Jan 17
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India set to install panic buttons on buses to combat sexual assault

Friday, May 27, 2016

The Indian Government announced on Wednesday they will issue a notification to ensure all buses are fitted with panic buttons to prevent sex-related violence occurring on buses in India. The motion was introduced by Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari. Installation of the buttons is set to become mandatory on June 2.

Tests are under way on 20 buses running from Rajasthan to New Delhi. Buses are to have panic buttons, a GPS-enabled vehicle tracking device, and CCTV cameras. The new buttons are located at the front doors and when pressed, a police control room has the ability to view live footage recorded inside the bus.

Last month, the government announced that as of 2017, mobile phones can’t be sold in India without a panic button. With the press of a single key, the panic button alerts emergency services that assistance is required.

Since a fatal sexual assault three and a half years ago on a bus in New Delhi, accompanied by increased rates of sexual assault, the government has been pressured to help women avoid the dangers of sexual assault. The bus sexual assault three and a half years ago resulted in India-wide protests, and laws regarding sexual assault were overhauled.

According to India’s National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), in 2014 New Delhi reported 1,813 rapes, more than any other Indian city. In more than 80% of rapes across India, the victim knew the rapist. In data from 2013, the rapists in 539 cases were parents, in 2,315 cases other relatives.

In 2012 the NCRB said the country had 24,923 reported rapes. However, this number grew over the following year, with 2013 seeing 33,707 reported.

In 2013, NCRB said New Delhi saw 1,636 rapes reported, with an Indian average of 92 women per day. The New Delhi cases alone account for more than four per day.

Jan 16
KKE: Interview with the Greek Communist Party
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KKE: Interview with the Greek Communist Party

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Wikinews reporter Iain Macdonald has performed an interview with Dr Isabella Margara, a London-based member of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE). In the interview Margara sets out the communist response to current events in Greece as well as discussing the viability of a communist economy for the nation. She also hit back at Petros Tzomakas, a member of another Greek far-left party which criticised KKE in a previous interview.

The interview comes amid tensions in cash-strapped Greece, where the government is introducing controversial austerity measures to try to ease the nation’s debt-problem. An international rescue package has been prepared by European Union member states and the International Monetary Fund – should Greece require a bailout; protests have been held against government attempts to manage the economic situation.

Jan 16
Stockholm chief prosecutor quashes arrest warrant for Wikileaks editor-in-chief
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Stockholm chief prosecutor quashes arrest warrant for Wikileaks editor-in-chief

Saturday, August 21, 2010

The arrest warrant issued for Wikileaks’ editor-in-chief Julian Assange has been quashed by Stockholm Chief Prosecutor Eva Finné, who said in a press release “I am of the opinion that there is no reason to suspect that he has committed a rape.” The press officer of the Swedish Prosecution Authority says that he is still suspected of molestation, and that neither police nor prosecutors have yet been able to contact Assange. Assange had this morning said that he was going to hand himself in to police but also said that the accusations against him were false. The investigation is continuing.

A warrant for Assange’s arrest was issued on Friday evening after the Stockholm police informed prosecutors that he had been accused of rape. According to Expressen’s sources two women between 20 and 30 years old are the alleged victims. Police and prosecutor Maria Häljebo Kjellstrand told Swedish news agency TT that the alleged molestation took place in Stockholm on the night of 13–14 August and the alleged rape happened “later” in Enköping. (Expressen’s sources say the alleged rape occurred on Tuesday.) Beyond that they have refused to comment. Sources told Expressen that the two women knew each other and “knew that they had been the victims of the same thing”. A source says that the women were afraid of Assange’s “position of power” and had been reluctant to make a formal report to the police. However, on Sunday one of his accusers was interviewed by Aftonbladet and denied that they were scared of Assange: “It is wrong to say that we were frightened of Assange and that we hadn’t wanted to report him for that reason. He’s not violent and I do not feel threatened by him.”

Assange was in Sweden last week to talk about his work and to defend Wikileaks’ publication of the Afghan War Diary, a set of tens of thousands of secret US military documents whose publication has angered the Pentagon and the Obama administration. He had also met Swedish Pirate Party leader Rickard Falkvinge and signed a deal in which the party agreed to provide Wikileaks with server space. The Pirate Party is continuing its cooperation with Wikileaks despite the allegations against Assange.

