Mexico’s new ‘common man’ president hits the ground running

first_imgMexico city, Dec 3 (AP) Mexico’s newly inaugurated president has hit the ground running, with his pledge to govern as a common man and end decades of secrecy, heavy security and luxury enjoyed by past presidents. Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador sported slightly ruffled hair at his first early morning news conference as president, which started at 7 am local time Monday. Lopez Obrador took his first airplane flight as president Sunday, boarding a commercial flight with the rest of the passengers. He promised to sell the presidential jet. Lopez Obrador arrived at Mexico City’s National Palace in the same white compact car he used before taking office Saturday. Lopez Obrador refused the military body guards used by past presidents. (AP) INDINDlast_img

The Sultry Jaguar XKSS is Back in Production after a 60-Year Hiatus

first_imgJaguar Classic has revealed its own work of art within the stunning Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles. After looking forward, with the debut of its all-electric i-Pace Concept, the U.K. automaker has drawn upon its rich racing history to produce something truly remarkable.In 1957, Jaguar honored the Le Mans-winning D-type with a road-going version, dubbed the Jaguar XKSS. Of the 25 total vehicles produced, nine examples designated for North America were lost in a fire at Jaguar’s factory. At the time, Jaguar didn’t replace the cars, but now, nearly 60 years later, Jaguar Classic is settling up its debt.Nine Jaguar XKSS sports cars will be produced for a select group of collectors and customers. Each vehicle will use a period-correct chassis and sell for more than 1 million British pounds ($1,241,900 U.S. dollars).“The XKSS is one of the most important cars in Jaguar’s history, and we are committed to making the ‘new original’ version absolutely faithful to the period car in every way,” said Kev Riches, Jaguar Classic engineering manager.The body of the XKSS is made from magnesium alloy, as it was in 1957, and Jaguar Classic built a new styling buck to construct each car using the original hand-wheeling process.To match these cars as closely as possible to the originals, Jaguar Classic combined original drawings and digital imaging techniques. Engineers started with original frames and commissioned Reynolds, a tube frame manufacturer, to produce bespoke parts using imperial measurements. Each frame is bronze welded, just like the ’50s chassis tubing.Under each hood sits a 3.4-liter straight six-cylinder Jaguar D-type engine making 262 horsepower. The engine is constructed from new cast iron block cylinder heads, and three Weber DC03 carburetors. Period-specific four-wheel Dunlop disc brakes and Dunlop tires on riveted two-piece magnesium alloy wheels are also part of the package.Inside, the XKSS features re-creations of original Smiths gauges and gorgeous wood. To improve safety, Jaguar Classic used more robust materials on the fuel cell. Jaguar Classics expects each XKSS will require 10,000 man hours of labor to produce.“Everything is the same as the original cars, because that is the way it should be,” said Riches.The XKSS is Jaguar Classic’s second continuation car, following the six Lightweight E-types that debuted in 2014. Jaguar Land Rover Classics will move into a new global headquarters costing 7.5 million British pounds in Coventry, England, in 2017, and plans to expand its operations.“The XKSS continuation program underlines the world-class expertise we have at Jaguar Land Rover Classic,” stated Tim Hannig, director of Jaguar Land Rover Classic. “We are committed to nurturing the passion and enthusiasm for Jaguar’s illustrious past by offering exceptional cars, services, parts, and experiences.” Editors’ Recommendations 6 Fastest Cars in the World Right Now Icons of America: Taking a Corvette Road Trip Along Route 66 The New Land Rover Defender Is Just as Glorious as We Expected A Breakdown of All the Major Types of Car Racing The Best Car Camping Gear for Any Seasonlast_img read more

Port Industry Stakeholders Consult on Improving Efficiency at Kingston Container Terminal

first_imgAs part of its strategy to improve service delivery at the Port of Kingston, the Jamaica Customs Agency (JCA) and other key industry partners participated in discussions on improving port efficiency on Thursday, November 8, 2018 at the JCA’s Newport East Office in Kingston.The meeting was chaired by the President and CEO of the Port Authority of Jamaica, Professor Gordon Shirley and engendered a spirit of cooperation by the players to ensure a speedy and smoother flow of containers for the domestic market for the Christmas Season and beyond.In addition to the JCA, other key participants were the Port Authority of Jamaica (PAJ), Kingston Freeport Terminal Limited (KFTL), the Port Trailers Haulage Association of Jamaica (PTHAJ), the Customs Brokers and Freight Forwarders Association of Jamaica (CBFFAJ) and the Jamaica Society of Customs Brokers (JSCB) who all committed to making the necessary adjustments for greater efficiency in port operations.Several commitments were made by KFTL and many solutions were put forward including; further extension of opening times at KFTL, from two to five days, as well as on alternate Saturdays until December 8, 2018, to allow truckers to receive containers, thereby reducing the back-log that has occurred at the port in recent months. Haulage contractors and truckers are being reminded that the extended opening hours up to 6pm is to facilitate gate-in activities only.In the light of the approaching Christmas season, the JCA will continue to collaborate with its partners in reviewing port operations in an effort to ensure operational efficiency.Contact: La Donna ManningDirector, Public Relations & Customer ServicesTelephone: 876 -922-5140-8; 876 550-9600last_img read more

