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MEPs rally to defend Turkish journalist jailed for Malta story

Members of the European Parliament from across political groups have called on the European Commission to condemn Turkey’s actions against journalist Pelin Ünker. Ms Ünker was given a 13-month jail sentence after she was found guilty of defaming and insul

Valletta fight back to floor ten-man Hibs

HIBERNIANS   1 Fonseca 5 VALLETTA       2 Malano 47 Alba 84 pen. Valletta boosted their chances of retaining their Premier League title when scoring two second half goals and beat Hibernians 2-1 to join the Paolites at the top of the Premier League st
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Valletta fight back to floor ten-man Hibs

HIBERNIANS   1 Fonseca 5 VALLETTA       2 Malano 47 Alba 84 pen. Valletta boosted their chances of retaining their Premier League title when scoring two second half goals and beat Hibernians 2-1 to join the Paolites at the top of the Premier League standings. The match had taken a difficult path for Valletta as Hibs took the lead after five minutes. Joseph Mbong, who was beyond the Valletta defenders, found the ball into his feet after it was deflected by a City player. The Valletta players appealed for offside but referee Philip Farrugia waved play on and Mbong served Jurgen Degabriele who saw his shot pushed away by Bonello. Taylon failed to control the rebound but in came Tiago Fonseca who rammed the ball into the net. Hibs looked the more composed side and on 12 minutes they should have doubled their lead. Dunstan Vella won possession just outside the Valletta area and quickly played in Jurgen Degabriele who was denied by a fine one-handed save from Bonello. Valletta’s first attempt at goal arrived on 26 minutes when they were awarded a central free-kick and Miguel Alba’s inswinger was saved by Andrew Hogg. Hibs suffered a blow on the half hour when Fonseca fail to recover...

City ease past Huddersfield to cut Liverpool's lead

Manchester City reduced Liverpool's lead at the top of the English Premier League table to four points as they eventually found top gear to win 3-0 away to basement club Huddersfield Town on Sunday. This was by no means City's most outstanding display of the
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City ease past Huddersfield to cut Liverpool's lead

Manchester City reduced Liverpool's lead at the top of the English Premier League table to four points as they eventually found top gear to win 3-0 away to basement club Huddersfield Town on Sunday. This was by no means City's most outstanding display of the season but, ultimately, goals from Danilo, Raheem Sterling and Leroy Sane ensured they did not trip up in the latest leg of their quest to keep the Premier League title-race alive. Liverpool's captivating 4-3 victory over Crystal Palace on Saturday ensured this was a crunch fixture for Pep Guardiola's side, yet any hopes Huddersfield could pull off a shock win never materialised. The embarrassment of riches available to City manager Guardiola meant Gabriel Jesus, who had scored seven goals in three matches, dropped to the bench alongside David Silva while Kevin De Bruyne and Sergio Aguero returned to his starting line-up. That depth of quality would be difficult for any side to counter, especially a team struggling as much as Huddersfield are at present. They parted company with manager David Wagner on Monday, a mutual decision but a sad one for Terriers' fans who will always remember him as the man who not only secured...

Watch: Lippi joy as China fight back to reach Asia's last eight

Coach Marcello Lippi hailed China's fightback on Sunday after they staged a second-half revival to beat Thailand 2-1 and reach the Asian Cup quarter-finals. The giant nation were all at sea as they fell behind to Supachai Jaided's opener but they hit back aft
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Watch: Lippi joy as China fight back to reach Asia's last eight

Coach Marcello Lippi hailed China's fightback on Sunday after they staged a second-half revival to beat Thailand 2-1 and reach the Asian Cup quarter-finals. The giant nation were all at sea as they fell behind to Supachai Jaided's opener but they hit back after the break through substitute Xiao Zhi and Gao Lin's well-taken penalty. It meant China live to fight another day under Lippi, who is expected to step down after the Asian Cup, while Thailand will know they were beaten by a superior team. «I'm very satisfied with the win. It was not an easy game because the opponent was very tough,» said Lippi, who coached his native Italy to victory at the 2006 World Cup. «We didn't play very well in the first half because we made a few mistakes but I'm very happy with the reaction from my players, especially in the second half where in the end we created many chances. »It was a great performance in the second half, so I'm very happy for the victory and the fact that we got to the quarter-final." In an open start, Theerathon Bunmathan saw a free kick tipped over and Wu Lei had an attempt smothered by Thai goalkeeper Siwarak Tedsungnoen before Thailand went ahead on 31 minutes. From a...

Death toll from Mexico fuel explosion rises to 79

The death toll from a fiery explosion at the site of an illegally tapped fuel line in central Mexico rose Sunday to 79, officials said. Hundreds of people had been drawn to the site in the  state of Hidalgo on Friday to gather fuel amid shortages and a gover
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Death toll from Mexico fuel explosion rises to 79

The death toll from a fiery explosion at the site of an illegally tapped fuel line in central Mexico rose Sunday to 79, officials said. Hundreds of people had been drawn to the site in the  state of Hidalgo on Friday to gather fuel amid shortages and a government crackdown on pipeline fuel thefts. The cause of the explosion is under investigation, Attorney General Alejandro Gertz told a news conference. Health Minister Jorge Alcocer said six more bodies were found during a final search of the site in the town of Tlahuelilpan, in addition to 73 previously reported dead. He said 66 people injured in the explosion were hospitalized in Hidalgo, while those in more serious condition have been moved to Mexico City for specialized care. «There are patients in serious condition with burns of more than 80 percent (of their bodies),» he said, adding that their prognosis was «reserved.» The search for remains ended late Saturday but families of the victims called for the search to continue and for forensic experts to return to the scene. Images captured by local media showed a torrent of fuel escaping from a pipeline after thieves tapped into it. As many as 700 people had converged on the...

