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Sarah Duchess Of York Helps Open Teenage Cancer Trust Unit

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first_imgSarah, Duchess of York and world snooker players Judd Trump and Jack Lisowski, have officially opened at Bristol Haematology and Oncology Centre (BHOC) the first specialist Teenage Cancer Trust unit in the UK’s South West for local young people with cancer.Sarah Ferguson helps open first specialist Teenage Cancer Trust unit in the South WestCredit/Copyright: Teenage Cancer TrustEach year, over 200 young people from Bristol, Somerset, Wiltshire, Gloucestershire, Devon and Cornwall, are diagnosed with cancer. Across the UK, seven are diagnosed every day. Traditionally treated either on a children’s ward or on an adult ward often alongside elderly patients, young people can feel extremely isolated during treatment, some never meeting another young person with cancer. Being treated alongside others their own age, by experts in teenage and young adult cancer care, can make a huge difference to their experience.Thanks to fundraising support from local communities, a volunteer committee chaired by Lady Wills, Trust funding from The Garfield Weston Foundation and the John James Bristol Foundation and generous help from corporate partners Home Retail Group, The Football Association, MandM Direct and Societe Generale, Teenage Cancer Trust raised £2.5million to open this new eight bed unit. Named Area 61 by the patients and taking ten months to build, the state-of-the-art unit offers 16 to 24 year olds a place to receive treatment where they can feel at home.Long term patron of Teenage Cancer Trust, Sarah, Duchess of York, opened the unit and said: “Teenage Cancer Trust is the most incredible charity, helping young people stay teenagers first, cancer patients second. I’ve been a patron for over 20 years and I’ve seen it grow and lead the way in the treatment of teenage and young adult cancer. This new unit will help so many local young people and their families and friends.”The unit also gives young people the best possible care, support and access to treatment via a team of specialist doctors, nurses and youth support staff who are all experts in teenage and young adult cancer care. Teenage Cancer Trust funds the lead nurse and youth support coordinator roles within this team. The youth support coordinator helps young people share their experiences and fears with each other, encourages them to socialise by arranging activities and outings and enables them to participate in a peer support group.Area 61 has two floors, with one floor dedicated to in-patients with five en-suite bedrooms with sofa beds for family and friends to stay overnight. It also has a large social area where young people can play pool, listen to music, play games consoles or watch films on the latest Smart TVs. There’s also a kitchen and dining space where meals can be cooked at all times of day and night, as well as a lounge for family members to take a break. The other floor is for day patients, featuring three treatment pods, two consulting rooms, a procedure room, a social space which includes entertainment and gaming consoles and a waiting area with cafe.A group of young people with cancer were involved in the overall design of the unit and worked with local street artist Dave Bain to develop the wall art. James Lusher, the architect also consulted young people on the furniture designs and colours.Teenage Cancer Trust ambassadors Jack Lisowski from Cheltenham and Judd Trump, from Bristol, also helped officially open the unit and have been supporting the local fundraising appeal. It’s a cause close to their hearts as at 16 Jack was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Jack said: “It’s a fantastic moment to be here today and the unit is so much better than we could have ever imagined. Teenage Cancer Trust is an amazing organisation and I only wish I had benefitted from being treated here.”Siobhan Dunn, Chief Executive of Teenage Cancer Trust said: “This is an incredibly exciting moment in Teenage Cancer Trust’s history as it’s our first specialist unit in the South West. It’s a remarkable facility and we are very much hoping that local communities and businesses will continue supporting our work here as we need to raise a £1,000 a day to maintain the unit, fund specialist staff and continue our free cancer awareness sessions in schools across the region.”Jamie Cargill, Teenage Cancer Trust Lead Nurse at University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust (UH Bristol) comments about today’s milestone: “It is taken a significant team effort to get to this point and credit must be given to all those who have been involved. Even after just a few months we can already see how the new facilities are benefiting our patients and their families. By helping us build this amazing unit, our local and regional supporters have done something very special for young people with cancer and I hope they feel as proud of the unit as we all do.”Dr Alison Cameron, Macmillan Teenage and Young Adults Lead Clinician at UH Bristol, said: “Over the past five years UH Bristol has built a team to care for and support teenage and young adult patients with cancer across the South West. The opening of this unit enables that team to maximise the support they give to patients and their families, whilst providing patients with as “normal”, least hospitalised, physical space as possible. This helps to reduce the impact of the cancer on the patient.”The unit opening marks the final phase in a multi-million pound investment the charity has made in young people’s cancer services across the South West. In December 2012, Teenage Cancer Trust lent its design expertise to enhance a brand new hospital ward at Bristol Royal Hospital for Children for 11 to 16 year olds with a variety of complex health issues including cancer. The charity has also adopted five teenage and young adult specialist nurses who operate from various shared care hospitals across the South West. By doing so, this provides an excellent model of care for 15-24 year olds no matter where they live in the region.Teenage Cancer Trust is now appealing to local communities to continue supporting its work with young people with cancer. The charity relies on donations and a £1,000 a day needs to be raised to maintain the new unit, fund specialist staff and support the free cancer awareness sessions that are delivered in schools, colleges and universities across the South West.Find out more here.Source:Teenage Cancer Trustlast_img read more

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‘Glad to be back’: Federer wins on long-awaited clay return

