Groundwater system still exists on Mars

first_imgLos Angeles: Mars may still have an active groundwater system deep below the surface, and could be feeding surface streams in some areas on the Red Planet, a study has found. Last year, researchers detected the presence of a deep-water lake on Mars under its south polar ice caps. Researchers at the University of Southern California (USC) in the US determined that groundwater likely exists in a broader geographical area than just the poles of Mars. They found that there is an active system, as deep as 750 metres, from which groundwater comes to the surface through cracks in the specific craters they analysed. Researchers studied the characteristics of Mars Recurrent Slope Linea, which are akin to dried, short streams of water that appear on some crater walls on Mars. Scientists previously thought these features were affiliated with surface water flow or close subsurface water flow, said Essam Heggy, member of the Mars Express Sounding radar experiment MARSIS probing Mars subsurface. “We suggest that this may not be true. We propose an alternative hypothesis that they originate from a deep pressurized groundwater source which comes to the surface moving upward along ground cracks,” Heggy said. “The experience we gained from our research in desert hydrology was the cornerstone in reaching this conclusion,” said Abotalib Z Abotalib, a postdoctoral research associate at USC. “We have seen the same mechanisms in the North African Sahara and in the Arabian Peninsula, and it helped us explore the same mechanism on Mars,” Abotalib said. The scientists concluded that fractures within some of Mars’ craters, enabled water springs to rise up to the surface as a result of pressure deep below. These springs leaked onto the surface, generating the sharp and distinct linear features found on the walls of these craters. The scientists also provide an explanation on how these water features fluctuate with seasonality on Mars. The study, published in the journal Nature Geoscience, suggests that groundwater might be deeper than previously thought in areas where such streams are observed on Mars. The findings suggest that the exposed part of these ground fractures associated with these springs as the primary location candidates to explore Mars’ habitability. Previous research to explore groundwater on Mars relied on interpreting the returned electromagnetic echoes sent from the radar-probing experiments from orbit onboard Mars Express and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. These experiments measured the reflection of the waves from both the surface and the subsurface whenever penetration was possible. However, this earlier method did not yet provide evidence of groundwater occurrence beyond the 2018 South Pole detection.last_img read more

Ggn traffic cops issued challans against 98954 vehicles in March

first_imgGururgam: In the month of March, the Gururgam traffic police levied fine on 98,954 vehicles. This was much lesser than the previous two months of January and February. While in February 1,11,653 vehicles were challaned and in January there were 1,29,853 drivers who were challaned.Traffic violators in the form of driving in the wrong lane and those parking the vehicles illegally were on top in the list among those who were challaned by the law enforcement officials. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderThere were 6,514 challans for those driving in the wrong lane and 11,233 fines levied on those who had parked their vehicles wrongly. In other violations, there were 601 incidents of drunken driving 1354 vehicles. Normally the Gurgaon traffic police and area police challans around 3,500 vehicles in the day but during special drives, the figures in the past have crossed to over 20,000 vehicles. The Gurugram police have conducted initiatives where a large number of challans were made on erring drivers. Yet the rate of accidents in Gurugram continues to be high. Last year there were over 442 people who lost their lives due to accidents on the city roads. Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchingsAccording to an official report, the majority of accidents happened beacuse the vehicles were moving in the wrong direction. While the traffic police claim there has been a crackdown, there are repeated complaints of rash, drunken and underage driving. “I hope the strict approach taken by the traffic police is beneficial in instilling proper traffic sense among the residents. Sadly, the situation is not bright. Being stationed in prominent areas will result in police getting hold of a large number of people however the main culprits which are the trucks, autos and private buses get away maybe because of their clout,” said Amardeep Singh, a resident. “As Gurugram is expanding very fast, it is not possible for our office to be in every corner. Yet, through these initiatives we want to ensure that commuting is safe in Gurugram,” said a senior police official from Gurugram police. In 2017, the Gurugram traffic police collected a total of Rs 11 crore through fines. This record was broken in the six months of 2018 itself with the law enforcement officials collecting Rs 15 crores from the period of January to August.last_img read more