Winks strikes late to hand Spurs vital victory

Harry Winks headed home a 93rd minute winner to give Tottenham's chances of securing a top-four Premier League finish a huge boost and deal another blow to Fulham's hopes of survival with a 2-1 win at Craven Cottage. Tottenham looked set to fail their first t
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Winks strikes late to hand Spurs vital victory

Harry Winks headed home a 93rd minute winner to give Tottenham's chances of securing a top-four Premier League finish a huge boost and deal another blow to Fulham's hopes of survival with a 2-1 win at Craven Cottage. Tottenham looked set to fail their first test without the injured Harry Kane as his deputy Fernando Llorente made an unwanted impact at the other end with an own goal to hand Fulham an early lead. Dele Alli levelled six minutes into the second-half, but later hobbled off having appeared to pull his hamstring in another devastating injury blow to Spurs' challenge on four fronts. However, after Winks burst into the box to meet substitute Georges-Kevin N'Koudou's cross with virtually the last touch of the game, Spurs tightened their grip on third. They have the cushion of a seven-point advantage over fifth-placed Arsenal and Manchester United in the race for a top-four finish. Fulham on the other hand are seven points off safety and look set to return to the Championship after just one season back in the top flight. After splashing over £100 million in transfer fees to little success in the summer, Fulham added Dutch international Ryan Babel till to the end of the...

Balzan overcome struggling Qormi

QORMI              1 Rozzi 75 BALZAN             3 Correa 44 Majdevac 45, 60 Balzan broke little sweat to see off Qormi and join Ħamrun Spartans in fifth place in the Premier League standings. The match was bereft of scoring opportunit
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Balzan overcome struggling Qormi

QORMI              1 Rozzi 75 BALZAN             3 Correa 44 Majdevac 45, 60 Balzan broke little sweat to see off Qormi and join Ħamrun Spartans in fifth place in the Premier League standings. The match was bereft of scoring opportunities in the first half as Balzan looked short of ideas despite their long spells of possesion. The Reds had to wait till the 44th minute to take the lead. Ivan Bozovic’s delivery from the right picked Ricardo Correa inside the area and the wingback blasted the ball past Azzopardi. There was still time for a second goal from Balzan before the interval when in a lightning counter attack, initiated by Correa, Kadu played in Andrija Majdevac who slid the ball past the onrushing Azzopardi. Twelve minutes into the second half Uros Ljubomirac should have added a third for Balzan as the Serbian winger picked up a loose ball on the edge of the area and after advancing inside the box he fired wide with only Azzopardi to beat. Balzan did make it 3-0 on the hour when Ljubomirac forced his way from the right channel and his low cross was met by Majdevac who hit the ball past the Qormi goalkeeper. Qormi had an opening on 68 minutes when Tensior Gusman found...

Watch: Rockets rally to down Lakers in overtime, Thunder and Kings win thrillers

James Harden scored 48 points as the Houston Rockets rallied from a 21-point deficit to down the Los Angeles Lakers 138-134 in overtime on a drama-filled NBA Saturday. Paul George was the hero for Oklahoma City, his 31 points including a decisive four-point p
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Watch: Rockets rally to down Lakers in overtime, Thunder and Kings win thrillers

James Harden scored 48 points as the Houston Rockets rallied from a 21-point deficit to down the Los Angeles Lakers 138-134 in overtime on a drama-filled NBA Saturday. Paul George was the hero for Oklahoma City, his 31 points including a decisive four-point play in the dying seconds that sparked the Thunder to a 117-115 victory over Philadelphia. And Sacramento guard Buddy Hield's running three-pointer beat the buzzer to give the Kings a 103-101 victory over the Detroit Pistons. Harden's latest gem followed his 58- and 57-point performances in his last two games. But the Rockets never led until Eric Gordon's three-pointer seconds into overtime put them up 123-120. Gordon, who finished with 30 points, had forced overtime with a three-pointer that knotted the score at 120-120 with two seconds left in regulation. Oklahoma City's win was their 19th straight against the 76ers -- the longest active NBA streak of one team defeating another. Excitement built as Philadelphia's Jimmy Butler intercepted a pass aimed at Thunder big man Steven Adams of New Zealand and drove in for a layup with 6.9 seconds remaining to give the 76ers a 115-113 advantage. But after a timeout George took an...

Waterpolo coach, PM’s personal friend, to be appointed ambassador

The government is set to appoint Karl Izzo, Malta’s national waterpolo coach and a personal friend of Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, as the island’s ambassador to Montenegro. Mr Izzo is not known to have any experience in diplomacy or political affairs an
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Waterpolo coach, PM’s personal friend, to be appointed ambassador

The government is set to appoint Karl Izzo, Malta’s national waterpolo coach and a personal friend of Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, as the island’s ambassador to Montenegro. Mr Izzo is not known to have any experience in diplomacy or political affairs and no academic background. He is a former waterpolo player who, together with his wife Diane, owns the fashion retail group Dizz. He is expected to be appointed a non-resident ambassador following approval by Parliament’s Public Appointments Committee, which scrutinises government nominations to important posts and institutions. The committee, on which government MPs have a majority, is chaired by former Minister Edward Zammit Lewis, another close friend of Mr and Mrs Izzo and a lawyer to their businesses. This raises the question of whether Dr Zammit Lewis should withdraw from the committee when the vote on Mr Izzo is taken. The Izzo family have often travelled abroad on vacation with the Muscat and Zammit Lewis families. The last holiday they took together was only a few days ago.  It is not known if Mr Izzo has any connection with Montenegro other than through waterpolo. Montenegro is considered one of the strongest national...

