TweetPinShare0 Shares Despite a cascade of turnovers, a rebuilt Greek national team shocked favored Argentina, 79-71 in the final group game at the World Cup Basketball Championship in Spain to go 5-0.Argentina was ranked third in the world to Greece’s fifth but the Greek squad has been refashioned after many of its veteran stars retired, were hurt or didn’t want to play.The play so far has been a remarkable turnaround from last year when Greece finished 11th in the European championships and lucked out to even get a bid for the world tourney.Greece advanced into the round of 16 where it will play a tough Serbian team on Sept. 7 while Argentina, which finished at 3-2 in the group, draws a tough rival, Brazil. Greece and Argentina will meet again if both win their quarter-final games.Greece ran out to a 28-16 first quarter lead and led 44-33 at the half before Argentina spurted in the third period to whittle down the lead before the Greek team, throwing the ball all over the court and playing Matador defense – waving while the Argentinians rushed to the hoop – composed itself again.Ahead 64-50 at the start of the final quarter, Greece came unglued and the Argentinians roared back with an 18-6 run to close within two at 70-68 before a couple of clutch hoops on the Greek side kept them at bay.A critical technical foul on Greek center Giannis Bouroussis, who slammed a ball into a sideline table, gave Argentina four easy points. But Bouroussis, who outplayed his heralded opponent Luis Scola, came back with a gritty basket just when Greece needed it most.Bouroussis had 16 points and 15 rebounds but early on it was the play of Florida’s Nick Calathes, a ball-handling player who became a shooter and kept Greece together that provided the early impetus. Calathes finished with 18 points to lead the team.
Oklahoma State will face a tougher test this Saturday against the Central Michigan Chippewas, who played the Cowboys very tough a year ago, before falling 24-13. Central Michigan, who finished 7-6 and lost 21-14 to Minnesota in the Quick Lane Bowl a year ago, bounced Presbyterian 49-3 last weekend in their season opener. While the Chippewas are excited for another crack at the 22nd ranked Cowboys, CMU head coach John Bonamego stressed the importance of playing solid in all facets of the game and avoiding costly turnovers, speaking to CM Life, a Central Michigan University publication:“We’re going to have to play well in all three phases,” he said. “We can’t have a bunch of penalties, we have to take care of the football and defensively we have to be very sound.”The Chippewas will lean heavily on Senior QB Cooper Rush, who threw for an impressive 3,848 yards and 25 touchdowns last season, and rushing for 3 more scores. Going into a hostile environment such as Boone Pickens Stadium, Rush will be invaluable for the Chippewas looking to pull off the upset. Bonamego didn’t sound too concerned with the road atmosphere in Stillwater, compared to the other MAC teams on the schedule for the Chippewas.“It’s more about the 22 players on the field than it is the 60,000 in the stands,” Bonamego said. “College stadiums can get loud, but we work with that all the time.”Despite the lack of concern, the Chippewas have been preparing this week for the raucous BPS by having crowds making noise at their practices while the offense is looking to snap the ball, which shows their awareness for what awaits for them in Stillwater. Look for the senior QB Rush to come in prepared and unafraid as Central Michigan squares off against the Cowboys this weekend.“This will be a good test for us in a lot of ways,” said Mike Gundy. “I’ve always been a big fan of the quarterback (Cooper Rush). He’s a potential NFL player. They’ve got eight returning starters on defense. They have some guys back in the running game. We’re going to continue to push forward. We need some quality work. We’ve got some areas that we certainly need to improve in. I feel like we’re making some strides in important areas of our team, but we still need to practice. I’m looking forward to a good week getting ready for Central Michigan.”If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!
