Home' Greymouth Star : September 12th 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
Saturday, September 12, 2015 - 3
PICTURE: Getty Images
A youth carries a young boy in a makeshift sling as migrants walk towards waiting buses at the Hungarian border with Serbia in
Roszke, Hungary. Migrants are rushing to the border due to fears and rumours that the borders will soon close.
Brazil’s Supreme Court said overnight
it had received a request from federal
investigators to question former President
Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva in a political
kickback scheme engulfing the State-run oil
According to a motion filed with the court,
federal police suspect the former president
“may have benefited ” from a political
kickback scheme at Petroleo Brasileiro SA,
Lula may have “secured advantages for
himself, for his party, or for his government
by maintaining a base of political support
sustained by illicit business” at the company,
investigators wrote in the motion.
The request adds further fuel to a crisis
that has already undermined support for
President Dilma Rousseff, Lula’s successor,
his former energy minister and chairwoman
of Petrobras at the time much of the graft
A spokesman for the former president, who
governed Brazil from 2003 to 2010, declined
The request was made to the Supreme
Court because the case, which has already
ensnared Lula’s former chief of staff and
dozens of other political and corporate
chieftains, also has led to charges against
sitting officials, including the speaker of the
lower house of Congress.
Under Brazilian law, the Supreme Court
is the only venue authorised to try elected
federal officials. The court is expected to rule
on the federal police request within a week.
In the motion, investigators said it was
necessary to question Lula because the
probe, and evidence obtained in plea bargain
testimony from officials already convicted
in the scandal, “reaches the political and
partisan nucleus of his government.”
The investigation is focused on billions of
dollars in kickbacks paid to some of the oil
company ’s executives, ruling party officials
and others in exchange for business contracts
and political support.
In the motion, investigators cited testimony
by Paulo Roberto Costa, a former Petrobras
executive who already pled guilty in the
investigation. When asked whether Lula or
Rousseff knew about the graft, Costa found
it “very unlikely” they would not.
Newsmagazine Epoca earlier reported
news of the request.
In July, federal prosecuters opened
a separate inquiry into whether Lula
improperly used his connections overseas to
benefit Latin America’s largest engineering
firm, Odebrecht SA, whose chief executive is
under arrest in the Petrobras case.
While tarnishing the image of a leader
who still remains the most popular politician
in Brazil, none of the probes have led to
official charges for the former president.
Lula’s lawyers have filed suit against Epoca
and other Brazilian media because of reports
seeking to tie him to the scandals.
Austria partly shut a
motor way linking Vienna
and Hungary overnight as
dozens of migrants who had
crossed the border set off for
the Austrian capital on foot
rather than wait for struggling
authorities to arrange
Austria closed the A4
motor way near Hungary for
security reasons yesterday
A spokeswoman for the road
operator ASFINAG later
said the eastbound lanes
towards Hungary had
Those walking had been
picked up by buses and taxis.
About 8000 people crossed
the border into Austria
yesterday and a further 4500
had crossed since midnight, a
police spokesman said, adding
that he expected the number of
crossings to match yesterday ’s.
Austria cut its rail link to
Hungary yesterday, citing a
“massive overburdening” of
its capacity by migrants who
continue to stream in from
Hungary, many of them having
fled the civil war in Syria and
marched through the Western
The train line will remain
closed over the weekend, the
rail company said.
Since Germany and Austria
said last Saturday that they
would let the wave of
migrants enter their territory,
tens of thousands of people
have passed through Austria
on their way to Germany.
Only hundreds have requested
asylum in Austria.
“Around 1500 people have
spent the night outdoors,”
the police spokesman said.
The authorities were trying to
move people “to where they
can continue their journey ”, he
The police handling the
new arrivals at the Hungarian
border are struggling to
provide food and shelter for
the migrants while arranging
transport — largely on buses,
though two special trains were
provided to shuttle people to
Hungary has transported
tens of thousands of people to
near the Austrian border in the
They have then crossed the
border on foot.
Others have entered Austria
by train, but that option
has been unavailable since
yesterday ’s rail
The Wiener Zeitung, a
daily newspaper, said the crisis
would cost Austria an extra 1
billion euros ($1.13 billion),
citing an estimate by the
Foreign Ministry, which deals
with integration matters.
Kurier, another daily, said the
figure was for 2016.
A spokesman for the
Foreign Ministry said it
had not compiled any such
Asked about the cost after
a cabinet meeting on the
migration crisis, Chancellor
Werner Faymann told a news
conference it would depend
on how many people arrived.
Struggling authorities shut motorway
An Italian-Chinese medical
team plan to perform the world’s
first head transplant in China
amid concerns over medical
ethics in the country.
