Rabat – The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has announced the pots for the 2021 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifiers.The 2021 AFCON will take place in Cameroon. Cameroon was set to host the ongoing 2019 tournament but was stripped of hosting rights. The West African country was not prepared for the tournament in terms of the standard of the stadium and other issues.The CAF listed the teams in 5 pots according to their FIFA rankings. The first two pots include 12 national teams, while the remaining three have only eight.Morocco was listed in the first pot alongside Algeria, Egypt, Senegal, Nigeria, Cameroon, and Tunisia.The draw of the 2021 AFCON will be made on Thursday, July 18 in Cairo, Egypt.
TORONTO — The Canadian dollar was lower Tuesday as the American currency strengthened ahead of the first of two days of testimony from U.S. Federal Reserve chairwoman Janet Yellen. The loonie declined 0.4 of a U.S. cent 79.12 cents US.Yellen will update Congress on the economy and monetary policy. Traders also looked for any indication of when the central bank might move on raising interest rates. There has been much speculation the bank could move on rates as early as June.Stephen Poloz will also speak today at 2 p.m. and if trader perceive a dovish tone from the Bank of Canada Governor it could push the loonie down further.Has the Canadian dollar’s unprecedented crash hit bottom? David Rosenberg thinks soTumbling Canadian dollar? Blame the economy, not the Bank of Canada, says Stephen PolozOn the economic calendar, investors were set to digest the latest reading on American consumer confidence. The U.S. Conference Board’s index is expected to step back to 99 versus 102.9 last month.Oil prices ticked higher after four days of losses triggered by data last week showing significant buildups in U.S. crude inventories to 80-year highs. On Tuesday, the April crude contract gained 21 cents to US$49.66 a barrel.Metals were mixed with March copper up three cents to US$2.63 a pound while April gold faded $1.90 to Us$1,198.90 an ounce.Meanwhile, Greece’s left-wing government will deliver a list of reforms Tuesday to debt inspectors for final approval of extended rescue loans. Greece and its bailout creditors reached a tentative agreement last week to extend a rescue loan program by four months to avoid the risk of a Greek default and exit from the euro currency. The reforms are expected to include tax evasion curbs, corruption, smuggling and excessive bureaucracy as well as poverty caused by a six-year recession.
Canada’s federal government says it will review proposed right-to-die legislation tabled in the Quebec Legislature Wednesday.After holding public hearings across the province, Quebec’s government tabled the controversial right-to-die legislation. Euthanasia is illegal in Canada. But the bill explains how actions to end a life will not be considered suicide. Under the legislation, terminal patients must meet specific conditions to request medical assistance to die. And doctors must follow certain requirements before accepting. Under the recommendations, patients would have to make the request to a doctor on the basis of unbearable physical or psychological suffering. And two doctors would have to approve the request, which would have to be made in writing.The campaign to stop this law is being led by Alex Schadenberg, chair of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition International. He appeared on Square Off today.00:00:00 | 00:00:00::Projekktor V1.3.09
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. “Across the country, there are children living in comfortable homes with their parents, who seem safe and secure but the moment they switch on their phone, tablet or computer, they enter a new realm where the usual rules, regulations and safeguards do not apply.”He added that “the risks connected with the online world, in addition to rising demand for children’s services, and limited resource, is creating a perfect storm”. With 77% of those polled saying there were insufficient resources to meet demand, Mr Khan advocated a radical new approach which included Barnardo’s delivering services for and in partnership with councils, police, the NHS and other charities.Mr Khan also backed urgent legislation to force the tech giants to take faster and more effective action to better protect children from online harms.“We know through our specialist services how abusers destroy children’s lives and much more needs to be done to protect them,” he said. “Any delay could put future generations of children in danger,” he said.The Telegraph has been campaigning for a new statutory duty of care on social media firms to better protect children from threats such as cyberbullying, grooming and addiction. Three children in every classroom are suffering mental health problems fueled by social media, the chief executive of the UK’s biggest children’s charity has said.Javed Khan, Barnardo’s chief executive, said children’s services are struggling to cope with a crisis made worse by the internet and social media which is exposing children to cyber bullying, sexual exploitation, grooming and gaming addiction.Mr Khan told The Telegraph, social media was contributing to a “perfect storm” of rising demand for children’s services which have increasingly limited resources to cope with it.A YouGov poll for the charity yesterday found 60% of social workers, education and law enforcement staff had seen an increase in number of particularly vulnerable children in the past five years.Two thirds attributed the rising numbers to a shortfall in early intervention and said more children than ever had complex problems including trauma, grooming, sexual abuse and exploitation.Citing an Office of National Statistics study of 7,000 children, Mr Khan warned it had become a wider issue affecting children of all classes and backgrounds. “Three children in every classroom are thought to have a diagnosable mental health problem, which is approaching epidemic proportions,” he said.“The nature of ‘vulnerability’ is changing and it doesn’t respect class or privilege.
