Daily Archives: November 9, 2011

Archives November 9, 2011 posted by

French and Germans explore idea of core eurozone

GERMAN and French officials have discussed plans for a radical overhaul of the European Union that would involve establishing a more integrated and potentially smaller eurozone, EU sources say.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy gave some flavour of his thinking during an address to students in the eastern French city of Strasbourg on Tuesday, when he said a two-speed Europe – the euro zone moving ahead more rapidly than all 27 countries in the EU – was the only model for the future.

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MoD grounds jets with suspect ejectors after Red Arrows tragedy

TRIBUTES were paid today to the Red Arrows pilot killed when he was ejected from the cockpit as military chiefs suspended all non-essential flights in planes with similar seats, the Evening Standard reported.

Flight Lieutenant Sean Cunningham, 35, was described as a “brilliant aviator” as military chiefs launched an inquiry into his death – the second to hit the RAF’s stunt team in three months.

The Ministry of Defence said in a statement today that all non-essential RAF flying on aircraft fitted with the type of ejector seat involved in yesterday’s death was being temporarily suspended pending further investigation.

Flt-Lt Cunningham, who was born and raised in Johannesburg, joined the nine-pilot team of Red Arrows last year as “Red 5”.

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Greeks pull €5 billion from banks as crisis deepens

FEARFUL Greeks have withdrawn savings from banks over the past week because of a deepening political crisis and fear of an exit from the euro, banking sources said yesterday.

Greeks withdrew as much as 5 billion euros – nearly 3 per cent of total deposits – after outgoing Prime Minister George Papandreou’s shock call last week for a referendum on a euro zone bailout, said one banker, who declined to be named.

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Greek party deal on new crisis premier collapses


A DEAL on forming a Greek national unity government collapsed on Wednesday as the country headed towards an economic abyss, hours after outgoing Prime Minister George Papandreou said he was handing over to a coalition that does not exist.

In a day that was bizarre and chaotic even by Greek political standards, Papandreou wished his successor well and headed off to meet the president — only for it to emerge that there was no successor due to feuding in the political parties.

Earlier, party sources said senior members of the socialist and conservative camps had settled on the speaker of parliament, veteran socialist Filippos Petsalnikos, barring last-minute snags.

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Merkel wants changes to Europe's Lisbon treaty


GERMAN Chancellor Angela Merkel said today in some of her most dramatic rhetoric since the eurozone crisis erupted two years ago that it was high time for Europe to achieve a “breakthrough” on changes to its ground rules.

Speaking at a conference in Berlin, Merkel said the situation in Europe had become “unpleasant” and the bloc would not survive unless it showed the world it was capable of adapting to the debt crisis that has intensified in recent weeks, sparking speculation of a eurozone breakup.

Her remarks appeared aimed at winning over sceptical European partners to a German push for changes to the bloc’s Lisbon Treaty, rather than a signal that Berlin was ready to consider radical new measures to stem the crisis.

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Police foil escape plan for high-profile convict


POLICE foiled a planned escape attempt this morning, when Andreas Onoufriou, 59, a convict serving time in state prison, was to be brought to the Supreme Court for a hearing.

According to police spokesman, Michalis Katsounotos, the police had been tipped off by an anonymous source that the escape plan would take place while the convict was being transferred to the Supreme Court in Nicosia.

“We took all the necessary measures to prevent the convict’s escape and to signal out his associates” said Katsounotos.

Police chief, Michalis Papageorgiou had instructed an elaborate action plan that included several members of the police force operating under cover in the area surrounding the court. 

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Cyprus trip no holiday, say Scots

RICKY Sbragia has dismissed suggestions Scotland’s trip to Cyprus is an opportunity for the players to relax. 

Sbragia, who joined Scotland’s backroom team in Limassol after assistant Peter Houston pulled out to focus on his club role with Dundee United, revealed the players were being put through double sessions each day ahead of tomorrow’s friendly in Larnaca. 

Manager Craig Levein has been keen to give players time together away from the training field to build up a team spirit, a trip to La Manga in Spain last season without a game among his tactics. 

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Tendulkar misses out on milestone

SACHIN Tendulkar’s sparkling 76 secured India’s five-wicket victory in the first test against West Indies on Wednesday while prolonging his agonising wait for his 100th international century.

Statistically the greatest cricketer with 33,000-plus runs in international cricket, Tendulkar, who passed 15,000 test runs on Tuesday, looked set for the triple digit mark before leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo trapped him leg before.

The 38-year-old batsman departed after a fluent 148-ball knock, studded with 10 crisp boundaries, but not before laying the foundation for a much-needed win for India, who lost their top test ranking after a 4-0 whitewash in England.

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Tube suicides increase by 74 per cent as recession worries hit home

THE number of people attempting suicide on the London Underground has soared over the last 10 years, the Evening Standard has reported.

Transport for London figures show 80 people threw themselves in front of Tube trains last year compared with 46 in 2000 – a rise of 74 per cent in a decade.

Tube passengers have suffered a total of 29 days of delays in the last 10 years because of people killing themselves across the network.

There has been a marked increase since the global financial crisis in 2008. In 2007, 61 people threw themselves in front of Tube trains. By 2009 the annual figure had soared to 82, a 34 per cent increase.

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UK backs Cyprus' right to explore EEZ


British Foreign Secretary William Hague has “fully and unequivocally” pledged British support for Cyprus rights to explore its exclusive economic zone (EEZ) 

In a meeting with Cyprus’ foreign minister Erato Kozakou-Marcoullis, Hague said: “It is very important to reinforce our bilateral relations, which are strong and important for many reasons. Being in the EU and the Commonwealth together but also because of our common interests in so many regional affairs”. 

He said: “We have got a very good basis for those bilateral relations-the Memorandum which President Christofias and former Prime Minister Gordon Brown signed three years ago. We want to build on that”. 

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