Site C construction schedule for March 417

first_imgDam site area – north (left) bank and south (right) bank . Contractors will continue to move equipment and material to site. This includes deliveries by rail.. Contractors are continuing construction and operations in their work areas. This includes the main civil works, generating station and spillways civil works, turbines and generators, and substation.. Water management activities may take place.. Excavation, including in-river excavation, will progress on both banks of the Peace River.. Construction activities, such as drilling, blasting, crushing, earth moving, tunnelling, concrete placement, and road maintenance, will continue. Tower and mobile cranes will be used on site.. Site preparation will continue at the 85th Avenue Industrial Lands. Work has begun on building the conveyor that will deliver fill material to the dam site.Highway 29 . At Halfway River, clearing and vegetation removal is continuing. Environmental and wildlife monitoring is taking place to support clearing.. At Farrell Creek and near Dry Creek west of Farrell Creek Road, geotechnical investigations may begin. This could include drilling, digging test pits, surveying, minor vegetation removal, and some traffic control.                                                                   . At Portage Mountain Quarry, site investigations and surveys have started in preparation for site clearing.                                                                                                            . Wood waste may be chipped, mulched, spread as coarse woody debris, hauled off-site, or burned. Burning may take place, as permitted by ground conditions, the fire danger rating, and venting conditions. Electrical distribution poles will be temporarily moved in the Cache Creek West area.Reservoir area. Forestry and access road data collection and site investigations will continue near and along the reservoir area.. Clearing activities are taking place in the eastern and lower reservoir areas (dam site to Cache Creek), Moberly River area and Cache Creek area. This includes access road upgrades, logging, log hauling and debris disposal.. Some clearing activities may begin in the middle reservoir area around Cache Creek and Halfway River on BC Hydro-owned properties. This includes road upgrades, log hauling and debris disposal.. Wood waste may be chipped, mulched, spread as coarse woody debris, hauled off-site, or burned. Burning may take place, as permitted by ground conditions, the fire danger rating, and venting conditions.Transmission works . Clearing will continue in the transmission corridor. Wood waste may be chipped, mulched, spread as coarse woody debris, hauled off-site, or burned.. Maintenance and upgrade work will continue on roads that provide access to parts of the transmission corridor.. Construction of temporary roads within the transmission line right-of-way will continue.. Material and equipment are being delivered to the marshalling yard at Moberly Lake and the temporary field office on Jackfish Lake Road.. The transmission line contractor will continue assembling towers on the ground, and installing and testing helical pile foundations at various sites along the right-of-way.. The transmission line contractor will continue installing transmission towers on the foundations.. Site investigations, including stripping and data recovery of archaeological sites, geotechnical work, and structure staking, may take place.. Upgrades will continue at Peace Canyon Generating Station.Other areas . Work is occurring downstream of the dam site for the Peace River side channel enhancements..  Aggregate and riprap production will continue in West Pine Quarry. Material will be transported by rail and road to the dam site.What to expectWork will take place during the day, night, and on the weekend, until the project is completed. During this time, residents can expect the following:                                       . Heavy machinery will be in the transmission line corridor assembling electrical towers. For your safety,please stay clear of the work areas.. There will be project-related traffic on public and resource roads, including petroleum development roads..  Trucks with heavy loads will be accessing the dam site and other project areas. This includes Old Hope Road and along Highway 29 at Cache Creek and Halfway River. Please use caution when meeting a pilot car and observe all warning signs..  Helicopters and commercial drones may be used to support investigative and construction works.. Some noise and vibration may occur near the dam site and work areas, including the quarries. Pile driving may take place near the 85th Avenue Industrial Lands..  There may be smoke in various areas as a result of planned burning. Burning will only take place when permitted by the fire danger rating and when venting windows are available..  For your safety, please stay clear of active in-river work areas along the Peace and Moberly rivers. These areas are clearly identified with signage and markings.Note: In BC Hydro’s technical documents, the north bank may be referred to as the left bank and the south bank may be referred to as the right bank.To view the Bulletin; CLICK HERE FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. –  With 3,107  people working on the project in December, work continues on the Site C Dam project.Below is a copy of the construction schedule for the next two weeks.The following construction activities are scheduled to occur March 4 – March 17:last_img read more

