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November 24, 2006

Word of Life Bible Institute student burns New York church for deviating from the \”word of God\”

Word of Life Bible Institute student burns New York church for deviating from the “word of God”

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Friday, November 24, 2006

Caleb Uriah Lussier, 20, a student at Word of Life Bible Institute, has been arrested and charged with two felony counts of third degree burglary and one count of felony third degree arson of Christ Episcopal Church in Pottersville, New York, on May 30th, after first collecting and placing the bibles out of reach of the fire.

Warren County Sheriff Larry Cleveland said Lussier confessed to the burning the church, saying Lussier Christ Church had deviated from the Bible and the word of God.

Police reported that Mr. Lussier confessed to stealing from the church twice in May and he described to authorities how he used gas to set the fire itself. He allegedly also confessed to sending threatening letters to a church in Plymouth, and setting a fire to the New Testament Church in his hometown in December, 2005.

Authorities were put onto Mr. Lussier’s trail by way of a tip from a congregant from another community church who reported that Mr. Lussier looked out of place when he attended services. At that point Mr. Lussier had no police record and a connection had not been made between the Pottersville church arson case and the Plymouth church fire where, similarly, a bag of Bibles had been previously saved from the arson.

Mr. Lussier is currently in Warren County jail on a $250,000 cash bail or a $500,000 bond. He is scheduled to appear back in court later this month.

Christ Episcopal Church serves a parish of about 15 people.

Word of Life is a large evangelical fundamentalist youth ministry with major campuses in Schroom Lake, NY, Florida, and California, and smaller campuses in 46 countries.

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TESEV Report on Eastern Turkey for UNDP released

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TESEV Report on Eastern Turkey for UNDP released

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Friday, November 24, 2006

According to a report released by the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV) for United Nation’s Development Plan, the per capita GNP in Eastern Turkey, an area predominantly inhabited by Kurdish people, is as low as seven percent of that of the European Union on average. The report analyzed a region of 21 cities in Eastern Turkey*. One of the cities included in the report, Şırnak, was reported to be as poor as Botswana, Southern Africa.

Other points highlighted in the report included:

  • 60% of the population in the region was under the poverty line. If this situation persists, people may start to migrate to Northern Iraq.
  • If 1% of the national income is spent on Eastern Turkey’s infrastructure and social investment for 7 years, the region will be enabled to finance itself. If the economic and social conditions in the region are fixed, the fragile relationship between the Turkish government and the Kurdish people of the region may improve.
  • Access to health services is a primary human right. Without access to health services, one cannot expect that people of this region can live in confidence. Health institutions should employ nurses who speak Kurdish so the patients can communicate with the health services staff.
  • The use of the private sector is not reliable as a solution. The government should act to remedy the lack of infrastructure in the region.

Sources

Related Topics in Wikipedia

  • Human Rights in Turkey
  • Kurds in Turkey
  • Turkish Kurdistan
  • TESEV Web Site
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Kurdish Linux launched in Turkey

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Kurdish Linux launched in Turkey – Wikinews, the free news source

Kurdish Linux launched in Turkey

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Friday, November 24, 2006

Turkey
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Kurdish Ubuntu, a Linux distribution, was promoted this week with a reception in Diyarbakir. Ubuntu was the first Linux distribution to implement Kurdish localization[1]. Kurdish localization in Linux is an important milestone for Turkey due to ethnic conflicts.

Kurdish Ubuntu was prepared by a team of hardworking translators working on the Rosetta web application [1]. In his talk at the reception, the mayor of Sur (a town in Diyarbakir) said that “Whatever language it is in, we wanted it [our service] to be accessible multilingually because multilingualism is our wealth. Our work is being conducted on Kurdish, English, and Turkish language support. … If we can integrate multilingualism, multi-identities, and multi-culturalism in this nation, this region will be a place of peace instead of conflicts.” Mehmed Uzun, a Kurdish writer, speaking about the Kurdish language, told the attendees that “Our most important problem is that the language is not standardized. The Kurdish language should be standardized.” Ubuntu was later distributed to the reception’s attendees.