Watch: Pacquiao batters Broner in lopsided welterweight bout

Manny Pacquiao put on a master class in elite boxing Saturday with a 12-round demolition of Adrien Broner, defending his welterweight title in his first fight on US soil in two years -- and his first as a 40-year-old. Pacquiao easily won with an impressive di
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Watch: Pacquiao batters Broner in lopsided welterweight bout

Manny Pacquiao put on a master class in elite boxing Saturday with a 12-round demolition of Adrien Broner, defending his welterweight title in his first fight on US soil in two years -- and his first as a 40-year-old. Pacquiao easily won with an impressive display of superior hand speed and destructive power that landed him a unanimous decision victory over the much younger American at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas. The Filipino star almost knocked Broner down twice in the seventh and ninth rounds and showed that he can still be a force in the highly-competitive division despite turning 40 last month. «I really don't believe my career is over. I proved it in my last fight against (Lucas) Matthysee,» Pacquiao said. «And now I prove it again at the age of 40.» In his 70th fight as a professional, Pacquiao retains the lesser version of the WBA's two welterweight belts and possibly sets the stage for a rematch with Floyd Mayweather, who watched the bout from ringside. Pacquiao improved to 61-7-2 with 39 knockouts, winning on all three judges' scorecards, including by one tally of 117-111. The other two judges also had it one-sided at 116-112. Pacquiao started the onslaught in the...

Watch: Shoot-out sees Vietnam beat Jordan, reach Asian Cup quarters

Vietnam emerged victorious from a penalty shoot out with Jordan to become the first team to reach the Asian Cup quarter-finals on Sunday -- after being the last side to scrape into the round of 16. After extra-time finished at 1-1, BT Dung rolled in the decis
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Watch: Shoot-out sees Vietnam beat Jordan, reach Asian Cup quarters

Vietnam emerged victorious from a penalty shoot out with Jordan to become the first team to reach the Asian Cup quarter-finals on Sunday -- after being the last side to scrape into the round of 16. After extra-time finished at 1-1, BT Dung rolled in the decisive spot-kick for a 4-2 penalties win and saluted the crowd after Baha Faisal and Ahmed Samir had missed for Jordan. The dramatic win upset the odds after Jordan were the first to qualify for the knockouts, and Vietnam only went through because of their disciplinary record after they finished with an identical points and goals record to Lebanon. However, the Southeast Asian champions came back from a goal down to force extra time, and they were on balance the stronger and more positive team over the 120 minutes. Vital Borkelmans' Jordan came into the game as the form side and they spurned a number of chances before opening the scoring six minutes from half-time. Baha Abdel-Rahman, taking a free kick from the right edge of the penalty area, hit it just right as the ball bent around the wall and flew into the top corner. However, the goal stung Vietnam into action and they nearly hit back when Hung Dung's dipping shot was...

Updated: Curmi progresses in girls doubles at Australian Open for juniors

There were mixed news for Maltese tennis at the Australian Open for juniors on Sunday as Francesca Curmi progressed to the second round of the women's doubles but Helene Pellicano was knocked out in the girls singles. Curmi, partnering French player Loudmill
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Updated: Curmi progresses in girls doubles at Australian Open for juniors

There were mixed news for Maltese tennis at the Australian Open for juniors on Sunday as Francesca Curmi progressed to the second round of the women's doubles but Helene Pellicano was knocked out in the girls singles. Curmi, partnering French player Loudmilla Bencheikh, came from a set down to overcome Amber Marshall and Annerly Poulous 2-6 6-4 10-8. The win was somewhat sweet revenge for Curmi who on Saturday she was knocked out of the singles competition by Poulous 6-1 0-6 6-2. Curmi and Bencheikh, who are seeded seventh in the doubles tournament will now await the winner of the match between New Zealand's Valentina Ivanov and Carol Young Suh Lee of Northern Marianas who were facing Russia's Maria Krupenina and Daria Snigur, of Ukraine. Earlier, Pellicano was eliminated from the singles competition when she went down to Hungary's Adrienn Nagy, of Hungary, 6-3 6-1. Nagy will now face Russia's Daria Frayman who had the better of Japanese player Natsumi Kawaguchi 7-5 4-6 7-5. Pellicano, on her grand slam debut, will now be in action in the doubles tournament when she teams up with Spanish player Marta Custic to take on Canada's Leylah Annie Fernandez and American Sasha Wood on...

Turning dreams into reality

“I have a dream” – four words that have resonated throughout the past five decades having been pronounced  by the charismatic Martin Luther King back in August 1963. Though the context back then was a trailblazer for more rights to blacks in America, t
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Turning dreams into reality

“I have a dream” – four words that have resonated throughout the past five decades having been pronounced  by the charismatic Martin Luther King back in August 1963. Though the context back then was a trailblazer for more rights to blacks in America, this famous phrase is a wake-up call for anyone who is determined enough to turn dreams into reality. Charles Buttigieg, a 19-year-old baritone from Gozo, has embarked on a tough journey to achieve his sky-high ambition to become an international opera singer. The last thing that comes to mind about teenagers is opera. Most men and women of his age are into pop music. This up-and-coming singer found out he has a golden voice quite by chance.  “I started singing aged 10, when I put my name to sing at a Christmas gathering in Għajnsielem, my home town.” On that occasion he sang Apologise by One Republic. “Believe me, I was awful. I wasn’t well-tuned and knew then that pop wasn’t the kind of bread I wanted to chew,” he said, his cheeks turning red as he laughs. “I never fancied operatic music and whenever there was that kind of fare on TV, I would switch it off immediately.” When did the penny drop? He got star-struck one day when he...

