The Latest: Fencing tournaments around the world called off

first_img10:55 a.m.The Euroleague says it is suspending all games indefinitely because of the coronavirus outbreak.Europe’s main club basketball competition says it made the decision because of “the increased risks for participants in games, the vast amount of traveling disruptions causing the impossibility to reach certain destinations, and the different recommendations by the health authorities.”The league was scheduled to hold regular-season games in Moscow, Istanbul, Madrid and Tel Aviv on Thursday.___ ___10:25 a.m.The hockey-like game of bandy has postponed its world championships in Russia because of the spreading coronavirus.The Swedish Bandy Association says the tournament, scheduled to be played from March 29-April 5 in Irkutsk, has been postponed until October.International Bandy Association president Boris Skrynnik says “we know that there are concerns in other countries when it comes to travel and spending time with larger groups.” The league says decisions on awarding titles, and promotion and relegation places, will be decided at a special meeting on Friday.The Swiss soccer leagues have been suspended through March, and Basel is unable to host a Europa League game next week against Eintracht Frankfurt.___10:05 a.m.After the NBA suspended its season, the Euroleague is considering doing the same. The under-15 world championships in Arkhangelsk, Russia, at the end of the month will also be played at a later date.___10:15 a.m.Denmark’s top soccer leagues are shutting down for at least two weeks because of the spreading coronavirus.The Danish league made the move a day after the national government announced a lockdown. The small Scandinavian country has 514 cases of people testing positive. 11 a.m.South Korea’s professional baseball league says it will postpone the start of its season to mid-April because of the coronavirus outbreak.The Korea Baseball Organization says it still hopes to maintain a 144-game regular-season schedule but will consider banning spectators from some games when risks of infections are high.The KBO had already canceled its preseason.___ The league says it is consulting with clubs about a suspension, something which its players are demanding.“Euroleague and the participating clubs cannot ask from players to put their health and that of their families at risk,” the Euroleague Players Association said.The players’ union asked for the season to be suspended “until health, safety and freedom of movement can be guaranteed.”___10 a.m. ___11:40 a.m.The Indian Premier League Twenty20 tournament could be staged without spectators after a government decree related to the coronavirus outbreak.Indian sports minister Kiren Rijuju told all national sports federations to ban spectators at all events, but events can go on if they “can’t be avoided.”The decision impacts the hugely popular IPL, due to start on March 29 and last seven weeks. Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditLONDON (AP) — The Latest on the coronavirus outbreak’s affect on sports around the globe (all times local):___Noon 11:15 a.m.Real Madrid says its soccer and basketball teams have been put in quarantine after a basketball play for the club tested positive for the coronavirus.The Spanish club says the soccer team was also affected because it shares training facilities with the basketball team.___11:05 a.m. Associated Press McLaren says it has withdrawn from the season-opening Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne after a team member tested positive for the coronavirus.The British-based team says the person was self-isolated as soon as they started to show symptoms and “will now enter a period of quarantine.”Team officials have taken the decision to pull out of Sunday’s race “based on a duty of care” for McLaren employees and the wider Formula One family.Qualifying was scheduled to start Friday.___ German broadcaster Sky says it will show some Bundesliga soccer games on a free channel after spectators were barred from the stadiums.Sky will show four league games simultaneously on Saturday on its non-subscription news channel in a “conference” format, with the broadcast switching between each game to show the key action.That includes Borussia Dortmund’s game against Schalke, which is one of Germany’s most heated rivalries.There will be a similar procedure for some second-division games.___center_img The Latest: Fencing tournaments around the world called off “We will look at exactly what this will mean for the running of the tournaments for the weeks to come,” said Danish league director Claus Thomsen, adding more information on what will happen with the postponed matches and the rest of the season will be announced later.___10:10 a.m.The Swiss hockey league has ended the season in the top two divisions before the playoffs because of the spreading coronavirus.The league’s decision comes less than two months before Switzerland is due to host the world championships in Zurich and Lausanne. The International Fencing Federation has postponed all international events for the next five weeks, including four Olympic qualifying tournaments.The FIE made the decision after the coronavirus outbreak was declared a pandemic, and the U.S. banned travelers from 26 European countries starting on Friday.The events postponed included the Africa, Asia, Europe and Americas qualifiers next month. Also off is the Anaheim Grand Prix in California starting on Friday, and the junior world championships in Salt Lake City next month.Four World Cups in saber and epee next week were also called off.“Full details regarding the rescheduling of competitions will be announced at a later date,” the FIE said. “Information regarding Olympic selection criteria will be made as schedules for the remainder of the season are finalized.” A four-race finals week in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy, was canceled last week by the International Ski Federation.“The health and welfare of the athletes and all other participants, as well as the general public are in the forefront and the priority of FIS and all stakeholders,” the governing body said Thursday.Kilde’s runner-up finish in what proved to be the season-ending race — a downhill last Saturday in Kvitfjell, Norway — lifted him to the overall title above French rival Alexis Pinturault.Pinturault also finished runner-up to Kristoffersen in giant slalom. Another Frenchman, Clement Noel, was runner-up to Kristoffersen for the season-long slalom title by only two points, 552-550.Kristoffersen had an outside chance of winning the overall title if the final two races had gone ahead. March 12, 2020 It’s not yet been determined how it will affect the one-day international series between India and South Africa which began on Thursday in Dharamsala. The second ODI is in Lucknow on Sunday, and the third ODI in Kolkata next Wednesday.Foreign players are expected to face difficulties in traveling to India as the government on Wednesday suspended all visas, barring categories such as diplomatic and employment-related, until April 15 in an attempt to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.Unless the government makes an exception, foreign cricketers will not be given business visas with which they travel to play the IPL.___11:30 a.m. ___9:55 a.m.The season-ending men’s World Cup ski races were canceled Thursday to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, giving Norwegian skier Aleksander Aamodt Kilde his first overall title.Giant slalom and slalom races were scheduled for this weekend in Kranjska Gora, near Slovenia’s border with Italy.The cancellations mean Henrik Kristoffersen, another Norwegian, becomes the season champion in both disciplines by tiny margins. The Juventus player who tested positive for the coronavirus says he’s “OK” and wants “to reassure everyone who is worrying about me.” Juventus announced late Wednesday that defender Daniele Rugani and “those who have had contact with him” are being isolated. It also said Rugani is not showing any symptoms of the disease.Rugani sent a post on Twitter overnight in Italian.“You’ll have read the news and that’s why I want to reassure everyone who is worrying about me. I’m OK. I want to remind everyone to respect the rules, because this virus doesn’t make distinctions! Let’s do it four ourselves, for those dear to us and for those around us,” he wrote.Rugani is the first player in the country’s top soccer division to test positive for the virus. Kilde succeeds Austrian great Marcel Hirscher, who won eight straight overall titles before retiring in the offseason.___More AP sports: and 10:30 a.m.The International Basketball Federation says it is suspending all competitions indefinitely from Friday.FIBA says the decision was made “in order to protect the health and safety of players, coaches, officials and fans.”The suspension includes games in the Basketball Champions League, which is a rival competition to the better known Euroleague, and the second-tier FIBA Europe Cup. The Champions League is part-way through its playoffs.Men’s qualification for the Tokyo Olympics is expected to resume in June with a series of qualifying tournaments overseen by FIBA. Women’s qualifying has already concluded.last_img read more

