Letters to the Editor for Monday, Aug. 19

first_imgArts projects are a perfect fit with trailIn mid-July, the Friends of the Mohawk-Hudson Bike-Hike Trail hosted the first Color the Canal event with the support of CREATE Community Studios. Both the Friends and CREATE would like to thank Schenectady County for its sponsorship of this event (through Schenectady County’s County Initiative Program Arts, History and Tourism Grant).We’re also grateful to the many community groups and individuals who helped make it a success.Thanks to all our supporters, more than 150 pieces of artwork greeted trail users the weekend of July 13. Art stretched from Kiwanis Park in Rotterdam to SUNY Schenectady and was also placed at locations on the trail in Niskayuna.Color the Canal helped highlight the trail, not just for local users, but also for the more than 650 cyclists taking part in the annual Cycle the Erie Canal ride. The cyclists, from across the country and around the world, ride from Buffalo to Albany over eight days, stopping in communities along the way. Numerous participants told us Color the Canal provided a warm welcome to Schenectady County and was unique to anything they had experienced along the trail.Public art projects serve a valuable role in establishing a trail’s and a community’s identity. We hope this was just the first of many Color the Canal events and that we can continue to use art to promote both our trail, an incredible recreational resource, and the many services Schenectady County has to offer trail users, whether they’re on the trail for an hour or for a longer journey.Gillian ScottSchenectadyThe writer is president of the Friends of the Mohawk-Hudson Bike-Hike Trail.Grateful for Engel’s work with veteransI’m writing to inform you and the community about the hard work and dedication that Mr. Dan Engel, director of Veterans Affairs for Fulton County, provides for, and on behalf of, the veterans in Fulton and Hamilton County.Many veterans and their families struggle to navigate the VA and federal government bureaucracy to obtain the care and benefits they are entitled to. They often give up in frustration.Dan works tirelessly and relentlessly striving to push the right buttons and get the proper paperwork submitted in a proper manner in order to satisfy the requirements necessary for the veterans to receive the help they desperately need.As anyone who has had to deal with these agencies knows, it can be a frustrating endeavor. Dan never lets it go and communicates often with the veterans and their families to keep them updated on the progress and what they can expect next.He’s a good listener and genuinely cares about the health and well-being of all veterans in the area. He’s a great asset to the community and to veterans.On behalf of all those he’s helped, and is helping, we’d like to extend a grateful thank you for his tireless efforts in the service of others.All our public servants should be as committed and dedicated as he to the community’s they serve.Joel Stuartthe family of Bill StuartWellsEat thoughtfully and help save the planetSo many of us want to step lighter on the planet, but how?One big step is eating thoughtfully. First, eat locally. Choosing farmer’s markets means more nutritional food, local economic support, and a lighter carbon footprint in delivering food to your table.Also, eat seasonally.Freeze or can produce, then in the dark winter, open up a jar of summer.When store shopping, continue to source food as locally as possible for a lighter carbon footprint. And finally, eating greener means eating less meat.As Bill Gates pointed out, “If cows were a country, they’d rank third in greenhouse gas emissions.” Try thinking of meat as a delicacy instead of a staple.Thoughtful eating will bring more joy to your table and to the planet.Caroline BrooksScotiaMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidation Categories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionCuomo should veto harmful health billAs the operator of a small logistics business that operates on tight margins and relies on attracting the best drivers in the business to ensure our customers get their packages on time, I felt compelled to speak up on an issue that will directly impact our employee healthcare plan.This past legislative session, the Legislature hastily passed a bill that if signed into law by the governor will likely have a serious negative impact on the price of prescription drugs and our employee healthcare plan.Senate bill 6531, which came about after the release of a report on pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) by state Sen. James Skoufis, could drastically increase the cost of prescription drugs.Although probably well-intentioned, this complicated legislation could hinder patient access to medication and reduce doctors’ ability to provide the most effective and affordable prescriptions available. The legislation is extremely complicated and requires careful consideration and review — both of which were not part of the legislative process.For this reason, the governor should veto the bill and begin working with the Legislature and stakeholders from patients to our doctors, hospitals and insurance companies, pharmacies and PBMs, and businesses and unions to improve the legislation.If you’re like me, you probably never heard of a PBM before. In doing my research, I discovered that our company’s healthcare plan relies on PBMs to keep costs down for my employees.Why can’t Albany ever think of the little guy?Jack McCabeMaltaTrump didn’t get his way with Russia helpJim Murphy in his Aug. 3 letter (Think about how Trump got advantage) asks three questions. Here are three possible answers:1. I don’t think that Russia necessarily wanted Trump to win. Any intelligence service worth its salt would have had access to all of the emails that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton sent and received on her unauthorized server. The blackmail possibilities were almost limitless. The Russians probably thought that Clinton would win. As in past elections, Russia wanted to sow social discord and create a lack of faith in our election process. Robert Mueller’s high-priced, fruitless investigation indicates that this time, they were successful.2. Trump and his campaign were unaware of the Russian efforts as they occurred before the election, during the Obama administration. The FBI director testified under oath that the FBI didn’t advise the Trump campaign of this threat. The Mueller investigation didn’t find that the Trump campaign, or anyone associated with it, conspired or coordinated with the Russian government.The investigation also determined that Trump had not obstructed an investigation of a crime that had not occurred. Interestingly enough, the only collusion with Russia that was uncovered was that by the Democratic National Committee and the Clinton campaign.3. Mueller testified that his investigation was not interfered with, nor were resources, documents and testimony withheld nor executive privilege claimed.Too bad that this amount of interest in Russian activities wasn’t present regarding their orchestration of the “Peace” Movement during the Vietnam War. Think of all of the lives, American and Vietnamese, that could have been spared.John HoetkerSchenectadylast_img read more