Sensex cracks over 300 pts Nifty below 11700

first_imgMumbai: The benchmark BSE Sensex cracked over 300 points in early trade Monday tracking losses in index heavyweights RIL, HDFC and ICICI Bank, amid weak global cues, sinking rupee and soaring crude oil prices. The 30-share index was trading 309.56 points or 0.79 per cent lower at 38,830.72. The NSE Nifty too plunged to 101.80 points, or 0.87 per cent, to 11,651. In the previous session Thursday, the BSE bourse settled 135.36 points, or 0.34 per cent, lower at 39,140.28. The broader Nifty slipped 34.35 points, or 0.29 per cent, to 11,752.80. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscal Stock market was closed Friday on account of Good Friday. Yes Bank and Reliance Industries were the biggest losers in the Sensex pack, dropping up to 2.66 per cent, followed by IndusInd Bank, Bharti Airtel, Asian Paints, Kotak Bank, Tata Motors, Axis Bank, ICICI Bank, HDFC, Maruti, M&M, Bajaj Finance and SBI, shedding up to 1.72 per cent. Bucking weak market trend, TCS, PowerGrid, HCL Tech, Infosys, HDFC Bank and NTPC rose up to 1.31 per cent. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boost “After a period of significant momentum ahead of the general elections, the market may take a pause in some kind of an interim profit booking,” said Joseph Thomas-Head Research, Emkay Wealth Management. The accelerating scenario of a slowdown in global growth as also the definitive prospects of higher fuel prices and a weaker currency may also be working on the minds of the market participants at this juncture, he added. Meanwhile, foreign institutional investors (FIIs) purchased equity worth Rs 1,038.46 crore on Thursday, and domestic institutional investors (DIIs) sold shares to the tune of Rs 337.59 crore, provisional data available with stock exchanges showed. The rupee depreciated nearly 50 paise to 69.84 against the US dollar in early trade. Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, was 2.06 per cent higher at USD 73.84 per barrel. Elsewhere in Asia, benchmark equity indices in Shanghai, Tokyo and Seoul were trading in the red in early trade.last_img read more

IPL final MI CSK rivalry set to unfold on biggest stage

first_imgHyderabad: Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings seem to always spiral towards each other in their relentless hunt for the Indian Premier League title. On Sunday, the two sides will face each other for the fourth time this season. It is also the fourth time that CSK and MI will be pitted against each other in an IPL final. They are the two most successful teams in the tournament’s history and the final on Sunday will be another chapter in what has been an epic rivalry between two sides who are as different from each other as a pair of sporting opposites can be. Also Read – We will push hard for Kabaddi”s inclusion in 2024 Olympics: Rijiju While CSK are known to be a team that dominates the group stage, MI are notoriously slow starters. Both sides stayed true to their reputation this season. While MI had a sputtering start to their season, before taking off, CSK remained top of the table for much of the group stages and were one of the first teams to confirm qualification to the playoffs. However, CSK were piped to the top spot by Mumbai Indians thanks to the 9-wicket hiding the latter handed out to Kolkata Knight Riders in their last group game. MI are also the only team that CSK haven’t been able to beat this season with the MS Dhoni-led side losing the two group matches and the first qualifier against their rivals. Also Read – Djokovic to debut against Shapovalov at Shanghai Masters Mumbai also have the statistical edge in IPL finals played between the two sides, having ended three out of the four title clashes between the two sides on the winning side. However, CSK displayed ominous form in the way they swatted Delhi Capitals aside in the second Qualifier. The ever-reliable CSK spinners helped them restrict Delhi Capitals to 147/9. Coming to the chase, Shane Watson finally found form and his opening partnership of 81 with Faf du Plessis set the stage for a rollicking win for the Yellow Brigade. They ended up winning the match by six wickets with an over to spare. Unpredictability is a constant in the IPL, a fact that has been as apparent as ever this season with the numerous collapses and death over run bursts that we have seen in the group stage. There is no reason to believe that the final would be any different. But it will all boil down to the team which holds its nerves on the day of the big battle. Chennai Super Kings: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain), Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu, Shane Watson, Faf du Plessis, Murali Vijay, Ravindra Jadeja, Dhruv Shorey, Chaitanya Bishnoi, Rituraj Gaikwad, Dwayne Bravo, Karn Sharma, Imran Tahir, Harbhajan Singh, Mitchell Santner, Shardul Thakur, Mohit Sharma, K M Asif, Deepak Chahar, N Jagadeesan, Scott Kuggeleijn. Mumbai Indians: Rohit Sharma (C), Quinton de Kock, Suryakumar Yadav, Yuvraj Singh, Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Mitchell McClenaghan, Mayank Markande, Rahul Chahar, Jasprit Bumrah, Anmolpreet Singh, Siddhesh Lad, Ankul Roy, Evin Lewis, Pankaj Jaiswal, Ben Cutting, Ishan Kishan, Aditya Tare, Rasikh Salam, Barinder Sran, Jayant Yadav, Beuran Hendricks and Lasith Malinga.last_img read more