Young Maltese-Syrian heads for refugee camps to build a school

A young Maltese-Syrian is planning to return to Lebanese refugee camps to build a school for war-stricken children for whom education is the silver lining in a bleak future. When Zarifa Dag travelled to Bekaa Valley with a group of Maltese volunteers, she exp
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Young Maltese-Syrian heads for refugee camps to build a school

A young Maltese-Syrian is planning to return to Lebanese refugee camps to build a school for war-stricken children for whom education is the silver lining in a bleak future. When Zarifa Dag travelled to Bekaa Valley with a group of Maltese volunteers, she experienced first-hand what it means to share a classroom with 45 students. Resources at the seven schools that they visited were stretched beyond their limit, with classes held in the morning for Lebanese students and in the afternoon for Syrian refugees aged seven to 18. The 20-year-old was struck by the willpower of the youngest students, who despite not knowing a world without war and living a life on the run or in camps, turned up to class brimming with energy. Ms Dag knows too well how much of a priority education is for Syrians. Born in Malta to a Maltese mother and Syrian father, she often travelled to her second home before the war broke out. Only two of her relatives have survived the Syrian civil war, which has been devastating lives for nearly eight years. According to the UNHCR, over 5.6 million people have fled Syria since 2011, seeking safety in Lebanon, Turkey and Jordan among others. Another 6.6 million have...

A thinking woman is a scary woman

The idea that a person can have an opinion that is not dictated by the agenda of a political party is unfathomable on this island. Whenever one states an opinion, everyone rushes to decipher the true colour – red or blue – of the opinion as they frantical
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A thinking woman is a scary woman

The idea that a person can have an opinion that is not dictated by the agenda of a political party is unfathomable on this island. Whenever one states an opinion, everyone rushes to decipher the true colour – red or blue – of the opinion as they frantically try to uncover the secret agenda behind your comment which must have been stated to gratify one or the other political party. If they can’t put you in one of their easy-to-understand boxes, they will either create one for you, or condemn you as a lost soul who doesn’t have a home or an opportunist who goes wherever lies most benefit. For how can someone in Malta, full as it is with such great and inspiring leaders to choose from, choose not to align with one of these god-like, all-powerful, never-erring, as-squeaky-clean-as-my-friend’s-kitchen-top, men?? Something must be seriously wrong with you if you think you know better than them. If you’re a woman with an opinion, it’s even worse. Did your father not include the political party alliance gene of his choice when he conceived you?!? Does your husband wear the skirt in the house if he isn’t even able to discipline you enough to toe the party line and not move past what is...

Malta will need another 13,000 foreign workers this year

Malta will need another 13,000 foreigners this year if it is to maintain its economic growth, according to the head of JobsPlus Clyde Caruana. With 55,000 already here, he is well aware that there is a simmering backlash against the huge influx in such a shor
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Malta will need another 13,000 foreign workers this year

Malta will need another 13,000 foreigners this year if it is to maintain its economic growth, according to the head of JobsPlus Clyde Caruana. With 55,000 already here, he is well aware that there is a simmering backlash against the huge influx in such a short time. But he is also adamant that there is no other option if the Maltese expect wages to increase, more inwork benefits, higher children’s allowance, or the extension of the child care service, to name but a few things. “If we want to increase pensions, the money has to come from somewhere and it can only come from higher income from taxes through further economic growth – if we are to avoid increasing the tax rates for some parts of the population, on which there is political consensus,” he warned. And it is not only the government coffers which are benefiting: “In two years’ time, the third highest source of income for Maltese families will be domestic rental income (after employment and pensions), overtaking income from interest on deposits, he revealed. “As we speak, 45 per cent of employers have at least one foreign worker.” Read the full interview: ‘The economy cannot do without foreign workers’ Read also: Migrant...

The Great British divide

The rejection of Theresa May’s Brexit deal by MPs is a massive defeat for Britain’s Prime Minister and government. May lost the parliamentary vote by a huge margin of 230, the largest-ever defeat for a ruling party. Among those who voted against the deal
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The Great British divide

The rejection of Theresa May’s Brexit deal by MPs is a massive defeat for Britain’s Prime Minister and government. May lost the parliamentary vote by a huge margin of 230, the largest-ever defeat for a ruling party. Among those who voted against the deal were 118 Tory MPs, which means that over one third of Conservatives in Parliament voted against their own government. The result was not surprising – all the Opposition parties had said they would vote against the agreement, as had many Conservative backbenchers – but the margin of defeat was. It leaves Mrs May, who the day after won a vote of confidence in Parliament, with precious little time to decide what to do next. Britain is meant to leave the European Union in less than 10 weeks time, on March 29, and tomorrow she has to spell out her ‘Plan B’. The rejection of Mrs May’s Brexit deal has led to more uncertainty, caused frustration in Brussels and has led to the possibility of a ‘no deal’ between the EU and the UK – which would be absolutely disastrous for both sides but especially so for Britain. Mrs May should now make it a point to state that under no circumstances will the UK exit the bloc without a deal in place. That...

Pharmacies open today - January 20, 2019

Collis Williams Pharmacy, 15, Republic Street, Valletta;San Raffael Pharmacy, 247, Qormi Road, Marsa (2122 1188);Tal-Ħlas Pharmacy, Freedom Street, Qormi (2148 7739);Rational Pharmacy, 74/75, Valley Road, Birkirkara (2144 1513);Charing Pharmacy, Mimosa St
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Pharmacies open today - January 20, 2019

