US, UK embassies in Yemen close due to al-Qaeda threat

Monday, January 4, 2010

The United States and the United Kingdom closed their embassies in Yemen Sunday, pointing to ongoing terrorist threats. The closures came after the two nations pledged to boost counter-terrorism support to the Yemeni government.

The American embassy’s website said the threats come from al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, the group linked to the failed Christmas Day airplane bombing attempt in the United States. The message in part said, “The U.S. Embassy in Sana’a is closed today, January 3, 2010, in response to ongoing threats by Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) to attack American interests in Yemen.”

Further adding, “On December 31, the U.S. Embassy sent a warden message to Americans citizens in Yemen to remind them of the continuing threat of terrorist actions and violence against American citizens and interests throughout the world. The U.S. Embassy reminds U.S. citizens to maintain a high level of vigilance and to practice enhanced security awareness.”

Deputy National Security Advisor for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism John O. Brennan said on CNN’s State of the Union with John King, “There are indications that al Qaeda is planning to carry out an attack against a target inside of Sana’a, possibly our embassy.” Brennan added, “And what we do is to take every measure possible to ensure the safety of our diplomats and citizens abroad, so the decision was made to close the embassy.”

The U.S. Embassy in Sana’a is closed today, January 3, 2010, in response to ongoing threats by Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) to attack American interests in Yemen.

A spokesperson for the British Foreign Office said their embassy would be closed on Sunday and a decision to reopen would be made on Monday.

The closures come a day after U.S. General David Petraeus visited the capital, Sana’a, to discuss security issues with President Ali Abdullah Saleh. The general, who oversees the U.S. wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, recently announced that the United States would more than double its security aid to the impoverished nation.

The United States gave $67 million last year to Yemen, the only country that receives more aid is Pakistan with $112 million, according to the Associated Press.

Yesterday, in his weekly radio address, President Barack Obama linked the suspect in the attempted bombing of Northwest Airlines Flight 253 to al-Qaeda saying, “We know that he traveled to Yemen, a country grappling with crushing poverty and deadly insurgencies. It appears that he joined an affiliate of al-Qaeda, and that this group, al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, trained him, equipped him with those explosives and directed him to attack that plane headed for America.”

Obama annouced, “So, as President, I’ve made it a priority to strengthen our partnership with the Yemeni government-training and equipping their security forces, sharing intelligence and working with them to strike al-Qaeda terrorists.”

Obama said that they had already results prior to the Christmas Day bombing attempt saying, “So, as President, I’ve made it a priority to strengthen our partnership with the Yemeni government-training and equipping their security forces, sharing intelligence and working with them to strike al-Qaeda terrorists.”

Britain has also announced plans to join with the United States in funding a counter-terrorism police unit in Yemen, as well as plans to hold an international conference on Yemeni security later this month.

Earlier today, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown told the BBC, “This is a new type of threat and it is from a new source which is obviously Yemen, but there are many other potential sources Somalia, as well as Afghanistan and Pakistan.”

Editor Hakim Almasmari, of the Yemen Post newspaper, thinks the conference might be advantageous if it results in more development projects for rural Yemen. However, he fears what any foreign-backed military attacks could mean.

“Al-Qaeda right now is not very strong,” Almasmari said. “Its followers are not more than 400 in all. However, if the U.S. does attack Yemen, al-Qaeda will get stronger and stronger because people who lose their families in the airstrikes will join al-Qaeda not because they want to but because they want revenge against the Americans and the Yemeni government for the attacks.”

The situation has gained new urgency as the government in Sana’a finds itself overwhelmed not only by the growing terrorist threat, but also two separate rebellions, one of which has become something of a proxy war, at least in rhetoric, between Iran and Saudi Arabia.

U.S. military experts have warned that vast reaches of the impoverished nation, with its booming population and dwindling resources, could spin permanently out of the government’s control.

Militant groups from Somalia said that they would send fighters to help aid al-Qaeda in Yemen. Yemen has vowed to keep foreign extremists out.

The U.S. embassy has faced attacks from the local al-Qaeda group before, with an assault outside its gates in 2008 that left 19 people – civilians and militants – dead.

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Telecom New Zealand to sell Yellow Page Group

Saturday, November 4, 2006

Christchurch Yellow Pages. Photograph by Gabriel Pollard.

Telecom New Zealand has announced that it is going to sell its Yellow Page Group business and is expecting at least NZ$2 billion. The Yellow Page Group includes the Yellow Pages, White Pages (which includes both offline and online services), New Zealand Retirement Guide and New Zealand Tourism Online.

However Chief Financial Officer, Mark Bogoievski, will not comment on how much the reserve price is.

The company says that the money they get from selling the directories will be used to repay almost $3.5 billion worth of debt.

