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Azerbaijan: abducted journalist gets six years in “terrifying” signal to exiles

first_imgNews January 12, 2018 Azerbaijan: abducted journalist gets six years in “terrifying” signal to exiles June 4, 2021 Find out more Organisation “We’ll hold Ilham Aliyev personally responsible if anything happens to this blogger in France” RSF says Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is appalled by the six-year jail sentence than an Azerbaijani court passed today on Afgan Mukhtarli, a journalist who was brought back by force from self-imposed exile in neighbouring Georgia. As well as unjustly punishing its victim, this iniquitous sentence is meant to intimidate his fellow journalists. The lack of evidence did not stop the court in the northern city of Balakan from convicting Mukhtarli, an Azerbaijani investigative reporter and activist, of smuggling, crossing the border illegally and refusing to comply with instructions from the police – trumped up charges designed to disguise the fact that he was abducted from his refuge in Georgia and brought back against his will.“The sentence imposed on Afgan Mukhtarli sends a terrifying signal to his colleagues in exile,” said Johann Bihr, the head of RSF’s Eastern Europe and Central Asia desk. “Only a very firm response from the international community would be able to reassure them – that punitive actions abroad by President Ilham Aliyev’s regime will not be tolerated.”Mukhtarli was kidnapped on 29 May 2017 in the Georgian capital, Tbilisi, when he had lived in self-imposed exile for three years. All evidence to the contrary, the Azerbaijani authorities claim that he was arrested at the border with 10,000 euros in his pockets. A diabetic, he has lost a lot of weight in prison and is suffering from high blood pressure.Mukhtarli worked for IWPR and the Meydan TV independent news website, often writing about high-level government corruption in Azerbaijan. Shortly before his abduction, he said he was being closely watched and that he was concerned for his safety and the safety other Azerbaijani dissidents in Georgia.Azerbaijan is ranked 162nd out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2017 World Press Freedom Index. The Aliyev regime has done everything possible to crush media pluralism in recent years, throttling all of the most outspoken media outlets financially or closing them by force. At least 13 journalists and two bloggers are currently detained in connection with their reporting. to go further AzerbaijanEurope – Central Asia Condemning abuses CorruptionJudicial harassmentExiled mediaImprisonedFreedom of expressionCouncil of Europe News RSF calls for a fully transparent investigation after mine kills two journalists in Azerbaijan Receive email alertscenter_img Follow the news on Azerbaijan Russian peacekeepers deny foreign reporters access to Nagorno-Karabakh RSF_en RSF_EECA Help by sharing this information June 8, 2021 Find out more April 9, 2021 Find out more News News AzerbaijanEurope – Central Asia Condemning abuses CorruptionJudicial harassmentExiled mediaImprisonedFreedom of expressionCouncil of Europe last_img read more


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Connells profits drop by 12% after a year of Brexit chaos

first_imgHome » News » Agencies & People » Connells profits drop by 12% after a year of Brexit chaos previous nextAgencies & PeopleConnells profits drop by 12% after a year of Brexit chaosConnells says it endured a tough 2019 but claims a ‘robust performance’ including its market share of sales maintained at 5.5% despite a lower number of transactions.Nigel Lewis27th February 202001,073 Views Connells has reported its full year results for 2019 during which pre-tax profits dropped by 12% to £50.1 million after sales decreased by 7% and overall revenue slipped by 1%.Connells Group CEO David Livesey claims its performance is strong given the difficult year the property sales and lettings industry has endured.He also says the company has been investing in tech to help it overcome the lost revenue from its lettings business following the tenant fees bans in England and Wales last year.It has form in proptech It has previously invested in Fixflo and is one of the agencies involved in Reapit’s Foundations proptech ‘app store’ set to fully launch later this year. But two years ago it closed down online agency Hatched, which it bought in 2015.Despite a slower market, Connells has maintained its share of listings as counted by Rightmove, which remains at 5.5% ahead of Countrywide and Purplebricks, although these two rivals usually claim to be larger by SSTC.“Connells Group has delivered a strong full-year performance that reflects the robustness and benefits of our diversified business model,” says Livesey.“Continued political and Brexit uncertainty inevitably impacted consumer sentiment and the number of housing transactions fell again, but our teams maintained their relentless focus on delivering great customer service and outcomes and we are proud of the progress we’ve made.”These latest results are for the group, which owns businesses or has investments in companies in every area the property industry.This includes its 600 branch network and high-profile brands including Connells, Sequence, Barnard Marcus, William H Brown and Gascoigne Halman.Read more about Connells. Gascoigne Halman Barnard Marcus Sequence connells David Livesey William H Brown February 27, 2020Nigel LewisWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 Hong Kong remains most expensive city to rent with London in 4th place30th April 2021last_img read more