Monitor grievances intensely to minimize pendency cops told

first_imgNew Delhi: In a meeting to review the redressal of grievances received through Centralized Public Grievance Redress and Monitoring System (CPGRAMS), Delhi Police was told that there should be sustained efforts at the police station level to build up trust among citizens of Delhi. Sources told Millennium Post that the meeting was chaired by Chairman, Public Grievances Commission which was attended by officers from districts, Vigilance, Special Cell, Crime Branch, SPUWAC, Traffic and other departments of Delhi Police. “In the meeting, one Deputy Secretary official explained the nature of cases and grievances of common people, complainants being received and redressed in the Commission,” sources said. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderSources further said that more often than not, the grievances are not being heard properly by the police officers, Investigating officers enquiring into the matter are not allowed to meet the SHO and supervisory officers. “One patient hearing to the complainant at the initial stage strengthen the trust of the public in police,” Deputy Secretary said. In the meeting, the city police were appreciated for their hard work to ensure the safety of Delhi’ites, they were told to be more sensitive to problems of common man and deal more efficiently with the complaints. The complainant should be updated regarding the progress of investigation in their cases at regular interval of 15 days. Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchings”Officials should listen to the public and their grievances and not let them wait for so long,” sources added. “In the meeting, the emphasis was given upon the effective supervision of police authorities over the subordinates to improve the quality of police performance as well as functioning,” sources further said. At the conclusion of the meeting, the emphasis was given to regular and intense monitoring of the grievances to minimize pendency. It was also stressed upon the need to clear the pendency in CPGRAM cases within the time frame of 21 days and desired that some of the grievances which are pending for six months or one year should be disposed of immediately.last_img read more

Googles Pixel 3a 3a XL launch date revealed

first_imgSan Francisco: The much-anticipated mid-rangers from Google — the Pixel 3a and 3a XL smartphones could launch on May 7, said the company’s own store page. A teaser poster on Google Store stated: “On May 7, something big is coming to the Pixel universe” that also happens to coincide with the first day of the Google I/O conference. The teaser also added: “Help is on the way” and “the power is in your hands”. Meanwhile, prices of Google’s upcoming mid-range Pixel 3a and 3a XL smartphones have been leaked; they are likely to cost CAD 649 (approximately Rs 33,767) and CAD 799 (about Rs 41,571), respectively. The prices of Pixel 3a, (codenamed Sargo) and Pixel 3a XL (codenamed Bonito) were tipped on social news aggregation and discussion website Reddit late on Monday.last_img read more

One vote made surgical strike air strike possible

first_imgBhatapara: Amid claims of “misusing” the armed forces for electoral gain, Prime Minister Narendra Modi Tuesday said the strength of “one vote” had enabled the surgical strike and air strike in Pakistan.Addressing a poll rally here in Chhattisgarh, Modi said the India of today carries out surgical and air strikes across the border and shoots down satellite in space due to the strength of “one vote” of the people. The Election Commission last week sought a report from poll officials in Maharashtra after Modi’s remarks at a rally in Latur, where he asked first-time voters to dedicate their vote to those who carried out the Balakot air strike. The report was sought in the context of an EC advisory issued last month asking parties to desist from indulging in political propaganda involving actions of the armed forces. Modi also stepped up attack on Congress chief Rahul Gandhi, saying it was the mindset of the “sultanate” of the ‘Naamdar’ to abuse the deprived and treat them as slaves.last_img read more