The Telegraph has been campaigning for a duty of care to be introduced on tech giants to protect children from online harms.The APPG has also heard evidence from, William Perrin, of the Carnegie UK Trust, who urged the government to adopt such a duty of care approach.He argued that the duty of care model was well established in UK law and would place a responsibility on the tech companies to better guard their users. Sagar Sharma, Barnardo’s Director of Policy and Communications, has told MPs that social media and tech companies build features into their apps that encourage “extreme internet use”.He urged the government to set out which app features should not be used on children in an upcoming code of conduct, which the government is drawing up for social media companies.He said: “We think a code needs to set clear enforcement rules about moderation of harmful content, what design features cannot be used and what is the off button, particularly when it comes to children.“They are being dragged in further and further into an uncontrolled spiral of internet use. We know from our research that the more time they spend online the more they are going to experience some of these harms including bullying.“But it also impacts on their mental health, well being and self esteem.”The charty’s intervention comes as the government is drafting a white paper, which which is expected to set out new regulations for tech and social media companies.The culture secretary Jeremy Wright has previously said the government was considering imposing a levy on social media company to fund a potential new regulator for the sector as part of the reforms. Push notifications should be switched off as default to protect children, a leading charity has told MPs.Barnardo’s has warned that the endless alerts and pop-up from social media apps are dragging young people “into an uncontrolled spiral of internet use”.The charity also criticised features such as autoplay videos for creating unhealthy onlines habits and said it wanted companies to be forced to switch them off for children by law.Barnardo’s Chief Executive, Javed Khan said: “Addictive features on social media, like notifications, alerts and videos that play automatically, should be switched off by default on all devices, apps and games used by children.“Auto-play, and games that don’t allow users to stop or pause, are designed to drive excessive use. And there is growing evidence that large amounts of time spent on social media can pose a threat to children’s mental health.”“Barnardo’s is calling for a change in the law, so that these addictive design features must be switched off by default.“His comments come after the charity gave evidence to an all party parliamentary group (APPG), set up by the Royal Society for Public Health, which is investigating the effect social media is having on young people’s mental health and wellbeing. 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.
When Blizzard appeared on stage during the PlayStation 4 reveal last month, I honestly thought they were going to announce World of Warcraft was coming to PS4. I, like many others, was a bit disappointed when it turned out to be Diablo III.Blizzard actually making games for consoles is a good start, though, so can we expect a WoW port in the future? Or even the inevitable next game in the series appearing on Sony’s hardware? The answer, according to Blizzard’s lead system designer Greg Street, is no (sort of).It’s not that Blizzard don’t want to release World of Warcraft on consoles, it’s more that doing so would form too big of a challenge. Street made this clear while talking to NowGamer, pointing to the very large hard drive requirement the game has, coupled with an interface that relies heavily on keyboard and mouse use.Apparently, the PS4 is only getting Diablo III after the team went back and changed “the very fundamentals of the game.” Doing the same for World of Warcraft looks to be too big of a job to make it worthwhile, so while Blizzard still hasn’t given a definitive yes/no answer, I think we can take this as confirmation: World of Warcraft won’t be coming to consoles.That shouldn’t kill all hope for a Blizzard MMO on the PS4, though. Street also said an MMO could work on consoles, but if Blizzard did it they’d go “in a different direction.” That at least points to the fact they have thought about it. And with next-gen console hardware expected to be very similar to PC components, it’s surely going to be very tempting to target multiple platforms for future games.