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first_imgMadrid: Roger Federer shook off a brief bout of pre-match jitters as he returned to clay after a three-year absence, posting a 6-2, 6-3 win over Richard Gasquet on Tuesday at the Madrid Open. The 20-time Grand Slam champion needed just 52 minutes to brush Gasquet aside in the second round, but confessed he had to control his emotions during afternoon match strategy sessions with his team. “I was very calm all day, but two hours before, I was feeling it a bit. But that was the only time,” Federer said. Also Read – We will push hard for Kabaddi”s inclusion in 2024 Olympics: Rijiju”The nerves went away quickly, I’m just happy I started well. “I’m glad to be back,” said the three-time Madrid champion who last played on clay almost three years ago, losing to Dominic Thiem in the Rome third round on May 12, 2016. Federer skipped the dirt for two full seasons to concentrate on his grass court form, winning Wimbledon in 2017. He claimed the Madrid title in 2006, 2009, and 2012. “I’ve been missing the clay, this is a great return, it’s a special night for me,” he said. Also Read – Djokovic to debut against Shapovalov at Shanghai MastersFederer swept up the opening set in 23 minutes and broke Frenchman Gasquet — who had defeated him twice on clay — for 5-3 in the second before serving it out a game later. Federer has won 18 of 21 meetings with Gasquet, just back from six months out with injury. “I’ve trained well, but that’s not like a match. The points here are quicker and first matches anywhere can be tricky,” said Federer. “But I felt really natural on the clay tonight.” Novak Djokovic needed just 65 minutes to make a winning start, while Naomi Osaka channelled her inner “zombie mode” to earn a place in the third round. Top seed and world number one Djokovic hammered American Taylor Fritz 6-4, 6-2 to advance to the last 16 following a premature exit here a year ago. “I thought my serve was very efficient today, that’s a big advantage,” Djokovic said.last_img read more

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Nabila Benkirane Rejoices at Her Husband’s Dismissal

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Rabat – Nabila Benkirane, the wife of ousted Head of Government, Abdelilah Benkirane, has congratulated her husband on King Mohammed VI’s decision to relieve him of his duties as appointed Head of Government.Mohamed Yatim, a leader in the Justice in the Development Party (PJD), took to his Facebook page Thursday, to share what happened behind the scenes after the release of the Royal cabinet’s communiqué announcing that King Mohammed VI will be appointing another PJD member as Benkirane’s replacement.In his Facebook post, entitled “Congratulations Benkirane,” Yatim said that Benkirane called him immediately following news that the King had decided to replace him with one of his partisan colleagues. “[Benkirane] called me at 10 p.m. – I had the feeling that significant developments had occurred. I was aware of recent information, including that Benkirane had requested a meeting with King Mohammed VI to discuss the government situation on Tuesday,” Yatim said.Yatim described the atmosphere in the Benkirane household Wednesday evening in anticipation of the King’s return from Africa and how he would move to break the deadlock that has plagued parliament for five months. He added that, as he entered the salon of Benkirane’s residence, he found several members of the PJD had preceded him to join the PJD leader at his house.“Once I entered the salon, I immediately congratulated Benkirane on being relieved of this responsibility and he rejoiced at being congratulated in this way,” Yatim added. “He told me how his wife Nabila had rejoiced after she received this news and she thanked God for his ‘dismissal,’ now able to hold his head up.” read more

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What Next? UK lawmakers to vote on myriad Brexit options

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LONDON — With the date and terms of Britain’s departure from the European Union mired in uncertainty, Parliament has seized control of the political process so lawmakers can try to hammer out a way forward. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Theresa May still hopes to win approval for her twice-rejected divorce deal with the bloc before an EU-imposed Friday deadline.Here’s a look at what might happen next:___PARLIAMENT TAKES CHARGEWith Brexit deadlocked amid feuding between Britain’s political factions, lawmakers voted to upend the usual parliamentary procedure, in which the government decides the schedule for debates and votes. The House of Commons carved out time for legislators to hold a series of “indicative votes” Wednesday on alternatives to May’s defeated deal.Lawmakers from across the political spectrum have submitted 16 different options for consideration, though Speaker John Bercow is expected to whittle the number down to about half a dozen before debate begins. The proposals include leaving the EU without a deal, remaining in the bloc’s single market and customs union, and holding a new referendum on Britain’s EU membership.The results are likely to be inconclusive, but could help indicate what, if anything, can command majority support in Parliament. Lawmakers behind the move plan to hold another day of votes next week to narrow down the proposals to one idea — then to send the government back to negotiate it with the EU.The government says Parliament’s move sets “a dangerous, unpredictable precedent,” but has promised to “engage constructively” with the result of the votes. But ministers say any plan agreed by Parliament must be “realistic” and negotiable with the EU.___MAY’S DEAL NOT DEAD YETMay hasn’t given up hope that the deal she agreed with the bloc setting out the terms of Britain’s withdrawal will be passed by Parliament, even though it has been rejected twice by hefty margins.Under an extension granted by the EU last week, if U.K. lawmakers approve the divorce deal by Friday — Britain’s original departure date — Britain will leave the EU on May 22. If they don’t, Britain has until April 12 to tell the EU what it plans to do next: leave without a deal, risking economic chaos, or seek a long delay to Brexit and chart a course toward a softer exit or even remaining in the bloc.May is still holding talks with lawmakers and could try to hold a third vote on the deal on Thursday or Friday.She hopes to persuade pro-Brexit legislators who have previously opposed the deal that if they don’t support it, Parliament will either impose a softer Brexit or delay Britain’s departure from the bloc indefinitely.There is some sign the argument is working. Leading pro-Brexit Conservative lawmaker Jacob Rees-Mogg said Wednesday that while he thought May’s deal was a bad one, “legally leaving is better than not leaving at all.”___THE END OF MAY?British politicians are divided over Brexit, but they agree that the process is a mess — and many blame May, who has refused to consider alternatives to her deal and failed to win changes to the agreement from the EU.Her authority has been shredded by a series of parliamentary defeats, and many Conservatives are now calling for May to step down. Some pro-Brexit Tories say they would support May’s deal if she promised to hand over the next stage of negotiations — when Britain and the EU will hammer out their future relations — to a new leader.For now, May is standing firm. Under Conservative rules, she can’t face a formal leadership challenge from within her own party until December because she survived one three months ago. But she is due to meet Conservative lawmakers later, and could try to win support for her deal by promising to step down at some point this year.___BYE-BYE BREXIT?Opposition politicians think the only way forward is an early election that could rearrange Parliament and break the political deadlock. May has ruled that out, but could come to see it as her only option.And anti-Brexit campaigners haven’t abandoned the idea of a new Brexit referendum on remaining in the EU. There’s currently no majority for that in Parliament, but pro-referendum campaigners feel opinion is shifting in their favour. Hundreds of thousands of people marched through London on Saturday to demand a new Brexit vote.The “nuclear option” of simply cancelling Brexit is also gaining support. An online petition urging the government to revoke the decision to leave the EU has amassed almost 6 million signatures.___Follow AP’s full coverage of Brexit at: https://www.apnews.com/BrexitJill Lawless, The Associated Press read more

