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Category:May 27, 2010
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US swimmer Phelps suspended over ‘pot pipe’
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Friday, February 6, 2009

United States swimmer Michael Phelps has been banned from competition and his training stipend revoked for three months by USA Swimming after Phelps was photographed smoking from a glass pipe, often used for smoking cannabis. The picture was published last Sunday by British tabloid News of the World.

USA Swimming, which is the governing body of swimming in the United States, however said that no “anti-doping” rules had been violated.

“This is not a situation where any anti-doping rule was violated, but we decided to send a strong message to Michael because he disappointed so many people, particularly the hundreds of thousands of USA Swimming member kids who look up to him as a role model and a hero,” it stated. “Michael has voluntarily accepted this reprimand and has committed to earn back our trust.”

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The suspension will end in time for Phelps to train for the US Championships, which are to be held on the 7th of July.

Phelps has also lost sponsor Kellogg, who said that it would not renew its deal with the swimmer next month.

Phelps won a record eight gold medals at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing last year, and has since become one of the world’s most famous athletes.

Category:July 14, 2010

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US Secretary Rice responds to European enquiries on alleged CIA prisons

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US Secretary Rice responds to European enquiries on alleged CIA prisons
July 5, 2019 · Uncategorized · (No comments)

Wednesday, December 7, 2005

The United States Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has begun to address concerns raised by the EU, the Council of Europe, and several member countries about the CIA’s detention practices upon her arrival in Germany for a European tour that began Tuesday.

“As a matter of US policy, the United States’ obligations under the U.N. Convention Against Torture, which prohibits, of course, cruel and inhumane and degrading treatment, those obligations extend to US personnel wherever they are, whether they are in the United States or outside the United States,” said Rice, speaking from the Ukrainian capital of Kiev on Wednesday.

Media reports and Human Rights groups have alleged that the CIA transported renditioned prisoners through European countries, which could violate European laws and the sovereignty of countries involved. Secretary Rice claimed that the United States has respected the sovereignty of other countries, and that it has not transported detainees from one country to another for the purpose of interrogation using torture, and has not transported anyone to a country when we believe he will be tortured.

“We consider the captured members of Al-Qaeda and its affiliates to be unlawful combatants who may be held, in accordance with the law of war, to keep them from killing innocents. We must treat them in accordance with our laws, which reflect the values of the American people. We must question them to gather potentially significant, life-saving, intelligence. We must bring terrorists to justice wherever possible,” Rice told reporters before she left from Andrews Air Force base on Monday.

Rice said that European nations should realize that interrogations of terrorist suspects have produced information that has saved European lives. However, Secretary Rice provided no specific cases.

“Secretary Rice made extra-legal rendition sound like just another form of extradition. In fact, it’s a form of kidnapping and ‘disappearing’ someone entirely outside the law,” said Tom Malinowski, a Human Rights Watch official in Washington.

The CIA practice known as “extraordinary rendition” is used to interrogate terrorist suspects outside the U.S., where they are not subject to American legal protection.

“Kidnapping a foreign national for the purpose of detaining and interrogating him outside the law is contrary to American values,” said Anthony D. Romero, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) on the Khalid El-Masri case. “Our government has acted as if it is above the law. We go to court today to reaffirm that the rule of law is central to our identity as a nation.”

The ACLU feels the government has to be held to account over “extraordinary rendition”.

Australia Votes 2007: Labor releases tax plan

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Australia Votes 2007: Labor releases tax plan
July 1, 2019 · Uncategorized · (No comments)

Friday, October 19, 2007

Wikinews Australia has in-depth coverage of this issue: Election 2007

Labor has released its tax plan, following the announcement from the Liberal/National coalition that they would provide tax cuts costing AU$34 billion if re-elected. The government has placed pressure on Labor since their announcement on Monday, urging Mr Rudd to release the opposition’s tax plan.

Under Labor’s system, the government’s planned tax cuts for Australians earning more than $180,000 per year would be scrapped, saving $3 billion. The savings would be spent on health and education for working families.

