U.N.concerned by Machar delay in return to South Sudan capital

first_imgThe United Nations Security Council expressed serious concern on Tuesday over the failure of South Sudanese rebel leader Riek Machar to return to Juba to take up his old post as deputy to President Salva Kiir as part of a peace deal.U.N. peacekeeping chief Herve Ladsous briefed the 15-member council on South Sudan at the request of the United States. Machar had been due to return to Juba on Monday, but a spokesman for his group said logistical reasons had delayed his travel.Thousands have been killed and more than 2 million people in a country of 11 million have been driven from their homes by more than two years of fighting that erupted at the end of 2013, barely two years after South Sudan’s independence.Kiir’s decision to sack Machar as his deputy in 2013 precipitated the crisis that erupted into conflict in December that year. Fighting has often run along ethnic lines, pitting Kiir’s dominant Dinka ethnic group against Machar’s Nuer.Machar and Kiir signed a peace deal in August that called for a transitional government and other security arrangements to end the fighting. But clashes have flared outside the capital and Machar has repeatedly delayed his return.“The members of the Security Council … reiterated that they are ready to address any obstruction of implementation of the agreement,” China’s deputy U.N. ambassador, Wu Haitao, told reporters. China is president of the council for April.Russian Deputy U.N. Ambassador Petr Iliichev said Ladsous told the council there was a huge lack of confidence between the parties but that the U.N. peacekeeping chief was hopeful that Machar might return to Juba on Wednesday.U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon spoke to both Kiir and Machar by phone on Sunday and urged them to form a transitional government quickly and roll out other parts of the fragile peace deal.last_img read more

AFRICOM commander, US ambassador hold talks with Libyan PM

first_imgLibyan Factions Upbeat about UN-Mediated Talks ROME, ITALY – JULY 26: Libyan Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj at Palazzo Chigi on July 26, 2017 in Rome, Italy. Paolo Gentiloni has previously met with Fayez al-Sarraj to discuss migration and border control. (Photo by Simona Granati – Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images) FILE PHOTO: Libyan Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj. (Photo by Simona Granati – Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)Libyan Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj and the commander of the United States Africa Command (AFRICOM) General Stephen Townsend on Monday held discussions on US security interests in Libya.A statement by AFRICOM said that the meeting was a chance to create new relationships and assess the situation in Libya. Among the issues discussed were the security environment, the importance of addressing the existing violent extremist organization threat, and the need to resolve the ongoing conflict in Libya.General Townsend was accompanied on his trip by the new United States ambassador to Libya Richard Norland.Libya has been in turmoil since Khalifa Haftar’s Libyan National Army (LNA) launched a military campaign on April 4 to take over the capital Tripoli where the UN-backed government is based.The offensive triggered the latest outbreak of violence in the country since the toppling of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.“We emphasized to Prime Minister Sarraj the importance of supporting a diplomatic solution to put an end to the current conflict,” Townsend said.Townsend and Norland are scheduled to have a meeting with the head of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) Ghassan Salame to discuss how the US military may cooperate with the UN in the quest for a political settlement in Libya.“We are committed to open and transparent dialogue on this urgent security issue. We fully support the United Nations, U.S. State Department and the Libya External Office’s efforts to promote stability and shared prosperity in Libya,” Townsend added.Townsend underscored the importance of ensuring that the threat of violent extremist organization is contained and does not create additional instability in Libya and the North African region.Despite AFRICOM not having any personnel stationed in Libya, it said it continues to evaluate the viability of a renewed US military presence once the security environment allows such a move.Related Italian PM visits Libya for talkscenter_img Libyan PM proposes elections to end crisislast_img read more

Africa’s confirmed COVID-19 cases pass 40,000 mark: Africa CDC

first_imgAfrica CDC: COVID-19 death toll surpass 117 as confirmed cases climb to 3,924: South Africa’s COVID-19 cases reach 2028 A picture of the map of Africa showing the countries that have confirmed cases of COVID-19./Africa CDC A picture of the map of Africa showing the countries that have confirmed cases of COVID-19./Africa CDCThe number of confirmed COVID-19 positive cases across Africa rose from 39,018 from Friday afternoon to 41,330 cases as of Saturday, the Africa Center for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) said in its latest situation update issued on Saturday.The death toll from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic on the African continent reached 1,701 as of Saturday, said the Africa CDC.Figures from the Africa CDC also showed that amid the rapid spread of the virus across the continent, the highly COVID-19 affected African countries include Egypt, South Africa, Morocco as well as Algeria.The Africa CDC disclosed that the Northern African region is the most affected area across the continent both in terms of positive COVID-19 cases, as well as the number of deaths.Earlier this week, the Africa CDC received the third round of medical equipment and supplies donated by China’s Jack Ma Foundation and Alibaba Foundation in support of the African continent’s fight against the spread of COVID-19.Relatedcenter_img Confirmed COVID-19 cases surpass 10,000 in Africalast_img read more

