LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Facebook Login/Register With: Advertisement It might be one of Toronto’s most idiosyncratic spots, the stretch of road where the crumbling artery into the city’s downtown core runs alongside the National Ballet of Canada headquarters. In a window overlooking the Gardiner Expressway, the company’s three most senior ballerinas are quick with suggestions on how to pose. Time for a Globe and Mail photo shoot is scarce, an occupational norm in the ballet world. Sonia Rodriguez is in rehearsal for the Canadian premiere of John Neumeier’s A Streetcar Named Desire, which opens Saturday night and in which she’ll be dancing the canonical role of Blanche DuBois. Greta Hodgkinson and Xiao Nan Yu are both preparing repertoire for the company’s annual gala on June 6 – Hodgkinson will be performing in Jiri Kylian’s Nuages and Yu in a premiere by choreographic associate Robert Binet.When the photographer is enthusiastic about what Yu has done with her arms, the statuesque ballerina instructs the others with playful high-handedness, “Do you see what I’m doing!?” As Rodriguez balances inside the window ledge, Hodgkinson keeps reminding her to be careful about slipping. There’s a lot of laughter, wryness and warmth; after all, these women have been working together for the better part of their lives. It’s Yu’s 20th anniversary with the company, Hodgkinson’s 25th and Rodriguez’s 27th. All three have been in the company since they were teenagers.There is a popular misconception that dancers, like athletes, peak in their twenties and retire soon after that. The averages reflect this – a 2004 study from the Columbia University Teachers College stated that the average age for American dancers to retire was 34. Advertisement Advertisement Twitter
TORONTO — The lengthy battle by Bre-X investors to recover billions in Canada’s largest mining fraud appears to be over in what one of the original plaintiff lawyers in the case called a “sad day” for accountability in Canada.Under a settlement approved Thursday by the Alberta Court of Queens Bench, the remaining class-action suits were dismissed against the main defendants in the case, the estate of Bre-X’s late founder and CEO, David Walsh, and chief geologist John Felderhof.The Calgary court made the ruling at the request of bankruptcy trustee Deloitte and Touche, which said there was no realistic prospect of realizing any significant recovery through the litigation and that the costs of proceeding were prohibitive.As a result, all parties agreed to a payment of $5.2-million to be divided among investors who apply for a settlement.Courts in Ontario and the Texas had earlier agreed to the settlement. The money will be divided between plaintiffs in the Ontario and Texas class actions on the basis of 67% to the Ontario class and 33 per cent to the Texas class, Deloitte said in an emailed statement.Bre-X became known as the largest mining fraud in Canadian history back in 1997 when its claim of a major gold discovery in Indonesia proved to be a fake.Investors around the world lost an estimated $3-billion in the resulting collapse of the company’s share price.Lawyer Clint Docken of Docken Klym, a law firm that represented a number of individual investors and originally led the case in Alberta, wasn’t happy with the outcome but agreed little more could be done.“Unfortunately, things have languished and languished to the extent that recovery possibilities aren’t promising,” said Docken, who was in the Calgary court Thursday.“It’s a sad day. . . . We have arguably Canada’s largest (ever) fraud and no accountability. There’s no criminal accountability, there’s no regulatory accountability and (now) there doesn’t appear to be any civil accountability.”Docken said there remain a few plaintiffs in Ontario who were not part of the settlement, but said he didn’t know the status of those cases.Deloitte and Touche was appointed as trustee in bankruptcy of Bre-X Minerals Ltd. by the Alberta court in November 1997 after the company was hit with several multibillion-dollar shareholder lawsuits.The trustee sought to recover insider trading profits from several of Bre-X’s former executives in Ontario and an action was pursued in Alberta against Bre-X’s sister company, Bresea Resources Inc.Cases was also pursued in the Cayman Islands, the Bahamas and Philippines and efforts were undertaken to recoup money that had been deposited in a Channel Island Trust.But in the end, the action from 1998 through to 2011 recovered only $5-million from the Channel Island Trust and a further $2-million in the settlement of the action against Bresea.With court approval, the funds were added to the cash on hand and used to fund ongoing recovery efforts. However, Deloitte said that by 2011 it had become apparent no further recoveries were possible.Part of the reason was that funds frozen under various injunctions had been spent under the terms of those orders that permitted payment of the defendants’ living expenses and legal costs, Deloitte said at the time.As well, one of the principal targets of the litigation, Bre-X’s geologist, John Felderhof, was acquitted after a lengthy Ontario Securities Commission trial.The Canadian Press
Commander Sri Lankan Navy Vice Admiral RC Wijegunaratne called on Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa in Rawalpindi on Thursday, Radio Pakistan reported.Matters relating to regional security and professional interest were discussed. The visiting dignitary acknowledged sacrifices and achievements of Pakistan Army in its fight against terrorism.He also recognized efforts of Pakistan Army for bringing peace and stability to the region. (Colombo Gazette)
by Raphael Satter, The Associated Press Posted Jun 22, 2016 2:16 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email How the UK could remain in the EU even if it votes to leave LONDON – If Britain votes to leave the EU on Thursday, it’ll be final. Irreversible. Irrevocable. No appeals. No second chances.“Out is out,” European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker told reporters Wednesday.“You can’t jump out of the airplane and then clamber back into the cockpit,” is how British Prime Minister David Cameron put it in a radio interview a few hours earlier.But what if a vote to leave weren’t really that final or dramatic? Some experts are wondering whether Britain can ever really free itself from the European Union — even if voters strongly endorse hitting the eject button. Others say it’s not out of the question that Brits could find themselves going back to the ballot box in a few years’ time if buyer’s remorse sets in.“The EU is a bit like the Hotel California in the Eagles song,” said Tim Oliver, a fellow at the London School of Economics’ IDEAS foreign policy think-tank . “You can check out anytime but you never really leave.”Much of the uncertainty stems from the ambiguity about what a British exit, or Brexit, really means. Abandoning Europe could mean anything from a sweeping withdrawal from EU institutions to more limited opt-outs which could leave major pillars of European integration, such as free movement of labour, untouched.