For many people, sports like karate, rock climbing and skateboarding are leisure activities that draw people in because of their daredevil charms. For people who think skateboarding is for pierced, tattooed and hooded teenagers gathering under a graffiti-riddled bridge and not for elite athletes interested in competing at the very pinnacle of world sports, it is time to rethink their outlook. This is because skateboarding has become one of five new sports that the IOC or International Olympic Committee has added to the next Summer Games that will take place at Tokyo in 2020, along with surfing, karate, baseball/softball and sports climbing.
The vote has been described as a complete evolution of the modern Olympic programme. While there will be no chances to the original 28 events set to take place in Tokyo, 18 events and 474 participating athletes will be added to the event schedule. The move is seen as a way to get the younger athlete generation interested in the Olympics. The president of the IOC, Thomas Bach states that with the inclusion of these five new sports (though baseball has been occasionally included in the Olympics) young people are given more options to participate in sports they may find more appealing.
The proposal for the five sports was forwarded to the committee in July where it received a unanimously positive vote. Yoshiro Mori, president for the Tokyo 2020 Games says these inclusions will allow young athletes a once in a lifetime experience of competing in the Olympic Games which is obviously the world’s biggest sporting event and inspire them to do their very best in sports and in daily life. The news hasn’t been received well by everyone. Many critics claim that squash and netball deserve more of a chance and the inclusion of skateboarding has been deemed “silly”. However, the new inclusions give hope to 474 new athletes and for some people, that is all that matters.
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Genetically engineered crops have been around for quite some time and they are considered to be harmful to human beings and it causes many side effects. Recent studies have shown that these crops are not only safe for humans and animal and also they do not cause cancer, obesity, kidney disease etc. National Academies of Science recently released a detailed report listing out the benefits.
Initial ground work on this report started about two years ago and the research was conducted by more than 50 scientists and researches from various fields such as agriculture, engineering and medicine. The observation was result of more than 900 studies and covers data that has been available for more than 20 years. Which means the research was done ever since the first genetically modified crop was introduced.
These crops were beneficial in terms of saving money for the farmers in United States. But the yield from these crops were not much. The pest infestation was also lowered in some areas but in other areas cultivating these crops lead to herbicide resistant weed growth. Also, no evidence has been collected to prove that the GE crops affect the population of butterflies.
The review that was conducted was thorough and systematic. It took into consideration many of the issues that are commonly raised about the genetically modified crops.
The genetic material of these plants was artificially modified so that they have the characteristics that the other crops might not possess. Two of the most important characteristics were the ability to resist pests and withstand the effects of the herbicides that are used.
In order to understand whether the crops are safe for humans or not, the disease reports from various states in United State and Canada were compared against the countries where the consumption of such plants are less. It was observed that there was no correlation between the two. There was also no impact on the long-term pattern of consuming genetically modified foods.
Recently a large number of confidential documents were leaked and it had led to the revelation about how rich powerful people are and the kind of techniques they use for hiding their wealth.
Approximately eleven million documents were leaked and some of the most secure companies such as Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca. These document reveal how Fonseca has helped clients in laundering money and other methods he had used for avoiding tax. This company has been present for more than 40 years and it was never charged for any criminal activities. The leaked documents contain all the transactions for the past 40 years and this is supposed to be the biggest leak in years.
The president of France, Francois Hollande had hailed these revelation as documents that would stop people from committing fraud and increase the revenue from tax. The documents contain more than 12 heads of state information including the ones holding office currently. It is estimated that almost 60 people are linked to the present or former world leaders in the data.
Some of the big names included in these papers are the Prime Minister of Iceland who has been linked with his wife’s wealth. Some of the close associates of Russian President Vladimir Putin are not to be left behind. They have been noted to have been involved in money laundering schemes that adds up to billion-dollars. The transactions seemed to have taken place between a Russian bank Rossiya.
Also revealed is a suspected billion-dollar money-laundering ring that was run by a Russian bank. Everyone who is associated with this are close associates of President Putin.
Another wealthy client and a US millionaire Marianna Olszewski was given fake ownership to make transactions and hide money from the authorities. This is also a breach of the regulations that are designed by the anti-money laundering authorities.
Egypt’s former president Hosni Mubarak, former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi and Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad are some of the other names that have been included in the leaked papers.