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Top Mexican Drug Lord Killed In Gunfight

first_imgBy Dialogo December 17, 2009 Arturo Beltran Leyva, a Mexican drug kingpin nicknamed the “boss of bosses,” was killed in a dramatic shoot-out with the navy south of Mexico City, the government said Thursday. Beltran Leyva was Mexico’s third most wanted man, with a 1.5-million-dollar (one-million-euro) reward on offer for information leading to his capture. The leader of a breakaway faction of the notorious Sinaloa drug cartel was killed late Wednesday, along with six cartel members, after a months-long manhunt, said the office of President Felipe Calderon. “An intense battle between presumed members of Beltran Leyva’s criminal cartel organization and members of the Mexican Marine infantry in the city of Cuernavaca resulted in the death of seven members of the Sinaloa cartel,” a statement read. Beltran Leyva, 47, led a feared drug-trafficking operation of international reach and shared blame in drug violence that has left more than 14,000 dead in Mexico in the past three years. One soldier died during Wednesday’s operation at a block of flats in Cuernavaca, a popular weekend retreat outside the capital with a population of 350,000. The firefight was so intense that many residents had to be evacuated to a nearby sports stadium, local radio reported. The operation had been planned for months after extensive intelligence work, admiral Jose Luis Vergara, a Navy spokesman, told a local television station. The Beltran Leyva cartel was formed after a split with the powerful Sinaloa cartel headed by fugitive drug kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman. Guzman escaped from a Mexican prison in 2001 and appears in Forbes magazine’s world billionaires list. Arturo Beltran Leyva reportedly worked with the Colombia Norte Del Valle cartel to distribute cocaine and other drugs in the United States. In August 2008, the US Justice Department unsealed indictments against him and 42 other defendants in connection with drug trafficking. The indictments claimed they had imported and distributed nearly 200 metric tons of cocaine and large amounts of heroin in the United States and smuggled cash proceeds of up to 5.8 billion dollars through the United States and Canada. He was also accused of hiring hitmen “who carried out hundreds of acts of violence in Mexico, including murders, kidnappings, tortures and violent collections of drug debts.” Calderon’s office described Beltran Leyva as an ally of the “Zetas” — former paramilitaries working with the Gulf cartel. One of Arturo Beltran Leyva’s brothers, Alfredo, was arrested in January 2008 in the first major drug capture for the Calderon administration. The conservative Mexican president has staked his office on tackling the drug cartels with a controversial crackdown involving some 50,000 security forces across the country. Drug gang influence extends throughout Mexican society, infiltrating even the police and politicians. Bloody violence between drug gangs, particularly struggles over lucrative smuggling routes into the United States, has left the region along Mexico’s border with the United States one of the most dangerous in the world.last_img read more

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Investigative Journalism Report Reveals ‘Corporate Labyrinth’ of Venezuelan Defense Minister

first_imgBy Voice of America (VOA)/ Edited by Diálogo Staff May 07, 2020 According to the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP), the family of Venezuelan Defense Minister General Vladimir Padrino López was involved in a business network that included 24 companies based in the United States and Venezuela.“His family has built up a web of private companies and real estate in Venezuela and the U.S. worth millions of dollars,” the consortium of investigative centers says in the report.According to the OCCRP, the business network of the Venezuelan minister’s family includes 24 companies in the United States and Venezuela and at least 14 U.S. properties. These properties are currently valued at about $4.5 million.The investigation says that one of the companies is likely Trámites Consulares, Inc., located in Sunrise, Florida, which provides services such as assistance to obtain a Venezuelan passport, translations, and applications for asylum in the United States.The firm’s director is believed to be Padrino’s cousin, Ludmila Padrino Valderrama.The report also mentions Prinmaplast, C.A., a paint company whose director is the general’s wife, Yarazedt Betancourt. The company’s plant in Venezuela is believed to have closed, but would have been able years ago to buy U.S. dollars at preferential rates through the currency exchange control that governed the South American nation for its imports.In March 2020, the United States pressed charges against Padrino and other high-ranking officials, including Nicolás Maduro, for their alleged connections to narcotrafficking.“It remains to be seen whether the March 26 indictment against Padrino will bring more scrutiny to his family members and their businesses and properties in the U.S.,” says the report.last_img read more

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Can employers motivate employees by promoting their health?

