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'Foreign son-in-law' assists local village in tourism

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

Ding Yimu (right 2) talks with foreign visitors at Hehong village, Zhejiang province. [Photo/chinadaily.com.cn]

A Frenchman, whose Chinese name is Ding Yimu, has worked as an assistant to the head of Hehong village in Ninghai county of Ningbo, Zhejiang province, for one year, and his main job is to promote tourism.

Ding, 54, is married to a local woman and has lived in Ninghai for 15 years. Before coming to China, Ding has worked for large financial companies in both Britain and the US. Ding is running two companies in Ninghai.

Ding happily agreed to assist Gan Yunya, the village head, when Gan asked him to work for the village in Feb last year, and Ding received the letter of appointment on Feb 29.

Recently, Ding invited a dozen foreigners to the village to see the tourism resources there. He worked as a tour guide to explain the village's history, culture, ancient architecture and environment for the visitors.

The foreigners have decided to turn some old houses into home-stay inns and bars in the village, and a 300-square-meter farm house would serve as a meeting place for foreign businesspeople.

Ding has called on the villagers to transform their houses into home-stay inns for backpackers, and attract urban visitors to experience the rural life there.

"His plan suits our village development, and we are constructing the village to attract more tourists," said Gan who speaks highly of Ding.

Ding has also done a lot after becoming the assistant. He invited eye doctors to check the eyes of seniors, and more than 10 cataract patients have received treatments.

Last year, Ding also organized a three-day-long longevity-themed festival for the first time, which attracted about 50,000 people to the village.

Ding Yimu explains the village's history, culture, ancient architecture and environment for the visitors. [Photo/chinadaily.com.cn]

Ding Yimu visits a local villager at Hehong village Hehong village in Ninghai county of Ningbo, Zhejiang province. [Photo/chinadaily.com.cn] 

Ding Yimu (center) walks together with villagers at Hehong village, Zhejiang province. [Photo/chinadaily.com.cn]

Ding Yimu (right) accompanies foreign businessmen to visit Hehong village in Ninghai county, Zhejiang province. [Photo/chinadaily.com.cn]

Ding Yimu (left) and foreign visitors take photos with local residents at Hehong village, Zhejiang province. [Photo/chinadaily.com.cn]

Ding Yimu (right) talks with a senior villager at Hehong village, Zhejiang province. [Photo/chinadaily.com.cn]

Ding Yimu at Hehong village, Zhejiang province. [Photo/chinadaily.com.cn]

Hehong village is honored as the first longevity village in Ningbo, Zhejiang province. [Photo/chinadaily.com.cn]

Categories: INTEL 3

World Built Environment Forum to be held in Shanghai

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

The second World Built Environment Forum will be held from March 27 to 28 in Shanghai, according to an announcement made on Feb 21 by the organizer, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

The London-headquartered organization, which has a history of more than 140 years and nearly 130,000 members, held its inaugural forum in April 2016 in Washington DC.

Organizers said that as more than two-thirds of the world's wealth is bound up in land and real estate, the forum is significant in that it can create and manage the built environment that today's and future global populations need by combining knowledge, skills and resources from the best in the industry.

Confirmed speakers for the Shanghai summit include Stephan Deville, project development director of Ikea, Wang Tao, senior director of Asset Management, Alibaba, and Vincent Lo, chairman of Shui On Group, which is most famous for its development of Shanghai's landmark Xintiandi area.

The speakers will be discussing issues such as mass urbanization, the evolving and growing importance of cities and how can cities globally compete for Chinese foreign direct investment in infrastructure and real estate.

The One Belt One Road initiative will also be used as a key point of reference at the summit.

Sean Tompkins, CEO of the RICS, noted that as the world's population continue to grow, the need to plan the world we live in will be an increasingly pressing question that concerns not only architects.

Categories: INTEL 3

Lies and abuses: Untold truths of Japan's intern training program

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

TOKYO/BEIJING - Tian is a Chinese woman in her forties who dreamt of learning valuable skills and making real money in Japan. Now, as she has been trapped in an endless cycle of forced overtime, that dream has become a nightmare.

Tian is from Northwest China's Gansu province and, fearing retaliation from her revelations, prefers her full name not to be made public.

Almost two and a half years ago, she came to work in a manufacturing factory in a landlocked prefecture in central Japan, under a government-sponsored program called Technical Intern Training Program with a three-year contract.

Tian's factory is tiny with only a total of seven workers -- three Chinese, three Cambodians and one Japanese.

Inside the workshop, her job is to process interior parts for vehicles. For her and her Chinese colleagues there, every day is like sitting in a hellish dungeon.

"We have to work unbearably long hours everyday," she told Xinhua. "We start to work at 7 in the early morning and only get off as late as 9 or 10 at night, with just one hour for lunch and supper. Overwork is just a daily routine."

Yet despite such a heavy work load, her wages and overtime pay are a pittance, roughly half the amount Japanese workers are paid for doing similar work. Meanwhile, she neither receives annuity nor has been covered by any insurance policy whatsoever.

"What I am doing everyday is to repeat the same procedures ... I have learned very little here," she said, adding that they had to pay for training lessons when they first started the job.

Things are no better for You, one of Tian's Chinese co-workers in the factory who is from east China's Zhejiang province. She also prefers not to have her full name made public.

You said they have almost no time to rest, even on weekends, adding that the owner shows little respect for foreign workers, desperately forcing them to work even longer to increase output.

"We are like prisoners," she said. "You know what, the boss even forbids us to go to the toilet within the first hour of our work."

Cheap labor

The stories of Tian and You are sad, shocking and alarming. Yet they only represent two of tens of thousands of other Chinese trainees working in Japan on the intern program.

Tokyo first introduced the program in 1993. Officially, it claims to bring in interns from developing countries and help them acquire technical skills they can bring back to their homelands to contribute to local economic development.

According to media reports, as of last June, there are altogether 210,000 foreigners working in firms and farms across Japan as what Tokyo calls trainees. The Japanese Ministry of Justice said recently that among these foreign workers, some 85,000 are Chinese.

Japan's promise to help developing economies train their own skilled workers has been proved to be largely deceptive: In an island nation with its workforce rapidly aging, many Japanese companies have turned to the intern system for cheap foreign labor.

Most trainees come to Japan only to do the low-paying 3K (dangerous, dirty and difficult in the Japanese language) jobs, most of which the Japanese themselves would not want to do.

Though interns of the program coming to Japan are promised to be protected by Japan's labor laws and minimum wages, the Japanese employers have exploited such foreigners since they are not familiar with the legal rules, not to mention helplessness when it comes to availing themselves of the legal system in Japan to defend their rights.

That has invited a pervasive delay of payments, mistreatment and harassment, and abuses of their legitimate rights and interests have been rampant.

"The boss didn't care about us at all," recalled a young Chinese man surnamed Chen, who has returned to China after working as a trainee in a clothing factory in Kumamoto in western Japan for three years.

"We lived in horrible conditions, with five to six people packed in the same tiny room. Summers and winters were the hardest because two people shared only one electric fan in summer and we didn't have any heating devices in winter because the boss wouldn't allow them. We were even denied access to electric blankets," Chen told Xinhua.

Lu Pengren, a Chinese living in Japan who has many trainee friends from China, told Xinhua that many trainees were maliciously placed under surveillance cameras, both at work and in their dorms. The contracts the trainees received were mostly unfair, and some companies even took the contracts away.

"We couldn't have a life there. We were prohibited from making any friends. We couldn't go outside the factory alone. We could only visit the supermarkets supervised by the Japanese foreman. When we met Chinese on the way, we were even not allowed to greet them," recalled Chen, sobbing.

Last June, Japan's Labor Ministry inspected 5,173 workplaces across the country. Of those, 3,695 were found to be in breach of foreign labor standards, according to the Nikkei Asian Review.

Modern-day slavery

According to the program, Japanese businesses have to hire such foreign workers through either private or official middlemen.

The trainees, before landing in Japan, have already paid large sums of money in broker fees, leaving many of them in debt. Also, as their visas usually tie them to a particular company, they cannot change jobs even when they feel bad about their bosses.

In a system equivalent to modern-day slavery, many interns have escaped, though sometimes it meant breaking the law.

Local news outlet The Japan Times said in a report in October last year that a record 5,803 foreign trainees went missing in 2015 while working in Japan, adding that among them 3,116 were Chinese, followed by 1,705 from Vietnam, 336 from Myanmar, 250 from Indonesia and 102 from Nepal.

This has sparked severe concerns that many may have remained in Japan to make a living as black market laborers.

Observers say this is another sign that the technical intern program -- long criticized by rights groups at home and abroad as akin to slavery -- is seriously flawed.

Even so, the Japanese government plans to further expand the trainee program as Japan's population continues to age and shrink.

The Japan Times quoted a Kyodo News survey as saying that nearly a third of 1,240 municipalities across the country said they want more foreign workers to compensate their shrinking labor force.

"Our workforce is shrinking ... We cannot grow rice or build the roads all by ourselves. Therefore, we need foreign friends to help us," said Inotoru, a lawyer in the northern Japanese city of Sapporo.

Since the government wants foreign workers to do the work most Japanese refuse to take, it should guarantee that they receive the same pay as the Japanese do and allow no exploitation, he added.

Categories: INTEL 3

Mongolian courier delivers on horseback in snow

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

Altan Boliger delivers items on a horseback in Bayannur League, Inner Mongolia, Feb 21, 2017. [Photo/Sina Weibo]

When weather turns bad in Mongolia, it's the horses that come to rescue, as this story shows.

A courier, Altan Boliger, in Bayannur League, Inner Mongolia, rode a horse to deliver packages in heavy snow on Tuesday when a massive cold front hit the region.

The traditional Mongolian method left both locals as well as internet users impressed after a short video clip of Boliger and his horse was uploaded online, with many praising his horseback skills and devotion to work.

While Chinese couriers often use electric tricycles or scooters to deliver packagers in extreme weather, Boliger said he rode the horse as it's a much more reliable in blizzards. He managed to deliver 30 to 40 items on Tuesday.

 

Categories: INTEL 3

Chinese State Councilor urges China, US to step up ties

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

BEIJING - Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi on Tuesday urged China and the United States to strengthen pragmatic cooperation in a bid to push forward bilateral relations.

Yang made the remarks during a phone call with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

In a phone conversation earlier this month, Chinese President Xi Jinping and his US counterpart Donald Trump reached consensus on safeguarding the foundations of China-US relations and promoting bilateral exchanges, paving the way for the next stage of development in China-US relations, Yang noted.

