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Published by it, 2017-12-31 08:29:22


December 31st 2017

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Important news for important people Volume 3047 Sunday December 31, 2017
International Business Sports
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Er- Prime Minister Justin Trudeau prom- A slow moving Serena Williams Cabo San Lucas
dogan announced on Saturday that he ises a “progressive agenda” for Cana- made an encouraging return to tennis Fair (day)
will travel to France to discuss bilat- da’s G7 presidency in 2018, but talks after maternity leave, taking a set off Sunrise: 7:00 AM
eral relations with counterpart Em- may once again hit a snag over cli- the French Open champion Jelena Os- Sunset: 5:45 PM
manuel Macron, after a... P.2 mate change after the US... P.3 tapenko in an exhibition... P.5 Humidity: 51% 73-77 F

Russia became involved in the Syrian conflict in September 2015 Militia leader said
Putin calls for ‘pragmatic cooperation’ in New Year wishes to Trump Boko Haram kills four
loggers in NE Nigeria
changes for the better will continue Boko Haram fighters opened fire on
in Syria in the new year”. a group of loggers in a remote village
The statement added that Putin told in northeast Nigeria on Saturday, kill-
Assad “Russia will continue to show ing four people, a survivor and a mili-
all kind of support to the Syrian Arab tia leader said.
Republic in order to protect its state Gunmen on motorcycles attacked
sovereignty, unity and territorial in- the loggers while they were loading
tegrity”. firewood into pickup vans at Maiwa
Russia became involved in the village, 20 kilometres (12 miles)
Syrian conflict in September 2015, from Maiduguri, the Borno state cap-
when it began an aerial campaign ital, they said.
in support of Assad’s military. Putin The gunmen burned three vehicles
ordered a partial withdrawal of the laden with firewood heading to the
Russian army from Syria earlier this volatile city.
month. “Four loggers were shot dead by
On ordering the partial with- the Boko Haram gunmen who also
drawal, Putin praised his country’s burnt three vehicles loaded with fire-
armed forces for having “bril- wood,” said Ibrahim Liman, a leader
liantly accomplished” their mis- of a militia force fighting the insur-
sion which saw Syrian government gents. He said other loggers escaped
forces make major gains from ji- the assault.
Russian President Vladimir Putin (Photo AFP) hadists and assorted anti-regime The attackers, who rode on six mo-
Russian President Vladimir Putin us to move towards building prag- rebel groups. torcycles, struck at the logging site
called for “pragmatic cooperation” in matic cooperation, orientated on the Russia does retain a military pres- around 4:40 pm (1540 GMT), said
his New Year wishes to US President long term,” the statement quoted Pu- ence in Syria, however, through its logger Haruna Dahiru.
Donald Trump, the Kremlin said on tin as saying. naval base at Tartus, whose expan- “Sixteen of them (Boko Haram)
Saturday. The Russian president also sent sion Moscow agreed earlier this came on six motorcycles, riding in
In a statement on the Russian messages to other heads of state, month, as well as Hmeimim, where twos and threes, and opened fire on
president’s New Year wishes to world including the leaders of former So- Russian singers performed a New us without saying a word,” he said.
leaders, the Kremlin said Putin told viet countries, France’s Emmanuel Year variety show Saturday. “They killed four of our colleagues
Trump that “a constructive Russian- Macron, Germany’s Angela Merkel Moscow hopes to host government and set fire to three pickup vans we
American dialogue is especially and Syrian president Bashar Al- and rebel group representatives at the loaded with firewood to bring to Mai-
needed to strengthen strategic stabil- Assad. end of January in the Black Sea resort duguri to sell,” he added.
ity in the world”. In his wishes to the Syrian leader, of Sochi to push both sides closer to Boko Haram’s violence has killed
According to the statement, Putin with whom he met during a surprise a political settlement of a seven-year over 20,000 people and displaced
said that “mutual respect” should be visit to Russia’s Syrian air base conflict which has cost more than some 2.6 million since 2009, trigger-
“a base to develop relations” between Hmeimim earlier this month, Putin 340,000 lives and displaced millions ing a dire humanitarian crisis in the
the two countries. “This would allow “expressed sincere hope that key more. region.
Most of the displaced rely on food
The New York Times reported Saturday handouts from aid agencies while
others have turned to felling trees
Australia helped spark Russia-Trump probe: report which they sell to buy food.
Information shared by Australia formation that Australia later passed “Two months later, when leaked The jihadists have increasingly
helped spark the FBI’s probe into on to its close ally the United States, Democratic emails began appearing targeted loggers, accusing them of
Russia’s attempts to disrupt the US the Times said. online, Australian officials passed the spying and passing information to the
presidential election and possible The conversation between Papado- information about Mr Papadopoulos military and the local militia fighting
collusion by Donald Trump’s cam- poulos and Downer, then Australia’s to their American counterparts,” the them. In August Boko Haram fight-
paign, The New York Times reported high commissioner to Britain, took Times said, citing four current and ers decapitated three loggers near Ai-
Saturday. place at an upscale London bar in former American and foreign officials sa-Wulomari village, 40 kilometres
George Papadopoulos, a former May 2016, the Times said, after Pa- with direct knowledge of the Austra- from Maiduguri while returning to
Trump campaign foreign policy advi- padopoulos had been told that Mos- lians’ role. “It was firsthand informa- the city. In April eight loggers were
sor who has pleaded guilty to lying cow had thousands of emails that tion from one of America’s closest killed and their bodies burnt by the
to the FBI, told Australia’s ex-foreign would embarrass Hillary Clinton, the intelligence allies” that alarmed the insurgents at Kayamla, 10 kilometres
minister Alexander Downer that Rus- Democratic presidential challenger FBI and helped prompt them to begin from Maiduguri while collecting fire-
sia had “dirt” on Hillary Clinton, in- in the election which Trump won. investigating, the Times said. wood in a bush.

