Colombian Security Forces Capture 79 Suspected Clan Úsuga Operatives

first_imgThe United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights reported in March that groups such as Clan Úsuga “are the main challenge to public security,” a threat greater than the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), the country’s largest guerrilla group. Meanwhile, the Colombian Armed Forces have become more aggressive in their pursuit of the organization. On April 18 in the department of Córdoba, law enforcement officers arrested seven suspects who allegedly were part of a network that trafficked cocaine into Central America, from where the drugs were routed to Mexico, the United States, and other destinations. Four of the suspects were allegedly leaders of the drug trafficking ring, and the United States has requested their extradition. The Coast Guard did not immediately report the names of the suspects; one is Colombian, one is Ecuadorean, and four are from Costa Rica. Neither did they immediately report the exact amount of the cocaine, though they placed it in the general range of 640 kilograms. Law enforcement agents also confiscated four pieces of radio equipment that could have been used to alert fellow narcotraffickers of the boat’s location so the cocaine could be transferred to another vessel. And three days later, security forces captured 72 more suspected members, also seizing an undisclosed number of weapons and computers that contained vital information about the organization’s criminal activities. Those arrests occurred during simultaneous raids in the departments of Antioquia, Atlántico, Chocó, Córdoba, Sucre, and Valle del Cauca. The arrests dealt a major blow to Clan Úsuga, said Defense Minister Juan Carlos Pinzón. And three days later, security forces captured 72 more suspected members, also seizing an undisclosed number of weapons and computers that contained vital information about the organization’s criminal activities. Those arrests occurred during simultaneous raids in the departments of Antioquia, Atlántico, Chocó, Córdoba, Sucre, and Valle del Cauca. The arrests dealt a major blow to Clan Úsuga, said Defense Minister Juan Carlos Pinzón. The Army and Navy are asking residents to use hotlines 146 and 147 to report any suspicious activity while they continue to combat violence and the trafficking of illicit goods nationwide. The Army and Navy are asking residents to use hotlines 146 and 147 to report any suspicious activity while they continue to combat violence and the trafficking of illicit goods nationwide. Costa Rican Coast Guard and National Police seize cocaine On April 18 in the department of Córdoba, law enforcement officers arrested seven suspects who allegedly were part of a network that trafficked cocaine into Central America, from where the drugs were routed to Mexico, the United States, and other destinations. Four of the suspects were allegedly leaders of the drug trafficking ring, and the United States has requested their extradition. The Coast Guard has been responsible for protecting the country’s waters since Costa Rica disbanded its Army in 1948. The Coast Guard did not immediately report the names of the suspects; one is Colombian, one is Ecuadorean, and four are from Costa Rica. Neither did they immediately report the exact amount of the cocaine, though they placed it in the general range of 640 kilograms. Law enforcement agents also confiscated four pieces of radio equipment that could have been used to alert fellow narcotraffickers of the boat’s location so the cocaine could be transferred to another vessel. Colombian security forces recently captured 79 alleged members of Clan Úsuga, one of the country’s most powerful narcotrafficking organizations, during numerous operations nationwide. The interdiction occurred about 30 nautical miles west of Cape Matapalo, where Coast Guard ships and aircraft spotted a suspicious vessel in a known narcotrafficking route. The Coast Guard surrounded the ship, preventing the crew from escaping, before Police and Coast Guard members boarded the vessel and found 32 bales each containing 20 kilograms of cocaine. The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights reported in March that groups such as Clan Úsuga “are the main challenge to public security,” a threat greater than the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), the country’s largest guerrilla group. Meanwhile, the Colombian Armed Forces have become more aggressive in their pursuit of the organization. Colombian security forces recently captured 79 alleged members of Clan Úsuga, one of the country’s most powerful narcotrafficking organizations, during numerous operations nationwide. In March, President Juan Manuel Santos deployed a total of 1,200 Military Troops and National Police Officers along with around 20 Black Hawk helicopters the country’s northwestern region as part of Operation “Toma Masiva del Urabá.” The operation is utilizing Neptuno Task Force, which combines 12 existing task forces and is made up of members of the Colombian Army, Air Force, Navy, and National Police. Costa Rica’s Coast Guard and National Police recently teamed to capture six suspects in connection with the seizure of more than 600 kilograms of cocaine found aboard their ship in the South Pacific, Costa Rican Public Security Minister Gustavo Mata said. The interdiction occurred about 30 nautical miles west of Cape Matapalo, where Coast Guard ships and aircraft spotted a suspicious vessel in a known narcotrafficking route. The Coast Guard surrounded the ship, preventing the crew from escaping, before Police and Coast Guard members boarded the vessel and found 32 bales each containing 20 kilograms of cocaine. By Dialogo May 01, 2015 The Coast Guard has been responsible for protecting the country’s waters since Costa Rica disbanded its Army in 1948. Costa Rican Coast Guard and National Police seize cocaine Costa Rica’s Coast Guard and National Police recently teamed to capture six suspects in connection with the seizure of more than 600 kilograms of cocaine found aboard their ship in the South Pacific, Costa Rican Public Security Minister Gustavo Mata said. In March, President Juan Manuel Santos deployed a total of 1,200 Military Troops and National Police Officers along with around 20 Black Hawk helicopters the country’s northwestern region as part of Operation “Toma Masiva del Urabá.” The operation is utilizing Neptuno Task Force, which combines 12 existing task forces and is made up of members of the Colombian Army, Air Force, Navy, and National Police. last_img read more

