Caricom expresses concern over hardships, sufferings in Venezuela

first_imgTensions in the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela continue to escalate resulting in an increase in hardships and suffering of that population and the imposition of sanctions are making matters worse.The Caribbean Community (Caricom) on Saturday reiterated that Venezuelans should be allowed to decide their own future in accordance with the principles of the United Nations (UN) Charter.According to Caricom, it is deeply concerned by the recent further escalation of tensions in the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and the ensuing increase in hardship and suffering of the population exacerbated by the imposition of sanctions.In a release to the media on Saturday, Caricom said that there must be non-intervention, non-interference and the prohibition of threat or use of force.It also maintains that there should be respect for the rule of law, human rights and democracy.“As Caricom has ceaselessly advocated, for this objective to be attained, there has to be a meaningful and internal dialogue between the contending parties. This dialogue must determine how best the crisis can be resolved within the confines of the Constitution and the rule of law, whether by referendum, elections or any other agreed mechanism. Nothing short of this will lead to the quelling of this crisis or provide the relief that all Venezuelans desire,” the release stated.According to the Caricom, pending this, there must be a commitment to the delivery of humanitarian aid in a manner that is “not politicised but which uses United Nations mechanisms that have been used over the years for the impartial and effective delivery of humanitarian relief”.On Friday last, the Trump Administration imposed sanctions on six high-ranking members of the Venezuelan security forces and revoked the visas of other officials and their relatives in the latest effort to pressure President Nicolas Maduro into leaving office.The sanctions are in response to the blocking of humanitarian aid convoys last week while the visa revocations on dozens of individuals are intended to punish people who have flourished amid the South American country’s dire economic crisis, the special representative for Venezuela, Elliott Abrams, told US reporters.Meanwhile, Opposition Leader Juan Guaido faces possible arrest upon return after he slipped out of the country in violation of a Supreme Court order to stay within the country’s borders.Reports in the media on Saturday are that Guaido left Venezuela last week to join aid convoys in Colombia and then met with US Vice President Mike Pence as well as other regional leaders to step up pressure on Maduro to resign.Maduro’s Government has closed borders with Brazil and Colombia in order to block what he says is an attempt by the US to proceed with its regime change plans.last_img read more

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Profits coming in sales volume

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week At Miami-based Lennar Corp., one of the nation’s largest publicly traded home builders, annual net profits soared about 38 percent in 2003 and 26 percent in 2004. Dallas-based Centex Corp., another builder, reported net increases of 49 percent and 22 percent for the same years. “Home builders are probably a good barometer for the strength of the housing market,” said Andy Sands, executive vice president and managing director for Los Angeles-based ING Realty Partners, which invests in new condominium complexes, condo conversions and single-family housing. “They’ve got so much product around the country that they’re seeing a statistically significant number of transactions.” But for some, the money is now to be made on volume of sales, not on growing profit margins. According to the National Association of Home Builders, the average profit margin on a new house dropped to 9.8 percent in 2004 from 12 percent in 2002. The major reasons for the decline were an increase in the price of land and construction and materials costs as a percentage of the price of a home. The Southland’s booming housing market has been a boon to home builders, finance companies and real estate agents, but none will claim to have received an unfair advantage. If anything, many believe profits have become even harder to come by as competition in those professions has grown more intense. The median price of a California home – the price at which half of homes sold for more and half for less – rose a combined 96.4 percent between September 2001 and September 2005, according to the California Association of Realtors. The increase from $276,960 to $543,980 is equivalent to average appreciation of 18.4 percent per year. To be sure, the rise has led to increased profits for practically all associated with the housing industry. The results came from a survey of the 10 largest builders in each of the country’s 50 largest metropolitan areas. “The share made up by the lot price is increasing over time,” said Rose Quint, director of survey analysis for the NAHB, based in Washington, D.C. “We know that because land prices are going up all across the country.” Back in 1949, land accounted for just 11 percent of a home’s selling price. Last year, it was 26 percent, up from 23.5 percent in 2002. Construction costs rose, as well – although not as much – to 51.7 percent last year from 50.7 percent in 2002. “There’s only so much they can raise prices,” Sands said. “Builders are looking for that land, and they’re having to pay more to get it.” Although exact figures are difficult to pinpoint because of sharp differences between urban and rural properties, insiders say land values have risen dramatically in Southern California, as commercial and residential developers battle for a shrinking number of usable properties. In coastal and urban communities, such as the West San Fernando Valley and Long Beach, potential urban infill land prices have soared in just the last 12 months. Even in the San Gabriel Valley, long a low-density, suburban region, builders are tightly competing for suitable properties. Brad Talt, a Pasadena-based partner at developer Jacobsen Family Holdings LLC, said in one city he has seen land values rise 67 percent. “The last six months, we’re really getting choked,” Talt said. Like many in the industry, Sands views the Southland’s high home prices as a basic function of demand far outstripping supply. Los Angeles County alone adds about 170,000 residents each year, according to CAR, roughly 50,000 new households. But the rate of new and infill construction is much lower. Still, as the red-hot housing market cools – ever so slightly – Sands cautions against riskier investments such as condo conversions and even new condo construction. “The better question, really, is are we building the right product for the demand?” he said. “By the time you’re ready to hire a contractor and build it, who knows where the costs will be?” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

