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Peruvian Armed Forces to Deploy Military Engineers to the Central African Republic

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first_imgTo maintain this prolonged effort, Peru will supply its first contingent of service members to MINUSCA for a year, with a second group of Peruvian Soldiers relieving them in November 2016. Currently, there is no end date regarding Peru’s commitment to the mission. “All combatants who participate in a peacekeeping operation must realize that they are going into a conflict zone and understand what they will have to confront,” Col. Chapoñan explained. “We have taken all necessary precautions to secure the perimeter. We won’t be alone in the zones with the most action; there will be battalions and Troop leaders from other countries.” The Peruvian Armed Forces have much to contribute to international peacekeeping operations. “The airfields in the Central African Republic are rather unkempt due to the religious conflict. A lot of work is required – work that will help the United Nations deploy other types of aircraft. The populace will also benefit from the arrival of humanitarian aid or commercial flights, which to date are not occurring at the airfields due to the serious defects.” Peruvian Troops participate in several UN peacekeeping missions By Dialogo September 15, 2015 We are all free slavery has ended “Our country has always been sensitive to the sustained efforts that the UN has deployed in the course of its history to contribute to reaching and fostering the noble objectives of peace and peaceful coexistence, to which all peoples of the world aspire since they are indispensable to their social and economic development,” the Peruvian Armed Forces Joint Chiefs of Staff website reports. As of July 31, more than 200 Peruvian service members were participating in five of them: the UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH); the UN Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO); the African Union/UN Hybrid operation in Darfur (UNAMID); the UN Mission in the Republic of South Sudan (UNMISS); and in UN Operations in Côte d’Ivoire (UNOCI). Such efforts have taken Peruvian service members all over the world in recent years, assisting peacekeeping operations in the Western Sahara, the Congo, Cyprus, Lebanon, Iran-Iraq, the Golan Heights, Eritrea-Ethiopia, Burundi, Sudan, Namibia, Côte d’Ivoire, Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Haiti. Composed of 160 Military engineers and 45 service members responsible for their protection and security, the Airfield Construction and Maintenance Company will work on 35 airfields in the Central African Republic. Peru’s Armed Forces received approval to deploy the contingent in July after a meeting with a delegation that included officials with the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) and the UN Department of Field Support (DFS). “This is not something that can be done in a short amount of time. We estimate the work will last approximately 10 years.” Preparing for the UN mission The Peruvian Armed Forces will deploy 205 service members in November to construct and repair important airfields in the Central African Republic as part of the United Nations (UN) Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission (MINUSCA). Since December 2013, the Central African Republic has been battered by waves of violence, a consequence of conflict between Christians in Antibalaka and Muslims in Séléka. The bloodshed has killed at least 5,000 people, and in 2014 displaced more than 900,000 residents. As of early 2015, more than 500,000 people remained displaced, with half of the country’s population of 4.6 million people in need of humanitarian assistance. “The plan is for this first contingent, commanded by Military Engineering Colonel Antonio Córdoba, to carry out its first mission in the city of Bouar (prefecture of Nana-Mambéré), in the western part of the Central African Republic, beginning next November,” said Colonel Juan Chapoñan Vinces, head of the Office of International Affairs, Peruvian Armed Forces Joint Chiefs of Staff, said in an interview with Diálogo. MINUSCA’s mandate to protect civilians and support stability in the Central African Republic began in September 2014. To buttress the effort, the UN formed the UN Integrated Peacebuilding Office in the Central African Republic (BINUCA) and assumed the responsibilities of the African-led International Support Mission in the Central African Republic (MISCA). In total, the UN is deploying 9,110 Armed Forces Troops, 144 Military observers, and 1,552 police officers to the peace mission. They are being supported by 462 civilian personnel, 219 local civilian staff members, and 76 UN volunteers. To prepare for the assignment, the Peruvian contingent of engineers, technicians, captains, and Soldiers trained for five weeks in April and May in Peru’s Joint Peace Operations Training Center (CECOPAZ), in accordance with UN standards. The training focused on patrol techniques, physical fitness, threat response, building entry, humanitarian law, and countering ambushes – all essential skills for Troops who are deploying to a potentially violent and volatile region. Peru is a major contributor to such UN peacekeeping missions. These efforts continue a record of generous contributions by the South American country to overseas peacekeeping operations since 1958. Peru formalized its willingness to serve in such missions by signing a Memorandum of Understanding with the UN in November 2003. Supporting stability Along with these highly trained Soldiers and Military engineers, the Peruvian government will also provide equipment and material to repair the airfields, including front loaders, bulldozers, steamrollers, steam shovels, water tanker trucks, fuel, engines, and combat vehicles. “The Peruvian Armed Forces have experience in real combat, the terrorism problem we have faced for many years has obligated us to,” Col. Chapoñan said. “That experience is leveraged to send out this sort of contingent. They can help the United Nations peace missions. [Furthermore], the peace operations have increased the high level of professionalism in Peru’s defense sector, international cooperation, and mutual confidence.”last_img read more

