Change (Peace, Love & Unity) is in the Air ... Time to GET IT !
You are ready for your Ascension? (Kryon Update: Apr 2014)

(Solar and Heliospheric Observatory - website /

Obama poses with Asean leaders. He is the first sitting US president
to visit Cambodia. Photograph: Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images
"A Summary" – Apr 2, 2011 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Religion, Shift of Human Consciousness, 2012, Intelligent/Benevolent Design, EU, South America, 5 Currencies, Water Cycle (Heat up, Mini Ice Ace, Oceans, Fish, Earthquakes ..), Middle East, Internet, Israel, Dictators, Palestine, US, Japan (Quake/Tsunami Disasters , People, Society ...), Nuclear Power Revealed, Hydro Power, Geothermal Power, Moon, Financial Institutes (Recession, Realign integrity values ..) , China, North Korea, Global Unity,..... etc.) - Text version)

“….. Here is the prediction: China will turn North Korea loose soon. The alliance will dissolve, or become stale. There will be political upheaval in China. Not a coup and not a revolution. Within the inner circles of that which you call Chinese politics, there will be a re-evaluation of goals and monetary policy. Eventually, you will see a break with North Korea, allowing still another dictator to fall and unification to occur with the south. ….”

“ … Here is another one. A change in what Human nature will allow for government. "Careful, Kryon, don't talk about politics. You'll get in trouble." I won't get in trouble. I'm going to tell you to watch for leadership that cares about you. "You mean politics is going to change?" It already has. It's beginning. Watch for it. You're going to see a total phase-out of old energy dictatorships eventually. The potential is that you're going to see that before 2013.

They're going to fall over, you know, because the energy of the population will not sustain an old energy leader ..."
"Update on Current Events" – Jul 23, 2011 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll) - (Subjects: The Humanization of God, Gaia, Shift of Human Consciousness, 2012, Benevolent Design, Financial Institutes (Recession, System to Change ...), Water Cycle (Heat up, Mini Ice Ace, Oceans, Fish, Earthquakes ..), Nuclear Power Revealed, Geothermal Power, Hydro Power, Drinking Water from Seawater, No need for Oil as Much, Middle East in Peace, Persia/Iran Uprising, Muhammad, Israel, DNA, Two Dictators to fall soon, Africa, China, (Old) Souls, Species to go, Whales to Humans, Global Unity,..... etc.)
(Subjects: Who/What is Kryon ?, Egypt Uprising, Iran/Persia Uprising, Peace in Middle East without Israel actively involved, Muhammad, "Conceptual" Youth Revolution, "Conceptual" Managed Business, Internet, Social Media, News Media, Google, Bankers, Global Unity,..... etc.)

US under fire in global press freedom report

"The Recalibration of Awareness – Apr 20/21, 2012 (Kryon channeled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Old Energy, Recalibration Lectures, God / Creator, Religions/Spiritual systems (Catholic Church, Priests/Nun’s, Worship, John Paul Pope, Women in the Church otherwise church will go, Current Pope won’t do it), Middle East, Jews, Governments will change (Internet, Media, Democracies, Dictators, North Korea, Nations voted at once), Integrity (Businesses, Tobacco Companies, Bankers/ Financial Institutes, Pharmaceutical company to collapse), Illuminati (Started in Greece, with Shipping, Financial markets, Stock markets, Pharmaceutical money (fund to build Africa, to develop)), Shift of Human Consciousness, (Old) Souls, Women, Masters to/already come back, Global Unity.... etc.) - (Text version)

… The Shift in Human Nature

You're starting to see integrity change. Awareness recalibrates integrity, and the Human Being who would sit there and take advantage of another Human Being in an old energy would never do it in a new energy. The reason? It will become intuitive, so this is a shift in Human Nature as well, for in the past you have assumed that people take advantage of people first and integrity comes later. That's just ordinary Human nature.

In the past, Human nature expressed within governments worked like this: If you were stronger than the other one, you simply conquered them. If you were strong, it was an invitation to conquer. If you were weak, it was an invitation to be conquered. No one even thought about it. It was the way of things. The bigger you could have your armies, the better they would do when you sent them out to conquer. That's not how you think today. Did you notice?

Any country that thinks this way today will not survive, for humanity has discovered that the world goes far better by putting things together instead of tearing them apart. The new energy puts the weak and strong together in ways that make sense and that have integrity. Take a look at what happened to some of the businesses in this great land (USA). Up to 30 years ago, when you started realizing some of them didn't have integrity, you eliminated them. What happened to the tobacco companies when you realized they were knowingly addicting your children? Today, they still sell their products to less-aware countries, but that will also change.

What did you do a few years ago when you realized that your bankers were actually selling you homes that they knew you couldn't pay for later? They were walking away, smiling greedily, not thinking about the heartbreak that was to follow when a life's dream would be lost. Dear American, you are in a recession. However, this is like when you prune a tree and cut back the branches. When the tree grows back, you've got control and the branches will grow bigger and stronger than they were before, without the greed factor. Then, if you don't like the way it grows back, you'll prune it again! I tell you this because awareness is now in control of big money. It's right before your eyes, what you're doing. But fear often rules. …

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Saturday, April 19, 2014

Head of China Resources SOE Song Lin under graft probe

Want China Times, Lan Hsiao-wei and Staff Reporter 2014-04-19

Song Lin during a press conference. (File photo/CNS)

China is investigating Song Lin, chairperson of China Resources Holdings, the nation's largest overseas state-owned enterprise, for suspected grave violations involving several billion yuan, according to a report in our sister paper, Taipei's China Times, citing a statement on the website of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection.