Man shot dead in Loni

first_imgGhaziabad: A 20-year-old trader was allegedly shot dead by his neighbouring shopkeeper after a heated argument broke out between them in Loni area of Ghaziabad on Sunday night. According to police, the deceased has been identified as Rohit Kumar, a native of Roop Nagar area in Loni. Cops said that the deceased runs a RO water plant in Loni area while the accused is a owner of garment shop in the market. Police officials said that the incident took place around 10 pm on Sunday, when the accused, identified as Ankit (24), opened fire on Rohit following an altercation. Also Read – Odd-Even: CM seeks transport dept’s views on exemption to women, two wheelers, CNG vehicles”Preliminary investigations showed that a heated argument broke out between the Rohit and Ankit at the time of closing shop, following which Ankit took no time to pull out his pistol and opened fire on Rohit. The victim was shot two bullets and he fell down on the ground. The other shopkeepers of the market took him to a nearby hospital where he succumbed to injuries. Police took the body into custody which was sent for post mortem,” said Neeraj Kumar Jadaun, Superintendent of Police (Rural), Ghaziabad. “Following the incident, an FIR under section 302 (punishment for murder) has been registered against the accused. The accused is at large while we have formed teams who are searching various suspected hideouts to nab him at the earliest,” added Jadaun.last_img read more

Morocco German Pedophile Receives Reduced Sentence After Agreeing to Marry One

Fez – The Court of Appeal of Tetouan in northern Morocco has reduced a one-year jail sentence for German journalist to six months based on his agreement to marry one of the girls he was convicted of molesting, according to Spanish news agency EFE.  The journalist, who was convicted of attempting to seduce two underage teenage girls, reached an agreement with the family of one of the girls to marry her.The German citizen was arrested last March when a group of people caught him red-handed inside his car with the two 16-year old girls near their high school. The journalist, who had been sentenced to one year in jail and has already served four months, claimed he was innocent of the charges and emphasized that he intended to marry one of the girls.The reduction in the sentence will likely stir a controversy in the country as it is reminiscent of the case of Amina Filali, a teenager who committed suicide in 2012 after she was forced by her family to marry her rapist.According to Morocco’s penal code, raping an underage child is punishable by 20 to 30 years of imprisonment. The law is rarely enforced, however, and as the case of the German journalist demonstrates, a rapist can still escape prison or receive a reduced sentence if he agrees to marry his victim.The Moroccan government has made promises to reform the country’s penal code and impose harsher sentences on sex offenders. But this sentence indicates that Morocco still has a way to go towards protecting its citizens from sexualpredators.As recently as July 18, the criminal court of Marrakech sentenced a pedophile, who had been convicted of raping a 10-year old child, to as little as 2 years in prison.© Morocco World News. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, rewritten or redistributed read more

Michelle Obama Sparks Controversy for Not Wearing a Veil in Saudi

Rabat – U.S President Barack Obama went to Saudi Arabia on Tuesday to pay respect to late Saudi King Abdullah in what appeared to be an expression of how important is the U.S.-American relationships. However, Obama’s visit to America’s Middle Eastern ally was not at the center of attention, at least on social media platforms.Instead, it was the attire his wife, Michelle Obama, wore in the conservative kingdom that sparked much of the controversy. Saudi state television showed images of the American first lady not wearing a veil in a country where women are expected to cover their heads and faces and must be accompanied by a male relative.Michelle Obama wore clothing that fully covered her arms, but not her head. Other foreign female guests were also shown in the photographs from the official event not wearing veils or headscarves.Many Saudi social media users took to Twitter and used hashtags that criticized Michelle Obama’s ‘bold’ move. Some Saudi Twitter users pointed out that Michelle Obama had worn a headscarf on recent trip to Indonesia, but not in Saudi Arabia.???????? ???????? #?????_??????_???? ?? ??? ??????? ??? ????????? ??????? ???? ???? ????????? @mshanarm @s_a_aldweesh pic.twitter.com/KvGTO2hgG9— ???? ??????? (@Riyadh_K_S_A) 27 Janvier 2015 #?????_??????_???? ??? ?????? ????? ???????? ?????? ?? ?????? ? ??? ?????? ?????? ?? ??????? ??? ?????? ? ??? ?????? ??????? ?? ??? ??????? — ????????? : Beer (@t3ber_) 27 Janvier 2015Otheres, however, applauded the first lady’s move, describing it as a ‘defiance’ to Saudi Arabia’s laws and traditions.I wish Michelle had bare arms and a plunging neckline. #?????_??????_???? — Je Suis Reality (@preach_atheism) 28 Janvier 2015Be your self and don’t sacrifice your values to please others.#?????_??????_???? — #Justice4Serena (@WORLDEMPATH) 28 Janvier 2015Hey Saudi Arabia, you might sell us lots of oil but you won’t force your primitive and hateful ways to treat women. No. #?????_??????_???? — Camila Qariwarmi (@qariwarmi) 28 Janvier 2015Saudis here, take a seat &let the world move forward unlike your static existence that is very similar to pre-islam time #?????_??????_???? — Mohamed Hemish (@MohamedHemish) 28 Janvier 2015#?????_??????_???? #MichelleObama blurred Problem solved? pic.twitter.com/k4KatNat39— colonelC (@oO_Qo) 27 Janvier 2015 read more