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The World Cup is done and Kane has already set himself a new target

first_img no dice REVEALED Son ban confirmed as Tottenham fail with appeal to overturn red card ALTERED punished Having won the World Cup Golden Boot, Harry Kane’s focus is already on Tottenham and the striker has set himself a new target.Kane has vowed to take just two weeks off in a bid to be ready to play Newcastle in Spurs’ first game of the season on 11 August. And despite becoming England’s first recipient of the award since Gary Lineker in 1986, he still feels he could have done better.“It’s been a fantastic campaign, for me personally and the team. It’s something I’m very proud of.“But there’s still stuff I can improve on. I can get better. I feel like there have been games in this tournament when I could have done better, but that’s all part of the learning curve.“It’s a big achievement. Not many people get to say they’ve won a Golden Boot at a World Cup. I said coming into this tournament that I wanted to prove I could do it on these stages.” Tottenham issue immediate ban to supporter who threw cup at Kepa Tottenham v Brighton LIVE: talkSPORT commentary and team news for Boxing Day opener Tottenham predicted XI to face Brighton with Mourinho expected to make big changes Harry Kane with the Premier League Golden Boot smart causal REVEALED 2 “I will hopefully be back for the first game and hopefully try and score in August [for the first time in the Premier League] this year,” said Kane, smiling as he acknowledged the fact he has never been able to find the net during the month.After Newcastle, Tottenham play Fulham and then Manchester United.“I want to be playing in four weeks’ time,” he said. “We’ll see. We’ll have to talk to the gaffer [Mauricio Pochettino] at Spurs. It will be a couple of weeks [off]. The most important thing is mentally [to be ready]. Physically, this has been our pre-season. We tick over and are not going to just do nothing for two weeks. We will ease our way into it.“It’s the world we live in and, obviously, if we want to be fit for the first game we have to keep on top of it. Try and rest mentally as much as possible.“Physically your body will take you where you never thought it would. It’s always mentally. We train all year round. We are young and fit and physically your body gets on with it.“Personally, and for the lads, it’s about getting away from football. That’s what we’ve got to try and do. With the season starting soon it will be hard, but that’s something we have to deal with.”Kane played 573 minutes of football for England at the World Cup and finished with two more goals than Cristiano Ronaldo, Romelu Lukaku, Antoine Griezmann, Kylian Mbappe and Denis Cheryshev and says the award will sit next to his two Premier League Golden Boot trophies.center_img How the Premier League table could change after the Boxing Day fixtures Kane scored six goals for England Every current Premier League club’s best kit from the past decade Boxing Day fixtures: All nine Premier League games live on talkSPORT 2 possible standings targets LATEST TOTTENHAM NEWS gameday cracker Where Ancelotti ranks with every Premier League boss for trophies won Which teams do the best on Boxing Day in the Premier League era? gameday Where every Premier League club needs to strengthen in Januarylast_img read more


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With Antonio Brown gone, Raiders’ receiving corps looks to pick up the slack

first_imgALAMEDA — A big headache left the building for the last time Saturday.So did 100-plus catches, 1,300-plus yards and double digit touchdowns.Life without Antonio Brown begins for the receiving corps when the Raiders host the Denver Broncos at the Coliseum Monday night before a national television audience. Click here if you’re unable to view the photo gallery on your mobile device. It’s not as if the Raiders haven’t been there before, considering the vast amount of training camp …last_img


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South African director to helm Hollywood action film

first_img8 March 2016Gary [email protected] actioner “Hunter Killer” brings on Donovan Marsh to helm https://t.co/X2WnzIeeCE pic.twitter.com/uklXaXZiiG— Tracking Board (@MyTrackingBoard) March 5, 2016Director and writer Donovan Marsh, responsible for bringing South Africa’s favourite schoolboy to life on the big screen in the first two Spud films, has been chosen to direct his first Hollywood film, Hunter Killer, starring legendary character actor Gary Oldman and action movie hero Gerard Butler.Marsh is a fixture in the South African film, television and media industry, having directed a number of commercials and television productions, including the Class Act acting reality show. Feature films, though, are his first love and where he has gained his most success. His first film, the Safta-winning Dollars and White Pipes, was an action-packed South African gangster drama. It gained a cult following in South Africa.He also directed and scripted the first two Spud films, bringing John Milton, the lovable but awkward hero of John van der Ruit’s popular book series, to wider local and international audiences.“iNumber Number” – Donovan Marsh (2013) pic.twitter.com/YboqwS3gu5— Framing Blackness (@FramingBlacknes) Novembe r 8, 2015Marsh’s greatest international triumph so far, however, has been as director and writer of the critically acclaimed action drama iNumber Number, which earned selection for the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival. It was also an audience favourite at the official Quentin Tarantino Film Festival. He won a Best Screenplay Award for the film at the 2013 Africa International Film Festival in Lagos, Nigeria. The film also won Best Director, Best Writer and Best Editing at the South African Film and Television Awards (Saftas).And now Hollywood has come calling, selecting Marsh to direct Butler and Oldman in an action thriller about an American submarine commander sent deep into Russian waters to save the elected Russian president in the midst of a military coup. The film begins shooting in London in July 2016.Marsh follows other prominent South African directors working in international mainstream cinema, including Gavin Hood (Tsotsi, Wolverine), Neil Blomkamp (District 9, Chappie) and Jann Turner (TV’s Castle, Teen Wolf).Speaking to the Screen Africa website in 2013, Marsh explained what inspired him as a director.“I am inspired by filmmakers who are always fully aware and respectful of their audience and do everything in their power, in every second and in every frame, to entertain, surprise, move and finally comment on the nature of humanity. Good solid thinking also inspires me. The world is in sore need of powerful thinkers.”A fan of directors such as Martin Scorsese, Tarantino and the Coen brothers, Marsh wants to create films that have both good action and real character development. His new opportunity working in international cinema will, no doubt, give him the chance to use that talent to tell more South African stories to the world.Source: Deadline (USA)last_img read more