He is the nation's highest ranking official to be under a graft investigation according to the paper.

Yesterday's announcement came two days after a journalist for Economic Information Daily, a subsidiary of the state-run Xinhua news agency, Wang Wenzhi, accused Song of having a mistress, Helen Yang, who worked at investment bank UBS in Hong Kong and of using her to launder large amounts of money from allegedly corrupt deals.

Although Song is only a deputy minister-level official, he controls China Resources whose total assets amount to over US$99 billion, including sectors such as property, power, gas, medicines and supermarkets.

Wang first made an accusation against Song on July 17 last year, but the anti-corruption agency didn't take any action.

On April 15 Wang filed another accusation against Song, this time using the status of a Chinese citizen and adding that Song has a mistress.

Song denied Wang's accusation on April 16, vowing to take legal action against him. "These allegations are pure fabrication and vicious defamation," he said in the statement on his company's website.

In a dramatic turn of events, however, the anti-corruption agency confirmed that it was investigating Song, while the China Resources board declined to comment.

UBS's legal department is conducting an internal investigation into Yang, whose main clients are Chinese state-owned enterprises.

Initially China Resources was a trading company, and gradually expanded to other areas such as manufacturing and distribution of consumer goods, property, infrastructure, manufacturing and the distribution of medicine.

China Resources, which is a listed company in Hong Kong, is the largest shareholder of China Vanke, one of China's biggest property developers. Both its beer unit and supermarket division ranked the top in the mainland.

According to Fortunes global top 500, China Resources ranked 233rd in 2012 with revenues of US$43.4 billion. As of the end of 2011, the total assets of China Resources had reached HK$764.4 billion.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Strike at Yue Yuen's Dongguan footwear factory continues

Want China Times, Xinhua 2014-04-18

Workers at Yue Yuen strike over social insurance and housing
funds benefits, Apr. 14. (Photo/CNS)

A massive strike over a social benefits dispute entered a fifth day on Friday at a footwear factory in south China's Guangdong province.

Thousands of workers at Yue Yuen Industrial (Holdings), a Dongguan-based footwear maker for major brands including Nike, Adidas and Timberland, began storming out of the main plant and walking along a nearby arterial road around 8:50am.

Police rushed to the front of the parade, urging them to leave and return to the plant. Dozens of workers were then taken away by police, but no clashes broke out nor were any people injured.

Police have blocked some road section, and most of the workers have returned to the premises of the factory, where there is a staff of about 45,000.

Production at the plant remains halted.

The protests began on April 5, when a few hundred workers from the plant took to the streets demanding that their social insurance and housing funds be fully paid.

After failed negotiations with management, more workers have joined what has become a massive strike since Monday.

On Thursday, the factory management promised to catch up on all the social benefits in arrears, but the workers have remained skeptical and refused to return to work.

UN security council urged to target North Korean officials over atrocities

Inquiry head Michael Kirby says leaders should be hit with sanctions and referred to international criminal court, AFP, Friday 18 April 2014

Michael Kirby and other commission members at a media conference
after the meeting. Photograph: Cia Pak/Demotix/Corbis

The United Nations security council should slap targeted sanctions on North Korean officials responsible for grave human rights abuses and refer them to the international criminal court (ICC), the head of a special UN inquiry said on Thursday.

The retired Australian judge Michael Kirby told an informal meeting of the security council convened by Australia, France and the United States he wanted leading members of the reclusive regime hauled before the ICC for prosecution.

"More monitoring and engagement alone cannot suffice in the face of crimes that shock the conscience of humanity," Kirby said. "Perpetrators must be held accountable, it is necessary to deter further crimes."

North Korea did not send a representative and the meeting was snubbed by China, Pyongyang's sole major ally, and Russia.

"A new generation of senior officials now surround the supreme leader Kim Jong-un," Kirby said.

"They must be made to understand that they will themselves face personal accountability if they join in the commission of crimes against humanity or fail to prevent them where they could.

"The commission of inquiry therefore recommends to the security council the adoption of targeted sanctions against those individuals most responsible for crimes against humanity."

Kirby said most countries present supported the proposal to refer North Koreans to the ICC, but UN diplomats said any move was likely to face fierce opposition from China, the North's economic lifeline.

Last month the UN's top rights body also called on the security council to act against officials responsible for a litany of crimes against humanity in North Korea.

Kirby's commission of inquiry on North Korea released a hard-hitting report in February documenting a range of gross human rights abuses, including extermination, enslavement and sexual violence.

North Korea refused to co-operate with the investigation and said the evidence was "fabricated" by "forces hostile" to the country.

After Thursday's meeting, the US ambassador to the UN, Samantha Power, praised council members for joining other countries for the first time to discuss the "tragic human rights situation in North Korea".

"We heard directly from the authors of a thorough, objective and credible UN report, and from victims of North Korean atrocities themselves," she added.

"These first-hand accounts –horrific stories of torture, rape, forced abortions and forced infanticide, extermination and murder –paint a chilling picture of the regime's systematic and remorseless repression of its citizens."

Human Rights Watch executive director Kenneth Roth echoed Power's sentiments.

"For the first time in its history, the security council has been confronted with the abhorrent crimes committed by the North Korean government against its people," he said.