Viking Line to Bolster HelsinkiTallinn Route

first_imgzoom Finnish ferry company Viking Line has decided to strengthen its Helsinki-Tallinn route as the company will add a new vessel, the Viking Faster, to the route during the period from April to late October, 2017.With a capacity for about 850 passengers and 120 cars, the new catamaran, which will cut the sailing time on the route to less than two hours, will start operating from April 10.In past years, aside from the usual service on the Viking XPRS, additional sailings were provided by the M/S Mariella and M/S Gabriella, according to Viking Line.“This year we also want to start up the additional sailings beginning in the spring and continue them well into the autumn,” Kaj Takolander, Sales and Marketing Manager at Viking Line, said.During the spring and autumn, the Viking FSTR will make four to six daily sailings in addition to the Viking XPRS’ usual four departures. In July, there will be 12 daily departures on the Helsinki–Tallinn route since the vessels that serve the Helsinki–Stockholm route will also make one return sailing to Tallinn during the day.last_img read more

MMIW inquiry opens with story of Mary Johns a mother and residential

first_img(Frances Neumann, sister-in-law to Mary Johns, speaks during the opening day of the MMIW inquiry)APTN National NewsThe long-awaited start to the murdered and missing Indigenous women and girls national inquiry began with the story of Mary Johns who was murdered by a serial killer and buried in a potter’s field years before the family ever discovered her fate.The inquiry lurched its way to Tuesday’s opening hearings after suffering through criticism from the families of the missing and the murdered who said it wasn’t communicating enough and seemed restricted by bureaucrats in Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s department, the Office of the Privy Council.The inquiry plans to hold three days of hearings involving families in the Yukon this week. It will then hold hearings exclusively with experts until the fall when it will again call on families to testify.The inquiry was created, at the urging of families, by the federal Liberal government and tasked with examining the crisis that leads to the disproportionate number of Indigenous women who die violent deaths, go missing or whose deaths remain unsolved.“Today is a turning point in our national history,” said lead Commissioner Justice Marion Buller opening the first day of hearings in Whitehorse. “Now there is a national stage for the stories and the voices of the missing and murdered indigenous women and girls through their families.”Inquiry lead Commissioner Marion Buller speaks to open the hearing. APTN/PhotoAnd the first story told was of woman, a mother, a residential school survivor, murdered by a serial killer who would preyed on Indigenous women with impunity for years.Johns left her home in the Yukon for Vancouver in 1975 heartbroken over the crib death of her six month-old child Howard Clifford two years prior. The death of the infant destroyed her marriage. When she went to Vancouver, she left behind another son, Charlie Peter Johns.For seven years, Mary Johns lived on the streets of Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside until July 1982 when she was found lying face down on a foam mattress inside a barber shop owned by serial killer Gilbert Paul Jordan.“There was no justice for my sister-in-law,” said Frances Neumann, during her testimony to the inquiry. “He wasn’t even charged and she was the fourth one to die in this man’s company.”Jordan was linked to the deaths of 10 women over 20 years and all of them were Indigenous except one. He would entice women with alcohol and coax them with cash to drink until they passed out. He would then pour more alcohol down their throats. Jordan was finally convicted of manslaughter in 1988 and he died in 2006.Police never found Johns’ family after her death and she was buried in a section of Vancouver’s Mountain View Cemetery known as a “potter’s field” because it’s reserved for those who died alone and were unclaimed.Mary Johns holding son Charlie Peter.Johns’ family never knew what happened to her until 1988 when Neumann, who was living Vancouver, saw her photograph in a newspaper article about missing women. Neumann then contacted the police saying the woman pictured in the newspaper was her sister-in-law.“So they came out to my home and my husband was with me and they asked me if I had any family photos of Mary and I brought out these pictures that sit before you and we identified Mary through our family pictures with morgue pictures,” said Neumann, during her testimony. “Mary was a young mother, full of life and full of promise. She loved to laugh and when she’d laugh, her whole body would jiggle and everybody would laugh.”Johns’ only son Charlie Peter never managed to come to grips with the loss of his mother and he died of an overdose in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside.Neumann implored the inquiry to complete its monumental task.“Every fiber of my body is shaking to my boots. Please, please see this through. We have come and waited for many years to see the results. Don’t sweep it under the carpet,” said read more

