arab village.”
In a bid to honour Hamdan’s memory, some hung up Palestinian flags and
others could be seen wearing traditional keffiyeh headdresses.
Among them was a young man
called Farhan Khatib, who said Kufr
Kana had been engulfed in an atmosphere of “sadness and fear” since Saturday.
After two days of observing a general strike, shops in this town of 18,000
had reopened their doors and the municipality sent workers to try and clean
the streets after the surge of violence
as a dozen police looked on from Kufr
Kana’s entrance.
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Be a part of the new
zing at
Arab-Israeli youths burn tyres in Kufr Kana yesterday.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Eight members of
Rwandan sect jailed
Military helicopter goes
down in restive area
Police probe SA president
over home spending
Zambia holds requiem
for late president
Rwanda’s high court convicted eight people
yesterday of inciting rebellion for marching to
President Paul Kagame’s residence to deliver
what they said was a message from god, and
sentenced them to five years in prison. The
seven women and one man, arrested in July
2013 outside Kagame’s home, belonged to a
sect called The Inseparable Heroes of Jesus
and Mary, and hoped to pass on a message
that criticised his leadership, the prosecution
told the court. Kagame has secured
international praise for rebuilding Rwanda
after ethnic genocide in 1994.
The Nigeria military said one of its helicopters
made an emergency landing in the restive
northeast on Monday, while witnesses and
a security source reported that the chopper
crashed with several foreigners on board.
Defence spokesman Chris Olukolade said the
helicopter left on a training mission at about
9.30am (0830 GMT) from the airport in Yola,
capital of Adamawa state, which is under a state
of emergency because of Boko Haram’s violent
uprising.The pilot executed “a controlled forced
landing four minutes after take-off”, Olukolade
said. “There is no casualty recorded.”
South African police are investigating President
Jacob Zuma over a $23mn taxpayer-funded
refurbishment project at his rural homestead,
according to parliamentary papers. In a written
police response to lawmakers published
yesterday, police confirmed that an investigation
into spending at Zuma’s Nkandla home “has
been initiated”. Zuma, who was re-elected in May,
has insisted that he had no knowledge of the
work on his home, including the construction
of a swimming pool, private clinic and
amphitheatre. His government has insisted all
the refurbishments were security related.
Zambia yesterday held a final requiem service
for president Michael Sata ahead of his burial
today, after a week of lying in state in the
capital city. Clerics from different faith groups
led prayers in parliament, in a ceremony
attended by diplomats and politicians,
including the country’s founding president
Kenneth Kaunda and Sata’s predecessor
Rupiah Banda. The public had until Sunday
been streaming in to view the body of the
77-year-old leader who died on October 28 in
a London hospital while undergoing treatment
for an undisclosed illness. “His wish and desire
Suicide bomber kills
47 in Nigeria school
suspected Boko Haram
suicide bomber disguised
in school uniform killed
47 students in northeast Nigeria
yesterday, in one of the worst attacks against schools teaching a
so-called Western curriculum.
The explosion ripped through
an all-boys school in Potiskum
just as students gathered for
morning assembly before classes
began, causing panic and chaos.
The massacre came just a day
after the release of a new Boko
Haram video in which the Islamist group’s leader, Abubakar
Shekau, again rejected Nigerian
government claims of a ceasefire
and peace talks.
Students at the Government
Comprehensive Senior Science
Secondary School were waiting
to hear the principal’s daily address when the explosion happened at 7.50am (0650 GMT).
Several witnesses described
the blast as “thunderous” and
the bloody aftermath as a scene
of abandoned footwear, charred
school books, bags and body parts.
“There was an explosion detonated by a suicide bomber. We
have 47 dead and 79 injured,”
national police spokesman Emmanuel Ojukwu said, adding that
Boko Haram was believed to be
Ojukwu also confirmed local
media reports that the bomber
was disguised as a student at
the school, which has more than
1,000 pupils aged 15 to 20.
Yobe state governor Ibrahim
Gaidam ordered the immediate
closure of all public schools in
the Potiskum area and slammed
the government in Abuja for failing to tackle the insurgency.
“Urgent action must be taken
right now to restore a fast-waning public confidence by doing
whatever it takes to stop the escalating violence,” he said in a
Student Adamu Abdullahi said
those at the centre of the blast
near the principal’s office were
flung in all directions and others
were knocked off their feet.
“I found myself under the
weight of another student, who
fell over me. I’m certain he was
dead. I was dazed and disorientated for a moment,” he told AFP.
“When I realised what had
happened, I managed to push the
body on top of me and started
running like everyone else. It was
confusion all over. Everybody
was hysterical.
“I saw many people on the
ground. Human flesh and blood
were splattered all over the
place... I ran out of the school and
went home.
“When my father saw me he was
terrified. I didn’t realise my white
school uniform was stained with
human blood and bits of flesh.”
The dead and injured were taken to the Potiskum General Hospital just 100m away.
Boko Haram, which wants to
create a hardline Islamic state
in northern Nigeria, has previously carried out deadly attacks
on schools teaching a so-called
Western curriculum.
In February, gunmen killed at
least 40 students after throwing
explosives into the dormitory of
a government boarding school in
Buni Yadi, also in Yobe state.
In July last year, 42 students
were killed when Boko Haram
stormed dormitories in a gun and
bomb attack on a government
boarding school in the village of
Mamudo, near Potiskum.
Boko Haram’s most high-profile
attack on a school came in April,
when п¬Ѓghters kidnapped 276 girls
from the town of Chibok in Borno
state, also in northeast Nigeria.
More than six months later, 219
of the girls are still being held.
The attack will again raise concerns about the level of security
at schools in northern Nigeria—
Abdullahi said the establishment
was “not properly fenced”.
Potiskum has been repeatedly
targeted in deadly attacks blamed
on Boko Haram, including last
Monday, when a suicide bombing
killed at least 15 at a Shia religious
Yobe is one of three northeastern
states that has been under a state of
emergency since May last year.
But violence has continued unabated and Boko Haram has seized
at least two dozen towns and villages in recent months, raising
doubts about the government’s
ability to control the region.
Governor Gaidam said President Goodluck Jonathan “has a
very urgent responsibility to explain... why murderous and callous insurgent and criminal attacks are still on the rise”.
Boko Haram п¬Ѓghters were seen
in a new video obtained by AFP
on Sunday parading a tank in an
unidentified town that they apparently now control and Shekau
preaching to locals.
The message in the 44-minute
video appeared to be aimed at
reinforcing Shekau’s claim that
he has created a caliphate within
Shekau, who has previously
expressed solidarity with other jihadi groups and leaders,
seemed to associate territory
under his control with a wider,
global caliphate. But he does not
submit to the authority of any
other leader.
Reeva hits the shelves
Copies of the book Reeva: A Mothers Story by June Steenkamp, the mother of Reeva Steenkamp who was killed by South African athlete Oscar Pistorius, are pictured in
a book shop in London yesterday. Copies of June Steenkamp’s memoir sharing details about the lives of her daughter Reeva and her relationship with Oscar Pistorius,
who was sentenced to a five-year jail term over her death, have hit the shelves in the UK.
The cortege arrives for a memorial service
was to develop this country. His wish and
desire was to bring economic development,”
said Bishop Alick Banda. Bishop Banda
called on the country’s new leader to fulfil
Sata’s wish of enacting a new constitution, a
process which has been marked by delays.
AU chief in
urgent talks
on Burkina
Faso crisis
Burkina Faso
he head of the African Union held urgent
talks in Burkina Faso
yesterday on the west African
country’s political transition
following the ouster of veteran
president Blaise Compaore.
With the military regime that
took power after Compaore’s
exit under heavy international
pressure to quickly hand over
to a civilian government, delicate negotiations loomed to
hammer out a transition plan.
“We have come to participate in a solution,” Mauritania’s
president and current AU head
Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz said
after talks with LieutenantColonel Isaac Zida, the officer
the army installed to lead the
nation after Compaore fled.
Abdel Aziz’s visit came a
day after the opposition and
civil society groups agreed on
a blueprint for transition that
provides for new elections in
a year. The deal now has to be
negotiated with the military.
The blueprint was handed
over to the military yesterday,
but a range of sensitive questions must still be resolved,
including who will serve as
interim president and the allocation of seats in the interim
After publicly embracing Zida, the AU head went
straight into private talks with
the soldier in a lounge at Ouagadougou airport. No details
emerged from their discussion,
which preceded talks in the
city itself between Abdel Aziz
and other parties to the political process.
“The African Union has
not come to sanction Burkina
Faso,” Abdel Aziz stated on
emerging from the talks with
Zida, adding that a settlement would come from “the
Burkinabe people”.
The AU chief then travelled
to a luxury hotel in the capital
for meetings with opposition
politicians and leaders of civil
society, as well as loyalists who
had backed the increasingly
unpopular Compaore in office.
“The African Union is there
to accompany them (the parties to transition). They have
already taken the essential
steps for more democracy in
their country,” Abdel Aziz said.
Though Zida’s regime rejected a recent ultimatum from
the AU to stand down within
a fortnight, Abdel Aziz said he
wanted “to congratulate” all
parties to the succession crisis
and urged them to go on working together “in tranquility, security and social peace”.
Compaore п¬Ѓrst seized power
in a 1987 coup that killed his
predecessor and former comrade-in-arms Thomas Sankara, a widely popular Marxist
and reformer under whom
the name of the country was
changed from Upper Volta to
Burkina Faso, meaning “Land
of Upright People”.
Compaore fled the country under pressure from mass
demonstrations and unrest,
with parliament set ablaze, in
protests against measures to
change the constitution to extend his 27-year rule. He has
found refuge in another former
French colony, neighbouring
Ivory Coast.
Compaore fled
the country under
pressure from mass
demonstrations and
unrest, with parliament
set ablaze
Zida, the second in command of the presidential guard,
was installed in power by the
military at the expense of army
chief of staff general Honore
Traore. The army soon aligned
itself fully behind Zida to oversee a democratic transition.
The opposition and civil
society groups now have to
negotiate their transition blueprint with the army to lay the
groundwork for the nomination of a transitional president
and the return of civilian rule.
The current blueprint provides for elections in November 2015, with an interim civilian president, a 25-member
government and a transitional
parliament with 90 seats.
A major question is who
might become the transitional
president in the deeply poor,
landlocked and cotton-producing nation of some 17mn
people, many of whom are
subsistence farmers.
Henri Ye, head of the commission that crafted the blueprint, said the military “has received the document. They’re
going to work on it and see
what comes next”.
Mali to declare 108 Ebola-free after quarantine
ali is preparing to release 108
people from Ebola quarantine
in a tentative step towards declaring it has contained an outbreak.
Mali became the sixth West African
country to report a case of Ebola when a
2-year-old girl died last month, leading
to an urgent search for anyone who may
have been infected during her 1,200km
bus trip from Guinea to the Malian
town of Kayes.
The Malian ministry of health is expected to confirm later that 29 people
who may have had contact with her
during a two-hour stopover in Bamako,
along with 12 people in Kayes, can be released from a 21-day quarantine today.
A further 67 contacts, including
three relatives who travelled with her
and 33 healthcare workers, are due to be
given the all clear on Saturday.
“If all goes well, by this Saturday all
108 contacts we were following up will
be safe and will have completed their 21
days,” WHO representative Ibrahima
Soce Fall said.
Two further contacts who got off
the bus in a village called Niamiga have
been traced to Paris and Dakar and are
still being monitored, a WHO spokesman said. They are thought to be at low
risk, as are about 37 contacts who have
not been traced.
If there are no new cases, Mali will
be declared Ebola free on December 6,
twice the maximum incubation period
for the disease.
“We need to remain vigilant and to
strengthen surveillance and the capacity to respond to any new cases that
might come in as Mali shares an 800km
border with Guinea,” said Fall.
Medical aid agency Doctors Without
Borders called yesterday for a change
of strategy in the п¬Ѓght against Ebola in
Liberia, to fund rapid response teams
rather than huge isolation units.
The charity, known by its French initials MSF, said it is seeing a decline in
the number of patients admitted to case
management centres in Liberia for the
п¬Ѓrst time since the outbreak started.
But new hotspots continue to emerge
and the global response must adapt to
this new phase of the epidemic, added
MSF, which has around 3,300 staff
across Liberia and neighbouring Sierra
Leone and Guinea.
“Financial support is starting to flow
into the country and huge resources are
being put into constructing large-scale
Ebola isolation centres,” said Fasil Tezera, MSF head of operations in Liberia.
“Isolation units in Monrovia and some
other parts of the country now have ad-
equate capacity and we must adapt the
strategy if we want to stay ahead of the
curve and beat the epidemic.
If there are no new cases, Mali
will be declared Ebola free on
December 6
“Priority should be given to a more
flexible approach that allows a rapid
response to new outbreaks and gets the
regular healthcare system safely up and
running again.”
MSF says its 250-bed ELWA3 centre in
Monrovia is treating around 50 patients,
while in the northern town of Foya, at the
epicentre of the outbreak, the number of
patients fell to zero on October 30, with
no confirmed cases since.
But the charity said case numbers
could rise again, as happened in Guinea
following two significant dips in admissions to MSF facilities.
MSF said the п¬Ѓght to contain the
epidemic should now focus on deploying teams quickly to new hotspots to
isolate patients, trace people who have
been in contact with the sick, organise
safe burials and carry out disinfection.
“In Foya, we believe this comprehensive approach, as well as active engagement by the community, has led to
a steady reduction of cases across the
county,” said Nico Heijenberg, MSF
emergency co-ordinator. The UN World
Health Organization is reporting around
5,000 deaths and 13,000 infections globally, although it has warned that this
official toll could be the tip of the iceberg.
The WHO has also confirmed a slowdown in the spread of the virus in hardest-hit Liberia, where 2,697 people
have died out of a total of 6,525 cases.
But officials from various UN agencies and the Liberian government have
warned against complacency. Liberian
President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has ordered four soldiers and their commanding officer to be punished for their
actions during a protest over an Ebola
quarantine in August, a government
statement said.
One boy was shot dead and others were
injured when soldiers and police deployed
to quell a protest against a decision to
quarantine in the West Point neighbourhood in the capital Monrovia following an
attack on an Ebola holding centre.
The Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL)
initially denied responsibility for the
violence, but an inquiry board was later
set up to investigate the incident.
“The findings from the Disciplinary Board of the AFL concluded that
a Platoon Commander and four enlisted men were guilty of indiscretion
and exhibited indiscipline on August
20, 2014,” the statement issued late on
Sunday said.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
US rules would expand white collar crime informers
S regulators are working
on rules that would require investment advisers, credit card п¬Ѓrms and check
cashers, among others, to serve
as informers on white collar
crime, a senior US official said
The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, known as FinCEN, is working on rules that
would require those entities to
п¬Ѓle formal reports notifying US
authorities of any suspicious
trading by employees or outside
parties, said David Cohen, US
Treasury undersecretary for terrorism and п¬Ѓnancial intelligence.
Banks, brokerages and mutual
funds are already required to п¬Ѓle
suspicious activity reports, or
SARs, with FinCEN to п¬Ѓght insider
trading and money laundering.
But US regulators have been
working for several years on how
to expand the rules to hedge
funds and others to close a big
gap in US anti-money laundering
Cohen said there was an “expanding universe” of entities
that are important to the п¬Ѓnancial sector and have insight into
п¬Ѓnancial crime, including commodity hedge funds and retail
foreign exchange dealers.
“If we are to be as effective
as possible in countering illicit
п¬Ѓnance, we must begin applying appropriate record-keeping,
reporting and program require-
Obama presses
for tough �open
Internet’ rules
US President Barack
Obama took a strong
stance yesterday on new
�net neutrality’ regulations
being drafted by the
Federal Communications
Obama voiced support
yesterday for “free and
open Internet” rules to protect
against putting online services
that don’t pay extra fees into a
“slow lane.”
Obama endorsed an effort to
reclassify the Internet as a public utility to give regulators more
authority to enforce “net neutrality,” the principle barring Internet service firms from playing
favourites or opening up “fast
lanes” for services that pay fees
for better access.
In a statement, Obama said he
wants the independent Federal
Communications Commission to
“implement the strongest possible rules to protect net neutrality.”
Obama’s comment comes
amid heated debate among online industry sectors as the FCC
seeks to draft new rules to replace
those struck down this year by a
US appeals court, which said the
agency lacked authority to regulate Internet service п¬Ѓrms as it
does telephone carriers.
“’Net neutrality’ has been
built into the fabric of the Internet since its creation - but it is
also a principle that we cannot
take for granted,” Obama said in
a statement.
“We cannot allow Internet
service providers to restrict the
best access or to pick winners
and losers in the online marketplace for services and ideas.”
Obama said that while the
FCC is an independent agency,
he wants the regulatory body to
maintain key principles of net
He said the rules should ensure
“no block” of any legal content,
to ensure that an Internet п¬Ѓrm
does not block one service such
as Netflix to promote a rival one.
Another key principle endorsed by Obama would prohibit
“paid prioritisation” that would
allow one service to get into a
faster lane by paying extra.
“No service should be stuck in
a �slow lane’ because it does not
pay a fee,” Obama said.
“That kind of gatekeeping
would undermine the level playing field essential to the Internet’s growth. So, as I have before,
I am asking for an explicit ban on
paid prioritisation and any other
restriction that has a similar effect.”
Obama said he wants the rules
to bar any “throttling” or slowing of content at the discretion of
the service provider.
He also said he wants the same
rules to apply to mobile broadband, which was not covered in
the earlier regulations.
To accomplish this, Obama
said the rules should reclassify
consumer broadband service as
a public utility - a move that
has been п¬Ѓercely opposed by the
companies that would be affected.
Obama’s statement places him
squarely in the camp of many
consumer activists and online
services and against industry
sectors involved in Internet delivery.
The FCC is redrafting its rules
after the court decision struck
down its regulations in a case
brought by US broadband giant
Verizon and its allies have argued that the FCC lacks authority to interfere with their business, and that Congress never
decided these companies were
regulated utilities or “common
Scott Belcher, who heads the
Telecommunications Industry
Association, said the reclassification “would set the industry
back decades, and threaten the
private sector investment that is
critically needed to ensure that
the network can meet surging
In a Seattle Times column on
Sunday, National Cable & Telecommunications Association
chief Michael Powell said this
kind of regulation is “a rusty
sledgehammer that has been sitting in the garage for 20 years.”
Walter McCormick at the
US Telecom Association said
Obama’s proposal would be “a
shift that will redefine the Internet, insert the government deeply into its management and invite
other countries to do the same.”
Others welcomed the initiative.
Nuala O’Connor, president of
the Center for Democracy and
Technology, said the proposals
“is one way to ensure everyone
has equal access and the opportunity to thrive in the digital
The consumer group Common
Cause said the plan would “preserve the innovative capacity of
the Internet and ensure that its
transformative power extends
to all consumers - not just those
who can afford a fast lane.”
FCC chairman Tom Wheeler
welcomed Obama’s statement
but offered no timetable for the
new rules.
A top Bank of England regulator warned last week that the
over-zealous application of antimoney laundering rules is hampering British banks abroad and
cutting off poorer countries from
global п¬Ѓnancial markets.
Banks, including HSBC and
Standard Chartered , have been
п¬Ѓned hundreds of millions of
dollars by US regulators in recent
years, and banks fear they could
be held liable even if they are only
indirectly connected to someone
involved in money laundering.
ments to those entities,” Cohen
said in a speech at an American
Bankers Association conference.
The п¬Ѓling of SARs took on new
urgency for the п¬Ѓnancial industry
in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001
attacks on the US as federal lawmakers moved to require banks to
become more aggressive in tracking money flows by terror groups.
Greater regulator scrutiny has
also prompted some banks to stop
dealing with risky clients entirely,
even if such business is legal, a
process known as “de-risking.”
he US Postal Service said
yesterday hackers stole
sensitive personal information from its employees in a
large data breach this year, and
got some customer data as well.
The postal service said in a
statement it “recently learned
of a cybersecurity intrusion into
some of our information systems” and was cooperating with
the FBI and other law enforcement agencies in an investigation.
It said the hackers appeared to
have gotten “identifiable information about employees, including names, dates of birth, social
security numbers, addresses, beginning and end dates of employment, emergency contact information and other information.”
A USPS spokesman said the
breach affected as many as
800,000 people who are paid by
the agency, including employees
and private contractors.
The statement said hackers
also penetrated payment systems
at post offices and online where
customers pay for services.
It said the customer data included “names, addresses, telephone numbers, email addresses
and other information” but that
there was “no evidence that any
customer credit card information from retail or online purchases” had been compromised.
The Washington Post, citing
unnamed sources, said Chinese
hackers were suspected in the
The news comes with US President Barack Obama in China for
high-level talks, amid heightened concerns about cyberattacks believed to originate from
The statement said some postal systems were taken offline over
the weekend “as part of the cybersecurity intrusion mitigation
mistakes,” he said. “So even as
we promote п¬Ѓnancial integrity
through regulatory and enforcement actions, financial institutions need not �de-risk’ to protect themselves.”
FinCEN was to issue a statement
later yesterday that should help the
п¬Ѓnancial industry maintain accounts with money transfer businesses despite their risks, Cohen
said. The Treasury also plans to
hold a public forum in January to
address compliance with regard to
money service businesses.
NYC’s largest subway hub opens to commuters
Commuters walk through the newly opened Fulton Center train station in lower Manhattan yesterday in New York City. The station was
scheduled to open in 2007 as part of the rebuilding effort of lower Manhattan after 9/11, but the project ran into cost overruns and years
of delays. The original plan for the facility, which has a glass and steel shell and 66,000 sq ft of retail and office space, was projected at
$750mn and nearly doubled to $1.4bn before it was finished. The station features a 10-ft-high glass opening, or oculus, which sits above an
atrium that lets sunlight down into two levels below street level.
N Korea’s release of two
Americans �small gestures’
resident Barack Obama
North Korea’s release of
two imprisoned Americans as
“small gestures”, saying nuclear-armed Pyongyang must
change its attitude on atomic
weapons if it wants improved
“We have been consistent in
saying that when and if North
Korea becomes serious about
denuclearisation on the peninsula and is prepared to have a
conversation around that topic,
then the US is going to be very
open to try to arrive at a solution,” Obama told reporters in
“Until that time, there is going to be a core problem between
us,” he added, speaking during a
meeting with Australian Prime
Minister Tony Abbott.
Both Obama and Abbott are
in China to attend the AsiaPacific Economic Co-operation
forum annual summit.
Obama said that while he was
happy for the families of the
freed Americans, it was going to
take more than “small gestures
like the ones that we saw, the
release of these individuals” for
relations to improve.
“Until this point we have not
seen serious engagement on the
part of Pyongyang to deal with
that problem,” he said, referring
to the nuclear issue.
US citizens Kenneth Bae and
Matthew Miller were released
after a secret mission to North
Korea by US intelligence chief
James Clapper.
Clapper spent less than a
Postal Service
says hackers got
employee data
In response, many banks have
shut down accounts for clients
they view as risky, such as money
service businesses that transfer
billions of dollars in remittances
to economies, from Somalia to
South America, for fear the cashdealing п¬Ѓrms could be exploited
by money launderers.
Cohen urged п¬Ѓnancial institutions to continue dealing with
risky clients, despite the recent
large п¬Ѓnes against banks.
“These enforcement actions
were not taken because of minor
day in Pyongyang, conducting talks with senior offices but
did not meet leader Kim JongUn, before flying out with the
two freed men to an airbase in
Washington state on Saturday,
a US senior administration official said.
Obama elaborated on Clapper’s mission, saying issues
such as Pyongyang’s atomic
programme were not discussed.
“It did not touch on some
of the broader issues that have
been the source of primary concern when it comes to North
Korea, in particular, its development of nuclear capacity,”
Obama said.
North Korea has expressed
interest in reviving long-stalled
six-party talks with the US and
others on the nuclear issue, but
Washington insists Pyongyang
must п¬Ѓrst show a tangible com-
mitment to denuclearisation.
No “high level policy discussions between Jim Clapper and
the North Koreans” took place,
Obama said.
Bae, a Korean-American,
was detained for two years. The
46-year-old was arrested in
November 2012 and later sentenced to 15 years’ hard labour
for “hostile acts” against North
Korea, having been accused of
trying to “topple” the hermit
According to his family, Bae
was held while leading a tour
group as the owner of a travel
agency he ran in neighbouring
Miller, 24, was sentenced to six
years hard labour by the North
Korean Supreme Court following
his arrest in April after he allegedly ripped up his visa at immigration and demanded asylum.
iPads, iPhones
�vulnerable to
US Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Matthews Burwell talks about the upcoming healthcare
exchange enrolment period at the Center for American Progress yesterday in Washington, DC. Burwell
said the Obama Administration projects that 9.1mn people, including new applicants and returning
customers, will be enrolled in 2015.
Low 2015 Obamacare
enrolment forecast
he US administration
dramatically cut expectations
for 2015 Obamacare enrolment, saying between 9mn
and 9.9mn people will enrol
in private health plans, compared with a Congressional
Budget Office (CBO) forecast
of 13mn.
An Obama administration
report, released just before the
start of 2015 open enrolment
on Saturday, also reduced the
official count of 2014 enrolment to 7.1mn people as of
October 15, from 7.3mn in
August. The change resulted
in part from 112,000 people
losing coverage because of
unresolved application issues
involving their citizenship or
immigration status.
CBO, which has been a leading enrolment forecaster for
Obamacare up to now, predicted that the private insurance marketplaces set up by
the Affordable Care Act, better
known as “Obamacare,” would
reach a mature 25mn paying
customers by 2017.
have warned that a bug in
Apple Inc’s iOS operating
system makes most iPhones and
iPads vulnerable to cyberattacks by
hackers seeking access to sensitive
data and control of their devices.
Cybersecurity п¬Ѓrm FireEye Inc
published details about the vulnerability on its blog yesterday,
saying the bug enables hackers to
access their devices by persuading users to install malicious applications with tainted text messages, emails and web links.
The malicious application can
then be used to replace genuine,
trusted apps that were installed
through Apple’s App Store, including email and banking programs, with malicious software
through a technique that FireEye
has dubbed “Masque Attack.”
These attacks can be used to
steal banking and e-mail login
credentials or other sensitive
data, according to FireEye, which
is well-regarded in cybersecurity
circles for its research.
“It is a very powerful vulnerability and it is easy to exploit,”
FireEye Senior Staff Research Scientist Tao Wei said in an interview.
Officials with Apple could not
be reached for comment.
Wei said that FireEye disclosed
the vulnerability to Apple in July
and that representatives with the
company have said they were
working to п¬Ѓx the bug.
News of the vulnerability began to leak out in October on
specialised web forums where
security experts and hackers
alike discuss information on Apple bugs, Wei said.
Wei said that FireEye decided
to go public with its п¬Ѓndings after Palo Alto Networks Inc last
week uncovered the п¬Ѓrst campaign to exploit the vulnerability,
a new family of malicious software
known as WireLurker that infects
both Mac computers and iOS.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Brown’s parents to tell UN about police violence
By Jon Swaine/Guardian News
& Media
New York
he parents of Michael
Brown, the
18-year-old who was shot
dead by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, will this week tell
the UN that the city’s police chief
must resign and that his department should be taken over by the
federal government.
Michaelt Brown Sr were yesterday travelling to Geneva, Switzerland, to tell the UN’s committee on torture that police in
Ferguson are “systematically targeting and harassing” black people in a “predatory and degrading
manner”. They say that their son
was treated as “less than human”.
The couple alleges in a report to the committee that both
the killing of their son and the
militarised police response to
protests over his death in the St
Louis suburb violated the UN’s
convention against torture, to
which the US is a signatory.
“The US must take steps to address the torture and/or cruel,
inhuman and degrading treatment of Michael Brown and other
unarmed black and brown persons killed by law enforcement”
as well as of peaceful protesters,
they say in their 13-page report.
In addition to the resignation
of chief Thomas Jackson and the
placement of his police force in
federal receivership, McSpadden
and Brown request the immediate arrest of Darren Wilson, the
officer who shot their son dead
following an altercation at Wilson’s SUV. The 28-year-old officer has been in hiding since
shortly after the August 9 shooting.
They also call on Missouri
governor Jay Nixon to apologise
to protesters for what they call
the “intimidation and excessive
force” used against them by police, and for amnesty to be given
to those demonstrators who
were arrested during the intense
McSpadden and Brown are expected to present their brief to
the committee during its scheduled sessions tomorrow or on
Thursday. They state in their re-
Bush likes
idea of Jeb
vs Clinton
ever mind the potential
for name fatigue. Former
US President George
W Bush likes the idea of a 2016
presidential matchup between
his Republican brother Jeb Bush
and Democrat Hillary Clinton.
In an interview as part of the
rollout of a book he has written
about his father, former President George H W Bush, Bush said
he is urging Jeb to try to make it
three Bush presidents.
Jeb Bush, 61, is a former twoterm governor of Florida who is
considering entering the Republican presidential nomination
race for 2016 and says he’ll make
up his mind by year’s end.
“He’s had the experience necessary to be president. He understands what it means to be a
leader. He can appeal to different voter groups in an attractive
way,” George W Bush said. “He’s
got vision,” said Bush, adding,
that if Jeb decides to run, “I’m all
in” with helping him.
Any concerns Americans
might have about a third president named Bush would be tempered by the presence of Hillary
Clinton in the race, since her
husband, Bill Clinton, served two
terms as president, said Bush.
“There are some people that’ll
say there’s no way I’m going to
vote for somebody with that
name,” said Bush. “Of course if
he were to run against Hillary
Clinton then I think the name
issue would somewhat dissipate and then people would pick
which one would be the leader.
But neither one of them has declared and I really don’t know if
Jeb is going to run.”
Hillary Clinton, who lost the
Democratic presidential nomination in 2008 and went on to serve
as President Barack Obama’s secretary of state from 2009 to 2013,
is favored to win the party’s nomination if she tries again for the
White House. She has said she will
make up her mind early next year.
In the interview, conducted
on Friday at the George W Bush
presidential library in Dallas,
the former president, 68, was
more willing to talk about current events than he has been in
the years since he left the White
House in early 2009.
He expressed concern about
the rise of the Islamic State militant group in Iraq and Syria and
said he backs Obama’s goal of
destroying the group.
“I’m hopeful that it works. If it
doesn’t the administration is going to need to adjust,” Bush said.
The former president was relaxed and at ease with his place
in history. He left office with a
34% approval rating from Americans weary of the Iraq war he
launched in 2003 and struggling
under a collapsing economy.
Now, as many former presidents experience, he is looked on
more fondly. A Gallup poll last
June said he was viewed favorably by 53% of Americans.
Bush shrugged when asked
about his improved image.
“There’s a long reach to history and people will analyse the
decisions I made for a long time
coming, and it will be in context
with other presidents and other
decisions,” he said.
Sticking to his pledge not to
criticise Obama, Bush said the
only thing that surprised him
about Republican victories in last
week’s midterm elections was
how many there were.
As far as Obama’s struggles in
his sixth year in office, Bush said
Republican President Ronald
Reagan had similarly crushing
midterm results in 1986. Bush
did not mention the thumping he
suffered in the 2006 elections in
his own sixth year in office, when
Democrats captured control of
“I have a theory that after six
years or seven years or eight years
they (voters) kind of get tired of
you no matter who are you. And
given all the exposure a president
gets these days people begin to
say, well, when’s the next person
going to show up? It was certainly my case. And presidents
shouldn’t take that personally,”
he said.
The book, 41 - A Portrait of My
Father, is a heartfelt tribute to his
90-year-old father, who is confined to a wheelchair and whose
memory, Bush writes, has faded.
He charts the elder Bush’s career from Texas oilman to Republican president who considered
not seeking re-election in 1992
because of the toil on his family.
He describes how his father was
believed to be on his death bed
with pneumonia two years ago,
but survived and went on a parachute jump for his 90th birthday.
But the book is revealing about
George W Bush himself. Bush,
who published a memoir called
“Decision Points” in 2010, again
defends his controversial war
in Iraq, pushing back against
critics who feel he had a go-italone strategy, noting that he assembled a substantial coalition
against Iraqi leader Saddam Hussain in 2003, just like his father
did against Saddam in 1990-91.
“For the sake of our security
and the Iraqi people, I hope we
will do what it takes to defeat
ISIS and allow Iraq’s democratic
government a chance to succeed,” he writes.
port that Brown’s “intentional,
arbitrary killing” amounts to torture under the 30-year-old UN
treaty, whose п¬Ѓrst article states
that it covers “severe pain or suffering” inflicted intentionally by
a public official “based on discrimination of any kind”.
They claim that Wilson acted
with “brazen confidence that he
would not be punished” and that
this has been borne out by the
apparent reluctance of authorities to prosecute him, as well as
Wilson remaining in his job on
full pay while placed on administrative leave.
The couple adds that the treatment of Brown’s “grotesquely
mutilated” body, which was left
lying on the street among housing estates on Canfield Drive
for more than four hours in the
August sunshine, “traumatised
countless neighbours”. This
only reinforced the longstanding humiliation felt by the city’s
majority-black population at the
hands of its near-unanimously
white police force, according to
McSpadden and Brown.
Police who cracked down on
demonstrations over Brown’s
death with teargas, rubber bullets
and other weapons also inflicted
“cruel, inhuman and degrading
treatment” on protesters, according to the couple’s report,
which was co-written with a law
professor and two human rights
The police response has already been roundly criticised by
regional leaders such as Claire
McCaskill, Missouri’s senior
US senator, as well as pressure
groups such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.
McSpadden and Brown travelled to Geneva as Ferguson continued to brace for the possibility
that further unrest might follow
the announcement of a decision by a grand jury considering
bringing criminal charges against
Wilson, who is widely expected
not to be indicted.
James Knowles, Ferguson’s
mayor, said in an interview last
week that the city should “prepare for the worst” and “there are
expectations that demonstrations … probably will break out in
several places”.
Rumours swirled throughout
the weekend about the extent of
police preparations for an imminent decision, fuelled partly by
photographs posted to social media of military Humvees and armoured vehicles spotted in recent
days around the St Louis region.
Mike O’Connell, a spokesman for Missouri’s department
of public safety, told the Guardian that “they have nothing to do
with Ferguson or St Louis or an
upcoming grand jury decision”
and were likely in the region for
“some sort of routine training”.
Asked whether the jurors had
begun deliberating or were still
being presented with evidence,
Ed Magee, a spokesman for the
county prosecutor, Bob McCulloch, said in an e-mail yesterday
morning: “We do not comment
on grand jury proceedings.”
Snowstorm in Minneapolis
Traffic on Interstate 35 slows to a crawl during the season’s first snowstorm in Minneapolis yesterday. Snow is forecast in the region
over the coming days.
Laundry detergent pods
dangerous for kids: study
aundry detergent pods
could be dangerous for
young children, researchers warned yesterday, as reports
grow of kids under six swallowing the capsules in the US.
The detergent pods - on US
shelves since 2010 - are just
the right size for a single load of
laundry, eliminating the need to
measure out a liquid or powder.
More than 17,000 incidents
from 2012 and 2013 were reported to US poison control
centres of children under six
being exposed to the detergent
chemicals - equivalent to one
child every hour - according to
the new study.
“Laundry detergent pods are
small, colourful, and may look
like candy or juice to a young
child,” said co-author Marcel
Casavant, toxicology chief at
Nationwide Children’s Hospital and medical director of the
Central Ohio Poison Center.
“It can take just a few seconds
for children to grab them, break
them open, and swallow the
toxic chemicals they contain, or
get the chemicals in their eyes.”
In one case, the child died,
while some 769 children were
hospitalised, a rate of more
than one a day. Two-thirds of
the cases were among toddlers
- children just one or two years
Children who put the capsules in their mouths can quickly swallow a large quantity of
concentrated chemicals, the
Nationwide Children’s Hospital
researchers warned.
Nearly half the children, 48%,
vomited after ingesting the detergent, the study found.
coughing or choking, eye pain,
drowsiness and pinkeye.
Most of the detergent capsules are sold in clear, easy-to-
open containers. One manufacturer last year switched to an
opaque package with an additional latch and a warning label,
but the study authors said this
was not enough.
“It is not clear that any laundry detergent pods currently
available are truly child resistant; a national safety standard is
needed to make sure that all pod
makers adopt safer packaging
and labeling,” said senior author Gary Smith, director of the
Center for Injury Research and
Policy at Nationwide Children’s
Hospital. He urged households
with young children to use traditional detergent.
Emergency in Hawaii
A White House date and other
nuggets from Bush’s new book
oung George W Bush once
had a blind date with the
daughter of President Richard Nixon. It didn’t go so well.
Bush recalls the incident in
an anecdote-п¬Ѓlled book being
released this week about his father, former President George H
W Bush, called 41 - A Portrait of
My Father.
The elder Bush was a member of the House of Representatives from Texas in the late 1960s
when he arranged a blind date
for young George W. with Tricia
Nixon. The son made his п¬Ѓrstever trip to the White House to
pick her up.
“During dinner, I reached
for some butter, knocked over
a glass, and watched in horror
as the stain of red wine crept
across the table. Then I п¬Ѓred up
a cigarette, prompting a polite
suggestion from Tricia that I
not smoke,” he wrote. “The date
came to an end when she asked
me to take her back to the White
House immediately after dinner.”
Bush calls the book a “love
story” about his father.
In it, he writes of the family’s
concern when the elder Bush
declared his intention to go on a
parachute jump to mark his 90th
birthday earlier this year. Asked
what his birthday wish was as he
prepared to jump, George H W
Bush said: “Make sure the parachute opens.”
While the book is heartfelt in
its praise, Bush writes that his
father and White House staff
should have been more active in
explaining to Americans why he
broke his “no new taxes” pledge
as part of a 1990 budget agreement, an issue that hurt the Re-
publican president among conservatives and was a factor when
he lost his 1992 re-election bid to
Democrat Bill Clinton.
“By taking the issue to the
people, a president can build up
public support and change minds
in Washington. Unfortunately,
George Bush did not do that for
the budget agreement of 1990,
and the bitterness that resulted
from his broken pledge damaged
his standing within the party,”
Bush writes.
The elder Bush had a serious
illness two years ago.
In December 2012, he was hospitalised with pneumonia. The
family feared the worst and gathered at his bedside. The elder
Bush put his hand on granddaughter Jenna’s pregnant belly
and said, “There’s death and
there’s new life.”
“We all left the room sobbing,”
Bush writes.
This November 9 US Geological Survey handout photo shows a new breakout from the June 27 lava flow, near the transfer station in
Pahoa, Hawaii. The lava flow has slowed in recent days, but it remains an emergency and Hawaii Governor Neil Abercrombie has requested
a Presidential Disaster Declaration to unlock federal resources to help local emergency measures. According to the Honolulu Star
newspaper, non-residents are barred access to the flow, and barricades have been installed and are guarded by National Guardsmen.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Protest against fuel price hike plan
Myanmar rejects
Dhaka plea to
restart Rohingya
Indonesian workers shout slogans during a rally in Jakarta yesterday. Thousands of workers staged a rally against the government’s plan to raise the fuel price.
Thailand police to push back
more than 200 boat people
ore than 200 boat
people held in southern Thailand will be
pushed back out to sea, police
said yesterday, despite calls by
rights group to stop a policy that
puts would-be asylum seekers at
Around 259 people were found
at sea on Saturday and were arrested for illegal entry.
Their discovery around 3km
from the coast follows what one
NGO said was a “major maritime exodus” from neighbouring
Myanmar of Rohingya, a mostly
stateless Muslim minority group
from the country’s west.
“On average around 900 people left by boat from the middle
of last month. We saw a major maritime exodus of nearly
10,000 people,” said Chris Lewa
of the Arakan Project, a Rohingya advocacy group, adding
that increasing desperation was
one reason for the departures.
Authorities in Thailand’s Kapoe district said it was unclear
whether any of the group were
Rohingya but interviews with
some of the group showed they
were heading for Malaysia to п¬Ѓnd
work or, in the women’s’ cases,
join their husbands.
The 259 will be put back on
boats and sent back to Myanmar,
said Police Colonel Sanya Pra-
kobphol, head of Kapoe district
“They are Muslims from Myanmar ... They are illegal migrants,” Sanya told Reuters by
“If they come in then we must
push them back ... once they
have crossed the sea border into
Myanmar then that’s considered
pushing them back. What they
do next is their problem.”
Tens of thousands of Rohingya Muslims have fled Myanmar’s Rakhine state since 2012,
when violent clashes with ethnic
Rakhine Buddhists killed hundreds and made about 140,000
Many were Rohingya, who
now often live in apartheid-like
conditions and have little or no
access to jobs, schools or healthcare.
The boats often sail from
Myanmar and Bangladesh to
Thailand where, as Reuters reported last year, human trafficking-gangs hold thousands
of boat people in brutal jungle
camps until relatives pay ransoms to secure their release.
Testimonies from Bangladeshi
and Rohingya survivors in an
October Reuters Special Report
provided evidence of a dramatic
shift in human-trafficking tactics.
Sanya said the 259 people were
currently being held at a community hall and that his team
were “looking after them like
relatives” but that they would
soon be put back on boats.
“Who will feed them? I’m
struggling day to day to feed
them,” said Sanya.
“No country wants an outsider to come in to their house.”
Thailand was downgraded
in June to the lowest category
in the US State Department’s
annual ranking of the world’s
worst human-trafficking centres, putting it in the same category as North Korea and the
Central African Republic.
The same month, the Thai
military vowed to “prevent
and suppress human trafficking”, after having seized power
from an elected government
on May 22.
yanmar has rejected a
request from Bangladesh to immediately
begin accepting back refugees
living in camps across the border, an official said yesterday.
“President Thein Sein said
that Myanmar stands ready
to receive the refugees from
Bangladesh by our four rules,”
presidential spokesman Ye
Htut said on Facebook, referring to rules for citizenship
that include proof that both
parents were Myanmar citizens.
Bangladesh is trying to restart a repatriation process
that stalled in 2005 to return
Rohingya Muslims who have
fled Myanmar during the past
two decades.
But the Myanmar government and the mostly Buddhist ethnic community of
the western frontier state of
Rakhine reject the Muslim
group’s claim to citizenship,
and refer to them as “Bengalis.”
Thein Sein and Bangladesh
President Abdul Hamid met
in Beijing on Sunday ahead of
an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting.
“He (Thein Sein) said that
it’s impossible to receive them
back urgently,” Ye Htut said.
Rohingya do not qualify for
full Myanmar citizenship by
birth as their ethnic identity
A Rohingya woman carries her
sick baby to a clinic at Dar
Baing Muslim refugee camp
near Sittwe, Rakhine State,
western Myanmar yesterday.
is not recognised under the
country’s 1982 citizenship law.
Myanmar has agreed to receive more than 2,000 refugees from Bangladesh whose
claims have been verified,
although the government
has disputed Bangladeshi announcements calling the refugees Rohingya.
There are more than
200,000 Rohingya refugees in
Bangladesh, including about
30,000 who are documented
and staying in two official
camps in Cox’s Bazar, according to the UN Refugee Agency
and the Refugee Relief and
Rehabilitation Commission in
Eight missing after
two cargo ships collide
ight people were missing after two cargo ships
collided off Vietnam at
the weekend, authorities said
The collision between the
Phuc Xuan 68 and the Nam Vy
occurred around 1:30 am Sunday (1830 GMT Saturday) off
the coast of Khanh Hoa province.
The Phuc Xuan 68 sank
straight away but three of the
11 crew were rescued.
“The most likely thing is
that eight crew were not sunk
with the ship. If they were
trapped inside the ship, rescue work will be very difficult,”
said Nguyen Anh Vu, head of
Vietnam Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre.
Ha Hong Thai, 37, one of the
surviving crew members, said
the ship sank within a minute
of the collision.
“I grabbed a life jacket and
jumped off the ship, but after
jumping out into the sea, looking back, I did not see the ship
any more,” Thanh Nien newspaper quoted Thai as saying.
New joust over sea dispute expected at Asean summit
resh diplomatic sparring
over who owns what in the
South China Sea is likely to
break out this week at a major regional summit in Myanmar, after
a year in which China jacked up
tensions in the resource-rich
Rival claims have gnawed
away at ties between Southeast
Asian nations including Vietnam and the Philippines and regional powerhouse China, which
claims nearly all of the sea, including waters near its smaller
neighbours’ shores.
The issue has also become a
key testing ground for diplomacy between China and the
US, which has cosied up to the
10-member Association of
Southeast Asian Nations (Asean)
as part of a wider eastwards foreign policy “pivot”.
Leaders including US President Barack Obama, Chinese
Premier Li Keqiang and Indian
Prime Minister Narendra Modi
will gather in Naypyitaw for the
two-day Asean summit from tomorrow which also takes in an
expanded list of dignitaries for
the East Asian Summit.
When he meets Asean leaders
Obama “will highlight US leadership in addressing maritime
territorial disputes,” according
to National Security Advisor Susan Rice.
Other security issues, such as
countering the rise of
self-proclaimed Islamic State
and the Ebola epidemic, will also
be on the table, she added.
Beijing has been accused of
aggression after boosting naval
patrols in waters contested with
the Philippines and positioning
an oil rig in seas disputed with
Vietnam in May, sparking deadly
anti-Chinese riots.
It has given ground on lowlevel talks with Asean towards
a multilateral, binding code of
conduct to governing the seas.
But analysts and diplomats are
sceptical of a tangible deal, as
China prefers bilateral talks with
its smaller neighbours, allowing
it to exert its massive economic
and political leverage in a region
dependent on Chinese trade.
That leaves expectations low
for any movement on the seemingly intractable South China
Sea squabble, which ritually
dominates regional diplomacy
The waters are a vital shipping
lane also believed to contain vast
oil and mineral deposits. Parts
are also claimed by Brunei, Malaysia, Taiwan and Vietnam.
“I don’t see any breakthrough
in Naypyitaw or anytime soon,”
one Southeast Asian diplomat
said ahead of the summit.
“Let’s face the reality that it’s
a complex issue and in addition,
Asean is dealing with China, a
major Asian and world power.”
Observers say a softening
A girl wearing a hat and tanaka paste on her face gets out of a fountain after releasing water in it, at one of the main intersections of Naypyitaw
yesterday. Leaders from Asean, East Asian and other countries will gather for the Asean summit this week in Myanmar’s capital.
of Chinese rhetoric in recent
weeks, including the removal of
the oil rig from Vietnamese waters and two high profile diplomatic visits to Hanoi, does not
amount to a strategy shift from
“China waxes hot and cold and
moderates its behaviour prior to
Asean summits,” said Southeast
Asia expert Carl Thayer.
“Some rabbit might be pulled
out of the hat to impress the end
of year summit meetings, but
nothing substantial has occurred
or is likely to occur.”
In early October Chinese state
media said a 2,000 metre runway
had been completed on Woody
Island, part of the contested Paracels, in an apparent bid to build
up bridgeheads in the area.
A few weeks later Vietnam’s
Deputy Defence Minister Lieutenant-General Do Ba Ty issued
a stark warning that China “unilaterally plans to take the East
Sea,” using the Vietnamese term
for the South China Sea.
“This struggle will move to
another phase, even more drastic and complex,” he told the National Assembly.
While China singes relations,
the US has moved in to bolster
its alliances.
Obama, who arrives in Myanmar from a major Beijing summit, will meet Vietnamese Prime
Minister Nguyen Tan Dung in
Naypyitaw. The meeting comes
after a US agreement to partially
ease a 40-year ban on arms sales
to its one-time war foe, citing
some “modest” progress in human rights.
In April, Washington also
signed a defence pact with the
Philippines, which is outraged
that China has effectively taken
over the contested Scarborough
Shoal. That deal will eventually
allow thousands of US troops to
be stationed in the country.
But American efforts to make
friends have irked China, which
insists it is seeking its own amicable resolution to disputes in its
At an Asean security meeting
in August, China accused its rival superpower of deliberately
stoking tensions in the South
China Sea and rejected a proposal by US Secretary of State John
Kerry for a freeze on provocative
actions in the region.
With no deal in sight the issue looks set to worry relations
between Washington and Beijing
for years to come, said Bill Hayton the author of The South China Sea — the struggle for power
in Asia.
“So the region is condemned
to a complex game of diplomatic
and military competition for
the next few decades at least,”
he added.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
A South Korean farmer protester holds up
banner reading �Farmer is Human’ during
a rally against the China and South Korean
government’s Free Trade Agreement in front
of the Gyeongsangnam-do Provincial Hall in
Changwon city, South Korea.
China-Seoul free trade
pact alarms Taiwan
Abe approval rating sags
amid talk of snap election
South Korea fires warning
shots at North patrol
�Butter refugees’ slam
pre-Christmas shortages
Taiwan’s government yesterday expressed alarm
at China’s free trade agreement with South Korea.
Seoul had announced yesterday it had effectively
reached a free trade deal with China. It expects
to sign by year-end the pact that will eventually
remove tariffs on over 90% of goods. Government
spokesman Sun Lih-chyun described the news
as a “most worrying event” for the island. Taiwan
competes fiercely with South Korea in products
ranging from textiles, semiconductors and flat
panels to machine tools and steel items. “South
Korea will be able to sell its products cheaper in
the mainland, thus lowering the competitive edge
of Taiwan-made products,” Sun told AFP.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s approval
rating fell in a public opinion poll published
yesterday amid speculation the government
is considering calling a snap election. National
broadcaster NHK surveyed 1,527 people and
found support for Abe’s government had fallen
eight percentage points from last month to
44%, the lowest since Abe’s government began
two years ago. Of those surveyed, 38% said they
disapproved of Abe, up four percentage points
from last month. Of those surveyed, 76% said
they saw no need for an election, while 74% said
next year’s sales tax increase to 10% from 8%
should be delayed or scrapped altogether.
South Korean troops fired warning shots yesterday
as a North Korean patrol approached the border
inside the heavily fortified Demilitarised Zone
(DMZ) that separates the rivals. There was no
exchange of fire and the North Korean patrol
eventually moved away from the military
demarcation line (MDL) marking the border, a
defence ministry spokesman said. The spokesman
said the incident - the latest of several - occurred at
about 9:40am (0040 GMT), when around 10 North
Korean soldiers were observed moving towards
the border line. “After issuing verbal warnings,
our side fired around 20 warning rounds,” he said,
adding that the North Korean patrol later retreated.
Japanese shoppers are up in arms over a serious
butter shortage that has forced Tokyo to resort to
emergency imports, as some grocers limit sales
to one block per customer. Stores are trumpeting
the arrival of new supplies with posters in the
windows announcing “We have butter!” With
Christmas cake-baking season approaching,
social media has been abuzz over the shortage,
with Twitter user @justastarter1 claiming to be
a “butter refugee” after trailing between shops
without success. The agriculture ministry said
the problem is linked to a broiling summer that
left the nation’s cows exhausted and unable - or
unwilling - to generate their usual milk supply.
Xi, Abe meet as big-power
rivalries take Apec stage
he leaders of China and Japan
yesterday held an ice-breaking
summit after two years of dangerous animosity, as world leaders including Barack Obama gathered for an
Asia-Pacific meeting spotlighting intensifying big-power rivalries.
Xi Jinping and Shinzo Abe met in Beijing’s Great Hall of the People in what
the Japanese prime minister said was a
“first step” towards repairing the fractured relationship between the world’s
second- and third-largest economies.
US President Obama flew in still
wounded by the Democrats’ defeat in
the US mid-term elections and with
relations between Washington and
Moscow in the deep freeze, while his
Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin arrived a day earlier and quickly signalled
his desire for ever-warmer ties with an
increasingly assertive China.
The gathering is the biggest event yet
hosted by the Chinese president, who
took office last year and spotlighted his
country’s expanding world profile Sunday by declaring a bright future ahead
for the vibrant Pacific Rim - with a confident China at its heart.
The annual two-day summit of AsiaPacific Economic Cooperation (Apec)
typically sees pledges of amity and trade
convergence, often balanced by tense
sideline exchanges on festering geopolitical problems.
Beijing and Tokyo’s historically frosty
relations have plunged to their lowest
in decades over competing claims to
Japanese-controlled islets in the East
China Sea.
Abe told Japanese media that he
asked Xi to establish a hotline aimed
at preventing clashes at sea, adding “I
think we will start working on concrete
steps toward it”.
But a Japanese official said the islands
were not specifically mentioned during
the 30 minutes of talks, Japan’s Kyodo
news agency reported.
The meeting appeared strained, with
footage of the two leaders’ initial handshake showing them looking deadpan
and Xi not responding to Abe’s greetings.
“Severe difficulties have emerged in
Sino-Japanese relations in recent two
years and the rights and wrongs behind
them are crystal clear,” China’s official
news agency Xinhua quoted him as saying.
Apec brings into focus the developing
big-power rivalry involving Washington, Beijing and Moscow.
Russia is under Western economic
sanctions over its seizure of Ukraine’s
Crimea region and role in that country’s
separatist war.
No Obama-Putin meeting is known
to be scheduled, but Australian Prime
Minister Tony Abbott has vowed to
confront the Russian strongman over
Malaysia Airlines flight MH17, which
was brought down over eastern Ukraine
in July, with 38 Australians among the
298 dead.
The West has accused pro-Russian
rebels of blasting it out of the sky with
a missile and Moscow of impeding investigations. Russia denies the accusations.
Russia and China both regularly
express impatience with a perceived
American domination of world affairs
and often move in tandem on the UN
Security Council, vetoing or abstaining
from US-led initiatives.
Increasing use of their rouble and
yuan currencies meant that “the influence of the dollar in the global energy
sector will objectively decline”, Putin
told Apec delegates. “This is not bad for
the global economy, nor for the world of
finance or for the energy markets.”
He and Xi met on Sunday in Beijing,
Gwangju, South Korea
China’s President Xi Jinping shakes hands with Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe during their meeting in the Great Hall of
the People in Beijing.
with the Chinese leader warmly calling
for the once-bitter Cold War rivals to
continue to “harvest” the fruits of their
“No matter the changes on the global arena, we should stick to the chosen path to expand and strengthen
our comprehensive mutually fruitful
co-operation,” Xi said.
China and the US have already jousted
in Beijing over differing visions of AsiaPacific trade integration, adding to persistent discord over commerce, human
rights, cyber-espionage, and territorial
disputes. The White House has said it
expects “candid and in-depth conversations” between Obama and Xi.
As well as the row with Japan - a US
security ally Washington is bound by
treaty to defend if attacked - Beijing’s
growing assertiveness in the South China Sea has also rankled rival claimants
to its strategic waters.
Another likely discussion topic between Xi and Obama is North Korea,
following the surprise weekend release
Lighting up the way!
of two Americans who were imprisoned
by the secretive state.
Beijing is Pyongyang’s closest ally,
and the prisoner release could fuel
speculation on the mercurial North’s
motives for its latest move.
The event culminates today with a
formal leaders’ summit.
Apec kicks off a week of high-level
summitry that will see Obama and other top leaders travel next to Myanmar
for the East Asia Summit, followed by
G20 talks in Brisbane, Australia.
Australia lagging
on renewables
The Story Bridge in Brisbane being lit up as part of the G20 Cultural Celebrations ahead of the G20 Leaders Summit later this week.
China eyes extradition treaty with Australia
ustralia is considering an
extradition treaty with
China to assist Beijing in
repatriating corrupt officials, a
report said yesterday, as Asia-Pacific ministers backed attempts to
deepen anti-graft efforts.
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop
told the Australian Financial Review that the treaty would be part
of a declaration against corruption to be signed at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec)
meeting in Beijing.
“China has requested one and
it’s under consideration, with a
number of other countries,” Bishop
said in Beijing. “It’s a Chinese operation in pursuit of Chinese economic fugitives abroad.”
Since taking office, Chinese
President Xi Jinping has made the
graft п¬Ѓght a central theme of his
administration as public anger
swells over widespread corruption.
In July, China launched its socalled “Fox Hunt” - a campaign to
repatriate corrupt officials or their
family members who have moved
abroad, taking ill-gotten gains
with them.
Australia is considered a haven
for corrupt Chinese officials, with
their money thought to п¬Ѓnd its way
into legitimate assets such as property and bank accounts.
The Australian city of Brisbane
is hosting a meeting of the world’s
S Korea
biggest economies at the G20 talks
this weekend, at which activists
have also urged leaders to address
Transparency International and
partners, including Amnesty International and Oxfam, issued an
open letter calling on the G20 to
stop the flow of stolen money and
end п¬Ѓnancial secrecy.
“As long as there are places in
the global п¬Ѓnancial system where
illicit financial flows can find a
safe harbour and there are people
to help hide these funds there will
be millions more around the world
who suffer,” it said.
The letter, also signed by Archbishop Desmond Tutu, claimed
some $1tn was siphoned from
developing countries each year
via opaque corporate ownership
structures which allow them evade
tax or hide funds.
“G20 governments must collect
and publish the identity of the real,
living people who ultimately own
and control companies and other
legal entities to make it easier to
track the origin of corrupt or illicit
funds,” it said.
“They should publish information about revenue, profits, numbers of staff, tax liabilities and taxes paid on a country-by-country
“This needs to be public for citizens to see the impact of companies in their communities and to
make it easier to scrutinise where
money is earned and where it may
be going missing,” it added.
ustralia is falling behind China and the US in
tackling climate change, with new investment
in renewable energy falling by 70%, a study released yesterday said.
The independent Climate Council report found that
while Australia had high per capita carbon emissions,
it had moved from being a leader to a laggard in terms
of one of the most common means of combating climate change - renewable energy.
“The future of Australia’s renewable energy industry remains highly uncertain due to a lack of clear
federal government renewable energy policy,” said the
report, entitled Lagging Behind: Australia and the
Global Response to Climate Change.
“Consequently investment in renewable energy in
2014 has dropped by 70% compared with the previous
Since coming to power last year, conservative Prime
Minister Tony Abbott has scrapped a tax on carbon
emissions and defended the use of coal as crucial to
Australia’s prosperity.
Meanwhile the largest emitters of greenhouse gases, China and the US, are leading the way in terms of
developing and investing in renewable energy, while
other nations were increasingly embracing carbon
pricing schemes, the report said.
“We’ve had a loss of 70% of new investment in renewable energy in this country, and when you compare
that with the US and China, which are powering ahead
- China particularly at record levels - it’s a pretty sorry
state of affairs,” the council’s Tim Flannery said.
Flannery added that uncertainty about the Australian government’s position on renewables was resulting in investment heading overseas.