China hopes the two countries, following through on the spirit of the phone conversation, could uphold the principles of non-conflict, non-confrontation, mutual respect and win-win cooperation as well as enhance high-level exchanges, Yang said.

He also urged the two countries to properly manage sensitive issues.

The United States and China are important countries in the world, Tillerson said, adding that strong bilateral cooperation not only benefits both countries but also does good for regional and global peace, stability and prosperity.

Noting that not long ago leaders from the two countries held important talks, Tillerson said the United States is willing to work with China to enhance mutual trust and develop ties.

The two sides also exchanged some views on a number of international issues.

Categories: INTEL 3

Couple's flower valley planted with love gains national attention

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

A screenshot of the couple in the TV program The Reader. [Photo from Sina Weibo]

A couple who has led a tranquil life on a 80-hectare-valley planting flowers by themselves in Chengdu, Southwest China's Sichuan province, now has gained nationwide attention after participating in a classics reading literature program The Reader on China's national television network CCTV.

"My wife (Yin Jie) had been longing for a garden of her own," the husband Zhou Xiaolin said. "I promised her I would build the most beautiful garden in China for her."

And it is his own dream to present the best scenery of his hometown Chengdu to the world.

Hearing the couple's story, the producers of the TV program invited them to read a masterpiece love letter by famous Chinese translator Zhu Shenghao for his wife Song Qingru.

The couple sits on a wooden swing in their flower valley in Chengdu, Southwest China's Sichuan province, July 4, 2016. [Photo/VCG]

The couple walks through their flower valley in Chengdu, Southwest China's Sichuan province, July 4, 2016. [Photo/VCG]

Yin Jie enjoys some peaceful time in their flower valley in Chengdu, Southwest China's Sichuan province, May 27, 2016. [Photo/VCG]

Yin Jie walks in a sea of flowers in their valley in Chengdu, Southwest China's Sichuan province, June 16, 2016. [Photo/VCG]

The couple walks along the riverside with baskets on their shoulders in their flower valley in Chengdu, Southwest China's Sichuan province, April 12, 2014. [Photo/VCG]

A photo of the couple Zhou Xiaolin and Yinjie with their dog at home in Chengdu, Southwest China's Sichuan province, April 12, 2014.[Photo/VCG]

Zhou Xiaolin takes care of flowers the couple planted in their flower valley in Chengdu, Southwest China's Sichuan province, June 16, 2016. [Photo/VCG]

Yin Jie enjoys reading on a hammock in their flower valley in Chengdu, Southwest China's Sichuan province, April 12, 2014. [Photo/VCG]

The couple looks for a good angle to take pictures of their planted flowers in Chengdu, Southwest China's Sichuan province, Feb 19, 2017. [Photo/VCG]

The couple walks on the road in their flower valley in Chengdu, Southwest China's Sichuan province, Feb 19, 2017. [Photo/VCG]

Categories: INTEL 3

Snow in North China disrupts traffic, flights

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

People ride bicycles on a road during a snowfall at Taiyuan, capital of North China's Shanxi province, Feb 21, 2017.[Photo/Xinhua]

Snow across north China on Tuesday caused road closures and delayed flights.

Light to moderate snow fell in Beijing, alleviating the winter drought. This winter, Beijing has only seen 0.9 millimeters of rain, nearly 90 percent less than average, according to the Beijing Meteorological Center.

Qiao Lin, head of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei meteorological center, said snow was forecast across a vast area of north China from Monday to Wednesday and parts of Inner Mongolia, Shanxi and Hebei were hit by heavy snow.

"Icy roads and low visibility could affect traffic in urban cities in the rush hours Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning," said Qiao.

In Zhangjiakou, Hebei, the snow was up to 9cm deep.

Many highways in Inner Mongolia, Shanxi and Hebei were closed, as was an airport in Taiyuan, the provincial capital of Shanxi.

"It is safer to take public transportation than to drive," said a woman surnamed Zhang in Taiyuan. "But the bus is more crowded today."

Snow also fell in Henan, Shandong, Shaanxi, Ningxia and Gansu.

"The snow is good for winter wheat, but could affect crops in greenhouses," said Mao Fengwu, an agricultural technician in Henan.

Vehicles run in snow in Yinchuan, capital of Northwest China's Ningxia Hui autonomous region, Feb 20, 2017.[Photo/Xinhua]

Cars run along a road during a snowfall at Taiyuan, capital of North China's Shanxi province, Feb 21, 2017.[Photo/Xinhua]

People and cars make their way along a road during a snowfall at Taiyuan, capital of North China's Shanxi province, Feb 21, 2017.[Photo/Xinhua]

A courier rides motorbike during snowfall in Beijing, Feb 21, 2017.[Photo/Xinhua]

Categories: INTEL 3

Hollywood actor Lee Pace feeds pandas in Chengdu

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

video video video  

With a long bamboo pole where an apple was tied, Hollywood actor Lee Pace fed four pandas to the cheers of onlookers in the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda in Sichuan province on Tuesday.

Lee is known in China for his role as Thranduil in the film “The Hobbit.”

He was invited by the Chengdu panda base and Conservation International to have one-day nursing experience.

The one-day tour was quite extensive.

After visiting the Moonlight Delivery House where he learned how to feed panda cubs with bottled milk, Lee went to the Giant Panda Cub Enclosure to learn from keeper Tan Jintao how to feed sub-adult pandas an apple.

Categories: INTEL 3

US-born panda bound for China on special flight

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

Giant panda Bao Bao at the Smithsonian's National Zoo enjoys her special treat at a dumpling party on Thursday morning. [Photo by Chen Weihua/China Daily]

A specially decorated plane will transport a giant panda that was born in the United States back to China on Tuesday.

Bao Bao, a female panda born in August 2013 at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo in Washington, D.C., is the offspring of Mei Xiang and Tian Tian, who have lived at the zoo since 2000.

Under the agreement that is signed between China and foreign governments, any panda cub born to Chinese pandas that have been loaned to a foreign country must be returned to China within four years of its birth, according to Zhang Hemin, head of the China Conservation and Research Center for the Giant Panda in Sichuan province.

Logistics company FedEx Express will provide a special crate for Bao Bao, who will be transported onboard a custom-decorated FedEx Express 777 Freighter, dubbed the “FedEx Panda Express.”

The direct charter flight will fly nonstop from Washington’s Dulles International Airport to Chengdu in Sichuan.

A keeper and a veterinarian from the Smithsonian’s National Zoo will accompany Bao Bao onboard the aircraft, continuously monitoring her during the trip and providing a supply of fresh water, bamboo and her favorite treats, including apples, pears and cooked sweet potatoes.

Upon arrival in Chengdu, Bao Bao will be driven to the China Conservation and Research Center for the Giant Panda’s base in Dujiangyan. The panda keeper from the Smithsonian will remain with Bao Bao for a short time while she acclimates to her new home.

Eddy Chan, senior vice president of FedEx China, said this is the seventh time that the company has helped transport a giant panda.

The other occasions were from China to Toronto in 2013; to Paris in 2012; to Edinburgh, Scotland in 2011; to Memphis, US in 2003; to Washington, D.C. in 2000; and from Washington, D.C. and Atlanta, US to China in 2010.

A close-up of Bao Bao eating bamboo at the National Zoo in Washington, Feb 21, 2017. [Photo/Xinhua]

Photographers and fans of Bao Bao saying goodbye to the panda at the National Zoo in Washington, Feb 21, 2017. [Photo/Xinhua]

Photographers and fans of Bao Bao saying goodbye to the panda at the National Zoo in Washington, Feb 21, 2017. [Photo/Xinhua]

Photographers and fans of Bao Bao saying goodbye to the panda at the National Zoo in Washington, Feb 21, 2017. [Photo/Xinhua]

Photographers and fans of Bao Bao saying goodbye to the panda at the National Zoo in Washington, Feb 21, 2017. [Photo/Xinhua]

A close-up of Bao Bao at the National Zoo in Washington, Feb 21, 2017. [Photo/Xinhua]

Staff of the National Zoo in Washington prepare for transportation of Bao Bao from US to China, Feb 21, 2017. [Photo/Xinhua]

Categories: INTEL 3

Guangdong sees post-holiday influx

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

Passengers head to board trains at the Bozhou Railway Station in Anhui province on Tuesday, the last day of the Spring Festival travel rush.[Liu Qinli/For China Daily]

With this year's Spring Festival travel rush ending on Tuesday, a report based on data of online train-ticket sales said that more than one-third of travelers since the end of the holiday have headed to Guangdong province.

The report, released by 360 Technology Co, analyzed ticket sales between Jan 30 and Feb 21. Its findings were based on data collected through its browser plug-in that helps users buy train tickets online, according to Zhang Lanpu, a data analyst for the report.

"The data shows that Guangdong province, with its advanced economy, developed industries and favorable weather conditions, is the most popular province for migrant workers," Zhang said.

Following Guangdong, Beijing, Shanghai and Zhejiang province have been the most popular destinations since the end of the holiday, according to the report.

The four places account for 66.2 percent of all migrant workers heading back to work after the holiday, the data showed.

"The migration before the holiday shows people moving from developed areas to less-developed central and western regions, while post-holiday migration has seen the reverse pattern, with people moving from less-developed regions to developed areas," Zhang said.

Hubei and Hunan provinces saw the biggest exodus of migrant workers following the holiday, the report said.

The 40-day travel rush, which started on Jan 13 and is renowned as the world's largest annual human migration, had seen 2.7 billion trips made as of Monday, according to the Ministry of Transport.

A total of 408 million trips were made between Jan 27, Lunar New Year's Eve, and Feb 2, the ministry said.

Categories: INTEL 3

Marathon maniac off to a running start

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

A Chinese runner who successfully finished all six of the World Marathon Majors before the age of 40 has her sights set on a new challenge - the world's highest trail-running event.

Zhang Wenjie was athletic from an early age, but she had never experienced marathon running until she moved to the United States to study at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts, in 2007.

Greater Boston is home to the world's oldest annual marathon, having hosted a race every year since 1897. It is one of the six World Marathon Majors - the others being in Tokyo, London, Berlin, Chicago and New York.

Living so close to such a prestigious event, Zhang could not help but be intrigued. So, with encouragement from her classmates and teachers, she decided to give it a go and qualified for the race in 2015.

A lack of preparation and underestimation of the effort involved almost proved to be her undoing, however.

"A Chinese pop song called Freezing Rain was in my head the whole time as the cold rain slapped across my face," Zhang was quoted as saying by Qianjiang Evening News.