Chamber hosting Geoscience BC at Tuesdays luncheon

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – A delegate from Geoscience BC will be the next guest speaker at the Fort St. John and District Chamber of Commerce luncheon on Tuesday.Geoscience BC is an independent non-profit organization that studies earth science in B.C., collaborating with First Nations, local communities, governments, academia and the resource sector. The organization has conducted a number of studies in Northern B.C. over the last few years, including aerial surveys of mineral deposits, groundwater, as well a natural gas atlas.The next Chamber luncheon will take place at the Pomeroy Hotel on March 20th from 11:45 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Tickets for the lunch are $35 for Chamber members and $40 for potential members. To register, visit read more

1 month after Brazil dam collapse stricter rules passed

RIO DE JANEIRO — The Brazilian state of Minas Gerais is banning the type of dam that collapsed a month ago, leading to the death of at least 179 people.The bill was signed Monday by Minas Gerais Gov. Romeu Zema even as recovery teams continued looking for 131 people still missing from the collapse in the city of Brumadinho.The legislation gives companies 90 days to present plans to substitute the dams within three years.A similar bill was introduced in 2016 following the rupture of another upstream tailings dam that killed 19 people. That proposal by state legislator Joao Vitor Xavier didn’t pass.Xavier says the staggering death toll in Brumadinho woke lawmakers up to the dangers of mining dams.The Associated Press

Neglect of agriculture in Asia leaves hundreds of millions in poverty –

The Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific 2008, produced by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), says that 218 million people – a third of the region’s poor, largely living in rural areas – could be lifted out of poverty by raising agricultural productivity.“The report asks the question why poverty still remains so high despite the much applauded high growth rates in the region,” Rob Vos, Director of the Development Policy and Analysis Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), said as he helped launch the study at UN Headquarters in New York. “The neglect of agricultural development and rural development has been among the main causes,” he said.Launching the report in New Delhi with Indian Government officials, Noeleen Heyzer, Executive Secretary of ESCAP, said: “It is simply unacceptable that at a time when the economic growth of Asia and the Pacific has surpassed all expectations, we are not doing all that we can to improve the lives of more than 200 million people living in such poverty.” This year’s issue also marks the 60th anniversary of the Survey, founded in 1948 to examine the Asia-Pacific region’s key short- and medium-term prospects and challenges in macroeconomic and selected social areas, especially from the point of view of minimizing human suffering.The 2008 survey, entitled “Sustaining Growth and Sharing Prosperity,” calls for revitalization of agriculture through a focus on improving agricultural productivity and market orientation. Reforms in land policy are needed to connect the rural poor to cities and markets and to make it easier for farmers to access loans and crop insurance, says the survey, which also proposes skills diversification training, to help the poor, particularly women, tap more job opportunities.The survey also calls for a comprehensive liberalization of global trade in agriculture, as this would take a further 48 million people out of poverty in the region.“Without these measures, the gap between rich and poor in the region will only get wider and millions will be condemned to lives of persistent poverty,” Ms. Heyzer said.Looking at overall prospects of Asia and the Pacific in the near term, the survey says that the region’s robust economic growth will continue in 2008, despite economic uncertainties in the United States and the continued appreciation of regional currencies. The developing economies in the region are expected to grow at a slightly lower but still robust rate of 7.7 per cent in during the year, after having enjoyed the fastest growth in a decade in 2007. However, the survey sees rising food prices as a key challenge in coming months. Food price rises are a greater inflation challenge than oil prices as food accounts for a far higher proportion of consumer spending across the region. The survey projects that the shadow cast by the United States’ economic situation is a long one, greatly contributing to the uncertainties that lie ahead. 27 March 2008Chronic neglect of agriculture in Asia and the Pacific has left over 200 million people in extreme poverty amid rising prices for foodstuffs and despite robust growth in other sectors, according to a United Nations report released today. read more

Key foreign currency quotations

Quotations for key foreign currencies in terms of the Canadian dollar. Quotations are nominal, for information purposes only.Canadian dollar value on Friday, the previous day, three-months and one-year: Currency Fri Thu 3 months Year U.S. dollar 1.2601 1.2478 1.2585 1.3222 British Pound 1.6615 1.6435 1.6325 1.6196 Japanese Yen 0.0111 0.0111 0.0112 0.0127 Euro in U.S. 1.1786 1.1838 1.1604 1.0927 Euro in Cdn 1.4852 1.4771 1.4604 1.4448Quotations provided by the Bank of Canada

UN announces interagency group to coordinate global fight against antimicrobial resistance

