first_imgCristiano Ronaldo Xavi digs at Ronaldo as he backs Neymar: He scored a penalty & a knee goal! Sacha Pisani Last updated 1 year ago 15:50 2/18/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(34) RonaldoNeymar-cropped Getty Images Cristiano Ronaldo Real Madrid Real Madrid v PSG PSG UEFA Champions League Neymar The former Barcelona star denied two-goal hero Cristiano Ronaldo was superior to the Brazilian attacker in Real Madrid’s win over Paris Saint-Germain Cristiano Ronaldo may have played a key role in sinking Paris Saint-Germain on Wednesday, but Xavi dismissed the Real Madrid star’s performance as he defended Neymar’s display in the Champions League loss.Ronaldo was at the double as the Champions League titleholders came from behind to beat French giants PSG 3-1 in the first leg of their last-16 clash at the Santiago Bernabeu, while Neymar was criticised for his subdued outing.AdChoices广告Five-time Ballon d’Or winner Ronaldo became the first player to score 100 goals for the same club in Europe’s elite competition after cancelling out Adrien Rabiot’s opener midweek before putting Madrid ahead with seven minutes remaining. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player However, former Barcelona midfielder Xavi denied Ronaldo was superior to Neymar in the Spanish capital.”They said that Cristiano was still better than Neymar,” Xavi said in an interview with So Foot. “No, no, it’s unfair.”What did Ronaldo do in the game? He scored a penalty and a knee goal…”But what about the dangerous situations created by Neymar? And the counter-attacks that he launched, the fear that he sowed in Madrid?”Ligue 1 leaders PSG welcome Madrid to Paris for the return leg March 6.last_img read more

first_imgTORONTO – Michael Bradley stood with his teammates on top of a red double-decker bus as chants of his name rang through the downtown streets of Toronto.The Toronto FC captain soaked it all in for a moment before making a fist with his right hand and pounding it on his heart. And then he lifted the Philip F. Anschutz Trophy in appreciation of the city that stuck behind the team as it made an 11-year journey from perennial league doormat to the best team in Major League Soccer.“This has been our dream, our obsession for the last year,” Bradley told a crowd of thousands Monday afternoon at Nathan Phillips Square for a fan rally celebrating Toronto FC’s first ever MLS Cup victory.“And to be able to take care of everything that we wanted, to lift that trophy in this city in front of our fans, to give everybody a day like this…this is why every single one of us is here.”Toronto beat the Seattle Sounders 2-0 in the MLS championship game at BMO Field on Saturday, becoming the first Canadian team to win the MLS Cup title. Seattle had beaten Toronto on the Reds’ home turf in the 2016 final, winning on penalty kicks following a 0-0 draw.Fans wearing tuques, jackets, sweaters, scarves — whatever red clothing they could get their hands on — stood along Front and Bay Streets to salute their team.There was a few in attendance, like 22-year-old Nicholas Fiore, that called in sick to work to brave the chilly -6 C conditions.“I said, ‘Guys, TFC won the championship, you won’t see me on Monday.’”Martin Omes has been a member of the Red Patch Boys — a Toronto FC supporters group — since the team started in Major League Soccer in 2007. He said having a team to get behind was huge while growing up playing local soccer, even if it took the Reds nine seasons just to make the playoffs.“I’ve never been able to witness a Toronto major championship before,” Omes said. “So to be able to be on the field with all my best friends, together as a family as one, celebrating to the top of our lungs, there’s no better feeling.“Probably one of the best moments in my entire life.”It’s the second championship Toronto has celebrated in the last two weeks after the CFL’s Toronto Argonauts won the Grey Cup at the end of November.Bradley and his teammates popped a bottle of champagne on the bus outside Air Canada Centre before the starting the parade route. Supporters groups waved flags and chanted while walking in front of the team’s bus.Toronto FC players basked in the chants of “TFC” and sprayed more champagne towards people on the sidewalk along the way.Fans were already gathered when Toronto FC arrived with the Philip F. Anschutz Trophy at Nathan Phillips Square, where several team personnel made speeches.Bradley told fans that he had immersed himself in Toronto’s sports culture since joining the team in 2014 and said his team will work hard to emulate the Blue Jays’ back-to-back World Series titles of 1992 and 1993.“We’re going to enjoy this for a little bit longer and then we’re going to dust ourselves off and make sure we get back to work so that we can be lifting that trophy again next year,” he said.Toronto (20-5-9) was the best team during the regular season and set a record with 69 points — the most ever in MLS history.Led by Bradley and forwards Sebastian Giovinco and Jozy Altidore, the Reds set franchise records for wins (20), goals scored (74), fewest goals allowed (37), shutouts (13), home wins (13), home points (42), road wins (seven) and road points (27).Toronto also won the Voyageurs Cup as Canadian champions, beating the Montreal Impact in a two-game series in June.Altidore scored the winner in Saturday’s victory over Seattle and took the microphone after Monday’s event to say a few final words.“I just want to let you guys know that I’ve been partying since Saturday,” Altidore said.“And baby, I’m TFC until I die.”—Follow @RyanBMcKenna on Twitterlast_img read more

first_imgLast Thursday, Ta’Rhonda Jones, star of FOX’s hit show Empire, was honored in Chicago at the nationally syndicated radio show Cafe Mocha’s Salute Her Tour presented by Hyundai.The gala was co-hosted by The Real’s Loni Love, and featured a performance from R&B music star Avant. The Salute Her tour recognizes women who share a common commitment to make a positive contribution to strengthen their respective communities.At the luncheon, Ta’Rhonda Jones took time out of her demanding agenda to talk to LookToTheStars.org about her work with youth and with her local community.How have you been able to use your platform as a celebrity to support your local community or specific social causes?Next Friday, I will be throwing an event for the kids at my old high school. I’ve been going from school to school talking to the kids because today, in this new day and age, believing is a fairy tale. No one uses the word believe or faith. I just want to be the voice for the ones who are not as outspoken as I am to let them know that anything possible, you just have to want it.I feel like today, women, especially our young girls, don’t have enough role models. Every time you turn on the TV, or you look on social media, or anything, you see women that are voluptuous, with a face full of makeup. Girls look at that and they think that’s it. They think that that is the way to be or that is how they should be.I want to be that girl to let them know that being yourself is okay. During my High School years, I was trying to portray something I wasn’t just to be accepted. And I feel like girls today are doing things to feel accepted. And I just want to let them know you can go a long way just being yourself. I’m a witness to it; you can go a long way being yourself.What’s your old High School?Simeon! Home of the Wolverines!Will working with young girls be one of your special causes?I would love it to be! Even before Empire, I’ve always had a lot of girl look up to me. Even my friends, and my older sisters; I have 8 siblings! And they all look up to me.When I landed the role for Empire they told me, “We knew you were gonna be something. We just didn’t know what or when.” A lot of people always ask, “Well, how did they react to you gaining this role,” and I say, “They’re excited, but not like ‘OH YEAH!’ because they already knew this was bound to happen.So like I said, I want to be that voice for young girls. I want to be able to guide them. I feel like girls today don’t have enough guidance.If you could give young girls three pieces of advice, what would it be?Oh, I only have two – and it’s two words. Two rules in life I live by, which are lie and steal. Lie down your own rules, and steal every opportunity that comes your way.Do you have any other charity events coming up on your schedule?Right now, I just want youth to be able to express themselves, so I want to continue going from school to school and host these talent showcases, which is what I’m doing for Simeon.What are your thought’s about the recent backlash that NBA player Stephan Curry’s wife, Ayesha Curry, received regarding her preference for classy clothing over more revealing clothing?I love it! You know? Something needed to be said. I feel the same way. A lot of women got offended, but if the shoe fits, wear it. There’s nothing wrong with showing a little here and there, but leave imagination for some folks.Do you think if more women like you and Ayesha Curry spread that kind of message more, then more young women will get it?It takes a village to build a home. Two or three women who feel the same way as myself and Ayesha Curry wouldn’t change a damn thing. Just two folks having the same opinion wouldn’t matter.Congratulations to Ta’Rhonda Jones on her Salute Her: Gentle Treatment ‘Woman of Style’ award and we wish her the best on her commitment to empowering today’s youth.Copyright ©2015Look to the Starslast_img read more

