Saturday, November 1, 2014

10 clean cities that make India proud

10 clean cities that make India proud

Last updated on: October 08, 2014 13:46 IST
Chandigarh has emerged as the cleanest city in India as per a study conducted by the ministry of urban development.
Dancers perform during the Republic Day celebrations in the northern Indian city of Chandigarh January 26, 2011. India celebrated its 62nd Republic Day on Wednesday.Ajay Verma/Reuters
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s nationwide ‘Clean India campaign’ or Swachh Bharat Abhiyan is very well received by the masses and celebrities alike.
Be it celebrities like actor Aamir Khan, BSF Jawans or the aam junta - most have joined hands to make this mission a success by 2019. However, according to data available with the Ministry of Urban Development, there are ten cities which are very clean and these are:
State: Chandigarh
The city has emerged as the cleanest city in India as per a study conducted by the ministry of urban development.
In order to keep its ranking and reputation as the greenest and cleanest city in India, the administration of Chandigarh along with The Energy and Resources Institute to working towards environment-friendly including use of natural construction material and lower energy consumption.
Chandigarh is also on the way to become the country's first solar city by 2016.

Image: Temple tank in Shravanabelagola. Photograph: Courtesy, Dinesh Kannambadi/Wikimedia Commons
In 2008, a citizen group in Mysore started a movement called Let’s do it! campaign to clean up not only the city but the entire country.
The response to this campaign has been huge. The youth in the city are spreading awareness on what each one of them can do individually and collectively to keep Mysore clean.

Image: Vehicles move over a bridge built over the river Tapi at Surat, in Gujarat. Photographs: Amit Dave/Reuters
State: Gujarat
The diamond city of Gujarat follows high standard of cleanliness at public places. The civic authority in the city is very strict about cleanliness on roads and public places.

Image: Prime Minister Narendra Modi launching the cleanliness drive for Swacch Bharat Mission from Valmiki Basti, in New Delhi. Photograph: PIB photos
 New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC)
State: Delhi
NDMC has intensified its cleaning operations after the launch of Swach Bharat campaign. Volunteers have even identified highly populated belts where they can spread their cleanliness drive.
NMDC is also keen to clean the backlanes of crowded colonies.

Image: Sports enthusiasts exercising on a clean road in New Delhi. Photograph: Reuters
Delhi Cantt
State: Delhi
Delhi is also considered a clean city due to the presence of various citizen forums that are actively involved in various cleanliness drives across the city.

Image: Mukkombu, a famous tourist spot in Tiruchirappalli. Photograph: Courtesy, Tiruchirappalli Tourism
State: Tamil Nadu
Tiruchirappalli is a city with amazing tourist spots. The citizens surely know how to keep their city clean. Tourists who have visited the city will tell you about clean habits that each one in the city follows. 

Image:XLRI, Jamshedpur. Photograph: Rediff archives
State: Jharkhand
Jamshedpur adheres to a high standard on sanitation and cleanliness.
The steel city is totally sanitised and citizens here believe that healthy living is utmost important and for this purpose they must adapt to cleaner habits.

Image: Mangalore Town Hall. Photograph: Courtesy, Premkudva/Wikimedia Commons
State: Karnataka
In Mangalore, the popular Nirmala Nagara Yojana is a very effective scheme to implement cleanliness in the city.
Volunteers of this scheme arranges for collection of garbage in a segregated manner from every household, the garbage so collected is later classified into different categories which can be used as a landfill material or used for making compost.

Image: Bandstand, Rajkot. Photograph: Courtesy, Jadia Gaurand/Wikimedia Commons.
State: Gujarat
Rajkot is the fastest growing city in the country. The city's civic body, resident forums are actively involved in keeping the city clean.

State: Uttar Pradesh
Kanpur is the biggest city in Uttar Pradesh with high industrial growth rate.
The city was not so clean few year ago, but currently, the city had made it to the list of clean cities in the country.
The credit for maintaining cleanliness goes to the local authorities and citizens who follow strict civic rules.