Speaking in Canberra today, Mr Rudd announced that if elected he would spend $2.3 billion on tax rebates for parents with children in primary and secondary schools. The refunds would be available to those who are eligible for Family Tax Benefit A. Mr Rudd claims the plan would be available to around two million children.

A Rudd government would offer a 50 percent education rebate to parents, up to $750 per child for primary school aged children and up to $1500 for children in secondary school. The rebate could be used for a variety of purchases but not for school fees. Mr Rudd said the rebate would help to equip children for the digital age.

“If mum and dad are spending money on buying a laptop, spending money on buying a home computer, spending money on … purchasing internet connection, education software printers and books, those expenditures, (they) will be eligible to claim the 50 per cent education tax refund that we are putting forward,” Mr Rudd said.

“We need to equip our young people with the skills necessary to participate in the digital economy of the 21st century.”

Mr Rudd vigorously denied that he rushed the plan out after the government’s announcement. “We have been working on this education tax refund for the better part of four, five months,” Mr Rudd told reporters.

Labor would spend $400 million of the savings on Labor’s national health reform plan, while the remaining $200 million would go to the budget surplus.

Under the health reform plan, an elective surgery strategy would be implemented with the aim of reducing waiting times. Mr Rudd said the waiting times experienced by some Australians were unacceptable.

“We intend … to establish through the use of other funds as well a plan which would create a national elective-surgery strategy to reduce waiting times across the nation,” Mr Rudd said.

About 25,000 Australians are on waiting lists for elective surgery despite having passed the clinically acceptable waiting period, he said.

“That’s unacceptable,” he said.

Mr Rudd also said that Labor would embrace tax reform by flattening the number of tax rates from four to three, at 15, 30 and 40 percent by 2012-13. This contrasts to the government’s planned tax cuts bringing rates to 15, 30, 25 and 40 percent.

If Labor is elected, those paying the highest tax rate would pay around $10 a week more than they would under a Howard government. Mr Rudd said that he was not waging a class war and believed those paying the top tax rate wouldn’t mind investing in the country.

“If you’re on $180 grand and more, as people like myself are, I don’t think you really need it just now,” said Mr Rudd.

“What I say instead is that most people in that bracket wouldn’t mind an investment going into bridging the digital divide for the whole country.”

“If we were waging some sort of class warfare, we wouldn’t be in the business of outlining the long term goals that we’ve put forward – a flattening, prospectively, of the tax system down to three rates rather than four with a top marginal tax rate of 40.”

The government has criticised the plan, with Treasurer Peter Costello claiming that Mr Rudd copied “91.5 percent” of their tax policy. He accused the opposition of never having a tax plan.

“Mr Rudd talks about education – if he’d have brought his exam paper in after copying 91.5 per cent of the answers from the student sitting next to him, he would have got an F for fail.”

The Treasurer said that it would be unlikely that a Rudd government could deliver tax cuts as it could not manage the economy well enough to deliver them.

“Unless you can manage the Australian economy, these tax cuts will not be deliverable,” he said.

“Mr Rudd and Mr Swan do not understand the Australian economy. This is entirely clear from the fact they have spent four days copying 91.5 per cent of our tax plan.”

Mr Costello said that a Rudd government would have a dilemma if elected, in that he could not follow the coalition’s policies.

“He never had a tax policy,” Mr Costello said.

“He hadn’t done the work, five days after our tax policy, his great contribution to the tax debate in this country is to say ‘me too, but’.”

“The trouble with ‘me too, but’ is, it’s OK for Mr Rudd to say ‘me too, I’ll be like Howard and Costello and adopt their policies’, but if he gets in Howard and Costello won’t be there writing the policies.”

Mr Costello said that when Kevin Rudd runs out of ideas, the union movement would step in to provide guidance. “So who is going to say ‘me to, but’ to them? I think the union movement will be giving him a few ideas,” said Mr Costello.

2007 Baseball World Cup: Highlights from Day 4 to Day 6

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2007 Baseball World Cup: Highlights from Day 4 to Day 6
June 29, 2019 · Uncategorized · (No comments)

Monday, November 12, 2007

Australia and Cuba have qualified for the Quarter Final of the 2007 Baseball World Cup. There was only one game taking place today between Chinese Taipei and Italy in Tianmu Baseball Stadium. After six days of play, the competition will most certainly heat up in next 48 hours with every team fiercely vying to qualify for the Quarter Final which takes place Friday, November 15.