"There are so many 'must-sees' on that course - Scream Tunnel where the girls of Wellsley College cheer loudly for participants and Heartbreak Hill, at the stage of the course where most runners feel depleted - but I could not think about them, all I cared about was reaching the finish line."

She eventually finished in 5 hours and 30 minutes, more than an hour slower than the average for her age group, but the experience galvanized her into improving her technique and participating in more events.

"I felt like it would be wonderful if I could finish all the WMM races before I was 40," she said. "My finish times might not be that great, but I just wanted to complete them all."

To complete the series, Zhang estimates that she invested about 150,000 yuan ($22,000), three-fourths of her annual salary. But she said it was all worth it to cross the finish line of the Berlin Marathon in September - 17 months after she first started.

Zhang now lives in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, where she works at a finance company, and she is not ready to give up the marathon bug.

Her next goal is to complete the highest running event in the world - the Everest Marathon on Qomolangma, which is known as Mount Everest in the West.

It begins at 5,362 meters above sea level after a 13-day trek to base camp and participants have to overcome altitude sickness, freezing temperatures and strong ultraviolet radiation to compete.

"People say that you are already a winner if you reach the starting line of the Qomolangma marathon," said Zhang. "And I am ready."

Categories: INTEL 3

Mutation of H7N9 poses 'no new threat'

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

The mutation of the H7N9 bird flu virus poses no new threat to humans, but sustained vigilance is needed for possible further mutations, both the World Health Organization and Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention said.

"The reported genetic changes in the H7N9 virus apply to poultry and there is no evidence that the changes in the virus affect the virus' ability to spread between humans," the WHO China Office said in a statement provided to China Daily on Tuesday.

"Currently, the risk of human-to-human transmission is low, as this virus does not appear to transmit easily from person to person," it said.

China has stepped up prevention of H7N9 avian flu transmission. It has been linked to at least 88 deaths since January. About 271 cases of human infection have been reported.

The H7N9 bird flu virus has mutated to a new strain in South China, which has proven more dangerous to poultry, but poses no new threat to humans, China CDC said in a statement posted on its website on Sunday.

The mutation was found in January in two people who had contracted H7N9 bird flu in Guangdong province, both having had exposure to live poultry. China CDC has confirmed the finding and reported the case to the WHO, it said.

The agricultural sector has also found the mutation in four poultry samples from Guangdong, China CDC said.

On the basis of a joint study with experts from the agricultural sector, China CDC has concluded that the mutation "does not make the virus more infectious to humans at the moment."

Chinese health and agricultural authorities will continue to study the mutated strain's source and its impact while intensifying monitoring to detect H7N9's further mutations, according to the statement on China CDC's website.

"Reported changes suggest that the virus continues to evolve as part of its natural progression. Influenza viruses continuously evolve and re-assort, so it is important to remain vigilant," the WHO said.

"WHO is working with international partners, including China, to coordinate the global health response, including risk assessment, the provision of updated information on the situation, and guidance for health authorities and technical health agencies on interim surveillance recommendations, laboratory testing of cases, infection control and clinical management," it said.

The Guangdong provincial government has banned exports of live poultry to other areas of China until March 31, unless the poultry has passed veterinary tests for the virus. Meanwhile, Guangdong also suspended imports of live poultry from provinces more seriously hit by H7N9 cases - such as Jiangsu, Zhejiang and Anhui - until the end of March, according to the provincial government.

(China Daily 02/22/2017 page5)

Categories: INTEL 3

'Kung fu granny' proves a hit

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

Zhang Hexian (right), 94, teaches kung fu to a girl in her village in Ninghai county, Zhejiang province, in 2016. She has had more than 100 disciples.Zuixiangli / For China Daily

Footages of aging martial artist performing moves went viral online

NINGBO, ZHEJIANG - Even at age 94, Zhang Hexian can still handle herself in a fight. Known in her home county of Ninghai, East China's Zhejiang province, as "kung fu granny ", she recently found fame on Chinese social media, with netizens saying that they want to become her disciples.

Zhang has been practicing martial arts since she was 4. "My father would teach me kung fu skills even when I was in bed," she said.

Every day, she gets up at 5 am and practices her kung fu, before eating a breakfast of porridge or noodles. Since the death of her husband, she has grown her own vegetables, chopped her own wood and cooked all her own meals.

Her son, Feng Chuanyin, says practicing each day has brought Zhang good health.

"My mom has never been to the hospital, and recovers from the occasional cold after some sleep," he said.

"She never takes any health products, such as vitamins or supplements."

After video clips and pictures of Zhang practicing kung fu went viral, she became something of an online celebrity.

"My dear granny, you are so great!" wrote one netizen on Sina Weibo, a Twitter-like service in China.

"Granny, do you still want to have disciples?" asked another netizen, while others requested that she taught their children.

Kung fu has not only given Zhang a strong body, it also helped her find romance.

At 14, she met Feng Yongkai - a student of her father's who was four years her senior.

They would often practice together in the mountains and gradually fell in love before getting married.

Zhang's skills have even helped her deal with robbers. Once, when she came across three of them near her home she shouted "dare you come and fight me?" and brought down two before they could even react. The third, realizing he had no chance, quickly ran off.

Kung fu has given her strong arms, enabling her to cook huge meals in the largest of pots. In the 1970s, she was considered the best cook in her village and once cooked as many as 52 dishes for a single banquet.

Practicing martial arts is a tradition in Zhang's family. She has taught her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren kung fu.

"We practice kung fu for health reasons and self-defense," said Feng, her son. "My mom tells us that attacking others is absolutely unacceptable."

Zhang said she wants to continue teaching her skills to younger generations so that she can pass her knowledge on.

 

Zhang practices a kung fu posture in her courtyard in January.Zuixiangli / For China Daily

Categories: INTEL 3

Navy upgrades missile destroyer

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

The CNS Shenzhen guided missile destroyer, before its recent upgrades, returns to Zhanjiang port in Guangdong province.Provided To China Daily

Expert: Changes to vessel's weapons systems improved combat capability

The People's Liberation Army Navy has upgraded the CNS Shenzhen guided missile destroyer, once the most powerful domestically made warship in the Navy, amid a massive modernization of the country's naval arsenal.

The only Type 051B Luhai-class ship, the 6,000-metric ton Shenzhen entered service with the South Sea Fleet in 1999 and was then the largest and most advanced domestically made warship of the Navy for about five years until the first Type 052B destroyer, CNS Guangzhou, was commissioned in 2004.

When the Shenzhen was commissioned, the Navy's destroyer fleet consisted of antiquated models, mostly 3,600-ton Type 051 guided missile destroyer vessels with older weapons and radars. Therefore, the Shenzhen was chosen as the command ship of the South Sea Fleet and has taken part in many overseas visits to show the best image of the Chinese Navy.

 

In 2014, the Shenzhen started a major upgrade of its weapons and electronics systems. It was recently spotted at a naval base of the South Sea Fleet with new weapons and a streamlined superstructure, indicating it has finished the modernization work, People's Daily reported.

A captain of a Navy guided missile destroyer who wished not to be named told China Daily that the overall capability of the refitted Shenzhen is at least double that before the upgrade. He said the ship's information capacity and firepower are much stronger than before.

Cao Weidong, a researcher at the PLA Naval Military Studies Research Institute, said that the biggest change to the Shenzhen is with its weapon systems.

"The HQ-7 short-range surface-to-air missile launcher has been replaced with a vertical launch system, which enables the ship to carry a larger number of missiles and to use more kinds of missiles," he said, explaining that the change will extensively improve the ship's combat capability.

In addition, its four 37-mm two-barrel anti-aircraft guns have been replaced with two close-in weapon systems, whose faster rate of fire increases the vessel's survivability against incoming missiles. The radars and sonar systems on the ship were also upgraded to enhance its capabilities in terms of reconnaissance, detection and monitoring, according to Cao.

Fang Bing, a weapon expert from PLA National Defense University, said the modifications on the Shenzhen's masts and superstructure would reduce its radar signature, thus give it stealth capability.

Before the Shenzhen, the Navy upgraded the CNS Guangzhou as well as the two Type 052 class destroyers - CNS Harbin and CNS Qingdao.

Currently, one of the four Russian-made Sovremennyy class destroyers deployed by the PLA Navy, CNS Hangzhou, is receiving an upgrade on its missile systems and electronic instruments, industry publication Modern Ships reported.

In 2016, the PLA Navy commissioned 18 ships, including a Type 052D guided missile destroyer, three Type 054A guided missile frigates as well as six Type 056 corvettes.

These ships have a total displacement of 150,000 tons, roughly half of the overall displacement of the Royal Navy.

In January alone, the Navy commissioned three ships - one destroyer, one electronic reconnaissance ship and one corvette.

Categories: INTEL 3

Farmer in Hangzhou arrested for capturing and killing toads

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

A farmer who hunted 114 toads, killing 109 of them, has been arrested in Chun'an county in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, according to a report by Hangzhou Daily Online.

The 48-year-old farmer, surnamed Chen, said he intended to use the toads in dishes for a dinner party and caught them in a reservoir on Feb 14, according to China News Agency.

On Feb 18, the Chun'an Forest Police caught Chen and his friends killing toads by a stream, having been tipped off by local residents. A total of 109 dead toads were found, with police setting free the five that were still alive.

"I didn't know that catching toads is an illegal act. I will never hunt toads or sparrows again," Chen told the police after he was arrested.

While many people know about regulations regarding the protection of rare and endangered animals, hunters are often unaware of the list of wildlife that is beneficial to the State or has important economic and scientific research value.

Up to 1,700 species with a significant value in ecology, science and society, including sparrows, toads, frogs, wall lizards, hares, pheasants and snakes, have been added to the list by the State Forestry Administration.

It is illegal to hunt animals on the list without permission. Hunting more than 20 constitutes a crime, and more than 50 is regarded as a severe crime, according to the criminal law.

"We see about 50 similar cases each year and the species varies with seasons," Lu Qiangjun, director of Chun'an Forest Police Bureau, was quoted as saying by Zhejiang News Online.

In another case on Monday in Liuyang, Hunan province, a villager was arrested on charges of capturing 4,057 toads weighing a total of 384 kilograms in the past two weeks, Changsha Evening News reported.

"It is time for us to take more measures to spread knowledge about wildlife," Lu said.

The list of animals can be found in booklets that illustrate some typical cases, Lu said.

Ruan Lifang contributed to this story.

Categories: INTEL 3

Deep-sea vehicle sets its sights on ocean trenches

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

A domestically developed unmanned submersible designed to explore as deep as 11,000 meters under the sea is expected to start deep-sea trials by 2020, researchers said on Tuesday.