“At the moment, I think they are at less than half of the establishment, and we intend for that to be corrected quickly. “It takes time to recruit the quality staff they require, and from what I have seen, they have some real assets – young, bright professionals. I expect the director will move very quickly [on this],” Dr. Chang said. Story Highlights Minister of National Security, Hon. Dr. Horace Chang, says the budget is in place for the establishment of an independent Major Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Agency (MOCA) and focus will now be placed on ensuring that the entity is adequately staffed. Minister of National Security, Hon. Dr. Horace Chang, says the budget is in place for the establishment of an independent Major Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Agency (MOCA) and focus will now be placed on ensuring that the entity is adequately staffed.“At the moment, I think they are at less than half of the establishment, and we intend for that to be corrected quickly.“It takes time to recruit the quality staff they require, and from what I have seen, they have some real assets – young, bright professionals. I expect the director will move very quickly [on this],” Dr. Chang said.He was speaking in the House of Representatives on Tuesday (July 10), where members approved the Senate’s amendments to the MOCA Act.The Bill seeks to establish MOCA as an autonomous body to fight organised crime in Jamaica, including detecting and investigating crime kingpins and persons who facilitate their activities.The organisation will be transformed into an elite law-enforcement investigative agency, operating autonomously of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF).MOCA will have a dedicated and specialised team of investigators that will probe and prosecute the complex cases that are characteristic of organised criminal networks.Minister Chang said that the agency has demonstrated the capacity to investigate in a fair, independent and transparent manner.First launched on June 4, 2012 and assuming full operations in September of that same year, MOCA focuses on taking the profit out of crime, targeting top-level crime figures and their facilitators in a bid to destroy their criminal networks and seize their assets.In August 2014, MOCA was merged with the JCF’s Anti-Corruption Branch, thereby creating a greater reach and an increased capacity to undertake investigations into persons of interest, including the police and persons occupying public office.To date, MOCA, with multi-agency support, has conducted 921 operations, 3,467 polygraph examinations, caused over 1,060 arrests, charged 691 persons, secured 151 convictions and seized more than $1.89 billion in assets.The Senate, on June 8, approved the MOCA Bill, with 77 amendments.
zoom Mexican ferry company Baja Ferries has filed a formal takeover offer with the Marseilles bankruptcy court for debt-stricken French ferry operator Société Nationale Maritime Corse Méditerranée (SNCM).As written by the French newspaper Les Echoes, Baja Ferries Chief Executive Officer Daniel Berrebi confirmed he had written to the court formalising the offer.As announced, should the offer be approved Berrebi plans to keep 800 of SNCM’s 1,500 staff.The offer stipulates keeping of the Marseille-Corsica lines and launching of new services from Marseille to Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria. However, Baja intends to shut down routes from Nice and Toulon.Another bid is being prepared as well from a group of unidentified investors lead by Marseilles businessman Christian Garin.SNCM filed for bankruptcy in November to avoid immediate liquidation and is now undergoing court protection proceedings, launched on Friday.The debt-laden ferry operator has six months, as decided by the court, to find a buyer for its Mediterranean business.SNCM was ordered to pay back USD 550 million of French state aid in SeptemberAccording to a court ruling, the European Commission had been wrong to approve the aid package as the circumstance under which the financial aid was given to the firm were not in accordance with that applicable to a private investor.Workers have been urging the state to keep the company afloat and have been staging strikes since June.World Maritime News Staff
The contracts will provide for site services, excavation, underground services, foundations and structural concrete for the new addition and a new emergency generator building. It also includes renovation of the loading dock area, elevators for the new addition and relocation of the bulk oxygen storage tanks. The total cost of these tenders is about $12 million. Construction will begin in early May. This is the first of three construction service tenders for the Dartmouth General Hospital. The second tender package is expected to be issued in late spring. The expansion and renovations at the Dartmouth General will result in space for 48 beds on the fifth floor plus eight new operating rooms to replace four existing suites. It also includes extensive upgrades to outpatient and diagnostic imaging areas. This is in addition to renovation work already underway on the third and fourth-floor inpatient wings. Construction crews recently completed work on wing 3 West, scheduled to open next week, and will add an additional eight beds. The QEII redevelopment project also includes the expansion of the Halifax Infirmary, Hants Community Hospital and other sites that will support the eventual closure of the Centennial and Victoria buildings in Halifax. For updates on the QEII redevelopment project, go to QE2redevelopment.ca. Eight Nova Scotia companies have been awarded contracts for the Dartmouth General Hospital expansion and renovation. Government issued the contracts today, April 28, as part of the QEII redevelopment project. The Nova Scotia companies are: Lloyd MacLellan Construction Services Ltd., Harrietsfield, Halifax Regional Municipality Omega Formwork Inc., Mount Uniacke Bedford Ready Mix Limited, Lower Sackville Techno Hard Surfaces Ltd., Bedford Allstar Rebar Nova Scotia Limited, Lower Sackville CKG Elevator Ltd., Burnside Tartan Mechanical Ltd., Brookside, Halifax Regional Municipality Atlantica Mechanical Contractors Inc., Burnside.