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Conrad Black selling 218million ninebedroom family mansion in Toronto

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TORONTO — Former press baron Conrad Black is looking to sell his 23,000-square-foot home in Toronto’s exclusive Bridle Path neighbourhood.Nestled on a 6.6-acre lot, the nine-bedroom property that includes a caretaker suite and a converted coach house will hit the auction block on March 8.It has an estimated value of $21.8 million, according to an online listing.Black’s house was built and renovated by New York architect Thierry Despont, who has also designed and built homes for Calvin Klein, Bill Gates and the late Greek shipping tycoon Stavros Niarchos.How Conrad Black foresaw China’s crisis even during the country’s years of double-digit growthSupreme Court of Canada will not hear Conrad Black’s tax appealThe building features two, two-storey libraries, an indoor swimming pool with skylight, a carved granite Jacuzzi and a copper-domed chapel consecrated by two cardinals.Toronto real estate agent Barry Cohen is handling the sale in partnership with New York-based Concierge Auctions. read more

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Kate Humble I had a panic attack at the thought of having

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first_imgMs Humble has spoken in the past about her decision not to become a mother, and said that there is still a “stigma” attached to women who make the same decision. “By choice I have said I do not want to have children,” she explained.“And that still seems to be quite odd and you do still seem to be quite judged for it.” She added that she was pleased to be able to support other women who feel stigmatised for not wanting children. “It felt constructive, it felt like women could turn around and say: ‘at last there’s somebody there in the public eye who feels the same way we do’. “Suddenly it’s becoming a topic of conversation.”  But she firmly rejected suggestions that her life’s devotion to animals is in any way a substitute for motherhood. “Absolutely not. I don’t want a substitute. I never wanted kids. “This is a completely different thing. I find animals just endlessly fascinating, in the way that people find children endlessly fascinating. “For me, there is never a dull moment when you have an animal around.” 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. Wildlife presenter Kate Humble said she had a “panic attack” when discussing having children. The 48-year-old BBC presenter said that there was still a stigma around childless women.She has previously said that both she and her husband of 25 years Ludo Graham, 55 are not interested in having children, but the pair had discussed what they would do if one of them had a change of heart. She said she had “what I can only describe as a panic attack”. “I broke down in tears and said: ‘I cannot do it’. It was kind of a primeval response,” she added. “I don’t know where it came from. It was so strong, and that was the moment that I thought: ‘I’m never going to change my mind’.”  Kate has presented a number of popular wildlife programmes, including Springwatch, Autumnwatch, Animal Park and Lambing Live. last_img read more

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Vicar apologises after criticising his grumbling congregation