Islamic State: Militants kill 50 from Iraqi Anbar tribe

Islamic State: Militants kill 50 from Iraqi Anbar tribe

A damaged police station is seen in the Anbar province town of Hit on 6 October 2014  
The people who died are believed to have been displaced from the town of Hit, seized by IS
Militants from Islamic State (IS) have killed at least 50 members of an Iraqi tribe in western Anbar province, officials and tribal leaders say.
The men and women from the Al Bu Nimr tribe are reported to have been lined up and shot in retaliation for resisting the jihadists.
A number of people from the same tribe were also found dead in mass graves earlier this week.
IS militants control large areas of Iraq and neighbouring Syria.
Meanwhile, AFP news agency quoted the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights as saying that at least 100 IS fighters had been killed in three days of fighting for the strategic Syrian border town of Kobane.
On Friday, some 150 Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga fighters crossed from Turkey to join Syrian Kurds who have been defending the town against IS for six weeks.
The Observatory says that more than 950 people have died in the battle, more than half of them from IS.
Deliberate strategy A local official told the Associated Press news agency that the Sunni Muslim tribesmen and women were killed on Friday in the village of Ras al-Maa, north of the provincial capital Ramadi.
Faleh al-Issawi said many members of the tribe had to flee their homes near the town of Hit last month when it was captured by IS.
The Al Bu Nimr tribe had joined the Shia-dominated government's campaign against IS.
There have been many other such killings, as pressure mounts on the tribes to swing one way or the other.
Analysts say mass killings are also a very deliberate strategy by IS to spread terror in their opponents.
One local official, Sabah Karhout, described the killings in Anbar province as a crime against humanity and called for more international support for Sunni tribes fighting the militants in Anbar.
US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel said the killing of Sunni tribesmen in Iraq by Islamic State fighters was the brutal "reality of what we're dealing with" in the conflict.
The US carried out an air drop of food supplies, the first of its kind, to the Al Bu Nimr tribe just a few days ago.
IS has taken over large parts of Anbar province as it expands its territory, currently about one-third of both Iraq and Syria.
The BBC's Jim Muir says the recently-formed Iraqi government is trying to win the Sunni tribes over, seeing them as a key element in the fight against IS, which in turn is trying to deter them from that course.
But Baghdad has not yet succeeded in persuading the bulk of the tribes to turn on IS.
The tribes want guarantees that they will be given a serious degree of devolution for their areas and a real say in national decision-making, our correspondent adds.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Yes, Celebs Had Their iCloud Accounts Hacked. No, You Shouldn't Shut Yours Off

Yes, Celebs Had Their iCloud Accounts Hacked. No, You Shouldn't Shut Yours Off

Back in May, Jennifer Lawrence joked to MTV: "My iCloud keeps telling me to back it up, and I'm like, I don't know how to back you up. Do it yourself."