Morocco Netherlands Ink MoU In Energy Cooperation

Rabat – Morocco and The Netherlands signed, here Wednesday, a memorandum of understanding in energy cooperation.Signed by Moroccan Minister of Energy, Mines, Water and Environment Abdelkader Amara and Dutch Foreign Minister Bert Koenders, the agreement provides for promoting a sustainable energy model and taking up the challenges of the sector.It also seeks to strengthen cooperation between government, research institutions and companies in the two countries, so as to step up the implementation of energy policies. The agreement, which includes natural gas, liquefied natural gas and renewable energy, provides for reforming the energy sector to better open up to markets, promoting a sustainable energy model.Both parties also undertake, under this agreement, to exchange technical and institutional experiences related to liquefied natural gas and its processing, legal and tax systems, and the development of joint projects. read more

When Muhammad Ali told the World about the True Islam

New York – Following the terrorist attacks of 9/11 in the U.S., former American heavyweight boxer champion Muhammad Ali and American actor Will Smith sent a message to the world about the true Islam.The video was made in 2001 when hate speech about Muslims was spread across the world, especially in America.Unfortunately, many did not understand the message of peace and 14 years later the same statement applies. Following the recent anti-Islam rhetoric and hate speech that targets Muslims, Occupy Democrats, a U.S. political organization shared a famous video where Muhammad Ali tells the world about Islam.The video has been repackaged and addressed to Donald Trump’s supporters who along with their candidate blame all Muslims for the terrorist attacks committed by ISIS.The video is captioned, “don’t judge an entire religion by the actions of the few”.“Heroes come in all shapes, sizes, color and religions. This man might be the most famous person in the world,” Smith says to introduce Muhammad Ali.“He’s one of the greatest heroes of our time – and he’s a Muslim,” he added.He goes on to remind us that “It was hate, not religion that motivated the horrible acts of September 11”, adding that we should not “respond to mindless hatred with blind vengeance”.After speaking up his mind, Will Smith cedes the turn to “The People’s Champion” to express himself in one of the most touching and sincere statements defending the truth of Islam.“I’m a Muslim. I’ve been a Muslim for 20 years. I’m against killing and violence, and all Muslims are against it. People should know the real truth about Islam. You know me. I’m a boxer. I’ve been called the greatest of all time. People recognize me for being a boxer and a man of truth,” Ali said.“I wouldn’t be here representing Islam if it was really like terrorists make it look. I think all people should know the truth, come to recognize the truth, because Islam is peace,” the champion firmly stressed.“I’m against killing, murder, and the terrorists, and the people doing that in the name of Islam, are wrong, and if I had a chance I would do something about it,” he concluded.Born Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr. in 1942 in Louisville, Kentucky, Muhammad Ali changed his name in 1964 when he joined the Nation of Islam (NOI). He converted to Sunni Islam, which aligned with his beliefs, in 1975 after the death of NOI’s former leader. read more

AU President Remains Silent on Algerias Deportation of SubSaharan Migrants

Casablanca — In a somewhat controversial move, President of the African Union Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma has remained silent on the issue of Algeria’s deportation of hundreds of sub-Saharan migrants and refugees — could this indicate an implicit alliance with Algeria?Various media across the continent (namely in Morocco, Mali, the Ivory Coast), have picked up on Dlamini-Zuma’s silence on the mistreatment and mass deportations of sub-Saharan migrants and refugees out of Algeria, labelling the utter lack of reaction as indication of an implicit alliance between Dlamini-Zuma and Algeria. Assabah’s weekend edition, for one, says, “The silence denotes a blatant compromise with Algiers on the part of Dlamini-Zuma, who preferred to turn a blind eye to condemnations expressed either officially or by international human rights NGOS.” Regardless of the idea of a somewhat unethical rapport between the AU leader and the union member country that is Algeria, it remains quite odd that Dlamini-Zuma has not felt compelled to denounce or even discuss, at the very least, the mistreatment of sub-Saharan migrants and refugees in Algeria, even while the injustice currently being carried out is undeniable. Last week, an investigation carried out by RFI revealed that deportees being transported out of Algeria and to Niger by way of Tamanrasset had been fed poorly and held in deplorable conditions. “The police won’t let us outside. If we go out, they beat us. They’re treating us like dogs,” one migrant told RFI over the phone. On December 9, the Human Rights Watch (HRW) issued a report saying that “Algerian authorities since December 1, 2016, have rounded up more than 1,400 sub-Saharan migrants and reportedly deported at least several hundred across the border into Niger.”The HRW report went on to demand the halting of deportations in accordance with the 1951 Refugee Convention and the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of their Families, both of which Algeria is party to. No word, however, has yet to be given on whether or not Algerian officials intend on discontinuing the deportations in response to these demands. read more