"Given this extraordinarily severe repression, it would be unconscionable for the council to continue limiting its work on North Korea to the nuclear issue.

"The ICC was created to stand with the victims of such atrocities. The most appropriate response to the Kirby report is for the council to refer them to the ICC."

Related Article:

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Former Dutch Labour prime minister works for big Chinese bank, Thursday 17 April 2014

Former Dutch prime minister
Wim Kok (NOS/ANP)
Former Dutch prime minister and union leader Wim Kok has joined the second biggest Chinese bank as a non-executive director.

Kok, 75, has worked for the listed China Construction Bank since November, the Volkskrant reports on Thursday.

The role involves at least six meetings a year, most of which involve a trip to China, Kok, who led the Labour party for years, told the paper. Kok was prime minister for eight years and has been on the supervisory board of ING, Shell and KLM since then.

Kok is a member of two bank commissions: strategic development, and appointments and remuneration. He earns €42,000 for the function, the Volkskrant says.

End of an era as Prince Bandar departs Saudi intelligence post

Prince's exit could signal shift in kingdom's policy towards Syria, with looming leadership transition complicating picture

The Guardian, Ian Black, Middle East editor, Wednesday 16 April 2014

Prince Bandar bin Sultan in 2008. Photograph: Hassan Ammar/AP

Prince Bandar bin Sultan's departure as head of Saudi intelligence, confirmed this week, marks the end of an era for a flamboyant and powerful character on the Middle Eastern stage. The big question is whether it signals a meaningful shift in the kingdom's policy towards Syria and its commitment to the overthrow of President Bashar al-Assad.

Bandar – known as "Bandar Bush" from his 22 years as Saudi ambassador to the US – is a legendary networker and hawk. The Saudi press agency said he stepped down at his own request. (It did not say whether he would continue as head of the national security council, a less important position.) He will be replaced by his deputy at the Saudi equivalent of the CIA, Youssef bin Ali al-Idrisi, who is not a royal and therefore far less powerful.

For the past 18 months Bandar had led Saudi efforts to better co-ordinate the supply of weapons to Syrian rebels fighting Assad. But he faced criticism for backing extreme Islamist groups and thus risking a repeat of the "blowback" that brought Osama bin Laden's Saudi fighters home after the officially sanctioned jihad against the Soviets in Afghanistan in the 1980s.

Bandar's departure is not a complete surprise. Amid unprecedented tensions in relations between Riyadh and Washington, there had been signs he had fallen from favour and had in effect already been sidelined on Syria.

"Bandar's approach was very black and white," said one well placed observer. "And he seems to have over-promised to the king in terms of confidently predicting Assad's departure."

He was often abroad, reportedly being treated for health problems, or "unavailable" at home due to illness. He is also known to suffer badly from depression. Several months ago he failed to turn up for an urgently-scheduled meeting on Syria with David Cameron at Chequers.

According to sources in Riyadh, Bandar faced strong opposition from the powerful interior minister (and possible future king), Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, who led the crackdown on al-Qaida following a wave of attacks between 2003 and 2006. Bin Nayef became increasingly concerned about battle-hardened young Saudis returning home radicalised after fighting in Syria. Bandar's removal probably reflects that policy divergence, western diplomats and Saudis say.

Bandar has irritated the Americans with outspoken criticism of Barack Obama's failure to punish Syria following the chemical weapons attack near Damascus last August. After that he talked of limiting interaction with the US in protest at its policies on Syria, Israel and especially the beginning of rapprochement with Iran – the latter an unchanging bogeyman and regional and sectarian rival for the Saudi prince. Bandar was also said by a senior Arab figure to have angrily threatened the emir of Qatar, which upstaged its larger neighbour in backing anti-Assad forces. His departure may help heal the rift between the US and the kingdom following last month's meeting between Obama and Abdullah. That, in turn, could impact on Saudi policy towards Syria.

Bandar, a former fighter pilot, is King Abdullah's nephew. He was close to presidents Reagan and both Bushes. He negotiated huge arms deals for the kingdom – including the infamous £43bn al-Yamamah agreement with the UK. The Guardian reported allegations that he had received £1bn in secret payments from BAE.

Known for his showy lifestyle – he has a penchant for cigars and flies in a private Airbus – he has kept a low profile since returning from the US to Riyadh in 2005. He became head of intelligence in July 2012. Apart from the Syria file, he was also closely involved in Saudi support for Egypt's military rulers after they ousted the Muslim Brotherhood president Mohamed Morsi.

Saudi-watchers say decision-making in Riyadh is in poor shape. King Abdullah is 90 and frail, Crown Prince Salman is 78. Last month the appointment of a new deputy crown prince, Muqrin, a relative youngster at 68, again focused attention on the succession.

"The looming transition in Saudi leadership … may contribute to the uncertainty and opacity of the kingdom's foreign policy-making," said Yezid Sayigh, of the Carnegie Foundation. "Already highly personalised, decision-making may become further dispersed as multiple centres of princely power prepare to compete over the succession from King Abdullah."

Related Article:

Iranian killer's execution halted at last minute by victim's parents

Convict had noose around his neck when victim's mother approached, slapped him in the face and spared his life

The Guardian, Saeed Kamali Dehghan, Wednesday 16 April 2014

The noose is removed from around the neck of Balal. Photograph:
Arash Khamooshi /Isna

When he felt the noose around his neck, Balal must have thought he was about to take his last breath. Minutes earlier, crowds had watched as guards pushed him towards the gallows for what was meant to be yet another public execution in the Islamic republic of Iran.

