US Open champion Bianca Andreescu feted in hometown

first_imgNEW YORK, NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 08: Bianca Andreescu of Canada poses with her trophy at the Top of the Rock in Rockefeller Center on September 8, 2019 in New York City. Mike Stobe/Getty Images/AFPBianca Andreescu, who beat Serena Williams in the US Open final to become Canada’s first Grand Slam singles champion, was honoured with a rally in her hometown on Sunday.“I am truly blessed,” the beaming 19-year-old told hundreds gathered to celebrate her achievement.ADVERTISEMENT Matteo Guidicelli had saved up for Sarah G’s ring since 2014? View comments Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next MVP Ricky Rubio says World Cup winners Spain ‘had biggest heart’ “I did not get here overnight. There has been a lot of hard work and sweat that went into it, a lot of downs, a lot of ups.”Bonnie Crombie, the mayor of Mississauga, a suburb of Toronto, presented Andreescu with a key to the city.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGreatest ever?SPORTSBecoming his own manSPORTSFormer PBA import Anthony Grundy passes away at 40Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, in the midst of campaigning for second term, was also on hand.“She is an inspiration to all Canadians old and young, but to be honest, especially an inspiration to young Canadians because she showed that young people can do anything,” Trudeau said. MOST READ Andreescu’s stunning 6-3, 7-5 victory at Flushing Meadows denied Williams a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam title.In the course of a year she has climbed from 200th in the world rankings to a career high fifth.Her rise has been another source of pride for Canadian sports fans, who saw the Toronto Raptors claim the NBA championship in June.The Raptors’ “We the North” slogan has been transformed for Andreescu to “She the North”.“I’m really glad I never gave up because I wouldn’t be standing here with everyone,” Andreescu said. “If I can do it, if Serena can do it, if Roger (Federer) can do it, if the Raptors can do it, so can you.”ADVERTISEMENT Becoming his own man Drilon apologizes to BCDA’s Dizon over false claim on designer of P50-M ‘kaldero’center_img LATEST STORIES This jewelry designer is also an architect Canadian vaping study details danger from ‘popcorn lung’ chemical Ethel Booba on SEA Games cauldron: ‘Sulit kung corrupt ang panggatong’ Duterte calls himself, Go, Cayetano ‘the brightest stars’ in PH politics DTI creates Marahuyo, a luxe Filipino fashion brand for global buyers Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:44Djokovic wins Laureus Sportsman of Year Award02:11Makabayan bloc defends protesting workers, tells Año to ‘shut up’03:07PH billiards team upbeat about gold medal chances in SEA Games01:38‘Bato’ to be ‘most effective’ CHR head? It’s for public to decide – Gascon02:07Aquino to Filipinos: Stand up vs abuses before you suffer De Lima’s ordeal01:28Ex-President Noynoy Aquino admits contracting pneumonia00:45Aquino agrees with Drilon on SEA games ‘kaldero’ spending issuelast_img read more

My partnership with Anil Kumble a marriage made in heaven: Ravichandran Ashwin

first_imgIndia’s coach and their strike bowler have 822 Test wickets between them. They are among India’s greatest match-winners and love conspiring against unsuspecting batsmen, who are beguiled by the mystery of Indian pitches. (SCORECARD)Anil Kumble finished with 619 wickets in Test cricket while Ravichandran Ashwin became the second fastest to take 200 wickets in the longest format. Since Kumble took over as coach, Ashwin has pocketed 22 wickets in six Tests, one of which was washed out after 22 overs. (Ashwin’s six-for scripts 197-run victory in India’s historic 500th Test)The numbers, phenomenal as they are, do not show a marked improvement for the 30-year-old off-spinner. He has been sensational for the last three years. What the figures do show is that Ashwin has obviously enjoyed himself in the company of his new coach.Kumble was a master in the art of deceit. He deceived batsmen and left them in two minds. Even the best were never very sure of their technique and approach against Kumble. Some of the greatest in the game felt they were never in even after spending hours at the crease. Kumble would extract bounce and spin in India, then his faster ones were a menace and his flippers were a thing of beauty. (Exclusive: Sourav Ganguly backs Ravichandran Ashwin to take 400-500 Test wickets)Ashwin, under the tutelage of India’s greatest spinner, has sharpened his skills further. His variations are mind-numbing and even though he concedes those extra runs for trying out too much too often, he has been unrelenting in his pursuit of greatness. Not surprisingly, he thinks Kumble’s appointment as coach was divine intervention at a time his career is spiking sharply.advertisement”My partnership with Kumble is a match made in heaven,” Ashwin said. “He comes down and gives me more options that I can actually execute, so that is something I am really enjoying.”Ashwin also steers his younger partner Ravindra Jadeja with a little help from Kumble. Ashwin made it clear that the channel of communication through to Jadeja opened from Kumble via him. (R Ashwin breaks Waqar Younis’ record, becomes second fastest to take 200 Test wickets)”The communication channel is pretty clear. We don’t feed a lot of information to Jaddu before a Test. Whatever Anil has to say to him, he tells me, I pass that information on to him in the field,” he said.Ashwin battled a corn on his second finger to finish with yet another 10-fer. In a worrying bit of information for India, Ashwin said if the corn did not heal in three days, it would be difficult for him to bowl in the second Test at the Eden Gardens, which starts on September 30.last_img read more