21 January 2011An independent United Nations human rights expert today called on Indian authorities to do much more to ensure a safe and conducive environment for human rights defenders working in the country. “I am particularly concerned at the plight of human rights defenders working for the rights of marginalized people, i.e. Dalits, Adavasis (tribals), religious minorities and sexual minorities, who face particular risks and ostracism because of their activities,” Margaret Sekaggya said at the end of her fact-finding mission to the country. The visit by Ms. Sekaggya, the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders, began on 10 January and included discussions with State officials, a broad segment of civil society and the press, representatives of UN agencies and the diplomatic corps, as well as visits to five states.She underscored the testimonies she received about human rights defenders and their families, who have been killed, tortured, ill-treated, disappeared, threatened, arbitrarily arrested and detained, falsely charged and under surveillance because of their legitimate work in upholding human rights and fundamental freedoms. “I am deeply concerned about the branding and stigmatization of human rights defenders, labelled as naxalites (Maoists), terrorists, militants, insurgents or anti-nationalists,” Ms. Sekaggya said. Defenders, including journalists, who report on violations by State and non-State actors in areas affected by insurgency are being targeted by both sides, she noted. “I urge the authorities to clearly instruct security forces to respect the work of human rights defenders, conduct prompt and impartial investigations on violations committed against human rights defenders and prosecute perpetrators.” Among her other recommendations, Ms. Sekaggya said the Government should enact a law on the protection of human rights defenders “in full and meaningful consultation with civil society,” and review the functioning of the National Human Rights Commission with a view to strengthening it. Noting the “arbitrary application of security laws at the national and state levels,” she urged the Government to repeal the Public Safety Act and the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, and to review the application of other security laws which negatively impact on the situation of human rights defenders. Ms. Sekaggya, who works in an independent and unpaid capacity, will present her report to the Geneva-based UN Human Rights Council at a future session in 2012. read more

By sweeping bipartisan vote, House passes budget plan, debt limit increase by The Associated Press Posted Oct 28, 2015 3:22 pm MDT Last Updated Oct 28, 2015 at 4:20 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email WASHINGTON – The House has passed a bipartisan budget-and-debt deal that prevents an unprecedented government default.A coalition of Democrats, GOP defence hawks and pragmatic Republicans supported the measure.The legislation now heads to the Senate, which is on track to pass it before Tuesday’s deadline for increasing the so-called debt limit. It gives the government authority to borrow freely through March 2017.The measure is the result of hard-fought negotiations between congressional leaders and President Barack Obama.The bill also calls for approximately $112 billion in additional spending over two years, to be allocated in upcoming legislation negotiated by the House and Senate.About $80 billion would be offset by spending cuts elsewhere in the budget. read more

Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion is shown at the Conference de Montreal, Monday, June 13, 2016 in Montreal. Dion has wiped the diplomatic slate clean of several high-profile appointments made by the previous Conservative government. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson Liberals replace Tory political appointments in major diplomatic shuffle by Mike Blanchfield, The Canadian Press Posted Jul 19, 2016 7:10 am MDT Last Updated Jul 19, 2016 at 2:57 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email OTTAWA – The Liberal government’s new ambassador to Japan was lauded Tuesday by a former Conservative trade official as a good choice for helping Canadian exporters crack the world’s third largest economy.Ian Burney was Canada’s chief negotiator on its free trade agreement with South Korea, a deal which viewed as a breakthrough in Asia.The bilateral Canada-Japan free trade process is all but dead as Japan has turned its attention to the 12-country Pacific Rim pact known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership. But with the ratification of the TPP in doubt — both U.S. presidential candidates are against it, and Canada is holding consultations well into the fall — revitalizing a deal with Japan is now more crucial, said Adam Taylor, a senior aide to former Conservative trade minister Ed Fast.“If there’s anybody who’s shown they have the skill, patience and temperament and the familiarity with the issues to take a deal that looks like it’s in the ditch and bring it back on track, it would be Ian Burney,” Taylor said.“I’m a Tory, but if this is a sign where the trade folks will go in the new government, that’s actually good for Canada.”Burney has a distinguished diplomatic pedigree: his father, Derek, served as Canada’s ambassador to the U.S. under Brian Mulroney and was the head of Stephen Harper’s transition team when it won power in 2006.Burney’s appointment was one of 26 Tuesday — 13 men, 13 women — that saw the Trudeau Liberals replacing several high-profile political appointments made by the previous Conservative government in a major shuffle of the top ranks of Canada’s foreign service.Almost all are career public servants, with three of them replacing Harper government appointees in the United Kingdom, Iraq and Israel.In the United Kingdom, former British Columbia premier Gordon Campbell is being replaced by the former clerk of the privy council, Janice Charette. Campbell’s term was set expire last summer but he was given a one-year extension.In the Middle East, Dion is replacing the heads of two missions whose appointments both drew criticism for being too partisan.In 2013, former prime minister Stephen Harper appointed the former head of his RCMP security detail, Bruno Saccomani, as the ambassador to Jordan, which includes Iraq, and where Canada has no embassy.Saccomani spent much of his time in Iraq, as the diplomatic spearhead of Canada’s military engagement in the U.S.-led military coalition fighting the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.Prior to his appointment, Saccomani faced criticism for his management style while in charge of the more than 100 Mounties that made up the prime minister’s detail, but he quickly won the respect of many of his new diplomatic employees in the Middle East.Peter MacDougall, the assistant secretary to the cabinet for foreign and defence policy, where he would have worked on the government’s new mission to combat ISIL, replaces him.Canada’s ambassador to Israel, Vivian Bercovici, is also gone just two years after her controversial appointment by the Harper government. The Toronto lawyer and former top adviser to the former Ontario finance minister Ernie Eves was seen as a harsh critic of Palestinian leadership.Bercovici is being replaced by Deborah Lyons, who was previously Canada’s ambassador to Afghanistan.All governments make political appointments to key posts, and the Liberals made two notable ones in January: Both U.S. Ambassador David MacNaughton and UN Ambassador Marc-Andre Blanchard worked for Justin Trudeau during his prime ministerial bid.On Tuesday, Patrick Parisot, who recently worked for former Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff, was appointed ambassador to Cuba. Phyllis Yaffe, who held senior entertainment industry posts, was appointed as Consul General to New York. She was a member of the board of directors of the World Wildlife Fund when Gerald Butts, Trudeau’s principle secretary, was its president.But the Liberals left one notable Conservative in place for another year: Lawrence Cannon, an ex-foreign minister, remains at his post in Paris, said Joe Pickerill, spokesman for Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion.“Minister Dion is proud of each and every one of our heads of mission currently serving in-country and those due to head out in the coming weeks,” Pickerill said.Reached by email in Paris, Cannon declined an interview but noted: “Indeed, it is a very interesting period to be in France and in Europe generally.” read more