Shanghai Jiao Tong University, which has been working on the development of the new autonomous underwater vehicle, said that the trial will be carried out in the Pacific Ocean's Mariana Trench, in a ravine called Challenger Deep.

"The deep-sea submersible is an essential tool for humans to explore the deepest ocean area and develop marine resources. But to dive 11,000 meters below sea level, the vehicle should not only have the ability to deal with more complex terrain, more powerful currents and waves, but also behave with great stability and security," said Zhang Weigang, Party chief of the university's School of Naval Architecture, Ocean and Civil Engineering.

According to Ge Tong, a professor at the university who led the research, the deep-sea submersible will be equipped with a comprehensive navigation system, which ensures the submersible maintains its direction even in deep sea environments.

As the remotely operated vehicle reaches the seabed, it will detect information from the deep sea, such as the location of tiny marine pipeline leaks, in the extreme ocean environment to prevent possible disaster, according to the research team.

Such a vehicle will enlarge the scale of research, and in the near future, we should be able to draw a picture of the sea at a depth of 10,000 meters, Ge said.

It is not the country's first autonomous underwater vehicle. The Chinese Academy of Sciences and Harbin Engineering University have developed the unmanned Qianlong AUVs. Qianlong-1, designed with the capability to travel to a depth of 6,000 meters, dove to 5,213 meters in the eastern Pacific Ocean in 2014.

Meanwhile, China's manned submersible Jiaolong made a record dive to 7,062 meters in 2012.

The team at Shanghai Jiao Tong University has also carried out research and development for remote operation vehicles, such as Hailong 02, a remotely operated vehicle that can operate at a depth of 3,500 meters.

The area of sea with depths from 6,000 to 11,000 meters is known as the hadal zone, the deepest part of the ocean. Scientific research in the Hadal zone focuses on sea ecology, marine geology and living beings, and is the most cutting-edge research in international earth science, especially marine science.

In 2016, the Ministry of Land and Resources issued a strategic plan, stating that the country will build its exploration abilities in the deep sea in the next five years. In the same year, the Ministry of Science and Technology also promoted a series of projects for key deep-sea technologies and equipment to boost the research and development of deep-sea submersibles.

Developed by Shanghai Jiao Tong University, this project will fill in the technology blank in China's deep-sea unmanned submersible applications. It will eventually form a comprehensive exploration technology system, and establish full deep-sea scientific investigation and sampling abilities, Zhang said.

"It will provide the necessary equipment and technical support for the country to obtain firsthand deep-sea biological, environmental and geological research samples and data, and promote the development of Chinese deep-sea science and technology," Zhang said.

Categories: INTEL 3

Hollywood star feeds panda cubs on visit to Chengdu

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

Hollywood movie star Lee Pace was invited by the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding in Sichuan province and Conservation International to have a one-day nursing experience at the base on Tuesday.

Pace, who is known in China for his role as Thranduil in The Hobbit trilogy, said he was thoroughly impressed with the way Mei Yan, a young keeper, fed panda cubs with bottled milk.

When Mei Yan shouted "Time for milk" in Sichuan dialect, all of the panda cubs ran to her and sat on the grass quietly waiting for their turn.

"The pandas knew it was time for milk, because they saw me carrying the bottles and heard me shouting," Mei said.

Under Mei's guidance, Pace took a bottle and fed a cub in his arms, as if it were a human baby.

After visiting the Moonlight Delivery House where Pace learned how to bottle-feed panda cubs, he visited the Giant Panda Cub Enclosure to learn from keeper Tan Jintao about how to feed young pandas apples. Using a long bamboo pole with an apple attached on a piece of string, Pace fed four pandas to the cheers of onlookers.

His last stop was the Panda Kitchen, where he saw how cakes for the pandas are prepared and joined in the preparation process.

Although Pace's visit was short, he showed a keen interest in giant panda conservation.

"They are so adorable and should not be allowed to become extinct as the result of human activities. We need to make more of an effort to protect them and their habitats," he said.

Categories: INTEL 3

Noodle shop owner killed, beheaded over dispute

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

A noodle shop owner in Wuhan, Central China's Hubei province, was believed killed and beheaded in a dispute over 1 yuan ($0.15) on Saturday, the Beijing News reported on Tuesday.

The public security sub-bureau in the city's Wuchang district is investigating whether the suspect might have a mental illness, according to the report.

A source from the publicity department of the Wuhan public security bureau said that whether the suspect is a patient with a mental illness will be determined by hospital tests, and it is not known how much time an assessment will take, the report said, without identifying the name of the source.

The suspect, surnamed Hu, was reported to have fought with the owner, Yao Yongsheng, at noon on Saturday for overcharging him 1 yuan for his noodles before Hu went to the kitchen, picked up a kitchen chopper and hacked Yao before cutting off his head.

The public security sub-bureau said on Saturday that it had captured the 22-year-old suspect at the scene.

According to media reports, Hu argued that the price on the menu in front of the noodle shop was 4 yuan, and Yao shouldn't have charged him 5 yuan.

The report by the Beijing News cited a witness passing by the noodle shop as saying that he saw a head being put into a plastic bag and thrown into a trash can nearby.

The report didn't disclose the name of the witness, who was identified as a doctor from a nearby hospital.

Yao divorced five years ago and has a 12-year-old son, the report said, adding that he was from a village in Shiyan, Hubei province, and had elderly parents to take care of.

In October, Hu, a native of Sichuan province, was issued a certificate of disability with the second-highest level of mental impairment, the report said. His father is said to have guardianship.

Hu was reported to have spent six months in a psychiatric hospital and shocked his family with previous acts of violence, having physically assaulted his own parents.

Categories: INTEL 3

Towns urged to offer better public services

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

China's central authorities have issued a document calling for improved public services at the township level.

Township-level officials said the document outlines their duties more specifically, and the preferential policies it includes, such as making promotions and subsidies more achievable, will increase motivation among grassroots officials.

The document was issued on Monday by the general offices of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and the State Council.

It lists a series of public services that township-level governments should provide, including quality education with suitable teaching environments; better training and vocational opportunities for rural residents; and basic social services for special groups, including the disabled, migrant workers and children living in poverty.

The document also calls on township governments to implement national insurance policies and improve public health services. Ancient villages of great historic and cultural value should be properly protected and developed, it states, adding that township governments should also improve their services in areas such as environmental protection, food safety and juvenile protection.

It also calls for preferential policies for township officials, such as making promotions and subsidies more achievable, to attract talent to work in townships. Although some officials may not be promoted, their salary can still be increased to the level of a deputy township head or even higher after a certain number of years, according to the document.

"I have never seen such detailed requirements for public services offered by township governments. There are a lot of requirements, but it gives us a specific scope and will make it easier for us to carry out our work," said Wang Zusheng, head of Nangang township in Hefei, capital of Anhui province.

There are more than 50 public servants in Nangang township government and only two of them hold posts of township head level. "Most officials remain in their posts for their whole life without being promoted. But now, they could still see their salary increase, without being promoted, which will make them more motivated in their work," Wang said.

The document also encourages farmers' cooperative organizations of various forms, including specialized cooperatives and joint-stock cooperatives, to be established in rural areas.

Gao Jian, head of Dawei township in Hefei's Baohe district, said she welcomes the initiative to encourage cooperative organizations.

"The model for cooperative organizations was brought into our township several years ago. Farmers can become shareholders of dozens of cooperatives in our township using funds or their farmland. Cooperative organizations have greatly improved the efficiency of agricultural production," Gao said.

The document also calls on local governments to give full pay to social work professionals in public services and to buy public services from social organizations.

Categories: INTEL 3

Courts told to ignore illegal evidence

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

New guideline meant to ensure justice and protect human rights of accused

China's top court has told every court nationwide to strictly exclude evidence collected illegally, in an effort to reduce wrongful convictions and protect human rights.

"When we looked back at wrongful cases corrected over the past few years, we found the mistakes were attributable to our undeveloped legal awareness, as well as improper legal procedures while tackling the cases," said Dai Changlin, a member of the trial committee at the Supreme People's Court.

A guideline released on Tuesday ordered courts at all levels to find suspects innocent when evidence is insufficient to prove their guilt, and to not accept evidence that is obtained illegally.

The guideline stipulates that courts should review the legality of evidence before hearing a case and they are not allowed to continue with cases if evidence has been collected in an improper manner.

"For example, evidence won't be accepted if it is obtained by torture," Dai said.

The guideline also asks judges to review interrogation videos and audio that are provided as evidence, adding that they must exclude those that are damaged or edited by investigators or prosecutors.

Dai confirmed some defendants in high-profile wrongful cases, such as Nie Shubin, were tortured during interrogations.

Nie, who was wrongly convicted and executed for rape and murder in North China's Hebei province more than 20 years ago, was exonerated in December.

"We should sentence those who commit real crimes, but for defendants where the evidence cannot prove their guilt, we must free them," Dai said.

The guideline is to uphold justice, as well as to protect human rights, he added.

Wang Ling, a judicial official at the top court's publicity department, said they will disclose examples of whether the guideline is being fully enforced in a timely manner.

Ji Chunwei, a criminal lawyer in Guangdong province, applauded the guideline, describing it as a significant step to reduce wrongful convictions.

Procedures are regarded as a way of achieving justice, "so not handling a case in accordance with procedures will harm justice", he said.

"Justice must not only be done, but must be seen to be done," he added.

Categories: INTEL 3

Swapping shantytown for The suburbs

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

 

2,100 Shanghai households to be relocated soon

At the entrance of an old, dilapidated residential community in downtown Shanghai, two women were going about their daily business. One of them was washing her hair in a sink, while the other used another sink to rinse out a spittoon.

Most of the residents have installed outside sinks to save space in their small homes, and 40 percent of them don't have indoor bathrooms or kitchens.

Actually, "entrance" is not an accurate description of the portal, because the community doesn't really have an exterior wall, which means burglary is rampant. For some residents, checking the door repeatedly before going to bed has been a habit for several decades.

 

Welcome to Zhangqiao, Shanghai's largest shantytown. Situated beside a small creek, the community appears as a blemish among the modern high-rise residential buildings worth more than 100,000 yuan ($14,500) per square meter in China's most cosmopolitan city.

Things will change soon, however, because the nearly 2,100 households in the 23-sq-km community in the central Hongkou district will be relocated. In a first-round survey conducted in October, more than 99 percent of residents agreed with the local government's relocation program.

"That's quite rare for an area as large as ours. The residents' decades-old dream will finally come true," said Lyu Xuebin, head of the relocation project, who works for the Jiaxing Road subdistrict of Hongkou.