Chinese surgeon Ren Xiaoping
and Italian colleague Sergio
Canavero hope to attempt the
procedure within two years, but
only if the preparatory research
and tests go according to plan,
Ren said overnight.
“A lot of media have been
saying we will definitely attempt
the surgery by 2017, but that ’s
only if every step before that
proceeds smoothly,” Ren said.
Canavero, who leads the Turin
Group, first announced his
project in 2013, saying at the
time that such a procedure could
be possible as soon as 2016.
This timeline seems extremely
unlikely given the numerous
obstacles and gaps in knowledge
The man who has volunteered
for the operation is Russian-
born Valery Spiridonov, 30, who
suffers from Werdnig-Hoffmann
disease, which is a progressive
and incurable wasting ailment.
Ren said the operation would
likely take place at Harbin
Medical University in China’s
province. He declined to say
where a donated body might
come from and said he was
unsure if the donor would be
High demand for organs in
China and a chronic shortage of
donations mean that death row
inmates have been a key source
for years, generating heated
China has pledged not to use the
organs of executed prisoners, but
experts have voiced scepticism
about the plan.
Surgeons plan head transplant
A British bill to allow some terminally ill
patients to end their lives has been rejected
after it sparked fierce opposition from
religious leaders and rival protests outside
In the first vote on the issue in 20 years
overnight, 330 MPs voted against the
backbencher-proposed bill while only 118
backed the proposal.
Prime Minister David Cameron was against
If passed, the Assisted Dying Bill would
have allowed doctors to help terminally ill
adults diagnosed with less than six months
left to live end their life, at the patient ’s
In rival protests outside parliament in
London, about 200 campaigners came out in
favour of the bill and there were dozens of
protesters against it.
“Eight-two per cent of Britons Support
Assisted Dying and the Current Law is
Broken: Fix It!” read placards held up by
supporters, while opponents’ signs read: “Do
No Harm. Vote No” and “Assist Us to Live,
Sarah Wootton, chief executive of Dignity
in Dying, said the vote showed that MPs
were “ridiculously out of touch” with the
British public on the issue.
“Suffering will continue as long as MPs turn
a blind eye to dying people’s wishes,” she said.
Peter Saunders, director of the Care Not
Killing campaign, said: “ They have done
this because they have witnessed mission
creep in the tiny number of places that have
changed the law to allow assisted suicide and
Anglican leader Justin Welby, the
Archbishop of Canterbury, and the heads of
all of Britain’s main faith groups wrote a joint
letter to MPs last week urging them to throw
out the bill.
“ While it is not a crime in the United
Kingdom for someone to take his or her own
life, we recognise that it is a tragedy and we,
rightly, do all that we can to prevent suicide.”
Under the plans, two doctors and a family
court judge would have had to assess the
patient ’s prognosis and confirm they were
mentally competent and made the decision
free from coercion.
The patient would still have had to
administer the lethal medication themselves.
In the vote, MPs were free to vote according
to their conscience.
MPs ‘ridiculously out of touch’
Ukraine’s security ser vice says it has foiled a
plot to murder the war-torn country’s interior
minister and several members of parliament.
Interior Minister Arsen Avakov has
been an outspoken critic of Russia and
faces prosecution in Moscow for his tough
approach to pro-Moscow fighters in the east
of the ex-Soviet republic.
The Security Ser vice of Ukraine said
overnight it had uncovered a plot to “murder
the interior minister and conduct several
other assassinations in Kiev and Kharkiv ”.
The eastern Kharkiv region’s industrial
heartland has narrowly avoided being swept
up in a 17-month separatist uprising that has
claimed nearly 8000 lives.
“As a result of a raid, police uncovered
a group that was preparing the murder of
senior police officers, deputies, volunteers and
businessmen,” an SBU statement said.
One the gang’s alleged leaders had been
arrested in Kharkiv, it said, adding that
the man had previously ser ved as head
of an interior ministry unit set up to
thwart separatist attacks. Avakov made no
immediate comment on the alleged plot and
the ministry gave out no further details.
The 51-year-old minister recently angered
far-right nationalists accused of involvement
in a grenade attack outside Kiev’s parliament
last month which killed three Ukrainian
Security service foils murder plot
by Dave Green 0728 Difficulty Level
QUICK QUIZ 10057
ANSWERS: 1 Hastings, 2 Six, 3 Sheep, 4 Tamil Bell, 5 A book of magic spells, 6
Salvador Dali, 7 Tim and Neil Finn, 8 Nicolas Cage, 9 Ultimo - In the previous month,
10 Fidelity, Bravery, Integrity.
1. Which New Zealand city was once known as Hicksville: Napier,
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9. What does the Latin abbreviation ult signify when referring to a date?
10. What is the motto of the FBI, echoing the letters of its title?
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