Assange has denied the allegations in e-mails to Swedish media and on Wikileaks’ Twitter feed, saying “the charges are without basis and their issue at this moment is deeply disturbing.” An official statement on the Wikileaks blog says: “We are deeply concerned about the seriousness of these allegations. We the people behind WikiLeaks think highly of Julian and he has our full support. While Julian is focusing on his defenses and clearing his name, WikiLeaks will be continuing its regular operations.”

Jan 16
Controversial Queensland Premier of 19 years dies at 94
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Controversial Queensland Premier of 19 years dies at 94

Saturday, April 23, 2005Queensland Australia’s Sir Joh Bjelke Petersen, a controversial figure who served as the State’s Premier for 19 years and reigned over the government that later became the subject of the Fitzgerald Inquiry, has died in hospital at Kingaroy, aged 94.

“By any measurement, Sir Joh was an exceptional state builder who will be remembered for consistently placing Queensland first,” said the Australian Governor General, Major General Jeffery, in a statement.

Australian Prime Minister, John Howard: “He was certainly a strong political figure and I extend my condolences to his wife and his family.”

But not all voices were sympathetic, prominent Queensland Aboriginal activist Sam Watson for example: “Aboriginal people will always remember him as a racist, a thug and a dictator.”

Having suffered severe ill-health for some weeks, and declining health for years, Sir Joh passed away at around 6pm AEST. He was surrounded by his family, who had been summoned yesterday by Lady Flo, his wife and one-time Senator, for final goodbyes.

Phrases such as “Don’t you worry about that” and “Goodness gracious me” were like trademarks to the maverick leader.

Known simply as ‘Joh’ to many, he would famously describe press conferences as ‘feeding the chooks’. Today Kingaroy locals taunted waiting press with cries from “You’re chooks, you’re chooks, ha ha” to “Go home, ya vultures”, and some obscenities, reported the Courier-Mail of Brisbane.

His fall from power at the end of the 80s was surrounded in controversy, with the state embroiled in corruption findings going to the level of his deputies, and Bjelke Petersen’s claims of ignorance coming under challenge with charges of perjury. The case was never heard due to a controversial hung jury: the foreman of the jury, Luke Shaw, had been an office-bearer of the Young Nationals — an arm of Bjelke Petersen’s National Party — as well as a member of a group calling themselves ‘Friends of Joh’.

Having had his start in life as a peanut farmer in remote Kingaroy, the former Premier was fit up until the very end, but palsy was paralyzing his muscles and organs, to which he eventually succumbed.

“Throughout his life Sir Joh combined enormous energy, vision and an immense capacity for hard work, most especially during his 19-year term as Premier of Queensland,” the Governor General said.

“What looked to us to be huge risks at the time turned out to be nation building,” said Bob Katter, a former minister of Joh’s Government, who credited Sir Joh with starting the Queensland coal, aluminum and tourism industries.

He is also remembered for dismantling many of the State’s unions, and for a somewhat totalitarian and heavy handed style of keeping control.

Under Joh, street protests were banned and Special Branch monitored extensively those the authoritarian leader saw as subversives, measures prompting Queenslander, Australian Civil Liberties Council, Terry O’Gorman, to comment Sir Joh was “the most appalling premier Queensland has ever had in terms of civil liberties and human rights”.

Joh was also influential in the famous case of the Dismissal by the Governor General of then-Prime Minister Gough Whitlam, in 1975.

In his last years as Premier, he had taken his cause to the nation’s capital, with the “Joh for PM” campaign. But this distraction has been credited with the downfall of his government, with corruption investigations at last being conducted by his stand-in, Bill Gunn.

The body of Sir Joh, who was of Lutheran faith, is to be buried at Bethany, the family property near Kingaroy.

Unsolicited quotes from ordinary Australians, many ex-Queenslanders seeking refuge in southern states, on hearing the news:

“Outrageous bastard! Oh God! That was polite!” — “Karen”

“Guilty as Hell. And that’s where he is now.” — “Michael”

“Yay! Good riddence to bad rubbish” — “Liza”

“The dictator is gone our time 2 sing” — “John. H.”

“Yeah he took a while — about 90 f*cking years overdue!” — “Hose Man”

“The pope an joh at least somethin going right” — “Helen”

“Corrupt f*cking sh*teating Bible-bashing f*ckw*t is dead. And thank f*ck. I haven’t been so happy since September 11!” — “Greg”

“I don’t drink but I’ll be having a red whilst dancing on his grave.” — “Cellest”

“Ding dong the d*ck is dead!” — anon.

