Posts Tagged ‘news’
Murdered and mutilated Portuguese journalist told pal his lover was scaring him – New York Daily News
Last Updated on Sunday, 9 January 2011 08:48 Written by admin Sunday, 9 January 2011 08:48
Carlos Castro, a prominent Portuguese journalist, was allegedly killed by Renato Seabra.
The Portuguese celebrity journalist murdered and mutilated in his swank Times Square hotel room was becoming increasingly threatened by his handsome young companion just before the gruesome slay, police sources said.
Carlos Castro, a prominent gay activist and society columnist, was beaten to death and his scrotum severed with a broken wine glass during a wild fight with his former lover, a fashion model now in police custody at the Bellevue Hospital psychiatric ward.
Castro, 65, was found faceup and nude in a pool of blood inside his 34th-floor room at the InterContinental New York Times Square on W. 44th St. on Friday night.
His suspected killer, 20-year-old Renato Seabra, was found hours later at Roosevelt Hospital – sporting wrist wounds that may have been evidence of a failed suicide attempt.
Investigators believe the suave Seabra, a former Portuguese reality-show contestant, was playing Castro and attacked him after he accused the older man of being chintzy about buying him gifts, sources said.
“He told people back home, before the trip, that he wasn’t gay,” a police source said. “He got [Castro] to pay his way to New York and wanted him to boost his career, buy him things.”
Castro’s body was found shortly after Wanda Pires and her daughter Monica, friends of the victim, grew concerned when they went to the swanky hotel at 6p.m. Friday and could not reach him.
“I’m scared to sleep with him here,” Castro had told Pires, according to police sources.
“I actually changed my flight to go home a couple of days early – this guy’s been acting crazy,” he told her.
After the savage slaying, Seabra disappeared for four hours before taking a cab to the hospital at 11 p.m. for treatment of cuts on his hands and face.
The cab driver who dropped off a nervous Seabra later saw a newscast, recognized Seabra’s photo – and immediately called 911.
“I think I just dropped your guy off at the hospital,” said the driver, who recalled Seabra as “frantic,” according to NYPD sources.
Moments later, a nurse from Roosevelt also saw Seabra’s photo on the news and called police, telling cops the suspect was in the hospital’s waiting room.
Seabra was arrested just after midnight and taken to Bellevue Hospital, where he was undergoing a psychiatric evaluation, the NYPD sources said. Charges are pending.
When Pires and her daughter went to check on Castro, they saw the tall, chiseled Seabra, clad in a black suit and purple tie, walk through the lobby – and stop in a panic when he spotted the worried women.
Burma generals ‘sign Aung San Suu Kyi release order’ – BBC News
Last Updated on Friday, 12 November 2010 02:27 Written by admin Friday, 12 November 2010 02:27
12 November 2010
Last updated at 03:17 ET
Reports are coming out of Burma saying the military authorities have signed an order authorising the release of pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi.
The Nobel laureate has been detained for 15 of the past 21 years, and her house arrest term expires on Saturday.
There has been increased police activity outside her house in Rangoon, but as yet no official confirmation.
However, Ms Suu Kyi is not expected to accept a conditional release if it excludes her from political activity.
She was originally due to be released last year, but a case involving an American who swam across Inya Lake to her home, claiming he was on a mission to save her, prompted the latest 18-month detention.
The BBC’s Alastair Leithead in Bangkok says a number of sources inside Burma have told the BBC that documents authorising Ms Suu Kyi’s release have been signed.
There has been increased police activity outside her home in University Avenue in Rangoon, Burma’s biggest city.
Aung San Suu Kyi
- Born 1945, daughter of Burma’s independence hero, General Aung San assassinated in 1947
- 1960: Leaves Burma and is later educated at Oxford University
- 1988: Returns to care for sick mother and is caught up in revolt against then-dictator Ne Win
- 1989: Put under house arrest as Burma junta declares martial law
- 1990: NLD wins election; military disregards result
- 1991: Wins Nobel Peace Prize
- 1995: Released from house arrest, but movements restricted
- 2000: Near continuous period of house arrest begins
- Sept 2007: First public appearance since 2003, greeting protesting Buddhist monks
- November 2010: NLD boycotts first election in 20 years and is disbanded
Her supporters, who have been publicly counting down the days to the end of her current term of house arrest, have been gathering at the headquarters of her political party, the National League for Democracy (NLD), in anticipation of her release.