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first_img“We (him and his wife Sarah-Jane) are actively looking for a ministry elsewhere. It has been a challenging time. I am on a sabbatical break for three months.” A vicar has been  forced to apologise after sending out a letter accusing some of his “grumbling” church members of  “actively sabotaging his ministry”. Rev Andy Thewlis has taken a “sabbatical break for three months” after the letter to his  congregation at All Saints Church in Burbage, Wiltshire said that Sunday morning services were marred by “gossip and disunity”.He apologised after an urgent meeting with the Bishop of Salisbury The Rt Rev Nick Holtam.In the original letter Rev Thewlis also complained that despite repeated requests he had not been provided with a comprehensive list of songs known to the congregation which “demonstrates an unwillingness to co-operate”. And he claimed there is also a culture of “non compliance in terms of organisation with respect to the law of the land and correctly implementing the policies and practices of the Church of England”. “The Sunday morning worship experience is neither warm, nor welcoming. It does not portray real love joy or peace. Rather it reflects an organisation that is characterised by grumbling, gossip, and disunity,” he wrote.“Criticism and negativism are predominant behaviour traits in too many church members. Some people through their actions are actively sabotaging the ministry of their vicar and their church….. 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.center_img “The arrogance of some church members through e mails and conversations on an almost daily basis is wearisome. It drains energy robs enthusiasm and reveals that some as we were told would prefer not to have a vicar.”Towards the end of the letter he says “we are not prepared to sacrifice our health or our marriage for a local church in which internal politics and unnecessary power games cause such hurt and division”.  The Salisbury Diocese said:”Upon being made aware of the letter sent to church members in Burbage the Bishop of Salisbury met with the Rev Thewlis at the earliest opportunity “Mr Thewlis has now written a letter of apology to those who received his letter which was inappropriate in both tenor and content. “The Bishop has also offered Mr Thewlis pastoral support including sabbatical time to consider his future and he has accepted this.”In the second letter Rev Thewlis told his congregation:”I recognise that the (first) letter was inappropriate and came as a shock. I should not have sent it to all church members nor should I have named individuals within it. I apologise unreservedly for the upset and hurt it has caused.”Mr Thewlis – who has been the Vicar for a year – added: ”I had a conversation (with the bishop).last_img read more

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3rd International handball goalkeepers camp in Makarska

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International handball goalkeeper camp ← Previous Story Enid Tahirovic: “I refused PSG” Next Story → Scandal in Poland: Wisla lost 0:10 against Piotrkowianin! Third year in a row, handball goalkeeper’s elite will gather on beautiful Adriatic coast in city of Makarska, where International Handball Goalkeeper Camp taking place from 22nd until 27th of June. High standard was set in the first two editions of the Camp. Over 100 young goalkeepers worked with famous handball names as Thierry Omeyer, Dejan Peric, Mirko Alilovic, Marin Sego, Dragan Jerkovic, Nikola Blazicko, Mirko Basic, Danijel Saric, Nebojsa Grahovac, Goran Stojanovic, Vlatko Djonovic. TOP quality conditions – good hotel and sports hall mixed with a trainings with some of this names are the best invitation for all young goalkeepers to join this project.COME AND ENJOY YOUR HANDBALL SUMMER read more

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This is where Irish food and drink was sold last year and

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first_imgHave trouble viewing this infographic? Click here for a larger version.TODAY BORD BIA announced that the value of Irish food and drink exports reached nearly €10 billion in 2013. This handy infographic sets out all of the main things you need to know about how well each type of food and drink did and where in the world we’re sending most of it to.Is anyone else feeling hungry?Related: Value of Irish food and drink exports nearly €10 billion in 2013>Read: Japan ends 12-year-ban and reopens its market to Irish beef>last_img

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Playing games wont be the first thing you do on Wii U

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first_imgWe are predicting you won’t be doing that much gaming on the day you receive your Wii U as it seems it requires some time-consuming setup. It has been confirmed that Nintendo’s new console will be getting a system update on release day. This is required to grant you access to the eShop, Miiverse, Wii U Chat, and Nintendo TVii, although it is currently unclear if this patch will be adding more than just access to those services. It’s also unknown how big this patch is or how long it takes to install.Not only is there a patch, but you’ll also want to create your new Nintendo Network ID. Yes, finally Nintendo has gotten rid of its friend code system in exchange for proper network IDs similar to what Microsoft and Sony use. Before you even do that though, you need to set up a user account. You can have up to 12 user accounts on one Wii U, which should be more than enough for most families. After you’ve done that, you create your Mii and then finally, your ID. To set up an ID, you’ll need to provide a password, your date of birth, gender, where you live, and finally an email address. Creating an ID allows you to buy things off the eShop, use the Miiverse, and use the video chat service, all after you’ve patched your console, of course.In the future, your Nintendo Network ID will be used in conjunction with other Nintendo hardware and Nintendo also plans to bring the ID system to PCs and smartphones. So it looks likely gamers will be able to access the eShop and Miiverse on non-Nintendo devices, too.It’s not a big deal for a console to have a day one patch, but it shows that Nintendo has faced a bit of a struggle getting features and services ready for launch day. If you don’t hook the console up to the Internet then you may just be able to start gaming (although the game discs could also carry a patch). But chances are you can expect to be watching one or more updates and console restarts being done before play can commence. Hopefully we’re not talking hours here, and hopefully Nintendo’s servers can handle the load.via IGN and Kotakulast_img read more

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Free Mobile la présentation aura lieu demain