OPPO unveils A5s budget smartphone in India

first_imgNew Delhi: Chinese handset maker OPPO on Monday launched a budget-friendly A5s smartphone in India for Rs 9,990. The OPPO A5s features waterdrop screen and runs on MediaTek Helio P35 chipset. The device is powered by a robust 4230mAh battery and has Artificial Intelligence (AI) algorithm optimisation to reduce power consumption, the company said in a statement. The A5s comes in 2GB RAM+32GB ROM variant and 4GB RAM+64GB ROM version and the latter would be available in green and gold colour starting next month on both online and offline channels. Also Read – Swiggy now in 500 Indian cities, targets 100 more this year “With the launch of OPPO A5s, we aim to push the envelope further by giving our users more power with advanced technology at a budget friendly price point,” said Charles Wong, CEO, OPPO India and President OPPO South Asia. There’s a 6.2-inch LCD waterdrop screen with an aspect ratio of 19:9. The A5s is packed with an 8MP front camera with F/2.0 aperture. At the rear is a 13MP+2MP dual camera system. It is the first smartphone in India which is powered by a MediaTek Helio P35 processor. A MediaTek Helio P35 is an octa-core chipset built on TSMC’s advanced “12nm FinFET” node.last_img read more

Naxal attack Rajnath assures Maharashtra all assistance

first_imgNew Delhi: Home Minister Rajnath Singh Wednesday assured all help to the Maharashtra government in the wake of a Naxal attack in which 15 security personnel and a civilian were killed. He termed the attack an act of cowardice and desperation. The home minister also spoke to Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, who briefed him about the incident. “Attack on Maharashtra Police personnel in Gadchiroli is an act of cowardice and desperation. We are providing all assistance needed by the state government. The Home Ministry is in constant touch with the state administration,” he said in a statement. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss account details under automatic exchange framework The home minister said the country was extremely proud of the valour of police personnel and their supreme sacrifice while serving the nation will not go in vain. “I have spoken to the Maharashtra chief minister regarding the tragic incident in Gadchiroli and expressed my grief at the loss of brave police personnel,” he said. At least 16 people, including 15 security personnel, were killed in an IED blast triggered by Naxals in Gadchiroli district. Those killed were members of the Quick Response Team (QRT) of Gadchiroli police, which was on way to inspect a fleet of torched vehicles belonging to a road construction contractor, police said.last_img read more

Wont let MP become Bengal Shivraj on BJP workers killing

first_imgIndore: Former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Monday slammed the killing of a 60-year-old man by a Congress supporter in Indore allegedly for “voting for the BJP” and said he won’t allow the state to become another West Bengal. After visiting the deceased Nemichand Tanwar’s son, who was injured in the attack, in a hospital in Indore, the BJP leader tweeted: “We won’t let goons take over Madhya Pradesh and allow it to become West Bengal. People are being threatened, the BJP will not tolerate this at any cost.” Also Read – Personal life needs to be respected: Cong on reports of Rahul’s visit abroad Tanwar was shot at inside his home in Palia village by Congress worker Arun Sharma, who accused him of “voting for the BJP”, police said. He was declared brought dead. Announcing a relief of Rs 5 lakh for Tanwar’s family , Chouhan said: “Such an incident of violence has never happened in Madhya Pradesh. Congress workers threatened BJP worker Nemichand Tanwar when he talked about voting for the saffron party and in the evening entered his house and shot him dead.” Also Read – Firms staying closed 10 days a month due to recession, govt doing nothing: Priyanka Gandhi He further wrote: “Nemichand’s wife and son critically were injured in trying to save him. Where is Kamal Nath taking the state? The Congress has been working with political vendetta since the time it came to power in the state. False cases are being lodged against the BJP government.” According to the police, Arun Sharma, who is close to a state minister, had on Sunday entered into an argument with Tanwar and hurled casteist abuses at him, accusing his entire community of voting for the saffron party. Later in the evening, he arrived at Tanwar’s house and fired at him with a country-made pistol.last_img read more