Its not too late to set money resolutions for 2019

New Year’s Day has come and gone and perhaps your resolve to stick to your resolutions has disappeared by now as well. If so, don’t despair — it’s not too late to set and achieve some money goals.WHY GOALS MATTERIt is important to use goals to help achieve big plans. For example, you may want to retire comfortably or own a house one day. But how do you do that? By setting smaller, achievable goals to get you down that path.“It’s planning,” said Michael Eisenberg, CPA, financial planner and member of a financial literacy commission for the American institute of CPAs. “Setting goals is equal to planning. When you have a goal you can see it and take steps toward it.”And when it comes to something as important and long-term as your financial security, goals are extremely important. Once you write down a specific goal it begins to become more real. And if you take action on it and see incremental success, it can often provide the positive feedback loop that helps keep people going.“It’s interesting to watch human behaviour,” Eisenberg said. “When (clients) start to set some money away and see it grow they start to (think) ‘wow’ and continue to do it.”WHY NOW?New Year’s has passed but a recent study from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania found that other days that have importance to individuals can serve as fresh starts of sorts as well.The study found that certain “landmark” days — such as a birthday, the start of a new week or beginning of a new school term — can jump start new habits. The exact day doesn’t matter as much as the fact it is embraced by an individual. That’s because when people buy into these landmarks, they interrupt the traditional decision-making process, helping people focus on their high-level goals rather than the mundane details of daily life.Consider a stop for coffee in the morning. Where someone might normally decide if they are going to stop based on a desire for coffee or how long the line is, this thinking may shift if someone has embraced a bigger goal, said Wharton researcher Katherine Milkman. The thinking may shift to “Is this coffee helping my ultimate goal of saving money?”Milkman, who specializes in behaviour change and decision making, also notes that people should not beat themselves up if they have tried and failed before.“Change is hard,” she said. “We have all tried these things before and we all need a kick in the butt to try again.”HOW TO CRAFT A GOALIt is important to pick a goal that really matters to you.Once you have a goal, make sure it is achievable. So don’t say you will save $29,000 if you earn $30,000, Milkman said as an example. Try something more bite-sized like saving $2,000 and calculate what that might mean on a weekly basis. Then figure out what steps you need to take (take the bus, bring your lunch twice a week, etc.) to make that happen.Lastly, write it down. Experts across the board agree this helps cement your goal.HOW TO MAKE THEM STICKConsider both the carrot and the stick.On the carrot side, keep your bigger goal in mind when you make smaller decisions along the way. And maybe consider how your future self might feel if you achieve that goal. A 2014 study from researchers from a group of universities used age progression software to show people what they looked like at retirement age. Those who saw the older images of themselves were significantly more willing to save money for retirement than those who had not. You may also want to consider the stick: some people commit to a financial penalty if they fail to meet smaller goals along the way.Some people make their goals public as the shame of admitting failure keeps them committed. “Anything you can do to make it painful to fail makes it incentive to succeed,” Milkman said.Also, try making it easy on yourself. If you are committed to saving or paying off a debt, automate it so that money is moved without you even having to take further action.Sarah Skidmore Sell, The Associated Press read more

