Saturday, October 11, 2008

Relations between Iceland and the United Kingdom are deteriorating after the two nations fell out over the current financial crisis. When Iceland nationalised first Landsbanki and then Kaupthing Bank the Financial Services Authority only took on domestic assets, leaving British customers with subsidiary banks out of pocket. While Britain feels Iceland should also pay out to their citizens, Iceland blame the UK for triggering the crisis by using the Anti-terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001 to freeze the UK assets of Icelandic banks.

UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown says Iceland should pay out up to €20,887 (£16,448) of UK investors’ money in the banks, particularly Icesave, an online company owned by Landsbanki which had around 300,000 accounts owned by UK customers. It will cost an estimated 2.4 billion pounds to compensate them, and it looks likely the UK will foot that bill.

Alistair Darling, the U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer, has said that individuals with accounts will see their money again but other accounts are not guaranteed – leaving governmental, corporate and charitable deposits at risk of being lost. UK local authorities could lose £799 million.

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“The prime minister made clear the behavior of the Icelandic authorities had been unacceptable, and we had found it very difficult to get information from them,” said Michael Ellam, a spokesperson for Brown. A delegation has been sent to Reykjavik from the UK to try and solve the dispute amicably.

However, fears that the crisis may escalate have led to the pound becoming heavily devalued. The pound hit its lowest level for five years versus the US dollar after Brown threatened to freeze the assets of all Icelandic companies in the UK, which employ around 100,000 people.

The last time the two nations had a dispute, dubbed the Cod Wars, was in the 1970s. Iceland declared an exclusive fishing zone and began to cut the nets of British trawlers entering the area. That dispute came to a head in 1976 when a UK naval vessel with nuclear arms rammed an Icelandic ship that had been cutting nets. After this a compromise was reached to allow a limited number of British ships in the area.



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Submitted by: Victor Banheuton

Designer sarees and designer saree blouses are loved by everyone. They are of different styles, patterns, colors, and designs. Do you often wonder how many styles of an Indian sari are accessible? Do you want to know the best one?

This article will take you through a journey, showing you different clothing styles available in today’s India. This article will tell you about Indian sarees and help you dress up better.

Some of the most well-known and famous Indian saree styles are:

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Nivi Style: This is the most popular style of draping a sari today. In this draping, one end of the piece is tucked into the petticoat s waistband, which usually is a plain skirt. The cloth is first wrapped around the lower body and then is hand-gathered below the navel, into even pleats. The pleats are then tucked into the waistband, and after one turn the loose-end (Pallu) is draped over the left shoulder, and is worn diagonally in front of the torso.

Gujarati / North Indian Style: Gujarati style, also known as north-Indian style, is very similar to that of nivi style. The difference is that in this style, the pallu is draped over the right shoulder, instead of the left one (like Nivi). Another difference is that in this style, the Pallu (the decorative end), is not draped from front to back, but from back to front unlike Nivi.

Maharashtrian Style: This traditional style resembles the Maharashtrian dhoti style. This one is very common in places like Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh. This sari style is different from other sarees as in this one the saree is draped to put the center at the back of the waist, and the end is securely tied in the front, and then the two-ends are wrapped around the legs. The decorative end (Pallu) is draped over the shoulder or torso.

Dravidian Style: This saree draping style is very common in Tamil Nadu. This is draped in two parts. The veshti is used to cover the lower body, while mundu is used as an add-on to yeshti. Yeshti is very simple to drape. It is draped around the waist like a tower, and is then folded in half (lengthwise). Some of these saris are particularly characterized by a pleated badge also called pinkosu at the waist.

Madisaara Style: This is mostly worn by Brahmin ladies in Kerala and Tamil Nadu, normally on festive occasions or weddings. A 9-yard saree is required for this kind of draping, which is very different from other ones. It is first clearly wrapped around the waist, with one hand (of the piece) on the right side and the other one on the left. At the left waist, a knot is firmly tied and is neatly tucked into the right side of the waist. The sari s end is also tucked into the waist.

