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News briefs:January 04, 2008

November 13th, 2018

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Contents

  • 1 Wikinews News Brief January 04, 2008 23:35 UTC
    • 1.1 Introduction
    • 1.2 Israeli troops kill 9 in Gaza
    • 1.3 Georgian President faces election challenge
    • 1.4 US unemployment hits two-year high
    • 1.5 Israel plans crackdown on West Bank settlement outposts
    • 1.6 Transaven Airlines plane carrying 14 people crashes off Venezuelan coast
    • 1.7 Sportswriter Milt Dunnell dies at 102
    • 1.8 2007 was particularly good year for aviation safety
    • 1.9 U.S. Senator Dodd bows out of presidential race
    • 1.10 Intel ends partnership with One Laptop Per Child program
    • 1.11 British Investigators arrive in Pakistan to join Bhutto investigation
    • 1.12 Disgorge bassist Ben Marlin dies from cancer
    • 1.13 Egypt lets 2000 pilgrims through Rafah
    • 1.14 Launch of Space Shuttle Atlantis once again delayed
    • 1.15 Study suggests hospitals are not the best place for cardiac arrest treatment
    • 1.16 US dollar no longer accepted at Taj Mahal and other Indian historical sites
    • 1.17 Footer

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UK Wikinews Shorts: July 8, 2013

November 13th, 2018

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A compilation of brief news reports for Monday, July 8, 2013.

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Who’s the richest entertainer in Australia? The Wiggles of course!

November 13th, 2018

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Saturday, April 9, 2005

The top money grossing entertainers in Australia in 2005 were not Kylie Minogue, Nicole Kidman, or Russell Crowe. In fact, it was four tot-time entertainers, the Wiggles, with their preference for bright colours and sing-along dance numbers. Their earnings level was estimated at AU$45 million over the last year by Australian publication Business Review Weekly (BRW), in its yearly who’s-who ranking of the nation’s top 50 entertainment earners.

“They got into the market early, they took time to understand their audience, not only children but the parents who pay for everything,” BRW managing editor Tony Featherstone, said.

Though almost doubling her earnings from the previous year, Nicole Kidman only made second place, at AU$40m. And Crowe came in third, at “only” AU$27m. Fourth place was long-time heavy metal favourites, AC/DC, whose estimated income was AU$18m.

Another children’s entertainment band, Hi-5 came in sixth with $15m, after Naomi Watts.

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Install Panel Blinds in Conservatory to Give it a Wow Look

by

livinuk

A conservatory is a great addition to any property, but it must be furnished and decorated in such a manner that is has a fantastic spectacular effect. Looking for beautiful furniture and getting the eye-catching conservatory blinds can transform your conservatory into a superb and serene retreat as well as a private getaway for relaxing. When you are contemplating to buy blinds for your conservatory, it is actually very important to keep in mind that blinds are just as essential, if not more, for the reason that these can prevent the sunlight from coming inside the conservatory. A number of options are available when it comes to buying conservatory shades. You can either choose to get the roof blinds that coordinate with the window blinds of conservatory or you may pick up the panel blinds for roof and natural weaves blinds for windows.

Panel window curtains are stylish and contemporary if that is the appearance you want to go for. These cover a large space that makes them the perfect choice for keeping most of the light out and for complete privacy. For this reason, they are appropriate for the large-sized windows, room dividers, and patio doors. If you like to change the d cor of your conservatory time and again, then you can decide for the simple and basic panel shades. A neutral bunch of blinds will definitely go well with any color scheme and any design of interior decor you opt.

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The buyers have a wide assortment of materials, styles, and colors at hand when it comes to panel shades, which can also be tailor-made, thus, enabling them to get a perfect fit for the windows of their conservatory. These fashionable and well-designed blinds will offer your conservatory the polish and make them look extremely beautiful.

Pleated blinds appear to be very attractive and neat and are fabricated using material having thermal insulation properties that reflect heat, thereby, keeping the conservatory cool. This is a good thing as these help the user to save energy, simultaneously letting you control the light and climate inside the conservatory.

The same way as with the panel blinds, you can also get the pleated blinds for roof of the conservatory that can be securely installed to work well with the conservatory window blinds. Moreover, the choice is not just limited to these blinds, you can also look for natural weaves blinds, roller blinds, Venetian blinds and there is a huge list that can also be ideal for the conservatory.