About 3.5 million sq m of the old city was revamped between 2011 and 2015, when Premier Li Keqiang said the government's goal was to complete the redevelopment of the country's shantytowns by 2020.

In the early 1950s, Zhangqiao was the place where the city's human waste was loaded before being shipped for disposal in remote areas.

Many boatmen, mostly migrants from neighboring provinces, moved ashore and built makeshift single-story houses in the district. As a result, hundreds of buildings of different shapes and sizes sprang up, facing in all directions; a stark contrast to most of the buildings in the city, which stand in neatly regulated lines.

Liu Lihua, who was born in Zhangqiao in 1955, recalled that all the residents lived in single-story houses. "Our ceiling was too low for my father to even stand up straight," she said.

Another resident, Jiang Minli, said his family - two parents and five children - shared a 24-square-meter house when he was young. "My father built an attic of around 7 sq m for us kids to sleep in. There was no running water and the roof leaked," the 65-year-old said.

Liu, her parents and two siblings lived in their 15-sq-m house until the mid-1980s, when her first child was born and the family added two floors to the original structure.

"Most families added a floor when one child got married, then added another when a second child married," she said. Her family installed a kitchen and a bathroom when they renovated their house, but they were the exceptions.

"Many of the roughly 6,000 residents still don't have flush toilets, showers or proper ovens, so most of them use small electric cookers instead," she said.

Overcrowded conditions

Some residents' living spaces remained overcrowded even after their houses grew taller.

A 58-year-old woman, who only gave her surname as Zhang, said 12 people occupy her family's three-story, 50-sq-m house. "Needless to say, the lack of personal space creates chaos and quarrels almost every day," she said. "Another problem is that we don't get any sunlight because the houses are too close to each other."

At some points, the alleys between the houses are so narrow and curved that people are unable squeeze pass each other.

Housewife Zhang Minhua hates the rats that infest her home. "They swarm over food that is left unattended on the dining table, and several of my leather purses have been bitten by them," she said.

The biggest headache for Chen Ziming, director of the Zhangqiao neighborhood committee, is that "the human waste from the flush toilets is drained directly into the gutters, and ends up getting baked by the sun, which makes the area very smelly".

Despite their poor living conditions, most residents failed to find new homes elsewhere. According to Chen, 175 of the 2,100 families in the shantytown live on minimum subsistence allowances, and more than 200 residents have disabilities.

Old dreams, new homes

The residents have been awaiting relocation for a long time, but the shantytown has been left untouched because the undesirable location means property developers have no interest in the place, according to Chen.

"It's along the creek, so it is unsuitable for high-rise housing projects. It was only recently that the government decided to play a leading role in the redevelopment program to improve the residents' living conditions," he said, adding that the area will be utilized as an extension of an arterial road and shrubs will be planted to block views of the creek.

Wang Meijuan, 57, who lives with her husband, son and mother-in-law in Zhangqiao, said her father-in-law had been eager to move to a new home in his twilight years, but he didn't live long enough to see that happen. He died two years ago at age 83. Soon, the rest of the family will see their dream of a new home finally come true.

"My 33-year-old son has been in relationships with two girls, but when they talked about marriage, they both refused to live in Zhangqiao and broke up with him," Wang said. "A new home might help him to find a spouse."

Lyu said the government is already preparing the necessary funding. Each family will receive compensation, based on the size of their house, and will be able to buy a new home wherever they want. The local government has recommended several residential communities where the new residents will enjoy relocation privileges, but these communities are usually located in suburban districts, far from the center.

The compensation plan is still being mulled over, Lyu said.

Many residents said they weren't worried about being relocated to areas far from the city center, but they hoped there would be adequate amenities, including grocery stores and hospitals, near their new homes.

Zhang Suoqiao is an exception. The strong emotional connection he has with the district means he is one of the few residents who isn't desperate to leave.

"When I was a child, my wife-to-be lived opposite me in this neighborhood. She was born here and I was raised here from the age of 3," the 71-year-old said.

"It's such a terrific location. Just 2 km ahead, you can see the Oriental Pearl TV Tower across the Huangpu River."

 

A Zhangqiao resident cleans pots and pans at an outdoor sink in the community.Gao Erqiang/china Daily

 

Categories: INTEL 3

Quality key for CPPCC proposals

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

Coming up with good ideas is better than a large quantity, officials say

Quality should take precedence over quantity when it comes to proposals from members of China's top political advisory body, officials said on Tuesday.

The total number of proposals from the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference has increased rapidly in the past two decades, according to Tian Jie, deputy head of the subcommittee for handling proposals.

"Back in 1993, when the first session of the 8th National Committee of the CPPCC was held, about 2,000 proposals were raised by members," he said. "The number climbed to 5,000 in 2008 and has remained steady at around 6,000 since 2013."

Led by the Communist Party of China, the CPPCC includes representatives from other political parties, mass organizations and people from different social circles.

The fifth session of the 12th National Committee of the CPPCC will start on March 3. It is part of the annual "two sessions" during the month, which also includes the National People's Congress, the highest organ of State power.

During the CPPCC session, about 300 group proposals from central committees of other political parties and the All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce are expected to be submitted.

Tian said the subcommittee has called for an increase in the number of group proposals - joint efforts from members that are submitted only after strict screening.

"In 2013, around 7 percent of proposals were raised by groups. Last year, it was 9.48 percent," he added.

Xi Yanchun, a spokeswoman for the State Council Information Office, said on Feb 7 that State Council departments had acted on 90.9 percent of members' proposals that came out of the National Committee of the CPPCC during last year's two sessions.

Members' proposals attract a lot of public attention and many suggestions are used by government agencies, according to Sun Gan, chief of the subcommittee for handling proposals of the CPPCC National Committee.

One good example is proposals to combat violence against hospitals and doctors, he said. In 2014, a proposal jointly raised by 89 CPPCC members called for regulations on public order at hospitals because of the growing amount of violence targeting doctors and other medical staff.

Sun said the Ministry of Public Security, National Health and Family Planning Commission and other authorities jointly released a document and set up police offices at major hospitals.

"So far, more than 85 percent of hospitals have police offices," he added. "In 2016, the criminal cases at hospitals decreased by 14.1 percent, which represented a two-digit decrease three years in a row."

Categories: INTEL 3

Ex-minister of work safety gets 15 years for graft

CHINA DAILY - 0 sec ago

Yang Dongliang, former head of China's work safety watchdog and a longtime Tianjin official, was sentenced to 15 years in prison after his conviction on bribery and embezzlement charges by a Beijing court on Tuesday.

The former minister of the State Administration of Work Safety was also fined 2 million yuan ($290,000) and ordered to return his illegal gains by the Beijing No 2 Intermediate People's Court, the court said in a statement.

Yang said during the hearing that he accepts the verdict and will not appeal to a higher court, the statement said.

Yang, 63, took bribes of about 28.5 million yuan between 2002 and 2015, when he served in posts including vice-mayor of Tianjin and head of the work safety watchdog, the court said.

He also committed embezzlement by taking control of an apartment in the Heping district of Tianjin in April 1999 when he served as the director of the municipal economy commission in the city. Yang did not register the apartment as a state asset and failed to transfer it to the commission when he left the director's post, the court said.

The court said it has shown leniency in the sentencing because Yang confessed his crimes and had shown remorse. He also took the initiative to return his illegal gains, all of which have been retrieved, the court said.

Yang was placed under investigation for "severe violations of discipline and law" by the Communist Party of China's Central Commission for Discipline Inspection in August 2015.

A native of Qingxian county, Hebei province, Yang began his career in 1972 and joined the Communist Party of China a year later. He served as vice-mayor of Tianjin from 2001 to May 2012, before he was appointed minister of the State Administration of Work Safety. He has a doctoral degree in law.

Categories: INTEL 3

2 famed scientists enlisted by CAS

CHINA DAILY - 2 min 38 sec ago

Nobel laureate C.N. Yang (left) and Turing Award winner Yao Qizhi. CHINA DAILY

Nobel laureate C.N. Yang and Turing Award winner Yao Qizhi have become Chinese citizens and officially joined the Chinese Academy of Sciences as academicians-the highest academic title in China, the academy's faculty office said on Tuesday.

They are the first overseas scientists to relinquish their US citizenship to join the official faculty of China's highest scientific research organization. Yang, 94, will join the mathematical physics department, while Yao, 70, will enter the information technology and science department.

"They are both world renowned scholars," the office said in a statement. "Their entry into the academy's faculty will increase the influence of China's scientific circles worldwide."

Yang and Tsung-dao Lee received the 1957 Nobel Prize in physics for their work on parity nonconservation of weak interaction, becoming the first people of Chinese origin to win a Nobel Prize.

Yao became in 2000 the first person of Chinese origin to receive the Turing Award, the most prestigious award in computer science. He won for his fundamental contributions to the theory of computation such as cryptography and communication complexity.

In late 2016, both scientists had relinquished their foreign nationality and submitted their request to join the academy. The faculty office said it had to adopt new procedures to accept the two scientists, who were both foreign academicians at the time.

In order to become a foreign academician, one has to be an accomplished scientist who contributed greatly to China's science and technology. After being recommended by more than five Chinese members, the foreign scientist enters a biennial election and must win a two-thirds majority of academicians' votes to join their ranks, according to the academy's charter.

A foreign academician, though lacking voting rights, can advise on Chinese scientific developments and the workings of the faculty office, as well as receive academic publications and invitations to seminars held by the office. Foreign academicians can join the ranks of Chinese members once they receive Chinese citizenship.

A Chinese member can make suggestions on major Chinese scientific projects and vote on prospective new members of the academy.

There are now 754 Chinese and 78 foreign scientists in the academy. In recent years, the faculty office has worked to build a "big academician family", connecting renowned scholars from around the world to give advice and contribute to China's scientific development.

"As China's science, economy and society develop, the influence of the faculties will increase domestically and abroad," the office said.

Categories: INTEL 3

Boost set for economic, social goals

CHINA DAILY - 5 min 30 sec ago

Reforms to deepen and livelihoods to improve, Political Bureau decides

China will "stabilize and improve its macroeconomic policies" and deepen reforms to achieve its economic and social development goals this year, according to a statement released after a key meeting on Tuesday.

The nation will continue to adopt proactive fiscal policy and prudent monetary policy, according to the meeting of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, which was presided over by Xi Jinping, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee.

Coordination of industrial, regional, investment, consumption, price, land and environmental protection policies will be strengthened, and reforms in key fields will be deepened to achieve better results, the meeting decided. Innovation will be promoted to help improve the efficiency of the economy and release domestic growth potential, participants agreed.