Seven years ago Balal, who is in his 20s, stabbed 18-year-old Abdollah Hosseinzadeh during a street brawl in the small town of Royan, in the northern province of Mazandaran. In a literal application of qisas, the sharia law of retribution, the victim's family were to participate in Balal's punishment by pushing the chair on which he stood.

But what happened next marked a rarity in public executions in Iran, which puts more people to death than any other country apart from China. The victim's mother approached, slapped the convict in the face and then decided to forgive her son's killer. The victim's father removed the noose and Balal's life was spared.

Hosseinzadeh's mother slaps Balal. Photograph: Arash Khamooshi /Isna

Photographs taken by Arash Khamooshi, of the semi-official Isna news agency, show what followed. Balal's mother hugged the grieving mother of the man her son had killed. The two women sobbed in each other's arms – one because she had lost her son, the other because hers had been saved.

The action by Hosseinzadeh's mother was all the more extraordinary as it emerged that this was not the first son she had lost. Her younger child Amirhossein was killed in a motorbike accident at the age of 11.

"My 18-year-old son Abdollah was taking a stroll in the bazaar with his friends when Balal shoved him," said the victim's father, Abdolghani Hosseinzadeh, according to Isna. "Abdollah was offended and kicked him but at this time the murderer took an ordinary kitchen knife out of his socks."

Balal's mother, left and Hosseinzadeh's mother embrace after the execution
was halted. Photograph: Arash Khamooshi/Isna

Hosseinzadeh Sr has come to the conclusion that Balal did not kill his son deliberately. "Balal was inexperienced and didn't know how to handle a knife. He was naive."

According to the father, Balal escaped the scene of the stabbing but was later arrested by the police. It took six years for a court to hand down a death sentence, and the victim's family deferred the execution a number of times. An date for execution was set just before the Persian new year, Nowruz, but the victim's family did not approve of the timing.

Hosseinzadeh said a dream prompted the change of heart. "Three days ago my wife saw my elder son in a dream telling her that they are in a good place, and for her not to retaliate … This calmed my wife and we decided to think more until the day of the execution."

Many Iranian public figures, including the popular TV sport presenter Adel Ferdosipour, had called on the couple, who have a daughter, to forgive the killer. Although they did so, Balal will not necessarily be freed. Under Iranian law the victim's family have a say only in the act of execution, not any jail sentence.

The chair on the gallows. Photograph: Arash Khamooshi /Isna

In recent years Iran has faced criticism from human rights activists for its high rate of executions. The UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, accused Hassan Rouhani of doing too little to improve Iran's human rights, especially reining in its staggering use of capital punishment.

As of last week, 199 executions are believed to have been carried out in Iran this year, according to Amnesty, a rate of almost two a day. Last year Iran and Iraq were responsible for two-thirds of the world's executions, excluding China.

At least 369 executions were officially acknowledged by the Iranian authorities in 2013, but Amnesty said hundreds more people were put to death in secret, taking the actual number close to 700.

Iran is particularly criticised for its public executions, which have attracted children among the crowds in the past. Iranian photographers are often allowed to document them.

Bahareh Davis, of Amnesty International, welcomed the news that Balal had been spared death. "It is of course welcome news that the family of the victim have spared this young man's life," she said. "However, qisas regulations in Iran mean that people who are sentenced to death under this system of punishment are effectively prevented from seeking a pardon or commutation of their sentences from the authorities – contrary to Iran's international obligations."

She added: "It's deeply disturbing that the death penalty continues to be seen as a solution to crime in Iran. Not only is the death penalty the ultimate cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment with no special deterrent impact, but public displays of killing also perpetuate a culture of acceptance of violence.

"Public executions are degrading and incompatible with human dignity of those executed. In addition, all those who watch public executions – which regrettably often includes children – are brutalised by the experience."

In October last year an Iranian prisoner who survived an attempted execution and was revived in the morgue was spared another attempt, though his family said he had lost mental stability and remained in jail.

Related Articles:

Capital punishment 2013

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

South Korea's 2015 budget plan focuses on reunification

Want China Times, Xinhua and Staff Reporter 2014-04-16

Park Geun- hye speaks at a press conference in Berlin when visiting
Germany, March 26. (Photo/Xinhua)

South Korea's 2015 budget plan will focus on laying the groundwork for reunification with the North, reflecting President Park Geun-hye's unwavering commitment to seeking the so-called "reunification bonanza" despite rising tensions on the Korean peninsula.

Seoul picked the groundwork-laying as one of the five major investment focuses for the 2015 budget plan, according to the finance ministry. The guidelines on the 2015 fiscal spending, which were approved at the cabinet meeting and ratified by President Park, will act as the principle under which ministries apply for next year's budgets.

Under the guideline, government funds will be spent next year on establishing foundations for a reunited Korea, including a humanitarian aid program, an expansion of exchanges and long-term fiscal preparations for the reunification.

"The groundwork-laying for reunification was included in the 2014 budget plan for the first time. There will be no cut in next year's fiscal spending in the unification area," a finance ministry official said.

The budget plans came amid mounting tensions on the Korean Peninsula. North Korea threatened a "new form" of nuclear test in late March, after firing a volley of missiles and artillery shells, including the medium-range Rodong missiles which were seen by some as a signal of a fourth nuclear test following those in 2006, 2009 and 2013.