An extensive survey of 903 species of Canadian birds, fish, mammals, reptiles and amphibians over more than four decades has found that half of them are in serious population decline.Declining species lost a total of 83 per cent of their numbers between 1970 and 2014, says the report released Thursday by the World Wildlife Fund. Species protected by federal legislation shrank nearly as quickly as those that weren’t.“In general terms, the Species At Risk Act does not seem to have made any difference,” said WWF president David Miller. “There’s an incredible urgency to reverse the decline.”The Living Planet Index could be the most comprehensive assessment of wildlife numbers in Canada.The organization looked at 3,689 different populations of 386 kinds of birds, 365 fish species, 106 different mammals and 46 reptiles and amphibians. It combined more than 400 datasets from government, academe, industry and citizen science using a peer-reviewed method developed by the Zoological Society of London.Overall numbers for all 903 species decreased by eight per cent over the 44 years studied.A total of 45 species were stable and 407 increased. Many of those benefited from large-scale conservation measures.Waterfowl, which increased by 54 per cent, have enjoyed widespread wetland preservation. Birds such as falcons are no longer harmed by DDT and grew by 88 per cent.Others on the increase were generalist species such as deer or geese that live well alongside humans.The survey found a familiar combination of reasons for declining populations: habitat loss, climate change, invasive species and pollution.Miller said it was surprising to find legislation such as the Species At Risk Act, passed in 2004, has done nothing to slow the decline.“What the science says is that it hasn’t made a material difference to the species.”Species listed under the act declined by 63 per cent over the study period. As well, the study suggests the rate of decline may have actually picked up after the act was passed.Part of that is due to the time it takes for action. Miller points out the St. Lawrence beluga was known to be at risk even before the act was passed, yet it took until 2015 for protections to be put in place.“There have been incredible delays in taking the steps mandated under the act.”The legislation may no longer be the best tool to protect wildlife, said Miller. There are too many shrinking species to protect each one individually.“We probably need a different approach,” he said. “The challenges are so complex and have multiple causes. You can’t rely simply on a plan for species. You have to look at a whole ecosystem.”There isn’t, for example, much that can be done to halt the slow disappearance of Pacific killer whales until scientists understand why chinook salmon — the orca’s main food — are declining.It will take networks of protected areas to reverse the trends, said Miller. He noted the survey does show that a collective approach — such as that taken to protect waterfowl — can make a difference.But the breadth and speed of the decline means action must be taken quickly.“Even for us, it’s sobering to see the results,” Miller said.“The declines are exceptionally serious. We need real urgency to take action.”— Follow Bob Weber on Twitter at @row1960
OTTAWA (NEWS 1130) – The Trudeau government is quick to react to the news that the National Energy Board has renewed its approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline.This second approval from the NEB is being called a milestone by the Trudeau government, but it says there is still work to be done.Parliamentary Secretary to Natural Resources Paul Lefebvre still won’t give a timeline for when shovels will be back in the ground for the stalled project, pointing out the there are 16 new conditions being added with this approval.“We will review those conditions and see how we can meet them … Meeting them is a priority,” he said.RELATED: NEB green-lights the Trans Mountain pipeline projectThe Parliamentary Secretary to Natural Resources calls this NEB decision an important milestone #cdnpoli pic.twitter.com/XLqZJw7o89— Cormac Mac Sweeney (@cmaconthehill) February 22, 2019The Court of Appeal rejected Ottawa’s approval of the project last year, after it said the board did not adequately consult First Nations or look at the effects of marine shipping.The board has again given its approval, citing national interest, but also acknowledged the significant environmental risks with the project.The NDP’s Murray Rankin is disappointed and predicting more lawsuits.“We’re not going to take that chance. We’re not going to play Russian roulette with our coastline.”
