Cyprus: A new vision for a ghost city
Bordered by barbed wire and out of bounds to all but a handful of Turkish military since the invasion nearly 40 years ago, rapidly crumbling Varosha makes for a haunting image.
Amid recent talk of the possible return of abandoned and derelict area as part of the ongoing negotiations on the Cyprus problem that are expected to resume in the coming weeks, one young Greek Cypriot filmmaker now living in New York has a vision that goes a step further than just a possible return of the area. Vasia Markides is aiming for the so-called ‘ghost town’ and its surrounding region to be turned into Europe’s model ecocity based on sustainability and permaculture.
Vasia is now reaching out to raise much needed money for a thought-provoking film aiming to document this transformation that she hopes will make waves locally, and far beyond the shores of Cyprus. …
Sweden: Police hunt for liquorice thief
Police in southern Sweden are trying to track down a thief who stole 75 kilos of liquorice from the back of a truck while the driver was asleep.
The sweet or salty craving thief struck at a local petrol station where the driver’s truck was parked in the Örkelljunga municipality. Initial reports were that the thief had made off with an entire trailer of liquorice but these were incorrect according to local police.
“That was due to some language confusion. It was about half a pallet that was stolen from the trailer,” said Calle Persson of the Skåne police.
The driver discovered the theft in the afternoon when he woke up from his nap and reported it to the police. It’s unclear whether the liquorice theft was carried out by more than one person. …
A muscular fireman hurled a fire hydrant more than seven metres to capture the title of champion of Switzerland’s newest sport over the weekend in the canton of Aargau.
Adrian Schuler, a member of the Wohlen fire department, threw a 22-kilogram hydrant 7.03 metres on Saturday afternoon to win the first championship of its kind in the country.
The competition was devised as a way to celebrate the department’s 50th anniversary.
The event was inspired by the traditional stone toss event at Alpine farmers festivals.
“We came up with the idea of throwing hydrants instead of stones,” fires department commander Marcel Christian told Blick.ch. …
Australia: ‘Lost world’ discovered in remote Australia
SYDNEY—An expedition to a remote part of northern Australia has uncovered three new vertebrate species isolated for millions of years, with scientists Monday calling the area a “lost world”.
Conrad Hoskin from James Cook University and a National Geographic film crew were dropped by helicopter onto the rugged Cape Melville mountain range on Cape York Peninsula earlier this year and were amazed at what they found.
It included a bizarre looking leaf-tail gecko, a golden-coloured skink and a boulder-dwelling frog, none of them ever seen before. …
South Africa: Grade 6 pupils beat teachers at maths
Some Grade 6 pupils are outperforming their teachers in mathematics tests.
This is the alarming result of a study by Nicholas Spaull, a University of Stellenbosch researcher,City Press reported on Sunday.
The news comes as South Africa’s 707 136 matrics start their final exams on Monday.
The maths pass rate has averaged at 45% since 2008, with most school leavers managing to scrape through with marks of between 40% and 49%.
If Spaull’s research is an indication of things to come, the maths crisis in schools appears to be far from over. …
Can cellphones save lives? Marking a significant shift, Indian healthcare providers are now looking at extending medical services through mobile telephony. This means a cancer patient in a Tamil Nadu district hospital can have the option of consulting a specialist in Kolkata or a heart patient in Meerut can receive treatment from a cardiologist in Bangalore.
Apollo Hospitals — which is already running a telemedicine project — is planning to ramp up its plans of providing medical services through technology like Bluetooth enabled glucometers or stethoscopes to send ECG results or sugar test to its panel of doctors. Last week saw the launch of a 46-member strong conglomeration of hospitals, health insurers, medical service providers under the aegis of NatHealth or the Health Federation of India which among other things plans to provide access to standardized healthcare at reasonable cost. …
The India Times
Homes and businesses have been flooded as heavy wind and rain hit Wales overnight and a clear-up operation is underway.
St Jude Storm has hit Wales overnight causing flooding, cancelled trains and flights and road closures.
But the disruption and damage may not be as widespread as originally feared.
Both Severn bridges were closed from early this morning but were reopened by 7am.
Flooding also briefly shut roads in Cardiff but they too have reopened.
Across the UK, winds speeds topped 99mph in the Isle of Wight and flights were cancelled. …