Akhannouch ECJ Did Not Clearly Mention a Ban on Fishing

Rabat – Morocco’s Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Aziz Akhannouch, has responded to the European  Court of Justice decision regarding the EU-Morocco fisheries deal, noting that “the verdict does not clearly say that there is a ban on fishing in the waters of southern provinces.”According to Spanish news agency EFE, the minister said that European boats have the right to keep fishing in Moroccan waters until the current agreement expires in July.Akhannouch told the press on Tuesday that “the agreement is valid. The court did not follow the recommendation or the opinion of [Melchior Wathelet],” who made the comments that the EU-Morocco fisheries agreement should be declared null and void because it includes Western Sahara. The Moroccan official added that, “the court did not prohibit fishing in the territorial areas,” and that “negotiations for another agreement will be conducted when things will be more clarified with the European Union and the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Fisheries.”Today, the European Court of Justice announced its verdict on the EU-Morocco fisheries deal, reaffirming the validity of the deal between the two parties as long as it does not involve the waters of Western Sahara.According to the ECJ, the fisheries agreement between the EU and Morocco “is valid insofar as it is not applicable to Western Sahara to its adjacent waters.”Legal experts and analysts have been raising concerns about the decision of the court, urging it to exceed its legal mandate by meddling in politics. read more

Honda Aircraft fined 45K for citizenship job requirements

GREENSBORO, N.C. — The U.S. Department of Justice says the maker of HondaJet violated the Immigration and Nationality Act by refusing to consider or hire certain work-authorized non-U.S. citizens because of their citizenship status.The Winston-Salem Journal reports the federal department said Friday that an investigation concluded Honda Aircraft published at least 25 job postings between 2015 and 2016 that illegally required a particular citizenship status. Honda Aircraft has been fined nearly $45,000.The government says the company misunderstood requirements under the International Traffic in Arms Regulations and the Export Administration Regulations.The company has agreed to remove specific citizenship requirements from job postings, unless permitted by law. The settlement also requires some employees to attend training on the act’s anti-discrimination provision.The newspaper couldn’t immediately reach Honda Aircraft for comment.___Information from: Winston-Salem Journal, http://www.journalnow.comThe Associated Press read more

El Othmani Apologizes to Boycotters Calls for Tolerance

Rabat – After nearly a month since the launch of the online boycott, Saad Eddine El Othmani has finally reacted, apologizing to customers for “verbal expressions and offenses” made against boycotters.During a meeting held in the upper house of the parliament today,  Othmani addressed an apology message to people supporting the online boycott targeting three companies against “unjustified” increase prices of their products.The list of companies includes: Sidi Ali bottled water, Centrale Danone dairy products, and Afriquia gasoline. In his speech in the monthly meeting today, El Othmani said that “the government cannot be against the interest of citizens, as some think.”On the eve of the holy month of Ramadan, a month of tolerance and forgiveness, El Othmani has seized the opportunity to urge boycotters to cease their campaign and  “move towards the future, to tolerance and positive start.”He called on the boycotters then to turn the page.The head of government apologized for statements made by some ministers in his government, emphasizing that his cabinet is committed to fulfilling its responsibility to protect consumers.After the launch of the boycott on April 20, Minister of Finance and Economy Mohamed Boussaid denounced the campaign, calling supporters of the campaign “fools.”Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries Aziz Akhannouch also condemned the boycott, asserting the ineffectiveness of an internet boycott against 470,000 employees in the dairy sector.In response, El Othmani explained that his government is also responsible for preserving the dignity of the citizen, producers and consumers equally.He added that the government has been following the campaign and is implementing a set of measures to meet the needs and aspirations expressed and will ensure the protection of the purchasing power of citizens. read more

Kauai officials sue vacation home owners for rental fines

LIHUE, Hawaii — Kauai officials are suing the owners of a vacation home, claiming they are violating county zoning ordinances for using the property as a short-term rental.The Garden Island reports the Kauai County Planning Department filed the lawsuit last week, seeking to compel Greg and Joanne Allen to pay $130,000 in fines.According to the lawsuit, county officials have been trying for more than a year to stop the couple from renting out their four-bedroom Wailua house that is outside the area designated for transient vacation rentals.A hearing officer sided with the county last year after the Allens contested the fines.Greg Allen says the planning department has been “overzealous,” and the previous proceedings were unfair.He says he has no immediate plans to stop renting the place out.___Information from: The Garden Island, http://thegardenisland.com/The Associated Press read more

