Ukraine parliamentary elections

Ukraine parliamentary elections

People walk past a pre-election poster with a portrait of former Ukrainian prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko, leader of Batkivshchyna (Fatherland) party, in Kiev, on Thursday. The parliamentary elections in Ukraine will be held on 26 October. The elections are supposed to return political stability to the crisis-hit country, but few observers expect that they will facilitate a peaceful solution to the bloody conflict with pro-Russian separatists (EPA)

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International News October 23, 2014

Second White House fence jumper faces mental evaluation

Second White House fence jumper faces mental evaluation

By Susan Heavey

The man arrested after jumping the White House fence on Wednesday night was charged in court with two federal offenses on Thursday, including harming a dog the Secret Service used to stop him from entering the presidential mansion.

Federal Magistrate Judge Deborah Robinson ordered a mental screening for the man, Dominic Adesanya, 23, of Bel Air, Maryland.

Adesanya was also charged with unlawfully entering the restricted grounds of the White House. Both charges are misdemeanors that carry…

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International News October 23, 2014

WHO voices confidence no wider spread of Ebola in Africa

WHO voices confidence no wider spread of Ebola in Africa

By Stephanie Nebehay and Kate Kelland

The World Health Organization said on Thursday it was still trying to slow the rate of new infections but had “reasonable confidence” that the Ebola virus plaguing three West African countries had not spread into neighbouring states.

Asked whether countries such as Guinea Bissau, Mali and Ivory Coast might have cases of the disease crossing their borders without knowing about or reporting them, WHO assistant director general Keiji Fukuda said he considered that unlikely.

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International News October 23, 2014

Islamic State militants seize Iraq village, press assault on Yazidis

Islamic State militants seize Iraq village, press assault on Yazidis

By Saif Sameer and Ned Parker

Islamic State wrested a Sunni Muslim village in western Iraq on Thursday from tribal defenders who put up weeks of fierce resistance, and the insurgents tightened a siege of the Yazidi minority on a mountain in the north.

The attacks showed Islamic State’s continued operating resilience despite air strikes by US-led coalition forces aimed at defeating the ultra-radical Sunni jihadist group, which has captured large expanses of Iraq and neighbouring Syria, beheaded prisoners and…

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Local News October 23, 2014

‘Alcohol too easily accessible to minors in nightclubs’  

‘Alcohol too easily accessible to minors in nightclubs’  

By Stefanos Evripidou

CYPRUS HAS the second highest level of accessibility of alcoholic drinks for minors in nightclubs across Europe, parliament heard on Thursday.

Deputies heard the “alarming” statistic at a joint session of the House Education and Health Committees yesterday where the Education Ministry and Anti-Drugs Council presented the results of a Europe-wide study into alcohol consumption among underage persons.

According to the results, Cyprus comes eight out of 35 European countries when it comes to the accessibility of…

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International News October 23, 2014

Suspected Boko Haram fighters kidnap 25 girls in northeast Nigeria

Suspected Boko Haram fighters kidnap 25 girls in northeast Nigeria

By Imma Ande and Isaac Abrak

Suspected Boko Haram militants kidnapped at least 25 girls in an attack on a remote town in northeastern Nigeria, witnesses said, despite talks on freeing over 200 other female hostages they seized in April.

John Kwaghe, who witnessed the attack and lost three daughters to the abductors, and Dorathy Tizhe, who lost two, said the kidnappers came late in the night, forcing all the women to go with them, then later releasing the older…

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International News October 23, 2014

Ukrainian PM warns Russia may try to disrupt Sunday’s election

Ukrainian PM warns Russia may try to disrupt Sunday’s election

By Richard Balmforth

Ukraine’s prime minister warned on Thursday of possible attempts by Russia to disrupt an election in Ukraine at the weekend, a vote being held against a background of Russian support for separatist rebels and an unresolved row over gas.

Sunday’s poll is the first parliamentary election since street protests last winter drove Moscow-backed leader Victor Yanukovich from office and ushered in a pro-Western leadership.