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Bindra calls for improvement in athlete support system

first_imgNew Delhi, Dec 19 (PTI) Olympic gold medallist shooter Abhinav Bindra today called for improvement in the professional support system of the athletes if the country wants to produce a continuous line of top performers.Bindra said all the National Sports Federations need to have a professional set up and appointment of a High Performance Manager.”Indian sports have come a long way. But there is still much distance to travel. Until we address and improve the overall depth of professional support of our athletes, we will not have the consistency that is needed to keep on replacing the top athletes,” Bindra said.The Beijing Olympics 10m air rifle gold medallist was speaking at the launch of ELMS (Excellence in Learning and Mastering of Sports and Physical Literacy) Foundation, of which he will be one of the leading lights, along with Pullela Gopichand.”I wonder what results can be produced if we introduce and groom our most talented youngsters systematically in a scientific and professional manner. While I have achieve my dreams and have been successful in my own sporting career, I now have new dreams and wish to empower the next generation of talents in a meaningful and sustainable way,” he said.”We want to develop the best minds in the world regarding the aspects of physical literacy, sports performance, administration and management. We intend to train high performance managers.”Talking about High Performance Managers, Bindra said, “One of the recommendations of the committee to draft the National Sports Code of which I am a member was to mandate each of the NSFs to have a HPM on its staff. The results a particular sport achieves will be directly proportional to the quality of the person who is appointed HPM.advertisement”The draft code is yet to be notified but I am delighted by the recent comments of the sports minister that this will be soon required for all federations. This will not be a moment too soon but that said we will need to train and equip these people,” he said with Sports Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore sitting by his side at the dais.”A High Performance Manager is someone who has an intrinsic deep knowledge of sports and then oversee the whole sport in a result-oriented mindset. They are not bound to one sport and can seamlessly move and develop different sports.”We want an individual who has gain a world perspective of sports and who can then improve our local situation here.” PTI PDS AH AHlast_img read more

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Rich Swann ‘suspended indefinitely’ by WWE for domestic violence

first_imgWorld Wrestling Entertainment Superstar Rich Swann has been “suspended indefinitely” after he was arrested in Florida and charged with kidnapping and false imprisonment.WWE released a statement on their website (www.wwe.com) saying: “WWE has zero tolerance for matters involving domestic violence, and per our policy, Rich Swann has been suspended indefinitely following his arrest.”BREAKING NEWS: WWE has zero tolerance for matters involving domestic violence, and per our policy, Rich Swann has been suspended indefinitely following his arrest. https://t.co/7GBJIu3Tyu- WWE (@WWE) December 10, 2017The former WWE Cruiserweight champion was arrested in Gainesville, Florida and the Gainesville Police Department posted the incident report on Twitter.Due to numerous national media requests…mugshot and arrest report for Rich Swann can be found here: https://t.co/PvQj5B7A7n(Redactions made in accordance with FSS 119 that protects home address/phone of domestic violence victim.) pic.twitter.com/EgjbzTbjNq- Gainesville Police (@GainesvillePD) December 10, 2017Swann was driving home with his wife, who is also a wrestler, after one of her matches when the two got into an argument, according to a report in TMZ sport.When she tried to exit the vehicle, Swann allegedly tried to grab her arm and put her in a headlock, allegations which Swaan has denied in the police report.Swann was slated to face Drew Gulak in a number one contenders match for the Cruiserweight title.last_img read more

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