Jim Mains, a political consultant, remembers the advice he gave to candidates in 2007: Don’t announce your campaign too early.Back then, he said he advised candidates not to announce until May or April of the election year, giving them seven to eight months to campaign before the fall election.“It felt really competitive then but it wasn’t that early,” said Mains, now a partner at the marketing firm High Five Media.Times changed. In 2013 Chuck Atkins announced his campaign for Clark County sheriff well over a year before the election. Mains recalled seeing a campaign sign for Atkins up before Christmas. Eventually, Atkins won his race.“It’s a great strategy getting your name out,” he recalled thinking. “As much as people hate signs, it does work.”Now, although the November 2018 election is over a year away, multiple candidates in Clark County have announced their campaigns. Political observers say that this could be part of a trend of state and local campaigns increasingly resembling federal races, which are more expensive, vitriolic and never-ending.“People would wait until the election year,” said Clark County council Chair Marc Boldt. “But now it’s all up in the air.”Early birdsBoldt, a former Republican state representative and county commissioner, announced his bid for county chair as an independent in March 2015 and was elected that fall. He’s up for reelection in November 2018. While he intends to run, he said he’s been too busy to file campaign paperwork or hold a kickoff event. That hasn’t stopped state Rep. Liz Pike, R-Camas, from announcing in August that she’s also running for chair.When asked why she announced so early, Pike responded with a text saying that it would add more transparency to the race.“This legislative seat belongs to the people and they deserve the opportunity to fully vet all candidates,” she wrote.Pike’s bid for council chair opens up her House seat, which also is up for election in November 2018. In the recent past, Clark County legislative candidates typically announced their campaigns early in the election year or in the spring, according to The Columbian’s archives.
YouTube ScreenshotMohanlal, the Complete Actor of Indian cinema is currently enjoying the success of his latest release ‘Lucifer’ that hit the theatres all across the world on March 28, 2019. The film which was released in a record number of theatres racked up positive reviews from its opening day, and it has already emerged as a blockbuster at the box-office. Now, makers of ‘Lucifer’ have revealed that the film has grossed more than Rs 150 crores worldwide, and thus it has emerged as the second biggest hit in Mollywood history, next to ‘Pulimurugan’ that collected Rs 160 crores.Current demand for tickets indicates that ‘Lucifer’ will shatter the records of ‘Pulimurugan’ within another six or seven days. Most of the theatres in Kerala are witnessing an average attendance of 60 percent even after 20 days of its theatrical release, and if this trend continues, ‘Lucifer’ may even cross the 200 crore club.However, the release of Mammootty’s ‘Madhura Raja’ has caused a slight dip in Lucifer’s box-office collection in the past week. ‘Madhura Raja’ which is an in and out commercial entertainer is directed by Vyshakh, and it has also succeeded in impressing audiences and critics alike. Considering the comic factor, families, especially in north Kerala are apparently preferring ‘Madhura Raja’ over ‘Lucifer’, and this is one of the major factors which may negatively affect the film’s collection in the coming days.’Lucifer’ marked the directorial debut of Prithviraj Sukumaran. The film narrated the story of Stephen Nedumpally, a daredevil politician based in south Kerala. Stephen Nedumpally has two faces, and he has a mysterious past overseas as Abram Qureshi, an alleged member of Illuminati. The story of this movie mainly showcased the games which happen in political powerhouses, both national and International.Apart from Mohanlal, ‘Lucifer’ also stars Manju Warrier, Vivek Oberoi, Tovino Thomas, Saikumar, Kalabhavan Shajon and Baiju Santhosh in other prominent roles. The film is bankrolled by Antony Perumbavoor in the banner of Aashirvad Cinemas.