The meeting highlighted the significance of 2017, since the 19th CPC National Congress will convene later in the year.

Acknowledging that China has scored a strong start for the 13th Five Year Plan (2016-20) period, the meeting called for further efforts to balance multiple economic tasks this year, including stabilizing growth, advancing reforms, pushing restructuring, improving people's livelihoods and preventing risks.

The meeting was held ahead of the two sessions-the annual meetings of the country's top legislature and the top political advisory body that will be held in early March.

Supply-side structural reform will be further pushed and people's livelihoods should be improved, the meeting statement said.

The meeting also decided that China will push the supply-side reform of agriculture to ensure healthy growth and increased income for farmers.

Tuesday's meeting also decided that the government should improve governance to "better serve the people".

According to the statement, 247 Party organizations have been inspected by teams sent from the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, the Party's top anti-graft agency, since the inspection effort was launched in 2013.

The inspections, with a focus on sticking to the Party's leadership, have functioned as a "political microscope" and a "political searchlight", under which supervision of following the Party's rules has been enhanced, said the statement.

On Tuesday, the CCDI disclosed information on its recent 11th round of inspections of Party and government agencies, institutes, associations and news media, such as the Supreme People's Court, the Party School of the Central Committee of the CPC and China Central Television.

"The meeting highlighted the most important tasks for China this year," said Liang Haiming, chief economist of the China Silk Road iValley Research Institute. "It highlights reform, innovation and people's livelihoods."

It is a must for China to further carry out reforms because the international situation has changed rapidly, Liang said.

Categories: INTEL 3

Police: Suspects in N. Korean death coated hands with poison

AP - 6 min 56 sec ago
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — The women suspected of fatally poisoning a scion of North Korea's ruling family were trained to coat their hands with toxic chemicals then wipe them on his face, police said Wednesday, announcing they were now seeking a North Korean diplomat in connection with the attack. 2017-02-21T20:06:00-05:00 2017-02-22T01:06:19-05:00

REUTERS: German Social Democrats still hard on heels of Merkel's conservatives: poll

THE POLITICAL AVENUE™ NEWSROBOT - 12 min 10 sec ago
BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany's Social Democrats (SPD) held steady at 31 percent support in a survey published on Wednesday, remaining hard on the heels of Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives - on 34 percent - seven months ahead of a federal election.

German Social Democrats still hard on heels of Merkel's conservatives: poll

REUTERS - 12 min 10 sec ago
BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany's Social Democrats (SPD) held steady at 31 percent support in a survey published on Wednesday, remaining hard on the heels of Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives - on 34 percent - seven months ahead of a federal election.

TASS [Russian State News]: US permanent representative to UN signed condolence book in memory of Churkin

THE POLITICAL AVENUE™ NEWSROBOT - 13 min 21 sec ago
Russia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Vitaly Churkin died in New York on February 20, a day before his 65th birthday

US permanent representative to UN signed condolence book in memory of Churkin

TASS [Russian State News] - 13 min 21 sec ago
Russia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Vitaly Churkin died in New York on February 20, a day before his 65th birthday

Woman spends $726 per month commuting between two cities

CHINA DAILY - 19 min ago

Jiang on her way to take the subway in Beijing, Feb 14, 2017.[Photo/VCG]

Rugged up in her coat in the chilled spring air, a drowsy Jiang Jingzi walks briskly towards the parking lot outside the railway station in Cangzhou, a small city in North China's Hebei province, on the night of Feb 15.

For the umpteenth time, Jiang returns home to Cangzhou late at night, after leaving work in Beijing.

For a whole year, Jiang kept up this daily routine. Rising at about 6:10am, taking a taxi to the railway station in Cangzhou by 6:50am and catching a high-speed train at 7:23am that delivers her to Beijing 58 minutes later. She arrives at her company at about 9:15am after completing the final leg on the subway.

The inter-city transportation has surprised many for its long distance, and high fees. It's 15 yuan ($2.20) for a taxi, 94.5 yuan ($13.70) for high-speed train and 4 yuan (60 cents) for the subway ride. That adds up to 225 yuan ($33) for a daily return commute, amounting to a monthly cost of almost 5,000 yuan ($726).

While this has caused many jaws to drop, Jiang Jiangzi smiles for her own reasons.

After her university graduation in Beijing in 2009, Jiang chose to stay in the city and became a "Beijing drifter".

She met her husband, who works for Beijing Hyundai Motor, at the end of 2011. By the time they were married, the couple had their own house near the East Sixth Ring Road, each spending about two hours on their journey to work.

In 2015, Jiang's husband was transferred to Cangzhou, leaving Jiang and their 1-year-old baby in Beijing.

Six months later, Jiang decided to start her two cities life. Before that, Jiang's husband had considered finding her a new job in Cangzhou, but Jiang refused as she didn't want to give up her career in Beijing.

"I was surprised by myself that I could hold on the trip for such long time," Jiang said, as she sorted out all the tickets she's collected in the last year.

"I admire what she has done for me and our family." her husband said. Jiang's persistence also won the support from her family.

Jiang said she was mindful of the high transportation costs, but said it was all worthwhile as long as the family could be together every day.

Jiang packs items to prepare to go home, Feb 10, 2017.[Photo/VCG]

Jiang talks on her smartphone while on the subway, Feb 10, 2017. [Photo/VCG]

Jiang takes a nap on the train heading to Cangzhou, Feb 14, 2017. [Photo/VCG]

Jiang's husband gives her a rose when she gets back from work on Valentine's Day.[Photo/VCG]

Jiang believes the long and expensive daily commute is worth it so the family is together each night in Cangzhou. [Photo/VCG]

Jiang on the subway in Beijing during the morning travel peak, Feb 16, 2017.[Photo/VCG]

Some of the train tickets Jiang has accumulated over the last year. [Photo/VCG]

Some of the train tickets Jiang has accumulated over the last year. [Photo/VCG]

Categories: INTEL 3

REUTERS: Philippine minister doubtful of China row resolution 'during our lifetime'

THE POLITICAL AVENUE™ NEWSROBOT - 26 min 42 sec ago
MANILA (Reuters) - The foreign minister of the Philippines expressed doubt on Wednesday that a maritime sovereignty dispute with China could be resolved "during our lifetime", so it was better to set it aside, engage Beijing and avoid an armed confrontation.

Philippine minister doubtful of China row resolution 'during our lifetime'

REUTERS - 26 min 42 sec ago
MANILA (Reuters) - The foreign minister of the Philippines expressed doubt on Wednesday that a maritime sovereignty dispute with China could be resolved "during our lifetime", so it was better to set it aside, engage Beijing and avoid an armed confrontation.

Live: Former Hong Kong leader Donald Tsang sentenced to 20 months in jail for misconduct

CNBC - 35 min 6 sec ago
Our live blog is tracking reactions as former Hong Kong leader Donald Tsang receives jail term for misconduct in office.

TASS [Russian State News]: Secretary General says SCO mourns Vitaly Churkin’s death

THE POLITICAL AVENUE™ NEWSROBOT - 42 min 19 sec ago
Vitaly Churkin died on February 20, a day before his 65th birthday

Secretary General says SCO mourns Vitaly Churkin’s death

TASS [Russian State News] - 42 min 19 sec ago
Vitaly Churkin died on February 20, a day before his 65th birthday

GOP dismisses hostile town halls as angry constituents demand policy answers

RINF Town halls with politicians have grown tense as constituents around the country continue to hammer their elected representatives about various policies. Both Democrats and Republicans have been forced to answer angry voters. Voters are going out in droves to speak with their elected representatives and hold them accountable for upcoming policy changes. After the […]

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Ambassador Nikki Haley Is Completely Clueless

RINF Just when we thought the great national embarrassment of a UN Ambassador Samantha Power was over, we are suddenly faced with a new US Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, who almost makes Ms. Power look like a giant in world affairs and diplomacy. Addressing the UN Security Council Open Debate on Conflicts […]

The post Ambassador Nikki Haley Is Completely Clueless appeared first on Russia News Now.

Rising From the Ashes of Flynn

Lew-RockwellPresident Trump rose from the ashes of Mike Flynn at his press conference last Thursday.  In a bravura performance, defiant and funny at times, the President took on the presstitutes en masse. It is a performance that should not be missed.  You can savor both video and transcript at your leisure here. The press Trump: […]

The post Rising From the Ashes of Flynn appeared first on Russia News Now.

Don’t Copy King Canute

Lew-RockwellWe all have great expectations, especially when we are young. Later in life, sunny skies often turn dark and by necessity we trim our sails. So it is both refreshing and quite remarkable to encounter a 70-year old man whose life trajectory set him on the opposite course of continually enlarging his expectations, most especially […]

The post Don’t Copy King Canute appeared first on Russia News Now.

Clinton Interferes in Russian Elections

Lew-RockwellFrom an academic paper published by Hamilton College (located, interestingly enough, in Clinton, New York): Immediately after coming to power, the Clinton administration declared the consolidation of market and democratic institutions in Russia to be a vital American interest. The administration’s central tactic for promoting this outcome was to help Boris Yeltsin remain in power…. […]

The post Clinton Interferes in Russian Elections appeared first on Russia News Now.

Is Trump-Putin Detente Dead?

Lew-RockwellAmong the reasons Donald Trump is president is that he read the nation and the world better than his rivals. He saw the surging power of American nationalism at home, and of ethnonationalism in Europe. And he embraced Brexit. While our bipartisan establishment worships diversity, Trump saw Middle America recoiling from the demographic change brought […]

The post Is Trump-Putin Detente Dead? appeared first on Russia News Now.

Can You Solve My Problems?

Lew-RockwellIt involves just six matches, but this puzzle is anything but easy to solve. The Growing Triangles puzzle asks users to transform two triangles made from six matches into four triangles, by moving just two matches. The key lies in the fact that the matches are allowed to overlap – but even knowing that, it’ll […]

The post Can You Solve My Problems? appeared first on Russia News Now.

Uncle Sam (and the Taxman)

Lew-Rockwell2016 was another record-breaking year for the number of US citizens and its long-term residents expatriating, giving up their US citizenship and passport or green card. According to a February 9 announcement in the Federal Register, 2,364 expatriated in the fourth quarter of 2016, bringing the tally for last year to 5,409. That’s a 26% […]

The post Uncle Sam (and the Taxman) appeared first on Russia News Now.