North Korea's show of force came as South Korea and the United States launched their annual war games. Pyongyang repeatedly denounced the joint military exercises as a rehearsal for the northward invasion.

Despite the escalation of tensions, the South Korean government is expected to continue its preparations for future reunification, which was described by President Park as a bonanza in her first New Year's speech in early January.

Park made a three-point proposal to North Korea in Dresden, Germany in late March, including support for babies and pregnant women through the United Nations, infrastructure development, natural resources exploration and broader inter-Korean exchanges on history, culture and sports.

South Korea will lend fiscal support to strengthen its military capability in response to North Korea's possible missile and nuclear threats.

Government money will continue to be spent next year on establishing the "kill chain" system and adopting a South Korean anti-missile defense system. The kill chain system refers to a strategy which preemptively detects and intercepts missile and nuclear threats from North Korea.

Fiscal funds will also be allocated to building up defense research and development infrastructure, developing core defense technology and enhancing the competitiveness of the defense industry.

'Cherry tree from space' mystery baffles Japan

Yahoo – AFP, Shigemi Sato, April 11, 2014

A cherry tree in bloom, grown from a cherry pit that spent time onboard the
 International Space Station (ISS), is shown at the Ganjoji temple in Gifu city,
central Japan, April 3, 2014 (AFP Photo/CHSZ Preservation Society)

Tokyo (AFP) - A cosmic mystery is uniting monks and scientists in Japan after a cherry tree grown from a seed that orbited the Earth for eight months bloomed years earlier than expected -- and with very surprising flowers.

The four-year-old sapling -- grown from a cherry stone that spent time aboard the International Space Station (ISS) -- burst into blossom on April 1, possibly a full six years ahead of Mother Nature's normal schedule.

Its early blooming baffled Buddhist brothers at the ancient temple in central Japan where the tree is growing.

Japanese astronaut Koichi Wakata hold
s a pack of cherry seeds in the International
Space Station, April 13, 2009 (AFP Photo)
"We are amazed to see how fast it has grown," Masahiro Kajita, chief priest at the Ganjoji temple in Gifu, told AFP by telephone.

"A stone from the original tree had never sprouted before. We are very happy because it will succeed the old tree, which is said to be 1,250 years old."

The wonder pip was among 265 harvested from the celebrated "Chujo-hime-seigan-zakura" tree, selected as part of a project to gather seeds from different kinds of cherry trees at 14 locations across Japan.

The stones were sent to the ISS in November 2008 and came back to Earth in July the following year with Japanese astronaut Koichi Wakata, after circling the globe 4,100 times.

Some were sent for laboratory tests, but most were ferried back to their places of origin, and a selection were planted at nurseries near the Ganjoji temple.

By April this year, the "space cherry tree" had grown to around four metres (13 feet) tall, and suddenly produced nine flowers -- each with just five petals, compared with about 30 on flowers of the parent tree.

It normally takes about 10 years for a cherry tree of the similar variety to bear its first buds.

The Ganjoji temple sapling is not the only early-flowering space cherry tree.

Of the 14 locations in which the pits were replanted, blossoms have been spotted at four places.

Two years ago, a young tree bore 11 flowers in Hokuto, a mountain region 115 kilometres (70 miles) west of Tokyo, around two years after it was planted.

It was of a variety that normally only comes into flower at the age of eight.

Cosmic rays

The seeds were sent to the ISS as part of "an educational and cultural project to let children gather the stones and learn how they grow into trees and live on after returning from space," said Miho Tomioka, a spokeswoman for the project's organiser, Japan Manned Space Systems (JAMSS).

FILE - This Nov. 7, 2013 file photo shows Japanese astronaut Koichi Wakata,
 a crew member of the International Space Station, waving prior to the launch of
 Soyuz-FG rocket at the Russian leased Baikonur cosmodrome, Kazakhstan.
 (AP Photo/Shamil Zhumatov, File)

"We had expected the (Ganjoji) tree to blossom about 10 years after planting, when the children come of age," she added.

Kaori Tomita-Yokotani, a researcher at the University of Tsukuba who took part in the project, told AFP she was stumped by the extra-terrestrial mystery.

"We still cannot rule out the possibility that it has been somewhat influenced by its exposure to the space environment," she said.

Tomita-Yokotani, a plant physiologist, said it was difficult to explain why the temple tree has grown so fast because there was no control group to compare its growth with that of other trees.

She said cross-pollination with another species could not be ruled out, but a lack of data was hampering an explanation.

"Of course, there is the possibility that exposure to stronger cosmic rays accelerated the process of sprouting and overall growth," she said.

"From a scientific point of view, we can only say we don't know why."

Wakata is back aboard the ISS, where he is in command of the station.

The astronaut took part in a video link-up on Thursday with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and US Ambassador to Japan Caroline Kennedy, chatting about his daily life hundreds of kilometres above the Earth.

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Scientists Finally Admit There Is a Second, Secret DNA Code Which Controls Genes

"The Quantum Factor" – Apr 10, 2011 (Kryon channeled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Galaxies, Universe, Intelligent design, Benevolent design, Aliens, Nikola Tesla (Quantum energy), Inter-Planetary Travel, DNA, Genes, Stem Cells, Cells, Rejuvenation, Shift of Human Consciousness, Spontaneous Remission, Religion, Dictators, Africa, China, Nuclear Power, Sustainable Development, Animals, Global Unity.. etc.) - (Text Version)

"... Cell Division - a static process?

