Bulk water for sale

BULK supplies of water are available in Bathurst, Evans Shire councillors want their constituents to know.
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Councillor Paul Toole said many rural households were suffering water shortages and asked at the last council meeting whether a deal could be arranged with Bathurst City Council to make water available.

Director of engineering David Swan said Evans had a standpipe in its works depot which ratepayers could access after payment.

People can visit Evans Shire Council during office hours and go to the front counter to pay for the water. They may then access the set amount of water from the standpipe.

Mr Swan said the fees were in accordance with the reticulated water rates charged by Bathurst City Council.

Council general manager Graeme Taylor said people must have a way of transporting the water and strict health rules applied to the cartage of drinking water.

Bathurst City Council has a similar system in place.

Full story in the Western Advocate.

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Teen sexually assaulted in front yard

A teenage girl has been sexually assaulted in the front yard of a house in western Sydney.The 15-year-old girl was walking along College Street at Cambridge Park about 5pm yesterday when she was set upon by a man, police said.He dragged her to the front yard of a nearby premises and sexually assaulted her before running away, police said.Message 0424 SMS SMH (+61 424 767 764) or email us or direct message us on Twitter @smh_news with information or images.The girl walked home and told a family member what had happened. She was taken to hospital for treatment.The man is described as Caucasian, more than 1.8 metres tall and weighing about 100 kilograms.AAP
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Pakistan bomb kills seven

A suicide bomber targeted the home of a Pakistani cabinet minister on Monday, killing seven people during mourning for his son, who was assassinated by suspected Taliban, police said.Police said the bomber tried to get into the home of Mian Iftikhar Hussain, information minister in Pakistan’s northwestern province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, in the small town of Pabbi.”Seven people, including three policemen, have been killed and 21 injured,” senior police official Imran Kishore told AFP by telephone from the scene.An intelligence official, speaking on condition of anonymity, from regional headquarters in Peshawar put the death toll at six.AFP
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Planning for 2003 season

PREPARATIONS for next year’s Group 10 season are well underway, with a pre-season meeting at St Pats Sporting Club on Sunday.
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Representatives from the Mudgee Dragons, Bathurst Panthers and St Pats attended the social, with St Pats first grade coach Dave Scott keen to start up the pre-season training.

First grade coach Scott said this year’s limited preparations for the 2002 season saw the competition commence on a flat note.

“It’s a bit disappointing the turn out here today, because we really wanted to get things rolling alot earlier for next year,” he said.

“We’ve had a training run already and we want to get it going at least once a fortnight to be better prepared this time.”

Scott said he was keenly anticipating the shift in focus, from his St Pats Premier League coaching days to becoming just a member of the team under the direction of new coach Jason Writer.

“It’s not looking too bad and we’re getting about 99% of players back.

“There is a couple of spots to fill in the front row and outside backs, but it’s looking good.”

MORE: Read today’s Western Advocate.

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Australia figures lightly

Forty of the Wikileaks cables touch on the Australian presence in Afghanistan.One cable describes how Australian soldiers shot at a man when he failed to stop his car at a checkpoint. Described as an “escalation of force” incident, the cable notes: “Friendly forces engaged the male with small-arms fire … Vehicle drove away.” The man’s injuries were not recorded, but the report notes two children in the car received serious gunshot and shrapnel injuries.Another cable describes how an Australian Army grenade, found in January 2008 in southern Afghanistan, was going to be used in an improvised explosive device. There are several other incidents where Australian mortar rounds or other ordnance are found in Taliban weapons caches.One cable reveals secret talks at the US embassy in Canberra on April 5, 2007, between a senior Defence bureaucrat and the US deputy chief of mission that the then prime minister, John Howard, planned to double the number of Australian troops in Oruzgan province. ”The GOA [government of Australia] … asked that we not publicly mention the decision,” the brief concludes.
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Recognition for police volunteers

INTERNATIONAL Volunteer Day was held yesterday, with over 100 NSW police units thanking the police volunteers across the state., Volunteers donate more than one million hours to the police force each year, completing tasks such as office administration and work in crime prevention campaigns., The ‘Volunteers in Policing’ program began in 1993, and there are now more than 700 volunteers in NSW., Bathurst police Inspector Greg Martin said a morning tea was held at Bathurst police station yesterday to recognise the efforts of the volunteers who work in the Chifley local area command., “Volunteers are necessary to the police force, because they do the work that we would otherwise have to take officers off the front line to do,” he said., “We have around nine volunteers working in the area, and we wanted to join in by saying a big thank you.”, The volunteers at the ceremony were asked to cut a cake, and Chifley local area commander Superintendent Frank Kuiters made a speech., Full story in the Western Advocate.
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Bushfires blamed for power dips

MOMENTARY dips in Bathurst’s power supply have been caused by the bushfires raging across NSW.
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Country Energy regional general manager Daryl Grant said the entire State supply had been affected by the bushfires.

The power dips are most evident when lights go dim.

Transgrid manager (corporate) Joe Zahra said voltage dips occurred automatically as the high-voltage electricity grid protected itself.

Mr Zahra said occasional flames, which conduct electricity, shoot up and make contact with transmission lines, tripping the protection mechanisms.

The system acts like a circuit breaker, kicking in for a fraction of a second.

It then automatically restarts. If there is a continuous short circuit, as would happen if a possum was electrocuted across the lines, then the system stops the electricity flow and must be manually reset.