Page 2 Sunday December 31, 2017
Justice minister said After a year of particularly strained ties between the European Union and Turkey
Guinea massacre suspects Erdogan to visit France amid tensions with EU
to go before criminal tribunal
Fourteen suspects held over a 2009
stadium massacre in Guinea which
killed 157 people are to go before a
criminal tribunal after a legal inves-
tigation concluded, the country’s jus-
tice minister said.
“I am happy to announce to you
that the judicial investigation into the
2009 Conakry stadium massacre end-
ed on December 29. (It) took almost
seven years,” said Cheick Sako.
“The committal order to go be-
fore the criminal tribunal was taken
at the same time on Friday, opening
the way to trial,” said Sako, adding a
steering committee was being set up
to deal with the “material preparation
of the forthcoming trial.”
At least 157 people were killed and
109 women raped by troops during a
massive opposition protest in the sta-
dium on September 28, 2009 against Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (Photo AFP)
the rule of then junta chief Moussa Turkish President Recep Tayyip Er- relations between France and Tur- including journalists, lawyers, oppo-
Dadis Camara after his security forc- dogan announced on Saturday that key,” Erdogan said in a televised sition politicians and academics.
es opened fire on the crowd. he will travel to France to discuss speech to members of his ruling A French journalist, Loup Bureau,
Last month, human rights organ- bilateral relations with counterpart AKP party. who was detained in a Turkish prison
isations and massacre victims said Emmanuel Macron, after a year of The announcement follows Erdo- for more than seven weeks on “ter-
the three investigating judges had particularly strained ties between the gan expressing hope for a better rela- ror” charges, returned to France in
notified them that the judicial inves- European Union and Turkey. tionship with the EU, telling Turkish September after Macron appealed to
tigation was complete after the panel Erdogan’s visit comes as Turkey journalists on Thursday: “I always Erdogan for his release.
heard testimony from hundreds of has seen its decade-long negotia- say this. We must reduce the number In September, Macron said that
people present that day. tions to join the EU almost grind to of enemies and increase the number “Turkey has objectively moved
At the time, the ministry of justice a halt and widespread criticism over of friends.” away from the European Union in
said the judges had forwarded the file a far-reaching crackdown against Erdogan launched a huge purge of recent months, with disturbing drifts
“to the public prosecutor at the Court the president’s opponents since last state institutions after the attempted that can not remain without conse-
of First Instance of Dixinn for final year’s failed coup. “Friday, I will go coup in July 2016; more than 55,000 quence,” in an interview with Greek
settlement,” opening the way for the to France. We will discuss bilateral people have been arrested since then, daily Kathimerini.
14 defendants to stand trial.
Camara, a former army officer, There were even chants in favour of the monarchy toppled by the Islamic revolution of 1979
seized power in 2008 after the death
of Guinea’s longtime dictator Lansa- DR Congo Catholics challenge Kabila with demo call
na Conte. Despite initial support he Catholics in crisis-torn Democratic ity with Kabila stepping down. But radio station at Uvira in South-Kivu
rankled the population when he broke Republic of Congo vowed Satur- Kinshasa’s governor insisted the un- province after it broadcast a call for
a pledge not to run for president. day to defy a protest ban and hold a authorised march could not go ahead. the rally, according to the station di-
After surviving an assassination “peaceful march” Sunday to urge im- “The city does not have sufficient rector. In a letter to the governor, a
attempt in late 2009, Camara fled plementation of a deal for President numbers of police officers to super- secular coordinating committee had
the country and now lives in exile in Joseph Kabila to leave office and for vise this march,” Andre Kimbuta earlier insisted the agreement signed
Burkina Faso, where he was indicted delayed elections. said. “Therefore, I do not recognise last New Year’s Eve is “the only vi-
in July 2015 by Guinean magistrates Kabila has been in power since the authorisation requested.” able road map” for holding cred-
for his alleged involvement in the 2001 when he succeeded his assas- Despite his stance, march spokes- ible elections. Clinging on to power,
massacre. His former aide-de-camp, sinated father Laurent Kabila and re- woman Leonie Kandolo insisted that Kabila is banned by the constitution
Aboubakar Sidiki Diakite, known fused to step down at the end of his “lay people will march tomorrow from running for a third term, but the
as Toumba Diakite, extradited from second and final term in December (and) the city authority and the po- deal allows him to stay on until the
Senegal to Guinea in March 2017, is 2016. That refusal led to protests and lice must fulfil their role of protecting next poll is held. The opposition has
another defendant. a bloody crackdown. Demonstrations people and property.” meanwhile complained in recent days
President Alpha Conde became have been banned or else widely re- March organisers have asked wor- that electoral reforms “automati-
Guinea’s first democratically elected pressed since September 2016 but shippers to gather after morning mass cally” ban certain hopefuls from next
president in 2010, taking over a na- several have nonetheless gone ahead and “take our destiny in hand -- our year’s poll by setting a minimum vote
tion run by a succession of strongmen with many ending in bloodshed in re- beautiful country is suffering.” share threshold a candidate must win
following independence from France. cent months. But the authorities underlined their to obtain a seat as well as demanding
Sako said although he could not say Elections had been due to take intent to quash the protest by taking a deposit equivalent to several hun-
when the trial would start “an affair as place by the end of this year under a off air for several hours a community dred dollars.
important as that of September 28, an church-mediated deal aimed at avoid-
affair of mass wrongdoing... will be ing more violence in a vast, mineral-
judged here in Guinea whether one rich country which has never had a
wishes so or not” and there was no peaceful transition of power since
question of Conakry seeking to delay independence from Belgium in 1960.
it. The United States and the European The delayed poll is now scheduled
Union have pledged financial support for December 23 next year, heighten-
for the trial and the Guinean state is ing tensions in the restive nation.
to budget its own contribution in the About 150 Catholic churches have
coming months. Sako did not divulge urged believers to heed their call to
any figures, but commented “if we protest, bibles in hand, Sunday in the
have no money there will be no trial,” capital Kinshasa and demand imple-
adding the process was expected to mentation of a deal signed exactly a
last “at least eight to ten months.” year ago designed to restore stabil-

