US Embassy and American Center in Colombo back to normal

Operations at the US Embassy in Sri Lanka has returned to normal, the US Embassy in Colombo said today.The Embassy said that the American Center in Colombo is also now open to the public. The Democratic leadership agreed to back the bill after accepting promises from Republicans for a debate later on the future of young illegal immigrants. Operations were back to normal after the US government partial shutdown ended after Republicans and Democrats voted for a temporary funding bill. Thousands of federal employees had been placed on temporary, unpaid leave since Saturday as the bill failed to get approval. (Colombo Gazette)

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US court unseals complaint filed against Gota

A federal judge in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, in Los Angeles has unsealed a civil lawsuit against former Sri Lankan Defense Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa, a dual U.S.-Sri Lankan citizen, seeking damages for his alleged involvement in the 2009 killing of journalist Lasantha Wickramatunga, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today.The suit was filed under seal by Ahimsa Wickramatunga, the journalist’s daughter, on April 4. Although authorities in Sri Lanka have claimed to be investigating the case for years, criminal proceedings have not progressed, according to CPJ reporting. The complaint against Rajapaksa describes a broad campaign against journalists during the decade he served as Defense Secretary, from 2005 to 2015. Lasantha Wickramatunga was editor of The Sunday Leader and exposed alleged corruption by Rajapaksa; he was beaten to death on January 9, 2009, allegedly by men who were part of the Tripoli Platoon, operating under Rajapaksa’s command, according to the complaint. “For more than 10 years, authorities in Sri Lanka have utterly failed to deliver justice in the brutal killing of Lasantha Wickramatunga, despite a wealth of evidence pointing to perpetrators,” said Steven Butler, the Committee to Protect Journalists’ Asia program coordinator, from Manila. “Perhaps successful prosecution of the case in a U.S. court will finally spur authorities in Sri Lanka to pursue the murder as they should have from the start.” The case was filed under seal with no damages specified, and Rajapaksa was served with papers in Los Angeles on April 7, according to the Center for Justice and Accountability, whose lawyers helped prepare the complaint. In January, the center won a $302.5 million judgement against the Syrian government over the 2012 killing of Sunday Times journalist Marie Colvin, as CPJ reported at the time.Rajapaksa did not respond to a Twitter direct message asking for comment. read more

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WatchQuadrigas downfall began when founder abruptly fired all the exchanges law and

“I don’t know why Mr. Cotten decided to eschew regulatory law but I never spoke with him after that day,” she said.The Quadriga story has come back to haunt Duhaime since the unexpected death in December of Cotten, who ran the business from his laptop. Quadriga Fintech Solutions Corp. has been under creditor protection since Feb. 5, with Ernst & Young acting as monitor to sort out the firm’s dealings through a court-approved creditor protection process in Halifax, Nova Scotia.Duhaime says her law firm was recently the target of extortion, with a person demanding her firm provide privileged and confidential information on QuadrigaCX or they’d defame the firm on social media and file a false criminal report to law enforcement.“As a result of the extortion of our firm, other people who have relevant information and key documents that could assist with the court process are now not willing to come forward and be seen as being associated with QuadrigaCX,” she said.She also noted that her law firm is owed $100,000 from Quadriga.Duhaime declined to comment further to Bloomberg News.–With assistance from Natalie Obiko Pearson.Bloomberg.com She was a lawyer who once helped Vancouver crypto exchange QuadrigaCX get its regulatory footing until its chief executive decided to dump “law and order” folks.Now Christine Duhaime of Duhaime Law in Vancouver blames Quadriga’s late founder, Gerald Cotten, for the decline of a firm that is now in shambles and owes 115,000 people about $260 million (US$194 million) in cryptocurrency and cash. Its downfall began one day in 2016, when Cotten decided he no longer wanted the Vancouver-based exchange to be a listed company, she said.“On that day, he terminated the professionals that were, in his mind, ‘law and order’ folks — the accountant, the auditor and me, the regulatory attorney,” Duhaime wrote in a March 26 post on Coindesk. “From that moment onwards, Mr. Cotten solely took over QuadrigaCX and operated the exchange as if it had no investors, no shareholders, no regulatory agencies and no law that applied to it— no corporate law, no securities law, no anti-money-laundering law and no contract law.” A criminal past haunts surviving founder of troubled cryptocurrency exchange Quadriga Watchdogs proposing new framework for cryptocurrency exchanges on heels of Quadriga collapse Quadriga founder’s widow asks court for repayment of $300,000 in costs Duhaime was hired in 2016 as a regulatory attorney to help their securities lawyer in Canada draft a statutory prospectus, she said. Her firm was terminated after six months.Christine Duhaime of Duhaime Law in Vancouver. Courtesy Duhaime Law read more

