Home' Greymouth Star : July 27th 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
6 - Monday, July 27, 2015
Real estate magnate Donald Trump
moved to the top of the 2016 Republican
presidential field in a CNN poll released
overnight, edging rival Jeb Bush and
gaining support from Republicans
in the last month despite a series of
Trump was backed by 18% of
Republicans in the CNN poll, which
was conducted entirely after his July 18
criticism of Republican Senator John
McCain’s war record. His lead over
Bush, a former Florida governor who
was at 15%, was within the poll’s margin
“There is a movement going on. This is
more than me,” Trump said on CNN’s
State of the Union, saying the poll
results were not surprising. “People are
tired of these incompetent politicians
in Washington that can’t get anything
Trump’s support among Republicans
has increased six points since late June
despite a flood of rebukes of Trump after
he said McCain, a former navy pilot
who was tortured during more than five
years in captivity during the Vietnam
War, was not a war hero because he was
Trump and Bush were joined near
the top of the pack by Wisconsin
Governor Scott Walker, who had
10% support among the Republican
and Republican-leaning independent
registered voters who were sur veyed in
the CNN poll.
None of the other Republican
candidates gained double-digit support.
Sixteen Republicans are running for the
party’s presidential nomination in the
November 2016 election.
Trump has been criticised by fellow
Republican candidates and party leaders
for making incendiary comments
about Mexican immigrants, belittling
McCain’s war record and for his personal
attacks against rival Republican White
House contenders such as Senator
Lindsey Graham and former Texas
Governor Rick Perry.
Trump gave out Graham’s private
cellphone number at a rally last week.
“I don’t think Mr Trump is qualified
to be commander-in-chief, I think he
is bankrupt when it comes to all the
qualities you need to lead the men and
women in uniform and to lead a great
nation,” Graham said on ABC’s “ This
Perry, appearing on CNN, said Trump’s
candidacy “is not necessarily moving the
cause of conser vatism for ward.”
The CNN poll was conducted July
22-25 among 1017 adults. The margin
of error was 3.5% among the registered
voting sample of 419 Republicans and
11 arrests over boy’s human sacrifice slaying
Police have arrested 11 villagers
over the murder of a 10-year-old
boy in south-western Nepal, in
what authorities are calling a case of
Local media reports said the father
of a sick teenager had last Tuesday
lured away the 10-year-old, Jeevan
Kohar, with a packet of biscuits and
the promise of 50 rupees ($1.18).
The suspect then reportedly slit
the child’s throat on the advice of a
shaman, who said his own son’s health
would improve if he committed the
“ We have arrested 11 people,
murdering a 10-year-old boy,” police
superintendent of Nawalparasi district
Nal Prasad Upadhyaya, said overnight.
“All the villagers say the boy
was killed in a case of human
sacrifice, because the suspects
were superstitious and believed in
witchcraft,” Upadhyaya said.
“ But we cannot confirm anything
completed,” he said.
According to a report in The
Himalayan Times, one of the
suspects, who confessed to the crime,
believed that his sick child was under
the “spell of a ghost ” who could only
be “pacified with human flesh”.
Shaman healers and mystics are a
common presence in the Himalayan
nation, especially in remote villages
with poor access to healthcare.
Some of the hot air balloons at Chambley-Bussieres.
France sets hot air balloon record
Four hundred and thirty-three
hot air balloons have lifted off
from an air base in eastern France,
soaring straight into the record
The balloons, including some
spectacular designs such as a
French chateau and rotund cartoon
character Obelix, took off from
Chambley-Bussieres air base
overnight to beat the previous
record for simultaneous hot air
The previous record was set at
the same spot in 2013 when 391
balloons went up.
“A new page in ballooning
history has been written,” Philippe
Buron-Pilatre, the organiser of the
twice-yearly Lorraine Mondial Air
Ballons event, said.
The biggest dangers for the
balloons, which were arrayed in
parallel lines 6km long for the
take-off, was that two of them
might collide causing tears in
their fabric, something that has
happened twice since 1989, he
Enthusiasts from over 40 nations
took part. — AFP
Pope Francis has used an iPad to
register for next year’s World Youth Day
festivities, while addressing thousands of
pilgrims and tourists in St Peter’s Square.
“Thanks to this electronic device, I
signed up as a simple pilgrim,” Pope
Francis said overnight, declaring himself
the first person registered for next
edition of the Youth Day celebration
while flanked by two Polish youths.
