Home' Greymouth Star : December 6th 2013 Contents Greymouth Star
10 - Friday, December 6, 2013
A Federal Court judge has likened the
journey to grant native title over a large
part of South Australia's west coast to a
classic Beatles ballad.
"In 1970, Paul McCartney of the
Beatles wrote A Long and Winding
Road," Justice Mans eld said yesterday.
"Well it has been a long and winding
road to where we are all today."
In his determination, the Mirning,
Wirangu, Kokatha and Anangu people
were granted native title over 75,249
square kilometres in South Australia's far
west, an area bigger than Tasmania.
It extends from just north of Streaky
Bay on Eyre Peninsula to the Western
Australian border and includes the
towns of Ceduna, evenard, Denial Bay,
Smoky Bay, Fowlers Bay and Coorabie.
More than 85% of the land is dedicated
as national park, reserve or wilderness
while the area also includes the Yalata
Lands held by the Aboriginal Lands
In a special sitting at Pidinga Lake,
Justice Mans eld said the determination
he was making had stemmed from a
series of separate claims rst instigated
Since then a number of agreements
had been reached to bring together
the interests of the various indigenous
A settlement in principle was reached
in 2006, largely thanks to mediation
led by the Aboriginal Legal Rights
"It has taken another seven years to get
to where we are and 15 years from the
rst claim to get this resolution," Justice
Mans eld said.
e judge told the traditional owners
that the court's ruling did not "give you
"It is a recognition of something that
you have always known, that you are the
traditional owners of this country," he
"It re ects the wide community
recognition of your rich and diverse
"It is a recognition of your deep and
abiding relationship with your country."
Former South African President Nelson Mandela attends the sixth Nelson Mandela annual lecture in Kliptown, near Johannesburg, in this July 12,
Mandela dies at 95
Pope Francis overnight ordered the
formation of a team of experts to address
the sexual abuse of children in the
Catholic Church, in his rst major step
to tackle a crisis that has plagued it for
e group will consider ways to better
screen priests, protect minors and help
victims in the face of charges the Vatican
has not done enough to guard the
vulnerable or make amends.
" e commission will be able to advise
the Holy Father about the protection
of children and pastoral care of victims
of abuse," the Archbishop of Boston,
Cardinal Sean Patrick O'Malley, told
reporters in Vatican City.
e precise mission and make-up of
the committee were not made clear, nor
how it would respond to one of the most
common criticisms of the Church: that
bishops who shielded paedophile priests
have not been held to account.
But Cardinal O'Malley, known as a
pioneer for a more open approach to
tackling scandal since he published a
database of Boston clergy accused of
sexual abuse of minors on-line in 2011,
said the question of bishops who had not
reported crimes was "something that the
Church needs to address".
e Vatican was criticised earlier this
week for refusing to share details of its
internal investigations into abuse cases
with a United Nations panel.
e proposal for a child protection
committee was rst discussed yesterday
and Pope Francis immediately approved
the suggestion when told of it overnight,
meaning it could be immediately
announced, Cardinal O'Malley said.
Some commentators have faulted Pope
Francis for not doing enough to address
the inherited abuse scandal since he
became the rst non-European Ponti
in 1300 years in March.
Cases of abuse by clergy have forced
the Church to pay hundreds of millions
of dollars in compensation worldwide,
bankrupting a string of dioceses.
Earlier this week the United States
Archdiocese of St Paul and Minneapolis
warned it planned to disclose the names
of dozens of priests credibly accused of
the sexual abuse of children.
e new body is likely to draw up
guidelines on screening of priests,
ways to help victims and co-operation
with civil authorities over abuse cases,
Cardinal O'Malley said.
It is also expected to examine ways to
help communities a ected by abuse and
provide mental health care to victims.
Catholic commentators said the
Pope's move was a step forward, but
the Survivors Network of those Abused
by Priests, which wants the Pope to
punish cover-ups of abuse, rejected the
committee as "meaningless".
"No institution can police itself,
especially not an ancient, secretive, rigid,
all-male monarchy," director David
Formation of the abuse committee
was the rst measure to be announced
following a series of closed-door
meetings between the Pope and a group
of cardinals discussing reforms to the
Vatican's troubled administration.
e team of eight, appointed shortly
after the Pope's election, is seen as central
to Pope Francis's attempt to clean up the
scandal-plagued Vatican court, the curia.
ey will next meet from February 17
to 19, Cardinal O'Malley said.
