Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Cleggie's bluff has been called. Now it's time the PM put him back in his playpen

That Roman emperor no one liked — the one whose lions dined off Christians in place of Pedigree Chum and who was accused of playing light music while his capital burned down — seems to have been a model of gravitas compared to the Liberal Democrats.

The party of Nick Clegg has an eye for the irrelevant and trivial, an instinct for embracing silliness, a nose for nonsense, which we would all find richly comic but for the fact the Lib Dems are part of Britain’s Coalition Government.

Before the last opening of Parliament, David Cameron asked Clegg if there was anything special he would like put in the Queen’s Speech, outlining forthcoming legislation.

The Lib Dems are men and women of powerful passions and clear priorities. Perhaps they would welcome a Bill to impose quotas for women in TV comedy? Or to outlaw cruelty to moorhens?

No, said little Nick with quiet firmness. All he wanted was House of Lords reform.

And thus, this month, the Government put such a measure before Parliament: a Bill to halve the size of the Second Chamber and make it 80 per cent elected.

The outcome is a widely predicted political shambles. Last night, the Government was obliged to cancel a key vote on the Bill, because close to 100 Tory MPs would have refused to support it. Read More

Russia drafts resolution to extend UN Syria mission

(Reuters) - Russia circulated among U.N. Security Council members on Tuesday a draft resolution to extend a U.N. mission in Syria for three months so it can shift focus from monitoring a non-existent truce to securing a political solution to the conflict.

The deeply divided council must decide the future of the mission, known as UNSMIS, before July 20 when its initial 90-day mandate expires. International envoy Kofi Annan is due to brief the council on Wednesday on his bid to broker peace in Syria.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's forces have killed more than 15,000 people since a crackdown on pro-democracy protesters began in March 2011, some Western leaders say. Damascus says rebels have killed several thousand of its security forces.

The Russian draft resolution is unlikely to satisfy the United States and European council members, who have called for a resolution under Chapter 7 of the U.N. Charter, which allows the council to authorize actions ranging from diplomatic and economic sanctions to military intervention.

U.S. officials have said they are talking about sanctions on Syria, not military intervention. Read More

More West Midlands Men Charged With Terrorism

A further three men have been charged over terrorism offences following a spate of arrests in the Birmingham area.

A further three men from the West Midlands have been charged with terrorism offence following a series of arrests last week.

The men, two aged 22 and one 24, will appear at Westminster Magistrates' Court in London on Wednesday.

The charges follow arrests made last week by the West Midlands Counter Terrorism Unit, assisted by the North East Counter Terrorism Unit, West Midlands Police said.

A 43-year-old man from Kirklees, West Yorkshire, was released on Tuesday evening without charge.

A police spokesman said: "The Crown Prosecution Service has advised that three men should be charged under section 5(1) of the Terrorism Act 2006 with engaging in conduct between 1 May 2012 and 4 July 2012 in preparation for an act or acts
of terrorism with the intention of committing such acts.

"That alleged conduct includes the manufacture of an improvised explosive device, the acquisition of firearms and other weapons, and the purchase of motor vehicles connected with their plans." Read More

Death Of Tetra Pak Heir's Wife 'A Mystery'

As her billionaire husband is quizzed by police, an autopsy on the body of Eva Rausing fails to shed any light on her death.

The death of one of Britain’s richest women in her London home remains unexplained after an initial post-mortem proved inconclusive.

Eva Rausing, the 48-year-old wife of the heir to the £6.5bn Tetra Pak drinks carton fortune, was found dead by officers on Tuesday as they searched her home in Belgravia, one of London's most expensive residential areas.

It is reported that her husband, Hans Kristian Rausing, is being held by police in connection with her death.

The 49-year-old heir, whose Swedish father helped transform Tetra Pak into a hugely successful manufacturer, was originally been arrested on suspicion of possession of drugs on Monday.

He is said to be receiving medical attention while in custody.