“There is no law to hold her for another day. Her detention period expires on Saturday and she will be released,” her lawyer, Nyan Win, told reporters. “They should release her for the country.”
Earlier this week, he said Ms Suu Kyi would “not accept a limited release”.
“[It] must be unconditional. As we all know, she never accepted limited freedom in the past,” he added.
Nyan Win said she would meet with the NLD’s central committee, members of the media and the public once she was freed.
The British ambassador to Burma, Andrew Heyn, has told the BBC that the UK and EU are pressing hard for Ms Suu Kyi’s unconditional release, and that her freedom would have a “significant impact”.
The increasing speculation that the ruling generals may sanction her release follows the country’s first elections in 20 years on Sunday.
On Thursday, state media announced that partial results showed that the biggest military-backed party, the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP), had secured a majority in both houses of parliament.
The USDP had won 190 of the 219 seats so far declared in the 330-seat lower House of Representatives, and 95 of 107 seats in the 168-seat upper House of Nationalities, the reports said.
Those elected included the leader of the USDP, Prime Minister Thein Sein, who retired from the military as a general in April to stand.
The junta has said the election marks the transition from military rule to a civilian democracy, but the opposition, many Western governments and human rights groups have said the election was neither free nor fair.
The NLD – which won the last election in 1990 but was never allowed to take power – was ordered to dissolve after refusing to take part.
A quarter of seats in the two new chambers of parliament will be reserved for the military. Any constitutional change will require a majority of more than 75% – meaning that the military will retain a casting vote.
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Travelers Disembark ‘Nightmare’ Cruise Amid Cheers – ABC News
Last Updated on Friday, 12 November 2010 02:04 Written by admin Friday, 12 November 2010 02:04
They can call it a nightmare. A cruise from hell. Even a Spamcation.
Sabrina Klinge, right, a passenger who was onboard the Carnival Splendor cruise ship for her honeymoon, leaves the cruise ship terminal in San Diego, Calif., Thursday, Nov. 11, 2010. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Whatever they label it, the grueling three-day journey of the crippled Carnival Splendor is over, and the nearly 4,500 passengers and crew members can forget about the backed-up toilets, the darkened, stuffy cabins and the canned meat.
“I love being back on land,” said passenger Ken King, 42, of Los Angeles.
As the ship docked on Thursday, people who had gathered on the decks and about 100 waiting onshore cheered loudly. Along the harbor, tourists, joggers and fishermen stopped to snap photos.
Passengers snapped up $ 20 T-shirts being sold on land with the phrase: “I survived the 2010 Carnival cruise Spamcation.”
An engine fire aboard the 952-foot cruise liner on Monday morning knocked out power early in its seven-day trip to the Mexican Riviera, setting the ship adrift about 200 miles outside San Diego and 44 miles off the coast of Mexico.
No one was hurt, but passengers said they were jolted awake by the fire. Few of them panicked.
Smoke filled hallways toward the back of the ship, and a smoky odor reached the front cabins. Carnival said a crankcase split on one of the ship’s six diesel engines, causing the fire.
“It felt like an earthquake and sounded like a jackhammer,” said Amber Haslerud, 27, of Chula Vista.
The captain immediately announced that there would be no need to abandon ship, said Amy Watts, 25, of Seattle. “You think about the Titanic,” she said.
The fire left the ship without air conditioning, hot water or hot food. The casino was closed and, for a time, so were the bars. The swimming pool was off-limits because the pumps wouldn’t work.
Navy helicopters flew in Spam, Pop Tarts and canned crab meat and other goods.