Collis Williams Pharmacy, 15, Republic Street, Valletta;San Raffael Pharmacy, 247, Qormi Road, Marsa (2122 1188);Tal-Ħlas Pharmacy, Freedom Street, Qormi (2148 7739);Rational Pharmacy, 74/75, Valley Road, Birkirkara (2144 1513);Charing Pharmacy, Mimosa Street, Pietà (2123 2954);J.V.’s Pharmacy, Swieqi Valley, Swieqi (2137 1062);Harley Pharmacy, 1, Nathalie Poutiatin Tabone Street, Sliema (2133 4635);St Mary Pharmacy, 2, Antonio Schembri Street, Attard (2143 6348);Tat-Tarġa Pharmacy, Plot No. 2, Constitution Street, Mosta (2143 3141);St Simon Pharmacy, 8, Islands Promenade, Buġibba (2157 1649);St Monica Pharmacy, 157, St Monica Street, Paola;Victory Pharmacy, 32, Victory Street, Senglea (2180 1698);Felice Dispensary 95, Sanctuary Street, Żabbar (2182 7939);Gudja Pharmacy, Triq il-Kappillan c/w William Baker Street, Gudja (2169 6422);Bronja Pharmacy, Sonata, Bronja Street, Żurrieq (2168 2251);Brown’s Pharmacy, 47, Freedom Avenue, Żebbuġ (2146 5411);Spiżerija Carmen, 1, Misraħ is-Suffara Street, Dingli (2145 7128);Castle Pharmacy, 2, Independence Square, Victoria (2155 6970);St John’s Pharmacy, 85, Independence Street, Xewkija (2156 3052). Airport pharmacy: Open from 8am to...

Appreciation: Agnese Mallia

Joe on behalf of his brothers and sister, writes: News of Agnese’s passing to a better life was a great shock for all our families and for her many friends. The depth of people who attended the funeral Mass at the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Grace in Żabbar,
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Appreciation: Agnese Mallia

Joe on behalf of his brothers and sister, writes: News of Agnese’s passing to a better life was a great shock for all our families and for her many friends. The depth of people who attended the funeral Mass at the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Grace in Żabbar, who she loved so much, showed how much Agnese was loved and respected both within the family and the community. Her name may not strike a note with the famous but, for those who knew her, our mother will never be forgotten for her simplicity. Her life was one of giving, particularly to the nurturing of her beautiful family. She loved us unconditionally. As Fr Joe Giuliano rightly said during Mass her faith was a gift to her family and those around her; she put her family before herself. Mum, we are forever proud of what you left behind. There are not enough words to describe just how important you were to us and what a powerful influence you continue to be. May our family and the persons who were blessed by her presence in their lives find comfort in the amazing memories of our dear mother. Mother, we love you.

The Marie Kondo mantra

With a bedroom that oftentimes looks like a cross between Aladdin’s cave and a Turkish bazaar, I am always looking for ways to maximise the space I have. I have saved pictures off Pinterest, visited blogs written by bored mothers and even watched You Tub
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The Marie Kondo mantra

With a bedroom that oftentimes looks like a cross between Aladdin’s cave and a Turkish bazaar, I am always looking for ways to maximise the space I have. I have saved pictures off Pinterest, visited blogs written by bored mothers and even watched You Tube videos posted by obsessively clean, over-eager men who reassure me that a cleaner room will change my life. In fact, I had bought and read Marie Kondo’s book long before they turned her spark joy mantra into a Netflix series. For those of you who don’t spend as much time on the internet as I, Marie Kondo is a diminutive Japanese lady who exudes a wonderful sense of calm while helping people to tidy up their homes. Apart from her killer method of folding things in order to take up as little room as possible, she also approaches items by getting their owner to think about whether each item or not sparks joy within them, that is, whether they get a good feeling or not when they touch it or whether they are indifferent towards it. Well, having been threatened with a guest appearance on Hoarders by a couple of my nearest and dearest, I attempted her method to not overly positive results. Firstly, I couldn’t get past her outlook on...

Tarxien see off St Andrews challenge

TARXIEN RAINBOWS 2 Woo Ling 24og Faria 48 ST ANDREWS 1 Davis 53 pen.  Tarxien Rainbows were back to winning ways after overcoming St Andrews 2-1, in a nerve-wrecking encounter at the Hibs Stadium.  This was the first win for the Rainbows since defeating Pie
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Tarxien see off St Andrews challenge

TARXIEN RAINBOWS 2 Woo Ling 24og Faria 48 ST ANDREWS 1 Davis 53 pen.  Tarxien Rainbows were back to winning ways after overcoming St Andrews 2-1, in a nerve-wrecking encounter at the Hibs Stadium.  This was the first win for the Rainbows since defeating Pietá Hotspurs 3-0 in November and have now moved to eighth place, with 19 points.  Meanwhile, St Andrews are still without a win since November and have slipped into 10th, with 17 points - five points ahead of the play-out spot.  The Saints only threatened once through a Kemar Reid low drive that went inches wide.  On 21 minutes, Ricardo Faria danced his way into the box and fired a close-range shot but Matthew Calleja Cremona was alert to avert the danger.  Nonetheless, the Rainbows still managed to forge ahead three minutes later when the Brazilian sent an inviting cross into the box which was deflected by Woo Ling into the far corner.  Faria opened the second half with a spectacular effort from well outside the area to double the lead for the Rainbows.  However, the Saints were thrown a lifeline on minute 53 when Daniel Zerafa tripped Kemar Reid inside the eighteen.  Martin Davis converted from the penalty spot to net his...

Macron's debate put to test as 'yellow vests' stage 10th protest

France's «yellow vests» took to the streets on Saturday for a 10th straight weekend of anti-government protests, despite attempts by President Emmanuel Macron to channel their anger into a series of town hall debates. In Paris, several thousand pe
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Macron's debate put to test as 'yellow vests' stage 10th protest

France's «yellow vests» took to the streets on Saturday for a 10th straight weekend of anti-government protests, despite attempts by President Emmanuel Macron to channel their anger into a series of town hall debates. In Paris, several thousand people, many waving placards calling for Macron to resign or condemning police violence, marched peacefully through the Left Bank in freezing temperatures. «Parisians, rise up!» they chanted, urging residents of the capital to join the movement which has been led by rural and small-town France. At the end of the march, clashes broke out around the Invalides war museum, with police using tear gas and water cannon to disperse hooded protesters who threw paving stones and bottles. Demonstrations were also held in other major cities, with clashes reported in the western city of Rennes and eastern city of Lyon. The interior ministry estimated the number of protesters at 27,000 by the early afternoon - down from 32,0000 at the same time a week ago - with 7,000 in the capital. Turnout was being closely watched for signs of possible fatigue in the movement as it enters its third month and Macron's «great national debate» gains momentum. Some...