Page 3 Sunday December 31, 2017
“Every big city in the United States, except for Chicago, is on a coast” Wall Street Indexes
Canada’s G7 presidency: a ‘progressive agenda’ at risk Dow Jones 24,719.22 - 0.48%
- 0.67%
S&P 2,673.61 - 0.52%
International Stock Indexes
Canada “quite properly” framed Australia 6,065.129 - 0.38%
this segment of the talks around Frankfurt 12,917.64 - 0.48%
oceans, Kirton told AFP, noting the Italy 21,853.34 - 1.21%
rise in sea levels and major recent London 7,687.77 + 0.85%
storm damage in the United States Madrid 10,043.90 - 0.49%
and the Caribbean. Paris 5,312.56 - 0.50%
“Every big city in the United Tokyo 22,764.94 - 0.08%
States, except for Chicago, is on a Toronto 16,209.13 - 0.08%
coast,” making them “vulnerable” to Latin-American Stock Indexes
climate impacts, he said. Bogota 1,513.65 + 0.57%
“The mood (in regards to climate) Buenos Aires 30,065.61 + 0.30%
in the United States is changing at Lima 19,974.38 + 0.68%
the state level and that will quickly Mexico 49,354.42 + 1.01%
move up into Congress as the (2018) Panama 442.93 + 0.05%
midterm elections approach,” Kirton Santiago 5,564.60 + 0.25%
predicted. Sao Paulo 76,402.08 + 0.43%
“So, (that battle) is not over yet.” Venezuela 1,263.140 + 0.03%
“Trump really likes Trudeau,” add- Most Active Stocks
ed Kirton, suggesting Trudeau has 3M Co 235.37 - 0.15%
an opening to “find a way to change Alcoa 53.87 - 0.50%
Trump’s mind” on the Paris Agree-
Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (Photo AFP) ment. Amex 99.31 - 0.39%
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau prom- The leaders of the Group of Seven Most hope a deal on a new North AT&T 38.88 - 0.77%
- 0.94%
B. of America
ises a “progressive agenda” for Cana- industrialized nations will meet June American Free Trade Agreement will Boeing 294.91 - 0.49%
da’s G7 presidency in 2018, but talks 8 and 9 at Le Manoir Richelieu in the be reached before the G7 summit, Caterpillar 157.58 - 0.53%
may once again hit a snag over cli- Charlevoix region of Quebec, a popu- which would allow Trudeau to focus Chevron 125.19 - 0.31%
mate change after the US withdrawal lar tourist destination 150 kilometers the discussion on gender and envi- Cisco Systems 38.3 - 0.75%
from the Paris agreement. (93 miles) northeast of Quebec City. ronmental issues while also seeking Coca Cola 45.88 + 0.35%
For Justin Trudeau, this presidency In this idyllic setting between the to sway Trump on climate. Dupont
comes at a time when his government sea and the mountains, at the mouth “The only globalization that Trump Exxon Mobil 83.64 - 0.45%
has been struggling with a difficult of the Saint Lawrence River, global has been able to stop is by not doing General Electric 17.45 + 0.52%
renegotiation of the North American warming once again promises to be anything more for the United States,” H.P. 21.01 - 0.66%
Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with a bone of contention, as it was at Kirton said, noting the Canada-EU Home Depot 189.53 - 0.13%
the United States and Mexico, which the last summit in Italy, according free trade agreement came into force IBM 153.42 - 0.40%
was demanded by US President Don- to John Kirton, director of the G7 this year. “The rest of the world is just Intel 46.16 - 0.13%
ald Trump amid rising American pro- Research Group at the University of going on and doing a lot.” Johnson & Johnson 139.72 - 0.60%
tectionism. Toronto. North Korea, which he called the JPMorgan 106.94 - 0.79%
Gender equality, climate change Trump was a climate pariah at “second-greatest global extinction Kraft Heinz Co 77.76 - 0.21%
and economic growth “that works the talks in Taormina, announcing threat after climate change,” will also McDonalds 172.12 - 0.57%
for everyone” are among Ottawa’s days later Washington’s withdrawal be a hot topic for the leaders. Merck & Co 56.27 - 0.58%