Can eat terrorist’s liver with salt and vinegar: Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte claims he is 50 times more brutal

first_imgPhilippine President Rodrigo Duterte has warned that he could be “50 times” more brutal than Muslim militants who stage beheadings and said he could even “eat” the extremists if they’re captured alive by troops.Duterte has repeatedly threatened drug suspects with death, but he raised his shock rhetoric to a new level as president when he said in a speech during the opening of a national sports tournament what he could do to terrorists who have staged beheadings and other gruesome attacks.Duterte ordered troops to kill fleeing Muslim militants behind a foiled attack in the central resort province of Bohol and not bring them to him alive, calling the extremists “animals.””If you want me to be an animal, I’m also used to that. We’re just the same,” Duterte said. “I can dish out, go down what you can 50 times over.”The foul-mouthed president said that if a terrorist was presented to him when he’s in a foul mood, “give me salt and vinegar and I’ll eat his liver.”The crowd broke into laughter, but Duterte cut in, “It’s true, if you make me angry.”Duterte, a longtime city mayor who built an image as a deadly crime-buster, won the presidency in May last year on a promise to battle illegal drugs, corruption and terrorism. Thousands have died under his anti-drug crackdown, which has alarmed Western governments and human rights groups.He has warned he may place the southern Philippines, scene of a decades-long Muslim separatist rebellion, under martial rule if terrorism threats spin out of control.advertisementHe recently offered a reward for information leading to the capture of Abu Sayyaf and other militants behind a foiled attack in the central province of Bohol. Eight militants, three soldiers, a policeman and two villagers have died in clashes in Bohol, which lies far from the southern jungle bases of the militants.ALSO READ: The man who abused Obama: All you need to know about Philippine President Duterte, known as The PunisherPhilippine President Rodrigo Duterte wins TIME 100 Reader pollDuterte orders military to occupy, fortify all Philippine-held islands in South China Sealast_img read more

BCCI begins search for new coach for India women cricket team

first_imgThe Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Friday invited fresh applications for the post of the head coach of the senior national women’s team.The apex body’s invitation comes after interim coach Ramesh Powar’s contract expires on November 30. The former India off-spinner was handed the reigns of the women’s team in July following the controversial exit of former Baroda all-rounder Tushar Arothe.The BCCI has set December 14 as the deadline for sending in applications while the interview for the role has been fixed for December 20 at the cricket body’s headquarters in Mumbai.”The appointment of Head Coach – Team India (Senior Women) will be a full-time engagement. The contract term is for 2 years with an age limit of 60 years (whichever is earlier),” a BCCI statement read.Arothe was forced to resign in the wake of differences with senior players who were not happy with the coaching methods.Powar’s contract expiry has coincided with the World T20 fiasco that saw the interim coach have a fallout with women’s ODI team captain and batting great, Mithali Raj.Mithali accused Powar of discrimination and bias in a letter addressed to the BCCI after she was controversially dropped from the playing XI for India’s World T20 semi-final against England in the Caribbean.The 35-year-old had missed the final round-robin game against Australia due to a knee injury but she was declared fit on the eve of the crunch semi-final. Mithali’s absence was felt as Harmanpreet Kaur’s team suffered a collapse and lost to England by eight wickets, thereby crashing out of the high-profile tournament.Mithali had slammed two match-winning half-centuries at the World T20 but Harmanpreet said she didn’t regret dropping the prolific run-scorer for the semi-final. The India skipper was then slammed by Mithali’s manager Annisha Gupta as she went on to call Harmanpreet a “manipulative, lying, cheat”.Powar hit back at Mithali’s allegation, saying the senior campaigner had been blackmailing and pressurising Team India coaches. The former off-spinner added that he was disappointed with the senior player’s attitude and added that for Mithali, she came first before the team.advertisement’There is little chance Powar will be brought back’In the wake of the much-publicised controversy, a top BCCI official has told the Press Trust of India that Powar might not be considered for the role even if he reapplies for the job.”His contract is coming to an end today and there is little chance that he will be brought back,” the BCCI source was quoted as saying.India women’s team will take on New Zealand in their next international assignment in January before which the BCCI is expected to appoint the new head coach.Also Read | My patriotism doubted, darkest day of my life: Mithali responds to Powar’s allegationsAlso see:last_img read more


first_imgOpportunities Unlimited and Siouxland Dairy Queens are teaming up to provide free bicycle helmets to every second grader in Sioux City.The first school to receive the helmets Tuesday were students at Irving Elementary.A loud cheer went up when the students were told what they were about to receive:Audio Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.OC………….CHEERING SFX ;11Susan Vondrak of Opportunities Unlimited says the helmet program caps off safety lessons taught to the second graders:Audio Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.OC…to the kids. :12Vondrak says brain injury prevention is an important part of the mission of Opportunities Unlimited:Audio Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.OC……..we will be happy. :09Siouxland Dairy Queens provided a $12,500 grant to provide the helmets for the second graders.last_img read more