“Yeahhh!!! Fucking finally” — “Leo”

“It’s a great day today the Rednecks are silent a great victory has been won” — “Zenner”

This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.
This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.
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Jan 15
Signs You Have A Bad Supplier On Your Hands

byAlma Abell

Improving supplier relations can be a major component to your company’s success. Bad suppliers can hurt your business, derail negotiations and lead to a ton of supply problems, Forbes says. Read on for tell-tale warning signs that you’re dealing with one:

Consistent decline

An occasional bad day isn’t unheard of, not when you’ve worked with a supplier for years. However, if there’s steady and consistent decline in service quality or product standards, that could be a major sign telling you that it’s time to move on to a new or better nicotine polacrilex USP supplier.

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Inconsistent stories

If your supplier says the delay was caused by shipment problems then electricity problems, those changing stories could be another sign that your supplier isn’t giving you the whole picture. If this keeps up, it’s best to engage the services of another company instead.

Assigning the blame elsewhere

One of the most annoying qualities of a bad supplier is that the company tends to assign blame elsewhere, even when it’s obvious that they share part of the blame. Accountability is indispensable and a quality you want to see in your nicotine polacrilex USP supplier.

Delays

If the company has too many clients on board and can’t seem to provide you with on-time shipments and deliveries, then you might want to have a long and serious talk with your supplier to try and fix the problem. If that doesn’t pan out, though, time to look for a new one.

Communication problems

If your supplier is hard to get a hold of, can’t seem to send out on-time responses and doesn’t exert any effort to be on the same page with you, getting help elsewhere is a wise and practical decision. Need a supplier you can count on? Ask us for help at BGP today. You can like their Facebook page for more information.

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Jan 15
Billy West, voice of Ren and Stimpy, Futurama, on the rough start that shaped his life
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Billy West, voice of Ren and Stimpy, Futurama, on the rough start that shaped his life
This article mentions the Wikimedia Foundation, one of its projects, or people related to it. Wikinews is a project of the Wikimedia Foundation.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Ren and Stimpy. Bugs Bunny. Philip J. Fry and Professor Hubert Farnsworth on Futurama. Sparx. Bi-Polar Bear. Popeye the Sailor Man. Woody Woodpecker. You may not think you have ever heard Billy West, but chances are on a television program, a movie, a commercial, or as Howard Stern’s voice guru in the 1990’s, you have heard him. West’s talent for creating personalities by twisting his voice has made him one of a handful of voice actors—Hank Azaria and the late Mel Blanc come to mind—who have achieved celebrity for their talent. Indeed, West is one of the few voice actors who can impersonate Blanc in his prime, including characterizations of Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Elmer Fudd and other characters from Warner Bros. cartoons.

What is the fulcrum in Mr. West’s life that led him to realize a talent to shape personalities with his voice, and how did the discovery of that gift shape him? Wikinews reporter David Shankbone found that like many great comedians, West faced more sour early in life than he did sweet. The sour came from a physically and emotionally abusive alcoholic father (“I could tell you the kind of night I was going to have from the sound of the key in the door or the way the car pulled up.”), to his own problems with drug and alcohol use (“There is a point that you can reach in your life where you don’t want to live, but you haven’t made the decision to die.”).

I’m telling you stuff that I never said to anybody…

If sin, suffering and redemption feel like the stages of an endless cycle of American existence, West’s own redemption from his brutalized childhood is what helped shape his gift. He performed little bits to cheer up his cowed mother, ravaged by the fact she could not stop her husband’s abuse of young West. “I was the whipping boy and she would just be reduced to tears a lot of times, and I would come in and say stuff, and I would put out little bits just to pull her out of it.”

But West has also enjoyed the sweet. His career blossomed as his talent for creating entire histories behind fictional characters and creatures simply by exploring nuance in his voice landed him at the top of his craft. You may never again be able to forget that behind the voice of your favorite character, there is often an extraordinary life.

Below is David Shankbone’s interview with renowned voice actor Billy West, who for the first time publicly talks about the horrors he faced in his childhood; his misguided search for answers in anger, drugs and alcohol; and the peace he has achieved as one of America’s most recognizable voice actors.