The next edition of the global meeting
of Catholic youths will be held next July
in Krakow, Poland. It was most recently
organised in Rio de Janeiro in 2013,
shortly after Francis’s election as pope.
Before digitally signing up for the
event followed, the Pope appealed for
the release of Italian Jesuit priest Paola
Dall’Oglio, who was kidnapped in Syria
two years ago.
In addition to calling for Dall’Oglio’s
liberation, Francis called for “renewed
engagement by local and international
authorities” to secure the release of all
hostages being held.
Next year’s event will be the 31st
edition of World Youth day which was
instigated in Rome in 1986 by Pope John
Paul II, the first Polish pontiff who also
ser ved as Archbishop of Krakow.
It has since been held in countries on
four continents. — AFP
Parliamentary authorities have
called in Scotland Yard after a peer
who oversees standards in the House
of Lords was pictured allegedly
taking cocaine with two prostitutes.
Baron Sewel of Gilcomstoun,
a Deputy Speaker of the Lords,
resigned amid claims he took the
class A drug at a sex party.
The House of Lords authorities
immediately referred his case to
police and dubbed the revelations
“shocking and unacceptable”.
Lord Sewel, formerly a Labour
peer and ally of former Prime
Minister Tony Blair, was said to
have been caught on video telling
the £200-a-night prostitutes that he
wanted to “ be led astray ”.
The Lord Speaker issued a strongly-
worded statement in which she said
Scotland Yard would be asked to
Baroness D’Souza said: “ Today ’s
revelations about the behaviour of
Lord Sewel are both shocking and
“Lord Sewel has this morning
resigned as Chairman of Committees.
The House of Lords will continue to
uphold standards in public life and
will not tolerate departure from these
standards. These serious allegations
will be referred to the House of Lords
Commissioner for Standards and the
Metropolitan Police for investigation
as a matter of urgency.”
In footage published by The Sun on
Sunday, the 69-year-old peer is said
to have stripped naked in front of the
pair in his flat near Westminster last
Hunched over a table, the former
Labour minister for agriculture,
environment and fisheries is pictured
with a rolled-up bank note in his
hand as he appears to snort white
The peer’s third marriage, to Lady
Jennifer, 54, took place in 2005.
He is seen in the video footage with
his wedding ring on show.
One of the escorts is said to have
told Lord Sewel: “ You’re such a party
animal!”, before he allegedly replied:
“I know. Disgusting, isn’t it?”
He is alleged to have snorted three
lines of cocaine during the 45-minute
Lord Sewel, a former senior vice
principal of Aberdeen University,
received £84,525 as chairman of
the Lords’ Privileges and Conduct
Committee — the body that
upholds standards of behaviour
A Scotland Yard spokesman said:
“ We are aware of allegations in the
Sun and any allegations that are
made will be investigated.
“ We are aware that Baroness
D’Souza has indicated she will
be making an approach to the
Metropolitan Police and we will get
on the case in due course. ”
A House of Lords spokesman
said: “Lord Sewel has this morning
resigned as chairman of committee, a
“This means he is no longer in an
“ I do not yet know whether he
intends to retire from the House,
which is now possible under the
Earlier this month, he wrote a blog
for the Huffington Post website in
which he spoke about the House of
Lords’ new powers to banish peers
who breach the code of conduct.
“The actions of a few damage our
reputation,” wrote Lord Sewel.
“Scandals make good headlines.
“All members now sign a declaration
to obey the code and the seven
principles of public life.
“The requirement that members
must always act on their personal
honour has been reinforced.
“ No system of regulation can be
perfect, but the House of Lords
has come a long way since 2010
in improving its regulation of its
members and punishing the small
number who misbehave.
“ Today ’s new sanctions strengthen
the regime further.”
Lord Sewel declined to comment to
The Sun on Sunday about the footage
said to have been filmed at his flat in
He was a Labour peer until
resigning his party membership to
take up the House of Lords role, and
is formally known as a “non-affiliated
A Labour spokeswoman said: “He
is not a Labour peer so we are not
As a junior lecturer at Aberdeen
University in 1975 Lord Sewel
published the book Colliery
Closure and Social Change and
lists his recreations in Who’s Who
as hill-walking, skiing and watching
His first marriage to Rosemary
Langeland took place in Malvern,
Worcs, in 1968 and they had a son,
now 38, and a daughter, now 36, who
were both born in Aberdeen.