The release of numerous nude photos of celebrities over the past several days was apparently made possible by a group of determined hackers who broke into the iCloud accounts of Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton and others. Because photos are backed up to iCloud automatically from iPhones — and to Google+ on Android — there has been a spate of articles explaining how you can shut off this functionality to “protect” yourself from being similarly victimized. The Mirror, in typical tabloid fashion: “Celebrity nude photo hacking: How to disable iPhone iCloud backups and keep your pictures safe” you’d expect. But the normally sober Will Oremus at Slate: “How to Not Back Up Your Naked Selfies to the Cloud” seems to have gotten caught in the frenzy too. Ignore them both. And everyone else who tells you it’s better not to use cloud backup. Instead, take some simple steps to get safer and smarter.
Why not just turn it all off?
Simple, it’s about relative risk. You need to consider the chance that someone is going to hack your cloud account against the chance you’re going to lose your phone. While there’s no doubt that the group responsible for revealing more of Selena Gomez than she hoped was determined, the odds anyone is interested in you aren’t particularly great. But the chance your phone will be damaged beyond repair, lost, or stolen is pretty good. When that happens, you won’t just lose the photos on it, but also your contact info, calendar and possibly even some e-mail, depending on how things are configured there.
Oh, and if someone has your phone, there’s a good chance they can get into it and access your pictures anyway. Yes, you can wipe that all out remotely on both iOS (with Find My iPhone) and Android (using this technique). Both of those use cloud services, by the way. So you could turn off the photo backup and use them anyway, but why not just secure your cloud account instead?
The answer turns out to be pretty simple and slightly complex at the same time. The first thing you need to do is use a good password for iCloud or for your basic Google/Gmail account. Hackers love it when you make their life easy by using “password” or “1234″ so you’ll obviously want to go above and beyond. Throw in punctuation, use miXed capS and lowercase, add in s0m3 numb3rs. Sure, you want it to be easy enough to type, so play around with this on your smartphone. But remember that complexity is your friend. (Google has some good advice.)
Also remember that your password can be reset by having a link sent to the e-mail address associated with your account. That’s a huge vulnerability if that account has a lousy password. The complexity of maintaining different, elaborate passwords is frustrating. I can’t keep track of the different variations I use, so I got myself LastPass a few years ago. Others swear by 1Password. Neither works very well on the iPhone itself because of limitations in the way Apple supports browser add-ons, but those should be fixed in iOS 8. Even now, though, LastPass is on my phone, secured by a master password that protects a list of my other passwords called the “vault”. When I forget one, I can look it up. Your Notes file or Word document with a list of passwords, backed up to your Dropbox, is a hackers dream. Print a copy, delete it from the cloud and your device, and get a password manager.
A lot of this stuff seems like it shouldn’t be my job?
That’s an entirely fair point. The second most egregious part of the celebrity hacking (after the unconscionable privacy violation) has been blaming the victims, as if they did something wrong. What’s wrong is that security is too damn hard and the way all of this works is beyond incomprehensible. I defy anyone to accurately explain how iCloud photo backup currently works.
But I need better security now, there’s something I can do, right?
Yes, in the meantime, both iOS and Android allow you to use 2-factor authentication and you should borrow a page from Nike and “just do it.” In 2-factor, you have to not only enter a password, but also a code that you receive through another means to ensure it’s really you. With Apple, the process involves text messages sent to “trusted devices” and the process is laid out in a pretty clear FAQ. It may sound inconvenient, but once you’ve established that a device is trusted, you won’t constantly be nagged to reconfirm that fact. This kind of security can be very effective against the kind of hack the celebrities fell victim to because it can block account access from a computer that isn’t already verified.
That said, Apple’s implementation of 2-factor security is incomplete right now, as TechCrunch reports. It’s still possible to grab a PhotoStream from iCloud without using the second factor, which is another hole Apple needs to plug in a hurry. Google, incidentally, has a more comprehensive 2-step offering. In addition to sending codes via text message, it can use a special app called an authenticator (which works even if you have no cell coverage) or can call you and read you a code. Apple didn’t respond to TechCrunch’s inquiry about expanding 2-factor to do more, but it seems certain to do so in the near future.
Is there more I can do?
On the other hand, if you’re really interested in security, you can encrypt your data. That’s hard with automatic backup function like PhotoStream on iCloud. But it’s possible for sensitive files or important e-mails. Forbes privacy guru Kashmir Hill posted an explainer on sending and receiving encrypted e-mail, for example. Online backup services like CrashPlan use strong encryption that renders your files a bunch of digital gibberish if the servers are accessed without your keys. A tool like CloudFogger can add a layer of encryption to your files on Dropbox, Microsoft’s OneDrive or Google Drive. The use of VPN software can help keep you secure on public WiFi.

Last thoughts?
Yes, the weakest link in most security turns out to be the human element, not the technology per se. A lot of sites let you engage in password resets using security questions. iCloud is one of those. When you’re famous — or just semi-open on Facebook — it’s often really easy to guess the answers to those without being the person about whom they’re being asked. This presents a problem for which the solution is again easy and hard. The easy part is to use absurd security questions like “What is the last name of your favorite elementary school teacher?” instead of “What was the name of your first pet?” There’s a good chance the former isn’t on Facebook while the latter might well be. Or maybe you told David Letterman about Scruffles once. (With 2-factor, the security questions aren’t a vulnerability by the way.)
The fact is your data is a tempting target, even if you aren’t the world’s most famous actress at the moment. And it’s very much up to Apple, Google and Microsoft (along with Dropbox, et al.) to do a better job of making it easier to protect that data from prying eyes. But at the same time, services like automatic cloud backup are hugely valuable. What was the once the catastrophic loss of possibly years worth of photos is now a mere inconvenience thanks to the cloud. Phone upgrades are routine as you pull all your information from an automatic backup you don’t even need to manage.
The last thing you want to do is stop using all those features just because things went wrong. You didn’t stop using your credit cards after the Target hack (nor will you if this Home Depot situation turns out to be worse). Don’t become a cloud Luddite just because security there isn’t perfect. Treat it like driving, which is inherently dangerous, but usually works out for the best: Make it as safe as you can, know that innovation will make in better over time, and be careful.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Prince George's first steps

