Thanks for numbering every box and putting the LNP last!
Lock The Gate [29/7/15]:
Western Downs landholders say the State Government’s response to two high-concentration methane blasts near Wandoan was “pathetic”.
Shay Dougall from the Hopeland Community Sustainability Group demanded to see the company's risk assessment for the public and livestock and asked why the government was answering for the company about the blasts.
Origin Energy has twice released very large volumes of gas from 90 km of pipeline in order to replace a faulty valve. The first occasion was May 25 and the most recent, shown here in video footage, https://www.dropbox.com/s/agllqdtqqifi377/gas%20let%20off%20and%20Neville.mp4?dl=0 happened on July 13.
On both occasions the noise of the venting could be heard as far away as 25 kilometres. Some residents were not warned about the venting and they have serious health concerns about the exposure to the high concentrations of methane, potential ignition sources and complete lack of community consultation and consideration.
Following complaints about the possible health impacts and noise from the blasts, the government said they were “planned, corrective maintenance activity.”
Mrs Dougall said this statement did not gel with the description of basic industry safety principles.
She said Origin and the government were treating the public with “contempt”, further straining already tense relationships.
“If it was a safe industry practice, then I want to see the risk assessment that was done before the government allowed both of the incredible blasts,” Mrs Dougall said.
“This government claims to be transparent and accountable but all we can see out here is people getting sick from coal seam gas, farmers being rail-roaded by mining companies and the government doing a lot of talking for the industry but not much talking for the people.”
Lock the Gate’s Drew Hutton said: "It is not safe for people or the environment to vent 90 kms of compressed methane into the atmosphere and it should not be allowed to happen again.”
He also questioned the royalties lost to the state by venting such as this around the state.
“I would like to know from the Queensland Government how much methane is being vented or flared from coal seam gas infrastructure and how much of this are the companies paying royalties on,” he said.
“I would also like to see a full cost/benefit analysis of this industry, given the small amount of royalties currently coming to the government.”
Oil slick on beaches near Ingham, Lucinda, Palm Island sparks call to report injured animals
The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority has urged the public to report any sightings of wildlife injured by an oil slick off the north Queensland coast.
Crews are continuing to work on cleaning up oil that has been washing up on beaches near Ingham, Lucinda and Palm Island.
Vets have treated a brown booby seabird after it was spotted on Forrest Beach yesterday.
The authority's Mark Read said so far the bird had been the only one affected by the oil slick.
"It's been assessed, it's had its vet check and it'll have its wash tomorrow, and we'll keep that under observation for usually seven days until we release it into the wild," he said.
He urged the public to report any other wildlife that may have been affected.
"We're really thankful we've got people on the ground, we've got members of the public phoning us up with interest and once again they're our eyes and ears," he said.
"So we ask people that if they see wildlife they think is in difficulty to use the 1300 animal number to report those sightings."
Dead turtle found on Taylors Beach [Yahoo – 29/7/15]
Greenpeace US activists have suspended themselves from St. Johns Bridge in Portland, Oregon to block a Shell Oil vessel from leaving port for Alaskan waters.
The climbers have enough supplies to last several days, and are prepared to stay in Shell's way as long as possible. ... [Media Release - 29/7/15]
Queensland caravan explosion could be murder-suicide
Queensland Police are considering the possibility a deadly caravan blast in Mount Isa was a murder-suicide.
Four-year-old River Hinder and his big sister Nyobi died along with their father Charlie in the explosion at Mount Isa yesterday.
There are reports Charlie had recently separated with his wife.
Police believe at least one of the caravan's gas cylinders fuelled the explosion.
Scientific officers spent the night at the tragic scene investigating the cause of the explosion.
Emergency services are still concerned about the structural integrity of the homes surrounding the explosion site and residents who have been evacuated still cannot return home.
Homicide detectives are flying into Mount Isa from Brisbane to prepare to investigate the deaths.
Police speak to mother who was in home at time of deadly caravan blast [ABC - 29/7/15]
Murder charge, Eli Waters
QPS Media [29/7/15]:
Detectives investigating the death of a 75-year-old woman at Eli Waters earlier this month have today charged a 60-year-old man with murder.
The woman was located with severe head injuries at a residence on Currawong Court around 2.30pm on July 4.
She was transported to Hervey Bay Hospital where she was pronounced deceased on July 6.
A 60-year-old Eli Waters man has been charged with one count of murder and is expected to appear in the Hervey Bay Magistrates Court tomorrow.
Anyone with information which could assist with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au 24hrs a day.
Supply dangerous drug charge – Varsity Lakes
QPS Media [29/7/15]:
A man has been charged following the death of a 20-year-old man earlier this year, from administering a dangerous drug.
It will be alleged on March 27, a personal trainer provided the man with a dangerous drug in the form of a patch, to aid an injury he had sustained.
It will further be alleged, after applying the patch, the man was unable to be revived the following morning.
He was transported to the Gold Coast University Hospital where he died on April 21.
A 28-year-old Bilambil Heights man has been charged with supplying a dangerous drug (fentanyl), possession of dangerous drugs (fentanyl and steroids) and the possession of a controlled drug (fentanyl).
He is due to face Southport Magistrates Court on August 11, 2015.
Anyone with information which could assist with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au 24hrs a day.
Trial begins for man accused of murdering housemate with sledgehammer in Emerald [ABC – 29/7/15]
A 74-year-old deaf woman was allegedly bashed during a home invasion at a retirement village in Edgewater today. ... [West Australian - 29/7/15]
Police investigate shooting in McKellar [Canberra Times - 29/7/15]
Ex-champion AFL footballer Ben Cousins was having delusions that his family was being held by police when he drove recklessly, failed to stop and refused a breath test during a "low speed chase" in March.
The former West Coast Eagles player, 37, pleaded guilty to the charges at Fremantle Magistrates Court on Wednesday.
He was fined $2679 in total, was disqualified from driving for 10 months and remains on an existing community treatment order. ... [WA Today - 29/7/15]
Armed robbery, Darra [QPS Media – 29/7/15]
Burglary, Kingaroy [QPS Media - 29/7/15]
Armed robbery, Inala [QPS Media - 29/7/15]
Missing 63yo British national found safe and well on Queensland's Cape York [ABC – 29/7/15]
Police officer stood down, South Eastern Region
QPS Media [29/7/15]:
A 48-year-old male Senior Sergeant from South Eastern Region was stood down from official duty with the Queensland Police Service today.
The officer is the subject of a disciplinary investigation concerning allegations of misconduct.
In keeping with our commitment to high standards of behaviour, transparency and accountability, we have undertaken to inform the public when an officer faces serious allegations of misconduct.
This does not mean that the allegations against the officer have been substantiated.