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Gas price drop likely temporary

Just when gas prices were flirting with record highs, prices through the region dropped roughly nine cents this afternoon.  But don’t expect them to stay that low.  Experts say the unexpected dip is fleeting.Hamilton gas stations saw a steady flow of customers this evening“Didn’t have any plans to fill up and I just saw the price drop.”Most pumps dropped prices to under a buck 31 per litre. 9 cents lower than yesterday’s rate.“I don’t know what’s going to happen tomorrow. Maybe it might go up it might go down, so I’m just taking a chance.”Experts say it was the right chance to take. Dan McTeague says: “There’s no doubt that by this time tomorrow morning prices will be back up to $139.6 on average in the Hamilton area.”The drop came as a surprise to even the most avid pump watchers. So what triggered the sudden turnaround? Wholesale prices haven’t changed.Dan McTeague of tomorrowsgaspricestoday.com says it could be an attempt to squeeze independent stations out of the market or to get rid of cheaper winter gas they didn’t sell during the harsh season — and make way for pricier summer fuel: “The summer gasoline is the stuff the oil companies love to sell because it’s an opportunity to make a lot more money.”Regardless of the cause, yo-yoing prices are getting to drivers.“It’s a shame — it really is. It would be nice if they could set it at one price and it stayed there for a little while.”That’s unlikely with another big dip predicted overnight. McTeague is predicting another significant jump as early as Friday morning. And while today’s 9 cent drop is highly unusual, we’ll likely see numbers bobbing up and down for a little while yet. read more

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Sexual relations lead to misconduct charges for Hamilton cop

(Update)He was Hamilton’s first police officer dedicated to the investigation of human trafficking. Now this sergeant is facing charges relating to an alleged sexual relationship with a witness.Sergeant Derek Mellor made his first appearance today at central station in Hamilton on of 11 counts of misconduct under the Police Services Act. A 14 year veteran of the force, he became the first officer dedicated to human trafficking in July 2011.The charges he is facing range from two counts of engaging in sexual activity with women who were potential witnesses, charges of sending pictures and a video of a sexual nature to those same witnesses and members of victim services; also having an inappropriate relationship with a human trafficking investigator.The charges of misconduct that mellor is facing today date back to may of 2011 before he was officially dedicated to the investigation of trafficking. The investigation dates back to last November when a 19 year old former sex trade worker came to police.Mellor has been on suspension since December. At today’s hearing the case was put over until July 30th at 10 am when they will meet again by conference call. Mellor has not yet entered a plea.Melissa Raftis has more from our newsroom.00:00:00 | 00:00:00::Projekktor V1.3.09 read more

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Hamilton girls aged 14 and 16 rescued in human trafficking investigation