Citation: Virtual Worlds May Be the Future Setting of Scientific Collaboration (2009, August 4) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2009-08-virtual-worlds-future-scientific-collaboration.html “The slow adoption of these virtual reality technologies by the academic (or any other professional) community is probably largely due to a widely held misperception that this is ‘just games,’” Djorgovski said. “This is incorrect; while these technologies got developed largely by the gaming industry, and there is certainly a lot of gaming going on, virtual worlds are something bigger: a general platform for all kinds of activities, ranging from entertainment to purely professional. Just like the Web itself.” As MICA’s founders explain in a recent published paper, MICA is currently based in Second Life where participants use avatars to explore and interact with their surroundings, and will expand to other virtual worlds when appropriate. As of this past March, MICA had about 40 professional members and 100 members of the general public interested in learning about science, specifically astronomy. MICA is also establishing collaborative partnerships with the IT industry, including Microsoft and IBM, and plans to further develop industrial partnerships. “Virtual worlds are already a very fruitful arena for research in social sciences and humanities, including sociology, economics, psychology, etc.,” lead author George Djorgovski told PhysOrg.com. “They are already a superb educational and outreach platform, and should be used much more. We are trying to find out what else we can do with these technologies in the natural sciences, such as physics and astronomy.”In addition to getting people together in a free and convenient way, virtual worlds can offer new possibilities for scientific visualization or “visual analytics.” As data sets become larger and more complex, visualization can help researchers better understand different phenomena. Virtual worlds not only offer visualization, but also enable researchers to become immersed in data and simulations, which may help scientists think differently about data and patterns. Multi-dimensional data visualization can provide further advantages for certain types of data. The researchers found that they can encode data in spaces with up to 12 dimensions, although they run into the challenge of getting the human mind to easily grasp the encoded content. Explore further Djorgovski and his coauthors see virtual reality as the next step in the continuing evolution of the ways we use information and computation technology to interact with each other. They predict that, in the future, virtual reality will become more synthesized with the Web by serving as an interface and replacing today’s browsers. “One can think of immersive virtual reality as the next generation browser technology, which will be as qualitatively different from the current, flat desktop and web page paradigm, as the current browsers were different from the older, terminal screen and file directory paradigm for information display and access,” the authors explained in their overview.As Djorgovski added, immersive virtual reality (including virtual worlds) seems currently to be roughly at a stage of development of the Web in 1992, with limited reach but huge growth potential. “Possibly the overall societal impact of these technologies would be as big as that of the Web itself – or even bigger,” he said.One part of this possible next generation application of virtual reality is an open source program called “OpenSimulator” (or “OpenSim”), which enables users to create their own 3D virtual worlds and applications. The authors predict that the synthesis of the Web and virtual reality could involve individuals managing their own virtual reality environment in a way that is analogous to hosting and managing websites today. In the meantime, MICA’s virtual events for a general audience include a series of popular talks called “Dr. Knop talks astronomy” and weekly “Ask an Astronomer” sessions. The authors have also started experimenting with regular student classes, graduate seminars, class discussions, and hybrids in which students read lecture materials on their own and use class time for an open discussion in the virtual world setting. They also plan to conduct a series of international “summer schools” on topics including numerical stellar dynamics, computational science and others, in an immersive and interactive virtual world venue.More information: MICA Website: www.mica-vw.org/S. G. Djorgovski, P. Hut, S. McMillan, E. Vesperini, R. Knop, W. Farr and M. J. Graham. “Exploring the Use of Virtual Worlds as a Scientific Research Platform: The Meta-Institute for Computational Astrophysics (MICA).” To appear in the refereed proceedings of Facets of Virtual Environments. arxiv.org/abs/0907.3520 .Copyright 2009 PhysOrg.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. MICA members from around the world can participate in informal discussions in virtual worlds. Image courtesy of Meta Institute for Computational Astrophysics (MICA). New Way of Measuring ‘Reality’ of Virtual Worlds Could Lead To Better Business Tools (PhysOrg.com) — Normally, virtual worlds are the setting of many online games and entertainment applications, but now they’re becoming a place for scientific collaboration and outreach, as well. A team of scientists from the California Institute of Technology, Princeton, Drexel University, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have formed the first professional scientific organization based entirely in virtual worlds. Called the Meta Institute for Computational Astrophysics (MICA), the organization conducts professional seminars and popular lectures, among other events, for its growing membership. MICA members attending a regular weekly astrophysics seminar, in this case by Dr. M. Trenti, given in the StellaNova sim in Second Life. Image courtesy of Meta Institute for Computational Astrophysics (MICA). 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.