“The big international companies are just looking
across-the-board and saying �there’s a favourable environment here in Texas or there in Europe or China,
we’ll put our money there’,” he told the ABC.
Australia’s climate action is in the spotlight ahead
of this weekend’s G20 leaders summit in Brisbane,
with Canberra resisting pressure to put the item on the
South Korean court is set
to rule on whether the
captain of a ferry that
capsized killing more than 300
people, most of them children
on a school trip, should be put to
death for culpable homicide in a
case that triggered widespread
grief and outrage.
A three-judge panel in the
southern city of Gwangju will
hand down verdicts and sentencing today in the trial of captain Lee Joon-seok, 68, as well as
14 crew members, who face jail
terms if convicted.
The overloaded Sewol capsized on April 16 while making
a turn during a routine voyage
to the holiday island of Jeju. The
crew were among the п¬Ѓrst people to be rescued from the ship,
while the mostly teenage passengers waited in their cabins.
The public outcry provoked by
the tragedy led to concerns over
whether the crew would be able
to get a fair trial, with private
sector lawyers largely shunning
the defendants. Only one crew
member was represented by a
private lawyer.
“I think the prosecutors have
been under very heavy pressure,”
said Cheong Yeong-seok, a law
professor at Korea Maritime and
Ocean University.
During the five-month trial,
families in the gallery occasionally made emotional outbursts.
“In my opinion, the death
penalty which prosecutors demanded is too much for the
captain’s charge. But the public
opinion was too negative and the
situation from the gallery in the
courtroom wasn’t good,” said
Death sentences are rare in
South Korea, which has not carried out an execution in more
than 15 years.
Kim Hymn, a maritime lawyer advising the government on
payment of damages to victims
in the sinking, said he believed
the crew received a fair hearing.
“I think it has been a fair trial
given the defendants and their
lawyers have made enough arguments in favour of them, despite
public criticism,” he said.
Only 172 of the 476 passengers and crew were rescued. Of
the 304 confirmed dead or still
missing, 250 were schoolchildren.
The crew on trial have said
they thought it was the coastguard’s job to evacuate passengers. Video footage of their
escape triggered outrage, especially after survivors testified
that crew repeatedly told passengers to stay put.
Three crew members in addition to Lee face homicide charges, with prosecutors seeking life
prison terms.
Prosecutors sought prison
terms ranging from 15 to 30 years
for the other crew on trial, who
face lesser charges, including
There are 58 people on death
row in South Korea, according to
the justice ministry, but the last
time the country carried out an
execution was in December 1997,
when 23 convicts were hanged.
Lee, the captain, has apologised to the families of the victims and said he never intended
to harm anyone.
Some of the crew made tearful
apologies following their lawyers’ closing speeches, which
argued that the defendants were
mostly too badly trained to handle the disaster.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Locked-in ordeal inspires
bookshop pajama party
Geldof to fire up charity
hit 30 years on to fight Ebola
�Terror suspect
smiled during arrest’
City worker who bit off
broker’s nose in club jailed
Brazil billionaire buys
Gherkin for ВЈ700mn
After a tourist was locked in a London bookshop,
the retailer invited 10 avid readers to a pajama
party at one of its shops. “The only thing you
have to worry about is what you will read next.
And whether someone will let you out the next
morning ... but that shouldn’t be a problem”
wrote the book retailer Waterstones about
their “Sleepover” action at the large shop near
Piccadilly Circus. The marketing gag was inspired
after an American tourist was locked in at a
Waterstones shop after browsing late in the day.
After police did not respond to his calls for help,
the tourist posted messages on Instagram and
Twitter about being locked in at the Trafalgar
Square outlet for two hours before being let out.
Musician and philanthropist Bob Geldof,
who in 1984 inspired a generation of rock
stars to record a charity single for Africa,
will raise money to combat Ebola with a new
version of the song. Geldof, frontman for
Irish new wave band The Boomtown Rats,
pulled together the Band Aid supergroup
for “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” three
decades ago to help those affected by
famine in Ethiopia. Geldof confirmed at a
conference in London that the song would
be re-recorded. The new line-up is expected
to include boy band One Direction and
singers Ed Sheeran and Sam Smith, British
media reports said.
A man arrested in connection with a suspected
Remembrance Day terror plot smiled as he was
led away by police, witnesses said yesterday.
The 27-year-old man was arrested by armed
officers who surrounded his car in a residential
street in west London. Counter-terror detectives
continued to question the four men aged
between 19 and 27 at a secure police station
in south London yesterday. Police swooped
last Thursday and Friday, after intelligence
suggested a plot to attack an individual was in
the final stages of planning. Officers stopped
a hatchback driven by the oldest suspect in
Southall. He was surrounded by marksmen and
dragged from the car.
A City worker who bit the nose off a broker in
the middle of a crowded nightclub after a row
over a spilt drink has been jailed for nearly
two years at the Old Bailey. Johnathan Ball, 26,
sank his teeth into Christopher Woolcott on the
dance floor at Babble City in the City of London.
CCTV footage showed both men enjoying
themselves with their own friends in February
last year. A scuffle broke out after a drink was
spilt and Ball grabbed hold of his victim’s head,
got him on the floor and sank his teeth into
the front part of his nose. He bit through the
cartilage and flesh and tore off the front part of
his nose. Woolcott needed a skin graft to repair
the damage done to his face.
The distinctive Gherkin building in the City of
London has been snapped up by a Brazilian
billionaire. Safra Group, the investment giant
owned by Brazilian Joseph Safra, paid more
than ВЈ720mn for 30 St Mary Axe, according
to the Financial Times. The price was not
disclosed. The Gherkin, as it is nicknamed,
went on sale in July after German property
firm IVG Immobilien struggled with debts. IVG
had bought the 180m high building, which
has 40 floors, in 2007 from insurance group
Swiss Re for ВЈ600m. The sale to Safra was
announced just weeks after another highprofile deal in which Safra took joint control of
banana specialist, Chiquita.
in party
critics are
d Miliband has told business leaders he does not
accept there is crisis of
confidence in his leadership of
the Labour Party.
At a CBI conference in central London Miliband was asked
whether he believed there was a
crisis of confidence in his leadership. He responded with a blunt
“no” and went on to answer the
next question.
Earlier shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna admitted there was a small minority of
MPs critical of the Labour leader,
but said the majority back an Ed
Miliband-led election campaign.
However his pledge of support
for Miliband’s leadership was almost derailed when the senior
Labour MP appeared to mix him
up with his brother David during
an interview with Sky News’ Eamonn Holmes.
Umunna, himself touted as a
possible replacement for Miliband, argued that Labour is within
“touching distance” of Downing
“Yes you get people sounding
off,” Umunna told Sky News.
“But at the end of the day we
have seen a tiny minority of people giving off-the-record, anonymous briefings.
“There are a small minority
who have gone on the record, but
the overwhelming majority of
our candidates, our MPs, shadow
ministers, everybody is concentrated on winning what we know
will be a tough election.”
In his response to being asked
about an alternative to the Labour leader, Umunna mistakenly
said Miliband’s brother David then corrected himself.
“I know from my constituents
a united Labour party in ensuring we get Dave, er we get Ed
Miliband into Number 10. I know
ultimately that’s going to make a
difference to their lives.” Other
senior Labour п¬Ѓgures have been
publicly rallying around Miliband.
Miliband loyalists rally
around Labour party
leader, saying hostile and
anonymous briefing is
undermining his authority
Guardian News and Media
Opposition Labour Party leader Ed Miliband prepares to address the Confederation of British Industries
(CBI) annual conference in London yesterday.
3,000 restaurants told to
improve kitchen hygiene
London Evening Standard
iners are being urged to
“look before you book”
ahead of their Christmas
parties as London restaurants are
ranked lowest for hygiene.
Figures yesterday revealed that
3,112 restaurants in the capital
have been warned to improve by
This is the equivalent of nearly
one in five — almost double the
national average, according to
the Food Standards Agency. The
watchdog also revealed that 1,729
restaurants in London are rated 0
or 1 — the lowest possible rankings for food hygiene.
The FSA has launched a campaign calling on would-be customers to do their research in the
run-up to the party season. This
means going online at
uk/ratings to check a restaurant’s
hygiene score before booking.
Amy Skinner is backing the
FSA campaign after suffering
food poisoning twice — at a chain
restaurant and at a small independent one. The resourcing and
talent adviser from Hackney said
the experience has left her cautious about eating out.
“Having food poisoning
was a horrible experience
and has made me much
more cautious about
eating out”
The 27-year-old said: “Having
food poisoning was a horrible experience and has made me much
more cautious about eating out.
I’m really aware there’s so much
we don’t see as consumers about
how a restaurant is run and how
clean the kitchen really is.
“Now, I always check the food
hygiene rating when I go out to
make sure it’s up to scratch.”
The majority of restaurants
in the capital are deemed up to
More than 15,000 have a rating ranging from 3, which means
“generally satisfactory”, to 5,
which is “very good”. This is under the Food Standards Agency’s
Scores on the Doors scheme,
which all local authorities in
London are signed up to.
However, other restaurants
have been told by inspectors
they must improve hygiene
standards. La Forchetta in Upper
Street in Islington; the Sports
Bar and Grill at Marylebone
station; Golden Pagoda restaurant in Gerrard Street and Caffe
Ritazza at Euston station are
among 205 in the capital given
a 0 rating on the FSA website.
This means they need “urgent”
Even establishments favoured
by the rich and famous have been
told they need to improve. The
Chiltern Firehouse was given a 2
rating by hygiene inspectors after
an assessment last June.
Models Lily Cole and Cara
Delevigne are among celebrities
who have dined at the restaurant,
which was told improvement was
needed on food hygiene.
The Chiltern Firehouse said at
the time that the “vast majority”
of the issues highlighted had already been rectified.
abour critics of Ed Miliband
are warning his supporters that they are in danger
of exacerbating internal unease
about his leadership by attacking
party loyalists who say they are
reflecting concerns they hear on
the doorstep.
As the former Labour leader
Neil Kinnock accused the critics of cowardice and a “tendency
towards political suicide”, one MP
warned of a horrible atmosphere
over the “cack-handed” response
of Miliband’s team.
Lucy Powell, who was promoted
to the shadow cabinet last week to
take a key role in Labour’s general
election team, highlighted concerns at senior levels of the party
when she warned that п¬Ѓve days of
hostile briefing against Miliband
was undermining his authority.
The shadow Cabinet Office
minister told Pienaar’s Politics on
BBC Radio 5 Live: “These things
often feed themselves. When
you have continuing anonymous
stories being floated around that
somehow Ed has lost the confidence of his MPs, that feeds
a wider concern in the public
whether he has the leadership
qualities to lead his own party, let
alone the country. So that doesn’t
Beckham in Hanoi
Powell, who said “cowardly”
attacks on Miliband would create
the worst of all worlds, issued a
put-up-or-shut-up challenge to
Miliband’s critics. She said: “They
are feeding the beast and they are
feeding the monster in terms of
the press. That is the worst of all
worlds – that we continue to have
this conversation in this way. So
show your colours and put names
to quotes or let’s just move on and
have a different conversation.”
Caroline Flint, the shadow
energy and climate change secretary, acknowledged that some
Labour MPs were nervous about
the party’s prospects.
Flint told the Sunday Politics
programme on BBC1: “Some of my
colleagues are having jitters. Part
of that is that we’ve always said
that this is not a done deal, this
election. This is going to be hardfought. We’ve said that from 2010
and Ed has been saying it since he
was elected our leader. We have to
п¬Ѓght for the right to represent the
country in Westminster.”
Lord Kinnock, who faced regular sniping during his nine years
as leader of the Labour party between 1983 and 1992, launched
a withering attack on Miliband’s
critics. He told The World This
Weekend on BBC Radio 4: “The
so-called threat is certainly not
substantial. Not only because all
of the sources, so called, of the
threat are common in their anonymity and cowardice and their
tendency towards political suicide but because there is no real
substance in what they are saying.
“The claims they are making,
in so far as you can identify them,
Cyclist left for dead
in hit-and-run
London Evening Standard
Former England forward David Beckham waves to a crowd
of fans as he arrives at a local restaurant in downtown
Hanoi yesterday. Beckham is on a one-day-long business
trip to Hanoi to promote a drink brand for which he is
commercial representative.
are totally unjustifiable because
after four years Ed Miliband is a
leader of proven courage, of high
intelligence. He has a quality of
great leadership which is being
calm, resilient under fire.”
The strong language from Kinnock upset critics of Miliband
who say it is their duty to voice
concerns about his leadership
amid widespread worries that he
is failing to connect with voters.
Alistair Darling, the former
chancellor, gave voice to some of
these concerns when he said that
Miliband “needs to show” he is
prime ministerial material.
In an interview with the Sunday
Times, the former chancellor said:
“The best way of dealing with adversity is to lead. If you retreat, if
you feel sorry for yourself, if you
start mumbling and muttering,
your enemies will take advantage
of it. The best form of defence is
attack. So attack. On all fronts.”
All but a handful of critics believe that Miliband will lead Labour into the general election next
year because Alan Johnson, the
only candidate who could unite
the party, has repeatedly ruled
himself out of contention.
The former home secretary told
the Sunday Times that standing
as Labour leader was a “definite
no-no”, adding: “We can win with
Ed as leader and I can help him do
Lord Falconer of Thoroton,
the former lord chancellor who
is in charge of Labour’s preparations for government, said there
was “absolutely zero chance” of a
change of leader before the election.
woman was yesterday
questioned by police after
a cyclist was knocked off
his mountain bike and reportedly left for dead on a country
road less than half a mile from his
family home.
Robert Worrall, 31, was found
sprawled on the A24 in Beare
Green, near Dorking, by a passerby at 1.25am on Sunday.
Police and ambulance crews
battled to revive him but he was
pronounced dead at the scene.
Family and friends flooded Twitter and Facebook with tributes to
Worrall, who had been cycling to
an all-night garage. His mother
Ann, a learning support worker at
the private Box Hill School, wrote
a message to wellwishers on her
Facebook page: “Just to let all my
friends know my youngest son
Robert was killed cycling to the
local garage. It was a hit-and-run.
We are obviously devastated. Live
your lives strongly, with courage
and love in his memory.”
His brother Michael thanked
people for their thoughts, adding:
“We are all going to miss him.”
A 47-year-old woman from
the Horley area who was arrested
for drink-driving and failing to
stop at the scene of an accident
in connection with the death has
been released on bail until a date
in December. Detective Sergeant
Gary Wright said: “I would appeal to anyone who knows they
were driving on this road at this
time to come forward with any
information they may have.
“It might also be that you
know of someone who has returned home later than expected, or you have noticed some
damage on a vehicle that was not
there the day before.”
Worrall studied at East Surrey
College in Redhill and had worked
for grounds maintenance company Groundscapes for nine years.
He was a keen DJ and had performed at friend Claire Mole’s
wedding last month. Mole, a
hairstylist, wrote: “You’ll be forever in our hearts, Rob. You were
a top bloke. You impressed all our
guests. We couldn’t have asked a
better person.”
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Exam choices holding pupils back, says minister
oo many young people are
still making exam choices
that will hold them back
for the rest of their lives, Nicky
Morgan has warned.
For years, take-up of maths
and science after age 16 was far
too low, the education secretary
suggests, with many teenagers
still unaware that these subjects
are becoming increasingly important for more and more careers.
Morgan’s comments came at
the launch of a new independent
campaign which aims to increase
the numbers of students taking
maths and physics at A-level by
50% over the next three years.
As little as a decade ago, young
people were being told that
maths and sciences were the
subjects you did if you wanted
to go into a specific career, such
as medicine, pharmacy or engineering, she said.
“If you wanted to do something different, or even if you
didn’t know what you wanted to
do, then the arts and humanities
were what you chose, because
they were useful, you were told,
for all kinds of jobs.
“Of course we know now that
that couldn’t be further from the
truth. That the subjects that keep
young people’s options open and
unlock the door to all sorts of
careers, are the STEM subjects science, technology, engineering
and maths.”
The skills someone gains from
studying these types of subjects
are useful in almost any job, Morgan argued - including the creative and beauty industries and
even the legal sector.
“That’s why I believe it is so
important that young people are
aware of the opportunities that
these subjects bring. Because
these are not nearly as popular as
they should be.”
Figures show that in 2011, less
than a п¬Ѓfth (19%) of girls who
scored an A* in GCSE physics
went on to study the subject at
A-level, while for boys the п¬Ѓgure
was under half.
And fewer than two-thirds of
girls who achieved the top grade
in GCSE maths took the subject
at A-level.
“These figures show us that
too many young people are making choices at age 15 which will
hold them back for the rest of
their lives,” Morgan said.
She insisted that the government has made “significant”
progress, with around 1,000
more girls taking physics each
year along with 2,000 more taking maths compared to 2010.
Maths is also now the most
popular A-level subject, and
there has been an increase in entries for the sciences.
But Morgan said that more
needs to be done, and the new
Your Life campaign will help to
“dispel the myths” around STEM
“They’re not stuffy, boring subjects for people who don’t get outdoors much, far from it,” she said.
“They are key, cutting edge, fastpaced areas of work, and they’re
behind some of the most exciting
new developments in this country
and around the world.
“Nor are they subjects that you
can only succeed in if you went to
the right school, or had the right
connections. In fact, quite the
opposite. Success in the sciences
is one of the biggest drivers of
social mobility, enabling young
people from a range of backgrounds to access highly paid careers and opportunities.”
Morgan also said that there
needs to be action to boost the
number of young women studying maths and science.
“If we want to make the most
of half of our workforce if we
want to eliminate the gender pay
gap and we want that same half
of the workforce to succeed in
jobs that boost our economy, we
must make sure that teenage girls
don’t feel, and certainly are not
told, that certain subjects are the
preserve of men,” she said.
fears on
EU plans
rime Minister David Cameron yesterday said Britain should not be willing
to stay in the European Union
“come what may”, as his main
political rival said the promise of
a referendum on membership of
the bloc was creating uncertainty
for businesses.
In a bid to quell dissent among
his own lawmakers and win back
voters who have defected to the
anti-EU UK Independence Party,
Cameron has pledged to renegotiate Britain’s EU ties before offering a membership referendum
in 2017 if he is re-elected next
“Britain’s future in Europe
matters to our country
and it isn’t working
properly for us at the
Opposition Labour leader Ed
Miliband told business leaders
that those who “flirt” with pulling Britain out of the EU were
putting millions of jobs at risk by
generating uncertainty.
But, Cameron said ignoring
that there was a debate over Europe would be the “worst thing
to do”.
“Britain’s future in Europe
matters to our country and it
isn’t working properly for us at
the moment, and that is why we
need to make changes,” Cameron
said. “Simply standing here and
just saying: �I will stay in Europe,
I will stick with whatever we
have, come what may’ ... that is
not a plan and that won’t work.”
The prime minister said the
level of investment into Britain
under his Conservative-led government showed that the issue
was not a deterrent.
Miliband, hoping to cash in
on fears among some business
groups that a Conservative election win could cost them unfettered access to the EU’s single
market of 500mn people, said
Britain’s national interest was
being damaged. “Every nod and
wink to those who want to leave
sends a message to potential investors that we are not open for
business, that our country is a
dangerous bet,” he said.
“Trying to use exit as a threat
has actually weakened our influence in Europe, not strengthened
it ... I will not be part of it. If I am
prime minister I will never risk
British businesses, British jobs,
British prosperity by playing political games with our membership of the European Union.”
Cameron has in recent months
battled other EU countries over
the leadership of the EU executive, the Commission, and the
EU budget, and has provoked
warnings from other EU leaders
with talk of trying to limit immigration from within the EU.
Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne arrive on the carpet before the 2014 MTV Europe Music Awards at the SSE Hydro Arena in Glasgow, Scotland.
Grande, Minaj shine at MTV awards
op stars Ariana Grande
and Nicki Minaj sparkled at the MTV Europe
Music Awards on Sunday, held
in the Scottish city of Glasgow
for the п¬Ѓrst time.
After opening the show
with a thumping performance
dressed in a futuristic silver leotard, Grande won best female
artiste and best song for her hit
“I’m excited, I’m very very
grateful and very happy,” the
Florida-born 21-year-old said
backstage at the event.
Pop star and rapper Nicki
Minaj was praised for her slick
hosting of the awards.
Dressed in a sheer black
catsuit, Minaj danced under a
cascade of sparks before per-
forming a debut of a new song,
Bed Of Lies, then breaking into
her raunchy hit Anaconda.
English-Irish superstar boy
band One Direction scored a
hat-trick of awards, picking
up the best pop, best live act
and biggest fans awards, which
are the result of votes by fans
“Our fans really are amazing! Thank you so much for
your amazing support! 3
EMA’s!! Thank you! Thank
you! Thank you!” singer Louis
Tomlinson wrote on Twitter.
Though they won the most
awards, they band were unable to
attend to collect them in person.
The absence of member
Zayn Malik in their video message left fans questioning his
Canada’s Justin Bieber was
awarded best male, pop star
Katy Perry won best look and
US rapper Nicki Minaj poses for pictures after being awarded the
title �Best Hip Hop’ during the 2014 MTV Europe Music Awards
(EMA) in Glasgow, Scotland.
best video, and singer Enrique
Iglesias won best world stage
Londoners flock to
�sea’ of poppies
London Evening Standard
ondoners stayed up “right
through the night” to pay
tribute at the ceramic poppy п¬Ѓeld at the Tower of London as
the awe-inspiring display neared
its climax.
Amid the solemnity, there
was also jubilation that one of
the capital’s most breathtaking but short-lived artworks —
Blood Swept Lands and Seas of
Red — was granted a stay of execution following the Evening
Standard’s Save Our Poppies
David Cameron, who announced plans to keep part of
the exhibition open for longer,
said: “The extraordinary poppy
display at the Tower of London
has caught the imagination of
people across Britain and it was
a privilege to visit it on Saturday
with my family. I’m pleased an
important section of this memorable display will now be saved
permanently for the nation at the
newly refurbished Imperial War
“It will help future generations
remember the huge sacrifice
British men and women down
the ages have made for our freedom.”
Mayor Boris Johnson said:
“There have understandably
been calls to allow more people
to see them. The authorities at
the Tower of London have listened, and they have taken action.
“They deserve to be congratulated, just as they deserve congratulations for their courage in
staging this display — and without a penny, so far, of public support.”
He added: “Yes, there will be a
sense of loss and of bereavement
among the public when the poppies п¬Ѓnally go. That is sad, and
inevitable; and it is also п¬Ѓtting
and in perfect keeping with the
message of that п¬Ѓeld of mortal
An astonishing four million people are expected to have
viewed the display by the time
the last poppy is planted just before 11am today.
Plans include keeping part of
the п¬Ѓeld intact until the end of
this month so that every Londoner will have the chance to pay
their respects.
Two features of the work —
the “Weeping Window” cascade
of poppies from a window of
the Tower and “Wave”, a curling
surge of poppies by the Tower
entrance — will go on a threeyear tour of the UK before going
to the Imperial War Museums in
London and Manchester.
Guards at the Tower said there
were “people here 24 hours, right
through the night”.
Royal Corps of Signals veteran
William Dedman, 78, from Merton, said: “My grandfather served
in World War I, part of his heel
was blown away. But those soldiers never talked about it. Being
here today is very emotional. I’m
glad they extended the poppies
because so many people wanted
to come and see it.”
Holding his grandfather’s
World War I service medal sent
by the King, Walworth-born
William Richards, 87, said: “My
grandfather was in the flying
corps and my father always said
that he was very special. It’s very
special for me being here today.”
Beyonce, though rumoured
to be a surprise guest, did not
attend, but was awarded best
song with a social message for
her song “Pretty Hurts”.
The theme of the awards
was time travel to mark 20
years since the п¬Ѓrst one was
held, and clips of the previous
award shows were played.
Actor and singer David Hasselhoff was applauded as he
walked on stage in a kilt.
Irish band U2 returned to
perform in their fourth appearance at the EMAs, playing “Every Breaking Wave”.
And rock musician Ozzy Osbourne took to the stage to
accept a global icon award,
remarking “I can’t believe it,
it’s just incredible.”
Guitar legend Slash appeared on stage to pay tribute
to Osbourne, telling the audience “He scares the hell out
of most people and all bats.
But to me is a gentle man and
a gentleman.”
New bid to reach
Stormont deal
French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian (left) and British
Defence Secretary Michael Fallon walk through the “Blood
Swept Lands and Seas of Red” installation of ceramic poppies
in the moat area of the Tower of London yesterday.
serious effort is being
made to address powersharing difficulties at
Stormont, Martin McGuinness
The parties are involved in political talks, convened by Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa
Villiers, aimed at п¬Ѓnding a new
way forward on disputes causing
logjams in the administration.
Historic probes into Troubles
incidents have been hit by significant cuts to public finances,
with the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI), the police
ombudsman and the coroner’s
service all facing resourcing
It follows disagreement over
welfare reform and other budgetary issues as well as more longstanding differences over controversial parades, the legacy of
the past and flags.
The deputy п¬Ѓrst minister said:
“In the context of the present
discussions it is fair to say that a
very serious investigation is taking place as to how we can resolve
the challenges to this administration as a result of policies be-
ing directed at us from London.”
He said the block grant from
Westminster which pays for
public services had been “undermined” to the tune of more
than ВЈ1bn.
The Northern Ireland secretary has said the government
would seriously consider any
proposal from Stormont to fund
a new mechanism to investigate
the events of the Troubles.
Villiers said she could not
promise money would be forthcoming, due to constraints on
public п¬Ѓnances, but said any
suggestion would be “looked at
with care” by Prime Minister
David Cameron and Chancellor
George Osborne.
There have been growing calls
for the government to contribute to potential new structures
to investigate Northern Ireland’s
toxic past and the treatment of
victims of violence.
Villiers has said it was also
vital that the Executive implemented efficiency programmes
within the public sector to free
up more funds for priority issues.
The talks resume in Belfast tomorrow and the Cabinet member said it was time for the parties to “buckle down” and strive
for consensus.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
gears up
for tough
uropean scientists will this
week make the п¬Ѓrst attempt to land a probe on
the surface of a comet, the climax of a decade-long project to
unlock some of the secrets of the
Spacecraft Rosetta caught up
with comet 67P/ChuryumovGerasimenko in August.
Tonight the team at the European Space Agency (ESA) will
decide whether to give the п¬Ѓnal go-ahead to release a lander
from the craft.
Comets – celestial bodies of
dust, ice and complex molecules
– are remnants of the birth of our
4.6bn-year-old solar system.
The probe’s mission is to
gather samples from the comet
to analyse the development of
Earth and other planets.
“It’s basically a time machine
containing clues to the composition of the solar system,” Fred
Jansen, Rosetta mission manager, said in a briefing ahead of the
landing attempt.
The three-legged lander,
called Philae, is due to be released tomorrow at 0835 GMT
on its descent towards the surface, which will take a nail-biting seven hours.
During that time, Philae will
send back information on the
dust and gases it encounters as it
nears the comet.
The timing, angle and speed of
the release are crucial because,
once on its way, there is nothing
the scientists on the ground can
do to change the trajectory of the
box-shaped 100kg lander.
Adding to the risks for a safe
landing is the fact that the comet’s surface is not smooth, as initially hoped, but instead marked
by craters, cliffs and boulders the
size of houses.
“We have to be a bit lucky,”
Rosetta flight director Andrea
Accomazzo said. “If the lander
lands in proximity of a boulder,
there is nothing we can do. This
is the part that worries me the
most because we have no control
over it.”
If the landing, expected to be
confirmed on Earth at around
1600 GMT, is successful, Philae
will start sending back pictures
and measurements.
This photo released by the
European Space Agency on
December 20 last year shows
an artist impression of Rosetta’s
lander Philae (back view).
PMs row over Kosovo on
historic visit to Belgrade
erbian Prime Minister
Aleksandar Vucic openly
clashed with his Albanian
counterpart Edi Rama over Kosovo during a fence-building visit
yesterday, the п¬Ѓrst to Belgrade in
68 years by an Albanian leader.
Vucic visibly got angry at a
press conference after Rama
called on Serbia to recognise the
“irreversible reality” of Kosovo’s
Belgrade refuses to recognise
the breakaway former Serbian
province populated mostly by
Albanians, which formally declared its independence in 2008.
“I had not expected a provocation from Mr Rama, that he
would talk about Kosovo, because I don’t know what he has
to do with Kosovo,” a visibly upset Vucic said.
“I have to reply to him because I will not allow anybody
to humiliate Serbia in Belgrade.
Kosovo is part of Serbia under
the constitution and it has nothing to do with Albania nor will it
ever have,” Vucic said.
He appeared visibly trying to
keep his anger under control.
Having repeated that “it is
my job to say that nobody will
humiliate Serbia”, Vucic underlined that Kosovo was not on
the agenda of the talks, nor was
it discussed during the leaders’
one-to-one meeting before the
press conference.
Rama had told reporters that
the two sides had different positions over Kosovo “but there
is only one reality – independent Kosovo is recognised by 108
states in the world”.
“This is a reality that is irreversible and this reality should
be respected,” Rama said.
“The independence of Kosovo made the Balkans more
stable and peaceful,” he added,
also calling for the rights of the
60,000-strong ethnic Albanian
minority in southern Serbia’s
Presevo valley to be respected.
Rama was due to visit them
Following Vucic’s fierce reaction, Rama denied his comments
were a provocation “because
Kosovo is a reality and the sooner we recognise it the faster we
can move on”.
Relations between Serbia and
Albania have been tense over
Vucic (right) and Rama at the news conference after their meeting in Belgrade yesterday. Rama, the first
Albanian prime minister to visit Serbia in 68 years, urged Belgrade yesterday to accept the
independence of majority-Albanian Kosovo and was accused by Vucic of �provocation’.
Kosovo and the ethnic Albanian
minority living in southern Serbia.
Serbia sees Kosovo as the cradle of its nation and faith, but
the vast majority of its 1.8mn
people are ethnic Albanians who
seceded in 2008 almost a decade
after Nato went to war to halt a
wave of ethnic cleansing.
The region has largely stabilised since the collapse of Yugoslavia in the 1990s – of which
the 1998-99 Kosovo war was the
final chapter – but widespread
poverty, joblessness and political disagreements continue to
fuel tensions.
Rama, in an interview with
Reuters, warned that much was
still at stake, and said the EU
should move more quickly to
bring in the rest of the Western
Balkans, amid deep misgivings
within the 28-nation bloc over
the wisdom of further expansion.
Both nations want to join the
European Union.
“Enlargement fatigue, okay,
but there is also patience fatigue
that is threatening the Balkans;
if the patience ends, it’s better
we don’t predict what can happen,” he said. “Whoever thinks
that the Balkans are out of Europe so it’s not a European problem is deadly wrong.”
Rama’s visit had already been
postponed from October 22
when a diplomatic row erupted
over an abandoned soccer match
between Serbia and Albania in
The game was halted when a
drone carrying a flag of “Greater
Albania” flew over the pitch,
triggering a brawl between players and a pitch invasion by Serbian fans.
Italian quake experts win
in �science on trial’ appeal
even Italian scientists who
faced jail for failing to predict a deadly 2009 earthquake were cleared yesterday of
manslaughter convictions that
had sparked international outrage.
The seven men were sentenced to six years in jail in October 2012 after a court in the mediaeval town of L’Aquila found
them guilty of causing multiple
deaths by having negligently
downplayed the risk of the town
being hit by a major earthquake
just days before the killer tremor
struck in April 2009.
But after a month-long appeal
trial in the mountain town east
of Rome, that verdict was overturned by a panel of three judges
which concluded that six of the
seven had committed no crime.
Judge Fabrizia Ida Francabandera said there was no case
to answer, according to video
streaming of her reading the verdict, absolving the defendants of
a six-year jail sentence handed
down two years ago.
The judges partially upheld
some of the charges against one
defendant, Bernardo De Bernardinis but downgraded his sentence to a two-year suspended
prison sentence that will not
lead to him having a criminal
“The credibility of Italy’s entire scientific community has
been restored,” said Stefano
Gresta, the president of the National Institute of Geophysics
and Volcanology, whose predecessor, Enzo Boschi, was one of
the most eminent of the defendants.
Franco Coppi, one of the lawyers for the scientists, said: “It is
very pleasing that our arguments
have been upheld although we
remain profoundly sorry for the
families of the victims and understand their reactions.”
But Stefania Pezzopane, an
Italian senator and former president of the Aquila region, called
the appeal decision “disconcerting and contradictory”.
The precise reasons for the
verdict will not be made clear
until the full written judgment is
released in several months’ time.
The prosecution may seek to
have the convictions reinstated
via a п¬Ѓnal appeal to a higher
The defendants had been
backed by outraged scientists
from across the world.
Numerous critics claimed
that their prosecution had put
science itself on trial, warning
that experts would stop offering
any kind of risk assessments if
they were opening themselves
up to potential litigation.
Many compared the sentencing to the persecution of 17thcentury astronomer Galileo,
who, under threat of torture,
was forced to recant his assertion that the Earth moves
around the Sun.
The journal Nature called the
original verdict “perverse” and
the sentencing “ludicrous” given the acknowledged impossibility of predicting earthquakes.
The seven convicted men
were all members of a Major
Risks Committee which met in
L’Aquila on March 31, 2009, six
days before the 6.3-magnitude
quake struck the town, triggering the collapse of many inadequately constructed buildings
within its walls and in surrounding villages.
The 28-second quake, which
struck in the middle of the night,
left thousands homeless, and
five years later L’Aquila has only
partially been rebuilt.
The prosecution in the case
had depicted the experts as having irresponsibly offered reassurances that persuaded citizens who might otherwise have
sought refuge outside or in safer
buildings to stay in their homes.
The Risks committee had been
convened after a series of smaller tremors in the run-up to the
deadly quake.
Key to the prosecution case
was a statement by Bernardinis,
then the deputy director of the
Civil Protection Agency, describing the seismic activity as
posing “no danger” to residents.
Although the defence pointed
out that was only one of many
observations made by the various committee members, the
prosecution succeeded in persuading the solitary judge in the
first trial that the experts had offered “disastrous reassurance”
to L’Aquila citizens when they
should have been making it clear
there was a very real risk of a
US writer David Wolman, who
carried out a major investigation
into the initial trial, concluded
that the scientists had been unjustly convicted largely because
of the difficulty many ordinary
people have in understanding
scientific advice.
“Where a career scientists
hears the word �improbable’ and
knows that rare events do occur,
a non-scientist hears �improbable’ as shorthand for �it ain’t
gonna happen’,” Wolman wrote
in an essay on the case for online
magazine Matter.
At the heart of the case was
whether, under political pressure, the government-appointed experts gave an overly reassuring picture of the risks facing
the town.
Over the centuries, L’Aquila
A file photo taken on April 8, 2009 shows an aerial view of the
village of Onna, located some 10km of the Abruzzo capital L’Aquila,
two days after a violent earthquake hit the area.
had already been hit by deadly
and destructive earthquakes
three times, and it was shaken
by a number of tremors in the
months leading up to the 2009
Families of victims of the
earthquake, and lawyers representing them in the civil case
against the defendants, called
the ruling “shameful” and
pledged to appeal.
Space crew make successful return from station
Search and rescue team members approach the Soyuz TMA-13M
capsule with the International Space Station (ISS) crew of Gerst,
Surayev and Wiseman after its landing near the town of Arkalyk in
northern Kazakhstan.
Below: Ground personnel carry Wiseman shortly after the spacecraft
landing, while Surayev is seen gesturing to teammate Gerst.
hree astronauts made a
successful return landing
yesterday after spending
165 days aboard the International
Space Station (ISS), flight control
in Moscow said.
“It is good to be back, even
though gravity sucks right now!”
German astronaut Alexander
Gerst wrote on Twitter after
landing near Arkalyk in northcentral Kazakhstan.
Russian commander Maxim
Surayev controlled the Soyuz
spacecraft during its three-hour
return trip and deployed parachutes for the landing.
Also on board was Reid Wiseman of the US space agency Nasa.
Television footage showed the
astronauts huddled in sleeping
bags and blankets on the snowcovered steppe, before they were
carried away by ground personnel.
“Earth smells amazing, it is
good to be back on our #BlueDot,” Gerst tweeted.
The astronauts will undergo
medical rehabilitation to revive
their weakened muscles, bones
and immune systems.
The three men smiled broadly
from reclining chairs as medical
personnel tended to them amid
patches of snow on the barren
steppe just northeast of Arkalyk,
Kazakhstan, where they landed.
Surayev flashed a V for victory
sign while Wiseman pumped his
п¬Ѓst as they waited to regain their
land legs after nearly half a year
of weightlessness.
“Everything was in the spirit
of co-operation, so I think that
everybody needs to learn and
follow the example of the ISS
crew members,” Surayev said.
“Let’s try to live together side by
side. This is the most important
During their п¬Ѓve and a half
months in the ISS, relations between Russia and the West have
deteriorated sharply over the
Ukraine conflict.
A native of Kuenzelsau in
southwestern Germany, Gerst
was the eleventh German in
German Foreign Minister
Frank-Walter Steinmeier, who
was on a visit to Kazakhstan’s
capital Astana yesterday, sent his
congratulations to Gerst.
“I hope that what the astronauts saw from above, a world
without borders, reminds us occasionally that we have bigger
problems on earth than border
conflicts,” he said, adding that
water rights and environmental
issues should be treated as issues
that are just as pressing.
Among the research carried
out by the astronauts were experiments on skin ageing and on
metals for turbines.
While in space the crew
traveled more than 70mn miles
(112.7mn km), Nasa said.
The “bulls-eye” touchdown
was executed amid low clouds
and fog “following a flawless descent back into the atmosphere,”
according to Nasa TV.
The spacecraft was pulled onto
its side by its parachute upon arrival, which Nasa TV added was
not uncommon.
The US space agency said the
“departure of Wiseman, Gerst
and Surayev marks the end of
Expedition 41”, referring to their
mission to the ISS to carry out
equipment repairs, maintenance
and experiments.
Surayev was on his second long
ISS mission, having now spent a
total of 334 days in space, while
the other two astronauts were on
their п¬Ѓrst trip.
Surayev handed over the ISS
command to US astronaut Barry
Wilmore, who remains on board
with Russians Yelena Serova and
Alexander Samokutyayev.
Three fresh astronauts, including Italian female astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti are
poised to join them on November
They will launch from Kazakhstan on November 23, Nasa
Nasa lost its ability to reach the
space station when the shuttle
programme ended in 2011 after
30 years.
The US space agency has
helped fund private companies
in a push to restore US access to
the ISS.
In the meantime, the world’s
astronauts must rely on Russia’s
Soyuz spacecraft to get to the ISS
and back, at a cost of $70mn per
There are 15 country participants in the ISS programme,
though the US and Russia contribute the lion’s share of funds
for the project.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
of stench in
Catalans step up drive
for secession after vote
yesterday to step up its
secession drive after more than
2mn people voted in a symbolic independence referendum
which Spain’s central government dismissed as “useless”.
The head of the Catalan regional government Artur Mas
called Sunday’s vote, which was
ordered blocked by the constitutional court at Madrid’s request,
“a total success” after the overwhelming majority of those who
took part supported independence.
“The people of Catalonia have
made it very clear that we want
to govern ourselves. It is an old
aspiration, which dates back
centuries and remains perfectly
alive,” he added in Barcelona after polls closed.
The Catalan government said
yesterday that a total of 2.3mn
people had taken part in the
vote, surpassing its initial estimate of 2.25mn, despite legal
challenges and objections from
the central government.
The vast majority of those
who took part, 80.7%, voted for
independence, it added.
ties boycotted the referendum,
which was organised by thousands of pro-independence volunteers, saying that the results
were skewed in favour of a break
from Spain.
There was no official electoral
roll but the regional government said 5.4mn Catalans and
resident foreigners aged 16 and
above were eligible to vote.
Mas said that his government
would now push to hold an official referendum and would seek
international support to help
persuade the Spanish government to allow it to go ahead.
“We deserve to vote in a legal
and binding referendum and this
is what we are going to try to do,”
he added.
Analysts said the turnout did
not show there was enough support for outright independence
but it strengthened Mas’s hand
in his showdown with Spain’s
Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy.
“If we see this as a five-set
tennis match, yesterday was the
п¬Ѓrst set which Mas won. Now
starts the second set and it depends on Mariano Rajoy,” said
Gabriel Colome, political science lecturer at Barcelona’s Autonomous University.
The total number of votes in
favour of independence was less
than the number cast in the last
regional elections in 2012 for the
People queue yesterday at the Palau Robert in Barcelona to vote in the non-binding referendum for
independence, a day after the �official’ voting date. Catalans who weren’t able to vote on Sunday are able
to vote in various places provided for the occasion, until November 25.
four Catalan nationalist parties
which called the referendum, he
“They expected to get much
more. This means that in a hypothetical real referendum they
have a problem,” Colome told
If Mas opts to hold early elec-
tions, the symbolic referendum
results indicate that nationalist
parties will not be able to secure
a majority in the regional assembly that would allow them to
unilaterally declare independence as some have proposed, he
Spain’s Justice Minister Ra-
fael Catala dismissed the vote
as “fruitless and useless” and
said it was “devoid of any kind of
democratic validity”.
State prosecutors were continuing to investigate whether
Catalan authorities breached
court injunctions by opening
polling stations in schools and
other public buildings, he added
after the polls closed.
The leader of the Catalan
branch of Spain’s ruling conservative Popular Party, Alicia
Sanchez Camacho, urged the
authorities to take action against
Mas over the referendum.
“Those who violate the law
have to face the consequences,”
she told a news conference in
Mas had originally planned to
hold an official yet non-binding
vote on independence, inspired
by the referendum held in Scotland in September which was
authorised by Britain and which
resulted in a “No” vote.
Asked about Catalonia’s symbolic referendum, British Prime
Minister David Cameron said
London wants Spain “to stay
“Our belief about referendums and things like that is these
things should be done through
the proper constitutional and
legal frameworks. They should
be done within them, and not
outside them,” he added.
Proud of its distinct language
and culture, Catalonia, a region
of 7.5mn, accounts for nearly a
fifth of Spain’s economy.
Demands for greater autonomy have been rumbling for years,
but the latest bid has pushed the
issue further than ever before.
Minister resigns over botched polling abroad
A woman walks past an election poster reading: �Stop the lie!’, �Choose a normal Romania!’ and
�IOHANNIS PRESIDENT’, in Bucharest. Romanians will vote in the presidential run-off on Sunday, with
incumbent Prime Minster Victor Ponta currently leading in the first round against Klaus Iohannis.
omania’s foreign minister, Titus Corlatean, resigned yesterday over the
botched balloting process for
expats in the ongoing presidential elections.
Corlatean stepped down after
protests by thousands of Romanians living abroad who were
unable to vote in overwhelmed
embassies and consulates because of the lack of facilities and
shortage of polling booths, in
the п¬Ѓrst round of polling on November 2.
Socialist Prime Minister
Viktor Ponta is facing the centre-right mayor of Sibiu, Klaus
Iohannis, in the election run-off
on Sunday.
The diaspora’s votes could
play an important role in case of
a close race.
About 10,000 protesters took
to the streets in Romania on Saturday to accuse the government
of “hobbling” the vote of Romanians abroad.
The п¬Ѓrst round was won by
Ponta with 40% of the vote,
ahead of Iohannis with 30%.
However, Iohannis won 46%
Vatican to rein in sales of papal blessings
By Philip Pullella, Reuters
ino Pensa has been making
personalised papal blessings on parchment for 65
years, a mainstay of his small
business creating intricately lettered scrolls marking milestones
like baptisms and marriages.
The Vatican has decided that
as of January 1, his workshop and
about 60 other producers and
stores that have been in the papal blessing business for decades
will no longer be allowed to make
or sell them, a decision vendors
say could cost up to 500 jobs.
The Vatican’s office of papal
charities, the Apostolic Almonry,
sent a letter to calligraphers and
stores in April reminding them of
a 2010 decision that their concessions would end this year.
The Vatican would resume
making all parchments, as it did
before the 1950s.
“After more 60 years, I feel like
an old rag that is being thrown
away,” Pensa said in his calligraphy workshop in Rome, where
he, his wife and son produce
parchments for the Vatican as
well as diplomas and elaborate
certificates for other clients.
Calligraphers and store owners sent several appeals to Pope
Francis, arguing the move contradicted his defence of workers’
rights. He has yet to respond.
The Vatican’s letter spoke of
a “return to the origins” when
Pope Leo XIII allowed papal
blessings on parchments to be
sold at the end of the 19th century to raise funds for charities.
All were then produced inhouse.
At the Vatican, they cost from
€6 to €30 depending on the
model, how much is computer
generated, and how much handdecorated.
They include flower designs,
sketches of Rome churches,
a photograph of the Pope and
script lettering.
While the Vatican capped the
price outsiders could charge –
€26 for plain models and €52 for
elaborate ones – vendors were
selling some for more than twice
“We have had a lot of problems
with that,” said Monsignor Diego
Ravelli of the papal alms office,
adding that the estimate of 500
jobs imperilled was “greatly exaggerated”.
of the vote among Romanians
living abroad, compared to just
under 16% for Ponta.
Corlatean pledged to ensure that the second round on
November 16 would go more
smoothly, but he also said he
would not be able to boost the
number of polling stations because it would be illegal.
Election officials dismissed
Corlatean’s claims and outgoing president Traian Basescu –
Ponta’s long-standing political
rival – accused him of “disinformation”.
In the statement announcing
his resignation, Corlatean stood
by his argument that he was forbidden from adding more polling stations.
“I refuse to violate the law and
cannot accept that the ministry
is obliged to violate the law for
the political interests and considerations (of Basescu and Iohannis), he said.
The vote is being seen as a
crucial test for the former communist country, which is grappling with recession and allegations of high-level corruption.
Following the protests, Corlatean had been told by the
prime minister to ensure that
the November 16 run-off vote
ran smoothly or lose his job.
Ponta told reporters yesterday
that he had accepted Corlatean’s
resignation and had appointed
former foreign intelligence head
Teodor Melescanu, a veteran
politician, as interim foreign
Melescanu quit the espionage post in September and had
joined the presidential race as an
independent candidate.
“First discussions will be at
the electoral bureau to п¬Ѓnd out
what can be done and which are
the ways to ensure voting participation (abroad),” Ponta said.
The Romanian embassy in
Paris called in French police as
tempers flared as people waited
to vote on November 2.
Analysts estimate there are
up to 4mn Romanians living
abroad, primarily in richer western Europe.
Although only a fraction of
them vote in elections, they have
the power to influence the outcome.
Outgoing president Basescu
won by a margin of 70,000 votes
in 2009 after trailing in opinion
polls, largely because he secured
more than three-quarters of the
148,000 ballots cast by the diaspora.
foul odour enveloped the
Russian capital throughout the day yesterday,
with concerned Muscovites
flooding authorities with complaints and officials scrambling
to locate the source of the stench.
Predictably, wits in Moscow
had a п¬Ѓeld day, with many joking
that the gates of Hell opened up
in the city of some 12mn.
Residents of Moscow began
complaining early yesterday of
the “unpleasant smell of sulphur, hydrogen sulfide and oil
products in the air”, MosEcoMonitoring, an environment
watchdog in Moscow, said in a
The concentration of hydrogen sulphide in the air briefly exceeded the norm while the sulphur dioxide was within limits,
the watchdog said.
Authorities warned Russians
against panic.
“The smell of hydrogen sulfide
is not dangerous,” the emergencies ministry spokesman told
Moscow’s chief toxicologist
Yury Ostapenko also sought to
allay fears.
“The appearance of smell is
more unpleasant than dangerous,” he said, speaking on radio.
“This is unpleasant but it makes
no sense to worry that we are going to get sick right now.”
By yesterday evening the
stench eased but the mystery
deepened when the authorities
said a local oil refinery was to
blame but its owner denied any
The emergencies ministry
pointed the п¬Ѓnger at faulty air
filters at a refinery in southeastern Moscow but Gazprom Neft,
the oil arm of state gas giant
Gazprom, which controls the refinery, denied the claim.
“The refinery is working in an
ordinary mode,” Gazprom Neft
said in a statement on Monday
evening, adding that its own labs
did not register any spike in the
concentration of hydrogen sulphide.
“Did the gates of Hell open up
in Moscow?” one Russian, writing under the nickname Yurii
Eagle, asked on Twitter. “What
is this smell?”
“Let me remind you that
Interstellar also begins with the
smell of smoke, dust and all of
that,” said another Twitter user,
referring to a new science п¬Ѓction
п¬Ѓlm depicting an apocalyptic future on Earth.
In 2010, amid the worst heatwave in its history, noxious
smoke enveloped Moscow as
п¬Ѓres burned outside the Russian
The smoke crept into apartments, offices, stores and even
underground into the Moscow
metro, forcing Russians to wear
surgical masks or flee the debilitating combination of smog and
high temperatures.
Italy’s singing nun releases her first album
Cristina Scuccia, the singing nun who won Italy’s
version of The Voice, releases today a first album
containing an unlikely cover of Madonna’s 1984 hit
Like a Virgin.
On her way to victory in the television singing
contest, the 26-year-old from Sicily became a
global Internet sensation with tens of millions
clicking on YouTube recordings of her covers of
Alicia Keys’s No One and Bon Jovi’s Living on a
Now, despite the misgivings of some church
traditionalists, she is planning to build on that
success with the release of a collection of songs
entitled Sister Cristina.
In an interview with Italian television ahead of the
release she insisted her showbiz career would not
radically change her life based in a Milan convent,
and defended the choice of Madonna’s raunchy
single as one of the tracks on the album.
“I looked at the words without thinking of the past:
the defining characteristic of Christians is being
able to see everything with a new eye,” she said.
In earlier interviews, Scuccia had said the song
struck a chord with her because she felt its
account of being “touched for the very first time”
was akin to her experience of finding God.
Berlin Wall light installations surface on eBay
Papal blessings on parchment are pictured at a calligraphy
workshop in Rome. The Vatican has decided that as of January 1,
about 60 other producers and stores that have been in the papal
blessing business for decades will no longer be allowed to make or
sell them, a decision vendors say could cost up to 500 jobs.
The Vatican gets €3 for each
parchment made by outsiders.
By excluding them, they will
give more money to the needy.
“It’s not a souvenir. You
are not paying for a blessing but contributing to the
Pope’s charities,” Ravelli said.
About 337,000 blessings were
made in 2013, nearly two-thirds
by the Vatican.
In 2013, €1.25mn was disbursed, most to help needy Italians pay for rent or utilities.
Some light installations that marked a 15km route
tracing the path of the Berlin Wall have been
stolen, police said, and have surfaced on eBay –
with a €7,999 ($10,000) price tag.
The installation, the so-called Border of Light, was
the highlight of celebrations that ended on Sunday
marking the 25th anniversary of the fall of the
Berlin Wall.
The 3m-high installations were used to release
about 7,000 white balloons into the Berlin night
sky, culminating in the weekend ceremonies
commemorating the breaching of the Cold War
barrier on November 9, 1989.
Police said that some of the installations, which
traced the Wall’s path through the centre of Berlin,
had gone missing overnight.
“Actually this is theft,” a police spokesman said,
but noted that the owners of the installations, Die
Kulturprojekte GmbH, had not lodged a complaint.
The daily newspaper BZ reported that the first
balloon holder had been put up for sale on eBay
for €7,999.
Austrian toddler dies from �punishment’ shower
A two-year-old Austrian girl died yesterday after
allegedly being put in a scalding-hot shower by her
father as a punishment, the hospital where she was
being treated said.
“Despite all the doctors’ efforts the child died at
midday from her serious injuries,” said Christoph
Mierau, a spokesman for the Vienna Hospitals
The girl had been in intensive care for two weeks.
Prosecutors are investigating the parents, who
have two other children, for alleged mistreatment
of a minor with fatal consequences.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Relatives and friends of the victims of the Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 disaster attend a commemoration with images of victims projected on a
screen at RAI in Amsterdam.
Grieving Dutch
hold memorial
for MH17 slain
A pro-Russian gunman stands guard yesterday next to parts of the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 at the
crash site near the village of Hrabove, some 80km east of Donetsk.
New news service to
battle �propaganda’
ussia launched a new
news service yesterday
to challenge the “aggressive
propaganda” of the West and
provide an “alternative interpretation” of global events.
The new media brand,
Sputnik, is the reworked foreign language service of the
state-owned RIA Novosti news
agency and Voice of Russia radio, which underwent a major
rehaul last December under
the leadership of notorious anchorman Dmitry Kiselyov.
Launching Sputnik before an
audience including diplomats
and government officials, Kiselyov said the new outlet will
propagate a “multi-coloured”
world where “Russia is Russian”.
“We are against aggressive
propaganda that is now being fed to the world and which
forces a unipolar construction
of the world,” he said. “We believe that it is unrealistic, that
it leads humanity toward suffering and blood, and that there
will be nothing good along this
Kiselyov is well-known as an
anchor of weekend programming on the Rossiya channel,
where he at one point boasted
that Russia could turn the US
into radioactive ash.
In another infamous talk
show appearance, Kiselyov
suggested that homosexuals
should be banned from donating blood and their hearts
burned if they are involved in a
car accident.
RIA Novosti was hastily disbanded in December and
Kiselyov put at the helm of the
newly-created Rossiya Segodnya.
While RIA Novosti continues
to use the brand in the Russian
language, its foreign language
website and social networking
pages now redirect to SputnikNews.
In March Kiselyov was
blacklisted by the European
Union due to his “propaganda
supporting the deployment of
Russian forces in Ukraine”.
He said the new company
would focus on radio and online formats, hiring up to 70
people in each of its “hubs”
around the world, including all
of the former Soviet countries,
Washington, Beijing, and several European capitals.
Russia has been waging an
information war over the crisis
in Ukraine at a time when relations with the West are at their
lowest point since the Cold
Kiselyov did not say how
much the expansion will cost,
saying merely that reports that
the state subsidies earmarked
for RIA Novosti and RT were
tripled are untrue.
he Netherlands held a
sombre and emotional
memorial yesterday for
the 298 people who died when
Malaysia Airlines flight MH17
was shot down over war-torn
eastern Ukraine in July.
“What if the holiday had
started a day later? What if the
plane had been late? What if I
wake up and realise it was all just
a dream?” Prime Minister Mark
Rutte told the memorial ceremony in Amsterdam, attended by
1,600 of the bereaved.
“But there is no what if? Only
the harsh reality of 298 dead,” he
told the ceremony, also attended
by King Willem Alexander and
Queen Maxima, as 298 large
candles burned in memory of
the victims, two-thirds of them
“They will not be forgotten,
the beautiful, warm and touching memories are forever,” Rutte
said, with flags flying at halfmast around the Netherlands.
Many of those killed on the
flight were children, starting
their summer holidays on the
doomed Amsterdam to Kuala
Lumpur flight, and their classmates ceremoniously placed
flowers among the candles.
King Willem (left) and
Prime Minister Rutte
(second left) are seen
with Queen Maxima
(second right) and
Princess Beatrix at
the national memorial
for the victims of
Malaysian Airlines
MH17, at the RAI
convention centre in
Right: Relatives and
friends of the victims
of the Malaysia
Airlines Flight MHI7
disaster grieve during
the ceremony.
Anton Kotte, who lost three
relatives in the crash including
his son, said the time since the
disaster had been like riding a
train that never stopped with the
other bereaved.
“We didn’t know each other
but we are partners in misfortune
and we stare out the window,”
said Kotte. “Today the train has
stopped, in Amsterdam. We
have another chance to reflect.
We wear white armbands with
the words �We shall never forget
Mourners from the different countries affected read out
the names and ages of all those
killed, in a ceremony broadcast
live on Dutch television and radio, marked by musical performances by famous Dutch artists.
Gita Wiegel, 13, who lost her
mother on the flight, said: “The
idea that I wouldn’t see her for
four weeks was awful, but this is
so much more awful. My mother wanted the best for me, and
that’s why I go on with my life,
for her. I want her to be able to
look down on me from above and
be proud of me.”
A trumpet rendition of The
Last Post was followed by a
minute’s silence.
Ukraine and the West say the
Boeing 777 was shot down by
separatist п¬Ѓghters using a BUK
surface-to-air missile supplied
Putin accuses Kiev forces of stalling MH17 probe
Russian President Vladimir Putin said yesterday that the investigation of
the MH17 crash site is stalling due to Kiev’s constant shelling of the rebelcontrolled area in eastern Ukraine.
Putin told Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak that rebels were not
hindering access to the site of the Malaysia Airlines crash, in which 298
people died in July when the aircraft came down in an area controlled by
pro-Russian separatists.
“Of course the rebels are not shooting, that is done by the various military
groups fighting on the side of Ukraine’s official authorities,” Putin was
quoted as saying by state news agency RIA-Novosti.
“The opposite side is constantly shelling this territory and that does not
permit comprehensive working at the site of the crash,” Putin told Razak
as the two met on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation
summit in Beijing.
Ukraine and the West blame Russia for supplying the separatists with the
Buk surface-to-air missile that shot down the Boeing 777 plane on July 17,
while Moscow and the rebels have pointed the finger at Kiev.
Five more coffins of passengers who were on the Amsterdam-Kuala
Lumpur flight were flown to the Netherlands on Saturday for identification.
by Russia, but Moscow strongly
denies the charges, pointing the
п¬Ѓnger at Kiev.
So far 289 victims have been
identified among body parts recovered from the site by a team
led by investigators from The
Netherlands but Dutch Foreign
Minister Bert Koenders warned
on Saturday that some remains
may never be recovered.
Five more coffins of remains
as well as personal effects flew
to the Netherlands on Saturday,
where they are to be identified.
Experts from The Netherlands
have made four trips to the crash
site since a fragile ceasefire deal
was signed in early September
between rebels and government
The visits come after international investigators were forced
to halt an initial probe at the
crash site in August due to heavy
A preliminary report by Dutch
investigators in September found
the jet was hit by numerous
“high-energy objects”.
Ukraine accuses Russia of further military build-up
n alleged Russian military
presence on Ukrainian
territory drew renewed
condemnation from Kiev yesterday as officials reported an evergrowing contingent of forces
from Moscow in separatist-held
areas in Ukraine’s east.
“Significant numbers of armoured vehicles and personnel
continue to arrive in the districts
controlled by militants,” Ukrainian National Security Council
spokesman Andriy Lysenko said
in Kiev, according to an official
He added that Russian and
separatist troops are being concentrated along the demarcation
line which divides them from
government troops.