Rand report proposes standards for mass antibiotic dispensing

first_img The standards are geared toward 72 cities that take part in the federal government’s Cities Readiness Initiative (CRI), a program launched by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2004 to prepare major cities and metropolitan areas to distribute antibiotics from the Strategic National Stockpile within 48 hours of a federal order to release them. Though federal law mandates that the standards be evidence-based, the Rand authors pointed out that the rarity of large-scale public health disasters means there is little evidence to base the standards on. Instead, the authors developed the standards by talking to practitioners, reviewing existing literatures, using mathematical modeling, and seeking feedback from an expert panel. Next stepsThe Rand authors suggest that HHS officials review the suggested standards, consider if changes are needed, then move forward to enact the standards. They also suggest that HHS consider whether the standards should apply to all locations that would receive antibiotics from the SNS, not just the 72 cities that participate in the CRI program. Oct 15, 2008 (CIDRAP News) – The Rand Corp., responding to a request from the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), recently unveiled a set of proposed standards for cities to use as they establish plans to distribute antibiotics to the public in the event of a bioterrorist attack or other public health emergency. The 133-page technical report, which appears on Rand’s Web site, covers four main topics: the number and location of points of dispensing (PODs), internal POD operations, staffing, and security. PODs are places where members of the public would go to receive antibiotics or other countermeasures in an emergency. See also: Internal operationsThe scale of the public health emergency will likely guide the selection of a dispensing protocol, and the report acknowledges the need for flexibility as cities make their operational plans. But the standards would require cities to establish and exercise at least one rapid-dispensing protocol that minimizes the need for licensed medical workers and gives instructions for directing recipients through the process, selecting the medication to dispense, releasing information about the medication, and dispensing the medication. The standards are designed to allow communities to be flexible and innovative in how they meet the 48-hour dispensing goal, the report says. “Moreover, the standards are intended to provide minimal requirements and should not discourage CRI sites from exceeding them,” it states. Instead of setting targets for numbers of PODs, the standards call for cities to estimate the number of people who would go to individual  PODs seeking antibiotics. Officials would then use a formula supplied in the report to determine how many PODs would be needed. Number and location of sitesThe authors recommend that the first planning step be to estimate the overall number of people who will likely come to PODs to pick up their medications, which will help them determine the number of PODs they will need. Estimating the number of people will likely depend on several factors that vary by location, such as tourism levels and the size of the urban workforce. Staffing provisionsThe authors predicted that recruiting adequate staffing for the PODs would probably be the most difficult aspect of conducting a mass dispensing operation and would present diverse challenges in different cities. “The standards development process revealed concern that uniform, one-size-fits-all staffing standards would fail to account for community differences, unnecessarily require jurisdictions to undo work already completed, and stifle innovation,” they wrote. Because rapid drug-dispensing actions are likely to push legal and liability boundaries, the standards require city officials to identify such conflicts and communicate them to those who have the authority to initiate legal changes. Another suggestion is that HHS establish an oversight committee to regularly review the standards in a way that engages stakeholders, seeks public input, and includes an appeal process. Security concernsThe standards would require cities to assess security at each POD, involve local law enforcement agencies in developing security plans, and provide for law enforcement presence at each site. In another nod to varying local needs, the authors give cities some leeway in the form of alternative standards regarding security staffing and formal law enforcement approval of security plans. For example, cities could use trained volunteers of private security firms if having sworn officers at every site were not feasible. “The standard assumes that individual jurisdictions are in the best position to define the scope of the population for whom they will be responsible for administering prophylaxis,” the Rand authors wrote. They also advised planners to factor in 12 hours for the CDC to get the drugs to warehouses and 12 hours to get the drugs to PODs. The Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Act of 2006 requires HHS to develop performance standards for public health preparedness, and the HHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) asked Rand to develop the proposed standards, according to the report. Public health officials will also need to recruit enough staff to operate the PODs and perform quarterly drills to keep in contact with them. The authors said the staffing requirement may be very large for some locations—as many as 6,000 in some metropolitan areas—so they offered an alternative standard under which officials would recruit and regularly contact only the core staff. Rand report on proposed antibiotic dispensing standardslast_img read more

