Home' Greymouth Star : December 20th 2013 Contents Greymouth Star
10 - Friday, December 20, 2013
A man who believes he
may be the illegitimate
son of the late Princess
Margaret has won an
important High Court
ruling which could aid his
quest to see the contents
of the will of the Queen's
sister and that of Queen
Elizabeth the Queen
Jersey accountant Robert
Brown, 58, is seeking
to prove he is Princess
Margaret's secret child and
that she hid a pregnancy in
e royal wills were
drawn up around the time
of Margaret's death in
2002 and were "sealed" to
keep their contents secret.
Overnight, Brown was
granted permission to
seek judicial review of a
refusal to allow him access
under the Freedom of
Information Act 2000 to
documents he says show
there was a "secret judicial process" for
sealing royal wills.
Giving him leave, Mr Justice Phillips
said at London's High Court there were
"compelling" constitutional reasons
to allow Brown's legal challenge to go
ahead and that was not altered by a past
Court of Appeal observation that his
claim to be Princess Margaret's son was
"scandalous and irrational".
e judge said the case gave rise
"to important points of principle and
practice" regarding open justice and the
ey related to how the courts dealt
with statutory provisions and rules "in
relation to a particular class of litigant".
delighted," Brown said.
"It is an important day for
the fundamental principles
of open justice and the rule
"Historically, it has
been very clear that the
monarchy should not have
with the court.
"I am delighted that
I have got this far and
have been reopened and
the points I have raised
have been recognised as
Of his claim to royal
"Hopefully I am not a
nutcase. I am either right
or I am wrong."
Brown has said he will
never give up the battle to
prove his royal heritage.
He believes he was born
to Princess Margaret in
1955 and his father was
possibly Robin Douglas
He claims that the later stages of her
pregnancy were covered up with the use
of body doubles and that he was sent to
Kenya to be brought up as the child of
Cynthia and Douglas Brown in Nairobi.
He believes the documents he wants
disclosed will reveal that Buckingham
Palace, the Attorney-General and a
senior judge acted together to maintain
secrecy around the Queen's sister's last
testament, which, he hopes, contain
details of his birth.
His claims were dismissed by lawyers
for the royal family in a previous court
hearing as that of "a fantasist seeking to
feed his private obsession". --- PA
China will expand its presence in
Antarctica by building a fourth research
base and nding a site for a fth, a
State-run newspaper said overnight, as
the country steps up its increasingly far-
ung scienti c e orts.
Chinese scientists are increasingly
looking beyond China for their research,
including sending submersibles to
explore the bottom of the ocean and
last weekend landing the country's rst
probe on the moon.
Workers will build a summer eld
camp called Taishan and look for a site
for another research station, the o cial
China Daily reported.
"As a latecomer to Antarctic scienti c
research, China is catching up," the
report cited Qu Tanzhou, director of the
State Oceanic Administration's Chinese
Arctic and Antarctic Administration, as
China already has three Antarctic
research stations --- Great Wall,
Zhongshan and Kunlun.
"Building the Taishan camp and
inspecting sites for the (other) station
can further guarantee that Chinese
scientists will conduct scienti c research
over a wider range and in a safer way,"
e Taishan camp will be used during
the South Pole's summer from December
to March and will provide logistical
support and be used to study geology,
glaciers, geomagnetism and atmospheric
science, the newspaper said.
Scientists will also be focusing their
studies on climate change, it added.
e Taishan camp will be near the
United States' McMurdo Station, Italy's
Zucchelli Station and a recently built
South Korean station, the newspaper
"While the nation is expanding
its presence in Antarctica, it is also
enhancing its scienti c research ability,
with a new icebreaker to be built and
a xed-wing aircraft to be bought for
future polar expeditions," the report
In 1908, Britain became the rst
country to claim Antarctic territory,
and since then New Zealand, France,
Nor way, Australia, Chile and Argentina
have also lodged o cial claims, although
most countries do not recognise them.
China does not have any territorial
claims, but has been boosting its presence
in Antarctica, and in June President Xi
Jinping said polar exploration was an
important eld to develop. --- Reuters
Retired Cuban leader Fidel
Castro eulogised Nelson Mandela
as "an apostle of peace" and praised
younger brother --- and successor
--- Raul for his handshake with
United States President Barack
Obama at the memorial service
for the father of democratic South
"I congratulate Comrade Raul
for his brilliant performance,
and especially for his rmness
and dignity when with a friendly
but rm greeting to the head of
government of the United States
he said in English, 'Mr President,
I am Castro,'" Fidel wrote in
the overnight edition of the
Communist Party daily Granma.
Both Obama and Raul Castro
spoke during the December 10
event in Johannesburg's FNB
stadium and their impromptu
encounter sparked some criticism
from Cuban exiles in the US.
e extensive article represents
the 87-year-old Fidel's rst public
comment on the passing of long-
time friend Mandela, who died on
December 5 at the age of 95.
"Mandela was a complete man,
profound revolutionary and
radically socialist, who with great
stoicism withstood 27 years of
solitary con nement," Castro said.