Florida man accused of scouting terror targets and attack weapons

first_imgA 23-year-old Florida man is accused of providing material support to the Islamic State extremist group, attempting to buy multiple weapons and scouting potential targets for an attack in the Tampa Bay area, according to federal prosecutors.Muhammed Momtaz Al-Azhari, a U.S. citizen is charged with attempting to provide material support or resources to a designated foreign terrorist organization.An FBI affidavit says Al-Azhari was recorded expressing his admiration for Omar Mateen, the deceased shooter at the Orlando Pulse nightclub massacre in 2016 that left 49 people dead. Al-Azhari even drove by the location to “scope” it out.A confidential FBI informant, told officials that Al-Azhari said he wanted to kill at least 50 people.The affidavit also details how Al-Azhari negotiated with an undercover FBI employee to purchase a variety of guns and silencers, including an AK-47-style rifle. He also scouted a number of target in the Tampa Bay area.Officials say his phone was filled with multiple videos in regarding the Islamic State group. Another video, the FBI says, shows Al-Azhari in a facemask and pointing a gun at presumably someone on the floor.“Hey you, get on the floor. Get on the floor now. Don’t you move, don’t you move, I’m telling you, I will kill you,” he says in the video.Officials arrested him on Sunday. Police retrieved weapons that were allegedly to be used in an attack.Al-Azhari’s public defender said the government’s charges in the case unfairly attempt to portray him as a terrorist.Al-Azhari had previously been convicted in Saudi Arabia in 2015 of terror-related crimes, including attempting to join a terrorist group. He served three years in prison in Saudi Arabia and then was deported to the U.S., according to the FBI. He lived in California and since 2019 in the Tampa area.If convicted he faces up to 20 years in prison.last_img read more