Full story in the Western Advocate.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Kidnapped woman reveals hostage nightmare

An American aid worker abducted by gunmen in the war-torn Sudanese region of Darfur on Monday described the “nightmare” of her situation in a telephone call to AFP.”In the past it was OK, but now it is not. They are threatening me, my life, my health,” the woman, who works for US aid group Samaritan’s Purse, said.She was kidnapped in mid-May in the village of Abu Ajura, south Darfur, with two Sudanese colleagues who have since been released.”I am not safe now. I don’t have clean water, the situation changed very quickly into a nightmare. There are 20 men around me now,” she said.”I want to go home, I just hope they will release me.”The woman’s identity was confirmed by Samaritan’s Purse, but the aid group has requested that her name not be published.It is the first time a Western woman has been held alone in Darfur.Her abductors have asked for a large sum of money in exchange for her release.”We have had talks with the Sudanese government, but nothing was reached. We have been holding her for nearly three months now,” one of the kidnappers, identifying himself as Abu Mohammed al-Rizegui, said via satellite phone.That name has been used several times by armed groups committing abductions in Darfur, notably in the kidnappings of two aid workers for French group Aide Medicale Internationale in April last year, and two employees of the French Triangle GH in the Central African Republic in October 2009.Since 2003, Darfur has been gripped by civil war that has left 300,000 people dead and 2.7 million displaced, the United Nations says. Khartoum says 10,000 have been killed in the conflict.There have been a wave of kidnappings of foreign nationals in Darfur since March last year, with 17 foreigners including 10 Westerners seized.All were later released unharmed except for two employees of German group THW, who were abducted by gunmen from their offices in Nyala in June, and the Samaritan’s Purse employee.AFP
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Behind the jargon, questions unanswered and lives lost

Shum Khan was a deaf and dumb man who lived in the remote border hamlet of Malekshay, high in the mountains. When a heavily armed squad from the CIA barrelled into his village in March 2007, the war logs record that he ”ran at the sight of the approaching coalition forces … out of fear and confusion”.The secret CIA paramilitaries shouted at him to stop. Khan could not hear them. He carried on running. So they shot him, saying they were entitled to do so under the carefully graded ”escalation of force” provisions of the US rules of engagement.Khan was wounded but survived. The Americans’ error was explained to them by village elders, so they fetched out what they term ”solatia”, or compensation. The classified intelligence report ends briskly: ”Solatia was made in the form of supplies and the Element mission progressed”.Behind the military jargon, the war logs are littered with accounts of civilian tragedies. The 144 entries in the logs recording some of these so-called ”blue on white” events cover a wide spectrum of day-by-day assaults on Afghans, with hundreds of casualties.They range from the shootings of individual innocents to the often massive loss of life from air strikes, which eventually led President Hamid Karzai to protest publicly that the US was treating Afghan lives as ”cheap”.US and allied commanders frequently deny allegations of mass civilian casualties, claiming they are Taliban propaganda or ploys to get compensation, which are contradicted by facts known to the military.But the logs demonstrate how much of the contemporaneous US internal reporting of air strikes is simply false.Last September there was a major scandal at Kunduz, in the north of Afghanistan, when a German commander ordered the bombing of a crowd looting two hijacked fuel tankers. The archive circulated to Nato allies records him authorising the airstrike by a US F-15 jet ”after ensuring that no civilians were in the vicinity”. The ”battle damage assessment” confirmed, it claims, that 56 purely ”enemy insurgents” had died.Media reports followed by official inquiries, however, established something closer to the real death toll. It included 30 to 70 civilians.Some of the more notorious civilian calamities did become public at the time. The logs confirm that an entirely truthful official announcement was made regretting the guidance system failure of one ”smart bomb”. On September 9, 2008, it landed on a village killing 26 civilians.But most of the assaults on civilians recorded here do not appear to have been investigated. The bulk of the ”blue-white” file consists of a catalogue of civilian shootings on nearly 100 occasions by jumpy troops. Unco-operative drivers and motorcyclists are frequent targets.Each incident, almost without exception, is described as a meticulous ”escalation of force”.US and British rules require shouts, waves, flares, warning shots and shots into the engine block, before using lethal force. Each time it is claimed that this procedure is followed. Yet ”warning shots” often seem to cause death or injury.Guardian News & Media
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Grateful patient gives thanks for new face

MADRID: A Spanish man who underwent the world’s first full face transplant has appeared before TV cameras for the first time since his surgery, thanking his doctors and the family of the donor.Identified only as Oscar, the 31-year-old spoke with considerable difficulty at a news conference at Vall d’Hebron hospital, where he was operated on in late March.During the 24-hour surgery, doctors lifted an entire face, including jaw, nose, cheekbones, muscles, teeth and eyelids, and placed it masklike onto the man. He has been described as a farmer who was unable to breathe or eat on his own after accidentally shooting himself in the face five years ago.The head of the surgical team, Dr Joan Pere Barret, said yesterday that Oscar would need between a year and 18 months of physical therapy and is expected to regain up to 90 per cent of his facial functions.He is now able to drink liquids and eat soft foods, and has been able to speak for the past two months, the hospital said in a statement. The patient also has regained feeling in most of his face and is partly recovering movement of his muscles. One good sign was that a week after the operation, he had to be shaved because of beard growth.But he also suffered acute rejection twice – once four weeks after the surgery and again between the second and third months. Both times, the new face was saved with medication, the statement said.At the news conference, Oscar seemed relaxed as he looked out at reporters with eyes he cannot yet close completely.A younger woman identified as his sister said her brother looks forward to leading a normal life.He is eager to enjoy ”little things, like walking down the street without anyone looking at him, or sitting down for a meal with his family. Doing things that all of us do on a normal day”, the woman said.A French team announced a similar operation earlier this month, saying a 35-year-old man with a genetic disorder has an entirely new face.The first face transplant, albeit partial, was in France in 2005 and since then about a dozen more have been done.Associated Press
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