Italys EGP Nareva to Start Building 180 MW Wind Farm in

Rabat – The Midelt wind farm is the first part of the 850 megawatt Integrated Wind Project (PEI) which includes four other wind farms, Enel Green Power (EGP) wrote in a statement on November 5.The Midelt wind farm will cost MAD 2.5 billion and is expected to be complete in 2 years.Morocco’s National Electricity Office (ONEE), the Moroccan Agency for Sustainable Energy (MASEN), and a consortium of both EGP and the Moroccan energy company Nareva all signed financing agreements on November 5 to start the wind farm’s construction. The project is “financed through equity investments from shareholders as well as debt financing from ONEE,” according to EGP.Read also: Moroccan MASEN and AFDB Announce “Desert to Power” InitiativeThe Midelt wind farm “is set to contribute to the economic and social development of Morocco, and particularly that of the Midelt region, notably in terms of job creation and use of local services,” wrote EGP.The Midelt farm is expected to have enough capacity to power a city like Agadir, with 500,000 inhabitants, and save 400,000 tons of CO2 emissions per year.“With this first, important step that we are taking today, Enel Green Power will support Morocco’s energy demand and help the country meet its objective to increase power generation from renewables, as announced in its Domestic Energy Strategy,” said Antonio Cammisecra, head of EGP. Once the Midelt wind farm becomes operational, the companies will sell the electricity produced to ONEE for a 20-year power purchase agreement. The blades and towers of the wind farm will be manufactured in Morocco through Spanish Siemens Gamesa, the only supplier of wind turbines for the project.Read also: Soluna and Blockchain DMG Partner for Moroccan Wind Farm ProjectMorocco’s ambitious wind projectThe EGP and Nareva consortium were awarded the 850 megawatt Integrated Wind Project following an international tender.The wind project will cost MAD 12 billion.The project, according to EGP, “marks a turning point in Morocco’s national energy strategy, aimed at meeting the country’s growing demand for electricity, at competitive prices while complying with Morocco’s sustainable development goals.”Nareva CEO Said El Hadi said, “The 850 MW [Integrated Wind Project] is a project that will enable Morocco to make significant progress in meeting its energy strategy.” “We are pleased to support the Government in achieving its goal of increasing the share of renewable energy to 52% of the country’s installed capacity by 2030,” El Hadi added.Read also: King Mohammed VI’s Renewable Energy Goals Reached Within DeadlineOn November 2, King Mohammed VI chaired a meeting to follow up the implementation of Morocco’s renewable energy strategy. During the meeting, the King gave instructions “to increase the initial ambitions for renewable energy to exceed the current goal of 52 percent of the national electric mix by 2030.”The other four wind farms included in the 850 megawatt wind projects will be built in Tangier (100 megawatts), Jbel Lahdid (200 megawatts) in western Morocco, and Tiskrad (300 megawatts) and Boujdour (100 megawatts) in southern provinces. read more

Ontario orders Hydro One to cap CEO pay at 15 million

TORONTO — Ontario has issued a directive to Hydro One, ordering it to pay its CEO no more than $1.5 million per year.The partially privatized utility and the government have been at loggerheads over executive compensation, with Hydro One refusing repeated requests to slash the pay.In a statement today, Energy Minister Greg Rickford says he has issued a formal directive to cap the CEO compensation.It also includes a requirement that the board chair be paid no more than $120,000 and board members be paid no more than $80,000 per year.Hydro One had submitted a proposal for maximum CEO compensation to be nearly $2.8 million, saying it was taking into account the need to attract and retain highly qualified leadership.The Progressive Conservatives campaigned hard against Hydro One salaries in last year’s election campaign, dubbing then-CEO Mayo Schmidt the “six-million-dollar man,” and after they were elected, one of the government’s first acts was to force Schmidt’s resignation.The Canadian Press read more

King Mohammed VI Visits Gabonese President Ali Bongo in Hospital

Rabat – After a visit on Monday, King Mohammed VI was pleased to see the health status of the Gabonese president is improving, according to Maghreb Arab Press (MAP).The Gabonese president arrived in Rabat on November 29 to recuperate following a stroke in Saudi Arabia.The King requested the transfer of the Gabonese president, suggesting he finish his recovery in Morocco instead of London. On November 27, Ondimba’s wife Sylvia Bongo Ondimba announced that the president would leave Riyadh for Rabat to finish recovering.Read Also: Gabon’s Ali Bongo Arrives in Morocco to Recover from StrokeGabon’s vice president, Pierre Claver Maganga Moussavou, has taken over official duties in Bongo’s absence.The monarch and the Gabonese president share a strong friendship. In 2017, Bongo shared a picture of himself and the King as teenageers. The picture illustrates the long-standing friendship between the two leaders. read more