“As we enter the era of sustainable development, I would like to emphasize that antimicrobial resistance really does pose a formidable threat to the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly in our developing countries,” Ms. Mohammed told reporters at UN Headquarters in New York.Antimicrobial resistance happens when microorganisms (such as bacteria, fungi, viruses, and parasites) change when they are exposed to antimicrobial drugs – antibiotics, antifungals, antivirals, antimalarials, and anthelmintics. Microorganisms that develop antimicrobial resistance are sometimes referred to as “superbugs.” As a result, says WHO, the medicines become ineffective and infections persist in the body, increasing the risk of spread to others.Ms. Mohammed said the creation of the UN joint agency group to combat AMR and advise on the global effort, is a sign of how seriously UN Member States were taking the threat. Last September, Member States adopted the Political Declaration of the High-Level Meeting on Antimicrobial Resistance that contained a request for the UN Secretary-General to establish such a body.She said AMR is a “multi-sectoral problem” affecting human and animal health, agriculture, as well as the global environment and trade. Clean water, sustainable food production and poverty alleviation are but a few of the challenges it poses. “Many UN agencies will need to engage in this fight, as will other international organizations, non-governmental organizations, civil society, and critically, the general public,” she explained, welcoming the Secretary-General’s establishment of the group, which would seek to provide practical guidance on the ways to combat AMR and to recommend how global efforts could and should be better coordinated. AUDIO: Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed speaks about drug-resistant microbes ‘formidable threat’ to SDGs Credit: UN NewsWHO chief Chan said antibiotic resistance is already prolonging illness worldwide, and the political declaration was a vital commitment to help tackle the scourge globally.She said the inter-agency group would support governments across the world, as well as advising on the “use and abuse” of antibiotics for people, and livestock.Ms. Chan promised that the group, appointed by the Secretary-General, would “get to work right away.”RELATED: UN health agency lists antibiotic-resistant bacteria which pose human threatThe group will be comprised of high-level representatives from relevant UN agencies, other international organizations, and individual experts across different sectors, including animal health, agriculture, and environment.It will produce a report to the Secretary-General for the UN General Assembly session starting in September 2018. read more

Brian Davis Announcer Who Said Russell Westbrook Was Out

YouTubeBrian Davis, a play-by-play announcer for the NBA’s Oklahoma City Thunder, has been suspended for saying Russell Westbrook was “out of his cotton pickin’ mind” during a game against the Memphis Grizzlies this week. He’ll be forced to miss the first game of the Thunder playoff series against the Utah Jazz, which starts on Sunday, April 15.Shortly after the remark was made, Twitter exploded and a Thunder spokesperson called the words “offensive and inappropriate.”Davis released a statement as well and said he understands the punishment but meant no harm.“It is with great remorse and humility that I accept this suspension for the insensitive words I used during Wednesday’s broadcast,” he wrote. “While unintentional, I understand and acknowledge the gravity of the situation. I offer my sincere apology and realize that, while I committed a lapse in judgement, such mistakes come with consequences. This is an appropriate consequence for my actions.”The announcer made the comment during the second quarter of the game, right before Westbrook became the first player to average a triple-double in multiple seasons. When all was said and done, he ended up with six points, 19 assists and 20 rebounds.Besides the statement, Davis also apologized on Twitter and most said they accepted his apology.During Wednesday’s Thunder broadcast, I used a phrase on the air that was ill-considered, insensitive and hurtful. I’m beyond sorry about it and apologize, without reservation, from the bottom of my heart.— Brian Davis (@TrueBDokc) April 13, 2018 read more

Kew murder Man 32 charged in connection with film producers death

The actress has said she was “shocked by the horrifying news” of her death.Producer and actress friend Hester Ruoff described Ms Garcia-Bertaux as “an amazing individual” and said they had been due to start filming a new movie next month. A man has been charged with the murder of a French film maker who was found buried in a shallow grave in her garden in west London.Laureline Garcia-Bertaux, 34, was reported missing on March 5 having failed to turn up for work at PR firm Golin, where she was an executive assistant.Her body was found the following day in the back garden of her home in Darell Road, Kew, and a post-mortem examination found she had been strangled.Kirill Belorusov, 32, was detained in Tallinn, the capital of his home country Estonia, last week after a European arrest warrant was issued.Scotland Yard said he was escorted back to the UK by officers from the force’s extradition unit and taken into custody at a west London police station on Wednesday.He was charged with Ms Garcia-Bertaux’s murder and will appear at Uxbridge Magistrates’ Court on Thursday.The Metropolitan Police said her family have been informed.Colleagues previously described Ms Garcia-Bertaux, who was originally from Aix-en-Provence and had been living in Kew since last April, as “a wonderfully creative, caring and charismatic woman”.As well as working as a personal assistant, she was involved in film and had worked with Dame Joan Collins on the 2018 short film Gerry. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