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New USDA Dietary Guidelines released

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Department of Health and Human Services last week released the final 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans,Servings of lean meat, poultry, eggs and dairy remain in the newly established 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The DGA’s are broken into three diet plans: healthy U.S. style eating pattern, healthy Mediterranean style eating pattern and the healthy vegetarian eating pattern.“The Dietary Guidelines provide a clear path for the general public, as well as policy makers and health professionals and others who reach the public, to help Americans make healthy choices, informed by a thoughtful, critical and transparent review of the scientific evidence on nutrition,” said representatives for USDA and HHS.These recommendations will be pivotal in the education components of health professionals, federal food and education programs, along with serving as a manual for registered dieticians. Five overarching guidelines include:follow a healthy eating pattern across the lifespan,focus on a variety, nutrient-dense foods and amount,limit calories from added sugars and saturated fats to no more than 10% of total calories and sodium to no more than 2,300 milligrams per day,choose healthy foods and beverages andsupport healthy eating patterns for all.The National Pork Producers Council voiced support for the guidelines. A review of the guidelines shows they are narrowly focused on nutrition — much more so than previous iterations. The recommendation on consuming protein calls for “a variety of protein foods, including seafood, lean meats and poultry, eggs, legumes (beans and peas), and nuts, seeds, and soy products.”The Recommended Daily Allowances (RDAs) of various food groups are largely unchanged from the 2010 guidelines. The guidelines do recommend that less than 10% of daily calories come from saturated fat and call out meat, processed meat and meat dishes as major sources of saturated fat. But the guidelines indicate that sticking to the RDAs should meet the recommendation on saturated fat. The guidelines also note that people aren’t getting enough potassium, calcium, vitamin D, iron and dietary fiber and single out meat as the best source of iron and pork as a source of vitamin D.The bottom line according to NPPC is that meat remains an important part of the American diet. The 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans do not contain any provisions that should drive federal, institutional or consumer shifts away from meat as the major protein source in diets, and they do not include extraneous matters, such as requiring food producers to meet sustainability standards or taxing certain foods as a way to reduce their consumption.The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans is available at www.dietaryguidelines.gov.last_img read more


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Near-Zero-Energy Homes in Santa Fe

first_imgNot much in Santa Fe – New Mexico’s “City Different” – is available for cheap, least of all its real estate, which, according to Zillow.com, still lingers in the $385,000 median-price range despite the downturn. But at least one builder in the area, Natural Homes of Prudential Santa Fe, has been marketing homes that it says operate at close to net-zero energy, typically cost less than the area median, and capitalize on one thing that is both abundant and free in Santa Fe – sunshine.In a recent press release, Natural Homes announced that it “has delivered LEED-certified Zero-Energy Homes to buyers for less than $339,000, with some homes garnering as much as $25,000 in state and federal tax credits.” The company website notes that Natural Homes’ NZE houses start at $279,000 for a 1,200-sq.-ft. two-bedroom, two-bath. The price includes a two-car garage and the lot.A high spot in northern New MexicoAlthough not all of the homes it builds operate at net-zero, those that do feature R-21 exterior walls, an R-50 roof, a solar hot water system, and a grid-tied photovoltaic (PV) system with enough capacity to bring the home’s electricity costs to zero under average power usage. These homes have a HERS Index of 55 — calculated before considering the effect of the PV array.Constructed by Renaissance Builders, the net-zero homes are designed in 1,200, 1,540, and 2,100-sq.-ft. configurations. Many of the properties shown on Natural Homes’ website are adobe-style structures that feature flat roofs, viga-beamed ceilings, and exterior walls that the company says are built using a cost-effective combination of stick framing and adobe construction.Santa Fe is more than 7,000 ft. above sea level, sees cold winter weather, hot and dry summer days, and, because of the arid climate, cool summer nights. It gets about 300 sunny days a year.last_img read more