What can candidates say? Judicial Ethics Advisory Committee says USSC decision means little for Florida

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first_img August 1, 2002 Jan Pudlow Associate Editor Regular News What can candidates say? Judicial Ethics Advisory Committee says USSC decision means little for Florida What can candidates say? Judicial Ethics Advisory Committee says USSC decision means little for Florida Associate EditorWhen Florida’s newest justice, Raoul Cantero III, was introduced by the governor at a news conference on the Capitol steps, a reporter asked whether he opposes the death penalty.“I have no views,” Justice Cantero replied.That many judges and judicial candidates — from county court to the state’s highest court — are reluctant to express views on controversial and political issues is playing it safe with the Code of Judicial Conduct designed to protect the impartiality of the judiciary.But there’s a new wave of debate rippling through Florida about whether the lips of judges or judicial candidates must be sealed on such hot issues after all. That debate was recharged June 27, when the United States Supreme Court, in a 5-4 ruling, found that Minnesota’s canon prohibiting judicial candidates from announcing their views on disputed legal and political issues violates the First Amendment ( Republican Party of Minnesota v. White ).What impact will that ruling have on Florida’s judicial elections?That depends on whom you ask.Ask the Judicial Ethics Advisory Committee, chaired by Dade County Judge Jeffrey D. Swartz, and the answer is a resounding: no impact in Florida.In an explanation of the ruling mailed to every judicial candidate and challenged incumbent judge in Florida, Swartz highlighted in bold print that White “has no impact on the statutory or code provisions which regulate judicial elections in Florida.”While the distinction is clear-cut in his mind, Swartz said there has been a lot of confusion out there in the real world of judicial campaigning.“We have been inundated as a committee since White with a number of requests for opinions that clearly indicate there are a number of judicial candidates — and incumbent judges, too — that we believe don’t understand the impact, or lack thereof, of White, ” Judge Swartz said. “That’s why we sent a copy of our opinion to everyone up for election. And it says in bold, ‘In Florida, nothing has changed.’ We have a couple who like to argue a different position. We tell them we’re just an advisory board. We’re not an enforcement board.”But others predict looser lips, pumped-up politics, and on the plus side, greater information for voters who often complain they don’t know enough about judicial candidates to cast meaningful ballots.“Though Florida’s Judicial Ethics Advisory Committee issued a statement saying the Minnesota decision means nothing here, hardly anybody else believes that,” wrote St. Petersburg Times columnist Martin Dyckman. “And, of course, the interest groups will be firing up their candidate questionnaires.”The Christian Coalition of Florida, for one, welcomes the opportunity to better size up judicial candidates, saying the top question they receive from their members is: “Where do judges stand on the issues?”American Bar President Robert E. Hirshon warned the ruling “will open a Pandora’s box. We will now have judicial candidates running for office by announcing their positions on particular issues, knowing that voters will evaluate their performance in office on how closely their rulings comport with those positions. It is not the type of justice system the American people want.”At least one Judicial Qualifications Commission case — regarding Escambia County Judge Patricia Kinsey’s challenge to paying a proposed $50,000 fine for alleged improper campaign speech against an incumbent judge — is pending before the Florida Supreme Court (case no. SC96629) and will pause for the filing of briefs to address the impact of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in White. But in explaining the Judicial Ethics Advisory Committee’s “no-impact” stance, Judge Swartz stresses the distinction that the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision is “very