The remaining sari is then folded four to five times. The folded portion is put between the legs and the pleated one is brought to the back. After neatly assembling the folds, they are neatly tucked at the backside of the waist. Next it is gathered to the right side, in front, and is then draped over the left-shoulder. The Pallu is then gathered around the waist and carefully tucked into the left side of the waist.

These are some of the most well-known styles of Indian sarees today. Hopefully you ll enjoy wearing them and letting us know about what you think.

About the Author: The author has been writing for 3 decades, joining his love of India, clothing and the latest fashion trends.

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Saturday, February 26, 2011

An elderly Brooklyn, New York woman was found dead yesterday after a fire triggered by a voodoo ceremony caused a blaze in an apartment that left dozens homeless. The details of the ceremony were not clear, but sources say it led to sex.

An unidentified woman hired a Voodoo priest for $300, identified as Nelson (Pepe) Pierre, to perform a mystic ceremony meant to bring her good luck. The woman went to Pierre’s apartment, where she ended up in bed surrounded by lit candles which were mistakenly knocked over, setting the bedsheets on fire. In an effort to suppress the flames, Pierre splashed water from the bathroom sink on the sheets while his roommate, who was ironing at the time, opened a window for air. However, according to the New York Fire Department, wind gusting through the open window created a “blowtorch effect” which caused the fire to spread to the 4th floor hallway and into the 5th and 6th floors. The blaze killed one woman, three others were severely injured, and at least 20 firefighters were left with burn wounds.

Time and time again we respond to tragedies that could have been so easily prevented … hopefully others will learn from this tragedy

In an NYFD statement, Fire Commissioner Salvatore J. Cassano said, “Time and time again we respond to tragedies that could have been so easily prevented. This fire had so many of those elements … hopefully others will learn from this tragedy.” It took hours for hundreds of firemen from dozens of companies to bring the raging fire under control.

Pierre, a man in his 60s, did not call 911 right away, but attempted to quell the fire using water from the bathroom sink. A source in law enforcement said, “Nobody sees a crime right now. It was an accident. Maybe they weren’t careful, but they did try to put it out.”

Mary Feagin, a 64-year old retired teacher, died in the blaze.

The New York Police Department is currently investigating the incident.



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Sunday, February 10, 2008

At least two children in Baghdad, Iraq have died after eating cake poisoned with thallium and at least nine others remain ill. The cake was given to people at an Iraqi sports club near the capital.

The Secretary of the Iraqi Air Force and his daughter are also among the victims. All are currently receiving treatment in Amman, Jordan as the antidote for the deadly poison is not available in Iraqi hospitals. The United Kingdom has flown in the antidotes and treatments for the victims, several of which are seriously ill.

“This is a disturbing incident,” said a police spokesman.

Thallium is used in poisons to kill rats and insects and is also considered the assassin’s drug or “The Poisoner’s Poison” because it is tasteless. Former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein used the poison against many of his enemies, and it has not been used since his rule of the country.

So far, it is not known how the cakes were poisoned, but the Air force Secretary says that the cakes were seemingly delivered to the club as a “goodwill gesture.” Two officials at the club then took the cake home, where members of the families ate it. He now believes someone conspired to kill him and his family.

“The use of thallium in this way appears to show that someone in Adhamiya is reviving the techniques of the mukhabarat [Saddam’s secret police]. What happens if al-Qaida gets the know-how? We are urgently trying to discover how much thallium is out there and who would know how to utilize it,” added the spokesman.

An investigation is ongoing, but police say that the cakes were made at a local bakery in the Adhamiyah district of Baghdad. Police also say that the bakery has recently been a host for Sunni militants.



byAlma Abell

There are millions of people in this country who have money problems. Yes, one of the biggest money problems for most people is the fact that they don’t have enough of it. However, there are a large number of people who make very poor financial decisions and these decisions can have a huge effect. If you want to start making good money decisions, you’ve got to start with Banking in Hattiesburg MS. Visit website for more information.