top priorities for the meeting of the from the Paris Agreement on climate Canada and the United States will Microsoft 85.54 - 0.21%
world’s largest advanced economies change. co-host North Korea crisis talks in Pfizer 36.22 - 0.41%
-- Britain, Canada, France, Germany, In an attempt to avoid fresh ten- Vancouver with foreign ministers Procter & Gamble 91.88 - 0.21%
Italy, Japan and the United States. sions, Canada has proposed lumping from 16 countries in January. Travelers Cos 135.64 - 0.01%
Trudeau said in a statement that he climate change in to a broader discus- Kirton is also “optimistic” that United Tech. 127.57 - 0.43%
wants the talks to focus on “finding sion that would also include “oceans Canada’s push to include gender par- Verizon 52.93 - 0.94%
real, concrete solutions” to these is- and clean energy,” according to the ity clauses in trade pacts and security Wal-Mart 98.75 - 0.65%
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Results of the investigation will be reported to the UN Security Council’s sanctions committee
Hong Kong ship crew questioned in S. Korea for oil transfer to North
The crew of a Hong Kong-registered October 11 and loaded up on some but in the Marshall Islands, and that firm on Hong Kong’s companies reg-
ship have been detained for question- 14,000 tonnes of Japanese refined oil it would “continue to fully comply” istry. Four ships -- three North Korean
ing in South Korea since their tanker before heading towards its purported with UN sanctions against North Ko- vessels and a Palau-flagged oil tanker
was impounded in November for destination in Taiwan. rea. Taiwan’s transport ministry said -- were blocked from international
transferring oil to a North Korean Instead of going to Taiwan, howev- it is investigating whether any Tai- ports by the UN Security Council on
vessel and breaching UN sanctions, er, the vessel transferred 600 tonnes wanese entities were involved. Thursday over suspicions of carrying
customs officials said Saturday. of oil to the North’s Sam Jong 2 in The ship is owned by a Hong Kong- or transporting goods banned by sanc-
The Lighthouse Winmore, which international waters off China before registered company called Win More tions targeting Pyongyang’s weapons
was chartered by a Taiwanese com- returning to Yeosu, the customs ser- Shipping Limited. There was nobody ambitions, according to the final list
pany, was impounded by South Ko- vice officials said. Friday at the address given for the adopted by the world body.
rean customs authorities at the port Earlier a foreign ministry official
of Yeosu on November 24 following in Seoul had said the ship had been
an inspection. “Since then, inspectors seized briefly by customs authorities Foreign Exchange
have been coming on board and ques- who inspected it.
tioning the crew”, a Korea Customs Results of the investigation will be EURO USA CAN UK AUS SWISS H.KONG JAP
Service official told AFP. reported to the UN Security Coun- EURO - 1.19 1.49 .89 1.54 1.18 9.30 135.00
The Lighthouse Winmore has 25 cil’s sanctions committee, foreign USA .84 - 1.27 .75 1.30 .99 7.81 113.64
crew members including 23 mainland ministry officials said. CAN .67 .79 - .59 1.02 .80 6.20 90.00
Chinese citizens and two Myanmar The Lighthouse Winmore is one of UK 1.12 1.34 1.69 - 1.72 1.33 10.50 152.00
nationals, another customs official at 10 ships the US has asked the Secu- AUS .65 .77 .98 .58 - .75 6.10 88.00
Yeosu said. rity Council to blacklist for violating SWISS .85 1.01 1.25 .75 1.33 - 7.90 114.00
The tanker, chartered by Taiwan- sanctions against North Korea. H.KONG .11 .13 .16 .10 .16 .13 - 14.50
ese company Billions Bunker Group Taipei said the Billions Bunker JAP .01 .01 .01 .01 .01 .01 .07 -
Corp., previously visited Yeosu on Group is not incorporated in Taiwan