Separatists in the Donbass region have said they would like to
secede from Ukraine and eventually join Russia.
The recent military build-up
began after they held elections
on November 2, which Kiev and
the West rejected as illegal.
Lysenko said Ukraine spotted
some 50 trucks on Saturday towing artillery howitzers from Russia towards the Ukrainian city of
Snizhne, east of Donetsk.
The Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe
(OSCE) has said that its observers
saw a similar convoy on the same
day in the same region, consisting of more than 40 unmarked
trucks, 19 of which were towing
It said the lorries “contained
personnel in dark green uniforms
without insignia”.
The OSCE observers spotted another convoy of nine unmarked tanks in southern Donetsk that day.
On Sunday the OSCE said it
observed another two convoys
east of Donetsk with 17 unmarked
trucks each, many of which were
towing artillery systems.
The OSCE did not say where
the convoys might have come
from, but Lysenko said on Sunday that Ukraine had no doubt
that they were from Russia.
Separatist leaders denied this,
saying that the armour and heavy
weapons were their own.
Russia also vehemently denies
that any of its troops are п¬Ѓghting
in Ukraine.
Trucks without licence plates tow a 122mm howitzer artillery piece
yesterday through Makiivka. New unidentified armoured columns
rumbled toward the pro-Moscow rebel stronghold in eastern Ukraine
yesterday as fears grew of a return to all-out fighting in the war-torn
Violence continues in the region despite a ceasefire brokered
between various factions in early
Lysenko said yesterday that
two Ukrainian soldiers were
killed and п¬Ѓve injured during the
past 24 hours.
Scandinavian jet �nearly crashed into Russian warplane’
Scandinavian airliner carrying 132 passengers nearly crashed earlier this year
into a Russian warplane that was
flying covertly, a study of RussiaWest military incidents said yesterday.
Swedish media reported that
the two planes came within 90m
of each other in the air some
80km southeast of the Swedish
city of Malmo on March 3.
“A collision was apparently
avoided thanks only to good
visibility and the alertness of
the passenger plane pilots,” the
European Leadership Network
(ELN) think-tank’s report said.
The Scandinavian Airlines
Boeing 737 was on its way from
Copenhagen to Rome.
The Russian reconnaissance
plane “did not transmit its position”, said the report entitled
Dangerous Brinkmanship: Close
Military Encounters Between
Russia and the West in 2014.
The narrowly avoided incident
would have been “comparable to
the tragedy of flight MH17 over
eastern Ukraine”, it said, referring to the downing of the Malaysia Airlines plane on July 17 in
which 298 people died.
The report listed a total of 45
incidents so far this year – almost
all of them linked to air and naval
war games in different parts of
the world including the Pacific.
The SAS incident was classified as “high risk”, along with two
others: the alleged abduction of
an Estonian security service operative by Russian agents from
an Estonian border post on September 5 and the reports of “foreign underwater activity” off the
Swedish coast last month.
The study also counted 11
“serious incidents with escalation risk” including four cases of
“harassment” of US and Swedish
planes in international airspace
by armed Russian п¬Ѓghter jets.
Among the 11 were also two
cases of Russian aircraft con-
ducting close overflights over
Canadian and US ships in the
Black Sea and Russian aircraft
violating Swedish airspace on a
mock “bombing raid” mission
and Russian planes conducting
a mock attack on the heavilypopulated Danish island of Bornholm.
The Soviet Union’s last leader
Mikhail Gorbachev on Saturday
warned that the world was on the
“brink of a new Cold War” at an
event to mark 25 years since the
Berlin Wall’s fall.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
No beef at Burger King’s
new outlet in Delhi
Nursery student
allegedly molested
Verdict in Mishra murder
case deferred to Dec 8
Kashmir secretariat
opens in winter capital
Five of family die
in Delhi factory fire
Burger King is famous as the home of the beefy
Whopper hamburger, but not in India, where
the American fast food empire opened its first
franchise on Sunday featuring chicken, lamb
and vegetarian fare. The debut of the chain’s
New Delhi branch marks the 100th country to
have a Burger King restaurant, the Miami-based
company said in a statement. “The Burger King
team spent months developing a unique locally
sourced menu that has been researched and
tested by more than 5,000 customers across
eight cities,” for its beef-free establishment in
India. The company said among the “innovative”
items on its Delhi menu are Whoppers made from
mutton and chicken, and a paneer melt sandwich.
Angry parents and guardians yesterday staged
a demonstration alleging that a nursery student
at a Kolkata school was allegedly molested.
According to the parents, the incident happened
on November 3 when the victim was allegedly
touched inappropriately by a staff member
while they were being taken for an outing in
a school bus. The matter came to light after
the child told her parents about the ordeal on
Sunday. “The school has been trying to hush up
the matter; it has been more than a week but no
action has been taken,” said one of the parents.
The parents and guardians claimed they were
apprehensive of the security of the children and
demanded that the school launch a probe.
A New Delhi court yesterday set December 8
for delivering verdict in the 39-year-old case of
the murder of the then railway minister Lalit
Narayan Mishra. District Judge Vinod Goel
was set to pronounce the verdict yesterday
but deferred it. Four followers of the Hindu
sect Anand Marg - Gopalji, Ranjan Dwivedi,
Santoshanand Avadhuta and Sudevananda
Avadhuta - are facing trial in the case. As railway
minister, Mishra had gone to Samastipur on
January 2, 1975, to declare open the SamastipurMuzaffarpur broad-gauge railway line. A bomb
explosion on the dais seriously injured him. He
was rushed to the railway hospital at Danapur
where he died the following day.
The Jammu and Kashmir civil secretariat
yesterday started functioning from Jammu in the
winter capital after six months in Srinagar. Chief
Minister Omar Abdullah was given the traditional
guard of honour on his arrival at the secretariat
that houses the offices of the chief minister, his
ministerial colleagues and all top bureaucrats.
A contingent of the Jammu and Kashmir
Police presented arms to Abdullah. Because of
the model code of conduct in force ahead of
state assembly polls, the chief minister’s press
conference was not organised in the secretariat.
Following more than a century-old tradition, the
secretariat and all other top offices shuttle on a
six-month basis between Jammu and Srinagar.
Four children were among five members of
a family who died due to suffocation as a fire
broke out at a small, paper-plate making unit in
New Delhi yesterday. The fire broke out around
3.14am at the factory located in Begampur in
west Delhi. Eight fire tenders were rushed to
the spot and fire fighters managed to douse
the flames by 6am, an official said. “Five
people died due to suffocation,” said the fire
official. “All the victims belonged to Bihar. At
the time of the incident, they were sleeping in
the two-room factory,” Deputy Commissioner
of Police Vikramjeet Singh said. He said the
factory was run by Pintu Shah, whose son
Niranjan died in the incident.
India vows to
do everything
to bring back
Bhopal gas
leak victims
stage hunger
strike in Delhi
New Delhi
mid reports that Prime
Minister Narendra Modi
has spoken to Sri Lankan
President Mahinda Rajapakse on
the issue of п¬Ѓve Indian п¬Ѓshermen
sentenced to death in the island
nation, India said yesterday that
it is “examining all avenues and
“will do everything possible to
ensure” their return.
External affairs ministry
spokesman Syed Akbaruddin said the Indian High Commission in Colombo has got
the judgment from a Sri Lanka
lower court on the sentencing
of Emerson, P Augustus, R Wilson, K Prasath and J Langlet who
were sentenced to death by the
Colombo High Court on October
30 on charges of drug trafficking.
He said the judgment is more
than 200 page long and in Sinhalese.
India has hired “the best legal
brains” in Sri Lanka to fight the
case. The lawyers are examining
the judgment.”
“We are examining the best
avenues to proceed so that the
п¬Ѓve п¬Ѓshermen can be brought
back home safely. What is the
best process is a work in process.
We will do everything possible
to ensure the return of the п¬Ѓve
п¬Ѓshermen in accordance with Sri
Lankan legal process,” he added.
Akbaruddin also said that India accords “very high priority”
to the matter.
“We are exploring a variety of
avenues to ensure their return,”
he said, adding that they have
not arrived at a conclusion on
the avenues on which to proceed.
“It is a delicate matter,” he
said, and added that “we haven’t
reached a situation where we
could say the situation has
reached a happy conclusion.”
Last week, India’s High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Yash Sinha
met the five fishermen at Colombo’s Welikada prison and assured
them of every effort to secure their
early release and repatriation.
Activists urge the
government against
overlooking any
environmental crimes
committed by companies
in its quest to lure foreign
New Delhi
A child looks on as a group of Bhopal gas tragedy survivors stage a hunger strike in New Delhi yesterday.
Greenpeace: govt moves
will hurt environment
New Delhi
oves by the government to block
and weaken environmental
protection laws send a “chilling message,” the head of the
lobby group said yesterday, as
he urged the prime minister to
release the money.
Kumi Naidoo also called on
India not to lose sight of the
environment in its campaign to
boost economic growth, saying
the country of 1.2bn had a leading role to play in saving the
New Delhi tightened controls on foreign fund transfers
to Greenpeace India in June after the Intelligence Bureau accused activist groups of “stalling development projects”
by protesting against power
projects, mining and genetically modified food.
The new government has also
been accused of watering down
environmental rules after it allowed polluting industries to
operate closer to national parks,
and said small coal miners could
expand production by 50%
without seeking public approval.
“It’s been a little bit of a
shock to see the allegation being
made that civil society is acting
against the national interest,”
Naidoo said in an interview.
“The clampdown of Greenpeace on the one hand as well
as the watering down of certain
aspects of the current environmental legislation does send a
very chilling message.”
“It’s been a little bit of a
shock to see the allegation
being made that civil
society is acting against
the national interest”
The Greenpeace executive
director urged against governing “in a way where we pretend
as if we don’t have children and
their children coming afterwards” and said leaders should
not be driven purely by “the
tyranny of quarterly reporting
cycles where businesses have to
show profit.”
“India has a leadership role
to play if we are to succeed in
securing this planet for future
generations,” he said, adding
that he hoped to meet the environment and home ministers
before leaving the country tomorrow.
Naidoo defended Greenpeace’s record in India, citing a solar energy project in
the eastern state of Bihar and
a campaign against Indian energy group giant Essar’s plans
to mine coal in central Madhya
Pradesh state, which he said
would damage one of India’s
oldest forests.
India’s biggest corporate
groups have flocked to business-friendly Prime Minister
Narendra Modi, whose government swept to power in May
elections on a pledge to revive
the ailing economy.
Since coming to power, his
Bharatiya Janata Party has
pushed through a series of
long-awaited moves that will
make it easier for companies to
win approval for new projects.
But it has faced criticism
over the environmental impact
of these moves.
Naidoo, who is South African,
said he had appealed personally
to Modi to release Greenpeace’s
funds after the Delhi High Court
recently directed authorities to
unblock them.
ictims of the Bhopal gas
disaster, suffering deformities and illnesses,
staged a hunger strike in the Indian capital yesterday for increased
compensation ahead of the 30th
anniversary of the tragedy.
Holding signs that read “Justice for Bhopal,” about 100
mainly women and children
gathered at a protest site in New
Delhi, including п¬Ѓrst and second
generation victims of the world’s
worst industrial accident.
Sarangi said a handful of the
protesters would fast indefinitely in the hope of attracting Prime
Minister Narendra Modi’s attention to the plight of the victims
of the 1984 disaster.
“We have come here with the
hope that the present government led by Mr Modi will correct
the wrongs done by the previous
government and ensure gas victims are given extra compensation,” he told the crowd.
Sarangi also urged Modi’s
Bharatiya Janata Party-led gov-
Cooks stage protest
ernment, which won power in
May on a pledge to revive the
economy, against overlooking
any environmental crimes committed by companies in its quest
to lure foreign investment.
Asked what the death of Warren Anderson, who headed the
Union Carbide at the time of the
disaster, means to the victims,
Sarangi said: “His death will
only affect his criminal liability
alone as the principal accused.”
Thousands of people were
killed when 40 tonnes of lethal
methyl isocyanate gas spewed
from the Union Carbide chemical plant in Bhopal on December
2, 1984.
The disaster killed 8,00010,000 people within the п¬Ѓrst
three days, according to data
from the state-run Indian Council of Medical Research, but hundreds of thousands more suffer
the consequences.
“I remember people running
from their homes to try and get
away from the gas, children dead
in the streets,” said Premlata
Chaudhary, 67, who lives in her
ancestral village less than a kilometre from the plant.
“I remember covering my face
and my children’s, just grabbing
them and running,” said Chaudhary, who lost one of her six children in the disaster.
Chaudhary, who suffers from
respiratory and stomach problems, said her Rs25,000 ($406)
in compensation from the com-
Monkeys create
panic in Shimla
Daily wage cooks who are hired in the government schools
of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh as part of the �mid-day meal
scheme’, shout slogans and wave utensils during a protest
in New Delhi yesterday. The workers were demanding
permanent employment with better facilities including
pany was п¬Ѓnalised 15 years after
the disaster.
“In 2010, a group of ministers decided to pay additional compensation of Rs1 lakh
(Rs100,000) but left as many
as 93% survivors without any
specific or legal reason. We are
calling upon this government to
correct that and pay Rs1 lakh to
all those affected,” said Rashida
Bee, president of the Bhopal Gas
Peedit Mahila Stationery Karamchari Sangh.
“In these 30 years, we have
fought at all levels - state, national and international. But
even today we await justice. The
government needs to fulfil the
promises made to us,” Balkrishna Namdeo of Bhopal Gas Peedit
Nirashrit Pension Bhogi Sangharsh Morcha, said. The protest
site has victims with placards
reading messages like “Revise
the п¬Ѓgures of curative petition
now!”, “Justice for Bhopal now!”
The protesters yesterday demanded the Modi government
attempt to speed up legal action
for greater compensation.
The Indian government in 2012
п¬Ѓled a petition in the Supreme
Court asking for higher compensation from the company, which
was initially set at $470mn in a
settlement reached in 1989.
US-based Dow Chemical,
which bought Union Carbide
after the disaster, insists that all
of the company’s liabilities were
settled in the 1989 agreement.
prowling in gangs on
the streets of this popular tourist resort has created
panic among residents and tourists with a woman being their
latest victim.
A mother of two died last week
after falling off the roof of her
house. According to the police,
Mamta Sachdeva was on the balcony when she was attacked by
the simians. She jumped off the
balcony in panic.
In another incident, a girl was
bitten by a langur in her school
on Friday.
“They have been causing
havoc by biting passersby, stealing food and brawling on the
streets,” said local resident Ambika Sharma.
“It’s an extremely dicey
situation once again as the
wildlife officials tasked with
managing the monkeys have
failed to check the menace,”
she added.
mayor Takinder Panwar charged the government with failure to contain the
“On aver-
age, more than 100 dog bite and
over 60 monkey bite cases are
being reported every month
in the Rippon Hospital (which
was set up in 1884 by the British rulers and functioned as the
government district hospital)
alone,” he said.
Panwar said the monkey menace has reached an alarming proportion and needs to be tackled
Kuldeep Singh Tanwar, state
convener of farmers’ outfit Kheti
Bachao Sangharsh Samiti, said
that selective killing of the marauding simians is the only solution.
“The state high court in 2011
restrained the state government’s decision to allow farmers to shoot monkeys that have
been destroying their crops and
fruits. Since then the previous
(Bharatiya Janata Party) and the
present government (Congress)
have failed to convince the
court about the need to
declare to go for selective killing,” Tanwar
Coming down heavily on the state government, a division bench
comprising Chief Justice Kurian Joseph and
Justice V K Ahuja on
January 6, 2011, directed
authorities to stop issuing
permits to kill monkeys.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Nearly third of ministers charged with crimes
New Delhi
ttempted murder, waging
war on the state, criminal
intimidation and fraud
are some of the charges on the
rap sheets of ministers Prime
Minister Narendra Modi appointed to the cabinet on Sunday, jarring with his pledge to
clean up politics.
Seven of 21 new ministers face
prosecution, taking the total in
the 66-member cabinet to almost one-third, a higher proportion than before the weekend
At least п¬Ѓve people in the
cabinet have been charged with
serious offences such as rape and
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley
said any suggestions there were
criminals in the cabinet were
“completely baseless.”
“These are cases arising out of
criminal accusations, not cases
out of a crime,” he told reporters
yesterday, adding that Modi had
personally vetted the new ministers.
Ram Shankar Katheria, a lawmaker from Agra, was appointed
junior education minister yet
has been accused of more than
20 criminal offences including
attempted murder and promoting religious or racial hostility.
Katheria was not immediately
available for comment and a mo-
bile phone number given by his
office was switched off.
The inclusion of such politicians does not sit easily with
Modi’s election promise to root
out corruption, and has led to
criticism that he is failing to
change the political culture in
India where wealthy, tainted
politicians sometimes п¬Ѓnd it
easier to win votes.
“It shows scant respect for
the rule of law or public sentiment,” said Jagdeep Chhokar,
co-founder of the Association
for Democratic Reforms (ADR)
which campaigns for better governance. “Including these people in the cabinet is a bad omen
for our democracy.”
Modi won the biggest par-
liamentary majority in three
decades in May with a promise
of graft-free governance after
the previous government led by
Congress Party was mired in a
series of damaging corruption
Soon after coming to power,
Modi called for courts to fast
track cases against politicians in
an effort to curb political criminality in the world’s largest democracy. Cases in India’s overstretched judicial system often
drag on for years.
Yet Modi’s cabinet includes
twice as many politicians facing
criminal charges as the previous
Congress one.
Hansraj Gangaram Ahir,
the new junior chemicals and
fertilizer minister, was another eye-catching choice.
He is charged with around 20
offences, including intent to
wage war against India, criminal intimidation and abetting
a mutiny.
Ahir did not respond to requests for comment, and it was
not immediately clear what incidents the more serious charges
pertained to. His secretary said
the cases were politically motivated.
Ahir is best known for helping
unearth corruption in the coal
industry while he served on a
parliamentary committee.
Shrikant Sharma, a spokesman for Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), said it was up
to courts to decide if ministers
were guilty, and said many of the
charges related to political rivalries.
The BJP is led by Amit Shah,
the closest aide of Modi, who
is accused of ordering police to
carry out three extrajudicial killings and running an extortion
racket when he served under
Modi as home minister in Gujarat almost a decade ago.
He has denied the charges. He
is facing a trial in Mumbai.
The number of lawmakers
charged with offences has more
than doubled in the last two decades. About a third of federal and
state legislators face charges, the
ADR said.
Politicians facing criminal
charges are twice as likely to win
an election as their untainted
peers, making them the preferred choice of candidates for
political parties in India, according to a study published last year
by the group.
In office, these politicians are
sometimes accused of enriching
themselves or their backers by
siphoning off money from government spending.
“We hear again and again
the country’s leaders promise to clean up the system,”
said Satish Misra, a political
analyst at the Observer Research Foundation. “Self interest prevails over principles.
That is why the system never
Ahead of trust
vote Shiv Sena
decides to sit in
the opposition
arely two days before the
Bharatiya Janata Party
minority government in
Maharashtra headed by Chief
Minister Devendra Fadnavis is
to seek a vote of confidence, its
former ally Shiv Sena yesterday
decided to sit in the opposition.
However, there is no immediate
danger to the survival of the Fadnavis ministry as the Nationalist
Congress Party (NCP) with its 41
members said it will extend “unconditional external support” to the
BJP government in case of voting in
the interest of political stability.
Announcing the Sena’s position,
party spokesman Neelam Gorhe
said: “We have sent a letter signed
by Shiv Sena president Uddhav
Thackeray to the legislature secretariat. In the letter we have requested that the name of Sena legislature
party leader Eknath Shinde should
be announced as leader of opposition at the earliest.”
She added that the Sena’s
claim was by virtue of its position as the second largest
party with 63 legislators in the
287-member assembly, with the
Congress having 42 and NCP 41.
The BJP is the single largest
party with 121 members after one
of its legislators died recently
and one pre-poll ally, the Rashtriya Samaj Paksha.
The Shiv Sena’s announcement came even as Thackeray on
Sunday gave a two-day ultimatum to the BJP to declare that it
would not seek NCP’s support in
the confidence vote.
Khadse, however, expressed optimism that the BJP government
would not only win the floor test but
also complete its full п¬Ѓve-year term.
“It is the Shiv Sena’s decision... we are not worried as
many of their legislators have
already assured us of support.
There are sufficient MLAs (legislators) to help us secure a majority,” Khadse claimed, as the party
has to ensure 144 votes falling in
its kitty tomorrow.
Earlier in the day, Gorhe indicated the party’s mood when she
said talks with the BJP on powersharing and other pending matters had been stalled.
The Sena’s 63 members came
wearing traditional Maharashtrian orange turbans, raising slogans and symbolically occupied
the opposition benches in the assembly as the three-day assembly
session started yesterday.
Besides, the Sena also plans to
contest for the post of assembly
speaker, scheduled prior to the
vote of confidence tomorrow.
The Sena’s move was apparently triggered by NCP president
Sharad Pawar’s reiteration of his
party’s “unconditional external
support” to the BJP in the interest of political stability in the
state and to avoid fresh elections.
“We do not want to destabilise
the government. We want a stable
government in the state. The NCP
legislators will take a decision at
the relevant time for whom to vote
or not,” Pawar said, implying that
his party was the key to the government’s survival.
He also ticked off the Shiv
Sena by saying that “the NCP did
not require anybody’s advice on
whom to support or not.”
Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis arrives at the
Legislative Assembly in Mumbai yesterday.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, who has been given the additional portfolio of Information and Broadcasting, addresses a press conference in New Delhi yesterday. Also seen are
Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore (right) who is the minister of state for Information and Broadcasting, and Minister of State for Environment, Forest and Climate Change Prakash Javadekar.
Ministers take charge
after cabinet revamp
Jaitley gets additional charge
of I&B; Gowda loses railways
and Harsh Vardhan health
New Delhi
started work yesterday, a
day after Prime Minister
Narendra Modi expanded his
cabinet and reshuffled ministries
in a move aimed at speeding up
economic reforms.
Twenty-one new ministers
were sworn in on Sunday, following which the portfolios were
Among the prominent faces
who took charge were Defence
Minister Manohar Parrikar,
Health Minister J P Nadda and
Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley
also took additional charge of
the information and broadcasting ministry.
Harsh Vardhan, who was removed from the health ministry,
Modi to address parliament,
engage diaspora in Australia
New Delhi
arendra Modi will address Australian parliament during his upcoming visit to the country - the п¬Ѓrst
by an Indian prime minister in 28
years, an official confirmed yesterday.
The trip comes just two
months after Australian Prime
Minister Tony Abbott’s tour
of India, during which the two
countries sealed a long-awaited
nuclear energy deal.
“Besides addressing the parliament in Canberra during this
п¬Ѓrst PM visit since 1986, Modi
will also hold a major event with
the Indian community in Sydney where we expect a crowd of
at least 15,000 people,” foreign
ministry official Ashok Wadhwa
said yesterday.
Modi’s public address in Sydney is expected to be similar to
his New York visit in September,
where he was greeted like a rock
star as he addressed a sellout
crowd of several thousand members of Indian diaspora at the
Madison Square Garden.
The foreign ministry described Modi’s historic visit to
Australia as part of its efforts
to �re-engage’ Australia and its
Modi will also be meeting top
business leaders and politicians
in Australia in efforts to improve
economic ties between the two
“We have overlapping economic interests, particularly in
the resources sector where India has already invested around
$10bn,” said Wadhwa.
There will be four different events
where Modi will interact with CEOs
and business leaders in Australia.
“This also includes a special
reception that will be held by
the Australian premier for Modi,
with a select audience in attendance at the Melbourne Cricket
Ground,” Wadhwa added.
The Indian government said
that contentious issues of the
past, such as racist attacks on
the Indian student community
in Australia, had been resolved.
took over as the new science and
technology minister.
D V Sadanand Gowda, who
was replaced by Prabhu as the
railway minister, took charge as
the law and justice minister.
Some prominent names who
will take over today are Ministers of State for Parliamentary
Affairs Rajiv Pratap Rudy and
Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and Rural Development Minister Birendra Singh.
Speaking to reporters, Jaitley
said: “Earlier too, I have been the
information and broadcasting
minister, but then print media
was more and very little electronic media. But now radio and
digital media have grown tremendously.”
Parrikar, who is a former chief
minister of Goa, said indigenisation of defence manufacturing
and higher transparency were
his top priorities.
Nadda’s appointment as
health minister comes amid a
controversy over All India Institute of Medical Services
whistleblower Sanjiv Chaturvedi
demanding a Central Bureau
of Investigation probe into his
removal as the institute’s chief
vigilance officer. It was reported
that Nadda had written to the
then health minister, Harsh Vardhan, for Chaturvedi’s removal
as CVO.
Others who assumed office
were Sanwarlal Jat as minister of state (MoS), water
resources; Babul Supriyo as
MoS, urban development; V
K Singh as MoS, programme
implementation,;Vijay Sampla and Krishan Pal as MoS,
social justice and empowerment;
Y S Chowdary as MoS science and technology and P Radhakrishnan as MoS road transport, highways and shipping.
Others who also assumed office included Bandaru Dattatreya
as labour and employment minister, Jayant Sinha as MoS, п¬Ѓnance, Jitendra Singh as minister
for development of northeast
region (DoNER), Rajyavardhan
Singh Rathore as MoS, information and broadcasting and
Sudarshan Bhagat as MoS, rural
This was the first ministry
expansion since Modi took over
as prime minister in May after
leading the Bharatiya Janata
Party to a landslide election
Modi earlier promised a lean
government but industry heads
welcomed the expansion, saying
it was needed to speed up economic reforms.
India now has 66 ministers,
junior ministers and ministers of
Modi has promised to get India back to the 8% GDP growth
path, up from the below 5% of
the previous two years.
New minister to promote yoga
Yoga-loving Prime Minister
Narendra Modi yesterday
appointed a new minister to
promote the ancient discipline
along with various systems of
traditional medicine. Shripad
Yesso Naik is to take charge of
the Department of Ayurveda,
Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani,
Siddha and Homoeopathy
(AAYUSH). It was previously
part of the Health Ministry.
The Bharatiya Janata
Party government earlier
announced the National
Aayush Mission to give a push
Film festival starts
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and film star Amitabh Bachchan, his son Abhishek
and daughter-in-law Aishwarya Rai watch as actor Shah Rukh Khan lights the traditional lamp
during the inauguration of the 20th Kolkata International Film Festival at the Netaji Indoor
Stadium in Kolkata yesterday. The annual film festival started in 1995 and is the second oldest
international film festival in India where more than 137 films from 60 countries will be showcased.
to alternative medicine with
a special focus on Ayurveda.
It envisages setting up
departments and hospitals
offering traditional medicine
to improve healthcare
services in the country. Modi,
a vegetarian who has been
practicing yoga for years, is
a proponent of traditional
medicine and yoga. He has
called on the UN to observe
an international yoga day and
also discussed the practice
with President Barack Obama
during a visit to US.
Explosion heard
near NIA office
An explosion was heard near
an office of counter-terrorism
National Investigation Agency
in Kolkata yesterday, police and
home ministry officials said. A
senior police official investigating
the incident said no trace of
explosive had been found in the
area near the NIA office. “There
was a loud explosion-like sound
heard around 7pm in the area.
We reached the spot but there
was no trace of any explosive,”
Rajeev Kumar, commissioner of
Bidhannagar City Police, under
which the area falls, said. A home
ministry official said nobody had
been injured. The official said
the ministry planned to send a
team from Delhi to investigate.
The NIA is investigating an
earlier explosion in Burdwan,
near Kolkata, in October that the
agency believes was a botched
plot by Bangladeshi militants to
kill Bangladesh’s Prime Minister
Sheikh Hasina.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Defiant Mexican official refuses to relent for massacre gaffe
Mexico City
espite sparking outrage
by saying he had “had
enough” when grilled by
reporters over the abduction and
apparent massacre of 43 trainee
teachers, Mexico’s attorney general was unrepentant yesterday
and said he would do it all again.
grant for
Jesus Murillo tried to cut short
a news conference on Friday
evening, arching his eyebrows
with the aside “Ya me canse”,
or “I’ve had enough”. His words
quickly went viral on social media, and protesters painted the
hashtag .YaMeCanse ... de miedo
(I’ve had enough ... of fear) on
the gates to his office.
A group of protesters set п¬Ѓre
to the wooden door of the cer-
emonial presidential palace in
Mexico City’s historic city centre on Saturday night, as anger
over the government’s handling
of the case mounts.
Asked if his phrase was unfortunate, a defiant Murillo told
local television yesterday: “No.
I was tired and that is the truth.
“Naturally, I have no reason
to lie, I’m as human as the next
person and I also get tired,” he
said, when asked if he would say
it again. “I have slept four hours
a night for 30 days, and that day
I had been awake for 40 hours.”
The government says corrupt
police in league with a local drug
gang abducted and apparently
murdered the 43 trainee teachers in the southwestern state of
Guerrero in late September.
President Enrique Pena Nieto
took office two years ago vowing
Strike lifted
MCT Information Services
Mexico City
Employees of aerospace firm Embraer assemble in front of the headquarters of the company,
in Sao Jose dos Campos, 100km from Sao Paulo, Brazil, yesterday. Workers at Embraer
suspended a strike over a pay claim as their union said it would ask the courts to rule on
their demand for a 10% wage rise. The decision was backed by almost 8,000 workers of the
10,000 who downed tools last Wednesday at the firm’s Sao Jose dos Campos headquarters,
the metalworkers’ union said.
exican journalists reported that President
Enrique Pena Nieto and his wife possess a posh
mansion built to their taste by
a company that has grown fat
with government contracts.
Pena Nieto has not reported
the mansion, worth an estimated $7mn, on his official
declaration of assets in the past
two years, the team said.
The report may test his image as a leader who claims to
battle corruption and п¬Ѓght for
the rule of law.
Known as Casa La Palma, the
mansion was built by a subsidiary of Grupo Higa, which has
earned hundreds of millions of
dollars in contracts under Pena
Nieto, according to reporters for
Aristegui Noticias, a news portal headed by Carmen Aristegui,
a radio and television journalist.
The mansion has an underground parking garage, an elevator, seven bedrooms, marble
floors and a system of recessed
mood lighting that changes
colours. Two distinctive palm
trees jut above its white exterior.
The president’s wife, Angelica Rivera, told a magazine that
the mansion belongs to her and
her husband, and that it will be
their home once they leave Los
Pinos, the official presidential residence in Mexico City’s
Chapultepec Park. The deed to
the mansion, however, remains
in the name of a subsidiary of
Grupo Higa.
Rivera’s claims of ownership
of the mansion might not seem
newsworthy, except for the explosive events of the past week.
Opponents hail criticism
of Colombia dams plan
MCT Information Services
Neiva, Colombia
pponents of a Chinese
plan to construct several
dams along Colombia’s
longest river said they were encouraged by an international
human rights panel’s report
that noted “tension” between
Latin American mega-projects
and “the full exercise of human
The report, issued by the Organisation of American States’
(OAS) human rights commission, addresses testimony last
month in Washington by Colombians who protested alleged
human rights abuses, including
forced displacement, in connection with plans to dam sections
of the nearly 1,000-mile-long
Magdalena River.
“The response by the OAS
encourages us to continue to resist these mega-projects and to
urge the government to adopt a
development model other than
the mining and energy megaprojects they favour,” said Miller
Dussan, a university professor
and opposition leader who went
to Washington to protest the development plan.
The Colombian dispute points
up a common theme across
much of Latin America: how the
needs of Third World countries
to improve the standard of living with massive public works
can bump up against the human
rights of those affected by such
The master plan for more than
a dozen dams, power plants and
canals was drawn up by Hydrochina, a government-owned
Chinese engineering and power
developer that probably would
be the contractor for some of the
facilities. Hydrochina also has
projects underway in Ecuador
and Bolivia.
In addition to the issue of residents being forced from their land
to make way for the reservoirs the
dams would create, the plan raises environmental questions that
opponents say the government
has not fully investigated.
Those include “rising temperatures, that could affect agricul-
ture and the future of the river
itself,” said Dussan, a philosophy
professor at Neiva’s University
of southern Colombia.
In a separate, e-mailed statement, Emilio Alvarez Icaza, executive secretary of the OAS’
Inter-American Commission on
Human Rights, said rights conflicts created by mega-projects
were “not exclusive to Colombia. We are following with close
attention what is happening in
various countries in the region.”
Development of the Magdalena River has already begun,
with construction of the $1bn El
Quimbo dam and hydropower
complex near Neiva. The project,
being built by the Italian-Colombian company Emgesa, is expected to produce enough electricity to light 8% of the homes
and businesses in Colombia.
But El Quimbo is displacing thousands of mostly poor
farmers and peasants, who have
mounted numerous protests and
blockades, saying they will be illegally forced from their homes
after being excluded from the
decision-making process.
his earlier comments yesterday,
Twitter users posted new messages decrying his attitude. “Murillo
... amid the chaos and corruption,
the only thing you are doing is engendering violence” said one.
The government says it found
the charred remains of dozens of
bodies in a garbage dump and in
a river, and that three men detained in the case admitted setting п¬Ѓre to the victims. But the
government does not yet have
scientific evidence that the remains were of the 43 missing
trainee teachers because almost
all of them were so badly burned
that they could not be identified
even with DNA testing.
Murillo said yesterday that two
pieces - a knee joint and another
fragment - could possibly be
identified and have been sent to a
specialist forensics lab in Austria.
Pena Nieto
�given mansion
for awarding
firm contracts’
enezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has announced
the beginning of the Yasser
Arafat Scholarship Programme,
which aims to train 1,000 Palestinians in п¬Ѓelds like medicine.
“We will train at least 1,000
doctors, quickly, now. It is a hard
goal but we can’t fail on this, we
have no excuses. It will be difficult but we will train at least
1,000 Palestinian students. I just
ordered the ministry of education to expand the programme
not just in medicine, we also
will enable them to study engineering, architecture and every
field of knowledge,” Maduro announced, in an address in front
of the newly arrived Palestinian
student delegation to Caracas,
the Venezuelan capital.
The scholarship programme is
named after the former head of
the Palestine Liberation Organisation, and the п¬Ѓrst president of
the Palestinian Authority.
Maduro said that he cried with
emotion when he saw the images
of the Palestinian students, who
landed and started to dance in
their first minutes in Venezuela. “We want to see you dance
again,” said the president.
After hearing that, the Palestinian students started to dance
again in front of the president,
who received from them a Arab
headdress, and gave them his
jacket. “Today, Palestine enters
to the heart of Venezuela,” Maduro said.
More than 20 of the Palestinian students are from Gaza and
the rest from the West Bank. They
were picked up in Jordan by a plane
sent from the Venezuelan government, that also brought 10 tonnes
of humanitarian aid for Gaza.
In May, Venezuela announced
that the South American country will supply oil to Palestine.
In August, Maduro publicly
accused Israel of pursuing “a
war of extermination against
the Palestinian people,” and has
compared Gaza to Auschwitz.
to restore order in Mexico, where
about 100,000 people have died
in violence linked to organised
crime since 2007. But the shocking case of the trainee teachers
has upended his efforts to focus
public attention away from violence and onto a raft of economic
reforms he has pushed through
Congress, and his attorney general’s comments have drawn fury.
As soon as Murillo defended
Mexico awarded a contract
on November 3 to a Chineseled consortium for a highspeed rail link between Mexico
City and Queretaro, a centre of
the aerospace industry. China
Railway Construction Corporation, a mammoth concern
that built up much of China’s
high-speed rail system in the
past decade, led a consortium
that was sole bidder on the
project, which has been valued
at between $3.7bn and $4.3bn.
The award came before Pena
Nieto headed Sunday to Beijing
for a state visit and to attend a
summit of leaders in the Asia
Pacific region.
But in a stunning move certain to put in jeopardy Mexico’s
relations with China, Pena Nieto’s government rescinded the
award late Thursday, reacting
to claims by opposition National Action Party legislators
that the bid was rigged to favour the Chinese-led consortium.
Authorities said the bidding would be reopened for six
months to allow more companies to participate.
One of the members of the
Chinese-led consortium is
Constructora Teya, a Mexican
company owned and controlled
by Grupo Higa.
Pena Nieto’s office released a
statement on Sunday afternoon
saying that Rivera, who had
“consolidated her fortune . . .
over a long professional career,”
struck a deal in January 2012 for
the Grupo Higa subsidiary to
accept a down payment of 30%
for the mansion and п¬Ѓnance the
rest over an unspecified term.
The п¬Ѓve-paragraph statement did not specify the value
placed on the property, the
terms of the loan or acknowl-
edge any wrongdoing in having
the п¬Ѓrst lady accept a loan from
a major government contractor.
Had the China Railway bid
stood, it would have been the
latest stroke of fortune for
Grupo Higa that began when
Pena Nieto, who many saw as
the new face of the ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party,
was governor of the state of
Mexico from 2005 to 2011. The
state wraps around much of the
Under Pena Nieto, the company’s subsidiaries built a regional hospital in specialised
medicine, a highway leading to
the largest airport in the region,
and numerous other projects.
One subsidiary, Eolo Plus, provided aircraft for his 2012 presidential campaign. Still others
provided cement and other
materials to the state.
The Mexican news team under Aristegui estimated the
value of state contracts to Grupo
Higa’s companies while Pena
Nieto was governor at $652mn.
Grupo Higa launched a subsidiary in 2008 that would begin building a mansion in the
posh Lomas de Chapultepec
district of the capital the day
after Pena Nieto announced
publicly that the television actress known to the public as La
Gaviota, or Seagull, for one of
her roles in a popular soap opera, had become his girlfriend.
Pena Nieto and Rivera married in 2010.
It was around then that a
prominent architect, Miguel
Angel Aragones, began collaborating with the president
and his wife on the design of
the mansion, including six
bedrooms for the six children
in the combined marriage, the
Aristegui news team reported.
Farc rebels jailed for
killing tribesmen
Colombian native guards escort seven alleged Farc members
accused of murdering two leaders of their tribe in Toribio,
department of Cauca, Colombia.
n indigenous court has
convicted seven Farc
guerrillas of murdering
two leaders of the Nasa tribe
in western Colombia, sentencing them to between 40 and 60
years in jail and 20 lashes.
The harshest sentence - 60
years prison time - was handed
down to Carlos Ivan Silva, who
confessed to killing two native
leaders on Wednesday.
The victims were removing billboards praising the late
leader of the Revolutionary
Armed Forces of Colombia,
Guillermo Leon Saenz, also
known as Alfonso Cano, when
they were murdered.
Four other defendants were
sentenced to 40 years each for
having “fired indiscriminately
on other members of the community” alongside Silva, said
the leader of the Northern
Cauca indigenous councils association, Gabriel Pavi.
Two teenagers also arrested
were sentenced to 20 lashes
and will be held at a rehabili-
tation centre until age 18, at
which point a new assembly
will reconsider their cases.
The verdicts and sentences
were determined after four
hours of debate by an assembly
of some 3,000 members from
the indigenous reserve in the
Cauca province.
When crimes are committed in aboriginal territory, the
punishment for the accused is
decided by the community and
not the ordinary justice system. Pavi had said Friday the
guerrillas were captured “in
uniform and with rifles” and
that “all are indigenous.”
In Colombia, indigenous
authorities have jurisdiction
over their own territory, unless
it contravenes the constitution
or the laws of the country.
Colombia’s indigenous population reached 1.4mn in 2005,
according to the latest official
п¬Ѓgures, out of a total population of 48.3mn. Following the
trial, the weapons used by the
guerrillas were destroyed in
front of the tribal court.
The sentences will be served
in the state prison at Popayan,
capital of Cauca.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Special courts
soon to hear
terror cases
The special courts will be
set up in each province to
deal with terrorism-related
cases that surface during the
ongoing military operation in
the country
he federal government of
Pakistan has decided to
set up п¬Ѓve special courts
to hear cases related to terrorism
registered under the controversial Protection of Pakistan Act
(PPA) 2014.
A senior law ministry official
revealed that special courts will
be established in each province including one in the capital
to deal with terrorism-related
cases that surface during the ongoing military operation in the
“Names for the special court
judges have been shortlisted,
now we will forward these names
to the respective high courts
chief justices for consultation,”
the official added.
Similarly, law secretary Barrister Zafarullah Khan also confirmed that the government
has given the green light for the
establishment of special courts
across the country.
Commenting on the move, an
active lawyer Chaudhry Faisal
Hussain urged the government
to appoint competent, honest
and brave judges. He cautioned
that the move will provide a legal cover to enforced disappearances in the country.
Marred by controversy, the
PPA act, which allows security
forces to detain suspects for up to
60 days without disclosing their
location or allegations against
them, was challenged by Jamate-Islami (JI) chief Sirajul Haq earlier this year. However, the case
has not been п¬Ѓxed for hearing.
In his petition, the JI chief requested the apex court to strike
down the entire law as it violates the fundamental rights and
Principles of Policy laid down in
Part-II (Chapter-I) of the Constitution.
The petition contended that
the vires of PPA are inconsistent
Islamabad likely to have first advocate general
The government of Pakistan
has decided to create a post of
advocate general for Islamabad
Capital Territory (ICT), for the
first time.
A senior official in the law
ministry said yesterday that
the government has decided to
appoint Mian Abdul Rauf as the
first advocate general. A summary
has already been sent to the
prime minister in this regard.
The official justified creation of
the AG office says the capital
city is a federating unit under
Article 1 of the Constitution with
its own separate high court and
bar council.
Lawyer Chaudhry Faisal
Hussain, however, opposed the
move saying the AG’s post only
exists in provinces.
Before the new post’s creation,
the government should have
amended Islamabad Bar Council
Act 2013, wherein it is mentioned
that chairman of the council will
be an advocate general.
and in negation of fundamental
rights provided in Articles 2-A,
4, 8, 9, 10, 10-A, 12, 14, 15, 19-A,
23, 24 and 25 of the Constitution.
It is further said that the state
is responsible for providing security and no citizen shall be
deprived of life or liberty in accordance with law.
Raising objections over the
government’s plan to set up
special courts, the petition said,
“The establishment of Special
Courts is in violation of Article
10 and 10-A of the Constitution.”
The JI chief further stated that
the definition of enemy, alien
and combatant enemy in the PPA
Act is not in consonance with
the Constitution.
Weighing in on the issue,
former Additional Attorney
General for Pakistan Tariq Mahmood Khokhar, who headed
the missing persons’ cell in the
Supreme Court, said that geographical distinction for special
courts does not make sense as it
excludes Azad Jammu Kashmir
(AJK), Gilgit-Baltistan and most
crucially Fata and Pata.
Interestingly, it was learnt
that the defence ministry had
recommended at least eight
special courts. However, the law
ministry officials claimed that
п¬Ѓve courts would be sufficient to
deal with the current number of
cases in the country.
According to the section 8
of PPA Act, the government in
consultation with the chief justice of the concerned high court
may appoint any individual as a
judge of the special court, who
has served as a sessions judge in
any province of the country or
has been an advocate of the high
court for a period of not less than
ten years.
Nawaz Sharif leaves for Germany
akistan Minister Nawaz
Sharif left for Germany
yesterday for a two-day
official visit to discuss trade and
security ties, an Islamabad official said.
Chancellor Angela Merkel
would be followed by a lunch
in his honour, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Tasnim
Aslam said.
Sharif will also meet the pres-
ident of the German Parliament
and address a business forum
organised by Pakistan Board of
A government official said
that the topics of extremism,
terrorism and Afghanistan
would also be discussed during
the visit.
Germany is Pakistan’s fourthlargest trading partner and its
largest in the European Union,
with bilateral trade of $2.5bn
dollars annually.
There is also a Pakistani diaspora of over 70,000 in Germany, including 2,300 students.
Pakistan schools network
observes anti-Malala day
n association of Pakistani schools held an “I am
not Malala” day yesterday, condemning young Nobel
peace laureate Malala Yousafzai
for what it called her support
for controversial novelist Salman Rushdie.
Education campaigner Malala was shot in the head by the
Taliban in October 2012 but recovered and went on to win this
year’s Nobel peace prize.
The 17-year-old has been
hailed around the world for
standing up for girls’ rights to
education, but the response to
her in Pakistan has not been
universally positive, with some
seeing her as a “Western agent”
on a mission to shame her
The All Pakistan Private
Schools Federation last year
barred its members from buy-
Malala Yousafzai
ing Malala’s memoir I am Malala because of what the group
said was its “anti-Pakistan and
anti-Islam content.”
It said the book, written with
British journalist Christina
Lamb, was too sympathetic to
British novelist Rushdie.
Rushdie in 1989 became
the target of an Iranian fatwa,
or religious edict, calling for
his murder for allegedly blaspheming Islam and the Prophet
Muhammad in his book The Satanic Verses.
Mirza Kashif Ali, the president of the schools’ federation,
said in a statement it was “clear
that Malala has nexus with
Salman Rushdie and Taslima
Nasrin, and also has alignment
with Salman Rushdie’s ideological club”.
“We severely condemned the
chapter of the book in which
Salman Rushdie’s book has
been mentioned as freedom
of expression by Malala while
referring to father’s views,” Ali
He said walks, seminars and
press conferences were held to
highlight the “I am not Malala”
Bangladeshi author Nasrin
was forced to flee her homeland in 1994 after radical Muslims accused her of blasphemy
over her novel Lajja (Shame), in
which a Hindu family is perse-
cuted by Muslims.
Blasphemy is a sensitive issue in Pakistan also, where it
can carry the death penalty.
Malala’s book describes her
life under the Taliban’s brutal
rule in northwest Pakistan’s
Swat valley in the mid-2000s,
hints at her ambition to enter
Pakistani politics and even describes her father’s brief flirtation with Islamic fundamentalism as a youngster.
The book describes public
floggings by the Taliban, their
ban on television, dancing and
music, and the family’s decision to flee Swat along with
nearly 1mn others in 2009 amid
heavy п¬Ѓghting between the
militants and Pakistani troops.
Malala, who lives in Britain
where she went for treatment
after being shot, was jointly
awarded the Nobel Peace Prize
in October alongside India’s
60-year-old Kailash Satyarthi
for their championing of children’s rights.
Court remands four suspects in lynching
Pakistani anti-terrorism court yesterday
remanded in custody
four people accused of killing
a Christian couple for alleged
blasphemy, officials said.
Shehzad Masih, a bonded
labourer, and his pregnant
wife Shama Bibi were beaten
by a mob of 1,500 people then
thrown on top of a lit furnace
last week in a crazed reaction to
rumours they had thrown pages
of the Holy Qur’an into the garbage.
The horrific incident took
place on November 4 in the
tiny hamlet of Chak 59 near
the town of Kot Radha Kishan,
60km southwest of Lahore.
It has sparked protests across
Pakistan by Christians and outrage among rights activists. Police have arrested more than 40
“The police produced four
suspects in anti-terrorism
Pakistani Christians protest against the murder of a couple, in Lahore yesterday.
court and the judge remanded
them into police custody for
further interrogation till November 19,” a prosecution official said.
He said 39 more suspects
were already in jail, out of a total of some 60 suspects named
in the lynching of the Christian
Some 900 students from
Lahore’s missionary schools
staged a demonstration outside
Lahore Press Club against the
Taliban bombs kill 10 Afghan policemen
Nawaz Sharif
wo Taliban bombs killed
at least 10 policemen in
Afghanistan yesterday,
officials said, the latest attacks
against the security forces who
are suffering huge casualties as
US-led Nato troops pull out.
Seven police, including their
commander, died when a suicide bomber detonated his explosives next to a group of officers in Logar province, south
of Kabul.
“A suicide attacker on foot
this morning targeted an Afghan
local police commander in Puli
Alam, killing him and six others,”
Abdul Hakim Eshaqzai, Logar’s
provincial police chief, said.
The attacker, who was wearing a military uniform, struck
as the commander was arriving
at his office for a meeting.
Logar’s media spokesman
Din Mohamed Darwish confirmed the attack.
Also on Monday, a remotecontrolled bomb hit a police car
in Jalalabad city in the east of
Afghanistan, killing three police, Ahmad Zia Abdulzai, the
provincial spokesman said.
Another roadside bomb blast
left two civilians wounded in
the capital Kabul.
The Taliban have stepped
up attacks as the withdrawing
Nato-led forces leave Afghan
security forces to п¬Ѓght the insurgents on their own.
Hair transplants: new weapon of mass seduction
ohamed Shahid’s eyes
lit up when he saw his
once bald cousin come
home one day with a head full
of hair and a strutting gait to
A handsome but follicallychallenged young man, he decided the time was ripe to restore
his honour, battered by years of
taunts that follow the barrenheaded and the beardless in Pakistan.
In the northwestern city of
Peshawar, home to underground
Taliban hideouts and a gateway
for trade to Afghanistan, men
go about their business in the
crowded dusty streets, their faces covered by bushy black beards
that would make Captain Haddock proud.
The city’s roads are filled with
giant billboards of celebrities
once bald but now all smiles.
They extol the virtues of manhood restored surgically with a
few well-placed tufts of hair.
“When I saw my cousin return from his procedure, I was in
shock. I said to myself: I have to
have it too,” said the thirtysomething excitedly as he prepared to
have the procedure at a local hair
transplant clinic.
“Hair is like our weapon
against society.”
In Pakistan, hair is synonymous with virility to the point
that even some Taliban п¬Ѓghters
buy ointments to give their long
locks and beards a lustrous п¬Ѓnish.
Woe to those without: they
are labelled “ganjas”, a deeply
derogatory term.
“Here, calling someone a
�ganja’ is a stigma but over there
(in the West), saying �bald’ is not
that bad,” explained Dr Humayun Mohmand, one of the first
doctors to offer the treatment in
Mohmand opened his practice
in the early 2000s, but transplants, done under local anaesthetic, did not take off immediately.
The breakthrough moment
came at the end of 2007, when
Nawaz Sharif, who was balding
when he was deposed as prime
minister by General Pervez
Musharraf eight years earlier, returned from exile with a full head
of hair.
“After the hair transplant... by
Nawaz Sharif and Shahbaz Sharif (his brother, the chief minister
of Punjab province) this has be-
Pakistani doctors treating a patient for hair transplants at a clinic in Islamabad.
come very popular,” said doctor
Fawad Aamir at his Peshawar
clinic, among a group of patients
seeking new manes.
“(Before) they were very afraid
of this, that something is going
to happen, that cancer will develop, that infection will lead to
the brain.”
Among them was the son of
Farid Khan Khattak, a big man
who п¬Ѓlls the room with hearty
laughter. “My son had some kind
of inferiority complex because
he had some gaps in his hair,” he
“One of my friends told me
that instead of a hair transplant
I should buy a motorbike for my
son. But my son insisted: �Instead
of a motorbike I want a transplant’, so it’s for his happiness.”
Since 2006, Mohmand has
conducted 8,000 operations
compared with 1,000 during the
previous п¬Ѓve years.
In Pakistan’s conservative society where arranged marriages
remain the norm, surgeons recall
the anguish of patients whose
engagements have been scuppered by baldness.
“One of my clients had lost a
lot of hair and two or three marriage proposals did not mature,”
said the doctor of a female patient.
“After that, she came to give
me the invitation to her wedding. That day, she had tears in
her eyes. She said, �You are the
person who has made my life’.”
Today, there are nearly 120
hair transplant clinics in Pakistan, according to official п¬Ѓgures, with a dozen in Peshawar.
The operation generally costs
from $400-$1,000, with some
top clinics charging up to $6,000
– a fraction of what it costs in
the West, but still well out of
reach for most Pakistanis.
Many clients come from
abroad, in particular the Pakistani-Afghan diaspora who come
to see their friends and family —
and return more hirsute.
Maihan, a cook from Denmark, п¬Ѓnds himself in one such
clinic in Peshawar. The young
Afghan knows that the shavenheaded Bruce Willis look isn’t
displeasing to the fairer sex in
the West.
“In Europe, in Canada, in
Australia and in the United
States, the girls don’t care, but
here guys must have long hair,”
he said.
Hairless heads aren’t the only
worry. Doctor Asif Shah says he
has also performed a number of
beard transplants on patients
keen to show their piety with a
healthy growth.
Fawad Aamir recalls with
pleasure the visit of a Taliban commander’s son who
had grown frustrated with his
patchy beard while fellow Islamist rebels proudly sported bushy
“A doctor tried to convince
the man that �you don’t grow
beard because this is the beard
given to you by God’,” he said.
“And he said �No, I want to
have this like Mohamed, peace
be upon him.’
“So we went ahead and six
months later he had a very big
beard and he was very happy.”
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Life becomes exciting for actress Ramos as she turns 24
Manila Times
ctress Rhian Ramos may
have just turned 24, but
she has certainly come a
very long way.
Her birth month of October
saw her receiving several blessings, with exciting news of acting projects, endorsements and
a string of meaningful celebrations.Among the highlights of
her 24th birthday included a
special production number on
GMA Network’s Sunday All
Stars (SAS) on October 26, and
just a week before that, joining
the п¬Ѓnal leg of the Vios Cup at
the McKinley Hill West Street
Circuit as a legitimate race car
driver on October 19.
This was quite a feat for Rhi-
an, who learned to drive just late
2013, showing just how determined she is to take all that she
does to the next level.
Professionally, after triumphant outings on TV in the series, My Destiny and Magpakailanman, Rhian is set to star in
the lead of an indie п¬Ѓlm opposite
Piolo Pascual under the direction of former Smokey Mountain singer Jeffrey Hidalgo.
“The film is eyeing release in
international film festivals,” she
excitedly told Manila Times.
Rhian п¬Ѓrst made a splash on
television playing Leah Lazaro
in 2006’s Captain Barbell opposite Richard Gutierrez, and
in one of her most memorable
roles as Jodi and Jenna in Stairway to Heaven opposite Dingdong Dantes.
Just this month, Rhian has
also been chosen to endorse, an online gaming site for Smart and Talk �N
Text subscribers. Loaded, she
shared, reminds her of the fun
centres she used to frequent as
a little girl as the classic games
are available through the website.
Meanwhile, following a string
of birthday parties for her family and fans, Rhian decided to
pay it forward this week, by
holding belated celebrations
with her favourite charities,
Child Haus, a home for sick
children, and the Graces home
for the aged.
“I’ve had a lot of challenges
that I’ve had to overcome in my
career and I am so thankful to be
where I am now. I’m so excited
to see what’s in store for me at
24,” she concluded.
Rhian Ramos: exciting times ahead
Lacson sees politics in
typhoon rehabilitation
By Joel M Sy Egco
Manila Times
Rehabilitation czar Panfilo Lacson discusses reconstruction work in typhoon Haiyan-stricken areas during a stakeholders forum attended by Vice President Jejomar Binay and UN
Assistant Secretary General Haoliang Xu.
dent Benigno Aquino to skip
Tacloban and visit Guiuan town
in Eastern Samar to commemorate the п¬Ѓrst year of Yolanda.
Lacson said the DILG contributed P230.4mn for Tacloban
as requested by Romualdez
himself for the rehabilitation of
the city hall, public market and
the city centre.
The mayor, he added, even
asked to “realign” some funds.
“We will continue to extend
a hand of co-operation to Tacloban. We will not give up on
Tacloban. Nobody will be left
out,” Lacson vowed.
Earlier, Romualdez criticised
the government for the “very
slow” response and expressed
hopes that the projects will pick
up in January.
He lamented that because of
red tape, shortage of manpower
and lack of resources, the recovery of the city was only about
Malacanang also yesterday
vowed that the government will
ensure the proper implementation of the Comprehensive Rehabilitation and Recovery Plan
in Yolanda areas.
“The president and the cabinet remain focused on ensuring that the CRRP programmes,
Tough life
projects and activities are implemented properly, and that
the �build back better’ principles are followed,” Secretary
Hermino Coloma of the Presidential Communications Operations Office said.
Vice President Jejomar Binay,
who was also present in the forum, said President Benigno
Aquino issued Administrative
Order 44 to expedite the con-
struction of houses for families
rendered homeless by Typhoon
AO 44 streamlines the process of issuance of permits,
certifications, clearances and
licenses for housing and resettlement projects in Yolanda affected areas. It directs all government agencies concerned to
observe these protocols or face
sanctions for non-compliance.
A woman looks for plastic bottles to sell on a street in Manila.
Child, three others hacked to death in Compostela
our relatives, including a
13-year-old boy, were brutally hacked to death in the
troubled southern Philippines,
police said yesterday.
dog handler in the southern Philippines narrowly
avoided death after his
dog alerted him to a bomb just
before it exploded, police said
Officer Manuel Ynid was only
injured when the bomb hidden in
a cardboard box exploded in the
strife-torn southern port city of
Zamboanga late Sunday, said the
city police spokesman Chief Inspector Ariel Huesca.
Ynid and his bomb-sniffing
Belgian Malinois called Diego
were part of a team that was investigating an earlier explosion
at a massage parlour, Huesca
said. The п¬Ѓrst bomb had caused
no casualties but as Ynid was approaching a cardboard box, the
dog reacted, indicating it had
detected a bomb.
Just as they moved away from
the box, the bomb inside exploded, wounding Ynid although the
dog was unharmed.
Security officials said the
bomb was made from ammonium nitrate and was possibly set
off with a mobile phone.
Ynid is in stable condition
while Diego, a three-year veteran who found a bomb in a public
square last month, was given a
week to recover from the stress,
police officials said.
Authorities are still trying to
determine who might have been
behind the bomb blast.
Zamboanga has been the scene
of rebel activity in the past.
Last year, die-hard guerrillas
occupied parts of the city, resulting in three weeks of urban
battles that left more than 240
The military is also carrying
out operations in the islands
south of Zamboanga, against
the Abu Sayyaf, an Al Qaedalinked extremist group blamed
for the country’s worst terror
attacks including bombings and
Manila police step up security
measures over bomb threat
By Jaime R Pilapil
Manila Times
residential adviser on
relief and rehabilitation
Panfilo Lacson yesterday
chided Tacloban City Mayor Alfred Romualdez for causing delays in the city’s rehabilitation
efforts, saying the local executive had politics in mind instead
of the quick recovery of the city
from super typhoon Haiyan
“You should forget personal
and political agenda and think
about your constituents,” Lacson said during a stakeholders
forum in reference to the local
chief executive whose performance he described as “below
lacked political will, unlike the
local executives from other areas that were similarly ravaged
by the typhoon. He also accused
Romualdez of hosting antigovernment protests following
the discovery of placards bearing anti-government slogans at
the back of city hall.