 THE world has followed his every move but now Prince George's first steps are grabbing all the attention.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Dutch sending police, want to secure MH17 crash site: PM

Dutch sending police, want to secure MH17 crash site: PM

The Netherlands is sending 40 unarmed police to the crash site of flight MH17 in rebel-held Ukraine and seeking means to "further stabilise the area", Prime Minister Mark Rutte said Thursday.
"We're examining means to further stabilise the surroundings... it requires international discussions, it requires a legal mandate," Rutte said, amid growing concern that the site has not been secured and all of the 298 bodies, most of them Dutch, not recovered.
"It's absolutely not certain that this is all going to work. It's very complex and requires many partners," Rutte told journalists.
"This must happen very carefully, which is why the cabinet is seeking ways to strengthen our commitment on the ground in the coming days, but that will happen step-by-step and very carefully," Rutte said.
A bolstered team of 23 investigators will be sent to the area, "accompanied by 40 unarmed royal military policemen," Rutte said.
The police will also be tasked with helping to recover bodies, he added, describing the security situation in the area as "changing".
He refused to comment on reports that the Netherlands and Australia are drafting a new UN Security Council resolution to allow armed police or troops to secure the crash site.
"The cabinet is working on several options that should help to create a more stable environment for bringing back the remaining victims," Rutte said.
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, whose country lost 28 citizens in the disaster, said that there was still a need for a rigorous search of the site and that 50 Australian officers were on stand-by in London.
At the crash site in eastern Ukraine, the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) monitoring mission said that an Australian policeman had been inspecting the security situation in the area.
"The Australians are getting a sense of the security for the area, they're mapping it, they're getting a sense of where the crash sites are," OSCE spokesman Michael Bociurkiw said.
Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was shot down with 298 people on board a week ago over rebel-held territory in eastern Ukraine in as-yet unexplained circumstances.
Dutch authorities say they can only be sure that 200 corpses have been recovered and no recovery efforts appear to be underway for more bodies or remains.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Godzilla in Malaysia? Godzilla, King Kong, Ultraman, Thor, Ironman and Rosmah Caused the Sinkhole

Meme including Thor and Loki

KUALA LUMPUR: KL Monorail service from Hang Tuah station to Jalan Imbi temporarily suspended due to two large sinkholes here have sparked off the creative juices of Malaysian creating a tide of funny memes on the Internet

Here are some:


- See more at:

Maybe footballer Luis Suarez bit the road and caused it to collapse...

Friday, June 27, 2014

UK summit on sexualized violence: ‘A time warp in the wrong direction’

UK summit on sexualized violence: ‘A time warp in the wrong direction’

By — June 15, 2014
I've spent this past week in London at the Global Summit to End Sexual Violence in Conflict hosted by UK Foreign Secretary William Hague and UNHCR Special Envoy Angelina Jolie. As the hosts noted, it was an historic gathering of ministers and other government representatives, UN officials, the ICRC, and civil society—including our Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in Conflict.
On the positive side, it was the first such global meeting focused on rape in conflict and we can use it to push governments to take meaningful action to address the complexities of taking action to stop rape and gender violence (in conflict).
On the negative side, the segregation of NGO activities to the “Fringe,” literally a floor below the panels and ministerial discussions, was in the view of many, including me, a deliberate decision on the part of the UK Foreign Office to put to one side and diminish the reality of the critical role that civil society always plays in pressuring governments to do what they should do anyway. For many of us who have been involved in various global campaigns involving civil society, governments, and UN agencies over the past couple of decades, being at this summit was like a time warp in totally the wrong direction.
Despite intense and continued discussions with the Foreign Office in the weeks and months leading up to the summit about the exclusion of civil society from any meaningful inclusion in the panels and discussions held on the floor above us, the Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in Conflict and other NGOs were consistently met with “no” when we made even small suggestions of ways to include NGOs in the discussions. The request by the Nobel Women’s Initiative for a meeting between Mr. Hague and the four Nobel Women at the summit—Leymah Gbowee, Shirin Ebadi, Tawakkol Karman, and myself—was met with deafening silence.