first_img 25SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr Companies are always looking for new ways to encourage employees to stay motivated on the job. Unfortunately, this motivation usually comes in the form of new rules or reporting procedures that ultimately feel like additional hoops to jump through to complete the same amount of work.Few companies think critically about what their employees need to perform better at work. The idea of promoting employee health never enters the picture. However, making health a company priority can be a monumental means of boosting productivity and increasing employee morale and relationships.Why Care About Employee Health?Coming into work and sitting at a desk all day can be exceptionally draining on a person mentally. And it also has a number of serious health impacts. Sedentary employees are greater than 10 percent more likely to be obese and are at risk for substantially more serious health problems including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and a number of different cancers. Part of a healthy work lifestyle is to encourage employees to get up and move around the office throughout the day.Small amounts of physical activity throughout the day have even been linked to improved mental health. In fact, those individuals that move around the office are more likely to feel happy, stress free, and energized throughout the day. All of these factors are major contributors to office productivity and overall job happiness. continue reading »last_img read more

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Coronavirus complicates S. Korea flood response as hundreds gather in shelters

first_imgIn neighboring North Korea, state media warned of “torrential” rain, possible flooding, and high winds and waves.While the reports did not mention any specific damage, North Korea has historically been vulnerable to flooding.This year’s heavy rains come during the summer harvest season, raising concerns about food security.The rain appears to be hitting some of the major rice-growing areas of North Korea, and come as anti-coronavirus border closures restricted key agricultural supplies such as fertilizer from China, said Choi Yong-ho, research fellow at the Korea Rural Economic Institute in Seoul.”This flooding will have a negative impact for North Korea’s food supply,” he said. Topics : South Korean officials are working to keep more than a thousand people displaced by flooding safe and healthy with anti-coronavirus measures in place at crowded shelters as the government weighed declaring disaster zones on Wednesday.At least 15 people have been killed and more than 1,500 forced from their homes as 42 consecutive days of rain – South Korea’s longest monsoon in seven years – triggered floods and landslides.More than 1,146 people remained in temporary shelters set up in gyms and community centers as of Wednesday, the Ministry of the Interior and Safety said, with measures implemented at the facilities to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Fabric enclosures were set up for families and individuals, with beds spaced apart to encourage social distancing.Local governments designated managers to check people’s temperatures and screen for any COVID-19 symptoms, and displaced residents were asked to wear masks and wash their hands, health authorities said.South Korea has reported 14,456 coronavirus cases, including 33 new cases as of midnight on Tuesday, with 302 deaths.Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun told a meeting of government officials the health ministry should declare three provinces in northern South Korea as special disaster zones, which would entitle them to receive additional aid from the national government.last_img read more

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Swedish government appoints Green MP to succeed Peter Norman

first_imgSwedish prime minister Stefan Löfven, a Social Democrat, has confirmed Per Bolund as the minister for financial markets, replacing Peter Norman.Last month saw the Swedish population take part in a general election, with the left-leaning coalition falling short of a majority, but with Löfven still electing to form a minority government with the Green Party.Bolund, a Green Party MP, will also become the deputy minister of finance in the new Swedish government.In addition to the appointment of Bolund, Annika Strandhäll is set to become the new social security minister, and in turn will take over from Ulf Krister Petersson as the chairperson of the country’s independent pensions committee. The cross-party group helps form policy on the country’s pension system and was behind the reforms announced for the AP funds.Bolund will now oversee this reform, which the outgoing government announced would be reduced from five funds to three, after accepting recommendations from the independent committee.In 2011, the then government initiated a review into the structure of the AP fund system, including the viability of buffer funds AP1 through AP4, and private equity investor AP6.Bolund, 43, became an MP in 2006 for the Green Party and has since been the economic spokesman.Previously, he was a civil servant in the industry ministry.His predecessor, Norman, began the review of the AP system having previously been in charge of the AP7 fund.The reform of the funds has been a contentious issue in Sweden, with AP3 vice-president Gustaf Hagerud leaving the fund amid speculation about whether it would cease to exist.last_img read more

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MSCI finalises plan to quadruple China A-shares in indices

first_imgIndex provider MSCI has confirmed plans to increase the weight of China A shares in its indices from 5% to 20%, after consulting market participants.This will lift the pro-forma weight of A-shares in the MSCI Emerging Market index to 3.3%, from 0.7%.However, MSCI conceded it should make changes to its initial approach to increasing the number of Chinese stocks it counts in its benchmarks.Remy Briand, chairman of the MSCI index policy committee, said the implementation of an initial 5% inclusion of China A shares had been a “positive experience” for international institutional investors. He said it had fostered an appetite to further increase their exposure to China’s mainland equity market, leading to MSCI’s initial proposal in September last year.“The strong commitment by the Chinese regulators to continue to improve market accessibility, evidenced by, among other things, the significant reduction in trading suspensions in recent months, is another critical factor that has won the support of international institutional investors,” Briand added.However, MSCI has adapted how it intends to increase the number of A-shares within the index, moving from a two-stage to a three-stage process.The index provider said investors and other market participants had flagged that a two-stage process could incur “execution pressure on the implementation dates”.Additionally, a significant proportion of investors asked for mid-cap shares to be included in the MSCI indices jointly with the weight increase in large-cap shares, to allow for a smoother implementation. Source: Eastspring InvestmentsMichelle Qi, EastspringMichelle Qi, chief investment officer for China at Eastspring Investments, the Asian arm of Prudential, said MSCI’s move would increase demand from global asset managers in the next few years.Qi said inflows to the country’s stock markets were estimated to be $70-80bn (€61-70bn) in 2019, with an even larger inflow next year.By the end of 2018, according to statistics from the People’s Bank of China, foreign investors’ equity holdings stood at RMB1.15trn (€150bn), or 6.7% of A-share free-float cap, Qi said. This scale was already close to the equity assets under management of domestic mutual funds, the mainstream local players in the A-share market.“Accordingly, we will see stronger pricing power of foreign investors at onshore market,” she added. “Foreign investors’ investment thesis, research framework and stock pitching preferences have already had, and will continue to have, a growing impact on the A-share market going forward.”MSCI’s initial announced was followed by fellow index provider FTSE Russell. However, some, including ERI Scientific Beta, said they would not be doing the same, citing restrictions to the use of derivatives, limited capacity for rebalancing and the high number of stock-trading suspensions in the mainland Chinese market.last_img read more