Kolkata: Come 2019 the Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) will take special measures to collect house tax arrears, the total amount of which has reached an astronomical figure of around Rs 4,000 crore. Deputy Mayor Atin Ghosh, who is in charge of the Assessment department, has proposed to launch a massive movement to collect the property tax dues. He called for involving the councillors who will go to the defaulters and urge them to pay the dues. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeKMC can waive 50% of the interest accrued on the principal amount. Ghosh will lead the teams that will visit the houses of errant house owners. Earlier, KMC had put up notices and conducted drives against the defaulters but they failed to yield desired results. Collection of house tax arrears has become a major problem for KMC. There are habitual defaulters and thousands of cases are lying pending before the Municipal Assessment Tribunal. The house owners not satisfied with the property tax fixed by the civic authorities move to the tribunal and many cases that had been filed nearly a decade ago have not been disposed of yet. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedAlso, there are houses where it is difficult to trace the original owners. The tenants do not pay the rent and many of them are encroachers. The civic authorities have sent several notices to the house owners who have neither turned up nor sent their representatives. KMC has proposed to take over these buildings and is taking opinions of legal experts, but this may give rise to several complications. Earlier, when Subrata Mukherjee was the Mayor (2000-2005) and in the first phase of Sovan Chatterjee as Mayor (2010-15), the state government had introduced the waiver scheme. But the tax arrears collected by KMC was not highly satisfactory.
There are still more laws that need to changeThe Queensland Government is currently reviewing laws which only allow people to change the gender on their birth certificate in very limited circumstances.‘Transgender people face problems every day accessing services and facilities most Australians use without thinking twice, because their identity documents do not match their gender,’ Brown said.‘We need a complete overhaul of these outdated laws to ensure, for example, that trans people do not have to undergo invasive and unnecessary surgeries simply to be recognized as the gender they live as.’Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… This change will mean trans people are not forced to choose between divorcing the person they love and having identification that doesn’t reflect who they are.Queensland is the third state in Australia to introduce the amendment after marriage equality was legalized last year. eTN Chatroom for Readers (join us) Anna Brown, Director of Legal Advocacy at the Human Rights Law Centre, celebrated the laws.‘Our communities, families, doctors and schools already support marriage equality, and it’s time our laws did as well. This is a small but significant change that will allow transgender people to be free to be who they are, while maintaining their commitment to the person they fell in love with,’ she said. GAYSTARNEWS- Equal treatment remains out of reach for LGBT Americans in most statesTrans people won’t have to divorce just to update their birth certificateSix months after marriage equality there’s much to celebrate – and still much to doRead the full article on Gaystarnews: :https://www.gaystarnews.com/article/queensland-will-allow-trans-people-to-stay-married-after-they-transition/
In an act of extraordinary political brinkmanship, President Jacob Zuma did not just fire Pravin Gordhan as finance minister and his deputy Mcebisi Jonas, he took another nine ministers and nine deputy ministers down in what many describe as “Zuma’s night of the long knives“.But while the political intrigues and back room stabbings are taking place within the corridors of power, President Zuma is expected to fly to Ladysmith to celebrate the accomplishments of Joseph Shabalala.He is expected to visit Shabalala at his home later today before attending a gala dinner in Ladysmith Black Mambazo founder Joseph Shababala’s honour.As he weathers the storm, former ANC Youth League president Malusi Gigaba, who replaced Gordhan, will be trying to steer the rand back towards safety. He will be joined by Sifiso Buthelezi, who takes over Jonas’ position as deputy minister in this endeavour.Also read: State president at Joseph Shabalala’s house Also read: Zuma ‘cementing’ his support in Cabinet with reshuffle, says analystOn Thursday evening, the president called a shock meeting with the ANC’s top six in the capital to explain the changes he planned. This is seen as the biggest challenge the ANC has faced since they ousted former president Thabo Mbeki.Click to receive news links via WhatsApp. Or for the latest news, visit our webpage or follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Join us there! WebsiteWebsiteWebsite WebsiteWebsiteWebsite WebsiteWebsiteWebsite
