Thursday, May 10, 2012

Germany remains opposed to calls for economic stimulus in Europe

BERLIN — French President-elect Francois Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel have each been prescribing the same salve — growth — to ease Europe’s economic ills. But the medicines vary sharply on either side of the Rhine.

And though European leaders will meet later this month to try to work out their differences, the 17 countries that share the euro currency remain far from abandoning the debt-funding spending cuts that Germany has long championed.

Hollande’s version of growth involves spending more money to stimulate jobs and economic recovery. Merkel’s version remains focused on slow-moving economic measures, such as making it easier to hire and fire workers, that increase short-term pain before yielding long-term benefits.

As opponents of austerity won elections in both France and Greece this weekend, some analysts and government officials, including some at the International Monetary Fund, have suggested giving governments more time to reduce their deficits, thus taking some of the bite out of steep budget cuts. Read More

UN condemns Syria bomb attacks after 55 killed and Injured 400

DAMASCUS — The UN Security Council condemned the deadliest bomb attacks of Syria's 14-month uprising, urging all sides to stick to an international peace plan after at least 55 people were killed.

The Syrian government and opposition traded the blame for Thursday's twin suicide bomb attacks in Damascus, which also left nearly 400 people wounded in horrific scenes of carnage.

Syrian state television aired gruesome footage of the aftermath of the twin explosions in the neighbourhood of Qazzaz, blaming rebels seeking to topple President Bashar al-Assad's embattled regime.

The television showed images of a woman's charred hand on a steering wheel, her gold bracelets dangling from her blackened wrist. Other burnt and mangled bodies lay in the street amid the carcasses of smouldering vehicles and rubble.

Russia and China, which have stymied Western efforts to heap stronger condemnation on Assad's government, joined in a UN Security Council denunciation of the attacks.

The 15 Security Council members "condemned in the strongest terms the terrorist attacks" in the Syrian capital, according to a statement. Read More

Woman Arrested After Search For 'Missing Baby'

A woman has been arrested on suspicion of wasting police time after a major
search was launched for a baby thought to be lost at sea.

The land and sea operation in Belfast Lough was cancelled when officers said initial reports that an infant had fallen from a ferry were incorrect.

The search got under way after the woman plunged from the Stena Line vessel as it made its way into port from Cairnryan in Scotland on Wednesday night.

Police said they were told that the woman, who fell into the sea as the boat arrived in Belfast, had a baby with her, prompting an extensive search.

But after a complex police investigation, which included interviewing the woman's family, officers said they no longer believed a child was in her care at the time. Read More

Romney Sorry Over High School Bullying

Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney has apologised after a newspaper reported that he had been among a group of students who bullied a classmate they presumed was gay.

"I did some dumb things and if anybody was hurt by that or offended ... obviously, I apologise," he said.

Mr Romney was responding to a Washington Post story that described an incident in 1965 in which the former Massachusetts Governor apparently pinned down a fellow student and attempted cut his bleached-blonde hair.

According to former classmates named in the article, Romney apparently led the attack against student John Lauber, who was "perpetually teased for his non-conformity and presumed homosexuality". Read More

JP Morgan Chase Hit By 'Embarrassing' $2bn Loss

JP Morgan Chase, the largest bank in the US, has admitted losing $2bn in a trading portfolio designed to protect the company against risks it took with its own money.

Chief executive Jamie Dimon blamed "errors, sloppiness and bad judgement" for the embarrassing loss.

"The portfolio has proved to be riskier, more volatile and less effective as an economic hedge than we thought," he said.

JP Morgan came through the 2008 financial crisis better than many other US banks, never posting a loss and remaining strong enough to take over investment bank Bear Stearns and consumer bank Washington Mutual when they collapsed. Read More

'British' Double Agent Foiled Plane Bomb Plot



The double agent who helped foil an al Qaeda plot to blow up a US-bound plane was a British national, possibly of Saudi origin, American officials have said.