Two Hamilton teenagers have been rescued by police following a human trafficking investigation in Brantford.Community Patrol Officers say they went to a hotel on Colborne St. and spoke with two young girls, aged 14 and 16, on Monday.“The officers identified the two young women as victims of Human Trafficking, being forced into the sex trade. An investigation, including officers from the BPS Child Abuse and Sexual Assault (CASA) and BPS Major Crime Units began,” said Brantford police in a news release.Police say the girls were being recruited and advertised to provide sexual services. Police allege a man and woman received cash in exchange for the services provided by the teens.Twenty-year-old Same Alemu, of Toronto, and 18-year-old Deja Clarke, of Brantford, were arrested at the motel and are facing several charges including human trafficking, and advertise sexual services.Both accused were held in custody for a bail hearing.Anyone with information regarding this investigation or if you are a victim or believe you may know of a victim of human trafficking is asked to contact Detective John Allan of the Brantford Police Service CASA Unit at 519-756-0113, ext. 2264.Ontario’s Strategy to End Human Trafficking has provided the following tips to help identify victims of human trafficking.Possible signs that someone is being groomed for sex trafficking include changes such as:Withdrawing from family and friendsBeing secretive about their activitiesHaving a new boyfriend, girlfriend or friend who they won’t introduce to friends and familySuddenly spending time with an older person or peopleStaying out more often and laterAbsences from school or a decline in school performanceWearing more sexualized clothingHaving new clothing, jewelry etc. that they can’t afford to buySuddenly having a new or second cell phone with a secret numberSigns someone is being ‘Recruited’ or ‘Groomed’The person is not allowed to speak for themselves and their activities are controlled by someone elseThe person is under 18 and involved in prostitution or sex workThe person is unpaid or paid very little to work, and seems to be treated poorly (long or unusual hours, not allowed breaks, forced to live in poor conditions, etc.)The person is repaying a large debt through labour or sexThe person seems fearful, anxious, depressed, submissive, tense, or nervous/paranoid. They may avoid eye contact, seem fearful around police, etc.The person shows signs of abuse, such as bruising, cigarette burns, fractures, etcThe person has tattooing or branding symbols, particularly namesThe person doesn’t have their own things or money, and doesn’t control their own passport or other documentsThe person seems malnourished or lacks medical careThe person is moved frequently and may not know their surroundings wellThe person has been reported missing read more

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New parking policies in effect at Pearson Airport

New parking policies come into effect at Toronto Pearson International Airport on Wednesday.To stop people from parking on the side of the road around the terminals, the airport will be issuing what it’s calling “mobile payment notices.”According to the Greater Toronto Airports Authority, a camera mounted on a vehicle will drive around looking for anyone who is illegally parked.A picture will be taken of their licence plate and a payment notice for $75 will be sent to the address registered to the vehicle.If the notice goes unpaid, the ticket will be sent to a collections agency.The money will be funneled back into the cost of running the program.The GTAA says the changes are about keeping those travelling to and from the airport safe.It is reminding passengers about their free waiting lots, called cell phone lots, that are designed for drivers to use while they wait for passengers.Be safe—use our free, convenient cell phone lots. Starting on Sept. 5, we will begin issuing mobile payment notices to cars waiting for arriving passengers on the busy roadsides around the terminals. https://t.co/oy3WRjaPKI pic.twitter.com/1VK18CRLmP— Toronto Pearson (@TorontoPearson) September 1, 2018The lots are free and offer short-term parking for 226 vehicles in total.Pearson is Canada’s busiest airport. Over 47 million passengers travelled through the airport last year. read more

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Republicans want Capital One Amazon to explain data breach

WASHINGTON — Republicans on the House Oversight and Reform Committee want Capital One and Amazon to explain to Congress how a hacker accessed the personal information from more than 100 million Capital One credit applications.The incident was the latest massive data breach at a large company.Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio and other Republicans have asked for a staff-level briefing by Aug 15. Jordan is the committee’s top Republican.In a letter to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, the lawmakers note that Capital One data was stored on a cloud service provided by Amazon Web Services. The suspected hacker is a former Amazon software engineer.The lawmakers also want Capital One to describe the scope of the incident and the company’s response.The Associated Press obtained copies of the letters Thursday.Matthew Daly, The Associated Press read more

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Energy sector weighs on stocks in Toronto loonie up after strong jobs

Companies in this story: (TSX:GSPTSE, TSX:CADUSD=X) TORONTO — Losses in the energy sector weighed on Canada’s main stock index in late-morning trading, while the loonie pushed higher after a stronger-than-expected jobs report for August.The S&P/TSX composite index was down 14.24 points at 16,560.57.In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 75.45 points at 26,803.60. The S&P 500 index was up 4.67 points at 2,980.67, while the Nasdaq composite was up 7.94 points at 8,124.77.The Canadian dollar traded for 75.92 cents US compared with an average of 75.60 cents US on Thursday, after Statistics Canada reported the economy added 81,100 jobs last month.The October crude contract was down 75 cents at US$55.55 per barrel and the October natural gas contract was up 4.4 cents at US$2.48 per mmBTU.The December gold contract was up US$2.80 at US$1,528.30 an ounce and the December copper contract was down 0.55 of a cent at US$2.64 a pound. The Canadian Press read more

