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March 10, 2008

Strong winds and heavy rain across southern UK

Filed under: Archived,Europe,Original reporting,United Kingdom,Weather — admin @ 5:00 am

Strong winds and heavy rain across southern UK

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Monday, March 10, 2008

United Kingdom
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A map showing the weather warnings as of 13:45 UTC yesterday

The southern United Kingdom has experienced heavy rains and strong winds, with approximately 10,000 homes now without power. In addition to damage to property, many journeys have been disrupted, as a result of cancelled flights, in addition to closed roads and rail tracks.

The UK Met Office described the current conditions by saying that “the Met Office continues to expect an intense low pressure system to move east across the UK during Monday, bringing severe gales and potentially damaging gusts across some areas, more particularly the west and south of England and Wales. Southerly winds are expected to strengthen during the early hours of Monday to give severe gales for a time, coinciding with the morning rush hour in some areas.”

Reports by area

Anglian region

The Anglian region, which covers the east of England, was issued with one flood watch, meaning that a flood is not likely, but is possible. The warning was issued for the North Norfolk coast at 13:37 UTC yesterday. It was also issued with given one all clear yesterday. Neither the flood watch nor the all clear has been removed, although no major damage has been removed.

North East region

The North East region, which covers the north east of England, was previously issued with four flood watches, although that number has now increased.. The first warning, which covered the areas between Whitby and Filey was issued at 12:20 UTC on Saturday, with the next warning, which covered the area surrounding the Lower River Ouse, being issued approximately nine hours later. The third and fourth warnings were both issued at approximately 9:40 UTC yesterday, with the warnings covering the areas surrounding the Upper River Ouse and Lower River Ouse. Two all clears were also issued, the first covered the North Sea at Scarborough and was issued at 20:37 UTC on Saturday and the second covered the River Ure at Aldwark Bridge, with it being issued at 09:02 UTC yesterday. No major damage has been reported for the North West although ten flood watches and seven flood warnings are in force.

North West region

The North West region, which covers the north west of England, was issued with eleven flood watches. All but one of them were issued yesterday, with the other one being issued on March 7. The warnings covered many areas including the coast at Barrow in Furness and the Wyre Estuary. No major damage has been reported for the North West although six flood watches are still in force.

A map showing the weather warnings at approximately 11:00 UTC yesterday

Southern region

The Southern region, which covers the south of England, was been issued with five flood watches. The warnings covering the Southampton Water Flood Watch Area and the Portsmouth Flood Watch Area were added the most recently, with the warnings for the Milford-on-Sea to Calshot Flood Watch Area, the Isle of Wight coast Flood Watch Area and the Hayling Island Flood Watch Area coming earlier at various times soon after 14:00 UTC yesterday.

According to a spokesperson for the environment agency, “the situation has now improved along parts of the south west and southern coast.”

South West region

The South West region, which covers the south west of England, was been issued with 28 warnings. This includes seven severe flood warnings, 13 flood warnings and eight flood watches. The severe flood warning covered large portions of the counties of Cornwall and Devon. Some areas in the region have, however, not been subject to the bad weather, with most of the Bristol area enjoying calm weather, although the nearby Portishead has been issued with a flood warning.

The city of Bristol experienced heavy rain at around 11:00 local time today, although no damage was noticed from this incident. Strong winds caused minor damage to property although the damage was low compared to that in other parts of the country. Other areas of this region have experienced flooding, although some reports are saying that the damage was not as severe as expected.

Floodline.

Call the UK Environment Agency’s floodline at 0845 988 1188 for advice if your area is expected to suffer from flooding.



Sources

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Socialists win second term as Spain\’s ruling party

Socialists win second term as Spain’s ruling party

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Monday, March 10, 2008

José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, Prime Minister of Spain and leader of the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party.

Mariano Rajoy, leader of the People’s Party.

In the 2008 Spanish general election held on Sunday, the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party (PSOE) has emerged as the winner for the second election in a row, edging out the more conservative People’s Party in a vote characterized by fears of a faltering economy and militant separatists.

With 93 percent of ballots counted, the Socialists, led by incumbent Prime Minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, had 43.8 percent of the vote, while the People’s Party, headed by former Interior Minister Mariano Rajoy, had 40.2 percent.

The Socialists are projected to win at least 168 of the 350 seats in the Chamber of Deputies, falling short of an absolute majority, which means they may have to rely on the backing of smaller parties to pass important legislation. The People’s Party is projected to win at least 154 seats.