Brock women’s basketball player Steph Findlay has been eagerly awaiting her Badgers debut.While the Oakville native transferred to Brock last December, she was unable to hit the court for the University mid-season, which meant a few months watching from the sidelines.As the new season approaches, and the team prepares for its first game Oct. 25, Findlay is ready to prove she can make an impact.And it wouldn’t be the first time.No stranger to the court, Findlay was a three-year varsity starter at St. Ignatius of Loyola Catholic Secondary School in Oakville. As a junior, she helped her high school team to a Golden Horseshoe Athletic Conference championship and a bronze medal in the school’s first-ever appearance in the AAAA OFSAA championships (Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations). Findlay was named a Halton Secondary School Athletic Association conference all-star in both her junior and senior seasons, and she was rated a top prospect by CROWN Scout Girls Basketball in Ontario as a member of several strong travel programs.“I received a scholarship to play basketball at Seton Hill University in Pennsylvania, but after my first semester, I didn’t feel it was the right fit for me,” Findlay said. “I wanted to be closer to home and my French education program was not overly challenging.”Findlay was able to connect with Ashley MacSporran, head coach of Brock women’s basketball, who was familiar with the young prospect.“I was quite happy to have such a versatile player be a part of our program, as I know she will be difficult to defend,” MacSporran said. “She has guard skills with size, a tremendous inside game and will to score, but is also a wonderful team player. I am able to push and challenge her because she wants to be better and desires an atmosphere where she can grow.”When Findlay arrived at Brock, MacSporran felt instantly connected to her.“Her competitive fire is a lot like mine with her will to win burning strong,” she said. “I knew sitting would be difficult for her, but encouraged her to use the few months as learning to improve areas of her game and make the team better.”Observing from the bench can be a great learning experience and MacSporran feels it has helped to improve Findlay’s court awareness. “We look forward to having her step into a very big role this year,” MacSporran said. “She has been working so hard and is ready. She bought in from her first day in December and that is certainly what I love and respect about Steph.” While Findlay had to sit out last season, which she admitted was “definitely not easy to do,” travelling and practising with her teammates made her feel like a true Badger.“I used my time off as motivation to come out stronger and better in my second year,” she said. “I am very grateful for the opportunity to play with some great teammates, and for a great coach. I think we are going to be a special team this year and I am beyond excited for the season to start.”The women’s basketball team kicks off its season Wednesday, Oct. 25 with a 6 p.m. tipoff against Western University in Brock’s Bob Davis Gymnasium. read more

Lantern file photoOhio State student-athletes are showing their brain power in the Big Ten.A conference-high total of 74 Buckeyes from 28 sports were named to the 2013 Big Ten Distinguished Scholars list, as released by the Big Ten.To be named to the list, those letter winners in at least their second year at their respective school must post a minimum grade-point average of 3.7 or higher in the previous academic year.There were a total of nine Buckeyes who earned a 4.0 GPA last year including senior Derek Blevins (track and field), senior Aaron Craft (men’s basketball), then-senior Adam Homan (football), redshirt sophomore Randy Languis (wrestling), redshirt junior Michael Newburger (gymnastics), senior Melissa Rennie (softball), redshirt senior Max Stearns (fencing), sophomore Gavin Trebilcock (swimming and diving) and junior Tim Wetzel (baseball).Craft is one of two conference basketball players to be named distinguished scholar for the year. He also was named the 2013 Academic All-America of the Year in the sport. Homan is one of three Big Ten football players to post a 4.0 GPA.OSU’s women’s swimming and diving program held the most members of any squad with eight, and were followed by field hockey, men’s volleyball and men’s swimming and diving, who all had five. read more

Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. A plane performing an aerobatic display nosedived towards the ground and nearly crashed after a loose pen in the cockpit jammed the controls, an investigation has found.The vintage single-engine ‘Chipmunk’ aircraft was performing an aileron roll at 600 ft when the controls stopped working properly and it plummeted to just 50ft above the ground.Only by vigorously pushing the pedals in the cockpit was 49-year-old pilot Paul Green able to regain control of the plane and perform an emergency landing.A report into the incident, which took place last September close to White Waltham Airfield in Berkshire, has concluded that a partially crushed pen found in the fuselage had probably become lodged in the in the rudder control circuit, causing the 65-year-old DHC-1 Chipmunk 22 to plunge towards the ground.The Air Accident Investigation Branch said: “During an aerobatic display the aircraft failed to respond to the pilot’s control inputs due to a restriction in the rudder control circuit caused by a loose article.“The pilot reduced power and declared a MAYDAY. “A detailed inspection of the aircraft completed a few days after the event confirmed that there were no defects with the flying controls. However, a partially crushed pen was found within the fuselage. read more