<< Previous PostNext Post >> Share Posted by Travelweek Group Tags: Mexico, Trend Watch MEXICO CITY — Mexico welcomed a record-breaking 35 million international tourists last year, a 9% increase from 2015. It was more than twice the global industry average of 3.9%, as most recently reported by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO). The Mexico Tourism Board also announced 10.4% growth in international tourist spend.“Mexico’s sustained, fast growth is a testament to the incredible quality and diversity in our tourism offering and the hard work for the entire industry, both internationally and domestically. More than nine million Mexicans working in the tourism and hospitality industry have made it their mission to ensure visitors have incredible experiences,” said Lourdes Berho, CEO, Mexico Tourism Board. “Plans are already underway to ensure 2017 builds upon these achievements and that Mexico continues to welcome all visitors and give them reasons to come back again and again.”The Mexico Tourism Board’s internal consumer tracking studies also show that 94% of inbound travellers to Mexico reported an experience that ‘exceeded their expectations’, and 86% say they would return in the next six months.More news: Flight Centre Travel Group takes full ownership of Quebec-based agencyAir arrivals grew at an even faster rate of 10.7%, bolstered by service from new international markets to multiple Mexico destinations, expanded frequency on existing routes and upgraded aircrafts featuring additional seats along with improved passenger experiences.The Mexico’s Tourism Board’s 2017 tourism development strategy includes a focus on developing expanded products and personalized marketing campaigns in areas such as luxury, weddings and romance, diving, biodiversity and nature, culture, gastronomy, high-profile events, sports and adventure, as well as programs for audience segments such as millennials, LGBTQ and retirees. Mexico is looking for 50 million international visitors by 2021. Mexico tourism up 9% with 35 million visitors in 2016 Wednesday, March 1, 2017
Regional Express (REX) is moving its business into Newcastle, announcing new services between the region and Sydney as well as Ballina/Byron.Subject to regulatory approval, commencing 30 October this year REX said it will fly three times daily, 38 weekly return flights between Sydney and Newcastle and kick off daily return services between Newcastle and Ballina/Byron Bay.Targeting business travellers, the airline said its Sydney to Newcastle services would run Monday to Friday during times that are “convenient” for the working traveller as well as Saturday and Sunday. Newcastle Airport chief executive Paul Hughes said the new services will assist leisure and business travellers from Sydney, with an additional 92,000 seats between the two cities.“Newcastle Airport is currently one of Australia’s fastest growing airports,” Mr Hughes said.“The impact of this new airline and new destination will not only provide passengers with greater choice, but have a significant and positive impact on the local economy.” Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.J
Global distribution systems (GDS) provider Sabre has announced a new agreement with a leading Australian travel agent, cementing its strength Down Under, it has been claimed.Travel Mole said that after an extensive review, Phil Hoffmann Travel (PHT) decided to invest in Sabre Pacific travel technology for a period of five years, deeming the GDS giant to be the best capable of meeting its needs.The deal in question would equip PHT with a state-of-the-art booking system, integrated into a customer relationship management (CRM) solution, leading Sabre to promise that the new service would allow the agent to continue its quality service and personal touch.According to Travel Mole , PHT said: “Going forward, we have some big plans for this year and here again, we’ll be supported by Sabre. We are looking forward to using ClientBase, to improve the level of sophistication of our CRM efforts, enabling us to provide clients with more tailored offerings.”He added that a second pillar of the partnership with Sabre was the enhancement of the agent’s online booking engine – key to providing prospective customers with a good impression of the firm’s technological expertise.ReturnOne wayMulti-cityFromAdd nearby airports ToAdd nearby airportsDepart14/08/2019Return21/08/2019Cabin Class & Travellers1 adult, EconomyDirect flights onlySearch flights Map RelatedEton Travel exchanges Sabre for GalileoA UK travel agent has switched its GDS allegiance, now opting for an agreement with Travelport.Silverjet spreads fares on SabreSilverjet has announced a new agreement that will see its airfares launched onto further global distribution systems.VRG seeks Sabre Solutions connectivityBrazilian airline VRG has taken a further step toward integrating itself with fellow international airlines.