Hodgson criticises Rodgers’ method

first_img Hodgson’s relationship with Rodgers was again put in the spotlight after the former Fulham manager revealed Liverpool winger Raheem Sterling asked to be excluded from the England team for Sunday’s 1-0 win in Estonia. ”He (Sterling) said, ‘I’m feeling tired, I’d rather sit this one out’,” the England manager told BBC Radio 5 Live after the game, which was settled by a second-half free-kick from Wayne Rooney. Press Association Shortly after revealing the details of the conversation, Hodgson told Rodgers he must do his bit to make sure his teenage star does not suffer from physical and mental fatigue too. “Am I the only one with that responsibility? Or does it have to be shared between club and country? I think it does,” Hodgson said. The 67-year-old then criticised one of the methods Rodgers uses to try to ensure his quickest players, presumably including Sterling, recover properly from matches. The Liverpool boss revealed last month that he is a strong believer in giving his “fast” players two-days to recover from matches due to the stresses and strains their speed causes on their bodies. Rodgers spoke of his frustration at Hodgson’s refusal to adopt the two-day recovery method for Daniel Sturridge last month after he pulled a thigh muscle during a sprint at an England training session. And it is understood the Northern Irishman also gives Sterling two days off after games as he thinks it aids the pacy player’s return to peak fitness. But Hodgson says there is little evidence the programme benefits players’ recovery times. “Raheem might say it is something that is becoming ingrained in him and that he felt the need to talk about being tired more than he would normally do,” Hodgson said. Roy Hodgson has risked causing the ire of Brendan Rodgers by criticising the two-day recovery method the Liverpool manager uses to try to keep Raheem Sterling fit. “But we have never had any problems with that. I don’t think there is a lot of medical evidence to support the ‘two day recovery’. “So if you want to, you might want to research that one. “Certainly, the Germans who you admire so much – they don’t do it. That is for certain. “I would expect players not to take it granted that there will be two-day recoveries.” In the early hours of Monday morning Sterling responded on Twitter to those who had ridiculed him for asking to be rested just eight weeks into the season. “Now listening too.. Excuse me for being human?? omw home,” the 19-year-old wrote after retweeting two critical messages posted to him on the micro-blogging website. “Oi @sterling31 sod off and choose to play for Jamaica if you’re going to continue all this tired nonsense,” read one message to Sterling. Another commented: “@sterling31 Prone to Tiredness? I use to play 3 Rugby matches a week when I was 19! #tiredness #yourhavingalaugh #stillyoung.” It is understood that England’s medical staff will be contacting their counterparts at Liverpool this week to talk about Sterling’s fitness. And Hodgson himself will call Rodgers to discuss the matter. “I think I should speak to Brendan, but it really is very simple and I am sure he understands that situation,” Hodgson said. “Raheem has played a lot of games recently and it is the first year in the Champions League for Liverpool for a while so the games have obviously been quite high pressure games and I will tell him he looked a bit tired and I made the decision from that to play Adam Lallana. “But Brendan has been talking anyway about the pressures Raheem has been under and the fatigue that may have set in a little bit so I am pretty sure that he will be dealing over the next month with Raheem as he sees fair.” Hodgson has come under fire from former Liverpool captain Jamie Carragher for publicly divulging the fact that Sterling asked to be rested. “No problem with Sterling telling Hodgson he was tired,” Carragher tweeted. “(He has) played a lot of football already this season on the back of a WC (World Cup… But not for disclosing it as there will be some negative comment towards Raheem now. “Hodgson could have been more careful.” Former international captain Rio Ferdinand defended Sterling’s actions and called for a winter break to help the England squad deal with a congested calendar. Ferdinand tweeted: “A mid season break like most other countries would help….fatigue is 1 element as to why England have struggled at tournaments too. “With more rest at the right times throughout seasons (Wayne) Rooney would have gone into tournaments for England fresher 100%…. Too proud again. “Same could be said of (Steven) Gerard (sic), (Frank) Lampard, JT (John Terry), A.Cole (Ashley Cole) myself etc-all too proud to sit out of training or a match with the bigger picture in mind.” last_img read more