“‘Leave’ could mean a million different things,” Oliver said, giving Britain’s political establishment considerable scope to loiter in Europe’s lobby as euroskeptics argue over where the exits are.Experts say there might be even more room for manoeuvr in the months and years following an “out” vote.In theory, a two-year countdown goes into effect after a European country formally notifies its partners of its intention to quit the union, but complex international negotiations routinely run on for years and the parties involved could let the deadline lapse as talks drag on, perhaps even past Britain’s 2020 parliamentary elections.What if voters’ minds change between now and then? And even if the negotiations over Britain’s departure were concluded on time, what would happen if the U.K. were presented with unfavourable terms?One expert said he could envisage a last-chance referendum asking Brits whether they still wanted to leave the EU under those conditions.“It is at least legally possible and it might create the political space for a government to back out of an exit,” said Gavin Barrett, an expert on European constitutional law at University College Dublin. “I think a case could be made for a second referendum asking, ‘Do you really want this?’”The let’s-vote-on-this-one-more-time manoeuvr has helped bail out the European project before, albeit under different circumstances. After Irish voters rejected EU reforms in 2008, politicians in Dublin won modest concessions from their European counterparts and ran the vote again the following year, this time with a positive outcome. Similar EU referendum do-overs turned an Irish “No” into a “Yes” in 2002 and helped secured a Danish “Ja” in 1993.But the path to a second referendum in Britain is far narrower, in part because — unlike in Ireland — the political establishment is split over Europe. If leading euroskeptic Boris Johnson takes the reins of the ruling Conservative Party following a vote to leave the EU, the prospect of a final vote will fade further still.Alan Renwick, the deputy director of the Constitution Unit at University College London, said a do-over would only be plausible “if a party wins the 2020 election on a platform of having a second referendum and trying to go back in.”That seems unlikely given the current political alignment, but he said nothing is completely out of the question when it comes to a potential Brexit.“You have so many possible long shot scenarios,” he said. “If you add up the probabilities of all of them, you end up with a significant chance of something surprising happening, whatever that might be.”
ARLINGTON, Texas — Kyler Murray threw for 379 yards and three touchdowns as No. 5 Oklahoma beat No. 9 Texas 39-27 in the Big 12 championship game Saturday, with the Sooners avenging their only loss and making their case for a return to the College Football Playoff.Murray, the Heisman Trophy-contending dual-threat quarterback, threw two of his TDs to Grant Calcaterra. That included an impressive 18-yard score on a third-and-10 play with two minutes left as the Sooners (12-1, No. 5 CFP) won their seventh consecutive game despite being held to fewer than 40 points for the first time in nine games.Sam Ehlinger was 23-of-36 passing for 349 yards with two touchdowns, and he also ran for two scores for Texas (9-4), but his final pass was picked off by Tre Norwood at the 1 in the final minute.Oklahoma is the first Power Five team to win four consecutive outright conference titles since Florida in the SEC in the mid-1990s.The Sooners went ahead to stay on Austin Seibert’s third field goal, a 31-yarder with 12:37 left that was good after ricocheting off the top of the left upright to make it 30-27.Two plays after Oklahoma’s only turnover, when receiver CeeDee Lamb fumbled inside the 10 after a 54-yard catch-and-run with nine minutes left, the Sooners got points anyway. Cornerback Tre Brown sacked Ehlinger in the end zone for a safety.The 114th meeting between the Red River rivals was their first in a championship game — and the first time since 1903 they had played twice in the same season. Every game since 1929 had been played about 20 miles away at the State Fair of Texas, where the Longhorns beat Oklahoma 48-45 eight weeks ago.Oklahoma never trailed after Murray threw TDs on its last two drives before the break for a 20-14 lead, on Calcaterra’s 6-yard TD pass in the final minute when the Sooners were out of timeouts but went 80 yards in five plays.The Sooners were up 27-21 until Ehlinger threw a 5-yard TD to Lil’Jordan Humphrey with 2:44 left in the third quarter. But the extra point that would have put Texas ahead was partially blocked and clanged off the crossbar no good.THE TAKEAWAYTexas: Collin Johnson set a Big 12 championship game record with his 177 yards receiving on eight catches. He had a 27-yard TD catch in the third quarter on a drive when he also had catches of 25 and 21 runs.Oklahoma: The Sooners won their 12 overall Big 12 title. They are the only Big 12 team that has made it into the College Football Playoff, going in 2015 and again last season with Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Baker Mayfield. They haven’t made it to a CFP title game.UP NEXTTexas will go to its first Sugar Bowl since 1995 if Oklahoma gets into the College Football Playoff. If not, the Longhorns are likely headed to the Alamo Bowl.Oklahoma waits to find out if it gets into the College Football Playoff, which could mean playing in the same stadium in four weeks for the Cotton Bowl. If not, the Sooners go to the Sugar Bowl to play an SEC team.___More AP college football: https://apnews.com/tag/Collegefootball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25Stephen Hawkins, The Associated Press
The pill is attached to a thin tube, meaning the balloon can be filled with water after it reaches the stomach.Experts said counselling was necessary to ensure that patients kept the weight off, after the empty balloon passes out through the body.Dr Roberta Ienca, from the University of Rome, said: “Because the Elipse Balloon does not require endoscopy, surgery or anaesthesia, this may make it suitable for a larger population of obese patients not responding to diet and lifestyle treatment.”The pill would not even need to be administered by a doctor, she said, suggesting nutritionists and dieticians could dole out the medication. The results triggered an “incredible” reaction from patients, who had struggled with their weight for years, she said. The ease of the technique – avoiding anaesthetics or surgery – meant it could be popular with swathes of failed dieters, they said. The technique could be suitable for those with a body mass index of 30 or moreCredit:PA Because the Elipse Balloon does not require endoscopy, surgery or anaesthesia, this may make it suitable for a larger population of obese patientsDr Roberta Ienca 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 pill – dubbed it a “gastric band in a tablet” – is licensed for use, but not yet available on the NHS. It costs around £3,000 privately – around half the price of stomach stapling.Researchers from the University of Rome said the balloon technique could be used widely and bring “significant cost savings” to health services in the long run.The head of the NHS has recently warned that obesity is the greatest challenge facing the service, fuelling £10bn spending on diabetes.The research, presented at the European Congress on Obesity in Porto, found patients who were given the one off pill, lost an average of 36 pounds – over 14 per cent of their total body weight.They also saw significant improvements in their health including blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and blood sugar control. Millions of Britons could lose more than two stone by taking a pill which contains a balloon, a study suggests.The results – unveiled at the world’s largest obesity conference – showed it can be an effective alternative to weight loss surgery.Experts said the NHS should now considering funding the pills for millions of Britons, with more than one in four obese.After the pill is swallowed, the balloon swells up in the stomach when it is filled with water – restricting the amount of calories a person can eat.The study of 42 adults found they lost two stone and six pounds on average after four months. Professor Jason Halford, from the European Association for the Study of Obesity, said: “This is to help people manage their appetite. If they have the balloon but they are also modifying their behaviour and the balloon helps them do that, that would be excellent. In that context it could be a solution for people who don’t want to go for full bariatric surgery.”The researcher, from the University of Liverpool, said “millions” of people could benefit from the treatment, if NHS would agree to pay for it.Prof Halford said: “I think this is for people before they would get to the point where they need bariatric surgery. It would be an alternative to an anti-obesity drug, which would come between the BMI 30 plus when people have tried everything and drugs have not worked….for somebody in that position it might be a good intervention.” Dr Simon Cork, Research Fellow at the Department of Investigative Medicine, Imperial College London, said:“This is an interesting study with interesting outcomes for clinical practice.” “Currently gastric balloons have to be inserted under general anaesthetic or sedation. This not only limits the number of patients who can have them implanted, but also increases surgery time and has significant costs associated with it.”Tam Fry, chairman of the National Obesity Forum, said: “Balloons should take all the fear and angst out of a bariatric procedure. If you need treatment and are offered the balloon experience, go for it .”
Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram I first met Victoria Kyriakopoulos in May 2015; I had just arrived in Australia, yet another number in the long list that makes the ‘Greek brain drain’, the recent wave of migration. At the time, she had just begun to outline The Hellenic Initiative Australia (THI Australia), a solution for the crisis in Greece, which saw me leaving the country.In June that same year that the first official meeting of philhellene businesspeople in Melbourne took place, aiming to offer relief for Greece. Three years later, I meet Victoria for coffee and an account of this experience that has many small victories, strong bonds, and collaborations with a lot of prospect.If there is a key person in every story, in the THI Australia case, Victoria Kyriakopoulos is certainly one such person. As a project manager, she took on the task to turn the will of the THI board to help Greece into action, selecting and developing projects that made a difference. Of course, nothing happened by accident: her personal and professional trajectory had given her the chance to have a compact knowledge of Greece that turned out to be particularly useful.“When I started working, everything was just an idea,” she says. “I was in a transitional phase in my own life, I was on maternity leave, having worked many years in Australia in different media roles and I also had some good professional experience in Greece, where I had worked during the ‘golden years’ of the Olympic Games. My relationship to Greece is multifaceted and has been through a lot of transformations. It is not only a matter of background: it has also been my professional occupation, [from] when I started covering Greek news for Australian media. After that, I changed position and perspective, as I found myself working in Greece for media relating to the Greek diaspora. At the same time, I got to do travel features on Greece for Lonely Planet. So I started seeing Greece not only as a Greek from the diaspora, but also as a guide, a traveller and a journalist, both from within the country and from the outside. A common thread made its presence in all my activities and I started thinking how I can help promote the country I know and love to the world.”THE FIRST THI PROJECTThe first project of The Hellenic Initiative was a program to offer internship to young graduates of Greek universities to large Australian businesses. Planning, designing, organising and executing this project was a great challenge, says Victoria.“What we do as an organisation goes much further than a simple office work,” she stresses. “We need to combine a lot of things: the vision and willingness to help with good planning, with the right assessment of the candidate, to find the appropriate internship position for each candidate in a large Australian corporation, but also it is part of our job to pick up these kids from the airport, welcome them to an unknown country and look after them. Soon I am going to go and pick up the 17th participant from the airport.”I point out that this motherly attitude seems like a fundamentally Greek trait. “You do play the mother a bit, inevitably,” she laughs. “These are kids that the THI takes under its wing, our relationship is personal, we still remain in touch after the program. I see them as ‘my children’, I follow their path and whenever they have good news about their career and they get in touch to share, it is a great joy for me.”Victoria Kyriakopoulos.THE ‘BOROUME’ FARMERS’ MARKET PROGRAM“When THI Australia first started, we were all thinking that as it consists of philhellenes who are powerful entrepreneurs, our actions would focus on programs of economic growth in Greece. But in 2015, the humanitarian crisis caught our attention. It was impossible to disregard it and we were looking for a way to intervene.”But why did she end up forming a partnership with ‘Boroume’ this successful Greek NGO? It was probably due to her journalism skills, as Victoria found herself doing research, just as she did when she was a reporter.“I had been in touch with some organisations in Greece, trying to identify their needs and their answer was that they wanted dry food, like rice and legumes in small packages. Our research showed that it is pointless to send food from Australia to Greece, not to mention logistically challenging. We were also not happy with the idea [of sending] funds for them to buy the food.“The Hellenic Initiative has a different approach to helping those in need, compared to traditional philanthropy, and this is something that is agreed upon across the board; our aim is not to raise funds and make donations. We are looking for partnerships and collaborations and we want our funds to be used to create programs with specific goals that could bring the best and longest-lasting outcomes. There are a lot of organisations that feel their money was lost somewhere in the procedure, so we make sure to check who we work with and operate under a different business model.”