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Ecopassages in dispute

A battle could be brewing over responsibility for the eco-passages and wildlife fencing installed in recent years along the Long Point Causeway.The Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation, in partnership with other conservation groups, raised $2.5 million over several years for the installation of the infrastructure along the 3.5-kilometre causeway.The three culverts, nine wildlife tunnels and fencing is credited with reducing reptile mortality on the causeway, which separates the Big Creek Marsh from Long Point Bay.The biosphere foundation is weighing an appeal to the Ministry of the Environment if Norfolk County refuses to accept responsibility.“We have to decide whether we need to take it up with the minister,” Rick Levick, president of the foundation, said Tuesday.“It’s not our preferred option. We don’t want to delay the project. The road is a mess. The bridge is a mess.”Levick and others raised the money for the causeway infrastructure, which was installed in phases, over several years.At the outset, former public works general manager Eric D’Hondt was careful to link responsibility for the care and upkeep of the eco-passages, culvert and fencing to the promoters of the Long Point Causeway Improvement Project in any agreement they entered with the county.With the causeway set to be rebuilt, Levick says the time has come for Norfolk to assume responsibility for infrastructure it is about to disturb.Levick says the private-sector entities that raised money for the causeway may’ve saved Norfolk millions of dollars. Levick said the province very easily could have ordered the county to undertake this work itself due to the high mortality rate of turtles, snakes and other species-at-risk due to traffic on the causeway between Port Rowan and Long Point.Port Rowan Coun. Tom Masschaele is sympathetic to these arguments. He has tabled a motion for an upcoming meeting calling on Norfolk to assume responsibility for this infrastructure.Levick’s comments came after a presentation by Henry Huotari, a program director with the environmental consulting firm Parsons in London. Parsons recently completed an environmental assessment regarding the $12-million causeway rebuild.Key findings of the Parsons’ report include:Parsons is discouraging the construction of a four-kilometre multi-use pathway offset from the road allowance on the west side of the causeway. Huotari said this would require a lengthy, complicated negotiation for land with the Canadian Wildlife Service that could delay the causeway rebuild. Parsons estimates that the causeway project will begin in the spring of 2020. The road itself should be rebuilt by late fall of next year. Replacement of the failing bridge over the causeway near George Lane would also begin in 2020 but not be finished until sometime in 2021. Huotari gave assurances that traffic in and out of Long Point will continue for the duration of the project. This includes the access and egress of heavy vehicles, RVs, boats and trailers and the like. “We simply cannot hold up an ambulance or a fire truck,” Huotari said. Norfolk will consider the possibility of removing the old willow trees on either side of the causeway later this year. If the county decides to get this work out of the way early, it will have to wait till late summer or in the fall when birds are finished nesting. MSonnenberg@postmedia.com read more

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Marking World AIDS Day UN urges refocused attention to fight epidemic

Addressing a Town Hall Meeting held UN Headquarters in New York in observance of the Day, UN Deputy Secretary-General Louise Fréchette said the events of the past few months had propelled the world into an uncertain environment, but that the resolve to address the epidemic should not be diminished as a result. “The Secretary-General has issued a call to action to the whole world, focusing on five clear objectives around which we can all rally,” she said. The aims were to ensure that people everywhere knew what to do to avoid infection, to stop “perhaps the most tragic form of HIV transmission” – from mother to child – to provide treatment for all infected persons, to redouble the search for a vaccine, as well as a cure, and to care for all those whose lives have been devastated by AIDS, particularly orphans.Marked annually on 1 December, World AIDS Day this year has the theme “I care, do you?” to inform people that individual action can go far in slowing infection rates and breaking the silence about the epidemic. For her part, the Director-General of the UN World Health Organization (WHO), Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland, said the world had seen the start of a real change over the past year. “Silence about HIV and AIDS is being broken,” she said in a message. “All governments are confronting the epidemic with a new openness. They know that the effects [of AIDS] are relevant for their people. Taboos are starting to erode.” Pointing to recent declarations by world leaders, the WHO chief said there was widespread political commitment to act. The increase in access to low cost AIDS medicines, the establishment of health services for people at risk of HIV, and the boost in contributions to the Global Fund initiated by Secretary-General Kofi Annan were all signs that the fight against the epidemic was gaining serious momentum, she said.Meanwhile, all over the world, the UN and its partners are organizing events to inform people about AIDS. UN Information Centres are holding media events, press conferences, film screenings, art competitions, script-writing contests, exhibits and educational campaigns to get the message out.World AIDS Day events are also being held by UN peacekeeping operations. The UN Mission in Sierra Leone, for example, is marking the Day with a march from park in central Freetown to a stadium, where a weeklong commemorative programme includes cultural performances, workshops, film shows and panel discussions. The UN refugee agency (UNHCR) is organizing events both at its Headquarters in Geneva and it many of its nearly 290 offices worldwide. read more

