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Showing posts from November 30, 2015

The Silk Road Affair: Power, Pop and a Bunch of Billionaires

Stephanie Baker StephaniBaker

November 29, 2015 — 1:00 PM PST

Mobile companies in three countries in alleged bribery probe

VimpelCom may pay near-record U.S. fine, people familiar say

Even in post-Soviet Uzbekistan, an ancient crossroads where torture and bribery allegations are endemic, Gulnara Karimova, the president’s Harvard-educated daughter, stood out for her ruthlessness.

As the U.S. embassy noted in a secret dispatch from 2005 that was later published by Wikileaks, Karimova was viewed by most Uzbeks “as a greedy, power-hungry individual who uses her father to crush business people or anyone else who stands in her way.”

Gulnara Karimova
Photographer: Yves Forestier/Getty Images for Style.Uz Art Week

These days the 43-year-old former globetrotting socialite who once publicly praised God for “my face” is confined to her homeland along the legendary Silk Road, watched over by the security services of her aging father, Islam Karimov, who has ruled for a quarter century. 

Even in isolation,…


AUSTRALIA : Brisbane irradiation facility ready for Australia's first big season of mango deliveries to USA, as horticulture searches for new export options

QLD Country Hour By David Sparkes

Posted yesterday at 9:21pm

PHOTO: Australian mangoes are set for a big season in the United States. (Marty McCarthy)
MAP: Bowen 4805

Australia's only irradiation facility with approval for exports to the United States is ready for its first big season of mango deliveries.

Irradiation is a technique used to sterilise fruit fly and other insects before products are exported.

Brisbane company Steritech earned the American approval in January, becoming one of just eight accredited facilities around the world.

00:00 AUDIO: Steritech general manager Glenn Robertson discusses the new approval for exports to USA (ABC Rural)

00:00 AUDIO: Stakeholders discuss potential for horticultural exports from Bowen in North Queensland (ABC Rural)

"The approvals came at the end of the last mango season, so there were only two [small] consignments sent," general manager Glenn Robertson said.

"It was good that they had that opportunity to test that market, but this…