Watch: El Shaarawy strike lifts Roma into Champions League places

Stephan El Shaarawy struck the winner as Roma held off Torino 3-2 to move into the Champions League places on Saturday as Serie A returned to action after a three-week winter break. El Shaarawy fired in the winner midway through the second half after coming o
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Watch: El Shaarawy strike lifts Roma into Champions League places

Stephan El Shaarawy struck the winner as Roma held off Torino 3-2 to move into the Champions League places on Saturday as Serie A returned to action after a three-week winter break. El Shaarawy fired in the winner midway through the second half after coming on as a substitute in the sixth minute for injured Turkish winger Cengiz Under and watching his side throw away a two-goal half-time lead in the second period. Roma overtake city rivals Lazio to move into fourth place, the final Champions League berth, with 33 points from 20 games -- 20 points behind leaders Juventus. “We made life complicated for ourselves as usual,” said Roma coach Eusebio Di Francesco. “The important thing is that the team is showing an impressive overall approach when creating chances. “We need to calm it down a bit sometimes and defend as a team.” Roma looked to be cruising when promising teenager Nicolo Zaniolo opened the scoring after 14 minutes at the Stadio Olimpico and Aleksandar Kolarov added the second from the spot 20 minutes later after Torino goalkeeper Salvatore Sirigu brought down El Shaarawy. But Torino fought back after the break, with Tomas Rincon curling in a fine goal in the 51st...

Watch: Salah fires Liverpool seven points clear

Liverpool moved seven points clear at the top of the Premier League as Mohamed Salah's double inspired a dramatic 4-3 victory over Crystal Palace, while Manchester United stretched their winning streak to seven games as they beat Brighton 2-1 on Saturday. Wit
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Watch: Salah fires Liverpool seven points clear

Liverpool moved seven points clear at the top of the Premier League as Mohamed Salah's double inspired a dramatic 4-3 victory over Crystal Palace, while Manchester United stretched their winning streak to seven games as they beat Brighton 2-1 on Saturday. With second-placed Manchester City travelling to bottom of the table Huddersfield on Sunday, Liverpool seized the chance to tighten their grip on the title race. Jurgen Klopp's side were pushed hard by Palace but Salah's predatory instincts and a woeful mistake from Eagles keeper Julian Speroni ensured Liverpool improved their unbeaten home league run to 32 games. Liverpool's haul of 60 points from 23 games tops the Reds' previous best tally of 59, set at the same stage of the 1893-94 and 1987-88 campaigns. Palace, the last team to beat Liverpool in a Premier League game at Anfield, in April 2017, took a shock 34th minute lead. Wilfried Zaha picked out Andros Townsend, who drilled a crisp finish past Alisson Becker. Salah had been accused of diving by Palace players after a failed attempt to win a first-half penalty. But he exacted his revenge with an equaliser 60 seconds after the interval, the Egypt forward slotting in his...

Around 170 dead, missing in two shipwrecks in the Mediterranean - reports

An estimated 170 people have died or went missing in two separate shipwrecks in the Mediterranean Sea, according to reports. Some 53 people have died on the Alborán Sea, western Mediterranean, according to information from NGO sources, the UNHCR said in a st
timesofmalta.com

Around 170 dead, missing in two shipwrecks in the Mediterranean - reports

An estimated 170 people have died or went missing in two separate shipwrecks in the Mediterranean Sea, according to reports. Some 53 people have died on the Alborán Sea, western Mediterranean, according to information from NGO sources, the UNHCR said in a statement. One survivor is understood to have been rescued by a passing fishing boat after being stranded for more than 24 hours at sea and is receiving medical treatment in Morocco. Moroccan and Spanish rescue vessels have been searching for the boat and survivors for several days to no avail. The Italian Navy are also reporting an additional shipwreck on the central Mediterranean. Three survivors were taken for treatment on Lampedusa, and reported that 117 people, who are currently dead or missing, were on board with them when they departed from Libya. UNHCR said it has been unable to independently verify the death tolls for both shipwrecks. “The tragedy of the Mediterranean cannot be allowed to continue,” said Filippo Grandi, UN High Commissioner for Refugees. “We cannot turn a blind eye to the high numbers of people dying on Europe’s doorstep. No effort should be spared, or prevented, from saving lives in distress at...

Watch: One of the largest sharks on record spotted off Hawaii

An enormous great white shark - believed to be one of the biggest on record -- has been spotted off the coast of Hawaii by divers who took a swim with the predator. The 20-foot (six-meter) female shark - bearing similar markings as «Deep Blue,» th
timesofmalta.com

Watch: One of the largest sharks on record spotted off Hawaii

An enormous great white shark - believed to be one of the biggest on record -- has been spotted off the coast of Hawaii by divers who took a swim with the predator. The 20-foot (six-meter) female shark - bearing similar markings as «Deep Blue,» the largest great white shark recorded - made its surprise appearance on Tuesday, joining other sharks feasting on a sperm whale carcass off Oahu. «We saw a few (tiger sharks) and then she came up and all the other sharks split, and she started brushing up against the boat,» said Ocean Ramsey, one of the divers, recounting the extraordinary encounter to the Honolulu Star Adviser. «She was just this big beautiful gentle giant wanting to use our boat as a scratching post,» added Ramsey, who swam with the shark all day and captured stunning pictures. «We went out at sunrise, and she stayed with us pretty much throughout the day.» Ramsey said the animal, believed to be at least 50 years old and weighing an estimated 2.5 tonnes, was «shockingly wide» and may be pregnant. Sightings of great white sharks are rare in Hawaii, where the water is too warm. «Deep Blue,» which has her own Twitter account and was the subject of a documentary several...