“I have called the candidate of the Socialist Party and I have wished him luck for the good of Spain,” Rajoy said in his concession speech.

Cquote1.svg I will govern for all, but thinking above all of those who don’t have it all. Cquote2.svg

—José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero

“Thanks to all the citizens who have participated,” Zapatero said after his challenger conceded. “And thanks from my heart to the citizens who have, with their votes, given a clear victory to the Socialist Party.”

“We have worked hard, and it’s been worth the trouble,” he added. “I will govern by improving the things we did well and correcting our mistakes,” he added.

The economy was a large focus of the election, with the unemployment rate rising and inflation at a 12 year high. To ease concerns about the economy, Zapatero said action would be taken to help construction workers that had been laid off, and he promised a 400 euro ($615) tax cut for all workers. “I will govern for all, but thinking above all of those who don’t have it all,” Zapatero said.

On March 7, one day prior to the end of the official campaigning period, former Socialist politician Isaias Carrasco was shot to death in Spain’s Basque region. Zapatero blamed the murder on the ETA, a Basque separatist organization. “We know that ETA is defeated by democracy and repudiated by the Spanish people together and by Basque Society,” said Zapatero. “Its members have no other future than jail.”

At Carrasco’s funeral Saturday, his daughter called for a massive voter turnout as a way of condemning the ETA. The turnout was estimated to be around 75 percent, close to the record 75.66 percent in the 2004 elections. The newspaper El País commented, “Some are already beginning to put out the idea that a bigger Socialist win than predicted by the opinion polls will be due to the killing of Isaias Carrasco.”

The killing drew comparisons to the 2004 Madrid train bombings, which killed 191 people three days before the general election in which Zapatero came to power. The conservative government initially placed the blame on the ETA, despite evidence that the attack was done by Islamic extremists angered by Spain’s involvement in the Iraq War. One of Zapatero’s first acts as Prime Minister was withdrawing troops from Iraq.

During the campaign, Rajoy often criticized his Socialist rival for not doing enough to prevent terrorism and negotiate with the ETA. Zapatero’s failed peace talks with the ETA, which ended with the separatists setting off a car bomb at a Madrid airport, became a highly debated issue in the election.

In his 4 years as president, Zapatero’s government has enacted social reforms that include legalizing gay marriage, allowing for quicker divorces, and promoting gender equality. These policies conflicted with the views of the Roman Catholic Church, and in December, Catholics staged a mass protest against the government in Madrid.



Related news

  • “Spanish Prime Minster condemns killing of Spanish councillor” — Wikinews, March 7, 2008
  • “Spanish councillor shot and killed in the Basque Country” — Wikinews, March 7, 2008

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New York governor Spitzer tied to prostitution ring

New York governor Spitzer tied to prostitution ring

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Monday, March 10, 2008

Eliot Spitzer (D), Governor of New York

According to a report by The New York Times (The Times), New York Governor Eliot Spitzer informed his senior administration officials on Monday that he was being investigated for using a “high-class” prostitution ring. The Times report cites anonymous officials who work for Spitzer. A law enforcement official who spoke to Associated Press on condition of anonymity stated that a federal wiretap related to a recent investigation revealed that Spitzer paid for prostitutes from an online service under investigation.

ABC News reported that, according to federal officials, the federal investigation into the prostitution ring was initially motivated by money transfers which led agents to believe Governor Spitzer was hiding bribes. Sources familiar with the case spoke to The Washington Post and CNN, and said that Spitzer is identified as “Client 9” in court documents and on a federal wiretap.

In a brief press conference held Monday afternoon, Spitzer apologized to his family and to the public, but did not directly admit or deny involvement in the prostitution ring. “I apologize first and most importantly to my family. I apologize to the public, to whom I promised better. I must now dedicate some time to rededicate my trust to my family,” he said, adding that he “acted in a way that violates his obligation to his family.”

Spitzer did not answer questions from reporters, indicating he would have more to say “in short order.” He did not admit or deny any allegations.

The Times’ report alleges that Gov. Spitzer was a client of the Emperors Club VIP, a high-priced international prostitution ring. Last week, federal investigators arrested four people involved with the operation in and around New York. The investigation utilized undercover work and wiretap recordings at various club locations, including New York and Washington, with the latter allegedly containing Spitzer’s voice.