SOFEPADI President and prominent DRC activist Julienne Lusenge, seen here at the Fringe with UNHCR Special Envoy Angelina Jolie. (Andrew Parsons/i-Images/Crown Copyright)
On the positive side, there was extensive media coverage of people at the summit—including grassroots activists on the frontlines of the fight against violence against women and survivors of sexual violence in conflict. People streamed through the various events, exhibits, films, and activities held in the Fringe and saw what civil society has been doing for decades to fight against sexual violence in conflict. Events by the campaign, including the opening of the fabulous photographic exhibit “Beauty in the Middle” and the launch of “Survivors United for Action” were absolutely packed with people spilling outside the exhibit/launch areas in the Fringe just trying to get a peek or hear a word. They were outstanding events as were others by fantastic NGO members of the campaign, such as WILPF, Sonke Gender Justice, Physicians for Human Rights, Human Rights Watch—and too many others to name.
On the positive side, 123 governments participated, including 60-70 at the ministerial level. On the negative side, only a small handful of that number made any concrete commitment toward addressing the issue while most spoke in vague generalities about what they’ve done in the past, which isn’t much, to be honest, and nothing about what they intended to do from the summit forward.
On the positive side, my sister Nobel Laureate Leymah Gbowee, who spoke in the opening plenary on behalf of the campaign, made the links between gender inequality and violence against women, between militarism and violence against women, and noted the decades-long work on the frontlines. And in the closing plenary, our colleague and member of the campaign, Dr. Denis Mukwege of Panzi Hospital, also spoke to the realities of dealing with ending sexual violence in conflict. (Yes, the organizers did let these two members of the campaign/civil society speak—and that was it.)
On the negative side, the summit in general was kept narrowly focused on “rape in conflict” and did not address its roots in the continuum of violence against women, in the lack of equality for women in all walks of life, in the staggering inability/unwillingness of governments to even comply with 14-year-old UN Resolution 1325 on women, peace and security, which recognizes the need for women to be fundamentally involved in peace and security issues and requires governments to formulate action plans for its implementation. To date, only 46 of the more than 190 countries in the UN have even drawn up an action plan and almost none of those 46 have carried out the implementation of their own plans of action.
On the positive side, members of the campaign’s advisory committee met for the entire day Saturday—the summit ended midday on Friday—to chart out a course of action for members over the next 18 months. The summit proclaimed that it is “time to act”; we’ve been acting for years and decades. We hope they—the governments—take meaningful action, including putting up the resources necessary to really tackle the various aspects of the violence, i.e., billions of dollars, not the millions pledged.
It is indeed time for governments to act—actually, it is way, way, way beyond time for them to act. Let’s hope they make up for all that lost time with bold action for change. We will certainly be there to push them forward.

WMC’s Women Under Siege is on the advisory committee of the International Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in Conflict.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Cell Phones Cause Cancer

Cell Phones Cause Cancer

tech myths busted
Many consumer technologies rely on energy and therefor emit or use some form of radiation. Even radio waves are a form of radiation, and since cell phones use them, there’s been concern that having a source of radiation close to our heads could cause cancer. This has been backed up by an alarming report from the World Health Organization which labeled cell phones a “Class B Carcinogen”.
You’d expect that to be based on some fairly hefty evidence, right? Actually, the WHO report is less damning than it sounds in headlines. Class B simply means that a study has indicated that there might be a link, but the link is too weak to be definitive. Meanwhile, numerous other studies have found no link. This includes a massive Danish study involving 350,000 people that was released in late 2011.
Further evidence against the risk of cancer can be found in what we know of physics. Radiation comes in multiple forms, and humans only need to worry about radiation energetic enough to damage DNA. Ultraviolet rays from the sun, which can cause skin cancer, are over 400,000 times more energetic than those emitted from cell phones. Low energy waves like radio can’t hurt DNA, and that means they can’t cause cancer.