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McDermott Breaks Ground of New Facility in Saudi Arabia

first_imgMcDermott has broke ground on its new fabrication facility within the King Salman International Complex for Maritime Industries and Services in Ras Al-Khair, Saudi Arabia. The overall site, which is being developed by Saudi Aramco, is expected to be the largest maritime industries complex in the Kingdom and the Middle East region in terms of production, capacity and scale.Within the development, McDermott is building a facility spanning 1.2 million square meters that will include offices, pre-fabrication shops, blasting and painting shops and large assembly shops capable of fabricating platforms and modules for both offshore and onshore projects for Saudi Aramco and other customers in the region.The facility will incorporate up to 80,000 square meters of covered shops to house the latest automation technology and will also include a 580-meter reinforced bulkhead providing marine access.“The King Salman International Complex for Maritime Industries and Services would offer opportunities for strategic industries to operate and flourish in the Kingdom and enable localizing the maritime industry,” said Ahmad A. Al-Sa’adi, Saudi Aramco senior vice president of Technical Services.“The Saudi Aramco team has been working tirelessly for a number of years to create the infrastructure from which McDermott and the other anchor tenants within the Complex are able to establish their facilities,” said Mohammad Al Assaf, Saudi Aramco vice president of New Business Development.“With McDermott breaking ground, we move a step closer to the Complex acting as a hub for job creation and supply chain development in accordance with Saudi Vision 2030 objectives.”“The SAFIRA fabrication yard enhances our long history and close relationship with Saudi Aramco, our largest customer, and demonstrates our commitment to the Saudi Vision 2030,” said David Dickson, McDermott president and chief executive officer.“This project will see a new world-class McDermott yard with innovative equipment, technology and processes. As the first EPC Contractor to establish a full-scale fabrication facility in Saudi Arabia, we will build on generations of knowledge and experience within McDermott to create something extraordinary. But this project is also about people, and we will continue building our in-Kingdom engineering and procurement offices as well as sourcing and developing local talent on all levels in the company,” said Linh Austin, McDermott senior vice president, Middle East and North Africa .In March 2019 , Saudi Aramco signed a land lease agreement with McDermott Arabia Company, a subsidiary of McDermott International, to grant McDermott a lease to establish this fabrication facility.last_img read more

