Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : September 30th 2014 Contents Riot policemen use pepper spray to young pro-democracy activists who forced their way into Hong
Kong government headquarters during a demonstration in Hong Kong, early Saturday. Hong Kong
police used tear gas to try to disperse thousands of protesters challenging Beijing's decision to
restrict democratic reforms in the Asian financial hub. AP PHOTO
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When it comes to purchasing products
on the Internet that claim to treat or cure
Ebola, the US Food and Drug Administra-
tion has one word for consumers: Beware!
This week the FDA sent warning letters
to three companies the government
agency says are selling products over the
Internet that claim to treat, prevent or
even cure the deadly disease. The letters
were issued after an alert warning con-
sumers about fraudulent Ebola products
being hawked online went out last month.
"We have a programme at FDA that
monitors the Internet to look for health
fraud products, products not approved by
FDA that claim to cure or treat disease,"
said Howard Sklamberg, the FDA's deputy
commissioner for global regulatory opera-
tions and policy. "We noticed that when
there is a public health issue that really
comes to the fore(front)---for example
H1N1 a few years ago, and now Ebola---
there tends to be an increase in health
fraud products, which are products that
claim to prevent, treat or cure disease and
the product has not been approved by
The FDA is firm: "At this point there are
no drugs or vaccines that have been
shown to be safe and effective to treat or
prevent Ebola disease," Dr Luciana Borio,
the FDA's Assistant Commissioner for
Counterterrorism Policy and Acting
Deputy Chief Scientist, says. (CNN)
FDA warns about fake Ebola drugs
Five more bodies found
after Japan eruption
MOUNT ONTAKE---Five more lifeless bodies have been
found on the slopes of Japan's Mount Ontake, bringing the
total number of presumed dead in a volcanic eruption Sat-
urday to 36.
Twenty-four bodies still remain on the mountain, while
12 have been recovered, identified and pronounced dead,
Nagano Prefecture Police said yesterday.
The search for more missing hikers has been suspended
due to dangerous conditions at summit. Hydrogen sulfide
gas is being spewed from the mountain, police said, putting
rescuers in danger.
The volcano in central Japan unleashed a huge cloud of
ash late Saturday morning that billowed down the moun-
tainside and engulfed hikers in its path. (CNN)
Belgium tries 46 over jihadist links
Forty-six people have gone on trial in Antwerp on
charges of belonging to a group that sent jihadists to Syria,
the largest case of its kind in Belgium.
Prosecutors say the Sharia4Belgium organisation sent
recruits to militant groups such as Islamic State (IS).
Only eight of the accused appeared in court. The rest are
thought to be on the frontline-or dead-in Syria.
European governments are increasingly worried about
the risks posed by their citizens fighting in Syria and Iraq.
IS militants spearheaded an assault across northern Iraq
this summer, adding a belt of territory there to the areas
under their control in Syria.
The US, and its European and Arab allies, have re-
sponded with air strikes on IS-held territory.
More than 3,000 European Muslims are thought to have
gone to Iraq and Syria to fight for IS and groups that share
its ideology, such as al-Qaeda-allied Jabhat al-Nusra.
European security agencies fear that jihadists who re-
turn from those countries could mount attacks on domes-
Officials estimate that up to 400 Belgian nationals have
gone to fight in Syria. Of these, about 10 per cent are
thought to have links to Sharia4Belgium.
ISIS fighter says
US airstrikes aren't effective
TURKEY---The United States may be touting its strikes
on ISIS targets in Syria, but one of the terror group's fight-
ers says the hits are trivial at best.
In an exclusive interview with CNN, a Syrian ISIS fighter
using the pseudonym Abu Talha said the militant group
has been preparing for such attacks.
"We've been ready for this for some time," Abu Talha
said. "We know that our bases are known because they're
tracking us with radars and satellites, so we had backup lo-
He taunted the US-led coalition that has been pummel-
ing ISIS targets in Syria over the past week, including at-
tacks on mobile oil refineries and vehicles.