In January the Holy See will be
questioned by the United Nations
Committee on the Rights of the Child on
its response to the abuse crisis in relation
to the 1990 United Nations Convention
on the Rights of the Child, which the
Holy See has signed. --- Reuters
Former South African President
Nelson Mandela died peacefully at
his Johannesburg home today after a
prolonged lung infection, President
Jacob Zuma said.
Mandela, the country's rst black
president and anti-apartheid leader,
emerged from 27 years in apartheid
prisons to help guide South Africa
through bloodshed and turmoil to
"Fellow South Africans, our beloved
Nelson Rohlihla Mandela, the founding
president of our democratic nation, has
departed," Zuma said in a nationally-
"Our people have lost a father.
Although we knew this day was going
to come, nothing can diminish our sense
of a profound and enduring loss. His
tireless struggle for freedom earned him
the respect of the world. His humility,
passion and humanity, earned him their
love," he added.
Mandela would receive a full State
funeral, Zuma said, ordering ags to be
own at half mast.
Mandela rose from rural obscurity to
challenge the might of white minority
apartheid government --- a struggle that
gave the 20th century one of its most
respected and loved gures.
He was among the rst to advocate
armed resistance to apartheid in 1960,
but was quick to preach reconciliation
and forgiveness when the country's
white minority began easing its grip on
power 30 years later.
Mandela was elected president in
landmark all-race elections in 1994 and
retired in 1999.
He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize
in 1993, an honour he shared with F W
de Klerk, the white Afrikaner leader who
released from jail arguably the world's
most famous political prisoner.
As president, Mandela faced the
monumental task of forging a new
nation from the deep racial injustices
left over from the apartheid era, making
reconciliation the theme of his time in
e hallmark of Mandela's mission
was the Truth and Reconciliation
Commission which probed apartheid
crimes on both sides of the struggle and
tried to heal the country's wounds. It
also provided a model for other countries
torn by civil strife.
In 1999, Mandela handed over power
to younger leaders better equipped to
manage a modern economy --- a rare
voluntary departure from power cited as
an example to African leaders.
In retirement, he shifted his energies
to battling South Africa's Aids crisis and
the struggle became personal when he
lost his only surviving son to the disease
Mandela's last major appearance on
the global stage came in 2010 when
he attended the championship match
of the soccer World Cup, where he
received a thunderous ovation from the
90,000 at the stadium in Soweto, the
neighbourhood in which he cut his teeth
as a resistance leader.
Charged with capital o ences in the
1963 Rivonia Trial, his statement from
the dock was his political testimony.
"During my lifetime I have dedicated
myself to this struggle of the African
people. I have fought against white
domination, and I have fought against
black domination. --- Reuters
A roadblock in the brain makes
reading hard for people with dyslexia,
a new study suggests, contradicting
e ndings in the United
States journal Science add to an
ongoing debate over whether the
inherited neurological disorder is
caused by faulty brain wiring or the
brain's inability to understand the
interaction of sounds and symbols
that form language.
Dyslexia is a learning disability
which a ects about 10% of the
population and occurs among
people of all economic and ethnic
e ndings were based on brain
scans of 23 people with dyslexia
and 22 without, showing dyslexics
understand the sound units ne but
lack the brain connections to process
"Quite to our surprise, and probably
to the surprise of the broader
dyslexia eld, we found that phonetic
representations are perfectly intact in
adults with dyslexia," researcher Bart
Boets, a professor of psychiatry at the
University of Leuven in Belgium,
Boets said his team's research
counters the predominantly held
opinion that somehow people with
dyslexia have an inferior ability to
recognise the distinct sounds of
Instead, they found impaired
connections between the right
and left auditory regions, where
processed, and Broca's region,
where higher level phonological
processing takes place.
"Our ndings indicate that the
speech sound representations
themselves are intact, but a
dysfunctional connection between
frontal and temporal language
areas impedes e cient access to the
representations," said Boets.