Oceanport Shelves Ex-Commvault Site For Its New School

first_imgDisheartened members of the Oceanport Board of Education announce that they have removed the Crescent Place property from consideration for a new district school on Feb. 21. Photo by Chris RotoloBy Chris Rotolo |OCEANPORT – The former Commvault building at Crescent Place, recently identified as the potential site of a new $30 million complex for students of Oceanport and Sea Bright, has been scrapped from consideration after a surprise unanimous decision by the Board of Education.The announcement was made following a 68-minute, closed-door executive session at a packed public meeting in the Maple Place School’s library on Feb. 21. Concerned residents had come to speak out at the public hearing, filling the venue and spilling out into the lobby.“Based upon our thorough review as a Board of Education of all aspects of this proposed project, at this point we are removing the Crescent Place property from consideration,” said Board President Michelle McMullin.“This is not a win for our children,” McMullin added. “This means they will be in an unfit building for at least another two to three years.”Located at 2 Crescent Place at the Monmouth Park Corporate Center, the 110,000-square-foot building was once the site of Commvault, a data protection firm that opened in Oceanport in 1996. In 2014 the operation moved to a Tinton Falls property at the former Fort Monmouth.The board initially settled on the property at a Jan. 24 meeting, choosing the former Commvault headquarters as the best of three presented options, noting that the site offered the ability to create a more modern facility without interrupting their students’ education during the construction process, as well as ample space to expand if student enrollment increased.Oceanport residents erupted in cheers and applause, some providing a standing ovation, as the Board of Education announced its plans to remove a property at Crescent Place from consideration for a new district school on Feb. 21. Photo by Chris RotoloThough public comments were delayed by the executive session, that did not quell discussion among the more than 120 waiting residents in the library, who voiced their concerns about student transportation, nearby flooding of the Turtle Mill Brook, contaminated soil due to the dumping and storage of chemicals by former inhabitants of the facility – including Perkin-Elmer Corp. and Interdata Inc. – and potential criminal threats.Resident Rob Newland presented a report to the board which he said described 94 criminal acts in the past 20 months at a nearby hotel, some of which allegedly occurred during school hours and when extracurricular activities would be taking place. The transgressions, he said, included drug overdoses, weapons discharge, theft and disorderly persons offenses.Oceanport resident Chris Macioch addresses his neighbors about harassment he has suffered for voicing his opinion in favor of a new district school at the Crescent Place property formerly under consideration for a new district school on Feb. 21. Photo by Chris RotoloBoard of Education member Meghan Walker said she was displeased that Commvault was no longer an option.“I don’t care what you think of me for saying this, but I don’t think this is the right decision,” Walker said to those on hand. “I whole-heartedly believed in Crescent Place. There wasn’t anything that was submitted to us that we did not investigate, and came up with answers that satisfied me.”“I’m not an expert on crime statistics but the people we consulted are. Same with the flooding, same with busing, same with everything else,” Walker added. “It breaks my heart to take this off the table, because in my heart I know it was the most fiscally responsible and forward-looking thing to do. It allowed for expansion. It solved all of our problems as it pertained to parking and ballfields, ADA compliance, fire safety, intruder protection. All of it would have been solved for every student in this district.”The Crescent Place project would have been financed through a $30 million bond over a 30-year period. It was tentatively planned to be on the ballot for a special referendum on Oct. 2, and would have raised taxes significantly for Oceanport residents, and would also have subjected Sea Bright residents to a slight hike.For the past three years, the Board of Education has researched options to upgrade its two schools – Wolf Hill Elementary School and Maple Place School – which serve kindergarten through fourth grade and fifth through eighth grade, respectively.During the proposal presentation on Jan. 24, it was revealed that Wolf Hill Elementary – which is 107 years old – and Maple Place School – which was built in 1966 – both lacked fire-prevention sprinkler systems, as well as intruder protective entrances approved by the Department of Homeland Security, and ADA-compliant features, providing limited security and accessibility to their students.Annamarie Ippolito is a resident and teacher at Wolf Hill Elementary School who supported the board’s decision, and said, despite the conditions of the facilities, she’s ready to continue the search for another option.“Now we do start over and I will sit in that building now for another two years until we find another solution,” Ippolito said. “And again, I ask that you continue to put the students first, as you have. And I thank you for that.”With the former Commvault site now off the table, the board may search for new options, or revisit remaining proposals, one of which included the construction of a brand new Wolf Hill Elementary School next to the current facility at 29 Wolfhill Ave., while making short-term upgrades to Maple Place School that would call for future funding.A second option was to build a two-story structure at Fort Monmouth for pre-K through eighth-grade students, but was shelved because of uncertainties surrounding the bidding process through the Fort Monmouth Economic Revitalization Authority.“I appreciate that you took into consideration what we had to say, what everyone had to say, and made a decision based on it,” resident Kim Vaughan said to the board. “I think that we have a very good momentum going now. Everyone in our town is engaged. Everyone wants a new school. And now you have us at your disposal. Use us. We will help you.”This article was first published in the March 1-8, 2018 print edition of The Two River Times.last_img read more