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first_imgFree Mobile: la présentation aura lieu demainCette fois c’est officiel et couché sur le papier, Free a convié la presse demain à 8H30 pour un évènement dans ses locaux parisiens. Le doute sera, en toute vraisemblance, demain mardi 10 janvier à 8H30. En effet, Free vient d’envoyer à la presse une invitation à un évènement dans ses locaux parisiens se tenant à 8H30 précises. Il n’y a aucun doute sur la nature de l’annonce que va effectuer le fournisseur d’accès à internet. Après des mois de spéculations, Free va enfin dévoiler les tarifs de son offre mobile, qui devrait selon son PDG, Xavier Niel, “diviser la facture des français par deux”.À lire aussiRéseau 4G de SFR : tout sur les forfaits, les lancements et les prixFree a fait durer le suspens au cours des semaines, Xavier Niel postant ce message énigmatique au mois de décembre: “La fusée est sur la rampe de lancement”. Une fusée qui va devenir au fil du temps l’emblème du buzz mis en place par Free, avec des pages web arborant discrètement l’engin prenant son envol. À la fin de la semaine, les choses s’étaient accélérées pour les internautes abonnés à Free. Leur décodeur TV affichait au démarrage un message les invitant à contacter leurs opérateurs de téléphonie pour obtenir leur départ en conservant leur numéro de téléphone.Free ne peut plus attendre plus longtemps pour lancer son offre mobile. L’Arcep oblige en effet le nouvel opérateur à déployer ses abonnements au plus tard le 12 janvier sous peine de perdre sa licence très chèrement obtenue. De plus, comme l’indique le site Business Mobile, ce lancement viendra court-cicuiter celui de Numéricable et de sa nouvelle box internet, prévu le même jour. Une vengeance à peine cachée, Free n’aimant pas que son concurrent utilise le terme “Révolution” alors que la Freebox est appelée de la sorte.Le 9 janvier 2012 à 12:45 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

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Retrieving bodies of Rainier climbers could take months

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first_imgLONGMIRE — Sunday morning at Mount Rainier National Park, family members of the six climbers presumed dead in one of Mount Rainier’s worst accidents met with officials from the park and the guide service Alpine Ascents, but they opted not to make a statement.“They are devastated and are in a ‘taking care of themselves mode,’” said Patti Wold, a park-service spokeswoman.The park service has not released the names of the guides or the climbers, but Alpine Ascents confirmed that veteran guide Matt Hegeman, 38, was leading the group.The name of one of the climbers, Mark Mahaney, also has been confirmed.Sunday’s weather on the mountain was clear, but Wold said conditions were still too treacherous for searchers to venture into the area on the Carbon Glacier where the climbers’ gear was spotted Saturday by a helicopter crew and their bodies are believed to be buried in a jumble of ice and snow.Park officials think the climbers fell some 3,300 feet down a very steep ridge. For would-be recovery teams, the biggest danger is from debris falling from a massive rock wall as well as nearby ridges, Wold said. Those risks are expected to increase as the summer progresses.“As the ice melts, things thaw out, and the area becomes more and more fragile and things begin to fall even more,” Wold said.last_img read more

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Indias economy big worry for PM Modi needs stimulus FICCI

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first_imgA scrap dealer searches for useful material at a weaving factory, that was shut a year ago, in Panipat in the northern state of Haryana, August 29, 2018.ReutersIndia’s slowing economic growth is of serious concern and the country needs to urgently cut tax and interest rates to revive the economy, a top industrial body said on Monday ahead of the inauguration of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s second term.The economy grew 6.6 per cent in the three months to December – the slowest pace in five quarters – and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI) said the bigger worry was that domestic consumption was not growing fast enough to offset a weakening global economic environment.”The recent signs of a slowdown in the economy stem not only from slow growth in investments and subdued exports but also from weakening growth in consumption demand,” FICCI said in a statement suggesting various measures the government could adopt in the next budget expected in a month.”This is a matter of serious concern and if not addressed urgently, the repercussions would be long term.”Narendra Modi – who won a thumping majority in the general election despite the agricultural sector’s economic woes, a shortage of jobs and the stuttering economy – takes the oath of office on Thursday and will need a finance minister who can help navigate through the challenges facing the economy.Some of the issues are slowing industrial output and manufacturing growth, slumping car and two-wheeler sales, and a drop in airline passenger traffic.FICCI said the new government should cut corporate and individual taxes, expand a programme of handing 6,000 rupees ($86) a year to poor farmers to boost consumption demand and consider tax concessions for export-oriented manufacturers.The Confederation of Indian Industry, another industry body, said it was crucial to reduce the income tax burden and expand the scope of investment allowance to all sectors, while higher incentives should be given to exporters.The FICCI also called for an interest rate cut from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), as real interest rates have remained high for a long time with commercial banks reluctant to pass on the benefits of recent cuts.When PM Modi took power for the first time in 2014, global oil prices slumped. But as he gets set for a second term, rising oil prices could push the current account deficit higher.The body also said the trade war between the United States and China could further slow down global trade and hurt India’s already sluggish exports.”Amidst rising uncertainties and economic challenges on both the domestic and global front, there is an urgent need to re-energise the engines of growth and pump prime the economy,” FICCI said.”The upcoming budget…is an opportunity for the government to boost consumption and investments through appropriate fiscal stimulus and policies.”Government bureaucrats have started consultations with industry bodies, such as the FICCI, before the budget.last_img read more

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BNP mired in unrest and confusion