Everything Electronic Causes Cancer

tech myths
This means that what holds true for cell phones should hold true for other wireless devices, as well. The rise of wireless networks has caused distress about what all those waves bouncing through the atmosphere might do to our cells. The answer is simple – nothing.  Sleeping on a bed made of wireless routers would be uncomfortable, but it’s not going cause cancer.
Some users become concerned because of another alarming effect. Heat. As electronics are used, they put out heat, and that heat is absorbed by our bodies. That’s why your thighs are warm after using a laptop.
Computers can be harmful if they’re too hot, but the problem isn’t limited to electronics. Dermatologists have long known that constant exposure to heat can cause scaly, discolored skin which is often permanent. A hot computer can cause this – as can a heating blanket, seat warmer, fireplace or oven.
While skin discoloration and minor burns can be a problem to a handful of people, there’s no evidence that normal, intermediate use of a computer will cause cancer. The lesson from dermatology is simple. If something is hot, don’t hang around it too long.


This is merely a handful of tech myths. There are plenty more out there, ranging from the believable to the utterly outrageous. Have you heard a tech myth that you later found out wasn’t true? Tell us about it in the comments.

Sunday, April 20, 2014


During a visit to the Gulf kingdom of Qatar, Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekçi said Turkey planned to invest $130 billion in its energy sector and $110 billion in its transportation sector, adding that Qatar was key to realizing this vision
  • by Daily Sabah

  • Published : 20.04.2014 22:55:26

Qatar top in Turkey's economic vision
ISTANBUL — While Turkey seeks better business ties with Qatar, Turkish Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekçi arrived with a delegation of senior executives of NGOs and businessmen to hold talks with Qatar's Prime Minister Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani. Afterward, he visited with Business and Trade Minister Mohammad Al Thani, Qatar Investment Authority President Ahmad al-Sayed and Ashgal Public Works Authority President Ali al-Mawlawi. As a part of his official visit, Zeybekçi also participated in the Turkish-Qatar Business forum in Doha.

Speaking at the Turkish-Qatar Business forum in Doha, Zeybekçi said, "In the next 10 years, we plan to invest $130 billion (TL 276.2 billion) in the energy sector, $110 billion in the transportation sector, more than $10 billion in information and communication technologies. And we have put Qatar in first place in our foreign economic vision. We will soon deliver good news to our Qatari brothers regarding much longer visas, residence permits and limitless residence permits."

Zeybekçi emphasized that he was pleased to be in Qatar and that there are brotherly and historic ties between Qatari and Turkish people. The Turkish minister said that economies such as Turkey and Qatar could direct the world economy in the new era. 

"Qatar has made $774 million in foreign direct investment in Turkey until today. Turkish contracting companies have carried out 117 projects worth $13.5 million in Qatar. Qatar is a No. 1 partner in terms of cooperation, foreign economic vision and brotherhood and this will stay that way," said Zeybekçi.

Zeybekçi also said that Turkey is proud of the fact that Qatar will host the 2014 World Cup. Qatar's Minister of Economy and Trade Ahmed bin Jassim Al Thani underlined the importance of the relations between two countries and said, "We will make efforts to develeop these relations further. We agree on this subject. It is of great importance for the private firms to share their experiences. In accordance with our 2030 goals, we aim for a strong economy which will be able to survive without depending on natural sources."

Qatar will host the 2022 World Coup and Turkey is aiming to get Turkish companies involved in new projects in the country. The trade volume between Turkey and Qatar was $24 million (TL 51 million) in 2003.

Iron and steel products, electrical machinery and equipment, motor vehicles and parts, home textile products, furniture and food are among the main export items to Qatar. Natural gas, plastic products, chemical products are the major items which Turkey imports from Qatar.

Turkish investments in Qatar are mainly in the fields of consultancy services and contracting and sub-contracting. Qatar is one of the most important markets for Turkish business circles in the Middle East with huge natural and economic resources. The country offers lots of opportunities for Turkish exporters and contractors. This potential has attracted Turkish businessmen in the last decade and the trade relations between Turkey and Qatar have also developed in this period.

In order to complete the legal framework of bilateral commercial and economic relations, Turkey and Qatar have signed a number of agreements, including an Agreement on Enhancing Economic and Technical Cooperation, Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (2008) and the Double Taxation Prevention Agreement (2008). The Turkish-Qatari Business Council was also founded in 2006 in order to develop and enhance bilateral economic cooperation between both countries' business circles.



  • Published : 18.04.2014 23:53:49
Climate change and drought in the Middle East
Tuğba Evrim Maden 

Reports about climate change were published after a series of meetings in preparation for a climate summit to be held in New York on Sept. 23, 2014. In the first report published in September 2013, wide coverage was given to the role of humans in climate change.