Canucks Drop 3-2 Decision in Shootout to Kings

first_imgLeigh Ramsden lives in Vancouver and is an avid Canucks fan, having been a partial season ticket holder for over 10 years. He’s old enough to have witnessed all three Stanley Cup losses, as such, his prime goal is to remove those scars by seeing a Cup brought to Vancouver. Leigh is Fighting For Stanley’s ( west coast correspondent, and will also blog after all Canuck games for The Nelson Daily.Coming into Tuesday night’s game at Rogers Arena, the Vancouver Canucks knew they had to be better than they were on Sunday night when the Los Angeles area’s other team, the Anaheim Ducks, schooled them.  Unfortunately, this knowledge didn’t help motivate the team, and they eventually lost to the L.A. Kings 3-2 in a shootout.For the second game in a row, the Canucks’ opponent scored first.  As bad as they were on Sunday, their first period tonight was worse, and the Kings broke through at 9:06 of the opening frame as “Mr. Pancake”, Dustin Penner, deflected a Drew Doughty point shot past Canuck netminder Roberto Luongo.  The Kings were absolutely dominant in the opening period, at one point outshooting the Canucks 14-4 before a late Canuck power play evened that statistic up marginally, the period ending with a 15-10 L.A. advantage.The Canucks played slightly better in the final 40 minutes of the game.  Vancouver tied the game up at one early in the second period on a Daniel Sedin power play marker, before Justin Williams catapulted L.A. into the lead late in the period with a power play goal of his own.  The Canucks stuck with it in the third, and David Booth tied the game again at the five-minute mark, as he converted a beautiful feed from Jannik Hansen. Overtime solved nothing, and the Kings bested the Canucks in the shootout as Mike Richards scored the game winner on the Kings’ third shot of the skills competition, roofing a wrist shot over Luongo.The Kings saw solid performances from Penner and Williams, who each had strong games for the visitors.  Kings’ netminder Jonathan Quick was sharp as well, especially in the deciding shootout.This game featured many similarities to Sunday night’s game, the biggest being the lethargy of the Canucks’ group and the top-notch play of Luongo, which kept them in it.  The first ten minutes of the game were brutal from the Canucks’ perspective, and Luongo was in a veritable shooting gallery.  He was equal to the task, making a number of show-stopping saves, some on odd-man rushes, to give the Canucks a chance in this game.  Also similar to Sunday’s game was the fact the Canucks were able to make average players look very good, evidenced by Penner’s strong game. The Canucks were just flat-out outworked as they continue to limp along to the all-star break.CANUCKS’ DEFENSE CONTINUES TO STRUGGLEVancouver’s defense has struggled significantly since Sami Salo was injured against the Bruins.  This trend continued tonight.  The entire six-man unit has had trouble containing the opposing forwards in each game.  Tonight, especially in the first period, the Kings were buzzing around the offensive zone unadulterated, with nary a body on them.  It was like L.A. was moving at twice the speed of the Canucks. Last game, I mentioned the “bottom three” (take your pick from Ballard, Alberts, Rome, and Sulzer) have struggled and this has led to increased pressure on Bieksa, Hamhuis, and Edler.I can’t honestly remember a time I have seen Dan Hamhuis play like he has in the past few games.  He seems unsure of where to go with the puck and has had his troubles moving it effectively.  He and his partner, Bieksa, have been more a liability in recent outings. For his part, Bieksa has been making some bad decisions with the puck and has had a number of bad pinches which have led to odd-man situations.  In addition, all these guys have had a horrible time tying up their checks.  Bieksa allowed dangerous King forward Anze Kopitar a crack at a rebound from right in front of the net in the overtime, while he was laying on the ice!  Luongo was forced to make a good stop to get the team to the shootout.  In the second period, Edler lost his man at the side of the net, who skated out and got another rebound, almost scoring.The team’s defensive struggles do not all lie with the defense corps, however.  It seems the forwards are also struggling with assignments and are not backing up the D when they pinch in an attempt to keep pucks in.  Tonight, this led to at least three odd-man situations against, in the first ten minutes alone.  In addition, they are not giving the defensemen good options on breakouts, which leads to neutral zone turnovers. Tonight, the team had 13 giveaways to the Kings’ three.SOME POSITIVESFor all the doom and gloom surrounding this team and its recent play, I’m going to go contrarian and mention a few positives – it’s too easy to focus on the negatives in a game like this. The Canucks showed some glimmers of hope in final 40 minutes. For one, Booth had another strong game in his second outing since returning from his knee injury.  He was dangerous at many times and his skating looks great – he seems to be moving faster than the rest of the team.  He has given the maligned Kesler unit a shot in the arm.  In general, that line had a slightly better game tonight, they generated a few chances to score and were noticeable.  Coach Alain Vigneault ended up changing this line in the third, as he moved Booth down to the third line to skate alongside Cody Hodgson and Jannik Hansen, swapping spots with Mason Raymond.  Both lines looked even better after this move, and it was Hansen and Booth who connected on the tying goal.  It is surprising to me that Hodgson and Booth weren’t featured more prominently in the overtime period, given their stong play in the third.The play of Luongo can’t be understated.  He was truly spectacular tonight at times, and the Canucks can thank him and him alone for their single point.  In general, he’s been on a roll since early December and is showing no signs of slowing down.  He’s given the team chances for points in recent games.The Canucks have also recently been getting beat in the faceoff circle on a nightly basis – not tonight.  They held a significant edge in this category, with 38 faceoff wins compared to 28 for L.A.Finally, the power play, while not appearing as lethal it was earlier in the season, was 1 for 4 tonight, right on their season average of ~ 24%.  After going 8 for 48 (17%) in its previous 15 games, it has clicked at a 30% success rate in the last three contests (3 for 10).  Hopefully this is a sign that the power play is getting back to top form.While overall the team isn’t going well at the moment, there are a few things going the right way.  And as bad as they’ve been in the past five games, the Canucks have come out of them with five points.  They are finding a way to at least get something out of these games.  A bigger test will be San Jose on Saturday afternoon.PARTING SHOTSChecking in on the Standings:  The Canucks again avoided the dreaded regulation loss tonight.  The SO loss leaves them with 60 points from 47 games, on pace for 105 (off last season’s pace, when they ended with 114 points).  The Canucks are third, points-wise, in the league, behind the Rangers and the Red Wings.  However, they have played between one and four games more than the other top teams, and as such, there are five other teams who could leapfrog over them if they got all the points available from their games in hand:  Boston, Philadelphia, San Jose, St. Louis, and Chicago.I believe the best way to gauge teams against each other is looking at their record in games decided in regulation – the four on four OT and the shootout are gimmicky and don’t represent “real” hockey.  In considering these records, these top teams would have the following point totals:NYR – 50Boston – 48Detroit – 48St. Louis – 48Philadelphia – 46Vancouver – 44Chicago – 40San Jose – 38If you take these results and extrapolate them over an 82 game regular season, given the number of games the teams have played, Vancouver is at the bottom of the list. Make no mistake about it – the Canucks performance this year has not met the standard that was set last year, when they won the President’s Trophy.  The Canucks are being forced to overtime or a shootout too often, and are leaving points on the table against some of the league’s inferior opposition.  Based on their play, this puts the Canucks near the bottom of the top 8 teams in the NHL – and that equals a second round playoff loss.Can the Canucks turn it around?  I believe they can, they have had some injuries to deal with (especially coming into the season) and their first 20 games were horrid.  They got hot in November but have come back to earth somewhat since.  If they can get the second line going and can shore up the defense, the goaltending appears good enough to win most nights.  Hopefully they can put something together here in the last 35 games of the season.Broadcast Observation of the Night:  I chuckled when I saw the fan behind the Kings bench had a bottle of Aunt Jemima syrup on the dasher on the other side of the glass, perfectly positioned behind the Kings’ Dustin Penner.  If you’re unfamiliar with this story, Penner missed a game last week with back spasms that he said flared up after he reached over the breakfast table to get a couple of his wife’s pancakes.Looking ahead: The Canucks continue their six-game homestand with a rare afternoon date with the San Jose Sharks on Saturday.last_img read more