Information about the Queensland Police Service Integrity framework can be found at: https://www.police.qld.gov.au/corporatedocs/reportsPublications/other/Documents/QPS-ESC-Integrity-Framework.pdf
Information about compliments and complaints can be found at: https://www.police.qld.gov.au/online/ComplimentsandComplaints.htm
Anyone with information which could assist with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au 24hrs a day.
Dangerous operation of a vehicle charges following police pursuit, Woolmar [QPS Media – 29/7/15]
A woman is dead and a male truck driver is seriously hurt after a car and cement truck collided head-on in country Victoria. ... [Nine MSN - 29/7/15]
Detectives from the Gold Coast Major and Organised Crime Squad have charged a Parkwood man over his alleged involvement in the selling of advertising in fictitious publications.
The arrest came following the execution of a search warrant at a Southport business.
It will be alleged the search resulted in the location of an operational call centre employing up to twelve people to cold call victims and ‘sell’ them advertising in a variety of national magazines and periodicals. ... [QPS Media - 29/7/15]
UK: Court rejects government appeal over fast-track detention of asylum seekers [Guardian - 29/7/15]
Gillard says political gender gap widening - fails to mention all the refugee women she incarcerated [Nine MSN - 29/7/15]
... Ms Yeshiwork applied for asylum in Australia two months after she arrived in 2011, but her application was rejected. The officer assessing her claim wrote: "I am ... of the view that the applicant either does not think it is important to provide correct information to the department at all times or that she has sought to embellish her claims."
The Refugee Review Tribunal similarly rejected her appeal in February 2013.
In April 2013, Ms Yeshiwork wrote a desperate letter to then immigration minister Brendan O'Connor, asking him to intervene in her case. He declined.
Finally, three weeks ago, she wrote to Immigration Minister, Peter Dutton, begging him to reconsider her asylum rejection.
She said that if Ethiopian authorities could snatch Mr Andargachew from another country, she would "face immediate arrest and persecution and death" if forced to return to Ethiopia.
"There is no safety for me ... If the Ethiopians can capture and imprison a dissident who is a British citizen and in another country, I know that they will arrest me as soon as I return to Ethiopia. I have no defence against them. No one can protect me." ... [The Age - 29/7/15]
How Do You Measure Persecution? [Open Society Foundations - 22/7/15]:
... If empathy and a moral obligation aren’t enough, at the very least, we should worry about asylum for selfish reasons.
If the legal system does not even make an effort to thoroughly examine the cases of people potentially fearing for their lives, how can we be sure it will treat us fairly when we need it?
Only when we can ensure that our legal system works for the most vulnerable can we trust that it will work for all of us.
"From now on many more
soldiers, who are burdened by their conscience, will talk because they know what
they did. They murdered and forcibly disappeared people."
Symbol of Chilean dictatorship abuse, Carmen Quintana, sees justice coming [Yahoo – 29/7/15]
PNG police confirm Manus Island attempted rape allegations, demand return of accused Australians [ABC - 29/7/15]:
Police in Papua New Guinea have threatened to arrest all managers at the Manus Island detention centre if three Australian men accused of attempted rape are not flown back to PNG.
The three men and a Papua New Guinean woman were reportedly found naked, intoxicated and sniffing an unidentified substance in mid-July.
Provincial police commander Alex N'Drasal said the woman involved was interviewed this morning and alleged the men tried to rape her.
The woman reportedly told police she was given pills and sexually assaulted.
Police say they are investigating reports of "attempted rape, indecent exposure and sexual assault".
Commander N'Drasal has demanded Australia's Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) arrange the return of the three expatriates by close of business Thursday.
"If they are not here, we will proceed on to arrest all those managers who facilitated the deportation of those three Australians, because their actions prevented the course of justice," he told the ABC.
The woman involved is understood to also work at the Australian-funded detention centre and PNG police said she could identify the men sent home.
The Immigration Department said in a statement that it had known about the incident for two weeks and said the men in question were employees of the centre's security provider Wilson Security.
"The Department of Immigration and Border Protection categorically rejects assertions made over recent days that it was involved in a 'cover up' of an alleged sexual assault on Manus Island," the statement said.
"To clarify the matter, the Department was made aware immediately in mid-July of an incident involving three service provider staff and a locally engaged staff member. There were no allegations of a criminal nature made as a result of this incident. However, the alleged incident was inconsistent with expected behaviours and contrary to the service provider's code of conduct.
"The three service provider staff were stood down and returned to Australia as part of standard procedures with the full knowledge and concurrence of the PNG police."
But PNG police insist they did not agree to send the men home and remain furious at the actions of Australian officials.
"They [DIBP] are concealing a lot of information from us and that's a total lie," Commander N'Drasal said.
PNG's prime minister Peter O'Neill has called for an investigation into the matter.
"After I receive the report from our officials, I will take this matter up with the Australian Government and we will come to the bottom of this," Mr O'Neill told local television station EMTV.
"I agree with the Commissioner, he is in charge of this, he must investigate who sent this particular person out of the country without him facing the law."
Yesterday, former prime minister and one of the founding leaders of independent PNG, Sir Michael Somare, said PNG should not have agreed to host the Australian-run immigration detention centre on Manus Island.
Suspended Nauru opposition MP hopeful of help from Pacific Islands Forum after a meeting with Secretary General [RNZI - 29/7/15]:
The suspended Nauru opposition MP Roland Kun says he's hopeful of help from the Pacific Islands Forum after a meeting with its Secretary General yesterday.
Mr Kun says Dame Meg Taylor arranged a meeting with all five suspended MPs at "the eleventh hour" during her visit to the island.
The MPs are either facing criminal charges or have had their passports cancelled in the wake of anti government protests on Nauru.
Mr Kun says the MPs were able to give Dame Meg valuable information like how their suspensions have differed from such action by parliament in the past.
"Our understanding is she's going to take this information back to the Forum Secretariat. They're going to put together a report that will then inform the Forum on its best way forward. They're going to make an assessment as to whether intervention is warranted and if so how best the Forum may be able to assist Nauru through our current crisis."
... An Olympics for Jews only is a problematic enterprise that contains an element of arrogance. If we cling to the past, we are granting ourselves too steep a discount, one that is no longer necessary. ... Why I'm not supporting the Maccabi Games, Noga Stiassny [Haaretz - 29/7/15]
Maccabi Games open in Berlin in ‘triumph over evil’ [Times Of Israel - 28/7/15]:
A record 2,300 athletes from 36 countries have come to the German capital which for the first time hosts the 10-day contest in disciplines from football, swimming and fencing to chess, bridge and bowling.
Visitors from Europe, Israel, the Americas and Australia hailed the event — held 70 years after the Holocaust — as a symbol of reconciliation and an affirmation of Jewish life in Germany.
The games are being staged in the Olympic Park near the stadium where Adolf Hitler opened the 1936 Summer Games that barred Jewish athletes and aimed to showcase “Aryan” athleticism.