UK intelligence played a central role in the operation that thwarted the plan to send a suicide attacker onto an aircraft with an underwear bomb, they added.

The undercover investigation reportedly involved MI5 and MI6, and the foiled plot ended with the explosive device being delivered to the FBI.

Its experts are examining it to see if it could have passed through security and been taken on to a plane.

The spy reportedly infiltrated a terror group in Yemen in a rare coup for Western agencies.

The individual is believed to have grown up in Europe where he was apparently radicalised.

He was subsequently "turned" and recruited by Saudi agents last year, it was claimed.

The reports were neither being confirmed nor denied in the UK.

The Obama administration had reportedly been under heavy pressure not to disclose the role of British authorities in the investigation. Read More

5.1 Magnitude Earthquake BOUGAINVILLE REGION, PAPUA NEW GUINEA - 11th May 2012

A magnitude 5.1 earthquake has struck the Bougainville Region, Papua New Guinea at a depth of 200 km (124 miles), the quake hit at 01:31:59 UTC Friday 11th May 2012
The epicenter was 69 km (42 miles) West of Arawa, Bougainville, Papua New Guinea
No Tsunami Warning Issued - No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this time

4.4 Magnitude Earthquake SERAM, INDONESIA - 11th May 2012

A magnitude 4.4 earthquake has struck Seram, Indonesia at a depth of 35 km (21.7 miles), the quake hit at 00:52:07 UTC Friday 11th May 2012
The epicenter was 163 km (101 miles) ENE of Ambon, Moluccas, Indonesia
No Tsunami Warning Issued - No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this time

4.3 Magnitude Earthquake BANDA SEA - 10th May 2012

A magnitude 4.3 earthquake has struck the Banda Sea at a depth of 150.7 km (93.6 miles), the quake hit at 23:45:44 UTC Thursday 10th May 2012
The epicenter was 208 km (129 miles) NNW of Saumlaki, Kepulauan Tanimbar, Indonesia
No Tsunami Warning Issued - No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this time

3.1 Magnitude Earthquake INDIANA - 10th May 2012

A magnitude 3.1 earthquake has struck Indiana at a depth of 11 km (6.8 miles), the quake hit at 22:54:05 UTC Thursday 10th May 2012
The epicenter was 6 km (3.7 miles) ESE from Russellville, Illinois
No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this time

3.9 Magnitude Earthquake OKLAHOMA - 10th May 2012

A magnitude 3.9 earthquake has struck Oklahoma at a depth of 6.8 km (4.2 miles), the quake hit at 21:14:31 UTC Thursday 10th May 2012
The epicenter was 27 km (16 miles) NNE of Shawnee, Oklahoma
No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this time

5.2 Magnitude Earthquake MOLUCCA SEA - 10th May 2012

A magnitude 5.2 earthquake has struck the Molucca Sea at a depth of 8.6 km (5.3 miles), the quake hit at 19:11:22 UTC Thursday 10th May 2012
The epicenter was 136 km (84 miles) WNW of Ternate, Moluccas, Indonesia
No Tsunami Warning Issued - No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this time

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Billions Of Life-Bearing Planets Could Exist

Billions more life-bearing planets the size of Earth may exist in the Milky Way, a study has claimed.

The research by an international team of scientists suggested a few hundred thousand billion of these dimly-lit icy planets, harbouring microbial life, could be floating in spaces between stars.

That equates to a few thousand for every star in the Milky Way.

The scientists believe the planets originated in the early Universe within a few million years of the Big Bang, and that they make up most of the so-called "missing mass" of galaxies.

According to their calculations, such planetary bodies would cross the inner solar system every 25 million years, and during each transit, zodiacal dust, including a component of the solar system's living cells, becomes implanted on the surface of these planets.