‘Boroume’ was one of the first organisations approached by The Hellenic Initiative; Victoria was impressed. “They had developed a scheme to save food, leaving out middlemen and storage. I was very impressed by its founder Alex Theodoridis and his team; they are very energetic, they have studied and worked abroad, they have a very good work culture, they speak fluent English and are leaders in their field. We thought that if we adopted their program, our funds could produce the best outcome. Basically we pay for the program managers’ salaries, thus allowing the organisation to not be in the position where it is relying too much on volunteers, so that they can focus on planning out and executing their program.”ΤΗΙ first undertook a collaboration on saving food, and then decided to go forward with ‘Boroume at the Farmer’s Market’, so that it could claim a program of its own.“You know, there are these big programs, where you enter as one of the sponsors, and your donation is a drop in an ocean of funding. We could not afford to offer such great sums, but we wanted to create a program tailored to our budget, which could be effective and meaningful both for us and crisis-stricken Greece. What we managed to do with the $36,000 we gave to Boroume last year was unbelievable! The effectiveness of the organisation, the food saved that could otherwise go to waste, the meals that were produced, the social impact – we know that our money were put to good use and went where it should. So, this year we doubled our funding; and there’s also another great outcome; we’ve built a great relationship.”Victoria is right to feel proud of the program. Numbers talk by themselves. The ‘Boroume at the Farmer’s Market’ motto is “no food portion goes to waste”; the organisation collects unsold fruit and vegetables from a number of farmers’ markets around Athens and Thessaloniki and donates them to local charities which turn them into meal portions. Last year they saved 73.5 tons of fruit and vegetables from waste and produced thousands of meal portions for people in need around Greece.“I hope this year I get to go volunteer at our Farmers’ market in Athens or Thessaloniki,” she says. “I like the market, I love it; when I was living in Athens, I often used to go to farmers’ markets, they are a universe of their own. During the last few years, producers would give their surplus to people in need, but these were random acts. Now that they have been organised through our program, they feel prouder themselves for this.”But why is it important to The Hellenic Initiative to persuade those travelling in Greece to volunteer for a day at the farmers’ markets?“It may sound a bit strange to ask Australians, whether they come from a Greek background or not, who travel to Greece to volunteer for a day or a few hours, but the truth is that it can make a great difference,” Victoria explains.“You don’t have to speak fluent Greek or have any specific knowledge, what we need is available hands. The program runs all year long in many farmers’ markets and we have a number of regular volunteers, but during Greek summer, this number diminishes.“Last year, we sent some of our own volunteers on a trial basis; we did not want to turn this into some kind of crisis tourism, nor cause any problems at the Boroume workflow. But what they told us was that our volunteers were very helpful and saved the day. On top of that, it is a great experience; you meet people, you make friends, you’re part of a group. In our pilot program last year, we had 35 people participate, including families with small children, young people, politicians, media professionals, entrepreneurs. We have had people from all ages: one of our volunteers was 82 years old! We hope to be able to send even more this time around.”WHAT’S NEXT FOR THI AUSTRALIA?So now, what are the future goals for The Hellenic Initiative Australia?“Following the same business model, we continue to run programs that help Greece,” says Victoria.“One of them is our joint program with Emfasis, which started in January. We do not leave anything to chance. Everything is connected. Here’s how the Emfasis collaboration came to be: one of the prerequisites for the young people who come to Australia to take part in our internship program, is to have volunteer experience in Greece. So when I was processing the application of one of the candidates, I found out about this program of volunteer community service which seemed very interested, so I looked into it.”It makes sense that Emfasis needed a bit more research than other programs. Despite being active for more than five years, this organisation, which supports homeless people, remains relatively unknown, operating as a kind of ‘invisible’ force in the streets of Athens, going to those in need with mobile units. This is why Maria Karra, one of the founders of Emfasis, was surprised to be contacted by Nick Pappas, president of THI Australia.“Before we made our decision, one of the THI board members, Peter Abraham travelled to Greece and had a firsthand account on the way Emfasis works. He spent a whole night on the streets of Piraeus with a team of volunteers, he saw them in action, realised how meaningful and impactful their work is and was impressed. So we decided to move forward and started funding the organisation in January.“We donated $35,000 which again allows Emfasis to not only rely on volunteers but hire a permanent team which will be organised and be in a position to drive with a van around Athens during the day as well. We follow the same business model here; we set goals in cooperation with the organisation, we assess the outcome and we proceed to the next phase of funding. We want to make sure that we’re in the right track and that we build long-lasting relationships.”It looks like Victoria Kyriakopoulos and THI Australia are part of an effort made by the ‘other’ Greece to mend the social fabric, where it has been torn. What part of Greece does she see, through her daily work?“The Greeks that I come across in my work are those who have struggled to stay in the country, but also those who decided to go back and help, leaving behind some significant careers abroad. For example, Michael Printzos, who is our head of programs and THI representative in Greece, is an Oxford University graduate who deliberately returned to the country, knowing what he [was] leaving behind. But he is committed to our cause and deeply believes in what he does.“We are all part of a network and we believe that slowly, step by step, we can make a difference. All our partners have this mindset, they have small, yet significant goals. We have a very specific vision for Greece. We build partnerships, we create a chain and this effort is starting to bear fruit. This is why I feel good do be one of The Hellenic Initiative people.”For more information about THI Australia and its programs, visit https://au.thehellenicinitiative.org/If you are interested to volunteer in the ‘Boroume at the Farmers’ Market’ in Athens or Thessaloniki, go to https://au.thehellenicinitiative.org/what-we-do/1089-2/
