Home' Greymouth Star : July 20th 2017 Contents Greymouth Star
8 - Thursday, July 20, 2017
Martha Savage, the mother of New Zealander Kelly Savage, who died in Japanese psychiatric hospital in May, speaks at a news conference in
A Japanese campaign group
whose members include lawyers
and academics are calling for a
change in psychiatric hospitals’
practice of putting patients under
prolonged restraint after the death
of a New Zealand man.
Kelly Savage, a 27-year-old
English teacher working in Japan,
was sent to a psychiatric hospital
near Tokyo on April 30 after
showing signs of losing touch
with reality such as screaming and
running around, his older brother
Pat Savage said.
Pat, who was with his brother
when Kelly was admitted to
hospital, said he was strapped to
the bed by the legs, wrists and waist
although he had calmed down. He
was under restraint for most of the
time until a nurse found him in a
state of cardiac arrest 10 days later.
He died at another hospital on
The post-mortem examination
result was inconclusive, but a doctor
at the second hospital said there
was a possibility that the extended
physical restraint led to cardiac
arrest, Pat said.
An official at the first medical
institution, Yamato Hospital,
declined to comment on the case.
“ We thought the restraint was
inhumane and unnecessary in
Kelly’s case, but we had no idea it
could cause Kelly’s cardiac arrest,”
Pat Savage told a Tokyo news
He said he was not considering
taking legal action against the
hospital, but the campaigners
nonetheless urged a change in
The number of psychiatric
patientsput under physical restraint
in Japan totalled 10,682 as of June
30, 2014, the latest date for which
data is available, a twofold rise
from a decade ago, according to the
During the same period, the
number of overall hospitalised
psychiatric patients fell 11% to
Among those who are put
under restraint, the duration of
restraint averaged 96 days, Toshio
Hasegawa, professor at Kyorin
University told the same news
This compares with several hours
to several tens of hours in many
other countries, said Hasegawa,
who yesterd ay launched the group
of psychiatric patients as well as
professors and lawyers to raise
awareness of such restraint and
reduce the practice.
“ What I would like to ask you
first is to think about the feelings
of those who are dying while under
physical restraint,” Hasegawa said.
NZ man’s death puts mental patients’ restraint in Japan under spotlight
Blind and alone, 81-year-old Anne
Iddon shared her Sydney sandstone
mansion with her husband’s body until
she, unable to care for herself, joined him
It was not yet known how long Anne
and Geoffrey Iddon had been dead
before police found their bodies inside
their stately Palm Beach home on
Mr Iddon, 82, had previously cared for
his wife who was blind and had other
disabilities, police said.
Autopsies are yet to be conducted and
a cause of death is yet to be confirmed.
Police suspect Mr Iddon died from
natural causes and his wife subsequently
passed away due to a lack of care.
“This is an opportunity to reflect on
this tragedy and think about our elderly
parents and neighbours and what we can
do as a community and as individuals
to prevent a recurrence of this terrible
event,” New South Wales police said in
a statement on Facebook.
The Iddons’ tragic deaths led the
police force to ask younger members
of the community to put away
their smartphones and “have a real
conversation with your elderly neighbour
who is living a simple life devoid of all
electronic gadgets that contribute little
to real community cohesion”.
The “fiercely independent ” couple had
consistently refused aged care support
and their next-of-kin live overseas.
The four Arab nations leading a boycott
of Qatar are no longer insisting it comply
with a list of 13 specific demands they
tabled last month.
Diplomats from Saudi Arabia, the
United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and
Egypt told reporters at the United
Nations they now wanted it to accept six
These include commitments to combat
terrorism and extremism and to end acts
of provocation and incitement.
There was no immediate comment
from Qatar, which denies aiding
It has refused to agree to any measures
that threaten its sovereignty or violate
international law, and denounced the
“siege” imposed by its neighbours.
The restrictions put in place six weeks
ago have forced the gas-rich emirate
to import food by sea and air to meet
the basic needs of its population of
At a briefing for a group of UN
correspondents in New York, diplomats
from the four countries said they wanted
to resolve the crisis amicably.
Abdullah al-Mouallimi said their foreign
ministers had agreed the six principles at
a meeting in Cairo on 5 July and that
they “should be easy for the Qataris to
This latest development does, on the
surface, hint at a possible way out of the
current stand-off between Qatar and its
neighbours. But it is unlikely to provide
a permanent solution.
The problem comes down to how
countries choose to interpret “extremism
and terrorism”. Qatar has long prided
itself on giving voice to alternative views
to the edited, government-approved
ones aired by its conser vative neighbours.