Since the first planet outside the solar system was discovered in 1995, the search for other so-called exoplanets has continued with some 750 now detected. Read More

Egypt Seizes Suspected Libyan Weapons‎

A senior Egyptian police official said, Thursday that Egyptian forces had seized a large shipment of heavy weaponry on the Mediterranean coast, 430 kilometers northwest of Cairo. The official said the three-vehicle shipment included 40 surface-to-surface missiles, 17 rocket-propelled-grenade launchers, automatic weapons and 10,000 shell.

Two of the three drivers arrested are residents of the Egyptian city of Rafah on the Gaza border. During their interrogation, they told police that the arms were intended for use against security forces in the Sinai Peninsula as part of efforts to create chaos before the presidential election on May 23rd and 24th. The official said it was likely that the weapons came from Libya which has become an important source for illegal weapons since 2011's civil war, when civilians took control of army bases and armories. Source

Pentagon’s Newest Ballistic Missile-Blaster Shoots Down Its Target

The Pentagon’s newest ballistic missile interceptor successfully destroyed a test missile off the coast of Hawaii late Wednesday. It’s a first for the latest upgrade to the America’s — and NATO’s — main defense against a missile attack from North Korea or Iran, assuming one ever comes.

According to the Pentagon’s Missile Defense Agency, the test involved a short-range target missile launched shortly after 8:00 p.m. Hawaiian time from the military’s Kauai-based Pacific Missile Range. The target missile then blasted out over the Pacific Ocean, where it was tracked by the Aegis cruiser U.S.S Lake Erie, and then destroyed in mid-flight with a “kinetic” interceptor launched from the ship, “using only the force of a direct impact,” the Pentagon’s statement read. That means the test missile was brought down by blunt-force trauma — termed “hit to kill” — by the interceptor. Read More

Mayan art and calendar at Xultun stun archaeologists

Archaeologists working at the Xultun ruins of the Mayan civilisation have reported striking finds, including the oldest-known Mayan astronomical tables.

The site, in Guatemala, includes the first known instance of Mayan art painted on the walls of a dwelling.

A report in Science says it dates from the early 9th Century, pre-dating other Mayan calendars by centuries.

Such calendars rose to prominence recently amid claims they predicted the end of the world in 2012.

The Mayan civilisation occupied Central America from about 2000BC until its decline and assimilation following the colonisation by the Spanish from the 15th Century onwards. It still holds fascination, with many early Mayan sites still hidden or uncatalogued.

The ruins at Xultun were first discovered in 1912 and mapping efforts in the 1920s and 1970s laid out much of the site's structure. Read More

Greece's Leftist Syriza Leader Says International Loan Deal Invalid

ATHENS (Dow Jones)--The head of the leftist Syriza party of Greece sent a letter Thursday to European leaders saying the country's loan agreement with international creditors is no longer valid following national elections.

Alexis Tsipras, who led Syriza to second place in the polls on Sunday with 16.8% of the vote and who failed Wednesday to form a coalition government, also said the debt crisis is not Greek, but rather, European, and must be resolved by the European Union as a whole.

"The Greek people's vote on Sunday, May 6 does not give political legitimacy to the [loan agreement], which was signed by the previous government," says the letter, sent to European Commission President Jose Manuel Barosso, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, European Parliament President Martin Schultz, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi and Eurogroup President Jean Claude Juncker.

The 37-year-old head of the Syriza, or Coalition of the Radical Left, campaigned against the austerity policies championed by Greece's European partners and accepted in return for bailout funds. Syriza more than tripled its share of the vote compared with previous elections in 2009 and relegated the socialist Pasok party to third place. Pasok and the conservative New Democracy were coalition partners in the previous government.

In Brussels, a senior European Union official said Thursday the agreement Greece signed with the European Commission in March to secure a bailout is nonnegotiable. "The large and small print are as they are and cannot be negotiated," the official, who requested anonymity, told reporters.

Tsipras met with the leaders of New Democracy, Pasok and other parties Wednesday to form a new administration, but no deal was reached.