Theresa Gattung, Chief Executive of Telecom, said: “There has already been considerable interest shown in the future of Yellow Pages Group based on recent media speculation. We expect that the sale should be completed by the end of this financial year.”

The Yellow Page Group generates $250 million worth of revenue per annum and employs 600 people.

Ms Gattung said: “In the long term the business will be dominated by the global players. It’s really prudent off us to take this opportunity to see what value we can get looking at the sale of this business at this stage.”

Analysts are warning Telecom that it would miss out on the digital media possibilities. “It looks to me that it is a bit of a panic reaction in order to generate some quick cash,” said, telecommunications expert, Paul Budde, “I think it’s a short-term sort of strategy to generate some cash, but it will undermine its long term strategy to move from the old Telecom’s world into the new digital media world.”

Ms Gattung said that the privacy of the individuals will be kept, “obviously we’re only going to sell to a very reputable party.”

Telecom is also hinting at cutting hundreds of jobs to invest in new technology to beat off competition.

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London Knights trade Steve Mason to Kitchener Rangers

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Steve Mason. Image: OHL.

On the morning of January 4, 2008, while at the 2008 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships, 19-year-old goalie Steve Mason received a phone call from Canada informing him that he was traded by the Ontario Hockey League’s London Knights to the Kitchener Rangers.

In a press release Friday, Kitchener Rangers Head coach and General Manager Peter DeBoer announced the trade to the Knights. In return for obtaining Mason, the Rangers have sent the Knights, Centre Phil Varone, Defenceman Steve Tarasuk along with 2nd, 3rd and 4th round draft picks in 2011 and a 2nd round pick in 2012.

Mason said that he had an enjoyable time playing for the London Knights, but nonetheless, he believes that he has a bright future playing for the Kitchener Rangers. He also notes that he doesn’t want the trade to distract him from playing in the Gold Medal Game, against Team Sweden.

Team Canada won the game in overtime 3-2.

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2008 COMPUTEX Taipei: Three awards, One target

Monday, June 23, 2008

Taiwan Design Gallery, designed to promote excellent “Made In Taiwan” products.Image: Rico Shen.

2008 COMPUTEX Taipei, the largest trade fair since its inception in 1982, featured several seminars and forums, expansions on show spaces to TWTC Nangang, great transformations for theme pavilions, and WiMAX Taipei Expo, mainly promoted by Taipei Computer Association (TCA). Besides of ICT industry, “design” progressively became the critical factor for the future of the other industries. To promote innovative “Made In Taiwan” products, pavilions from “Best Choice of COMPUTEX”, “Taiwan Excellence Awards”, and newly-set “Design and Innovation (d & i) Award of COMPUTEX”, demonstrated the power of Taiwan’s designs in 2008 COMPUTEX Taipei.

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Basic Elements Of A Contact Lens Fitting

Submitted by: Adrianna Notton

One thing about wearing glasses that is much easier than wearing contacts is the fitting process. Since the contact lens sits directly on your cornea, it s very important that the correct measurements are taken and that it fits properly. If the fit of contacts is even a little off, you may experience problems while you wear them. Clear vision and comfort are the two most important elements of wearing contact lenses, and both are affected by the fit of the lenses in your eyes. Whether you seek out cheap contacts or the most expensive ones in the store, the correct fit is crucial. All contact lens fitting consist of a few basic elements.

Before the fitting for contacts even begins your eye doctor will test your eyes to determine the strength of corrective lens you need. Then, they will help you decide on the right type of contact lenses for you. They will ask you several lifestyle questions and your preferences regarding the wearing and hygiene schedules. After the testing is done and decision about which type of contacts to wear is complete, you ll need corneal measurements taken. Contact lenses are not a one-size-fits all kind of product, and the size and curvature of the lens must be correct. The doctor will likely use a device called a keratometer to measure your cornea during the fitting. This takes pictures of your eye to determine the curvature and size of contacts you ll need for a proper fit.


The doctor will also measure the size of your pupils to help ensure properly fitting contact lenses. The diameter of your iris is also recorded and in some cases a tear film evaluation is taken. This helps to determine if you have dry eyes, and the result may cause you to rethink the choice for contacts. If you have a problem with dry eyes, wearing contact lenses can be quite uncomfortable as the day rolls along. At the least, you will be given eye drops and instructions on how to keep your eyes and contacts moist.

Your eye doctor may also use a biomicroscope to get a highly magnified view of your cornea, so they can watch how a trial contact lens fits in your eye. If the doctor chooses to go with trial contacts, you ll probably have to wear them for at least 15 minutes to get a true sense of how they fit. They can then give your eyes a detailed examination and determine if the contact lenses fit properly or not. It s common for contact lens fittings to take at least two office visits, to ensure the right size and style has been selected. Once the fit is good, you ll get your prescription and you can go get it filled. Cheap contacts are usually available through specials or promotions at many optical stores. Whether you find cheap contacts or not, make sure you give your prescription details to the retailer preparing them for you, and double check at the end that it s the right one.