first_img WWE posted a new video on Wednesday, announcing the first-round matches for the WWE UK Championship tournament that will take place during the annual NXT visit to the Download Festival in the UK from June 8 to June 10.First-round matches include:* Gentleman Jack Gallagher vs. Drew Gulak* Joesph Connors vs. Ashton Smith* James Drake vs. Flash Morgan Webster* Dave Mastiff vs. Kenny Williams* Travis Banks vs. El Ligero* Zack Gibson vs. Amir Jordan* Joe Coffey vs. Tucker* Jordan Devlin vs. Tyson T-BoneGulak vs. Gallagher has already taken place, as it was filmed during the recent NXT TV tapings at Full Sail University a couple weeks back.The winners will face off on the first night of the WWE UK King of the Ring special on June 18 at Royal Albert Hall.The tournament winner will challenge WWE UK Champion Pete Dunne for the WWE UK Championship on the second night of the WWE UK King of the Ring special on June 19 at Royal Albert Hall.WWE also announced a non-tournament tag-team match for the June 19th show via Twitter on Wednesday.BREAKING: The @WWEUKCT at Royal Albert Hall on 19 June will host a MEGA MATCH as @WWENXT Champion @WWEAleister teams with @KingRicochet to take on @therealec3 and @VelveteenWWE! Tickets available here: https://t.co/YVx12U31zs pic.twitter.com/D3Du6f7Djh— WWE UK (@WWEUK) May 23, 2018Already set for the June 18th show is The Undisputed ERA vs. WWE UK Champion Pete Dunne, Tyler Bate and Trent Seven.Both shows will air live on WWE Network. WhatsApp Jason Namako RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Twitter Google+ Chad Gable advances to the finals of the King of the Ring to be held on this Monday’s RAW center_img Facebook WWE Smackdown Results – 9/10/19 (The Undertaker returns, Clash of Champions build) Pinterest WWE announces Elias will withdraw from the King of the Ring tournament due to injurylast_img read more

first_img(WSVN) – McDonald’s of South Florida is saying thank you to local first responders — in the form of free meals.According to company officials said firefighters, police officers, emergency medical technicians, paramedic personnel and National Guardsmen nay stop by on Wednesday, Sept. 27, to enjoy a free Extra Value Meal.To redeem this dine-in offer, first responders need to present a valid badge or identification at the front counter.Officials said the free meals are the company’s way of expressing gratitude toward first responders for all they do in their communities, including relief efforts during and after Hurricane Irma.The offer is valid at any of the 207 McDonald’s restaurants in Miami-Dade, Broward and Monroe counties.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img read more

first_imgState fire crews are scrambling to contain a wildfire near Tyonek on the west side of Cook Inlet.Download Audiolast_img

first_imgVirtual reality is set to take off in 2016, what with the Oculus Rift becoming available and more game developers deciding to add VR support to their games. But even if you have the money to invest in a head-mounted kit, what about your PC? Is it capable of handling the demands placed on it by a virtual reality experience?Valve has decided to take the pain out of figuring out the answer to that question by releasing the SteamVR Performance Test.The test can be downloaded from Steam and measures your PC’s rendering performance using a 2-minute demo based on a sequence from the Aperture Robot Repair VR demo. Using the information gathered from the demo, the test answers two important questions: can your PC run virtual reality content at 90fps? And can the visual fidelity be tuned to the recommended level?If the answer to both those questions is “yes,” then your PC is VR-ready. Otherwise the test will present the results and make recommendations as to what components need upgrading. Typically this will be either your CPU or your graphics card, but in the worst case both will need to be replaced.Here’s the demo in action:Running this free test can save you a lot of cash or trigger a lot of spending. If your PC is good enough then no PC spend is needed. If your PC isn’t good enough, it saves you buying that expensive VR kit until it is. Either way, run the test before buying anything.last_img read more

first_imgMicrosoft to retire Security Bulletins in January 2017 by Martin Brinkmann on November 09, 2016 in Companies, Microsoft – Last Update: January 04, 2018 – 17 commentsMicrosoft announced on yesterday’s Patch Tuesday for November that it plans to retire the publication of Security Bulletins in January 2017.Security bulletins like MS16-129 reveal information about patched vulnerabilities. This includes information about the vulnerability, affected software, severity ratings, deployment information and more.The company has created a new portal called Security Updates Guide which can best be described as a searchable database of security updates released for Windows and other products. Microsoft plans to make it the sole destination for security update information starting February 2017.Instead of publishing bulletins to describe related vulnerabilities, the new portal lets our customers view and search security vulnerability information in a single online database.Security Updates GuideThe Security Updates Guide database lists publication dates, KB Article IDs, and the affected products in a table.Update: An update added options to display details, severity and impact as well. The details link opens a new page that lists information such as a description, affected products, exploitability assessment, mitigations and more similar to what Security Bulletins listed previously.It features a data filter at the top to limit the listing to a particular time period, and a text search option that enables you to find updates by product, KB article or CVE.A search for Windows 7 returns updates that are released for the operating system for instance, while a KB ID search that particular update.A new Rest API can be leveraged to obtain “Microsoft security update” information. This eliminates the need for companies and individuals to use screen-scraping or other methods to obtain update information.The table looks less useful from a user perspective. One reason for that is that it does not highlight KB article titles. While you know that updates apply to your systems or products by looking at the “applies to” column, there is virtually no information on the update itself.You do need to click on the KB article link to open it to get the information. It is unclear yet how this will work when security bulletins are not released anymore.The KB article 3197867, which is the Security Only Quality Update for Windows 7 for November 2016, links to security bulletins for instance. If those are not published anymore, it seems likely that the links will point to KB articles instead as well.Microsoft notes that Security Bulletins will be published until January 2017. After the January 2017 update, information is published only to the Security Updates Guide.Security update information will be published as bulletins and on the Security Updates Guide until January 2017. After the January 2017 Update Tuesday release, we will only publish update information to the Security Updates Guide.It remains to be seen as to how this will work out in the end as we don’t know all the facts yet.Now You: What’s your take on the announcement?SummaryArticle NameMicrosoft to retire Security Bulletins in January 2017DescriptionMicrosoft announced on yesterday’s Patch Tuesday for November that it plans to retire the publication of Security Bulletins in January 2017.Author Martin BrinkmannPublisher Ghacks Technology NewsLogo Advertisementlast_img read more

first_imgThe Shri Siva Soobramoniar Temple held their annual Kavady Festival today (February 12), followed by a procession through the streets.The Kavady prayer is observed over a 10-day period, during which devotees have to abstain from alcohol and meat, among other things. They maintain a vegetarian diet for the entire period.Kavady is a ceremonial sacrifice and offering practiced by devotees during the worship of Lord Muruga.There are various reasons for carrying the Kavady (wooden structure decorated with flowers and carrying milk), but the main reason is to express thanks to Lord Muruga for help in overcoming a particular problem. WebsiteWebsiteWebsite WebsiteWebsiteWebsite WebsiteWebsiteWebsite Devotees were seen  piercing various parts of their bodies with hooks and small lances called ‘vel’. This is done as a symbol of their faith.Click to receive news links via WhatsApp. Or  for the latest news, visit our webpage or follow us on Facebook and Twitlast_img read more