Festival de films performance multimédia sur le naufrage du Titanic

first_imgUn festival de films organisé par le Festival du film de l’Atlantique et une performance multimédia présentée à l’intérieur et à l’extérieur du Musée maritime de l’Atlantique offriront au public différents points de vue sur le naufrage du Titanic. « Il y a de nombreuses façons d’apprendre au sujet du Titanic, a dit David Wilson, ministre des Communautés, de la Culture et du Patrimoine. Le fait d’assister au festival de films et à la performance multimédia, qui sont des événements publics, peut nous aider à mieux comprendre le contexte de la tragédie. » Le festival de films sur le Titanic, intitulé « A Night to Remember », est organisé en partenariat avec Titanic 100, la Galerie d’art de l’Université Dalhousie et les Archives de la Nouvelle-Écosse. Un film sera présenté chaque soir du 9 au 13 avril, y compris des films variés tels que In Nacht und Eis, un film allemand tourné en 1912 et A Night to Remember, un film du Royaume-Uni tourné en 1958. Les films seront présentés à la Galerie d’art de l’Université Dalhousie, aux Archives de la Nouvelle-Écosse et aux cinémas Empire Theatres de Park Lane. Dans le cadre du festival, Ron Foley MacDonald, programmeur principal du Festival du film de l’Atlantique, animera une conférence intitulée « Lecture: The Titanic on Screen », avec les conférenciers invités Stephen Cooke et John Boileau. La conférence aura lieu le 12 avril à 18 h 30 aux Archives de la Nouvelle-Écosse. Le public peut assister gratuitement au festival, mais un don de cinq dollars est suggéré pour les films présentés les 11 et 12 avril. Les dons seront versés au programme ViewFinders, un programme de films à l’intention des jeunes, des familles, des écoles, des cinéastes et des cinéphiles. « Le naufrage du Titanic en 1912 est devenu l’un des premiers moments emblématiques de l’histoire du film, a dit Gregor Ash, directeur général du Festival du film de l’Atlantique. Le Festival du film de l’Atlantique est fier d’avoir cette occasion de faire partenariat avec Titanic 100, la Galerie d’art de l’Université Dalhousie et les Archives de la Nouvelle-Écosse pour présenter une rétrospective du Titanic sur le grand écran. » Une performance multimédia intitulée « The Depths of Sorrow », présentée en partenariat avec Titanic 100, racontera l’histoire tragique du voyage inaugural du Titanic. Deux performances auront lieu à 20 h et à 21 h le 9 avril, au Musée maritime de l’Atlantique. La projection à grande échelle, le traitement vidéo et des éléments d’animation, de musique, de son et de danse transmettront aux spectateurs les émotions liées à la tragédie. Il s’agit d’un projet élaboré par Lukas Pearse, compositeur audio visuel, Susan Tooke, artiste visuelle et animatrice, et Veronique MacKenzie, danseuse. Les performances sont gratuites et peuvent être vues dans la Galerie des petites embarcations du musée, ainsi que de l’extérieur, dans les grandes fenêtres qui font face au front de mer. « Il s’agit d’une interprétation unique du voyage du Titanic, présentée selon les expériences d’un passager fictif, a dit Mme MacKenzie. Grâce au soutien de Titanic 100, de Halifax Dance et du Musée maritime de l’Atlantique, cette œuvre est une continuation de notre performance présentée en collaboration lors du festival d’arts Nocturne en 2011. » Veuillez noter que les événements se dérouleront en anglais. Des renseignements sur ces événements et sur d’autres activités liées au Titanic se trouvent au (en anglais seulement). Pour accéder à d’autres ressources sur le Titanic, y compris des images à haute résolution et un lien à l’exposition virtuelle des Archives de la Nouvelle-Écosse, consultez le (en anglais seulement).last_img read more

Man beaten up for not chanting Jai Shri Ram

first_imgDarjeeling: A man has been arrested here for allegedly assaulting a person for not chanting “Jai Shri Ram.”The incident occurred in Toofangunj in the Cooch Behar district. On May 29, in Dhalpal, a daily wage worker Asgar Ali was roughed up by a group for not chanting “Jai Shri Ram.” The persons who roughed him up were allegedly led by Apasi Mia. They beat him up and made him do squats. The whole incident was video-recorded and uploaded on social media. Also Read – Centuries-old Durga Pujas continue to be hit among revellersAn FIR was lodged and Mia was arrested on Thursday night. He was produced at the Toofangunj Additional Judicial Magistrate Court on Friday and was remanded to three days of police custody. Abdul Jalil Ahmed, TMC leader stated: “This culture has been imported to Bengal by the BJP. We vehemently condemn this. Stringent action is needed.” “Its internal rivalry between rival factions of the TMC.”Jai Shri Ram” has been used to taint BJP’s image,” stated BJP leader Malati Rava Rai.last_img read more