“We should Not Stand in the Way”

first_imgThe Deputy Minister for Fiscal Affairs at the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning, Dr. James Kollie, has called on his colleagues in government to embrace the government’s decentralization initiatives to adequately serve the Liberian people.It is now time, he said, for officials to disabuse their minds about the process, and join the effort to leave behind a fruitful legacy for President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.The MFDP official spoke at the launch of the National De-concentration Platform in Gbarnga, Bong County last week.Dr. Kollie noted that decentralizing the governance system has been an ongoing challenge in the country, and there is no better time than now to ‘take the bull by the horns’.“Decentralizing the government is about making our governance responsive and accountable,” he said. “People do not have to go far to the center for redress.”Dr. Kollie said Services should be as close as to the people so that approval of small ticket items does not have to be sought from afar.“When the people ask questions, they need answers, and these answers have to be available as close as possible,” he stressed.In order for government to achieve its decentralization goal, which President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf eloquently articulated, he said, “I am urging those of us who are her lieutenants, who have been privileged to have the opportunity to serve with her, to demonstrate our commitment to making this happen.”Dr. Kollie indicated that though President Sirleaf will make the big policy pronouncements and demonstrate the commitment to the extent that she is willing to give up some of her powers that the Constitution has given her, her lieutenants should also be willing to do the same at their Ministries and Agencies.“For this to be successful we need to disabuse our minds, knowing that this governance process is not about us, but the country,” he declared.“I think we are under obligation to ensure that we do the right thing for the country.  And so decentralizing our governance system and making it more responsive to the people, even at the grassroots level, is [a key, part of our jobs],” he said.Dr. Kollie admonished: “We should not stand in the way. Whatever we can do to begin with the decentralization will require us losing some of our authority and powers.”Dr. Kollie made mention of what he described as nuances and complications as well as challenges that would need financial resources and human capacities to accomplish the decentralization process.“With this launch today,” he said, “the actual work starts tomorrow; I beg my colleagues and other stakeholders to make this happen.”“History,” Dr. Kollie stated, “will be kind to us because we’re taking practical steps to address the challenge of decentralizing our governance system.”Dr. Kollie stood in for Finance, Development and Planning Minister, Amara Konneh, who is co-chair on the NDP, and presently out of the country.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Irishman arrested on suspicion of murder as 39 bodies found dead inside lorry