Man arrested over Sydney family law court bombings, murders in 1980s
A man has been arrested over the family law court bombings and murders in Sydney in the 1980s, New South Wales police say.
The attacks, between 1980 and 1985, targeted judges of the Family Court of Australia, their families, a lawyer and members of the community, police said, killing four people.
They are among Sydney's biggest unsolved crimes.
Family Court judge David Opas was shot outside his home, Judge Richard Gee was injured by a bomb at his home, and another bomb killed the wife of Judge Ray Watson.
Another victim, Stephen Blanchard, was shot and Jehovah's Witness minister Graham Wykes was killed by a bomb at a church hall.
Three years ago, detectives attached to the State Crime Command's homicide squad restarted an investigation into the crimes.
On Wednesday morning, Strike Force Reddan detectives, helped by officers from the Tactical Operations Unit, arrested a 68-year-old man at Campbelltown.
The ABC understands the man is Leonard John Warwick, a person of interest during the investigations.
He was taken to Narellan Police Station where police said he was assisting with their inquiries.
Deputy Commissioner Nick Kaldas said 32 charges would be laid against Mr Warwick, including four murder charges.
"The evidence that we've gathered includes significant new evidence, historic evidence enhanced using technology not available 30 years ago, witness evidence that was historic and new witness evidence," he said.
"The tenacity of the detectives involved, the professionalism and commitment that's been shown by the team, led by detective inspector Pam Young, has been outstanding."
Detective Superintendent Mick Willing said it was the culmination of three years of hard work.
"Three years is a long time, but as the deputy said these cases go back over 30 years, and the message is that we won't give up and we will keep working on these matters," he said.
He said family members of those killed were notified this morning of the arrest and were "surprised and relieved".
Sue Chapman, the daughter of Judge Watson — whose wife Pearl was killed in a bomb attack on their home — said today's arrest was a relief.
"I'm just very, very grateful that they have finally arrested someone," she said.
"I'm still in a state of shock and I'm totally churned up inside, but in a way I'm very, very relieved and I think it's about time the person concerned was brought to justice.
"I'm just terribly, terribly sorry that my father, who died about four years ago, is not around to see that justice will finally be done for the loss of his wife and my beautiful step-mother."
Author and journalist Debi Marshall was part of an investigation by the Seven Network's Sunday Night program into the attacks.
She said today's arrest would bring some closure and justice to the families and victims.
"If those families were in front of me right now I would give them a huge hug," she said.
The Chief Justice of the Family Court, Diana Bryant, said in a statement she was grateful police had "at last made an arrest after so long without any resolution of these crimes".
She declined to make any further comment "until the judicial process has been concluded".
Asked in 1984 whether a certain development in family law at the time was behind some of the attacks, former High Court justice Michael Kirby — at the time chairman of the Australian Law Reform Commission — told the ABC it was a highly emotive area of the law.
"I think it is significant that in that area of the law's operation, where people feel most powerful and passionately, that the two judges concerned have been involved," he said.
"I think that it simply is the reflection of the fact that this is one area of the law where people simply find it difficult to accept human justice, to accept the decision of a particular human being sitting in judgment over them."
In 1984, police offered a $500,000 reward for information about the attacks.
Pacific Partners may discuss currency rules along with trade deal
Jakarta Globe [29/7/15]:
Pacific Rim trading partners might convene a top-level forum to discuss how to stop countries manipulating currencies for competitive advantage, Australian Trade Minister Andrew Robb said on Tuesday.
Speaking on the sidelines of a meeting in Hawaii where ministers are negotiating a 12-nation trade deal, Robb said member countries of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TTP) were considering a US proposal for a separate forum.
The United States had not suggested including currency rules in the TTP deal, he said.
US officials have warned such rules could undermine the independence of monetary policy and other TPP partners, including Japan, are also opposed to the idea.
“It’s a forum of finance ministers who will agree to consider on a regular basis aspects of currency manipulation,” he said in an interview.
“They are not looking to put it in as part of the TPP treaty, they are looking … to make use of the relationship of the 12 countries to consider currency issues on an ongoing basis, so we hopefully don’t see the re-emergence of currency manipulation.”
The move would stop short of calls by US automakers such as Ford Motor and some US lawmakers to include sanctions against currency manipulation in the trade deal.
Weaker exchange rates make a country’s exports cheaper and give exporters a competitive advantage.
New Zealand Trade Minister Tim Groser said countries were working to find a “sweet spot” that answers political concerns and does not mess up monetary policy in member countries.
“We certainly know that this is a major issue of concern to the US Congress so given the importance of the United States we will always listen carefully to any US proposals,” he told Reuters. “I think we will find a way through this.”
Japanese Economy Minister Akira Amari said currency concerns should not be addressed in the TPP.
“I think foreign exchange is an issue which the International Monetary Fund and currency authorities should discuss,” he said, when asked for Japan’s view on the proposal.
US officials were not immediately available to comment.
Washington lobbying by companies and groups involved in global trade boomed in the past nine months, records show, as Congress debated a landmark trade pact proposed by President Barack Obama, the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).
Lobbying expenditures by members of a pro-TPP coalition increased to $135 million in the second quarter of 2015, up from $126 million in the first quarter and $118 million in the fourth quarter of 2014, according to Senate Office of Public Records reports reviewed by Reuters. ... [Reuters - 23/7/15]
India: Three-story building collapses killing seven, Mumbai [Naharnet – 29/7/15]
Energy giant Chevron will eliminate about 1,500 job positions in an effort to cut costs, the company said in a statement Tuesday.
The cuts, which will take place across 24 business groups in its corporate center, will result in cost reductions of about $1 billion. ... [CNBC - 28/7/15]
Something is rotten in the eurozone kingdom, Yanis Varoufakis [Financial Times - 28/7/15]:
... Handing over the reins of the finance ministry to my friend, Euclid Tsakalotos, on July 6, I presented a full account of the ministry’s projects, priorities and achievements during my five months in office. The new payments system outlined here was part of that presentation. No member of the press took any notice.
But when a subsequent telephone discussion with a large number of international investors, organised by my friend Norman Lamont, and David Marsh of the London-based Official Monetary and Financial Institutions Forum, was leaked — despite the Chatham House rule we agreed with listeners, under which speakers are not identified — the press had a field day. Committed to unlimited openness and full transparency, I granted OMFIF permission to release the tapes.
While I understand press excitement about elements of that exchange, such as having to consider unorthodox means of gaining access to my own ministry’s systems, only one matter is of significance from a public interest perspective. There is a hideous restriction of national sovereignty imposed by the “troika” of lenders on Greek ministers, who are denied access to departments of their ministries pivotal in implementing innovative policies. ...