RCMP video brings home reality in a visceral way former TRC chairman

first_imgOTTAWA — Former Truth and Reconciliation commissioner Murray Sinclair says a video of a Mountie interrogating a young Indigenous woman disclosing sexual abuse in B.C. foster care brings home in a “visceral way” a reality that Canadians should be shocked by and one that they need to see.The 2012 video was released publicly by APTN this week as a result of a court proceeding and has prompted political reaction, including from the federal public safety minister, who called its contents “absolutely abhorrent.”Sinclair tells The Canadian Press in an interview that the video should cause Canadians to be more supportive of those who say police officers require more oversight.He says Canadians have been told over many years that this type of treatment happens but he is not sure that they really accept it.Policing is expected to be a key theme in the upcoming report by a federal commission on missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls in Canada.Sinclair says the Truth and Reconciliation Commission heard that the vast majority of women sexually victimized in residential schools felt they were not believed when they spoke to police.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

AltaGas shares fall after CEO David Harris resigns abruptly due to complaint

first_imgCALGARY – Shares in AltaGas Ltd. fell Wednesday after it announced president and CEO David Harris had resigned suddenly following an unspecified complaint.“The board of directors of AltaGas and Mr. Harris have mutually agreed to his resignation due to a complaint under review by the board,” the company said in a news release.“This complaint is not related to AltaGas’ strategy, operations or financial reporting.”The Calgary-based company refused to provide more information. It didn’t say who had made the complaint.AltaGas’s stock fell by as much as 71 cents or 2.6 per cent to $26.37 on the Toronto Stock Exchange but recovered to $26.60 by mid afternoon.“We view this unexpected departure of David Harris negatively as the company is going through a transformation period with the integration of WGL and (it) provides uncertainty to AltaGas shareholders over long-term leadership,” wrote Ian Gillies, an analyst for GMP FirstEnergy, in a note to investors.The company’s $6-billion deal to buy Washington, D.C.-based energy utility company WGL Holdings, Inc., was announced in January 2017 but didn’t close until early this month after the last needed regulatory approvals were received.Including assumed debt, AltaGas says the acquisition value is about $9 billion.Last month, AltaGas announced an agreement to sell 35 per cent of its interest in B.C. hydroelectric operations for $922 million, thus achieving about half of its target of $2 billion in asset sales needed to fund its acquisition of WGL.The deal was shepherded by Harris, who has been with Calgary-based AltaGas since 2010 and its top executive since April 2016. He was 55 years old as of the end of 2017.In Wednesday’s news release, Harris is quoted as saying his time at the company has been a “privilege.”“I leave AltaGas feeling proud of the team’s accomplishments and I look forward to seeing their continued success,” he said.The role of chief executive officer will be shared on an interim basis by AltaGas founder David Cornhill, who will also remain chairman of the board, and Phillip Knoll, an industry veteran and director of AltaGas.Cornhill founded AltaGas in 1994 and was its CEO until April 2016.Follow @HealingSlowly on Twitter.Companies in this story: (TSX:ALA)last_img read more

No suitors emerge for pipeline project stake as Kinder Morgan deadline looms

first_imgCALGARY, A.B. –  With just over a week remaining until the May 31 deadline set for abandoning its Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, no suitors have publicly emerged to step into builder Kinder Morgan Canada Ltd.’s shoes.Analysts and observers say they remain perplexed by Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s comment last week that “plenty of investors would be interested in taking on this project,” after the federal government said it would offer an “indemnity” or insurance to guarantee it is built.Kinder Morgan said Monday it has nothing to add to last week’s statement from CEO Steve Kean in which he repeated the May 31 deadline and said that discussions are ongoing but “we are not yet in alignment.” It’s difficult to guess who might take Kinder Morgan’s place without knowing what guarantees or deals are being offered by the federal government and possibly the province of Alberta, said Samir Kayande, a director with RS Energy Group in Calgary.He pointed out that the richer the deal, the longer the list of potential replacements for Kinder Morgan, which could include pension or private equity funds.“There is still time to get something done around a guarantee of some sort that will satisfy Kinder Morgan,” he said in an interview on Monday.“It really depends on the scope of the federal and provincial guarantees that are going to be offered. The governments are in kind of a tough spot here because if anyone does step in, it’s going to take them months or longer, potentially, to ramp up the whole effort.”The federal government has said its indemnity and suggestion of the entry of a third party gives it an advantage as it negotiates with Kinder Morgan but Dennis McConaghy, a former TransCanada Corp. executive and industry analyst, said he disagrees.He said it would be a “political disaster” for both Morneau and Alberta Premier Rachel Notley if the pipeline in-service date is delayed beyond 2020 because both governments have staked their reputations on it being built. “I’ve been very skeptical about the advent of third parties,” said McConaghy. “This deal has to get done with Kinder if the focus is to get the pipeline in service by 2020.“This project is essentially an expansion and a debottlenecking of an existing pipeline so it’s very difficult to build the project without selling the original Trans Mountain asset, which is of course a very complicated prospect.”He said the cost and delays involved in bringing in a third party makes it clear that the federal government’s best bet is to reach an agreement with Kinder Morgan.Meanwhile, finance officials had no new details to report in an email received Monday.center_img Trans Mountain has been operating since the 1950s, carrying as much as 300,000 barrels a day of oil and refined fuels from Edmonton to the Vancouver area, where it connects with a line carrying crude to refineries in Washington state.The planned tripling to 890,000 barrels a day could give Canada access to alternative markets as booming production from U.S. shale plays reduces Canada’s biggest customer’s need to import northern oil.B.C. is fighting the pipeline in the federal Court of Appeal and in B.C. Supreme Court. It has also referred to the B.C. Court of Appeal its own proposed legislation to cap oil shipments across the province.Enbridge Inc., North America’s biggest crude pipelines operator, has denied it is negotiating to take over the Trans Mountain expansion project. Rival pipeline company TransCanada Corp. didn’t respond to a request for comment on Monday.Oilsands producer Cenovus Energy Inc., a company hit hard by oil price discounts in the first quarter and a committed shipper on the project, refused comment when asked if it is interested in buying a stake in the project.Kinder Morgan says it has already spent $1.1 billion of estimated $7.4 billion price of the project.(THE CANADIAN PRESS)last_img read more