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first_imgLogo of BNPVacillations over joining the parliament, taking oath and deciding on whether to join any other elections under the incumbent government, have created a sense of unrest in the BNP leadership. With the party’s chairperson in jail and the central leaders mired in indecision, the leaders and workers at the grassroots are confused and frustrated.After rejecting the results of the 30 December election, the Bangladesh Nationalist Party ( BNP) leaders took the decision not to contest in any further elections under the present government. They decided not to join the parliament and not to take oath. The party, accordingly, boycotted the upazila parishad polls. In fact, 180 field level leaders were expelled from the party for going ahead to take part in this local government election.Then in April all the decisions were reversed. Five members of parliament from the party took oath. However, party secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir desisted from taking oath and his seat fell vacant. Now BNP has decided to take part in the by-election for his vacated seat. They will also nominate candidates for the reserved seats for women in the parliament.There had been speculations initially that a deal had been struck for the release of party chairperson Khaleda Zia on bail in exchange of the BNP MPs taking oath. When asked about the matter on 29 April, BNP standing committee member Jamir Uddin Sircar said that if they took oath upon instructions from Tarique Rahman, then there might be some sort of veracity to this speculation.A number of other senior leaders of the party told this correspondent that they too had heard that the MPs-elect would join the parliament in exchange of Khaleda Zia’s release. It was said that a BNP leader and a close relative of Khaleda Zia had discussed the matter with certain quarters of the government, though the senior leaders had not be informed of the matter.Party sources say that after these discussions, the government quarters contacted the five MPs-elect separately and these MPs expressed their eagerness to join the parliament, even if it meant violating party decision. This diffused the necessity to release Khaleda Zia. Under these circumstances, the party’s secretary general refused to take oath. He did, however, say that the five MPs had taken oath under instructions from the acting chairman and that was a correct decision.Mirza Fakhrul declined from joining the parliament in order to avoid any sort of adverse reaction from within the party, according to sources in BNP. The party’s acting chairperson Tarique Rahman did not object to his stand. Mirza Fakhrul has chosen to term his refusal to take oath as part of a political strategy.The sudden changes in the decision to take oath and the secretary general’s refusal to do so have reportedly confused the party leaders and workers. The field-level leaders who were expelled for joining the upazila polls, have reacted to these decisions.One such disgruntled leadership, former general secretary of the Indurkani upazila BNP in Pirojpur, Faizur Kabir, told Prothom Alo, “I hope the party will now withdraw its organisational action and reinstate me in my position.”BNP standing committee member Amir Khosru Mahmud Chowdhury, speaking to Prothom Alo, said, “There can be differences of opinion in a party over any issue. There were differences over whether to take oath or not and they expressed these differences. This is a healthy practice for the party. At the end of the day, the party decision is the final decision.”Several allies of the BNP-led 20 party coalition were unhappy with BNP joining parliament after having rejected the results. As a reaction to BNP’s decision, an ally of the alliance, Bangladesh Jatiya Party (BJP), left the coalition. President of another ally, LDP, Oli Ahmed said that BNP’s decision to join the parliament was wrong and the people have rejected this decision.BNP’s Khulna division organising secretary Nazrul Islam Manju told Prothom Alo, “The people have not accepted the rigged election and so the field level leaders and activists do not accept BNP joining the parliament. They are angry, that is the bottom line. They are no longer interested in what had happened after that.”He said, “Given the party’s present leadership, the movement for democracy will not be possible unless Khaleda Zia is released.”This report, orginally published in Prothom Alo print edition, has been rewritten in English by Ayesha Kabir.last_img read more

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Mudslide kills 17 in Colombia

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first_imgA rescue worker searches for victims after a landslide in Rosas, Valle del Cauca department, in southwestern Colombia, on 21 April, 2019. Photo: AFPAt least 17 people were killed and 13 others were missing after a mudslide that buried eight houses early Sunday in southwestern Colombia, authorities said.The national risk management agency gave the updated toll after rescue efforts in Rosas, in the department of Cauca, were halted at nightfall.Reducing by two an earlier toll of 19 killed that was given by firefighters, it added that five people had also been injured.Meanwhile, the estimated number of missing was confirmed by an agency official speaking on condition of anonymity.A search had been underway for people who might be trapped under rubble. The injured were treated at hospitals near the scene of the disaster, the agency said.It attributed the mudslide to the heavy rains that have battered the country for several weeks.Mudslides are common during Colombia’s rainy season.last_img read more

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Houstons Economy Will See Moderate Growth Without An Oil Rebound

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first_img 00:00 /00:59 Crude oil storage tanks along Beltway 8 in the Houston area. The city’s economy, though diverse, is still closely tied to oil and gas activity.A new economic forecast indicates Houston’s economy is growing, but not as fast as it usually does.Unless oil drilling ramps up, the city will continue to see only “moderate” growth. That’s according to Bill Gilmer, head of the Institute for Regional Forecasting at the University of Houston.In his latest forecast, Gilmer said that unless there is a big uptick in the oil sector, the city will likely only see about 40,000 new jobs over the next year.“Even without oil and gas, we have still sub-par, on Houston standards, growth and growth in employment,” he said, noting that 60,000 new jobs is an average year for the city.Still, Houston has fared the oil downturn pretty well. Gilmer’s forecast points to 97,000 jobs in other sectors like restaurants, retail and education since oil prices dropped in 2013. Cities like Pittsburgh or Detroit, Gilmer said, would be happy to see those numbers.“It looks like a pretty dismal outcome, but it’s hardly the end of the world,” he said.“Even if oil and gas don’t come back for a couple of years, we’re still seeing slow to moderate growth here in Houston.” To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: Listen X Sharelast_img read more

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Texas Supports Federal Government In Denying Abortions To Two Undocumented Immigrants

