Σάββατο, Νοεμβρίου 12, 2005

Hope for Cancer Patients

Greek Researcher Developed Vaccine
A Greek researcher developed a vaccine, which stimulates the immune system and hence gives hopes for life extension to cancer patients. As vaccine developer and director of the Medical Research Institute in Paris Kostas Kosmatopoulos said, the vaccine was tested on 59 patients suffering from terminal cancer and 75% of them lived for an entire year, when life expectancy ranged from 6 to 9 months. At the same time, all patients' immune system was stimulated and there were no side effects. These facts encourage the researchers. Although the vaccine does not promise cancer cure, 30% of patients (20 of the 59) showed stabilisation of the disease. In particular, Oncology professor at the University of Crete Vassilis Georgoulias reported the case of a patient with breast cancer, who was stabilised for two years! The next step is comparative testing, to evaluate results.
The next step is comparative research on patients who have taken the vaccine and on others who have not. Researchers will focus their study on inhibiting the disease from developing and for this reason the vaccine will be tested on patients who have had a primary tumour removed, but are still in a high-risk category. The comparative research results for patients in Greece, Italy, France, Germany and perhaps the Netherlands will be released in three or four years and give the green light for the vaccine's circulation in the market

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Παρασκευή, Νοεμβρίου 11, 2005

Europe launches probe to Venus

A European-built spacecraft successfully blasted off Wednesday for Venus on a five-month mission to probe the planet's greenhouse effect.
The remote-operated probe lifted off from the Baikonur, Kazakhstan on board a Soyuz rocket and made contact with mission control.
"The mission is an outstanding success," Gaele Winters, a director at the European Space Agency in Darmstadt, told reporters. "We had a perfect launch. The instruments are switched on, the solar panels are deployed, everything is working."
The probe, called Venus Express, is expected to reach the planet in mid-April. It cost 220 million euros.
Scientists hope the mission will help them to understand why Venus evolved so differently than Earth, given the two planets have similar sizes, masses and composition.
Venus lacks a magnetic field to protect it from the solar wind, leading temperatures to peak at 740 K, hot enough to melt lead.
The Venusian atmosphere is mainly carbon dioxide, which traps solar radiation in the most powerful greenhouse effect known in the solar system, according to ESA's website.
The probe's instruments will also study the hurricane force winds at high altitudes and measure temperatures.
Scientists also want to learn if the volcanoes on Venus are active.
The space agency planned to launch the craft on Oct. 26. The launch was delayed to allow technicians to clear contamination on the covering of the probe's Russian-made Soyuz-Fregat launcher.
NASA made the last mission to Venus in the early 1990s, mapping the planet's surface

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Πέμπτη, Νοεμβρίου 10, 2005

Judges liken new UK terror laws to Nazi Germany

A powerful coalition of judges, senior lawyers and politicians has warned that the Government is undermining freedoms citizens have taken for granted for centuries and that Britain risks drifting towards a police state. One of the country's most eminent judges has said that undermining the independence of the courts has frightening parallels with Nazi Germany.
Senior legal figures are worried that "inalienable rights" could swiftly disappear unless Tony Blair ceases attacking the judiciary and freedoms enshrined in the Human Rights Act.
The new anti-terrorism (?!!) laws would allow police hold terrorist suspects for up to 90 days without charge.

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"Grey Wolves" Create Unrest

A new challenge was delivered by the "Grey Wolves" in Istanbul, just hours after the State Department issued a report criticising Turkey’s religious freedoms. A group of Turkish nationalists gathered in Phanar this morning, calling for the expulsion of the Ecumenical Patriarchate and chanting mottos against the USA, the EU and Tayyip Erdogan. The group, however, which was made up of some 200 people, did not accomplish its target. The Turkish police had implemented tight security measures in the areas surrounding the Orthodox Patriarchate and the demonstration ended without any incidents being recorded.These challenges are very often and in the previous one; some days before; the leader was an ex-military general!!
After the demonstration, the members the Church of Cyprus met with Patriarch Bartholomew in the Patriarchate. In Athens, after meeting with Greek President Karolos Papoulias, Foreign Minister Petros Molyviatis, answering to a relevant question, reminded reporters of Turkey’s pledges concerning religious freedoms and voiced his satisfaction over yesterday’s reports by the State Department and the European Commission.