Professor James K. Galbraith’s statement on the Ministry of Finance Working Group convened by former finance minister Yanis Varoufakis [27/7/15]
Dominican Republic: UN experts warn against deportations, racial profiling of people of Haitian descent [Media Release – 28/7/15]
United States "allies" continue bombing Iraq and Syria
US Department of Defense [28/7/15]:
U.S. and coalition military forces have continued to attack Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorists in Syria and Iraq, Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve officials reported today.
Officials reported details of the latest strikes, noting that assessments of results are based on initial reports.
Airstrikes in Syria
Fighter, fighter-attack, bomber and remotely piloted aircraft conducted nine airstrikes in Syria.
-- Near Hasakah, seven airstrikes struck five ISIL tactical units and destroyed four ISIL fighting positions, an ISIL staging position, an ISIL bunker, an ISIL motorcycle and an ISIL structure.
-- Near Aleppo, two airstrikes struck two ISIL tactical units and destroyed an ISIL vehicle, seven ISIL fighting positions and an ISIL bunker.
Airstrikes in Iraq
Attack, fighter-attack, bomber and remotely piloted aircraft conducted 23 airstrikes in Iraq, approved by the Iraqi Ministry of Defense:
-- Near Qaim, one airstrike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL checkpoint.
-- Near Beiji, three airstrikes struck two ISIL tactical units and terrain denying ISIL a tactical advantage and destroyed two ISIL buildings.
-- Near Habbaniyah, one airstrike struck an ISIL large tactical unit and destroyed six ISIL structures.
-- Near Haditha, one airstrike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed two ISIL structures.
-- Near Makhmur, three airstrikes struck two ISIL tactical units and destroyed 19 ISIL fighting positions, 10 ISIL tunnels and three ISIL vehicles.
-- Near Mosul, two airstrikes struck two ISIL tactical units and destroyed two ISIL fighting positions and an ISIL vehicle.
-- Near Ramadi, six airstrikes struck two ISIL tactical units and destroyed an ISIL excavator, two ISIL fighting positions, an ISIL resupply truck, an ISIL mortar position, an ISIL anti-aircraft artillery weapon, an ISIL vehicle and an ISIL structure.
-- Near Sinjar, five airstrikes struck three ISIL tactical units and two ISIL staging areas and destroyed an ISIL vehicle, an ISIL heavy machine gun, five ISIL fighting positions and an ISIL light machine gun.
-- Near Tal Afar, one airstrike struck an ISIL staging area.
Iraqi PM says Turkish airstrikes violation of Iraq’s sovereignty [Todays Zaman - 28/7/15]
Violent attacks reported against civilians fleeing ISIL-controlled areas of Iraq – UN human rights office [Media Release - 28/7/15]
At least seven Peshmerga have been killed by roadside explosives in the abandoned city of Golala in recent months as authorities struggle to deactivate improvised explosives planted by ISIS militants. ... [RUDAW - 28/7/15]
A political solution is more urgent than ever to end the “futile, hopeless” cycle of brutality and violence in Syria, the top United Nations humanitarian official said today, urging the Security Council to consider its options through “the eyes of the beleaguered, now long-suffering” civilians. ... [UN Media Release - 28/7/15]
Saudi Arabia-led coalition airstrikes on Mokha is a war crime: HRW [Yemen News Agency - 28/7/15]
Durable ceasefire needed as humanitarian catastrophe leaves millions suffering in Yemen – UN relief chief [Media Release - 28/7/15]:
... With 80 per cent of the population of about 26 million people in need of some kind of humanitarian assistance and more than 1,895 civilians killed by fighting since March, the impact of the conflict on civilians is indeed catastrophic, he acknowledged.
“Airstrikes hit a residential complex in Mokha on 24 July, killing at least 73 civilians. Bodies continue to be pulled out of the rubble, and the final death toll is not known.” ...
Gunmen kill Egypt policeman guarding Niger embassy [Naharnet - 28/7/15]
A bomb blast killed two
Bahrain policemen and wounded six others Tuesday in an area often shaken by
clashes between security forces and Shiite Muslim protesters, the interior
ministry said. ... [Yahoo
Suicide bomber, clashes kill 12 Libyan soldiers in Benghazi [Reuters - 28/7/15]
Libyan court sentences Gaddafi son Saif, eight other ex-officials to death [Reuters – 28/7/15]
Three militia fighters and 11 Boko Haram militants have been killed in a clash in a village in northeastern Nigeria, a local resident and a member of the militia fighting alongside the army said Tuesday.
News of the clash came as Nigeria's military spokesman told AFP a new regional force tasked with fighting the jihadists should go into action very soon, though he did not specify when for tactical reasons. ... [Ahram - 28/7/15]
Taliban seize control of several villages in Kunduz: officials [TOLO News - 28/7/15]
438 days imprisoned in Ethiopia: Journalist recounts facing arrest, mock execution and terror charges [Democracy Now - 28/7/15]:
... MARTIN SCHIBBYE: We were called up in the loudspeaker, and, yeah, the Swedish ambassador was there to meet us and to take us out of prison. And there was just one hurdle left, and that was that the Ethiopian state television wanted us to make an interview, the interview they didn’t succeed in doing in the desert. And, basically, we had—we could have said no to that and go back and take our 11 years, and we wouldn’t survive that, or we would say to the Ethiopian journalist that we apologize and accepted guilt. And then we were—they checked the interview with their information department, and then we were released and sent back to Sweden.
But, I mean, I’m—I’m free from the prison, but I’m not—I will never be free from the memories. I’m not free from the sounds. It doesn’t go a day that I don’t think of all the colleagues who are there. I mean, especially the sounds, the screams, when people—kind of the first screams, you really remember, because those were always the worst. And then, eventually, the abused prisoner was always silent. But the first scream before the first stroke hit, those screams you never forget. And those will haunt me for the rest of my life and be a part of me.
But it also—I think that also this experience makes me a better journalist. I mean, usually, you go and you do a story, and then you go to a hotel and you take your beer and that’s it. Now, we went and we did a story, which was supposed to be about oil, but it turned out to be about ink, about press freedom, and we slept on the concrete floor with—in a prison with 8,000 inmates, and we didn’t go home the next day. We stayed, and we stayed, and we stayed. And we stayed for 438 days. And, of course, we were always somehow tourists in that environment. We had our embassy. We had our Swedish passports. But still, I went from just being someone who’s standing and looking at something, and also I was, I mean, participating in something. And those experiences and really seeing the conditions of those prisoners and talking to them and sharing life stories with them, that makes me a better journalist. ...
Cecil the lion's killer revealed as American dentist [Telegraph – 28/7/15]
... Israel, Saudi Arabia and sections of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) are not keen on peace in Kenya and Somalia and the demilitarization of the Indian Ocean. These forces are aligned to one wing of the Kenyan leadership who have invested in the military and security.
To strengthen these forces, neo- conservatives and right wing Christians have fanned out over rural Kenya spewing hatred of humans who are same gender loving beings.