narrow and expressly limited to the ‘announce clause’” — which was removed from Florida’s Code of Judicial Conduct in 1994.Like Minnesota, Florida’s current judicial code does, however, include a “pledges or promises clause,” which separately prohibits judicial candidates from making pledges or promises of conduct in office other than the faithful and impartial performance of the duties of the office — and the U.S. Supreme Court specifically noted that prohibition was not challenged in White, and therefore the court expressed no view.What’s the difference, practically speaking, on the judicial campaign trail? In an interview, Judge Swartz acknowledged the difference is “very subtle.”“A promise or a pledge would be: ‘Every person who commits first-degree murder goes to the electric chair.’“Then you take a look at a judge in a nonpartisan setting who says, ‘I believe the death penalty is appropriate, and in appropriate cases should be applied to serve as a deterrent.’ Those are announcements of positions of political and controversial issues and come short of a pledge or promise,” Judge Swartz explained.Because Florida does not have the announcement clause, Judge Swartz said, judges are able to state positions in general, as long as it is not done in a partisan setting.“Don’t go to a gathering of the Republican Party and say you are against abortion, because you know that will get you votes,” Swartz said. “Don’t say at the Democratic Party event that you are against school vouchers. That would be deemed to seek partisan support.”But it would be okay, Swartz said, for a judicial candidate to address a group of senior citizens at a condo meeting and express opinions about Social Security issues or health care for the elderly.Special interest groups may be able to get judicial candidates to tell them their personal views on abortion, Swartz said, but that candidate “cannot say, ‘I will do everything I can to impede Roe v. Wade. ’”At Florida State University College of Law, visiting Assistant Professor Howard Wasserman, who specializes in First Amendment law, said the White case “certainly will inject more politics into judicial elections.”What Wasserman found most interesting was Justice Sandra Day O’Connor’s concurring opinion, in which she took the opportunity to blast the process of electing judges, sometimes rife with million-dollar-plus campaign contributions, in practice in 39 states, including Florida.“If the state has a problem with judicial impartiality, it is largely one the state has brought upon itself by continuing the practice of popularly electing judges,” O’Connor wrote.“An undercurrent of the opinion is that if you take this step and allow judges to be elected by the political process, you are stuck with a robust, wide-open, and uninhibited debate on public issues,” Wasserman said.“If you want to elect judges, fine. But we’ve got this thing called the First Amendment. It will give you headaches, but you are stuck with it. That’s the bottom line. And the gloves are going to come off.”Speaking as an individual judge, not as chair of the committee, Swartz said, “I can tell you that politicalization of the judiciary is something that has been happening. It just started a short time ago, and it is more pronounced.“I think that certain legal issues and political issues have divided us and polarized us to the extent that both sides of issues are demanding answers that border on the pledge or promise they are not allowed to get,” Swartz said.“Some parties, organizations, and groups of people would like to see us do away with a nonpartisan judiciary. These are the kinds of things that are a real attack on the independence of the third branch of government. It’s very disconcerting.”The nation’s highest court was divided on how far judicial candidates should go in expressing their views, with the goal of balancing free speech rights with maintaining an impartial and open-minded judiciary.