Stay on target A new study suggests dogs were domesticated before migrating to the Americas.By analyzing DNA of ancient North American and Siberian pups, researchers were able to better understand the history of the continents’ first canine inhabitants.The oldest remains date back about 9,000 years—millenia after people began crossing a land bridge connecting present-day Siberia and Alaska; dogs would have moved with their human counterparts, spreading across North and South America.These animals—likely having originated in North Asia—persevered for thousands of years. Until contact with European colonists, at which point they all but vanished.“This suggests something catastrophic must have happened, and it’s likely associated with European colonization,” senior lead author Laurent Frantz, a lecturer at Queen Mary University and co-investigator at the University of Oxford.Unfortunately, there is not yet enough evidence to explain this sudden disappearance.Ancient dog burials like this one found at the Janey B. Goode site near Brooklyn, Ill., provided genetic material for a new study of dogs in the Americas (via Illinois State Archaeological Survey)This is the first comprehensive genomic study of its kind to analyze nuclear DNA (inherited from both parents) and mitochondrial DNA (passed down only from mothers).“Few modern dogs have any trace of these ancient lineages,” according to Kelsey Witt, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of California, Merced, who led the mitochondrial DNA genome work as a graduate student at the University of Illinois.The team also discovered the genomic signature of a hereditary dog cancer, which could be one of the last “living” remnants of early canine genetic heritage.“This suggests that this tumor originated in or near the Americas,” Witt said.These findings, published by the journal Science, reinforce the idea that early man—and his best friend—faced many of the same challenges after European contact, U. of I. anthropology professor Ripan Malhi said.“It is known how Indigenous peoples of the Americas suffered from the genocidal practices of European colonists after contact,” Malhi, a co-author of the study, said in a statement. “What we found is that the dogs of Indigenous peoples experienced an even more devastating history and a near-total loss, possibly as a result of forced cultural changes and disease.”Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey. Driver Finds Dog With Throat Cut, Mouth Duct-Taped in OhioWatch: Dog Rescued After Collapsing From Heatstroke During Hike
Stay on target FaceApp Responds to (Mostly Unfounded) Privacy ConcernsInstagram Employs Machine Learning to Stop Bullying The B.C. RCMP are giving a press conference on the two people murdered on the Alaska Highway, and they have the cat ear filter on. pic.twitter.com/j8GvkvKA4u— Tyler Dawson (@tylerrdawson) July 19, 2019Police said they were aware of the “technical difficulties,” and have since uploaded a new, feline-free video of the press conference to their Facebook page. .@BCRCMP apologizing for the cat filter. Says it was not the result of an “outside party,” was an internal error and the mistake has been fixed. “Our effort to be available via a social media platform did have technological challenges which is a risk that can happen.” https://t.co/DFUgJ6Vz8F— Sonia Aslam (@SoniaSAslam) July 20, 2019Investigators are asking to speak with anyone traveling in the area of Liard Hot Springs and on the Alaska Highway 97 between 4 p.m. July 14 and 8 a.m. July 15—especially those with dashcam footage.Anyone with information relating to the blue van or the deaths of Deese and Fowler should contact the Northern Rockies RCMP at 250-774-2700.The same furry filter recently turned Pakistani politician Shaukat Yousafzai’s live-streamed press conference into an unintended farce.According to the BBC, Yousafzai was unaware of the digital distraction, but later said it was a “mistake” and should not be taken “so seriously.”More on Geek.com:Google Apologizes for ‘Hidden’ Nest Secure Microphone DilemmaFreeze! Police in Illinois ‘Arrest’ Elsa Due to Extremely Cold WeatherOops: Apple’s Squid Emoji is Upside Down It’s hard to take anyone seriously when they have digital cat ears and whiskers superimposed onto their face.A lesson Canadian police learned the hard way.The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) in British Columbia have apologized after livestreaming a press conference detailing a double homicide—with an augmented reality “cat filter” turned on.Chynna Noelle Deese, 24, of North Carolina, and Lucas Robertson Fowler, 23, of Australia, were found Monday morning alongside Highway 97 in British Columbia.A blue 1986 Chevrolet van with Alberta license plates was also at the scene.The couple, as reported by CBS17, were on a road trip through Canada; after visiting national parks, they planned to end the journey in Alaska.It remains unclear whether the duo were specifically targeted or the victims of a random act of violence.“Early in the investigation, the deaths were deemed suspicious and investigators from the North District and BC RCMP Major Crimes Units were called to assist the investigation,” Sgt. Janelle Shoihet, of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, said at a Friday press conference.Unfortunately, the somber announcement was marred by a pair of pink cartoon cat ears and animated whiskers on Shoihet’s otherwise earnest face.
No bond for alleged terrorist of Bahamian descent Recommended for you Related Items:florida, Johnson and Wales University, kayon cox Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Cruise Ship suspected of Norovirus due to dock in Grand Turk Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, 28 May 2015 – More graduates of the country doing outstanding things, Kayon Cox of South Caicos who last week finished with a 4.0 GPA at Johnson and Wales University in Florida. She was one of the students receiving an academic award for her scholastic performance and is now elected to the National Honors Society of the prestigious institution as a result. We’ve posted her colorful photos online; Kayon, who is daughter of Marjorie Basden High Vice Principal, Rodney Cox and South Caicos District Commissioner Yvette Cox, tells us she was ‘reppin’ the TCI with a customized graduation cap sporting the nation’s flag and 649 country code, not to mention the super-sized Turks and Caicos flag, she proudly carried – like others from abroad – in tribute to their home countries. She even sent us a little video where the moderator announced that there was a graduate from Turks and Caicos. Congratulations again. Turks and Caicos to be affected by closed sea ports in Florida
Inter Milan goalkeeper Samir Handanovic hailed the importance of their 1-0 win over Napoli on Wednesday night in the Serie AA injury-time winner from Lautaro Martinez gave Inter victory at the San Siro against 10-man Napoli.The result enabled Inter to extend their hold on a top-four spot with a seven-point advantage over fifth-place Sampdoria.And Handanovic, who made two key saves while the scoreline was goalless, relished the Nerazzurri’s late winner.Maurizio Sarri satisfied despite Juventus’ draw at Fiorentina Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Maurizio Sarri was satisfied with Juventus’ performance on Saturday afternoon after finishing a tough game at Fiorentina 0-0.“It was vital to win today to in order to silence all the other discussions and we did. Then, you get more of a sense of enthusiasm when you win in the 90th minute,” Handanovic told InterTV.“Following the red card for Koulibaly, we had to take more risks in order to look to win the game.“But Saturday is now even more important. Let’s hope that San Siro remains a fortress, the Coppa Italia and Sassuolo games await us after the holidays. The crowd always gives us something more and they showed it today.”Inter, who are now five points behind Napoli in third, will next take a trip to Empoli before heading into the winter break.