Related news

  • “Kurdish operating system under investigation by Turkish attorney general” — Wikinews, November 29, 2006

Sources

  1. Kürtçe Linux hazır Kurdish Linux Ready” — NTVMSNBC, November 23, 2006

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Hare Krishna village demolished in Kazakhstan, religious persecution alleged

Hare Krishna village demolished in Kazakhstan, religious persecution alleged

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Friday, November 24, 2006

Flag of Kazakhstan

An ongoing struggle in Kazakhstan between the authorities and a local Hindu village has turned serious. Forum 18 has been documenting the alleged human rights abuse regarding the Hare Krishna village for some time, but as of 21st November events took a drastic turn.

The following was seen and written by Ninel Fokina, president of the Almaty Helsinki Committee, and Andrei Grishin, official member of the International Bureau of Human Rights and Law Observance:

On November 21, 2006 at 1 pm the information was received that according to the court decision to evict the members of the religion organization International Society for Krishna Consciousness from the occupied land near Sri Vrindavan Dham farm, and the demolition of 13 country houses will begin immediately.

Heavy equipment was brought to the suburban community: trucks, demolition machines, three busses with riot policemen, a bus with demolition squad and the local authorities including the Hakim. Electricity was disconnected in the morning of the same day.

There were only women and children in the village. All men went to work in town.

The president of the Almaty Helsinki Committee Ninel Fokina tried to contact different officials in Astana (the capital): B. Baikadamov, the envoy of human rights, B. Muhamedjanov, the minister for internal affairs I. Bakhtibayev, the assistant General Prosecutor; R. Aliev, the deputy minister for foreign affairs.

She had a conversation with B. Baikadamov, the only person she could reach at that time, who promised to communicate to the Committee of Religious Affairs at the Ministry of Justice, the Supreme Court, and the Court Administration Committee which includes the department of court decision execution.

At 3 pm representatives of human rights organizations: Ninel Fokina, Andrei Grishin, and Maxim Varfolomeev, press-secretary of the Society for Krishna Consciousness, plus, a journalist and representative of Astana TV channel left for the village which is located 40 km from Almaty.

All the roads to village were closed and patrolled by police. They would not let anyone go through. The human rights representatives and the journalist took detour through the fields. It was snowing, but they were able to reach the border of the village because of the four-wheel-drive jeep they were traveling in. But even that road was closed by patrol.

The jeep was not allowed to drive into the village. The patrol explained it was instruction of authorities. When Grishin and the jeep driver tried to pass by walk they were stopped and threatened to be put in handcuffs. And the patrol promised to send for additional force.

Lieutenant colonel, who came with another patrol car, explained that they are not allowed to the village for their own safety. He said that at that time the electric line was being dismounted in the area.

The driver of the jeep had his wife and two months old daughter in the village. He was begging to let him go through, but his request was denied. He was told that safety is guaranteed to his family. This group could still enter the village. They approached it from the other detour road, and leaving the car on the sidewalk, one by one they entered the village.

As they approached the village they met two small groups of young people who were not drunk but unnaturally exited.They held hammers, big dumb-bells, metal crow-bars and sticks. Two of them politely greeted the group, and one said gaily, “Your houses are finished.

Four big busses with toned windows and two cars of ambulance were parked at the entrance of the village in the grove. 30-40 policemen stood by the houses, and 20-30 people in civil clothes including the leaders of the district with the Hakim, the head of local executive authority stood on the street, watching the demolition.

It was snowing. Residents’ household stuff such as mattresses, blankets, utensils cookware, and furniture were laying outside on the lawns by their houses. People in construction outfits (labor people) got inside the houses and started crushing windows and doors, destroying walls. The bulldozer was demolishing the buildings and the big stone fencing with cast iron openwork lattice which separated the houses from the driving area.

