Archive for: September, 2019

Philippines hunts down suspects

Sep 30 2019 Published by under 深圳桑拿网

The small band of primarily armed forces officers who seized a luxury hotel yesterday to demand the resignation of President Gloria Arroyo were bundled off by police after a lightning raid, but officials said others were involved.

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National police chief Avelino Razon said documents found in the debris of the Peninsula Hotel, which SWAT teams stormed in a hail of gunfire and tear gas to end the stand-off, indicated “four groups” took part in the mutiny.

He declined to give details but said one of the renegade officers seen taking over the hotel had managed to get away despite an overnight curfew imposed in the Philippine capital after the rebels surrendered.

“We are looking for him,” Razon told local radio. “We don't know how he escaped.”

Meanwhile the president's national security adviser, Noberto Gonzales, said up to 20 other people who were not part of the hotel siege were under investigation, including businessmen said to have financed the rebellion.

“Some of them are businessmen but I do not want to be hasty by naming names,” Gonzales was quoted as saying in the local press.

Arroyo has faced repeated coup attempts since taking power in 2001, and many of the people involved in Thursday's mutiny had come directly from a court hearing into their involvement in a 2003 coup attempt.

Razon said some of them were the “usual suspects” from previous attempts to bring down the government in the Philippines, where the military, big business and the Catholic church all hold powerful sway over national political life.

The armed forces can make or break a president, and the leaders of yesterday's uprising — Navy Lieutenant Antonio Trillanes and Brigadier General Danilo Lim — had appealed to the rest of the military to join them.

Instead, after the rebels ignored a deadline to surrender, armoured personnel carriers smashed into the hotel lobby and elite troops poured inside, unleashing volleys of weapons fire and tear gas.

The rebels swiftly surrendered, and no one was reported injured in the raid.

“This armed undertaking had failure written all over it,” said the

Philippine Daily Inquirer, one of many newspapers that lambasted the renegades for their actions.

Despite the rebellion's failure to attract large numbers of supporters onto the streets, however, it appeared to have been well-organised.

Police did not stop the rebels on their way toward the hotel, witnesses said, and a detailed website appeared as the uprising was launched that included harsh criticisms of the state of the nation under Arroyo.

Among those found with the rebels were at least one prominent Catholic bishop as well as a former Philippine vice president and vocal Arroyo critic, Teofisto Guingona.

The Philippines has been benefitting from a strong economy of late but poverty and corruption continue to plague the Southeast Asian nation, which is made up of more than 7,000 islands.

Arroyo has been repeatedly accused of stealing her 2004 election after tapes emerged of her talking to an election commission official while the votes were being counted.

On their website, 南宁夜网.sundalo.bravehost广西桑拿,, the rebels said the president was “destroying” this overwhelmingly Roman Catholic country of around 90 million people.

“The economy, the rule of law and the moral order lie in ruins,” they said.

“The entire system has broken down, thanks to a president whose legitimacy is denied by the vast majority of our people.”

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McKew declares victory in Bennelong

Sep 30 2019 Published by under 深圳桑拿网

The political career of outgoing prime minister John Howard is officially over, with Ms McKew on Saturday making history by claiming victory in the northern Sydney seat.

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Despite leading Mr Howard from the outset, Ms McKew had been reluctant to claim victory, repeatedly saying it was too close to call.

Even at her election function last Saturday in North Ryde, as her jubilant supporters screamed for her to call it, Ms McKew held back, saying Bennelong was on a knife edge.

But on Saturday at Gladesville Public School the former ABC journalist finally called Bennelong for Labor – the first time it has been out of Liberal hands since being established in 1949.

“One week after the polls opened I can now say that in Bennelong we are 2,100 votes ahead, we have 51.25 per cent of the two party vote, so we are comfortably ahead,” Ms McKew said.

“I can formally say that Bennelong is now a Labor seat for the first time.”

Her statement made official the end of Mr Howard’s illustrious political career, which began in 1974 when he first won the seat.

It is only the second time in history that a sitting prime minister has lost his seat.

In a blot on his copybook, Mr Howard joins Stanley Melbourne Bruce, who was unceremoniously dumped in 1929.

Mr Howard has yet to officially concede the seat, however on election night last Saturday the outgoing PM admitted it was very likely he would lose his grip on Bennelong.

Ms McKew said she was not disappointed Mr Howard nor his office hadn’t formally relinquished the electorate, instead paying tribute to his 33 years in public office.

“Mr Howard and his family clearly had a huge amount to do this week,” said Ms McKew, who on Thursday was named parliamentary secretary to the prime minister and cabinet.

“I would like to acknowledge John Howard’s long years of public service – he gave 30 years to public life.”

Ms McKew said she had been swept into office by a uniform swing to Labor in Bennelong, which showed many people in the electorate had voted for the party for the first time.

“We saw swings in every single booth bar one (and) we had an overall swing of five per cent,” she said.

“To give you some idea of the scale of what the Labor Party has achieved in Bennelong, the primary vote at the 2004 election was around 28 per cent, our primary vote this time was around 44 to 45 per cent.

“That is a huge increase in Labor’s primary vote … and for me to see swings in places like Carlingford, Epping, Lyon Park and Eastwood … tells me people have voted Labor for the first time.”

Ms McKew said some voters may have felt neglected by Mr Howard in recent years, causing them to change allegiances.

“There was definitely a little bit of cynicism, I have to say, at the high level of visibility of Mr Howard in recent months,” Ms McKew said.