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Karen leads South qualifiers for Grand Medal Final

first_img Surrey golfer Karen Kuhler swept through to the England Golf women’s Grand Medal Final when she won her regional qualifier by five shots.Karen scored net 68 – four under par – at Tyrrells Wood in Surrey to lead the 10 qualifiers from the South Region Medal Final.She will be joined in the Grand Medal Final at Peterborough Milton Golf Club on June 28 by:  Nancy O’Connor (Sundridge Park), Nicola Smith (Sittingbourne & Milton Regis), Gill Pates (Addington Palace), Kirsty Galbraith (Mid-Kent), Pat Morecroft (Nizels), Dinah Henson (West Byfleet), Michele Desmond (Knole Park),  Susan Jones (Chestfield) and Fiona Pullar (The Wildwood).All the regional finalists had returned the best four scores at their club in the England Golf Medals during 2013.Karen was playing in the second group out and set an early target which was never threatened. She described her round as “interesting” because it included a triple bogey, three double bogeys, 12 pars and a birdie. “I didn’t really play a bad shot, but I don’t know the course that well and got the wrong club on the bad holes. It was a very good day,” she said.She has played golf for 40 years and has been as low as nine. But, when her three children were young she didn’t play much and is currently working her way back down from 17 handicap. Last year she reduced from 15 to 13 and another cut is on the way after the regional final. “Now the children have all finished school I’m playing more,” said Karen.This was the second of six Regional Medal Finals. The East final has already taken place and the other dates are:  Midlands North at Shrewsbury, Shropshire, on 3 May;  Midlands South at Tadmarton Heath, Oxfordshire, on 13 May;  North at Houghton-Le-Spring, Durham on 21 May; South West at Forest Hills, Gloucestershire on 25 May.South  Region Medal FinalQualifying scoresPar 72  CSS 7568 Karen Kuhler (Walton Heath)73 Nancy O’Connor (Sundridge Park); Nicola Smith (Sittingbourne & Milton Regis)74 Gill Pates (Addington Palace); Kirsty Galbraith (Mid-Kent)75 Pat Morecroft (Nizels); Dinah Henson (West Byfleet); Michele Desmond (Knole Park); Susan Jones (Chestfield)76 Fiona Pullar (The Wildwood) 28 Apr 2014 Karen leads South qualifiers for Grand Medal Final last_img read more

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A Dozen Leftovers

first_imgHere’s a rapid-fire list of links to science stories that looked interesting, but were filling up our backlog.  Thinkers, bloggers and reporters might want to do what they want with them.Baby born after 20 years as a frozen embryo: PhysOrg.Where dinosaurs died reveals how they lived: Live Science.Clues included in diamonds: PhysOrg; but did they look for carbon-14?Neptune was incapable of sending asteroids out to the edge: Science Daily.Crystal cave in Mexico: great photo gallery on National Geographic.NASA has a busy “year of the solar system” on tap: PhysOrg.Talk about global warming: the universe overheated, according to Science Daily.Earliest land plant in Argentina? BBC News.Fish were first to have sex: Discovery Channel.The case of the cannibal T. rex: Live Science.Giant pterosaurs might have flown 10,000 miles nonstop: National Geographic.Monkeys try to make a movie: New Scientist.These 12 stories would have been classified under more than 12 Chain Links, but the catch-all categories Amazing and Dumb will have to suffice for now; readers can pigeonhole them into one or the other.The list provides a small taste of the dozens of headlines, stories, papers, and claims that have to be evaluated each day for a chance to be reported on Creation-Evolution Headlines.  Which one(s) would have won Stupid Evolution Quote of the Week?(Visited 10 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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Ohio Ag Weather and Forecast — June 28, 2018

