Home' Greymouth Star : October 2nd 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
Friday, October 2, 2015 - 9
The United Nations refugee agency
says it expects 700,000 migrants
and refugees to reach Europe via the
Mediterranean this year and projected
at least the same amount again in 2016.
“UNHCR’s response is now based
on the assumption that up to 700,000
people will seek safety and international
protection in Europe in 2015, and
possibly even higher numbers in 2016,”
the agency said overnight, issuing a
revised funding appeal.
UNHCR spokesman Adrian Edwards
confirmed that the figures specifically
referred to people expected to seek
refuge by crossing the Mediterranean.
The UNHCR had previously
projected 350,000 arrivals in 2015, but
those figures had not been updated in
many months — and on Tuesday, it said
520,000 people had already arrived on
Europe’s shores this year.
Nearly 3000 people have perished
or disappeared trying to make the
Overall, the latest figures show the
agency expects no let up in the waves of
people making the perilous sea crossing
to escape conflict and strife in the
Middle East, Africa and south Asia.
More than half of those to have
reached Europe this year were Syrians
fleeing the country’s brutal civil war,
which has forced at least four million
people to leave their homeland and
internally displaced more than 7.6
Refugees from Afghanistan, Eritrea,
Nigeria and Iraq make up the main
other nationalities after the Syrian
The 2015 figures and the projections
for 2016 mark a major surge compared
to last year, when the agency recorded
219,000 migrant and refugee arrivals in
Europe by sea.
The surge in migrants this year led the
cash-strapped UNHCR to appeal for
more funding, noting the “very volatile
operational context ” it is facing.
The organisation, which has launched
a special funding campaign to
respond to the crisis, estimated total
financial needs at $US128 million
($200.04 million) from last June
through to December 2016. — AFP
An Afghani refugee family gathers its belongings as refugees wait to be transferred from Victoria Square to an indoor
stadium in Athens.
UN expects 1.4m to cross Mediterranean
Greek Olympic venues house refugees
Greek authorities have hastily
reopened a derelict sports hall from
the Athens 2004 Olympics to house
hundreds of migrants who were
sleeping on the streets of the capital.
City buses took more than 400 mainly
Afghani migrants from central Victoria
Square to the Galatsi indoor hall.
A few days earlier, a similar operation
ferried migrants to the Hellenikon
hockey centre in southern Athens.
“I ask residents to be patient. Victoria
Square will be cleared,” Yiannis
Mouzalas, the junior interior minister
in charge of migration, told reporters
on the scene.
“ We are trying to reduce pressure
on the local population so that it will
maintain the stance of solidarity it has
shown until now,” he said.
“ We do not want them to become
susceptible to far-right, racist and
xenophobic views. ”
Hundreds of mainly Afghani
migrants had set up tents on Victoria
Square in recent days, and a late-night
brawl broke out on Tuesday, prompting
protests from the city of Athens and
Around the square, shops closed their
doors and locals staged a protest to
demand that the camp be dismantled.
“ We are not racist, but (a migrant
camp) is not what the square is for,”
one man told Skai Television.
Members of an anti-racist group
staged a counter-protest to demand
housing for the migrants.
“ We cannot work miracles, but the
situation will improve,” Mouzalas
Greece is the first port of call for
hundreds of thousands of refugees,
mainly Syrian, who are seeking to
travel west, triggering Europe’s worst
migrant crisis since World War Two.
Since the beginning of the year, more
than 310,000 people have arrived in
Greece from neighbouring Turkey.
As refugees, Syrians are allowed
to swiftly move northwards to other
EU states, but other migrants have
remained blocked in Greece.
Ferries from the islands continually
bring more migrants to the port of
Piraeus in Athens with another 2500
landing early today.
Athens in August opened a short-
stay reception camp with a capacity
of about 700, but more facilities are
Mayor George Kaminis has called
on the government to permit the use
of disused army camps around the
“There are abandoned army camps in
greater Athens and all over Greece,” he
told Skai this week.
“It ’s inexcusable to have empty camps
and squares full (of migrants),” he said.
Victims asked to state religion
The gunman who opened fire at
a community college in Roseburg,
Oregon, this morning, asked people in
an academic building to stand up and
state their religion before he began
shooting, a witness told the local News-
Kortney Moore, 18, was in Snyder Hall
when the shooter asked people to name
their religion and then began firing, she
told the paper.
The lone shooter killed 13 and injured
at least 20 is dead.
According to the Guardian, Roseburg
sheriff Jan Hanlin told media gathered
near the college the shooter was a male.
“The shooter is deceased,” he said. “ I
have no further information on that.”
Hanlin said the scene was a “very active
The shooter fired at police officers
when they arrived but he did not know
what type of weapon the gunman had.
United States media are reporting
there are at least two girls among the
dead. CNN reported one female had
been shot in the chest, but there remains
little other detail around the casualties.
