Archive for January, 2011

White House clean energy standard gets key support

Monday, January 31st, 2011

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The White House on Monday won a key endorsement for its proposal to boost U.S. electricity generation by clean energy sources as the head of the Senate’s energy panel said he…

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NJ Gov. Christie signs bill to get more power plants built

Monday, January 31st, 2011

NEW YORK (Reuters) – New Jersey Governor Chris Christie on Friday signed a bill into law to promote the construction of new power plants and make electricity more affordable in a state with some of…

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Chelsea pay record fee for Torres

Monday, January 31st, 2011

Liverpool permit striker Fernando Torres to hold talks with Chelsea, which could see him become most expensive footballer in British history.

This article is from the BBC News website. © British Broadcasting Corporation, The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

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Carroll joins Liverpool for ?35m

Monday, January 31st, 2011

Liverpool confirm the signing of Andy Carroll from Newcastle for a British record transfer fee, believed to be about ?35m.

This article is from the BBC News website. © British Broadcasting Corporation, The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

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Liverpool confirm Carroll signing

Monday, January 31st, 2011

Liverpool confirm the signing of Andy Carroll from Newcastle for a record fee, believed to be around ?35m.

This article is from the BBC News website. © British Broadcasting Corporation, The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

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Egypt’s future in army hands

Monday, January 31st, 2011

The pledge by the army in Egypt not to attack demonstrators is being seen as a signal that the Mubarak regime is possibly coming to an end.

This article is from the BBC News website. © British Broadcasting Corporation, The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

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Liverpool sign Suarez for ?22.7m

Monday, January 31st, 2011

Liverpool complete the signing of Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez from Dutch club Ajax for ?22.7m.

This article is from the BBC News website. © British Broadcasting Corporation, The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

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Egypt army rules out using force

Monday, January 31st, 2011

Crowds stand by tanks in Tahrir Square

The BBC’s Lyse Doucet describes the protests in Tahrir Square

Egypt’s army has vowed it will not use force against the tens of thousands of people protesting for the removal of the regime of President Hosni Mubarak.

It said it respected the “legitimate rights of the people”.

The statement comes ahead of a massive march planned for Cairo on Tuesday and amid a call for a general strike.

Earlier, Mr Mubarak announced a cabinet reshuffle to try to head off the protests, replacing the widely despised Interior Minister Habib al-Adly.

In its statement, carried on Egyptian media, the military said: “To the great people of Egypt, your armed forces, acknowledging the legitimate rights of the people… have not and will not use force against the Egyptian people.”

The BBC’s Jon Leyne, in the Egyptian capital, says that if this announcement does represent the will of the senior army commanders, it is a devastating blow for President Mubarak.

At the scene

On the seventh day of the crisis which will help define Egypt’s future, the extraordinary is beginning to feel ordinary. The now familiar rhythms of a day of protest are re-establishing themselves. Demonstrators remain on Tahrir Square, their numbers fluctuating over the course of the day.

Egypt remains trapped in the pre-internet age to which government censorship has dragged it back. Military helicopters drone overhead. The role of the army remains enigmatic. Troops are on the street and military checkpoints have been playing a more assertive role in controlling traffic crossing the bridges over the Nile.

The soldiers see themselves as a force for stability, and while some of their armoured vehicles are daubed with graffiti that reads “Down with Mubarak” it’s also true that the very act of preserving order helps the old regime to maintain its grip on power.

The opposition is declaring a general strike and talks of bringing a million people on to the streets on Tuesday but it’s far from clear that they have the coherent structure to keep sustained pressure focused on the Mubarak administration.

Our correspondent says that to regain control of the streets, the president would need the use force, or at least the threat of force, from his army – and it now seems increasingly likely that his 30-year rule is drawing to a close.

Soldiers, tanks and other military vehicles are deployed in many areas of the country ahead of Tuesday’s demonstration. The opposition have called for a million people to take to the streets of Cairo.

A similar mass march has been called for Alexandria.

Train services in Egypt have been halted between the curfew hours of 1500 and 0800 (1300 and 0600 GMT) and EgyptAir said it was cancelling all domestic and international flights between these hours, a move correspondents say may be intended to restrict attendance at demonstrations.

However, thousands of protesters are still camped out in Tahrir (Liberation) Square in central Cairo, defying the curfew.

The BBC’s Jim Muir in Cairo says the military, who cordoned off the square with tanks, are letting people come and go.

Leaflets were being distributed to the crowds calling on the army to take the people’s side and resist orders to move against them.

Earlier Mr Mubarak ordered new Prime Minister Ahmed Shafiq to push through democratic reforms and create new jobs.