first_imgAdnan stayed in Raqqa for almost a year, watching the extremists pervade nearly every aspect of life. IS authorities came to his family’s car parts store and demanded taxes — the equivalent of $5,000. The group was clearly flush with money from taxing businesses, confiscating lands from those who fled and sales from oil fields captured further east in Syria, Adnan said.The group encourages commerce across the “caliphate,” he said — for example, cement supplies and vegetables moved from Turkey, through Raqqa to Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest cityThen Adnan’s one-time activism in support of Syrian rebels caught up with him. In January, a patrol raided his family home, confiscated his laptop and arrested him for publishing online articles they said encouraged secularism. “Such a pretty house,” a patrol member said before smashing two glass water pipes. “This pollutes the environment,” he told Adnan.For the next 55 days, Adnan was held in Point 11, the soccer stadium.He was interrogated three times in the initial days, beaten with a green plastic pipe. Then he was moved out of isolation into wards with other prisoners. Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober “We gave up 2,200 martyrs in Kobani, and you go and steal?” Adnan said he heard the interrogator shouting at the two detained militants.Adnan met Palestinian prisoner Mohammed Musallam, whom IS accused of being a spy for Israel. Musallam told Adnan his captors were repeatedly filming him in his own execution video. Each time, he said, they would video a child shooting him in the head — but each time the gun would be empty.“Then one day, they executed him for real,” Adnan said.In March, the Islamic State group released a video showing Musallam’s death. Kneeling in a field, he is shot in the head by a young boy wearing military camouflage.Adnan said he believes that is why many victims in the execution videos appear so calm. “They repeat the thing with them like 20 times. So when the real one comes, the prisoner will think it’s just another mock execution,” he said.___SURVIVING THE CALIPHATE — OR NOTIn Eski Mosul, a village on a bend in Iraq’s Tigris River, Sheikh Abdullah Ibrahim lives in one of the larger houses, behind high walls with a garden. He looked exhausted as he showed AP journalists one IS vestige he’s keeping: the death certificate for his wife, the group’s black logo on top. Now, he said, “I want to blow myself up among Daesh. Even that won’t satisfy me. If I chop them up, drink their blood and eat their hearts, it won’t take away my pain.”Laying low was often key to survival in the “caliphate,” several of those interviewed said. Best to stay home as much as possible, avoiding checkpoints of IS fighters and the “Hisba” committees, the dreaded enforcers of IS’ innumerable regulations.Armed members of the Hisba patrol the streets, cruising in SUVs with blackened windows and wearing Afghan-style baggy pants, long shirts and face masks, looking for behavior deemed unacceptable.Punishments for smoking, for wearing Western clothes or for playing the wrong radio station can vary from a fine to imprisonment for a few hours or days — often depending on the Hisba’s mood. For more serious or repeat offenses, the fighters might bind the perpetrator to a pole in a town square for several days with his crime written on a sign around his neck.Women try not to go out at all, most of those interviewed by AP said. If they do go to market, they sometimes avoid taking their husbands, sons or brothers with them: If they’re harassed by the Hisba, their male relative might defend them and bring the Hisba’s wrath. “He told me my faith is weak and asked, ‘Do you pray?’” Abdullah recalled. Then the fighter asked to see his “repentance card.” Abdullah had been a policeman until the IS takeover, and policemen and soldiers are required to have one. So are many other former government loyalists or employees — even former English teachers, since they once taught a “forbidden” language and tailors of women’s clothes because they once designed styles deemed un-Islamic.Abdullah had left his card at home. Terrified, he sent his son running to get it.“They are brutal people,” he told The Associated Press. “They can consider you an infidel for the simplest thing.”The Islamic State’s “caliphate,” declared a year ago, stretches across northern Syria through much of northern and western Iraq. Untold numbers have been killed because they were deemed dangerous to the IS, or insufficiently pious; 5-8 million endure a regime that has swiftly turned their world upside down, extending its control into every corner of life to enforce its own radical interpretation of Islamic law, or Shariah.The Islamic State’s domain is a place where men douse themselves with cologne to hide the odor of forbidden cigarettes; where taxi drivers or motorists usually play the IS radio station, since music can get a driver 10 lashes; where women must be entirely covered, in black, and in flat-soled shoes; where people are thrown to their deaths off buildings on suspicion of homosexuality; where shops must close during Muslim prayers, and everyone found outdoors must attend. Sponsored Stories Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility The picture they paint suggests the Islamic State’s territory, now an area roughly the size of Switzerland, has evolved into an entrenched pseudo-state, one based on a bureaucracy of terror.___THE TAKEOVERIn January 2014, when the Islamic State group took over the Syrian city of Raqqa, Adnan fled, fearing his work as a political activist would make him a target. But after a few months of missing his family, he returned to see whether he could endure life under the extremists.Adnan found Raqqa transformed from a once-colorful cosmopolitan city into the Islamic State’s de facto capital. Women covered head to toe in black scurried quickly to markets before rushing home, young men avoided the cafes they once frequented. IS fighters turned the city soccer stadium into a prison and interrogation center, known as “Point 11.” One of the city’s central plazas was now referred to by residents as “Jaheem” Square — Hell Square.He soon learned why. He heard celebratory gunshots one day and saw the bodies of three men dangling from poles in Hell Square. The corpses were left there for three days, he told AP as he chain-smoked in a cafe in Gaziantep, a town on the Turkish border filled with Syrians living in exile. 5 people who need to visit the Ultrastar Multi-tainment Center It’s all he has left of her.IS swept into the village of some 3,000 families in June last year, established its reign over a grim seven-month period, then fled in January when Kurdish fighters ran them out. IS forces remain dug in only a few miles away, so close that smoke can be seen from fighting on the front lines.Ibrahim’s wife, Buthaina, had been an outspoken human rights advocate and had run for the provincial council in Mosul. So when IS took over, fighters demanded she apply for a repentance card. “She said she’d never stoop so low,” her husband said.He knew the danger. He had seen the bodies of a dozen policemen in the street, shot in the head. He’d seen others thrown off buildings. He had heard talk of the dreaded “Khasfa,” a deep natural sinkhole in the desert south of Mosul where the extremists boast of throwing bodies — or sometimes living victims.Ibrahim sent his wife away to safety for a few days, but she soon returned, missing their three daughters and two sons, he said. Her youngest was 2.A few nights later, in early October, the militants came for her, he said.Ibrahim and his wife were asleep, but their daughters were watching TV. “Wake up, dad, Daesh is in the front yard,” they called out, using the group’s Arabic acronym. Ibrahim saw the house was surrounded. They demanded to see Buthaina. Ibrahim tried to protect her, he said, but she came out and confronted the IS extremists, demanding an explanation. An argument ensued, and one militant handcuffed the sheikh and knocked him across the head with a pistol. The men pushed Buthaina into their car, and took Ibrahim’s as well.A member of the powerful al-Jabour tribe, Ibrahim hoped his connections — and money — could win Buthaina’s freedom.He and fellow tribesmen went to the nearby town of Tal Afar, an IS stronghold from which many of the fighters who took Eski Mosul had come. There, he said, he met in a mosque with Abu Alaa al-Afari, a local IS commander who some Iraqi officials now believe has risen to become the No. 2 figure in the “caliphate.”Ibrahim begged for his wife’s release, pointing out that she was still breastfeeding their youngest son, Arkam.“It doesn’t matter. Your children will become orphans,” al-Afari replied, according to Ibrahim.Another Eski Mosul resident, 31-year-old Fadi Mohammed, wishes that all he had gotten from IS was his brother’s death certificate.He and his brother, Mohammed Mohammed, were both former policemen who had given up their weapons and signed repentance papers. But his brother was arrested after informants claimed he was part of an elite intelligence unit. Mohammed Mohammed was sent to Mosul. In January, 13 days before the Kurds took back Eski Mosul, Mohammed said IS militants “brought us discs that showed his beheading.” In this May 26, 2015 photo, Bilal Abdullah poses for a portrait in the village of Eski Mosul in northern Iraq, nearly a year after Islamic State militants took over the village. In the Islamic State’s realm, a document testifying that one has “repented” from a heretical past must be carried at all times and it can mean the difference between life and death. Abdullah learned that not long after the extremists took over his home village. (AP Photo/Bram Janssen) Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Sheikh Abdullah Ibrahim’s wife, Buthaina, never reappeared after being taken by the militants.Shortly after her husband appealed for her release, he received the death certificate. A simple sheet of paper from an “Islamic court” with a judge’s signature, it said only that Buthaina’s death was verified, nothing more.It is a horrifying document, but he’s keeping it, he said, “because it has her name on it.”___ESCAPING THE CALIPHATEEscape is not easy. Residents are banned from leaving their cities without first applying for permission, filling out a long form with all their personal details and setting property as a guarantee that IS will seize if they don’t return. Women must apply to the Hisba to travel and are often refused permission, out of concern that they will not follow IS dress codes once they are out.When Adnan’s aunt needed cancer treatment, she applied to leave IS territory to get care. The IS refused but sent her to Mosul, paying for transport and some of the medical costs, though not her chemotherapy.In March, after Adnan had spent 55 days in prison, a top IS leader in Raqqa freed about 40 inmates — including the young Syrian activist.center_img Soon after came another gruesome moment. One of the top Islamic State judges in the area, a local man known by the pseudonym Abu Ali al-Sharei, dropped by in early February to teach another lesson in Islamic law to the prisoners. He made small talk with a roomful of them. Then he grinned and said, “Listen, I haven’t told you yet, but today we made al-Kaseasbeh crispy.”He took a flash drive out of his pocket, Adnan said, and, to the prisoners’ horror, played them footage of captured Jordanian Air Force pilot Muath al-Kaseasbeh being burned alive in a cage by his IS captors.Adnan’s account is just one example of how IS uses the execution videos that it broadcasts to the world online to also intimidate people under its rule.In Raqqa’s prison, Adnan’s job of distributing food to other inmates gave him a broad view of operations.He saw two Kurdish prisoners and overheard wardens saying the pair would likely be used in Kurdish-language propaganda videos before being released. Adnan said he also saw several foreign Islamic State fighters being held — three Turks, an Uzbek, a Russian and a Yemeni — apparently on suspicion of spying. Two other IS fighters were brought in for stealing booty looted from the Syrian Kurdish town of Kobani rather than sharing it with other fighters. Kobani was the scene of the biggest defeat of IS in Syria, when Kurdish forces backed by U.S. airstrikes drove off the militants after months of heavy fighting. Adnan decided it was time for him to go. He paid a smuggler to drive him along dirt roads about 25 kilometers to the Tal Abyad border crossing, which at the time was in IS hands and was shut from the Turkish side, then paid another smuggler to get him into Turkey. “It was an adventure,” he said, smiling.Escape was much more harrowing for Ali, a 63-year-old appliance store owner from the Iraqi town of al-Zaab, near Mosul, who asked that his full name not be used to protect relatives still under IS rule. He told AP that when he decided to flee, he managed to convince local authorities he was only going on a three-day work trip. They gave him a permission slip without a guarantee of property, so he set out in his car with his wife, son and daughter-in-law.Between them and freedom were three different checkpoints. At the first, fighters wrote down the model and license number of his car. At the second, they searched his car, then ordered him to return to the first checkpoint. There, the fighters told him his car registration was improper and he had no property guarantee.