Amul hikes milk prices by Rs 2litre in Delhi NCR from today

first_imgNEW DELHI: Dairy major Amul said on Monday that it will increase milk prices by Rs 2 per litre in Delhi NCR, Maharashtra and other states from Tuesday due to an increase in production cost. Milk prices were last revised two years back in March 2017, Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF), which sells milk and milk products under the Amul brand, said in a statement.The new price will come into effect from May 21 onwards and on all six brands being sold in major markets of Delhi-NCR, Gujarat, West Bengal, Kolkata, Uttaranchal, Maharashtra and other states, the GCMMF said in a statement. Also Read – More good air days in Delhi due to Centre’s steps: JavadekarThe revised price of 500 millilitres (ml) pack of ‘Amul Gold’ in Ahmedabad will be Rs 27, ‘Amul Shakti’ at Rs 25, ‘Amul Taaza’ at Rs 21 and ‘Amul Diamond’ at Rs 28, it said. “This increase in milk prices by Rs 2 per litre has happened after a gap of two years with an aim to provide remunerative milk purchase price to our milk producers owing to drop in milk production and increase in the cost of production,” GCMMF said. Considering the increase in the cost of milk production, all member milk unions of Gujarat have increased the milk purchase price by a minimum of Rs 30-50 per kg fat (5-8 per cent) over the last few months, it said. Also Read – Union min Hardeep Singh Puri, Delhi L-G lay foundation stones for various projects in DwarkaMilk prices were last revised two years back in March 2017, Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF), which sells milk and milk products under the Amul brand, said in a statement. According to GCMMF officials, the national and international dairy markets have witnessed adverse conditions for the last two years. Due to this, there has been a steep decline in the prices of commodities such as skimmed milk powder and butter oil which had resulted into decline in producer prices of milk across India leading to adverse impact on milk producers. “The milk cooperatives of Gujarat, however, continued to pay remunerative prices of milk to its producers and the average final price of milk paid to our producers has increased from Rs 710 per kg fat in 2017-18 to Rs 730 per kg fat in 2018-19,” the release states. The milk prices are being hiked due to increase in the price of major cattle feed ingredients such as de-oiled rice bran, rice polish fine, molasses, maize which has resulted in an increase in the cattle feed price by over 15 per cent.last_img read more

EgyptUS ties in delicate phase foreign minister

first_imgCAIRO- Egypt’s foreign minister acknowledged in comments published Wednesday that relations with Washington were in a “delicate” phase after it suspended some military aid in response to a July 3 coup.Nabil Fahmy said the US administration had overestimated the amount of leverage that its aid dollars bought it over the policies of the interim government installed by the army after it overthrew elected Islamist president Mohamed Morsi.“We are right now in a delicate phase reflecting turmoil in the relationship and whoever says otherwise is not speaking honestly,” Fahmy said in an interview with state-owned daily Al-Ahram. Fahmy said Washington was wrong to assume that its October 10 decision to suspend deliveries of major military hardware and cash assistance of $260 million would influence the interim government’s policies.He blamed the hiccough in relations on the dependence on US aid of the regime of Hosni Mubarak which was ousted in 2011 after three decades in power.“We chose the easy option and did not diversify our options… this led the US to wrongly believe that Egypt would always follow its policies and aims,” Fahmy said.last_img read more

Selfie of Moroccos Hicham El Guerrouj With the French President

Rabat – Morocco’s Former Olympic champion Hicham El Guerrouj published on his Facebook page, a photo with his wife and French President Francois Hollande.“Our joy was great attending decorating Nawal El Moutawakel and meeting with President Francois Hollande,” said El Guerrouj.Last Wednesday, French president bestowed France’s highest award, the Legion of Honour, to former Moroccan athlete and Olympic champion Nawal El Moutawakel. This award is in recognition of the strong ties between France and Morocco, and reflects the bonds of friendship between King Mohammed VI and the French president, former Olympic champion in 400m hurdles in Los Angeles in 1984 said. read more