Hence one of the reasons why Qatar’s Al
Jazeera network has been such a thorn in
However, the charge levelled against
Qatar is that those alternative voices
include people committed to the
overthrow of governments in the region.
Brotherhood, which it considers
a peaceful, political force. Qatar’s
opponents in the region consider
the Brotherhood to be a terrorist
organisation that is an existential threat
to their rule. These differences have yet
to be resolved.
They were combating terrorism and
extremism, denying financing and safe
havens to terrorist groups, stopping
incitement to hatred and violence,
and refraining from interfering in
the internal affairs of other countries,
according to the New York Times.
Mouallimi stressed that there would be
“no compromise” on the principles, but
added that both sides would be able to
discuss how to implement them.
The list of 13 demands handed to
Qatar on 22 June included shutting
down the Al Jazeera news network,
c losing a Turkish military base, cutting
ties with the Muslim Brotherhood and
downgrading relations with Iran.
Mouallimi said closing Al Jazeera
might not be necessary but stopping
incitement to violence and hate speech
“ If the only way to achieve that is by
c losing down Al Jazeera, fine,” he was
quoted as saying. “ If we can achieve that
without closing down Al Jazeera, that ’s
also fine. The important thing is the
objective and the principle involved.”
UAE permanent representative Lana
Nusseibeh warned that if Qatar was
“ unwilling to accept core principles
around what defines terrorism or
extremism in our region, it will be very
difficult” for it to remain in the Gulf
Qatar has acknowledged providing
assistance to Islamist groups designated
as terrorist organisations by some of
its neighbours, notably the Muslim
Brotherhood. But it has denied aiding
jihadist groups linked to al Qaeda or
Islamic State (IS).
International Co-operation Reem al-
Hashimi said: “At this stage, the ball is
in Qatar’s court. ”
She added the United States had “a
very constructive and very important
role to play in hopefully creating a
peaceful resolution to this current crisis”.
US President Donald Trump was
quick to claim credit for the pressure
being placed on Qatar, saying it might
mark the “beginning of the end to the
horror of terrorism”.
His Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson,
questioned the list of demands,
acknowledging that some elements
would “be very difficult for Qatar to
meet”. — AP
The top Democrat on the House
committee said overnight it was
“deeply troubling” that United States
President Donald Trump met with
Russian President Vladimir Putin
in Germany this month for talks not
attended by any US national security
“These two isolated leaders on the
world stage making common cause
in a way that has not been witnessed
by any of our national security
officials . . . that ’s deeply troubling,”
Representative Adam Schiff said .
A White House official said earlier
Trump and Putin had a previously
undisclosed conversation during a
dinner for G20 leaders at a summit
The two leaders held a formal two-
hour bilateral meeting on July 7 in
which Trump later said Putin denied
allegations that he directed efforts to
meddle in the 2016 US presidential
Trump’s interactions with the
Russian leader were scrutinised
closely because of those allegations,
which have dominated his first six
months in the White House, and
Trump’s comments as a presidential
candidate praising the former KGB
Trump and Putin first met at the
G20 during a gathering of other
leaders, which was shown in a video.
They later held the bilateral meeting,
which was attended briefly by a pool
In the evening, both men attended
a dinner with G20 leaders. Putin was
seated next to US first lady Melania
Trump. The US president went over
to them at the conclusion of the
dinner and visited with Putin, the
official said. That conversation had
not been previously disclosed.
“There was no ‘second meeting’
between President Trump and
President Putin, just a brief
conversation at the end of a dinner.
The insinuation that the White
House has tried to ‘hide’ a second
meeting is false, malicious and
absurd,” the official said.
In a late-night tweet, Trump said:
“Fake News story of secret dinner
with Putin is ‘sick’. All G 20 leaders,
and spouses, were invited by the
Chancellor of Germany. Press
News of the conversation, first
reported by Ian Bremmer, the
president of political risk consultancy
Eurasia Group, could raise renewed
concern as Congress and a special
by US intelligence agencies that
Russia interfered to help Trump, a
Republican, win the presidency.
Trump says there was no collusion
and Russia denies interference in the
Bremmer said Trump got up from
his seat halfway through dinner and
spent about an hour talking “privately
and animatedly” with Putin, “joined
only by Putin’s own translator.”
The lack of a US translator raised
eyebrows among other leaders at
the dinner, Bremmer, who called it a
“ breach of national security protocol”,
The White House official said the
leaders and their spouses were only
permitted to have one translator
attend the dinner. Trump sat next
to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo
Abe’s wife. His translator spoke
“ When President Trump spoke
to President Putin, the two leaders
used the Russian translator, since the
American translator did not speak
Russian,” the official said.