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Clouds and lingering showers can be found in far eastern parts of Ohio to start the day this morning, but generally, we should be seeing mostly sunny skies and a nice batch of drying over the rest of the state. In fact, Dry weather is here for the next 3 and a half days to almost 4 days! We see nothing but sunshine and blue skies today through most of Sunday. Temperatures will be climbing. We expect temperatures to be in the lower 80s today, mid 80s tomorrow and a range of 88-95 for the weekend, with Saturday being the hottest day. A large part of the state will see 90+ temps on Saturday. The map at right shows those high temperatures across Ohio for Saturday. With humidity values trying to increase, the heat index values will be climbing as well.Now, fortunately, growing crops could care less about heat indices. While it will be hot, we need to stress that actual air temps are not going to really be all that excessive. These temps are going to be a good 5-7 degrees above normal for this time of year, but after all, it is summer, and we have been cooler than normal the past several days.Scattered showers move into NW Ohio Sunday evening, and spread south and east from there through the overnight hours Sunday night and into Monday.  Rain totals can be anywhere from .1”-.5” with coverage at 60%. Rains should wind down by Monday afternoon at the latest. We see mixed clouds and sun for both Tuesday and Wednesday (Independence Day) of next week, but we can’t rule out a bit of scattered shower action. Tuesday it looks to mostly be south of I-70, and Wednesday it s just scattered about, with not more than 50% coverage. We do not think this is a big deal, but we can’t bring ourselves to wave the all clear flag. Temperatures for the Monday through Wednesday period will be generally in an 82-88 degree range.We are dry next Thursday through the following Monday. Temps to finish next week will be in the upper 80s to low 90s. This will promote strong drying once again. For the rest of the extended period, we have a few scattered showers with 40% coverage for the 10th, rain totals of no more than .4”, and then we are dry again for Wednesday the 11th through the morning of the 12th. The only strong front in our forecast this morning comes late in the 11-16 day window, crossing from Thursday afternoon the 12th through Friday the 13th (yes…Friday the 13th!). That front has potential for half to 1.5” rains with coverage at 90% of the state. We swing back dry with strong high pressure building in for the 14th forward.So, a general summary of this forecast runs similar to what we have been hinting at over the past few days. The pattern is getting warmer, yes. But a bigger story will be precipitation shutting off. Initially, that will make many folks happy, as we have see excessive rains over the past couple of weeks. However, soil conditions may change quickly, with maximum evaporation and high temps. This makes us concerned that we may start to hear complaints about moisture and “needing a rain” as soon as mid to late week next week. Time will tell, but if we have gotten used to ample moisture to this point…we likely are going to be in for a rude awakening. We are not calling for instantaneous drought or immediate crop problems…but rain timing will take on much more of a premium in our discussions going forward.last_img read more

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Case of Toronto van attack suspect Alek Minassian heading straight to trial

first_imgTORONTO – The case of a man accused of killing 10 people in a van attack in north Toronto will skip a preliminary hearing and head straight to trial.Alek Minassian, of Richmond Hill, Ont., faces 10 counts of first-degree murder and 16 counts of attempted murder in connection with the April 23 incident.The 25-year-old is accused of driving a rental van down a busy sidewalk along Yonge Street and plowing into dozens of pedestrians.Court heard on Thursday that the deputy attorney general has granted the Crown’s request to proceed by a direct indictment in the case.Outside court, Minassian’s lawyer said he wasn’t surprised by the decision.“It’s really never been discussed if he’d prefer a preliminary inquiry,” said Boris Bytensky. “It’s something that’s been off the table for quite some time in my mind.”Minassian did not appear in person or by video during the brief hearing.Bytensky said it will be 10 to 18 months before the trial would start. There would be numerous dates where Minassian won’t appear as they work through case management.He wouldn’t comment on whether Minassian would enter a plea beforehand.“I’m not going to discuss what our intentions may or may not be,” he said.Bytensky said he’s concerned about his client’s right to a fair trial given the publicity surrounding the attack.“But I have faith in our criminal justice system,” Bytensky said.“There is at least the possibility of a change of venue. That’s something — I’ll be candid — that I’ve contemplated. I don’t know if that’s something that we’ll be seeking.”Crown lawyer Joe Callaghan told court he has given over more disclosure to the defence, which Bytensky described as “voluminous.”There is a large volume of video evidence, Bytensky said, along with numerous witness statements to go over.Police have previously said they haven’t identified a motive for the attack, but that the evidence they had didn’t warrant terrorism charges.Minassian’s family has said they grieve for the victims, who included eight women and two men ranging in age from 22 to 94.His case will move to the Superior Court of Justice on Dec. 4.last_img read more