Study subjects listened to a
sequence of four partial words,
followed by another sequence in
which a consonant or vowel had been
switched, such as ba-ba-ba-ba, da-
en they were asked to identify
what had changed.
e team used advanced functional
magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI)
techniques to measure the unique
ngerprint of each sound in the brain,
and found the quality of impressions
was the same in normal readers and
In other words, their brains were
identifying the sounds and their
changes just like normal readers.
However, the dyslexic people took
50% longer to make their responses,
according to Science.
Researcher Hans Op de Beeck
likened the experiment to having
his daughter call from the landline
telephone at their house to say she
was home from school. at, he could
verify, but what was she doing at
home? Was she doing her homework
or playing a game? He could not
know for sure.
With this experiment, researchers
were able to see that "the regions
containing phonetic representations
in adult dyslexic readers are doing
their homework, that's for sure."
Boets said he hopes the research
could lead to better ways of improving
the brain circuitry, perhaps through
However, the ndings were
questioned by neuroscientist Michael
Merzenich at the University of
California, San Francisco.
Decades of "very extensive and
compelling" evidence show that
people with dyslexia process phonetic
representations with lower delity
than normal, he was quoted as telling
"You can't just ignore this
literature," he told the journal.
Dyslexia may be due to 'brain wiring'
e Brazilian government's plan
to resolve widespread land disputes
between farmers and Indians is
meeting opposition from both
sides, increasing tensions in South
America's bread basket.
Farmers say the proposal would
not prevent productive land from
being turned over to Indians
while tribes protested outside
the presidential palace in Brasilia
because they fear the measures will
slow the creation of new Indian
" is was a huge disappointment,"
Tito Matos, a spokesman for the
Agricultural Front in Congress,
said of the 10-page draft ordinance
presented this week.
e proposal from the Justice
Ministry gives Indian a airs agency
Funai the option to consult other
branches of national and local
governments before proposing
new Indian territories. Farmers
had wanted Funai, which they say
threatens private property, to seek
other opinions on new territories.
Brazil's 1988 constitution gives
Indians the right to inhabit "the
lands they traditionally occupy."
e government asked Funai to
identify ancestral land through
anthropological studies and gave
the Justice Ministry the job of
approving Indian territories.
Brazil has an estimated 897,000
indigenous people, making up
about 0.4% of the country's overall
population, and about 13% of Brazil
has been set aside for them. Most of
that land is in the remote Amazon
jungle but more recently Funai has
proposed creating or expanding
Indian territories on land used to
produce soy, beef, sugar and other
Late last year the federal
government evicted some 7000
farm families and bulldozed a small
town in order to return a slice of
central Brazil to Xavante Indians
who had been removed by a military
dictatorship in the 1960s.
Some 80 farms, ranches and sugar
plantations in the state of Mato
Grosso do Sul are now occupied
by Indians who have been trying
to return to the land for decades,
according to the State farm
Angry ranchers planned a cattle
auction to raise funds to hire
security guards and protect their
properties from invaders, although
a local judge this week sided with
Guarani Indians and ordered the
sale to be suspended.
e State's public prosecutor's
o ce accuses ranchers of paying
private militias to murder Indians
and a lawsuit to shut down security
rm Gaspem is making its way
Guarani-Kaiowa chief Ambrosio
Vilhalva, the lead actor in the 2008
lm Birdwatchers about the tribe's
quest to take back ancestral land,
was found stabbed to death on
Sunday. Vilhalva was an outspoken
critic of sugar plantations in
traditional Guarani territory.
Police say Vilhalva's father-in-
law is suspected of killing him
and Famasul said in a statement
lamenting his death that alcohol,
rather than land con icts, was to
blame. Rights groups disagreed.
" e impact of the land con ict on
the Guarani in Mato Grosso do Sul
cannot be discounted," said Alice
Bayer, a spokeswoman for London-
based Survival International.
" e loss of land and intimidation
by ranchers occupying the land
is exerting immense pressure on
Guarani communities such as
Ambrosio's --- leading to social
breakdown and internal con icts."
e government's proposal for
Indian lands, which can still be
altered, would go into e ect as
an ordinance and does not need
Congressional approval. It would
also give the Justice Ministry the
option to hold public hearings
on new Indian reserves before
Although it stops far short of
stripping Funai's powers as the farm
lobby wanted, rights groups fear
the mere option of involving other
agencies such as the agricultural
research body Embrapa would slow
the creation of new Indian lands.