American-born Mrs Rausing and her husband have both had long-running and often public battles against drug addiction.

On Tuesday police said that further tests were being carried out on her body after an autopsy was inconclusive.

Officers from the Homicide and Serious Crime division are now investigating the case "and the death continues to be treated at this time as unexplained", police said. Read More

4.3 Magnitude Earthquake GULF OF CALIFORNIA - 11th July 2012

A magnitude 4.3 earthquake has struck the GULF OF CALIFORNIA at a depth of 15 km (9.3 miles), the quake hit at 02:58:17 UTC Wednesday 11th July 2012
The epicenter was 83 km (51 miles) North of La Paz, Mexico
No Tsunami Warning Issued - No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this

5.1 Magnitude Earthquake KURIL ISLANDS - 11th July 2012

A magnitude 5.1 earthquake has struck the KURIL ISLANDS at a depth of 49.3 km (30.6 miles), the quake hit at 02:50:02 UTC Wednesday 11th July 2012
The epicenter was 285 km (177 miles) East of Kuril'sk, Russia
No Tsunami Warning Issued - No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this

5.5 Magnitude Earthquake KURIL ISLANDS - 11th July 2012

A magnitude 5.5 earthquake has struck the KURIL ISLANDS at a depth of 37.2 km (23.1 miles), the quake hit at 02:31:20 UTC Wednesday 11th July 2012
The epicenter was 280 km (173 miles) East of Kuril'sk, Russia
No Tsunami Warning Issued - No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this time

5.0 Magnitude Earthquake KEPULAUAN OBI, INDONESIA - 11th July 2012

A magnitude 5.0 earthquake has struck KEPULAUAN OBI, INDONESIA at a depth of 1 km (0.6 miles), the quake hit at 01:11:38 UTC Wednesday 11th July 2012
The epicenter was 206 km (127.7 miles) Northwest of Ambon, Indonesia
No Tsunami Warning Issued - No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this time

4.1 Magnitude Earthquake OFFSHORE COQUIMBO, CHILE - 11th July 2012

A magnitude 4.1 earthquake has struck OFFSHORE COQUIMBO, CHILE at a depth of 40 km (24.8 miles), the quake hit at 00:35:05 UTC Wednesday 11th July 2012
The epicenter was 32 km (19.8 miles) Northwest of La Serena, Coquimbo, Chile
No Tsunami Warning Issued - No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this time

5.3 Magnitude Earthquake SOLOMON ISLANDS - 11th July 2012

A magnitude 5.3 earthquake has struck the SOLOMON ISLANDS at a depth of 8.9 km (5.5 miles), the quake hit at 00:16:10 UTC Wednesday 11th July 2012
The epicenter was 70 km (43 miles) WSW of Gizo, Solomon Islands
No Tsunami Warning Issued - No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this time

5.3 Magnitude Earthquake BOUGAINVILLE REGION, PAPUA NEW GUINEA - 10th July 2012

A magnitude 5.3 earthquake has struck BOUGAINVILLE REGION, PAPUA NEW GUINEA at a depth of 200 km (124 miles), the quake hit at 23:26:07 UTC Tuesday 10th July 2012
The epicenter was 86 km (53 miles) WNW of Arawa, Papua New Guinea
No Tsunami Warning Issued - No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this time

4.0 Magnitude Earthquake SALTA, ARGENTINA - 10th July 2012

A magnitude 4.0 earthquake has struck SALTA, ARGENTINA at a depth of 210 km (130.2 miles), the quake hit at 22:23:53 UTC Tuesday 10th July 2012
The epicenter was 201 km (124.6 miles) West of Jujuy, Argentina
No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this time

Hyon Song-wol: Kim Jong Un's new girlfriend?

South Korean intelligence sources named the attractive, short-haired woman as Hyon Song-wol, who used to front the Bochonbo Electronic Music Band and was hugely popular among the North Korean masses.