"Apart from the lack of democratic legitimacy, the continuity of this program of internal devaluation leads to the destruction of the economy without creating conditions for recovery," according to the letter, a copy of which was received by Dow Jones Newswires. Read More

Severe outbreak of malaria in Madagascar has killed seven people since the beginning of the month

Antananarivo - A particularly severe outbreak of malaria in Madagascar has killed seven people since the beginning of the month and has left 60 others in need of hospitalization, the country's health minister said Thursday.

Madagascar has seen an increase in the number of malaria cases in the first months of 2012 when compared with the previous year, government officials say.

Local doctors say the increase is likely a result of changing climate conditions, which have made the region more hospitable to the insects which carry the disease.

Moreover, the country suffered a coup in 2009 and Madagascar has been in a political stalemate ever since, despite regional efforts to reach an agreement between the military-backed rulers and the old regime now in exile. Read More

Baby boy dies after 'fall from moving car'

Police are investigating the circumstances surrounding the death of a baby boy, who is believed to have fallen from a moving car.

West Midlands Police said the incident took place nearly a week ago, at the junction of Green Lane and Talfourd Street, in Small Heath, Birmingham.

The 10-month-old from Birmingham, suffered serious head injuries and died on Tuesday in hospital.

Officers investigating the incident, together with local neighbourhood officers, will be at the location between 11.30am and 2pm tomorrow, which is one week on from the incident, to talk to motorists and passers-by who may have seen what took place.

Detective Sergeant Simon Kirman, from the Public Protection Unit at Birmingham North Police, said: "The exact circumstances surrounding how the child became injured are currently being investigated and a post mortem will be taking place.

"We are urgently appealing for anyone who may have seen the incident or witnessed how the child managed to fall from the vehicle to contact us." Read More

Media Spins Wild Conspiracy Theories To Sell NATO Attack on Syria

'Greece better off in default & outside Eurozone'

Turkey ups Iran oil imports despite sanctions

Russia: 2014 Olympics terror plot foiled

Moscow (CNN) -- Russia's security service has foiled a plot to attack the 2014 Winter Olympics in the Black Sea city of Sochi, state media reported Thursday.

Authorities arrested three men this week in Georgia's breakaway republic of Abkhazia on charges of plotting the attack in a joint operation with Abkhazian security services, the Russian National Anti-Terrorism Committee said, according to the state-run RIA Novosti news agency.

The three are suspected of being ringleaders of a regional cell of the North Caucasus-based terrorist group Caucasus Emirate.

Police seized weapons, including three portable surface-to-air missiles, two anti-tank guided missiles, a mortar and a flamethrower, the news agency said. Read More

4.7 Magnitude Earthquake FIJI REGION - 10th May 2012

A magnitude 4.7 earthquake has struck the Fiji Region at a depth of 604.4 km (375.6 miles), the quake hit at 16:15:31 UTC Thursday 10th May 2012
The epicenter was 70 km (43 miles) NNE of Ndoi Island, Fiji
No Tsunami Warning Issued - No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this time

William Hague condemns suicide blasts in Syria but Urges Regime to Lay Arms down......What!!! and allow the Terrorist to take over Syria?

William Hague condemned suicide bombings that killed at least 55 and injured 300 in the Syrian capital Damascus today and urged the regime to implement a full ceasefire.

The Foreign Secretary said civilians continued to pay the price for its failure to end repression and violence despite agreeing to a United Nations peace plan.

In the deadliest such terror attacks since the uprising against President Bashar Assad's government 14 months ago, two explosions tore the front off a military intelligence building.

The government and opposition blamed each other for the bloodshed but there were growing concerns that it was a sign that al Qaida-inspired terror groups were beginning to exploit the chaos. Read More

Damascus Syrian Terrorist Attacks





Source

Heat wave Killed 4,450 pelicans on Peru's beaches... as mystery still surrounds deaths of 900 dolphins...DO they think we were Born Yesterday?