“We are calling on all local
government chiefs to put the
interest of your constituents
before any personal or political agenda you may have,” he
It was estimated that more
than P6bn have been poured to
various projects in the city but
Lacson bewailed Tacloban was
slow “over-all.”
The rehabilitation chief’s
statements negated that of Interior and Local Government
Secretary Mar Roxas, who
claimed that there was no problem with government efforts in
Tacloban City, the bailiwick of
the opposition Romualdez clan.
Roxas, in an interview last
week, said the DILG released
P200mn for Tacloban. He was
defending the decision of Presi-
dog saves
Local residents discovered
the hogtied bodies of the four
farm caretakers in Compostela Valley about 970 kilometres
south of Manila, said Superintendent Antonio Rivera, police
spokesman for the southern
island of Mindanao where the
killings happened Sunday.
The four bodies were covered
with stab wounds and had their
faces covered with cloth, the police said. Authorities suspect the
killings may be related to a land
conflict in the largely feudal region where violence is often used
to settle disputes between families over property and politics.
In one of the worst cases, 58
people, including lawyers and
journalists, were murdered in
Mindanao in November 2009 allegedly by members of a powerful
political clan who were trying to
prevent a challenger from running against one of their members in an upcoming election.
he Manila Police District
Office (MPDO) yesterday stepped up security
measures against what it described as possible “bombings”
targeting government, private,
business and religious buildings and establishments.
In a memorandum, a copy
of which was obtained by
Manila Times, dated November
10, 2014, Malate Police Station
commander and Supt. Romeo
Mendoza Odrada reported to
acting MPDO director Rolando
Nana that “pre-emptive and
hardening measures” against
the “bombings” had been implemented.
The memorandum, however,
did not identify who the supposed bombers would be.
“In line with the directives
of higher headquarters regarding police visibility within our
AOR (Areas of Responsibility),
elements of this station conducted aggressive patrol and
inspection particularly at vital
installations such as (Meralco),
power unit, Bangko Sentral
ng Pilipinas, hotel and motels
such as Ambassador Hotel,
Orchid Garden Hotel, Aloha
Hotel, Victoria Court, Mercury
Drug Stores, malls, schools,
universities, gasoline stations,
markets and churches,” it read.
Meralco is the Manila Electric Co and Bangko Sentral ng
Pilipinas is the Central Bank of
the Philippines.
In addition, according to the
memorandum, “the elements
of this station’s anti-crime
conducted clearing operations
of vendors and pedicab drivers at the vicinity of Ospital ng
Maynila and Baywalk.”
Baywalk is a stretch of Roxas
Boulevard in Manila facing Manila Bay.
The Odrada memorandum
apparently was in reaction to
reports on twin bombings in
Zamboanga City in Mindanao
on Sunday evening that left
a member of a police antibomb squad wounded.
The attacks, according
to Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang Jr., chief of staff of the
Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), could be a diversionary tactic of the terrorist
Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) to
distract ongoing intensified
military operations against
the bandits in Sulu and Basilan, also in Mindanao.
“We are looking into that
(ASG angle). I still cannot say
if the group was behind the
bombings,” Catapang said in
a news conference at Camp
Aguinaldo, the AFP’s General
headquarters, in Quezon City
(Metro Manila) also yesterday.
He added that he was planning to go back to Zamboanga
City to allay fears of the people there about the apparently
uneasy peace in the city.
Also yesterday, Chief Supt.
Wilben Mayo, the Philippine
National Police spokesman,
told Manila Times that they
have not monitored any specific threat against Pope Francis when he visits the country
early next year.
A number of foreign governments earlier warned
that the Islamic State in Iraq
and Syria (ISIS) had issued a
threat against the Pope and
that it would carry out in one
of Francis’ foreign travels.
Basilan Bishop Martin Jumuad said the government
should not take the ISIS’
threat lightly.
The Pope will arrive on January 15 and will stay for five
While his schedule has not
been disclosed, he is expected
to spend time with survivors
of Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda)
in Tacloban City, Leyte.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Bangladesh cleric held
over death of TV host
angladesh police said yesterday they have arrested a
hardline Muslim preacher
for allegedly inciting the murder
of a popular television host.
Sheikh Nurul Islam Faruqi,
the 60-year-old chief cleric of
a Dhaka mosque and host of television shows on Islamic issues,
was found tied to a chair with
his throat slit at his home in the
capital in August.
Police suspect he was murdered by Ansarullah Bangla, a
little-known group of hardline
Islamists whose members were
agrees to
work on
everal opposition political
parties in Sri Lanka yesterday announced that they
have agreed to work together to
push for constitutional reforms
in the country including abolishing the executive presidential
The leader of the main opposition United National Party,
Ranil Wickremesinghe, said that
the opposition wants to ensure
good governance by bringing in
amendments to the constitution.
Leaders and representatives of
the opposition held a joint media
conference where they spelt out
their demands to the government
of President Mahinda Rajapakse.
Democratic Party led by
former army commander Sarath Fonseka, former Sri Lanka
cricket captain and now legislator Arjuna Ranathunga as well
as minority Tamil and Muslim political parties are among
those who have decided to work
together in the campaign.
Fonseka said that the political parties, which are part of the
campaign, have decided to put
aside their differences to work
Led by a prominent Buddhist
monk, Maduluwawe Sobhithathero, the campaign already had
the support of Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) lawmaker Athureliya
Rathanathera, who is part of the
Former president Chandrika
Kumaratunga has also extended
her support for the campaign
which seeks reforms before the
next presidential election.
There are speculations that a
Presidential election will take place
in January next year and President
Mahinda Rajapakse is expected to
seek a third term in office.
Meanwhile the opposition said
it will stage a major political rally
in Colombo tomorrow to gather
support for the abolishing of the
executive presidency and other
constitutional changes.
and felt we had a breakthrough
in the murder investigation after
seeing the uploaded video of a
speech by Mozaffor.”
accused of killing an atheist
blogger last year.
Yesterday police said they had
arrested 35-year-old preacher
Mozaffor bin Mohosin after video footage of him calling Faruqi
an “apostate” emerged.
“We’ve arrested him for inciting the murder. He has been
remanded for two days for
questioning,” police spokesman
Monirul Islam said.
“We have seen the video in
which he (Mohosin) could be
seen seeking Faruqi’s punishment because he promoted (Sufi)
shrines in his programmes.”
He said: “We suspected the
involvement of an extremist
group behind Faruqi’s murder
“We have seen the video in
which he (Mohosin) could
be seen seeking Faruqi’s
punishment because he
promoted (Sufi) shrines in
his programmes”
The joint commissioner said:
“During his interrogation, Mozaffor denied direct involvement in the murder but said a
number of people came to visit
his mosque and madrasa to hear
his speech.”
Metropolitan Magistrate Mo-
he second phase of the
tiger census project
using camera trapping method begins today
in Bangladesh’s mangrove
At least two infrared cameras
will be installed in each of 132
identified spots within about
3,000sq km area in Bangladesh
part of the Sundarbans to capture tigers’ photos for 40 days
without any recess.
Divisional forest officer Zahidul Kabir said a total of 78
infrared cameras will be used
in the 132 identified spots in
phases in the tiger census that
Faruqi’s murder triggered
protests by moderate Islamic
groups, who called a nationwide
strike to demand the culprits’
swift arrest.
In the last decade, Islamic
militants in Bangladesh have
killed around 100 people seen
as critical of Islam, including
secular and cultural activists and
bloggers. They have also bombed
Sufi shrines which were deemed
Last year six people including a 60-year-old man who
called himself a Sufi master were
slaughtered at their home in a
similar fashion to Faruqi.
Police have not yet solved
those cases.
Lanka calls off search for
victims at landslide site
ri Lanka has called off search
operations for the bodies of
those killed in a landslide in the
central part of the country, Minister
of Disaster Management Mahinda
Amaraweera said yesterday.
The death toll in the October 29
disaster is officially listed at 34, but
the military, which conducted recovery operations, found only 14 bodies
at the site at Meeriyabedda, Koslanda, some 200km east of the capital
The others are believed to be buried in the landslide, Amaraweera
Some 58 families evacuated from
the area would be housed in an abandoned tea factory for three months.
After that, new houses will be built
for them by the state, Amaraweera
Some 330 persons were living in
the affected area, but at the time of
the landslide some 75 children had
left for school and most others had
gone to work on the tea plantation.
Survivors sitting at a relief camp in central Sri Lanka after a landslide hit the Koslanda area, some
200km east of Colombo, last week.
Agartala, India
rms and drug smuggling, terrorism, circulation of fake currency
notes and border crimes are
among the issues to be discussed when border guards of
India and Bangladesh meet on
November 17, an official said
in the Indian state Tripura’s
capital Agartala yesterday.
“The BSF (Border Security
Force) officials would ask the
BGB (Border Guard Bangladesh) officials to dismantle
the camps of northeast India
terrorists, who have been running many camps in Bangladesh despite many such camps
were destroyed by the security
forces of that country,” a senior BSF official said.
He said: “At least 55 camps
of northeast India militants
are still functional in different
parts of Bangladesh and opposite to Tripura, Meghalaya,
Mizoram and Assam’s borders
with that country.”
The northeast militant outfits running camps in Bangladesh territories include
National Socialist Council
of Nagaland (Isak-Muivah),
United Liberation Front of
Asom and National Liberation
Front of Tripura.
“After Bangladesh security forces undertook occasional crackdowns against
the northeast India militants,
some terrorists have taken
shelter in the jungles of neighbouring Myanmar,” the BSF
official said on the condition
of anonymity.
Inspector generals of three
frontiers of BSF in northeast
India - Tripura, Meghalaya,
Mizoram-Cachar - would
hold a four-day long border
management meeting from
November 17 with BGB officials at Tamabil in Bangladesh’s Sylhet district.
Meghalaya frontier Inspector General of BSF Sudhesh
Kumar would lead the Indian
team while Bangladesh delegation would be led by BGB’s
additional director general
(northeastern region) Mohammad Latiful Haider.
Experts call for reforms in Nepal’s prisons
xperts in Nepal have urged
the government to upgrade
prison facilities and invest
in rehabilitation programmes
for inmates, as the conditions in
jails have deteriorated.
“Detention facilities in Nepal
do not meet basic safety standards. If there is an earthquake,
most prisons will collapse,” Gobinda Mani Bhurtel, chief of the
central jail in Kathmandu, said in
an interview with Xinhua.
Representatives from the office of the High Commissioner
for Human Rights in Nepal (OHCHR-Nepal) have pointed out
the inhuman conditions inside
detention cells where both the
inmates and prison personnel
have to cope up on a daily basis.
“In most prisons across Nepal, international standards on
the separation of petty criminals
from hardcore ones, convicts
from accused, and young inmates
from adults are not respected,”
OHCHR-Nepal reported.
Following a visit to various prisons across the country
last week, the National Human
Rights Commission (NHRC)
urged the authorities to improve prison management to
protect the rights of prisoners.
“Several commissions that
were formed in the past have
recommended measures to
improve the safety and wellbeing of inmates. Had these
recommendations been acted
upon, jails in Nepal would have
reached international standards,” said Sudeep Pathak,
member, NHRC.
According to Bhurtel, over
Dhaka prepares to count tigers
By Mizan Rahman
hammad Tarique Moinul Islam
Bhuiyan passed an order placing Mozaffar on two days’ police
Mohosin has denied the
charge, he said.
The gruesome murder highlighted the growing faultline
between hardline Islamists in
Muslim-majority Bangladesh
and the country’s centuriesold tradition of Sufi-inspired
moderate Islam.
Hardline Islamists say that
worshipping at Sufi shrines is
The police spokesman said
Mohosin regularly preached at a
Dhaka mosque attended by militants from the Ansarullah group.
Border troops
to discuss
terror, crimes
will be conducted till June
next year.
He said the second phase
of census is going to kick off
through installment of infrared cameras at Nilkamal area of
Hiron Point in the Sundarbans
on Tuesday.
A team of 30 trained workers will participate in the second phase of the tiger census,
Kabir, also co-ordinator of
project, added.
In the п¬Ѓrst phase of the
Bangladesh-India joint tiger
census project, completed in
April this year beginning November 1, 2013, a total of 89
infrared cameras were used to
capture tigers’ photos within a
3,000sq km area in Bangladesh
part of the Sundarbans.
However, the result of the
п¬Ѓrst phase of the census was
not made public yet.
The project is being implemented with п¬Ѓnancial assistance from the World Bank.
A survey of 2004 showed
that the total number of Bengal Tigers in Bangladesh part
was 440. The UNDP conducted
the census using pugmarks
For the survey conducted in
this April, a team of Wildlife
Institute of India trained forest
staff on setting cameras in the
The world’s largest mangrove
Sundarbans is the only abode
of Royal Bengal Tigers. But the
Sunderban’s Royal Bengal Tiger
is fast becoming extinct.
the last few years, the overall
condition in prisons in Nepal
has worsened.
Bhurtel underscored the importance of treating inmates
as human beings, adding that
there is a need to improve their
living conditions both during
their incarceration and after
they are released.
“While they are under detention, inmates should be
taught some skills so that when
they get out of prison, they
can earn a living and would
not commit crimes anymore,”
Bhurtel said.
Overcrowding has been
identified as a major problem
in Nepal’s jails. According to
the department of prison management, all 74 prisons across
the country are overcrowded.
Statistics reveal that prisons house inmates more than
double their capacities.
A jail located close to the
popular Annapurna circuit
has recently been termed �a
torture house’. Human rights
watchdogs found 520 inmates �packed like sardines’
in a space meant for only 60
people. Inmates cannot even
stretch their legs to sleep and
there are only seven toilets for
males, and three for females.
Overcrowding often results
in п¬Ѓghting among inmates. It is
also the cause of diseases, especially respiratory ailments.
A former prisoner, nicknamed “Pilot” by his gang, said
that when he was in prison,
he used to share his detention
ward with some one hundred
other prisoners.
“Pilot,” who is in his thirties,
was sentenced to п¬Ѓve months
in prison after seriously injur-
ing a man during a gang п¬Ѓght.
He was jailed at the Central
Jail in Kathmandu, which has a
capacity of only 1,200 but was
housing more than 2,500 inmates when “Pilot” was there.
The central jail has only 22
employees that attend to 2,527
inmates. Because of lack of
funds and inadequate prison
personnel, the prisoners themselves have created their own
internal management system
to help in maintaining order
inside the prison facility.
Experts recognise the need
to improve the professional
skills of prison staff to avoid
internal conflicts. They acknowledged that prison staff
lacks the proper training, particularly on how to impose discipline among the inmates or
teach them some skills as part
of their rehabilitation.
Bangladesh president at APEC summit
Bangladesh’s President Abdul Hamid, second left, and his wife Rashida Hamid, left, posing
as they are welcomed by Chinese President Xi Jinping and his wife Peng Liyuan, right,
upon arrival for Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit banquet at the Beijing
National Aquatics Center in the Chinese capital yesterday. Top leaders and ministers of the
21-member APEC grouping are meeting in Beijing from November 7 to 11.
Senior officials of India’s
home ministry and Narcotics
Control Bureau would also be
present in the meeting.
“Smuggling of arms and
drugs and using northeastern
states as corridors for their
illegal hauling would also be
discussed in the meeting. We
would ask the BGB officials to
take stringent steps to prevent
such clandestine trading,” the
BSF official added.
He said the BSF and BGB
troopers are now holding coordinated patrolling along the
border and the meeting would
discuss about intensifying
such joint patrolling in the
sensitive and porous borders.
“Bangladesh security forces
in the recent past have seized
huge fake Indian currencies
and arrested a large number of
people involved in circulating
the fake currencies. We would
ask the BGB officials to share
the information (with BSF)
gathered about the fake currencies and their roots,” the
official added.
In the meeting, the BSF
would also propose to the BGB
to hold mutual cultural and
sports events on both sides of
the border and adjoining cities and villages as part of the
confidence building measures.
The official said that the
BSF would also ask their BGB
authorities to take effective
measures to prevent attacks
on BSF troopers and Indian
villagers by the bordering
people of Bangladesh.
Four Indian northeastern
states of Tripura, Meghalaya,
Mizoram and Assam share an
1,880-km border with Bangladesh.
The mountainous terrain,
dense forests and other hindrances make the unfenced
borders porous and vulnerable, enabling illegal immigrants and intruders cross
over without any hurdle.
India is erecting a fence and
putting up floodlights all along
the 4,096-km India-Bangladesh border in West Bengal,
Tripura, Assam, Meghalaya
and Mizoram to check transborder movement of militants,
prevent infiltration and check
border crimes.
kicks off
n international conference on “mountain people adapting to change”
kicked off in Kathmandu on Sunday, aiming at providing a platform to discuss best ways to help
mountain communities to deal
with adverse impacts of climate
The four-day conference,
jointly organised by the Nepal government and the International Centre for Integrated
Mountain Development (ICIMOD), attracted more than 200
scientists, experts, government
representatives and stakeholders from 22 countries, Xinhua
Govind Raj Pokhrel, vice chair
of Nepal’s national planning
commission, said at the inauguration ceremony that Nepal’s
poverty rate, which stands at
23% now, could rise again “if we
fail to tackle climate-induced
disasters and climate change.”
This year alone, natural disasters have cause huge damage
to the country’s infrastructure
facilities, excluding individual
houses, he said, adding: “If we
cannot minimise the impacts of
climate-induced disasters, more
people will find themselves below poverty line.”
David Molden, director general,
ICIMOD, said that mountain people have developed a huge diversity of options to adapt to different
mountain environments.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Chairman: Abdullah bin Khalifa al-Attiyah
Editor-in-Chief : Darwish S Ahmed
Production Editor: C P Ravindran
P.O.Box 2888
Doha, Qatar
[email protected]
Telephone 44350478 (news),
44466404 (sport), 44466636 (home delivery)
Fax 44350474
End of the road
for Lee after
positive dope test
The world of badminton is in a state of shock after
it was revealed that Malaysian ace Lee Chong Wei has
failed a dope test.
Lee, who has spent about 300 weeks as the world
number one without ever winning an Olympic
or world Championship gold, has been one of
badminton’s greatest icons, especially in Malaysia,
which has been literally stunned into silence since the
news became public three days ago that traces of the
anti-inflammatory drug dexamethasone were found in
his samples at a lab in Oslo.
Lee is loved as much for his exploits on the court
as for his mild disposition off it—his image as a role
model enhanced by his image as a family man and
doting father.
However, despite winning a whopping 55 titles
globally, he has had to play second п¬Ѓddle to Chinese
heartthrob Lin Dan who has been hogging most of
the limelight over the past few years by claiming two
Olympic and п¬Ѓve World
Championship crowns.
Lee now faces a
two-year ban, which
would effectively put
an end to his career as
he will be 34 when the
punishment ends. It’s
an unfortunate way to
end a career especially when he was gearing up for one
last shot at Olympic glory – at the 2016 Games in Rio
de Janeiro.
Lee posted messages on his official Twitter and
Facebook accounts thanking fans for their support and
denying using drugs to gain an advantage.
“I just want to thank every one of you who had faith
in me through this difficult time. There are so many
unanswered questions and I hope to clear my name
soon,” he wrote.
“I never cheated nor will I ever rely on banned
Lee said in April he intended to play on until the
2016 Games in the hope he would п¬Ѓnally win a gold
medal to go with the silvers from Beijing in 2008 and
London four years later.
Even his great rival Dan had put off retirement in the
hope of winning his third straight Olympic medal.
However, the prospect of witnessing the rivals
battling it out like a pair of ageing prize-п¬Ѓghters for
one п¬Ѓnal grudge match is no longer a possibility after
Lee’s positive test.
The substance he tested positive for –
dexamethasone – is, however, not a performance
enhancing drug, the kind of which cheats use to gain
undue advantage over their rivals.
This may come as some consolation to his adoring
fans, but the damage has already been done.
Lee is loved as
much for his
exploits on the
court as for his
mild disposition
off it
To Advertise
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Telephone 44466621 Fax 44418811
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2014 Gulf Times. All rights reserved
Silk Road aims to cement
China’s emerging role
As the balance of power
within the global economy
shifts, it is inevitable that the
international economic
architecture will have
to evolve
By John Kemp
he New Silk Road Economic
Belt - from China across
Central Asia and Russia
to Europe - and the 21st
Century Maritime Silk Road - through
the Malacca Strait to India, the Middle
East and East Africa - have become
the centrepiece of China’s economic
“The Silk Road, no longer just a
concept in history books, has evolved
into a story of modern logistics and
Sino-European co-operation,” Yang
Jiechi, China’s top diplomat, told a
conference this month.
The belt and the road, as China’s
diplomats refer to them, are the focus
of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) summit in Beijing
this week. They aim to cement China’s
emerging role at the heart of the 21st
century economy.
China’s President Xi Jinping has
pledged $40bn to a new Silk Road
fund for investing in infrastructure,
resources and industrial and п¬Ѓnancial
co-operation across Asia.
Chinese diplomats have also
been busy promoting a new Asian
Infrastructure Investment Bank,
promising to provide half of its $50bn
start-up capital, to help build ports,
roads, power projects and other
desperately needed infrastructure
across the region.
The Silk Road fund and Asia
Infrastructure Investment Bank pose
a direct challenge to the traditional
primacy of US-dominated п¬Ѓnancial
and trade institutions in the region,
including the International Monetary
Fund, World Bank and Asian
Development Bank, all of which were
set up following the US victory in
World War Two.
US diplomats have been
manoeuvring furiously to limit
the impact of China’s economic
diplomacy. In the past month,
Australia and South Korea both
declined to join the new Infrastructure
Investment Bank following intense
lobbying from officials in Washington,
which went all the way up to Secretary
of State John Kerry and President
Barack Obama himself.
Officially, US diplomats are
concerned about governance
standards at the new institutions.
There are fears about the large share
of the voting rights that will go to
China and the willingness of the new
institutions to lend for projects that do
not meet the social and environmental
criteria currently employed by
multilateral development banks.
There is nothing
new in the idea that
countries seek to
turn financial capital
into political power
Under intense pressure from
the US, the World Bank and Asian
Development Bank will no longer
п¬Ѓnance coal-п¬Ѓred power stations due
to concerns about climate change.
But many countries, including India,
have indicated they intend to continue
building coal-п¬Ѓred plants to bring
electricity to millions of homes that
are currently without secure and
affordable access to modern energy.
US officials fear the new Chineseled institutions will lend to projects
that are unable to secure п¬Ѓnancing
from other multilateral institutions,
rendering the conditionality
But there is a deeper, unspoken fear
that the new institutions will be used
to enhance China’s leadership at the
expense of the US and its traditional
allies in Asia including Japan, South
Korea and Australia.
In the run-up to the Apec summit,
US diplomats have sought to keep
the focus on the Trans-Pacific
Partnership, a proposed US-led
regional trade deal, rather than the
broader Free Trade Area of the Asia
Pacific, promoted by China.
It is part of a mounting economic,
political and military competition
between the US and China across the
Asia-Pacific is not the only area
where the post-war economic and
п¬Ѓnancial leadership of the US and its
network of allies is being challenged.
The US pivot to Asia is being
matched by a similar move on the
part of Russia, which has sought to
reduce its dependence on the US and
Europe by upgrading its economic ties
with China. In the past six months,
Russia has signed two major deals to
supply natural gas to China, which
has become Russia’s most important
trading partner.
In July 2014, China, Russia, India
and Brazil reached agreement on a
$100bn New Development Bank to be
headquartered in Shanghai. China and
Russia have also been busy promoting
economic and military ties across
Central Asia through the Shanghai
Cooperation Organisation.
The major п¬Ѓnancial and economic
institutions, which experts sometimes
call the “international financial
architecture”, no longer correspond
to the balance of power and the
shifting centre of gravity in the world
The International Monetary Fund,
World Bank and regional development
banks are all dominated by the US
and its allies in terms of voting rights,
capital structure, headquarters
location and staffing.
Efforts to reform them to give a
greater role to China and the other
fast-growing developing economies
have largely proved unfruitful.
The multilateral lending institutions
are severely undercapitalised and
have nowhere near enough resources
to meet the enormous infrastructure
needs across Asia, Africa and Latin
The result is that many multilateral
institutions appear to be outdated, too
small and entrenched in colonialist
approaches to development.
There is still an assumption that
economies of developing countries
are defined by their relationship with
their more developed counterparts.
But that world has vanished over the
last decade.
More than half the exports from
developing economies were sent
to other developing economies in
2013, according to the World Trade
Organisation (“International Trade
Statistics 2014”).
Countries in Asia sent more than
60% of their exports to other nations
in Asia and to Africa and the Middle
East, compared with just over 15%
each to North America and Europe.
As the world’s greatest export
powerhouse, China has accumulated
vast foreign exchange reserves and
is now becoming a major supplier of
Prior to the п¬Ѓnancial crisis, that
capital was tied up passively and
uselessly in US Treasury bonds. Now
China wants to use its capital more
productively to invest in infrastructure
in its major trading partners and at the
same time buy more economic and
political influence.
There is nothing new in the idea
that countries seek to turn п¬Ѓnancial
capital into political power. Britain
pursued the same approach in the
19th century, and the US has done so
successfully since World War Two.
Market access and capital can all be
traded for various forms of influence.
The Marshall Plan traded US economic
assistance in European reconstruction
for a pro-American orientation in
European foreign policy.
As the balance of power within
the global economy shifts, it is
inevitable that the international
economic architecture will have to
Some Western foreign policy
specialists have naively assumed that
emerging markets would become
integrated into existing post-war,
Western-dominated structures of
power and governance.
But it was always at least as likely
that those institutions would have to
adapt and change to accommodate the
rising economic and п¬Ѓnancial power of
emerging markets.
Just as access to American markets
and capital was once a key component
of US diplomacy, China is now
employing its п¬Ѓnancial and trade
muscle to win friends and influence.
Taavi Kotka, a former IT entrepreneur who now runs the project as Estonia’s chief information officer, presents the e-residency IDs project in Tallinn. Estonia is the
first country to offer digital e-residency IDs to people worldwide, a move designed to spur growth by allowing foreigners to do e-commerce in and from this small but
innovative member of the European Union.
Estonia aiming to be e-commerce superpower
By Maris Hellrand and
Mary Sibierski
he small Baltic country
of Estonia hopes digital
innovation will turn it into
a global superpower in
e-commerce by offering foreigners
e-residency IDs, and opening the door
to doing business online throughout
the European Union.
Estonia says it is the п¬Ѓrst country to
offer e-residency identification cards
to people worldwide, and the novel
venture dubbed “10mn Estonians” is
set to take effect in December.
“Estonia has reached the limit of
growth that can be achieved through
savings and efficiency, so in order to
keep our country growing, we need
to increase the client base with global
companies that are connected to the
Estonian economy,” says Taavi Kotka,
a former IT entrepreneur now chief
information officer for the EU and
eurozone member state.
“We can offer them a hasslefree business and administrative
environment and a foothold in the
EU,” he told AFP, explaining the
opportunities outlined on Estonia’s
e-residency website.
In theory, anyone could apply for
e-residency, and for the equivalent
of 50 euros ($62), obtain an Estonian
digital ID card providing access to a
multitude of government and private
sector e-services that slash the cost of
doing business - without conferring
citizenship rights.
Arne Ansper, a cyber-security
expert with the Tallinn-based
Cybernetica IT company, describes
the e-residency ID card as “a tool
for secure and legally binding online
communication with other parties”.
“Estonia has reached
the limit of growth
that can be achieved
through savings and
Entrepreneurs from China, India or
Saudi Arabia could use e-residency to
set up shop in Estonia and do business
anywhere in the 28-nation EU via the
Internet, says Kotka.
All transactions can be done
remotely using digital signature, he
added. Although the European Union
recognises digital signature, most
states in the bloc currently do not have
a reliable service.
So far, nearly 10,000 people have
expressed interest in acquiring
e-residency, with roughly a third
hailing from the US, followed by Finns,
Russians, Britons, Canadians, Indians
and Bangladeshis among others. The
п¬Ѓrst IDs are expected to be issued by
year’s end.
Initially, around 7,600 companies
with a majority share of foreign capital
already operating in Estonia stand to
benefit the most. These businesses
generate around 60% of Estonia’s
exports and 36% of employment.
According to Indrek Kasela,
a partner at private equity fund
Amber Trust, doing business the old
fashioned way does not come cheap.
“Up to now this has cost our
companies tens of thousands of euros
a year in travel, legal fees, courier costs
and time. E-residency would allow
us to handle all administrative work
online,” he told AFP.
Digital IDs are not new to Estonia.
Many of the 1.3mn Estonians have
embraced using a digital ID for a wide
range of government services since
Around 95% of Estonians п¬Ѓle their
taxes online and the digital signature
facility has been used more than
180mn times to endorse everything
from bank transactions to contracts.
Estonians can also vote online or
start up a company with a few mouse
clicks and keystrokes within the space
of an hour.
A range of features has been put
in place to ensure security and
transparency, including hard-to-crack
2048-bit encryption and so-called
X-road-enabled systems requiring
two PINs to complete a transaction.
Estonian officials maintain that so
far, the system has not been hacked or
To apply for e-residency, an
individual needs to explain their
connection to Estonia or substantiate
their interest in using its digital
Initially an applicant must come to
Estonia in person to provide biometric
data like п¬Ѓngerprints to the police
and border guards, but plans call for
embassies to process applications possibly next year.
Interior ministry spokesman
Mihkel Loide admitted that while
“e-residency itself will not create new
risks but may, indeed, amplify the
existing ones, such as digital fraud and
other cyber-crimes”.
“The Estonian government is
assuming the responsibility to correctly
identify people, so we can assume that if
there is any doubt, the government will
refuse to issue the card,” cyber-security
expert Ansper told AFP.
Officials insist any abuse of
e-residency IDs will be nipped in the
bud with a revocation notice that is
just a mouse click away.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Speaker, Italian leader hold talks
Defence minister meets US commander
The Speaker of Advisory Council HE Mohamed bin Mubarak al-Khulaifi met yesterday with Giovanni Ardizzone, president of Sicilian
Regional Assembly, Italy. They discussed bilateral relations in parliamentary fields and the means to enhance them. Secretary-General
of the Advisory Council Fahad bin Mubarak al-Khayareen attended the meeting.
HE Minister of State for Defence Affairs Major General Hamad bin ali-Al Attiyah met with Commander
of US Special Operations Command Central Maj Gen Michael Nagata in Doha yesterday. During the
meeting they exchanged views on matters of common concern and discussed issues related to the
current situations and the joint military co-operation. The meeting was attended by US ambassador
to Qatar Dana Shell Smith and a number of ranking armed forces officers.
400 experts to attend
public transport meet
atar’s public transport
sector stands to gain
substantially from the
deliberations and exhibition of
equipment to be held as part of
the UITP Large Events Summit
and Taxi Conference at the Qatar National Convention Centre
from November 25.
Nasser al-Khanji, executive
director, Mowasalat and chairman of summit’s organising
committee, said in a statement
yesterday that the participation of more than 400 delegates
and 50 exhibitors from across
the world would help in understanding the genuine needs and
requirements of the local public
transport sector.
The event also expects the
participation of about 30 ministers from participating nations.
Nearly 60 experts will make
Khalid Kafoud, corporate
Mowasalat, said Qatar Rail and
Qatar 2022 Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy will
be event’s partners and while
Mowasalat and Qatar Rail officials at the announcement on UITP Summit yesterday. PICTURE: Jayan Orma
China’s Higer will be overseas
strategic sponsor.
He said: “The UITP (International Union of Public Transport)
is a globally acclaimed platform
working for the development of
public transport and sustainable
mobility and the forum is also
involved in the industry as a large
promoter of innovations.”
The three-day meeting offers
enormous exposure, prestige
and legitimacy for the country
to emerge as a vibrant economy
with improved quality of life
and economic well-being duly
supported by a superior public
transport system and public mobility of international standards,
he added.
Kafoud said Mowasalat is
working round the clock to improve the residents’ access to
public transport through the
introduction of reforms.
This year’s summit, he said,
will focus on the safety and security aspect for larger events
transportation. “The meeting
also aims to attract and enhance
investments for putting in place
efficient and effective public
transport system in place long
before the country hosts such
mega events as the 2022 FIFA
World Cup.”
Hassan al-Marwani, director,
Qatar Rail, said the rail company
is counting on events such as the
UITP Summit to highlight the
latest global developments in the
transport sector.
Al-Marwani, an engineer,
hoped the event would bring together many stakeholders from
different countries who are capable of exchanging expertise. The
Qatar Rail official said the main
motivation behind the company’s projects is to serve all those
who live in Qatar even while the
company hopes to serve large
spectator groups arriving for the
2022 FIFA World Cup.
The conclave is held under the
patronage of the Prime Minister
and Interior Minister of Qatar HE
Sheikh Abdulla bin Nasser bin
Khalifa al-Thani.
The event is held under the
guidance of the Minister of
Transport HE Jassim Seif Ahmed
al-Sulaiti, who is also vice-president of the UITP Mena region.
Surveillance under way
for respiratory diseases
he Public Health Department (PHD) has
enhanced the alertness
for winter season when respiratory diseases usually escalate as surveillance of acute
respiratory conditions and
influenza-like illnesses continues. Additionally, monitoring of persons arriving
from Ebola-affected regions
has not revealed any confirmed case of Ebola in Qatar
so far.
The Supreme Council of
Health (SCH) has also notified that the seasonal flu vaccine is readily available at the
Primary Healthcare Centres
for all public and in particular
for those at greater risk of severe respiratory illnesses: persons with chronic morbidities
like diabetes mellitus, heart
diseases, renal diseases, or
low immunity, in addition to
the elderly.
Further, several training activities are under way to maintain the national alertness and
reinforce capacities of leaders and healthcare staff of the
institutions involved in early
preparedness and response.
Surveillance reports, however, did not register any new
confirmed case with Middle
East Respiratory Syndrome
Corona Virus (MERS-CoV),
apart from the two Qatari
cases reported in last October,
where one case has completely
recovered, while the other is
still kept under intensified
medical care due to his critical
Both cases have tested
negative for the serological
investigation during the п¬Ѓrst
week of supportive treatment
and isolation, as monitoring
of potential contacts of the
two patients was actively implemented and recommendations of preventive practices
were communicated with the
close contacts at the community level as well as the
healthcare institutions.
The health protection and
communicable diseases control department early preparedness and response package
includes surveillance coupled with monitoring of suspected cases and contacts,
laboratory confirmation, case
management and isolation of
infected cases with ensuring availability of supportive
medications and seasonal flu
vaccine, infection prevention
and control measures, in addition to health education
for vulnerable population
C-Ring Road stretch opens
QRC launches �warm winter’ campaign
he Public Works Authority (Ashghal) yesterday opened a portion of C-Ring Road to traffic,
extending from the Jabor bin
Ahmed intersection (Ramada
junction) to the Al Kinana
Fully operational to traffic,
this stretch of C-Ring Road
has been widened from three
lanes to four in each direction as part of phase four of
the C-Ring Road development
project, so as to improve traffic flow and reduce congestion
in the area.
Ashghal is currently working on phase four of the CRing Road project, which is
expected to be completed by
the end of the year. As part
of this phase, works are taking place in both directions of
Salwa Road starting from right
after the Al Asiri intersection
towards the Jabor bin Ahmed
intersection and The Centre roundabout, which will be
converted to a signal-controlled intersection.
This stretch of C-Ring Road has been widened from three lanes to
four in each direction.
This phase also includes
works on C-Ring Road starting
from the Ramada junction until
mid-way before the Rawdat alKhail intersection.
Ashghal is working round the
clock to expedite the implementation of this phase of the
C-Ring Road project. Works
are taking place seven days a
week, with the same number of
labourers working during the
day and night in order to complete the work by the end of
December as scheduled, while
all four phases of the C-Ring
Road project will be completed
in Q2, 2015.
he Qatar Red Crescent
(QRC) yesterday launched
�warm winter 2014-2015’
campaign, a seasonal programme organised for eighth
consecutive years to distribute
winter assistance to the poorest
families in needy countries.
This year’s campaign will target needy families in Syria and
Palestine and refugee camps in
Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey and
north Iraq, in addition to Afghanistan and Kashmir, which
were hit by floods and landslides.
The assistance will be provided in the form of blankets, winter garments and other necessities such as heaters.
Issa Mohamed al-Ishaq, head of
investment at QRC, said that the
targeted aid to be distributed during
the campaign would include 10,000
blankets, 5,000 blazers for school-
Rashid al-Mohannadi, Ahmed al-Khulaifi, Saad al-Kaabi, Issa al-Ishaq and Nayef al-Mohannadi at the QRC
press briefing yesterday.
children, 10,000 mattresses, 10,000
pillows, 10,000 heaters, 500 gifts
for the elderly (mattress, pillow and
blanket) and heating oil for 2,000
families (100 litres per family).
“The aid amounts to around
QR5mn. This is an initial estimation and could be increased if
actual circumstances dictate so.
We also hope to receive more donations for the designated purpose,” al-Ishaq added.
Saad bin Shahin al-Kaabi, director, resources development
department, QRC, said previous
campaigns were highly successful
Vodafone hosts CSR and
sustainability experts
Link road to be closed for work V
s part of the North Road enhancement project, the Public
Works Authority (Ashghal) will
close a road that connects Al Shamal
Road with Al Torfa Road (see map).
The closure will start on November 14 and last for eight months.
During this period, users of Al
Shamal Road in both directions
heading towards the Al Duhail area
can use Al Duhail Road or Al Ebb
Street as alternative roads.
The diversion is being implemented to facilitate completion of
the construction of new service
roads and Al Duhail interchange as
part of the North Road enhancement
odafone Qatar recently
hosted a group of corporate
social responsibility (CSR)
and sustainability experts to discuss trends, best practices and
case studies in the п¬Ѓeld and shed
light on the growing role of sustainability within an organisation’s
business model and strategy.
The roundtable, coinciding
with World CSR Day 2014, is one
in a series of events Vodafone is
planning to organise as part of its
ongoing CSR Majlis programme,
which aims to provide an open
platform that facilitates dialogue
and knowledge-sharing between
peers representing both the
public and private sectors.
Vodafone named Ernst & Young
as knowledge partner for the event.
Dinesh Aggarwal, senior
manager, Ernst & Young, Clean
Energy & Sustainability Services, gave a presentation on the
role of CSR and sustainability
and the growing impact of the
latter on the way businesses are
done. He also shared a few live
cases to emphasise that sustainability is pivotal to the survival
of a business today.
He said: “While the Qatar government is doing its bit
by initiating programmes like
SDIR, Tarsheed, Estedama to
promulgate the culture of sustainability, it is for the organisations to recognise and endorse
and not only enrich its business
DNA but contribute towards a
sustainable national economy.”
Project for Sustainable Development was also part of Vodafone’s
CSR Majlis. Estedama is a platform that helps develop sustainable social and economic growth
by raising awareness about environmental issues and empower
people to act in their society.
Attendees joined Vodafone
and Ernst & Young in a debate
on how CSR and sustainability should be deeply engrained
within a company’s business
strategy instead of being considered as a cosmetic and publicity
element. Some of them showcased examples of how both
practices have developed within
their organisations to become an
integral factor of success.
in easing the suffering of needy
and vulnerable people in areas of
conflict and natural disasters in
different parts of the world.
He also expressed confidence
that the people of Qatar would be
generous with their donations in
supporting this initiative.
Dana Haidan, head, CSR, Vodafone
Dana Haidan, head, CSR and sustainability at Vodafone Qatar, said:
“As a global company with very local roots, corporate social responsibility ranks high on our agenda and
our aim is to continue to make a real
contribution to society.”
“Vodafone Qatar firmly believes that CSR should stretch
well beyond mere charitable
activities to encompass our integrity in everything we do and
to ensure that the initiatives we
spearhead are of true and genuine value to the larger National
Vision of 2030,” she added.
Vodafone will hold the CSR
Majlis, with different themes, on
a quarterly basis.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Representatives from AoD partners at the announcement yesterday. PICTURE: Najeer Feroke
Action on Diabetes
unveils new initiatives
By Joseph Varghese
Staff Reporter
ction on Diabetes (AoD),
a joint venture of Qatar’s
largest public and private
organisations, yesterday unveiled a number of initiatives to
п¬Ѓght the disease.
AoD partners, including the
Supreme Council for Health
(SCH), the Hamad Medical Corporation, the Qatar Diabetes Association, the Primary Health
Care Corporation (PHCC), Maersk Oil Qatar and Novo Nordisk,
provided the details of the activities so far and the future plans
while celebrating three years of
AoD’s success.
According to the Qatar STEPwise report in 2012, 16.7% of Qataris are estimated to be diabetic
while the International Diabetes
Federation predicts that 25% of
all Qataris will have diabetes by
2030 if the diabetes challenge is
not addressed and lifestyles not
Sheikh Dr Mohamed bin Hamad al-Thani, director of Public Health, SCH said: “Diabetes
is one of Qatar’s greatest health
challenges but Action on Diabetes’ work since 2011 illustrates
what can be achieved when we all
work together for the good of everyone in Qatar. The SCH is proud
to confirm our continued com-
HMC boosts awareness activities
Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC)
will host a series of events during
the month to increase awareness
of diabetes risk factors, symptoms
and prevention in recognition
of World Diabetes Day held on
November 14 every year.
“Through HMC’s public awareness campaign, and the events
we are holding in association with
World Diabetes Day, we aim to
increase public awareness of diabetes risk factors, symptoms and
prevention. Our fundamental goal
is helping the public identify their
risks and encouraging the adoption of a healthy lifestyle,” said Dr
Mahmoud Zirie, senior consultant
and head of HMC’s Endocrinology,
Diabetes Division.
mitment as a strategic partner in
helping AoD encourage behaviour
change in 2015 and beyond,”
To mark World Diabetes Day on
November 14, AoD will host its
fourth annual Diabetes Screening
Awareness Village at Katara this
Friday and Saturday. The AoD
Screening Bus will be staffed by
professional diabetes educators
and separate tents will educate
visitors about the importance of
a healthy diet and exercise.
Maersk Oil Qatar, a strategic
partner of AoD will jointly host the
annual Maersk Oil Qatar and Qa-
Dr Mahmoud Zirie
He added that exercise and
diet are important elements in
managing the disease, as well as
preventing or delaying the onset
of diabetes.
As part of its World Diabetes
Day celebrations, HMC is holding
a number of public screenings.
tar Petroleum (MOQP) Challenge
this weekend at Fuwerit, where
30 corporate teams will compete.
All funds from registration fees
will once again go towards funding
the Al Bawasil childrens’ camp for
those with diabetes.
Over the past three years, Action on Diabetes has screened
22,000 people for the condition,
with the help of partners; engaged with thousands of people
through awareness campaigns
and supported п¬Ѓve courses to
further educate doctors, nurses
and diabetes educators about the
These started on November 2 and
will last throughout the month. On
Thursday, HMC will participate in a
three-day exhibition at Katara Village with Action on Diabetes.
HMC will also host a series
of information sessions at local
elementary and secondary schools
where nurses and cafeteria supervisory staff will be taught how
to manage diabetes in the school
environment. HMC will also host
public screenings at local malls
every Friday and Saturday during
the month of November. An exhibition is also planned for November
20-21 at Sealine Beach Resort in
Other planned events include
a symposium for clinicians as well
latest techniques in treatment
and support.
Dr Mohsin Mismar, manager
of the Adult Health Division at
the PHCC said: “I am pleased
to reaffirm our commitment to
Action on Diabetes and we look
forward to seeing hundreds of
people visit this year’s Diabetes Village at Katara. Diabetes
awareness has come a long way
in Qatar over the past three years,
and continuing our partnership
was an easy decision for us.”
He continued that a pilot programme of setting up a diabe-
as education and screening events
at both Al Wakrah and Al Khor
Earlier this year, HMC launched
an awareness campaign designed
to increase public understanding of diabetes and to empower
residents to take control over their
health. Running in three phases,
the campaign focused on risk
factors in the first phase and is currently shedding light on diabetes
The third phase of the campaign
which will start in February 2015,
will focus on healthy living and
prevention. The campaign will
provide strategies to manage
and prevent diabetes and other
lifestyle-related conditions.
tes registry is going on in some
health centres under PHCC and
the project will be implemented
at other health centres soon.
Ahmed Saeed al- Kuwari,
technical liaison manager, Maersk Oil Qatar, said: “Maersk Oil
Qatar is focused on supporting
social investment programmes
that make a meaningful difference to the lives of people living in Qatar. There is no better
example of this than Action on
Diabetes, which seeks to address
one of Qatar’s greatest health
Al Furjan outlets now
open for business
he Ministry of Economy and Commerce (MEC) has started
delivering completed shops at the Al Furjan (neighbourhood) Markets to winning applicants.
The winners were selected through a draw and the lease contracts would be managed through Ezdan Real Estate and Waseef.
The tenants are expected to start operations at their newly-delivered shops as soon as possible.
Expressing happiness at signing the delivery contract, Qatari
shopowners have stressed that such an initiative will serve the
interests of different neighbourhoods’ inhabitants and also boost
the local economy.
“I got a shop at Rawdat Al Hamam and would immediately start
preparing it to operate as a supermarket. This is a much-needed
business in the neighbourhood and we expect to have a good turnout of customers. The MEC should expand the project and include
more areas; as a start, though, it is really laudable,” said Mubarak
al-Qahtani, one of the new shopowners.
Ahlam al-Ubaidli, a Qatari woman who rented one of the shops,
lauded the idea behind the Al Furjan Markets. Such shops earlier
existed in many neighbourhoods but they almost disappeared in
the massive urban development in recent years.
“Reproducing the Al Furjan Markets has become an urgent need
that will ease the lives of many people and cater to their demands.
Besides, the comparatively low rents of these outlets would greatly help young people commence their own business, which would
reflect positively on the economy of the country,” she pointed out.
Hamad Abdulla, who will start a laundry, said he has already
started preparing and occupying the place and it will be ready to
receive customers soon.
Other shopowners expressed similar opinions, but also wished
that the MEC study the idea of adding shops providing other kinds
of goods and services, such as mobile stores and car mechanics.
The Al Furjan project includes 44 markets across various neighbourhoods in the Doha, Al Rayyan and Al Daayen municipalities.
These comprise some 645 shops with a monthly rent of QR6,000
In all, 2,593 Qataris had applied for shops and the draw winners
were announced by the ministry in June. Besides the shops, which
are planned to provide daily services to neighbourhoods such as
grocery, barbershops and laundry, a selection of banks would be
allowed to instal ATMs there.
The project is a joint initiative of various entities to curb “unreasonable” hike in the rents of commercial outlets and accordingly control the prices of consumer goods and services. Participants in the project include the MEC, Ministry of Finance,
Ministry of Municipality and Urban Planning, Qatar Chamber and
Qatar Development Bank.
Pan-Arab science contest encourages new talent
total of 58 science projects
created by more than 100
Grade nine to 12 students
from nine countries across the
Middle East and North Africa
have been installed at the Qatar
National Convention Centre as
official entries for the 5th Intel
Science Competition Arab World
The projects were entered into
six categories: energy and transportation; engineering; mathematical and computer sciences;
chemistry and biochemistry;
health sciences; and social sciences.
A grand award will be given to
the overall winning project at a
closing ceremony.
The students have qualified
for the pan-Arab science, technology, engineering and maths
(STEM) competition by winning
their home country’s science
competitive heats.
“The Intel Science Competition Arab World is more than a
competition; it is a valuable educational programme encouraging continued learning and the
pursuit of scientific knowledge,”
said Dr Ayman Bassil, head of
Research Training at Qatar Foundation (QF) Research and Development.
QF welcomes some of the
brightest young scientific minds
to the competition. It hopes to
inspire many students towards
promising careers in science and
later contribute to supporting
knowledge-based economies in
their home countries.
In a press statement, Bassil
said QF plays a crucial role in
contributing to human development locally, regionally, and internationally. “This competition
is firmly in line with this role.”
The Intel Science Competition
Arab World aims to empower
Arab students with skills and
greater proficiency in STEM subjects. It also aims to raise confidence and experience in these
subjects in the Arabic language.
The international contest also
encourages cultural exchange
and social interaction. Visiting
students had the opportunity to
become acquainted with Qatari
culture during a visit to Katara –
the Cultural Village.
Fawziya Abdulaziz al-Khater,
director of Education Institute,
Supreme Education Council, reiterated the importance of STEM
saying it equip students with the
skills needed to contribute towards an Arab future based on
knowledge, innovation and scientific research.
Intel Corporation (Ltd.), the
research and development division of QF for education, science
and community development,
and Qatar’s Supreme Education
Government and QF officials at the opening of the 5th Intel Science
Competition Arab World 2014 in Doha on Sunday.
Council have jointly organised
the three-day competition.
Hosted in Qatar for the п¬Ѓrst
time, the event provides students
with the opportunity to compete
on an international stage, according to QF.
The opening was attended by
Dr Wyatt Hume, executive director of Education, Training and
Development at QF; Taha Kha-
lifa, Intel general manager for the
MENA region; and Rabea Mohammed al-Kaabi, Undersecretary of Qatar’s Ministry of Education and Higher Education.
“With sufficient training,
these students will have the opportunity to contribute positively to the development of society
and the growth of the economy,”
Khalifa said.
Dr Hume speaks to the participants and guests.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Stage set for international boat show
he second Qatar International Boat Show (QIBS),
which begins today at
Mourjan Marinas in Lusail City,
has attracted several exhibitors,
mainly owners of luxury yachts,
cruises and dhows, along with a
number of industry professionals.
The show will be formally
opened this afternoon by HE the
Minister of Economy and Commerce Sheikh Ahmed bin Jassim
bin Mohamed al-Thani.
Among the local boats berthed
for the expo are an unnamed luxury dhow belonging to a Qatari
enthusiast, yachts such as Gulf
Craft Majesty 101 (31m in length),
Amer Yachts 92 (28m), Behnemar 90 (27.5m), Al Omar Marine
88 (27m) and Gulf Craft 88 (27m).
The luxury dhow, sold to an
unspecified buyer, was built in
Qatar by Al Mannai Marine at the
Al Khor shipyard. Al Mannai Marine has since moved its manufacturing to the Al Ruwais ship-
yard as it has a larger capacity.
The 150-tonne dhow is 30m in
length and incorporates the latest
advancements in technology while
maintaining the traditional look
of a Qatari dhow. As such, it is the
п¬Ѓrst of its kind in a luxury dhow
category with yacht specifications.
Such dhows could take anywhere between 18 months and
two years to build, and at present
Al Mannai Marine has six dhows
in production. Its exterior is
made of solid teakwood, while
the interiors are designed and
made in Italy.
It has п¬Ѓve bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms of Onyx and marble, and the interior п¬Ѓt-out cost in
excess of QR2mn ($550,000).
Speaking yesterday on board
the newly-built yacht, Essa alMannai, chairman of SnowComms, organisers of the QIBS,
and founder of Al Mannai Marine, introduced the dhow and
its special features.
Essa al-Mannai speaking yesterday aboard a new luxury yacht at Lusail Marina.
“The Qatar International Boat
Show is not just a boat show held
in the country but is an event of
international importance,” he
said. “It showcases modern Qatar and its ambitions, and QIBS
has been supported by the Qatari
government as well as blue-chip
Qatari corporate brands to stage
a truly world-class event. This
dhow from Al Mannai Marine
showcases the very best of Qatar’s maritime capabilities.”
In total, there will be over 75
boats on display, with brands
as celebrated as Azimut, Sea
Ray, Princess, Ferreti, Riva, Gulf
Craft, Sunseeker, Prestige, Itama, Al Shaali Marine, San Lorenzo, Benetti, Sunreef, Esen Yachts,
Ares, Lagoon, Amer Yachts,
Cranchi, Everglades and more.
Other acclaimed exhibitors include Lurssen and Blohm + Voss
– the two largest shipbuilders in
the world, Palmer Johnson, Tan
Services, Al Badi, Alfardan, Al
Omar Marine, Art Marine, Concept Marine, Cranchi, Gulf Craft,
Gulf Yachts, Kaldari Marine, Lingawi, QMSF, Royal Marine, Seas
& Deserts, Shrao, Speed Marine,
Sunseeker, YCO and many more.
Also on the schedule of many
visitors will be a tour of the Nakilat (NDSQ) shipyard, situated
in Ras Laffan, tomorrow. The
shipyard covers a total area of
58,000sqm and includes a massive ship construction hall (270m
long x 65m wide x 45m high),
which is capable of simultaneously accommodating four vessels completely under a shelter.
The visit will showcase the
massive potential that Qatar has
among international shipyards,
together with Qatar’s vision in
the maritime industry.
Faysal Mikati, vice-president
of QIBS, said: “The five-day expo
is being increasingly recognised
around the world as a major shop
window for boats and services
in the maritime industry, especially in the Gulf region. We have
no doubt that the show will be
even more successful than that of
last year, and we look forward to
welcoming everyone to witness
п¬Ѓrsthand the special role that Qatar has carved out for itself in the
international boat show circuit.”
Exhibition to highlight QRC participates in workshop to
improve livelihoods in Mena region
Qatari artist’s works
new exhibition from one
of Qatar’s best-known
artists is opening at the
Qatar Museums Gallery, Building
10 in Katara, today.
As a pioneer of Qatar’s modern art movement, Yousef
Ahmad’s artistic journey has
spanned more than three decades and his work has been influenced by his surroundings
and emotional ties with Qatar’s
culture and traditions.
The “Yousef Ahmad: Story
of ingenuity” exhibition highlights the Qatari artist’s body
of work through a selection of
his most striking artworks from
his early career in the 1970s until today.
It showcases three phases in
Ahmad’s artistic development,
from the early oil paintings that
include the historic depiction
of Al Zubarah Fort, to his mixed
media calligraphic pieces and
then through to his new conceptual artworks presenting his ability in developing an innovative
artistic style.
Ahmad’s exhibition marks
the highpoint of Qatari artistic
talent included in a number of
dynamic and exciting exhibitions that have opened in venues
Yousef Ahmad with one of his works.
across Doha. These include exhibitions and events at Mathaf:
Arab Museum of Modern Art
and the Museum of Islamic Art
in an ongoing celebration of art,
creativity and heritage.
Ahmad is renowned for his
distinct and flexible style and
his mastery of different media –
from charcoal to calligraphy and
oil painting earlier in his career.
Thousands of visitors to Katara
will now have the opportunity
to see artworks that have been
exhibited around the world, including the US, Europe and the
Middle East.
His strong affection for Qatar
is evident both in the inspiration he draws from the country
in his work but also the me-
dia and materials he uses. His
work celebrates the gentle quietness of Qatar’s sea, the flat
expanses of its desert and the
serene openness of the sky. His
connection is strengthened by
his use of materials, including local palm trees from which
he produces handmade paper
and in using desert pigments
from the ground and earth of
Qatar to create earthy and rustic
Describing the exhibition, Ahmad said: “As a local artist who
has had the privilege to train
abroad, I find so much in our environment that excites and inspires me.”
The exhibition will be on display until February 14, 2015.
(QRC) has participated
in a four-day regional
workshop to examine ways of
improving livelihoods in the
Middle East and North Africa
(Mena) region.
The workshop was held by the
International Federation of Red
Cross and Red Crescent (IFRC)
at the International Humanitarian City in Dubai under the title,
“Introduction to Livelihood”.
The attendees included representatives of eight Arab national societies from Qatar,
Palestine, Syria, Jordan, Iraq,
Yemen, Lebanon and Morocco.
Delivered by instructors from
IFRC and the British Red Cross,
the workshop covered topics
such as “What are livelihoods?”,
“How do disasters and conflicts
affect livelihoods?”, “People’s
coping strategies”, “Different
types of livelihood assistance”,
“What is involved in livelihood
assessment and analysis?”, “How
to target effectively?”, “Job creation and small entrepreneur
durable solutions through socioeconomic empowerment and
microfinance interventions” and
“Enhancing the capacity of communities to generate income”.
Workshop participants at the International Humanitarian City.
The workshop’s agenda included group exercises to exchange ideas, contemplate approaches to the issues at hand
and share the outcomes with
other trainees.
The purpose of the workshop
was to promote a better understanding of livelihoods among
relief workers, identify opportunities to establish income-generating projects, raise awareness
of how to integrate livelihood,
food security, nutrition and
gender programmes through
discussions backed by examples
and evidence, and explore possible options to support liveli-
hood projects across the region.
On the sidelines of the event,
the participants made a п¬Ѓeld visit
to IFRC premises and warehouses
in the International Humanitarian
City to take a look at relief items,
the process of vehicle preparation
and despatch of humanitarian assistance to disaster-hit regions.
Ajyal Youth Film Festival to
celebrate homegrown talent
with 20 Made in Qatar п¬Ѓlms
he second Ajyal Youth
Film Festival, presented by
Doha Film Institute (DFI),
will shine the spotlight on a selection of locally produced п¬Ѓlms
in the Made in Qatar section.
A showcase of 20 п¬Ѓlms made
by Qataris and other Qatar residents, including independent
Qatari productions as well as
winners of the institute’s filmmaking challenges, will be
screened on December 4 and 5 at
Katara – the Cultural Village.
Fatma al-Remaihi, acting chief
executive officer of DFI and director of Ajyal Youth Film Festival, said: “Our Made in Qatar
programme is a highlight of the
festival as it underlines our mandate of supporting a homegrown
п¬Ѓlm culture here in Qatar.
Made in Qatar 1 will showcase
several short п¬Ѓlms made as part
of a collaboration between DFI
and Seha, the National Health
Insurance Scheme for Qatar,
through which the directors have
made films about Qatar’s tradition of care.
Those п¬Ѓlms will screen alongside the following independent projects: 10%, directed by
Yousef Almodhadi, about a man
obsessed with his mobile phone
that lands him in all kinds of
trouble; Amreeka Laa by Hind
al-Ansari, which narrates the
story of Yousif, who wants to go
to university in New York City
while his father is vehemently
opposed to the idea; The Big
A scene from Amreeka Laa by Hind al-Ansari.
A still from Qarar by Ali al-Ansari.
Dream by Nadia Tabib, about a
10-year-old Algerian boy born
in Qatar who hopes to become
a champion swimmer; He Will
Steal It by Abdulaziz al-Saadi,
on the temptation and moral dilemma of a boy who spots a driver leave his mobile phone in the
car without locking it; New Day
by Ali Ali, which depicts an ill
woman who prays for assistance
until one day she receives news
that changes her life; Qarar by
Ali al-Ansari, a suspenseful tale
of a young married couple trying
to survive an epidemic that has
turned people into zombies; and
T Boy by Maryam al-Sahli, a п¬Ѓlm
that sheds light on immigrant
workers through the life of an IT
professional who ends up in a job
making tea.