Just about everyone with a job does business with a banking institution. One of the mistakes people make is simply choosing any bank to do business with. Before you choose a bank you should get an understanding of the types of fees that your account will be subjected to. Banks use various types of fees in order to make money off of their customers. For instance, some banks charge customers to use their ATMs, and other banks charge annual fees for debit card usage. When it comes to Banking in Hattiesburg MS don’t overlook these small charges.

Most people don’t take advantage of their banking options as well as they should. For instance, most banks like Central Sunbelt FCU allow customers to set up multiple accounts. You can use this option in order to help you save money. If you have a habit of spending all of your money in your one bank account, consider getting a second account. Use your second account to store and save a small percentage of your monthly income. Before you know it you’ll have hundreds of dollars saved up.

These are just a few of the tips you should consider for Smart Banking in Hattiesburg MS. Again, learn about the possible fees you’ll be subjected to. You’ll also want to know about any limits that’ll be placed on your account. Lastly, take advantage of the banking options available in order to save a little extra money. For more information visit Central Sunbelt FCU.



Friday, March 3, 2006

The possibility of large-scale protests in the face of the 3,000 journalists covering the Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games, has event organisers and the Government worried.

The group “Black GST” – which represents Indigenous Genocide, Sovereignty and Treaty – are planning demonstrations at prominent Games events unless the Government agrees to a range of demands including an end to Aboriginal genocide, Aboriginal Sovereignty and the signing of a treaty.

The Black GST say they hope the focus of the world’s media will draw attention to the plight of indigenous Australians during the Games. Organisers say supporters are converging from across Australia and from overseas. Organisers say up to 20,000 people may take part in talks, rallies, colourful protests and many cultural festivities designed to pressure the Federal Government on Indigeneous rights issues. They want the Government to provide a temporary campsite for the supporters, saying “organised chaos was better than disorganised chaos.”

The 2006 Stolenwealth Games convergence, described by organisers as the “cultural festival of the 2006 Commonwealth Games,” was virtually opened on March 2nd with the launch of the official “Stolenwealth Games” website. Scoop Independent News and Perth Indymedia reported that the launch was held at Federation Square in Melbourne. The site contents were projected via wireless laptop by the Stolenwealth Games General Manager, and a tour of the website was given on the big screen. He said “overwhelming amusement was the response from the audience.” The group say permanent access points to the website are being set up at public internet facilities across Victoria during the coming weeks.

“Interest in the Stolenwealth Games is building all over the world and this fresh, exciting and contemporary site will draw in people from Stolenwealth Nations around the globe to find out about the latest news and events,” said a Stolenwealth Games spokesperson. “We have been getting many requests from around the world wanting to know about the Stolenwealth Games. We have provided many ways that individuals and organisations can support the campaign by spreading the word.”

The Victorian Traditional Owner Land Justice Group (VTOLJG) which represents the first nation groups of Victoria, has announced its support to boycott the 2006 Commonwealth Games until the Government “recognises Traditional Owner rights.” The group asserts that culture has been misappropriated in preparation for the Games.

Organisers of the campaign say they welcome the formal support from the Traditional Owners. “While some seek to divide and discredit Indigenous Australia, this support is further evidence that the Aboriginal people are united in opposition to the ongoing criminal genocide that is being perpetrated against the Aboriginal people” said Black GST supporter and Aboriginal Elder, Robbie Thorpe.

“We now have endorsement from the VTOLJG and the Aboriginal Tent Embassy for the aims and objectives of the Campaign and we are looking forward to hosting all indigenous and non-indigenous supporters from across Australia in March,” he said. The Black GST group have said “the convergence will be held as a peaceful, family-focussed demonstration against genocide, and for the restoration of sovereignty and the negotiations towards a Treaty.”