Page 4 Sunday December 31, 2017
“Unlike other protests in various cities which were against the economic situation and high prices” Period of change
Competing protests at Tehran university Liberians hail Weah’s
Students protested in Tehran on Sat- Tehran were arrested and, based on on Thursday and Friday, which had
urday in a third day of demonstra- our information, two of them have been sparked by high living costs but presidential victory
tions sparked by anger over Iran’s been released,” the official said. quickly turned against the Islamic re- Liberians and international football
economic problems, videos on social It followed a protest by several gime as a whole. stars have joined together in celebrat-
media showed, but were outnum- dozen students, with videos on social The conservative-linked Fars news ing George Weah’s presidential vic-
bered by counter-demonstrators. media showing scuffles with police agency said “harsh chants” were tory in the country’s first democratic
The pro-regime students shouted and chants against the regime. heard at the Tehran protests and that transfer of power in decades, as the
“Death to the seditionists” as they “The opportunists who wanted to riot police had been dispatched to former striker vowed to usher in a pe-
seized back control of the entrance of benefit from the situation have been the scene. “Unlike other protests in riod of change.
the University of Tehran, videos pub- dispersed with the arrival of (the oth- various cities which were against the Idolised in Liberia as “Mister
lished by several local news agencies er) students,” the conservative-linked economic situation and high prices, George”, Weah is to be sworn in on
showed. Tasnim news agency reported. the one in front of the University of January 22, replacing Ellen Johnson
Later in the day, pro-reform news Mehr news agency said 300 to 400 Tehran was political,” Fars said. Sirleaf, who in 2006 took the helm of
agency ILNA quoted a ministry of protestors were still around the uni- The students repeated a popular the West African country first found-
science official as saying that the stu- versity, causing the closure of nearby chant of “Not Gaza, not Lebanon, ed for freed US slaves.
dents were eventually able to leave streets and heavy traffic congestion. my life for Iran” -- an expression of The electoral board confirmed
the university in buses. The numbers appeared to be anger over claims the government is Weah’s run-off victory on Friday
“During the afternoon’s protests smaller than demonstrations seen focusing more on regional issues than evening, as his rival, Vice President
three students from the University of across other major towns and cities problems at home. Joseph Boakai, conceded defeat.
Weah, 51, who starred in top-flight
The UN describes Yemen’s humanitarian situation as the worst in the world in 2017 football at Paris Saint-Germain and
AC Milan in the 1990s and briefly at
Key events around the world in 2017 Chelsea and Manchester City before
From the inauguration of US Presi- es from the Saudi capital that he is deemed illegal by the central govern- entering politics in 2002, won 61.5
dent Donald Trump to the exodus of resigning, citing Iran’s “grip” on his ment. percent of the ballot, taking 14 of Li-
Rohingyas from Myanmar, here are country. He later backtracks. Madrid moves to assert control but beria’s 15 counties.
12 events that marked 2017. Saudi Arabia also accuses rebels Catalan lawmakers vote on October “My fellow Liberians, I deeply feel
A year of Trump in Yemen of receiving support from 27 to declare independence. the emotion of all the nation. I mea-
On January 20 Republican bil- Iran, which denies the accusation. Madrid dismisses Catalonia’s gov- sure the importance and the respon-
lionaire Donald Trump, 70, is inau- The UN describes Yemen’s hu- ernment and suspends its autonomy, sibility of the immense task which I
gurated as US president, vowing: manitarian situation as the worst in also calling regional elections. De- embrace today. Change is on,” Weah
“America first.” the world in 2017. posed regional president Carles Puig- said on Twitter.
Suspicions of collusion between Venezuela: economic disaster demont, charged with sedition and A victory speech, however, was
his election campaign and Russia dog On July 30 Venezuela’s Constitu- rebellion, takes refuge in Belgium. postponed after crowds of energetic
the start of his term. ent Assembly -- whose legitimacy On December 21 three pro-inde- supporters gathered around a podium
Trump progressively unpicks the is disputed by the opposition and pendence parties defeat the central for Weah’s address grew too boister-
achievements of his Democrat pre- abroad -- is elected after four months government in the elections. How- ous, an AFP correspondent said.
decessor, Barack Obama. He pulls of deadly protests against socialist ever, the centrist, anti-independence Boakai said he had called Weah
out of international agreements on President Nicolas Maduro. Ciudadanos party gets the best indi- to congratulate him and appealed for