Peladeau may be interested in restarting Teo Taxi if industry rules changed

MONTREAL — The head of media conglomerate Quebecor Inc. has confirmed his personal financial interest in restarting insolvent electric transportation firm Teo Taxi, provided that certain rules about the industry are changed.Pierre Karl Peladeau tweeted his interest Tuesday, saying that as one of the service’s original customers, he has always believed in electric mobility and its potential for Quebec.However, he later warned that rules surrounding pricing should change, pointing to how Uber doesn’t operate according to the same rules as taxi companies.Some 400 drivers have been unemployed since Teo Tax ended its service because the company was not profitable and the shareholders didn’t want to inject new funds.Teo Taxi is part of Taxelco, which also owns Teo Techno as well as Taxi Diamond and Taxi Hochelaga. One of the founders, Alexandre Taillefer, says he hopes the company can be relaunched.According to a Friday court filing by the National Bank, one of the creditors, the debts of Taxelco and Teo Taxi are nearly $25 million, including almost $10.2 million tied to the bank.The Canadian Press read more

Senegal and Morocco Reaffirm Support for African Security Uphold Bilateral Ties

Rabat- Delegations from the two countries met at the 11th African Union summit on reforms in Addis Ababa. Saad Eddine El Othmani, Morocco’s head of government who led the Moroccan delegation at the summit, met with Mbagnick Ndiaye, Senegal’s minister of African integration.Discussions between the two delegations centered on finding ways to commit more African countries to the 3S initiative, a 2016-launched platform which Senegal and Morocco pioneered from the outset.Standing for “Sustainability, Stability, and Security” in Africa, 3S aims to help the AU achieve its most urgent goals, especially food security and irregular migration, according to Dakar and Rabat. As it expects to collect funds and other economic resources from both African governments and international partners, the 3S initiative seeks to create over 2 million jobs on the African continent.Within the context of stemming irregular migration among the continent’s youth—especially from rural areas— Dakar and Rabat have also pledged for more coordinated action to curb desertification.The move would entail restoring about 10 million hectares of cultivable land. The two countries hope that more job prospects and sufficient food will markedly decrease the urge among Africa’s youth to leave the continent.Senegal and Morocco’s push for an African platform to ensure security, stability, and sustainability is part of the AU’s broader reforms initiative that has been calling for structural reforms for nearly two years.Since the launch of the reform process in January 2017, Paul Kagame, the AU’s chair, has repeatedly noted the continent’s need for more financial autonomy.Achieving financial autonomy, African representatives have maintained, will allow for greater ownership of African policies on critical issues like security, migration, corruption, stability, and accountability of African governments vis-à-vis their own people rather than foreign aid donors.Senegal is Morocco’s foremost ally in sub-Saharan Africa. Dakarspearheaded Rabat’s return to the AU in January 2017 and has been a vocally favorable voice for Morocco’s aspirations to join the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).During their meeting in Addis Ababa, El Othmani and Ndiaye also upheld their nations’ historical and cultural ties. They insisted on greater bilateral relations and economic integration. read more

Memorial service planned for Prof Alex Amprimoz

Alex AmprimozA memorial service will be held Monday to honour the life of Prof. Alex Amprimoz.Amprimoz, a professor in the Department of Modern Languages, Literatures and Cultures, died Oct. 12. He was 64. Amprimoz had taught at Brock since 1985.The service happens from noon to 1 p.m. in the Sankey Chamber. A light lunch will be provided afterward.Read ‘Modern languages professor remembered’ in the Brock News.