No more enforcement action on Siġġiewi ‘illegal’ road... after 12 years

The Planning Authority has confirmed that it will no longer be insisting on enforcement action against the asphalting of an ‘illegal’ road in an environmentally sensitive area in Wied Qirda, limits of Siġġiewi, as it has now decided to lift the enforcem
timesofmalta.com

No more enforcement action on Siġġiewi ‘illegal’ road... after 12 years

The Planning Authority has confirmed that it will no longer be insisting on enforcement action against the asphalting of an ‘illegal’ road in an environmentally sensitive area in Wied Qirda, limits of Siġġiewi, as it has now decided to lift the enforcement notice it issued 12 years ago. The planning regulator, which in 2007 issued an enforcement notice “for the deposit and levelling of concrete in a valley without permit”, has now reversed its decision. Asked to explain how something which was illegal in 2007 and was left for “pending direct action” by the authorities for such a long time suddenly became legal, a PA spokesman said: “The access existed prior to 1968 therefore it is committed and not illegal. “Consequently, no action can be taken against the resurfacing of an existing access and so the enforcement notice has been withdrawn,” the spokesman said. It is not yet known why it took the authority 12 years to lift its enforcement notice and why the ‘sudden’ change of heart. The latest decision taken by the PA on this ‘illegality’ arrived after the Times of Malta asked the authority for an update on the unlawful tarmacking by Transport Malta of the illegal stretch of the...

Football club opens doors to London homeless

Crystal Palace have opened up their Selhurst Park stadium to rough sleepers seeking shelter from the winter weather, the English Premier League side said. A lounge at the south London ground can be turned into a temporary overnight shelter for up 10 rough sle
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Football club opens doors to London homeless

Crystal Palace have opened up their Selhurst Park stadium to rough sleepers seeking shelter from the winter weather, the English Premier League side said. A lounge at the south London ground can be turned into a temporary overnight shelter for up 10 rough sleepers whenever temperatures are forecast to drop below freezing. Under a deal with the Croydon Council local authority, people formally identified as sleeping rough are referred to Selhurst Park, where they can access a camp bed for the night, a hot evening meal, breakfast and washing facilities. Eight people used the shelter on Thursday night, the first time it was opened, the club said in a statement. The lounge was then converted back again on Friday morning. «The club wants to be a force for good in the community and we are happy to do our bit to help those most in need,» said chief executive Phil Alexander.  

Missing man found, arrested

The 31-year-old man sought by the police since Thursday has been found.  David Liniker Micallef was arrested on Saturday morning and was being detained at the Corradino Correction Facility, the police said.  A nationwide appeal for help to track down the ma
timesofmalta.com

Missing man found, arrested

The 31-year-old man sought by the police since Thursday has been found.  David Liniker Micallef was arrested on Saturday morning and was being detained at the Corradino Correction Facility, the police said.  A nationwide appeal for help to track down the man was made on Thursday. In a statement, the police thanked the public for its cooperation.   

Minister justifies FIAU budget ‘explosion’ to €10.6m

Finance Minister Edward Scicluna has justified what PN MP Chris Said dubbed as an “explosion” in the FIAU 2018 budget, which mushroomed from the original approved amount of €1.6 million to €10.6 million. The FIAU has been in the spotlight over the pas
timesofmalta.com

Minister justifies FIAU budget ‘explosion’ to €10.6m

Finance Minister Edward Scicluna has justified what PN MP Chris Said dubbed as an “explosion” in the FIAU 2018 budget, which mushroomed from the original approved amount of €1.6 million to €10.6 million. The FIAU has been in the spotlight over the past few years after handling high-level money-laundering investigations involving politicians, including the Prime Minister’s chief of staff Keith Schembri, Tourism Minister Konrad Mizzi and Opposition leader Adrian Delia. Read: Casa publishes FIAU report showing €1.3m 17 Black transactions In July, the European Banking Authority demanded action by the FIAU after it deemed that the unit had breached EU anti-money laundering laws over its supervision of Pilatus Bank. The bank’s licence was withdrawn by the European Central Bank last November. The Finance Minister informed parliament that additional funds were needed by the FIAU for a number of reasons. Prof. Scicluna said security improvements were made to the way the FIAU handled data, as well as improvements to the building’s security and its staff. The Finance Minister said the unit’s human resources had been boosted and other changes implemented according to an established...

Watch: Jota treble fires Wolves to leave Puel under fire

Diogo Jota's hat-trick piled pressure on Leicester manager Claude Puel as the Wolves midfielder's last-gasp strike secured a thrilling 4-3 win on Saturday. Nuno Espirito Santo's side blew a two-goal lead and then wasted a 3-2 advantage, but still finished
timesofmalta.com

Watch: Jota treble fires Wolves to leave Puel under fire

Diogo Jota's hat-trick piled pressure on Leicester manager Claude Puel as the Wolves midfielder's last-gasp strike secured a thrilling 4-3 win on Saturday. Nuno Espirito Santo's side blew a two-goal lead and then wasted a 3-2 advantage, but still finished with all three points in one of the Premier League's games of the season at Molineux. Jota was Wolves' hero with his winner deep into stoppage-time, capping a dramatic finale that left Puel holding his head in disbelief at the final whistle. This was a third successive defeat for Leicester, including an embarrassing FA Cup exit at minnows Newport, leaving Puel facing a fight to hold onto his job. The Frenchman had already endured numerous reports that he was on borrowed time at the King Power Stadium amid reports of player and fan unrest. Wolves were quickly into their stride and took the lead in the fourth minute when Joao Moutinho's cross picked out Jota and the Portugese midfielder guided a close-range volley past Leicester keeper Kasper Schmeichel. Jamie Vardy almost snatched an equaliser when Wolves goalkeeper Rui Patricio got his feet in a tangle, gifting possession to the Leicester forward before scrambling back to...