The Made in Qatar 2 pro-
gramme includes seven independent productions. These
are After My Death, directed by
Mohamed al-Hamadi, wherein
the soul of a recently deceased
young woman is in for some bitter surprises as she pays a visit to
her mother, her husband and her
girlfriends; Coucou by Meriem
Mesraoua, which captures the
distorted reality of a senile mind
through the life of 80-year-old
Samira. Her fragile mental state
shatters when an upstairs neighbour’s laundry lands on her balcony; Hind’s Dream by Suzannah Mirghani, about a young
Bedouin woman who spends
weeks alone when her husband
is away. Their tent is her world
yet her dreams travel afar; Kings
and Queens of Qatar by Shamir
Allibhai focuses on Qatar’s
women’s chess team, the nation’s first generation of female
players at the 40th World Chess
Olympiad held in Istanbul; Lumiere by Aisha Abduljawad, an abstract symphony of images that
plays on the stark contrast between light and shadow, open
and closed spaces and urban
and natural landscapes; Public
Phone by Ethar Ahmed Hassaan
and Leena al-Musalmani, where
four people from different backgrounds make calls to all corners
of the world and show they are
all united in their human struggles; and Temsah by Latifa alDarwish, on the life of Abdulaziz
as he prepares to visit Dubai’s
comic convention hoping to п¬Ѓnd
a publisher for Skanwah, the
п¬Ѓrst comic book from Qatar.
Made in Qatar 2 also includes
dRain by Papanapattu Ganesh.
six winners of the Tarsheed
Short Filmmaking Competition organised in collaboration
with Kahramaa in celebration of
Earth Day 2014 to raise awareness about water and electricity
These are 7amood Kahraba by
Mohamed Abdulla Shaheen on
7amood’s obsession with electricity, using as much as he can,
going off the hook when he goes
one step too far; dRain by Papanapattu Ganesh, a video that shows
conserving water is almost as
easy as wasting it and the results
are a whole lot tastier; Monsters
directed by Nesma Sherif and Islam Sherif, which puts forth the
message that saving water and
conserving energy are as easy as
flipping a switch but some people
seem to need more encouragement than others; Reasons Why
You Need to Conserve Water and
Electricity by Tala Abu Samaan,
which dispenses information on
water and electricity consumption and provides practical tips to
save energy and reduce harm to
earth; Secure the Future by Hadi
al-Marzouki, an animated short
п¬Ѓlm that forces viewers to consider important issues like wasting water without using a single
word; and Takrir by Ghassan
Kairouz, in which a Korean refrigerator, a German toilet, a French
washing machine and a Chinese
lamp teach a lesson on water and
electricity consumption.
Made in Qatar 1 will screen on
December 4, at 7pm, at the Katara Drama Theatre and Made in
Qatar 2 on December 5, 5.45pm,
at the Katara Opera House. Both
screenings are free of charge but
ticket reservations are required
to secure a place.
The full programme will be announced tomorrow and tickets go
on sale on November 18.
For more information, visit
GAS TIES | Page 15
London prime
property still
a good bet
Russia and
China add to
$400bn deal
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Moharram 18, 1436 AH
RasGas gets British
Standards Institution
recertification after
a rigorous audit
Delayed Shariah
body key to Dubai
hub ambitions
Board members of Entrepreneurs Organisation Qatar at their recent meeting in Doha. EO has announced new plans to support the government’s diversification goals and growth
target through boosting SMEs and new business ventures.
EO Qatar looks to support
economic goals of govt
he Qatar Chapter of Entrepreneurs
Organisation (EO) has announced
new plans to support the government’s economic goals for diversification
and growth through SMEs and new business ventures.
The 2014-15 plan was approved at a
board meeting at the Qatari Businessmen
Association office at West Bay. The process began two months ago with a �strategy
summit’ and focuses on three key priorities for the year.
These priorities will be implemented
in a new yearly plan to engage a greater
number of Qatari entrepreneurs, provide them with more learning opportunities, and increase collaboration with
and support to government organisations such as Qatar Development Bank,
Qatar Business Incubation Centre, Social Development Centre and Enterprise
Patrick Forbes, president of Entrepre-
neurs Organisation Qatar, said EO would
do this by playing a unique role in Qatar
and draw on its members and their experiences to support small businesses and
“EO is the catalyst that enables entrepreneurs to learn and grow from each other, leading to greater business success and
an enriched personal life. We are focused
on peer-to-peer learning and support,
which is something no other organisation
can provide. The government has set objectives for SME growth, and our members
are fully committed to playing a positive
role and helping other entrepreneurs to
succeed”, he said.
Efforts to engage a greater number of
Qatari and expat entrepreneurs have resulted in strong membership growth, with
an increase of 65% since June 2014. EO
Qatar vice-president Abdulsalam Abu Isa
said the high calibre of members has been a
key reason for new applications.
Kuwait mulls spending
cuts as oil revenues fall
The chapter has created a busy calendar
of learning events, led by learning chair
Khalifa al-Haroon, giving members access
to two events a month in addition to social
meetings. EO members will be taking part
in various activities organised by the Global Entrepreneurship Week, which will be
held in mid-November.
A �CEO lunch’ series has started with
an �inspirational talk’ by Sheikh Mohamed bin Abdullah al-Thani that drew on
his expertise as an advisory board member for the London Business School. The
�Evening Workshop’ series has drawn
talks by industry leaders such as Prof
Amy Sanders of Northwestern University
in Qatar, who gave a presentation on the
tools and thinking needed to create a strategic social media plan. The events were
widely attended by members of EO Qatar
and п¬Ѓgures from the local entrepreneurship ecosystem.
EO Qatar is the country chapter of EO
�Qatar, UAE least vulnerable to oil fall’
Kuwait City
Oil-rich Kuwait yesterday ordered cabinet ministers to
“rationalise spending” after considering measures to counter
the sharp decline in oil prices, an official statement said.
“The government asked ministers to control expenditure
and rationalise spending in such a way to serve citizens and
achieve the country’s higher interests,” said a statement
following the weekly cabinet meeting.
The statement said the cabinet had studied proposals
presented by the finance ministry about the slide in oil prices
and “emphasised it will continue with capital spending and
projects under the development plan”.
Oil income makes up around 94% of public revenues in the
emirate which pumps around 3.0mn bpd.
Oil prices have lost around 30% of their value since June,
amid a surplus in supplies and a weak global economy,
hitting the state coffers of energy-dependent countries like
The head of parliament’s budget committee, lawmaker
Adnan Abdulsamad, has said if oil prices continue at the
current level, the budget surplus would shrink to just $3.1bn
from $45bn last year.
The emirate has decided to end subsidies on diesel, kerosene
and aviation fuel as a first step in revising heavily-subsidised
electricity, water and petrol.
Local media said Kuwait’s fiscal reserves grew to $548bn as
of June 30.
Kuwait has a native population of 1.25mn and is also home to
about 2.8mn foreigners.
Global, a dynamic network of more than
10,000 business owners in 46 countries
with an average annual sales of $27mn.
Members of EO Qatar are all self-made
entrepreneurs and own successful businesses that meet global minimum revenue
requirements. The organisation’s membership is a diverse mix of Qataris and expatriates from Europe, the Middle East,
North America and Asia.
The EO Qatar Chapter was established
in 2009 and currently has more than 20
members who employ nearly 3,000 staff.
Members of EO Qatar are involved in various sectors including public relations, legal services, hospitality, wireless communications, multi-media, on-line services,
business process optimisation, publishing, consumer product manufacturing,
retail, green technologies and renewable
EO Qatar is established as a branch of
the Qatar Businessmen Association.
If Dubai is serious about becoming a hub for the global Islamic
economy, it may need to put its centralised Shariah board in
A year after the emirate set out plans to be an Islamic economic
hub; it is seven months behind schedule in setting up a body that
Moody’s Investors Service said would help spur the emirate’s
sukuk market.
Dubai is still deliberating with the federal government to establish the board, according to Abdulla Mohammad al-Awar, chief
executive officer of the Dubai Islamic Economy Development
“Today the initiative is not at a stage that it could be launched,”
al-Awar said in an interview in Dubai on October 29. “We are in
discussion with the federal authorities, such as the central bank,
to make sure they’re involved in the decision.”
While Ernst & Young estimates that Islamic financial assets are
set to almost double to $3.4tn by 2018, regulations in the industry are underdeveloped. Institutions typically turn to their own
Shariah scholars to determine if products comply with Islam’s
principles. A central board may help overcome differences, said
Khalid Howladar, the Dubai-based global head of Islamic finance
at Moody’s.
Dubai, one of seven emirates that make up the UAE, planned to
establish its board in the first quarter as it sought to become a
global centre for Islamic finance, e- commerce, fashion and arts,
education, tourism, standards and certification, and an export
hub of Halal food.
“A board could be helpful to have the broader UAE aligned with
centralised principles,” Omar Shaikh, executive board member
at the Islamic Finance Council UK, an adviser to companies and
governments on Shariah finance, said by phone on November
5. “They provide a final authority which allows standardisation
of interpretations and avoids scenarios of conflicting Shariah
opinions creating market confusion.”
Malaysia was one of the first countries to set up a Shariah
authority as part of its central bank, he said. It is home to the
world’s biggest sukuk market.
“There would be more confidence in the Shariah policies and
procedures if there was some central bank involvement,”
Howladar at Moody’s said by e-mail on Wednesday. “Some of the
complexity of the sukuk market issuances from the UAE could
be reduced if there was more harmonisation.”
The central bank didn’t respond to an e-mail and calls requesting
comment last week.
Even without a central board, the UAE is poised to be the world’s
third-biggest issuer of Islamic bonds for a third consecutive year,
according to data compiled by Bloomberg. It was the secondbiggest in 2011.
Still, PricewaterhouseCoopers said in a report last month that
Islamic banks are challenged by a perception among customers that they aren’t “true” to Shariah values. The UAE Federal
National Council, a half-elected advisory council with some
parliamentary powers, plans to push for a central Shariah board,
a committee member said last week.
��Having a central Shariah board will change misconception that
some people have about the conformity of Islamic banking products with Shariah,’’ Ali al-Nuaimi said by telephone November 5.
��It would help unify procedures and prevent breaches by some
banks that only look for making profit.’’
Lower oil prices are likely to have
a bigger impact on private players
in the Middle East and North
Africa’s oil and gas industry than on
government-related entities
atar and the UAE are the least vulnerable to the present weakening crude, even as lower oil price
could slow economic growth for the Gulf
Co-operation Council (GCC) and weaken
the operating environment for the corporate and infrastructure sectors, according
to global credit rating agency Standard &
Poor’s (S&P).
A prolonged period of lower government
revenue amid GCC governments’ high infrastructure spending plans may push up
sovereign and government-related entity
capital market issuance and place a greater
responsibility on the private sector to fund
investments, it said.
On average, hydrocarbon revenues
constitute 46% of nominal GDP (gross
domestic product) and three-quarters of
total exports for the GCC. Therefore, the
recent drop in hydrocarbon prices, if sustained, could have a significant impact on
the region’s economic and financial indicators.
“We view Bahrain and Oman as most
vulnerable to a decline in the hydrocarbon
market, and Qatar and the UAE as the least
vulnerable. While the Gulf countries’ significant oil and gas reserves are key supports for their sovereign credit ratings,
their economies’ concentration in the hydrocarbon sector is also a significant vulnerability,” it said.
Expecting total credit in the GCC banking system to grow by about 10% annually
in 2014 and 2015 as banks take advantage
of growing economies, recovering corporate asset quality, and ample financing opportunities, it said the system’s asset base
will likely climb to roughly $2tn by yearend 2015, by its estimates, up from $1.7tn
as of year-end 2013.
Low production costs continue to support the credit quality of GCC commodities producers, the report said, adding the
recent fall in oil prices and resultant pressure on government budgets is likely to
bring this issue to the fore. It may result
in higher feedstock costs for commodities
producers in the region over the coming
Lower oil prices are likely to have a bigger impact on private players in the Middle
East and North Africa’s oil and gas industry than on government-related entities.
That said, upstream players typically operate under production-sharing agreements that cushion the impact of lower
prices, and the production cost is very low.
The п¬Ѓscal pressures Gulf sovereigns
are facing as a result of recent commodity
price declines, and the consequent potential for energy subsidy reform, could pave
the way for more cost-reflective tariffs in
GCC markets.
“If oil prices remain above $80/barrel
over the next few years, as we expect, they
will continue to benefit RasGas projects.
This is because about 60% of liquefied
natural gas sale contracts are indexed to
crude oil prices,” it said.
The reduction in oil prices over the past
six months does not markedly dampen the
success of the RasGas projects because of
the compellingly low breakeven pricing for
oil on these deals (in the low double digits
for Brent).
“We believe that GCC transportation
companies may keep tapping the sukuk
market to fund infrastructure development, as they have done historically
through entities such as the Civil Aviation
Authority,” it said.
Islamic п¬Ѓnance lends itself naturally
to project п¬Ѓnance (particularly when it is
asset-backed in nature) because of the
need under Shariah to have an asset linked
to a transaction. Project п¬Ѓnance sukuk are
potentially attractive not just to investors in more conventional project п¬Ѓnance
instruments but also to those looking
specifically at Islamic assets. The implementation of the Basel III framework for
banks makes it more difficult for banks to
fund long-term and large projects. Saudi
Arabia has adopted new regulations for financial services firms, and “we anticipate
that Kuwait and Qatar will soon introduce
similar controls,” it added.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Turkish Airlines Q3
profit almost doubles
Egypt consumer inflation
quickens in October
Oversubscribed Avivasa
float valued at $746mn
�Concerns over buyer cash
behind bond cancellation’
Israel cabinet okays steep
tax hike on mining firms
Turkish Airlines’ third-quarter net profit almost
doubled compared with the same period a
year ago due to lower oil prices and a rise in
passenger numbers. The carrier reported a net
profit of 1.37bn lira ($607mn), up from 705.1mn
lira a year earlier and above an average forecast
of 1.16bn lira in a Reuters poll of analysts. Sales
rose to 7.17bn lira in the quarter, the company
said in a statement with the Istanbul stock
exchange yesterday. That was a 26% rise from a
year earlier, and beat the poll forecast of 6.89bn
lira. In the first nine months of the year, the
airline’s passenger numbers rose 14% to 41.4mn.
Egypt’s annual urban consumer inflation
quickened to 11.8% in October from 11.1% in
September, the official statistics agency CAPMAS
said, while the less volatile core measure fell.
Inflation had fallen in September after a rise
this summer triggered by the government’s
introduction of fuel price increases. Mohamed
Abu Basha of EFG-Hermes, said he had predicted
a smaller increase. “It came above expectations
and that’s solely due to the jump in the category
of education”, he said, noting that the back-toschool period usually spurs a price hike but not
the 25% registered by CAPMAS for October.
British insurer Aviva and Turkey’s Sabanci
Holding completed the flotation of a 19.7%
stake in their Turkish joint venture pension unit
Avivasa yesterday, valuing the firm at 1.68bn lira
($746mn). The company is expected to be
listed as AVISA on the Istanbul stock exchange
from Thursday and will trade at 47 lira per
share, Aviva and brokerage Ak Yatirim, which
managed the sale, said in statements. The
offering was almost three times oversubscribed,
with 7.04mn shares sold against demand of
19.8mn, Ak Yatirim said in a stock exchange
Commercial Bank of Kuwait said yesterday it
cancelled its 120mn dinar ($412.7mn) capitalboosting bond last week over potential
perception concerns about where some of the
buyers were getting cash to participate in the
issue. The lender, the Gulf state’s fifth-largest
by assets, said on November 4 that despite
attracting sufficient attention for the deal,
unspecified “legislative and technical issues”
had forced it to end the sale process. CBK said
several of its customers who have ongoing
credit facilities with the bank obtained external
funding to subscribe to the bond.
Israel’s socio-economic cabinet yesterday
unanimously approved a proposal to sharply
raise taxes on mining activities, saying
government coffers would grow by 400mn
shekels ($106mn) a year. In a final report
issued last month, a government-appointed
committee recommended a progressive tax of
25% after companies reach an annual return
on investment of 14%, rising to 42% for a return
above 20%. The plan still needs parliamentary
approval. Israel currently takes in about 23% in
taxation from mining companies but that would
ultimately rise to between 46% and 55%.
London realty
seeks Qatar
The Eaton Place, London, which has a guide price of £25mn. The high value prime markets – the top 5% to 10% of homes by value – have already been impacted by increased stamp duty, the introduction of an
annual tax on enveloped dwellings (ATED) and the closure of certain tax loopholes, said Sophie Chick (right), senior research analyst at Savills.
London prime property
still a good bet; mansion
tax could cast a cloud
By Denise Marray
Gulf Times Correspondent
he latest research by global real
estate п¬Ѓrm, Savills, shows that
prime London property remains
an attractive proposition for those who
have deep enough pockets to buy. Prices
have levelled off a bit, but long-term
prospects look good. There is just one
potential cloud on the horizon: the much
talked about mansion tax that could be
introduced if the Labour party were to
win the general election next year.
“The UK’s prime housing market
is expected to slow in the run up to
next year’s election and resume steady
growth thereafter, but if it were to
be introduced, a mansion tax could
change the outlook dramatically. Such
a tax could negatively impact п¬Ѓve year
growth by an average of п¬Ѓve percentage
points,” the report said.
Sophie Chick, senior research analyst at Savills, said, “Owners and buyers will be rightly factoring it into their
decisions as the election approaches. It
would take some time for the markets to
accurately price in the impact of a mansion tax, but the threat of it has already
slowed the market. If it becomes clear
that a mansion tax is to be introduced
after May 2015, we would expect an immediate price adjustment before the
market more rationally finds its level.”
Chick pointed out that the high value
prime markets – the top 5% to 10% of
homes by value – have already been
impacted by increased stamp duty, the
introduction of an annual tax on enveloped dwellings (ATED) and the closure
of certain tax loopholes. The rate of
price growth has, she noted, begun to
slow, particularly in London.
Given the uncertainties around a
possible change of government next
year, Savills has forecast tow scenarios: a central scenario, and a second
based on its estimates of the number of
properties in different price bands over
ВЈ2mn and the scale of possible mansion
tax charges given current Labour party
The central forecast would see av-
Qatar SWF displays new
prudence in pivot to Asia
By Una Galani
Hong Kong
Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund is displaying new prudence in its pivot to Asia. The
Qatar Investment Authority has announced
it will join forces with China’s CITIC Group
to invest $10bn in the country over five
years. The tie-up reflects the challenges of
putting large sums to work on the mainland
compared with Qatar’s traditional hunting
ground in Europe. Creating value will be the
tricky part.
The alliance with China’s top state-owned
company is the latest move by the QIA
fund as it ramps up its exposure to Asia.
In October, Qatar bought a near-20% in
the Hong Kong operator of Sogo department stores for $616mn. Earlier this year it
picked up a stake in Chinese e-commerce
giant Alibaba and invested in new partner
CITIC as the Chinese company completed
a backdoor listing on the Hong Kong stock
exchange. Past investments include stakes
in Agricultural Bank of China (Agbank) and
in privately-held CITIC Capital.
Qatar’s decision to join hands with a statecontrolled partner reflects the limited
opportunities big funds have to invest in
China, especially those trying to write large
cheques. Even buying Chinese stocks is not
straightforward. After waiting two years,
Qatar recently received a $4.9bn investment
quota to access China’s domestic capital
markets. That is still a small sum for a country that the International Monetary Fund
estimates will generate a current account
surplus of $57bn in 2014.
While Qatar continues to make acquisitions
and direct investments in the West, it appears to be taking a softer approach in Asia.
That reflects a wider recalibration of Qatar’s
foreign policy to a more measured style.
The challenge will be to make its new partnership turn a profit. China’s state-owned
entities typically lag their private sector
peers when it comes to creating value. Just
take Agbank. The lender’s Hong Kong-listed
shares - of which Qatar owns 17% - have
underperformed the benchmark Hang Seng
index by 5% since Agbank listed in 2010.
Though Qatar’s new approach may be more
prudent, success is far from guaranteed.
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews
columnist. The opinions expressed are her
erage prime UK house prices slipping
-0.5% in 2015, assuming no further
increases in the taxation of high value
properties. Growth would be expected
to resume post election, averaging
22.7% over the next п¬Ѓve years across all
prime London markets.
However, a mansion tax, if implemented in the form most recently discussed, would according to their estimates, trigger average price falls of
5.0% across prime London in 2015 and
3.0% across the prime regions.
In a worst case scenario, the value of
prime London properties over ВЈ10mn
could fall by 10% and homes worth
over ВЈ3mn regionally would fall 7.0%.
Homes below the mansion tax threshold would not escape its effect, but the
proposed progressive structure of the
tax would limit the trickledown effect,
with small falls of 2.0% anticipated.
By 2017, according to their analysis,
the top end of the market would absorb the tax change. The ВЈ1mn to ВЈ2mn
end of the market would see less of a
rally, being more affected by mortgage
regulation and expected interest rate
rises, similarly the ВЈ2mn to 3mn market remains impacted by the top rate of
stamp duty
The prime market already accounts
for a disproportionately high share of
the total tax take, with ВЈ2mn-plus sales
accounting for just 0.3% of the housing market, but generating over ВЈ1bn
in stamp duty,” says Lucian Cook, head
of UK residential research at Savills.
Tax receipts for two central London
boroughs generate ВЈ54mn more in
stamp duty than the combined total for
Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, the
North East, North West and Yorkshire
& the Humber.
“We would favour a revision of the
council tax system,” Cook says. “This
would be more equitable, without the
potential unintended consequence
of punishing owners of lower value
homes, or those who are equity rich but
cash poor.”
The latest statements of intent on the
mansion tax have come from Labour,
who would hope to raise ВЈ1.2bn. They
favour a progressive tax, with properties valued between ВЈ2mn and ВЈ3mn
paying ВЈ3,000 per year, with higher
value homes contributing significantly
Savills estimates that there are some
97,000 homes worth over ВЈ2mn in the
UK, of which some 40,000 are worth
between ВЈ2mn and ВЈ3mn, and a further 30,000 between ВЈ3mn to ВЈ5mn.
To raise £1.2mn – and allowing for tax
leakage from stamp duty and inheritance tax as values fall – the charge for
homes worth between ВЈ3mn to ВЈ5mn
could be in the order of ВЈ7,000 a year,
rising to ВЈ125,000 for the estimated
1,500 properties worth over ВЈ20mn.
Looking at the UK as a whole, the
report shows that there are attractive
investment opportunities beyond the
somewhat saturated London market.
Regionally, the recovery is yet to become fully established and the market
has capacity for price growth to continue through next year, albeit averaging
just 1.0%. Five year growth is forecast
to average 23.9% across the UK, outperforming prime London, with prime
commuter and lead city locations expected to show the strongest growth.
London is seeking
investments from Qatar in
its real estate sector with
Chestertons, an international
property agency, all set to
unveil QR8.7bn �Royal Wharf’
project, a series of luxury
mixed-use developments by
Oxley and Ballymore.
The Royal Wharf - which will
create a new town centre
complete with 3,385 new
riverside properties, providing
homes for approximately
10,000 residents in London will be showcased at W Doha
Hotel and Residences, West
Bay from November 13 to 15.
Prices for these properties
start from QR1.5mn and the
project is located close to the
Emirates Air Line, London’s
only cross-river cable car.
“London, unlike any other
property market is a key hub
for Qatar-based property
investors. It is a versatile
global capital as it offers
the best prospects for the
investors in terms future
growth,” Samuel Warren,
director of international
residential developments,
Chesterton Humberts, said.
The �Royal Wharf’ project
will include two new parks
and three pocket parks, a
high street with nearly 5,000
sq m of shops, restaurants
and significant new
community infrastructure
including a school. This
residential centrepiece of
the transformation of the
Royal Docks in East London
launched its second phase
on October 24 this year in
The Royal Wharf - which
will create a new town
centre complete with
3,385 new riverside
properties in London
- will be showcased
at W Doha Hotel and
DIFC looks to double in size
in a decade, says governor
ubai International Financial
Centre (DIFC) is on track to
double in size over the next
decade with companies from China
and South-east Asia set to fuel its
next phase of growth, the governor
of the п¬Ѓnancial free zone said yesterday.
The zone’s expansion illustrates
the shift away from traditional п¬Ѓnancial centres such as London
and New York due to the increasing
wealth of emerging market economies, and the increasing importance of the Middle East as a hub.
DIFC has its own labour laws and
court system separate from the wider UAE. Since opening a decade ago,
it has risen to become a prominent
п¬Ѓnancial hub in the Middle East,
with many international banks, law
and advisory п¬Ѓrms and insurance
companies using it as their regional
base of operations.
The Dubai International Financial Centre is seen illuminated at dusk. The
DIFC’s expansion illustrates the shift away from traditional centres such as
London and New York due to the increasing wealth of emerging market
economies, and the increasing importance of the Middle East as a hub.
“We’ve been growing very fast, in
terms of the number of companies
and people that are working in the
DIFC, and if you extrapolate that,
we’ll manage to double everything
in the next 10 years,” DIFC governor Essa Kazim told reporters at a
media event. “Chinese and Southeast Asian companies are showing
a strong interest in the region so we
are working with them to capitalise
on Dubai and the DIFC as a hub for
their businesses to expand. That is
where I feel the growth will hap-
pen.” The doubling in size would be
in terms of floor space, the number
of people working in the centre and
the number of companies there,
Kazim added.
In total, around 17,000 people
worked in 1,147 companies based
in the area at the end of August, according to п¬Ѓgures provided by the
The DIFC currently has around
15.2mn sq ft of office and other
space, such as retail and hotels, and
plans to add an extra 10.2mn sq ft
have already been announced.
DIFC Investments, the investment arm of the free zone, raised
$700mn from a 10-year sukuk earlier this month that will help to fund
its real estate development as well
as pay off existing debt.
There were no plans to sell further Islamic bonds at the present
time, chief financial officer
Rajesh Pareek told the event, saying the money that was raised
from the sukuk was sufficient for
its needs.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
QSE nears 13,800 on
strong buy support
MSCI to list GIS
in its EM index
Global index compiler MSCI
(Morgan Stanley Composite
Index) will include Gulf International Services (GIS) in its
emerging market index.
MSCI also increased the
weights and removed the
adjustment factor for three
stocks in the UAE and four in
Qatar, citing relaxed foreign
ownership restrictions, a Qatar
Stock Exchange (QSE) spokesman said.
GIS is the holding company
for Gulf Drilling International,
Al Koot, Gulf Helicopters and
When MSCI upgraded the UAE
and Qatar to emerging market
status in May, it cut the weightings of a number of companies
by a factor of 0.5 because of
limits on foreign ownership.
Now, however, in the review
that will take effect at the
end of November, MSCI has
removed the adjustment factor
for QNB, Industries Qatar, Commercial Bank and Doha Bank.
Qatar had recently eased foreign ownership limits in the
listed companies, following
an Emiri decree, as part of efforts to attract more foreign
investments into its capital
market and also to enhance
MSCI is considered one of the
leading providers of international equity indices, with
about $3trn of funds benchmarked against its indexes
globally and some $321.9bn
invested in exchange-traded
funds linked to the MSCI indexes.
By Santhosh V Perumal
Business Reporter
trong buying – especially in the transport, telecom and consumer goods
stocks – yesterday lifted the Qatar
Stock Exchange to near the 13,800 level.
Foreign institutions and local retail investors’ net buying led the 20-stock Qatar
Index (based on price data) to gain for the
third straight session by 0.7% to 13,788.4
Small and micro caps, particularly, kept
up the bullish momentum in the market,
which is up 32.84% year-to-date.
The index that tracks Shariah-principled stock was seen gaining slower than
the other indices in the bourse, where
realty and banks together accounted for
more than 56% of the total trading volume.
The Total Return Index rose 0.7% to
20,565.27 points, the All Share Index by
0.71% to 3,483.74 points and the Al Rayan
Islamic Index by 0.49% to 4,595.42 points.
Market capitalisation gained 0.73%, or
more than QR5bn, to QR744.56bn with
small, micro, mid and large cap equities
adding 1.37%, 1.11%, 0.88% and 0.69% respectively.
Transport stock appreciated 1.99%,
followed by telecom (1.56%), consumer
goods (1.11%), insurance (0.84%), banks
and п¬Ѓnancial services (0.78%), industrials
(0.47%) and realty (0.07%).
More than 73% of the stocks extended
gains with major movers being QNB, Doha
Bank, Dlala, Gulf Warehousing, Al Meera,
Gulf International Services, United Development Company, Mazaya Qatar, Vodafone
Qatar, Ooredoo, Nakilat and Milaha.
However, Qatar National Cement, Al
Khaleej Takaful and Barwa bucked the
Foreign institutions’ net buying rose to
QR51.18mn against QR31.35mn the previous day.
Qatari retail investors turned net buyers
to the tune of QR2.62mn compared with net
The 20-stock Qatar Index yesterday gained for the third straight session by 0.7% to close at
13,788.4 points.
sellers of QR22.42mn on Sunday.
However, domestic institutions turned
net profit-takers to the extent of QR37.64mn
against net buyers QR7.27mn on Sunday.
Non-Qatari individual investors’ net
selling fell to QR16.16mn compared to
QR16.2mn the previous day.
Total trade volume fell 23% to 12.88mn
shares, while value rose 3% to QR902.58mn
and transactions by 15% to 10,003.
The telecom sector’s trade volume plummeted 59% to 0.83mn equities, value by
16% to QR34.98mn and deals by 35% to 328.
The insurance sector saw its trade volume
plunge 48% to 0.32mn stocks, value by 47%
to QR18.57mn and transactions by 22% to
The market witnessed a 41% shrinkage in
the real estate sector’s trade volume to 5mn
shares, 48% in value to QR164.01mn and
13% in deals to 1,869.
The banks and п¬Ѓnancial services sector
reported a 15% decline in trade volume to
2.24mn equities, 18% in value to QR257.09mn
and 26% in transactions to 3,274.
However, the transport sector’s trade volume more than tripled to 1.34mn stocks and
value also more than tripled to QR75.03mn
on more than doubled deals to 643.
There was a 23% surge in the industrials
sector’s trade volume to 1.8mn shares, 25%
in value to QR220.69mn and 19% in transactions to 2,744.
The consumer goods sector’s trade volume
expanded 21% to 1.35mn equities, value by 89%
to QR132.2mn and deals by 55% to 875.
In the debt market, there was no trading
of treasury bills and government bonds.
Gulf markets continue to
recover; Arabtec lifts Dubai
Most stock markets in the Middle
East gained yesterday, led by
Dubai, where construction firm
Arabtec Holding rose sharply
after a key shareholder bought
a stake in a major Egyptian
property developer.
Dubai’s index jumped 2.8%, its
biggest daily gain in three weeks,
as Arabtec, which dominated
trading volumes, surged 8.8%.
Abu Dhabi state fund
Aabar Investments, a major
shareholder in Arabtec,
bought a 5.1% stake in Egypt’s
second-largest listed real estate
developer Palm Hills on Sunday.
“It shows there is a strong
commitment (by the UAE) to
support the Egyptian economy,
especially in the real estate
sector,” said Sebastien Henin,
head of asset management at
The National Investor in Abu
Dhabi. “We could imagine it might
sooner or later benefit Arabtec,
for example with a new project.”
Arabtec is already involved
in a $40bn project to build a
million housing units in Egypt,
the company’s largest project
to date.
Abu Dhabi’s benchmark rose 1.1%
on the back of blue chips Abu
Dhabi Commercial Bank and
Aldar Properties, up 3.8 and 5.1%
Shares in investment firm Waha
Capital, which posted strong
third-quarter results on Sunday,
jumped 5.5% to 3.08 dirhams
and were the most heavily
traded stock in the market.
Waha made a net profit of
301.2mn dirhams ($82mn) in
the quarter, up from 107.1mn
dirhams in the year-ago period.
On Sunday, the stock surged
7.0%, breaking technical
resistance at 2.85 dirhams, the
late October peak. This triggered
a bullish right triangle formed
by the highs and lows since
mid-October and pointing up
to 3.16 dirhams. It faces strong
resistance at 3.20-3.28 dirhams,
the September and July peaks.
Saudi Arabia’s index rose 1.1%,
largely on the back of the
banking sector. Al Rajhi Bank, the
country’s largest listed lender,
rose 1.2% and Samba Financial
Group, the third-largest bank by
assets, jumped 3.1%.
Weak oil prices are keeping
investors away from
petrochemicals, and a shock
restatement of 18 months
of earnings by Mobily last
week dampened demand
for all telecommunications
firms, making banks the most
attractive Saudi sector for now,
said Henin from The National
Investor. “A lot of cash came
back to the market after the end
of National Commercial Bank
IPO and I guess they are looking
for investment opportunities,”
he said.
The kingdom’s biggest bank
completed its 22.5bn riyal
($6bn) share offer last week
with the retail portion 23 times
subscribed. Banks who had run
the deal returned excess funds
to investors on Sunday.
Egypt’s benchmark added
0.9%, largely on the back of
Commercial International Bank
(CIB), which gained 2.8%.
Cairo-based Naeem brokerage
said it expected CIB to publish
its third-quarter results after
the market closes on Tuesday
and maintained a “buy”
Kuwait’s index edged down 0.7%
as heavyweight Burgan Bank
dropped 3.8% after saying it
would open subscriptions for a
102.6mn dinar ($353mn) rights
issue next Sunday, a move which
will dilute the existing shares.
Oman’s bourse added
0.3% and shares in Oman
Telecommunications were up
0.6% after it reported a 3.1%
rise in third-quarter profit on
Monday, meeting analysts’
Elsewhere in the Gulf, Bahrain’s
measure slipped 0.6% to 1,434
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
HK-China stock trading
scheme to start on Nov 17
Link allows foreigners to buy more China
stocks; could create world’s third largest
equity market; launch of scheme was
expected on November 17; move is milestone
in opening-up of China capital markets;
Chinese retail investors can buy foreign
shares directly for first time
Hong Kong/Shanghai
long-awaited trading link between Hong
Kong and Shanghai will launch on November 17, a crucial step towards opening China’s capital markets that will give foreign and Chinese individual investors unprecedented access to
each others’ stock exchanges.
The announcement by Hong Kong and Chinese
regulators yesterday comes as China is making a
big push to widen the use of the yuan, with Canada and Malaysia becoming the latest addition to a
growing list of trading hubs for the currency.
The so-called Stock Connect trading scheme
could boost the average daily value of stock trading
in Hong Kong by about 38% by 2015, French bank
BNP Paribas estimates, and may ultimately lead to
the creation of the world’s third largest stock exchange.
The project will at the same time provide a
channel for Chinese savers to start moving some
of the $8tn of private wealth currently in deposits
into overseas stocks.
“This marks an important milestone in the liberalisation of the mainland’s capital account,”
said Hong Kong Monetary Authority CEO Norman Chan. “It will also propel the development of
offshore renminbi business in Hong Kong to new
Chinese markets rallied as the launch date was
The Stock Connect programme was originally
expected to launch on October 27, but that unofficial deadline passed, leading to speculation that
the programme might be held up by technical or
political hurdles.
Hong Kong’s leader CY Leung hinted last week
the recent pro-democracy protests in the city had
Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing chief executive Charles Li (left) and chairman Chow Chung-kong during a news conference on the Shanghai-Hong Kong
Stock Connect in Hong Kong yesterday. Hong Kong and Shanghai will link their stock exchanges on November 17, regulators said yesterday.
played a role in the delay. Industry participants
had also said uncertainty over the taxation of capital gains was a possible sticking point.
Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd CEO
Charles Li said yesterday the tax regime for the
trading link would be announced before the launch
next week. “I wouldn’t waste time agonising about
it,” he told reporters.
If the two stock markets become further integrated, they would form the world’s third-largest
equity market with a $5.6tn capitalisation, according to Allianz Global Investors.
China already operates several cross-border investment schemes but these are restricted to spe-
cific firms that must apply for a license to participate. Giving foreigners easier access to Chinese
stocks could provide support for an ongoing stock
market rally and liquidity to upcoming Chinese
stock market listings.
Chinese stocks have been among the world’s
worst-performing in recent years, down nearly
25% from п¬Ѓve years ago. But they have been rallying since summer and look set to post their best
annual performance since 2009.
The Shanghai Stock Exchange said yesterday
regulators are ready to experiment with resuming
same-day settlement for stocks after a long freeze,
a move that would put Hong Kong and mainland
Chinese exchanges on the same settlement regime
and eliminate a big operational mismatch.
Meanwhile, Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd (HKEx) CEO Charles Li said yesterday that
a tax regime for a landmark stock connect scheme
linking the Shanghai and Hong Kong bourses will
be announced before the launch of the scheme.
Li also told a media conference that a system
enhancement to allow short selling in Shanghai
�A’-listed stocks in Hong Kong is expected to be in
place by early 2015.
Earlier on Monday, the Hong Kong and Chinese
regulators announced that the long-awaited trading scheme will be launched on November 17.
Russia’s VTB may
delist from London
in favour of China
TB, Russia’s No 2 bank, may
delist from the London Stock
Exchange (LSE) in favour of
Chinese bourses as sanctions imposed
in the Ukraine crisis hit its ability to
raise capital in Western markets, its
chief executive said yesterday.
VTB shares have traded in London
and Moscow since 2007, when the
bank raised about $8bn in an initial
public offering. In total, it has raised
over $14bn in public share issues and
has received state support to boost its
capital. The Western sanctions imposed on VTB over Russia’s role in the
conflict in Ukraine limit its ability to
raise funds – including capital – in the
United States and Europe.
“We are not satisfied with the LSE’s
position,” Andrei Kostin, President
and Chairman of the management
board of VTB, and an ally of President
Vladimir Putin, told reporters on the
sidelines of an Asia-Pacific summit in
Beijing. “We will seriously consider
our participation in the London Stock
Exchange. We are looking at Chinese
In an interview with Russia state television channel Rossiya-24, he added
any Chinese listing was unlikely this
year. He gave no time-frame and did
not say how much VTB might raise.
VTB shares were trading at 4.08 kopecks yesterday, close to the price of its
latest share offering in 2013.
VTB received 214bn roubles ($4.8bn)
in capital in September when the Finance Ministry bought preferred
shares as part of wider support for the
banking sector. VTB’s Tier 1 capital
ratio – a measure of its ability to absorb losses – fell below 10% in the first
six months of the year as an economic
slowdown in Russia and political tensions drove profits down 82%.
Sensex hits
new record;
rupee rallies
benchmark index of Indian equities markets yesterday touched a new high
of 28,027.96 points, its п¬Ѓfth high
in six trading sessions, but ended
the day’s trade flat barely 6.10
points or 0.02% up.
The 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the S&P Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) had
touched a high of 28,010 points
in the intra-trade session on November 5, surpassing its previous
high of 27,969.82 points recorded on November 3.
Healthy buying spree was witnessed in fast moving consumer
goods (FMCG), consumer durables and healthcare stocks. However, heavy selling was observed
in capital goods, oil and gas and
bank sectors.
The Sensex, which opened at
27,919.45 points, closed trade at
27,874.73 points, up 6.10 points
or 0.02% from the previous day’s
close at 27,868.63 points.
The Sensex touched a high
of 28,027.96 points and a low of
27,764.75 points in the intra-day.
The S&P FMCG index gained
by 211.32 points, while consumer
durables index increased by 97.57
points and healthcare index went
up by 70.49 points.
However, the capital goods index was down 161.02 points, followed by oil and gas index which
was lower by 142.09 points and
bank index which fell by 105.02
The wider 50-scrip Nifty of
the National Stock Exchange also
closed trade in positive territory.
It ended 7.25 points or 0.09% up
at 8,344.25 points.
strengthened yesterday, tracking emerging market currencies
as the dollar weakened following
weaker-than-expected US jobs
data, although caution ahead
of consumer inflation data later
this week tempered some of the
The rupee also failed to get
much of a lift from shares, which
hit their latest record highs earlier in the session but ended flat
as investors booked profits.
Traders are looking ahead at
the consumer prices data due tomorrow, amid rising expectation
the Reserve Bank of India could
opt for earlier-than-expected
cuts in interest rates should inflation continue to ease.
“Markets will watch out
for the CPI data for immediate direction. Outlook for rupee
broadly remains positive but
global dollar strength will have
some effects on the rupee,” said
Hari Chandramgethen, head
of foreign exchange trading at
South Indian Bank, predicting
a range of 61.30 to 62.30 for the
The partially convertible rupee
closed at 61.4950/5050 per dollar compared with 61.6425/6525
on Friday. The unit had hit an
intra-day low of 61.6750 in the
previous session, its lowest level
since Oct. 17.
The gains tracked higher
emerging market currencies after data on Friday showed US
employers added 214,000 new
jobs to their payrolls last month,
a bit smaller than economists on
Wall Street had expected.
Asian stock markets mixed
sian markets were mixed yesterday, with Japanese shares
succumbing to profit-taking
while Hong Kong and Shanghai rallied
after a launch date was announced for
a trading link between their stock exchanges.
The dollar retreated from multi-year
highs despite another record close on
Wall Street that came in response to
broadly upbeat jobs data.
Tokyo slipped 0.59%, or 99.85
points, to п¬Ѓnish at 16,780.53 after ramping up gains of more than 10% in the
previous six sessions as the Bank of
Japan unveiled fresh monetary easing
Hong Kong rose 0.83%, or 194.46
points, to 23,744.70 and Shanghai
jumped 2.30%, or 55.50 points, to
Seoul closed up 0.95%, or 18.36
points, at 1,958.23 while Sydney fell
0.45%, or 25.1 points, to 5,524.0.
Dealers in Hong Kong and Shanghai
Japanese shares succumb
to profit-taking while Hong
Kong and Shanghai rally after
announcing launch date for
stock trading link
cheered news that the delayed trading
link between the two stock exchanges
would start on November 17.
The connection is expected to allow
the equivalent of $3.8bn a day in crossborder transactions.
However, the euphoria over the announcement was tempered by news
that Chinese inflation was unchanged
at 1.6% in October, well off the government’s target of 3.5% and adding to
fears about the strength of the world’s
number two economy.
Data on Saturday also showed
growth in exports and imports slowed
last month.
The result weighed on the dollar,
which slipped from a seven-year high
against the yen.
The greenback was at 113.96 yen
yesterday, down from 114.62 yen in
New York Friday and well off the 115.39
yen in Tokyo earlier Friday.
The euro bought $1.2480 and 142.14
yen against $1.2456 and 142.78 yen in
US trade.
Japan’s Nikkei slipped on the
stronger yen.
“Given that a great deal of the market’s gains over the last several days
and months have come on the back
of a stronger US currency, its weakness naturally invites profit-taking,”
said Nomura Securities equity market
strategist Junichi Wako.
But he added that “a severe sell-off
is unlikely”, partly because the Bank of
Japan and government pension funds
are known to be buying on the dip.
On oil markets US benchmark West
Texas Intermediate for December delivery rose 20 cents to $78.85. Brent
crude for December was up 31 cents at
$83.70 in afternoon trade.
Gold was at $1,171.30 an ounce,
compared with $1,144.92 late Friday.
In other markets, Taipei added
1.54%, or 137.36 points, to 9,049.98;
Wellington rose 0.95%, or 51.35
points, to 5,470.34 and Manila closed
0.19% lower, giving up 13.60 points to
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Japan п¬Ѓrm to buy
80 Boeing planes
A view of the Boeing 737 MAX 8, a more fuel-efficient variant of the world’s most widely flown jetliner. Japan aircraft leasing
giant SMBC Aviation Capital said yesterday it has placed an order for 80 Boeing planes in a deal worth up to $8.5bn.
apanese aircraft leasing giant
SMBC Aviation Capital said yesterday it has placed an order for
80 Boeing planes in a deal worth up to
The company, owned by Sumitomo
Mitsui Financial Group and trading firm Sumitomo Corp., said its
purchase of the 737 MAX 8 aircraft
marked the single largest order for the
plane by a leasing company as it looks
to further tap the lucrative sector.
SMBC, the world’s third-biggest
aircraft lessor, already has a stable of
more than 370 planes which it rents to
carriers, with 95 airline customers.
The 737 MAX 8 – a 200-seat, single-aisle, fuel-efficient plane – is
Malaysian lender Cagamas adds
amortisation to $12bn sukuk issue
Malaysia’s state-backed mortgage lender Cagamas
Bhd has broadened the scope of its 40bn ringgit
($12bn) bond and sukuk issuance programme by
adding the use of a novel amortisation format, a
regulatory filing showed.
Cagamas’s mandate as the national mortgage
corporation and the leading issuer of AAA
debt securities in Malaysia is to facilitate home
ownership but, is also exploring ways to develop a
deeper and more liquid domestic bond market.
An amortising bond is structured in a way that
gradually reduces the value of the bond over a fixed
period of time, meaning the borrower pays off the
full amount before the final maturity date.
Amortising bonds are commonplace, but the format
is rare for sukuk. Last year, Dubai’s Emirates airline
launched the first such sukuk in the international
market, a 10-year $1bn deal with an average
weighted life of five years.
Cagamas said it had received confirmation
from its Shariah advisers and the capital market
regulator for the proposed change to its issuance
This would not affect the programme’s AAA credit
rating from RAM Rating Services, the company
added. In 2012, Cagamas broadened its range of
issuance with the introduction of an agency-based
sukuk known as wakala, which is acceptable to
Islamic investors from outside Malaysia for trading
in the secondary market.
China inflation
hovers near 5-yr
low in October
hina’s annual consumer inflation remained near a
п¬Ѓve-year low in October at 1.6%, further evidence
that the world’s second-largest economy is cooling and reinforcing expectations that authorities will roll
out more measures to support growth.
Analysts polled by Reuters had expected annual consumer inflation to be 1.6% in October, the same as September, which was the weakest reading since January
On a monthly basis, consumer inflation was flat in October, the National Bureau of Statistics said yesterday.
That compared with 0.1% expected by economists.
“The risk of deflation has risen as the economy is expected to slow further in the next few quarters,” ANZ
economists said in a research note.
“This is a significant risk ... which requires China’s
policymakers to monitor the situation closely and take
action swiftly,” ANZ said, suggesting the central bank
could inject money into the system more frequently to
keep the п¬Ѓnancial system working smoothly.
Facing mounting risks to growth and rising risks of deflation, Beijing is widely expected to continue rolling out
a steady stream of stimulus measures in coming months,
though most economists believe it will hold off on more
aggressive action such an interest rate cut unless conditions sharply deteriorate.
President Xi Jinping said on Sunday that the risks facing China’s economy are “not that scary” and even if
China’s economy were to grow 7%, that would still rank
it at the forefront of the world’s economies.
But signs are growing that the economy is continuing to lose momentum despite a raft of earlier stimulus
measures, putting the government’s official 2014 growth
target of 7.5% at increasing risk.
The producer price index fell 2.2% from a year ago, its
32nd consecutive decline, as sluggish demand curbed
the pricing power of companies, the National Bureau of
Statistics said. The market had expected a 2% fall in producer prices after a drop of 1.8% in September.
Many Chinese companies are already facing rising
borrowing costs as banks grow more reluctant to lend.
Yu Qiumei, a senior statistician at the National Bureau of
Statistics, said worsening factory price deflation in October
was mainly caused by a drop in oil prices and over-capacity
problems that have plagued some sectors for years. China
has cut retail prices of gasoline and diesel seven times in a
row since late July as international oil prices fell.
“The worsening PPI weighed on the manufacturing
industry, providing more evidence that China’s economic growth will remain under pressure in 2015. Policymakers should take more measures to boost the economy,”
said Li Huiyong, an economist at Shenyin & Wanguo Securities in Shanghai.
the main rival to the Airbus A320neo.
“Our expectation is that much of these
aircraft...will be placed in the highgrowth, emerging markets, particularly in Asia where... (there is) a lot of
demand,” SMBC Aviation’s chief executive Peter Barrett told a press briefing
in Tokyo.
The $8.5bn deal for 737 MAX 8
aircraft marks the single largest
order for the plane by a leasing
“Certainly, we would also expect
many of these aircraft will go to LCC
(low-cost carrier) airlines.”
In July, SMBC Aviation announced
an order from Airbus for 115 singleaisle A320s in a deal worth around
$11.7bn at list prices.
comes less than a week after a property flagship led by Asia’s richest tycoon Li Ka-shing said it planned to
buy up to 60 passenger jets in a series
of transactions that amount to more
than $2.5bn.
SMBC’s latest deal comes amid
fierce competition in the industry
with a proliferation of budget carriers
in the Asia Pacific region.
China has lifted a six-year ban on
creating private airlines, helping fuel
demand for aircraft, and smaller passenger planes are increasingly in demand in Asia as budget carriers cash in
on the region’s growing middle classes
by expanding their reach to less prominent cities. Airbus, Boeing and Embraer – in their 20-year forecasts for
the industry – have all said the Asia
Pacific is the key market to enter because of the burgeoning middle class.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Asia-Pacific leaders call
for faster free-trade deal
S President Barack Obama and other
Asia-Pacific leaders called yesterday for
a deal to be reached “as soon as possible”
on a proposed free-trade agreement, which has
added to China-US discord, at a regional summit
in Beijing.
Obama and leaders from 11 other Pacific Rim
countries including Japan, Canada, Australia and
Mexico instructed negotiators to build on “significant progress” and push toward a conclusion of difficult talks on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)
free-trade idea.
“With the end coming into focus, we have instructed our ministers and negotiators to make concluding this agreement a top priority ... to reap the
real and substantial benefits of the TPP agreement as
soon as possible,” a statement said.
The TPP countries met on the sidelines of the
Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) summit
hosted this year by Beijing.
Washington has for years pushed the TTP, which
proposes a loosening of trade restrictions, but notably excludes the world’s second-largest economy
But the talks have become bogged down amid resistance from some prospective members wary of
opening up domestic markets, notably Japan.
Obama said he was “seeing momentum building”,
in remarks to reporters.
But a US official who spoke on condition of anonymity said: “This is not an agreement which is
about to get signed. This will take a period of time to
finish off some of the difficult issues.”
China wants the 21-member Apec meeting to
endorse a stronger commitment to the Free Trade
Area of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP) idea, a longer-term
concept for the entire region that would build on the
TPP and other free-trade initiatives.
US Trade Representative Michael Froman told
reporters in Beijing on Sunday that FTAAP was a
by China,
Seoul free
trade pact
aiwan’s government expressed alarm yesterday at
China’s free trade agreement with South Korea, the island’s strong trade competitor,
and urged the opposition to stop
boycotting a planned services
pact with Beijing.
South Korea announced earlier yesterday it had effectively
reached a free trade deal with its
giant neighbour China. It expects
to sign by year-end the pact that
will eventually remove tariffs on
over 90% of goods.
Taiwan’s government spokesman Sun Lih-chyun described the
news as a “most worrying event”
for the island. Taiwan competes
fiercely with South Korea in products ranging from textiles, semiconductors and flat panels to machine tools and steel items.
“With the agreement, South
Korea will be able to sell its products cheaper in the Chinese mainland, thus lowering the competitive edge of Taiwan-made
products there,” Sun told AFP.
The China deal will mark another crucial step forward in
South Korea’s push for greater
access to global markets, he said,
adding that Seoul has already
signed free trade deals with 50
other countries.
China is Taiwan’s largest trading partner, with two-way commerce amounting to $97.24bn,
nearly 22% of the island’s foreign
trade, in the nine months to September. According to a study by
the economic ministry, Taiwan’s
overall exports are expected to decline by 1.34 percentage points or
$3.75bn after the trade agreement
between China and South Korea
becomes effective. The exportreliant island currently only has
free trade deals with Singapore,
New Zealand, Panama, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Honduras and
El Salvador. Taiwan and China
in June 2010 signed an Economic
Cooperation Framework Agreement, which was widely seen as
the boldest step yet towards reconciliation following their split in
1949 at the end of a civil war.
Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (centre) and his delegation walk along a carpet during a meeting at the Great Hall of the People on the sidelines of the
Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation Summit in Beijing yesterday.
“long-term aspiration”. TPP, meanwhile, was “the
major focus” of US economic policy toward the
Asia-Pacific, he stressed.
Some Chinese analysts and state media have
framed the TPP as an attempt to check Beijing’s
growing economic clout, allegations Washington
dismisses. Russian President Vladimir Putin, who
also is attending Apec, said in an interview last week
that TPP was designed to benefit the United States.
He added that Russia and China’s absence in the
scheme “will not promote the establishment of effective trade and economic co-operation”.
Facing Western sanctions over Russia’s policies
toward Ukraine, Putin has aggressively sought closer
trade ties with China.
China, Russia
to settle more
trade in yuan,
says Putin
Russia and China intend to increase
the amount of trade settled in the
yuan, President Vladimir Putin said
yesterday in remarks that would be
welcomed by Chinese authorities
who want the currency to be used
more widely around the world.
Speaking at an Asia Pacific
conomic Co-operation summit
in Beijing, Putin also ruled capital
controls for Russia and vowed to
keep its foreign debt level below
15% of gross domestic product.
“As part of our cooperation with
this country (China), we intend to
use national currencies in mutual
transactions,” Putin said.
“The initial deals for rouble and
yuan are taking place. I want to
note that we are ready to expand
these opportunities in (our)
energy resources trade.”
Spurred on by their often testy
relations with the United States,
Russia and China have long
advocated reducing the role of
the dollar in international trade.
Curtailing the dollar’s influence
fits well with China’s ambitions to
increase the influence of the yuan
and eventually turn it into a global
reserve currency. With 32% of its
$4tn foreign exchange reserves
invested in US government debt,
China wants to curb investment
risks in dollar. The quest to limit
the dollar’s dominance became
more urgent for Moscow this
year when US and European
governments imposed sanctions
on Russia over its support for
separatist rebels in Ukraine.
Regarding Russia’s economic
problems, Putin said he was hopeful
speculation against the rouble,
would stop soon, arguing there was
no fundamental reason for its slide.
Obama: TPP trade deal picking up pace
S President Barack Obama said
yesterday he sees momentum
building for a Washingtonbacked free trade agreement in the
Asia-Pacific, after arriving in Beijing on
the п¬Ѓrst leg of an eight-day Asia tour.
US officials had ruled out a major announcement on the ambitious
12-country Trans-Pacific Partnership
(TPP) in Beijing, where Obama will attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) forum and meet Chinese President Xi Jinping.
But business leaders attending the
Apec forum have been looking for signs
of progress on the TPP, especially as
China is pushing for a separate trade
liberalisation framework called the Free
Trade Area of the Asia Pacific (FTAAP).
Obama said the TPP, in a deadlock
largely due to disagreement between
the United States and Japan over how
widely Japan will open its doors to farm
exports, had the potential to be an “historic achievement”.
“During the past few weeks our
teams have made good progress in resolving several outstanding issues regarding a potential agreement. Today
is an opportunity for us at the political
level to break some remaining logjams,”
Obama said at a meeting of TPP leaders
at the US embassy.
“What we are seeing is momentum
building around a Trans-Pacific Partnership that can spur greater economic
growth, spur greater jobs growth, set
high standards for trade and investment throughout the Asia-Pacific.”
Some see a proposed study on the
FTAAP plan, which will be presented to
US President Barack Obama smiles during a meeting with leaders from the Trans-Pacific Partnership at the US embassy in
Beijing. Top leaders and ministers of the 21-member Apec grouping are meeting in Beijing from Friday to today.
Apec leaders for approval this week, as
a way to divert attention from the TPP,
which excludes China.
“With the end coming into focus”,
TPP leaders said in a statement issued
after the meeting that they remained
open to including “other regional partners that are prepared to adopt its high
Obama arrives in China seeking to
show renewed commitment to his administration’s much-touted strategic
“pivot” toward Asia, widely seen as an
effort to counter China’s rising influence. The TPP is at economic core to
that rebalancing effort.
His challenge will be to overcome
scepticism among some Asian allies as
to whether the United States can fully
engage with the region at a time when
it is preoccupied with global crises
ranging from the п¬Ѓght against Islamic
State militants in Iraq and Syria, the
spread of an Ebola outbreak and the
conflict in Ukraine. At the same time,
the drubbing Obama’s Democrats took
in this week’s midterm congressional
elections, defeats that were blamed by
many on his questions about his leadership, will hardly strengthen his position in talks with China or with allies
in the region. Many may see him as a
diminished leader on the world stage in
the п¬Ѓnal two years of his presidency.
Obama’s focus on Asia business ties
on the п¬Ѓrst day of his visit underscored
his efforts to strike a balance between
seeking deeper economic cooperation
with a rising China while also challeng-
ing Beijing with the US pursuit of the
TPP. The choice of the US embassy as
the venue for the meeting is not likely to
be lost on Beijing, which has expressed
interest in one day joining TPP talks.
Newcomers to the TPP, however,
would have to meet high standards on
issues such as intellectual property
rights and the role of state-owned enterprises, which are already sources of
tension in US-China relations.
Though negotiations have been
slow-moving, one of the areas where
a new Republican-controlled Congress might actually help Obama is by
easing passage should a trade deal be
The TPP would establish a freetrade bloc stretching from Vietnam to
Chile and Japan, encompassing about
800mn people and almost 40% of the
global economy. Obama was also due to
speak to a conference of corporate chief
executives in Beijing a day after Xi assured them that risks faced by China’s
economy were “not so scary”.
For his part, Obama comes to China
boasting a resurgent US economy. This
could give him added economic clout
as he attends regional summits in Beijing and Myanmar and a G20 summit in
Brisbane this week, even if his political
capital at home appears to have waned.
In their meetings on Tuesday and
Wednesday, Obama also plans to press
Xi about China’s aggressive behaviour in pursuit of maritime claims in
Asia and US concerns about Chinese
cyber-spying, White House aides say.
But mindful of the mutual need for
constructive relations between the two
countries’ closely intertwined economies, Obama will also seek improved
cooperation on regional and global
BlackBerry seeks partnerships with Beijing firms
From left: John Chen, executive chair and CEO of Blackberry, Greg Boyce,
chairman and CEO of Peabody Energy, Vietnam’s President Truong Tan Sang,
Steve Mollenkopf, CEO of Qualcomm and Shu Yinbiao, president of the State Grid
Corporation of China, attend a dialogue at the Apec CEO Summit at the China
National Convention Centre (CNCC) in Beijing yesterday.