by The Canadian Press Posted Jul 18, 2019 7:05 am PDT Robbie Robertson, right, stands next to American director Martin Scorsese, left, before they presented the film “Last Waltz,” a film about Robertson’s band, at the 31st Cannes International Film Festival on May 29, 1978. This year’s Toronto International Film Festival will kick off with a star-studded feature documentary about Canadian rock legend Robbie Robertson and the creation of The Band. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Toronto International Film Festival to open with Robbie Robertson doc TORONTO — This year’s Toronto International Film Festival will kick off with a star-studded feature documentary about Canadian rock legend Robbie Robertson and the creation of The Band.Organizers say “Once Were Brothers: Robbie Robertson and The Band” will make its world premiere as the opening night gala film at Roy Thomson Hall on Sept. 5.This marks the first time TIFF is opening with a Canadian-made documentary, and the second year in a row it’s kicking off with a film intended for a streaming service.“Once Were Brothers” is a Crave original and will launch on the Bell Media streaming service later this year.Last year TIFF opened with the Netflix historical drama “Outlaw King.”Executive produced by a team including Martin Scorsese, Brian Grazer, and Ron Howard, “Once Were Brothers” is described as a deeply personal story of how Robertson overcame adversity and founded his seminal 1970s group.The film includes rare archival footage and is inspired by “Testimony,” the 2016 memoir from the guitarist and songwriter, who was born in Toronto and is also a producer and film composer.Many of Robertson’s friends and collaborators appear in the film, including Bruce Springsteen, Eric Clapton, Van Morrison, Scorsese, Peter Gabriel, David Geffen, and Ronnie Hawkins.Toronto documentary maker Daniel Roher (“Ghosts of Our Forest”) directed the film, which will stream in Canada on Crave, Bell Media’s streaming service, later this year.In a statement, Robertson said he’s “tremendously honoured” the film will be opening TIFF in his hometown.Roher called the film “a remarkable reminder of how vision, ambition, and hard work can empower one’s wildest dreams.”“Robbie took a chance on me, and I will be forever grateful that he rolled the dice on a kid from Toronto to helm his story,” Roher said.“Opening the Toronto International Film Festival is beyond some wildest dreams of my own and I am thankful for everyone who believed in me.”TIFF co-head and artistic director Cameron Bailey called the film “one of Toronto’s great stories of a hometown hero.”And TIFF co-head and executive director Joana Vicente said audiences can expect some “very special guests” at the premiere.The 44th Toronto International Film Festival runs Sept. 5-15.TIFF will announce more galas and special presentations next Tuesday.The Canadian Press
CYPRIOTS woke on Friday to the ashes of ten days of make-or-break talks in Crans-Montana, Switzerland, which crashed and burned in the early hours, giving way to the blame game, at least until the smoke clears when the UN issues its report later this month.Both sides accused the other of being responsible for the gigantic failure of talks that seemed to swing between ‘almost there’ to ‘never there’ from day to day until an exhausted and clearly disappointed UN Secretary-general Antonio Guterres, after 15 hours of negotiating, called a halt at 3.15am Cyprus time.Guterres’ news conference lasted only 3.5 minutes. He said he could not isolate a particular issue as the death knell for the talks, but was firm that the conference was over and he wished “the best for all the Cypriots north and south”.UN Special Adviser Espen Barth Eide tweeted on his way out of Crans-Montana later Friday: “Close, but not close enough: A somber mood as delegations leave #CransMontana, after 10 days, without agreement”.Close, but not close enough: A somber mood as delegations leave #CransMontana, after 10 days, without agreement. #ConferenceOnCyprus pic.twitter.com/oTNNapR5gw— Espen Barth Eide (@EspenBarthEide) July 7, 2017The blame game began with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu who tweeted within minutes of the collapse that “unfortunately” the Greek Cypriots’ ‘zero guarantees, zero army’ red line could not be overcome. He even suggested that negotiating within UN parameters might no longer be the answer for Cyprus.Government Spokesman Nicos Christodoulides, shortly after said it was Turkey’s stance on security and guarantees and their position on the remaining chapters that “not only steers away from the UN secretary-general’s framework, but could in no way be accepted”.Greek Foreign Minister Nicos Kotzias posted on Twitter that “Turkey’s intervention rights on the island could not be