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Article Source:

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Asbestos victims file 6.6 billion yen class action lawsuit in Tokyo

November 13th, 2018

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Saturday, May 17, 2008

Construction workers and next of kin of deceased workers filed a lawsuit in Tokyo, Japan Friday seeking damages of approximately 6.6 billion yen (about US$64 million) from the government and manufacturers related to illnesses stemming from exposure to asbestos. 178 plaintiffs; including construction workers and family members filed the suit in Tokyo District Court against 46 building manufacturers and the Government of Japan.

According to the Mainichi Daily News, the class action suit is the first that has been filed in Japan related to health damages caused by asbestos exposure at construction sites. The plaintiffs hail from the Japanese prefectures of Tokyo, Saitama and Chiba.

The plaintiffs claim that the government and manufacturers knew of the dangers of asbestos inhalation but failed to take proper precautions, including ceasing to promote asbestos as a cheap fire retardant and banning production of the material.

They state that after inhaling asbestos in the workplace, 172 people have developed lung cancer or mesothelioma, and that almost half of those afflicted are now dead. Plaintiffs argue that the government and health ministry did not act quickly enough after international organizations issued warnings in 1972 that asbestos could be a carcinogen.

Plaintiffs also place blame with the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry for sanctioning the use of asbestos under Japanese Industrial Standards, and with the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport for approving the use of materials comprised of asbestos and other substances under Japan’s Building Standards Law.

We will do our utmost until we win the suit.

“We will do our utmost until we win the suit,” said Kazuo Miyajima, 78, who heads the group of plaintiffs. Lawyers for the plaintiffs released a statement saying: “We seek complete relief for the victims by clarifying the liability of the state and the manufacturers.”

Approximately 40 construction workers from Kanagawa Prefecture plan to file a similar lawsuit in June in Yokohama District Court.

After a 2005 revelation that residents who lived near a factory in Amagasaki, Hyogo Prefecture developed diseases related to asbestos, the government implemented a law in 2006 which provides monetary assistance to asbestos victims and relatives of deceased family members. The plaintiffs argue that the amount of financial assistance given to families and victims of asbestos-related diseases is not sufficient.

Asbestos has been used in Japan as a fire retardant, for sound absorption, and for insulation. It was mixed in concrete and water and sprayed on walls and ceilings, but the practice of spraying asbestos in this manner was banned in Japan in 1975.

Armstrong announces retirement from professional cycling

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Armstrong announces retirement from professional cycling

November 12th, 2018

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Monday, April 18, 2005

At a press conference Monday, Lance Armstrong announced his intention to retire from professional cycling after going for his 7th Tour de France title in July 2005.

“Ultimately, athletes have to retire,” said the 33 year-old American. “The body doesn’t just keep going and going.”

Speculation on the retirement of the six-time Tour de France winner had been growing in recent months. The Texan had hinted at wanting to spend more time with his children and his cancer charity, the Lance Armstrong Foundation. There was talk he may marry his well-known girlfriend, rock-star singer Sheryl Crow.

Armstrong battled with testicular cancer in 1996 before coming back to win the 1999 edition of the legendary French race. He went on to win the next five Tours de France and is now widely regarded as one of the greatest riders in the history of the sport.

Asked about his chances for Tour success, he expressed hope tempered with praise for his opponents. “Can I win this year? I’m not sure, but I’ll try… This will be a different year for the Tour with Jan Ullrich looking better and a host of young riders coming up,” he said.

Should Armstrong follow through with his plans, he will begin his final race in the United States tomorrow at the first stage of the Tour de Georgia. He has successfully used the springtime race in the past as a tune-up to the Tour de France in the summer. The contract with his new team sponsor, the Discovery Channel, obligates him to compete in one more Tour de France.

Norwegian government considers prosecuting Scientology

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Norwegian government considers prosecuting Scientology

November 12th, 2018

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Sunday, May 31, 2009

The Norwegian Ministry of Health and Care Services is considering prosecuting and banning some Scientology practices, in particular the use of the Scientology personality test to sell courses. State Secretary Rigmor Aasrud said that the activities in question might be prosecuted as fraud or as violations of existing healthcare regulations. A Norwegian Member of Parliament (MP) whose daughter killed herself after taking such a test, supports the idea of prosecuting illegal practices rather than trying to ban the movement as a whole.

Also stupid or clearly false expressions must be allowed as free expressions in a democracy, as long as individuals are not harmed by the expressions. The questionable thing about the Scientology cult is, however, that their operation is harmful for individuals.

