Daily Archives: November 24, 2015

Russian fighter jet shot down by Turkish jets near Syrian-Turkish border


Beirut: In a dangerous escalation in the Syrian conflict, a Russian warplane has been shot down by Turkish fighter jets in Syria near the Turkish border, after it violated the nation’s air space.

It was shown plummeting towards an area known as Turkmen Mountain near the town of Bayirbucak in the northwest of Syria near the Turkish border.

The Turkish military said the aircraft had been warned 10 times in the space of five minutes about violating Turkish airspace. Officials said a second plane had also approached the border and been warned.

“The data we have is very clear. There were two planes approaching our border, we warned them as they were getting too close,” a senior Turkish official told Reuters.

“We warned them to avoid entering Turkish airspace before they did, and we warned them many times. Our findings show clearly that Turkish airspace was violated multiple times. And they violated it knowingly,” the official said.

Footage showed the two pilots parachuting from the burning jet before it crashed. Some local media reports indicated at least one pilot was “in the hands of locals”.

Reuters is reporting that a video sent by a Syrian rebel group claims to show a Russian pilot immobile and badly wounded on the ground.

“A Russian pilot,” a voice is heard saying as a group of men gather around him. “God is great,” a voice is heard saying.

An official from the group says the pilot is dead.

Russian officials confirmed that a Russian warplane had been shot down but claimed it had been flying over Syria and had not violated Turkish airspace.

The plane was likely shot down “due to shelling from the ground,” the Russian Ministry of Defence said.

The Russian Defence Ministry said the plane was one of more than three-dozen fixed-wing aircraft flying sorties in Syria as part of Russia’s two-month old bombing campaign there. It is the first Russian plane to crash in that time.

President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman called the downing of a Russian Su-24 warplane in Syria a “very serious incident”, but said it was too early to draw conclusions, according to Reuters.

“It is just impossible to say something without having full information,” Dmitry Peskov, Putin’s spokesman, told reporters.

Tensions between Turkey and Russia escalated early last month when Russian warplanes violated Turkish air space twice – on October 3 and 4 – violations Russia said had happened by accident due to weather conditions.

Since it began its air campaign in Syria to prop up the regime of President Bashar al-Assad on September 30, Russia has been harshly criticised for pursuing mostly opposition groups fighting to overthrow President Assad, as opposed to the Islamic State terrorist group it says it is targeting.

But in recent days, Russia had shifted its air campaign in an effort to mimic the US-led anti-ISIS coalition’s recent offensive to target ISIS-run oil and natural gas infrastructure, the Institute for the Study of War reported.

Without specifying the incident, Turkey indicated it would take the issue to the United Nations and NATO.

“Necessary initiatives will be taken at NATO, UN and at the level of countries concerned by the foreign ministry upon instructions from Mr Prime Minister,” a statement from Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu’s office said.

Over the weekend, Russia’s Ministry of Defence reported its fighter jets had carried out 141 combat sorties “engaging 472 terrorist objects in the Aleppo, Damascus, Idlib, Latakia, Hama, Homs, Raqqah, and Deir al-Zor provinces”.

They eliminated “columns of petrol tank vehicles and oil production plants in the oil-bearing regions in the north and east of Syria …These facilities in the districts of Palmyra, Deir al-Zor and Raqqa are controlled by terrorists and constitute their main source of income,” the Ministry said in a statement.

According to groups monitoring the Syrian war, Russian airstrikes had killed more than 400 civilians since they began in September.

The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) said the death toll from September 30 to November 20 had reached 403 civilians, including 97 children, while another group, the Syrian Network for Human Rights, said the toll was as high as 526, including 137 children.

Russia denied the civilian casualty toll and criticised the “so-called fake ‘human rights observatories’ and other propaganda organisations”.

At least 250,000 people have been killed in Syria’s civil war, more than four million Syrians have fled their homes, mostly to neighbouring countries, while a further 7.6 million have been displaced.

Human rights groups say it is the Assad regime, rather than the Islamic State group that is responsible for the majority of deaths in Syria, in particular through its use of barrel bombs.

The Syrian government denies the allegations.