Saudi Arabia Seizes 48000 Cans of Heineken Beer Disguised as Pepsi

New York – Police in Saudi Arabia confiscated over 48,000 of Heineken beer smuggled into the country disguised as Pepsi-Cola cans.Saudi authorities at the Al Batha border between Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates stopped the truck carrying the contraband, according to several Saudi news reports.“A truck carrying what first seemed to be normal cans of the soft drink Pepsi was stopped and after the standard process of searching the products, it became clear that the alcoholic beers were covered with Pepsi’s sticker logos,” Al Batha border General Manager Abdulrahman al-Mahna said, according to Al Arabiya News. A video and several photos of the confiscation was provided by Saudi Customs showing an officer peeling the Pepsi sticker off to reveal the Heineken cans.At first sight, the Pepsi stickers in Arabic writing looked real as the disguises seemed authentic, yet when the authorities seized the pallets full of cans, they discovered the felony.The images have gone viral on social media networks when KSACustoms posted the news on their official Twitter account.Since the sale and consumption of alcohol in Saudi Arabia is strictly prohibited, smugglers come up with ingenious ways to get alcoholic beverages into the Muslim country.Punishment for smuggling alcohol in Saudi Arabia can include jail time and physical whippings to citizens the same as foreigners.In August 2014, a 74-year-old Briton was sentenced to jail time and physical punishment of 350 lashes after being arrested in Jeddah for possession of homemade wine.Despite the country’s harsh measures on alcohol, nationals and non-nationals find ways to possess and consume the banned substances.According to the World Health Organization, official figures of alcohol consumption in Saudi Arabia are 0.2 liters per adult, without accounting for illegal use.Last September, Saudi authorities arrested a man at the Bahrain border with 12 bottles of whiskey smuggled into his trousers and disguised under his Saudi robe.In addition, last April, more than 19,000 liquor bottles were seized when found hidden in a cargo between rich and tomato paste. read more

Ilyas el Omari heads Moroccan Business Delegation to Washington

Washington – President of Morocco’s Tangier, Tetouan and Al Hoceima region, Ilyas el Omari, is leading a delegation of business leaders in Washington this week. The trip is aimed at exploring potential business opportunities and making critical economic connections between the two countries.The delegation, which arrived in Washington earlier this week, includes Chairman of the Casablanca Chamber of Commerce, Mustapha Amhal.Hoping to discover new areas of commonality, and open new business investment doors, “the trip’s agenda includes numerous meetings with educational institutions, federal and local government officials and a host of business leaders” the Moroccan American Network said in a communique. The world’s economy is changing and Morocco’s is developing rapidly. “For El Omari and the delegation, it’s a match made in trade heaven,” Mohamed El Hajjam, President of the Moroccan American Network (MAN) and CEO of AV Actions in Alexandria, VA, told Morocco World News in a phone interview.Addressing the aim of the delegation’s foray into Washington, El Omari said, “The world economy is changing and we have to change our human resources to keep up with it.”“I am delighted to work with the Moroccan American Network to meet with those individuals and institutions with whom we might partner to do this.” He emphasized that Morocco is “ready to move forward rapidly to accelerate Morocco’s economic development.”The trip was organized around the 2017 edition of the Moroccan American Network’s CEO Summit 2. This year’s event has focused on nurturing small businesses, a segment of investment which often gets overlooked.Elisabeth Myers, General Counsel and Strategic Advisor to the Moroccan American Network, described the summit as an ideal “opportunity for entrepreneurs and CEOs who want to grow their businesses in the U.S. or who wish to explore small business opportunities in Africa, and especially in Morocco, to network and meet with others with similar interests and concerns.”Photo by Morocco World NewsOn Wednesday, the delegation met with Democratic Congressman Don Beyer as well as the Mayor of the City of Alexandria, Virginia, Allison Silberberg. Former Mayor of Alexandria, Va, Bill Euille, also played a critical role in making the Moroccan delegation’s visit possible.Thursday’s agenda saw the delegation visiting the Virginia Technology Institute, Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business and the Children’s Medical Center’s Shiekh Zayad Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation.Describing the key role the Moroccan American Network plays in expanding economic connections between the US and Morocco,  El Hajjam explained that the “Moroccan American Network focusses on small business, the backbone of every country’s economy. Through our business, media, and cultural events, we expand business networks, enhance Morocco’s image, and strengthen economic ties between Morocco and the US.”On Friday, Ilyas El Omari will be feted as the guest of honour at the summit. For Meyers, the presence of such a high-profile Moroccan dignitary speaks volumes. “We are thrilled to have such a prominent businessman and leader as Mr. El Omari here with us in Washington. This delegation visit will serve to greatly facilitate and enhance the exchange of know-how and expertise between Morocco and US.” read more