US court gives Integrity Commission green light to subpoena Google

first_img Tweet Share 54 Views   no discussions Attorney General Anand Ramlogan (Photo: Trinidad Express)PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad (Trinidad Express) — The Integrity Commission has won its legal battle to have Google Inc provide information on three e-mail accounts, believed to be connected to Attorney General Anand Ramlogan and Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar, as part of its investigation into Emailgate.A judgment handed down by the United States District Court has stated the Integrity Commission’s subpoena to Google Inc in connection with its Emailgate probe has met “both statutory requirements and discretionary factors”.The judgment was handed down by US District Judge William Orrick of the Northern District of California Court on August 14.“On August 11, 2014 the Integrity Commission of Trinidad and Tobago requested the court’s assistance under 28 U.S.C. 1782 in issuing a subpoena to Google Inc,” the Order granting the subpoena application stated.“The subpoena seeks information for the e-mail accounts “anand@gmail.com”, “anand@tstt.net.tt” and “kamlapb1@gmail.com” which the Commission represents is relevant to a criminal investigation into possible governmental corruption.“Because the application meets both the statutory requirements and discretionary factors I must consider in deciding whether to grant it, the application is granted,” the order stated.According to a footnote in the court document, Google says the e-mail address anan@gmail.com does not exist but the Integrity Commission said in its motion it believed the address was incorrectly copied so it is asking any information pertaining to anand@ gmail.com to be preserved.In his ruling, Orrick says he granted the subpoena for several reasons:1) Google itself is not the subject of the case and since it’s out of the jurisdiction of Trinidad and Tobago law enforcement, any evidence will be unobtainable without Google’s help.2) There is no evidence the request is an attempt to circumvent foreign proof-gathering restrictions or any country’s policies.3) It’s not “intrusive or burdensome.” It’s only a request for information concerning three accounts and an affidavit to authenticate…and according to the document, one of the owners, Anand Ramlogan, has given consent to search his TSTT account which is operated by Google.Ramlogan has denied having a gmail account and Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar has never confirmed if the gmail account belongs to her.Google now has the right to modify or quash the subpoena within 14 days.If it does that, the Integrity Commission will then have another 14 days to appeal. NewsRegional US court gives Integrity Commission green light to subpoena Google by: – August 19, 2014center_img Share Share Sharing is caring!last_img read more

NI Announces New PXI-Based Wireless Production Test System

first_imgNational Instruments today at NI Week has announced thethe Wireless Test System (WTS), a solution that dramatically lowers the cost of high-volume wireless manufacturing test. This Test Set can be used to test a range of wireless technologies including Bluetooth, WiFi, GPS and Cellular including LTE-Advanced.The WTS combines the latest advances in PXI hardware to offer a single platform for multi-standard, multi- DUT and multi-port testing. When used with flexible test sequencing software, such as the TestStand Wireless Test Module, manufacturers can significantly improve instrument utilization when testing multiple devices in parallel. The WTS integrates easily into a manufacturing line with ready-to-run test sequences for devices that use chipsets from suppliers like Qualcomm and Broadcom as well as integrated DUT and remote automation control. With these features, customers are seeing considerable efficiency gains from their RF test equipment and further reducing their cost of test.The Test Set is built on PXI hardware and LabVIEW and TestStand software (see the Semiconductor Test System launched in 2014). With support for wireless standards from LTE Advanced to 802.11ac to Bluetooth Low Energy, the WTS is designed for manufacturing test of WLAN access points, cellular handsets, infotainment systems and other multi-standard devices that include cellular, wireless connectivity and navigation standards. Software-designed PXI vector signal transceiver technology inside the WTS delivers superior RF performance in the manufacturing test environment and a platform that can scale with the evolving requirements of RF test.The Internet of Things is expected to push more devices to include RF and sensor functionality, which has traditionally been expensive to test. The NI Wireless Test Set based on the PXI Platform can reduce test costs and multiply throughput on the production floor with a system optimized for measurement speed and parallel test. Visit http://ni.com/wts to learn more.last_img read more