Responsible for a string of hits that included Footsteps of Soldiers, I Love Pyongyang, She is a Discharged Soldier and We are Troops of the Party, her popularity reportedly peaked in 2005 with the song Excellent Horse-Like Lady.

Hyon subsequently disappeared from public view at the time that Mr Kim emerged as the heir-apparent to his father, Kim Jong-il.

There are reports that 28-year-old Kim Jong-un was ordered to break off his relationship with Hyon by his father and that she later married an officer in the North Korean army with whom she has a baby.

She made a return to the limelight in early March when, heavily pregnant, she performed at an event in Pyongyang to mark International Women's Day, which was attended by Mr Kim. more

Thoughts: 

Pfft, how is that fair? What does Kim Jong Un have that the Editor of the Coming Crisis doesn't? Seriously, I make a mean peanut butter and jam sandwich. I bet one letter with comparisons of eyes to sunsets and a strategically placed haiku and he wouldn't stand a chance. Right guys? Guys? Hey look, cricket populations are on the increase.

UN-Arab envoy seeks Iran help in Syria crisis

Europe's unemployment set to continue in 2013

Euro 'socialism' backfires in Germany

'Syrian rebels' aim not democracy but dictatorship'

Disaster Zone: Russian flood survivors recount fear and heroism

Bankers rob Central Banks: 'That's where the credit is!'

Nigel Farage- Ridiculous scheme to Save Euro explained !!

'Bath Salts' Causing 'Excited Delirium'?

Inquiry into deaths of 30 swans in Cardiff

Animal health officials have begun an investigation after 30 swans died in Cardiff over a three week period.

A spokesman for Cardiff council said the affected birds were mainly from the Roath Park and Cardiff Bay areas.

Bird flu has not been diagnosed as the cause of the birds' death and inquiries into why they died are under way.

The Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency is investigating. Advice not to touch a dead bird with bare hands has been issued.

Disposable protective gloves should be worn if possible when picking up and handling them.

There is a population of around 200 swans in the city. Read More

Mexico to vaccinate 1 Million chickens against bird flu

A shipment of 1 million doses of vaccine from China will be used to inoculate chickens over the next few days to contain a bird-flu outbreak, Mexico's National Union of Poultry Farmers, or UNA, said.

According to UNA, the number of farms with a confirmed presence of the flu virus has increased to 29, five more than indicated in the previous report, so that the epidemic has now affected close to 2.5 million barnyard fowl in the western state of Jalisco.

In a communique, UNA said that the first doses of the vaccine have arrived in Mexico and will be applied to the poultry population most likely to catch the "highly contagious" H7N3 strain of avian flu.

They also reported that the flu has caused the deaths of "at least a million fowl" in the Jalisco municipalities of Tepatitlan and Acatic, either from the virus itself or because they were slaughtered.

According to UNA officials consulted by Efe, another 7 million doses of vaccine are expected to arrive over the coming weeks to immunize a large part of the country's poultry farms. Read More

Torrential rains trigger floods in China

China, Jul 10: Torrential rains since last Saturday have lashed east and northwest China, drenching towns, causing landslides and halting traffics.

Another round of heavy rainfall following the previous one ended last Friday has struck most regions of east China’s Shandong Province. Rainfall caused severe flood in Cangshan County of the province, drenching residences and halting local traffics.

Flood has immersed many streets of the county, including one of the major roads, which has been inundated completely. A nearby residential quarter has also been flooded.

A resident said usually he spent three to five minutes to get home. But now it takes him 20 minutes to stumble in water.

Waterlogging is a long-time issue that troubling the residential quarter due to its obsolete sewage system. Local authority dispatched workers to drain the floodwater of the waterlogged area on Sunday.

So far they are making progresses gradually, but it still needs time to dry the streets completely.

The flood also caused severe losses to the mink farmers in rural areas.