Contents

  • 1 The use of celebrities for voiceovers
  • 2 Iconic characters and choosing projects
  • 3 Discovering his talent
  • 4 “It was a horror chamber where I grew up”
  • 5 West moves to Boston after his parents divorce
  • 6 How West dealt with his father’s abuse
  • 7 Rehabilitation and sobriety
  • 8 Is West glad he experienced addiction?
  • 9 West on his career
  • 10 West on politics
  • 11 Billy West on modern American society
  • 12 Billy West on telling it like it is
  • 13 Source
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Jan 14
South African prosecutors charge ANC leader Jacob Zuma with corruption
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South African prosecutors charge ANC leader Jacob Zuma with corruption

Saturday, December 29, 2007File:JacobZuma.jpg

Corruption-related charges have been brought against Jacob Zuma, the newly-elected leader of the African National Congress (ANC), according to his lawyer. A trial is scheduled to begin on August 14, 2008.

The charges stem from an arms deal with a French company, which is alleged to have involved bribes and fraud. Zuma’s financial adviser at the time, Schabir Shaik, was convicted in 2005 of attempting to solicit a bribe of US$72,500 per year from the arms company on Zuma’s behalf and was sentenced to 15 years in prison. Zuma was fired as deputy president in 2005 by South African President Thabo Mbeki due to the scandal.

Two-term ANC leader Mbeki recently lost an ANC leadership contest to Jacob Zuma, who garnered about 60 percent of delegate votes in his win.

Zuma had been charged with corruption in 2005, but the case was dismissed on procedural grounds. Michael Hulley, Zuma’s defence lawyer, indicated that they will strongly contest the new charges in court. Hulley also suggested that the South African government’s National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) and its anti-organised crime division known as The Scorpions, have carried out a smear campaign against Zuma.

“These charges will be vigorously defended, in the context of the belief that the Scorpions (NPA) have acted wrongly and with improper motive calculated to discredit Mr. Zuma and ensure that he play no leadership role in the political future of our country,” said Michael Hulley in a statement.

Given that the ANC has been the governing party in South Africa since the end of apartheid in 1994, it is likely that Jacob Zuma could become the next president after general elections in 2009. Zuma has said, however, that he would resign if he was found guilty by the courts.

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Jan 14
14,000-acre Southern California ‘Crown Fire’ at 82% containment, evacuation orders lifted
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14,000-acre Southern California ‘Crown Fire’ at 82% containment, evacuation orders lifted

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Antelope Valley, California —The Crown Fire that has burned through 13,980 acres in the High Desert of Southern California since 2:32 pm (2232 UTC) Thursday was at 82% containment Saturday evening, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

On Friday high winds caused the fire to jump the California Aqueduct and spread into the city of Palmdale. Over 2,000 residents of Leona Valley, Ana Verde, and Rancho Vista were given mandatory evacuation orders. The sky was blanketed with thick orange pyrocumulus clouds and falling ash, making the air hard to breathe.

State Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger arrived in Palmdale on Friday to survey the burned areas. “We were very fortunate to not have fires for quite some time because the air temperature was cool and we didn’t have the experiencing of dry weather and all the winds and so on, but all of a sudden the fire season kicked in as if, ‘Here we are,'” Schwarzenegger said during a press conference. “But we are ready and we have luckily distributed resources all over the state of California, so we are ready at any given time.”

The fire has so far destroyed one house and three mobile homes, damaging the roof of another and burning car garages, horse stables, and other outbuildings. Most of the more seriously threatened homes were constructed recently from fire-proof materials, with walls coated in stucco, and fire-resistant plants in the yards. Although some roads are still closed to all traffic, all existing evacuation orders were lifted late Friday night and 500 residents of Rancho Vista were told to “shelter in place” until further notice. Despite the absence of mandatory evacuation orders, over 2,000 houses, 60 commercial buildings, and 100 outbuildings are still under threat.

Throughout the night, fire crews have been battling the wildfire, assisted by cooler temperatures and lighter-than-expected winds which have enabled them to establish containment lines. “Crews went out [Friday] night and did some great work trying to complete more lines and also trying to take care of what we call ‘cat eyes’ which are embers within the perimeter of the fire, so there will be much more work being done there today,” said LACFD Captain Roland Sprewell. “But of course we’re not going to rest on our laurels today…we’re going to be vigilantly watching the winds, especially in the ridge and down in the valleys.”

At the height of the fire, 1,700 firefighters from all over California were battling the flames, although as of 12:00 pm Saturday afternoon, it has been reduced to around 1,350 personnel. 16 fire camp crew have also assisted. 250 fire engines and four bulldozers have been used. In the air, 4 Boeing 747 supertankers, 1 McDonnell Douglas DC-10 tanker, and 6 modified Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters known as “Firehawks” have been dropping water and red Phos-Chek slurry. The Los Angeles Sheriffs Department also increased its presence in the Antelope Valley by bringing in response teams from stations outside the AV. This afternoon, the deployment has been scaled back to three teams as the fire stabilizes and further evacuation orders become unlikely.