"We have revenues other than oil. We have other av-
enues, and our finances are not going to stop just because
of oil losses," the 28-year-old militant said.
"They thought they knew everything. But thank God,
they don't know anything. And God willing, we will defeat
Abu Talha said he was among the ISIS fighters who took
over Mosul, Iraq's second-largest city, in June.
He said even if coalition attacks impede ISIS, they're not
enough to stop ISIS' mission of fortifying an Islamic state
across Sunni parts of Syria and Iraq. (CNN)
Protests in Hong Kong are
continuing after tens of thou-
sands of people defied calls for
them to dismantle their camps
and return home.
Demonstrations grew after
police tried to disperse crowds
using batons and tear gas in the
early hours of yesterday morn-
ing. Riot police later withdrew.
The pro-democracy protest-
ers are angry at China for lim-
iting their choice in Hong
Kong s 2017 leadership elec-
China has warned other
countries not to support the
The protesters---a mix of stu-
dents and members of the
Occupy Central civil disobedi-
ence movement---want Beijing
to abandon its plans to vet can-
didates for the post of chief
executive in the 2017 polls.
They want a free choice of
candidates. Until now the ter-
ritory s chief executive has
essentially been selected under
a pro-Beijing mechanism.
As night fell, cheers rippled
through the crowd. Many office
workers joined the protesters
or stood on bridges watching
the remarkable scenes.
The only jeering was when
protesters held up a huge por-
trait of Chief Executive CY
Leung and carried it through
For the demonstrators he is
now Public Enemy Number
One and they have called on
him to resign.
Many other people in Hong
Kong are not on the streets and
think the protesters are pushing
their luck with Beijing. They
also fear that growing protests
could lead to instability, and the
possible flight of capital.
Dozens of protesters were
arrested overnight on Sunday
amid angry scenes that saw riot
police fire tear gas into large
Cheung Tak-keung, assistant
commissioner of police for
operations, insisted police had
used the "bare minimum force."
He said 41 people, including
12 police officers, had been
injured since protests broke
The Hong Kong government
urged protesters to stay calm
and leave peacefully but crowds
remained camped out around
the government complex on
Schools in the Wan Chai,
Central and Western districts
were closed yesterday and will
remain shut today, according
to the Hong Kong Education
The city remains heavily dis-
rupted, with several major thor-
Tensions escalated on Sunday
when Occupy Central threw its
weight behind student-led
protests, bringing forward a
mass civil disobedience cam-
paign due to start tomorrow.
Analysts say Communist
Party leaders in Beijing are wor-
ried that calls for democracy
could spread to cities on the
Hong Kong protesters
refuse to move
Court has suspended Catalo-
nia's planned independence
The court said it first
needed to consider argu-
ments whether the Novem-
ber 9 vote breached the
country's constitution. It
acted on a request from the
Spanish central government
The head of Catalonia, the
wealthy north-eastern Span-
ish region, signed a decree on
Saturday calling for the refer-
But Spanish Prime Minis-
ter Mariano Rajoy told re-
porters that the vote was
not "compatible with the
"Nobody and nothing will
be allowed to break up
He was speaking in a tele-
vised statement to the na-
tion after holding an
emergency cabinet meeting.
Hundreds of thousands of
Catalans joined a protest in
Barcelona recently, calling for
their right to vote.
Unhappy at Spain's refusal
to give Catalans more pow-
ers, protesters have been en-
ergised by Scotland's recent
and many also waved the
Catalonia's 7.5 million in-
habitants make up approxi-
mately 16 per cent of the
population of Spain. Yet it is
one of Spain's richest and
most highly industrialised re-
gions, as well as one of its
Spain's deepening eco-
nomic crisis, though, has
seen a surge in support for
A recent poll for Spain's El
Pais newspaper showed that
45 per cent of Catalans were
in favour of suspending the
referendum if the Constitu-
tional Court declared it illegal.
Only 23 per cent would like
the referendum to go ahead
regardless, the survey sug-
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