The statement was made after three journalists from the online edition of the newspaper Verdens Gang (VG) took the test. The journalists wore hidden recording devices, and did not disclose that they were journalists; VG put the recordings on its website. Scientology staff members told all three that they should buy a course to handle psychological issues. Two of the journalists filled out the 200 questions with honest answers, while the third gave answers consistent with being depressed. The “depressed” journalist was told that he should avoid traditional medicine, while one of the “normal” journalists was told that the course was her only hope for improvement unless she wanted to start taking “chemicals”.

Matthias Fosse, spokesperson for the Church of Scientology in Norway, said that the staff members in question were acting individually. He said that the Church of Scientology does not give medical advice, but that it encourages people to focus on the side effects of medications, and is critical of the “over-medication” of psychiatric patients.

Olav Gunnar Ballo, a Norwegian MP and medical doctor whose daughter Kaja suddenly killed herself after a negative experience with the Scientology test in France in March 2008, released a book about Kaja Ballo‘s life in April 2009. The book debuted on 2nd place in the Norwegian best seller list. Ballo listened to the recorded test result sessions from VG and said that he found the practice “horrible and harmful”. He told the newspaper Dagbladet that Norway could have something to learn from the current French prosecution of Scientology corporations and individuals, by prosecuting specific harmful practices rather than banning Scientology as a whole.

Matthias Fosse said that France is a far more secular society than Norway, and that France were going too far in their prosecution. He said that France has a list of 165 organizations considered to be “sects”, which not just included Scientology but also covered Baptists such as former U.S. president Bill Clinton. The list which Fosse referred to is a list from the 1995 Parliamentary Commission on Cults in France. Fosse said that the OSCE, the U.S. State Department and the UN had criticised French “violations of human rights”.

More than 80 people killed in Nice, France attack on Bastille Day

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More than 80 people killed in Nice, France attack on Bastille Day

November 11th, 2018

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Friday, July 15, 2016

Yesterday at about 10:30 pm local time (2030 UTC) in the French city of Nice, a truck killed at least 84 people and more than 100 people were injured, at least 18 critically, who were watching fireworks on Bastille Day evening, French officials reported. The attacker was later shot dead by the police.

The attacker drove for some distance — by one report as much as 2 km (more than a mile) — through the crowd along the Promenade des Anglais. The owner of the Le Queenie Restaurant near the seaport told  France Info, “People went down like ninepins”.

Agence France-Presse reported police had discovered identity papers of a 31-year old Tunisian-Frenchman along with, according to one source, fake weapons including rifles and an “inactive” grenade.

20-year-old eyewitness Fanny told Reuters the fast-approaching truck was moving in a zigzag manner, driving in the pedestrian area. Another survivor described sheltering with others in a restaurant. An eyewitness named Nader told BFM TV he thought the driver had lost control of the truck. Later, he also saw the driver taking out a gun.

European Council President Donald Tusk said, “Tragic paradox that the subject of the Nice Attack was people celebrating liberty, equality, and fraternity” ((fr))French language: ?C’est un tragique paradoxe que les cibles de l’attaque Nice attaque soient les gens qui célébraient liberté, égalité, fraternité.

French president François Hollande tweeted, “France is tearful, sorrowful, but she is strong and will always be more than the fanatics who now want to smite her.” ((fr))French language: ?La France est éplorée, affligée, mais elle est forte et le sera toujours plus que les fanatiques qui veulent aujourd’hui la frapper.

A few hours before the incident, Hollande had announced the state of emergency would be lifted on July 26 after November’s Paris attack, but after this incident, he announced extending the state of emergency into October. Condemning the incident, he said, “We will further strengthen our actions in Iraq and in Syria.” He also said “operational reserves” will be called up to support the armed forces in France.

Helpline numbers:

  • 04 93 72 22 22 (Public information ((fr))French language: ?une cellule d’information du public)
  • 01 43 17 56 46 (Interministerial aid to victims ((fr))French language: ?la cellule interministerielle d’aide aux victimes)

UK electoral commission asked to investigate News International payoffs

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UK electoral commission asked to investigate News International payoffs

November 11th, 2018

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Thursday, August 25, 2011

The United Kingdom electoral commission has been asked to investigate whether payments made by News International to Andy Coulson amidst the recent phone hacking scandal were illegal.