“Your fate will be execution,” he said they told him.But in a show of how capricious life can be under the Islamic State, a commander at the checkpoint made a phone call and got approval to let Ali and his family pass. “God give him long life,” Ali said of the commander. He said he’d rather have been killed right there at the checkpoint than be forced to drive back into IS-held al-Zaab. 0 Comments   Share   ESKI MOSUL, Iraq (AP) — Inside the Islamic State’s realm, the paper testifying that you have “repented” from your heretical past must be carried at all times. Many people laminate it just to be safe. It can mean the difference between life and death.Bilal Abdullah learned that not long after the extremists took over his Iraqi village, Eski Mosul, a year ago. As he walked down the street, an Islamic State fighter in a pickup truck asked directions to a local mosque. When Abdullah didn’t recognize the mosque’s name, the fighter became suspicious. 5 things to look for when selecting an ophthalmologist Top Stories New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies The reign of terror he had fled had gotten only worse, he said.Each time the Islamic State group overruns a community, the pattern has been roughly similar, AP found — as methodical as it is bloody.First comes an initial wave of killings of police and troops. Then the fighters often seek to garner support by quickly repairing electricity and water lines. They call on bureaucrats to return to work. Government employees and any former troops or policemen sign their “repentance” papers and must hand over their weapons or pay fines sometimes amounting to several thousand dollars.In loudspeaker announcements, mosque sermons and leaflets, new regulations are laid out: No smoking, no alcohol, and no women working except as nurses or in women’s clothing shops, where even mannequins in store windows are covered. Residents said they were required to build walls outside their homes so women would never be seen.In each district, an “emir” — often a local militant — is appointed to govern. Schools close, then reopen with IS-written curricula. Taxes are imposed on businesses. Pharmacies are given Shariah courses and banned from selling contraceptives. In most locations, tribes or families declare loyalty to the group and gain positions or perks, several interviewees told AP. There is no safe way out. People vanish– their disappearance explained by a video of their beheading, an uninformative death certificate, or nothing at all.“People hate them, but they’ve despaired, and they don’t see anyone supporting them if they rise up,” said a 28-year-old Syrian who asked to be identified only by the nickname he uses in political activism, Adnan, in order to protect his family still living under IS rule. “People feel that nobody is with them.”The AP interviewed more than 20 Iraqis and Syrians who survived life under the group’s rule. One AP team travelled to several towns in northern Iraq, including Eski Mosul, north of Mosul, where residents are just emerging from nearly seven months under IS rule. Another AP team travelled to Turkish cities along the border, where Syrians who have fled IS territory have taken refuge.What follows is based on their accounts, many of which were verified by multiple people, as well as on IS social media and broadcast operations and documents obtained by the AP, including copies of repentance cards, weapons inventories, leaflets detailing rules of women’s dress and permission forms to travel outside IS territory — all emblazoned with the IS black banner and logo, “Caliphate in the path of the prophet.” It’s not an unreasonable fear. Abu Zein, a 31-year-old who recently fled the eastern Syrian town of Muhassan, recounted how a Hisba member one day berated a woman for being improperly covered as she swept her porch. Her brother came out and argued, the fight escalated, the militant shot the brother, and the brother’s relatives promptly killed the militant. Soon after, a larger contingent of Islamic State fighters descended on the house and killed eight members of the family, Abu Zein said.Abu Zein said he was detained multiple times for various minor offenses, including visiting his uncle’s grave.During Islamic holidays late last year, he said, militants announced in mosques that it was forbidden to visit the graves of relatives, a holiday tradition that IS sees as encouraging polytheism. Abu Zein’s uncle had died of cancer the year before, so he, his cousin and another relative decided to defy the ban.As they approached the graveyard, IS fighters opened fire over their heads, shouting “Grave worshippers!” and “This is forbidden!” Abu Zein said he and his friends tried to reason with them. “You cannot stop me from visiting my father,” cried Abu Zein’s 20-year-old cousin — prompting one militant to slap him across the face. The three were arrested and detained for several hours before being released with a warning. In Eski Mosul, delivery from IS came to residents at the hands of Kurdish fighters. Amid the joy over liberation — and perhaps worry over being accused of having IS loyalties — many residents promptly discarded documents from the Islamic State.Not Salim Ahmed. For nearly seven months, the 23-year-old former soldier had clung to his repentance card, always having it ready at checkpoints. He hated the card. He had refused to laminate it, unwilling to give it a sense of permanence.Now IS is gone, but the fear instilled in him is not. He still carries his card.“We live very close to their front line,” he said. “One day, they might come back and ask me for my repentance card again.”____Salama and Janssen reported from Eski Mosul, Karam from Gaziantep, Turkey, and Keath from Cairo. AP journalists Mohammed Rasool and Hussein Malla in Beirut and Salar Salim in Irbil, Iraq, contributed to this report.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. 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first_img Sponsored Stories Comments   Share   Top Stories Besides McConnell and Boehner, denunciations also have come from several 2016 GOP presidential hopefuls, including former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Cuban-American Republican Sens. Marco Rubio of Florida and Ted Cruz of Texas. In a typical comment, Bush said warming relations should “advance the cause of human rights and freedom for the Cuban people” and said the administration’s moves were “failing this test.”Rubio and Cruz each said they would try blocking any Obama effort to win Senate confirmation of an ambassador to Havana.While Republicans are likely to strongly oppose large expenditures to improve relations with Cuba, the administration may be able to use smaller amounts to buttress its diplomatic presence there.Obama has requested $6 million to improve the current, lower-level U.S. outpost there. Congressional aides said that even without specific approval from lawmakers, the State Department could well access that money because agencies can unilaterally shift relatively small amounts among their budget accounts.Though it’s not yet law, the GOP-led House Appropriations Committee approved foreign aid legislation last month barring work on a U.S. Embassy in Cuba unless Obama certifies that Havana is meeting the terms of a 1996 statute aimed at fostering democracy in Cuba. That includes extraditing people wanted in the U.S. for crimes. New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Mesa family survives lightning strike to home The comments by McConnell came a day after Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro announced that the two nations will open embassies in Havana and Washington July 20 and resume diplomatic relations severed in 1961, the year Obama was born.McConnell’s remarks underscored that despite a push to ease the curbs by U.S. business and agriculture interests and some GOP lawmakers, Republican leaders remain sympathetic to the party’s more conservative, anti-Castro voices. House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, and several contenders for the GOP’s 2016 presidential nomination criticized Obama’s moves shortly after they were announced Wednesday.“You would think that the normalization of relations with Cuba would be accompanied by some modification of their behavior,” McConnell said Thursday at Commerce Lexington, the chamber of commerce for Lexington, Kentucky. Instead, he called the country “a police state” and “a haven for criminals” wanted in the U.S.“I don’t see any evidence at all that they are going to change their behavior. So I doubt if we’ll confirm an ambassador, they probably don’t need one,” McConnell said. How do cataracts affect your vision? The difference between men and women when it comes to pain The Republican-controlled Senate Appropriations Committee plans to write its version of the aid measure next week.The two countries’ surprise revelation last December that they would move toward normal relations has been followed by other steps. The U.S. has lifted some travel curbs on Americans and began permitting U.S. companies to export telephones and computers to Cuba, and has removed Cuba from the list of countries sponsoring terrorism.Yet divisions remain.The U.S. remains focused on Cuba’s reputed human rights violations. Cuba wants an end to the U.S. economic embargo, the return of the U.S. military base at Guantanamo Bay and a halt to U.S. broadcasts aimed at the island.___AP White House Correspondent Julie Pace and AP reporter Adam Beam in Lexington, Kentucky, contributed to this report.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. He added, “Some of their restrictions on Cuba would require legislation to lift, and we’re going to resist that.”Though Obama has not nominated an ambassador for Cuba yet, the current top U.S. diplomat there, Jeffrey DeLaurentis, was expected to be considered for the post.Labeling the moment “a choice between the future and the past,” Obama on Wednesday revealed the latest steps in a half-year of rapid-fire improvements in relations between two nations that lie 90 miles apart but have spent nearly six decades separated by light years diplomatically and economically.Obama also asked Congress to lift the economic and travel embargoes that the U.S. has used for decades to try forcing Cuba’s leaders toward democracy. Obama has partly eased those restrictions on his own, but even before McConnell’s comments Thursday, longtime opposition from many Republicans and some Democrats had made it unlikely that lawmakers will fully revoke the bans quickly.When President Dwight Eisenhower broke relations in 1961 with the communist regime of Raul’s brother, Fidel Castro, it set the tone for decades of Cold War hostility that included failed U.S.-backed efforts to overthrow the island nation’s leaders. WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Thursday that his chamber is unlikely to approve an American ambassador to Cuba, dishing out a quick rebuff to President Barack Obama and his drive to normalize relations with the U.S. neighbor and longtime Cold War foe.The Kentucky Republican also suggested that the GOP — which controls Congress — would fight Obama administration efforts to fully lift trade and travel restrictions that have limited American commerce and tourism with the communist-led island nation. McConnell said the country was led by “a thuggish regime.” 5 ways to recognize low testosterone Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facilitylast_img read more