The results are expected to turn a political bloc supporting President Petro Poroshenko…

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Local News October 23, 2014

Bodies of missing airmen recovered (Update 3: adds communication with tower)

Bodies of missing airmen recovered (Update 3: adds communication with tower)

By Evie Andreou

THE BODIES of the two men believed to have been on board of the 5B-CLI, twin-prop Diamond DA42 training plane that crashed on Wednesday night en route to Beirut from Cyprus are in the process of being officially identified, the defence ministry said on Thursday.

Authorities will establish if the two men are Cypriot Avgoustinos Avgousti, 54, a father of three and Lebanese George Obagi, 54, a father of two children. The two bodies were brought ashore…

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Local News Business October 23, 2014

Banks receive final ECB verdict on finances

Banks receive final ECB verdict on finances

By George Psyllides

THE eurozone’s 130 biggest banks, which include four Cyprus-based banks, received the European Central Bank’ s final verdict on their finances on Thursday after a review aimed at drawing a line under persistent doubts about the health of the region’s banking sector.

Taking part from Cyprus is the Bank of Cyprus (BoC), the co-op sector, Hellenic Bank, and the Russian Commercial Bank.

The results will not be made public officially before 1pm on Sunday, and the ECB…

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Local News October 23, 2014

Anastasiades back in hospital for overnight stay (Update)

Anastasiades back in hospital for overnight stay (Update)

President Nicos Anastasiades was admitted late on Thursday afternoon to a Brussels hospital, specialising in Ear, Nose and Throat treatment, where he underwent specialised treatment, the palace in Nicosia said in a statement.

“The President of the Republic’s health is in good condition and it was his personal choice to remain at the hospital overnight for purely precautionary reasons,” said the statement..

Anastasiades was taken to a hospital in Brussels early on Thursday after suffering prolonged nosebleeds. He was treated…

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Local News October 23, 2014

Party leaders agree to devise rules forcing AG to attend committees

Party leaders agree to devise rules forcing AG to attend committees

By Angelos Anastasiades

Party leaders on Thursday agreed to make an effort to devise rules on when the Attorney-general would be obliged to address the House and parliamentary committees.

The issue came up after Attorney-general Costas Clerides refused to appear before the Ethics committee earlier this week in a session that would discuss the potential conflict of interest arising from the fact that the Central Bank Governor’s daughter legally represents ex-Laiki’s strongman Andreas Vgenopoulos.

Vgenopoulos is currently in a legal…

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Local News October 23, 2014

Vergas suspends his participation in municipal affairs

Vergas suspends his participation in municipal affairs

By George Psyllides

Embattled Paphos mayor Savvas Vergas said on Thursday he was suspending his participation in municipal affairs until November 10, pending a police investigation into allegations of misconduct.

Vergas said his decision was part of the effort to help the investigation and deny anyone the opportunity to cast shadows about a possible intervention.

He did not offer any comment on the essence of the allegations that saw him remanded in custody for four days last week, but claimed…

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Local News October 23, 2014

Nobel laureate to speak at Cyprus Institute

Nobel laureate to speak at Cyprus Institute

Nobel laureate Professor Carlo Rubbia will be the keynote speaker at the annual Huburt Curien Memorial Lecture at the Cyprus Institute on Friday night at 7pm, with a focus on the future of energy.

Professor Rubbia, who won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1984, will deliver a speech with an innovative approach to dealing with the challenges of climate change. He will examine the change mitigation potential of a “methane-based society” relying on low-carbon innovative technologies such as methane cracking and the…

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International News October 23, 2014

Canada’s Harper pledges tougher security laws after attack

Canada’s Harper pledges tougher security laws after attack

By Randall Palmer and David Ljunggren

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper pledged to boost security forces’ surveillance and detention powers on Thursday, a day after a gunman killed a soldier and raced through parliament before being shot dead.

Addressing the House of Commons just meters from the spot where the gunman, a reported convert to Islam, was shot dead on Wednesday, Harper said lawmakers would expedite new powers to counter the threat of radicals.