Police release person of interest in Calgary missing person case

Calgary Police have released a man they took into custody as they continue to search for five-year-old Nathan O’Brien and his grandparents.Police questioned 55-year-old Douglas Garland earlier and say, despite his release, he remains a person of interest. Reports also say Garland has a link to the Liknes family: his sister is in a common-law relationship with a member of the family.There are also reports he once operated an illegal drug lab on a property that’s now being searched by police. It’s a field and body of water near Airdrie, Alberta. Investigators were joined by a canine team and officers in a boat while a helicopter hovered overhead.The little boy and his grandparents, Alvin and Kathy Liknes, have now been missing a week. Police have confirmed a violent incident occurred in the home. read more

UN development official calls for expanding credit ratings in Africa to boost

“The investment potential in Africa is huge,” the Associate Administrator of the UN Development Programme (UNDP), Zephirin Diabre, told a conference in New York on capital flows to Africa, organized by the Corporate Council on Africa (CCA). “Through our credit rating initiative, we intend to support countries in their efforts to mobilize resources from private capital markets.” Mr. Diabre said better access to financing should help African countries tackle a broad range of poverty alleviation issues and provide an incentive to achieve the Millennium Development Goals set by the UN Summit of 2000, which aim among other things to halve extreme poverty and hunger by 2015. Over the past year several African countries received ratings under UNDP’s credit rating initiative with Standard and Poor’s. In September, Ghana became the first country to benefit from the initiative and was assigned a ‘B+’ long-term foreign currency sovereign credit rating. In November, Cameroon received a ‘B’ long-term and ‘B’ short-term sovereign credit ratings and, in December, Benin was assigned a ‘B+’ long-term and ‘B’ long-term sovereign credit ratings. More sub-Saharan African countries, including Burkina Faso, Kenya, Madagascar, Mali and Mozambique, are expected to receive ratings in 2004. The CCA represents more than 200 companies dedicated to strengthening commercial ties between the United States and Africa. Mr. Diabre noted that helping countries define and implement policies that can create an enabling environment for investment is a top priority for UNDP as part of its support for the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD). The conference seeks to demonstrate that African markets can be profitable, highlighting key viable financing opportunities and providing a platform for financiers to meet sponsors of projects in Africa. Attendees include representatives from major United States financial institutions, business, and government and African financial institutions and companies. The conference programme is set to explore best practices for investing and analyze current trends in accessing liquidity through African capital markets. Participants will review effective mechanisms for public and private debt flows and examine case studies of high yield investments. read more

Students to stay home farmworkers to march for Cesar Chavez

LOS ANGELES, Calif. – California and several other states will honour Cesar Chavez by closing schools and state offices Friday, the 90th anniversary of the birth of a man who went from a grape and cotton picker to an enduring hero for labourers, Latinos and justice seekers of all kinds.Farmworkers in four states also plan to march Saturday and Sunday in honour of Chavez, who died in 1993, and in protest of President Donald Trump’s immigration policies.Here’s a look at Chavez, his legend and his legacy:___FROM FARMWORKER TO ORGANIZERChavez was born near Yuma, Arizona, on March 31, 1927, and grew up in a Mexican-American family that travelled around California picking lettuce, grapes, cotton and other seasonal crops.He left school in seventh grade to work full time in the fields and later turned to organizing for farmworkers’ rights.In 1962, Chavez and Dolores Huerta co-founded the National Farm Workers Association, which became the United Farm Workers of America.Farmworkers were crucial to agribusiness in California, which grows nearly half the nation’s fruits, nuts and vegetables, but pay was poor and conditions often miserable.There were no toilets in the fields for workers, who weeded fields with short-handled hoes that forced them to bend over for hours at a time.Bosses frequently ignored the health and wages of their workers, many of whom were Spanish-speakers in the country temporarily or illegally and had little political or legal clout to prevent abuses.___GRAPES AND GRIEVANCESThere had been protests and small strikes, but the UFW, with Chavez as its figurehead, helped organize the farmworkers on a large scale and turn their cause into a movement.The UFW staged nonviolent strikes, boycotts and protests that garnered immense publicity and had a significant effect in California.A five-year strike that began in 1965 targeted grape growers in the central California town of Delano. Workers demanded pay equal to the federal minimum wage. The fight was marked by a nationwide consumer boycott of non-union grapes, a 350-mile march by grape pickers to the state capitol and a 25-day fast by Chavez.In the end, the union reached agreements with growers that covered thousands of workers.In 1970, nearly 10,000 workers went on strike after lettuce growers and other farmers in the Salinas Valley signed deals with the Teamsters that granted that union — instead of the UFW — the right to organize agricultural workers. It was the largest farmworker strike in U.S. history.What followed was a boycott that doubled the price of lettuce and a brutal battle with the Teamsters with protests, mass arrests and violence. UFW picketers were beaten and shot, one was killed and a UFW field office was firebombed.Eventually, the Teamsters signed a deal with the UFW and bowed out of field organizing.In 1975, the UFW launched a 110-mile march from San Francisco to a winery in Modesto, with more than 15,000 people eventually taking part. A few months later, Gov. Jerry Brown signed a law creating the California Agricultural Labor Relations Board to oversee collective bargaining for farmworkers.___‘SI SE PUEDE’The union Chavez co-founded now represents only a fraction of the estimated 450,000 people who work in California fields during harvest seasons.However, he remains an icon of the worker protest movement. His image adorns murals, and his name has been given to streets in Los Angeles; Austin, Texas; and other cities.His signature protest chant, “Si se puede,” translated as “Yes we can!” became a rallying cry at demonstrations for various causes and even was used during Barack Obama’s presidential campaign.In 2000, California became the first state to establish a day commemorating the labour leader, held on his birthday. Holidays or other commemorations have been enacted in Arizona, Colorado, Illinois, Michigan, New Mexico, Texas, Utah, Wisconsin and Rhode Island.In 2014, Obama proclaimed March 31 national Cesar Chavez Day, urging Americans to honour Chavez’s legacy. However, it is not a U.S. holiday and federal offices remain open.___‘WE FEED YOU’About half the people hired to farm crops in the United States aren’t legally authorized to work here, and a large majority of them were born in Mexico, according to federal statistics.Trump’s pledge to deport millions of people living in the U.S. illegally, build a wall on the Mexican border and withhold funds from “sanctuary cities” that don’t co-operate with federal immigration authorities has struck a chord with this community.The UFW and other unions have pledged to bring out thousands of people over the weekend in 11 mostly rural communities in California, Texas, Oregon and Washington state.“Field labourers whose toil supplies fresh fruits and vegetables to America and much of the world will be marching against the Trump immigration agenda carrying ‘We feed you’ banners and signs,” a UFW press statement said. FILE – In this July 2, 1974, file photo, United Farm Workers leader Cesar Chavez, right, marches in a picket line with Archer Cole, an official of the New Jersey AFL-CIO in Hopelawn, N.J., against Pathmark supermarket, urging shoppers to boycott non-union picked lettuce. California and several other states will honor Chavez by closing schools and state offices Friday, March 31, 2017, the 90th anniversary of the birth of a man who went from a grape and cotton picker to an enduring hero for laborers, Latinos and justice seekers of all kinds. Farmworkers in four states plan to march Saturday and Sunday in honor of Chavez, who died in 1993, and in protest of President Donald Trump’s immigration policies. (AP Photo, File) by The Associated Press Posted Mar 31, 2017 12:15 pm MDT Last Updated Mar 31, 2017 at 1:00 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Students to stay home, farmworkers to march for Cesar Chavez read more