«H Αυστραλία, παιχνιδάκι στα χέρια των ισχυρών»


Δηλώσεις Βαρουφάκη για την αυστραλιανή οικονομία, λίγο πριν την επίσκεψή του στη Μελβούρνη και το Σίδνεϊ

“Η ‘αξιοσημείωτη’ ροή χρήματος από το εξωτερικό προς την Αυστραλία, τα τελευταία χρόνια, είχε δημιουργήσει μια “ψευδή αίσθηση ευημερίας” δήλωσε σε συνέντευξή του στο αυστραλιανό παράρτημα της εφημερίδας “Guardian” ο Έλληνας πρώην υπουργός Οικονομικών, Γιάνης Βαρουφάκης. Μάλιστα, προτρέπει τους υπεύθυνους χάραξης της οικονομικής πολιτικής να αλλάξουν κατεύθυνση γρήγορα για να αποτραπεί μια κρίση.

Ο κ. Βαρουφάκης, που απομακρύνθηκε από το ελληνικό Υπουργείο Οικονομικών τον περασμένο Ιούλιο, πιστεύει ότι η Αυστραλία είναι ένα “παιχνιδάκι” διαφόρων δυνάμεων που η ίδια δεν μπορεί να ελέγξει, τη στιγμή που η παγκόσμια οικονομική κρίση περνά σε μία άλλη φάση.

Ο κ. Βαρουφάκης, που θα δώσει δύο ομιλίες αυτή την εβδομάδα στη Μελβούρνη και το Σίδνεϊ, κρατούσε το “πηδάλιο” της ελληνικής οικονομίας για έξι μήνες, όταν η Ελλάδα έφτασε στο χείλος της χρεοκοπίας. Είχε διδάξει Οικονομικά στο Πανεπιστήμιο Σίδνεϊ για 12 χρόνια, μέχρι το 2000. Εκείνη τη χρονιά επέστρεψε στην Ευρώπη εξαιτίας της στροφής της Αυστραλίας προς τα δεξιά υπό την πρωθυπουργία του John Howard.

Ο διάσημος οικονομολόγος, που κατέχει και την ελληνική και την αυστραλιανή υπηκοότητα και η κόρη του ζει στο Σίδνεϊ, πιστεύει ότι η εντυπωσιακή αύξηση των τιμών των κατοικιών στη Μελβούρνη και το Σίδνεϊ είναι λόγος για να σημάνει συναγερμός.

“[Η αυστραλιανή οικονομία είναι] βοηθούμενη και υποκινούμενη από την αξιοσημείωτη ροή κεφαλαίων προς την αγορά ακινήτων στο Σίδνεϊ και τη Μελβούρνη, και έχει δημιουργήσει μια ψευδή αίσθηση ευημερίας” είπε ο πρώην υπουργός στον “Guardian”.

“Ο κόσμος πάντα έλεγε ότι η Αυστραλία είναι απρόσβλητη από την κρίση, διότι κατά τη διάρκειά της έφτασαν στη χώρα χρήματα ως επένδυση.

Αν στη συνέχεια, τα πράγματα πάνε στραβά [στην Κίνα], οι πλούσιοι Κινέζοι θα μεταναστεύσουν εδώ και θα φέρουν μαζί και τα χρήματά τους. Αλλά η Αυστραλία έχει γίνει ένα “παιχνιδάκι” διαφόρων δυνάμεων που η ίδια δεν μπορεί να ελέγξει, τη στιγμή που η παγκόσμια οικονομική κρίση περνά σε μία άλλη φάση, είπε ο κ. Βαρουφάκης.

Προειδοποίησε, δε, ότι η Αυστραλία κινδυνεύει από οικονομικό σοκ, αφού η “πιστωτική φούσκα” που δημιουργήθηκε από την Κίνα στον απόηχο της παγκόσμιας οικονομικής κρίσης έχει αρχίσει να ξεφουσκώνει.

“Η κρίση του 2008 είναι ακόμη εδώ. Έχει μια ενιαία και στέρεα δομή, μεταμορφώνεται και αλλάζει συνεχώς. Από τη δεκαετία του ’80 μέχρι το 2008, η παγκόσμια οικονομία τροφοδοτήθηκε από το χρέος των ΗΠΑ, και η τεράστια αύξηση της πίστωσης δημιούργησε ‘μια πυραμίδα’ που κατέρρευσε το 2008” είπε ο Έλληνας οικονομολόγος.