climate, free trade, immigration and With wide-ranging powers, it dis- vidual result. unity, saying: “My love for the coun-
UNESCO. misses in early August Attorney Gen- The Weinstein scandal try is far (more) profound than my
On December 6, in another break eral Luisa Ortega, one of Maduro’s On October 5 the New York Times desire for the presidency.”
with the previous administration, top critics. publishes a bombshell investigative The White House called the vote “a
Trump creates shockwaves when he It then takes over the opposition- report accusing Hollywood mogul major milestone for Liberia’s democ-
recognises Jerusalem as Israel’s capi- dominated Congress. Harvey Weinstein, 65, of sexual ha- racy” while UN Secretary-General
tal, a move largely rejected in a UN Crippled by plummeting oil prices, rassment over decades. Antonio Guterres applauded “all Li-
vote. the country is considered to be in “se- Similar allegations have since been berians for the successful completion
On December 20 he seals his first lective default” by ratings agencies. levelled at a long list of personalities of the elections process, which was
major reform, signing long-awaited North Korea: escalation in film, television, journalism and conducted in a peaceful environ-
tax cuts into law. The reclusive regime conducts its politics around the world. ment”.
Brexit under way sixth and largest nuclear test on Sep- Zimbabwe: Mugabe falls The tumultuous events of the past
On March 29 London launches the tember 3. On November 29 leader Zimbabwe’s veteran President 70 years in Liberia, where an esti-
process to quit the European Union, Kim Jong-Un says a “state nuclear Robert Mugabe, 93, resigns on No- mated 250,000 people died during
as voted in a referendum nine months force” has been completed with the vember 21 following 37 years of rule back-to-back civil wars between
earlier. test of a long-range missile able to and after being abandoned by the 1989-2003, have prevented a demo-
In a snap general election on June deliver a nuclear warhead anywhere military and his own party. cratic handover from taking place
8 Prime Minister Theresa May’s Con- in the United States. IS defeated, not wiped out since 1944.
servatives suffer a major setback and Washington threatens to “utterly Iraq on December 9 declares victo- Sirleaf’s predecessor Charles Tay-
lose their majority. destroy” the regime “if war comes”. ry in its war to expel the Islamic State lor fled the country in 2003, hoping
Brussels and London agree on di- On December 22 the UN Secu- group but experts warn that jihadists to avoid prosecution for funding
vorce terms on December 8. rity Council imposes new sanctions remain a threat. They have also lost rebel groups in neighbouring Sierra
France: political earthquake against North Korea that restrict vital most of their territory in Syria. Leone. Two presidents who served
Pro-EU centrist Emmanuel Macron, oil supplies. Numerous deadly attacks around prior to Taylor were assassinated.
39, wins a resounding victory over far- Myanmar’s Rohingyas: ‘genocide’ the world over the year, including Weah’s former club Paris Saint-Ger-
right rival Marine Le Pen in France’s On August 25 the military in Bud- in Afghanistan, Britain, Egypt and main tweeted its congratulations to
presidential election on May 7. dhist-majority Myanmar launches a Somalia, are claimed by or blamed the “world football legend on the lat-
His new En Marche (One the crackdown on Rohingyas after mili- on the group or others linked to Al- est chapter of his brilliant career!!!”
Move) movement drives the two big- tants from the stateless Muslim mi- Qaeda. while former Chelsea star Didier
gest parties -- the Socialists and Re- nority ambush security forces. Climate: record disasters Drogba, Manchester City midfielder
publicans -- from the Elysee Palace Nearly 655,000 Rohingyas find The year in which Trump decides, Yaya Toure and Marseille’s former
for the first time. refuge in Bangladesh. on June 1, to leave the landmark 2015 Cameroon midfielder Stephane Mbia
Middle East: boiling point The United States denounces “eth- Paris climate accord is marked by a also sent their best wishes.
Saudi Arabia and its allies sever nic cleansing” while the UN speaks series of natural disasters, including “I think the Liberian people will
diplomatic ties with Qatar on June of “elements of genocide”. record-breaking hurricanes, earth- expect... Weah’s presidency to (have
5, accusing it supporting “terrorists” Catalonia: autonomy suspended quakes and devastating fires that af- a) pro-poor, pro-growth policy that
and of being too close to Iran. Spain’s wealthy northeastern Cata- fect several countries. It is set to be will put the people at the centre of
Then on November 4 Lebanese lonia region holds a referendum for one of the three warmest years ever national development,” said political
Prime Minister Saad Hariri announc- independence on October 1 that is recorded. analyst Vita Ishmael Tue.