Reports indicate the governor learned on Friday, March 7, of federal investigators’ discovery of his alleged involvement in the prostitution ring. He informed his top aides on Sunday night before meeting with the rest of his staff Monday, according to The Times. Sources for the Fox News Channel and WCBS-TV in New York report Spitzer could resign and be indicted, in which case the Lieutenant Governor of New York, David Paterson, would become governor.

James Tedisco, the New York State Assembly Republican Minority Leader, says Spitzer should resign and state Republican leadership will initiate impeachment proceedings if the governor fails to step down. “Today’s news that Eliot Spitzer was likely involved with a prostitution ring and his refusal to deny it leads to one inescapable conclusion: he has disgraced his office and the entire state of New York. He should resign his office immediately,” stated Tedisco.



Sources

Wikipedia Learn more about Eliot Spitzer and Eliot Spitzer prostitution scandal on Wikipedia.
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National Hockey League news: March 10, 2008

National Hockey League news: March 10, 2008

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Monday, March 10, 2008

There were 8 games played in the National Hockey League on March 9, 2008.

Game summaries

Edmonton Oilers @ Chicago Blackhawks

  1 2 3 OT Total
Edmonton Oilers 1 2 2 1 6
Chicago Blackhawks 1 2 2 0 5

Dustin Penner scored first for Edmonton, a power play goal giving them their first lead 2:52 into the game. Patrick Sharp tied the score when he scored for the Blackhawks 7:49 into the first. Duncan Keith scored 8:22 into the second period, giving Chicago their first lead of the game. Curtis Glencross tied the score at 2 apiece about halfway through the second. A couple minutes later, Jason Williams retook the lead for the Blackhawks. Robert Nilsson scored with 1:24 left in the second period, re-tying the score again. Marty Reasoner retook the lead for the Oilers 1:29 into the third period. A couple minutes later, Robert Lang scored a power play goal, tying the score again. Andrew Cogliano scored for Edmonton 6:12 into the third period, but Chicago tied it up with less than 5 minutes remaining in regulation on a Dustin Byfuglien unassisted goal to force overtime. Cogliano scored his second goal of the night 3:01 into OT, giving the Oilers their second straight win and the Blackhawks their second straight loss. Lang had three points on a goal and an assist.

Boston Bruins @ New York Rangers

  1 2 3 OT SO Total
Boston Bruins 0 0 0 0 0/3 0
New York Rangers 0 0 0 0 1/3 1

Nigel Dawes scored the only goal of the game, which came in the second round of the shootout. Alex Auld made 35 saves during regulation for the Bruins, and allowed just the shootout goal . Henrik Lundqvist made 29 saves for the Rangers.

Pittsburgh Penguins @ Washington Capitals

  1 2 3 Total
Pittsburgh Penguins 0 2 2 4
Washington Capitals 0 2 0 2

Brooks Laich scored a power play goal 7:23 into the second period, giving Washington the first lead of the game. Moments later, Pittsburgh tied the score when Petr Sykora scored. Sidney Crosby scored his first goal since returning from a high ankle sprain, giving the Penguins their first lead of the game. Alexander Semin scored with 14 seconds left in the second period, tying the score heading into the second intermission. A pair of late period goals, first Crosby’s second of the night with 28 seconds left in regulation, then Jordan Staal empty netter with 13 seconds left, gave the Penguins the victory. Washington has now lost 2 straight. Evgeni Malkin had 3 points on three assists.

Nashville Predators @ Detroit Red Wings

  1 2 3 Total
Nashville Predators 0 0 3 3
Detroit Red Wings 2 2 0 4

Johan Franzen scored first for Detroit 11:17 into the first period on a Red Wings power play. Jiri Hudler scored a power play goal of his own a few minutes later. Brad Stuart gave Detroit a 3 goal lead at 15:21 in the second period. Franzen put the Red Wings ahead by 4 just over a minute later with his second power play goal of the night. Nashville tried to come back, scoring three goals in the third period. First, Shea Weber scored a power play goal 11:24 into the third period. A few minutes later, Martin Erat scored his 22nd of the season on another power play. With 1:01 left in regulation, Nashville came within 1 with Jordin Tootoo’s 10th goal of the season. Nashville couldn’t get any more goals after that though, as they fall to the Red Wings, who have now won their third straight.