Ο κ. Βαρουφάκης έχει γίνει σφοδρός επικριτής της οικονομικής πολιτικής που ακολουθείται στην Ευρώπη. Περιέγραψε το τρίτο μνημόνιο που επιβλήθηκε στην Ελλάδα τον Ιούλιο, ως καταδικασμένο σε αποτυχία και θα μείνει στην ιστορία ως η μεγαλύτερη καταστροφή της μακροοικονομικής διαχείρισης ποτέ.

Ο πρώην υπουργός κάλεσε τον Αυστραλό πρωθυπουργό, Malcolm Turnbull, να ανακατευθύνει την οικονομία της χώρας και να έχει ως βάση την καινοτομία. “Η Αυστραλία έχει εξαιρετικές δυνατότητες δημιουργίας καινοτομιών, αλλά συνήθως αυτές πωλούνται σε αμερικανικές εταιρίες ώστε να αναπτυχθούν περαιτέρω και να επιτύχουν” είπε.

“Ήταν ο πρώην πρωθυπουργός Paul Keating που είπε ότι η Αυστραλία πρέπει από ‘τυχερή’ να γίνει ‘έξυπνη’ χώρα. Ωστόσο, η κυβέρνηση δεν βοηθά προς αυτή την κατεύθυνση αφού δεν καταφέρνει τις ιδέες της να τις προχωρήσει προς ένα επόμενο επίπεδο ” κατέληξε ο κ. Βαρουφάκης.

* Ο Γιάννης Βαρουφάκης θα συνομιλήσει με την δημοσιογράφο Μαρία Κωστακίδη στο Athenaeum Theatre της Μελβούρνης, στις 28 Νοεμβρίου (wheelercentre.com) και στην Όπερα του Σίδνεϊ, στις 29 Νοεμβρίου (sydneyoperahouse.com)

Πηγή:Νέος Κόσμος

“Starve IS of cash”- Yanis Varoufakis


‘I think there is only one answer. You open the door [to refugees] and you give them shelter’ … former finance minister of Greece and Q&A panellist Yanis Varoufakis. Photo: ABC

Closing borders to Muslim refugees only fuels terrorism, former Greek Fin Min says.

Greece’s former finance minister Yanis Varoufakis appeared on ABC’s Q&A show yesterday, stressing that intolerance towards Muslim refugees would only fuel further violence.

The former finance minister of Greece Yanis Varoufakis answered his question backed by the experiences of a country that has borne the brunt of Europe’s refugee crisis.

“There’s no doubt that when you have a massive exodus of refugees, there may very well be a couple of insurgents that infiltrate. But it’s neither here nor there,” Varoufakis said.
“Both the terrorist attacks and the refugee influx are symptoms of the same problem but one doesn’t cause the other. “There is a correlation but no causation,” he said.

“The vast majority of the people who exploded bombs, and blew themselves up, and took AK47s to mow people down, these were people who were born in France, in Belgium. Think of the bombings in London. Britain doesn’t have free movement [over its borders] it is not part of the Schengen treaty. So the notion that we’re going to overcome this problem by erecting fences, electrifying them, and shooting people who try to scale them … the only people who benefit from that are the traffickers, because their price goes up … and Isis. They are the only beneficiaries.”

Referring to the thousands of refugees who fled the Islamic State and “washed up on [Greece’s] shores”, Varoufakis said one simple thought came to his mind:
“If somebody knocks on your door at three in the morning, they are wet, bleeding, they’ve been shot at, they’re frightened, what do you do? I think there is only one answer. You open the door and you give them shelter,” he said.

Source: The Guardian, ABC

Όλα για όλα στο Μόναχο ο Ολυμπιακός


Το μεγάλο ευρωπαϊκό στοίχημα του Ολυμπιακού παίζεται σήμερα, Τρίτη (21:45, ΟΤΕ Sport 2), στο Μόναχο. Κόντρα στην μοναδική ομάδα από την οποία έχουν φέτος ηττηθεί, τη Μπάγερν, οι «ερυθρόλευκοι» θέλουν να κάνουν την υπέρβαση που θα τους φέρει ακόμα πιο κοντά στο όνειρο της πρόκρισης στους «16» του Champions League.

Οι δύο ομάδες είναι στην κορυφή του ομίλου και ο σύλλογος του Πεπ Γκουαρντιόλα θέλει τη νίκη για να εξασφαλίσει την πρόκριση στην επόμενη φάση του θεσμού, αλλά η ομάδα του Πειραιά μπορεί να ελπίζει…

H ομάδα του Σίλβα προκρίνεται με θετικό αποτέλεσμα, αλλά ακόμη κι αν χάσει σε περίπτωση όμως που η Άρσεναλ την ίδια ώρα αφήσει βαθμούς απέναντι στη Ντιναμό Ζάγκρεμπ.