Early reports suggested there could be
up to 15 dead after one shooter opened
fire at Umpqua Community College at
10.30am local time.
Ellen Rosenblum has confirmed with
MSNBC that 13 were killed.
A chilling message was posted on an
internet forum last night, hours before
the shooter opened fire. It read, “Don’t
go to school tomorrow if you are in the
It was posted anonymously on bulletin
board 4chan, the Daily Mail reported.
“Some of you guys are all right . . . Will
post again in am, 10 min countdown.
Won’t say more too much to prepare,”
the post continues.
It is yet to be confirmed if the message
was posted by the shooter.
As the incident unfolded one student,
Kayla Marie, took to social media.
“OMG there’s someone shooting on
campus,” she tweeted. “Students are
running everywhere. Holy God.”
She later tweeted an update saying she
was okay and being bussed off campus.
Local police responding to the incident
were joined by FBI and special agents
from the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco,
Firearms and Explosives.
UCC Associate Professor in English
Jillanne Michell told Oregon Live the
shooting happened in Snyder Hall on
There are various reports as to what ’s
happened to the shooter, with some
media reporting police taking the suspect
into custody and others simply saying
the shooter has been “neutralised”.
confirming the shooter was dead on
“I’m looking to get it confirmed that
the shooter is now deceased. I ’m not in
a position to confirm that for you, but I
believe that to be true.”
However, US emergency personnel
have confirmed there is no longer an
active threat on campus.
The injured have been sent to various
hospitals in the area depending on their
injuries, while police continue to clear
Jeff Merkley, a senator from the State
of Oregon, tweeted his shock at the
news. “ Horrific news from Umpqua
Community College in Roseburg. My
heart and prayers are with the victims
and their families.”
US media are already questioning just
what may be behind this latest shooting.
Professor of Sociology Randy Blazak who
has spent 25 years studying hate crimes
and hate groups told the Washington Post
past incidents shows shooters like this
tend to be “white and male”.
“It’s heart-breaking how often our
news cycle is disrupted by something
in films the hero is the guy who goes in
with two guns blazing. ”
Mr Blazak says it was often those who
had been bullied or suffered a loss that
tend to pick up a gun.
Sky News US Correspondent Amanda
Walker says such shootings are becoming
an all too regular occurrence.
“This seems to have gone into that
category of being a really serious
incident . . . we see it way too often.
This is a regular, nonetheless tragic real
problem in America.”
Zealand Herald and agencies
on Syrian targets
unleashed a new wave of strikes
against opponents of Syrian
President Bashar al-Assad, as
Moscow and Washington sought
ways to avoid confrontation
between their forces.
It was the second straight day
of Russian raids in Syria, where
Moscow yesterday launched its
first military engagement outside
the former Soviet Union since
the occupation of Afghanistan in
Russian President Vladimir
Putin overnight hit back at
allegations that civilians had been
killed, describing such claims as
“ information warfare”.
Moscow, a key backer of Assad,
said the latest strikes hit four
targets linked to the Islamic
State jihadist group, which
controls large parts of Syria and
It said the raids destroyed
a “terrorist ” headquarters, a
weapons warehouse, a command
centre and a car bomb factory.
But a Syrian security source
said the strikes had targeted a
powerful coalition of Islamist
rebels, the Army of Conquest,
which includes al Qaeda’s Syria
affiliate Al-Nusra Front and
which is fiercely opposed to IS.
The Syrian conflict, which
began as an uprising against
Assad’s regime in 2011, has
escalated into a multi-sided civil
war that has drawn thousands of
jihadists from overseas.
worried opposition supporters,
with Turkish Foreign Minister
Feridun Sinirlioglu saying he
felt “serious concern over the
information that Russia’s air
strikes targeted opposition
positions instead of Daesh
Russian Foreign Minister
Sergei Lavrov has rejected the
accusations, saying Moscow saw
“eye to eye” with the United
States on striking IS and Al-
US Senator John McCain said
Russian warplanes had targeted
groups “funded and trained
by our CIA”, showing that
Moscow ’s real priority was “to
prop up Assad”.
McCain, who chairs the Senate
Armed Ser vices Committee, said
he could “absolutely confirm”
that the strikes hit the Free
Syrian Army or other groups
armed and trained by the Central
A US-backed rebel group,
Suqur al-Jabal (Falcons of
the Mountain), said Russian
warplanes had fired more than
10 missiles at its training camp in
The group has received
training and equipment as
part of a $US500 million
($781.54 million) US programme
to build an anti-IS force.
A US-led coalition has carried
out near-daily strikes on IS
in Syria for more than a year,
saying overnight it had “not
altered operations in Syria to
accommodate new players on the
Pentagon spokesman Colonel
Steve Warren told reporters that
coalition planes had conducted
several sorties over Syria over
the past 24 hours, one of which
resulted in air strikes.