first_imgWolgan Valley Resort & Spa team at the 2010 HM Awards. L-R: Dwane Goodman, Rosanna Barthelot, Andrew Adams-Smith, Maryann Romeo, Joost Heymeijer. Source = Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa Heritage Suite living room With a one year anniversary just around the corner, Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa has even more reason to celebrate, after receiving the most hotel awards at the 2010 HM Awards for Hotel and Accommodation Excellence. As Australia’s first conservation-based luxury resort, Wolgan Valley was honoured with six awards including Winner in Unique Accommodation, Best New Hotel, Regional Property, Hotel Chef, and Environmental Program with a Highly Commended in the Resort category.Now in its eighth year, the annual HM Awards recognise the leaders in hospitality and honour the achievements of excellence in a wide range of categories in the accommodation industry.With a record 1,300 entries received this year, the highly competitive awards span across Australia, New Zealand and selected South Pacific nations. Joost Heymeijer, General Manager, Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa said: “This is an outstanding achievement for a resort that has been in operation less than one year. These awards recognise the efforts of the entire Emirates Wolgan Valley team who strive for unparalleled service and superior standards every day.” “To date Wolgan Valley has been a great success and has introduced a new era of luxury to Australian and international travellers. Now as we reach our first anniversary we look forward to continuing setting the benchmark for excellence within the industry,” said Mr Heymeijer. A scenic three-hour drive from Sydney, Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa is nestled between two of Australia’s most prominent national parks and borders the Blue Mountains World Heritage Area. Occupying just two per cent of a 4,000-acre conservancy reserve, Wolgan Valley combines the expectations of the high-end traveller with a commitment to conservation of threatened and endangered wildlife, ecological and environmental sustainability. Since its opening in October 2009, Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa has also been awarded the following accolades: Conde Nast US and Conde Nast UK “Hot List” (Spa and Resort categories). National Trust Heritage Awards – for its work in restoring the original 1832 farmhouse.  Luxury Travel Magazine – Gold List Awards. (Voted by readers “Most desired new resort to visit in the world“)Australian Hotels Association (NSW) Accommodation Awards for Excellence for Best Environment Initiative, Regional Deluxe Accommodation of the Year and Outstanding Contribution to Tourism.Conservation Award Winner, with Emirates Hotels & Resorts, in the World Travel & Tourism Council’s 2010 “Tourism for Tomorrow” Awards Travel + Leisure’s “It List 2010″ 2010 Blue Mountains, Lithgow and Oberon Tourism Awards for New Tourism DevelopmentThe resort was the first hotel in the world to achieve carbon neutral certification from CarboNZero, an internationally accredited greenhouse gas certification scheme. Wolgan Valley is also a proud member of Leading Hotels of the World, the world’s largest luxury hospitality organisation, representing more than 450 of the finest hotels, resorts and spas around the world; and is a founding member of Luxury Lodges of Australia, an association launched in May to promote the uniquely Australian breed of luxury experiential lodges, domestically and internationally. Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa Main Homestead and Main Swimming Poollast_img read more