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Triple Attack in Jordan

The Work of al-Qaeda ?
Amman, Jordan, was the newest al-Qaeda target, since on Thursday, the group’s Iraq faction claimed responsibility for the triple attack against the hotels Radisson SAS, Grand Hyatt and Day Inn, with an announcement posted on the Internet and signed by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the head of al-Qaeda in Iraq. However, the announcement has not been confirmed yet. Right from the start, though, the Jordanian authorities had declared that the Islamic group was behind the attacks, which killed 57 people and injured over 110.

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Κυριακή, Νοεμβρίου 06, 2005

EU's Turkey deadline

LONDON: Turkey will have two years to eliminate torture, establish freedom of religion and assert civilian control over the military if it wants to become a member of the European Union in 10 years.The deadline is set in a European Commission checklist of about 150 conditions it will give Turkey this month.
The draft document, seen by London's Financial Times, is aimed at easing EU voters' concerns about Turkey's potential membership.
Turkey will have to "ensure implementation ... of the 'zero tolerance' policy against torture" and "to adopt a law comprehensively addressing all the difficulties faced by non-Muslim religious minorities and communities," the draft says, according to the paper. During the same period, Ankara must establish full parliamentary oversight of military and defence policy, abolish any remaining competence of military courts to try civilians and ensure the independence of the judiciary.

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Paris-Escalating Tension

Hit-and-run arson attacks escalated in poor Paris suburbs as the government met to work out a response to nine nights of urban violence that has spawned copycat unrest in major towns.
The violence has been seen as the expression of pent-up anger by youths, many Muslims of North African and black African origin, at police treatment, racism, unemployment and their marginal place in French society.
After nine nights of wailing sirens, acrid smoke, stone-throwing and destruction, residents from all ethnic backgrounds are tiring of the unrest.
Nearly 900 cars were torched, while at least 170 people belonging to socially segregated ethnic minorities were arrested. According to the police, a total of 897 cars were destroyed during the violent incidents, 656 of which were located in the outskirts of the French capital, as opposed to 519 that had been destroyed in the same areas in previous nights. It is the worst destruction, as far as damages are concerned, recorded since the beginning of the riots.
In fact, the police used helicopters this time to monitor the situation, while some 700 firefighters and 1,400 police officers were deployed in Paris to deal with the rioting youths. While fewer clashes with youths were reported, judicial officials said the unrest was being organised via the Internet and mobile phones.
Without question what is taking place bears all the hallmarks of being coordinated," Yves Bot, the Paris public prosecutor, told Europe 1 radio.
Police appealed for witnesses in the petrol bomb attack on a bus that severely burnt a handicapped woman, and 200 people in Epinay-sur-Seine held a minute's silence for a photographer beaten to death in front of his family in a street robbery.
In Meaux, a town east of Paris whose mayor is government spokesman Jean-Francois Cope, youths threw petrol bombs at paramedics, whose patient was taken to hospital under police escort.
One police union spoke of "civil war spreading into all French ghettos", and said the government should decree a nightly curfew and send in troops to dissuade trouble-makers.
It should be noted that the riots started last week, after the death of two migrants, who were being chased the police.

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Palestinian boy shot by Israeli army dies of wounds

JENIN, West Bank, Nov 5 (Reuters) - A 13-year-old Palestinian boy shot in the head and chest by Israeli soldiers died of his wounds on Saturday, Palestinian officials said.Ahmad al Khateep was critically wounded on Thursday during an Israeli army raid to detain suspected Palestinian militants in the occupied West Bank.
The Israeli army has said soldiers in the Jenin refugee camp came under fire from Palestinian gunmen in several locations and returned fire hitting the boy who they said was later discovered to have been holding a toy weapon.The army said that it regretted the incident.Al Khateep's body was transferred to Jenin from an Israeli hospital where he was being treated, Palestinian medics and a Palestinian security source said.
The boy's father, Ismail al Khateep, told Israeli television before the body was moved that his family had decided to donate Ahmad's organs to Israeli children who needed them."We want to send a message of peace to Israeli society, to the defence ministry and the Israeli parliament," he said."They (Israeli forces) killed my son who was healthy and we want to give his organs to those who need them."Palestinian officials have said Israel's frequent raids in West Bank towns and villages to arrest suspected militants hurt chances of resuming peacemaking stalled by more than five years of violence.

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