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Net servers may soon be set for full site name in 9 Indian scripts

first_imgNew Delhi: Global internet servers are expected to be ready by June to enable people register complete website name in nine Indian scripts, according to Universal Acceptance Steering Group. At present, website name can be booked in several non-English scripts including Mandarin, Arabic, Russian, Devanagari etc.However, top level domain (TLD) — which is the second part on the right side of the dot of a website address — can be booked only in limited set of characters identified by root server. As of now, people can book website name in Devanagari script and only .bharat in this script is available as extension. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscalThe nine Indian scripts that will be initially fed in root servers of ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) are Bengali, Devanagari, Gujarati, Gurmukhi, Kannada, Malayalam, Oriya, Tamil and Telugu. “Label Generation Rules (LGR) for nine language scripts that are used in India are expected to be finalised in a quarter and will be fed in root servers that are managed by ICANN by June. “LGR in root servers will identify characters in Indian scripts. This will allow people to choose complete name of website as per their choice,” said Universal Acceptance Steering Group (UASG) Chairman Ajay Data. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boostData is the first Indian to hold the position in UASG that has been set up with the support of custodian of global internet ICANN. UASG is working to finalise standard characters of non-English scripts to be accepted by internet system globally. Under the new system, people will be able to use any name, word, combination of letters in the nine Indian scripts after ICANN accepts it and completes the process of allocating the system to various bodies across the globe that will facilitate registrations.last_img read more

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LS polls begin; BJP yet to finalise candidates for 31 seats

first_imgNew Delhi: The Lok Sabha elections of 2019 have begun on Thursday with the voting in 91 seats of 20 states, but the ruling BJP is still yet to announce name of candidates for approximate 31 seats. Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh are among the states.So far, the party has declared 403 candidates for the seven-phased parliamentary elections. In many seats, BJP is facing a quagmire that has left senior leaders and ticket aspirants baffled. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’For Delhi, the filing of nominations for all seven seats will commence on April 16. But the three main parties – Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), Bharatiya Janta Party and Congress are yet to finalize the names. Sources said BJP is waiting for the Congress-AAP deal to get finalised. The mongering buzz indicates that there will be a major reshuffle in the saffron quarter this time. Former cricketer Gautam Gambhir, former Aam Admi Party leader Kumar Vishwas and former IPS officer Deepak Mishra are the floating names to replace few BJP existing parliamentarians. The last date for filing of nomination is April 23 in Delhi. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KIn Madhya Pradesh, the party is yet to decide its candidates for its strongholds – Bhopal, Vidisha and Indore. In Bhopal, the party plans to field Sadhvi Pragya Bharti or former chief minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan, where Congress is also likely to field the party veteran and former CM, Digvijaya Singh. Similarly, party sources said that for the Indore seat, the top brass has selected the name of the mayor Malini Gaur. However, she is already holding two posts- MLA and mayor of Indore. Even, candidates for Khajuraho, Guna-Shivpuri, Sagar, Dhar and Ratlam-Jhabua are yet to be decided. In Rajasthan, Dausa is yet to get its BJP candidate. This is one of the twelve constituencies which will go to polls in the second phase on May 6. According to the party sources, BJP leader Kirori Meena is demanding a ticket for his wife and former MLA Golma Devi, whereas independent MLA Omprakash Hudla, with support from former chief minister Vasundhara Raje, is also staking a claim for the seat. The BJP is contesting on 24 out of the total 25 Lok Sabha seats in the state. It has fielded Rashtriya Loktantrik Party (RLP) leader Hanuman Beniwal from Nagaur seat. Meanwhile, the saffron party further banks on 13 more allies in this election, where it had 16 parties to depend on in 2014. Though BJP is pitching the fight this time on “Modi versus all” and “Kaamdar versus Naamdar” face-off, but experts opine that the party leadership has gone about carefully suturing alliances in all key states-taking into account that the Prime Minister alone might not be enough to thrust to retain power. The party had nominated 428 candidates among the 545 seats. However, there is twist and twirl in the equation this time. Party sources said that this time BJP may field around 434 candidates.last_img read more