BlackBerry chief executive officer
John Chen said he’s interested in
partnerships to expand in China, the
world’s largest smartphone market,
after meeting the heads of Xiaomi and
Lenovo Group.
BlackBerry’s strengths in security,
encryption and privacy are in
demand in China and there may be
opportunities for agreements on
technology licensing, distribution
or manufacturing, Chen said in an
interview yesterday in Beijing, where
he was attending the Asia-Pacific
Economic Cooperation CEO Summit.
During the summit, Chen said he
met with Xiaomi’s CEO Lei Jun, and
Lenovo’s head Yang Yuanqing. These
meetings with China’s two largest
smartphone vendors come at a time
when BlackBerry is trying to return
to growth after declining phone
shipments dragged it to net losses in
each of the past three years.
“It does seem that a more efficient
way is to have a good partner to be
here,” Chen said in the interview.
“I’m here this time to look at what
opportunities there may be. We have
not really focused on this market. It’s
a huge market but it’s a very highly
competitive market too.”
Chen said he also met Cher Wang,
chairwoman of Taoyuan, Taiwan-based
HTC Corp.
Chen took the helm a year ago to lead
a turnaround after shipments of its
smartphones plunged in the past four
years as it struggles to compete with
touch-screen devices produced by
Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics
Co. The Hong Kong native outsourced
some production, sold property and
focused on business customers by
bringing back phones with signature
physical keyboards and offering more
software-based services.
The changes have helped put the
Waterloo, Ontario-based company on
track for break-even cash flow by the
end of this fiscal year and for a return
to profit the next year, Chen reiterated
In 2013, there were 19.2 million
smartphones shipped with the
BlackBerry operating system
compared with 51.1 million units in
2011, according to data compiled
by Bloomberg. The company in
September released its new squarescreened Passport smartphone which
sold 200,000 units in its debut.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Company Name
Company Name
Zad Holding Co
Widam Food Co
Vodafone Qatar
United Development Co
Salam International Investme
Qatar & Oman Investment Co
Qatar Navigation
Qatar National Cement Co
Qatar National Bank
Qatar Islamic Insurance
Qatar Industrial Manufactur
Qatar International Islamic
Qatari Investors Group
Qatar Islamic Bank
Qatar Gas Transport(Nakilat)
Qatar General Insurance & Re
Qatar German Co For Medical
Qatar Fuel Co
Qatar Electricity & Water Co
Qatar Cinema & Film Distrib
Qatar Insurance Co
Ooredoo Qsc
National Leasing
Mazaya Qatar Real Estate Dev
Mesaieed Petrochemical Holdi
Al Meera Consumer Goods Co
Medicare Group
Mannai Corporation Qsc
Masraf Al Rayan
Al Khalij Commercial Bank
Industries Qatar
Islamic Holding Group
Gulf Warehousing Company
Gulf International Services
Ezdan Holding Group
Doha Insurance Co
Doha Bank Qsc
Dlala Holding
Commercial Bank Of Qatar Qsc
Barwa Real Estate Co
Al Khaleej Takaful Group
Aamal Co
Lt Price
% Chg
Company Name
Saudi Hollandi Bank
Al-Ahsa Development Co.
Al-Baha Development & Invest
Ace Arabia Cooperative Insur
Allied Cooperative Insurance
Arriyadh Development Company
Fitaihi Holding Group
Arabia Insurance Cooperative
Al Abdullatif Industrial Inv
Al-Ahlia Cooperative Insuran
Al Alamiya Cooperative Insur
Dar Al Arkan Real Estate Dev
Al Babtain Power & Telecommu
Bank Albilad
Alujain Corporation (Alco)
Aldrees Petroleum And Transp
Fawaz Abdulaziz Alhokair & C
Alinma Bank
Alinma Tokio Marine
Al Khaleej Training And Educ
Abdullah A.M. Al-Khodari Son
Allianz Saudi Fransi Coopera
Almarai Co
Saudi Integrated Telecom Co
Alsorayai Group
Al Tayyar
Amana Cooperative Insurance
Anaam International Holding
Abdullah Al Othaim Markets
Arabian Pipes Co
Advanced Petrochemicals Co
Al Rajhi Co For Co-Operative
Arabian Cement
Arab National Bank
Ash-Sharqiyah Development Co
United Wire Factories Compan
Astra Industrial Group
Alahli Takaful Co
Axa Cooperative Insurance
Basic Chemical Industries
Bishah Agriculture
Bank Al-Jazira
Banque Saudi Fransi
United International Transpo
Bupa Arabia For Cooperative
Buruj Cooperative Insurance
Saudi Airlines Catering Co
Methanol Chemicals Co
City Cement Co
Eastern Cement
Etihad Atheeb Telecommunicat
Etihad Etisalat Co
Emaar Economic City
Saudi Enaya Cooperative Insu
United Electronics Co
Falcom Saudi Equity Etf
Filing & Packing Materials M
Wafrah For Industry And Deve
Falcom Petrochemical Etf
Gulf General Cooperative Ins
Jazan Development Co
Gulf Union Cooperative Insur
Halwani Bros Co
Hail Cement
Herfy Food Services Co
Al Jouf Agriculture Developm
Jarir Marketing Co
Jabal Omar Development Co
Al Jouf Cement
Saudi Kayan Petrochemical Co
Knowledge Economic City
Kingdom Holding Co
Saudi Arabian Mining Co
Malath Cooperative & Reinsur
Makkah Construction & Devepl
Mediterranean & Gulf Insuran
Middle East Specialized Cabl
Mohammad Al Mojil Group Co
Al Mouwasat Medical Services
The National Agriculture Dev
Najran Cement Co
Nama Chemicals Co
National Gypsum
National Gas & Industrializa
National Industrialization C
National Shipping Co Of/The
National Petrochemical Co
Rabigh Refining And Petroche
Al Qassim Agricultural Co
Qassim Cement/The
Red Sea Housing Services Co
Saudi Research And Marketing
Riyad Bank
Al Rajhi Bank
Saudi Arabian Amiantit Co
Lt Price
% Chg
Saudi British Bank
Sabb Takaful
Saudi Basic Industries Corp
Saudi Cement
Saudi Dairy & Foodstuff Co
Saudi Arabian Fertilizer Co
Al Sagr Co-Operative Insuran
Saudi Advanced Industries
Saudi Arabian Coop Ins Co
Salama Cooperative Insurance
Samba Financial Group
Sanad Cooperative Insurance
Saudi Public Transport Co
Saudi Arabia Refineries Co
Hsbc Amanah Saudi 20 Etf
Saudi Re For Cooperative Rei
Saudi Cable Co
Saudi Chemical Company
Saudi Ceramic
Saudi Electricity Co
Saudi Fisheries
Al-Hassan G.I. Shaker Co
Saudi Hotels & Resort
Arabian Shield Cooperative
Saudi Investment Bank/The
Saudi Industrial Development
Saudi Industrial Export Co
Lt Price
% Chg
Company Name
Securities Group Co
Sultan Center Food Products
Kuwait Foundry Co
Kuwait Financial Centre
Ajial Real Estate Entmt
Gulf Glass Manuf Co -Kscc
Kuwait Finance & Investment
National Industries Co
Kuwait Real Estate Holding C
Securities House/The
Boubyan Petrochemicals Co
Al Ahli Bank Of Kuwait
Ahli United Bank (Almutahed)
National Bank Of Kuwait
Commercial Bank Of Kuwait
Kuwait International Bank
Gulf Bank
Al-Massaleh Real Estate Co
Al Arabiya Real Estate Co
Kuwait Remal Real Estate Co
Alkout Industrial Projects C
A’ayan Real Estate Co
Investors Holding Group Co.K
Markaz Real Estate Fund
Al-Mazaya Holding Co
Al-Madar Finance & Invt Co
Gulf Petroleum Investment
Mabanee Co Sakc
City Group
Inovest Co Bsc
Kuwait Gypsum Manufacturing
Al-Deera Holding Co
Alshamel International Hold
United Industries Co
Mena Real Estate Co
National Slaughter House
Amar Finance & Leasing Co
United Projects Group Kscc
National Consumer Holding Co
Amwal International Investme
Jeeran Holdings
Equipment Holding Co K.S.C.C
Nafais Holding
Safwan Trading & Contracting
Arkan Al Kuwait Real Estate
Gulf Finance House Ec
Energy House Holding Co Kscc
Kuwait Slaughter House Co
Kuwait Co For Process Plant
Al Maidan Dental Clinic Co K
National Ranges Company
Kuwait Pipes Indus & Oil Ser
Al-Themar Real International
Al-Ahleia Insurance Co
Wethaq Takaful Insurance Co
Salbookh Trading Co K.S.C.C
Aqar Real Estate Investments
Hayat Communications
Kuwait Packing Materials Mfg
Soor Fuel Marketing Co Ksc
Alargan International Real
Burgan Co For Well Drilling
Kuwait Resorts Co Kscc
Oula Fuel Marketing Co
Palms Agro Production Co
Ikarus Petroleum Industries
Mubarrad Transport Co
Al Mowasat Health Care Co
Shuaiba Industrial Co
Kuwait Invest Co Holding
Hits Telecom Holding
First Takaful Insurance Co
Kuwaiti Syrian Holding Co
National Cleaning Company
Eyas For High & Technical Ed
United Real Estate Company
Kuwait & Middle East Fin Inv
Fujairah Cement Industries
Livestock Transport & Tradng
International Resorts Co
National Industries Grp Hold
Marine Services Co
Pearl Of Kuwait Real Estate
Warba Insurance Co
Kuwait United Poultry Co
First Dubai Real Estate Deve
Al Arabi Group Holding Co
Kuwait Hotels Co
Mobile Telecommunications Co
Al Safat Real Estate Co
Tamdeen Real Estate Co Kscc
Al Mudon Intl Real Estate Co
Kuwait Cement Co Ksc
Sharjah Cement & Indus Devel
Kuwait Portland Cement Co
Educational Holding Group
Bahrain Kuwait Insurance
Kuwait China Investment Co
Kuwait Investment Co
Burgan Bank
Kuwait Projects Co Holdings
Al Madina For Finance And In
Kuwait Insurance Co
Al Masaken Intl Real Estate
Intl Financial Advisors
First Investment Co Kscc
Al Mal Investment Company
Bayan Investment Co Kscc
Egypt Kuwait Holding Co Sae
Coast Investment Development
Privatization Holding Compan
Kuwait Medical Services Co
Injazzat Real State Company
Kuwait Cable Vision Sak
Sanam Real Estate Co Kscc
Ithmaar Bank Bsc
Aviation Lease And Finance C
Arzan Financial Group For Fi
Ajwan Gulf Real Estate Co
Manafae Investment Co
Kuwait Business Town Real Es
Future Kid Entertainment And
Specialities Group Holding C
Abyaar Real Eastate Developm
Lt Price
% Chg
Company Name
Dar Al Thuraya Real Estate C
Al-Dar National Real Estate
Kgl Logistics Company Kscc
Combined Group Contracting
Zima Holding Co Ksc
Qurain Holding Co
Boubyan Intl Industries Hold
Gulf Investment House
Boubyan Bank K.S.C
Ahli United Bank B.S.C
Al-Safat Tec Holding Co
Al-Eid Food Co
Al-Qurain Petrochemicals Co
Advanced Technology Co
Ekttitab Holding Co S.A.K.C
Kout Food Group
Real Estate Trade Centers Co
Acico Industries Co Kscc
Kipco Asset Management Co
National Petroleum Services
Alimtiaz Investment Co Kscc
Ras Al Khaimah Co
Kuwait Reinsurance Co Ksc
Kuwait & Gulf Link Transport
Human Soft Holding Co
Automated Systems Co
Metal & Recycling Co
Gulf Franchising Holding Co
Al-Enma’a Real Estate Co
National Mobile Telecommuni
Al Bareeq Holding Co Kscc
Union Real Estate Co
Housing Finance Co Sak
Al Salam Group Holding Co
United Foodstuff Industries
Al Aman Investment Company
Mashaer Holdings
Manazel Holding
Mushrif Trading & Contractin
Tijara And Real Estate Inves
Kuwait Building Materials
Jazeera Airways
Commercial Real Estate Co
Future Communications Co
National International Co
Taameer Real Estate Invest C
Gulf Cement Co
Heavy Engineering And Ship B
Refrigeration Industries & S
National Real Estate Co
Al Safat Energy Holding Comp
Kuwait National Cinema Co
Danah Alsafat Foodstuff Co
Independent Petroleum Group
Kuwait Real Estate Co
Salhia Real Estate Co Ksc
Gulf Cable & Electrical Ind
Al-Nawadi Holding Co K.S.C
Kuwait Finance House
Lt Price
% Chg
Company Name
Voltamp Energy Saog
United Finance Co
United Power Co
United Power/Energy Co- Pref
Al Madina Investment Co
Taageer Finance
Salalah Port Services
A’saffa Foods Saog
Sohar Poultry
Shell Oman Marketing
Shell Oman Marketing - Pref
Smn Power Holding Saog
Al Shurooq Inv Ser
Al Sharqiya Invest Holding
Sohar Power Co
Salalah Beach Resort Saog
Salalah Mills Co
Sahara Hospitality
Renaissance Services Saog
Raysut Cement Co
Port Service Corporation
Packaging Co Ltd
Oman United Insurance Co
Oman Textile Holding Co Saog
Oman Telecommunications Co
Sweets Of Oman
Oman Orix Leasing Co.
Oman Refreshment Co
Oman Packaging
Oman Oil Marketing Company
0Man Oil Marketing Co-Pref
Oman National Investment Co
Oman National Engineering An
Oman National Dairy Products
Oman Medical Projects
Oman Ceramic Com
Oman Intl Marketing
Oman Investment & Finance
Hsbc Bank Oman
Oman Hotels & Tourism Co
Oman Holding International
Oman Fiber Optics
Oman Flour Mills
Oman Filters Industry
Oman Fisheries Co
Oman Education & Training In
Oman & Emirates Inv(Om)50%
Oman & Emirates Inv(Emir)50%
Oman Europe Foods Industries
Oman Cement Co
Oman Chlorine
Oman Chromite
Oman Cables Industry
Oman Agricultural Dev
Omani Qatari Telecommunicati
National Securities
Oman Foods International Soa
National Pharmaceutical-Rts
National Pharmaceutical
National Packaging Fac
National Mineral Water
National Hospitality Institu
National Gas Co
National Finance Co
National Detergents/The
National Carpet Factory
National Bank Of Oman Saog
National Biscuit Industries
National Real Estate Develop
Natl Aluminium Products
Muscat Thread Mills Co
Muscat Insurance Company
Modern Poultry Farms
Muscat National Holding
Musandam Marketing & Invest
Al Maha Petroleum Products M
Muscat Gases Company Saog
Majan Glass Company
Muscat Finance
Al Kamil Power Co
Interior Hotels
Hotels Management Co Interna
Al-Hassan Engineering Co
Gulf Stone
Gulf Mushroom Company
Gulf Invest. Serv. Pref-Shar
Gulf Investments Services
Gulf International Chemicals
Gulf Hotels (Oman) Co Ltd
Global Fin Investment
Galfar Engineering&Contract
Galfar Engineering -Prefer
Financial Services Co.
Flexible Ind Packages
Lt Price
% Chg
Company Name
Financial Corp/The
Dhofar Tourism
Dhofar Poultry
Aloula Co
Dhofar Intl Development
Dhofar Insurance
Dhofar University
Dhofar Power Co
Dhofar Power Co-Pfd
Dhofar Fisheries & Food Indu
Dhofar Cattlefeed
Al Batinah Dev & Inv
Dhofar Beverages Co
Computer Stationery Inds
Construction Materials Ind
Cement & Gypsum Pro
Marine Bander Al-Rowdha
Bank Sohar
Bankmuscat Saog
Bank Dhofar Saog
Al Batinah Hotels
Majan College
Areej Vegetable Oils
Al Jazeera Steel Products Co
Al Sallan Food Industry
Acwa Power Barka Saog
Al-Omaniya Financial Service
Taghleef Industries Saog
Gulf Plastic Industries Co
Al Jazeera Services
Al Jazerah Services -Pfd
Al-Fajar Al-Alamia Co
Ahli Bank
Abrasives Manufacturing Co S
Al-Batinah Intl Saog
Lt Price
% Chg
Company Name
National Takaful Company
Waha Capital Pjsc
Union Insurance Co
Union National Bank/Abu Dhab
United Insurance Company
Union Cement Co
United Arab Bank
Abu Dhabi National Takaful C
Abu Dhabi National Energy Co
Sudan Telecommunications Co$
Sorouh Real Estate Company
Sharjah Insurance Company
Sharjah Cement & Indus Devel
Ras Al Khaima Poultry
Ras Al Khaimah Co
Rak Properties
Ras Al-Khaimah National Insu
Ras Al Khaimah Ceramics
Ras Al Khaimah Cement Co
National Bank Of Ras Al-Khai
Ooredoo Qsc
Umm Al Qaiwain Cement Indust
Oman & Emirates Inv(Emir)50%
National Marine Dredging Co
National Corp Tourism & Hote
Sharjah Islamic Bank
National Bank Of Umm Al Qaiw
National Bank Of Fujairah
National Bank Of Abu Dhabi
Methaq Takaful Insurance
#N/A Invalid Security
Gulf Pharmaceutical Ind-Julp
Invest Bank
Insurance House
Gulf Medical Projects
Gulf Livestock Co
Green Crescent Insurance Co
Gulf Cement Co
Foodco Holding
Finance House
First Gulf Bank
Fujairah Cement Industries
Fujairah Building Industries
Emirates Telecom Corporation
Eshraq Properties Co Pjsc
Emirates Insurance Co. (Psc)
Emirates Driving Company
Al Dhafra Insurance Co. P.S.
Dana Gas
Commercial Bank Internationa
Bank Of Sharjah
Abu Dhabi Natl Co For Buildi
Al Wathba National Insurance
Intl Fish Farming Co-Asmak
Arkan Building Materials Co
Aldar Properties Pjsc
Al Ain Ahlia Ins. Co.
Al Khazna Insurance Co
Agthia Group Pjsc
Al Fujairah National Insuran
Abu Dhabi Ship Building Co
Abu Dhabi National Insurance
Abu Dhabi National Hotels
Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank
Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank
Abu Dhabi Aviation
Lt Price
% Chg
Company Name
United Paper Industries Bsc
United Gulf Investment Corp
United Gulf Bank
United Finance Co
Trafco Group Bsc
Takaful International Co
Taib Bank -$Us
Securities & Investment Co
Seef Properties
Sudan Telecommunications Co$
Al-Salam Bank
Delmon Poultry Co
National Hotels Co
National Bank Of Bahrain
Nass Corp Bsc
Khaleeji Commercial Bank
Ithmaar Bank Bsc
Investcorp Bank -$Us
Inovest Co Bsc
Intl Investment Group-Kuwait
Gulf Monetary Group
Global Investment House Kscc
Gulf Finance House Ec
Bahrain Family Leisure Co
Esterad Investment Co B.S.C.
Bahrain Duty Free Complex
Bahrain Car Park Co
Bahrain Cinema Co
Bahrain Tourism Co
Bahraini Saudi Bank/The
Bahrain National Holding
Bankmuscat Saog
Bmmi Bsc
Bmb Investment Bank
Bahrain Kuwait Insurance
Bahrain Islamic Bank
Gulf Hotel Group B.S.C
Bahrain Flour Mills Co
Bahrain Commercial Facilitie
Bbk Bsc
Bahrain Telecom Co
Bahrain Ship Repair & Engin
Albaraka Banking Group
Banader Hotels Co
Ahli United Bank B.S.C
Lt Price
% Chg
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Company Name
Exxon Mobil Corp
Microsoft Corp
Johnson & Johnson
General Electric Co
Wal-Mart Stores Inc
Procter & Gamble Co/The
Jpmorgan Chase & Co
Chevron Corp
Verizon Communications Inc
Pfizer Inc
Coca-Cola Co/The
At&T Inc
Merck & Co. Inc.
Intel Corp
Intl Business Machines Corp
Visa Inc-Class A Shares
Walt Disney Co/The
Home Depot Inc
Cisco Systems Inc
3M Co
United Technologies Corp
American Express Co
Mcdonald’s Corp
Unitedhealth Group Inc
Boeing Co/The
Goldman Sachs Group Inc
Nike Inc -Cl B
Du Pont (E.I.) De Nemours
Caterpillar Inc
Travelers Cos Inc/The
Lt Price
% Chg
FTSE 100
Company Name
Wpp Plc
Wolseley Plc
Wm Morrison Supermarkets
Whitbread Plc
Weir Group Plc/The
Vodafone Group Plc
United Utilities Group Plc
Unilever Plc
Tullow Oil Plc
Tui Travel Plc
Travis Perkins Plc
Tesco Plc
Standard Life Plc
Standard Chartered Plc
St James’s Place Plc
Sse Plc
Sports Direct International
Smiths Group Plc
Smith & Nephew Plc
Shire Plc
Severn Trent Plc
Schroders Plc
Sainsbury (J) Plc
Sage Group Plc/The
Sabmiller Plc
Rsa Insurance Group Plc
Royal Mail Plc
Royal Dutch Shell Plc-B Shs
Royal Dutch Shell Plc-A Shs
Royal Bank Of Scotland Group
Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc
Rio Tinto Plc
Reed Elsevier Plc
Reckitt Benckiser Group Plc
Randgold Resources Ltd
Prudential Plc
Petrofac Ltd
Persimmon Plc
Pearson Plc
Old Mutual Plc
Next Plc
National Grid Plc
Mondi Plc
Meggitt Plc
Marks & Spencer Group Plc
London Stock Exchange Group
Lloyds Banking Group Plc
Legal & General Group Plc
Land Securities Group Plc
Kingfisher Plc
Johnson Matthey Plc
Itv Plc
Intu Properties Plc
Intl Consolidated Airline-Di
Intertek Group Plc
Intercontinental Hotels Grou
Imperial Tobacco Group Plc
Imi Plc
Hsbc Holdings Plc
Hargreaves Lansdown Plc
Hammerson Plc
Glencore Plc
Glaxosmithkline Plc
Gkn Plc
G4s Plc
Friends Life Group Ltd
Fresnillo Plc
Experian Plc
Easyjet Plc
Dixons Carphone Plc
Direct Line Insurance Group
Diageo Plc
Crh Plc
Compass Group Plc
Coca-Cola Hbc Ag-Cdi
Centrica Plc
Carnival Plc
Capita Plc
Burberry Group Plc
Bunzl Plc
Bt Group Plc
British Sky Broadcasting Gro
British Land Co Plc
British American Tobacco Plc
Bp Plc
Bhp Billiton Plc
Bg Group Plc
Barclays Plc
Bae Systems Plc
Babcock Intl Group Plc
Aviva Plc
Astrazeneca Plc
Associated British Foods Plc
Ashtead Group Plc
Arm Holdings Plc
Antofagasta Plc
Anglo American Plc
Aggreko Plc
Admiral Group Plc
Aberdeen Asset Mgmt Plc
3I Group Plc
#N/A Invalid Security
Lt Price
% Chg
Company Name
Inpex Corp
Daiwa House Industry Co Ltd
Sekisui House Ltd
Kirin Holdings Co Ltd
Japan Tobacco Inc
Seven & I Holdings Co Ltd
Toray Industries Inc
Asahi Kasei Corp
Sumitomo Chemical Co Ltd
Shin-Etsu Chemical Co Ltd
Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings
Kao Corp
Takeda Pharmaceutical Co Ltd
Astellas Pharma Inc
Eisai Co Ltd
Daiichi Sankyo Co Ltd
Fujifilm Holdings Corp
Shiseido Co Ltd
Jx Holdings Inc
Lt Price
% Chg
Lt Price
Dow Jones Indus. Avg
S&P 500 Index
Nasdaq Composite Index
S&P/Tsx Composite Index
Mexico Bolsa Index
Brazil Bovespa Stock Idx
Ftse 100 Index
Cac 40 Index
Dax Index
Ibex 35 Tr
Nikkei 225
Japan Topix
Hang Seng Index
All Ordinaries Indx
Nzx All Index
Bse Sensex 30 Index
Nse S&P Cnx Nifty Index
Straits Times Index
Karachi All Share Index
Jakarta Composite Index
Company Name
Bridgestone Corp
Asahi Glass Co Ltd
Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Meta
Sumitomo Metal Industries
Kobe Steel Ltd
Jfe Holdings Inc
Sumitomo Metal Mining Co Ltd
Sumitomo Electric Industries
Smc Corp
Komatsu Ltd
Kubota Corp
Daikin Industries Ltd
Hitachi Ltd
Toshiba Corp
Mitsubishi Electric Corp
Nidec Corp
Nec Corp
Fujitsu Ltd
Panasonic Corp
Sharp Corp
Sony Corp
Tdk Corp
Keyence Corp
Denso Corp
Fanuc Corp
Rohm Co Ltd
Kyocera Corp
Murata Manufacturing Co Ltd
Nitto Denko Corp
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries
Nissan Motor Co Ltd
Toyota Motor Corp
Honda Motor Co Ltd
Suzuki Motor Corp
Nikon Corp
Hoya Corp
Canon Inc
Ricoh Co Ltd
Dai Nippon Printing Co Ltd
Nintendo Co Ltd
Itochu Corp
Marubeni Corp
Mitsui & Co Ltd
Tokyo Electron Ltd
Sumitomo Corp
Mitsubishi Corp
Aeon Co Ltd
Mitsubishi Ufj Financial Gro
Resona Holdings Inc
Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdin
Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Gr
Bank Of Yokohama Ltd/The
Mizuho Financial Group Inc
Orix Corp
Daiwa Securities Group Inc
Nomura Holdings Inc
Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Holdin
Ms&Ad Insurance Group Holdin
Dai-Ichi Life Insurance
Tokio Marine Holdings Inc
T&D Holdings Inc
Mitsui Fudosan Co Ltd
Mitsubishi Estate Co Ltd
Sumitomo Realty & Developmen
East Japan Railway Co
West Japan Railway Co
Central Japan Railway Co
Ana Holdings Inc
Nippon Telegraph & Telephone
Kddi Corp
Ntt Docomo Inc
Tokyo Electric Power Co Inc
Chubu Electric Power Co Inc
Kansai Electric Power Co Inc
Tohoku Electric Power Co Inc
Kyushu Electric Power Co Inc
Tokyo Gas Co Ltd
Secom Co Ltd
Yamada Denki Co Ltd
Fast Retailing Co Ltd
Softbank Corp
Lt Price
% Chg
Company Name
Zee Entertainment Enterprise
Wipro Ltd
Ultratech Cement Ltd
Tech Mahindra Ltd
Tata Steel Ltd
Tata Power Co Ltd
Tata Motors Ltd
Tata Consultancy Svcs Ltd
Sun Pharmaceutical Indus
State Bank Of India
Sesa Sterlite Ltd
Reliance Industries Ltd
Punjab National Bank
Power Grid Corp Of India Ltd
Oil & Natural Gas Corp Ltd
Ntpc Ltd
Nmdc Ltd
Maruti Suzuki India Ltd
Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd
Lupin Ltd
Larsen & Toubro Ltd
Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd
Jindal Steel & Power Ltd
Itc Ltd
Infosys Ltd
Indusind Bank Ltd
Idfc Ltd
Icici Bank Ltd
Housing Development Finance
Hindustan Unilever Ltd
Hindalco Industries Ltd
Hero Motocorp Ltd
Hdfc Bank Limited
Hcl Technologies Ltd
Grasim Industries Ltd
Gail India Ltd
Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories
Dlf Ltd
Coal India Ltd
Cipla Ltd
Cairn India Ltd
Bharti Airtel Ltd
Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd
Bharat Heavy Electricals
Bank Of Baroda
Bajaj Auto Ltd
Axis Bank Ltd
Asian Paints Ltd
Ambuja Cements Ltd
Acc Ltd
Lt Price
% Chg
Cairn’s share price surged 12.1% to stand at 177 pence yesterday.
European stock markets
kick off week with gains
uropean stock markets mostly
rose yesterday amid a lack of
negative news to dent sentiment,
analysts said.
London’s benchmark FTSE 100 index added 0.67% to end the day at
6,611.25 points, while in Frankfurt the
DAX 30 climbed 0.65% to 9,351.87
and in Paris the CAC 40 rose 0.79% to
4,222.82 points.
“European equity markets edged
higher in today’s session, as firm Chinese and European economic data improved market sentiment,” said Sucden
Research analyst Myrto Sokou.
David Madden, a market analyst at
online trader IG, observed “no negative
news encourages traders to go long.”
With today a holiday in much of
Europe and the United States, there is
little in the way of economic data releases scheduled for the beginning of
this week
However Milan dropped 0.85% after
Italian industrial production contracted 0.9% in September.
Wall Street continued to advance
yesterday after hitting new records on
Friday after the US Labor Department
said the American economy added
214,000 jobs last month.
While that п¬Ѓgure was weaker than
forecast, the previous two months’ job
gains were revised upward and the US
unemployment rate slipped to a sixyear low.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average
added 0.17% to 17,603.97 points in
afternoon trading, while the S&P 500
rose 0.21% to 2,036.18 and the techrich Nasdaq Composite Index climbed
0.30% to 4,646.33.
In yesterday’s foreign exchange
deals, the single European currency
slid to $1.2430 from $1.2456 late in
New York on Friday.
The euro dipped to 78.30 British pence
from 78.48, while the British pound grew
to $1.5874 from $1.5869 on Friday.
On the London Bullion Market, the
price of gold increased to $1,162 an
ounce from a $1,154.50 on Friday.
In company news, Cairn Energy said
it had unearthed another oil п¬Ѓnd off the
coast of Senegal.
It comes after the British energy explorer last month said it made its п¬Ѓrst
offshore oil find in in Senegal’s maritime territory, prompting the west African country to say that it aimed to
begin pumping its own oil in about п¬Ѓve
years’ time.
Cairn Energy chief executive Simon
Thomson described the latest п¬Ѓnd as
“significant” for the company and
The new discovery was made at
Cairn’s SNE-1 well, situated about 100
Company Name
Aluminum Corp Of China Ltd-H
Bank Of East Asia
Bank Of China Ltd-H
Bank Of Communications Co-H
Belle International Holdings
Boc Hong Kong Holdings Ltd
Cathay Pacific Airways
Cheung Kong Holdings Ltd
China Coal Energy Co-H
China Construction Bank-H
China Life Insurance Co-H
China Merchants Hldgs Intl
China Mobile Ltd
China Overseas Land & Invest
China Petroleum & Chemical-H
China Resources Enterprise
China Resources Land Ltd
China Resources Power Holdin
China Shenhua Energy Co-H
China Unicom Hong Kong Ltd
Citic Ltd
Clp Holdings Ltd
Cnooc Ltd
Cosco Pacific Ltd
Esprit Holdings Ltd
Fih Mobile Ltd
Hang Lung Properties Ltd
Hang Seng Bank Ltd
Henderson Land Development
kilometres (60 miles) off the country’s
Cairn’s share price surged 12.1% to
stand at 177 pence.
Mining shares initially rose as commodity prices climbed on reassuring
Chinese data, but turned negative on
gains by the dollar, which tend to dent
Rio Tinto shed 0.49% to 3,024
pence, Anglo American slid 0.29% to
1,360.5 pence and BHP Billiton gave up
0.24% to 1,672 pence.
Elsewhere, Britain’s scandal-hit
services giant Serco cut its profits
outlook and revealed plans to shrink
the group after taking an impairment
charge of £1.5bn ($2.4bn or €1.9bn),
sending shares plunging by almost a
third to 215.10 pence.
In Lisbon, a rival bid for Portugal
Telecom helped the PSI-20 index jump
by 5.5% to €8.22.
Shares the operator leapt nearly 12%
to €1.36 after Isabel Dos Santos, an
Angolan businesswoman and daughter of the country’s president offered
€1.2bn for PT SGPS holding, which has
a 25.6% stake in Brazilian telecommunications operator Oi.
The offer could disrupt the ongoing
merger of Portugal Telecom with Oi, as
well as wrongfoot a bid by Altice, parent
company of French cable operator Numericable, to acquire most of Portugal
Telecom from the Brazilian operator.
Lt Price
% Chg
Company Name
Hong Kong & China Gas
Hong Kong Exchanges & Clear
Hsbc Holdings Plc
Hutchison Whampoa Ltd
Ind & Comm Bk Of China-H
Li & Fung Ltd
Mtr Corp
New World Development
Petrochina Co Ltd-H
Ping An Insurance Group Co-H
Power Assets Holdings Ltd
Sino Land Co
Sun Hung Kai Properties
Swire Pacific Ltd-A
Tencent Holdings Ltd
Wharf Holdings Ltd
Lt Price
% Chg
Doha Securities Market
Saudi Tadawul
Kuwait Stocks Exchange
Bahrain Stock Exchage
Oman Stock Market
Abudhabi Stock Market
Dubai Financial Market
Lt Price
“Information contained herein is believed to be reliable and had been obtained from sources believed to be reliable. The
accuracy and completeness cannot be guaranteed. This publication is for providing information only and is not intended
as an offer or solicitation for a purchase or sale of any of the financial instruments mentioned. Gulf Times and Doha Bank
or any of their employees shall not be held accountable and will not accept any losses or liabilities for actions based on
this data.”
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
New rules proposed
to put an end to �too
big to fail’ banks
New �bail in’ bonds rule set
for January 2019; minimum
buffer of 16-20% of risk
weighted assets; rule to be
finalised by G20 summit in
2015; FSB turns attention
to implementing post crisis
Basel, Switzerland/London
lobal regulators yesterday proposed new rules
to ensure that bank creditors rather than taxpayers pick
up the bill when a big lender collapses.
Mark Carney, chairman of the
Financial Stability Board and
Bank of England governor, said
the plans marked a watershed in
ending banks that are too big to
be allowed to fail.
“Once implemented, these
agreements will play important roles in enabling globally
systemic banks to be resolved
(wound down) without recourse
to public subsidy and without
disruption to the wider п¬Ѓnancial
system,” Carney said in a statement.
After the financial crisis in
2007-2009, governments had
to spend billions of dollars
of taxpayer money to rescue
banks that ran into trouble and
could have threatened global
financial system if allowed to
go under.
Since then, regulators from
the Group of 20 economies have
been trying to п¬Ѓnd ways to prevent this happening again.
The plans envisage that global banks like Goldman Sachs
and HSBC should have a buffer
of bonds or equity equivalent to
at least 16 to 20% of their riskweighted assets, like loans, from
January 2019.
These bonds would be converted to equity to help shore up
a stricken bank. The banks’ total
buffer would include the minimum mandatory core capital requirements banks must already
hold to bolster their defences
against future crises.
The new rule will apply to
30 banks the regulators have
deemed to be globally “systemically important,” though initially three from China on that
list of 30 would be exempt.
G2O leaders are expected to
back the proposal later this week
in Australia. It is being put out to
public consultation until February 2, 2015.
Carney was confident the new
rule would be applied as central
banks and governments had a
hand in drafting them.
“This isn’t something that we
cooked up in Basel tower and are
just presenting to everybody,” he
told a news conference, referring to the FSB’s headquarters in
Breaches should be punished
by curbing dividends and bonuses, the FSB said.
Bank of England governor and chairman of the Financial Stability Board Mark Carney addressing a news conference at the Bank for
International Settlements (BIS) in Basel yesterday. The world’s biggest banks should hold a buffer of bonds in case of a collapse so that
government bailouts are avoided, a global regulatory body proposed yesterday. Carney said the plans marked a watershed in ending banks
that are too big to be allowed to fail.
Most of the banks would need
to sell more bonds to comply
with the new rules, the FSB said.
Some bonds — known as “senior
debt” that banks have already
sold to investors would need restructuring.
Senior debt was largely protected during the п¬Ѓnancial crisis, which meant investors did
not lose their money. But Carney said it in future these bonds
might have to bear losses if al-
lowed under national rules and
investors were warned in advance.
The new buffer, formally
known as total loss absorbing
capacity or TLAC, must be at
least twice a bank’s leverage ratio, a separate measure of capital
to total assets regardless of the
level of risk.
Globally, the leverage ratio
has been set provisionally at
3% but it could be higher when
finalised in 2015. Some of the
buffer must be held at major
overseas subsidiaries to reassure regulators outside a bank’s
home country. Banks may have
to hold more than the minimum because of “add-ons”
due to specific business models, Carney said.
Fitch ratings agency said
banks might end up with a buffer
equivalent to as much as a quarter of their risk weighted assets
once other capital requirements
are included.
Analysts at Citi estimated
the new rule could cost European banks up to 3% of profits
in 2016.
Citi said European banks
would be required to issue the
biggest chunk of new bonds, including BNP Paribas, Deutsche
Bank, BBVA and UniCredit, with
Swiss and British banks the least
affected in Europe.
Bigger п¬Ѓnes in
less time for FX
reveals Libor
lessons learned
ritish regulators are closing in on a settlement in
their currency-rigging
probe that will yield bigger
penalties for more banks in less
than half the time spent investigating Libor.
The Financial Conduct Authority is poised to reach a settlement as soon as this week
with six banks, which together
have set aside about $5.3bn in
recent weeks for legal matters
including the currency investigations, people with knowledge
of the talks have said.
That’s less than a year and a
half since the agency disclosed
it was looking into the matter.
By contrast, after more than
two years п¬Ѓning п¬Ѓrms piecemeal for manipulating the
London interbank offered rate
and related benchmarks, the
FCA and its predecessor have
reaped ВЈ532mn ($849mn) from
seven firms. Chief executive officer Martin Wheatley said last
month it’s “not a good message” the agency is still investigating Libor. The FCA is
working to produce a different
narrative on currency rigging,
according to the people, who
asked not to be named because
the talks are private.
“There can be little doubt
that the FCA has learned lessons from its protracted Libor investigations,” said Jason
Mansell, a London-based trial
lawyer involved in Libor cases.
“The much rumoured multiinstitutional global settlement
will enable the FCA to present
itself publicly as providing a
tough response to global misconduct.”
The FCA was the п¬Ѓrst agency to say, in June 2013, that it
was looking at whether the
$5.3tn-a-day currency market had been manipulated. Investigations soon opened on
three continents as authorities
probed allegations that dealers at the world’s biggest banks
traded ahead of clients and colluded to rig benchmarks used
by pension funds and money
managers to determine what
they pay for foreign currencies.
Barclays, Citigroup, HSBC
Holdings, JPMorgan Chase &
Co, Royal Bank of Scotland
Group and UBS are in settlement talks with the FCA, people
with knowledge of the negotiations have said. Lara Joseph, a
spokeswoman for the FCA, declined to comment, as did representatives for the six banks.
The British regulator already
has reached Libor settlements
with three of the six banks —
Barclays, RBS and UBS — levying £307mn in fines.
A two-page FCA document
outlining interview protocol for
currency investigations, sent
to lawyers advising banks last
year, was one of the п¬Ѓrst signs
the agency was taking a different tack, according to three
people who saw the letters and
asked not to be identified because they were private.
The document set out a series
of requirements for lawyers,
including recording employee
interviews and sending them
to the FCA, one of the people
said. That request hadn’t been
seen before, according to four
lawyers who regularly work on
FCA investigations and were
involved in Libor cases. After
getting pushback about attorney-client privilege, the regulator agreed to accept detailed
notes instead, they said.
“After Libor, the FCA realised
it needed to have greater control
over banks’ internal investigations, rather than just accepting
evidence,” said Richard Burger, a
London-based lawyer who has
worked for the regulator. “The
more prescriptive approach
taken with FX investigations
was probably the regulator’s attempt to remedy this.”
The FCA has benefited from
improved communications with
overseas counterparts, according to an agency official involved
in the case. A lack of understanding about different legal
systems hampered the Libor investigation, the person said.
The Financial Conduct
Authority is poised to
reach a settlement as
soon as this week with
six banks, which together
have set aside about
$5.3bn in recent weeks for
legal matters
The British markets watchdog received 52 requests for
help from other agencies on
foreign exchange through
March, according to its annual
report. The US Federal Reserve,
the Office of the Comptroller
of the Currency and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission are pressing to reach
accords with some of the same
banks at the same time the FCA
does, people with knowledge of
the matter have said.
The FCA may still issue settlements on its own, other people said last week. That willingness to go it alone differs from
the agency’s approach on Libor,
in which it mostly has coordinated п¬Ѓnes with the CFTC and
US Department of Justice.
The CFTC is striving to announce settlements along with
the FCA, as are the Fed and
OCC, while the Justice Department probably will take longer,
people with knowledge of the
probes have said. The Justice
Department is pressing to take
action against one bank before
the end of the year and planning
to п¬Ѓle criminal charges against
individuals next year, the people
said. Spokesmen for all four US
agencies declined to comment.
The FCA isn’t planning to
levy п¬Ѓnes against individual traders, two people with
knowledge of the discussions
said in September. In contrast,
11 anonymous warning notices
outlining wrongdoing over Libor and related benchmarks
have been published by the FCA
against traders. The regulator
has proposed penalties of as
much as ВЈ10mn. The п¬Ѓnes have
been delayed because of possible criminal proceedings.
Draghi’s morality tale echoes as euro recovery grinds
Mario Draghi’s morality tale on the need
for structural reform will resonate this
week in data revealing Spain outshone the
region’s biggest economies yet again.
Reports on November 14 predicted by
economists to show a recession in Italy,
and marginal growth in France, Germany,
and the euro area as a whole, will reinforce a parable the European Central Bank
president tells every month. That theme
has particular poignancy for Draghi, an
Italian whose country has become the
poster child of economic sclerosis.
Spanish wedding-dress designer Jordi
Dalmau says he can see animal spirits
taking hold in the economy from the way
his creations sell. The lack of buoyancy
elsewhere in the 18-nation region, which
Draghi blames in part on a lack of effort
by governments, may lead officials to cut
their economic outlook in December.
“After four years of doing nothing
other than saving, Spanish people have
started spending again,” Dalmau said in
a telephone interview from Granollers,
close to Barcelona. “Business is going
much, much better than in previous years,
there’s no comparison.”
With growth of 0.5% in the JulySeptember period, the Spanish economy
outperformed the German one for a second quarter, something it hasn’t done since
2007. By contrast, the euro-area economy
probably expanded 0.1%, according to
economists surveyed by Bloomberg News.
Eurostat will publish that report following
data from France, Germany, Slovakia, the
Netherlands, Italy and Portugal.
“We expect a very heterogeneous
outcome” for this week’s GDP reports, said
Daniel Lenz, lead market strategist at DZ
Bank in Frankfurt. “Those countries that
have undertaken more reforms are now
in a better state — the examples of Ireland
and Spain demonstrate that.”
Draghi has identified “insufficient
progress” in structural reforms as a key
downside risk to the economy. While the
outlook for a modest recovery remains in
place, a weakening in momentum signals
cuts in the ECB’s staff projections, he said
last week after policy makers kept interest
rates unchanged. New forecasts are due
in December.
Euro-area investor confidence unexpectedly improved to minus 11.9 this month
from minus 13.7 in October, according to an
index published yesterday by the Limburg,
Germany-based Sentix research institute.
Economists had predicted minus 13.8, according to a Bloomberg News survey.
Separate reports showed industrial
production in Finland expanded 0.7% in
September from August, while it dropped
0.9% in Italy, more than economists’ forecast. In Greece, consumer prices plunged
1.8% in October from a year earlier, a 20th
straight decline.
The European Commission already
lowered its GDP outlook for the euro
area and its largest member economies
— Germany, France and Italy. In Spain,
where growth is projected to accelerate next year, Economy Minister Luis de
Guindos has committed that the government will continue the policies that
turned the economy around — changes
to labour law and measures to encourage
enterprise. Unemployment at 24% is still
the second-highest in the region, and the
government’s budget deficit won’t fall
back in line with European Union rules
before 2017.
Ireland, which exited its bailout programme last December, will expand at the
fastest pace in the euro region this year,
the commission said.
Profit at Banco Santander, Spain’s
largest lender, surged 52% in the third
quarter as charges for bad loans dropped.
Ryanair Holdings, the Irish carrier that’s
Europe’s No 1 discount airline, upgraded
its full-year profit goal this month, days
after Air France-KLM Group and Deutsche
Lufthansa said sluggish growth would
weigh on demand.
Manufacturing data for last month
painted a similar picture, with gauges for
Ireland and Spain signalling some of the
strongest expansions, while a downturn in
France accelerated and Italy fell back into
“Most of the signs are that the eurozone
countries are still struggling,” said Howard
Archer, chief European economist at IHS
Global Insight in London.
“If the eurozone does do a bit better
next year, it’s largely because of external
factors — it’s got its problems.”
The ECB in Frankfurt has already
unleashed a barrage of stimulus, including
a negative deposit rate, long-term loans
and asset purchases. Draghi said last
week that more unconventional measures
are being prepared in the event they’re
needed, stoking expectations that the ECB
will buy government bonds before long.
Economists at Nomura International
now predict a classic quantitative-easing
programme in the first half of 2015, while
analysts at BNP Paribas expect a broaden-
ing of asset purchases to be announced
next month.
Investors should “feel more convinced
that the euro will depreciate further and
that prices of assets on securities from
the eurozone’s periphery countries will
rise,” said Andrew Bosomworth, managing
director at Pacific Investment Management Co in Munich. “From an economic
perspective, households and Corps
should feel more convinced that the ECB
is serious about reflating the eurozone
Back in Granollers, dress-maker Dalmau
says sales in Spain, which represents
85% of his revenue, have hit €470,000
($584,000) so far this year, compared with
400,000 for all of 2013. That’s despite the
economic sobriety that has caught up
with customers, who no longer take out
bank loans for his gowns.
“Most clients now come when they’ve
got the money to spend,” he said. “So if
we’re seeing more of them, it’s a sign of
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Bullish oil bets cut in sign of growing Opec scepticism
New York
Speculators are the least bullish on US
crude in 20 months as they lose faith in
Opec’s willingness to ease a global supply
Money managers reduced net-long
positions in West Texas Intermediate by
8% in the week ended November 4, US
Commodity Futures Trading Commission
data show. Long positions retreated to the
least since May 2013 while short holdings
WTI tumbled into a bear market this
year as crude supply expanded from
the US to Libya and demand sputtered
from Europe to China. Saudi Arabia cut
its export charges to the US this month,
signalling a preference for market share
over prices. The kingdom accounts for
almost a third of Opec’s output and the
12-nation group meets in about two weeks
to debate supply.
“The market needs some Opec action
and the only thing we get out of the
Saudis is the price cut to the US,” Michael
Lynch, president of Strategic Energy &
Economic Research in Winchester, Massachusetts, said by phone on November
7. “That makes people think �Gee, this
doesn’t look hopeful.’”
WTI fell $4.23, or 5.2%, to $77.19 a barrel
on the New York Mercantile Exchange in
the period covered by the CFTC report,
the lowest level since October 4, 2011.
Futures climbed 73Вў, or 0.9%, to $79.38 at
Saudi Arabia reduced the premium of
Arab Light to US Gulf Coast benchmarks
on November 4 by 45Вў a barrel to the lowest level this year. Discounts for Medium
and Heavy grades widened for a fourth
month, according to Saudi Arabian Oil Co,
the state oil company.
“The Saudis declared open warfare with
the price cut,” Phil Flynn, senior market
analyst at the Price Futures Group in
Chicago, said by phone on November 7.
“Traders dumped those positions.”
The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, responsible for about 40%
of the world’s oil supply, is scheduled to
discuss output policy at a November 27
meeting in Vienna. Its 12 members produced 30.974mn barrels a day in October,
according to a Bloomberg survey, more
than their collective target of 30mn.
Opec cut forecasts on November 6 for
the amount of crude it will need to supply
for most of the next two decades as the
shale-energy boom in the US lessens
dependency on the group.
Brent for December settlement advanced $1.26, or 1.5%, to $84.65 a barrel on
the London-based ICE Futures Europe exchange at 8:34am in New York. Prices slid
for a seventh week through November 7,
the longest run of declines since November 2001, and are 24% lower this year. WTI
added 41Вў to $79.06 a barrel.
“The sentiment is really bearish; $75 is
the technical target,” Kyle Cooper, director
of commodities research at IAF Advisors
in Houston, said by phone November 6.
In the US, oil production climbed to
8.97mn barrels a day in the week ended
October 31, the most in weekly data going
back to 1983, according to Energy Information Administration estimates.
Drilling rigs targeting oil in the US fell
for the third time in four weeks, a signal
that the price drop is causing some
producers to scale back plans. The Eagle
Ford shale formation in south Texas lost
the most, dropping nine to 197 rigs, Baker
Hughes said on November 7.
The combination of horizontal drilling
and hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, has
unlocked supplies from shale formations
in the central US, including the Bakken in
North Dakota and the Eagle Ford in Texas.
“We are still in bearish mode and we
could go a little further downward,” Tom
Finlon, Jupiter, Florida-based director of
Energy Analytics Group said by phone
on November 7. “We are still substantially
below $80 a barrel.”
Net longs for WTI declined by 14,580
to 167,906 futures and options combined,
the lowest since March 2013, while short
positions increased 13,734 to 81,089.
In other markets, bullish bets on gasoline slid 1.6% to 30,587 contracts. Futures
tumbled 5.4% to $2.078 a gallon on
Nymex in the reporting period, the lowest
since October 2010.
Bearish wagers on US ultra-low sulfur
diesel decreased 14% to 30,737 contracts.
The fuel fell 2% to $2.4427 a gallon in the
report week.
Net-long wagers on US natural gas
almost tripled to 57,517 contracts. The
measure includes an index of four
contracts adjusted to futures equivalents:
Nymex natural gas futures, Nymex Henry
Hub Swap Futures, Nymex ClearPort
Henry Hub Penultimate Swaps and the ICE
Futures US Henry Hub contract. Nymex
natural gas jumped 13% to $4.129 per
million British thermal units during the
report week.
Oil rose to $78.65 on November 7 after
US employment gains exceeded 200,000
for a ninth month and the jobless rate
dropped to a six-year low.
“You’ve got to wonder how many people would be thinking, �Maybe we’ve hit
the bottom, let’s go long now,’” Lynch said.
“It’s the old adage: buy low and sell high. A
lot of people don’t seem to implement it.”
Russia, China add to $400bn
gas deal with second pact
Sydney, Hong Kong
hina and Russia deepened their
energy ties with a second blockbuster deal that lessens Russian
reliance on Europe and would secure
almost a п¬Ѓfth of the gas supplies China
needs by the end of the decade.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping
signed the preliminary gas-supply
agreement in Beijing as US President
Barack Obama arrived in the Chinese
capital for the Asia-Pacific Economic
Cooperation summit.
The deal is slightly smaller than the
$400bn pact reached earlier this year,
shortly after Russia annexed Crimea.
Russian oil п¬Ѓrm OAO Gazprom is
negotiating the supply of as much as
30bn cubic metres of gas annually from
developments in West Siberia to China
over 30 years, it said. At the same time,
another Russian producer, OAO Rosneft, agreed to sell a 10% stake in a Siberian unit to state-owned China National Petroleum Corp.
The export of new supplies to Asia
increases the possibility of a glut on
global energy markets by early next
decade. Once deliveries begin, China
would supplant Germany as Russia’s
biggest gas market, even as relations
have soured with the US and Europe
over the Ukraine crisis.
The gas glut could resemble what’s
happened in the iron ore industry, said
Kenneth Courtis, chairman of Starfort
Holdings and former Asia vice chairman at Goldman Sachs Group. That
industry has seen miners ramp up production in the teeth of falling prices,
shaking out higher cost suppliers.
“There is going to be new supply of
natural gas coming from everywhere,”
including Australia, the US, Canada
and Mozambique, Courtis wrote in an
The accord “will make Russia rely
more on China both economically and
politically,” said Lin Boqiang, director of the Energy Economics Research
Center at Xiamen University.
The Bank of Russia today cut its
growth forecast for next year to zero,
citing continuing sanctions and oil
prices at $95 a barrel. The ruble has depreciated to record levels.
“China is probably the only country
in the world that has both the п¬Ѓnancial
ability and the market capacity to con-
ECB picks
artists for
new HQ
Russia’s President Vladimir Putin (left) is welcomed by Chinese President Xi Jinping as he arrives for Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Summit banquet at
the Beijing National Aquatics Centre in the Chinese capital on Sunday. China and Russia have deepened their energy ties with a second blockbuster deal that lessens
Russian reliance on Europe and would secure almost a fifth of the gas supplies China needs by the end of the decade.
sume Russia’s huge energy exports on a
sustainable basis over a long period of
time,” Lin said yesterday by phone.
It gives Putin an opportunity to show
Europe and the US that his country
won’t be isolated over Ukraine, he said.
The two deals could account for almost 17% of China’s gas consumption
by 2020, Gordon Kwan, a Hong Kongbased analyst at Nomura Holdings,
wrote today in an e-mail.
Russia may start selling gas to China
within four to six years as part of its
agreement with CNPC, Alexey Miller,
the chief executive officer of Gazprom,
told reporters in Beijing.
“Together we have carefully taken
care of the tree of Russian-Chinese
relations,” Xi Jinping said at a meeting with Putin at the economic forum.
“Now fall has set in, it’s harvest time,
it’s time to gather fruit.”
A second China-Russia agreement
adds to pressure on liquefied natural
gas suppliers, mainly in Australia where
costs to build new plants are high,
Adrian Wood, a Sydney-based analyst
at Macquarie Group, said yesterday
by phone. “There is a general view out
there that China is going to underwrite
all these projects, that Chinese demand
is insatiable,” Wood said. “We’ve never
shared that view. This is going to certainly weigh on demand, and therefore
there will be even more competition for
Putin called the earlier agreement
between state-run Gazprom and its
Chinese partners “epochal.”
CNPC also signed an initial agreement with Rosneft to acquire 10% of
the Vankorneft business. Russia and
China also are considering gas supplies from Russia’s Far East, Gazprom’s
Miller said.
Under the agreement earlier this
year, China will import 38bn cubic
metres of gas from Russia annually
over three decades starting as soon as
Gas will account for more than 10%
of China’s energy consumption by
2020, compared with 6% currently, according to the National Development
and Reform Commission, China’s national economic planner.
he European Central Bank
said yesterday it has commissioned new works from
three leading contemporary artists to adorn its spectacular new
headquarters in Frankfurt.
Italian sculptor Giuseppe
Penone, Bulgarian installation
artist Nedko Solakov and British
conceptual artist Liam Gillick
“are the winners of the ECB’s
international competition for
site-specific artworks at its new
premises,” the central bank announced in a statement.
The artists will create artworks
for three different locations at the
new premises — a twin-tower
glass skyscraper by Vienna-based
architects Coop Himmelb(l)au —
in the east of Frankfurt.
The overall budget for three
works is €1.25mn ($1.6mn), the
statement added.
The competition was launched
in February, with a selection
committee of internationally renowned art experts drawing up a
list of artists from across the EU.
In total, 59 artists from the 28
member states were nominated.
The shortlisted artists were
then asked to submit a proposal
and the jury then selected the
best proposal for each of the
three locations.
“The jury has chosen three
impressive works, representing
European art at its best. We hope
they will inspire, spark discussions and shift perspectives,”
said jury chief and ECB executive
board member Benoit Coeure.
The three works are to be inaugurated in the autumn of 2015.
The ECB has been housed in a
skyscraper in downturn Frankfurt since it was created in 1998.
Work began on its new headquarters in the historic Grossmarkthalle (wholesale market) in
the east of the city in 2008, and it
is now nearly completion.
Senior EU aide defends Juncker on Luxembourg tax deals
senior aide defended European
Commission President Jean-Claude
Juncker yesterday against charges
of having provided a haven for corporate
tax avoidance in Luxembourg, saying the
entire new EU executive was committed to
stamping out tax evasion.
Juncker, 59, who was the tiny Grand
Duchy’s finance minister from 1989 and
prime minister in 1995-2013, has avoided
the media since a network of investigative
journalists reported last week that Luxembourg had granted sweetheart deals to
some 340 multinationals allowing them to
avoid billions of euros in tax.
Asked when the Commission chief
would answer questions on the affair,
his spokesman, Magaritis Schinas, told a
Brussels news briefing: “Mr Juncker will
choose the moment himself to say what
he has to say, either at the G20 or at some
other time.”
An EU official said Juncker was expected
to take part in a news conference in Brisbane, Australia, next Saturday, during the
November 15-16 global economic summit.
After chairing his inaugural meeting last
Wednesday, Juncker said he felt no conflict
of interest and would not interfere with an
investigation by the Commission’s competition department into Luxembourg’s
so-called tax rulings, which enabled companies to pay minimal tax on profits channelled via the country.
EU authorities are also investigating
corporate tax avoidance schemes in Ireland
and the Netherlands on suspicion that they
may constitute illicit state aid to business.
Global brands such as Pepsico, Amazon,
insurer AIG and Deutsche Bank are reported
to have benefited from such deals with Luxembourg, a flourishing offshore financial
centre with a population of just 560,000.
The affair has overshadowed the start
of what Juncker has billed as “Europe’s
last chance”. His team has promised swift
action to revive a stagnant economy and
combat mass unemployment by boosting
public and private investment and economic reforms.
Pierre Moscovici, the European Commissioner for economics, taxation and
customs, said what counted was Juncker’s
commitment to a new era of cross-border
information exchange among tax authorities and steps towards tax harmonisation.
“I haven’t talked to Jean-Claude Juncker
specifically about this investigation, but I
know I have his commitment to move rapidly to a new world of fiscal transparency,”
Moscovici told a news conference in Paris.
The French socialist said the centreright Juncker had given him the tax portfolio in full knowledge of his record of campaigning against “fiscal dumping” and for
greater tax harmonisation in the EU.
“He should not be judged on his past,”
Moscovici said. “The question now is: is
he suited to preside over the Commission?
The answer is self-evidently yes. He is
more than in his place.”
He suggested there could be a deal by the
end of this year among 11 eurozone countries to launch a common financial transaction tax — not including Luxembourg or
Britain, Europe’s biggest financial centre.
The same approach of enhanced co-
operation among like-minded European
Union countries might be applied to other
areas of tax cooperation if the unanimity
rule continues to block progress among all
28 member states, he said.