Let me take you to the cellular division process. We've said this before, but you need to hear this to understand how it works. A cell is ready to divide. The Human body is designed to rejuvenate... all tissue. You've been told that there's some tissue that does not rejuvenate, but that is incorrect. It all rejuvenates at different speeds at different times and in different ways. It rejuvenates. So now you know that the Human body is designed to live a long time. Unfortunately, the energy that you have created on this planet and what you've gone through, has beat it up. You don't live much more than 80 years. That was not the design.

The Biblical personalities were sometimes prophets and sometimes masters and sometimes just there... and lived for hundreds of years. Did they really? Or perhaps this is that just a metaphor? Did they get that right in the Bible without a error in transcription? I'm going to tell you the truth. It's very accurate. Thousands of years ago you lived a very long time, Lemurian. If you knew your lifespan, you'd gasp. But not anymore. Instructions have been given over time to DNA, literally, by the energy of the planet... en energy that you have created through consciousness.

A cell divides. Right before it divides, it needs the blueprint to clone itself. The blueprint is available from the stem cell. The stem cell gets its information from the quantum part of the DNA, which has never changed since you were born. It's remained static, since nothing has ever changed it... and the fact that you don't believe it's changeable and have just accepted aging. There's not a conscious effort to do anything with it, and it just lays there like it always did.

The diving cell "talks" to the stem cell and says, "Do the same thing you always did? Change anything?" And the stem cell talks to the cell that is dividing, saying, "Make another one just the same." Then you rejuvenate just like the last one, accepting everything you received when you were born. ..."

India top court recognises transgenders as 'third gender'

Yahoo – AFP, Trudy Harris, 15 April 2014

Indian transgenders perform at a seminar in Mumbai on October 3, 2013
(AFP Photo/Punit Paranjpe)

New Delhi (AFP) - India's highest court ruled Tuesday that a person can be legally recognised as gender-neutral, a landmark judgement that raises hopes of an end to discrimination against several million transgenders and eunuchs.

The Supreme Court also said transgenders should be included in government welfare schemes offered to other minority groups in a bid to pull them out of the impoverished margins of Indian society.

"Transgenders are citizens of this country and are entitled to education and all other rights," Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan told the court while handing down the ruling.

An Indian transgender dancer puts on
 makeup before a performance for a
 function in Kolkata on April 30, 2013
(AFP Photo/Dibyangshu Sarkar)
"Recognition of transgenders as a third gender is not a social or medical issue but a human rights issue," said Radhakrishnan, who headed a two-judge bench on the case.

The case was filed in 2012 by a group of petitioners including prominent eunuch and activist Laxmi Narayan Tripathi seeking recognition for the transgender population and equal rights under the law.

Transgenders and eunuchs or hijras -- a term for cross-dressers and men who have been castrated -- often live on the extreme fringes of India's culturally conservative society.

Transgenders are often seen as inauspicious and even cursed in traditional Hindu culture. Many resort to prostitution, begging or menial jobs that leave them mired in poverty.

The ruling, hailed as landmark by activists, comes just months after the same court reinstated a ban on gay sex and sparked accusations it was dragging the country back to the 19th century.

'Proud to be Indian'

"Today, for the first time I feel very proud to be an Indian," activist Tripathi told reporters outside the court.

"Today my sisters and I feel like real Indians and we feel so proud because of the rights granted to us by the Supreme Court."

In this photograph taken on October 3,
 2013, Indian transgenders attend a
seminar for the transgender community
in Mumbai (AFP Photo/Punit Paranjpe)
Australia's top court also ruled earlier this month that a person can be legally recognised as gender-neutral, ending a long legal battle by a sexual equality campaigner.

Germany last year passed a law allowing babies born with characteristics of both sexes to be registered as neither male nor female. Several countries including Australia, Germany and Nepal also allow people to have an X on their passport rather than male or female.

In its judgement, the court in India instructed state and federal governments to allow transgenders to identify themselves on official documents as a third gender.

It also ruled governments should include transgenders in "socially and economically backward" groups that are given quotas in jobs and education, said the lawyer for the petitioners Sanjeev Bhatnagar.

Transgenders also have the right under the constitution to be given access to medical care and other facilities regardless of their gender, the court said.

"Direction has been given to all the state governments and the central government to comply with the direction of the court to give them reservations and to identify them and give them their rights," Bhatnagar told reporters.

Some state governments, such as southern Tamil Nadu, and official bodies already recognise transgenders, including the Election Commission which ruled in 2009 that they could be listed as "others" on electoral rolls and voter identify cards.

In this photograph taken on April 30,
 2013, Indian transgender dancers put on
 makeup before a performance in Kolkata
(AFP Photo/Dibyangshu Sarkar)
Official estimates for India's transgender population are not known but they are thought to number several million.

Transgenders are classified as people who have either had sex change operations or who regard themselves as the opposite of their born gender, according to Sanjay Srivastava, professor of sociology at the Institute of Economic Growth in New Delhi.

However only 28,341 are registered with the Election Commission for the parliamentary elections currently taking place, highlighting the fear and stigma many face.

The ruling comes after the court's decision in December banning gay sex. Gay sex had been effectively legalised in 2009 when the High Court ruled that the colonial-era penal code prohibiting "carnal intercourse against the order of nature" was an infringement of fundamental rights.