These right wing Christian forces seek to associate followers of the faith of Islam with terrorism. ... Obama in Kenya: Will he cater to the barons or the people? Horace G. Campbell [Counterpunch - 24/7/15]
Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete says Australian companies are welcome to develop his nation's vast gas reserves.
Mr Kikwete on Tuesday met with Prime Minister Tony Abbott in Canberra as part of a four-day visit, just months before he ends his second and final term as leader of the east African nation. ... [Nine MSN - 28/7/15]
Jewish settlers clashed with Israeli police on Tuesday as authorities took control of homes being built in the occupied West Bank, after a court ruled that the illegal structures must be demolished.
The Israeli High Court last month ordered the two structures in the Beit El settlement north of Ramallah to be razed before July 30. ... [Maan - 28/7/15]
White House rejects petition to pardon Snowden [Al Jazeera - 29/7/15]
The United States is granting parole to Jonathan Pollard after three decades of imprisonment on charges of spying for Israel.
Pollard, a former US Naval intelligence analyst who spied for the Tel Aviv regime, will be freed from life sentence, his lawyers announced on Tuesday.
The decision, made unanimously by the three members of the Parole Commission, was later confirmed by the US Justice Department.
The spy, who had tried to gain asylum at the Israeli embassy in Washington, is slated to be set free on November 21. ... [Press TV - 28/7/15]
Police arresting a 25-year-old man who refused to leave a Brooklyn Target punched the man as they pinned him to the ground, a video posted online shows.
As four officers pin the squirming Alando Brissett down on the floor of the Flatbush store, a male and female officer punched him in the back several times, the tense 14-minute video shows.
“Stop f---ing hitting him,” one woman yelled as a crowd gathers during the Saturday night incident, which happened around 7:20 p.m., police said. ... [New York Daily News - 28/7/15]
As Jordan's Za'atari camp – the largest refugee camp in the Middle East – prepared to mark its third anniversary, the UN refugee agency revealed on Tuesday (July 28) an increase in the number of refugees seeking shelter in camps across the rest of the country.
UNHCR said that living conditions for more than half a million refugees living outside of camps in the country had become increasingly tough, swelling the population of other camps. The latest survey showed 86 per cent of urban refugees live below the Jordanian poverty line of 68 JOD (approx. US$95) per capita per month. ... [Media Release - 28/7/15]
@MSF_Sea [28/7/15]: The #MSFSea team has rescued 1000s of people escaping the brutal regime in #Eritrea and they are beautiful singers! [VIDEO]
More than 1,800 migrants have been picked up in the Mediterranean and 13 bodies recovered as the exodus from north Africa by boat endures, Italy's coast guard said Tuesday.
Vessels taking part in EU border security operation Triton rescued the migrants from their rickety boats in five separate operations on Monday, following the arrival in Sicily on Saturday of 1,300 migrants, mostly from sub-Saharan Africa and Syria.
The 13 bodies were recovered by an Irish military ship after it came to the aid of one of the boats, which was carrying 522 people.
The cause of death was not yet known, the coast guard said, but migrants attempting the perilous crossing to Europe often suffer from dehydration and sun exposure.
Italy and Greece have been hard pressed to handle a massive increase in migrants fleeing conflicts and poverty in Africa and the Middle East.
Some 2,000 migrants tried to enter the Channel Tunnel terminal in Calais on Monday night in an attempt to reach the UK, operator Eurotunnel has said. ... [BBC - 28/7/15]
Germany: Pro-refugee politician escapes bomb attack [Anadolu Agency – 27/7/15]
The dangerous rise of ethnic and religious chauvinism in South East Asia, Former Japanese Defense Minister Yuriko Koike [Project Syndicate - 28/7/15]:
The Buddha, Siddhartha Gautama, composed no sutta to religious hatred or racial animus. And yet Buddhist chauvinism now threatens the democratic process in both Myanmar (Burma) and Sri Lanka.
Some of the same Buddhist monks who braved Myanmar’s military junta in the “Saffron Revolution” of 2007 today incite violence against members of the country’s Muslim Rohingya minority.
In Sri Lanka, the ethnic chauvinism of the Buddhist Sinhalese, stirred by a former president determined to reclaim power, mocks the supposed goal of reconciliation with the vanquished Hindu Tamils.
In Myanmar, Buddhist racism is at the root of a virtual civil war in the state of Rakhine and is fueling a humanitarian crisis in which hundreds of thousands of Muslim Rohingya have fled their country by land and sea.
Most ominous for Myanmar’s future, given that all genocides are linked to official action, this racial and religious antagonism is in no way spontaneous.
The Rohingya have already been stripped of their Myanmar citizenship, and a raft of new and proposed legislation that would further marginalize Islam seems certain to provoke further violence. ...
Australia: Establishment racism wins again ---> ... Fairfax Media said the reason for Goodes contemplating retirement is not directly due to the booing, but rather the effect the booing is having on his team-mates. ... [ABC - 29/7/15]
Human rights groups silent.
... In the eight months since the change in policy, the number of asylum seekers and refugees registered with Jakarta have increased by 30 per cent to 13,188 people, according to United Nations data. ... [Australian Financial Review - 27/7/15]
Where is the honesty? ---> @UNrefugees - Australia for UNHCR [29/7/15]: Refugee hosting around the world - image via @ASRC1 [Asylum Seeker Resource Centre] #forcedtoflee <--- Note this 2013 map doesn't include refugees in South East Asia.
Figures for 2015 would put Australia at ZERO.
Australia hasn't accepted refugees since October 2014 and has shown no intention of lifting the ban. What is the UNHCR's Australian office findraising for, and why are refugee rights groups disseminating misinformation?
While "advocates" are perplexingly distracted by divisive Go Back To Where You Come From propaganda, who will speak for the refugees Australia has exiled to Manus Island?
… Just show me something I can be
Play a song that I can sing
Make me feel as I am free …
'Speak For Me', John Mayer 
Australian Democrats SA Division Media Release [29/7/15]:
Tensions on Manus Island have reached a new high and the Australian government must act immediately before more violence erupts says the Australian Democrats National Spokesperson for Asylum Seekers, Jeanie Walker.
"With widespread violence being reported against asylum seekers and refugees, both inside and outside the Manus Island detention centre, the Australian government has a duty of care to protect the world's most vulnerable," says Ms Walker.
"This is impossible in PNG and offshore processing facilities."
"Now the violence has spread to the detention centre guards with tragic consequences."
"In the early hours of Saturday morning I was advised by a reliable source of both a homicide and a serious assault, both involving detention centre guards in the PNG community."
"First a guard was murdered and his body found in a waterway in Ward 1 around 11 PM."
"Then an assault occurred near the refugee transit centre gates where a woman and a man were attacked, resulting in the man having his hand cut off with a machete only three hours later."
"This is no place to either house or resettle genuine refugees and Australia can no longer pretend that this is an option."