"I have never ceased to admire his
honesty, modesty and enormous
Fidel, who stepped down in
July 2006 after falling seriously
ill, also recalled Cuba's military
inter vention against South
African-backed rebels in Angola in
e performance of the Angolan
army and Cuban forces against
UNITA insurgents and South
African troops in the 1987-1988
battle of Cuito Cuanavale was "a
turning point for the liberation
of our continent and my people,"
Mandela said years later during a
visit to Cuba as South Africa's rst
Fidel Castro hails Raul's Obama handshake
United States President Barack Obama, left, greets Cuban President Raul Castro before giving his speech, as Brazil's President Dilma Rousse
looks on, at the memorial ser vice for late South African President Nelson Mandela.
Two Muslim converts have been
found guilty of murdering a British
soldier on a London street, hacking
him to death in a gruesome killing
that horri ed the nation.
A jury at London's Old Bailey
criminal court decided unanimously
that Michael Adebolajo, 29, and
Michael Adebowale, 22, were guilty
of murdering Lee Rigby on May
22 but not guilty of the attempted
murder of a police o cer.
e two British citizens had denied
murdering Rigby, with Adebolajo
saying the killing was part of a war
for Allah in response to western
military action in nations such as Iraq
e court heard the two men ran
over Rigby, a 25-year-old Afghanistan
war veteran, near an army barracks
in Woolwich, south-east London,
in broad daylight then attacked his
unconscious body with knives and a
meat cleaver, trying to behead him.
ey then dragged his corpse into the
middle of the road where Adebolajo
asked a bystander to video them, with
their hands covered in blood, as he
calmly explained what he had done.
"We swear by almighty Allah we
will never stop ghting you. e only
reason we've killed this man today is
because Muslims are dying daily by
British soldiers," Adebolajo told the
camera. "He is an eye for an eye, a
tooth for a tooth."
e murder horri ed Britain and
sparked a surge in reported hate
crimes against Muslims, several
anti-Islamist street protests by a
right-wing group and government
promises of tougher action on radical
Islamic preachers. --- Reuters
Muslim converts convicted of hacking soldier
A rescue operation is under
way after part of a balcony in the
Apollo theatre in London's West
End is thought to have collapsed
during a performance, trapping
people inside, eyewitnesses say.
Police con rmed they
were called to the theatre in
Shaftesbury Avenue shortly after
8.15pm on ursday (9.15am
" ere is a report of a collapse in
the building itself," a spokesman
It is believed some people
may have been injured in the
collapse, which occurred during
a performance of e Curious
Incident Of e Dog In e
Eyewitnesses said they saw
people being escorted out of the
building, covered in dust and
Amy Lecoz, who attended with
her two teenage children, said:
" e entire dome roof fell down
on the audience just in front of us.
We were protected by the balcony
above and we ran. People started
"We thought it was water.
We thought it was a part of the
show. I grabbed my kids and
Another witness said she heard
a "strange crackling noise" before
"the roof just crumpled".
e theatre "suddenly
went dark" with "dust clouds
everywhere", she said.
e witness said police and
emergency crews were at the
scene within minutes.
e Apollo, which was built
in 1901, has 775 seats over four
levels. --- PA
Theatre balcony collapses during performance
A le photograph of the Apollo eatre, in the West End of London.
Man sets himself alight
A 52-year-old Italian man
set himself on re in St Peter's
Square in the Vatican overnight
and su ered serious burns,
o cials said.
e man entered the square
with a bottle of petrol early in
the morning (local time), doused
himself, and lit a ame.
A Jesuit priest passing by tried
to put out the ames with his
cape before police arrived with a
Two policemen su ered slight
burns to the hands and smoke
e man, who was taken to
hospital with serious burns on his
torso, was carrying a note with
his daughter's phone number on
it. His reasons for setting himself
alight were not known and the
contents of the note were not
Pope Francis was in his
residence in another part of the
Vatican at the time. --- Reuters
An Australian app is helping a group
of elderly Catholic nuns connect with
long-lost family members.
Tapestry, a mainly tablet-based app, is
like simpli ed social media for seniors.
It lets older people send and receive
photos and messages from family
members and friends via a minimalistic
It is proving extremely popular among
the Dominican Sisters of Eastern
Australia and the Solomon Islands,
the order's business manager, Andrew
Many of the congregation's 93 sisters
lost touch with their families when they
devoted themselves to the church in the
1950s and 1960s.
Most are now in their 80s, and have
only in recent years restored contact with
their brothers, sisters, cousins, nieces and
Now, Dunstan says, many are using
Tapestry to keep in touch.
Ten nuns in the order trialled the app
over several months, including three
who had never used a computer before.
ey exchanged photos and messages
with newly-discovered relatives.
Dunstan says the sisters had
gone through an "extraordinary
transformation" while using the app.
" ey not only have felt more
included, but the change in their general
disposition has been amazing," he says.
"What we're nding now is that
the sisters don't purely want to be the
recipients of information --- they want
to start sharing it.