first_imgAn Irishman been arrested in connection with the deaths of 39 people following the discovery of the bodies inside a lorry container today (Weds). Police and ambulance crews were called following the discovery at Waterglade Industrial Park in Grays, Essex at 1.40am.All 39 people were pronounced dead at the scene and the lorry driver, a 25-year-old man from Northern Ireland, has been arrested on suspicion of murder. The vehicle is believed to have come from Bulgaria and entered the UK at Holyhead in north Wales on Saturday.Police in Essex Essex said: “This is a tragic incident where a large number of people have lost their lives. Our enquiries are ongoing to establish what has happened.“We are in the process of identifying the victims, however, I anticipate that this could be a lengthy process.“We believe the lorry is from Bulgaria and entered the country at Holyhead on Saturday 19 October and we are working closely with our partners to investigate. We have arrested the lorry driver in connection with the incident who remains in police custody as our enquiries continue.” Paige Wade was driving past the industrial park at 4.15am on the way home from work.She told the PA news agency: “I honestly didn’t see much, I had just finished work while driving up Motherwell Way and all you could see was blue flashing lights, as I was driving past there was police tape to cordon off the start of eastern avenue.“I knew it was serious because of how many police cars and ambulances were there, but the police had parked their cars across the whole access of the road so you couldn’t see anything.“There’s always lorries around there as they park up there for the night, I couldn’t say whether I did or didn’t see the actual lorry in question.”Irishman arrested on suspicion of murder as 39 bodies found dead inside lorry was last modified: October 23rd, 2019 by Shaun KeenanShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Stem Cells: Hope, Politics, Charity, and Clarity