Page 5 Sunday December 31, 2017
“I don’t know if I am totally ready to come back on the Tour yet” Tennis
Beaten Serena unsure about Australian Open Anderson wins Abu Dhabi
exhibition event
A slow moving Serena Williams Kevin Anderson won the 10th edition
made an encouraging return to ten- of the Mubadala World Tennis Cham-
nis after maternity leave, taking a set pionship on Saturday, joining a roll
off the French Open champion Jelena of honour that includes Rafael Nadal,
Ostapenko in an exhibition match Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray as
Saturday, but said she has not made its only previous winners.
up her mind about defending the Aus- The South African world number
tralian Open title. 14 was in imperious form once again,
In a match featuring a super tie- beating Spain’s world number 20 Ro-
break and lasting one hour and seven berto Bautista Agut 6-4, 7-6 (7/0) in
minutes, Ostapenko won 6-2, 3-6, the final.
10-5. Anderson played three matches
The 36-year-old American, win- in the six-man exhibition tournament
ner of 23 grand slam single titles, and won all of them in straight sets,
was making a comeback after taking including wins against two play-
nearly 11 months off to have her first ers ranked higher than him –- world
child. number five Dominic Thiem and
Her last match was the Australian number 10 Pablo Carreno Busta.
Open final, which she won despite “It feels great to win a tournament
being two-month pregnant. that has been played for 10 years and
“It was good to be back out there. has such great champions in the past,”
I missed playing, I missed competi- Serena Williams of the US reacts after losing a point (Photo AFP) said Anderson, who heads to Pune in
tion, I missed the crowd, the atmo- “I am taking it one day at a time. the match. But Williams’ inabil- India for the Maharashtra Open be-
sphere so much. It was really nice I am going to assess everything with ity to get her first serve going, along fore flying down to Melbourne for
to be back,” said Williams after the Patrick (Mouratoglou, her coach) and with several unforced errors early the Australian Open.
match. my team,” she said. in the match, allowed the Latvian to “I am very happy with the way I
“I don’t know if I am totally ready It was the first time Ostapenko had break twice and build a 4-1 lead be- played and I am very excited about
to come back on the Tour yet. I know played against Williams, whom she fore wrapping up the set 6-2. the next few weeks and obviously,
that when I come back I definitely described as her “childhood idol”. Williams’ problems with her serve the rest of 2018.
want to be competing for champion- Williams was clearly having prob- continued, but she unleashed a few of “I have set big goals for myself and
ships,” she said, refusing to commit lems with her serve and was broken her trademark double-handed shots this is a good start towards that. I can
yet to the Australian Open, which five times in the 17 games. on both sides to break Ostapenko definitely take the confidence from
starts in a little over two weeks. She also stuck mostly to the base- twice at the start of the second set to here to my next few tournaments.
“I don’t know, but I am definitely line and only twice charged the net. go 3-0 up. By this time she was mov- “I worked very hard during the pre-
looking forward to getting back out She started well, breaking Osta- ing better and she started hitting more season and it was good to put that to
there. penko’s serve in the first game of winners. test here. I was very pleased with the
way I served and with my movements
Snooker Formula One Australian Open on the court.”
The 31-year-old Anderson, who
‘Rocket’ Ronnie fuels specu- Hamilton Instagram Wozniacki targets New had lost to Bautista Agut in their
lation over missing worlds account emptied Zealand crown ahead only previous head-to-head, started
strongly by breaking the 29-year-old
Mercurial snooker legend Ronnie Lewis Hamilton’s Instagram account Top seed Caroline Wozniacki faces Spaniard in the opening game.
‘Rocket’ O’Sullivan hinted on Satur- has been completely emptied as the a difficult assignment in the opening He then held on to his extremely
day he could eschew the chance of a fall out over his lapse of judgement round of the ASB Classic in Auck- reliable serve to close the first set in
sixth world title describing the tour- when recently lambasting a nephew land on Monday after being drawn 37 minutes.
nament as his least favourite. for wearing a princess dress contin- against unpredictable American The second set was closely con-
The 42-year-old -- the sport’s great- ues. Madison Brengle, as the Danish play- tested for just over an hour, with
est drawcard -- made the remarks in a Four-time Formula One world er tunes up for the Australian Open Bautista Agut showing real intention
question and answer session on Twit- champion Hamilton had shared a next month. Although Brengle is only by breaking Anderson in the second
ter saying he would prefer to focus video with his 5.7 million followers ranked 85th in the world, she has game to go 2-0 up. However, the 2017
on making another series of ‘Hustle’ mocking his nephew sporting a blue been as high as 35th and her success- US Open runner-up broke right back
about globe trotting playing pool than and pink dress and waving a pink es include making the fourth round of and the set went with serve thereafter.
the world championship. heart-shaped furry wand over the the 2015 Australian Open and beating In the tie-breaker, Anderson just
O’Sullivan wouldn’t be missing Christmas holidays. Serena Williams in the second round proved too strong and closed it with-
out on the opportunity of getting In the video, which has since been of the Auckland Classic last year. out losing a point. Bautista Agut, who
to within one of record-holder Ste- taken down, Hamilton shouts: “Boys Wozniacki, the world number had beaten Andy Murray in a one-set
phen Hendry’s seven world crowns don’t wear princess dresses” which three, won the 2017 season-ending match on Friday after would-be op-
through a lack of form having swept led to the youngster covering his ears WTA championship in Singapore and ponent Novak Djokovic withdrew
three ranking titles in November and with his hands. wants to start the new year with a win injured, said: “I am happy with the
this month. The 32-year-old’s actions drew in New Zealand. way I played my three matches and
The world championship at its his- criticism on social media from users “I was so happy with the way I I am very happy with the tournament,
toric home ‘The Crucible Theatre’ who felt his nephew should be free to managed to finish the year off,” Woz- but Kevin served very well today and
in Sheffield, Yorkshire, runs from wear whatever he wanted. niacki said on arrival in New Zealand. played very aggressive.”
April 21 to May 7 with O’Sullivan Hamilton took down the Instagram “I love starting my year here so it’s
revealing he would be filming in May post and later tweeted an apology, great to be back and hopefully it’s go-
in Australia. “I might do,” replied which has also now been deleted. ing to be a good one. I’ve never won
O’Sullivan to a questioner regarding He was further criticised for liking the tournament before so it would be
missing the world championships. some of the replies to his Twitter post, great to do that this year.” In the draw
“Crucible goes on too long and it’s one of which said he had no need to made Saturday, second seed Julia Go-
my least fav event of all.. plus I’ve apologise to the “PC brigade”. erges clashes with Olympic champion
got plenty ranking points so no need ‘’Yesterday I was playing around Monica Puig in the first round, third-
to play as much.” with my nephew and realised that seed Barbora Strycova plays former
“Why not. Making Hustle is a right my words were inappropriate so I re- French Open finalist Sara Errani and
laugh crucible is boring plus I’ve moved the post,” Hamilton wrote in Radwanska was drawn against Bra-
ticked that box 5X.” his Twitter apology. zilian Beatriz Haddad Maia. Kevin Anderson (Photo AFP)