Irish Prison Service to pay €85000 to three employees over equality issues

first_imgTHE EQUALITY TRIBUNAL has upheld three complaints against the Irish Prison Service and has directed it to pay out €85,000 in awards to three employees.The November judgements, published this morning, were all filed as employment equality cases.Anne Delaney and Monica O’Sullivan Byrne both took cases over working conditions and promotion opportunities. They were awarded €40,000 and €25,000 respectively.Julie Madden also took a case after she was unsuccessful in her application for promotion. She had applied for an allowance-carrying post in the Detail Office but was not appointed. Two junior male officers were successful in their applications. The Irish Prison Service was directed to pay her €20,000.During the month, the Tribunal upheld or part-upheld ten complaints awarding €162,200 to the complainants.Read: Human rights training course launched for prison staffMore: Over 40 per cent on probation re-offend within three yearslast_img read more

15 awkward moments when sport and politics met

first_img1. Bertie Ahern getting booed at Ireland matches(They’re saying boo-ertie – INPHO/Tom Honan)2. Tony Blair going on Football Focus(Football punditry – far more fun than discussing the Iraq War – BBC/PA Archive/Press Association Images)3. Deadspin and Donald Trump’s Twitter war(But tell us what you really think – Twitter screen grab)4.  Jesse Owens embarrassing HitlerYouTube credit: joni45654(So much for that ‘master race’ theory)5. Martin Johnson’s Mary McAleese red carpet snub(Johnson practices his angry face – INPHO/Photosport/Andrew Cornaga)6. Eamon Dunphy slamming Bertie Ahern YouTube credit: Daniel Sullivan(It’s a far cry from the two of them appearing on ‘The Premiership’ together)7. Charles Haughey congratulating Stephen Roche on his Tour de France win(Did someone say ‘bandwagon’ – Billy Stickland/INPHO)8. Bertie Ahern attempting to intervene in the Roy Keane Saipan row (Was this the ingenious disguise that enabled Roy to avoid Bertie at the airport? Niall Carson/PA Archive/Press Association Images)9. Linda McMahon’s failed political bid(Wrestling’s a sport, right? Jessica Hill/AP/Press Association Images)10. The Ultimate Warrior’s general belief that he can make it as a legitimate politicianYouTube credit: TheYoungTurks(Oh dear!)11. David Mellor and THAT Chelsea kit incident(Sigh! Matthew Ashton/EMPICS Sport)12. George Bush and the Texas Rangers’ love-in(No George, just no! EMPICS/EMPICS Sport)13. Italy’s 1938 World Cup-winning team pose with Benito Mussolini(The less said, the better – EMPICS/EMPICS Sport)14. THIS handshake(Neither of those two know who the other person is – INPHO/Cathal Noonan)15. Lance Armstrong hangin’ with George Bush SeniorYouTube credit: livestrongarmyWhat have we forgotten? Let us know in the comments section below.10 reasons why Ronan O’Gara and Robbie Keane are practically the same person>VIDEO: Thrills, spills and the most frantic 3 minutes of rugby you’re likely to see this year>last_img read more

Assessor County home values on rise

first_imgTest Caption Your value is on the rise Clark County.After five years of seeing the valuation of homes drop county wide, Clark County Assessor Peter Van Nortwick says the valuation of most homes in the county is expected to jump about 10 to 15 percent this year.And no, he warns, that does not mean your taxes will necessarily go up as a result.“This is a good thing, and it definitely means housingvalues are rebounding,” Van Nortwick said. “But the bottom line for a lot of people is to understand that just because the assessed value of their homes goes up, that doesn’t mean the taxes go up, as well.”Perhaps the best way to explain it is that in a budget-based system, when values go up, rates go down.The long form explanation is that the formula for determining levy rates in Washington divides a taxing district’s budget into the total assessed value of property.Van Nortwick said that means when property value increases, most levy rates decrease, resulting in many paying a similar amount of property taxes.But note the word “many.”“For some districts, they will pay more,” Van Nortwick said, “But that is because the levy rates were at its statutory limit.”Van Nortwick said, “many taxing districts have a statutory limit on the levy rate. When a district’s levy rate hits its statutory limit, they can’t collect any additional funds, even if it is below the district’s highest lawful budget.”For example, Van Nortwick said, “a district’s highest lawful budget could require a levy rate at $3 per $1,000 of assessed valuation. But if the statutory limit for the district is set at $2.50 per $1,000 valuation, the tax district may not be able to collect the highest lawful levy.”last_img read more