Julian Daley has joined global travel service provider Hotelbeds Group as reward and mobility manager.In his new role, Daley will be working across all Hotelbeds Group’s service lines and businesses on a global scale, tackling salary reviews, bonuses, job evaluations and employee benefits.He will also assist on the design and implementation of functional projects and delivering operational excellence, and will be accountable for the effective ongoing operation of reward activities.Previously, Daley worked as reward and recognition manager at British Steel, reward manager at Arla Foods, reward manager at Carlsberg UK and compensation and benefits specialist, also at Carlsberg UK.
Alaska’s Mental Health Trust Land’s Office is in the process of determining the issue of a ground lease of Trust land to Usibelli Coal. The approximately 95-acre parcel is located adjacent to Usibelli’s Wishbone Hill prospect near Palmer.The stated purpose of the lease is to allow Usibelli to construct a haul road to it’s existing Wishbone Hill mine.The terms of the lease require Usibelli to pay over$13,000 a year for the duration of 25 years for the property.A Mental Health Trust spokesman could not be reached for comment over the MLK holiday.Comments regarding the decision are due at the Alaska Mental Health Trust Lands Offices in Anchorage by the close of business on Tuesday, January 19.
Pavlof Volcano, on the Alaska Peninsula, jetted lava into the air and spewed an ash cloud 20,000 feet high in 2013. (International Space Station – NASA)A $12 million budget boost from Congress will help modernize the instruments that protect transcontinental jet planes from threats posed by volcanic ash.Listen nowLeaders at the Alaska Volcano Observatory say new technology will help them issue more precise forecasts, which would translate into restrictions for smaller areas or shorter periods of time.Alaska has dozens of active volcanoes dotting the Aleutian Islands and Cook Inlet, just west of Anchorage. The observatory, a partnership between the U.S. Geological Survey, the state and University of Alaska Fairbanks, is charged with watching them.Ash from eruptions poses a mortal threat to jets; in 1989, a KLM 747 flew through volcanic ash from Mt. Redoubt and lost all four of its engines. It dropped more than two miles before pilots could restart two engines and land in Anchorage.The observatory monitors Alaska’s volcanoes through a network of seismic sensors installed on the sides of volcanoes. But the system for transmitting data from the sensors is obsolete, according to Tom Murray, who works at the U.S. Geological Survey and oversees the observatory.“It was obsolete 20 years ago, and it’s more obsolete now,” Murray said.The current system sends data with an analog signal, which Murray compared to using an old telephone. The analog signal can pick up noise and static that interfere with scientists’ ability to interpret the information.The cash from the federal government will pay to convert the system to a digital one, Murray said. The digital signal will allow scientists to capture a broader range of seismic activity, from low rumblings to big explosions.Some sites, especially those that are more accessible, have already been converted; the rest, including far-flung sites in the Aleutians, will take three to four years to finish. Many of the remote monitoring sites can only be reached by helicopter.
Maruti Suzuki, the country’s largest car maker is reportedly set to announce a voluntary recall of 1.5 lakh Swift Dzire in India, over a possible problem with the car’s fuel neck filler, said a new report.The company will recall 1.5 lakh units of the Swift Dzire which are manufactured between 2013 and 2014, reported Financial Express, citing its sources.Although the company is yet to announce the recall, report claims that the suppliers have already been informed and some of the vehicles with problems are still not out of the showrooms. If the report rings to be true, this will be the biggest recall over a single model. JBM is the supplier of the component.”Out of the 1.5 lakh units affected under the recall, some are still in the dealerships. The supplier has already been informed of the defect and has started making the replacement parts,” the industry source told FE.This is not the first time Maruti withdrawing its vehicles from the market over technical glitches. In November 2013, the company had recalled 306 units of Ertiga, 592 units of Swift, 581 units of Dzire and 13 units of A-star models in the country to fix the problem with the steering column. Previously, the company had taken back 13,157 units of Dzire, Swift and Ritz in April 2011. In February 2010, around one lakh units of Maruti’s flagship export model A-Star were also recalled.Meanwhile, in March, Maruti Suzuki posted 5.5 percent decline in total sales. The company’s total vehicle sales stood at 1,13,350 units, as against the 1,19,937 units in the corresponding month last year and the domestic sales witnessed a dip by 5.2 percent in the month of March 2014, as against 1,07,890 units in March 2013. The export of the company declined by eight percent to 11,081 units in March against 12,047 units in the corresponding month last year.
Daisy Shah, Salman KhanYouTubeBigg Boss 13 has already started trending months before its start date and International Business Times India have already laid its hands on the list of celebrities who are most likely to be part of the show this season. But it looks like Salman Khan won’t let his protege Daisy Shah to participate in the controversial reality show.Daisy Shah’s name had cropped up several times in the past to be a part of Salman Khan hosted Bigg Boss show. It was being said that participating in Bigg Boss would help Daisy revive her Bollywood career as she can make good use of all the attention in the Bigg Boss house.But when Daisy was recently asked by the media if she would ever participate in Bigg Boss show, she replied, “Never.” When she was asked if she would change her mind if Salman would offer her a place in the show, Daisy replied, “He (Salman) won’t let me participate. Even if I get the offer, Salman would make sure that I’m not going inside the Bigg Boss house.”As many as 23 people, including some well-known celebs, have been shortlisted for Bigg Boss 13. Out of these 23, the final 13 contestants will be signed after July 30.Unlike previous seasons, Bigg Boss 13 house is being built in Goregaon’s Film City by ditching the usual Lonavla set where most of the seasons have been shot. While there’s a lot of speculations around Bigg Boss 13 grand premiere date, it is being said that the show will start airing on television by September 29 replacing Madhuri Dixit’s dance reality show Dance Deewane 2.It is being speculated that owing to their crackling chemistry, Katrina Kaif might co-host Bigg Boss 13 with Salman Khan.Celebrities like Zareen Khan, Warina Hussain, Chunky Pandey, Ankita Lokhande, Sonal Chauhan and Devoleena Bhattacharjee have reportedly been shortlisted to enter the show. Commoners won’t be a part of Bigg Boss 13, the decision taken by the makers of the show after the debacle of the previous season.