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Our confidence in the Election Commission has been badly shaken, says Kapil Sibal

first_imgNew Delhi: Leaders of 21 opposition parties have recently petitioned both the Election Commission and the Supreme Court to demand a review of VVPAT (Voter-Verification Paper Audit Trail) slips for a free and fair elections after several EVMs glitches were reported in the last four phases of the ongoing Lok Sabha elections from many parts of the country. Over the past few years, the opposition parties have voiced their misgivings on this issue both inside and outside Parliament. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss account details under automatic exchange frameworkCongress stalwart and senior Supreme Court lawyer Kapil Sibal- who is representing the 21 opposition parties in the apex court said in an exclusive interview to the Millennium Post that the malfunctioning of electronic voting machines had dented confidence of political stakeholders and further claimed that the ‘Election Commission had gone soft on some people.’ He said that the whole scheduling of the ongoing general election was questionable. ” You have one day for Gujarat, one day for Tamil Nadu, two days for Tripura, any number of days for Bihar and West Bengal. It simply defies logic.” Also Read – Trio win Nobel Medicine Prize for work on cells, oxygenQuestioning the logic of spending thousands of crores on VVPAT machines where the EC was somewhat reluctant on their extensive use, he demanded the counting of VVPAT slips at least 50 per cent booths in every Assembly constituency. “I assume that everything is fine. Since you have invested thousands of crores, what is the harm in counting? At least the entire nation would know that the EVMs have not been tampered with and the result is free and fair. The Election Commission’s explanation that it could delay results by four to five days- the explanation is illogical. If that doesn’t happen then there will be a lurking suspicion whether the process was free and fair,” Sibal said. “I am afraid of that the confidence we had in the Election Commission, has diminished,” he added. Launching a scathing attack on the autonomous constitutional authority, the former law minister said, “I think the Election Commission is dithering in acting against both the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Amit Shah. The kind of political discourse has been used; any other Election Commission would have ensured that they were reprimanded.” “We are deeply disturbed at the way the Election Commission is functioning. It seems that it has gone soft on some people. This has some impact on our confidence in an election that is fair,” Sibal said.last_img read more

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Sri Lanka reimposes curfew as over 100 arrested for anti-Muslim riots

first_imgColombo: Sri Lanka’s police reimposed night curfews in vulnerable areas on Wednesday and arrested over 100 people in connection with the communal riots which targeted Muslim-owned businesses in the aftermath of the deadly Easter Sunday bombings. The police announcement came hours after authorities lifted the nationwide restrictions on people’s movements and assembly. The curfew will be imposed in the North Western province and the Gampaha Police division from 7 pm Wednesday night till 4 am Thursday, News First quoted police spokesperson SP Ruwan Gunasekara as saying. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince Salman ‘snubbed’ Pak PM Imran, recalled his private jet from US: ReportThe Air Force would deploy helicopters at day and night to assist with controlling illegal assemblies and acts of violence, Sri Lanka Air Force spokesman Group Captain Gihan Seneviratne said. “We have already taken measures to obtain aerial photographic evidence of those involved in such activities and to direct such evidence for legal action against lawbreakers,” he said. Police spokesman Ruwan Gunasekera said at least 78 people were arrested from the worst-affected North-Western Province (NWP) for the anti-Muslim violence. Also Read – Iraq military admits ‘excessive force’ used in deadly protestsRest of the suspects were arrested from other parts of the country, he said. “In addition to the 78 arrested and remanded after they were produced in court, video footage from the incidents are being reviewed to make more arrests,” Gunasekera said. The majority Sinhala community mobs vandalised Muslim-owned properties in NWP and adjoining Gampaha district in the Western Province, a senior police officer said, adding that the mobs even defied the curfew to attack Muslim properties which resulted in the death of one person. Gunasekera said among the arrested were state and private sector employees. They have been remanded till 29 May. The island-wide curfew was imposed on Monday after violence against the Muslim community which accounts for 10 per cent of the country’s population. The curfew was briefly lifted on Tuesday before being reimposed for a second straight night following reports of fresh violence in some parts of the country.last_img read more

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