UN reports widespread human rights abuses in Libya where complete impunity prevails

“Despite the human rights situation in Libya, the country only sporadically makes the headlines. A multitude of actors – both State and non-State – are accused of very serious violations and abuses that may, in many cases, amount to war crimes,” UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein said in a press release.The violations and abuses documented by the report from the High Commissioner’s Office (OHCHR) relate to unlawful killings, including executions of people taken captive, detained, abducted or perceived to be voicing dissent; indiscriminate attacks on highly populated residential areas; torture and ill-treatment; arbitrary detention; abductions and disappearances; and gender-based violence and discrimination against women.Child Recruitment by ISIL and Attacks Targeting Women Human rights defenders and journalists, migrants, and children are among the targets of those acts. For instance, cases of forced recruitment and use of children in hostilities by groups pledging allegiance to Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL/Da’esh, are also documented.There has been a series of attacks by armed groups against women activists since 2014. The assassination of well-known activists, such as Salwa Bugaighis, Fareeha Al-Berkawi and Intissar Al-Hasaeri, and the threats, “harassment and assaults targeting many others appear designed to send a broader message that women should not be vocal in the public sphere,” notes the report.“One of the most striking elements of this report lies in the complete impunity which continues to prevail in Libya and the systemic failures of the justice system,” Mr. Zeid said, underscoring the lack of means and capacity in the justice system to conduct prompt, independent and credible investigations or to prosecute those responsible for violations or abuses.Since 2014, judges and prosecutors have been subject to killings, court bombings, assaults and abductions, he noted. As a result, courts in Derna, Sirte and Benghazi ceased activities in 2014, with limited re-activation of courts in parts of Benghazi in 2015, and victims have had little recourse to seek protection or to an effective remedy. “This impunity is facilitating further abuses,” he said. “In the absence of proper protection, the judiciary cannot deliver justice,” says the report, which notes that the system for providing security is “inadequate and flawed,” as thousands of members of armed groups have been integrated into the Judicial Police with limited vetting.Recommendations The report recommends urgent action to stop the proliferation of armed groups through disarmament, demobilization and reintegration, and a vetting programme to remove and prevent the recruitment of individuals responsible for human rights violations or abuses. The report further calls upon the international community to ensure that the International Criminal Court (ICC), which has jurisdiction in Libya, has the necessary resources to carry out its investigations and prosecutions.Suggesting priority actions, it calls for addressing the security threats to administration of justice, reforming the Judicial Police, creating a robust victim and witness protection programme, establishing a specialized judicial structure within the Libyan courts to focus on crimes under international law, and organizing a high-level meeting to bring together Libyans actors and international partners to discuss initiatives to increase accountability in Libya. read more