The second report published in March, emphasized that conflict and immigration due to issues of food production may increase as a result of global warming and extreme weather conditions. The third report, which included outcomes of meetings held on April 13, 2014 in Berlin, argued that food prices will increase by 58 percent across the world by 2050. The report also explained that global emissions resulting from fossil fuels reached their maximum levels between 2000 and 2010 in comparison to previous decades. If these emissions don't decrease by 40-70 percent, global warming will not cease. The need for energy, which increases with intense use of coal, and a growing global population are the main reasons for the increase in carbon emissions. However, tripling the use of clean energy will negate the destructive effects of climate change.

Today, fossil fuels are used to produce 80 percent of our energy. In order to minimize the effects of climate change, this figure should be decreased to 30 percent. The report also suggests that more effort should be placed on utilizing renewable energy sources such as wind and solar power. However, these renewable energy sources require vast annual investments, which may not be financially sustainable.

Due to the effects of climate change, a decrease in the amount of rainfall as opposed to an increase in evaporation rates has been seen in recent years, particularly in the Middle East. Additional restraints caused by climate change, as well as overpopulation, growth of cities, water pollution and ineffective use of energy sources, have contributed to water shortages across the world.

As a result of studies on climate change, we know that the surface temperature of the Middle East will increase by 2.5 to 5.5 degrees Celsius in the coming years, causing a 20 percent decrease in rainfall in the region.

While an increase of 2.5 to 3.5 degrees is expected across Turkey, rainfall will diminish by 25 to 35 percent. This year, precipitation is below previous averages for Turkey and the Middle East. This year's snowfall, which is the main source of surface and ground water, was less than last year's average.

In line with this evidence, it is highly probable that we'll see a worldwide drought next summer. It is predicted that this drought will greatly affect food prices. According to the World Bank's food price index, food prices that were lower in January and February rose in March. Water shortages caused by drought not only affect food production but also energy security.

Especially in such times of water shortage, dams producing hydropower fail to produce electricity.

Turkey in particular is not a water-rich country and experts predict that water shortages will increase with population growth. The water levels of dams in Turkey's two biggest cities, Ankara and Istanbul, are below the 50 percent level. With this month's good rainfall, water levels will at least increase.

The need for potable water in Istanbul and Ankara is provided by dams but alternative projects must be developed to prevent further water shortages. Careful use of water is vital in order to manage the water crisis.

This year is described as the driest year in the last decade and as a result the agricultural sector, which uses an average of 70 percent of all water sources, will be negatively influenced and food prices may increase. The decline in water levels in dams could negatively affect electricity generation and suppliers may have to resort to other sources such as natural gas. In order to plan effectively, we must consider not only the environmental effects of drought but also the social and economic consequences.

The effects of drought can be clearly seen in the Middle East. Under normal conditions, only one-fourth of the world's average precipitation falls in the Middle East. What's worse is that this year rainfall was at its lowest level in 60 years, especially in Jordan. This period of drought was also seen in Lebanon, Iraq and Syria, and adversely affected water sources and agricultural activities. This year, food imports will rise in the Middle East, which is already the biggest importer of food in the world. In Syria, where a civil war still rages, this year's rainfall was half of the annual average. Experts say that drought will be particularly severe in the cities of Aleppo, Idlib and Hama.

As the Syrian civil war severely damaged water distribution systems, from March 2011 onward 4.5 million people migrated within the country while 2.5 million others sought refuge in neighboring countries. The chaos inflicted a heavy blow on the country's agriculture sector. According to the World Food Programme (WFP), the need for grains in Syria was 5.1 tons last year, while this year the amount that will be grown with the present capacity is between 1.7 to 2 million tons. A serious food shortage is expected as international aid organizations also fell short in providing food aid. An increase in refugees fleeing to neighboring counties because of hunger is a serious possibility.

Additionally, the demand for water within a growing population, concern for food security, unproductive use of water resources and the lack of modern irrigation techniques in agriculture causes a major loss of water and further deterioration of the situation. In order to use water efficiently, water management strategies should be regulated and public awareness raised. In addition, climate change will alter the management and functioning of present hydraulic structures (hydroelectric, flood control, drainage and irrigation systems).