Lord Sewel’s second marriage was
in 1988 to Leonora Harding, in
Aberdeen, with the third to Lady
Jennifer 10 years ago also taking place
in the city. — PA
Peer resigns over drugs allegations
Lord Sewel allegedly snorting cocaine in a Sun photo.
Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad
has acknowledged the ranks of his
government ’s army are shrinking, but
insisted the force is still capable of
beating rebel fighters.
Assad also said any “dialogue that is
not based on the fight against terrorism
would be meaningless”.
Syria’s army once had about 300,000
members, but has been roughly halved
in size by deaths, defections and a
rise in draft dodging, a fact Assad
acknowledged in a rare public speech in
“There is a lack of human resources”
in the army, he said, addressing
representatives of economic organisa-
tions in a speech broadcast live on Syrian
“The problem facing the military is not
related to planning but to fatigue.
“It is normal that an army gets tired,
but there’s a difference between fatigue
“The word defeat does not exist in the
Syrian army’s dictionary,” he said, telling
the applauding audience that “collapse”
was not on the cards.
“ We will resist and we will win. ”
The rare public acknowledgment of
weakness comes amid growing concern
in Damascus about the state of the
country’s armed forces.
In early July, a campaign was launched
to encourage citizens to join the army,
with billboards going up around the
The government has also regularly
urged Syrians to perform their military
ser vice and on Saturday Assad decreed
a conditional amnesty for army deserters
and draft dodgers.
Assad, whose opponents include
Islamic State group jihadists, al-Qaeda-
affiliated fighters and other rebel
groups, also made reference overnight
to army withdrawals from parts of the
In recent months, government forces
have been pushed out of almost all of the
north-western province of Idlib, as well
as losing the ancient city of Palmyra.
“There were areas where we wanted to
show our commitment,” he said.
“But the army cannot be on every part
of the territory.
“In some areas, residents have taken
up weapons alongside the army and
that has had a decisive impact on the
More than 230,000 people have been
killed in Syria since the conflict began
in March 2011 with anti-government
protests before spiralling into a civil war
after a regime crackdown. — AFP
Jehovah’s Witnesses face inquiry
A public hearing into child sex
abuse in the Jehovah’s Witnesses,
Christian church, starts in Sydney
In the inquiry, which is expected
to run for two weeks, the Royal
Commission into Institutional
Responses to Child Sexual
Abuse will hear from people who
allege abuse within the Jehovah’s
Witnesses Church in Australia.
The commission will also examine
the responses of the church and
its company — the Watchtower
Bible and Tract Society of Australia
Ltd — to complaints made against
The Witnesses are best known for
their door-to-door proselytising as
they spread the message of what
they believe is the true meaning of
They are also known for their
refusal to accept blood transfusions
and have been accused of being a
The commission will also ask what
the church, which has an estimated
60,000 disciples in Australia, is
doing to prevent child sexual abuse
in its organisation.
The Jehovah’s Witnesses case
is the 29th study by the Royal
Commission into Institutional
Responses to Child Sexual abuse.
The commission has already held
public hearings into the Anglican
and Catholic Churches as well as
other Christian churches, including
the Salvation Army.
When the inquiry was announced
a spokesman for the Witnesses said
they would co-operate fully with
the commission as they consider
the safety of children to be of the
utmost importance. — AAP
Prince George may have just
turned two but his proud mother
the Duchess of Cambridge says he
actually thinks he is three.
The toddler, who celebrated his
second birthday last Wednesday,
“thinks that he’s older”, Kate told
staff from sailor Sir Ben Ainslie’s
racing headquarters as she and
William were given a tour of
facilities in Portsmouth.
During the visit Freddie Wilson,
the two-year-old son of the team’s
head coach Rob Wilson, stepped
for ward and said, “Hello Princess,
my name is Freddie Wilson.”
Mother Wendy Maxwell said
later, “She asked him how old he
was and he said ‘I’m three’.
“ When I said he is only two, she
said, ‘George says that. He thinks
that he’s older’.”
Kate also stopped to chat to two-
year-old George Mills and his
13-week-old brother Harry, who
had fallen asleep.
Mother Rebecca said, “She asked
George if he likes Peppa Pig and
said she hoped Charlotte would be
doing a lot of sleeping too.”
Earlier Kate had had another go
on a sailing simulator as she and
William joined Sir Ben on a tour
of the centre.