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first_imgMarjorie Kamys CoteraTexas Attorney General Ken Paxton is supporting the federal government’s right to deny abortions to two minors who came to the United States by themselves and without the proper immigration documentsTexas Attorney General Ken Paxton is supporting the federal government’s right to deny abortions to two minors who came to the United States by themselves and without the proper immigration documents.On Sunday, Paxton filed a friend-of-the-court brief (amicus brief) with a U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.The minors in question “were detained by immigration officials and remain in federal custody,” according to a news release from Paxton’s office, which detailed that one of them is 22 weeks pregnant and the other is 10 weeks pregnant.The brief was filed ahead of a U.S. District Court hearing scheduled for Monday to decide whether to issue a temporary restraining order against the federal government on the two requests.In October, the same court ordered the Trump Administration to allow another unlawfully present minor in Texas to obtain an abortion.“Texas must not become a sanctuary state for abortions. If the plaintiffs in this case prevail, there will be no meaningful limit on the constitutional rights an unlawfully present alien can invoke simply by attempting to enter the U.S. illegally,” Paxton stated in his news release and added that “the states are already spending enormous resources dealing with unlawful immigration.”The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has filed a lawsuit against the Department of Health and Human Services on behalf of the pregnant minors.Joining Texas on the amicus brief are the attorneys general of Arkansas, Louisiana, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, West Virginia, and the governor of Kentucky. Sharelast_img read more

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Following Health Scare Serena Williams Advocates for Black Mothers

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first_imgCelebrated professional tennis player Serena Williams almost died after giving birth in September of last year.  Now she is using her platform to spread awareness about the realities of maternal and infant mortality, and the importance of access to affordable healthcare.After Serena Williams had a health scare following the birth of her baby she is becoming an advocate for Black mothers. (AP Photo/Dita Alangkara)“I almost died after giving birth to my daughter, Olympia,” Williams wrote in an essay published on CNN Tuesday.Williams, who said she had a fairly easy pregnancy, had complications in labor when her daughter’s heart rate dropped during contractions, resulting in an emergency C-section.“The surgery went smoothly.  Before I knew it, Olympia was in my arms. It was the most amazing feeling I’ve ever experienced in my life,” she wrote.However, Williams’ maternal excitement quickly turned into fear.  “But what followed just 24 hours after giving birth were six days of uncertainty,” the tennis player wrote.First, because of her medical history with this issue before, Williams was able to self-diagnose a pulmonary embolism, “a condition in which one or more arteries in the lungs become blocked by a blood clot,” she explained.The pulmonary embolism ignited more health issues and measures, including a torn C-section wound, a hematoma, which is inflammation of clotted blood, in her abdomen, and then a procedure to prevent anymore blood clots.  After she was able to return home from the health scares, she was confined to bed for over a month.“I had to spend the first six weeks of motherhood in bed,” Williams wrote.With fame and fortune, Williams had access to some of the best doctors and healthcare.  “Yet I consider myself fortunate,” she wrote.“I am so grateful I had access to such an incredible medical team of doctors and nurses at a hospital with state-of-the-art equipment.  They knew exactly how to handle this complicated turn of events.  If it weren’t for their professional care, I wouldn’t be here today,” the 36-year-old wrote.Her near death experience brought attention to a sobering reality- many women, in particularly those of color, would not have been as lucky as the rich and revered tennis player.“According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, [Black] women in the United States are over three times more likely to dies from pregnancy or childbirth-related causes,” Williams wrote.Beyond the realities Black mothers in America face in pregnancy and labor, Williams also considered the thousands of women in poor countries around the world.“When they have complications like mine, there are often no drugs, health facilities or doctors to save them.  If they don’t want to give birth at home, they have to travel great distances at the height of pregnancy.  Before they even bring a new life into this world, the cards are already stacked against them,” Williams wrote.In her essay, Williams pondered a world where there was sufficient access to adequate birthing attendants, clean water, and affordable and accessible healthcare.“That world is possible.  And we must dare to dream it for every Black woman, for every woman in Malawi, and for every mother out there,” she wrote.last_img read more

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Scientists fabricate defectfree graphene set record reversible capacity for Co3O4 anode in