New Evidence Emerges in Journalist Hajar Raissounis Abortion Case

Rabat – Five days after Hajar Raissouni’s arrest, on August 31, new evidence has emerged causing more controversy around the case. A medical report, signed by Dr. Samir Bargach from Rabat’s Ibn-Sina Hospital, confirms that Raissouni underwent an abortion.Additionally, the medical report claims that this pregnancy and abortion was not Raissouni’s first. According to the report she had undergone a previous abortion six months prior to the alleged procedure that prompted her arrest.However, newspaper Akhbar Al Yaoum, Raissouni’s employer, drew attention to inconsistencies within the report. According to the medical report, “there is no trace of a tenaculum being used on Hajar’s uterus”. However, the newspaper noted that “abortion is impossible without the use of a tenaculum”. The new evidence will be presented in the next hearing session, on September 9. Until then, Raissouni, along with the other defendants in the case, will remain in custody.Raissouni’s arrest dates back to Saturday, August 31. According to Raissouni’s narrative, relayed by Akhbar Al Yaoum, six undercover police officers surrounded her and her fiance, a Sudanese researcher and activist, right after they left a gynecologist’s office in Agdal, Rabat.The police officers then proceeded to take them both back to the doctor’s office, saying that Raissouni had undergone an abortion, which she denies. Raissouni, her fiance, and the medical staff were all arrested on a range of charges related to illegal abortions.The defense of the doctor mentioned that the medical check-up done on the journalist when in custody proved that she had not undergone an abortion. “Expertise at the University Hospital Ibn-Sina, at the request of the judicial police, confirmed Raissouni’s medical state,” according to Al Yaoum 24.Online backlashThe arrest of Hajar Raissouni sparked a lot of controversy, with Moroccan people divided on the motives behind the journalist’s arrest.Some Moroccan internet users have speculated that the charges against Raissouni are based on a “hidden agenda”. Raissouni’s uncle, Ahmed Raissouni, is the former head of the Movement of Unity and Reform, a branch of the Justice and Development Party (PJD).The arrest also comes about one year and a half after Taoufik Bouachrine, the founder of Akhbar Al Yaoum where Raissouni works, was arrested for “adultery” and “human trafficking”.On the other hand, while some Moroccans defend the importance of anti-abortion laws, others believe that it is a personal affair that shouldn’t have been made public in the first place.Toute l’affaire de #HajarRaissouni me rend dingue, le maroc se transforme en une dictature à la nord-coréenne. Nous sommes d’accord qu’il y a une thérorie du #complot derière cette histoire.— Stendhalienne (@stendhalienne) September 5, 2019“The whole case of Hajar Raissouni makes me mad. Morocco is turning into a North Korea style dictatorship. We agree that there is a conspiracy theory behind this story,” posted one twitter user.Tout mon soutien à #HajarRaissouni, injustement arrêtée pour soit-disant “relations sexuelles hors mariage” et “avortement illégal”. Tout laisse penser qu’il s’agit d’une arrestation politique. S’il vous plaît, lisez ce thread, elle a besoin de soutien. https://t.co/Ga6732Qjgw— Rachid l’instit (@rachidowsky13) September 4, 2019“All my support goes to Hajar Raissouni, arrested unjustly for ‘out-of-marriage sex’ and ‘illegal abortion’. Everything leads to think that it is a political arrest.”, commented another twitter user.Je refuse de savoir si #HajarRaissouni a véritablement subi un IVG ou pas. Je m’en fous de le savoir. C’est sa vie privée. La presse doit pouvoir dénoncer ces pratiques, et parler clairement d’un 2 poids 2 mesures sur l’application de ces lois, à la base très contestées— Othman Naciri (@othmannaciri) September 5, 2019“I refuse to know if Hajar Raissouni underwent an abortion or not. I don’t care to know. It is her personal life,” reads a tweet.Abortion in MoroccoThis arrest also reawakened the public debate about abortion laws in Morocco.It is illegal to carry out an unauthorized abortion as a doctor, and for a pregnant woman to undergo the unauthorized procedure.However, article 453 of Morocco’s penal code stipulates that abortion is not punishable if it is practiced to preserve the mother’s health in case of a medical threat. In this case, abortion can be openly practiced with the spouse’s authorization.In 2016, the Moroccan government agreed to legalize abortion in cases of rape, incest, situations where the mother has serious mental health issues, or when the fetus has a serious illness or malformation. However, these changes have not yet been implemented. read more

Bet responsibly A struggle for some as sportsbook ads widen

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — It’s hard enough for compulsive gamblers to stop betting.Now, in a growing number of places, they’re bombarded with ads urging them to gamble on sports.It’s a temptation they didn’t face a year ago.And it’s raising questions as to how tightly regulated sports betting advertising should be in the United States.Aside from requiring a mention of a compulsive gambling telephone hotline, the U.S. takes a much lighter hand with these ads than some European governments.Gambling ads are increasingly being banned or restricted in several European countries. The gambling companies themselves say they are sensitive to compulsive gamblers and try not to target them with ads.Wayne Parry, The Associated Press read more