Dismissing the idea that the “Lux leaks”
affair had fatally weakened Juncker, Moscovici said the veteran politician’s European commitment, experience and political
skills made him the right man to lead the
In France, right-wing anti-EU sovereignists Marine Le Pen and Nicolas DupontAignan have called for Juncker to resign.
Left-wing and ecologist members of the
European Parliament have asked that he
appear before the EU legislature to explain
his role, but no formal request has yet been
issued, parliament officials said.
“The Commission is always ready to go
to Parliament, provided the appropriate
authorities of the European Parliament
formulate a request, and the Commission
will adapt according to the level and competence formulated in the request by the
European Parliament authorities,” Schienas said.
Jean-Claude Juncker, Luxembourg’s then-prime minister, arrives
at a meeting in Meise, near Brussels, in this October 24, 2013 file
photo. A senior aide defended European Commission president
Juncker yesterday against charges of having provided a haven for
corporate tax avoidance in Luxembourg.
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Changing currency market dynamics and its impact on financial markets
By Dr R Seetharaman
The US Federal Reserve ended its record
asset purchase programme on 29th October 2014. As a result of this, the US dollar
index has strengthened to three-year
highs to 87.6 in November 2014 from 77.3
in November 2011.
The dollar index strengthened on
improving consumer sentiment, improving
jobs data and recovery in housing demand.
US markets have closed at record
highs. Euro, British pound and Japanese
yen weakened against the dollar since the
announcement of the end of tapering.
The economic data weakened in
Germany, France and Italy as compared to
the earlier months. Eurozone’s unemployment rate remained unchanged at 11.5% in
October as compared to last month.
In September 2014, ECB projected Eurozone Real GDP growth to increase by 0.9%
in 2014, 1.6% in 2015 and 1.9% in 2016.
The ECB had cut the deposit rates to
minus 0.2% in September 2014 to stimulate the economic growth in eurozone.
The euro fell by 9.7% this year to $1.2455.
The weakness was due to lower than
anticipated growth, contraction in industrial production, slowdown in retail sales,
25 banks failing the ECB stress tests and
strengthening of the US dollar.
The United Kingdom saw an uptick in
housing prices, increase in industrial production and consumer price inflation. The
British pound fell by 4.2% to $1.5869.
Bank of Japan (BoJ) implemented
additional easing measures at the policy
meeting on October 31; it increased the
monetary base commitment to ВҐ80tn
from ВҐ60tn. The BoJ has said that until
2% price stability target is achieved, it will
increase its holding to Japanese government bonds, exchange traded funds
(ETFs) and real estate investments.
Japan’s nationwide consumer price
index (CPI) rose 1% in September, the
inflationary pressures have eased on
increase in consumption tax hike coupled
with downward pressure on prices due
to fall in oil prices, and this raises further
possibility of inflation slowdown.
The BoJ revised its GDP growth projection for FY14 to 0.5% from 1.0% as of July
2014 and 1.4% as of April 2013.
The Japanese yen has fallen by 8.9% to
114.60 against the US Dollar. The Japanese
yen may further weaken if inflation target
of 2% is not met, this may result in further
easing by BoJ.
The emerging markets like Russia saw
sharp fall in its currency against US dollar
on account of end of tapering and uncertainty in revival of economic growth.
The Brazilian real fell by more than
8.3% to 2.5587 against the US dollar this
year. Russian Ruble has fallen by 42.2%
to 46.7232 against the US dollar this
year. The Brazilian Real has concerns of
high inflation and slowing growth. The
Russian Ruble fell on account of political
stand-off in Ukraine and a non-performing
In China the policymakers have
pledged to move gradually towards full
convertibility of the yuan, allowing it to be
freely bought and sold. The The People’s
Bank of China (PBoC) had earlier removed
the peg of the yuan against the US dollar
in June 2010.
Chinese yuan has fallen by 1.1% to
6.1224 against the US dollar this year. The
bilateral trade has expanded between Gulf
Co-operation Council and China and this
will increase usage of the yuan.
According to the Society for Worldwide
Interbank Financial Telecommunication
(SWIFT), in December 2013 the yuan overtook the euro as the second most used
currency in trade finance.
The Indian rupee has shown resilience
against the US dollar as compared to
the emerging market currencies. The
rupee has strengthened by 0.26% to
61.6362 against the US dollar this year.
It strengthened on account of reforms
being executed by the new stable government, the IMF’s upgrading GDP growth for
India and expectations of further reforms
resulting in foreign money flowing into
the country.
The WTI and Brent have fallen 20.1%
and 24.7% respectively till date on account of end of tapering program by
US Fed, easing concerns on Russia and
Ukraine, Libya supply and increase in
overall supply of oil coupled with global
growth concerns.
The Japan’s $1.2tn public pension fund
said it plans to make more aggressive
bets by slashing the money it puts in
domestic bonds and ramping up its in-
vestment in stocks. It will raise allocations
for Japanese and foreign stocks to 25%
each, while reducing its domestic debt
allocation to 35% of assets and increasing
overseas bonds to 15%.
The dramatic portfolio shift of the
government pension fund is aimed at
boosting the retirement incomes of the
fund’s 67mn participants.
The financial markets have reacted
positively to the BoJ easing plan. The US
dollar and Japanese yen will continue
to strengthen as inflationary expectations may not match the pace of the BoJ
requirement. This is positive for Japan
as it is a huge exporter of automobiles,
electronics and other accessories.
With the Fed ending QE and a countdown to rate hike anticipated in the second quarter of financial year 2015 might
keep the currency markets volatile, going
ahead. The economies which are able
to consolidate the fiscal and monetary
policies will be able to revive economic
Dr R Seetharaman is Group CEO of Doha
Bank. The views expressed are his own.
Ooredoo develops
global connectivity
solution for QNB
RasGas CEO Al-Mohannadi receiving the British Standards Institution recertification for RasGas.
RasGas gets BSI
ollowing a rigorous audit,
RasGas has been recertified
by the British Standards
Institution (BSI) for its quality
management (ISO 9001:2008),
environment management (ISO
14001:2004) and occupational
health and safety management
(OHSAS 18001:2007) systems.
This confirms and reinforces
RasGas’ continuous drive for excellence, through a relentless focus on quality, environment and
occupational health and safety
management systems.
“On behalf of the BSI, I would
like to congratulate RasGas for
driving forward and re-shaping
the boundaries of operational
excellence via the use of standardisation solutions. The BSI
has been privileged to see how
RasGas has used standardisation
solutions to improve processes
and reduce risks in all its operations,” said Omar Rashid, general manager, BSI Qatar.
The BSI, which is the world’s
п¬Ѓrst national standards body
and a founding member of the
International Organisation for
Standardisation (ISO), presented the recertification to Hamad
Rashid al-Mohannadi, RasGas
chief executive officer at a ceremony here.
“RasGas’ steady focus on accident prevention, maintaining
an inherent culture of excellence
and commitment to best practice and quality has established
it as an industry leader. This
ISO and OHSAS recertification
encourages RasGas’ management to oversee systematic and
continuous improvement of its
practices, and encourages the
integration and alignment of the
organisation’s strategy and operations,” said al-Mohannadi.
RasGas received its п¬Ѓrst ISO
and occupational health &
safety advisory services (OHSAS) certification in 1999 and
has continuously met the world
class ISO and OHSAS standards
through its stringent RasGas
Elements for Excellence (RGEE)
programme, which provides an
integrated framework of quality,
safety, health and environment
management systems.
The ISO recertification ceremony coincides with the World
Quality Day on November 13.
World Quality day was introduced by the United Nations
in 1990 to increase worldwide
awareness in which quality contributes to transitioning
a nation’s and an organisation’s
growth and prosperity.
oredoo and QNB have
announced a new agreement for a global connectivity solution to connect the
bank’s Qatar headquarters with
its overseas branches around the
The solution deploys Ooredoo’s Global IPVPN service,
which offers a fully-managed
next-generation private network using submarine and
terrestrial cables, connecting
major business destinations in
more than 100 countries.
Ooredoo chief sales & services officer Mohammed Saleh alMarri said, “We use our network
leadership to deliver an expanding
range of innovative solutions for
businesses of all sizes in Qatar. We
are proud to be able to offer this
new solution for QNB, one of Qatar’s most important companies,
which will ensure that QNB’s offices and branches enjoy the same
high-standard of connectivity
overseas as they do in Qatar.”
With a presence in more than
26 countries through its subsidiaries and associate companies,
QNB will benefit from the highly-diverse and robust solution
that will enable the company
to manage operations remotely
from its headquarters in Doha.
Ooredoo has worked with
Al-Marri: Network leadership.
a range of leading vendors to
develop the solution, delivering the highest possible level
of connectivity, security, and
speed to ensure the swift and
safe international transmission
of data.
QNB continues to enhance its
technological and communication infrastructure with the help
of Ooredoo to provide seamless
service to customers, wherever
they are in the world.
QNB Group Information
Technology general manager
Adel Ali al-Malki said, “QNB
is continuing to grow and develop our services around the
world, with new branches in
new markets every year. We are
deploying a world-class global
connectivity solution in order
to enhance the management of
our international operations
and have worked with Ooredoo
to ensure that we have the support of the very best partners
at every phase of this solution’s
The advanced connectivity
solution is a new feature in the
expanding technology partnership between QNB and Ooredoo, which sees the bank deploy
a range of advanced solutions
with the support of Ooredoo.
The two companies signed a
first-of-its-kind “service level
agreement” last year, providing QNB with early access to
cutting-edge technology and
breakthrough systems.
Ooredoo plays a vital role in
ensuring that QNB’s customers enjoy uninterrupted service
without connectivity losses between the bank’s main office and
its branches and ATMs nationally, and now globally, through
the global connectivity solution.
Recognising that many Qatari
businesses are looking to expand
overseas, Ooredoo has invested
in developing global expertise
and a network of strategic partners in more than 100 countries.
Muntajat wins SAP Quality Award
Qatar Chemical and Petrochemical Marketing and
Distribution Company (Muntajat) has received
the SAP Quality Award in recognition of its
implementation efforts in business innovation.
Muntajat received the award in the Large Enterprise
category for partnering with SAP Mena Services
on a full-scale Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)
project based on SAP’s Rapid Deployment Solutions.
SAP Quality Awards celebrate excellence in
deploying SAP software and in increasing return
on investment.
The award was presented to Muntajat Information
Technology director Abdullah Fakhroo by
SAP Qatar country manager Mohamed Helmy
and SAP Mena head of Customer Office Frank
Forndron at the SAP Executive Business Forum
held in Doha.
“Investing in our IT infrastructure is a key
differentiator for Muntajat. As a marketing
and distribution company, we are always on
the lookout for ways to enhance customer
experience and drive efficiencies. IT is an
important enabler of our strategy. Receiving
this recognition testifies our efforts and
demonstrates how SAP’s ERP solutions enable us
to rapidly scale up our operations and enhance
Qatar’s competitiveness in the chemical and
petrochemical industry,” Fakhroo said.
Qatar’s chemical and petrochemical exports are
expected to grow from 10mn tonnes per year to
23mn tonnes by 2020.
“Out of our nearly 50,000 ERP customers
worldwide, Muntajat stands out for having
increased their competitiveness, enhancing
resources, and enabling Qatar’s petrochemical
growth,” Helmy said.
Candelite opens п¬Ѓrst confectionery store at City Center
andelite, Landmark Group’s
leading multi-brand confectionery concept, has opened its doors
to residents and tourists of Doha with
its City Center branch — the first and
largest confectionary store of its kind in
With 25 outlets in the UAE across major malls in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah,
Ras Al Khaima, and Fujairah, Candelite’s
latest outlet in Qatar expands the store’s
retail footprint to more than 20,000sq ft.
Candelite is a unique and colourful
concept that houses more than 50 international brands of confectionery across
1,000 SKUs (stock keeping units) with a
key focus on retailing candy and chocolate for any occasion.
The event was highlighted by the
breaking of the ceremonial piГ±ata by
kids while the store was formally-inaugurated by Commercial Bank of Qatar
CEO Abdulla al-Raisi and Landmark
Group Qatar COO Santosh Pai.
Candelite business head Manish
Jeswani said, “Qatar is the first territory
expansion for Candelite outside the UAE
and we are excited and confident that
our range of confectionery and gift options will prove equally popular among
our customers in Qatar as has been in the
UAE since our inception in 2011.We are
looking to expand in Qatar with stores
in Doha at Gulf Mall, Barwa Mall, and Al
Rayyan Near Max store, taking our store
count to four by early 2015.”
Pai said Landmark Group continues
to diversify its presence in the retailing
sector with the launch of Candelite.
“The colourful visual appeal also lives
up to the promise of offering the ultimate gratifying experience to the most
die-hard candy lover. Candelite would
п¬Ѓll a gap in the market and bring premium global brands that offer exceptional
value for money. Candelite is our unique
treat to the Qatari consumer and we are
confident it will evolve as the preferred
choice across all age groups,” Pai said.
Located near Carrefour and the Food
Court on City Center’s Level One, Candelite’s latest store spans a retail area of
1,500 square feet and offers a brand new
store experience with its fun, colorful
interiors to an exciting product range
that includes a variety of candies, chocolates, and gifting options.
The concept also offers an exclusive
range of candy toys, M&M dispensers, and a premium selection of Butler’s
Chocolates. A section is dedicated to
Wonka and includes product lines such
as Nerds, Runts, and Gobstoppers.
The store also retails sugar-free confectionery options, gourmet chocolates,
gifting options, and party favours.
The Landmark Group said it is proud
to be associated with Commercial Bank,
a pioneer in credit cards and acquiring
services in Qatar. The bank is committed to extending the long and successful banking relationship that has been
in place over the years by continually
offering state-of-the-art, high-tech,
innovative, and competitive payment
Candelite, Landmark Group, and Commercial Bank officials at the ribbon-cutting
NBA | Page 7
Atletico beaten
by managerless
Real Sociedad
LA Lakers
notch first win
of the season
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Moharram 18, 1436 AH
Younis, Misbah hit
tons as Pakistan
declare at 566-3
Page 2
�Compact 2022 World Cup
will create great atmosphere’
Goalkeeping legend Oliver Kahn says it’s normal for host nations to be criticised and will lead to positive outcomes
By Sports Reporter
he only goalkeeper to have won the
Golden Ball at a FIFA World Cup has said
that Qatar’s compact hosting concept
will help in creating a great atmosphere
at the 2022 edition of the quadrennial event.
Oliver Kahn, who starred in Germany’s
run to the п¬Ѓnal of the 2002 World Cup, further
added that it was normal for host nations to be
criticised and can lead to positive outcomes.
The former Bayern Munich goalkeeper told “It is a great concept to have such
short distances between venues, and it will add
almost an Olympic character and feel to the
competition. Brazil was very big, and sometimes the atmosphere was not the same everywhere and suffered slightly, so it will be very
nice here where you have everyone in a small
place and teams will be able to prepare better.”
When asked about Germany’s World Cup triumph this summer, Kahn credited it to intense
preparation: “What was the key for Germany
this summer? I think it was the organisation
and preparation before and during the tournament. And in addition, it is about concentration
during the four weeks of the World Cup. When
all of this comes together, the result is that you
create World Cup winners.”
Looking forward to the tournament in 2022,
the 2001 UEFA Champions League winner with
Bayern Munich said that criticism of major
events was normal, and had the advantage of
improving conditions in host countries.
“Generally I am used to this entire outcry, it
happens before any World Cup. It doesn’t matter where it was held, there's always a media
debate. In South Africa, it was about security.
Ahead of Brazil there was a lot of talk.
“There are also justified topics that are always discussed ahead of World Cup tournaments, but it leads to those problems, like
workers’ rights here, being improved.
“In this regard the World Cup in these countries has a certain advantage, because it highlights those areas which are in need of change.”
Kahn added that he had also seen cooling
technology work for the п¬Ѓrst time on his visit
to Doha: “I have experienced now how they can
cool it all down, outside it is above 30 degrees,
inside it is very comfortable. Since money is not
an issue here, that is the way it is.”
The former Bayern Munich captain also expressed his admiration for current Bayern Munich coach Pep Guardiola: “He takes the word
coaching very seriously. He is always coaching
for full 90 minutes.
“You saw it again against Dortmund. He always has some kind of solution.
“Look at the substitution, bringing on Ribery
and giving him the clear order to run at Subotic.
He likes to change the system, change positions, this flexible football is simply strong.
“He just needs to watch out that these many
changes in positions don’t hurt the team, as was
the case sometimes last year. So he also should
not overdo it and make sure the players play in
the position that is best suited for them.”
Asked whether Bayern Munich goalkeeper
Manuel Neuer deserved to win the Ballon D’Or
award this year, he said: “The Ballon D’Or is that
tennis match between Cristiano and Messi. It is
Messi, Cristiano, Messi, Messi, Cristiano... it is
a monologue and those who choose the award
should change their thinking.”
“By my experience, I know it is difficult to
give it to a goalkeeper, but the advantage of
Neuer is that he is not a goalkeeper. He is more
of a libero or center-back than a goalkeeper,”
Kahn added.
Formula Kite Course Racing Championship begins
By Sports Reporter
he inaugural 2014 Formula Kite Course
Racing Asian Championship began yesterday with registration for all competitors, practice races and official opening
President of the Qatar Sailing & Rowing Federation, Khalifa al-Sewaidi, expressed his pride in
hosting the new venture while officially declaring
the event open in the presence of participants,
officials and volunteers.
“Being the host nation to an international
Kiteboarding event, with the inclusion of п¬Ѓve
Qatari competitors, after only two years of starting the programme is a great indicator of how the
sport is developing in our country.
“The progress of the sport in Qatar is evident
in the presence of our national team which is eagerly waiting to begin its first kiteboarding race,”
he said.
“I thank the support given by local companies
who have generously offered sponsorship to support this event. In addition to the support from
the Qatar Olympic Committee, I express my deep
thanks to the National Academy of Professional
Training (NAPT), Apollo Enterprises, and The
Pearl Qatar for offering services to ensure the
success of our upcoming championship.”
For the next п¬Ѓve days, the championship in
which 60 men and 30 women will compete, will
run from 9am to 4.30pm daily at Pearl Qatar’s
Qanat Quartier, with races ongoing, leading to
the grand п¬Ѓnal being held on November 15.
The Qanat Quartier beach has been transformed to accommodate all event participants,
with the provision of seating areas and an onsite
catering outlet. Live commentary of races will be
broadcast on the beach.
Although this is an Asian Championship, the
Khalifa al-Sewaidi, president of Qatar Sailing & Rowing Federation, declared open the 2014 Formula
Kite Course Racing Asian Championship, that began at the Pearl Qatar’s Qanat Quartier yesterday.
(Left) Participants during a practice session. PICTURES: Thajudheen
event is open to the entire world, allowing all to
compete under different age categories. An Asian
champion will be crowned, in addition to an open
men’s and an open women’s fleet.
Khalifa al-Misnad, Omar al-Hammadi, Bader
al-Madani, Khalid Festook and Alaa Festook are
the Qatari participants who will be competing
against worlds’ top kiteboard racers, including
course racing world champion Florian Gruber of
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Shehzad fractures
skull but Pak on top
Younis wishes
good form
had come
in Pakistan
Younis and Misbah hit dominant tons as Pakistan declare at 566 for 3
batsman Younis Khan
yesterday wished his
run of big scores had
come in Pakistan where international cricket is suspended
due to terrorism.
Pakistan have been forced to
play international cricket on
the neutral venues of United
Arab Emirates since terrorist
attacks on the Sri Lankan team
bus in Lahore in 2009.
And Younis missed his home
crowds during his sequence of
big scores, notching a century
in each innings in the п¬Ѓrst Test
against Australia in Dubai and
then racking up 213 in the second in Abu Dhabi.
He followed this with an
unbeaten 100 in Pakistan’s
mammoth 566-3 declared on
the second day of the п¬Ѓrst Test
against New Zealand. By close
New Zealand had reached 15
without loss, still needing 352
to avoid follow-on.
Younis said he missed home
fans. “It would have been fantastic had all this happened in
Pakistan before my own people,” said an emotional Younis.
“It’s always a good feeling playing before your home crowd as I
did in 2004 against India, then
in the next two years so I wish it
could happen again in Pakistan
before my own people.”
Younis hoped teams like
India, Australia and England
come to Pakistan again. “I wish
teams like India, Australia and
England come to Pakistan, our
people are able to watch the
game again and we are doing
efforts to bring the game back
to Pakistan and I am sure it will
happen,” said Younis.
Younis said he was considering retirement after he was
dropped from the one-day series against Australia before
the Tests.
“I was considering retirement but my family and friends
backed me to go out and now
everyday I wake up I say to myself in the mirror that I have a
match with myself and can I do
it again,” said Younis of his prolific form.
“It’s all about motivation and after we lost the
one-day series to Australia
(3-0 last month) I promised
to myself to score big,” said
Younis, who also praised batting coach Grant Flower. “He
(Grant) works from morning to
evening, tough hard work and
he doesn’t force me but motivates me and that has worked,”
said Younis of the former Zimbabwe opener, now Pakistan’s
batting coach.
Pakistan batsman Ahmed Shehzad was hit on the side of the head while trying to hook a short ball off New Zealand seamer Corey Anderson in Abu Dhabi.
Abu Dhabi
hmed Shehzad hit a career-best
176 before being rushed to hospital with a fractured skull as Pakistan’s batsmen smashed New
Zealand around the ground in the п¬Ѓrst Test
Younis Khan and Misbah-ul Haq also
hit dominant tons to put Pakistan in control on 566 for three declared. But Shehzad’s injury briefly set alarm bells ringing.
In the п¬Ѓnal over before lunch, Shehzad was
hit on the side of the head trying to hook a
short ball by New Zealand seamer Corey
Anderson on the hard Abu Dhabi wicket.
Shehzad’s bat struck the stumps for a
hit-wicket dismissal and the dazed batsman fell to the ground before walking off.
Shehzad was later rushed to a hospital
where scans showed he had a minor skull
fracture and will be kept under observation for the next 48 hours.
Before the drama, he had hit 17 fours
and a six in his 371-ball innings.
While team managers worried about
the opener, Younis went on to smash an
unbeaten 100 -- his 28th Test hundred
and fourth in п¬Ѓve innings.
Misbah knocked an unbeaten 102,
his third ton in three innings. Azhar Ali
missed his hundred after he was dismissed
for 87. At the close on the second day New
Zealand were 15-0 with Brendon McCullum on nine and Tom Latham on п¬Ѓve.
They need another 352 to avoid the
follow-on. Younis, who scored 468 runs
against Australia in a series which ended
last week, hit ten fours in his 141-ball
He hit a century in each innings in the
п¬Ѓrst Test against Australia in Dubai and
followed that with 213 in the Abu Dhabi
Test last week. Younis said he wanted to
keep his good run intact.
“Everyday I wake up I promise myself to
keep scoring like this,” said Younis. “Its all
about motivation and I am happy that I am
keeping that and with that scoring big.”
Misbah, who smashed twin hundreds
in the second Test against Australia,
knocked nine fours and a six off 162 balls.
The two veteran batsmen added 193 for
the unbroken fourth wicket stand to build
on another second wicket stand of 169
runs between Ali and Shehzad.
Misbah survived two chances, one on
17 and the other on 20 as п¬Ѓelders failed
Benaud fighting skin cancer
Sydney: Legendary cricket commentator
Richie Benaud revealed yesterday he
is battling skin cancer and is undergoing
radiation therapy, but said he was coping
well. The 84-year-old former Australian
captain made his illness public at the
Nine Network’s launch for its Australian
summer cricket coverage, saying he was
receiving treatment for skin cancers on
his forehead and the top of his head. “I’m
coping with it very well—the doctors are
pleased,” he said. “I’m going along slowly.
The cancers need to be treated.”
Benaud, a much-loved figure in
Australian cricket, urged people to take
precautions to protect themselves from
the sun. “I recommend to everyone they
wear protection on their heads,” he said.
“Eighty-four-year olds don’t seem to mend
as well as they used to. When I was a kid,
we never ever wore a cap. I wish I had. You
live and learn as you go along,” he added.
Benaud attended the Nine Network
launch at the Sydney Cricket Ground
with its broadcast team, including former
cricketers Bill Lawry, Ian Chappell, Mark
Nicholas, Brett Lee and Shane Warne.
Benaud, who has worked in the commentary box since retiring from Test
cricket in 1964, has been out of action
since suffering chest and shoulder injuries
during a car crash in Sydney late last year.
He said he was still recovering from
the injuries which included two fractured
vertebrae. It prevented him calling a
single ball during the Ashes series against
to reach uppish shots with Ish Sodhi the
luckless bowler on both occasions. It was
Younis who reached his hundred п¬Ѓrst, hitting an uppish shot off McCullum which
Tim Southee failed to catch at short midon. Misbah drove McCullum in the same
over for three to complete his eighth Test
Pakistan lost Shehzad and Ali in the two
sessions after resuming at 269 for one.
Ali missed a sharp turner from Sodhi and
was bowled. He hit four boundaries off 215
balls. Anderson was the best bowler with
2-68 while Sodhi п¬Ѓnished with 2-162.
The New Zealanders paid dearly for
giving Shehzad a life on Sunday. He had
been on 16 when wicketkeeper B J Watling
failed to stump him off the bowling of
spinner Mark Craig.
Craig went wicket-less in his 33 overs.
Shehzad, 126 overnight, took some time
to open up on Monday. But he then hit
a straight six off Craig before running a
three to surpass his previous best of 147
against Sri Lanka in Sharjah earlier this
year. The remaining two Tests will be
played in Dubai (November 17-21) and
Sharjah (November 26-30).
M Hafeez c and b Anderson
A Shehzad hit wicket b Anderson
A Ali b Sodhi
Younis Khan not out
Misbah ul-Haq not out
Extras: (lb4, nb1)
Total: (for 3 wkts dec; 170.5 overs)
Fall of wickets: 1-178 (Hafeez), 2-347 (Shehzad), 3-373 (Ali)
Bowling: Boult 26-7-62-0, Southee 23-5-62-
0 (1nb), Craig 33-1-126-0, Sodhi 43-6-162-1,
Anderson 19-3-68-2, Neesham 16-0-50-0,
McCullum 10.5-1-32-0
New Zealand I innings
T. Latham not out
B. McCullum not out
Extras: (nb1)
Total: (for no loss; 7 overs)
Bowling: Rahat 3-2-1-0 (nb1), Khan 1-0-4-0,
Babar 2-0-6-0, Hafeez 1-0-4-0
Younis Khan smashed an unbeaten 100 in the first Test — his 28th
Test hundred and fourth in five innings. (AFP)
Warne backs misfiring Clarke to regain form
England last southern summer, and he has
only just returned to work with the television network.
However, Benaud confirmed he would
make a return to commentate on Australia’s fourth Test against India at the Sydney
Cricket Ground in his home town, starting
on January 3. “Progress is slow,” he said.
“I’ve been doing a lot of walking. We (with
wife Daphne) are out every morning, doing 40-minute walks every morning and
it’s showing beneficial effects.”
Famed for his beige jackets and
engaging commentary, Benaud made
his broadcasting debut on BBC Radio in
1960, moved across to BBC Television
three years later, and became a full-time
cricket journalist and commentator when
his playing career ended. He hung up the
microphone for British television following the 2005 Ashes series, and has been
working for Nine since 1977.
hane Warne yesterday said
he was concerned about
backed struggling skipper
Michael Clarke to score heavily this
summer season.
The spin great said the congested
home season looms as an opportunity for Australia to win some big
trophies and regain the status of the
top team in world cricket. Australia
begin a п¬Ѓve-game one-day series
against South Africa this week before a four-Test series against India
and tri-series of one-dayers against
India and England this domestic
season. The World Cup then starts in
Australia and New Zealand on February 14.
Warne, the second highest Test
wicket taker (708) behind Sri Lanka’s Muttiah Muralitharan (800),
said Australia had enough matchwinners to win the World Cup, if the
right team was selected. While he
likes the look of the country’s pace
and spin bowling options, he is concerned about the batting after the
poor efforts in their recent 2-0 Test
series drubbing by Pakistan in the
United Arab Emirates.
“I thought as a collective group
they didn’t bat very well against Pakistan,” he said. “They played pretty
poorly, so I’d like to see the batsmen
start making some runs. If they do
that, I’m sure the bowlers will be
able to knock them over. But watch
out for Michael Clarke, I think he’ll
make a few big hundreds soon.”
Clarke has averaged just 27.46 in
his last 16 innings and managed just
2, 3, 47 and 5 in his four innings during Australia’s series loss to Pakistan, but Warne believes the captain
is poised to start another golden run.
“I think they can win the World
Cup, they’ve got enough match winners, we’ve got the best captain in
the world in Michael Clarke,” Warne
said. “I’m sure he’ll find some form
... I think he’s in pretty good touch. I
think he’s cleared up his mind a little
bit and I think he’ll do pretty good.”
South African all-rounder JP Duminy will miss this month’s fivematch one-day series against Australia due to a knee injury, team
officials said.
Duminy was withdrawn from the
series, which begins in Perth on Friday, with patella tendinopathy in his
left knee, a team spokesman said.
Farhaan Behardien, who is in Australia for the T20 series, will replace
him in the squad, while Marchant
de Lange has been added to bolster
their pace-bowling resources.
“JP aggravated his long-standing
knee injury during the current T20
series against Australia,” Proteas
team manager Mohammed Moosajee said. “This is the same injury that
plagued him during the tri-series in
Zimbabwe and caused him to miss
the Champions League T20. The
recommendation from the medical
committee is that he returns back to
South Africa for a six-week period of
rest and rehabilitation, particularly
ahead of a busy season at home and
the ICC World Cup in three months.”
South Africa’s ODI squad will
gather in Perth today, ahead of the
п¬Ѓrst match at the WACA on Friday.
Duminy scored just two runs as
Australia won the deciding T20 by
two wickets with one ball to spare in
Sydney on Sunday. Cameron White
steered the Australians home with
an unbeaten 41 off 31 balls to pip the
Proteas in a tense decider at Olympic
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
India captain Dhoni out of first Australia Test
Virat Kohli (left) will lead India in the first Test in Brisbane from December 4, with MS Dhoni (right)
returning to the helm for the remaining three games. (AFP)
ndia yesterday named a jumbo 19-man
squad for the four match Test series
in Australia starting next month even
as captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni was
ruled out of the opening match due to injury.
Batsman Virat Kohli will lead the tourists
in the п¬Ѓrst Test in Brisbane from December
4, with Dhoni returning to the helm for the
remaining three games, the Board of Control
for Cricket in India said in a statement.
Dhoni has opted out of the ongoing oneday series against Sri Lanka due to a longstanding wrist injury. Dhoni’s injury worries
prompted the selectors to include two other
wicket-keepers, Wriddhiman Saha and Naman Ojha, in the unusually large touring
squad that comprises eight specialist batsmen and п¬Ѓve seamers.
Right-hand batsman K L Rahul, 22 and
leg-spinner Karn Sharma, 27, are the two
new faces in the squad, having forced their
Mahendra Singh Dhoni (capt), Virat Kohli,
Shikhar Dhawan, Murali Vijay, Lokesh Rahul,
Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit
Sharma, Suresh Raina, Wriddhiman Saha,
Naman Ojha, Ravichandran Ashwin, Karn
Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar
Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma,
Umesh Yadav, Varun Aaron.
ODI squad for two matches against
Sri Lanka: Kohli (Captain), Rahane, Rohit,
Ambati Rayudu, Raina, Robin Uthappa, Axar
Patel, Karn Sharma, R Ashwin, Umesh Yadav,
Dhawal Kulkarni, Stuart Binny, Vinay Kumar,
Kedar Jadhav.
way in with strong performances in domestic
cricket. Rahul, who can also keep wickets, is
the third opener behind Shikhar Dhawan and
Murali Vijay, while left-hander Suresh Raina
was back in favour after playing the last of his
17 Tests in September, 2012.
Ishant Sharma leads the new-ball attack
that includes Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammad Shami, Umesh Yadav and Varun Aaron.
The three spinners in the side are Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja and Karn Sharma. The tour, which ends with the World Cup
in Australia and New Zealand in February and
March, gives India a chance to improve their
poor record overseas in recent years.
India have won just three and lost 14 of
their 23 Tests away from the sub-continent
in the last four years, enduring 4-0 routs in
England and Australia in 2011 and a 3-1 drubbing in England earlier this year. The series
opener in Brisbane will be followed by Tests
in Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney. The
one-day squads for the tri-series against
Australia and England from January 16 and
the 50-over World Cup will be picked later.
Meanwhile, opening batsman Dhawan and
all-rounder Jadeja have been rested for the
last two ODIs of the Sri Lanka series. Rohit
Sharma, Robin Uthappa, Karn, Vinay Kumar
and Kedar Jadhav have been selected for the
last two games which will be played in Kolkata tomorrow and Ranchi (Oct 16).
Players could
return early from
corruption bans
ICC approves revised anti-corruption code
Flexible White
still hopeful of
World Cup spot
ameron White is hoping
his flexibility as a batsman might bring an end
to his three-and-a-half
year exile from one-day international cricket and earn him a
place in the Australia squad for
next year’s World Cup.
The 31-year-old showed his
value in a tight spot on Sunday when he hit a nerveless 41
not out from 31 balls to guide
the Twenty20 side to a seriesclinching victory over South
Africa at Sydney’s Olympic Stadium.
“I feel as though I’ve been in
good form now for quite a while
and it’s good to take advantage of
that form,” White told reporters
after the match. “It was good to
be not out and to get the win.”
White, who started his international career as a spin-bowling all-rounder, played the last
of his 87 one-day internationals
in April 2011 and was not included in the squad for the upcoming
ODI series against the Proteas.
Twenty20 skipper Aaron
Finch, who was included in the
squad for the п¬Ѓrst two matches in
Perth, said he had no doubt that
White would do a job if called up.
“I think his record for Australia
speaks for itself,” Finch said.
“When you look at that, it’s
been pretty outstanding for a
long time. At the same time, the
side at the moment, there’s some
quality players in there. I think it
takes a bit of luck at times to п¬Ѓnd
an opening in the team.
“But saying that, he’s been in
great touch in all forms of cricket
for about two-and-a-half years
now, so there’s no reason why he
wouldn’t be the next guy picked
if something was to happen.
“And I’m sure if he did come
in and fill a spot there he’d do an
amazing job.”
White, who batted at number
six on Sunday just a few days
after opening in the п¬Ѓrst match
of the series, said he preferred
to be at the top of the order but
was happy to play where he was
“Given the chance to open the
batting simply means I can bat
wherever required,” he said.
“The one-day team is a really
hard team to get into. There’s
some really good players in there.
“I’ve just got to keep making
as many runs as I can and try
to be in form when the squad
is picked and hopefully get a
The revised code will specifically help Pakistan seamer Mohammad Aamer’s early return to domestic cricket, likely in February next year.
he International Cricket Council approved its revised anticorruption code yesterday but
left it up to home boards to allow
banned players to return early to domestic competition.
For a player to return to domestic
competition before the expiry of his ban
would need the agreement of the chairman of the anti-corruption board, Sir
Ronnie Flannagan, and the relevant National Cricket Federation, with the approval of the ICC Board, an ICC release
The revised code will specifically help
Pakistan seamer Mohammad Aamer’s
early return to domestic cricket, likely
in February next year. Last year, the Pakistan Cricket Board had demanded the
ICC relax certain conditions of Aamer’s
ban after he pleaded guilty to a spot-п¬Ѓxing crime and then completed the rehabilitation process.
Aamer, now 22, was banned along with
Salman Butt and Mohammad Asif in a
spot-fixing scandal on Pakistan’s tour of
England in 2010. Aamer was banned for
п¬Ѓve years, Butt for ten (with п¬Ѓve suspended) and Asif for seven (two suspended).
The trio, also jailed in Britain, were
charged with orchestrating deliberate
no-balls during the Lord’s Test against
England in return for money. The ICC
said the revised code would close certain
Dubai: The International Cricket Council yesterday announced a 20 percent
increase in prize money for next year’s
World Cup in Australia and New Zealand. The winners will take home $3.975
million, but if a team remains unbeaten
that would rise to more than $4mn.
“A total of $10 million, an increase of
approximately 20 per cent over the ICC
Cricket World Cup 2011, will be available,” said the ICC.
The 2011 edition jointly hosted by India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka had prize
money of $8.01 million. “Should a team
at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 win
the tournament without losing a match,
it will receive total prize money of
$4,020,000, while a team that loses one
match on the way to winning the tour-
loopholes and address the issue of who
has jurisdiction in a particular case.
The code would also allow a player
charged with an offence but who has not
been provisionally suspended, to agree to
voluntarily suspend him/herself, the ICC
said. ICC chairman Naryanaswami Srinivasan, himself suspended in India over a
п¬Ѓxing scandal in a Twenty20 league, said:
“The process for the revision of the ICC
Anti-Corruption Code was exhaustive
and has been based on our learning and
experiences over the past few years.
“This code is now even more robust
nament will receive USD $3,975,000.”
The team which loses the March 29
final at Melbourne will pocket $1.75 million while the two losing semi-finalists
will each get $600,000 each. The four
losing quarter-finalists will receive
$300,000 each while the winners of
each group matches will get $45,000
per match, the ICC said.
All six teams eliminated from the first
stage will get $35,000 each. The decision was taken at a two-day ICC Board
meeting in Dubai while playing conditions were also finalised for the tenth
edition of the World Cup, from February
14 to March 29
The ICC also announced that the Decision Review System (DRS) will be used
in all 49 matches and that there would
and comprehensive and it provides clarity on jurisdictional issues, gives options
to the charged Participant and offers
more choices to the Anti-Corruption
ICC Chief Executive David Richardson
admitted the п¬Ѓght against corruption was
still a priority.
“The battle against corruption remains
one of cricket’s biggest challenges and
we remain committed to eliminating this
menace from our sport,” he said.
Aamer last week told AFP that he was
anxiously awaiting the revision of the
only be reserve days in the knock-out
phase. It also added that there will be
no super over in tied matches in the
knock-out phase.
In case of a tied quarter-final and
semi-final, the side finishing in the
higher position in the group stage
would progress. If the final is tied or if
the match is a no-result, then the teams
will be declared joint winners.
The ICC Board approved cut-off dates
for qualification to the 2017 Champions
Trophy and the 2019 World Cup. The top
eight sides on the ICC one-day rankings
on 30 September 2015 will qualify for
the 2017 Champions Trophy in England.
The cut-off date for the 10-team 2019
World Cup, also in England, was set for
30 September 2017.
code and would apply to the Pakistan
Board to be allowed to play in domestic
matches. “I am waiting for the ICC decision and once it comes I will apply with
the PCB to resume my domestic career
and then international matches,” said
The ICC Board also accepted the PCB’s
nomination of its former chairman, Najam Sethi, for the ICC Presidency. The
presidency is now merely an honorific
position with all the power in the hands
of the chairman, following a reorganisation in June.
Cameron White. (AFP)
New Delhi: India’s Supreme
Court yesterday said it will
go through the Justice Mukul
Mudgal committee report
that probed the allegations of
betting and spot fixing in 2013
edition of IPL and also examine
whether it could be made
public or what parts of it could
be withheld.
At the outset of the hearing,
a bench of Justice T S Thakur
and Justice Fakkir Mohamed
Ibrahim Kalifulla said they have
yet to go through the report.
The probe report was submitted to the court Nov 3.
That means a decision on
whether N Srinivasan, the BC-
CI’s sidelined president, will be
allowed to stand for re-election
on November 20 has been put
off by another four days.
Senior counsel C.A. Sundaram, appearing for the Board
of Control for Cricket in India
(BCCI), urged the court to see
the conclusion of the report
and if there was nothing
against any of the office bearers, then that can be disclosed.
The court said that it had to
see the findings of the report,
nature of the findings, whether
(acts alleged were) illegal,
improper, fairness of the entire
exercise, a does it not affects
the confidence of the people”.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Wenger says EPL title
is Chelsea’s to lose
�At the moment Chelsea are on course for 100 points. If you look at the points they have, if they keep
that up nobody will catch them.. There doesn’t look to be anybody capable to challenge them...’
Pos Team
1 Chelsea
2 Southampton 11
3 Man City
4 West Ham
5 Swansea City 11
6 Arsenal
7 Man United
8 Newcastle
9 Stoke City
10 Everton
11 Liverpool
12 Tottenham
13 West Brom
14 Sunderland 11
15 Hull City
16 Aston Villa
17 Crystal Palace 11
18 Leicester City 11
19 QPR
20 Burnley
GD Pts
11 9
11 8
11 7
10 7
11 7
11 6
11 5
11 4
11 4
11 3
11 3
11 2
11 3
11 2
11 2
11 2
11 2
11 2
10 1
11 0
GD Pts
GD Pts
GD Pts
GD Pts
La Liga
Pos Team
1 Real Madrid
2 Barcelona
3 Valencia
4 Atletico
5 Sevilla
6 Malaga
7 Celta Vigo
8 Villarreal
9 Getafe
10 Eibar
11 Athletic Bilbao
12 Espanyol
13 Rayo V’cano
14 Granada
15 Almeria
16 Deportivo
17 Elche
18 Levante
19 Real S’dad
20 Cordoba
Serie A
Pos Team
1 Juventus
2 Roma
3 Napoli
4 Sampdoria
5 Lazio
6 Genoa
7 AC Milan
8 Udinese
9 Inter Milan
10 Hellas Verona 11
11 Fiorentina
12 Palermo
13 Sassuolo
14 Torino
15 Cagliari
16 FC Empoli
17 Atalanta
18 Chievo Verona 11
19 AC Cesena
20 Parma
Ligue 1
Chelsea’s Diego Costa (second left) celebrates after scoring the winning goal during the English Premier League match against Liverpool. (Below) Arsenal coach Arsene Wenger
Wenger all but conceded the
Premier League title to leaders Chelsea after seeing his
side let slip a one-goal lead in a 2-1 loss
away to Swansea on Sunday.
Defeat left the Gunners 12 points behind Jose Mourinho’s table-toppers after only 11 league games played.
There might be more than twothirds of the season left and the small
matter of 81 points to play for, but
Wenger believes Arsenal’s London rivals are unstoppable.
“At the moment Chelsea are on
course for 100 points this season,” said
Wenger, who won the last of his three
Premier League title as Gunners boss
during the 2003/04 season.
“If you look at the number of points
they have today, if they keep that up
nobody will catch them, that’s for
Wenger added: “We have had a very
disappointing week, considering the
performances we produced and the end
results we got, it’s very disappointing.
“We were 3-0 up against Anderlecht
and 1-0 up today and in the end we
lose two points against Anderlecht and
three points today. You have to be capable, once you are 1-0 up and a big team,
to win the game.
“I don’t know how much damaging it
is, but we had an opportunity to come
back into the top four.”
Swansea manager Garry Monk was
understandably delighted with a victory that saw his side leapfrog Arsenal
into п¬Ѓfth place.
“We had some unfortunate injuries
in the week, but I have belief in the
squad and it takes a squad not just 11
players,” Monk said.
“I think we saw again today that we
have that inner belief and mentality. It
was certainly what carried us through
“When we were 1-0 down, I was
thinking what we could do. I felt we had
the crowd with us and when we got the
equaliser, I thought we needed to seize
the initiative. That was why I put Bafe
“We prepared for the best Arsenal
side today and we understood just how
much they can hurt you, at any moment,” Monk added.
“I know they suffered in midweek
but they are capable of upping it at any
moment. But the way we worked was
“Of course, we are very happy going
into the international break. We have
had a tough time, but it was crucial we
took points from our last two games.
“We won’t always get it right but we
have to make sure that we stay in games
right until the very end.”
Radamel Falcao still struggling
with knee problem at United
The Guardian
adamel Falcao is having
to ice his left knee following every training
session and match to
mitigate against further damage
following the serious injury he
suffered in January.
With Falcao is already facing a
п¬Ѓght to regain a п¬Ѓrst-team place,
the condition of his knee is bound
to be a factor when the club weigh
up whether to make his loan permanent next summer.
The 28-year-old had suffered
anterior cruciate damage in January, an injury that prevented
him from playing in Colombia’s
World Cup campaign.
It was the third severe knee
injury of Falcao’s career and
ruled him out for eight months.
He was unable to return to action until 10 August when he
scored in Monaco’s 2-1 defeat
to Lorient. It is understood that
since arriving at United, Falcao’s
need to apply an ice pack on his
to last for 90 minutes. It’s disappointing but we have to take it on the chin.
“But give Swansea credit...Swansea
are a good team.”
sure,” the Frenchman added.
“There doesn’t look to be anybody
capable to challenge them at the moment.”
Having relinquished a three-goal
lead at home to Anderlecht during a
3-3 Champions League in midweek,
the Gunners’ defensive frailties were on
display again in south Wales.
Alexis Sanchez gave Arsenal a 63rdminute lead at the Liberty Stadium,
but two goals in three minutes in the
final quarter, from Gylfi Sigurdsson
and substitute Bafetimbi Gomis, left
Wenger empty-handed.
“I think it’s a game that we were quite
in control of at 1-0,” Wenger said. “But I
felt that we allowed them back into the
game by losing some challenges in the
middle of the park. You cannot afford to
lose them.
“It’s unfortunate to lose a game like
that but we were not rigorous until the
“We produced quite a decent performance for 75 minutes but you have
Radamel Falcao
left knee following any kind of
physical exertion has surprised
United players over the degree
of treatment required.
On signing from Monaco,
Falcao admitted the injury still
concerned him. Having made a
п¬Ѓrst international appearance
since the problem, Colombia’s
1-0 defeat to Brazil in Miami, he
said: “Because of the injury I felt
so nervous. Almost like it was
my п¬Ѓrst time with the national
team. And I expect it will be the
same before I play my п¬Ѓrst game
for Manchester United. I’m so
happy to be back, and I am also
happy about being able to join
United. Physically I feel spectacular. I have been able to play
without any kind of trouble.”
While the striker earns at
least ВЈ190,000 a-week - which
is paid by the club - there is
also an option for the 20-time
champions to make him a United player in the close season.
As well as the state of his knee,
Falcao’s form will also be closely
observed. So far he has managed
only one goal in п¬Ѓve appearances
Colombian and is currently injured due to a calf problem.
While Van Gaal is unsure
when Falcao might return the
manager made it clear last week
that a two-forward approach
he previously utilised upset the
“balance” of the team. Even
before the calf injury Robin van
Persie was preferred for the 2-2
draw at West Bromwich Albion on 20 October, with Falcao coming on as a second-half
10-man Atletico beaten by
managerless Sociedad
a Liga champions Atletico Madrid remain four
points behind leaders
Real Madrid as they fell
to a 2-1 defeat at managerless
Real Sociedad after being reduced to 10 men.
Sociedad are expected to announce the appointment of
former Manchester United
manager David Moyes in the
coming days and on this performance there was plenty to
encourage the Scot after Mario
Mandzukic had п¬Ѓred Atletico
into an early lead from Raul Garcia’s fine low cross.
Carlos Vela curled home a
wonderful equaliser п¬Ѓve minutes
later and the Mexican was then
extremely unfortunate to see a
yellow card for diving when he
appeared to have been felled by
Diego Godin inside the area.
Godin showed the athleticism
and awareness that has made
him one of the best centre-
Pos Team
1 Marseille
2 Lyon
4 Bordeaux
5 Nantes
6 St Etienne
7 Monaco
7 Rennes
9 Metz
10 Stade Reims
11 Toulouse
12 Nice
13 Montpellier
14 Lille
15 Bastia
16 Evian Gaillard
17 Caen
18 Guingamp
19 Lens
20 Lorient
Pos Team
1 Bayern Munich 11
2 Wolfsburg
3 Bor. M’bach
4 Hanover
5 Hoffenheim
6 B’ Leverkusen 11
7 Augsburg
8 Mainz
9 Paderborn
10 Cologne
11 Schalke
12 Frankfurt
13 Freiburg
14 Hertha Berlin 11
15 Bor. Dortmund 11
16 W. Bremen
17 SV Hamburg 11
18 Stuttgart
Pakistan gears up for
South Asian women’s
Real Sociedad’s forward Imanol Agirretxe celebrates a goal.
backs in world football to prevent Sociedad going in front just
before the break as he raced back
to clear off the line after Imanol Agirretxe had latched onto
Miranda’s awful backpass and
rounded Miguel Angel Moya.
Atletico’s task became much
tougher just four minutes into
the second period when Guilherme Siqueira was shown two
quickfire bookings to leave the
visitors with just 10 men.
Vela had another penalty
appeal waved away when he
clashed with Mandzukic inside
the area and the Croatian international could have restored
Atletico’s lead at the other end
when he turned Cristian Ansaldi’s low cross just wide.
However, Diego Simeone’s
men were struggling to retain
possession for any period of
time and were п¬Ѓnally punished
eight minutes from time when
Imanol Aggirretxe powered a
header home at the near post.
Pakistan hosts the third
South Asian women’s
football championship this
week. The third edition
of South Asian Football
Federation (SAFF), featuring
eight teams including India
and Afghanistan, will run in
Islamabad from November
11-20, the first time a highprofile regional women’s
event has been held in Pakistan. The Pakistan Football
Federation (PFF) promised
tight security, after a suicide
attack at a border post with
India last week killed nearly
60 people.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Guardiola: Bayern
better than last year
PSG too strong for
Marseille as title
race tightens up
Bayern Munich’s Spanish head coach Pep Guardiola.
�We played with a lot of intensity and it’s a great victory which counts a lot for us’
ayern Munich coach
Pep Guardiola says his
side are playing “better”
than at this stage last
The German champions top
the Bundesliga undefeated, have
already won their group in the
Champions League in record
time for a German club and are
in the last 16 of the German Cup.
Last season, Bayern smashed a
series of records on their way to
a league and cup double in Guardiola’s first season in charge after
Bayern had won the Champions
League, Bundesliga and German
cup under Jupp Heynckes.
“The results show that we are
on the right path,” Guardiola told
the Bayern website in a report
published yesterday.
“We are making consistent
progress and are playing better
than last year at this stage.”
Bayern are on a run of 17 consecutive competitive matches
without defeat, including 14
After 11 league matches, Bayern have 27 points, a four-point
lead over Wolfsburg. Last season,
however, they had one win and
two points more after 11 games.
Guardiola said that by “better” he meant the style of play
was getting closer to his ideal.
“We are a bit better because
we are playing more and running
less,” he said.
The improvement comes despite the success of last season
and the World Cup tournament
in summer, two factors which
might have led to a dip in form.
“The players are working outstandingly. They are always there
mentally. But we are not yet
playing the way I want. We can
improve in many small details,”
Guardiola said.
The former Barcelona coach
said the small details could prove
decisive, and referred to last season’s exit to Real Madrid in the
semi-п¬Ѓnals of the Champions
Three of Real’s goals came from
set-pieces and Guardiola said
Bayern could learn from that, calling his side’s success from deadball situations “a catastrophe.”
Guardiola has players absent
this week for the international
break and says he will use the
time “to analyse what we have
done well and what we can improve on.”
Oscar signs new
deal with Chelsea
Paris St Germain’s Edinson Cavani celebrates his goal against Olympique Marseille during their French Ligue 1 match.
aris Saint-Germain defeated
arch rivals Marseille 2-0 at the
Parc des Princes on Sunday as
the Ligue 1 title race was thrown
wide open. The two-time defending
champions dominated their visitors from
the south in an intense encounter and
wrapped up three crucial points thanks
to an opportunist strike from Brazilian
Lucas Moura and a close-range header
from Edinson Cavani.
PSG are now just one point behind
Marseille as their unbeaten start to the
season, in all competitions, continued in
the biggest п¬Ѓxture in French football.
Lyon, who won their п¬Ѓfth straight
match earlier in the day when they
downed Guingamp 3-1 at the Stade Gerland, are also breathing down the necks
of Marseille and stand two points adrift.
The match in the capital struggled to
burst into life despite the return of PSG’s
Swedish star Zlatan Ibrahimovic who
came on with 24 minutes left for his п¬Ѓrst
action since September 21.
Marseille coach Marcelo Bielsa looked
on in shock with the match 1-0 as his
side’s chances of an equaliser took a severe turn for the worse with 12 minutes
left when Giannelli Imbula was shown a
straight red card for what appeared to be
a minor offence.
Cavani capped a convincing performance for PSG with a poacher’s header
from just outside the six-yard box with
п¬Ѓve minutes remaining that capped a
perfect week for the capital club who
also booked their place in the Champions
League knockout phase.
“We played with a lot of intensity and
it’s a great victory which counts a lot for
us,” said PSG defender Maxwell.
“Zlatan played well when he came on
and he gives us a different dimension.
He’s a very important player for us so it’s
good for him that’s he’s back but we’re all
looking forward to some rest now,” added
the 33-year-old Brazilian ahead of the international break.
Bielsa admitted the red card changed
the momentum of the match. “I think the
result was justified,” said Bielsa.
“We were on top for a while in the first
half even if it was 1-0 for them and the
second half was balanced until the red
card which allowed PSG to get on top.
“There are six more matches left in the
п¬Ѓrst half of the season and we have to get
back to positive results in order to justify
our position at the top.”
Monaco held on for a 1-1 draw at SaintEtienne despite п¬Ѓnishing the match with
ten men in a stormy encounter at the Geoffroy Guichard stadium.
Reims extended their unbeaten run to
п¬Ѓve matches with a 2-0 victory over Lille,
who now haven’t won in the league in five
Alexandre Lacazette went top of the
Ligue 1 scoring charts with 11 goals as he
opened the scoring for Lyon in the eighth
minute with a back post header from Nabil Fekir’s cross.
Fekir doubled the lead on 20 minutes
after converting on the slide a low cross
from Christophe Jallet.
At that point Lyon seemed in cruise
control but they needed Fekir’s second
goal, three minutes from time, to п¬Ѓnally
steady their nerves.
The Cup holders pulled a goal back on
the stroke of halftime as Sylvain Marveaux’s free-kick came back off the bar
and hit Lyon goalkeeper Anthony Lopes
before going in.
Under steady rain at Saint-Etienne,
Lacina Traore saw his shot deflected past
Stephane Ruffier to put Monaco 1-0 in
front after just 17 minutes.
However Saint-Etienne, were handed
the п¬Ѓrst of two dubious decisions on
58 minutes, when Dutchman Ricky van
Wolfswinkel was allowed to run clear despite being blatantly offside and he gratefully tucked away the equaliser.
Monaco suffered more bad fortune
when they were reduced to ten men with
19 minutes left when Tiemoue Bakayoko was shown a second yellow card for
a light brush against a Saint-Etienne
player that even had the home players
appealing to the referee for leniency.
“We didn’t create a lot of chances and
we were lucky enough to take the lead but
we weren’t able to protect the advantage,”
said Monaco playmaker Jeremy Toulalan.
razilian international Oscar has signed a new п¬Ѓveyear contract with Chelsea that will keep him at
Stamford Bridge until 2019, the
English Premier League leaders
announced yesterday.
The 23-year-old attacking
midfielder joined the London
club from Internacional in 2012
and has since scored 27 goals in
126 appearances, including 92
starts, for the Blues.
“I am so happy because I love
playing for Chelsea and living in
England,” Oscar told the club’s
website. “I have enjoyed playing here for two years, and now
I have п¬Ѓve more, so I am very
Signed originally for a fee of
close to ВЈ20 million ($32 million,
25.5 million euros) when Roberto
di Matteo was Chelsea manager,
Oscar has become an increas-
ingly influential figure since Jose
Mourinho returned for his second spell in charge at Stamford
Indeed, the Portuguese boss’s
decision to deploy Oscar in the
number 10 role was widely regarded as a major factor in Juan
Mata’s decision to leave Chelsea
for Manchester United.
Oscar scored twice on his п¬Ѓrst
start for the club in the European
Champions League and helped
them win the continental second-tier Europa League in 2013.
He has also scored 11 goals in
40 appearances for Brazil since
making his debut against archSouth American rivals Argentina
in 2011, including the hosts’ lone
goal in their stunning 7-1 World
Cup semi-п¬Ѓnal loss to Germany
in July.
Chelsea are currently four
points clear of surprise package
Southampton at the top of the
Premier League table heading
into this week’s break for international matches.
Tevez gives Juventus fans reason to celebrate
The Guardian
orty words to sum up 40 years.
That was the thinking behind
Alessandro Del Piero’s birthday
post on his official website on
Sunday morning.
“A number? A frontier? A Lifetime
has passed by, another awaits: I am
ready. To be, to grow, to become. Son to
father, footballer to man. The best I can
be. Thanks everybody for never allowing me to feel lonely.”
Sentimental, certainly. Overblown,
perhaps. But п¬Ѓtting for a player who
wears his heart on his sleeve, and whose
fans feel a connection to him that goes
beyond standard-issue sporting hero
worship. The nostalgic among us spent
Sunday morning reliving Del Piero’s
greatest goals – from that volley against
Fiorentina back in 1994 to his World
Cup semi-п¬Ѓnal strike against Germany
12 years later – but also remembering
his п¬Ѓnal Juventus home game in 2012,
when the football itself became secondary to his impromptu lap of honour
He could not make it back to Turin on Sunday, since he had a match to
Juventus’ Carlos Tevez celebrates after scoring a goal.
play for his new team, the Delhi Dynamos. There was no Del Piero goal to
mark that occasion, the forward instead picking up a booking before being
subbed off in the 72nd minute of a 0-0
draw against the Kerala Blasters. But he
would be remembered again at Juventus Stadium, where his former teammates took on Parma.
“Un capitano, c’è solo un capitano,”
sang the Bianconeri’s fans before kickoff, as a banner was hung behind the
goal promising Del Piero that “we’ll
never forget you”. Those supporters
would evoke his memory many more
times before the match was over, and
yet they would also end the day singing
the praises of a new Juventus No10.
It feels wrong to describe Carlos
Tevez as an heir to Del Piero. They are
very different players and very different men, having grown up in radically dissimilar circumstances and
followed contrasting paths through
their respective careers. In a sense that
is what made Tevez the perfect person to inherit Del Piero’s shirt number
in the п¬Ѓrst place. Here was a man who
was different enough in approach, and
confident enough in himself, not to be
weighed down by comparisons.