In Jinling Township of the Canshan County, rainfall has accumulated to 282 millimeters, immersing dozens of local mink farms.

At one of the biggest farms, which raises 1,100 minks and sables, piles of drowned animals can be seen lying on ground. Read More

Dead Danish drug user tests positive for anthrax‎

COPENHAGEN, Denmark -- Danish authorities say an intravenous drug user who injected heroin and died has tested positive for anthrax.

The Health Ministry suspects the drug was contaminated with the bacillus anthracis strain of anthrax. The 55-year-old addict died Sunday.

Terrorism is not suspected, and the health ministry says there is no risk of contagion because the bacteria cannot be passed from person to person.

Anthrax is a deadly disease that can be treated with antibiotics if caught early.

Officials said Monday they will compare the case to two similar deaths in Germany in June.

Last week, German officials said there may be a link between contaminated heroin found in Germany and an anthrax outbreak in Scotland in 2009 and 2010, which left 10 people dead. Source

Nine taken ill after council office chemical alert, The Crescent, Colchester

Fire crews investigating the cause of a suspected chemical leak at a council office that left nine people needing medical treatment have found no trace of any chemicals that could have caused the problem.

The Essex County Council building in The Crescent, Colchester, was evacuated this morning after reports of around a dozen people feeling ill.

It is the second time in less than a fortnight that the building has had a suspected chemical leak - it was first cleared by authorities on June 29 after reports of people falling unwell and reporting a strange smell.

Essex County Fire and Rescue Service said that shortly after the incident this morning nine people were given oxygen therapy and all other persons were accounted for. Read More

Wildfires continue to devestate West, but firefighters make progress

Historic wildfires continue to ravage Idaho, California, Colorado, Wyoming, Utah and other western states.

BOISE, Idaho — Wind-fanned wildfires in southern Idaho are proving stubborn, but across the West as a whole, firefighters are gaining ground and keeping an eye on the weather.

A fast-moving blaze spread across nearly 300 square miles of sagebrush and dry grass, authorities said Monday.

More firefighters were headed to that lightning-sparked fire, which has spread to nearly 300 square miles by Monday after it ignited Saturday. At one point, it was threatening six homes in the Castleford area, west of Twin Falls.

"The fire has been pretty well laid down near Castleford," said Heather Tiel-Nelson, a spokeswoman for Bureau of Land Management.

A steady 20-mph wind has been pushing the blaze northwest, where crews were focusing their efforts, said BLM officials.

Strong gusts also spread flames of a separate fire to the Saylor Creek bombing range, a training space operated by the Mountain Home Air Force Base, but no structures were threatened. Read More

Virginia Thunderstorm knocks out power to nearly 17000

It took less than an hour, but an afternoon thunderstorm on Monday knocked out power to nearly 17,000 customers, shut down traffic lights and caused several minor crashes that tied up traffic through rush hour.

The thunderstorm moved into the region shortly before 3 p.m. with winds of about 40 mph and lightning strikes throughout the area, said John Billet, a National Weather Service meteorologist. As much as 2.5 inches of rain reportedly fell in the Deep Creek area of Chesapeake.

Billet said there wasn't anything special with Monday's storm, that it was a "normal summer storm."

A weak, slow-moving cold front moved into the area Monday before stalling over the border with North Carolina. The front brings relief from last week's record-setting high temperatures, but also the possibility of storms through Thursday.

Temperatures should stay in the mid-80s the rest of this week.

A new batch of storms prompted warnings for parts of southeastern Virginia and northeastern North Carolina late Monday night, but as of 11:17 p.m., Dominion Virginia Power's website indicated there were only 267 customers still without electricity. Read More

Scientists discover where the mysterious sounds of the Northern Lights are generated

The noises have inspired folktales and created both fear and awe in wilderness wanderers.

But for the first time, the strange crackling noises and muffled bangs of the Northern Lights have been explained through science.