Syrian civilians, evacuated from rebel-held areas in the Eastern Ghouta, gather at a school in the regime-controlled Adra district, on the northeastern outskirts of the capital Damascus on 16 March 2018. On the edge of Ghouta, a sprawling semi-rural area within mortar range of central Damascus, hundreds of civilians were still streaming out of destroyed towns, carrying scant belongings in bags and bundles. AFPAir strikes on Eastern Ghouta killed at least 30 civilians on Saturday, a monitor said, almost a month into a blistering Russia-backed regime assault on the Syrian rebel enclave outside Damascus.The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights could not say who carried out the strikes on the town of Zamalka in a southern pocket of the enclave.Regime forces have retaken 70 percent of the last rebel bastion on the outskirts of the capital since February 18, carving it up into three shrinking pockets held by different rebels.“Warplanes targeted civilians in Zamalka as they prepared to flee” the southern area of the enclave held by the Faylaq al-Rahman rebel group, Observatory head Rami Abdel Rahman said.The regime assault has killed more than 1,390 civilians in the enclave, according to the Observatory, which relies on a network of sources on the ground.The offensive has pushed thousands more to flee their homes into government-controlled areas.On Saturday morning, “around 10,000 civilians streamed out of the rebel enclave into regime-held areas”, Abdel Rahman said.More than 40,000 civilians have poured out of the enclave since Thursday morning, fleeing bombardment and advancing troops.Syria’s war has killed more than 350,000 people and displaced millions since it broke out in 2011 with the brutal repression of anti-government protests.
More information: Dangerous jellyfish blooms are predictable, Published 14 May 2014 DOI: 10.1098/rsif.2013.1168AbstractThe potentially fatal Irukandji syndrome is relatively common in tropical waters throughout the world. It is caused by the sting of the Irukandji jellyfish, a family of box jellyfish that are almost impossible to detect in the water owing to their small size and transparency. Using collated medical records of stings and local weather conditions, we show that the presence of Irukandji blooms in coastal waters can be forecast on the basis of wind conditions. On the Great Barrier Reef, blooms largely coincide with relaxation of the prevailing southeasterly trade winds, with average conditions corresponding to near zero alongshore wind on the day prior to the sting. These conditions are consistent with hypotheses long held by local communities and provide a basis for designing management interventions that have the potential to eliminate the majority of stings. (Phys.org) —A small team of researchers working in Australia has found a link between trade winds that blow near the Great Barrier Reef and jellyfish blooms that impact swimmers along the coast. In their paper published in Journal of the Royal Society: Interface, the researchers describe how they studied weather patterns over a 27 year period and compared what they found with reported jellyfish stings and found a pattern that may help prevent jellyfish stings in the future. There are a lot of jellyfish in the sea, some big, some small, some with relatively minor stings, others with stings that are not only painful but at times life threatening to humans. The Irukandji jellyfish (Carukia barnesi – a type of box jelly) is one of the latter, it’s tiny—just about the size of the end of a human thumb—very nearly transparent when in water, and has a sting so severe that its symptoms have been given a name: Irukandji syndrome. The jellies also tend to live in groups, which means that one person can wind up with multiple stings, or multiple people can get stung in short order. On the plus side, the fact that they move in groups means that most of the time they pose little risk—it’s only when they “bloom” and move close to shore that they become a problem. Unfortunately, until now, it’s been difficult if not impossible to predict when such a bloom might occur, offering beach managers a way of protecting swimmers. In this latest effort, the researchers believe they have found a way to give swimmers up to a day’s warning. They compared weather data over the period 1985 to 2012 with reports of Irukandji syndrome and found a clear link between calm southeasterly trade winds near the Great Barrier Reef and stings on the shores nearby. They believe the calm winds impact currents, pulling they jellies near shore. They also believe that closing beaches after spotting calm easterlies would reduce the number of days that stings are reported by up to 61 percent.Only time will tell of course, but if the easterly wind connection holds true to the past, beach managers, lifeguards and swimmers themselves may find the waters off the coast of Australia a lot safer in the future. Taking the heat out of jellyfish stings © 2014 Phys.org This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Explore further Drifters-in-the-sea: salps bloom off the coast of New Zealand. Credit: Seacology Citation: Study shows jellyfish blooms can be predicted by calm trade winds (2014, May 14) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2014-05-jellyfish-blooms-calm.html Journal information: Journal of the Royal Society Interface
About Latest Posts Kathryn FolliottEditor at TravelweekKathryn is Editor at Travelweek and has worked for the company since 1995. She has travelled to more than 50 countries and counts Hong Kong, Jerusalem, the Swiss Alps and the Galapagos Islands among her favourite destinations. Latest posts by Kathryn Folliott (see all) “They need to go where the bucks are”: Agents on ACTA partnership – April 18, 2019 As the cost of doing business climbs, host agencies, retail groups say they have options – April 4, 2019 As of 2021 Europe-bound clients will need to apply online for a visa waiver and pay a fee – April 3, 2019 The unlikely alliance between agents, OTAs as Expedia TAAP reaches 15,000 mark in Canada << Previous PostNext Post >> Wednesday, May 31, 2017 Kathryn Folliott Posted by This article originally ran in the May 25th, 2017 issue of Travelweek magazine. Canadian travel agents can subscribe for free to receive the magazine weekly here. TORONTO — Flashback to 1996: Travel agencies are still reeling from the first wave of airline commission caps a year earlier. Then Expedia and Booking.com arrive on the scene. More online travel agencies (OTAs) start coming out of the woodwork, and suddenly the bricks-and-mortar retail travel industry is staring down huge revenue losses from the commission caps (and then cuts) just as OTAs begin siphoning off ever-increasing numbers of clientele. Few thought travel agents could survive the one-two punch, and the vultures were out.And now? Just over 20 years later, the travel agents who survived (and later thrived) are earning commissions on everything from hotels to packages, car rentals and attractions from a most unlikely ally: the OTAs. Competition makes strange bedfellows and that’s as true in the travel industry as anywhere else.Aren’t OTAs the bad guys? Booking.com’s Managing Director, Americas, Todd Dunlap says he thinks “some of that stuff is a little overstated”. Booking.com