A small group of inhabitants (20-30 people, mostly women) did not offer physical resistance. One of the women felt dizzy, fell down and was picked up by the ambulance. Police was bringing down those few (basically women) who tried to interfere with the destruction of their property. Two men tried to prevent the entrance of destroyers into a house, but were brought down by 15 policemen who twisted their hands and took them away to the police car.

During all these events none of the representatives from the Office of Public Prosecutor were present at the place of the event, even though both Krishna people and legal service people demanded meeting with representatives of the Office of Public Prosecutor who are obligated to be present during this type of actions.

The Hakim of the Yetisu district who was personally responsible for this action noticed A. Grishin photographing the destruction of the houses using a digital camera and commanded the policemen to detain him. A. Grishin is an officer of the Human Rights Bureau and a journalist.

To avoid confiscation of the camera A. Grishin tried to escape. He ran away by 200 meters and was caught by the police. Police officers confiscated his digital camera and took away his journalist certificate.

Then he was let free, but police refused to return the camera, saying that they would give it to the Hakim. The camera was indeed found in the car of the Hakim, but the flash card and the batteries were confiscated. When Grishin approached the Hakim to find out for what reason his camera and his journalist ID were confiscated, the Hakim told in front of the witnesses, “If I see you here again, I will personally crash Your eyes, even though I am the Hakim.”

No one of the policemen, who took part in the camera and ID confiscation, wanted to reveal their names.

Ms. Fokina was able to talk with the assistant of the General prosecutor I. Bakhtibayev, who did confirm that he would contact the prosecutor of the province and he would work out this situation.

The envoy of human rights E. Baikadamov, who was also contacted, said that the president of the Court Administration Committee Z. Makashev confirmed that he would contact immediately the provincial department and would give the appropriate instructions.

All the attempts of the representatives of the human rights organizations to find the people in charge of the operation and give them any information were unsuccessful.

All the present officials refused to speak and declared that they were not responsible for the action. The Police colonels would point at bailiffs. The bailiffs did not confirm their being bailiffs.

The OSCE representatives in Almaty Eugenia Benigni and Lisa Zhumakhmetova did not make it to the village. Their car just was stoped by police.

When the darkness fell, at around 6 pm, everything was finished: 13 houses destroyed, people thrown to the snowbound street, the village left without electricity, without heat and water.

The condition of the witnesses can be described as shock. The condition of the people who were thrown from their destroyed houses to the dirt and snow cannot be described.

When all the 13 buildings were destroyed as was planned … while the adjacent houses of other people who do not belong to the Society for Krishna Consciousness were left untouched even though their title deeds have the same status … the bailiffs decided to give an interview to the TV channel “to avoid one-sided opinion.” However no one of them introduced himself. The only thing they could say, “we are executing the court decision.”

Neither the Hakim, nor the police chiefs, nor the bailiffs would listen to the arguments that the governmental commission established to solve the issue around the Society for Krishna Consciousness has not yet come to final decision.

Notice: the notifications of eviction and demolition of the 13 houses owned by members of the cottage cooperative, who are the members of the religious organization Society for Krishna Consciousness, were delivered to the watchman of Sri Vrindavan Dham in the evening of November 20. The date of execution and the period for evacuating the buildings were not stated. It should be noted that the acting Kazakh law does not stipulate such a kind of eviction as the demolition of houses, and the eviction should be accompanied by the inventory of property removed from the evacuated building, while the storage of this property should be provided is necessary.

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Former Russian spy Litvinenko dies, radioactive poisoning suspected

Former Russian spy Litvinenko dies, radioactive poisoning suspected

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Friday, November 24, 2006

Mr Alexander Litvinenko, reputed to have been an Ex-Russian spy who had defected to Britain, died last night in mysterious circumstances. He had alleged many associations between people in high places and organised international crime, implying that President Putin and Romano Prodi among others had been involved personally. He had sought political asylum in UK in 2000 and became a naturalised citizen in October this year, just weeks before his death.