Researchers at the Aalto University in Finland located where the sounds are created, and discovered that the sounds form about 70 meters above the ground level.

Compare this the the lights themselves, for the dramatic displays caused by disturbances in the Earth's magnetic field occur around 120km above the Earth's surface.

Researchers located the sound sources by installing three separate microphones in an observation site where the auroral sounds were recorded.

They then compared sounds captured by the microphones and determined the location of the sound source. Read More

5.1 Magnitude Earthquake SOUTH OF THE FIJI ISLANDS - 10th July 2012

A magnitude 5.1 earthquake has struck SOUTH OF THE FIJI ISLANDS at a depth of 535.1 km (332.5 miles), the quake hit at 18:09:43 UTC Tuesday 10th July 2012
The epicenter was 326 km (202 miles) SSW of Ndoi Island, Fiji
No Tsunami Warning Issued - No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this time

4.4 Magnitude Earthquake SOUTHERN SUMATRA, INDONESIA - 10th July 2012

A magnitude 4.4 earthquake has struck SOUTHERN SUMATRA, INDONESIA at a depth of 85 km (52.7 miles), the quake hit at 18:06:10 UTC Tuesday 10th July 2012
The epicenter was 117 km (72.5 miles) South of Pagar Alam, Sumatra, Indonesia
No Tsunami Warning Issued - No Reports of Damage or Injuries at this time

Kaleb Langdale jokes with his sister after having right arm bitten off by ALLIGATOR

A teenager who was savaged by an alligator is on the road to recovery and even joking about his ordeal with friends and family - despite having his right arm ripped off.

Kaleb Langdale had been swimming in the Caloosahatchee River in Moore Haven, Florida, when he was attacked by the 11ft beast on Monday afternoon.

The 17-year-old thought he had swam away from the giant alligator, only for it to clamp on to his right arm - leaving the teenager with a choice of his life or his limb.

Now after swimming to safety without part of his right arm, the brave teen has been recovering in hospital, where he has been in good spirits since his death-defying ordeal.

Brave Kaleb has even joked with his sister that now she 'won't be the only left-handed person in the family'. Read More

David Hilder Charged with the Murder of David Guy

A 46-year-old has appeared in court charged with the murder of a man whose torso was found wrapped in a bin liner on a beach by a group of horrified students.

David Hilder, from Southsea in Portsmouth - where the body was also discovered - was charged in connection with the death of 30-year-old David Guy.

The grisly discovery of the body - without its head, arms and legs - was made by a group of foreign students on the popular tourist beach last week.

They had earlier reported the find to some builders but police were not called in until later when a passer-by said they had found a body.

Hilder, who was charged following consultation between Hampshire Police and the Crown Prosecution Service, spoke only to confirm his name, age and address during the short hearing at Portsmouth Magistrates’ Court.

District Judge Anne Arnold remanded Hilder, who was wearing dark trousers, a white polo shirt and a blue jumper, into custody and adjourned the case for a hearing at Winchester Crown Court on Thursday. Read More

John Damien Eamer who attacked woman cashier in row over losing 50p bet walks free from court

A thug walked free from court today - despite admitting punching a female cashier in the face at a bookies after losing a bet worth just £1.30.

John Eamer, 29, flew across the counter at terrified Leanne Vallis and struck her twice after she told him he had lost the 50p wager - before calmly walking away.

The horrifying attack, which left the assistant with bruising and swelling below the eye, was caught on CCTV and he was later captured by police.

But the serial offender - who previously beat up a pensioner just because he sat next to him on a bench - was spared jail.

Cheltenham Magistrates' Court handed him a 12-month community order alongside 200 hours of unpaid work.

The court had previously heard that Eamer had put one 50p bet on Germany to beat Portugal in their Euro 2012 clash on June 9. Read More

Philip Braithwaite who killed himself and daughter, 7, in suicide house blaze had planned to take out his wife and elder daughter too

A father killed himself and his seven-year-old daughter in a pre-planned house fire intended to wipe out his entire family, an inquest heard today.