"Not only is it unsafe for refugees, but the press on on the local community, caused by friction between locals and guards is now at boiling point."
"With allegations of a gang rape perpetrated on a local PNG woman by Australian Wilson security guards hired to watch over asylum seekers in the Manus Island detention centre, there is bound to be more unrest in an already volatile country."
"The alleged suspects in the sexual assault are believed to have fled back to Australia."
"There has been a steady stream of stories of beatings and mistreatment of asylum seekers within the Manus Island detention centre as more people become aware of what Australia is actually doing in these offhsore detention centres."
"These incidents are also becoming more extreme and seemingly more prevalent."
"With detainees now being used as witnesses in court cases which challenge the legality of detaining people with no crime in a foreign country, the asylum seekers are facing a new round of threats and violent retaliation."
"I have been provided with evidence of a complaint made to Transfield who run the Manus Island facility, by an asylum seeker who found a handwritten death threat in his bed inside the heavily guarded centre."
Ms Walker who was provided with a photograph of the death threat with the man's full name and boat ID, a number of weeks ago, immediately wrote to the Australian Minister for Immigration Peter Dutton with her concerns.
She writes on the 2nd July 2015:
"There is an asylum seeker on Manus Island who has received a written death threat in his room in Manus Island detention centre if he testifies in the PNG court case.
I don't need to tell you how disturbing it is that someone has access to his room.
I have been instructed by the lawyers for the detainees to bring this immediately to the Minister's attention.
There is no witness protection in PNG so this is a request that the detainees need to be brought to Australia for safety.
The note says that it doesn't matter if they are in the detention centre or outside, they will kill him and that PNG 'doesn't want asylum seekers'.
Please treat this request with great urgency and in a way that will not put these men at further risk.
He has been told by security at the detention centre that they can do nothing to protect him."
THE MINISTER DID NOT RESPOND.
Ms Walker has now received copies of another complaint made to Transfield Services only last week where it is alleged that a guard entered a room and turned off his radio in front of witnesses then challenged an asylum seekers to a "duel" and displayed a knife.
The witnesses called for help and another guard came and removed the guard from the room.
"What on earth is going on inside these Australian run detention centres?" says Ms Walker.
"No sane government can possibly allow this contine."
"It is time for the government to bring these men to an Australian facility for processing as the Abbott government has completely lost control of what is happening on Manus."
"Guards murdered, detainees allegedly beaten and threatened by staff, severe mental health issues from two years of incarceration for daring to ask Australia for help. Where will it end?"
"If the government 'stopped the boats' as it keeps claiming, then when why are we continuing to pump billions of wasted taxpayer dollars into less than 1,000 despairing men on an island in crisis?"
The Manus Island detention centre seems to be a place where crimes can be committed against vulnerable individuals and you get away with it.
Manus Island rape allegations may indicate possible Govt cover-up [Australian Lawyers Alliance Media Release - 28/7/15]:
Three detention centre guards who were allowed to return to Australia after allegedly drugging and raping a local woman on Manus Island may constitute a cover up of possible criminal activity by the Australian government, the Australian Lawyers Alliance (ALA) said today.
Authorities from Papua New Guinea (PNG) said the incident occurred in mid-July when the men and a local woman were allegedly found partially unclothed, inebriated and sniffing an unidentified substance.
However, according to media reports today, Australia's Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIPB) allowed the detention centre guards to return to Australia before an investigation could be carried out, angering PNG police.
ALA spokesperson Greg Barns said the DIPB’s ability to transport the guards back to Australia contradicted previous government claims that the offshore detention facilities on Nauru and Manus Island were under the jurisdiction of local authorities.
“If these reports are substantiated, there can be no further doubt that Australia is in full control of the offshore detention centres on Manus Island and Nauru,” Mr Barns said.
“It is further confirmation that, despite the contrary statements of Prime Minister Abbott and Immigration Minister Dutton, these centres are under the direct control of the Australian government.”
“One would expect that the Australian government had knowledge of the circumstances in which the three guards were flown out of Papua New Guinea”, Mr Barns said.
“If Australian government officials participated in removing these men from a potential criminal investigation then they may be criminally liable in the same that a person who helps an individual cover up evidence of a crime would be liable”.
Mr Barns said the DIPB’s actions may have left it criminally liable for obstructing a criminal investigation by local authorities.
“The question needs to be asked whether there may be some criminal liability on the part of the Department of Immigration and Border Protection if it knowingly removed people from these centres to inhibit an investigation,” Mr Barns said.
“The Manus Island detention centre seems to be a place where crimes can be committed against vulnerable individuals and you get away with it.
“If this happened in Sydney or Melbourne it would be front page news,” Mr Barns said.
“The Department of Immigration and Border Protection needs to reveal its role in this affair and must cooperate fully with the police investigation into this matter.”
PNG police want death camp worker's Australian rape suspects returned [RNZI - 29/7/15]:
The police commander on Papua New Guinea's Manus Island says he is relying on immigration authorities to help return three expats accused of a sexual assault two weeks ago.
Alex N'Drasal says a local woman working at Australia's asylum seeker detention centre was raped, and the suspects, three expatriate guards, were flown out of PNG before their inquiry was finished.
Mr N'Drasal says he has asked the immigration departments of both PNG and Australia to help return the suspects to Manus Island.
"They were employees of Transfield Services, and these guys were supposed to be brought to the police for further investigations. They then decided to leave Papua New Guinea and deported to Australia."
Australia's immigration department has told media there that it hasn't been notified of the alleged rape.
Meanwhile PNG's prime minister, Peter O'Neill, told EMTV news he wants an internal investigation into the matter.
EMTV News was told the 3 officers were stood down from duty and returned to Australia as part of Transfield's standard procedures. [28/7/15]
... Police revealed two Australian employees of security contractors G4S were wanted for questioning over the violence, which came after asylum seekers say security guards and others broke into the centre.
''They are expatriates … but they returned to Australia soon after the incident. We are recommending that once we have completed our investigation of these two people, we will ask that they be extradited back to PNG to face possible criminal charges,'' a police source said. ... Two Australian men wanted for questioning over Reza Berati's death [Sydney Morning Herald - 29/3/14]
PNG Works Minister gives Chinese contractor a show cause notice [The National - 28/7/15]
No reply. Bishop's busy trying to start a war with Russia and McCully's genuflecting to Washington [Canberra Times - 29/7/15]:
... More than 80 Australian and New Zealand legal academics wrote to Ms Bishop's and New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully's offices a fortnight ago.
They released the letter on Tuesday night.
"We urge the respective governments to assist Mr Kun in being reunited with his family and to express sincere concern for the infringement of international human rights law and the deterioration of the rule of law in Nauru," they said.
The group includes academics from the Australian National University, Melbourne University, UNSW and the University of Queensland.