Water management affects energy politics, the environment, public health, nature conservation and food security. For these reasons, the damage caused by climate change should be seriously addressed and water management systems should be adapted to new conditions.

* ORSAM Researcher, Dr

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Korean Twin Sisters Become Totally Different After Plastic Surgery

Korean Twin Sisters Become Totally Different After Plastic Surgery

The first photo is the twin sisters before going to Korean liveshow TV 'Let's Beauty'. The main purpose of this program is to help those with special circumstances or people who are too ugly to feel confident in their life.

This lucky twin sisters has got their chance to change their look when they got sponsored by this program. Let's take a look and see the magic
Before plastic surgery
twin sister before after surgery 03
Doctors are discussing about their face structures
twin sister before after surgery 01 plastic korea#2
twin sister before after surgery 02 korea#3
Eyes before and after
twin sister before after surgery 04 korea#4
twin sister before after surgery 05
Side View - Before
twin sister before after surgery 06#6
twin sister before after surgery 07
Front View - Before
twin sister before after surgery 08
twin sister before after surgery 09#9
The last minutes when the twins show up and surprise people on the stage
twin sister before after surgery 10
Thanks to their magician (doctor)
twin sister before after surgery 11 korean#11
The beautiful swans
twin sister before after surgery 12
twin sister before after surgery 13
twin sister before after surgery 14 korean

Friday, February 7, 2014

Boundary lines between countries .

Boundary lines between countries .
Best to have imaginary lines if possible. Only those who don't trust will erect barriers etc.
An interesting collection of country borders photos, from which you will learn how to look borders of neighboring countries, The boundary between some countries - it is only a symbolic line separating pedestrian sidewalk cafes, house and among others - is a high fence with barbed wire. 

Germany / Czech Republic
Germany and Czech Republic Country Border
Germany and Czech Republic Country Border
Ukraine / Poland
Ukraine and Poland Country Border Line
Ukraine and Poland Country Border Line
China / Russia
China and Russia Country Border
China and Russia Country Border
 South Korea / North Korea
South Korea and North Korea
South Korea and North Korea
Sweden / Norway
Sweden and Norway Country Border Rive Bridge Road
Sweden and Norway Country Border Rive Bridge Road
 Canada / United States
Canada and United States Country Border Road
Canada and United States Country Border Road
 Italy / Switzerland (at an altitude of 3,470 meters above sea level)
Italy and Switzerland Country Border Road Mark (at an altitude of 3,470 meters above sea level)
Italy and Switzerland Country Border Road Line Mark
 Mexico / USA
Mexico and USA Country Border
Mexico and USA Country Border
 Netherlands / Germany / Belgium Triangle Point
 Netherlands, Germany and Belgium Triangle Border Pint
 Netherlands, Germany and Belgium Triangle Border Pint
Liechtenstein / Austria
Liechtenstein and Austria Country Border Road Line
Liechtenstein and Austria Country Border Road Line
 Bangladesh / India
Bangladesh and India Country Border Barbed Wire Line
Bangladesh and India Country Border Barbed Wire Line
 Syria / Iraq
Syria and Iraq Country Border Barbed Wire Line
Syria and Iraq Country Border Barbed Wire Line
 India / Pakistan
India and Pakistan Country Barbed Wired Border
India and Pakistan Country Barbed Wired Border Photo
The Netherlands / Belgium
The Netherlands and Belgium   Country Border House
The Netherlands and Belgium Country Border House
 Switzerland / Liechtenstein
Switzerland and Liechtenstein Country Border River Bridge
Switzerland and Liechtenstein Country Border River Bridge
 China / India
China and India Country Border
China and India Country Border Photo
 Portugal / Spain
Portugal and Spain Country Border Mark
Portugal and Spain Country Border Mark
 Argentina / Paraguay / Brazil River Triangle Point
Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil River Country Border Triangle Point
Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil River Country Border Triangle Point Photo
 Russia / Belarus
Russia and Belarus Country Border Road
Russia and Belarus Country Border Road

 Austria, Slovakia and Hungary Country Triangle Border Point
 Austria, Slovakia and Hungary Country Triangle Border Point

India and Myanmar Country Barbed Wire BorderIndia and Myanmar Country Barbed Wire Border Photo