Philip Braithwaite had been suffering from mental health problems and had racked up significant debts when he set the family home on fire last year, Teesside Coroner's Court heard.

The 49-year-old had researched methods on the internet before hand and had left notes suggesting he meant to kill his wife Christine and two daughters in the May day blaze, the inquest was told.

His youngest daughter Jessica, died in hospital the following day while eldest daughter Catriona, now 10, who has cerebral palsy, suffered significant injuries. Mrs Braithwaite managed to escape the 'inferno' and raise the alarm.

Investigations following the fire revealed Mr Braithwaite had disconnected the home’s smoke alarms and brought a petrol can into the family home, just yards from the sea in Redcar, Teesside. Read More

Yacht blows up and sinks just 15 minutes after they picked it up from boat yard

Businessman Paul Ward was on the crest of a wave when he picked up the luxurious yacht he had paid £269,000 for at the Southampton Boat Show.

The sleek Meridian 341, a four-berth motor yacht with two state rooms and all mod cons, was every sailor’s dream.

But that dream quickly turned into a nightmare when just 15 minutes after picking up the vessel from a Hampshire boat yard, Mr Ward, 61 and his crew member John Innes were leaping for their lives, their clothes in flames, as the yacht exploded.

Then, as they shivered in a life raft on a freezing cold February day, they watched in horror as the blazing boat, by now a ball of fire, sank beneath the waves. Read More

Fred Wigg Tower residents lose their High Court bid to stop Army placing surface-to-air missiles on their roof to protect Olympic Games

Alarmed residents have lost their High Court battle to prevent surface-to-air missiles being stationed on the roof of a 17-storey residential tower block during the Olympics.

A judge ruled today residents at the Fred Wigg Tower in Leytonstone, east London, did not have an arguable case.

The tenants fear the missile base above their heads could make them the focus for a terrorist attack.

The Ministry of Defence (MoD), security service and police say there is 'no credible threat' and the siting of the missiles is both 'legitimate and proportionate'.

The block is one of six sites in the capital where missiles, including rapier and high-velocity systems, will be deployed to protect Games venues. Read More

Fixing Libor rates has been carried out for DECADES, claims bank whistleblower

Several of Britain's largest banks have been fixing the Libor rate in the own favour for decades, a whistleblower said today.

The rigging of the key interest rate has been a 'well-kept' secret at the heart of banking since the 1980s, several bankers have claimed.

And these experts say that the Bank of England and regulators like the FSA allowed it to happen.

'Fifteen years ago, the word was that Libor was being rigged,' an anonymous veteran banker said in an interview with the Economist.

'It was one of those well kept secrets, but the regulator was asleep, the Bank of England didn't care, and...[the banks involved were] happy with the reference prices.

'Going back to the late 1980s, when I was a trader, you saw some pretty odd fixings,' another financial industry veteran told the Economist. Read More

Robert McAlees Killed after his Girlfriend Helen Green 'poured white spirits onto his clothes and set him on fire as he lay in bed'

A woman set fire to her boyfriend as he lay on a bed following a drunken row, a court heard.

Helen Green, 43, is accused of pouring white spirits on his clothes to start the blaze that killed Robert McAlees, her partner of ten years.

The jury was played chilling 999 calls where a man screams 'I'm burning'.

Neighbours saw him screaming and engulfed in flames outside the house they shared in Stockport, Greater Manchester, in February.

Paramedics took him to Wythenshawe Hospital where he died an 'agonising death' the following morning with burns to up to 90 per cent of his body, a murder trial jury at Manchester Crown Court was told.

Miss Green, who has two children from a different relationship, denies murder.