Passengers on lower decks had to climb as many as nine flights of stairs to get to the cafeteria only to meet long lines that stretched on for hours. By the time those at the end got to the food, they were left with tomatoes and lettuce, Haslerud said.
G20 leaders face fractious talks – BBC News
Last Updated on Thursday, 11 November 2010 05:37 Written by admin Thursday, 11 November 2010 05:37
11 November 2010
Last updated at 19:11 ET
Talks between leaders of the G20 group of major economies are entering their second day in Seoul, with key nations locked in fractious talks.
Leaders are due to publish a final communique on the summit, setting out agreements had made.
But tensions are high between some delegations over how to correct distortions in currency and trade.
Some fear the conflict – primarily between the United States and China – may threaten global growth.
The US has faced criticism from several countries for pumping another $ 600bn into its economy to try to revive growth through a second round of so-called quantitative easing.
And there are also divisions about China’s currency, the yuan, which Washington says is artificially weak and gives Chinese exporters an unfair advantage as well as leading to Beijing amassing huge foreign reserves.
What is the G20?
The G20 group comprises the world’s 19 leading national economies, plus the European Union.
It was formed in 1999, and held its first meeting that year.
Until 2008 the G20 was overshadowed by the smaller G8 grouping of France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, the US, Canada and Russia.
However, this has changed since the global financial crisis of 2008, and the G20 has effectively now replaced the G8 as the main global economic forum.
The major growth in the economies of G20 members China, India and Brazil has also contributed to the rising importance of the grouping.
The G20 currently meets twice a year, but this is set to reduce to one meeting from 2011.
However Chinese officials argued that Beijing had an “unswerving” commitment to reform its currency regime, but that global economic stability was needed to achieve it.
“If you’re sick yourself, don’t ask others to take medicine,” commerce ministry spokesman Yu Jianhua said.
A spokesman for the summit said on Friday that G20 leaders were likely to reach some sort of agreement on resolving trade and currency disputes.
Earlier, in a joint news conference with the South Korean leader, US President Barack Obama insisted the G20 final communique would include mechanisms to promote balanced and sustainable international economic growth.
However BBC economics editor Stephanie Flanders said that the draft version of the communique still left much to be agreed on – especially on issues around exchange rates and imbalances.
In a seeming acknowledgement that the summit was not going to be as successful as previous meetings, British Prime Minister David Cameron said the G20 was “not in its heroic phase” – an apparent reference to its well-received response to the 2008 financial crisis.
The group needed to do “a lot more work” on fixing economic imbalances, Mr Cameron said.
As they negotiate into the small hours, officials say the leaders might well end up broadly where they would have ended up a few weeks ago”
Some economists fear that if steps are not made to resolve the so-called “currency wars”, this could act as a barrier to trade which may risk a return to global recession.
President Obama has called on other nations to agree on clear rules for reducing big trade surpluses and deficits – and is urging agreement that a strong US recovery is in everyone’s interests.
“The most important thing that the United States can do for the world economy is to grow because we continue to be the world’s largest market and a huge engine for all other countries to grow,” he said.
He also called for a stronger promise from China that it will let its currency go up very soon, not simply at some point in the future.
That would make Chinese exports costlier abroad and make US imports cheaper for the Chinese to buy.
However our economics editor said that while the US may make headway at the G20, it had been weakened by the global criticism of its policies.
This means that China, and other nations with huge trade surpluses such as Germany, would “not be signing up to any hard numbers or targets”, she added.
Developing nations have also expressed concerns at the potential impact on them of the US Federal Reserve to pump more money into the economy, as well as having low interest rates.
There are fears that if US rates are kept too low, this could create bubbles in the prices of commodities and stocks.
Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Republic of Korea, Turkey, US, UK, European Union
This would leave emerging markets could be vulnerable to a crash if investors later decide to pull out and move their money elsewhere, observers say.
“Memories of the recent financial crisis originating in the United States are still very fresh and make governments aware of the potential danger,” said BBC World Service’s economic editor Andrew walker.
He added that many developing countries had been through heir own turmoil within the last 15 years – including the hosts South Korea which was caught up in the Asian crisis.