Mr Litvinenko was said to have been investigating the shooting of Russian journalist and human rights activist Anna Politkovskaya, a well-known critic of Russian activities in Chechnya, in her apartment in Moscow October 7, 2006. It is reported that he had met two Russians in an hotel room, one said to be former member of the KGB in conneciton with the affair and he went on to meet Mario Scaramella at a sushi bar in Piccadilly where some papers were exchanged. Some hours after this he was taken ill.

Mr Litvinenko was admitted to Barnet General Hospital, north London on November 1, 2006 complaining of feeling sick. By November 11, he was said to be suffering from serious poisoning. A week later he was transferred to University College Hospital in central London. A week later he was said to have been poisoned by ingesting thallium, once used in rat poison, but, in the opinion of some doctors, there were signs of radioactive poisoning, including loss of weight and shedding of hair. Various explanations of his condition were offered. Last night he suffered a heart attack, after having left a message blaming President Putin for having him killed.

The radioactive isotope polonium-210 was found in his blood and urine as reported by the United Kingdom’s Health Protection Agency. The post-mortem was cancelled. Subsequently the Agency examined conditions in the hospitals in which Mr Litvinenko has been treated. Police visited the Itsu sushi restaurant in Piccadilly, his home in Muswell Hill and the Millennium Hotel, Grosvenor Square where the meeting on November 1 had been held. Traces of radiocactivity were found in all three places. It is speculated that the polonium was probably eaten by Litvinenko as a substance that could be combined with a salt-like substance, such as polonium nitrate.

It was reported that a meeting had been held in Cabinet Office Briefing Room A (COBRA) used for high level emergency planning and control, to consider the implications of these events. The Foreign Office asked Moscow for a response to the accusation of Russian involvement and President Putin himself dismissed the allegations saying (before the cause of death had been established) that there was no proof of an unnatural death and that the case was being used as a “political provocation”.

Related news

  • “Traces of radiation found where Litvinenko ate” — Wikinews, November 25, 2006
  • “Russian journalist Anna Politkovskaya shot dead” — Wikinews, October 7, 2006

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Britain to replace Trident nuclear missile system

Britain to replace Trident nuclear missile system

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Friday, November 24, 2006

Britain currently deploys 4 Vanguard class submarines, each armed with 16 Trident II D-5 missiles carrying up to 12 nuclear warheads apiece.

The British Cabinet decided that Britain will retain its nuclear deterrent by replacing the Trident missile system carried on submarines, in its first meeting on the subject yesterday. The case for considering land-based and airborne systems made by former Defence Minister Geoff Hoon was rejected.

The Cabinet agreed that three or four new submarines should be built to carry the new missiles, but the number of nuclear warheads to be carried by each vessel will be decided at a later date. The existing fleet of four Vanguard class submarines, even if refitted, is due for decommissioning by 2024 at the latest. The time for design and construction is expected to be 17 years, so there is a need for an early decision. Chancellor Gordon Brown is reported as being keen to get construction started as soon as possible, in order to retain the skills of the existing workforce.

Some Cabinet Ministers thought to oppose the replacement of Trident, who worried that there might be a breach of Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty or who had concern that the Labour party had not been consulted sufficiently. They include Margaret Beckett and Peter Hain, who, until recently, was a member of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament. The Cabinet Ministers expressed themselves content to carry out consultation and have a debate in Parliament in February.

Some 200 Members of Parliament have demanded that Parliament debate alternatives. It was agreed that a white paper for this purpose would be published before Christmas and a period of consultation would follow. Parliament would be asked to vote on the Cabinet’s proposal—not to choose between alternative systems, but to support the Cabinet’s choice “in principle.” Although the Government, with Conservative support, is most likely to get approval for its plan, Jack Straw, Leader of the House, has announced that the vote will be whipped.