“The notion that the special context of electioneering justifies an abridgment of the right to speak out on disputed issues sets our First Amendment jurisprudence on its head.. . . We have never allowed the government to prohibit candidates from communicating relevant information to voters during an election,” Justice Antonin Scalia write in the majority opinion.But in her dissent, Justice Ruth Ginsberg made a sharp distinction between candidates for the judiciary and for the other branches of government, because judges must be concerned with the due process rights of litigants.“When a judicial candidate promises to rule a certain way on an issue that may later reach the courts, the potential for due process violations is grave and manifest,” Ginsberg wrote. And she argued the “announce clause” and “pledge or promises clause” are not so conveniently separated.“The constitutionality of the pledges or promises clause is thus amply supported; the provision not only advances due process of law for litigants in Minnesota courts, it also reinforces the authority of the Minnesota judiciary by promoting public confidence in the state’s judges. The announce clause, however, is equally vital to achieving these compelling ends, for without it, the pledges or promises provision would be feeble, an arid form, a matter of no real importance,” Ginsberg wrote.In Florida, the “announce clause” went by the wayside, sparked by a 1990 ruling from U.S. District Judge William Stafford, of the Northern District of Florida, who sided with the American Civil Liberties Union in giving judicial candidates greater latitude in discussing disputed legal or political issues.“A person does not surrender his constitutional right to freedom of speech when he becomes a candidate for judicial office. A state cannot require so much,” Judge Stafford said at the time. “Indeed, when a state decides that its trial judges are to be popularly elected, as Florida has done, it must recognize the candidates’ right to make campaign speeches and the concomitant right of the public to be informed about judicial candidates.”In the current JQC case, Roy Kinsey, Jr., on behalf of his wife, Judge Patricia Kinsey, told the Florida Supreme Court in an order to show cause: “This may be an appropriate time for this court to issue the ‘narrowing construction’ called for by Judge Stafford in his order granting plaintiffs’ motion for summary judgment following the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals’ remand of American Civil Liberties Union v. The Florida Bar, 999 F.2d 1486 (11th Cir. 1993), and provide future candidates easily understood guidelines that will permit them to fully discuss issues relevant to the office they seek without fear of violating the Canons.”What political views are okay for judicial candidates to express?Professor Wasserman notes that in White, Minnesota’s code of conduct provided an approved list of topics to inquire of judicial candidates, such as cameras in the courtroom, how minorities and women are treated in the court system, and how a judge might reduce case loads.While not “hot-button” political issues — like the death penalty or abortion rights — Wasserman said, they still contain political ramifications, nonetheless. And the argument can be made that voters have a right to seek and gather information about candidates — judicial or not.“If we have to make judges open to popular elections, then the gloves come off. Do we hope judges behave with slightly better comportment than candidates in the political branch? We hope they do. Does it hurt judicial independence? No more than popular elections, in and of itself,” Wasserman said.Judge Swartz concluded that freedom of speech could end up tying judges’ hands in the courtroom, because expressing their views makes judges vulnerable for removal on certain types of cases that come before them. For example, a judge who has proclaimed he is against abortion, would likely be asked to recuse himself on all cases about abortion rights.“All a candidate can tell you is: ‘I love the law. I believe in the law. Are there things I don’t like about the law? Yes, but as a judge, it’s my job to enforce the law the way it’s written, and that’s what I am going to do,’” Swartz said.“Asking judges to do more is committing them to a course of action they cannot carry out.”Bottom line: No matter what the Supreme Court says about free speech, lawyers will still be able to ask to disqualify a biased judge.last_img read more