Facebook Login/Register With: Breakout actor Stephan James has just signed with CAA. James is currently starring in the Barry Jenkins-directed If Beale Street Could Talk, playing Alonzo “Fonny” Hunt, the young man whose incarceration for a crime he didn’t commit propels the narrative. He also stars in Sam Esmail’s Amazon Prime Video series Homecoming, and last week received a Golden Globe nomination for his performance opposite Julia Roberts. Beale Street has been nominated for three Golden Globes including Best Motion Picture — Drama. LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Stephan James (Photo by Ryan West) Advertisement Twitter
BUCHAREST, Romania — Anca Pop, a Romanian-Canadian singer-songwriter, has died after her car plunged into the Danube River. She was 34.Emergency authorities identified her body after divers found her car late Monday in southwestern Romania. Her sister alerted police after she failed to arrive at the family home Sunday evening. Police said Tuesday they were investigating the death of Pop.Pop’s style was a fusion of Balkan and mainstream pop. She had a big following in Japan. Facebook Login/Register With: Twitter LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Advertisement Advertisement She also collaborated with Bosnian musician Goran Bregovic on his “Champagne for Gypsies” album.In 1987, Pop fled communist Romania with her family, crossing the Danube into then-Yugoslavia where they became political refugees. Months later, they emigrated to Canada.After communism ended, she returned to Romania. This year she caused a stir by revealing she was in a same-sex relationship, in a society which can be intolerant of homosexuality.She is survived by her parents and sister.
APTN National NewsA new report says tanker traffic for Energy East pipeline could disturb Bay of Fundy whales.APTN’s Trina Roache has the details.
Progress towards reaching the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) was the focus of talks today between Tanzania’s leader and a senior United Nations official, who praised the East African nation for the strides it has made in boosting primary school enrolment.Ensuring that all boys and girls complete a full course of primary schooling is among the eight MDGs, which world leaders have pledged to achieve by 2015.“The education goal stands out as an area where Tanzania has had a lot of success in increasing the numbers of children going to school,” with the enrolment rate hovering near 100 per cent, UN Development Programme (UNDP) Administrator Helen Clark told President Jakaya Kikwete.Speaking at the end of her four-day visit to the country, she hailed Tanzania for the “incredible” progress it has also made in increasing girls’ school attendance.“Every dollar we invest in girls’ education has a multiplier effect for development across every area,” Miss Clark said. “This huge investment in education will pay dividends in Tanzania.”Also today, she visited the National Electoral Commission’s voter registration facilities and met with first-time voters – set to cast their ballots in October – who told her that development and economic growth are among the most important issues.“Elections are something I know quite a lot about,” said the UNDP chief, who formerly served three terms as the Prime Minister of New Zealand. “And there is nothing more fundamental to the integrity of elections than having rigorous voter registration procedures.”Some 21 million people are expected to be registered to vote, and UNDP is supporting the election process through voter education, as well as training the media, political parties and domestic observers.Its support also centres on women as both voters and as candidates, and UNDP seeks to bolster women’s organizations and networks which promote the rights of women.Women’s empowerment, along with maternal health, was also the focus of a meeting Miss Clark had yesterday with women parliamentarians.Largely due to quotas, women’s participation in parliament and local government has reached 30 per cent.Also yesterday, the UNDP head held talks