Tampa Bay Lightning @ Columbus Blue Jackets

  1 2 3 Total
Tampa Bay Lightning 1 2 0 3
Columbus Blue Jackets 2 1 2 5

Columbus scored first with David Vyborny’s goal 11:29 into the game. Jeff Halpern tied the score a few minutes later with his 13th goal of the season. Derek MacKenzie scored with 42 seconds left in the first to retake the lead for Columbus going into the intermission. Michael Peca put the Blue Jackets up by 2 11:29 into the second period. Martin St. Louis made it a one goal game 16:35 into the second, then just a minute later, Vincent Lecavalier scored his 33rd goal of the season on a penalty shot, tying the score 3 goals apiece. Jason Chimera scored a power play goal late in the third period, giving Columbus a 1 goal lead with 3:44 left in regulation. The Blue Jackets added an empty net goal by Jiri Novotny with a minute left in the game, snapping Columbus’ 3 game losing streak. The Lightning have now lost 5 straight.

San Jose Sharks @ Minnesota Wild

  1 2 3 OT SO Total
San Jose Sharks 2 0 0 0 2/3 3
Minnesota Wild 0 1 1 0 1/3 2

San Jose struck first, when Milan Michalek scored 46 seconds after the opening faceoff, giving them an early 1-0 lead. Tomas Plihal scored his second goal of the season on a penalty shot, giving the Sharks a 2 goal lead. Kurtis Foster cut the Sharks’ lead in half in the second period. Minnesota went on to tie it up with a Brian Rolston goal with 29 seconds left in regulation, to force overtime. Marian Gaborik had an opportunity to give Minnesota a win late in the 4-on-4, but Patrick Marleau batted Gaborik’s shot out of midair. The game went to a shootout. Joe Pavelski scored in the first round for San Jose. Pierre-Marc Bouchard tied the shootout with a spin-a-rama goal, but the next shooter for San Jose, Marleau, beat Niklas Backstrom, giving the Sharks their 9th straight win, which sets a franchise record. Minnesota now has a 4 game losing streak. San Jose can sweep the season series with Minnesota when they face them at home on March 19.

Montreal Canadiens @ Anaheim Ducks

  1 2 3 Total
Montreal Canadiens 1 0 0 1
Anaheim Ducks 1 0 2 3

Todd Marchant scored for Anaheim 21 seconds into the game, giving the Ducks an early 1-0 lead. Alex Kovalev tied the score with his 30th goal of the season later in the first period. Chris Kunitz scored the go-ahead goal for Anaheim at 12:36 in the third period. Samuel Pahlsson scored a shorthanded goal 33 seconds later for Anaheim. Jean-Sebastien Giguere made 20 saves, earning his 31st win of the season.

Colorado Avalanche @ Dallas Stars

  1 2 3 Total
Colorado Avalanche 0 0 0 0
Dallas Stars 2 1 0 3

Stu Barnes scored 3:56 into the first period, giving the Stars an early lead. Stephane Robidas scored less than two minutes later. Brad Richards put the Stars ahead by three 6:55 into the second period. Marty Turco saved all of Colorado’s 19 shots, earning his 30th win and 3rd shutout of the season. Mike Modano had 2 points on 2 assists. Richards also assisted on the Robidas goal. Dallas snapped a 3 game losing streak, and the Avalanche snapped a 6 game winning streak.

Player of the Day

Today’s Player of the Day is Evgeni Malkin of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Malkin assisted on 3 of the Penguins’ 4 goals in Pittsburgh’s 4-2 win over the Washington Capitals.

For information on the selection process of the Player of the Day, see this page.



Sources

Game summaries:

Yesterday’s NHL news:

  • “National Hockey League news: March 9, 2008” — Wikinews, March 9, 2008
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Malaysian opposition gains in elections, conquers four new state legislatures

Filed under: Archived,Asia,Elections,Malaysia,Politics and conflicts,Sarawak — admin @ 5:00 am

Malaysian opposition gains in elections, conquers four new state legislatures

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Monday, March 10, 2008

Malaysia
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Location of Malaysia

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To write, edit, start or view other articles on Malaysia, see the Malaysia Portal
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The elections in Malaysia have resulted in gains by opposition parties. The ruling Barisan National (BN) Coalition’s fraction has fallen below two thirds (The requisite supermajority to amend the constitution), while still maintaining an absolute majority to mass its legislation.

The elections, held on the March 8, were for the Parliament of Malaysia and all the state legislatures, except that of Sarawak. Opposition parties defeated the BN in five of the thirteen state legislatures, up from one in the 2004 elections.

A number of commentators noted that the results had been unexpected, including the BBC’s Robin Brant, who stated that “no one expected the opposition to do so well across the board.”



Related news

Sources

Wikipedia
Wikipedia has more about this subject:
Malaysian general election, 2008


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