Flexible Super Capacitors to Power Wearable Electronics

first_imgOne of the key limitations of wearable electronics is the battery. Currently batteries are thick and rigid – not and not ideal for wearable devices. The development of smart T-shirts and other werable devices may depend on the development of stretchy power sources. A team of researchers at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore have produced a stretchy micro-supercapacitor using ribbons of graphene.Xiaodong Chen, and his research team have developed stretchable electrodes, and have integrated them into a super-capacitor, which is an energy storage device which can be used to power electronic gadgets. Supercapacitors, developed in the 1950s, have a higher power density and longer life cycle than standard capacitors or batteries. Over the years, supercapacitors have shrunk in size, enabling a generation of two-dimensional micro-supercapacitors that are integrated into cell phones, computers and other devices. However, these supercapacitors have remained rigid, and are thus a poor fit for soft materials that need to have the ability to elongate.In this study, Xiaodong Chen, and his team have developed a micro-supercapacitor from graphene. This carbon sheet is renowned for its thinness, strength and conductivity. Graphene can be flexible and foldable, however it cannot be stretched. The team took a cue from skin. Skin has a wave-like microstructure and they tried to figure out how they could make graphene more like a wave.The first step was to make graphene micro-ribbons. Most graphene is produced with physical methods, like shaving the tip of a pencil. However, it is very difficult to control its structure and thickness using a physical method. Thickness can really affect the conductivity of the electrodes and how much energy the supercapacitor overall can hold. So they used chemistry to build his material.The next step was to create the stretchable polymer chip with a series of pyramidal ridges. The researchers placed the graphene ribbons across the ridges, creating the wave-like structure. The design allowed the material to stretch without the graphene electrodes of the superconductor detaching, cracking or deforming. In addition, the team developed kirigami structures, which are variations of origami folds, to make the supercapacitors 500 percent more flexible without decaying their electrochemical performance. As a final test, they powered an LCD from a calculator with the stretchy graphene-based micro-supercapacitor. Similarly, such stretchy supercapacitors can be used in pressure or chemical sensors.In future experiments, the researchers hope to increase the electrode’s surface area so it can hold even more energy. The current version only stores enough energy to power LCD devices for a minute.last_img read more

Alaska Representatives Weigh in on AGDC Cuts

first_imgGovernor Walker’s reasoning for the move was that he wanted more Alaskans on the board with greater geographic representation. FacebookTwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享Legislators are reacting to Governor Bill Walker’s removal of three of the Alaska Gasline Development Corporation Board’s members. House Speaker Mike Chenault issued a statement Wednesday saying that losing those board members will be hard to replace. Some are questioning if the move will delay the group’s work and Senator Resources Committee Chair Cathy Giessel said firing those board members is the opposite of the governor’s goal to bring north slope natural gas to market.center_img Along with that announcement, Walker instructed the commissioners of the commerce and labor committees not to sign any confidentiality agreements. Late Tuesday the governor’s office announced the dismissal of former Anchorage Senator Drue Pearce, Former oil company executive Al Bolea of Big Lake , and former Exxon-Mobil Pipeline President Richard Rabinow of Texas.last_img read more

Japan golf left without sponsor

first_img IN FIVE EASY PIECES WITH TAKE 5 GET THE BEST OF THE JAPAN TIMES Computer equipment manufacturer Iiyama Corp. said Wednesday it will not renew its sponsorship contract with the Japanese men’s professional golf tour after it expires at the end of this year.The withdrawal of the Nagano-based company leaves the Japan Golf Tour Organization (JGTO) looking for a new corporate sponsor for the tour and the Japan Golf Tour Championship meet, which was inaugurated two years ago as the newest of the tour’s major tournaments.last_img read more