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Indonesian President praises China’s role

first_imgEthiopian president hails China’s role in industrialization drive Related China’s President visits Boeng in US We sat down with Indonesian President Joko Widodo for an exclusive interview, to speak on the role of the Asian-African summit. Joko Widodo also spoke on the impact China can have through the meeting President Trump praises President El-Sisi’s leadershiplast_img

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Dean Foods files bankruptcy

first_imgDean Foods, America’s biggest milk processor, filed for bankruptcy on Tuesday stating a decades-long drop-off in U.S. milk consumption is to blame on changing trends and a growing variety of alternatives.The company said it may sell itself to the Dairy Farmers of America, a marketing cooperative owned by thousands of farmers.“Despite our best efforts to make our business more agile and cost-efficient, we continue to be impacted by a challenging operating environment marked by continuing declines in consumer milk consumption,” CEO Eric Berigause said in a statement.Since 1975, the amount of milk consumed per capita in the U.S. has tumbled more than 40%. Americans consumed around 24 gallons per year in 1996, according to government data. That dropped to 17 gallons in 2018.last_img read more

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Boxers Amit, Vikas enter semis

first_imgJakarta: Indian boxers Amit Panghal and Vikas Krishan notched up contrasting victories to enter the semi-finals of their respective weight categories at the 18th Asian Games here on Wednesday.Both of them thus ensured a spot on the podium for themselves as the losers in the last four stage are awarded bronze medals.In the quarter-finals, Amit overpowered Kim Jang Ryong of North Korea by a unanimous 5-0 decision in the men’s light flyweight (49 kilogram) category.Vikas faced a much tougher challenge against Tuoheta Erbieke Tanglatihan of China in the men’s middleweight (75kg) division. The Indian was stretched to the limit by his agile and technically strong opponent before eking out a narrow 3-2 win.In the semi-finals, Amit will take on Paalam Carlo of the Philippines while Vikas will face Kazakhstan’s Amankul Abilkhan.Later in the day, Dheeraj Rangi lost by a unanimous 0-5 verdict to Mongolia’s Chinzorig Baatarsukh in the light welterweight (64kg) quarter-finals.There was bad news for Indian fans in the women’s section as well since Sarjubala Devi lost 0-5 to Chang Yuan of China in the 51kg quarter-finals.Amit was far superior to his opponent and dominated all the three rounds. The bout saw a fast opening round with both boxers coming up with a repeated barrage of punches.Amit repeatedly used a low guard in an attempt to draw the Korean in and create gaps in his defence. At the same time, the Indian’s quickness and superior technique allowed him to maintain a strong defence. Vikas’ middleweight quarter-final bout saw a slow start with both boxers reluctant to be too adventurous, preferring to sit back and size up their opponent instead. (IANS)last_img read more

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FA mulls retrospective bans for diving

first_img(REUTERS) – The Football Association (FA) is considering introducing retrospective bans for players who dive, according to a media report.Diving came under the spotlight yet again after Hull City’s Robert Snodgrass won a spot-kick during a 3-3 draw against Crystal Palace last month and later conceded that the penalty should never have been awarded.The FA will send officials to Scotland to see how the punishment works there, according to the Times.“On the face of it, it’s a good idea. The devil is in the detail, but as a tool to penalise blatant simulation versus ‘did he dive or slip?’ it is now being investigated,” the newspaper quoted an unnamed FA official as saying.“It is being discussed with the SFA (Scottish Football Association) and some FA people are going up to Scotland for a meeting on how it is working.”Premier League managers, including Burnley’s Sean Dyche and West Bromwich Albion’s Tony Pulis, have called for retrospective bans to eradicate diving.last_img read more

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