MAD 170 Million 17 Million Seized at House of Moroccan Towns

Rabat – Moroccan police have allegedly seized MAD 170 million, equivalent to about USD 17 million, at the house of Zine El Abidine El Houass, and the, member of the parliament and mayor of Had Soualem, a town near Casablanca, according to Moroccan newspaper Akhbar Alyoum in its June 29 issue.According to the same source, El Houass is being held in custody for blackmail, falsification, abuse of power, intimidation, forgery and use of forgery and corruption.The whopping amount of money was allegedly found in form of bundles of MAD 200 papers, and an additional amount of more MAD 30 million was found in his bank account. According to the same source, people acquainted with the arrest of the MP have neither confirmed nor denied the seizure of MAD 170 million in his house.El Houass had previously been arrested by the police under instructions from the Attorney-General at the Casablanca Court of Appeal, following complaints from contractors and companies in Had Soualem.The parliamentarian’s conduct was exposed following the reception of 80 million centimes, which he considered to be a “gift” and not a bribe. During the investigations, the unidentified person who gave El Houass the money explained to the police that he was blackmailed by the town’s mayor, who forced him to provide 80 million centimes if he wanted to obtain a license to build a housing division.During his hearing by the police, the mayor of Had Soualem was faced with a number of questions and accusations of embezzlement of public money and bribery, especially related to real estate investments.According to Moroccan daily newspaper Akhbar Alyoum, a number of real estate developers and contractors asserted that they had acquired housing licenses and work permits only after the payment of large sums of money toEl Houass.The investigations also revealed that large sums of money were transferred to the accounts of his wife, mother in law, and some of his family members to avoid suspicions.El Houass who has now been stripped of his duties as mayor, was prevented from traveling at Mohammed V International Airport a few days ago under the instructions of the Attorney-General pending investigations by the members of the National Police and Judicial Police. He explained his sudden travel decision to be his and his family’s interest in performing Umrah, read more

3 Policeman 1 Tunisian National Arrested for Counterfeiting and Blackmail DGSN

Rabat – Five suspects, including three police officers and one Tunisian national, were arrested on Wednesday for blackmail, forging official documents, and unlawfully detaining a person.The arrest was conducted by the National Brigade of Judiciary Police (BNPJ).Investigation revealed that the three officers had falsely arrested and detained an individual and forced him to sign forged documents, in an operation spearheaded by the Tunisian national, who was the victim’s trade partner. The victim was forced to sign several documents, including one stating that he owed the Tunisian, whom police said he was living in Morocco illegally, a sum of money.The police found that the Tunisian had been the subject of a search warrant.The suspects were referred to the public prosecution for further investigations. read more