But the campaign has received flak in mainstream media, such as Melbourne’s Herald Sun, who wrote: “the proposal to allow BlackGST to set up an Aboriginal tent embassy at a site well away from the Commonwealth Games will be interpreted by some as the State Government caving in to a radical protest group. A major concern for the Government… is to protect the event from disruption… no chances should be taken…”

The Black GST has been planning the convergence for months, calling for Aboriginal people and their supporters to converge on Melbourne. The Melbourne-based Indigenous rights group have called on thousands of people concerned about the plight of indigenous Australians to converge on Melbourne during the Games, which they have dubbed “the Stolenwealth Games”. But the choice of Kings Domain has made conflict almost inevitable, as the area is one of the areas gazetted by the State Government as a “Games management zone”.

Under the Commonwealth Games Arrangements Act, any area gazetted as a management zone is subject to a range of specific laws – including bans on protesting, creating a disturbance and other activities. The protest bans will be in effect at different times and places, and offenders can be arrested. A spokeswoman for the Black GST, which advocates peaceful protest, said the site had been chosen because it was close to where the Queen will stay on March 15. “We figured that she is only in Melbourne for 27 hours or something like that so we thought we would make it easy for her to come next door and see us,” she said. “We are a very open, welcoming group, so she will be welcome to come and join us.”

Kings Domain is the burial site for 38 indigenous forefathers of Victoria. Black GST elder, Targan, said trade union groups have offered to install infrastructure at the site. The group initially worked with the State Government to find a suitable camp site, but the relationship broke down when the Government failed to meet a deadline imposed by the protesters. “While we are disappointed the ministers were not able to meet deadline on our request, we thank them for their constructive approach towards negotiations and the open-door policy exercised,” said Targan.

A spokesman for Games Minister Justin Madden said the Government was still investigating other sites. Victoria Police Games security commander Brendan Bannan said he was not convinced the Black GST represented the views of most indigenous people. “We are dealing with the Aboriginal community and they don’t seem to support it at all … the wider Aboriginal community don’t support disruption to the Games at all,” he said.

The Government was told that Black GST supporters would camp in Fitzroy Gardens and other city parks should it fail to nominate a site. A spokesman for Aboriginal Affairs Minister Gavan Jennings said the Government was taking the issue seriously, but had not been able to finalise a campsite before the deadline.

Under special Games laws, people protesting or causing a disturbance in “Games management zones” can be arrested and fined. While prominent public spaces such as Federation Square, Birrarung Marr, Albert Park and the Alexandra Gardens fall under the legislation, such tough anti-protest laws cannot be enforced in the nearby Fitzroy Gardens.

Games chairman Ron Walker has urged the group to choose another date for its protest march through the city, which is currently planned to coincide with the opening ceremony on March 15. The group believes that an opportunity to gain attention for indigenous issues was lost at the Sydney Olympics and has vowed to make a highly visible presence at the Games.

The Black GST said the Australian Aboriginal Tent Embassy’s sacred flame, burning over many years at the Canberra site will be carried to Melbourne before the Games, and its arrival would mark the opening of the protest camp from where a march will proceed to the MCG before the Opening Ceremony.

Black GST claims supporters from all over Australia, including three busloads from the West Australian Land Council, will gather in Melbourne during the Games for peaceful protests.

Aboriginal Affairs Minister Gavin Jennings had offered Victoria Park to the protesters. Victoria Park, former home of Collingwood Football Club, where one of the strongest statements of Aboriginal pride, when St Kilda star Nicky Winmar in 1993 raised his jumper and pointed to his bare chest after racial taunts from the Collingwood crowd.

Black GST, which has labelled the Games the Stolenwealth Games, said the State Government had failed to find a suitable venue. Black GST may encourage protesters to camp in prominent parks such as Fitzroy Gardens and Treasury Gardens. Graffiti supporting the action has also appeared in central Melbourne.