‘Fifty Shades of Grey’: Guiltless, Mindless, Glorious Indulgence

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first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York The premiere of the Fifty Shades of Grey film is sparking two kinds of buzz throughout the country—from the I-can’t-wait camps, and from the I’d-rather-eat-glass-than-watch-that-drek crowd. Critics, from the Daily Beastlast_img

Pavilions Hotels launches franchise model to property owners | News

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first_imgNewerEmirates Group slumps to US$3.8bn six-month loss Guests are looking more to branded properties that offer safety and known standards in the post Covid-19 world. Key advantages for owners under the Pavilions Hotels & Resorts franchise model include that they can maintain full operational control of their property.At the same time, the group says, owners gain immediate market presence and global distribution from the brand website and other sales channels, access to development, sales, marketing and operational support. – Advertisement – The Pavilions Hotels & Resorts has launched a franchise model to hotel owners and operators.The group aims to add to its existing portfolio of nine hotels and resorts across Asia and Europe under ownership and management. – Advertisement – OlderSO/ Moscow set for 2023 opening in Russia For the launch of the new franchise model, up until January the company is waiving the initial joining fee for all new properties.Within Asia, use of the franchise model has been limited, compared with the United States, where it is estimated that over 70 per cent of hotels are franchised, rather than under traditional hotel management agreements. For independent hotel operators, it is becoming increasingly competitive and harder to stand out amongst the international brands. – Advertisement – The Pavilions’ first franchise property joined the group earlier this year as the Pavilions El Nido Resort, on Palawan island in the Philippines.The Pavilions Hotels & Resorts began 20 years ago by passionate founder and owners Gordon and Danielle Oldham. “We are seeing a definite change in expectations from owners in Asia.  “There are many great boutique properties across the region, delivering great experiences to guests in their properties. “However they are struggling to attract business to the property without being a known brand and seeing the high costs involved in the marketing of a stand-alone property,” said Scot Toon, the Pavilions Hotels & Resorts managing director, Asia. – Advertisement –last_img read more

Advent in Zagreb was named the best in Europe for the third time in a row

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first_imgZagreb’s Advent has been the best in Europe for the last three years and is breaking all records.Thus, for the third time in a row, it was named the best Advent in Europe by the European Best Destinations Advent portal in Zagreb. Thus, the Croatian capital in a competition of 20 cities defended the title that it will carry for 2018 and also became the only city that holds the title of the best Christmas destination for three years in a row, and the Tourist Board announced that it will no longer run.In the selection for the best Christmas destination in 2018 on the European Best Destinations portal, 200.596 people from 131 countries participated, and 38.830 voters gave their vote among the candidate cities to Zagreb, while the second-placed Colmar received a total of 24.625 votes. It is interesting that 72% of the votes came from Europe, while voters from Australia, America and Russia gave the most votes to Zagreb, while Zagreb is in second place among voters from Austria and England.Of course, there is always the question of the relevance of the choice, but in the end only one thing is important, and that is how Advent breaks all tourist records this year as well. Thus, in the first nine days of Advent 2017 (December 1-10.12.2017, 37.685), 28 arrivals of guests were recorded, which is 9 percent more than in the first 2016 days of Advent 68.480, and 23 overnight stays were realized, with a growth rate of 20.158 percent . Of these, domestic guests realized 22 overnight stays (an increase of 48.322 percent), while foreign guests registered 24 (an increase of XNUMX percent). Apart from guests from Croatia, most overnight stays were realized by tourists from Italy, Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Great Britain and the USA.So, whatever others think, Advent in Zagreb is a big hit, and TZGZ took advantage of the opportunity and made good money for the title of the best Christmas destination in Europe. The figures on the growth of arrivals and overnight stays show how relevant it is, and the story of the relevance of the European Best Destinations portal comes to an end. The title of the best Christmas destination is as relevant as the Tourist Board makes it relevant, and the Tourist Board succeeded in that and branded the whole story very well, and in the end it charged.In the final analysis, the figures speak for themselves, as well as justify the hypothesis that investing in a manifestation is an investment, not an investment. By the way, last year, according to a survey, the total consumption generated by Advent in Zagreb was estimated in the range of 390 to 438 million kuna.<br />
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Thailand shooting: Soldier who killed 20 shot dead in shopping mall siege