is currently testing out its Booking.com for Travel Agents trade platform, with tools the company says will help agents make and manage bookings for clients. It says travel agents who join the platform will be eligible for similar partner benefits as all Booking.com affiliate partners. The company currently has some 12,500 affiliates.Aren’t OTAs the bad guys?Dunlap, who was at the opening of the Booking.com Toronto office last month, says Booking.com handles millions of contacts every year. Some of those are from business travellers and corporate travel agencies. “We discovered one in five of our bookers were booking for business. So we’re looking at optimizing and growing that side of the business.”And it’s not just travel agents booking corporate through OTAs, but leisure too. What about commissions? Dunlap wouldn’t reveal percentages at this stage but said Booking.com’s agent platform “will have tailored solutions for travel agents.” The OTA looks at the travel agent category as a strategic partnership, he added. “There’s power in selection. [Travel agents] have great access to conventional inventory. Now they may be looking for unconventional inventory because there’s a demand for that. If I’m a travel agent, I’m looking for inventory, and I’m looking for the best solutions for my clients.”Booking.com got its start in Amsterdam in 1996 and was sold to OTA behemoth The Priceline Group (parent company of Kayak.com and Priceline.com) for US$133 million in 2005. The site now claims 1.2 million active properties in 220 countries, and 1.2 million room nights booked every 24 hours.Luxury hotel Ciragan Palace in Istanbul won’t be found on Booking.comThe road to working with travel agencies is paved with good intentions but isn’t always smooth: in Turkey, the Association of Turkish Travel Agencies this past spring succeeded in blocking Booking.com from offering Turkish hotels to Turkish consumers in a court case that cites “unjust competition against travel agencies.” Talks are now underway to find a solution that works for both sides.More news: Consolidation in the cruise industry as PONANT set to acquire Paul Gauguin CruisesWhen Booking.com’s travel agent platform does launch, it will have strong competition from Expedia TAAP. Since arriving in Canada in 2010 Expedia TAAP (Travel Agent Affiliate Program) has seen year-over-year consistent growth, says Katrina Moseley, Travel Agent Distribution Manager, Expedia TAAP. Worldwide it has more than 70,000.Moseley says she gets good feedback from agents about Expedia TAAP’s on-time payments and the fact that commissions are based on gross booking volume versus net. Base commission rates range from 3 – 11% on hotels, to 3 – 5% for vacation packages including flight and hotel, to 6% on car rentals and 10% on activities and attractions. Commission rates go up for TAAP Preferred Partners.Agents who enroll in Expedia TAAP also get customer support via a dedicated TAAP team, she said. “Agents can visit the program as need. Agents do not need to book with Expedia TAAP exclusively… we’re a one-stop shop [and] offer competitive commissions on multiple lines of business.”TAAP hotel rates are the same rates as those seen on Expedia.comMoseley adds that since displayed TAAP hotel rates are the same rates as those seen on Expedia.com, “agents are not only potentially less at risk of losing customers who book their hotels through other sources, but are also are provided with the opportunity to further solidify their client relationships”.Expedia TAAP now counts about 15,000 active travel agents in the Canadian market. Niche Travel Group’s Faith Sproule, in Dartmouth, NS says she dips into the program as needed. “The hotel rates are often less than every wholesaler that I look at. Great hotels at great prices, transfers and day tours [although] it’s a sin that they messed with the 10% commission on hotels and started to tier the commission.”Asked if he’s seeing an increase in the number of agents making bookings on OTA agent platforms, Flemming Friisdahl, Founder, The Travel Agent Next Door said that companies like Booking.com or Expedia TAAP/ Expedia Affiliate Network programs are getting more traction than 10 years ago for 3 simple reasons: price, availability and convenience. “They are huge hotel aggregators and they are starting to do things that traditional vendors of selling hotels cannot do. They have a lot of selection and they are paying commission. Some of the OTAs in Canada have hotel-only programs on their site and they are being back-ended by companies like Booking.com. It may surprise people in the industry to know what companies use these companies.”More news: Air Canada’s global sales update includes Managing Director, Canada & USA SalesFlemming adds that many times a hotel is only being booked for an overnight, or pre / post a cruise or a quick getaway, “so the agent is not looking at the hotel as being the portion they will make money from. The majority of money will be made on the package/tour/cruise. Also sometimes the agent will do a hotel-only booking to simply help a good customer from a customer service perspective.”Should traditional wholesalers be taking notice and be concerned? It’s surprising to learn how many traditional wholesalers include pricing from Expedia or Booking.com in their pricing structure, he says. “The average agent may simply not know this. But the traditional wholesalers are paying attention and it is a concern.”Down the line, with more of these OTA agent platform bookings preferred supplier agreements could take a hit, although Friisdahl says he believes there is room for everyone. “Every single supplier (almost) sells directly to the end user, either through their wholesale brand directly to the consumer or through an agency name to the consumer. Some ITC suppliers do both. So the world is changing … we must go where we find the best commission and pricing to make sure we retain a customer.” Share Tags: OTAs, Trend Watch
Direct Air India services between Delhi and Melbourne have been scheduled to finally commence in October this year with the carrier planning to fly its new Boeing 787 Dreamliner on the route.The long awaited service, originally earmarked for a November 2010 start, will see the airline become just the second carrier behind ANA to receive the new jets, Indian newspaper The Telegraph reported. Boeing flew a demonstration Dreamliner to New Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport late last week. An Air India official told the newspaper direct flights to Australia were a “priority” for the airline.“The route will be profitable for Air India and is a key ingredient of the turnaround plan,” the official said.According to the newspaper, Air India also intends to operate services to Melbourne from Chennai and Mumbai.The carrier has ordered around 27 of the 259-seater wide-body jets for its medium to long-haul flights, with trials on the aircraft to begin in August.“Training for the Air India pilots will begin next month,” Boeing India president Dinesh A. Keskar remarked.As well as Australia, Air India plans to fly its Dreamliner to North America from the end of October, the airline official said. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: M.H Air India plans to fly directly to Melbourne from October