Melbourne City councillor Fraser Brindley has offered his home to the Black GST organisers. “I offered my home up to people who are organising visitors to come to the Games,” he said. Cr Brindley will be overseas when the Commonwealth Games are held and has offered the free accommodation at his flat at Parkville. He said he agreed with the protesters’ view that treaties needed to be signed with indigenous Australians. “I’m offering it up to the indigenous people who are coming to remind Her Majesty that her Empire took this land from them,” said Cr Brindlley. Nationals leader Peter Ryan said: “This extremist group has no part in the Australian community.” Melbourne councillor Peter Clarke said the actions were embarrassing and that he would try to discourage him. “It’s not in the spirit of the Games,” he said.

Aboriginal elder, Targan, said the possibility of securing Victoria Park was delightfully ironic. “There’s a lot of irony going on,” Targan, 53, a PhD student at Melbourne University, said. “GST stands for Genocide, Sovereignty and Treaty. We want the genocide of our people to stop; we want some sovereignty over traditional land, certainly how it is used, and we want a treaty with the government,” Targan said.



Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Five British citizens have been seized in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad. The group, comprising a finance expert and four bodyguards, were captured from the finance ministry by kidnappers wearing police uniforms and driving police vehicles. The BBC is reporting that over 40 police vehicles were involved in the incident.

In separate incidents, at least 22 people were killed and 55 injured in a bus explosion elsewhere in the city, and at least 15 people were killed in a car bomb which injured a further 36, possibly more.

It is believed the four bodyguards are employed by Canadian GardaWord, a subsidiary of Garda.



Sunday, June 19, 2016

Microsoft announced on Thursday they are partnering with KIND Financial to help governments track the production and distribution of legal marijuana. Kind Financial, a California-based start-up company, began selling its Agrisoft Seed to Sale software three years ago. Microsoft is admitting Kind’s software on the Government portion of its Azure cloud service.

Although Kind Financial CEO David Dinenberg stressed to The Guardian they “absolutely do not touch the plant”, his company does business with growers and distributors of marijuana, as well as the governments that regulate it. State law in twenty-five US states — but not US federal law — has legalized marijuana, whether medicinally or for recreational use. Kimberly Nelson, Microsoft executive director of state and local government solutions, said they expect significant demand for technology to help states make sure cannabis distribution within their state is done according to their laws.

Kind also provides kiosks similar to automated tellers (ATMs) to facilitate marijuana transactions in dispensaries. The distribution of marijuana is often done only with cash or through machines like the ones Kind offers since many banks in the United States shy away from the marijuana industry entirely. Microsoft is not interacting with this part of Kind’s operations, however.

Microsoft and Kind will apply for contracts with state governments for their software. Currently, they have applied to Puerto Rico, a US territory, where medical marijuana has recently been made legal. BioTrackTHC, a company similar to Kind Financial, already has contracts with Washington, New Mexico, and Illinois.

Dinenberg said his company’s partnership with Microsoft is a major step in advancing the legitimacy of cannabis-related businesses.



Thursday, November 16, 2006

Sixteen-year-old student Ang Chuang Yang of Singapore has earned a place in the record books, thanks to his fast thumbs.

Yang typed a 160-character SMS message in just 41.52 seconds, beating the previous record by seven-tenths of a second. The student was competing in a competition organized by SingTel.

The record was first set by 18-year-old Ben Cook of Utah, two years ago. He soon lost the record to a girl in Asia, then won it back last July, “significantly besting his own previous typing speed”, says the website impulse.

Each record is set by typing a standard text chosen by Guinness World Records, the organization to which the record has been submitted. The message reads: “The razor-toothed piranhas of the genera Serrasalmus and Pygocentrus are the most ferocious freshwater fish in the world. In reality they seldom attack a human.”

He claims his secret is using a phone with a larger keypad. Speech-to-text software recently introduced by mobile company Nuance is not allowed for use under Guinness rules.



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