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first_imgPolice have identified the suspected shooter as 32-year-old soldier Jakrapanth Thomma.The killings began at around 3 p.m. (0800 GMT) on Saturday when the soldier opened fire in a house before moving to an army camp and then to the mall, posting messages on Facebook as he went.Thai media said the suspected shooter had worked at an army base close to Nakhon Ratchasima, which is about 250 km (155 miles) from the capital Bangkok. Before the attack, Jakrapanth had posted on his Facebook account that he was out for vengeance — but he did not say for what.A provincial health official told a news conference that a total of 20 people had been killed and 42 wounded, revising down an earlier figure of 21 dead given by other officials. “We don’t know why he did this. It appears he went mad,” Defence Ministry spokesman Kongcheep Tantrawanit told Reuters.Overnight, soldiers and police stormed into the mall and escorted hundreds of trapped people to safety.”It was frightening because I could hear the occasional gunshot…we waited a long time for the police to come and help us, many hours,” said Suvanarat Jirattanasakul, 27, her voice trembling after she emerged.The mall was busy with shoppers on a long weekend for the Buddhist Makha Bucha holiday.CCTV footage from inside the mall posted on social media showed the gunman dressed in black and wearing a mask, his gun slung over his shoulder with no sign of other people around.Facebook said it had removed the suspect’s account.”There is no place on Facebook for people who commit this kind of atrocity, nor do we allow people to praise or support this attack,” a Facebook representative said in a statement.Major shootings are rare in the Southeast Asian country other than in the far south, where a decades-old insurgency persists.  Thai security forces on Sunday shot and killed a rogue soldier who went on a rampage in a shopping mall in a northeastern city, ending an overnight siege after a series of attacks that left at least 20 people dead.Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul confirmed the soldier had been shot dead at the Terminal 21 mall in the city of Nakhon Ratchasima.”Thank you police and army for ending the situation. Shooter shot dead!!!” Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul said in a post on Facebook. Police and the army also said he had been killed.center_img Topics :last_img read more

Eagles Reaction to the Lesotho’s Goal was Magical, Says Rohr

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first_imgAFCON 2021 QUALIFIERFemi Solaja with agency reportStill smarting from the 4-2 away win on Sunday night in Maseru, Head Coach, Gernot Rohr, has said that he is contented with Super Eagles’ conceding first so far the end result is positive for his team.The Franco-German gaffer was reacting to Eagles come back after conceding an early goal against Lesotho in Nigeria’s AFCON 2021 qualifier against the southern African nation. Super Eagles Coach, Gernot Rohr Just like it happened in the opening match last week in Uyo against Republic of Benin, Super Eagles had to dig deep to overcome the Crocodiles of Lesotho.Right hailed his players for showing that his team is a force in football.He said he saw only the positives whenever his side conceded first.“Some matches, you score the first goal and in some matches you concede first,” he said.“We scored first against Brazil and Ukraine but we didn’t win, so I prefer to concede first and win the match.“This has proven that my players have a good spirit because they never give up.“They continue to play well and do not panic. We have a very young team and what I like is the enthusiasm to play football.”He is also full of praises for the Super Eagles for putting up a brave performance despite arriving Maseru a few hours before the game.“We know that it’s difficult to win in Lesotho especially when you concede the first goal. They played very well in the beginning but we had to take the game in our hands,” Rohr continued.“We had a long travel by night and you can see that at the beginning, my players were not fully concentrated.“In the second half, we changed our organisation a little bit and it was better and better. I feel that my players have fun when they play football and that is most important.“We won but congrats to my colleague, he has a good team they gave us a lot of trouble.”Having won their two games, Nigeria top Group L with six points. They host Sierra Leone in their next match on August 31, 2020.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more

Men’s hockey: Wisconsin heads to Massachusetts for thrilling non-conference lineup