Washington complained that
Moscow gave just an hour’s
notice of yesterday ’s Russian
The two sides were set to
hold military talks on avoiding
mishaps between planes from the
US-led coalition and Russia, a
US defence official said.
It remains unclear how much
of the opposition fighting
Assad’s army — including the
western-backed opposition —
is considered by Moscow as a
potential target. — AFP
Scientists are to attempt to
nudge an asteroid out of its
orbital path in a practice run for
saving the world.
AIDA (Asteroid Deflection and
Assessment) mission will crash a
probe into the smaller of a pair
of binary asteroids to see if the
object ’s path can be altered.
Although the egg-shaped
target, known as “Didymoon”,
is only 160m wide, the test will
show if in principle a much larger
asteroid threatening to wipe
out human civilisation can be
deflected the same way.
Two spacecraft, one to smack
into the rock and the other to
monitor the effect of the impact,
will be launched in October
2020, scientists were told at the
European Planetary Science
Congress in France.
They are due to rendezvous with
Didymoon and its 750m-wide
partner Didymos in May 2022.
“ To protect Earth from
potentially hazardous impacts,
we need to understand asteroids
much better — what they
are made of, their structure,
origins and how they respond
Michel, lead investigator for the
European Space Agency half of
the mission, said.
“AIDA will be the first mission
to study an asteroid binary
system, as well as the first to
test whether we can deflect an
asteroid through an impact with
AIDA is made up of two
led Asteroid Impact Mission
(AIM) and the American space
agency Nasa’s Double Asteroid
Redirection Test (DART)
DART will fire the probe
into Didymoon, which orbits
diamond-shaped Didymos every
12 hours from a distance of
AIM will measure properties of
Didymoon such as its mass and
density and deploy a small lander
to investigate the object ’s internal
In October 2022, AIM will
move out to a safe distance
to obser ve DART hitting the
asteroid and record any changes
in orbit. — AP
Scientists plan ‘practice
run’ for saving Earth
Hundreds of people are still
unaccounted for a week after a haj
stampede killed hundreds more, with
national tallies of the dead far exceeding
figures provided by Saudi Arabia.
The kingdom gave a toll of 769 people
killed and 934 injured in the tragedy last
Thursday during a pilgrimage stoning
ritual at Mina near the holy city of
Riyadh has not given any figures for
the number of missing or said whether
any Saudis were killed.
A tally of death tolls from 23 countries,
mostly from official sources, put the
number killed at more than 990.
More than 600 are reported as missing.
The reason for the discrepancy was
unclear and the Saudi health ministry
did not respond to a request for
Iran has topped the list of fatalities,
reporting 239 as of Wednesday.
But it nearly doubled that toll
overnight, declaring that people known
to be missing were now presumed dead,
raising the number killed to 464.
Iran has blamed the stampede on
Saudi Arabia, demanded an apology
from Riyadh and accused it of hindering
efforts to repatriate the bodies.
There is also anger and anxiety
elsewhere in the Muslim world.
“The families of the missing people
are in distress,” the Arab News quoted
Mehbooba Mufti, leader of India’s haj
delegation, as saying.
“ With each passing day, their anxiety
worsens,” she said. India has reported 51
“I wish the authorities would do
something to help locate my parents,”
The Indian Express newspaper quoted
Mohammed Jahangir Alam, of Kolkata,
Family members feared the worst, he
India’s neighbour Pakistan gave a
figure of 46 dead and more than 40
Pakistani officials yesterday met Saudi
Arabia’s Minister for Haj, Bandar
Hajjar, Arab News reported.
Hajjar said he shared the concerns of
relatives, and said the Saudi government
was making “all efforts” to address
the issues they raised, the newspaper
Among Pakistan’s more than 40
missing is Bushra Khaliq, an instructor
at a Saudi training centre for flight
attendants, her sister Uzma Khaliq, of
She said her brother had also gone to
the kingdom to search for their sister.
“ We saw a photo of an injured woman
admitted in (the) intensive care unit of
some hospital which we suspect is of
Bushra, but we don’t know in which
hospital that photo was taken,” she said.
After Iran, Egypt has reported the
biggest death toll, with 124 killed.
Nigeria has 64 confirmed deaths and
the largest number of missing.
“ We have 244 Nigerians unaccounted
for but we still presume they are not
dead until we have seen their corpses,”
said Uba Mana, spokesman for the
National Hajj Commission of Nigeria.
Frustration has also risen in Indonesia,
the world’s largest Muslim-populated
nation, where the official death toll
reached 59 overnight with 74 missing.
Hundreds still missing after haj stampede
or more at any of these participating stores to go in the draw.
Promotion Runs From Thurs 10th Sept - Thurs 22nd October 2015
TRAILER & ACCESSORIES PACKAGE
7 X 4 CRUISER TRAILER
WOF & REG
Links Archive October 1st 2015 October 3rd 2015 Navigation Previous Page Next Page