Protesters in Tahrir Square, 31 JanProtesters have been defying the curfew in Tahrir Square

However, there were few major changes in the new cabinet line-up, with Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit and Defence Minister Gen Mohamed Hussein Tantawi – who also becomes deputy PM – both keeping their posts.

Correspondents say it is likely the demonstrators will only settle for Mr Mubarak’s removal from office.

Mr Adly has been replaced by Mahmud Wagdi, an army general, while Samir Mohammad Radwan replaces Youssef Boutros-Ghali as finance minister. Mr Radwan said he had a “national mission at a very critical time”.

The line-up confirms a purging of those behind Egypt’s economic liberalisation and growth over the past few years, analysts say, and a move towards a more military cabinet.

A number of businessmen holding economic posts have been removed. Some Egyptians have resented the influence of the tycoons.

Concerns are growing about the economy after a week of protests.

World oil prices on Monday topped $100 a barrel amid fears of the ongoing unrest.

Egypt’s CrisisMost populous Arab nation, with 84.5 million inhabitantsAuthoritarian President Hosni Mubarak has ruled for 30 yearsProtests against corruption, lack of democracy, inflation, unemploymentTriggered by overthrow of President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali of TunisiaArmy – the deciding factor Anxious waiting game Why Egypt matters Old tech aids protests

Few of the 50,000 protesters in Tahrir Square appeared appeased by the cabinet changes.

“We will stay until the coward leaves,” the crowd chanted.

One demonstrator told the BBC: “This is not a new government. This is the same regime – this is the same bluff. [President Mubarak] has been bluffing us for 30 years.”

Amid the protesters’ call for a general strike, banks, schools, many businesses and the stock market were closed for a second day, with queues forming outside food stores.

Some police are back in parts of Cairo, having abandoned their posts on Friday.

Thousands of people also rallied in Alexandria, and there were sizeable demonstrations in Mansoura, Damanhour and Suez.

Israel has agreed to allow Egypt to deploy 800 more troops to the Sinai, the first such deployment since the 1979 peace deal between the two nations. The troops will ring the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh.

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu warned against the takeover of Egypt by “an organised Islamic group” as had happened in Iran.

The death toll from the protests so far is hard to assess but is thought to be at least 100.

Many countries are evacuating citizens, leading to chaotic scenes at Cairo airport as air traffic becomes congested and flights are cancelled or delayed.

Tourism remains a vital sector in the Egyptian economy, accounting for about 5-6% of GDP.

International pressure is growing for some kind of resolution.

US President Barack Obama and his Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have talked about the need for an “orderly transition” to a democratic future for Egypt.

EU foreign policy chief Baroness Ashton said on Monday that the “legitimate grievances” of Egyptians should be heeded.

“Their aspirations for a just, for a better future should be met with urgent, concrete and decisive answers and with real steps,” she said.

The unrest in Egypt follows the uprising in Tunisia which ousted President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali two weeks ago after 23 years in power.

Egypt flashpoints

This article is from the BBC News website. © British Broadcasting Corporation, The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

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Sudan student ‘killed by police’

Monday, January 31st, 2011

Riot police in Khartoum (30/01)There is tight security outside universities in Khartoum

A student has died from his injuries after clashing with Sudanese police, activists say.

Mohammed Abdulrahman was studying at the Ahaliya University in Omdurman, scene of fierce fighting on Sunday.

The anti-government protests have been inspired by those in Tunisia and Egypt and were also organised on Facebook.

The demonstrations in Khartoum and its twin city, Omdurman, were against the high cost of living and the lack of political and social freedom in Sudan.

“You are our martyr Mohamed Abdelrahman,” activists wrote on a Facebook group called Youth for Change which has more than 16,000 members, reports the Reuters news agency.

One prominent human rights activist said Mr Abdulrahman had been shot.

Khartoum’s universities are said to be surrounded by heavy security and some have been closed.

There has been no official comment on the reports of Mr Abdulrahman’s death.

The authorities say they have arrested about 70 people but many were later released.

The BBC’s James Copnall in Khartoum says the protests come at a difficult time for President Omar al-Bashir.

On Sunday, results of this month’s referendum showed 99% of southerners had voted to secede from the north.

Independence for the oil-rich south will hit both the northern economy and Mr Bashir’s prestige, our reporter says.

This article is from the BBC News website. © British Broadcasting Corporation, The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

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Many 7/7 injuries ‘unsurvivable’

Monday, January 31st, 2011

The blast injuries sustained during the 7/7 attacks in London were so severe that most victims could not have survived them, military experts tell the inquests.

This article is from the BBC News website. © British Broadcasting Corporation, The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

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