Three firefighters have been injured battling the fire, although all injuries are minor. One sheriff deputy was also hospitalized for smoke inhalation but has since been released.

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Jan 13
Commonwealth Bank of Australia CEO apologies for financial planning scandal
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Commonwealth Bank of Australia CEO apologies for financial planning scandal

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Ian Narev, the CEO of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, this morning “unreservedly” apologised to clients who lost money in a scandal involving the bank’s financial planning services arm.

Last week, a Senate enquiry found financial advisers from the Commonwealth Bank had made high-risk investments of clients’ money without the clients’ permission, resulting in hundreds of millions of dollars lost. The Senate enquiry called for a Royal Commission into the bank, and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).

Mr Narev stated the bank’s performance in providing financial advice was “unacceptable”, and the bank was launching a scheme to compensate clients who lost money due to the planners’ actions.

In a statement Mr Narev said, “Poor advice provided by some of our advisers between 2003 and 2012 caused financial loss and distress and I am truly sorry for that. […] There have been changes in management, structure and culture. We have also invested in new systems, implemented new processes, enhanced adviser supervision and improved training.”

An investigation by Fairfax Media instigated the Senate inquiry into the Commonwealth Bank’s financial planning division and ASIC.

Whistleblower Jeff Morris, who reported the misconduct of the bank to ASIC six years ago, said in an article for The Sydney Morning Herald that neither the bank nor ASIC should be in control of the compensation program.

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Jan 13
Lakota activists declare secession from US
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Lakota activists declare secession from US

Friday, December 21, 2007

We are no longer citizens of the United States of America and all those who live in the five-state area that encompasses our country are free to join us.

A delegation claiming to represent the Lakota Indian Tribe, an Indian nation within United States borders, have signed a document stating that the tribe withdraws and or cancels all treaties with the U.S. and formally establishes independence from the country. The letter was hand delivered by activists for the tribe to Deputy to the Public Liaison at the State Department, Daniel Turner.

“We are no longer citizens of the United States of America and all those who live in the five-state area that encompasses our country are free to join us. This is according to the laws of the United States, specifically article six of the constitution. It is also within the laws on treaties passed at the Vienna Convention and put into effect by the US and the rest of the international community in 1980. We are legally within our rights to be free and independent,” said Russell Means, an activist for Native American rights to reporters at a press conference on Wednesday in Washington, D.C..

“Today is a historic day and our forefathers speak through us. Our Forefathers made the treaties in good faith with the sacred Canupa and with the knowledge of the Great Spirit. They never honored the treaties, that’s the reason we are here today,” said Garry Rowland who is also known as Wounded Knee.

The delegation wrote a formal letter to the Department of State which was hand-delivered by activists of the tribe announcing their secession. So far, the U.S. has not issued a public response regarding their decision. Wikinews attempted to contact the State Department, but in an e-mail Director of the Office of Media Affairs Kirsten Petree stated that “this is not an issue for the State Department” and referred us to the Department of the Interior.

Under the declaration, the tribe, which consists of people from Nebraska, North Dakota, Montana, South Dakota and Wyoming, would create and issue its own driver’s licenses and passports. According to a report by Agence France-Presse, all residents who currently live within Lakota borders can continue to reside there without paying taxes, as long as they renounce their U.S. citizenship.

The attempt to gain independence began in 1974 when activists wrote up a draft declaration of independence, which was modeled after the 1776 Declaration of Independence that the U.S. signed in declaring freedom from England.

Many of the treaties the tribe signed with the U.S. are over 150 years old.

“We have 33 treaties with the United States that they have not lived by. They continue to take our land, our water, our children,” said activist Phyllis Young, who was one of the individuals who helped to organize a 1977 conference in Geneva on “indigenous rights.”

The other members of the activist delegation were Duane Martin Sr., Gary Rowland and Phyllis Young. Duane Martin Sr. is a leader of a group called the Strong Heart Society. Gary Rowland is a leader of a group called the Big Foot Riders. Phyllis Young is the founder of a group called Women of All Red Nations.

Means’ group is based in Porcupine, South Dakota on Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. Means’ group is not an agency or branch of any Lakota tribe, although he ran unsuccessfully for president of the Oglala Sioux tribe in 2006.

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