Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 7th 2014 Contents A27
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DONETSK---Driven out of their key stronghold
in eastern Ukraine, pro-Russia separatists
regrouped yesterday in the city of Donetsk, vow-
ing to renew their fight against the government
in Kiev before thousands of cheering supporters
at a rally.
Ukrainian troops on Saturday forced the rebels
out of Slovyansk, a city of about 100,000 that
had been the center of the fighting. The govern-
ment s success there suggested it may finally be
making gains in the months-long battle against
President Petro Poroshenko said, while it was
not a total victory, purging Slovyansk of the armed
insurgents had "incredible symbolic importance."
It was not yet clear, however, whether the rebels
have been permanently crippled and their setback
will also increase pressure on Russia to do more
to help them.
Rebel fighters from Slovyansk and other towns
taken over by the Ukrainian army moved freely
yesterday around central Donetsk, a city of 1 mil-
lion and the capital of a region where the sep-
aratists have declared independence in the name
of the Donetsk People s Republic.
The insurgents control the regional adminis-
tration building and checkpoints on the city out-
skirts, but Ukrainian forces demonstrated their
superior firepower in repelling a rebel attempt
to take control of Donetsk airport in late May.
That battle left dozens of rebel fighters dead.
Igor Girkin, the defence minister of the sep-
aratist republic, told the Russian television channel
Life News yesterday that he would keep up the
fight from Donetsk.
"We will continue the combat operations and
will try not to make the same mistakes that we
made in the past," said Girkin, a Russian also
known by his nom de guerre, Igor
Ukrainian authorities have identified him as
a veteran of the Russian military intelligence
At the rally yesterday on a square in Donetsk,
people waved flags from Russia and the Donetsk
People s Republic.
"We will begin a real partisan war around the
whole perimeter of Donetsk," Pavel Gubarev, the
self-described governor of the Donetsk People s
Republic, told the crowd.
"We will drown these wretches in blood."
But he said the insurgents could easily die in
Donetsk if Russia did not come to their aid.
They were forced to flee Slovyansk because
several commanders had betrayed Girkin and left
his forces vulnerable to attack, Gubarev said.
MANHATTAN BEACH---A swim-
mer was bitten Saturday by a juve-
nile great white shark that grew
agitated trying to free itself from
a hook a fisherman had thrown
into the water off a Southern Cal-
ifornia beach, officials said.
The man, who was with a group
of long-distance swimmers when
he swam into the fishing line, was
bitten on a side of his rib cage around
9.30 am, said Rick Flores, a Los
Angeles County Fire Department
spokesman. The man s injuries were
not life-threatening and he was
taken to a hospital conscious and
breathing on his own, Flores said.
Witnesses said the approximately
seven-foot (two-metre) shark was
thrashing around in the water for
more than 30 minutes before biting
the swimmer about 274 metres off
Eric Martin said the shark s mouth
opened and closed as if it was trying
to shake the hook.
"We think the swimmer just hap-
pened to be at the wrong place at
the wrong time," Martin said.
The fisherman cut the line, and
a surfer put the injured swimmer
on his board, taking him ashore with
the help of Los Angeles County life-
guards. Paramedics began treating
The victim s identity was not
released. Flores described him as a
The shark remained in the area
for the next 20 minutes and then
disappeared into the murky water,
Flores said. The beaches remained
open, but a mile-long stretch was
temporarily off-limits to swimmers.
Police also prohibited fishing from
the pier until tomorrow as a pre-
Shark sightings are on the rise at
some Southern California beaches,
especially in the waters off Man-
hattan Beach, which is a popular
spot for surfers and paddle board-
ers.It s illegal to fish for great white
It wasn t immediately clear
whether the department was inves-
tigating the accident. (AP)
CAIRO---Egypt's president has
issued a decree raising the sales tax
on cigarettes, beer and wine.
The decision released yesterday is
the latest in a series of decrees that
aim to ease Egypt's staggering budget
deficit, which has hovered at around
12 per cent during three years of
President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, a
former military chief elected last
month, vowed to take tough decisions
to address Egypt's battered economy.
El-Sissi also partially lifted subsidies
on fuel, a politically sensitive issue
that Egypt's previous leaders had
avoided. In Egypt, where nearly 50 per
cent of the population live in poverty,
state subsidies on energy and basic
food stuffs eat up a quarter of the
budget. The new tax increases a flat
rate on local and imported cigarettes
and doubles an already existing tax on
NEW YORK---The Fire Department
of New York is mourning the death of
a lieutenant who became trapped
while looking for victims in a public-
housing high-rise blaze, the first city
firefighter to die in the line of duty in
more than two years.
Lt Gordon Ambelas died Saturday
after suffering multiple injuries while
on the 19th floor of the 21-storey
building in the Williamsburg section
of Brooklyn, officials said.
"We lost a real hero tonight and
our hearts are heavy," Mayor Bill de
Blasio said of the 14-year veteran of
Fellow firefighters found Ambelas
unconscious and carried him out of
the building. They worked with
emergency rescuers to try to revive
him, but he died at a hospital, the
"Ambelas went into the apartment
to search for life and did not come
out, and by the time his brother
firefighters found him, it was too late
for him," Fire Commissioner Daniel
It is the department's first line-of-
duty death since Lt Richard A Nappi
was killed fighting a Brooklyn
warehouse blaze in April 2012.
Ambelas is the 18th to die since 343
firefighters perished in the
September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks
that destroyed the World Trade
A police officer, Dennis Guerra, died
in April after he and his partner were
overcome by smoke and carbon
monoxide while responding to a
mattress fire on the 13th floor of a
Coney Island public housing complex.
Ambelas, a 40-year-old married
father of two daughters from the
New York City borough of Staten
Island, was among the firefighters
honoured last month for helping to
save a seven-year-old boy who
became trapped in a roll-down gate
in May. (AP)
NYC mourns loss
of firefighter in
Pro-Russia supporters stage rally as
Shark caught on fisherman's hook bites swimmer
Lt Gordon Ambelas
Egypt raises cigarette, alcohol prices
Two men rescue a swimmer after he was bitten by a great white shark, as lifeguards close in at left in the ocean
off Southern California's Manhattan Beach on Saturday. The man was bitten on a side of his rib cage but the
injuries were not life-threatening. AP PHOTO
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