Stephen Roirdan QC, prosecuting, said: 'The prosecution say that his partner Helen Green caused these injuries at the home which they shared in Stockport. Read More

1990 report shows workers at U.S. firm had same cancer as Osaka printing company staff

Workers at a chemical fiber plant in the United States who died of the same bile duct cancer that has claimed the lives of employees of an Osaka printing firm also handled the same organic solvent as their Osaka counterparts, a 1990 US study shows.

Chemical fiber products similar to those made at the factory in South Carolina are also produced at Japanese companies. Therefore, Shinji Kumagai, associate professor at the University of Occupational and Environmental Health, said, "The chemical fiber industry in Japan should also exercise caution. "

American researchers released the report on the South Carolina factory in a European magazine in 1990. The chemical fiber factory manufactured "triacetate fiber," a semi-synthetic fiber, and the company used dichloromethane, made by mixing natural wood materials with acetic acid, and used dichloromethane as a solvent. The company stopped production of triacetate fiber in 1986.

The US experts conducted research on the health conditions through 1986 of 1,271 people who had worked at the South Carolina plant between 1954 and 1977 The research found that two of them had died of bile duct cancer and another of cholangiocellular carcinoma -. A rare liver cancer originating in bile duct cells. The mortality rates linked to these types of cancer at the South Carolina factory are said to be 20 times higher than the US national average. Read More

Japan: Gov't finds 3 more cancer cases at printing firms, including 2 deaths

Three workers at printing firms in Tokyo, Ishikawa and Shizuoka prefectures developed bile duct cancer and two of them died, according to emergency survey results released by the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry on July 10.

Twelve workers at a printing company in Osaka are already known to have developed bile duct cancer and seven of them died, while two workers at a printing company in Miyagi Prefecture filed applications for medical benefits with a local labor office for the same disease.

The latest findings bring the total number of printing factory workers who developed bile duct cancer to 17 in five prefectures.

The survey also found that nearly 80 percent of printing firms across the country violate toxic chemical regulations set by the health ministry. The ministry will consider toughening the regulations.

According to the health ministry's Labor Standards Bureau, of all the 561 printing firms across the country surveyed since June, two workers over the age of 60 in Tokyo and Ishikawa Prefecture died of bile duct cancer, and another worker in his 40s in Shizuoka Prefecture was temporarily admitted to hospital. The health ministry did not disclose the names of the printing companies. Read More

Thousands of endangered leatherback turtle hatchlings crushed by excavators

Thousands of endangered leatherback turtle hatchlings were killed over the weekend in an erosion-control project on a Trinidad beach, according to reports from the Caribbean island.

The work was done by the Trinidadian Ministry of Works after it got reports that erosion from the Grande Riviere river was threatening several homes and hotels. Excavators were used to try to redirect the river, according to a report from the Trinidad Express.

The beach where it took place is the world's third-most prolific nesting site for the endangered turtles, the Express reported.

"This is the worst set of destruction I have ever seen by humans on turtles," the Express quoted Sherwin Reyz of the Grand Riviere Environmental Organization as saying.

Reyz and others were able to save about 500 of the hatchlings, but hundreds of crushed turtle eggs and animals were lying in the sand or floating in the surf off the beach, the report said. Read More

Jeremiah Aaron Haughee: *Another* zombie attack? Naked man arrested after rampage and attack in St. Augustine (Bit several people, took 5 officers to subdue him)

A naked man went on a rampage Saturday, biting a chunk out of a man’s stomach after leaping from a roof onto a truck on Palmetto Avenue, according to the St. Augustine Police Department.

After it took several officers to subdue him, 22-year-old Jeremiah Aaron Haughee of North Central Avenue in Flagler Beach was booked into the St. Johns County jail on five counts of battery, according to the arrest report. Three of the batteries were against a police officer, while Haughee was also charged with burglary and criminal mischief before he was released Sunday on $32,000 bail.

Police were called to the scene about 4:30 a.m. to find a naked man being restrained by two men outside their home on Palmetto Avenue, the arrest report said. The men said they were asleep when they heard someone destroying their lawn furniture, then climbing on their roof before leaping onto a truck and denting its hood.