OPTIMA to support Betfred’s Spanish market launch

first_img Share StumbleUpon Betfred counters Oppenheimer bid in race to rescue Phumelela August 26, 2020 Betfred boosts US racing coverage with XB Net deal renewal August 10, 2020 Related Articles Share Betfred extends World Snooker Championship deal until 2022 August 17, 2020 Submit OPTIMA has increased an existing partnership with the Betfred Group to provide the operator with its Omnichannel Player Account Management and Sports Betting system (OPTIMAMGS™) to enter the competitive Spanish market.Betfred Managing Director Mark Stebbings said that OPTIMA was the “natural choice” for Betfred to expand into the Spanish market. He explained: “We have partnered with Jacob Lopez and his team because of their professionalism and the flexibility of their technology as we expand internationally.”Jacob Lopez, OPTIMA CEO, added: “It is a pleasure working with the very knowledgeable Betfred team side by side. We are delighted that the Betfred management team appreciates the work our teams are doing in the United Kingdom, where they are one of the leading omnichannel operators.“The flexibility of our platform to adapt to different markets; the great combination of our Sports Betting and e-Gaming Omnichannel platform technology, together with Betfred’s sports betting and gaming expertise, will bring a leading international operator to the top of the Spanish market. “At OPTIMA, as we do for all our appreciated partners, we will work relentlessly for Betfred to fully deploy their product strategy in the very competitive Spanish market.”The initial agreement between the two parties, signed in December of 2017, saw the rollout of the OPTIMAMGS™ platform and Serverless v2 retail product for over 1,600 Betfred shops, supporting nearly 4,000 point of sale OTC terminals.last_img read more

Trackers earn opening series sweep over Barons

first_imgThe Trackers made sure to take quick advantage of home ice, scoring within the first three minutes of the opening frame, courtesy of Kody McManus’ first goal of the series.However, the Barons showed some great resiliency, tying the game at the 13 minute marker of the first, concluding the opening period with the score deadlocked at 1-1.The remainder of the game belonged to the hometown Trackers. With time winding down in somewhat of a sloppy second period, Wyatt Gale tipped in a point shot with 1:25 left in the second, providing not only the go-ahead-goal, but the eventual series winner.   – Advertisement -Entering the third with the 2-1 lead, the Trackers refused to let up, continuing to push the offensive pace. Trevor Whynot tipped in his first of the series six minutes into the third, followed by back-to-back goals from Gale to complete the hat-trick, concluding the game 5-1, and providing the Trackers a birth into the second round.   Round two of the post season will pit the Trackers against the Grande Prairie Sherpa Safety Storm, who finished first in the North Black Division, the same division the Trackers played in.Following the game, Trackers head coach Brennen Giroux talked about the importance of scoring first in the game.Advertisement “It’s huge. You always want to get that first goal, just to get the momentum on your side and to establish that presence.”Trackers goalie Michael Chute played a great game in net for the home team, playing with confidence and making numerous timely saves to maintain the lead for his team.  Coach Giroux says it’s because of that confidence and solid play that Chute will continue to get the start in net.With Grande Prairie on the horizon, Giroux says success in the upcoming series revolves around effort.“The last time we played them they beat us 4-0, so we really need to come prepared to work next week. It’s going to be a really good series, and I hope our players come out strong. Grande Prairie is a good team, so we just have to come prepared.”Advertisementlast_img read more