Coast Guard saves dog 2 boaters off Haulover Inlet

first_imgHAULOVER BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) – Two boaters and a dog have the United States Coast Guard to thank for their rescue off the coast of South Florida, Sunday.A helicopter crew from Coast Guard Station Fort Lauderdale made the save and after the group’s boat began taking on water near Haulover Inlet.After the save, the rescuers took a photo with the boaters and their dog.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img

Meredith National Media Group Ad Revenue Down Almost 12 Million in Fiscal

first_imgA company press release specifies that 5 percent of these visitors accessed Meredith’s sites from mobile devices. Meredith Corp. saw a busy first quarter in fiscal 2012: the rebranding of its marketing services group as Meredith Xcelerated Marketing; the launch of ROI guarantee Meredith Engagement Dividend; and the somewhat rocky acquisition of RDA’s Every Day with Rachael Ray magazine. Also during this time, Meredith’s National Media Group experienced a drop in print and digital advertising revenue from the same period in 2010, falling from $135.5 million to $124.4 million. Circ remained almost flat at $66.6 million; first fiscal quarter 2010 totaled $65.3 million in circulation revenue.According to Meredith chairman/CEO Stephen Lacy, “Print and digital advertising revenues continue to be challenged – primarily the food and beverage and pharmaceutical categories – due to higher commodity cost pressures and fewer pharmaceutical drugs in the marketplace.”Despite ad struggles, Meredith’s digital presence continues to grow. Online sub purchases doubled in during 2011’s fiscal first quarter, now up to 400,000. Monthly unique visitors also grew during this time, spiking 25 percent to 24 million; page views were also up, increasing 35 percent to 300 million.last_img read more

JaPa candidates motorcade vehicle of Ronys wife attacked

first_imgThe attacked vehicle of BNP candidate in Patuakhali-3 Golam Maula Rony in Patuakhali on Saturday, 15 Dec, 2018. Photo: UNBThe motorcade of Jatiya Party candidate for Manikganj-2 and the vehicle of Patuakhali-3 BNP contestant’s wife allegedly came under attack in Manikganj and Patuakhali districts on Saturday, reports UNB.In Manikganj, leaders and activists of Juba League reportedly attacked the motorcade of former member of parliament and Jatiya Party runner from Manikganj-2 parliamentary seat SM Abdul Mannan in Kanthapara of Harirampur upazila in the afternoon, leaving nine people injured.Mannan claimed that the Juba League men swooped on his motorcade equipped with sticks around 2:30pm as they reached Kanthapara for electioneering.They vandalised his vehicle and several motorcycles, he said.In Patuakhali, the vehicle carrying the family members of BNP candidate in Patuakhali-3 Golam Maula Rony, including his wife Runu Begum and sister, was attacked in Madina Masjid of Golachipa upazila at noon.Former Golachipa municipality chairman Abu Taleb Miah, who also inside the vehicle, was injured in the attack.Runu alleged that Awami League activists attacked and vandalised the vehicle.However, Golachipa upazila Awami League general secretary Golam Mostafa Titu denied the allegation, saying BNP’s internal feud was behind the attack.Akhter Morshed, officer-in-charge of Golachipa police station, said they received a complaint in this regard and will take necessary steps.last_img read more