Page 6 Sunday December 31, 2017

The aim of the game is to fill a 9x9 grid (81 squares) that is subdivided into 3x3 “sub-squares, with each of the numbers one through nine, besides
the ones that are already filled with numbers.
The rule is that each number appear only once per row, once per column, and only once per sub-square. It is rather easy to solve, in fact no math-
ematical knowledge is required. The solutions are indicated below.
Have fun!

Beginners Advanced
6 8 3 5 3 8 9 4

3 7 5 8 6 4 5 1

4 5 7 9 4 9

1 5 6 2 4 3 4 6

4 7 6 2 9 7 1
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12
2 8 7 1 6 7 3 6
14 15 16 17 18
2 4 5 7 5 9
19 20 21 22
23 24 25
8 3 9 2 5 1 5 8
26 27 28
29 30
9 2 1 3 6 8 2 1
31 32 33 34 35
36 37
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

10 11 12 1 Scale note after mi 1 Seeking victory by delay
3 Taps 2 Entirely outstanding performers (2
10 Brew wds.)
12 Rib joiners 4 Freak
13 Bacon-lettuce-tomato sandwich 5 Neuter pronoun
14 15 16 17 18 14 Abraham's son 6 Atlanta location
16 Scarlet 7 Oregon (abbr.)
19 By 8 Nashville locale
19 20 21 22
20 Humble 9 Gloomy
23 Kenya capital 11 Airport abbr.
23 24 25 25 Virginia (abbr.) 15 Skilled gymnast
26 River (Spanish) 17 Emergency room
26 27 28 27 Radiuses 18 That divides in math
30 American sign language 21 Hug upon greeting
31 Phony 22 Grabbed
29 30
35 Garden tool 24 Caesarʼs two
36 Taken of 28 Telegraphic signal
31 32 33 34 35 37 Road (abbr.) 29 Spiritedness
32 Sun god
33 Strontium (abbr.)
36 37
34 Toward
Fold Fold

ACROSS 5 2 9 3 7 1 4 6 8 DOWN 6 7 8 9 5 1 H O E E R S A T Z (52)8183105037
[email protected]
1 Scale note after mi 1 7 5 8 3 2 6 4 9 1 Seeking victory by delay [email protected]
Information Source:
3 Taps 4 8 2 6 5 9 1 3 7 2 Entirely outstanding performers (2 I S A A C Agence France-Presse (AFP)
Printed and distributed locally in each hotel.
All rights reserved.
10 Brew 6 4 1 9 2 8 5 7 3 1 5 wds.) 6 3 7 2 9 S T E R N A A L E Reproduction in whole or in part by any printed
or electronic without permission of the publisher.
12 Rib joiners 2 5 7 1 4 3 9 8 6 4 Freak 8 7 5 3 6 S P I G O T S F A Solution:
13 Bacon-lettuce-tomato sandwich 5 Neuter pronoun
14 Abraham's son 6 Atlanta location
16 Scarlet 7 Oregon (abbr.)
19 By 8 Nashville locale
20 Humble 9 Gloomy
23 Kenya capital 11 Airport abbr.
25 Virginia (abbr.) 15 Skilled gymnast
26 River (Spanish) 17 Emergency room
27 Radiuses 18 That divides in math
30 American sign language 21 Hug upon greeting
31 Phony 22 Grabbed
35 Garden tool 24 Caesarʼs two
36 Taken of 28 Telegraphic signal
37 Road (abbr.) 29 Spiritedness
32 Sun god
33 Strontium (abbr.)
34 Toward

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