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first_imgSteps to fabricate defect-free graphene: (a) graphite, (b) potassium graphite intercalation compound, (c) graphene nanosheet, and (d) defect-free graphene. Digital images of (e) potassium graphite, (f) a graphene nanosheet, and (g) defect-free graphene. (h) SEM images of (left) a graphene nanosheet and (right) defect-free graphene. (i) and (j) compare X-ray diffraction patterns and Raman spectroscopy of the materials in (a-d). Credit: Park, et al. ©2014 American Chemical Society Journal information: Nano Letters The research groups of Professor Junk-Ki Park and Professor Hee-Tak Kim from Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) and Professor Yong-Min Lee’s research group from Hanbat National University, all in Daejeon, South Korea, have published their paper on the new fabrication method in a recent issue of Nano Letters.As the researchers explain, current methods to fabricate high-quality graphene fall into two categories: mechanical approaches and chemical approaches. While mechanical cleavage provides high-quality graphene, its low yield makes it insufficient for large-scale production. Chemical approaches, on the other hand, can produce bulk quantities but can involve imperfections. The new method differs from both of these types of methods and involves a few key steps. First the researchers filled a Pyrex tube with graphite powder, and then placed the open-ended tube inside a slightly larger tube. Then they added potassium to the bottom gap between the two tubes, sealed the tubes, and heated them. The heat causes the molten potassium to move inside the micropores between the graphite powders, so that the potassium molecules become intercalated into the graphite interlayers. The resulting potassium graphite compounds were then placed in a pyridine solution, which causes the layers to expand away from each other to form graphene nanosheets that could later be cooled and exfoliated one layer at a time. The researchers performed many sets of experiments in which they varied factors such as the temperatures and the type of solution, which are critical to control the quality and size of the df-G. They found that, by controlling the temperature of the exfoliation step, the size of the df-G can be varied between 0.25 to 14.0 µm2. The researchers demonstrated that wrapping a large-sized negatively charged sheet of df-G around a positively charged piece of Co3O4 creates an anode with several impressive characteristics. Most significantly is its high capacity after many cycles (1050 mAh/g at 500 mA/g and 900 mAh/g at 1000 mAh/g even after 200 cycles). To the best of the researchers’ knowledge, this reversible capacity is the highest among all Co3O4 electrodes ever reported. The researchers explain that the large-sized df-G, with its perfect crystallinity, improves the anode performance because when a single graphene sheet is wrapped around a bundle of Co3O4 particles, the Co3O4 particles are prevented from becoming pulverized and then electrically detaching from the anode, which would otherwise occur. Because of this protective effect, the anode’s capacity is preserved even after 200 cycles, whereas anodes with an imperfect graphene layer rapidly decrease with cycling. The large size of the graphene plays a key role in the performance because a larger size provides a higher cycling stability of the nanosized anode materials by improving their mechanical integrity.With these advantages, the researchers expect the df-G to bring significant advances of composite electrodes for a variety of electrochemical system, including batteries, fuel cells, and capacitors. More information: Kwang Hyun Park, et al. “Defect-Free, Size-Tunable Graphene for High-Performance Lithium Ion Battery.” Nano Letters. DOI: 10.1021/nl500993q Researchers developing cheap, better-performing lithium-ion batteries Explore furthercenter_img (Phys.org) —Graphene has already been demonstrated to be useful in Li-ion batteries, despite the fact that the graphene used often contains defects. Large-scale fabrication of graphene that is chemically pure, structurally uniform, and size-tunable for battery applications has so far remained elusive. Now in a new study, scientists have developed a method to fabricate defect-free graphene (df-G) without any trace of structural damage. Wrapping a large sheet of negatively charged df-G around a positively charged Co3O4 creates a very promising anode for high-performance Li-ion batteries. © 2014 Phys.org This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: Scientists fabricate defect-free graphene, set record reversible capacity for Co3O4 anode in Li-ion batteries (2014, August 22) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2014-08-scientists-fabricate-defect-free-graphene-reversible.htmllast_img read more

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MSME minister visits IHGF fair on its second day

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first_imgGiriraj Singh, Union Minister [I/C] marked his presence at 45th edition of IHGF-Delhi Fair Spring, being held at India Expo Centre and Mart, Greater Noida. He gave away the Guild certificates to 12 framers – working in Picture Framing Segment- on the second day of the fair. O.P. Prahladka, Chairman – EPCH, Radhey Shyam Ranga, President of the fair, R.K. Passi, and Sagar Mehta, Vice Chairmen- EPCH and Rakesh Kumar, Executive Director – EPCH were also present at the venue. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfWhile awarding the guild certified framers, MSME Minister appreciated the efforts and vision of Rakesh Kumar and said that he has both emotion and devotion which have strengthened the handicrafts sector.Giriraj Singh also lauded EPCH’s efforts towards creating marketing platform in the form of IHGF-Delhi fair wherein exhibitors from across the country are showcasing their products to the visiting buyers from all over the world. He further acknowledged the role of 70 lakhs artisans who are the backbone of the handicrafts sector and are engaged in the production of handicrafts and commended EPCH for giving them the opportunity to display their intricate craftsmanship in this show as well. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsive Keeping in view the vision of EPCH, the Minister expected that the exports of handicrafts would cross Rs. 30,000 crores very soon. The MSME minister also elaborated that he has introduced technology in spinning and hoped it will create employment of 5 crore people in the MSME sector. Rakesh Kumar, Executive Director informed that EPCH in collaboration with M/s Lion India has taken unique initiative to upgrade the Picture Framing Industry in India by conducting GCF training programme for the Indian framers. The training programme was held from November 6 to 12, 2017 in Kolkata where 20 participants from all over India participated in the course. Among them, 12 participants who have passed the Guild Certified Framers examination successfully include Deepak Oulkar from Belgaum, Punit Prahladka from Kolkata, Dipak Dholey from Kolkata, Sanjay Lahoti from Pune, Geovanni Fernandes from Goa, Liza Mayan from Kannur, Kerala, Aliasgar Kanchwala, Hyderabad, K. Narendra Shenoy from Mangalore, Mia Renny from Cochin and others. Shri Kumar further said that this kind, of course, is held first time in India and Mr. Mohd. Asif from Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts was one of 12 participants who passed the examination successfully and was awarded the Guild Certificate. Fashion shows were the highlight of 2nd second day and models displayed fashion jewellery and accessories from Kenway Sartaj Worldwide, Asian Handicrafts, Veva Fashion, Gramin and Vikas Chetna Sansthan and many more.last_img read more

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