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DR of Congo Annan pledges UN support in wake of volcano eruption

“The Secretary-General has learned with deep concern of the eruption of Mount Nyiragongo, near Goma, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo,” his spokesman, Fred Eckhard, told reporters in New York. “He notes that this severe natural disaster is occurring in an area that has already suffered from years of conflict.” Mr. Annan assured the Governments of the DRC and Rwanda, which also experienced lava flows, that he would put the UN’s assets to “full use” in helping them to mitigate the disaster’s consequences, the spokesman said. As part of that effort, the Secretary-General dispatched Ross Mountain, the Assistant Emergency Relief Coordinator to oversee the UN response. In addition, a flight from the UN Mission in the DRC (MONUC) will leave Kinshasa for Kigali, carrying 28 metric tonnes of emergency supplies to meet the immediate needs of some 300,000 people who have been displaced by the disaster. Briefing reporters in New York, Steven Johnson, acting chief of the Humanitarian Emergency Branch of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, said 3 or 4 lava flows from the volcano had caused some 100,000 people to flee into villages in the DRC, while some 200,000-300,000 had fled just over the border into Rwanda. “Goma town has been split completely in half, and one half totally destroyed – burned,” he said. read more

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Security Council demands end to Israeli measures in and around Ramallah

With the United States abstaining on a resolution that was negotiated through Monday night and adopted in the early hours of this morning, the United Nations Security Council demanded that Israel immediately cease measures in and around Ramallah, including the destruction of Palestinian civilian and security infrastructure.The Council also demanded the “expeditious withdrawal of the Israeli occupying forces from Palestinian cities towards the return to the positions held prior to September 2000.” In addition, it reiterated past calls for a complete halt to all acts of violence, “including all acts of terror, provocation, incitement and destruction.”In another provision of the resolution, which was submitted by Bulgaria, France, Norway, Ireland and the United Kingdom, the Council called on the Palestinian Authority to meet its expressed commitment to bring to justice those responsible for terrorist acts.The Security Council also threw its full backing behind efforts of the diplomatic Quartet – the United Nations, European Union, Russian Federation and United States – which just last week outlined a roadmap for achieving a final settlement of the conflict in three years. The Council called upon the Israeli Government, the Palestinian Authority and all States in the region to cooperate with those efforts. In that context, the Council also recognized the continuing importance of the initiative endorsed at the Arab League Summit held in Beruit in March.Explaining his country’s decision to abstain in the voting, James B. Cunningham of the United States said the resolution failed to explicitly condemn terrorists or those who gave them safe haven. Noting that those responsible for killing civilians obstructed both the Quartet’s peace efforts and Palestinian reforms, he named in particular Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad and the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigade. The resolution had started the process of taking a clear stand against terrorists, but did not go far enough, he said, adding that it lacked the clarity of a draft submitted by the United States.The meeting, which spanned over 16 hours of both formal and closed-door sessions, heard from more than 40 participants, including UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, during the public debate. read more

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UN World Food Programme warns of unprecedented hunger in Uganda

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) today warned that unless donors came forward with urgent contributions, the victims of fighting in northern Uganda will soon face severe food shortages and unprecedented hunger. WFP is seeking 18,000 tonnes of food for over half a million people, including many displaced persons or refugees fleeing the prevailing insecurity, until the end of the year. The sharp increase in fighting since June has caused almost daily raids on displacement camps and refugee settlements. According to WFP, the attacks usually involve a brutal mix of abductions, executions and the widespread destruction of property, leaving thousands of people homeless and destroying belongings and crops across the region. “People in Northern Uganda are already suffering horribly as a result of the fighting, and the destruction of their crops is having a terrible effect on their nutritional condition,” said Ken Davies, WFP’s Country Director for Uganda. “All the stocks from the previous harvest have been exhausted, and no additional food production is expected during the following year.” WFP, which is the only humanitarian agency with access to camps and settlements beyond the two main towns in the region, does not have the necessary resources to continue providing all the urgently needed assistance. The agency says it has already been forced to reduce food rations being distributed in Gulu district by 30 per cent and warns that if the funding situation does not improve, further cuts are envisaged in other areas next month, resulting in complete lack of food security for the vulnerable people of the affected region. read more