first_imgHawaiian Airlines’ new lie flat seats take off from Sydney todayHawaiian Airlines’ new lie flat seats take off from Sydney todayAustralian travellers flying Hawaiian Airlines from today on flights between Sydney or Brisbane and Honolulu will step on board the airline’s newly redesigned Airbus A330 aircraft featuring an elegant new Premium Cabin and expansion of the airline’s popular Extra Comfort product.New Premium CabinIncorporating flowing curves evocative of the winds and the ocean, Hawaiian’s spacious Premium Cabin features 18 lie-flat leather seats that fold into 180-degree beds at a roomy 20.5 inches wide and 76 inches long.  Aligned in a 2-2-2 configuration, the seats are ideally tailored to leisure guests such as couples, families and honeymooners, while offering superior functionality to the business traveler.Hawaiian has also partnered with renowned local designer Sig Zane on a new line of complimentary amenity kits, a cotton quilt and a lounging pillow all fashionably adorned in a ‘Auli‘ilani lehua flower pattern. Premium Cabin guests will receive a selection of soothing products, including a hand and body balm, lip balm and hydrating mist, dental kit, a bamboo comb, and socks with a playful slipper design that invites travelers to “E Hiamoe Maika‘i” (Sleep well). An eye mask, plush mattress pad and pillow are also provided for restful sleep.Hawaiian’s Executive Chef Chai Chaowasaree will delight guests with world-class cuisine presented on custom-crafted dinnerware, linens and trays, and showcasing delicious regional food by Hawai‘i’s top local chefs. A premier cocktail and full beverage bar service will offer specialty drinks such as a signature Mai Tai, wines selected by Hawaiian’s Master Sommelier Chuck Furuya, local craft beer and Hawai‘i-made spirits.Guests will enjoy intuitive seat controls and access to multiple power ports, including two USB connections and one A/C outlet. An advanced in-flight entertainment system with over 100 hours of movies and TV is powered by a 13-inch wide-screen tablet resting on an adjustable telescoping arm for optimal viewing angle and comfort.68 Extra Comfort SeatsThe airline’s popular Extra Comfort seating introduced in 2014 has proven a hit with Australian travellers and is now expanded from 40 to 68 seats per aircraft. Extra Comfort offers 36 inches of seat pitch, priority boarding at the gate, complimentary on-demand in-seat entertainment, and a personal power outlet.In the new configuration, Hawaiian’s A330 aircraft seat 278 passengers, with 18 Premium Cabin Lie Flat seats, 68 Extra Comfort seats and Main Cabin seating for 192 guests with a roomy seat pitch of 31 inches. From the moment travellers board a Hawaiian Airlines flight, the airlines’ signature mea ho’okipa (translation: I am host) on-board hospitality is offered – a warm and friendly celebration of the culture, people and Aloha Spirit of the Hawaiian Islands. Hawaiian Airlinesbook your flight hereSource = Hawaiian Airlineslast_img read more