Japanese princess sacrifices Royal status for the Love of Her Life

By Chaimae BoulifaRabat – Like old myths or classic romance movies, in which princesses and women in the aristocracy make major sacrifices in the name of love, the real-life Princess Mako, the eldest granddaughter of Japanese Emperor Akihito, is giving up her royal family title to marry a “commoner.”The unexpected decision has been making the rounds on social media after the princess held a press conference Sept. 3 to officially confirm her engagement to Kei Komuro, who works as a paralegal at Tokyo law firm, according to the Japanese news outlet Japan Times. As under the Japanese law, women must leave the imperial family after marrying a commoner, the 25-year-old princess will relinquish her royal status, having received the 83-year-old Emperor Akihito’s approval.“I was aware since my childhood that I’ll leave a royal status once I marry,” Princess Mako told reporters at the press conference. “While I worked to help the emperor and fulfil duties as a royal family member as much as I can, I’ve been cherishing my own life.”The couple met while studying at Tokyo’s International Christian University in 2012, where the princess was first attracted to her fiancé Komuro’s bright smiles that “seemed like the sun,” she said at the news conference in Tokyo’s Akasaka district.“It would be nice to have a warm and comfortable household with Mr. Komuro, so that we can make a family full of smiles,” she added.In a romantic response, Komuro stated that Princess Mako “has been quietly watching over me like the moon.”While the couple’s wedding ceremony is planned for next year, when the emperor is expected to abdicate his responsibility to his elder son, Crown Prince Naruhito.The Princess Mako’s father is the second in line for Japan’s Chrysanthemum Throne, followed by his 10-year-old son, Hisahito of Akishin, the only family member left in the line of royal succession.Princess Mako is not the only female member of the imperial family who has decided to leave the Imperial House for marriage.In 2014, Princess Noriko, the second daughter of the Emperor Akihito’s cousin, married 41-year-old Kunimaro Senge, while in 2005, Princess Nori, Princess Mako’s aunt, married the 40-year-old urban planner Yoshiki Kuroda, leading to revived concerns for the future of the monarchy and debate about the current laws regarding royal succession. read more

Paradise Papers Leak Expose the Dirty Deeds of the Worlds Richest

Rabat – The offshore secrets of the world’s richest are being exposed this week in a massive 13-million-document leak. Dubbed the Paradise Papers, the leak shows that the elite like Queen Elizabeth II, members of Trump’s administration, and various African presidents use offshore accounts to preserve their wealth and avoid taxation.As the poor are growing poorer, the rich are sheltering their wealth in secretive havens, mainly to avoid taxation but also to evade international sanctions and to hide compromising financial deals.The massive document leak carried out by International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) has revealed a vast tax abuse network of over 25,000 companies owned by individuals from 180 countries, stemming all the way back to 1950. The 13.4 million documents were mainly leaked from Appleby, a law firm based in Bermuda.The 119-year-old company assists wealthy clients in circumventing millions of dollars in tax burden by placing ownership of assets, including companies, private aircraft, real estate and yachts, in small tropical islands that “charge zero taxes and [do] not ask many questions,” says The Guardian.The documents were obtained from two companies in Singapore and Bermuda by the German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung, the same group that unveiled a similar trove referred to as the Panama Papers in 2016, who then shared them with the ICIJ.Among the major companies appearing in the Paradise Papers is tech giant Apple. The company sifts a big portion of its earnings to Irish subsidiaries, avoiding income taxes. The offshore business saved Apple more than USD 128 billion in earnings free from taxation. On November 7, Politico reported that the European competition authorities had contacted Apple over the tax arrangement exposed by the leak.But the technique isn’t unique to Apple. Facebook, Apple, Uber, Nike, Walmart, Allianz, Siemens, McDonald’s, and Yahoo! are among the corporations that own offshore companies.Apple, Nike, and Facebook avoided “billions of dollars” in tax using offshore companies, according to The Express Tribune.British Queen Elizabeth II is also listed in the leak, as about USD 13 million of her private money was invested in offshore islands.Three former Canadian prime ministers are also named in the Paradise Papers: Jean Chrétien, Paul Martin, and Brian Mulroney.The papers found that Stephen Bronfman, an adviser and close friend of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, also moved millions of dollars offshore.From Trump’s administration, more than a dozen members are included the business, including the Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Gary D. Cohn, the director of the US National Economic Council. Wilbur Ross, the United States Secretary of Commerce, holds stakes in offshore businesses which deal with Russian officials sanctioned by the US.Major American donors and advisers also pop up in the documents, including major donors Robert Mercer and Sheldon Adelson.The African names to appear in the list so far are Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Nigeria President of the Nigerian Senate Bukola Saraki and Uganda’s Foreign Minister Sam Kutesa.Prince Khaled bin Sultan bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, a former deputy minister of defense for Saudi Arabia, is in the list for owning yachts and airplanes in Bermuda.Rami Makhlouf, reportedly Syria’s wealthiest man, is listed in the papers along with the sons of Turkey’s Prime Minister Binali Y?ld?r?m.Between the two leaks, the Paradise Papers are bigger in number of records (13.5 million in Paradise Papers vs. 11.5 million in Panama Papers) while the Panama Papers are bigger in terms of size of the leak (1.4 terabytes in Paradise Papers vs. 2.6 terabytes in Panama Papers). read more