“People saw that as something of a contrast to what had gone before.”

She declined to comment on claims made by former treasurer Peter Costello, who on Friday night said the coalition would have performed better had Mr Howard handed over power.

“The fact is that didn’t happen and the Liberal Party are doing a lot of soul searching, but I’ll leave them to do that,” she said.

Ms McKew was “thrilled to bits” with her appointment as a parliamentary secretary, saying her swearing in on Monday would be a “spectacular honour”.

She promised the voters of Bennelong an energetic and visible member.

“As I campaigned in Bennelong (I said) I would be a strong voice for Bennelong,” Ms McKew said.

“That strong voice will be right there in the prime minister’s office.

“They have this assurance from me that I will serve them as energetically, as conscientiously as I can over the next three years.”

Comment is being sought from Mr Howard.

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Rates likely to rise in February

Sep 30 2019 Published by under 深圳桑拿网

The board of the central bank meets to discuss monetary policy in Sydney on Tuesday, and its decision will be announced on Wednesday.

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A clear majority of 19 economists surveyed by AAP believe the RBA will wait until after the release of December quarter consumer price index (CPI) data in January 2008 before tightening monetary policy in February.

The board does not meet in January.

Rate hike expected

Some 16 economists expect the RBA to hike rates by a quarter of a percentage point to seven per cent in February, while five expect to see another rise by the end of the June quarter to 7.25 per cent.

Westpac senior economist Andrew Hanlan says inflationary pressures were still evident in the economy, adding weight to the case for further rate hikes.

“The risk is the interest rate rises to date will be insufficient to temper those pressures,” Mr Hanlan says.

The central bank has already lifted the key cash rate twice in 2007, with last move in November to 6.75 per cent from 6.50 per cent.

Credit market fears

Mr Hanlan believes the RBA will raise interest rates in February and tighten further in the June quarter.

He says ongoing concerns about conditions in global credit markets, the US housing market slowdown and the state of the global economy could delay action by the RBA.

But the risks to domestic inflation remain firmly on the upside.

Inflation

“Core inflation in the last couple of quarters has been running at a 3.7 per cent annualised pace … and we think the risk is we'll seen another unacceptably high number released in January, thus forcing the Reserve Bank to act in February,” he says.

“We're expecting the CPI result next quarter will again force the RBA's hand.”

The RBA has said underlying inflation is likely to exceed the top end of its two and three per cent comfort band in 2008.

Effects of drought

JPMorgan chief economist Stephen Walters, who has also forecast a February rate rise, agrees that underlying inflation is set to worsen as the drought pushes up food prices, energy costs increase and rents continue to advance.

“Seven out of 10 of the top CPI items are going up,” he says.

“In our view, that means inflation is going to be above the (RBA's) target range for the next couple of quarters.

“During the past 18 months, when inflation has threatened the top of the target range, the RBA has raised interest rates.”

Brakes ‘on inflation’

But Grange Securities chief economist Stephen Roberts, who sees interest rates staying on hold through to the second half of 2008, said the global credit crunch would push up retail lending rates, helping to put a brake on inflation.

“The credit crunch is doing the work of the Reserve Bank,” he says.

Mr Roberts sees underlying inflation likely falling below three per cent in the second half of 2008, as global economic growth slows.

“Since November, the downside risk to global economic growth has become more pronounced,” he says.

Spending cut ‘likely’

“That will keep rates on hold.

“Inflation will be coming down in 2008 and 2009.”

Mr Roberts added that the incoming federal Labor government was likely to cut spending.

“It looks like the new Labor government is going to be intent on not adding pressure to interest rates,” he says.

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Gilchrist dismisses fears of rift

Sep 30 2019 Published by under 深圳桑拿网

Adam Gilchrist insists Australia's cricketers are not trying to be “rebels” and will toe the company line when it comes to playing in the Indian Premier League.

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The Test vice-captain confirmed today he was one of about a dozen top-level players to receive a letter from Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland warning them against playing in next year's lucrative IPL Twenty20 tournament without CA's consent.

Gilchrist denied he or any other player was trying to bend the rules of their CA contract by signing a memorandum of understanding with the IPL, and insisted any such tournament would always come second to playing international cricket.

Dismiss concerns over split

The wicket-keeper said he did not view the letter as being the start of a “stand-off” between the players and CA, and dismissed fears Australian cricket was on the verge of the game's biggest split since Kerry Packer launched World Series Cricket 30 years ago.

“I think it's pretty dramatic to draw comparisons between the Twenty20 revolution and World Series Cricket all those years ago,” said Gilchrist, who added he had already spoken to Sutherland about the matter a few weeks ago after receiving the letter.

“World Series Cricket was quite dramatic, and there was a lot of bad blood around at that time, from what I've learned, but it's far from that at the moment.

‘Consent’

“No one will play (in the IPL) without consent.

“We're not trying to be rebels here. It's a new opportunity for cricketers and it's a very exciting one that I know Cricket Australia are endorsing and encouraging.

“We're not looking for a moment to bend the rules or our contracts with Cricket Australia. They are our employer, as simple as that.

‘Abide by rules’

“We'll abide by their rules at all times and we're not trying to bend those rules what so all.

“If the opportunity comes up to play IPL, which a lot of us have signed a MOU to allow us to do, (we will play) but that will always be secondary to international cricket and playing for our country.

“I don't see (the letter) as a stand off or a threat. It's simply them (CA) stating exactly what their position is, and making sure that everyone is fully aware of it.”

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