with Tanzanian Finance Minister Mustafa Mkulo on the MDGs, particularly the efforts to halt the spread of HIV/AIDS.They also touched on the “Delivering as One” initiative – a programme under which countries work closely with UN entities to facilitate development – which they said had made a significant contribution to Tanzania’s anti-poverty strategy.On Sunday, Miss Clark visited Tanzania’s semi-autonomous island of Zanzibar, where she had a meeting with President Amani Abeid Karume. She also visited the Jozani-Chwaka Bay Conservation Area, the single most important site for the conservation of Zanzibar’s biodiversity. UNDP supported the creation of the park and helped the Government put in place policies and legislative processes that made conservation possible.Miss Clark’s mission to four African countries has already taken her to Mali and Burkina Faso, and will wrap up with a stop in South Africa. 11 May 2010Progress towards reaching the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) was the focus of talks today between Tanzania’s leader and a senior United Nations official, who praised the East African nation for the strides it has made in boosting primary school enrolment.
Meanwhile, Rajapaksa said that he does not do politics based on positions or posts. He said that he will continue to do politics as long as he has the support of the public. (Colombo Gazette) Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa today reiterated calls for an early Parliament election, saying that is the only way the current political crisis can be resolved.Speaking to reporters today, Rajapaksa said that the political situation in the country was a mess and the public are calling for a Parliamentary election. Asked what his next step will be based on the ruling the Supreme Court gives on the dissolution of Parliament, Rajapaksa said that he will need to wait and see.
Egyptian state news agency MENA is reporting that 115 people have been killed in a bombing and shooting attack on a Sufi mosque in the North Sinai region.Officials said militants in four off-road vehicles bombed the mosque and fired on worshippers during the sermon segment of Friday prayers.MENA said 120 people were also wounded in the attack on the al-Rawdah mosque in the town of Bir al-Abd, 40 kilometres from the North Sinai provincial capital of El-Arish.
“More children could be among the dead as residents in the area and the Lebanese authorities continue to look for people who are reportedly trapped in the mountains in freezing temperatures and snow,” said Geert Cappelaere, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa, in a statement issued Saturday. “Syrian people continue to risk their lives and the lives of their children in a desperate search for safety and shelter,” he added.The tragic incident occurred during a storm Thursday night (18 to 19 January) near the Masna’ border between Lebanon and Syria. The victims were trying to cross an arduous and rugged passage.According to the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), others in the group, including a pregnant woman, were discovered in time and assisted by nearby residents and the Lebanese Armed Forces and Civil Defense to reach hospitals before they froze to death.Funding constraints challenge assistance efforts – UNICEFIn the statement, Mr. Cappelaere also said that UNICEF has been distributing blankets, warm clothes, and fuel to heat schools to help families cope with the harsh winter in Syria and other countries in the region.However, funding constraints are challenging its ability to continue the assistance.So far, UNICEF has received only half of the funding needed for winter response, and if urgent funding is not received, it will not be able to reach nearly 800,000 children with winter assistance, said the UN agency.Underscoring that the death of the two Syrian children is a “reminder” that much more needs to be done, Mr. Cappelaere calling for an end to brutal conflicts and increased support for vulnerable children.“We have no excuse. We cannot continue failing children.” he said.