Related news item

“Cabinet to discuss UK nuclear deterrent for the first time tomorrow” — Wikinews, November 22, 2006

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Auckland Regional Council supports Eden Park upgrade in New Zealand

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Auckland Regional Council supports Eden Park upgrade in New Zealand

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Friday, November 24, 2006

New Zealand
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The Auckland Regional Council (ARC) has voted to support an upgrade of Eden Park and not the New Zealand government’s preferred option of a new stadium built on Auckland’s waterfront. The stadium consultation is because to host the Rugby World Cup, which New Zealand is hosting in 2011, the final venue has to be able to seat at least 60,000 people.

Trevor Mallard, minister for sports, would not comment on the decision made by the ARC. Mr Mallard would not speak to the media until Monday when he goes to the cabinet.

Yesterday the Auckland City Council also made their decision on the stadium but they had a different opinion, going with the waterfront stadium.

Mr Mallard said a fortnight ago that the final will go to Christchurch’s stadium Jade Stadium if the two councils could not agree on the stadium they wish to pursue.

With coming to its decision the ARC said that it sympathizes with the public as there was no formal public consultation and the two weeks given to them to make their decision and tell the government their choice was not enough time.

The ARC also said that the Auckland City Councils resolution to move the waterfront stadium around 200 metres to the east is not viable as found by a Technical Working Group working for Trevor Mallard.

“By taking this decision, they may be putting more responsibility on Auckland ratepayers,” the mayor of Auckland, Dick Hubbard, said.

The ARC found the waterfront stadium was “inappropriate” because there would be a significant adverse reaction to the council owned Ports of Auckland, special legislation would be required to build it, it would have a “negative impact on the heritage and urban design values of the Britomart precinct and the adjacent waterfront area”, and it would be quite expensive to build.

With all the above considered the ARC decided to pursue the Eden Park option as it is also an internationally recognised stadium and was used for the bid to attempt New Zealand to get the 2011 Ruby World Cup.

“Trevor Mallard’s stadium is a dead duck,” he said. “This afternoon he has no option but to take the waterfront stadium off the table,” Keith Locke, Member of Parliament for the Green party.

Related news

  • Auckland City Council supports waterfront stadium in New Zealand” — Wikinews, November 23, 2006
  • “Injunction fails to stop decision on waterfront stadium in New Zealand” — Wikinews, November 23, 2006
  • “New Zealand National party rejects waterfront stadium” — Wikinews, November 18, 2006
  • “Christchurch can host 2011 Rugby World Cup final” — Wikinews, November 14, 2006
  • “New stadium in Auckland for 2011 rugby world cup preferred by NZ government” — Wikinews, November 10, 2006
  • “Possible new stadium in Auckland for 2011 rugby world cup” — Wikinews, November 7, 2006

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French actor Philippe Noiret dies at 76

Filed under: Archived,Cancer,Europe,Film,France,Obituaries — admin @ 5:00 am

French actor Philippe Noiret dies at 76 – Wikinews, the free news source

French actor Philippe Noiret dies at 76

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Friday, November 24, 2006

The French actor Philippe Noiret died of cancer on Thursday afternoon, as reported by the Artmedia agency.

He is most known for his roles in Nuovo Cinema Paradiso, Il Postino and 125 other films in French, Italian and English.

He was born in Lille, northern France, on 1 October, 1930. He married the actress Monique Chaumette in 1962.

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Former pitcher Pat Dobson dies at 64

Former pitcher Pat Dobson dies at 64 – Wikinews, the free news source

Former pitcher Pat Dobson dies at 64

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Friday, November 24, 2006

Former Major League Baseball pitcher and coach Pat Dobson died of leukemia Wednesday, November 22. He died at age 64 at a local San Diego hospital only a day after being diagnosed with the disease.

Dobson is best known for winning 20 games in the 1971 season for the Baltimore Orioles. He was a major league All-Star in 1972. Dobson finished his 11 year career with a career win-loss record of 122-129 and with a 3.54 ERA in eleven seasons.

Dobson later became a pitching coach for several teams, last appearing for the Orioles in 1996. At his death he was a special assistant to San Francisco Giants general manager Brian Sabean, where he worked the past nine years.

Dobson is survived by his wife and six children.

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