Contents

  • 1 Day 4: Australia set records in single game
    • 1.1 Other Results at Day 4
      • 1.1.1 Group A
      • 1.1.2 Group B
  • 2 Day 5: Australia and Cuba qualify for Quarter Final
    • 2.1 Cuba vs Venezuela
    • 2.2 Australia wins thriller against S Korea
    • 2.3 Other Results on Day 5
      • 2.3.1 Group A
      • 2.3.2 Group B
  • 3 Day 6: Host edges Italy in controversy
  • 4 Tomorrow’s fixtures
    • 4.1 Group A
    • 4.2 Group B
  • 5 Sources

News briefs:July 14, 2010

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News briefs:July 14, 2010
June 28, 2019 · Uncategorized · (No comments)
Wikinews Audio Briefs Credits
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Turkey sets the price to lift the ban on YouTube and Google services

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Turkey sets the price to lift the ban on YouTube and Google services
June 23, 2019 · Uncategorized · (No comments)

Friday, June 11, 2010

Turkey’s Finance Ministry has given Google a tax demand of $18.6 million, and Transport and Communications Minister Binali Y?ld?r?m called on Google to register as a taxpayer in the country to “help accelerate” the lifting of a ban on YouTube and Google services.

As The Register reported, access to search engine Google had been limited due to a block imposed on its IP set, and most of Google’s online services had been inaccessible in Turkey since June 4. The IP addresses were shared between YouTube and other Google services. As International Business Times reports, YouTube has been banned in Turkey since 2008.

Accoring to HaberTurk, which is the Turkish version of Bloomberg, Yildirim said that “YouTube is a tax-payer in 20 countries, and we want them to do the same in Turkey.” Turkey’s Finance Ministry has given Google a tax demand of $18.6 million. Y?ld?r?m called on Google to register as a taxpayer in the country, and he said that it is a step that “would help accelerate the lifting of a ban on the company’s Youtube video-sharing website.”

Reporters Without Borders condemned “the growing repercussions of Turkey’s censorship of YouTube” and quoted Turkey’s President Abdullah Gul as saying “I do not want Turkey to be included among the countries that ban YouTube and prevent access to Google.”

Several internet sites have recently been banned in Turkey. The Register reports that 3,700 websites are “blocked for arbitrary and political reasons” in Turkey, including foreign websites, sites aimed at the country’s Kurdish minority, and gay sites according to The Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). Reporters Without Borders added Turkey to the list of “countries under surveillance” in its report on “Enemies of the Internet,” issued March 2010.

Militants bomb Gaziantep, Turkey police headquarters

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Militants bomb Gaziantep, Turkey police headquarters
June 21, 2019 · Uncategorized · (No comments)

Monday, May 2, 2016

A car bomb detonated at police headquarters in Gaziantep, Turkey yesterday morning killed two police officers and injured more than twenty other people. The governor’s office said nineteen of the injured were police officers. Police said they suspect an alleged Daesh (ISIL) militant of responsibility for the attack.

Turkish media reported two police officers, Yusuf Evrin and Serdar ?akir, spotted the bomb in the vehicle as the driver approached the building. The officers opened fire on the driver before the bomb exploded.

This follows another suicide bombing in Istanbul four days earlier that wounded several people, and three other militant attacks this year in Turkish cities populated with high numbers of tourists. Daesh have not claimed responsibility for any of these attacks.

Turkish police claim to have found evidence linking the suspect to Daesh and conducted a raid on his home. They took the suspect’s father in for questioning and DNA testing, in an attempt to confirm the bomber’s identity.

The US-led coalition against Daesh, of which Turkey is a member, carried out airstrikes in Syria last Thursday. Gaziantep is near the Syrian border and a city official estimated to news website The Conversation the area harbors as many as 400,000 Syrian refugees. Suspected Daesh militants amongst them have recently been subjected to police raids.

Foreign travel advisories are warning tourists of an increased threat of terrorist attacks in Turkey.