Japan celebrates after Naomi Osaka’s triumph in U.S. Open final

first_imgNaomi Osaka became the first Japanese player to win a Grand Slam singles title Sunday at the U.S. Open, sparking celebrations among her family and compatriots in Japan.Osaka’s 73-year-old grandfather Tetsuo told reporters at his home in Nemuro, Hokkaido, he and his wife were ecstatic after watching their granddaughter’s 6-2, 6-4 victory over 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams on television. Osaka, Serena Williams, U.S. Open, Naomi Osaka Employees at Nissin Foods Holdings Co. celebrate after Naomi Osaka’s victory over Serena Williams in the U.S. Open final on Sunday. RELATED PHOTOS He said Osaka had called them after the match to tell them about it, adding that he hopes her achievement will lift the spirits of locals still reeling from the powerful earthquake that struck Hokkaido recently.Prime Minister Shinzo Abe took to Instagram to praise Osaka’s accomplishment. “At difficult times like now, thank you for the energy and inspiration,” his message read.Residents of her namesake city of Osaka, where she was born, also expressed their delight.“I subscribed to satellite TV to see the match, and I got goosebumps when she won,” said Yuta Yokoyama, 33, who was practicing at a tennis court.Kazuki Nakadate, 26, said he had never expected a Japanese to win the tournament. “She showed a bullish attitude even toward a legend like Serena Williams,” he said.Ai Sato, 55, said, “We’ve had lots of gloomy news recently such as typhoons and earthquakes. But I think (her victory) will help encourage people living in the affected areas.”At the Tokyo head office of Nissin Foods Holdings Co., one of Osaka’s sponsors, about 150 people watched the match on a large-screen television.“She has inspired Japan at a time when the country is reeling in the aftermath of the Hokkaido earthquake and torrential rain in western Japan,” said 35-year-old Shuichi Fukushima, whose voice had gone hoarse from cheering.People in Haiti, the homeland of Osaka’s father, also celebrated her win.“We are proud of her,” Mac Keven Frederic, 45, said. “With this victory, many young Haitian women will take up tennis.”Osaka’s victory is an “honor” for Haitian people, as it proves that people from smaller countries can still triumph, said 63-year-old Hilario Batista Felix. center_img KEYWORDS GET THE BEST OF THE JAPAN TIMES IN FIVE EASY PIECES WITH TAKE 5last_img read more

Texas coming off win with fresh questions about defense

first_imgAUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Missed tackles and botched assignments were embarrassing enough the first time around. Then the Texas Longhorns were forced to endure them again while watching tape on Sunday.Their coaches were kind enough to assemble a collection of every third down conversion on which the Longhorns failed to stop Notre Dame and Rice.“Not necessarily a highlight film,” safety Dylan Haines said. “More of a lowlight film. You are sitting there saying, ‘Why did I do that? I would never do that again.’”The Longhorns have some reason for optimism after defeating Rice 42-28 Saturday to even their record at 1-1. Several young players made significant contributions. Redshirt freshman quarterback Jerrod Heard had a breakout game running and passing. Freshman receiver John Burt hooked up with Heard for a 69-yard touchdown play. Freshman linebacker Malik Jefferson is already a play-maker.But those developments won’t matter much if the Longhorns can’t make some stops. Texas ranks 114th of 127 teams nationally in total defense. The Longhorns are last in defending third-down conversions after allowing Rice failed only seven of their 21 attempts.The issues start up front with the line.“We’re not winning one on one,” coach Charlie Strong said. “We tell them all the time, you have to get off blocks. You can’t be a shock absorber.”The Longhorns lost six starters from a team that ranked 25th in defense last season. One of them, all-America tackle Malcom Brown, was a first-round draft pick of the New England Patriots.Even so, Strong praised his returning linemen during preseason camp, saying he had nine reliable players.And now?“I still have them,” Strong said, smiling. “I have to get them to play.”Tackles Hassan Ridgeway and Desmond Jackson, a junior and senior, respectively, began the season with high expectations. They are also recovering from injuries. Jackson missed the last 10 games last season with a foot injury.“I’m trying to get back to being who I am,” Jackson said.Texas had difficulty with Rice’s Driphus Jackson, a mobile and elusive quarterback.“I think we had eight missed sacks,” Strong said. “One time we had four people miss him on one sack.”This week the Longhorns face California’s Jared Goff, a more stationary quarterback who ranks eighth nationally in passing efficiency.“He’s not going to scramble around like Jackson,” Strong said. “We have to make him move his feet, make him uncomfortable.”One man capable of that is Jefferson, the highly touted middle linebacker. Jefferson leads the team in tackles – he also has missed some — and returned a fumble 26 yards for a touchdown against Rice.The enthusiastic Jefferson enjoyed watching himself run on the Royal-Memorial Stadium video scoreboard.“My eyes got real big,” Jefferson said. “I was wondering, does the end zone glow when I score?”last_img read more