Thousands of pelicans that perished on Peru's northern beaches died because of a heat wave, scientists have claimed.

Investigators looking into the deaths of 4,450 of the birds say hotter than usual ocean temperatures have driven anchovies deeper into the sea, beyond the reach of many young.

But scientists studying the deaths of dolphins and porpoises from early February to mid-April say that particular phenomenon still remains a mystery.
Their inability to discover what had happened was due in part, they said, to the government's slowness in investigating.

Authorities were so late in gathering tissues from the mammals that crucial clues were likely to have been lost, said dolphin death probe scientist Armando Hung, head of the molecular biology lab at Cayetano Heredia University. Read More

Doinita Mitaru 'slit throat of son, 4, and intended to kill other nine children'

A mother who slit the throat of her four-year-old son had intentions to kill all nine of her children with the same knife, according to police.

Doinita Mitaru, 44, from Polk County, Missouri, was arrested and charged with first-degree assault and armed criminal action on Tuesday.

Her son is in critical condition in hospital.

Detective Billy Simpson said she told him she intended to kill all nine of her children when he interviewed her at the sheriff's station.

He said Mitaru admitted she 'attempted to kill the boy by cutting his neck with a knife'.

'She also advised that her intentions were to kill all nine of her children with the knife . . . but that she was unable to because her children woke up and started screaming after she cut the neck' of the four-year-old.

The children all range in age from four years old to 19. Read More

TSA officers 'board plane and brand toddler a terror suspect'......The 18 Month old was on a no fly list

A family said they have been left 'humiliated' after they were ordered off a flight because airline staff claimed their 18-month-old was on a no fly list.

The girl's parents, who did not wish to be identified, believe Jet Blue asked them to leave the flight as they thought little Riyanna was a terror suspect.

An employee approached the family and said officers from the Transport Security Agency at the Fort Lauderdale Airport wished to speak with them.

The girl's mother told WPBF she asked 'For what?' and the employee said: 'It's not you or your husband. Your daughter was flagged as no fly.'

Her husband added: 'It made no sense. Why would an 18-month-old child be on a no-fly list?'

The parents believe they were stopped as they are both of Middle Eastern descent. Riyanna's mother wears a head scarf.

Both were born in the United States and raised in New Jersey. They were flying from Florida to their home in New Jersey when they were stopped. Read More

British man 'sexually assaulting woman and then being beaten up' causes outrage in China after being posted online

An online video of a British tourist carrying out a drunken sex attack has caused outrage in China.

The disturbing three-minute footage has been watched by millions and shows a young male dressed in a polo shirt and tracksuit trousers standing over a Chinese women lying in a flower bed in central Beijing.

The woman is heard crying out in distress – and saying she does not know the foreign man.

Her calls are heard by several Chinese men who come to her aid and physically attack the foreign national while one films the summary justice.

Police arrested a 'drunk' British suspect shortly after the incident, an Chinese official said via a statement.

'Officers have detained a British man suspected of sexually assaulting a woman in Beijing on Tuesday night,' the statement said.

A Beijing Public Security Bureau official said the suspect, who has not been named, holds a tourist visa.

A British Embassy spokesman told MailOnline: 'We are aware of the reports about this incident and the claims that the suspect in detention is British.

'But we have not been contacted by Chinese police or anybody else at this stage. We are monitoring the situation.'

In the film, which last night had been viewed by three million viewers, the alleged sex attacker is beaten and left with his clothes torn lying unconscious in the middle of a busy road.

Traffic navigates around him.

The Chinese men are then seen jumping on him and calling him obscene names and derogatory racist terms for a foreigner.

Tens of thousands of Chinese have expressed anger online, with many demanding police make an example of the 'foreigner' and punish him severely.

If found guilty of attempted rape, the suspect, who has not been named, could face three to ten years in prison under Chinese law. Rape carries the death penalty in China. Source