Σε περίπτωση ήττας του και νίκης της Άρσεναλ, ο Ολυμπιακός θα έχει δεύτερη ευκαιρία, καθώς οι Λονδρέζοι θα χρειάζονται νίκη με +2 γκολ στο «Καραϊσκάκη» για να προκριθούν εκείνοι σε δύο εβδομάδες.

Ο Πορτογάλος τεχνικός αναμένεται να προχωρήσει αλλαγές στο βασικό σχήμα των «ερυθρολεύκων». Οι Πειραιώτες πιθανότατα θα παραταχθούν με 4-3-3. Ο Ρομπέρτο κάτω από τα δοκάρια, Ελαμπντελαουί και Μαζουακού θα είναι οι δυο μπακ, με τους Ντα Κόστα και Σιόβα στο κέντρο της άμυνας. Οι Μιλιβόγεβιτς, Κασάμι και Καμπιάσο θα είναι οι τρεις της μεσαίας γραμμής, ενώ στην επίθεσης θα αγωνιστούν οι Πάρντο, Σεμπά και Ιντέγε.

Ο τεχνικός του Ολυμπιακού δεν υπολογίζει για τη συγκεκριμένη αναμέτρηση στους Μποτία, Πουλίδο, Βούρο και Μπουχαλάκης, καθώς επίσης και οι παίκτες που δε δηλώθηκαν στη λίστα για τις ευρωπαϊκές διοργανώσεις.

Από την άλλη πλευρά, ο Πεπ Γκουαρντιόλα αναμένεται να παρατάξει τη Μπάγερν Μονάχου με τους Νόιερ, Ραφίνια, Λαμ, Μπενατιά, Μαρτίνεθ, Αλόνσο, Βιδάλ, Μίλερ, Ρόμπεν, Κόστα και Λεβαντόφσκι.

Στο πλευρό του Ολυμπιακού θα βρίσκονται περίπου 6.000 φίλοι του. Τα 4.200 εισιτήρια που πήρε η ομάδα εξαντλήθηκαν, αλλά αρκετοί Έλληνες έχουν προμηθευτεί μεμονωμένα εισιτήρια σε άλλες θύτες. Παρών στο γήπεδο θα είναι και ο πρόεδρος της ΠΑΕ, Βαγγέλης Μαρινάκης.

Διαιτητής του αγώνα θα είναι ο Σουηδός Γιόνας Έρικσον.


Αρσεναλ – Ντιναμό Ζάγκρεμπ

Μπάγερν – Ολυμπιακός


Μπάγερν 3 0 1 13-3 9

Ολυμπιακός 3 0 1 6-6 9

Ντιναμό Ζάγκρεμπ 1 0 3 3-9 3

Αρσεναλ 1 0 3 6-11 3


Billionaire Con Makris joins the luxury hotel party in Adelaide


South Australian Treasurer Tom Koutsantonis welcomed the announcement.

Billionaire Con Makris, whose wealth has been estimated at $1.03 billion in the latest BRW Rich 200 List, is joining the throng of developers setting up new luxury hotels in Adelaide.

Up to 500 new jobs are expected to be created when work begins on the long-neglected site formerly occupied by LeCornu in North Adelaide, following a deal signed by the developer.

The agreement was signed between Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide and the Makris Group to begin work, with one of the hospitality sector’s most iconic names, the Sheraton, agreeing to run a 160-room hotel on the O’Connell Street site.

The $200 million luxury residential, retail and hotel development received planning approval in June, and the hotel construction is now expected to start either late next year or in early 2017 and open its doors in mid-2019.

South Australian Treasurer Tom Koutsantonis welcomed the announcement, saying public investment in Adelaide was helping leverage private investment in and around the city.

“We are well aware of the jobs and investment that the visitor economy brings to our state, which is why our recent state budget included an unprecedented $35 million over two years to promote SA to key international and domestic markets,” he said.

The hotel will offer leisure facilities including a state-of-the-art fitness centre and indoor swimming pool, with innovative work spaces and meeting rooms for business guests and a 300m2 ballroom.
The development will boast eight buildings, including the five-star hotel, a 16-storey apartment tower, public piazza, underground carpark, retail stores and restaurants.