When the men came out of their house to see what was happening, Haughee ran in and tackled them. He urinated on the floor before biting one of them in the stomach as they held him for police, according to the report.

It took five officers with two sets of handcuffs, leg shackles, a spit-prevention hood and Taser strikes to control Haughee, police said. Three officers were kicked, hit or bitten during the arrest. Haughee was taken to Flagler Hospital and anesthetized to calm him down, then jailed.

There is no initial indication if he was on any substance during his rampage, police said. source


Russian Wikipedia shuts down in protest of 'censorship' bill

(CNN) -- Wikipedia once again is diving into Internet politics.

The free encyclopedia on Tuesday temporarily shut down access to most of its Russian-language site in protest of proposed legal action in Russia that it says would result in Internet censorship.

Visitors to ru.wikipedia.org on Tuesday saw a black censorship bar over the Wikipedia logo and a message asking them to imagine a world without free access to knowledge.

In January, Wikipedia shuttered its English sites for 24 hours in protest of anti-piracy laws that were being discussed in the U.S. Congress. That action was cited as evidence of a new wave of political power for the technology and Internet industries. Google and others joined in that protest, which essentially derailed two anti-piracy bills in the United States.

The Russian Wikipedia site compares proposed amendments to an "On Information" law to China's hyper-restrictive firewall. If implemented, the changes to the law could result in access to Wikipedia being cut off permanently, the group says. Read more

Annan: Iran has role in Syrian peace

(CNN) -- International envoy Kofi Annan said Tuesday he sees Iran as a factor in diplomatic efforts to forge peace in Syria, a stance not shared by the United States.

"I think Iran can play a positive role," Annan said during a news conference with Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi in Tehran.

His remarks came a day after he met with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in Damascus. Annan said al-Assad agreed on "an approach" to ending the 16 months of bloodshed in his country.

For months, world powers have deplored al-Assad's government for its assaults against civilians.

But the diplomatic wranglings, such as Annan's recent Action Group meeting in Geneva and the U.S. and Arab-backed Friends of Syria initiative, have failed to stop the killings of thousands since March 2011. Read More

Alarm over Romania's bitter Ponta-Basescu turf war

Romania's deep political rivalries have broken out into a turf war that has caused alarm in Brussels and that the opposition has compared to a coup.

President Basescu left the Cotroceni Presidential Palace in Bucharest on Tuesday morning, driving his own car, a Romanian-built Dacia Logan, closely followed by his bodyguards in another vehicle.

An hour later, Acting President Crin Antonescu arrived from the Senate to take his place. Each day in Romania brings new political drama, with tempers frayed by a fortnight of record high summer temperatures, and the attempted suicide and imprisonment for corruption of a former Prime Minister, Adrian Nastase.

The Constitutional Court has ruled that the government of the current Social Democrat Prime Minister Victor Ponta acted legally when it suspended President Traian Basescu on 6 July.

But it has also added a passage to the referendum law, which requires a majority of the population to take part in the referendum for the result to be valid.

This clears the way for the referendum on the future of Basescu to take place on 29 July - but makes it harder for his opponents to oust him. If they do, the result will gain added legitimacy. Read More

Hostage-taker at French school complex used 'fake firearm'

PARIS — An official says a man who took hostages at a school complex just south of Paris used a “fake firearm.”

All hostages were released unharmed and a suspect detained after the Tuesday morning incident.

Patrick Dallennes, a top official in the Val de Marne region, says: “It wasn’t a firearm he used but a fake one with gas cartridges ... without the capacity to kill.”

He added: “It’s made to scare... but it’s not very dangerous. It was a replica and at first it was hard to tell that it was fake.”

The drama began as parents dropped their children off at the complex, which was being used as a summer camp.

The alleged hostage-taker was incoherent in his talks with police and his motivations remain unclear. Read More