Demand for new cars in the EU increased for a 20th consecutive month in April 2015, with registrations growing 6.9%. 1,166,482 new passenger cars were registered last month – the best April performance since 2009.All major markets in the region experienced growth, with Italy’s 24.2% increase contributing significantly, while registrations in Germany (6.3%), the UK (5.1%), Spain (3.2%) and France (2.3%) were also strong.Year-to-date values also remain positive compared with the same period in 2014, with 4,695,058 units registered in the first four months of the year – an increase of 8.2%. The Spanish (23.9%), Italian (16.2%), UK (6.4%), German (6.4%) and French (5.6%) markets all grew over this period.Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)
I was barely 13 years old during WrestleMania VI on April 1, 1990, and just about at the height of my pro-wrestling fandom. I watched every televised event and read wrestling magazines, and I had been to a live event at the Blaisdell Arena in Honolulu. I even watched unofficial wrestling-analysis shows that aired in the middle of the night. I was delirious.My favorite wrestler was Brutus “The Barber” Beefcake, who took on “Mr. Perfect,” who had yet to lose in a televised head-to-head matchup. Brutus won. “Mr. Perfect,” a.k.a. Curt Hennig, had finally lost.Hennig died in 2003 at age 44.Of course, the main event at WrestleMania VI was the “Ultimate Challenge,” in which The Ultimate Warrior defeated Hulk Hogan to unify the Intercontinental Championship and the WWF Championship for the first — and so far only — time ever (the WWF changed its name to the WWE in 2002).The Ultimate Warrior, James Hellwig, died two weeks ago at age 54.Here are a few other pieces of information about WrestleMania VI:One match — Earthquake’s defeat of Hercules — featured two wrestlers who are now both dead.It was Andre the Giant’s last major televised match; he died in 1993 at age 46.Dusty Rhodes, who won his first wrestling title in 1968, is 68. His tag-team partner, Sapphire, his opponents “Macho Man” Randy Savage and the Sensational Queen Sherri, and his surprise manager, Miss Elizabeth (who was in a “feud” with Macho Man, her real-life husband), died in 1996, 2011, 2007 and 2003, respectively.Just five of 14 matches featured wrestlers who are all alive today.Here’s the card with all of the televised matches for the night. I’ve marked the ones who are dead in red; it’s one-third of the wrestlers who appeared (12 of 36, plus Miss Elizabeth).For all the dramatized bloodshed of professional wrestling, the card for WrestleMania VI certainly looks like a bloodbath. Is there anything fishy about pro wrestling, or are my intuitions about what percentage of young 1990s athletes should be alive 25 years later just way off?Let’s look at some data.I collected biographical information (including date of birth and date of death, if applicable) from the Internet Wrestling Database on all WWF wrestlers who are/would be younger than 60 in 2014, and who had at least 20 pay-per-view appearances between WrestleMania I in 1985 and the time the WWF was forced to change its name by the World Wildlife Fund in 2002 — for 203 in all.I then calculated each wrestler’s chances of dying between the ages of 25 (roughly around when his or her career may have started) and however old he or she is/would be in 2014, using actuarial tables from the Social Security Administration. Because health technology has improved significantly, I used a 1990 actuarial table to cover years before 2000, a 2000 table to cover years 2000 to 2009, and a 2010 table to cover 2010 to the present.I then broke them down by age groups and compared each group’s death rate with its expected death rate:We can also calculate the probability of so many wrestlers dying in each age group and overall by chance (using binom.dist), and it comes out like so:Note: I calculated each wrestler’s odds individually, but the probabilities in the last column of this table are based on the average probability for each group (which gets us extremely close, though technically it could be calculated precisely).I don’t want to speculate as to the cause of this phenomenon, though a number of theories in varying shades of sinister spring to mind. But it saddens me to think that my 13-year old self was so thoroughly entertained by watching ghosts. Rest in peace.