Gay sex has long been a taboo subject in India, where homophobic tendencies abound and many still regard being gay as a mental illness.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

More Than 900 Environmental Advocates Slain In A Decade As Concern For The Planet Grows

The Huffington Post – AP, Denis D. Gray, 15 April 2014

This January 1999 image shows Nobel Peace Prize winner Wangari
 Maathai, environmentalist and human rights campaigner, carried to the courts
 after she was beaten by a mob after she confronted private developers that
had illegally taken land in the Karura forest. | EPA / Landov

BANGKOK (AP) — As head of his village, Prajob Naowa-opas battled to save his community in central Thailand from the illegal dumping of toxic waste by filing petitions and leading villagers to block trucks carrying the stuff — until a gunman in broad daylight fired four shots into him.

A year later, his three alleged killers, including a senior government official, are on trial for murder. The dumping has been halted and villagers are erecting a statue to their slain hero.

But the prosecution of Prajob's murder is a rare exception. A survey released Tuesday -- the first comprehensive one of its kind - says that only 10 killers of 908 environmental activists slain around the world over the past decade have been convicted.

The report by the London-based Global Witness, a group that seeks to shed light on the links between environmental exploitation and human rights abuses, says murders of those protecting land rights and the environment have soared dramatically. It noted that its toll of victims in 35 countries is probably far higher since field investigations in a number of African and Asian nations are difficult or impossible.

"Many of those facing threats are ordinary people opposing land grabs, mining operations and the industrial timber trade, often forced from their homes and severely threatened by environmental devastation," the report said. Others have been killed over hydro-electric dams, pollution and wildlife conservation.

The rising deaths, along with non-lethal violence, are attributed to intensifying competition for shrinking resources in a global economy and abetted by authorities and security forces in some countries connected to powerful individuals, companies and others behind the killings.

Three times as many people died in 2012 than the 10 years previously, with the death rate rising in the past four years to an average of two activists a week, according to the non-governmental group. Deaths in 2013 are likely to be higher than the 95 documented to date.

The victims have ranged from 70-year-old farmer Jesus Sebastian Ortiz, one of several people in the Mexican town of Cheran killed in 2012 while opposing illegal logging, to the machine-gunning by Philippine armed forces of indigenous anti-mining activist Juvy Capion and her two sons the same year.

Brig. Gen. Domingo Tutaan Jr., who heads the Philippine military's human rights office, told the Associated Press that a military investigation showed the three died in crossfire as troops clashed with suspected outlaws. "We don't tolerate or condone human rights violations and we hope Global Witness can work with us to pinpoint any soldier or officer involved in those killings," Tutaan said.

Brazil, the report says, is the world's most dangerous place for activists with 448 deaths between 2002 and 2013, followed by 109 in Honduras and Peru with 58. In Asia, the Philippines is the deadliest with 67, followed by Thailand at 16.

"We believe this is the most comprehensive global database on killings of environment and land defenders in existence," said Oliver Courtney, senior campaigner at Global Witness. "It paints a deeply alarming picture, but it's very likely this is just the tip of the iceberg, because information is very hard to find and verify. Far too little attention is being paid to this problem at the global level."

Reports of killings, some of them extensive, from countries like Central African Republic, Zimbabwe, and Myanmar, where civil society groups are weak and the regimes authoritarian, are not included in the Global Witness count.

By contrast, non-governmental organizations in Brazil carefully monitor incidents, many of them occurring in the Amazon as powerful businessmen and companies move deeper into indigenous homelands to turn forests into soya, sugar cane and agro-fuel plantations or cattle ranches. Clashes between agribusiness and the Guarani and Kuranji people in the Amazon's Mato Grosso do Sul province accounted for half of Brazil's killings during 2012, the report said. Human rights groups and news reports say killings are often carried out by gunmen hired by agricultural companies.

In Thailand, Sunai Phasuk of the U.S.-based Human Rights Watch echoed the report's assertion that an "endemic culture of impunity" was prevalent, and that governments and their aid donors must address this.

Prosecution of Prajob's suspected killers, Sunai said, was a "welcome rarity" in a country where investigations have been characterized by "half-hearted, inconsistent, and inefficient police work, and an unwillingness to tackle questions of collusion between political influences and interests and these killings of activists."

"The convicted tend to have lowest levels of responsibility, such as the getaway car driver. The level of impunity is glaring," he said.

After Prajob's murder, villagers lived in fear but in the end decided to sue the illegal dumpers and landfill owners, said the victim's brother, Jon Noawa-opas.

"Prajob's death has led us to fight for justice in this town," he said. "We can be disheartened and we were, but we also know that we have to do the right thing for our community."

AP reporters Thanyarat Doksone in Bangkok and Jim Gomez in Manila contributed to this report.

Monday, April 14, 2014

China’s EximBank funds 46 ASEAN infra projects

The Brics Post, April 13, 2014

With preferential loans from China, 24 highways, three railways, one port,
 three airports and nine bridges have been built, rebuilt or renovated in
 ASEAN countries, says EximBank, which plays a critical role in the growth
of China’s external trade [AP]

The Export-Import Bank of China (EximBank), one of the world’s leading lenders, has provided credit support to 46 transport infrastructure projects in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries by early 2014, according to official Chinese data.

With preferential loans from China, 24 highways, three railways, one port, three airports and nine bridges have been built, rebuilt or renovated in ASEAN countries, says EximBank, which plays a critical role in the growth of China’s external trade.