The closest parallel journalists could
find for Tevez in Juventus’s history was
in fact Omar Sivori, another abundantly talented Argentinian forward with
below-average height (although Tevez,
at 5ft 8ins, would still have towered
over his compatriot) but above-average
dribbling ability. Each had a reputation as a trouble-maker, even if Tevez’s
refusal to leave the bench at Manchester City does seem rather meek when
compared to Sivori’s proclivity for
late-night whisky sessions and taking naps during training. Tevez would
score a second goal on Sunday, bringing
his personal tally to 10 in 14 games for
the club this season. Add in last year’s
numbers and he has 31 in 62 appearances for the Bianconeri across all competitions, not to mention 12 assists.
Not that Sunday was all about him.
Juventus would go on to beat Parma
7-0, their biggest victory in 31 years
(since they beat Ascoli by the same
scoreline on the opening weekend of
the 1983-84 season). There were braces
not only for Tevez but also for Fernando Llorente and the substitute Alvaro Morata. Stephan Lichtsteiner also
chipped in with a п¬Ѓne goal.
Juventus got a helping hand from
Parma, atrocious in every phase of the
game. The Ducali have now lost nine
out of their п¬Ѓrst 11 matches, conceding
28 goals along the way. Their manager,
Roberto Donadoni, will not survive
many more days like this one.
But this was a victory п¬Ѓrst and foremost for the Juventus manager, Massimiliano Allegri. For the п¬Ѓrst two
months of the season he had stuck
faithfully to the 3-5-2 formation used
by his predecessor, Antonio Conte, but
after succeeding with a four-man defence against Olympiacos in midweek,
he lined his team up in a Christmas tree
formation against Parma. The experiment could not have gone any better.
Allegri insisted afterwards that this
was only another tool in Juventus’s tactical arsenal, rather than a tactical blue-
print that they must stick to going forwards, arguing that “flexibility is a great
resource”. But certainly this has felt like a
week in which the manager put his mark
on the team. Many have argued over the
last two seasons that Juventus would
need a new formation to make progress
in Europe. On this evidence it may help
them domestically, as well.
Although we must guard against
sweeping conclusions from one game,
and especially one against a team as
bad as Parma, the new shape seemed to
help Llorente. Playing as a lone striker – with Tevez and Roberto Pereyra
playing off either shoulder – he held
the ball up well and took his chances
with confidence. It is noteworthy that
he achieved his greatest successes in a
similar role for Athletic Bilbao.
“I had never won a game 7-0 as a
professional,” said the striker afterwards. “I remember one match as a
youth player where we won 42-0, with
me scoring 11 goals.”
A target to work towards, at Juventus, perhaps. In the meantime, a few
more days like this one would probably
be enough to earn Llorente an international recall to go with the one that his
strike partner Tevez just received.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Hopkins deserves respect for
past but defeat leaves no future
Philadelphian looked every minute of his 50-odd years in losing to Kovalev and can no longer try to bend time to his will
By Kevin Mitchell
hey say п¬Ѓghters can grow old in a single п¬Ѓght. At least Bernard Hopkins took
26 years in the ring to get to the point
where he had no more to give. Whatever
equivocation he expressed about his future after losing to Sergey Kovalev over 12 one-sided
rounds in Atlantic City on Saturday night, he is
done with the п¬Ѓght game.
From start to finish in their world light-heavyweight title unification contest the Philadelphian looked every minute and hour, every night
and day of his nearly 50 years on the planet. He
was knocked down near the end of the п¬Ѓrst round
and beaten up badly in the п¬Ѓnal moments of the
12th. In between he might have deserved a share
of the seventh and 10th rounds but that is taking charity to extremes. This was the most comprehensive beating of his illustrious career and
hopefully the only one we will have to witness.
Before the п¬Ѓght Hopkins, perhaps the most
eloquent boxer in the business, told my colleague Donald McRae: “I have no fear. I have no
doubt. I have bent time to my will.”
After losing he said in the ring: “I would not
disclose anything now. It’s 50:50 what I’m going to do. But I’ve done more than anybody expected me to do in my whole career. I’m fine. But
I will think about (retirement). It’s been like that
for the last nine years when I turned 40.”
Hopkins said beforehand it would be “easy”.
It was – for the Russian. Kovalev, unbeaten and
indisputably the hardest puncher in his division, went past the eighth round for the п¬Ѓrst
time in 26 bouts and he is established now as a
feared and respected champion.
Kovalev, a better boxer than many experts
gave him credit for, out-thought and out-hit
Hopkins in nearly every exchange.
Hopkins, surely the п¬Ѓttest 49-year-old in
sport, somehow п¬Ѓnished upright but this was
not a п¬Ѓtness contest and the judges were rightly
merciless with two cards of 118-107 and a third
of 118-106. I had it 120-107.
Catching the п¬Ѓght on tape afterwards did little to dilute the poignancy. I thought Hopkins
would be stopped late – for the first time in his
66-fight career – but hoped it would not be so.
Pride and a great chin kept him on his feet when
lesser men would surely have fallen. Hopkins
took his tumble early, going down, embarrassed
and confused from a wide-arced right to the
temple with 50 seconds of the п¬Ѓrst round left.
What he knew from that point on was there was
meat in every one of the Russian’s blows, with
full contact or not, and he retreated to the ropes
looking for space and time. He got none.
But the incontrovertible verities of the п¬Ѓght
game are these: you don’t get younger, you don’t
get faster. As early as the third Hopkins was reduced to survival mode, each blow draining his
strength if not his resolve. There were the odd
sneaky rights, the trademark shifting of the
Sergey Kovalev (right) punches Bernard
Hopkins during their IBF, WBA and WBO
Light Heavyweight title fight at Boardwalk
Hall Arena in Atlantic City, New Jersey. (AFP)
shoulders and the possibility that he could conjure a miracle. But this was not a contest, it was
a mugging.
Hopkins went the distance for the 26th time,
testimony to his commitment and courage but
revealing as well: it had been 10 years since he
had scored a stoppage win and that with a body
shot to beat a faded Oscar de la Hoya, co-promoter of Saturday’s action. When they fought,
Hopkins earned $10m and De la Hoya three
times that; Bernard’s purse on Saturday was
$1m although he shared in the promotion’s revenue with De la Hoya.
Where he was really supposed to do the business, however, Hopkins was not up to it. The
American’s reflexes were not sharp enough to
feint Kovalev into mistake range nor could he
avoid the steady, incoming artillery. By halfway his mouth hung open. “Gotta trust your
defence, gotta trust your chin,” Naazim Richardson told him in the break before the seventh.
Sound advice but his п¬Ѓghter could not deliver.
He could neither make a contest of it nor even
launch a futile assault. In the game’s unforgiving argot he looked shot. He could not pull the
trigger. They entered the second half with Hopkins needing to win every round to give himself
even a statistical chance of victory. In truth he
needed a knockout. “Only chance we got,” Richardson told him. “If you ain’t capable of doing it,
you gotta let me know. Gotta push him back. He
can’t fight in close.”
He did not need to. By now Kovalev was cruising. He respected Hopkins’ past but not his
present. There was no future either for the old
man, none except the difficult journey towards
the п¬Ѓnal bell, over the championship rounds as
they are known. But this champion was done.
The crowd even booed him; they wanted a п¬Ѓght
and what they got was a mismatch.
The final three minutes of Hopkins’ career
were as disappointing for him and his fans as
were the preceding 33. He knew he had to stop
Kovalev but could do no more than poke out his
tongue after shipping another brain-scrambling
right to the head.
“Big respect,” Kovalev told Max Kellerman at
the local microphone. “I’m the next. He touched
Spurs afraid to play at home: Adebayor
By Amy Lawrence
mmanuel Adebayor has
admitted that Tottenham’s players are struggling with the pressure of
a negative atmosphere at White
Hart Lane while they strain to
get the message from their new
manager, Mauricio Pochettino.
“Instead of booing people,
which will make it even worse,
I think it is sometimes better
to support them and give them
what they need to perform on the
pitch,” he said.
“And right now, to tell you
the truth, I think a lot of players
when they put on the shirt and go
out on to the pitch, are п¬Ѓnding it
hard in the head.”
Tottenham fans are understandably airing their frustrations – they have seen their team
lose four out of the last five Premier League games at home –
and it was telling to hear the PA
system blaring out music with
conspicuously sharp timing the
very second the referee blew the
final whistle in the weekend’s
loss to Stoke. It seemed like the
club were conscious of the possibility for an outpouring of disapproval and did their bit to drown
it out. Adebayor says the players
are feeling the heat. “It’s kind of
hard when you know the п¬Ѓrst bad
ball you make the fans are going
to boo you,” he said. “When you
are playing in front of your own
crowd you want them to support you. But now it is like going
through a sad moment and your
family not welcoming you home.
Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino’s (second right) side has lost four times in last five matches. (Reuters)
That’s the worst thing ever because you have nowhere to go.
At the moment I don’t know
whether we should play at home
or whether we should play away.
“Obviously I was on the bench
against Stoke and, though I could
not see everything as clear as
night, I could see that nobody
wanted the ball. It’s hard for the
players. It’s not their fault and it’s
not the fans’ fault either because
the fans want to see a result, the
fans want to see a response and
things are not going our way at
the moment. We just have to
п¬Ѓght as a team and as a club to
п¬Ѓnd a solution. The quicker the
Adebayor suggests that it is
proving difficult for Tottenham
to adapt to the methods preferred
by Pochettino, the latest chosen
one in White Hart Lane’s white
hot seat: “He’s a good manager
and we just have to п¬Ѓnd a way
so that we can try to understand
what he wants to tell us and how
he wants us to play. If every player
could do what the manager wants
then we would win the Champions League. But at the moment
we are not getting the message.
To me, he is a good manager and
a good man – we just have to get
what he is telling us.
“We have to get used to him.
He is the new manager and it is
tough. Tactically, he is working hard, he is trying to make us
understand what the opponents
will try to do and what we have
to do to score goals and win the
games. But at the moment there
is a blockage somewhere. Hopefully we can overcome that. Football is a funny game. You play
one game and score one goal and
everybody says �Hey, things have
changed for you.’ Maybe we can
go out and win the next game 3-0
or 4-0 and that will be it – the
fans will be back enjoying Tottenham again.
“Then, every weekend I was
happy to come in and play for the
club because I knew I was going
to have fun and enjoy it. Now it is
not fun anymore. The critics are
there and I welcome them – I take
them in a good way and hopefully
I will do my talking on the pitch.
At the moment things are not going our way, but it cannot go any
lower than this. Things can only
get better.
“Obviously all managers bring
their own philosophies, the way
they see football, the way they
see games and everything. But
come on, this the third or fourth
manager in two or three years so
we just have to stop it now being
about the manager.”
After the international break,
Tottenham ’s next game is at Hull
and according to Adebayor, it will
almost be a relief to be away. “To
be honest, I think so,” he admitted. “I think it might be better to
play away from home at the moment because at least we know
beforehand we are guaranteed to
be booed because they want their
home club to win. But when you
are playing at home and your own
fans start booing you after a few
minutes then it is harder.”
me with two good punches but not hurt me.”
Hopkins was reasonably humble: “He fought
a great technical fight, used his reach,” he said.
“He definitely has the mechanics and he has patience. Every time he got hit with punches from
me he did the right thing and stepped back and I
had to reset. Every time I tried to engage he did it
on his terms. He had a good right hand over my
jab. He stuck to his game plan.
“He’s going to be around for a long time, as
long as he wants to. I’ve got respect for a guy
who wants to fight everybody.”
And boxing should respect Hopkins. Still, like
everyone who has gone before him in the history
of the sport, he has to bow to time not try any
more to bend it.
Could Kramer’s freak own goal
be the lift that Dortmund need?
By Raphael Honigstein
Helmut Winklhofer can sleep
a little easier now. For nearly
30 years, the former Bayern
Munich midfielder has been
synonymous with the most
famous own goal in Bundesliga history.
None’s ever quite managed
to hoof the ball into their own
goal from 30 metres out with
so much aplomb before or
since. Until Sunday night at
the Signal Iduna Park, that is.
The Gladbach midfielder
Christoph Kramer received
the ball with his back to
goal and passed it on again
… a little too forcefully and
casually chipped his keeper
Yann Sommer from 45 metres
in the process. It was the
most fantastic autogol – as
our Italian cousins call this
regrettable act of footballistical self-penetration – you’ll
see this season and for many
years to come.
“I thought the ball was
bouncing up a bit”, the
23-year-old tried to explain
later, “but as soon as I hit it,
I thought �oh s***’”. Indeed.
BVB’s veteran Sebastian Kehl
was the first to console the
World Cup winner, others
“He’s an extraordinary player, this will be nothing more
than a curious footnote in his
career,” said Jürgen Klopp.
Like Winklhofer before him
in August 1985, Kramer is unlikely to escape the ignominy
of being named November’s
goalscorer of the month.
Winklhofer refused to receive
his medal in the Sportschau
studio – but Kramer will
probably play along gamely,
lovely boy that he is. “That
can happen, it’s only human,”
Uli Hoeness winced after the
final whistle.
Kramer was the Germany player who had to be
replaced with concussion in
Rio de Janeiro, having asked
the referee whether it really
was the World Cup final that
he was playing in. This time,
however, he knew exactly
where he was and what he
was doing.
“I have to apologise to my
team-mates but I’m angrier
about playing 90 minutes of
crap” he told reporters, “that
mustn’t happen”.
By way of mitigation, the
whole Gladbach team had
actually forgotten to turn up;
one measly effort in front of
Roman Weidenfeller was all
that Lucien Favre’s lame Foals
could muster against the far
superior black and yellow
“It was a well deserved win
for Dortmund,” admitted the
Swiss coach.
Gladbach will live with their
first defeat in 19 games (in
all competitions) even if they
could easily have extended
their record run in this game.
Because, though Dortmund
played their best football of
the season in the first half,
they had nothing to show for
it after Henrikh Mkhitaryan
and Marco Reus missed the
best chances. It took Kramer
going rogue to break the
deadlock in the 58th minute.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Lakers notch first
win of the season
�We were just trying to make them take some tough jump shots’
Chicago Bears defensive player Jon Bostic (left) stops Green Bay
Packers Offensive player Eddie Lacy (right) after a three yard gain
in the first half of their NFL game at Lambeau Field in Green Bay,
Wisconsin on Sunday.
49ers edge Saints in
overtime, Cardinals
lose quarterback
Los Angeles
he San Francisco 49ers
prevailed in an overtime
thriller with New Orleans after Saints quarterback Drew Brees fumbled
and the league-leading Arizona
Cardinals won again but suffered
a costly blow in defeating the St.
Louis Rams on Sunday.
Cardinals quarterback Carson
Palmer went down with a knee
injury after being sacked in the
fourth quarter of their 31-14 win
and was carried off the п¬Ѓeld.
promptly came through with a
go-ahead, 48-yard touchdown
pass to John Brown and the Cardinals (8-1) added an interception return for a TD and scored
on a fumble recovery that kept
them as the surprise team of the
San Francisco linebacker Ahmad Brooks blindsided Saints
quarterback Brees to force a
fumble and allow the 49ers to
escape New Orleans with a wild
27-24 victory.
Brooks’ big play set up Phil
Dawson’s winning 35-yard field
goal and the 49ers (5-4) prevailed to keep pace in the NFC
West despite squandering a 2110 second-quarter lead.
Brees, who tossed three scores
and two interceptions, put the
Saints (4-5) ahead 24-21 with
less than two minutes left in the
fourth quarter but San Francisco
rallied to force overtime thanks
to a 51-yard pass from Colin
Kaepernick on fourth down that
sent up Dawson’s 45-yard game
tying п¬Ѓeld goal.
New Orleans had what would
have been a game-winning 47yard touchdown pass from Brees
to Jimmy Graham wiped out
with seconds to play in regulation when Graham was called for
pass interference.
The freefalling New York Jets
stunned the Pittsburgh Steelers 20-13 to snap an eight-game
losing streak behind a solid start
from Michael Vick.
Vick threw two touchdowns
and added 39 yards on the
ground to become the п¬Ѓrst NFL
quarterback to reach 6,000
yards rushing.
Steelers quarterback Ben
Roethlisberger, who had thrown
six touchdowns in each of his
last two games, was limited to
one score and sacked twice as
the Jets forced four turnovers.
In Seattle, the defending Super Bowl champion Seahawks
stayed just two games behind
Arizona in their division after
Marshawn Lynch rumbled for
140 yards and four touchdowns
in a 38-17 win over the New York
Quarterback Russell Wilson
ran for another 107 yards and a
score in Seattle’s third successive victory.
In Oakland, Peyton Manning added to his career record
touchdown total with п¬Ѓve more
TD passes to lead Denver in a 4117 rout over winless Oakland.
Manning tossed two scores
apiece to Emmanuel Sanders
and Julius Thomas and Denver
(7-2) stayed in п¬Ѓrst place in the
AFC West.
In Detroit, Matthew Stafford п¬Ѓred an 11-yard touchdown
pass to Theo Riddick in the п¬Ѓnal
minute to lift the Lions (7-2) past
Miami 20-16.
Lions wide receiver Calvin
Johnson had 113 receiving yards
and a TD after missing three
games because of an ankle injury.
Baltimore ................21
Kansas City ..........17
San Francisco ...27
Dallas ..........................31
NY Jets....................20
Atlanta ......................27
Denver ......................41
Arizona .....................31
Seattle...................... 38
Green Bay ........... 55
Tennessee ..............7
Miami ........................16
New Orleans ....24
Pittsburgh .............13
Tampa Bay...........17
St. Louis .................. 14
NY Giants ..............17
Chicago .................. 14
New York
obe Bryant and Jeremy
Lin scored 21 points
apiece on Sunday as
the Los Angeles Lakers nabbed their п¬Ѓrst win of the
NBA season, a 107-92 decision
over Charlotte.
The Lakers, whose 0-5 start
was the worst since the club
moved to Los Angeles, hadn’t
lost six straight to open a season
since the 1957-58 Lakers—then
based in Minneapolis—lost
their п¬Ѓrst seven.
While the current Lakers
have avoided a repeat of that
dismal start—or worse—Bryant
and Lin both said they have a lot
of work to do if they want to win
“The one thing about today
is we were talking, we were
engaged, we were moving, we
were trying to make it difficult
(for Charlotte),” Lin said of the
Lakers’ improved defensive
“We were just trying to make
them take some tough jump
Offensively, Lin said, he and
Bryant are still adjusting to each
“It’s just a process,” said Lin,
who was traded to the Lakers
by the Houston Rockets in July.
“He’s got to learn to continue to
trust me and I have to learn to
trust him and what that looks
like in terms of when to give the
ball to the other person.
“It’s not like we’re both coming in inherently trying to be
selfish. We both want it to work,
we just have to п¬Ѓgure out how
and today was a step in the right
Carlos Boozer п¬Ѓnished with
16 points and Jordan Hill added
12 with a career-high seven assists for the Lakers.
Al Jefferson paced the Hornets with 23 points, while Kemba Walker added 17 and Marvin
Williams chipped in 11.
The Lakers trailed throughout the п¬Ѓrst half, but outscored the Hornets 34-13 in the
third quarter to seize control.
Boozer scored eight points
during a 16-1 scoring run, with
his last basket giving the Lakers
their п¬Ѓrst lead of the night.
Lin and Bryant then both hit
three-pointers as the Lakers
built a 67-59 lead.
Ed Davis’ layup with 2.4 seconds left in the third helped Los
Angeles take a 76-64 advantage
entering the fourth, and the
Hornets never got the deficit
below eight in the п¬Ѓnal period.
Bryant, a п¬Ѓve-time NBA
champion with the Lakers,
Stamkos’ two goals lift
Lightning to 4-3 win
ight winger Ryan Callahan scored in the
shootout to give the
Tampa Bay Lightning
a 4-3 victory over the Detroit
Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena
on Sunday.
Center Steven Stamkos
scored twice and center Tyler
Johnson got the goals for Tampa Bay in regulation.
Callahan also had two assists
and goalie Ben Bishop stopped
17 shots in regulation and overtime.
Right winger Johan Franzen
and left winger Gustav Nyquist
had a goal and an assist each
Tampa Bay .............4
Edmonton ...............3
Vancouver ..............2
Ottawa ........................3
Detroit .........................3
NY Rangers ............1
San Jose ...................2
and center Darren Helm scored
for Detroit. Defenseman Niklas Kronwall had two assists
and goaltender Jimmy Howard
made 27 saves in the п¬Ѓrst 65
Elswhere, left winger Benoit Pouliot scored a goal and
made an assist as Edmonton
defeated the New York Rangers 3-1.
Center Ryan NugentHopkins scored his fifth of
the season for Edmonton,
while right winger Teddy
Purcell scored his second of
the season into an empty net
with 1:27 remaining to seal
the win. Goaltender Viktor
Fasth made 20 saves for the
Carl Hagelin scored the lone
goal for the Rangers (6-62), who have lost four of п¬Ѓve.
Goaltender Henrik Lundqvist
stopped 30 shots and took the
Toronto goalie James Reimer made 38 saves to top
Ottawa 5-3 at Canadian Tire
Toronto winger David Clarkson scored the lone goal of the
third period after center Peter
Holland had a goal and an assist, and wingers James van
Riemsdyk and Josh Leivo and
center Mike Santorelli scored
Ottawa goalie Robin Lehner stopped just 25 shots while
center Kyle Turris and wingers
Mike Hoffman and Mark Stone
scored goals.
Chicago scored three goals in
a span of 2 minutes, 34 seconds
in the second period to beat
San Jose 5-2.
Defensemen Trevor Van
Riemsdyk, Brent Seabrook
and Niklas Hjalmarsson, left
winger Bryan Bickell and
center Jonathan Toews scored
goals for Chicago and goaltender Corey Crawford turned
aside 32 of 34 shots for the
scored both goals for San
Jose while goaltender Antti Niemi stopped 32 of 36
Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant defends Charlotte Hornets forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist in the second half of the game at Staples
Center on Sunday. Lakers won 107-92.
wasn’t ready to call the victory
a turning point, even if it was a
positive sign.
“You’ve got to start somewhere,” he said, but noted that
the Lakers face a tough stretch
of games against Memphis,
New Orleans and San Antonio
in the coming week.
“The task just gets harder and
harder,” Bryant said, and was
echoed by Lin.
“We’ve got to play harder
every night,” Lin said. “If we
play harder every night, we have
a chance.”
Suns hand Warriors first
defeat of the season
The Phoenix Suns handed
Golden State their п¬Ѓrst defeat
of the NBA season on Sunday,
taking full advantage of the
Warriors’ miscues in a 107-95
Isaiah Thomas scored 22
points and handed out seven
assists for the Suns. Gerald
Green and Goran Dragic had 19
points apiece for Phoenix, who
out-scored the Warriors 36-16
in the п¬Ѓnal quarter.
Stephen Curry ended with
28 points and 10 assists for the
Warriors—who were the last
unbeaten team left in the league
two weeks into the season.
“We turned the ball over in
the п¬Ѓrst half, but eventually they
catch up to you,” said Golden
State’s Draymond Green, who
scored 22 points with nine rebounds and four blocks.
“Obviously I’m one of the
main culprits, I had five (turnovers) myself. So we’ve just really
got to cut down on turnovers
and once we do that we’ll be
Golden State had squeaked
out a win over Houston on
Saturday despite 26 turnovers,
and coach Steve Kerr had already predicted that the mistakes would catch up with his
On Sunday they were also
hurt by the absence of guard
Klay Thompson, who was
sidelined with a sprained right
Even so, the Warriors led by
eight through three quarters,
before the Suns exploded in the
п¬Ѓnal period.
Gerald Green scored eight
straight points for the Suns to
give them an 83-82 lead. He
made a pair of three-pointers
later in the fourth, the second
one giving Phoenix a 95-88 lead
with 4:46 to play.
Thomas scored seven points
down the stretch to seal the
come-from-behind victory.
Brooklyn............. 104
Utah ........................... 97
Oklahoma City101
Toronto .................120
Miami .....................105
Phoenix ................107
Portland ................ 116
LA Lakers ...........107
Orlando ................ 96
Detroit .................... 96
Sacramento ......93
Philadelphia ..... 88
Dallas ...................... 96
Golden State ....95
Denver................ 100
Charlotte ..............92
�Champions of the Sand’ Exhibition
Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club general manager Sami Jassim al-Boenain (centre) presents a memento to Qatar Photographic Society
president Ahmed al-Khulaifi (right) as World Arabian Horse Organisation (WAHO) president Peter Pond looks on during the opening of
the �Champions of the Sand’ Exhibition at the Katara on Sunday. The photographic exhibition is being held on the sidelines of the WAHO
Conference which is being held in Qatar from November 8 to November 18. PICTURE: Juhaim
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Rosberg needs
help from friends
in Abu Dhabi finale
�I know that I will need some help from Felipe or Valtteri or maybe Lewis himself’
Red Bull warns of
engine development
spending war
Sao Paulo
ed Bull team principal
Christian Horner fears
Formula One could be
forced into a �ridiculous’ spending race from 2016 if
the engine rules are not relaxed
for next season.
Weekend talks at the Brazilian Grand Prix failed to reach any
agreement between dominant
Mercedes, Ferrari, Renault and
Honda on allowing some in-season development on the new V6
turbo hybrid power units.
Any changes to the sport’s
technical regulations must be
agreed unanimously for 2015 but
can be pushed through on a majority vote for 2016 and beyond.
“With a majority vote,
2016/17/18 can be opened, so we
will have to face the pain in 2015 to
open it up in 2016/17/18,” Horner
told reporters at Interlagos.
“Which is ridiculous because
we will all end up spending a lot
more money over a longer period
of time, whereas what should
happen is that a window should
be opened to allow Renault, Ferrari and Honda to try to close that
gap (with Mercedes).”
Mercedes have won 15 of 18
races so far and started 17 on pole
position. They are sure of winning both championships, ending Renault-powered Red Bull’s
run of four in a row.
Renault and Ferrari want limited in-season development to
help close the gap, but Mercedes
argue that would be too expensive and want to reap the rewards
of their work.
They also say talk of an engine
�freeze’ is wrong since 92 percent
can still be worked on.
Horner said mistakes were
made with the 2014 engine rules
that allowed a competitor to lock
in an advantage without rivals
being able to catch up.
“Not only have we got an
enormously expensive engine,
we’ve got an engine that we have
got very limited development
on,” he said, adding that teams
could not bear any additional п¬Ѓnancial burdens.
“Unfortunately, the costs of
these power units has driven two
teams out of this sport already
and it is a big issue,” he added.
Failed Marussia and Caterham
were both absent from the last
two races.
Horner was critical of Mercedes and saw little point in further talks because “you can sit in
a meeting with people who then
change their minds п¬Ѓve minutes
after they leave the room”.
Big boys want
independents out,
says Sauber boss
Sao Paulo
Mercedes teammates Lewis Hamilton (left) and Nico Rosberg are locked in a close battle for the driver’s title this season with the Brit leading by 17 points. (AFP)
Sao Paulo
ico Rosberg may need some help
from his friends, but he is utterly convinced he can win the
season-ending “double jeopardy” Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and claim
the drivers’ world title.
After ending championship leader and
Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton’s
run of п¬Ѓve straight wins, the 29-year-old
German shrugged aside concerns over the
much-criticised and controversial introduction of double points at the п¬Ѓnale.
“I find it artificial and I don’t like it in
general,” said Rosberg. “Of course, it’s
great for me at the moment, but you know
that’s just because of the situation....
“There are other sports which have
tried the same sort of thing, like Nascar,
and they’ve done this very successfully.
We need to keep on reviewing it. It’s good
to try something and we’ll see how it goes
this year.”
Rosberg’s cheery demeanour under
pressure and his flawless concentration
on keeping his title dream alive, earned
him much respect as he won Sunday’s
Brazilian Grand Prix ahead of Hamilton,
but it has also left the sport facing another dilemma.
Just as Formula One’s veteran commercial ringmaster Bernie Ecclestone,
84, struggles to control a potential п¬Ѓnancial crisis, with three more teams threatened by collapse following the demise of
Caterham and Marussia, the Abu Dhabi
showdown presents a stark contrast.
Mercedes team chief Toto Wolff, who
has toiled all season to control his embattled drivers as their scrap for glory
became increasingly fraught and sometimes acrimonious, said the wrong kind
of result would leave Formula One under
a dark cloud.
“Hopefully double points will not make
a difference,” said Wolff, fearing that the
exaggerated ruling at one race could decide the title.
“It would put a big shadow over the
championship if it was turned by a technical issue.”
After Sunday’s race, in which Rosberg
resisted Hamilton’s pressure for 71 laps,
the Briton holds a 17-point lead, having
won compared to Rosberg’s five.
Wolff, however, believes that whatever
the outcome, the man with most points
will deserve to take the title.
“Whoever has most points at the end
the season is the worthy champion,” he
said. “Even though if it really comes down
to that situation, some of us might have a
different feeling about it, it is what it is.
“Whoever wins the championship
is going to have his name in the record
books and that’s it.”
Given that the Mercedes pair delivered
a record 11th one-two п¬Ѓnish on Sunday,
another win is in prospect.
If it is for Hamilton, he will take the title, whatever Rosberg does - but if Rosberg wins, Hamilton must п¬Ѓnish second
to be champion.
If the race was being run under “normal” points-scoring, Hamilton could
п¬Ѓnish as low as sixth and take the title.
Wolff said he hoped the system, introduced by Ecclestone, would be dropped
next year.
“Nobody likes the double points,” he
said. “We are going to discuss it next time
around. I don’t think Bernie likes it, so it
is probably something we should be getting rid of for next season.”
Rosberg, whose father Keke Rosberg
took the title in 1982 after winning only
one race in the season, said: “We now
have a great п¬Ѓnale to look forward to in
Abu Dhabi and I’m still believing 100 per
cent I can make it.
“But, I know, of course, that I will need
some help from Felipe (Massa) or Valtteri
(Bottas) or maybe Lewis himself.”
Alonso set for McLaren switch: report
Sao Paulo
ernando Alonso is set to
join McLaren, with the
former two-time world
champion’s move due to
be confirmed before the seasonending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on
November 23, according to a report on the Autosport magazine
website published yesterday.
Last month Luca de Montezemolo, the outgoing chief of
Ferrari, the Spaniard’s current
team, said the 2005 and 2006
world champion would leave
the Italian giants at the end of
the current campaign, two years
before his contract expires, because of their failure to provide
him with a car where he could
challenge for a third world title.
Alonso п¬Ѓnished sixth in last
weekend’s Brazilian Grand Prix
and the 33-year-old is currently
п¬Ѓfth in the overall standings for
this season.
But even with the innovation
of double-points for the season’s climax in the UAE, there
is no way he can close the gap
on the Mercedes’ leading duo of
Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg.
Autosport added that the only
reason why Alonso’s move to
McLaren, for whom he drove in
one turbulent season in 2007,
had not yet been confirmed was
because the management of
the British team had still to decide on which of their two current drivers, Jenson Button and
Kevin Magnusson, would remain to pilot their other car.
Button, after п¬Ѓnishing fourth
at the Interlagos circuit in
Sao Paulo on Sunday, said he
was still in the dark regarding
McLaren’s driver line-up for
“I enjoyed the race and had a
great battle with Kimi (Raikkonen),” said Button, world champion in 2009.
“To beat both Red Bulls, both
Ferraris and a Williams is not a
bad day’s work. But that’s all I
can do right now—go out and
enjoy my racing,” the 34-yearold Briton added.
Last month, reigning champion Sebastien Vettel announced
he was quitting Red Bull, with
whom he was won four successive world titles.
That led to reports the German was being lined up for a
move to Ferrari, Formula One’s
most iconic team.
ormula One’s major
manufacturing teams are
working to an agenda to
streamline the sport and
eliminate smaller independent
outfits, Sauber team chief Monisha Kaltenborn said yesterday.
After two races, in the United
States and Brazil, where the grid
was reduced to 18 cars after the
withdrawal of the Marussia and
Caterham teams, and a weekend of tense behind-the-scenes
talks aimed at saving three more
cash-starved teams, Kaltenborn
expressed a view widely-held by
many paddock observers.
“Looking at the proposals
which have been made you have
to believe there is some agenda,
don’t you?” she said.
“The agenda seems to be that
people are looking at four or п¬Ѓve
names to stay in here, and when
ideas are offered to us of a yearold chassis or engines which are
maybe a different spec or series,
there must be an agenda.
“As there’s no-one reacting to
it in front, we don’t know whose
agenda it is. That’s why it’s important we said what we had
to on this point because these
things are changing every day,
Mallya says Force
India will continue
Sao Paulo
Ferrari’s Spanish driver Fernando Alonso walks around the team garage at the Interlagos track in Sao
Paulo for the Brazilian Grand Prix last weekend. (Reuters)
but the fact is it cannot remain
like this.
“It’s no way we want to work
and can work and the more these
ideas are coming up the more
we get the feeling that maybe
some people don’t want us to be
around—and maybe the sport is
supposed to be changed in a very
different way.”
Agreements between commercial rights holders and the
teams say that if the number of
cars on the grid falls below 20,
the major teams have an obligation to п¬Ѓeld a third car, but Red
Bull boss Christian Horner said
they were not thinking of doing
that. “Our preference is to have
at least 10 healthy competing
two-car teams.”
Kaltenborn added that she believed some of the manufacturer-backed big teams do not see
their Formula One involvement
as sport, but purely as business.
“The big teams out there use
this as a simple sporting marketing platform,” she said.
“It’s nothing more for them.
We are not out here with, as they
are saying, begging bowls.
“We don’t need to be a threat
to them, but we are part of the
show and it’s very disrespectful to behave like this to teams
within the sport and even more
disrespectful towards the fans.”
orce India co-owner Vijay Mallya has rejected
speculation about his
Formula One team’s finances, saying they will be racing
for years to come.
Speaking at the Brazilian Grand
Prix, where only nine teams competed on Sunday, Mallya said Force
India would not be following Marussia and Caterham onto the
sporting scrapheap.
“All this speculation I think
needs to stop,” the liquor baron
told Reuters. “It’s not doing anybody any good...the bottom line
is we’re OK.”
Asked whether Force India
would be definitely racing in
2015 and beyond, he replied: “Of
course. Absolutely.”
Force India, Lotus and Sauber,
whose п¬Ѓnances have also caused
concern, want a more equal distribution of the sport’s revenues.
Bernie Ecclestone told report-
ers on Sunday that the teams as a
whole shared $900mn in revenues
and ruled out extra payments.
However, Mallya said Ecclestone had told him he was meeting
Donald Mackenzie, co-chairman
of rights holders CVC, to discuss
the matter today. “If I don’t hear
by the end of the week I’ll send him
a gentle reminder,” he added.
Force India is co-owned by
Mallya and the Sahara Group run
by Subrata Roy, one of India’s
best known tycoons, who is in a
Delhi jail over the conglomerate’s
failure to refund billions of dollars raised in outlawed bonds.
Mallya also has troubles of his
own, with an Indian bank declaring him and his grounded carrier
Kingfisher Airlines “wilful defaulters”, although a court has
halted execution of the decision.
A report in Britain’s Sunday
Telegraph said Force India had
reported a net annual loss of
38.5mn pounds ($61.21mn) to
Dec. 31, 2013. That was up from a
previous 33.4mn.
The team are currently sixth in
the championship.
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
�Pacquiao pace, skills will be too much for Algieri’
Las Vegas
Chris Algieri represents a younger, hungrier generation of
boxers hoping to take down
Manny Pacquiao but the world
champion’s coach Freddie Roach
is confident the Filipino has both
the speed and skills to retain his
WBO title.
Algieri earned his shot at Pacquiao, a winner of world titles
in eight different divisions, by
climbing off the canvas twice to
earn a split decision victory over
Russian Ruslan Provodnikov in
June, a win that improved his
record to 20-0.
Roach recognised the hardhitting New Yorker’s toughness but said Pacquiao had the
tools to defend his welterweight
crown in Macau on Nov. 22.
Foley adds
the drop goal
to Australia’s
American challenger Chris Algieri (left) and Manny Pacquiao
“He’s a tough kid and he’s
strong,” Roach told The Philip-
pine Star. “He doesn’t have the
speed and the skills Manny has.
But he has the power.”
Pacquiao’s (56-5-2) storied
20-year professional career is
littered with wins over some of
boxing’s biggest names, including Erik Morales, Marco Antonio
Barrera, Juan Manuel Marquez,
Shane Mosley and Oscar De La
He suffered successive defeats
in 2012 but has got back on track
with two impressive wins over
Brandon Rios and Timothy Bradley.
A win over Algieri could bring
the long-awaited super п¬Ѓght
with Floyd Mayweather Jr one
step closer.
“A lot of the guys we fought
in the past are retired now,”
Roach said. “We’re fighting
the new generation. Rios was
the first step. And then Bradley. These guys are younger and
Pacquiao has not scored a
knockout since stopping Miguel
Cotto in Nov. 2009, and was
himself knocked out by Mar-
Klitschko goes it alone with news
conference after Pulev spat
HAMBURG: World heavyweight boxing champion
Wladimir Klitschko went ahead
with a press conference yesterday without challenger Kubrat
Pulev after a row over who was
allowed to attend.
The joint conference was
planned at a Hamburg hotel
ahead of Saturday’s heavyweight fight in the city, but
Pulev’s entourage stayed away
after being told by Klitschko’s
manager, Bernd Boente, not all
would be allowed in.
Boente refused to allow all six
quez in 2012 in his п¬Ѓrst outing
after losing to Bradley the same
While some have questioned
how much gas the 35-year-old
of Pulev’s delegation from promoter Kalle Sauerland into the
conference, saying the contract
stipulated a maximum of three.
Pulev countered by saying all
or none of his entourage would
attend the news conference.
Klitschko defends his WBA, IBF
and WBO belts against undefeated 33-year-old Bulgarian
The 38-year-old Ukrainian aims
to make it a 17th successive title
defence in a fight rescheduled
from September when he withdrew with an arm injury.
has left after 63 professional
п¬Ѓghts, Pacquiao will be a strong
favourite to beat the 30-year-old
American at The Venetian Macao in two weeks’ time.
France targeting triple
Australia revenge
�We’re French, every time we don’t move things very much, we fall asleep’
Wallabies coach Michael
Cheika admitted after last
weekend’s victory over Wales
the drop goal was not in
Australia’s playbook but given
his reputation for attention
to detail, it might not be long
before it is.
Bernard Foley’s (pictured)
effort from the pocket at the
Millennium Stadium on Saturday crucially put Australia
ahead eight minutes from
time before the 15-test flyhalf
rounded out the 33-28 victory
with a 78th minute penalty.
“I took a few after the captain’s run on Friday. A couple
went over and a couple
ended up closer to the corner
post,” Foley told Sydney’s
Daily Telegraph in Cardiff.
“That was my first one at
this level and I think I’ve only
kicked one in Super Rugby, so
it’s not something I do often.
“There’s a lot of experience in
the pack who knew where we
had to be and in that situation
it’s always good to have crack
and not die wondering.”
The Wallabies have benefited
from drop goals in the past,
most notably when Stephen
Larkham dropped a 48-metre
bomb to beat South Africa in
extra time in the 1999 World
Cup semi-final.
It had, though, appeared to be
a dying art Down Under.
Australian teams scored
only two in the entire Super
Rugby competition this year,
compared to 18 successful
attempts for South African
Australia have spurned the
chance to use a drop kick to
break the deadlock in two
draws against the All Blacks in
the last two years—the 18-18
tie in Brisbane in 2012 and the
12-12 result in Sydney earlier
this year.
In the latter match, Foley was
on as a replacement at flyhalf
but the Wallabies kept the ball
in hand looking for a penalty
only to lose possession, and
with it the chance of a first
win over the world champions in three years.
Even if Cheika does not now
have his players drilling for
drop goals, the fact that Foley
felt comfortable improvising
the score sits well with the
coach’s philosophy that his
players should feel free to try
something different.
“The way we prepare, I’d like
to think tight games, if we
work hard, we’ll always get
them going our way,” Cheika,
who brought Foley through
as his starting flyhalf at New
South Wales Waratahs, said
after the match.
“Saying that, drop goals are
definitely not in our play
books. It was Bernard stepping back and taking the shot
and he delivered.”
rance have “triple revenge” in mind ahead of
Saturday’s international
Test against Australia.
Philippe Saint-Andre’s team
suffered three straight defeats
by the Wallabies on their June
tour Down Under, and two of
those were humiliating.
Either side of a dour 6-0 reverse in Melbourne, France were
thumped 50-23 in Brisbane and
39-13 in Sydney.
“We have to take a triple revenge,” said Saint-Andre on
Sunday, a day after Les Bleus
cruised to a 40-15 success over
Fiji in Marseille while Australia
triumphed 33-28 in Cardiff for
their 10th successive victory
over Wales.
“What struck me was the
third Test (in June) where we
collapsed too quickly. That’s
unacceptable when you represent a country, a history, an
Saint-Andre knows his side
will have to stand up to the Wallabies in individual battles at
the Stade de France in Paris.
“Yesterday (Saturday) they
won a lot of turnovers. They
have individuals who are capable of winning one-on-one
As for his own side, SaintAndre says there is much to
work on from the Fiji match,
despite running in п¬Ѓve tries, including a hat-trick from debu-
France coach Philippe Saint-Andre
tant wing Teddy Thomas.
“We know we still have work
to do. We conceded two tries
from defensive mistakes and we
could have been a bit more patient close to the line.
“But at least there was enthusiasm, desire, a team that was
lively and enjoyed playing.”
The result ensured France did
not suffer a п¬Ѓfth straight defeat
for the п¬Ѓrst time since 1982 -
Canadian rookie Taylor triumphs in Jackson
ookie Nick Taylor,
helped by three consecutive birdies on the
back nine, displayed
ice-cool composure to win his
maiden PGA Tour title by two
shots at the Sanderson Farms
Championship in Jackson, Mississippi on Sunday.
On a glorious afternoon
of unbroken sunshine at the
Country Club of Jackson where
the greens ran п¬Ѓrm and fast, the
26-year-old Canadian surged
past overnight leader John Rollins with a sizzling six-underpar 66.
Taylor broke clear of a tightly
bunched leaderboard with his
three-birdie blitz from the 13th,
calmly sank a par-saving putt
from nine feet at the 16th and
could afford a three-putt bogey
at the last to post a 16-under
total of 272.
Rollins, seeking his п¬Ѓrst PGA
they had lost their п¬Ѓnal Six Nations clash 22-20 at home to
Ireland in March before the June
But Saint-Andre is wary of
his side switching off.
“We’re French, every time we
don’t move things very much,
we fall asleep.”
Still, the coach was enjoying
a rare success since taking over
the reins three years ago—it was
only the 12th France win in 30
matches on his watch.
And he even found the chance
to mock those who have criticised him for constant tinkering.
He aligned scrum-half Sebastien Tillous-Borde with flyhalf Camille Lopez for his 13th
different half-back pairing in
those 30 matches. Yet they both
played well and combined expertly.
“Apparently it was the 13th
(pairing), maybe there will be a
14th or 15th,” said Saint-Andre
Finally he turned his attention to Racing-Metro’s Thomas,
who is likely to be given another
outing against the Wallabies
despite being partially at fault
for Fiji’s first try after a weak attempt at a tackle.
“Already he has qualities
that you can’t buy in the supermarket—he runs fast, he
wins his duels and he scores
tries,” said Saint-Andre, who
was also impressed with the
debuts of South African born
Scott Spedding and Alexandre
“For (Spedding’s) first cap it
was a quality performance, just
as with Dumoulin, who was
more than interesting.”
Nick Taylor of Canada poses with the trophy after winning the Final
Round of the Sanderson Farms Championship at The Country Club
of Jackson on Sunday in Jackson, Mississippi.
Tour victory in п¬Ѓve years, closed
with a 73 to п¬Ѓnish in a threeway tie for fourth at 13 under, a
stroke behind fellow Americans
Boo Weekley (66) and Jason
Bohn (69).
“It’s been a whirlwind of a
summer,” a smiling Taylor told
Golf Channel after becoming
the п¬Ѓrst Canadian-born player
to win on the PGA Tour since
left-hander Mike Weir at the
2007 Fry’s Electronics Open.
“Six months ago, I was struggling but I kind of kept at it,
kind of got hot and the putter
started cooperating. Today I
putted unbelievable ... it’s pretty surreal and a shock but I am
certainly happy with it.”
Taylor, the world’s topranked amateur for 21 successive weeks in 2009 before turning professional the following
year, secured his PGA Tour card
after closing with a 63 at the
2014 Tour’s season’s
п¬Ѓnale in September.
He began the п¬Ѓnal round in
Jackson four strokes off the
pace but got hot early and
caught Rollins at the top with
п¬Ѓve birdies and a bogey on his
outward nine.
Though Rollins briefly regained the outright lead with
a birdie at the par-п¬Ѓve 11th,
Taylor tightened his grip with a
timely three-birdie run, sinking
an 11-footer at the 15th to forge
two ahead.
Rollins ran up a three-putt
bogey at the 14th to hand Taylor
a three-shot cushion.
“I kind of had a feeling where
I was coming off 17,” said Taylor, who was born in Winnipeg.
“Obviously the last few holes I
had some nerves but I was able
to make some putts.”
McIlroy wins Race
to Dubai, Scott
aims for revenge
dam Scott has called
on Australian Open
organisers to let him
against Rory McIlroy, who
secured the European Tour’s
Race to Dubai title Sunday
without swinging a club.
Second-ranked Scott п¬Ѓnished tied 12th in the WGCHSBC Champions in Shanghai
on Sunday, and said after that
he would love to be paired with
McIlroy in Sydney for at least
the п¬Ѓrst two days of the event,
which begins on November 27.
Masters champion Scott
had led McIlroy by a shot going down the п¬Ѓnal fairway in
the 2013 Australian Open, but
stunned his fervent home fans
at Royal Sydney by missing the
green with his second shot and
making a bogey, while McIlroy
stroked home a 15-foot putt
for a birdie and victory.
“It annoyed me for a little
while,” Scott told reporters at
Sheshan International Golf
Club. “To mess up on the very
last hole of the last of the four
tournaments I played back
home last year was very, very
Scott is desperate to atone
and would relish the chance
to stare down his great rival in
a straight duel. “I believe the
organisers should take advantage and put Rory and myself
together because it does happen occasionally at US Opens
where they pair the players according to their rankings.”
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Wawrinka routs
Berdych in opener
�I’m really happy with the way I handled the situation today’
Positive feedback
for athletics
coaching congress
By Sports Reporter
he 1st Aspire Academy
�Youth Athletics Coaching Congress’ concluded
yesterday at the academy
auditorium. The two-day event
involved discussions, experiences exchange and workshops with
the mass participation of the Qatar Athletics Federation coaches
and clubs coaches. Certificates of
participation were distributed to
local attendees and participants
from clubs and QAF.
In a common discussion panel,
the guest speakers expressed
their gratitude and thanks to Aspire Academy and QAF for being
behind this interesting initiative,
and said they were very excited
about what they witnessed in
Qatar as perfect organization and
professional atmosphere surrounded the participants during
the two days Congress in such a
state of the art academy.
Christopher Earle, Aspire
Academy Director of Sports,
thanked the participants and the
speakers for making this initiative a big success and set an appointment for all to the 2nd edition on the same date next year.
He also mentioned that all the
lectures and workshops are to be
available for all to learn from it
and get back to it.
As the programme continued
yesterday, the speakers and participants were full of praise about
the event hosted by Aspire Academy in co-operation with Qatar
Athletics Federation.
“It’s been a great experience
and I really enjoyed it,” said
John Godina, four-times World
Champion in shot put and CEO
of the “World Athletics Centre”
and one of the popular speakers of the event. “It’s also great
to meet old friends at this congress and to spread knowledge in
another part of the world.” The
US-American also stressed the
importance of such events and
the strive of coaches to further
educate themselves. “The whole
sport is constantly pushed forward by coaches who develop
athletes, train and improve them.
The better the coaches, the better the athletes, the better the
Qatar Middle Distance Coach
Jama Aden, who has coached
multiple world record holders
as well as World and Olympic
champions was also delighted
about the output of the congress.
“It’s a great thing for Aspire
Academy to bring these people
from all over the world together
and opportunities like here are
very important for the development of our Qatari coaches, because it’s the perfect chance to
get useful inputs,” says Aden.
“I was really impressed by the
high-level speakers and great
topics that were discussed during these two days. I could exchange a lot of ideas with fellow coaches and there is a lot of
useful information and inputs I
can take home,” said Efthymios
Kyprianou from Cyprus, who
expressed perfectly what many
participants felt at the end of the
Stanislas Wawrinka of Switzerland celebrates his win over Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic during their ATP World Tour Finals match in London yesterday. (EPA)
witzerland’s Stan Wawrinka
opened his ATP Tour Finals campaign in scintillating style with
a 6-1, 6-1 demolition of Tomas
Berdych yesterday.
Wawrinka, the reigning Australian
Open champion, had been in poor form
heading into the prestigious event at London’s O2 Arena, but the world number
four was back in the groove against the
Czech as he took only 58 minutes to wrap
up his Group A opener.
The 29-year-old hit 16 winners to only
four from Berdych, while the Czech’s 20
unforced errors were also a large part of
his undoing.
Wawrinka made it to the semi-finals
on his Tour Finals debut last year and,
on this evidence, will fancy his chances
of progressing from a group that also
includes world number one Novak
Djokovic and US Open champion Marin
Cilic, who were scheduled to meet later
“For me, when I play against him it’s
usually tough,” Wawrinka said. “But I can
always find a solution. I’m really happy
with the way I handled the situation today.”
It was another dispiriting Tour Finals
start for Berdych, who had lost all four
of his previous opening matches at the
eight-man tournament.
“Unfortunately it was my worst match
of the whole season, and I kept it for the
start here in the World Tour Finals,” Berdych said.
“I’m in the worst possible situation
that I can ever be.
“I’m going to face Marin and Novak
and the only chance to qualify is to beat
them. It’s almost a mission impossible,
but let’s try.”
Karina wins QAFCO tennis
After winning his maiden Grand Slam
title at the Australian Open in January,
Wawrinka has suffered a gradual slump
that reached its lowest point over the
last month as he lost four of his last п¬Ѓve
matches, including п¬Ѓrst round exits in
Tokyo, Shanghai and Basel.
Despite that woeful run, Wawrinka had
won his last four matches against Berdych,
including in the group stage of the Tour Finals last year, and he was quick to reestablish his supremacy against the Czech.
Wawrinka broke in the second game and
refused to release his grip as he landed another break to race into a 5-0 lead before
most fans had even got settled in their seats.
Berdych got on the scoreboard at last
but it was too late to stop the Swiss wrapping up the п¬Ѓrst set in 25 minutes.
There was no let-up from Wawrinka
in the second as he out-played the Czech
with his mix of power and poise from the
He broke for a 2-1 lead and, with Berdych completely out of sorts, it was no
surprise to see Wawrinka break twice
more as he sprinted to victory.
Roger Federer eased his way into the
ATP World Tour Finals with a 6-1 7-6
(0) defeat of Canadian newcomer Milos
Raonic in his opening round-robin match
on Sunday.
The 33-year-old Swiss, competing
for a record 13th time at the seasonender, took advantage of some early
Raonic nerves to pocket the opening set in 25 minutes but things got
Raonic, the п¬Ѓrst Canadian to qualify
for the tournament, began to do damage
with his booming serve and even carved
out several break point opportunities as
Federer’s level dipped slightly.
Six-times champion Federer saved a
set point at 5-6 before streaking away in
the tiebreak as his opponent buckled.
West ends strong, Ramos bids adieu
Valencia, Spain
Karina Sarajan poses with her trophy after winning the
under-12 girls’ singles title in the QAFCO tennis championships
last week. She beat Bianca Lorentz in the final.
MMF Racing Team rider Anthony West rode to a strong
ninth place at the Valencia
Grand Prix and п¬Ѓnished the
2014 season on a high note. The 33-yearold Australian had struggled with the
wind in qualifying, but took advantage of
much better conditions on race day and
recovered from his 23rd starting position
at a rapid pace.
Rising up to 15th after only one lap, he
continued to move up through the ranks
and was in tenth position by lap п¬Ѓve and
eighth place by lap six. From that point
on, he was in a small group of riders that
kept changing positions for the remainder of the race, with West losing out on
eighth place against German rider Marcel
Schrötter over the last few metres of the
West п¬Ѓnished 12th in the Moto2 standings for the season.
“I am happy. After the shocking last
three races that I’ve had and also after a bit
of bad luck during the season, I think it is
a good and strong result to п¬Ѓnish the year.
This top-ten result will give me and the entire crew a boost of confidence and the right
motivation to start testing for the next season, which begins on Wednesday at Jerez,”
West said after the race.
“The race was not bad, I felt quite good
with the bike, as I did in all practice sessions. The only problem during the weekend was that I reached a limit with the
lap time and I couldn’t go any faster. We
changed the bike a lot over the weekend
trying to п¬Ѓnd further improvements, but
in the end, we went back to the settings
we had on day one, with only some small
“The wind yesterday made it hard work
QMMF Racing Team’s Anthony West (right) leads Tech 3’s Marcel Schrotter (centre) and Gresini’s Lorenzo Baldassarri during the
Moto2 race in Valencia on Sunday.
to turn the bike, but the conditions were
much better today, which helped us a lot.
Now our goal is to work hard during the
upcoming three days of testing in order to
further improve the bike and п¬Ѓx the few
issues that we still have, with the aim to
return next year even stronger.”
While West took his strong п¬Ѓnish at the
race as motivation for the upcoming threeday test in Jerez, the Valencia Grand Prix
marked the end of the partnership between
West’s Spanish teammate Roman Ramos
and the QMMF Racing Team.
Ramos also seemed set to п¬Ѓnish the
year with a great result and was up in 18th
place right ahead of former 125 cc world
champion Nico Terol, when he ran off the
track and crashed after a small mistake.
“It’s a shame because up until my crash
it was a good race and without this inci-
dent, it would have been a nice end to this
season for myself and my crew. I want to
thank my guys for all the effort they’ve
put in and I also want to thank the federation of Qatar for giving me the opportunity to ride for them this year. Maybe in
a not too distant future we will have the
chance to work together again, because
they are great people and it was a pleasure
to be a part of it all.”
Gulf Times
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Former Dutch Footballer
Euro �88 winner, AC Milan star
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
ABATS sponsors Vodafone Qatar
team for Amsterdam charity race
By Sports Reporter
he Ali Bin Ali Technology Solutions (ABATS)
sponsored a team of four members from Vodafone Qatar for a charity marathon in Amsterdam which was held on October 19. The
marathon was aimed to raise funds for the Vodafone
Foundation Moyo Lesotho Challenge.
The Amsterdam Marathon saw 100 Vodafone employees from around the world taking part to raise
funds that will be used to provide support to the
young people living with HIV/AIDS in Lesotho.
Lesotho, which is one of the poorest countries in
the world, has the third highest HIV prevalence in the
world. According to statistics, almost 41,000 children
and young people under 16 years of age are living with
HIV in Lesotho.
As many as 36,000 of these children do not receive
ARV (Antiretroviral) Therapy and suffer from this
devastating epidemic.
The funds collected from Amsterdam Marathon
would facilitate advanced technological options such
as mobile money which would assist the children
to receive transportation to travel and receive their
medication, receive medical diagnosis results via mobile and sending mobile clinics to rural areas which
would bring life saving care further and faster.
Speaking of the sponsorship, Mohamed AlEbrik,
COO-ICT of the Ali Bin Ali Group, said: “We are
proud to be sponsoring this event which was initiated
by the Vodafone Foundation. We feel that this initiative reflects the values that our group was built on—
that people are capable of incredible things. Vodafone
Moyo Lesotho Challenge aims in giving children a future they would not otherwise have had, and Ali Bin
Ali Technology Solutions (ABATS) is honoured be a
part of this worthy cause.”
Marc Norris, Chief Commercial Officer of Vodafone Qatar, added: “On behalf of Vodafone Qatar, I
would like to thank Ali Bin Ali Technology Solutions
for their generous support of a great cause which will
have a strong impact on many in a terribly deprived
area of the world such as Lesotho."
“Our team joined other colleagues to run the marathon, was tasked with raising the highest amount
of funds possible and without Ali Bin Ali Technology Solutions (ABATS) we wouldn’t have been able to
make it,” he added.
NOBLE CAUSE: Vodafone Representatives Markus Bikker (left) and Orlando Pangan (right) with Mohamed AlEbrik, COO-ICT of Ali Bin Ali Group.
Strong finish for Doha
ladies in Inter-Gulf rugby
By Sports Reporter
he Doha RFC ladies teams have been consistently developing their game as they close out the third leg of
the Inter-Gulf Rugby Tournaments, marking an exciting year for women’s rugby with 13 teams regularly
participating in the tournaments allowing this league to п¬Ѓeld
three divisions for the п¬Ѓrst time.
All around the gulf region, this has also translated to a
steadily increasing high standard of women’s rugby that just
keeps producing better and better games with every meet.
Doha’s first team Oryx had two stellar games within their
pool and almost clinched the overall pool champions title before losing to a well drilled Dubai Cones team.
The Oryx showed some good handling skills and drove the
ball up the pitch well. With some tight passes in the second
and third games of the tournament and by managing good
pressure, Doha Oryx emerged victorious over both Abu Dhabi
and Sharjah. Their control of the game and well-executed
tackles kept the flow going while the pace on the pitch kept
them in the lead.
The п¬Ѓnal match versus Cones was a great game with the
ladies showing determination and quick thinking. There were
notable tries from Lyvika Allen-Adekunle in every game,
massive support from Irish Amy and newcomer Sasha Hudson displayed a depth of understanding that will surely make
her a force on the wing in the tournaments to come.
However, some unforced errors and missed tackles hurt the
end result and the team fell short of becoming overall tournament winners.
The Trojans set out to display their hardwork on the game
basics. They came out and played an absolute stormer to open
up their tournament. They looked great and in control of
themselves and their game versus the Dubai Wasps.
The ladies continued to show good coordination between
players and the improvement was on display all tournament
long. A few wild passes and some dropped balls prevented
some wins but the experience gained playing in these tournaments will continue to grow and develop these ladies as the
season goes on.
“Doha is fortunate that interest is quite high and we are
introducing new players to both squads this year but п¬Ѓnding
some consistency in our approach is proving elusive so the
results for both teams aren’t where we would like to be at this
point,” Duncan Fairley, the Trojans Coach, says. “But we are
working towards consistent success in making full use of the
space, drawing in defenders and getting our ball to the wing
for the catch and run”.
Action from the matches
involving Doha RFC ladies
teams in the Inter-Gulf
rugby tournaments
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