Let's just 'skip' road safety

Safety standards by drivers operating large vehicles in Malta often leave much to be desired but this truck driver is clearly pushing the limits.  This picture shot on Saturday morning shows a truck transporting two skips packed to the brim with garden rubbl
timesofmalta.com

Let's just 'skip' road safety

Safety standards by drivers operating large vehicles in Malta often leave much to be desired but this truck driver is clearly pushing the limits.  This picture shot on Saturday morning shows a truck transporting two skips packed to the brim with garden rubble driven through the area known as T'Alla w'Ommu, off Naxxar. One of the skips appears to be tilting dangerously towards one side, posing a potential hazard to other drivers. «Apart from safety aspects, why is this waste going to Magħtab not to the domestic stream being turned to energy and compost,» asked the Times of Malta reader who sent in the picture.

Fourth MCI concert

The Malta Cultural Institute will be presenting its fourth concert of the MCI 2018/2019 season tomorrow at 7pm at the G. F. Abela Junior College Theatre, Msida. During the concert the MCI will be presenting a pianoforte recital by Ricardo De Nittis, who wil
timesofmalta.com

Fourth MCI concert

The Malta Cultural Institute will be presenting its fourth concert of the MCI 2018/2019 season tomorrow at 7pm at the G. F. Abela Junior College Theatre, Msida. During the concert the MCI will be presenting a pianoforte recital by Ricardo De Nittis, who will be playing the MCI Blüthner Concert Grand Piano. De Nittis, a very promising young pianist who has an ATCL Diploma from Trinity College, London, will be playing works by Chopin, Fauré and Alleví. The second part of the evening will be presenting a saxophone trio made up of Alexander Cordina, Curtis Casha and Karissa Bugeja. They will be accompanied on the piano by Amy Borg. Also taking part will be dancers from the Mary Jane Bellia Ballet School, who will be performing solos and an ensemble excerpt from the classical ballet Les Papillons by E. Chausson. The MCI painting exhibition for January will feature works by Frank Agius. The coordination and presentation of the concert will be in the hands of Marie Therese Vassallo. Free parking will be available for guests in the grounds of the Junior College during the concert. The Junior College theatre has lift facilities, providing easy access for guests with special needs. For...

Yet another Brexit chapter

It has been two years, six months and 12 days since that day on June 4, 2016, when the world awoke to the news that the people of the United Kingdom voted for a break away with the rest of the European Union. Divorces are complicated and messy at best, and i
timesofmalta.com

Yet another Brexit chapter

It has been two years, six months and 12 days since that day on June 4, 2016, when the world awoke to the news that the people of the United Kingdom voted for a break away with the rest of the European Union. Divorces are complicated and messy at best, and if this is to be compared to one it can be considered as the mother of them all. After delaying the initial parliament vote in December in favour of trying to extract further concessions from the European Union, the day of reckoning on January 14, delivered the inevitable blow to Theresa May’s Brexit deal.   During last year’s snap election, the Labour party came back from its relative obscurity that grappled the party post the Tony Blair and Gordon Brown heydays. The prospect of the Labour party possibly endorsing a second referendum has galvanised support and mobilised many disenfranchised youths. However the party’s leader Jeremy Corbyn, has come short of endorsing a second referendum, making the Labour party’s position unclear in this respect. It is of paramount importance that the British people are given a clear way forward in this regard. Both Conservative and Tory parties have a proportion of representatives in favour...

President made honorary graduate of Leicester University

President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca has been made an honorary graduate by the University of Leicester. The university bestowed the honorary degree at its graduation ceremony on Friday at De Montfort Hall in Leicester. During her acceptance speech, President
timesofmalta.com

President made honorary graduate of Leicester University

President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca has been made an honorary graduate by the University of Leicester. The university bestowed the honorary degree at its graduation ceremony on Friday at De Montfort Hall in Leicester. During her acceptance speech, President Coleiro Preca thanked the University for the honour saying “this is a truly memorable moment in my life, which I will treasure forever”. The President also commended the University of Leicester for being an inclusive university which promotes the most important values of humanity, such as human dignity. “These are values which I treasure so much. Through this, I truly feel connected with this wonderful university, and, in fact, I feel so honoured to have been chosen to be connected to this university. I am also proud of you, as the University of Leicester is an example of what our human family should stand for. I truly look forward to an even better connection by exploring further collaboration with the University of Malta.” President Coleiro Preca dedicated the honour to all the children in Malta and the United Kingdom, and all over the world, but in particular to the 264 million children around the world who did not yet...

Venus and Jupiter light up Malta's skies

The sky was clear enough on Saturday at dawn to enable reader Klaus Farrugia capture Venus above Jupiter. The pair will at their closest on Tuesday at dawn. Both planets are in motion as they orbit the sun following their respective orbital path.  Antares,
timesofmalta.com

Venus and Jupiter light up Malta's skies

The sky was clear enough on Saturday at dawn to enable reader Klaus Farrugia capture Venus above Jupiter. The pair will at their closest on Tuesday at dawn. Both planets are in motion as they orbit the sun following their respective orbital path.  Antares, in the constellation Scorpius the Scorpion, shines bright over Malta own “mount” Magħtab.

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