In Cambodia where most places were not connected by railways, the bank’s lending has facilitated the country to put in place its national rail system, building railways of about 2,173 kilometers.

The Second Penang Bridge in Malaysia, the longest sea-crossing bridge in Southeast Asia, and the Luang Prabang Airport in Laos have also been provided credit by the EximBank.

The new Chinese leadership of President Xi Jinping has placed great emphasis on deepening economic links between China and ASEAN. The two sides are also trying to upgrade the existing China-ASEAN Free Trade Area agreement.

Beijing’s increased attention to the neighborhood is in the backdrop of the much-hyped Asia Pivot by the US, a policy aimed at re-invigorating American military and economic influence in the fast-growing region.

Meanwhile, the EximBank, which is also the biggest lender to Africa, will account for almost 80 per cent of a $1 trillion financing for the continent announced by the Chinese government up till 2025.

TBP and Agencies

Indigenous children surprise travelers to Taiwan with flash mob

Want China Times, CNA 2014-04-14

Flash mob performers pose for photos at Taipei Main Station. (Photo/Hotel Royal)

A flash mob organized by members of one of Taiwan's indigenous tribes surprised travelers at Taipei Railway Station on Sunday with traditional songs and dances and the traditional costumes they wore.

Many spectators were touched by the angel-like voices of the members of the flash mob, all Puyuma children.

"They made me tear up within five seconds after they started," one passenger at the station told reporters from Public Television Service.

Asked about what they sang, a member of the flash mob said the songs extolled the beauty of their land in Taitung County in southeastern Taiwan and the return of brave Puyuma warriors from battles they won.

The performance was in fact part of a charity program initiated by the Hotel Royal Chihpen in Taitung to help indigenous children residing in remote mountainous parts of the county live their dreams.

Most members of the flash mob, comprised of a dancing troupe and a choir, had never been outside Taitung due to their secluded living environment, the organizer of the show said.

With assistance from the Taitung County Tourism Bureau and Uni Air, the indigenous children took their first-ever flight to Taipei to show urban dwellers in Taipei the beauty of Taitung through song and dance, the organizer said.

The Puyama, one of 14 indigenous tribes in Taiwan, reside mainly in Taitung County.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Jasvir Ginday guilty of murdering wife to hide his sexuality

BBC News, 11 April 2014

Related Stories

Jasvir Ram Ginday was found guilty
at Wolverhampton Crown Court
A bank worker has been found guilty of murdering his wife in a bid to stop her revealing his homosexuality.

Jasvir Ram Ginday, 29, from Walsall, attacked Varkha Rani at their home with a metal pipe from a vacuum cleaner.

He strangled her then burnt her body in a garden incinerator, telling a neighbour he had set fire to rubbish, Wolverhampton Crown Court heard.

Ginday had struggled "being a gay man in a straight world," Judge John Warner told the court during his summing up.

The jury of seven women and five men took about 17 hours to find Ginday guilty of murder after a three-week trial. He will be sentenced later on Friday.

Ginday, of Victory Lane, had flown to attend his arranged wedding to Varkha, 24, from India, at a lavish ceremony attended by up to 700 guests last year.

But he had told a friend he was attracted to men as early as 2008, said prosecutor Deborah Gould.

West Midlands Police said Ginday was frequenting gay bars and having relationships with men around the time of his engagement to Varkha.

In August, six months after the ceremony, Varkha arrived in the UK to join her husband and live together in the matrimonial home.

Ginday murdered his wife in their home then tried to destroy her
remains in a garden incinerator

But on 12 September, university graduate and IT specialist Ginday - who had been preparing to take up a job with the Financial Ombudsman Service in London - had a row with his new wife.

During the trial, Ginday had alleged his wife had threatened to "expose" him as homosexual to family and friends, after apparently discovering "compromising" material on an iPad and iPhone.

He told the jury that his wife had come at him in the bedroom, "thrashing", and he was "trying to calm her down".

The pair ended up on the floor, at which point he claimed he grabbed the metal pipe of a vacuum cleaner which was lying nearby and "in the spur of the moment" put it on her neck.

Ginday said he then "panicked", dragged his new bride to the patio incinerator and placed her inside using a metal pole.

After the killing, the police said Ginday told his relatives Varkha had left him. He went to Walsall Police Station with his uncle and reported her as missing.

Officers conducting inquiries in the area were told people had seen smoke emanating from the property.

Ginday attacked his wife six
months after their wedding
They went into the garden of the home Ginday shared with his parents and found the metal incinerator. When they lifted the lid, they saw a human skull.

Although he admitted manslaughter and perverting the course of justice, he denied planning to kill his wife.

Varkha's cousin Sunil Kumar said: "No words can truly express the sadness and hurt my family and I are experiencing at the loss of Varkha. She was loved dearly by all. She had a great passion for life and doted on her family.

"Varkha attained a masters degree and was driven to make her life a success. Unfortunately she fell prey to Ginday who had ulterior motives which Varkha would not have appreciated."

Varkha's family said the 24-year-old was "loved dearly"

Det Ch Insp Sarbjit Johal said: "How Varkha met her death still remains a mystery... but it was clear to the pathologist she was dead when she was put into the incinerator.

"Ginday got married as a matter of convenience - he tricked a poor innocent girl into marriage but was living a lie. When she uncovered the truth he could not live with it and killed her quickly then tried to dispose of her body and her possessions by burning them."