The human rights and constitutional law academics said Mr Kun was suspended from Parliament after he criticised the government's removal of judicial officers.
Torture, abuse, no medical ethics and nazi uniforms: Executives at Australia's Department of Keeping Refugees Out reach tipping point [Canberra Times - 23/7/15]:
... Four deputy secretaries, nine first assistant secretaries and 17 assistant secretaries have now confirmed their departures or are expected soon to do so.
An unprecedented 10 of them have opted to follow their old boss Martin Bowles to the Health Department.
Insiders have complained about the management style of the new regime and there has been unhappiness from veteran public servants forced to wear the military-style Australian Border Force uniform to work each day after a lifetime of civilian service.
Many of the replacement executives drafted in have come from Defence, where new Immigration secretary Michael Pezzullo used to work.
The "militarisation" of the portfolio, which began as a nation-building outfit 70 years ago, has proven too much for many executives, who have voted with their feet.
Long-time public service observers say it is the biggest exodus of senior personnel from an operation since the Hawke government's consolidation of Canberra departments in 1987. ...
Pacific Islands Forum urged to discuss rights abuse in West Papua
The Australia West Papua Association is calling on Pacific Islands Forum leaders to address what it describes as a deteriorating human rights situation in Indonesia's Papuan provinces.
Its call comes in the lead up to the 46th Pacific Islands Forum Leaders Summit to be held in Papua New Guinea in September.
The group says Indonesia's security forces used excessive and often lethal force on peaceful protesters in West Papua on numerous occasions in 2014 resulting in at least four deaths.
The association is urging the leaders at the summit to discuss the human rights situation in West Papua and seek Indonesia's approval for a Forum fact finding mission to West Papua.
It is also calling for the release of all West Papuan political prisoners and the granting of observer status to genuine representatives of the Melanesian people of West Papua.
Consultations extended on US military plans for CNMI
Public consultations on US military training plans for the Northern Marianas have been extended by another fortnight.
The consultations on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement will now end on 17th of August.
The Marianas Variety reports the extension was granted following a request by the CNMI because of the recent telecommunications outage.
It meant people could not access the web to provide their comments.
The islands of Tinian and Pagan are being eyed as sites for the U.S. military to conduct live fire exercises and amphibious landing training.
Under the proposal Pagan would also be the target for so-called inert bombs.
Serious assault, Warner
QPS Media [29/7/15]:
Police are investigating after a teenage girl was assaulted at Warner overnight.
Initial investigations indicate the incident occurred at a Curlew Court residence around 2.45am after the home was broken into.
The victim, a teenage girl, was taken to the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital with what are believed to be non-life threatening injuries.
It is believed that the victim and the offender may be known to each other.
A crime scene has been established with investigations continuing. Anyone with information which could assist with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au 24hrs a day.
Update – hit and run traffic crash, Warana
QPS Media [28/7/15]:
Police continue to appeal for information after a hit and run traffic crash at Warana on Sunday.
Investigations suggest that between 3 and 3.30am a 37-year-old Marcoola man was walking northbound along Kawana Way near the Premier Circuit turn off when he was struck by a vehicle.
A passing motorist found the man lying on the roadway. He was transported to hospital for treatment of non-life threatening head injuries.
Police believe that a Toyota Camry, 2007-2011 model may have been involved in the incident and are appealing for anyone who may have seen the vehicle, witnessed the incident, or have any information that could assist with investigations, to contact Crime Stoppers.
Kidnapping charges, Birkdale
QPS Media [28/7/15]:
Bayside detectives have charged two men following the alleged kidnapping and assault of a man at Birkdale on Monday.
It will be alleged around 4:00am two men forcibly removed a 20-year-old man from a Barron Road residence, placing him into the rear of a vehicle.
It will be further alleged the men drove the 20-year-old man to Judy Holt Park where he assaulted further before being placed in an industrial bin.
The two men then allegedly left the scene in the vehicle. The 20-year-old sought assistance at a nearby house where he contacted police.
A 26-year-old man from Deception Bay and a 21-year-old man from Holland Park West have both been charged with one count each of; kidnapping, entering a dwelling with intent, receiving tainted property, deprivation of liberty, assault occasioning bodily harm whilst armed/in company and unlawful use of a motor vehicle.
Both men are due to appear in Brisbane Magistrates Court tomorrow, July 29.
Sexual assault charges, Mount Isa
QPS Media [28/7/15]:
Mount Isa police have charged an 18-year-old man in relation to the sexual assault of a woman in Mount Isa yesterday morning.
It will be alleged the man has followed a 33-year-old woman along Grace Street before he sexually assaulted her in a vacant block on Railway Avenue.
It will be further alleged a passer-by has heard the woman screaming and has stopped to render assistance. The man then fled the scene.
The woman received treatment for minor injuries.
An 18-year-old Townview man was later arrested and charged with one count of sexual assault, assault with intent to commit rape and assaults occasioning bodily harm.
He is due to appear in the Mount Isa Magistrates Court today.
Search and rescue, Cape York
QPS Media [28/7/15]:
An aerial and land search is underway for a man in his 60’s who failed to return to his camp in Cape York, 100km south of Bamaga on the Telegraph Track yesterday.
At 2pm, the man set out to walk 1.5km between Canal Creek and Elliott Falls.
Nearby campers contacted police this morning when the man did not return.
It is believed he is not carrying any provisions, and is wearing shorts, a blue T-shirt and no shoes.
Police, a helicopter and other agencies are part of the search.
There is no further information available at this time in relation to the man and this matter.
QPS Media [29/7/15]:
Police are investigating after two men entered a service station at Goodna and demanded money last night.
Around 9pm two men entered the Railway Terrace business and demanded money from the male attendant which was refused.
One man was claimed to be armed but no money was handed over.
The men then took some food and drink before leaving the store.
No weapon was sighted.
The male attendant was not physically harmed.
Investigations are continuing.
Armed robbery, Springfield Lakes
QPS Media [28/7/15]:
Police are investigating the overnight armed robbery of a Springfield convenience store.
At around 10:15pm a man and a woman entered the Springfield Lakes Boulevard store. The man produced a firearm and threatened a 23-year-old male attendant, demanding money.
The attendant complied with the man’s demands, handing over a quantity of cash and cigarettes. The man and woman then fled the scene on foot.
The male attendant was not physically injured during the incident.
The man is described as approximately 175cms tall, of medium build with tanned skin.
The woman is described as approximately 165cms tall, of medium build with tanned skin and multi-coloured hair.
Boy arrested after school break ins, Coomera
QPS Media [28/7/15]:
Detectives from Taskforce Latro have charged a 16-year-old boy in relation to a number of offences committed at a Coomera College in June and July this year.
During the night of June 19, it will be alleged the boy unlawfully trespassed at the college, gaining entry to the swimming pool area, where more than $8,500 in damage was caused and property stolen.