made acceptable. The dream and the plan for a solution to the Cyprus issue are still open.”In a press briefing, he expressed Greece’s willingness to work for a fair and sustainable solution so that Cyprus could become a normal state without guarantees and guardians.And while President Nicos Anastasiades made no statements at all on Friday, Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci held a news conference during which he repeated several times that the problem was the insistence on zero troops and zero guarantees by the Greek Cypriots. “The Conference started with it and finished with it,” he said.The perspective from diplomatic circles surrounding the talks was different. One diplomat in Crans-Montana lamented that the sides had come “so, so close” to succeeding, a Reuters report said.Indications which had emerged that Turkey was considering relinquishing intervention rights vanished when the Greek side asked for that commitment in writing, it said.The Greek Cypriots had indicated readiness to make concessions on Turkish Cypriot demands for a rotating presidency, the other key issue.Reuters said the source found fault with Turkish Cypriots for being “a bit greedy” and “overplaying their hand”, but also Greek Cypriots, who possibly made a tactical error in asking for a written commitment from Turkey relinquishing its intervention rights before a deal had been agreed.“I just don’t think there is a sense of trust there. We were really, really close,” one diplomatic source added. Sources also said the four-hour dinner had been marked by “yelling and drama”.A UN source close to the talks said: “Turkey conceded in private to us end to guarantees and right of intervention. When we signalled this to [President Nicos] Anastasiades, he started insisting on zero troops. He simply didn’t want it. Tonight’s dinner was a disaster and he was behaving really badly.”CNA quoted a UN official who expressed intense disappointment with the outcome. Replying to a text message he said that “it was just tragic”. “We were so near and nevertheless failed. Very sad”. However, CNA said he did not reply to their question as to why Guterres decided to end the conference he had previously described as “open ended”.The agency said that according to its sources, there was no deal due to Turkey’s insistence on retaining the guarantees and on maintaining Turkish troops on the island. On the guarantees and the right to intervention, Ankara wanted a review of the presence of troops in 15 years and not withdrawal.On the territorial level, the Turkish side would only accept the return of part of Morphou to the Greek Cypriot constituent state, in an agreed federal solution. Furthermore, Turkey wanted any agreement reached to become primary law of the EU, while it insisted on equal treatment of Turks in Cyprus with Greeks residing on the island after a political settlement.Greek Cypriot and Greek sources told CNA that Anastasiades and Kotzias repeatedly asked the Turkish side to submit their proposals in writing. Guterres intervened so he could take note of the Turkish proposal, but Cavusoglu denied he had ever agreed to the immediate withdrawal of guarantees.Anastasiades’ phone call with Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras after midnight was about the prime ministers from the three guarantor powers possibly going to Crans-Montana to close the chapter on security, but the sticking point was the fact that Turkey did not submit any written proposals. Sources told the Cyprus Mail that Anastasiades wanted to delay the arrival of Tsipras until the very last minute while Britain’s Theresa May, and Turkey’s Binali Yildirim were prepared to join the talks.Yildirim said on Friday that Turkey would do everything within the framework of international law to defend the rights of Turkish Cypriots.Meanwhile, Britain and the EU expressed their continued support for a possible Cyprus solution.UK Minister for Europe, Sir Alan Duncan, said; “This is a disappointing outcome. The UK continues to be a strong supporter of a settlement. Now is a time for calm reflection and consideration of future steps. The commitment of the UK to a deal on Cyprus remains unwavering.”Alexander Winterstein, deputy Chief Spokesman for the European Commission, said the EU stands ready to support any future initiative to resolve the Cyprus issue.“The EU, as you know, has been supportive on both political and technical levels, and we remain committed to supporting both sides to reach a viable settlement in the future,” he said.Echoing the UNSG, he said Crans-Montana was not the last chance and he did not exclude further initiatives in the near future.You May LikeFigLeaf Beta AppHow to Become Fully Anonymous Online in Less Than 3 Minutes? 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