first_imgThose promising little cells that can differentiate into almost any tissue continue to make news – but they also continue to generate controversy.  Actually, only some of them generate controversy: the embryonic stem cells.  Not all of the articles about stem cells make that clear. Defining life:  With the stroke of a pen, South Korea decided that frozen human embryos are not life forms.  PhysOrg reported that “The ruling means that human embryos that are in their early stage and are not implanted into a mother’s womb cannot be seen as human life forms,” even though they have a full complement of human DNA from a father and a mother.  Well, if that is the decision, fertility clinics are free to toss out any ethical concerns about them.  The embryos become non-persons.  The clinics can dispose of them, or turn them over to the Science Lab.  “Following the ruling, shares related to stem-cell research surged on the local market.”Your embryonic brain stem cells:  When you were a mere embryo in the womb, your developing pin-sized brain had special stem cells that were busy building the center of higher learning – the neocortex.  PhysOrg reported that neurologists at UC San Francisco discovered a stem cell in the human embryo “illuminates human brain evolution, points to therapies.”  It “likely accounts for the dramatic expansion of the region in the lineages that lead to man, the researchers say.”  Is this because mice and monkeys lack these stem cells in their brains?  Not exactly; it’s just that in primates and especially in humans, the complexity of the layers and types of stem cells is dramatic.  The scientists equivocated about the e-word, saying that their work follows the “molecular steps that the cell goes through as it evolves into the nerve cell, or neuron, it produces.”  So what’s politics got to do with it?  “This information could then be used to prompt embryonic stem cells to differentiate in the culture dish into neurons for potential use in cell-replacement therapy.”  But what would somebody else’s stem cells, with their DNA, do inside your head?  Is that ethical or desirable?No controversy in this heart:  The phrase “non-controversial” has a calming effect on a heart.  Science Daily began an article, “A new and non-controversial source of stem cells can form heart muscle cells and help repair heart damage, according to results of preliminary lab tests reported in Circulation Research: Journal of the American Heart Association.”  The source is amniotic membrane, a sac in which the embryo develops, which is a form of medical waste normally discarded after a baby’s delivery.  Now, it can be kept to derive stem cells to heal damaged hearts.  The press release from the American Heart Association said that the cells are not rejected, and transform into heart muscle cells that start beating spontaneously.  In experiments on rats, a significant percent of them survived for weeks and decreased scarring after a heart attack.  If clinical trials show this works on humans, saving up this previously discarded tissue for heart therapy would be a very loving thing to do.Spanish love:  Spanish scientists have turned fat into a lovely thing.  Science Daily reported that scientists at the University of Granada took stem cells from adipose tissue (fat cells) and reprogrammed them into cardiac myocytes – heart muscle.  “This technique could be used in the future for regeneration of cardiac muscles through the use of cells directly extracted from the patient.”  Wouldn’t that be cool?  Some day, your doctor might extract your fat and use it to repair your heart.    A somewhat similar study at the University of Texas was reported by PhysOrg.  Your own adult stem cells could be re-injected into your heart and start the repair process, scientists have found.  “Injection of a patient’s own adult stem cells into the heart has shown some efficacy in assisting recovery after a heart attack in early human clinical trials,” the article said.Hope for MS patients in bone:  Stem cells in bone marrow appear to offer hope for those with multiple sclerosis.  Science Daily reported that “A groundbreaking trial to test bone marrow stem cell therapy with a small group of patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) has been shown to have possible benefits for the treatment of the disease.”  This was a human trial with encouraging results: “The procedure was well tolerated and the participants were followed up for a year.  No serious adverse effects were encountered.”  Bone marrow stem cells are a form of adult stem cell, with no ethical or controversial issues; they can be taken from the patient and re-injected the same day.Seeing the way for an embryonic stem cell therapy?  A first step toward a possible use of embryonic stem cells was announced by Science Daily.  Researchers at UC Irvine have succeeded in coaxing human embryonic stem cells to differentiate into an “an eight-layer, early stage retina” in the lab.  This was in isolation from an actual eye.  “We made a complex structure consisting of many cell types,” the study leader said; “This is a major advance in our quest to treat retinal disease.”  It is hoped that creating retinal tissue might lead to treatments for macular degeneration, retinitis pigmentosa and other blinding diseases, but such actual therapies are a long way off.  The article did not say whether embryonic stem cells were required for this feat, or whether adult stem cells, such as induced pluripotent stem cells, could work just as well.An article on both embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells in Science Daily this month was strangely silent about the controversy.  The focus was on understanding how these cells become pluripotent (i.e., able to differentiate into numerous cell types) – certainly an important issue.  But there was only this brief mention of the ethical controversy surrounding embryonic stem cells: “Because ethical and legal issues have hampered human ES cell research, mouse cells have provided a more viable platform for ES cell studies.”  On those ethical and legal issues, however, rides a great debate, millions of dollars, and fundamental questions about the value of human life.Is it right to do wrong to have a chance to do right?  Do the ends justify the means?  If there are two ways to get something done, and one is not controversial, why choose the controversial way?  Have we not learned that declaring someone a non-person is the first step to unspeakable abuses of human rights?    The proponents of embryonic stem cell research know how to play on your emotions with tear-jerking commercials of suffering people.  Californians saw that with their $3 billion stem cell initiative they couldn’t afford (02/08/2005).  What the pleading scientists don’t tell you is that (1) they stand to make a lot of money from tax-funded ES research, (2) embryonic stem cell research is getting stampeded by actual successes in the adult stem cell arena, and (3) ES research is tainted by desires to tinker with human cloning and chimeras (mixing human and animal cells).  Stay away from it.  They have nothing to show for it after years of hype and millions of dollars and one of the biggest scandals in the history of science.  Its advocates are primarily Darwinian leftist progressives.  They have mixed motives.  The practice of harvesting embryos opens up a potential shop of horrors, with markets for women selling their eggs, and catalogs of human body parts.  And with non-controversial iPS and adult stem cells available, we don’t need anything they’re selling.(Visited 9 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Even the biggest football game depends on agriculture

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest For those of us in agriculture, it is easy to see all of the ways that farmers, and what they produce, make our lives a bit easier to live. From the jeans we wear to the food we eat, there are an unlimited amount of products we use everyday that are taken for granted.Heck, even the Big Game on Sunday wouldn’t be the same if not for agriculture. I’m not talking about the nachos and cheese or hot dogs served up at the game’s concession stand, or even the “pigskin” that is actually made of cowhide (right here in Ohio by the way). I am referring to the beautiful, lush natural-grass field that will take more hits than any one player will on Sunday night.According to an ESPN The Magazine, on a remote piece of farmland east of San Francisco, sometime in the fall, a buyer arrives to inspect the product. The farmers have tended to it for months, keeping it warm under grow blankets and dry under tarps — its very existence under wraps. The farmers have leverage; few places grow product of this quality. The buyer has leverage; he can hold out for the best.The buyer takes the product in his hands. He rubs it with his fingers. He inhales deeply, taking in the aroma. He pinches off a bit and tastes it, to judge the quality and texture.Around the first of December, the phone rings at the farm. The buyer is on the line. The deal is made. The discussion turns to delivery — to Levi’s Stadium.You’ve probably never thought about the turf at the Super Bowl, which means the people who grow and tend to the turf at the Super Bowl have done their jobs. Turf is big business, and the stakes are high.Read the full article herelast_img read more