On the evening of July 18 another offence occurred at the college and it will be alleged the boy entered the grounds and broke into the canteen, where further property was stolen.
Surveillance footage containing images of the suspect wearing a distinctive clothing was obtained and posted on social media which was later recognised by staff at a local supermarket.
Detectives were able to obtain further surveillance footage from the supermarket, which was used to successfully identify the person.
A 16-year-old boy has been charged with one count of enter premises and commit indictable offence, two counts of wilful damage, and two counts of stealing.
He will be dealt with under the provisions of the Youth Justice Act.
Burglary and serious assault police charges, Arana Hills
QPS Media [28/7/15]:
Police have charged a man following an incident in Arana Hills yesterday afternoon.
At around 5.00pm, police were called to a club on Dawson Parade in Arana Hills in relation to a vehicle, which had allegedly been stolen from a Ferny Hills address earlier that afternoon.
Upon arrival police conducted foot patrols and identified a man who allegedly ran from police before threatening officers with a knife. In response an officer drew their service firearm, instructing the man to drop the knife.
The man then allegedly jumped over a fence before being detained by police.
No person was injured during the incident.
A 27-year-old Morayfield man has been charged with one count each of; burglary, unlawful use of a motor vehicle, serious assault police whilst armed and possession of a knife in a public place.
He is due to appear in the Brisbane Magistrates Court today, July 28.
Dangerous driving charges, Bellmere and Bracalba
QPS Media [28/7/15]:
A man has been charged with dangerous driving following an incident at Bellmere and Bracalba yesterday afternoon.
It will be alleged police attempted to intercept a vehicle at Bellmere around 3:15pm in relation to a traffic matter when the vehicle refused to stop.
The vehicle was then located Almond Way and again attempted to intercept it when it allegedly conducted a U-turn, driving towards the police car before mounting a footpath and driving away. Officers did not follow.
The vehicle was then spotted by police on the D’Aguilar Highway.
At about the same time police received a report that the vehicle had been spotted a short time earlier allegedly crossing double lines near the intersection of Gamgee and D’Aguilar highway travelling at high speed.
Officers followed the vehicle before it was observed to allegedly travel on the wrong side of the road and then enter the Beerburrum State Forest. Police continued to follow before the vehicle became stuck in a washout.
A 21-year-old D’Aguilar man has been charged with two counts each of dangerous operation of a vehicle and fail to stop motor vehicle and one count each of unlicenced driving and other traffic matters. He has been released on bail to appear at the Caboolture Magistrates Court on August 27.
Police, media scrutinised over Victorian siege
Nine MSN [28/7/15]:
A fugitive who fatally shot himself during a 43-hour siege had felt backed into a corner by Victoria Police and media reports, an inquest has heard.
Antonio Loguancio died as police fired tear gas into a bungalow in Glenroy, bringing the tense stand-off to a tragic end.
The 40-year-old convicted rapist had been on the run after assaulting his partner and breaching parole when police tracked him to the Justin Avenue property on March 1, 2013.
Loguancio told police he was upset by media reports about his arrest warrant and previous convictions for rape, a Coroners Court inquest was told on Tuesday.
"Loguancio told another officer that he was angry and that media reports had pushed him into a corner," Detective Senior Sergeant Jason Goddard said.
The fugitive also told friends and the woman he assaulted that he did not want to go back to jail.
Police were also aware that Loguancio had at least one gun in his possession.
"If you come here I have enough firepower to make sure that I am okay," Det Snr Sgt Goddard told the inquest Loguancio had said.
"... He was crying (on the phone) while considering his options."
Before the siege, Loguancio became increasingly agitated and refused police requests to surrender.
Inspector Tony Glenane said police decided to release details about the manhunt to the media because Loguancio was considered dangerous.
"The fact that he had committed three offences whilst on bail was a reason for us to go to the media," Insp Glenane told the inquest.
In her opening on Monday, counsel assisting the inquest Fiona Ellis said Loguancio spoke to a television reporter over the phone for 54 minutes during the siege.
The inquest continues.
Abuse victim told to bottle her tears
Nine MSN [28/7/15]:
It took six years and three trials before a senior official in the Jehovah's Witness Church was jailed for sexually abusing his daughter.
The only support the Jehovah's Witnesses gave the woman was to tell her to" put her tears in a skin bottle".
It was a quote from an ancient psalm and Jehovah's Witnesses believe God will cap the tears with his love and take away a person's pain.
The woman, known as BCG, had a nervous breakdown and continues to suffer from the past events, a royal commission in Sydney heard on Tuesday when she gave evidence about how her father, a respected member of the church congregation in Mareeba in Queensland, abused her and her three sisters.
BCG spent her childhood and young adulthood in fear of her father and of being shunned by the church which taught her if she disobeyed her father God would abandon her.
The witness, now 43, has four children and is finishing a law degree.
She said on Tuesday her father was a Ministerial Servant in Mareeba where he preached at the congregation's Kingdom Hall.
BCG was often forced to attend meetings still bleeding from her father's beatings with a belt.
Her father was eventually jailed in 2004 after one retrial and a mistrial.
The police supported her during the case, BCG said, but when she wrote to the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society she just got a letter quoting the tears in a bottle line.
BCG said her father removed her bedroom door when she tried to lock him out.
"I used to pray to Jehovah to put angles around my bed to stop my father coming to me, but he didn't help me and my father didn't stop," she said.
In 1989 he left the family and BCG's mother told her he had abused her older sister and she found out he was abusing her younger sisters aged four and six.
Her mother said: "I did not think he would do it again because he had become a Jehovah's Witness".
BCG reported her own experience and that of her sisters to the elders.
At several meetings with elders she had to confront her father who became angry, threatened her and said she seduced him.
When she asked him if he was going to claim her young sisters also seduced him he said he would kill her and elders had to restrain him, she said.
The congregation excommunicated her father and he moved to Cairns but began stalking BCG. A few years later Elder Ron de Rooy told BCG her father was "doing the right things" and would be re-instated.
When BCG told Mr de Rooy she would go to police, he quoted scripture about not taking brothers to court.
The hearing before Justice McClellan continues on Wednesday.
Eight men have been charged with committing hundreds of offences against a 13-year-old girl.
Perth police say 503 charges have been laid by the Child Abuse Squad against the men.
They said no further details would be available until a media conference at 11:30am (AWST).
The ABC understands most of the charges are of a sexual nature.
It is understood that one of the men charged is the girl's father. [ABC - 29/7/15]
Man who molested stepdaughter shows no remorse [Canberra Times – 27/7/15]
The head of one of Iraq's fiercest Shi'ite militias called the U.S.-led coalition's campaign against Islamic State ineffective and accused Washington of lacking the will to uproot radical Sunni jihadis controlling large swathes of Iraq and Syria. ... [Reuters - 28/7/15]
29 July 2015