Baltimore Grief Camp Provides Needed Outlet

first_imgTwo campers share a hug at Roberta’s House. (Photos Courtesy Roberta’s House/Shantivia Brown)Annette March-Grier is no stranger to death and grief. “I was born into and grew up around the funeral industry,” the now-55-year-old said.March-Grier’s parents were founders of March Funeral Homes, one of the premier mortuary companies among Blacks in Baltimore.As a young woman, March-Grier fled the business of death and spent years as a registered nurse. But after several years at Johns Hopkins, the prodigal daughter returned to the family business and used her experience as a healer to make a mark.“Interestingly enough, I saw grief from a new perspective,” she said. “I saw how untreated grief led to poor health, substance abuse, domestic abuse and other forms of violence, and I saw there needed to be much more education and understanding about grief and loss in our community.”After obtaining training and education in grief counseling, March-Grier began running an adult bereavement support group over the next 30 years.“I discovered [that] in urban communities, families are dealing with multiple types of losses,” she said.Inner-city communities such as Baltimore are often plagued by violence, high unemployment and incarceration rates, foreclosures and homelessness, poor health and high rates of illness.“We provide support for families to understand their grief and adjust to the losses in their lives and learn coping skills that lead to productive lives and healthy outcomes,” she said.But those services were being offered in a veritable vacuum, in which even churches—who were also conducting many funeral services in Baltimore—seemed to lack the necessary tools, including trained staff, to cater to the overwhelming need for grief counseling.“Many of the participants in the group support sessions said they would get very angry with their pastor or church members because they felt they were not understood,” March-Grier said. “They would get all the Scriptures and clichés about being strong and having a strong faith and ‘you’ll see your loved one again’…. But those clichés could be very hurtful and harmful to people when they are going through their hard times.”The paucity of grief counseling services was particularly acute for children, March-Grier found. But that’s par for the course, said Derrick Gordon, assistant professor of psychiatry, Yale School of Medicine.“In urban communities there aren’t a lot of resources to help these (grieving) young people,” Gordon said. And, even when there are services available, “there aren’t support staff who understand, look like or have a cultural connection to the people they are meant to serve.“There isn’t a silver bullet when it comes to dealing with these situations,” the Yale professor added. “But a targeted response that meets those kids where they are to shepherd them through the process of healing is necessary.”In 2006, the personal loss of her mother, Julia Roberta March, set March-Grier on the path to providing that targeted response. She established Roberta’s House—named after her mother—which primarily provides psychological first aid to children, ages 5-17, who have experienced traumatic loss.The service is a needed one in Baltimore where many children in the Black community experience loss—particularly to violence—every day. Already, the city has experienced more than 200 homicides this year, with 19 in August alone.Every year, Roberta’s House facilitates mourning, providing mental health support and training to about 800 children, families and practitioners through various programs and activities, according to a brochure.In addition to 10-week programs at the center, Roberta’s House conducts 10-week peer support programs in Baltimore City Schools and bereavement counseling workshops for local churches, social workers, schools, and universities. And in July 2014, Roberta’s House began a partnership with the Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice and the Baltimore City Police Department to implement a death notification pilot project. The organization provides relevant training to homicide detectives and case managers who can work together to conduct death notifications and help connect families with grief support and counseling.From Aug. 9-11, Roberta’s House hosted its sixth Camp Erin, a summer camp for grieving and recovering children, in partnership with The Moyer Foundation. Fifty Baltimore-area children were taken to the NorthBay Adventure Camp in Cecil County, Md., where they engaged in activities meant to help them mourn, including connecting with other children who have experienced loss, and, also, to have fun.“To get them out of the environment of their home and community, which can create more stress, fear and trauma, and take them out into nature facilitates the opening of the spirit and mind to explore their grief and see their situation from a broader world view,” March-Grier said about the camp. “To be around other children who are grieving gives them a safe place to express their feelings and to make friends and gives them a sense of hope that they can heal and grow from this experience.”last_img read more