Television cook and
author Nigella Lawson
has accused lawyers for
two former assistants of
treating her like a suspect
rather than a witness, as she
again denied allegations of
heavy drug use.
"If you want to put me
on trial, put me on trial,"
Lawson said overnight as
she testi ed for a second
day at the fraud trial of her
"I don't feel it is right to
have me here as a witness for the Crown
and treat me like this."
Yesterday, Lawson acknowledged
taking cocaine a handful of times, but
denied being a regular drug user.
She was pressed on the subject again
overnight under cross-examination by a
defence lawyer, who asked whether she
had kept cocaine in a hollowed-out book
containing jewellery, including her late
rst husband's wedding ring.
Lawson denied it.
"If I was taking cocaine and cannabis to
the extent you say, I wouldn't be standing
here," she said.
"If you think I'm going to sabotage my
health and leave my children as orphans,
you are very wrong," Lawson, who has
a son and a daughter from her marriage
to John Diamond, who died of cancer in
"I promise you . . . regular cocaine users
do not look like this," the cook known
for her voluptuous gure, added. " ey
are scrawny and look unhealthy."
Elisabetta and Francesca Grillo, sisters
from Italy, are charged with using credit
cards, loaned to them by Lawson and
her ex-husband Charles Saatchi, to
spend £685,000 ($1.36 million) on
luxury clothes, accessories and rooms at
ey deny the fraud charges.
e case has been overshadowed
by revelations about the troubled
relationship between Lawson and
Saatchi, a wealthy art
collector. e couple
divorced in July after
Saatchi was photographed
throat outside a London
Lawyers for the Grillos
allege that Lawson
sanctioned their high
spending in exchange for
their silence about her drug
ey have quoted an
e-mail in which Saatchi
accused Lawson of being
"so o her head" on drugs she allowed
them to "spend whatever they liked."
Lawson said that claim was "ridiculous"
and denied misleading police by
not mentioning earlier that she had
occasionally taken drugs.
She said she was not proud of her past
drug use, but came clean to avoid being
"bullied by lies" from Saatchi.
Lawson said, "I would rather be honest
and ashamed" than let false allegations
"I'm not proud of the fact I have taken
drugs, but that does not make me a drug
addict or a habitual drug user," she said.
e trial has generated huge media
Lawson, 53, entered the court walking
past dozens of photographers and
Cross-examined by Francesca Grillo's
lawyer, Karina Arden, Lawson denied
using her court appearance to explain
herself to the world's press or to hit back
at her ex.
"I prefer to keep my private life private,"
"I felt it was my duty to come."
Lawson spent two days in the witness
box at London's Isleworth Crown Court,
at times sparring with defence lawyers
who quizzed her on details of her
domestic life with Saatchi.
Judge Robin Johnson several times
asked lawyers to halt lines of questioning.
'I won't be
Doctors at a Northern California
hospital say a couple has given birth to
a rare set of naturally conceived identical
e Sacramento Bee reports that
Abby, Brindabella and Laurel Hepner
were born on November 22 at Sutter
Memorial Hospital to Hannah and Tom
Hepner, of Quincy.
e triplets were produced when a
single fertilised egg split into three.
Dr William Gilbert, director of
Sutter Women's Services, said that the
odds of producing identical triplets
without fertility drugs ranged from
one-in-one million to one-in-100
He said the rarity makes it di cult to
more accurately calculate the frequency
of such births.
Abby weighed 1.41kg (3lb, 2oz);
Brindabella 1.67kg (3lb, 11oz); and
Laurel 1.81kg (4lb). --- AP
Identical triplets a rare event
State funeral planned
Brazil's plan to resolve
land disputes opposed
Six suspected robbers and four
police o cers were killed in a
shootout in a remote rural part of
north-western Nicaragua close to
the border with Honduras, police
e gun ght, one of the bloodiest
to hit Nicaragua this year, occurred
in Bocas de Ayapal in the Jinotega
department after police and army
units ran into a gang carrying out
a robbery on a grocery store, police
said in a statement.
Authorities have not yet identi ed
the dead suspects.
Honduras, which has just elected
a new president, su ers from the
highest murder rate in the world.
Levels of deadly violence are far
lower in Nicaragua. --- Reuters
10 killed in Nicaraguan gunfight
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