Murder of JFK’s Intimate Confidant

Lew-RockwellListen to the podcast ROCKWELL:  Well, good morning.  This is the Lew Rockwell Show.  And how great it is to have as our guest, Dr.  Peter Janney.  Peter is a graduate of Princeton.  He has a PhD in Psychology from Boston University and an MBA from Duke.  He’s here today to talk about his very […]

The post Murder of JFK’s Intimate Confidant appeared first on Russia News Now.

US-backed alliance enters Syria's Deir al-Zor province

AL JAZEERA - 49 min 6 sec ago
Eleven people killed and more than 35 wounded in air strikes in town in northern Deir al-Zor province, observatory says.

Rosneft ready to sell part of gas stations in some regions

MOSCOW, February 22. /TASS/. Rosneft, after purchasing Bashneft, is ready to sell part of gas stations in the regions where their share exceeds 50%, according to Head of the Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) Igor Artemyev. “Rosneft does not oppose (selling gas stations in the regions – TASS). In Tatarstan, Bashkiria we finish collecting papers […]

The post Rosneft ready to sell part of gas stations in some regions appeared first on Russia News Now.

Iran plans to buy 12 Superjet-100 Russian aircraft in near future — minister

© Marina Lystseva/TASS MOSCOW, February 22. /TASS/. Iran has confirmed intention to purchase 12 Superjet-100 Russian aircraft in the near future, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said in an interview with Rossiya 24 TV channel. “It was confirmed that Iran is interested to buy 12 Sukhoi Superjet-100 aircraft in the near future,” Novak said. The Minister […]

The post Iran plans to buy 12 Superjet-100 Russian aircraft in near future — minister appeared first on Russia News Now.

Mission Unaccomplished, 15 Years Later

antiwarOriginally posted at TomDispatch. If you’re going to surround yourself with generals in the Oval Office, as Donald Trump has done, that means one thing in these years: you’re going to appoint men whose careers were made (or unmade) by what was once known as the Global War on Terror. They will be deeply associated […]

The post Mission Unaccomplished, 15 Years Later appeared first on Russia News Now.

TASS [Russian State News]: Iran plans to buy 12 Superjet-100 Russian aircraft in near future — minister

THE POLITICAL AVENUE™ NEWSROBOT - 54 min 33 sec ago
Russia has offered Iranian partners to establish joint production of turboprop upgraded Ilyushin Il-114 aircraft

Iran plans to buy 12 Superjet-100 Russian aircraft in near future — minister

TASS [Russian State News] - 54 min 33 sec ago
Russia has offered Iranian partners to establish joint production of turboprop upgraded Ilyushin Il-114 aircraft

THE WASHINGTON POST: Mexicans weigh the daunting prospect of deportee camps

THE POLITICAL AVENUE™ NEWSROBOT - 54 min 56 sec ago
Mexicans fear deportee and refugee camps could be popping up along their northern border under the Trump administration’s plan to start deporting to Mexico all Latin Americans and others who entered the U.S. illegally through this country.

Mexicans weigh the daunting prospect of deportee camps

THE WASHINGTON POST - 54 min 56 sec ago
Mexicans fear deportee and refugee camps could be popping up along their northern border under the Trump administration’s plan to start deporting to Mexico all Latin Americans and others who entered the U.S. illegally through this country.

AP: Sentencing of Israeli soldier in shooting deepens fissures

THE POLITICAL AVENUE™ NEWSROBOT - 56 min 57 sec ago
JERUSALEM (AP) — An Israeli soldier was sentenced Tuesday to 18 months in prison for killing a badly wounded Palestinian assailant as he lay on the ground, in a landmark decision that deepened fissures in Israeli society and drew Palestinian criticism for being too lenient. 2017-02-21T11:12:00-05:00 2017-02-21T16:12:33-05:00

Sentencing of Israeli soldier in shooting deepens fissures

AP - 56 min 57 sec ago
JERUSALEM (AP) — An Israeli soldier was sentenced Tuesday to 18 months in prison for killing a badly wounded Palestinian assailant as he lay on the ground, in a landmark decision that deepened fissures in Israeli society and drew Palestinian criticism for being too lenient. 2017-02-21T11:12:00-05:00 2017-02-21T16:12:33-05:00

State Deals Blow to Federal Reserve, House Passes Bill To Treat Silver and Gold as Money

the-free-thought-projectAs central economic planners at the Federal Reserve continue their vision of “prosperity” through crushing debt and dollar devaluation, some states are fighting back. The Arizona House took a major step toward sound money by passing a bill to eliminate penalties in the form of taxes on gold and silver specie. The move would be […]

The post State Deals Blow to Federal Reserve, House Passes Bill To Treat Silver and Gold as Money appeared first on Russia News Now.

The Russian Enemies of Trump-Putin Détente. Stephen F. Cohen, @NYU @Princeton EastWestAccord.com

02-21-2017 (Photo: Michael Flynn, Vladimir Putin, Jill Stein, 2015) http://JohnBatchelorShow.com/contact http://JohnBatchelorShow.com/schedules http://johnbatchelorshow.com/blog Twitter: @batchelorshow The Russian Enemies of Trump-Putin Détente. Stephen F. Cohen, @nyu @princeton EastWestAccord.com “…Where Russians saw hope with Trump’s election, they are now apparently yielding to disillusionment and despair. The question arises: If not toward better relations with Russia, where are we […]

The post The Russian Enemies of Trump-Putin Détente. Stephen F. Cohen, @NYU @Princeton EastWestAccord.com appeared first on Russia News Now.

'No sex with saints'

BBC ENTERTAINMENT - 58 min 7 sec ago
Calls in Russia for Matilda, the true story of a future tsar and a ballerina, to be banned over blasphemy.

BBC: 'No sex with saints'

Calls in Russia for Matilda, the true story of a future tsar and a ballerina, to be banned over blasphemy.

'No sex with saints'

BBC - 58 min 7 sec ago
Calls in Russia for Matilda, the true story of a future tsar and a ballerina, to be banned over blasphemy.

The War Hawks Rolled Donald Trump

Moon-of-AlabamaFebruary 22, 2017 The War Hawks Rolled Donald Trump President Trump’s first National Security Advisor Mike Flynn got kicked out of office for talking with Russian officials. Such talks were completely inline with Trump’s declared policies of détente with Russia. (I agree that Flynn should have never gotten the NSA job. But the reasons for […]

The post The War Hawks Rolled Donald Trump appeared first on Russia News Now.

‘Medicare for All’ only way for Trump to keep healthcare promises

IntrepidReportCut the bureaucratic mess. Reduce costs. Expand coverage. Make it great. President Donald Trump put forth a good number of lofty promises on healthcare on the 2016 campaign trail. A new analysis released Tuesday reveals there’s only one way to achieve them: Enact a single-payer, Medicare-for-All system. In their paper, published in the Annals of […]

The post ‘Medicare for All’ only way for Trump to keep healthcare promises appeared first on Russia News Now.

America’s dangerous descent into symbiotic politics

IntrepidReportUS media gave us Trump . . . but it seems unlikely that same media will take him away. It’s beginning to look as too formidable a task, unless there is a quick transformation of the mutualism that exists between the Republican congressional majority and the Emperor in the White House wearing no clothes while […]

The post America’s dangerous descent into symbiotic politics appeared first on Russia News Now.

Trump’s world of intrigue

IntrepidReportWith Donald Trump, nothing is as it seems. The Michael Flynn episode exemplifies the elusive, unpredictable and deadly nature of the high stakes conflict that continues to unfold. What is obvious and beyond question is that President Trump is at war with the Deep State in all of its forms, including significant factions of the […]

The post Trump’s world of intrigue appeared first on Russia News Now.

Mexicans weigh the daunting prospect of deportee camps

AP - 1 hour 56 sec ago
MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexicans fear deportee and refugee camps could be popping up along their northern border under the Trump administration's plan to start deporting to Mexico all Latin Americans and others who entered the U.S. illegally through this country. 2017-02-21T19:04:00-05:00 2017-02-22T00:04:55-05:00

Japanese man suspected of stabbing 19 patients to death at care home believed he was being targeted by gangsters

SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST - 1 hour 4 min ago
The 27-year-old suspect in a deadly stabbing rampage last July at a facility for the mentally disabled told police he sped up his plans for the attack after hearing he was being pursued by a gangster, investigative sources said on Wednesday. Satoshi Uematsu reportedly told police an acquaintance with underworld connections informed him on July 25 that he was being targeted by a gangster. The following day, he broke into the Tsukui Yamayuri En facility in Sagamihara, Kanagawa Prefecture, where...
Categories: INTEL 3

Amnesty: Toxic fear mongering pushing back human rights

AL JAZEERA - 1 hour 7 min ago
'Grave violations of human rights' in 159 countries from Myanmar to France opens door to dark times, group says.

TASS [Russian State News]: Rosneft ready to sell part of gas stations in some regions

Rosneft, after purchasing Bashneft, is ready to sell part of gas stations in the regions where their share exceeds 50%

Rosneft ready to sell part of gas stations in some regions

TASS [Russian State News] - 1 hour 7 min ago
Rosneft, after purchasing Bashneft, is ready to sell part of gas stations in the regions where their share exceeds 50%

REUTERS: China calls landmark Taiwan protests part of Chinese liberation struggle

THE POLITICAL AVENUE™ NEWSROBOT - 1 hour 11 min ago
BEIJING (Reuters) - China on Wednesday described landmark Taiwan protests against Nationalist troops in 1947 as part of China's liberation struggle that Taiwan independence forces were trying to hijack, ahead of commemorations next week for the 70th anniversary.

China calls landmark Taiwan protests part of Chinese liberation struggle

REUTERS - 1 hour 11 min ago
BEIJING (Reuters) - China on Wednesday described landmark Taiwan protests against Nationalist troops in 1947 as part of China's liberation struggle that Taiwan independence forces were trying to hijack, ahead of commemorations next week for the 70th anniversary.

THE WASHINGTON POST: Island kingdom of Tonga mourns the death of its queen mother

THE POLITICAL AVENUE™ NEWSROBOT - 1 hour 16 min ago
The South Pacific island kingdom of Tonga is mourning the death of its queen mother, who dedicated her time to helping the elderly and those with disabilities.

Island kingdom of Tonga mourns the death of its queen mother

THE WASHINGTON POST - 1 hour 16 min ago
The South Pacific island kingdom of Tonga is mourning the death of its queen mother, who dedicated her time to helping the elderly and those with disabilities.

Will rules mean I have to pay my accountant more?

FINANCIAL TIMES TECHNOLOGY - 1 hour 17 min ago
As a landlord I am worried about new quarterly reporting requirement
Categories: TECHNICAL NEWS

Q AND A: Chris Hemsworth, Australia Spokesman, Is Mad About Melbourne

NEW YORK TIMES - 1 hour 17 min ago
The actor who plays Thor is promoting his native Australia for the country’s tourism group. He has a list of what you should see.