MMA star Georges StPierre announces his retirement

Canada’s Georges St-Pierre is retiring from mixed martial arts.The 37-year-old from St-Isidore, Que., made the announcement on Thursday at the Bell Centre.St-Pierre, a two-division champion, leaves with a record of 26-2-0 and a 13-fight winning streak. He holds the record for most 170-pound title defences at nine.“It takes a lot of discipline to become and stay champion. It also takes a lot of discipline to stop while still feeling that you’re in the best physical and mental shape of your life, but I’ve always planned to leave the sport when I’m at the top and in good health,” St-Pierre said in a statement.“I want to thank my family, my fans, my coaches, trainers and training partners, my sponsors and my agents for their … support during all these years. I will forever be grateful for the work of (former UFC bosses) Lorenzo and Frank Fertitta, as well as (UFC president) Dana White and all UFC employees for giving me the opportunity to showcase my skills before the world, from UFC 46 to UFC 217.“I also want to thank each of my opponents. All of them are incredible athletes who brought out the best in me. I retire from competition with great pride at having had a positive impact on my sport. I intend to keep training and practising martial arts for as long as I live and I look forward to watching the new generation of champions carry our sport into the future.”St-Pierre debuted on the big stage with a unanimous decision win over Karo Parisyan at UFC 46 in 2004. He won his first welterweight championship via knockout over Matt Hughes at UFC 65 in 2006.After losing the title to Matt Serra, he later recaptured the belt via TKO in their rematch at UFC 83 in Montreal.While he has fought just once since stepping away from the sport in late 2013 after nine straight welterweight title defences, St-Pierre made headlines in November 2017 when he dethroned middleweight champion Michael (The Count) Bisping in his comeback bout at UFC 217.St-Pierre gave up the 185-pound crown a month later, citing health issues (ulcerative colitis). Despite that limited activity, he still stands eighth in the UFC’s pound-for-pound rankings.“Georges has cemented his legacy as one of the pound-for-pound greatest fighters ever,” White said. “He beat all the top guys during his welterweight title reign and even went up a weight class to win the middleweight championship. He spent years as one of the biggest names in MMA and remains one of the best ambassadors for the sport. He put Canada on the MMA map.”In 2011, St-Pierre set the largest UFC gate outside the U.S. at US$12.075 million when he headlined UFC 129 at the Rogers Centre in Toronto. The event had the second largest attendance in UFC history with 55,724 fans.St-Pierre won Sports Illustrated fighter of the year in 2009. He was nominated for best fighter at the ESPY Awards in 2008, 2010, 2011 and 2018. BROWSE georges st-pierre read more

Smokers should switch from cigarettes to vaping says worlds biggest tobacco firm

Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. The world’s biggest tobacco company is encouraging smokers to give up cigarettes and switch to vaping in a multi-million pound campaign.The £2 million campaign, called Hold My Light, is aimed at persuading the UK’s 7.4 million smokers to go “smoke free” with the help of family and friends.Smokers are encouraged to give up the habit for a minimum of a month based on Public Health England research that found smokers who gave up for 28 days were five times more likely to stop smoking completely.The initiative has been launched by Philip Morris Limited, makers of Marlboro, as part of a new strategy to switch smokers to their vaping products.–– ADVERTISEMENT ––They cite Public Health England research, which suggests vaping is 95 per cent safer than smoking cigarettes.Peter Nixon, managing director of Philip Morris Limited, said: “This campaign breaks new ground which is an important next step in our company going smoke-free and ultimately stop selling cigarettes.“There are more options than ever before for smokers to give up cigarettes but often they don’t realise that alternatives, like ecigarettes and heated tobacco are a better choice than continuing to smoke. Our research has shown that smokers want personal support from friends and family if they are to give up cigarettes – and that is what Hold My Light is designed to offer.” Hold My Light is based on similar behavioural science initiatives that have created positive societal change and is aimed at the 60 per cent of smokers that say they want to quit.The campaign features a website, video and major £2m advertising campaign across digital and print media aimed at both smokers and their potential supporters.The website,, suggests the kind of pledges that supporters might offer – from looking after a pet to cooking dinner every night in a bid to help loved ones give up smoking.It is the first time a tobacco company has launched a smoke-free campaign directly aimed at encouraging UK smokers to give up cigarettes.Former health minister Simon Burns MP supported the move, saying: “I think it’s a good initiative. Anything that helps people switch from cigarettes to a less dangerous product can only be a good thing.”In January, Philip Morris announced that it was “building its futureon smoke-free products that are a much better consumer choice than continuing to smoke cigarettes.”It insists its smoke-free products meet rigorous regulatory requirements although concerns have been raised over the safety of vaping. Since ecigarettes have only been on sale in the UK since 2007, long-term studies do not yet exist.A 2014 study in the New England Journal of Medicine found that “electronic cigarettes may function as a ‘gateway drug’ that can prime the brain to be more receptive to harder drugs”.A study published in Environmental Science and Technology in July 2016 identified harmful emissions in the vapour, including possible carcinogens and irritants, though at a much lower level than in conventional cigarettes.Each year, smoking causes around 46,000 deaths from cancer and 28,000 from respiratory disease in the UK, plus an estimated 20,000 deaths from cardiovascular disease.The Royal College of Physicians has reviewed the available evidence and advises GPs to promote e-cigarettes “as widely as possible as a substitute for smoking”. read more