A US official who was briefed by
some of his counterparts about the
encounter said some of the leaders
who attended the dinner were
surprised to see Trump leave his seat
and engage Putin in an extended
private conversation with no one else
from the US side present.
“No one is sure what their discussion
was about, and whether it was purely
social or touched on bilateral or
international issues,” the official said.
Trump-Putin dinner talk ‘deeply troubling’
Combustible cladding on hospital
The Q ueensland Government has
confirmed cladding on Brisbane’s
Princess Alexandra Hospital is
combustible, but says further testing
is required to see if it is dangerous
to patients and staff.
Health Minister Cameron Dick
said the Government was waiting
on the results of final testing and
would speak to experts about how
to deal with the problem.
He remained confident the
hospital was safe, saying it was well
built and fitted with sprinklers and
fire alarms throughout.
“Every building in Q ueensland
has combustible material in it, we
have to determine what is the risk
and what is the response to that
risk,” Dick said.
“The PA Hospital has stood there
for 17 years, it is a concrete building
that has cladding around it — it ’s
quite different to the Grenfell
The Grenfell Tower in London
was engulfed in flames last month,
killing 79 people and sparking
concerns about flammable building
c ladding worldwide.
It comes as the Government
admits it has not told tenants or
residents in a private building they
could be at risk.
Four private buildings were
identified as having similar cladding
material to the PA Hospital, with
three of those cleared and one
remaining under a cloud.
Housing Minister Mick de
Brenni would not publicly reveal
the building due to privacy concerns
and said it was up to the building’s
owner to let residents know about
“That ’s a matter for the building
owners but I can assure all
Queenslanders that we have an
outstanding Queensland Fire
and Emergency Ser vice, that
is dedicated to keeping those
residents safe,” de Brenni said.
“There is no evidence of any
other building whatsoever having
The Labor government says
the next round of testing on the
cladding at the PA Hospital will
take about a month and is being
conducted by a company from
Melbourne. — A AP
Despacito has become the most
streamed track in history with
more than 4.6 billion plays across
Universal Music Latin Entertain-
ment announced the song by Puerto
Rican artists Luis Fonsi and Daddy
Yankee, and the accompanying remix
featuring pop star Justin Bieber, had
surpassed the previous record holder
Bieber’s 2015 hit song Sorry
which has 4.38 billion plays.
Despacito, which was released
in January, has been at the top of
Billboard Hot 100 for weeks.
Fonsi said in a statement that
streaming has helped his music
reach every corner of the planet.
Daddy Yankee recently ousted
Ed Sheeran this year to become
the first Latino artist to lead in
Spotify streams, thanks in part to
Despacito’s success. — AP
Song streamed 4.6 billion times
Tributes f low for pyjama shooting victim
Justine Damond’s grieving family
and friends have cast pink flowers
into the water at a Sydney beach
to remember the spiritual woman
shot dead by a police officer in the
People around the world held
their own tributes to coincide
with the dawn candlelight vigil at
Freshwater Beach which came a
day after Damond’s father asked for
“the light of justice to shine down
on the circumstances of her death”.
Hundreds of the 40-year-old’s
family and friends gathered under a
pink Sydney sky yesterday morning
as investigators in Minneapolis
work to determine why the spiritual
healer was shot on Saturday night.
Her father, John Ruszczyk, was
emotional as the crowd walked
to the shoreline at first light to
remember the woman who was
raised on the northern beaches and
attended Manly High School.
The meditation teacher and vet
was due to marry her American
partner, Don Damond, next month.
People from the US, Brazil,
Sweden and France posted on a
Facebook page promoting the “silent
tribute” at Freshwater. — A AP
Enough plastic produced
to cover Argentina
More than nine billion tonnes of
plastic has been produced since 1950
with most of it discarded in landfills or
the environment, hurting ecosystems
and human health, according to the first
major global analysis of mass-produced
Nearly 80% of this plastic ended
up in landfills or the environment
and production in increasing quickly,
researchers from the University of
California, Santa Barbara, said in the
study published on Wednesday.
Less than 10% was recycled and about
12% was incinerated.
“ If you spread all of this plastic equally,
ankle-deep, it would cover an area the
size of Argentina,” Roland Geyer, a
professor of industrial ecology and the
study’s lead author, said.
“ It is an enormous amount of material
that does not biodegrade. I am very
Burning plastics contributes to climate
change and adversely impacts human
health, while build-ups of the material
can hurt the broader environment,
Packaging is the largest market for
plastic and the petroleum-based product
accelerated a global shift from reusable
to single-use containers, researchers said.
The Iddons’ mansion.
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