Gene Editing Is Trickier Than Expected—but Fixes Are in Sight

first_imgMore Great WIRED StoriesThe triumphant rediscovery of the biggest bee on EarthI stopped using exclamation points and lost all my friendsThe Hyundai Nexo is a gas to drive—and a pain to fuelATM hacking has gotten so easy, the malware’s a gameThe best backpacks—for every kind of workplace👀 Looking for the latest gadgets? Check out our latest buying guides and best deals all year round📩 Want more? Sign up for our daily newsletter and never miss our latest and greatest stories Well, not exactly no one. The authors speculate that one of Liu’s base editors tends to grab onto any naked, single-stranded DNA it comes across. In a rapidly dividing embryo, cells have a lot of that kind of DNA exposed, creating more opportunities for the base editor to mess up. Liu, who knows more about it than anyone, says that’s exactly right.Because that particular editor can bind DNA so well on its own even without its Crispr guide,“it’s not so surprising to see these unwanted edits.” Liu, whose base editors have been licensed by an $87 million startup he cofounded, says his lab has already evolved a number of more precise versions of his original base editing approach. That work is still being prepared for publication, he says.“There’s no doubt in my mind this will be a quick fix,” says Steve Murray, a senior research scientist at the Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor, Maine. He’s part of a consortium of 17 academic research institutions receiving $190 million over the next six years from the National Institutes of Health to develop safeguards and standards around therapeutic genome editing. He says there’s actually a bigger story with the new Science paper. Besides the base editors, Steinmetz’s group also tested good ‘ol Crispr 1.0, the gene-editing workhorse of the biological research world. And they found it passed their test with flying colors. In Murray’s mind, it’s the first time convincing evidence has shown that Crispr Classic isn’t plagued by any mechanistically mysterious mistake-making. As long as you do a good job telling it where to go, it’ll do the job you designed it to do. “It helps to settle this debate back-and-forth about off-targets that no previous studies were really designed to answer properly.”The question on Murray’s mind now is, how many errors are too many? Cells are prone to making their own mistakes—on the order of once every million to 100 million base pairs, with more for skin cells, and fewer for sperm and eggs. Does it matter if an overactive gene editor makes that number closer to one in 500,000? What’s one messed up gene in one cell out of your 37 trillion? What if the mistake in that one cell grows into a cancer? And if a patient is on death’s door, how much does it matter?Murray and his colleagues on the NIH consortium will spend the next six years grappling with some of those questions. He imagines they’ll one day be able to calculate risk curves to help doctors and regulators assess the trade-offs of Crispr-based medicines. “I don’t think we or anybody can come up with a hard and fast rule, that above a certain number of errors it’s not useful for anything and below which it’s useful for everything. Every disease is different. Every therapy is different. Every patient is different,” says Murray. “But you have to have the data first to start the discussion.” Crispr therapies, it appears, now have one more test to pass. David Liu, the biochemist whose lab at Harvard and the Broad Institute developed the base editor in question, isn’t so sure of the clinical impact. Steinmetz’s group found almost 300 more mutations in edited cells as opposed to un-edited cells. Three hundred errors across the whole six billion bases in the mouse genome yields a mutation rate of one in 20 million. Liu points out that number is within the range of errors your cells spontaneously make on their own—more than neurons, but fewer than skin cells. Even so, he says the Science paper is an important advance in a field that is still figuring out its safety standards. “It’s a clever, elegant method designed to boost the signal so that we can now detect and understand these rarer types of guide-independent, off-target events.”A little bit of backstory: In 2017, Nature Methods published a one-page letter claiming that a Crispr treatment that cured two mice of blindness also caused a massive number of unintended mutations. Crispr stocks plummeted and scientists threw shade at the dramatic results, which relied on sequencing each of the mice and comparing their DNA to unedited siblings. The paper was eventually retracted, and the changes determined to be just the natural genetic variation between different individuals of the same lab strain. But the episode pointed out an important blind spot in these error-detection technologies. Virtually all of them use some sort of algorithm to pick places in the genome where Crispr is likely to accidentally go to work, and observe what happened there. “This is a field where you only see what you look for,” says David Jay Segal, a molecular geneticist who studies these effects at the Genome Center at UC Davis, and who was not involved in either study. Scanning the entire genome for changes would be ideal, he says. But no one had figured out a good way to do that in living animals with the proper controls until Steinmetz’s group came along.The trick was in making each animal its own control. Stay with me. The scientists used mouse embryos that were only one cell division old—so consisting of only two cells total. Into one cell they injected Crispr editing constructs and a reporter protein called tdTomato. The other cell they left alone. And then they let the embryos grow for 14 days. Under a special type of microscope all the cells that had been edited glowed bright red, while all the unedited cells stayed dark. They used that fluorescence to sort the cells, sequence them, and compare all six billion base pairs.The idea was to design a method that could detect every unintended change for any type of Crispr system, says Steinmetz. “We wanted to be able to pick up edits mediated by mechanisms we don’t yet understand.” Think of it like a red flare gun: It can send up a warning signal, even if inside no one’s sure exactly what’s going on.center_img Of all the big, world-remaking bets on the genome-editing tool known as Crispr, perhaps none is more tantalizing than its potential to edit some of humanity’s worst diseases right out of the history books. Just this week, Crispr Therapeutics announced it had begun treating patients with an inherited blood disorder called beta thalassemia, in the Western drug industry’s first test of the technology for genetic disease. But despite the progress, there remain a host of unknowns standing in the way of Crispr-based medicines going mainstream, chief among them safety.That’s because the classic, most widely used version of Crispr works by slicing open a strand of DNA in a specific spot in the genome and letting the cell stitch it back together. The major concern is that an army of DNA-breaking enzymes might sometimes wander astray and cause unintended mutations in places it shouldn’t. When a more precise technique, called base editing—which swaps individual letters of DNA without severing the strand—arrived in 2017, it promised a safer way forward. The technique had specific potential for the two-thirds of the 50,000-plus human genetic diseases caused by a single-letter screwup, and investors wasted no time licensing the technology. Researchers in China immediately began testing one such base editor in viable human embryos.It now appears that may have been premature. Using a new method for measuring unplanned edits, a team of American, Chinese, and European scientists has found that the same base editor, widely in use by researchers today, actually messes up the genome at an eyebrow-raising rate.Their report, published today in Science, claims a 20-fold increase in mutations over what would be expected in the normal course of cell division and repair in mouse embryos. “That number will vary depending on a lot of factors, but the major takeaway is that if you want to move this particular base editor to a clinical setting, you should probably be concerned,” says Stanford biochemist Lars Steinmetz, a co-author on the paper. That advice goes out especially, he says, to scientists who might be tempted to skirt rules and regulations to rush base editing into humans, a concern that’s been on his mind since the Crispr baby scandal broke in November.last_img read more