About the Author: Find the perfect

contact lenses

at discount prices, whether you have astigmatism, dry eyes, or poor vision.


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Reality TV star sought after model found dead in California dumpster

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

A millionaire reality TV star is being sought by police over the murder of a model whose body was found in a Californian dumpster. 28-year-old Jasmine Fiore was found dead in an unzipped suitcase in Buena Park, Orange County.

Police are seeking real estate tycoon Ryan Jenkins, 32, a contestant on the reality show Megan Wants a Millionaire, in which former Rock of Love hopeful Megan Hauserman dates several rich men with the aim of ultimately becoming the girlfriend of one of them. Jenkins reportedly met Fiore at a Las Vegas strip club and married her two days later.

Jenkins reported the swimsuit model missing hours after the discovery of her body. Since then he has not returned calls from investigators and is considered a person of interest. Police suspect he may be on the run and are trying to trace him as well as a black and white Mercedes car he may be driving.

It is thought that Jenkins may have returned to his homeland of Canada. Fiore, who had worked for Playboy, had been strangled according to police. Her body was found by someone searching for goods to recycle. She was last seen alive at 8:30 p.m. on Friday and had not contacted her family since then.

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Toyota to pay US government $16.4 million over recalls

Monday, April 19, 2010

Toyota has agreed to pay a record $16.4 million fine to the US government over allegations that the automaker concealed defects in its vehicles.

Toyota has accepted responsibility for violating its legal obligations to report any defects promptly

US Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood made the announcement Monday, saying in an e-mailed statement that “Toyota has accepted responsibility for violating its legal obligations to report any defects promptly.” Toyota has still not admitted any wrongdoing, and said that it disagreed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which levied the fine against Toyota. In a statement, Toyota said it “denies N.H.T.S.A.’s allegation that it violated the Safety Act or its implementing regulations. We believe we made a good faith effort to investigate this condition and develop an appropriate counter-measure.”

Toyota is still at risk of lawsuits from those affected by cars that crashed due to a safety defect in the accelerator pedal. Numerous such lawsuits have been filed, and analysts said that the total cost of the lawsuits could be upwards of two billion dollars in 2010, and possibly as much as ten billion in total. While the government fine is largely symbolic, as the amount was limited by US law, it could provide support for lawyers who are filing legal charges against Toyota. If the cap on the fine was not in place, Toyota would have been fined a total of $13.8 billion; each of the 2.3 million defective vehicles sold would have had a $6,000 fine.

Additionally, the NHTSA is reportedly considering a second fine, also of $16.4 million, based on evidence that there were two separate defects in the affected vehicles, and the company is facing an investigation from both the Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission.

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UK court remands man in custody over Leytonstone knife attack

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

A UK court has remanded a man in custody after he appeared in court over a stabbing incident in the capital London. Muhaydin Mire, a 29-year-old from east London, was charged with attempted murder after reportedly at least two people were injured, one seriously, in Leytonstone tube station on Saturday. The suspect, who spoke only to confirm personal details in yesterday’s hearing at Westminster Magistrates’ Court, is also set to appear at the Old Bailey on Friday.

The motivation for the attack is not yet clear, although prosecutors told yesterday’s hearing imagery associated with Daesh was thought to be on the suspect’s phone. Witnesses reportedly heard the suspect shout the words “this is for Syria” when the attack occurred. The House of Commons voted in favour of UK military action against Daesh in Syria three days earlier. The Metropolitan Police have said they are treating this attack as a terrorist incident.

Prime Minister David Cameron yesterday condemned the attack as “hideous” and praised the public and police response. “It’s obviously a hideous attack,” he said, “and we’ve all seen pictures of it and read about it and first of all, full credit to the person and people who took on this attacker, and full credit to the very brave police officers who managed to subdue him […] I think this event simply showed again what brilliant and brave and dedicated people there are when it comes to our police officers.” Earlier, Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn said: “The stabbing in Leytonstone is absolutely shocking. My thoughts are with the victim and his family.”

The Prime Minister also endorsed the sentiment of the phrase ‘You ain’t no Muslim, bruv’, which one man is heard to shout in video of the suspect’s arrest, and which subsequently became a Twitter trend. “Some of us have dedicated speeches and media appearances and soundbites and everything to this subject,” Cameron said, “but ‘you ain’t no Muslim, bruv’ said it all much better than I ever could and thank you because that will be applauded around the country.” Additionally, Sadiq Khan, Labour Party candidate for Mayor of London, used the hashtag in a tweet in which he added: “To defeat extremism we must directly challenge their poisonous ideology”.

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