“The objective of these attacks was…

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Sport October 23, 2014

From the front line to the try line: Twickenham ready to salute Rokoduguni

From the front line to the try line: Twickenham ready to salute Rokoduguni

By Mitch Phillips

ENGLISH rugby loves to trumpet its links with the military, so the RFU’s marketing men will be beside themselves with the news that Samesa Rokoduguni, a serving soldier, has been called up to the squad for the four November internationals.

But anyone thinking that Fijian Lance Corporal Rokoduguni of the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards is some sort of symbolic selection has obviously not been paying much attention to the Premiership over the last year or so.

The…

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Local News October 23, 2014

Public service union eyes bank’s sports club

Public service union eyes bank’s sports club

By Angelos Anastasiou

Civil servants’ union PASYDY has its eye on Bank of Cyprus’ sporting club in Latsia, Nicosia, and is allegedly offering €10 million to acquire it, local daily Phileleftheros reported on Thursday.

According to the paper, the Land Registry has valued the property at €8 million, but two independent private valuers said it was worth over €10 million.

The union’s leadership recently met with the lender’s chairman, Christis Hassapis, in order to express interest in the sports complex.

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International News October 23, 2014

US-led air strikes killed 521 fighters, 32 civilians in Syria

US-led air strikes killed 521 fighters, 32 civilians in Syria

By Oliver Holme

Air strikes by US-led forces have killed 521 Islamist fighters and 32 civilians during a month-long campaign in Syria, a monitoring group which tracks the violence said on Thursday.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the vast majority of the deaths, 464, were militants from Islamic State, an al Qaeda offshoot which has grabbed large areas of Syria and neighbouring Iraq.

The attacks also killed 57 members of the al Qaeda-affiliated Nusra Front, the Observatory…

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International News October 23, 2014

Russian prosecutors detain more suspects in Total CEO plane crash

Russian prosecutors detain more suspects in Total CEO plane crash

By Katya Golubkova and Maria Tsvetkova

Russian prosecutors detained four Moscow airport workers and denied bail to the driver of a snow plough which hit a private jet killing the CEO of French oil company Total earlier this week, officials said on Thursday.

Russia’s investigative committee has moved quickly to detain those it says might be responsible for the crash, which killed Christophe de Margerie in a tragedy which has done little to improve Russia’s reputation for poor air safety.

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Local News October 23, 2014

Artist Glyn Hughes dies aged 83

Artist Glyn Hughes dies aged 83

Renowned Cyprus-based artist Glyn Hughes has died aged 83. Hughes died of a heart attack in Limassol hospital on Thursday.

Hughes came to Cyprus in 1956 and first worked at the Junior School from then until to the early ’90s, and taught countless children the wonders of light and colour in art. The children returned the favour – according to Hughes, it was not until he started teaching them that he learned a valuable lesson himself.

He said in an…

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International News October 23, 2014

Hong Kong protesters set for the long haul at self-sustaining village

Hong Kong protesters set for the long haul at self-sustaining village

By Farah Master

Hong Kong protesters have created a self-sustaining village within a month of taking their call for democracy to the streets, setting up changing rooms, tents for hire, a study area, first-aid stations and even their own security patrols as they ready for the long haul.

What started out as hastily built barricades against police pepper spray and tear gas, relying mainly on cling film and umbrellas, has evolved into a fully fledged campus with carpeted stairs, water…

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International News October 23, 2014

Bomb blast kills five at bus station in north Nigeria

Bomb blast kills five at bus station in north Nigeria

By Tim Cocks

A bomb exploded at a bus station in northern Nigeria’s Bauchi state late on Wednesday, killing at least five people and wounding 12, police said.

The blast, which struck the town of Azare, is likely to be blamed on Islamist Boko Haram militants, casting further doubt on government reports that it had reached a temporary ceasefire with the rebels in order to secure the release of more than 200 schoolgirls they are holding hostage.

Police did not…

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