Mom arrested after dead baby found in Amazon sites restroom

PHOENIX — Police say a woman has been arrested on suspicion of unlawful disposal of human remains after her newborn baby was found dead inside an Amazon distribution centre in southwest Phoenix last week.They say 22-year-old Samantha Vivier was booked into jail Tuesday.It wasn’t immediately clear if Vivier had a lawyer who could speak on her behalf.Police say the body of a baby girl was discovered the night of Jan. 16 inside the women’s restroom in the secured Amazon facility.They say the baby was full-term or near full-term and the Maricopa County medical examiner will determine the cause of death.The Associated Press read more

Kazakhstan president fires govt over low living standards

MOSCOW — Kazakhstan’s president has fired the government over what he calls a failure to raise living standards and diversify away from oil and gas in the Central Asian nation.President Nursultan Nazarbayev, who has ruled since the country became independent after the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union, says on the presidential website he will soon propose “a range of measures to strengthen social welfare and raise people’s quality of life.”Nazarbayev says the focus will be on more support for the poor, improving living conditions and regional development. Poor families, he says, are seeing stagnant incomes and spending more of their earnings on food.The announcement follows a wave of protests by Kazakh women calling for more financial support for children and safer housing after a fire in which five children died.The Associated Press read more

Saudi Supreme Court Calls on Muslims to Observe Ramadan Moon

Rabat – After the International Astronomical Center (IAC) announced on Sunday, April 26, that Ramadan will start on Monday, May 6, in most Arab countries, Saudi moon observers also expect Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar, to begin on the same day in Saudi Arabia.On Saturday, April 13, the Saudi Supreme Court, however, called on Saudi citizens to begin keeping a close watch on Saturday, May 4, for the crescent moon signalling the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan, news agency SPA reported.The Supreme Court said in a statement that clouds had obstructed sight of the crescent moon on April 5, Rajab 29 in the Islamic Hijri calendar. The Supreme Court called on moon observes to also watch for the moon on Sunday, May 5, corresponding to Sha’baan 30, a possible day for the crescent moon to come out.Read also: Ramadan to Begin on May 5 in the US, UKMorocco, however, is most likely to begin fasting on Tuesday, May 7, after seeing the moon on Monday, May 6, according to astronomer Abdelaziz Kharbouch Al Ifrani. Muslims around the world observe the holy month of Ramadan by abstaining from eating and drinking from dawn to dusk. read more

After a Violent Conflict in Kashmir Islamic State Declares New Territory

Rabat – On May 10, the self-described Islamic State (IS) declared a new “Wilayat al-Hind” (“Province of India” in Arabic) in Indian territory, reported Reuters. The announcement came after a reported violent clash between Indian security forces and allegedly IS affiliated members in Shopian, a village in Indian-controlled Kashmir territories. The alleged IS announcement was released in Amaq News Agency, an IS-affiliated news agency. The declaration also claimed to have “inflicted casualties on Indian army soldiers,” said Reuters. IS’s Friday statement coincided with the Indian news reports on the killing of an IS-affiliated militant, Ishfaq Ahmad Sofi, in a violent clash with Indian security forces in Shopian. Reports showed that Sofi had ties with the Islamic State of Jammu and Kashmir (ISJK).The declaration of new territory in India appears to be an attempt to bring life to the Islamic State’s geographical expansion endeavors under the “Caliphate” title, after recently having lost control over significant parts of Syria and Iraq to the Syrian and Iraqi armies. read more