Paris Saint-Germain have reacted furiously after defender Serge Aurier had his visa revoked by the British authorities and will not be allowed to play in the vital Champions League tie against Arsenal.The French club have the backing of Uefa, which said it was “regrettable that a player eligible for the competition” is being prevented from playing.In September Aurier was found guilty of elbowing a police officer and sentenced to two months in prison, but he contested the charge and is appealing the verdict which means he is free to play football in the meantime. Even if the conviction is upheld, the 23-year-old is expected only to undergo community service.PSG said that the Home Office had originally granted Aurier a visa but then changed their minds which meant that the Ivory Coast international could not travel with the rest of the squad that flew to London. PSG are even more furious because they were informed of the decision only at 2pm on Tuesday.They said it showed a “flagrant lack of respect” and accused the Home Office of damaging “the very integrity of the Champions League” in a strongly worded statement.“Due to a sudden about-face by the British authorities, Serge Aurier has not been allowed to travel with PSG squad for the clash away to Arsenal,” the club said. “After an initial application on Oct 18, complete with all the necessary documents, the British authorities had originally granted the Ivory Coast international an entry visa to the UK on Oct 21.“However, on Nov 16, his visa was finally revoked by the British Ministry of the Interior (Home Office), who justified their about-face by citing Aurier’s conviction on Sept 30, 2016.” PSG added: “The club has argued several times that since the player has launched a legal appeal against the criminal ruling, he is therefore entitled to the presumption of innocence, as any other person exercising their right to appeal.“Paris Saint-Germain strongly regrets that the presumption of innocence has not influenced Britain’s decision. On several occasions, Uefa has also transmitted its total support of Paris Saint-Germain to the British authorities regarding this case, in order to preserve the integrity of its competitions.” Aurier is currently appealing the convictionCredit:afp 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. Aurier has been involved in several controversial incidents but has got his career back on track. He was suspended earlier this year after making derogatory comments about the then-PSG coach, Laurent Blanc, but apologised. He saved the life of Mali forward Moussa Doumbia after he was knocked unconscious in a match in October.A Home Office spokesperson said: “We reserve the right to refuse a visa to anyone who is convicted of criminal offences. Mr Aurier received a two-month custodial sentence in September for assaulting a police officer.The immigration rules clearly state that non-EU nationals who have received a custodial sentence of less than 12 months within the last five years will be refused on criminality grounds.“All applications are carefully considered on their individual merits, in line with the UK immigration rules and based on evidence provided by the applicant.” PSG’s anger is partly fuelled by what it perceives as double standards from the UK authorities. Both Lionel Messi and Neymar face, in theory, custodial sentences for tax-fraud convictions. Neither will be sent to jail, and are expected to be given suspended sentences, and were allowed to recently play in the UK. The pair faced Manchester City in Barcelona’s recent Champions League tie.PSG added that it was “stunned by this incomprehensible situation” over their highly rated right-back “that attacks the very integrity of the Uefa Champions League”. Uefa issued its own statement and said it was “deep disappointment” that Aurier had not been allowed to travel.“Uefa supported Paris Saint-Germain in its efforts to acquire a travel visa for the player but ultimately the authorities denied it,” it said. “It is regrettable that a player eligible for the competition will not be able to take part in the match for reasons which are not related to football and its regulations.”