She joined the Olympic hero
alongside a ship’s wheel and donned
a pair of virtual reality goggles with
him to try out the “virtual sailing
Wearing personalised team kit
printed with their royal titles across
the back, William and Kate also
met staff in the centre’s gym and
“mission control” room, where
experts analyse training data.
In the gym, William joked about
Sir Ben to trainers, saying, “I’ve
seen him crash, look after him. He
will be in pieces other wise.”
There were shown a big screen
where the team can view and replay
footage from training sessions and
Sir Ben joked, “ The only issue with
this is that it gets all the audio off
William asked: “Lots of bleeps
then?” Sir Ben laughed and replied,
“If someone’s having a bad day at
the office you hear it all.”
The royal couple also met the
aerodynamics team and asked
about the different sails used. — PA
Prince George thinks he is three
Rudd rejects claim
A popular theory that communist rule
in China has started to collapse is dead
wrong, former Australian prime minister
Kevin Rudd said.
Rudd, speaking during a panel
discussion on United States television
news channel CNN, bluntly rejected
respected China expert David
communist rule was in its final phase.
Shambaugh detailed his views in The
Wall Street Journal in March.
“This so-called China collapse-ism
thesis has been galloping along here in
the US, and elsewhere in the world, since
David wrote that,” Rudd told CNN host
Fareed Zakaria overnight.
“ But, collapse-ism, I think, is just dead
Rudd also rejected fears US and China
sabre-rattling in the South China Sea
would spark a regional military conflict.
“ I think the underlying dynamic is
that neither side has any interest to
allow any significant incident to occur,
which would then flame into a regional
conflict,” Rudd, president of the New
York-headquartered Asia Society Policy
“ From the Chinese side that would
upset the agenda in terms of their
No 1 priority which is to continue to
transform the economy.
perspective, if they were to trigger
conflict with the United States
the military realists in the People’s
Liberation Army know full well that
they would in all probability lose hands
“. . . From the American side, America
as we have seen more broadly in US
strategic policy around the world, has
no particular interest in going to war
by accident or design in Asia so these
incidents will come and go.
“ I suggest, analytically speaking, we
take a bit of a cold shower because I don’t
think we are at the cusp of something
radically spinning out of control. ”
Half of Cuba’s men’s
hockey team defects
Half of the Cuban men’s field hockey
team at the Pan American Games in
Toronto have defected to the United
A player and sources close to the
Cuban delegation says eight of the 16
Cuban players have deserted, while
team member Roger Aguilera put the
number at seven, just the latest in a
rash of Cuban defections across several
“ Everyone knows what happened to
our team, we have seven of them in the
United States,” Aguilera said after the
decimated Cubans were hammered 13-0
by Trinidad and Tobago.
Short of manpower, Cuba could only
field eight players instead of the standard
11 plus five substitutes.
They are not the first Cubans to defect
during the Pan Am Games, after four
rowers disappeared last week, including
silver medallist Orlando Sotolongo.
It is not uncommon for Cuban athletes
to defect, with baseball, boxing and
volleyball — sports where Cuban stars
can command big salaries internationally
— particularly hard hit.
At the 1999 Pan American Games in
Winnipeg, eight members of the Cuban
In January 2013, Cuba eliminated legal
barriers to foreign travel, but that did not
end the defections of artists and athletes,
who remain susceptible to the lure of
higher pay abroad.
In an attempt to stem the losses, Cuba
raised salaries of athletes, and began
allowing them to sign contracts with
But the defections have continued,
including at this month’s football Gold
Cup, despite a historic thaw in ties
between communist Cuba and the US.
Satanic group unveils statue
A Satanic organisation unveiled
a controversial bronze Baphomet
sculpture in Detroit just before midnight
on Saturday, after trying in vain to have
it installed near a 10 Commandments
monument in Oklahoma.
Due to planned demonstrations, the
group, which is opposed to Bible-themed
displays on government land, kept the
location of the unveiling of its 3m-tall
monument secret until the last moment,
when it e-mailed the information to
The Satanic Temple unveiled the one-
tonne statue at an industrial building near
the Detroit River just before 11.30pm
local time as supporters cheered,
“ Hail Satan.” Some of the hundreds in
attendance rushed to pose for photos.
The statue of a winged Baphomet
with a human body and a goat ’s head
resembled a design the group previously
released. — Reuters
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