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UNsupported initiative helps vaccinate 105 million children against hepatitis

According to the progress report of the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI), there is clear evidence that a public-private alliance, along with significant financial backing from the Alliance’s financing branch, known as the Vaccine Fund, can create a new interest in vaccines for the poorest countries. Partners in the Alliance include public institutions such as the UN World Health Organization (WHO), UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the World Bank; bilateral aid and non-governmental agencies; the vaccine industry; new partners such as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and developing country governments. “Our times require new solutions, including new partnerships – with private industry, developing country governments, and new ways of financing. The Alliance has helped us to deliver more and faster than if any of the partners had gone it alone,” said Dr. Tore Godal, Executive Secretary of GAVI. The report, released today in Dakar, Senegal, at a gathering of global health leaders from more than 60 countries, including more than 30 health and finance ministers, says that since the program started, 130 million vaccine doses have been delivered to countries. Meanwhile, preliminary estimates by WHO say those vaccines have already saved more than 100,000 lives. The report notes, however, that war, political turmoil, failing economies and natural disaster have impeded the transfer of GAVI/Vaccine Fund assets to local governments in some countries, while in others, the introduction of a complex new vaccine has over-stressed fragile health systems. read more

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In Iran IAEA chief sees uranium enrichment facility under construction

Mr. ElBaradei’s three-day trip, which included the visit to Natanz, is at the invitation of the Iranian Government and was originally slated for December before being rescheduled for this month, an IAEA spokesman in New York said.The IAEA Director-General is scheduled to meet with President Mohammed Khatami and other senior officials tomorrow before wrapping up his visit Sunday with a press conference.

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UN report spotlights ways to reduce potential devastation of natural disasters

From building terraced fields in the Indonesian mountains to reduce the severity of floods to constructing earthquake-resistant buildings in Japan to producing a radio soap opera in Central America with storylines about hurricane awareness, the UN’s disaster reduction arm hopes the report’s examples will serve as an inspiration and as a guide.More than 70,000 people died last year as a result of 700 separate natural disasters, such as earthquakes, floods and cyclones, around the world, according to the Inter-Agency Secretariat of the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UN/ISDR). Its new report is called Living with Risk: A global review of disaster reduction initiatives.These hazards cost $65 billion collectively and affected at least 600 million people – seven to 10 times’ more than the number of people affected by wars.Launching the report today, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Jan Egeland said the number of disasters is increasing – and the disasters are becoming more severe – because of the impact of human civilization on the earth.The amount of people at risk is also rising because population growth means more and more of the world’s largest cities and conurbations are located in prime hazard areas.But Mr. Egeland said the scale of human losses and damage to infrastructure and livelihoods has been reduced because countries are getting better at protecting themselves from disasters.He said the monsoonal rains that have caused deadly floods and landslides across South Asia this week have had a much smaller impact – while still extremely serious – than they would have had a few decades ago, when the region was less prepared.This is “for the simple reason that we now have enormously better preventative programmes” in place, he said.Mr. Egeland stressed, however, that international donors and aid agencies lag behind in recognizing the devastating impact that disasters have compared to conflicts.”The Bam [in Iran] and Algerian earthquakes [last year] killed 30,000 people in seconds – many more than” some wars have killed in a decade, he said, adding “it is much easier to get, unfortunately, assistance the day after an earthquake than it is to fund some preventative work” before a disaster strikes.The report also sets out strategies and priorities for countries and communities to consider when planning how to reduce the impact of natural hazards. These include setting up early-warning systems for disasters, managing land use more responsibly to reduce potential erosion and landslides and increasing construction of disaster-resistant buildings.A global conference on disaster reduction, to be held next January in Kobe, Japan, to coincide with the 10th anniversary of the deadly earthquake there, is expected to further discuss these issues. read more

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