IHFihf.info At the openning day of World Championship in Sweden, many journalists and handball fans worldwide where negatively surprised with a fact that official website of International Handball Federation – www.ihf.info was offline for some time during the matches. Yesterday early in the evening, we couldn’t open a official page, find statistic and other news related to a happening in Sweden.Hopefully, this won’t happen again in next days of the biggest handball event this year. ← Previous Story Nemanja Pribak (Serbia): “Poland has a quality for a gold” Next Story → WC Sweden 2011 (Day 3): Hungary still in “the Game” – Japan wrote a history
RECENTLY WE’VE SEEN politicians, State bodies and public institutions begin to use social media as a way to update, engage with and – in some cases – listen to the public. Even Pope Francis has gotten in on the act calling the Internet a ‘gift from God’.This interesting shift in relationship is being driven by people who are tiring of the broadcast type communications of yesteryear and who now expect to be part of the conversation, in real time.However, while some public figures and bodies are using social media well, others appear confused. They are yet to hone their skills and find the new line between being ‘accessible’ and ‘professional’ online. Even so, the reality for all is that it’s now becoming less and less acceptable to opt out altogether.Tourism Ireland was one of the first Irish state bodies to really embrace social media and continues to successfully promote Ireland overseas using multiple Facebook and Twitter accounts. Their approach? Establish a local social media presence for each market and engage directly with the consumer. An Garda Síochána are using Twitter to show a ‘human’ and humorous side to the force, this tweet is just one example, and the Irish Defence Forces are another State body that get it.Politicians’ use is a bit more hit-and-miss. Gerry Adams has split opinion with his cutesy tweets while Stephen Donnelly hits the mark by engaging with issues and other users, as just two examples.The Digital Policy Council has just released its fifth annual report measuring world leaders’ activity on Twitter. As of last December, four out of every five heads of state are now using the site. Barrack Obama was one of the first to realise its potential by using social media to engage US voters during his initial 2008 campaign and again during his re-election in 2012. Interestingly, during his re-election, he spent 10 times more ($ 47.0 million) on social media than challenger Mitt Romney. Obama’s Social Media strategist, Laura Olin said, “we knew that people getting campaign messages from their friends was so much more powerful than them getting campaign messages directly from us.” Here be dragonsOther politicians, such as former Taoiseach, Brian Cowen, have experienced the negative consequences of social media when his performance during a 2010 radio interview went viral on Twitter and subsequently became an international bad-news story. Former Dragon and entrepreneur, Seán Gallagher, was hot favourite to win the 2011 Irish presidential election, until a spurious tweet read out during a live TV debate destroyed his chances of becoming president.While many countries, cities and government departments now interact with people through social media, a few currently use it to collect information that is used in an analytical way. Washington DC is one example; local government in the US capital gathers information using real-time comments made on Twitter, Facebook and online message boards as well as the government’s own website, to grade and motivate the bureaucracies that handle tasks like administrating drivers’ licences, building permits etc.In 2011, Iceland crowd-sourced their new constitution and used social media to help make the process transparent and collect input from the public. The Constitutional Council, made up of ordinary residents compiled the document online with the help of hundreds of others. The council posted a first draft on their website and then let citizens comment via a Facebook page. Members of the council were also active on Twitter posting videos of themselves to YouTube and uploaded pictures on Flickr.“In the aftermath of the financial crisis, we realised that this wasn’t just an economic or a financial crisis; it was also a social, political and judicial crisis,” said President of Iceland, Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson. “If we were going to allow the nation to regain its strength and position, it wouldn’t be sufficient to deal with it in traditional economic and financial ways. We needed a different democratic approach.”Dipping in and out? Yes, people notice.Many Irish politicians were prepared to leverage social media during their election campaigns but are now less inclined to participate. I find this contrary to the recent debate around the abolition of the Irish Seanad, when many highlighted the need for increased public input. For instance, the number of Irish Twitter users has grown considerably since the last general election in early 2011; however we’ve not seen a new tweet from Enda Kenny’s official account since July of that year.The property bubble, banking crisis and even the recent charities controversies were caused by, amongst other things, a pre-dominance of self-interest. Whether you’re a politician, State body or a public institution, social media provides both direct and indirect opportunities to listen, measure public sentiment and ultimately inform decisio- making. It’s potential as a tool is enormous but it is not without risks. Clear goals, policy, planning, crisis management, trained personal and responding quickly are all key components of an effective social media strategy.The political class have realised the importance of building a digital economy. Now, they need to realise the importance of building a digital democracy.Niall Devitt is co-founder and C.S.O of the Ahain Group, a research led social business consultancy firm. He has authored and co-authored several reports on the Digital Economy and has appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Business Insider and other leading online and offline business publications. In 2009, he co-founded Tweak Your Biz, an international, business advice community and online publication.Social media: the good, the bad and the uglyRead: Is Facebook an ‘infectious disease that will die out’?