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first_imgAn exciting and challenging weekend awaits the University of Wisconsin men’s hockey team as they head out east to take on Boston College and Merrimack.The Badgers are off to an exciting start this season, managing to earn a 2-1-0 record thus far this season, but what is perhaps one of their biggest challenges this season still lies ahead of them. This weekend will not only be about showing how great Wisconsin hockey is, but also showcasing the major differences between East coast and West coast hockey, as three powerful teams hit the ice to determine which coast truly has the best hockey.Men’s hockey: Intense weekend ends in draw for Badgers and BuckeyesIt was a strange weekend for the Wisconsin men’s hockey team as they earned their first win and their first Read…Wisconsin, the representative for West coast hockey, certainly has a lot to show this weekend as they enter Massachusetts currently ranked No.10 in the nation. Their first opponent of the weekend, Boston College, is currently ranked No.13 and is looking to move into the top ten in the NCAA.While it might sound like Wisconsin has the slightest of edges this weekend, there are many things that actually favor Boston College this weekend. While the Eagles might be at No.13 this week, Boston is managing to hold on to this ranking despite only having a 0-0-1 record so far this season.Wisconsin has been having a hard time moving up in the rankings, despite the fact they have a better record than six of the teams that are higher than them in the NCAA rankings. One reason for this is the fact many critics of Wisconsin hockey were not impressed with the fact the Badgers only managed to pull out one win against Ohio State this past weekend.The Badgers have a lot to prove this weekend if they want to move up in the polls, and the first step to do that is going to be to have a good game against Boston College. After that, Wisconsin will come head to head with Merrimack, who is struggling this season and has yet to earn their first win of the season.What to expect from Men’s hockey this seasonThe 2016-’17 season was a huge success after Tony Granato resurrected the team to a winning season finishing with 12 Read…If Wisconsin can head out East and make some waves, there is no doubt it will be harder for critiques to keep overlooking this team. First thing is first, the Badgers need to defeat Boston College.Fans who want to watch the game can head over to ESPN3 Friday night at 6 p.m.last_img read more