Labor MP Tom Watson, who has been a driving force in the phone hacking scandal, called for the investigation after he believed that payments and benefits made to Coulson, including private health benefits and a company car, should have been declared as a political donation. Mr Watson has reportedly been trying to uncover whether Coulson declared these payments to the cultures committee upon applying for access to parliament.

MPs are bewildered by Prime Minister David Cameron’s hiring of Coulson without anyone looking into his financial history, and many have expressed outrage as the reports contradict evidence given by the former News of The World editor to the culture committee in 2009. He allegedly told the committee that he had received a salary of £275,000 and that he did not have a second income.

Coulson is expected to face further questioning from the committee about the payments after he is cleared from the phone hacking scandal.

Robert Peston, a journalist for the BBC, claimed that Mr Coulson had received several hundred thousand pounds from News International after he began working for the Conservative Party. Despite his ousting in 2007, Mr Coulson received his severance pay in installments from News International until the end of that year.

Coulson was known to have received a payoff after his resignation from News of the World in 2007. The resignation came after the conviction of journalist Clive Goodman for phone hacking.

The Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee has stated that both Coulson and News International should have informed the committee about the payments. The investigation will decide whether or not the electoral committee has been misled by Coulson, and whether the payments should be considered as a political donation.

The committee is expected to meet in early September to decide on a plan of action.

Wikinews Shorts: September 11, 2006

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Wikinews Shorts: September 11, 2006

November 10th, 2018

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Monday, September 11, 2006

September 9, 2006

The Queensland state election has been won by the Peter Beattie led labor government. After a colourful campaign featuring disunity between the liberal-national coalition and a forecasted protest vote that failed to eventuate against labor, Beattie maintained his considerable margin in the 89 seat legislative assembly winning a predicted 60 seats with approximately 70% of votes counted. The nationals and liberals are predicted to pick up 16 and nine seats respectively.

September 10, 2006

Leander Paes and Martin Damm crowned their first year as a pair on Saturday as they beat Jonas Bjorkman and Max Mirnyi 6-7, 6-4, 6-3 to win the men’s doubles title at the 2006 U.S. Open tennis tournament.

Paes and Damm had lost the first set and their serve broken in the second set managed to win their first title of the year.

Paes said communication had been the key to his success with Damm. “I don’t think there are enough words to express how much fun and how much learning I’ve actually had playing with Martin, because we’re actually opposites on the court,” Paes said.”Martin is strong and plays more solid. I’m more flashy and a bit more quick. We really complement each other.”It’s been a fantastic year playing with him. I’ve really enjoyed it. I’d like to thank him for a wonderful year.”

September 10, 2006

The situation in Malegaon is calm, two days after multiple blasts killed 38 people and left 200 others injured. The police are investigating cautiously and are yet to find definite clues or detain suspects.A special ten-member team of Mahrasthra’s Anti-Terror Squad (ATS) is in Malegaon to probe blasts.National Security Guards (NSG) is inspecting the site as well.Investigators admit that cracking the Malegaon mystery will be tough one and so for there have been no arrests or detentions.

Related news:

  • “Muslims in Gujarat hold anti-Pakistan rally” — Wikinews, September 9, 2006
  • “38 dead, over 180 injured as blasts rock Maharashtra town” — Wikinews, September 8, 2006

September 10, 2006

A mid-air collision has taken the life of Swedish aerobatics champion Gabor Varga. Shortly after the in-flight tangle, the two planes crashed into the sea as co-competitor Eddie Goggins of Ireland parachuted into the sea where Maltese Armed Forces rescued him.

The incident comes only days after Aero GP announced a sponsorship deal with Betfair, giving the Malta Aero GP the official title, Aero GP Betfair Grand Prix of Malta.

The competition in the Aero GP involves a variety of skill tests for the pilots, testing their racing, dogfighting and target-bombing abilities.

September 10, 2006

An earthquake struck in the Gulf of Mexico with a magnitude of 6.0, a strength very rare for that region of the world, at 10:56am EDT (14:56 UTC) on September 10. Although no damage has been reported, it has been reported that tremors were felt in Orlando and Ocala in the state of Florida.

According to the U.S. Geographical Survey, the quake’s epicenter was 260 miles (418 km) WSW (240°) of Clearwater, Florida, and 329 miles (529 km) southeast (145°) of New Orleans, Louisiana, at a depth of 6.2 miles (10 km).

USGS officials stated that the quake was not strong enough to trigger a tsunami. Tremor intensities as high as Force IV on the Modified Mercalli scale were felt throughout Florida.