2 famed scientists enlisted by CAS

CHINA DAILY - 1 hour 22 min ago

Nobel laureate C.N. Yang and Turing Award winner Yao Qizhi have become Chinese citizens and officially joined the Chinese Academy of Sciences as academicians — the highest academic title in China, the academy's faculty office said on Tuesday. 

They are the first overseas scientists to relinquish their US citizenship to join the official faculty of China's highest scientific research organization. Yang, 94, will join the mathematical physics department, while Yao, 70, will enter the information technology and science department.

"They are both world renowned scholars," the office said in a statement. "Their entry into the academy's faculty will increase the influence of China's scientific circles worldwide."  

Yang and Tsung-dao Lee received the 1957 Nobel Prize in physics for their work on parity nonconservation of weak interaction, becoming the first people of Chinese origin to win a Nobel Prize. 

Yao became in 2000 the first person of Chinese origin to receive the Turing Award, the most prestigious award in computer science. He won for his fundamental contributions to the theory of computation such as cryptography and communication complexity. 

In late 2016, both scientists had relinquished their foreign nationality and submitted their request to join the academy. The faculty office said it had to adopt new procedures to accept the two scientists, who were both foreign academicians at the time. 

In order to become a foreign academician, one has to be an accomplished scientist who contributed greatly to China's science and technology. After being recommended by more than five Chinese members, the foreign scientist enters a biennial election and must win a two-thirds majority of academicians' votes to join their ranks, according to the academy's charter.  

A foreign academician, though lacking voting rights, can advise on Chinese scientific developments and the workings of the faculty office, as well as receive academic publications and invitations to seminars held by the office. Foreign academicians can join the ranks of Chinese members once they receive Chinese citizenship. 

A Chinese member can make suggestions on major Chinese scientific projects and vote on prospective new members of the academy. 

There are now 754 Chinese and 78 foreign scientists in the academy. In recent years, the faculty office has worked to build a "big academician family", connecting renowned scholars from around the world to give advice and contribute to China's scientific development. 

"As China's science, economy and society develop, the influence of the faculties will increase domestically and abroad," the office said.

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Categories: INTEL 3

Boost set for economic, social goals

CHINA DAILY - 1 hour 23 min ago

Reforms to deepen and livelihoods to improve, Political Bureau decides

China will "stabilize and improve its macroeconomic policies" and deepen reforms to achieve its economic and social development goals this year, according to a statement released after a key meeting on Tuesday.

The nation will continue to adopt proactive fiscal policy and prudent monetary policy, according to the meeting of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, which was presided over by Xi Jinping, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee.

Coordination of industrial, regional, investment, consumption, price, land and environmental protection policies will be strengthened, and reforms in key fields will be deepened to achieve better results, the meeting decided. Innovation will be promoted to help improve the efficiency of the economy and release domestic growth potential, participants agreed.

The meeting highlighted the significance of 2017, since the 19th CPC National Congress will convene later in the year.

Acknowledging that China has scored a strong start for the 13th Five Year Plan (2016-20) period, the meeting called for further efforts to balance multiple economic tasks this year, including stabilizing growth, advancing reforms, pushing restructuring, improving people's livelihoods and preventing risks.

The meeting was held ahead of the two sessions — the annual meetings of the country's top legislature and the top political advisory body that will be held in early March.

Supply-side structural reform will be further pushed and people's livelihoods should be improved, the meeting statement said.

The meeting also decided that China will push the supply-side reform of agriculture to ensure healthy growth and increased income for farmers.

Tuesday's meeting also decided that the government should improve governance to "better serve the people".

According to the statement, 247 Party organizations have been inspected by teams sent from the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, the Party's top anti-graft agency, since the inspection effort was launched in 2013.

The inspections, with a focus on sticking to the Party's leadership, have functioned as a "political microscope" and a "political searchlight", under which supervision of following the Party's rules has been enhanced, said the statement.

On Tuesday, the CCDI disclosed information on its recent 11th round of inspections of Party and government agencies, institutes, associations and news media, such as the Supreme People's Court, the Party School of the Central Committee of the CPC and China Central Television.

"The meeting highlighted the most important tasks for China this year," said Liang Haiming, chief economist of the China Silk Road iValley Research Institute. "It highlights reform, innovation and people's livelihoods."

It is a must for China to further carry out reforms because the international situation has changed rapidly, Liang said.

Contact the writers at anbaijie@chinadaily.com.cn

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Categories: INTEL 3

THE WASHINGTON POST: Police: Suspects in N. Korean death coated hands with poison

THE POLITICAL AVENUE™ NEWSROBOT - 1 hour 24 min ago
The women suspected of fatally poisoning a scion of North Korea’s ruling family were trained to coat their hands with toxic chemicals then wipe them on his face, police said Wednesday, announcing they were now seeking a top North Korean diplomat in connection with the attack.

THE WASHINGTON POST: Philippines to deport convicted US pedophile

THE POLITICAL AVENUE™ NEWSROBOT - 1 hour 24 min ago
The Philippines’ Bureau of Immigration said Wednesday it had arrested a convicted American pedophile wanted by U.S. authorities for a string of crimes.

Police: Suspects in N. Korean death coated hands with poison

THE WASHINGTON POST - 1 hour 24 min ago
The women suspected of fatally poisoning a scion of North Korea’s ruling family were trained to coat their hands with toxic chemicals then wipe them on his face, police said Wednesday, announcing they were now seeking a top North Korean diplomat in connection with the attack.

Philippines to deport convicted US pedophile

THE WASHINGTON POST - 1 hour 24 min ago
The Philippines’ Bureau of Immigration said Wednesday it had arrested a convicted American pedophile wanted by U.S. authorities for a string of crimes.

Police: Suspects in N. Korean death coated hands with poison

AP - 1 hour 26 min ago
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — The women suspected of fatally poisoning a scion of North Korea's ruling family were trained to coat their hands with toxic chemicals then wipe them on his face, police said Wednesday, announcing they were now seeking a North Korean diplomat in connection with the attack. 2017-02-21T18:39:00-05:00 2017-02-21T23:39:06-05:00

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praises Australia for ‘puncturing UN hypocrisy’

SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST - 1 hour 31 min ago
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday praised Australia for being “courageously willing to puncture UN hypocrisy” on anti-Israel resolutions. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull marked the first visit to Australia by a serving Israeli leader by writing an opinion piece in Wednesday’s The Australian newspaper that backed Netanyahu’s criticism in 2015 that the UN General Assembly had adopted 20 resolutions critical of Israel in the preceding year and only one...
Categories: INTEL 3

Police: Suspects in N. Korean death coated hands with poison

AP - 1 hour 36 min ago
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — The women suspected of fatally poisoning a scion of North Korea's ruling family were trained to coat their hands with toxic chemicals then wipe them on his face, police said Wednesday, announcing they were now seeking a top North Korean diplomat in connection with the attack. 2017-02-21T18:34:00-05:00 2017-02-21T23:34:32-05:00

Hong Kong's Donald Tsang jailed for corruption

AL JAZEERA - 1 hour 38 min ago
Tsang sentenced to 20 months in prison for corruption, becoming Hong Kong's highest ranking official to be jailed.

Fighting ISIS with mercenaries is bad idea, says private military expert

RINF Sending mercenary forces into Syria to fight Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) would invite failure, according to an expert on modern private militias. Ulrich Petersohn, who lectures in international politics at the University of Liverpool, has published a number of books and studies on privatized military forces and intervention. In an essay for the […]

The post Fighting ISIS with mercenaries is bad idea, says private military expert appeared first on Russia News Now.

Ex-CIA Operative Wants To Warn President Trump Of What Is Coming On May 1, 2017 – Steps He Should Take For Survival

A-Sheep-No-MoreThis article by Pamela Williams was originally published at investmentwatchblog.com. Ex-CIA Operative and writer Robert Steele has written a memo to President Trump warning him of what he needs to prepare for. He says a “violent American spring” is being planned for May 1, 2017. He says there will be 10s of millions of paid agitators, who […]

The post Ex-CIA Operative Wants To Warn President Trump Of What Is Coming On May 1, 2017 – Steps He Should Take For Survival appeared first on Russia News Now.

REUTERS: Mexico homicides jump by a third amid cartel infighting

THE POLITICAL AVENUE™ NEWSROBOT - 1 hour 44 min ago
MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Homicides in Mexico jumped by more than a third in January, new figures showed, fueled by violence in states hit by an internal split in the Sinaloa drug cartel.

Mexico homicides jump by a third amid cartel infighting

REUTERS - 1 hour 44 min ago
MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Homicides in Mexico jumped by more than a third in January, new figures showed, fueled by violence in states hit by an internal split in the Sinaloa drug cartel.

National Security Adviser General McMaster: The War Complex’ Resident Parrot

It was recently announced that US President Donald Trump selected US Army Lieutenant General Herbert Raymond McMaster as his National Security Adviser. The New York Times in their article, “Trump Chooses H.R. McMaster as National Security Adviser,” would report: President Trump appointed Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster as his new national security adviser on Monday, picking […]

The post National Security Adviser General McMaster: The War Complex’ Resident Parrot appeared first on Russia News Now.

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BEST NEWS OF THE YEAR 2016 AWARD GOES TO BBC FOR REPORTING :

LONDON (Reuters) - A 14-year old girl who died of cancer has been cryogenically frozen in the hope she could be brought back to life in the future after winning a landmark court case shortly before her death, the BBC reported on Friday, 2016-11-18.
The youngster knew she only had weeks to live when she wrote a heartbreaking letter to a judge asking to be frozen until a cure could be found.

REASON FOR CHOICE OF BEST NEWS 2016: Even though we think that life continues somewhere else, like in heaven or paradise, she wanted to have it, and get brought back to life in the future, AND FOUGHT FOR IT ! AND WON ! She was only 14 years old, and wanted to live. In the future, we might end up with a 14-year old girl, living in 2 worlds at the same time. That was our main reasons. Hope you support our choice of NR 1 best news 2016. Especially considering the fact that she was 14 years old, and had to die, in this sometimes quite fucked up world, but her will and desire to live, manifested in a HOPE, that she MIGHT be brought back to life in the future somewhere. That is why this was the best news in 2016. She was only 14 years old and none could help her with her cancer. So I insist that IF we can make a body live again that has been frozen, she will be the first one "ONLINE" again.
/End of OPERATORS intellectual judgement comment. /
More details here !