Sheraton is owned by Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, while the Makris Group owns the O’Connell St land and hotel. Sheraton will run the hotel on behalf of Makris.

The development will bring to an end more than 25 years of inactivity on a prime slice of Adelaide real estate. It will be the first Sheraton hotel in South Australia.

The state is attracting more Asian and interstate tourists chasing premium food and wine experiences and has capitalised on the popularity of the new $535 million redevelopment of the Adelaide Oval, which attracts regular sellout crowds of more than 50,000 for Australian Football League matches and is within walking distance of the new Makris project.

The higher tourism numbers were a bright spot in a state economy being hit hard by the looming closure of the car manufacturing industry as Holden prepares to exit by 2017, and heavy job losses as energy company Alinta is preparing to shut down two power stations at Port Augusta in the state’s north, with the loss of 438 jobs.

source:Neos Kosmos

Steven Gerrard, Ian Rush, Jamie Carragher among Liverpool Legends lineup heading to Sydney


Former Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard will wear the famous Reds jersey for the first time since his departure from the club when he leads a star-studded team of former players against an Australian Legends lineup at ANZ Stadium in Sydney early next year.

Former Liverpool FC stars Jamie Carragher, Ian Rush, Didi Hamann and John Arne Riise are also among the side, which will be announced in full in the weeks leading up the match on January 7.

Taking charge of coaching duties will be Gerard Houllier, who led the side between 1998 and 2004.

The famous Reds will take on an Australian team featuring the likes of Mark Bosnich, Brett Emerton, Tony Popovic, Mile Sterjovski, Craig Foster, Ned Zelic and Scott Chipperfield.

Liverpool released a statement quoting Houllier as saying: “It will be a very proud moment to step back into the dugout to manage the Liverpool Legends team. I’m very much looking forward to working with some of the best players in the club’s history, some for the first time and some not. But getting back out in front of the LFC fans will be the most special – wherever you are in the world their support is incredible and will make this game a really special experience.”

Gerrard – who made more than 500 appearances for Liverpool before moving to LA Galaxy – said: “It will be great to play with the Official Liverpool FC Legends, the squad looks like it’s a great set of lads, it’ll be good to get on the pitch with them. Our fans are the best and to play in front of them again will be emotional I’m sure.”

Some 150,000 fans turned out to see English Premier League sides Tottenham and Chelsea play Sydney FC in Sydney earlier this year.


Hamilton jeweller Peter Williams admits to aggravated kidnapping of clockmaker at Beaumont St shop


A PROMINENT Hamilton master jeweller has admitted luring a clockmaker into a back room of his shop before four unknown thugs bashed, robbed and kidnapped him over a debt.

Peter Edward Charles Williams, of Williams Jewellers on Beaumont Street, pleaded guilty in Newcastle District Court on Tuesday to the aggravated kidnapping of the 54-year-old clockmaker in November 2013.

The clockmaker had owed money and had kept several clocks belonging to Islington businessman William Barry Jones when the victim arrived at the jewellers on the promise of work from Williams, whom he had had a sporadic work relationship with for 15 years.

But the victim was instead walked into a back “polishing room” after Williams told him ‘‘in here’’, where the four men confronted him about the debt.

Jones, who has already been handed a suspended two-year jail sentence, was also present.

‘‘The apparent leader of the group said to the [victim] “you owe him money”, indicating to Jones,’’ an agreed statement of facts said.

Williams left the room, turned off the CCTV inside the shop and played no further part in the crime.

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The victim was punched several times in the back room, causing a bloody nose and a cut above an eye.

He was also tied up and taken away in a car before he was driven to a storage shed where jewellery, clocks and other items were taken before he was freed.

‘‘The offender was not owed money by the complainant and the demands for money and property were not made for his benefit,’’ the facts read.

‘‘‘The offender has therefore been involved to the extent that he arranged for the complainant to attend the store, arranged for persons to confront and detain the complainant in the secure rear room of his premises and caused the complainant to enter and be detained by the group inside the room where he was assaulted.’’

‘‘The offender asserts that he [had] no expectation that the complainant would be taken or that weapons would be produced.”

The statement of facts said the four men had not been identified.

It was not expected that there would be any evidence given on their identities.

Sentencing submissions will be held on March 18.