" ey started taking their own
Several have begun using the Tapestry
app to share messages and photos with
their fellow sisters, who are spread along
the east coast from Queensland to
Tasmania, Dunstan says.
"It's changing the way we communicate
with our sisters."
Tapestry founder and chief executive
Andrew Dowling says the app has also
had successful trials in nursing homes.
" e straightforward nature of
Tapestry means that seniors who have
never even used a computer before can
be comfortable using our app," he says.
e app is free to download but
charges $5 a month for unlimited photo
and message storage.
An expanded version for nursing
homes and other organisations featuring
extra administration controls and
messaging features costs $9 a month.
New app popular with elderly nuns
e phone of the Duchess
of Cambridge, while she
was still Kate Middleton
and dating Prince William,
was hacked by the News
of the World, it has been
Transcripts of voicemails
of calls between the royal
couple were read out at the
Old Bailey hacking trial.
e transcripts were
unearthed during a police
Prosecutor Andrew Edis
QC, read out "Hi baby, it's me" from one
voicemail that William left to Kate.
He also called her "Babykins".
In the voicemail, Prince William ---
now the Duke of Cambridge --- starts
the message to Kate with the words: "Hi
baby. Um, sorry, I've just got back in o
my night navigation exercise."
He tells her that he nearly got shot
while on a training exercise.
In the call, he said: "I had a busy day
today again. I've been running around
the woods of Aldershot chasing shadows
and getting horribly lost, and I walked
into some other regiment's ambush,
which was slightly embarrassing because
I nearly got shot.
"Not by live rounds but by blank
rounds, which would have been very
e court was read excerpts from
the voicemails in which it is claimed
William left a message for his younger
brother Harry, putting on a high-pitched
voice and pretending to be Harry's then-
girlfriend Chelsy Davy.
In the jokey message William called
Edis noted the voicemail
private investigator Glenn
Mulcaire's home address,
and quoted from it: "It's
Chelsy here and saying you
are the best looking ginger
I have ever seen."
Former News of the
World managing editor
Stuart Kuttner, 73, of
Woodford Green, Essex,
and the tabloid's former
editor Andy Coulson, are
accused of conspiring to
hack phones between October 3, 2000,
and August 9, 2006, along with former
News International chief executive
In May last year, Kuttner made
a statement to police denying the
allegations and stating he was not
willing to answer any further questions.
Former News of the World and Sun
editor Brooks also faces two counts
of conspiring with others to commit
misconduct in public o ce --- one
between January 1, 2004, and January 31,
2012, and the other between February 9,
2006, and October 16, 2008 --- linked to
alleged inappropriate payments to public
She also faces two allegations of
conspiracy to per vert the course of justice
--- one with her former personal assistant
Cheryl Carter, 49, of Chelmsford, Essex,
between July 6 and 9, 2011, and a second
with her husband, Charles Brooks,
and former News International head
of security Mark Hanna and others,
between July 15 and July 19, 2011.
Kate's phone hacked,
Catherine, Duchess of
Prisoners held by an al Qaeda-linked
rebel group that controls large areas
of northern Syria have been subjected
to systematic torture and summary
executions, Amnesty International says.
e Islamic State in Iraq and the
Levant (ISIL) runs a string of prisons
in the northern provinces of Aleppo
and al-Raqqa where detainees have
undergone ogging and other forms of
abuse, Amnesty wrote in a report based
on inter views with people who had been
held by the extremist group.
Former detainees told Amnesty
of being held for unknown reasons;
handcu ed in painful positions for long
periods; and beaten by members of the
Some said they had witnessed trials in
the group's sharia (Islamic law) courts,
in which death sentences were handed
down to persons accused of crimes such
as ghting against ISIL or of committing
"After years in which they were prey
to the brutality of the al-Assad regime,
the people of al-Raqqa and Aleppo
are now su ering under a new form of
tyranny imposed on them by (ISIL),
in which arbitrary detention, torture
and executions have become the order
of the day," Philip Luther, Amnesty
International's director for the Middle
East and North Africa, said overnight.
e rights group called on ISIL to "end
its appalling treatment of detainees" and
asked the international community "to
take concrete steps to block the ow
of arms and other support to (ISIL)
and other armed groups implicated
in committing war crimes and other
serious human rights abuses."
" e Turkish government, in particular,
should prevent its territory being used by
(ISIL) to bring in arms and recruits to
Syria," Luther said.
ISIL was established by Abu Bakr
al-Baghdadi, the head of the al Qaeda-
linked Islamic State of Iraq, which sent
ghters to Syria to join the revolt against
President Bashar al-Assad.
e militants initially fought under
the name of the radical al-Nusra
Front. However, in April, al-Baghdadi
announced that the two formations were
merging as the Islamic State in Iraq and
Al-Nusra's leader, Abu Mohammed
al-Jaulani, objected and won the support
of al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri.
Nonetheless, many of al-Jaulani ghters
appear to have decided not to back him
and are now working with ISIL. --- DPA
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