Ohio Ag Net Podcast | Episode 56 | Eddie George, FFA, Corn, RINs, Planting, and Sinkholes

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The crew recaps coverage of the Ohio FFA Convention, in which the student reporters spoke with keynote speaker Eddie George and Dale Minyo talked with Todd Peterson.An important call to action day for corn farmers is here and Ty Higgins caught up with Ohio Corn and Wheat’s Tadd Nicholson.A sinkhole in a farm field in Logan County is getting attention. Joel Penhorwood hears from Sunny Yoesting on the situation happening on her farm.All that and much more in this week’s podcast, sponsored by AgriGold.last_img read more

Pro Farmer Corn & Soybean Final Crop Estimates

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Corn: 14.501 billion bu.; Average yield of 177.3 bu. per acreCorn +/- 1% = 14.646 billion bu. to 14.356 billion bu.; 179.1 bu. to 175.5 bu. per acreSoybeans: 4.683 billion bu.; Average yield of 53.0 bu. per acreSoybeans +/- 2% = 4.731 billion bu. to 4.589 billion bu.; 54.1 bu. to 51.9 bu. per acreNote: The estimates on this page reflect Pro Farmer’s view on production and yields. These estimates are based on assumptions for normal weather through the remainder of the growing season. We measured a mature crop that in some cases is just weeks away from harvest. Most of the corn crop (possibly with the exception of Iowa and Minnesota) will not be able to add to yield. Soybeans have the soil moisture needed for a strong finish. The soybean production estimate assumes a 500,000-acre reduction versus the June Acreage Report.  CornOhio: 184 bu. per acre. They say records are meant to be broken, and that could definitely be the case this year. We typically measure the state too light and feel the crop will top USDA’s 180-bu.-per-acre August peg.Indiana: 186 bu. per acre. We can’t argue with USDA’s 186 bu. per acre peg. Ear counts pushed up yields. It’s a big crop that could’ve been even better if not for some tipback.Illinois: 204 bu. per acre. We found a surprising amount of variability in the state, but a 6% increase in ear counts will offset some of the “low” areas. We measured a good crop, but not good enough to hit USDA’s yield peg.Iowa: 202 bu. per acre. The opportunity to add yield is still there… but so is the opportunity to lose some yield. The state was too wet in the northwest, too dry in the south and pretty darn perfect in the east. Crop health on the eastern side of the state was the best we encountered on Tour.Minnesota: 186 bu. per acre. We encountered nitrogen loss, shallow root systems and dry conditions in areas. Therefore, we feel USDA may have overshot the crop.Nebraska: 195 bu. per acre. We saw a really good Nebraska corn crop — USDA measured a record-large crop in August and so did we. The crop is nearing maturity. We expect harvest to get underway in a week or two.South Dakota: 171 bu. per acre. We can’t find much to argue with regarding USDA’s August crop estimate for the state, especially since our Tour favors higher-yielding areas.SoybeansOhio: 60 bu. per acre. It’s a beautiful crop, and one that’s very uniform and mature. And the moisture is there for a strong finish.Indiana: 62.5 bu. per acre. Much the same can be said for Indiana’s crop, and it is even a little more mature than Ohio’s. Combines could roll in places as soon as two weeks.Illinois: 65 bu. per acre. Illinois beans did their part to contribute to an overall U.S. soybean crop that promises to be a real beast, likely setting record yields. Pods are exemplary and starting to fill. High pod counts and ample soil moisture point to a bigger yield than USDA estimated in August.Iowa: 63.5 bu. per acre. R6 beans should finish easily before frost. There’s plenty of moisture to take it to the finish. Disease and insect pressure were light.Minnesota: 49 bu. per acre. This soybean crop is the most variable of any on the tour. Sudden Death Syndrome (SDS) is setting in for some areas. Some of the crop needs rain, some needs the rain to stop. Nebraska: 63 bu. per acre. We measured a  whopper of a bean crop in Nebraska. And it was a much cleaner crop than we’ve seen in recent years. It won’t add any pods from this point forward, but rains could help it to fill existing ones.South Dakota: 50 bu. per acre. We saw much the same crop as USDA did on Aug. 1. As was the case for most of Tour, maturity was advanced. Plant health was generally excellent, insect and disease pressure were low and stands were better than average.last_img read more