The Point After: NFL should consider expansion to London

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first_imgWhile I was gladly able to enjoy my fall afternoons binging “Red Zone” and watching my fantasy football team ascend to the highest peaks, my experience with this year’s NFL Playoffs was far different than anything I had previously encountered. The most impressive aspect of British sports culture is the passion its fans have for teams and cities that are located thousands of miles away. Whether it’s rooted in their historical interest in soccer or attraction to the fast-paced, high-impact game of football, fans of all teams hark back to one unifying concept of fandom: loyalty. Through thick and thin (and fans of the six-time London host Jacksonville Jaguars have seen a lot of the latter over the past year), these fans remain absolute in their devotion to a single team. As a Florida native, my love for the Ravens came first from family but second from watching the likes of Ray Lewis and Ed Reed terrorize offenses on Sundays. The Londoners I met shared a similar story in which they were drawn to the familiarity of team sports like soccer or rugby but fell in love with the personalities and generational talents of American football. As an American, I was initially rather skeptical of this seemingly unnecessary song and dance put on by the league. Not only did the International Series come off as, at best, a cheesy exhibition akin to the MLB opening seasons in Japan, it even struck me as an incredibly destructive force in a team’s schedule that often knocked two teams outside of playoff contention further off course. As a massive fan of the Baltimore Ravens, I was not happy when they were chosen to play in September 2017. After waking up at 6 a.m. PST for kickoff, I was even more upset when they lost 44-7, the largest margin of defeat in the franchise’s history. As a student in the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, I was afforded the opportunity to spend my spring semester in London. As exciting as it is to travel the world and immerse myself in a culture vastly different from that of Southern California, I have still sought out ways to remain in touch with the beautiful sport of (American) football. The results have been nothing short of eye-opening. Whether the NFL will find success in officially planting its flag in the British capital remains to be seen. The money, travel logistics and television rights certainly make it a more difficult venture than most. But if anything is certain, it’s that the fans in this city are ready for professional football. There is hardly anything more American in this world than the combination of wings, beer and football. What this interest traces back to is often not exactly clear: Was it the high production quality of the game? The 81,000-plus screaming Europeans at Wembley? The 131-yard output from Giants running back and future Super Bowl champion Brandon Jacobs? Whatever it was, the League and Brits alike were intrigued by what they saw on that October afternoon. In the decade since, the NFL International Series has only grown in size, frequency and popularity. The NFL’s initiative to schedule games in the United Kingdom has yielded a passionate group of fans in London. (Photo from Twitter) In recent years, the rhetoric coming from NFL commissioner Roger Goodell suggests that there is not only an interest in putting a football franchise in London, but that it is one of the league’s top priorities.center_img Featuring pre-game acts from the likes of Calvin Harris, Train and Ne-Yo, the series has scheduled at least one game in London every year since 2007, growing to as many as four games in 2016, with another four slated for 2019. By the end of next season, the Green Bay Packers will be the only team that hasn’t kicked off on the Queen’s turf, as the league has sought to not only showcase the game and league as a whole but also ensure that all franchises are given the opportunity to present themselves abroad. And sometime in the not-so-distant future, wings, beer and football may not be strictly American. Most Sundays throughout the fall, millions of Americans like me crowd around our television sets around 1 p.m. EST and begin the three to eight-hour long odyssey of drama and intrigue, success and failure that occurs around the nation. Coming across the pond, I was truly expecting the worst. I assumed people would be completely incapable of understanding the game’s rules. As it turned out, I was wrong. Since the New York Giants defeated the Miami Dolphins in a sleepy 13-10 game on a particularly rainy day at London’s Wembley Stadium in October 2007, the NFL has not just retained but expanded on a particular interest in bringing the sport and the NFL brand to audiences in the U.K. For the Ravens wild-card round playoff game against the Chargers, I decided to head to what was labeled as an “NFL” pub and found 30 people decked out in purple and blue jerseys. While the crowd certainly included a few Americans, I had the opportunity to talk to locals and understand how their fandom developed. In a lot of ways, the stories they shared weren’t all too different from mine. Even walking around the city, it is obvious that the NFL has made a lasting impact on British sports fans. Whether it be the Jaguars, Seahawks, Eagles or even the lowly Buccaneers, locals have shown a serious interest in the sport. Jimmy Goodman is a junior writing about current events in sports. His column, “The Point After,” runs every other Tuesday.last_img read more

GFA pursues Globacom for $2.12 million GPL sponsorship debt

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first_imgThe GFA have resumed legal proceedings against Telecommunications giants, Globacom over a 2.12 million dollar debt owed the association.The Nigeria-based company, with operations in Ghana, signed a 5 year deal as headline sponsor of the Ghana Premier League in 2009 but still owe the GFA sponsorship fees for that deal 11 years later.The deal was worth 3 million dollars per season but Glo opted out of the deal in 2013, having only paid 1.9 million dollars.In December last year, GLO paid another 1 million dollars but now the GFA wants the rest of their money.The Daily Graphic reports that the FA had asked its lawyers to help them retrieve the money, plus interest, from Glo.The GFA President Mr. Kurt  Edwin Simeon- Okraku has already stated that the clubs desperately needed the money from GLO to boost their finances  which has been hit hard by the suspension of competitions occasioned by the COVOD-19 pandemic. “Given the big impact of COVID, this is the time GLO should have shown concerns to support our football industry.” Mr. Okraku stressed“This would have gone a long way to help the clubs.” He added.The Ghana Premier League was suspended on March 15 in line with directive by President Nana Addo-Dankwa  Akufo-Addo to suspend social gatherings and sporting events to help prevent the entire spread of the virus.The entire football season was subsequently cancelled by the FA which is currently putting on safety measures and protocols to ensure football returns in the safest environment possible when the suspension on contact sport is lifted by the government.last_img read more