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Weekly News from Fyksland

Coverage and translation provided by Vaijskä Radio

Sunday, 11 May, 2003

Toxic paint residues close old docks

NIEKOPENHAAG, Jølantä (VKK) - Dredging operations at Niekopenhaag's old docks have been suspended after large concentrations of the toxic chemical tributyl tin (TBT) were detected in the nearby waters. Municipal authorities suspended construction operations yesterday after dangerously large amounts of TBT compounds were discovered. Aari Tuolan, head of technical operations at the Port of Niekopenhaag, told reporters that federal agencies have been notified and the construction activities at the site have been ceased indefinitely. He notes that the now-defunct Old Port of Niekopenhaag was once a dumping ground for hazardous industrial wastes. Tuolan worries the discovery of hazardous wastes will further delay the much-needed waterfront revitalisation projects. Full story...

Monday, 12 May, 2003

Workers demand compensation due to toxic shut down

NIEKOPENHAAG, Jølantä (VKK) - Over 60 discontented workers gathered outside the construction site at Niekopenhaag's Old Docks Monday demanding loss wages and compensation for the possibility of developing health problems due to exposure to toxic substance. Project manager Knæl Smit of AiKon said his company cannot be held responsible for this incident. Smit claims whoever responsible for the waste will also have to pay for his company. Preparation construction activities at the site began a week ago even though a concrete development plan has yet to be drawn up. Full story...

Canada denies suspected SARS patient caught disease in Toronto

TORONTO, Canada (VKK) - Canadian health officials have severely criticised the diagnosis according to which a Fyksian pneumonia patient has SARS, saying that he could not have caught the virus during a visit to Canada. In the Canadian view, the idea that the young man had caught SARS during a visit to a trade fair in Toronto was "preposterous". A 29 year-old man of Korlsä-op-Löj reported to hospital on Saturday after showing SARS-like symtoms. Colin D'Cunha, Commissioner for Public Health for the Province of Ontario, said in the Toronto Star newspaper that nobody could have been exposed to SARS in Toronto at the time the man was in the city, "unless somebody managed to visit one of our hospitals despite the restrictions." Full story...

Tuesday, 13 May, 2003

Terror strikes Riyadh

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) - U.S. and Saudi officials said they suspect al Qaeda in simultaneous explosions in a western housing compound that rocked the Saudi capital late Monday, killing at least one person and hurting dozens of others. The incident drives home the continued terror threat to western interests around the world. It is not immediately known if any Fyksian nationals were among the injured or missing, but Prime Minister Jana Stotson immediately condemned the suicide bombings, saying the assualts were a "work of hatred" and she reminded Fyksian to maintain "utmost vigilance". Full story...

Wednesday, 14 May, 2003

Niekopenhaag toxic waste could snag city's Olympic hopes

NIEKOPENHAAG, Jølantä (VKK) - The discovery of hazardous waste beneath Niekopenhaag Old Port could well jeopardise the city's hopes to redevelop the area in the next few years and use it as part of the next Olympic bid. According to environmental law experts, the Niekopenhaag Site falls under federal jurisdiction and it may take much longer to clean-up compared to other sites that are under ducal or municipal authorities. "It is well-known that [federal] sites are often caught up in bureaucractic mess," said Dr. Ponse Kouen of the University of Niekopenhaag, "and then there's always the question of 'who is going to pay for it'." Full story...

Thursday, 15 May, 2003

SvenesÆr loses one quarter of its passengers in April

KAANSÄ (VKK) - National carrier SvenesÆr is suffering from the SARS epidemic, the war in Iraq, and the global economic downturn. Traffic to Asia, which long kept the airline afloat, has quickly become one of SvenesÆr's worst problem areas. SvenesÆr has increased its service to the Far East and other Asian-Pacific destinations considerably in the wake of 9/11. Still in early 2003, most of the airline's growth came from its Asian routes. Now the number of passengers on Asian flights has plummeted. Full story...

Two Fyksian families target of Saudi bombing

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) - Two Fyksian families are among the residents of the al-Hamra residential compound, which was one of three targets hit by suicide bombers in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, late Monday night. Seven Fyksian nationals were in al-Hamra when the attack took place. None were injured in the explosion. Järin Þjenen works for the IT company Nixu, and has lived for several years in Riyadh. He says that al-Hamra is an area about 400 metres in diameter, and that the explosion was so powerful that it broke windows in all parts of the compound. Full story...

Friday, 16 May, 2003

Niekopenhaag toxic waste clean-up a priority: Värgas

NIEKOPENHAAG, Jølantä (VKK) - Niekopenhaag-Søntrum MP Krooni Värgas warns that the federal government must speed up the investigative and clean-up processes of Niekopenhaag's Old Port which may well be the country's latest environmental disaster left by Niekopenhaag's legacy of heavy manufacturing and shipping industries. "The redevelopment of the Niekopenhaag waterfront is vital to Fyksland as a whole," said Värgas, "and this requires the government's immediate attention". Observers say it may well be couple of years before the site can be re-opened for construction. Full story...

Saturday, 17 May, 2003

Fyksland denies Danish claim of prostitution on ferries

LAAKTUMAA, Øtali-Þorja (VKK) - According to a report on a Danish television channel, rampant prostitution exists on the passenger ferries operating between Laaktumaa and the Danish Faroes Islands. A 40-year-old woman who called herself "Lotta", said in the programme that many women on the ships sell sex services. She said that she charges 1,000 Danish krones for half an hour, and that sex workers on the ships recruit customers over the Internet. "Nothing wrong with tourists just out for a good time whilst on vacation," explains Lotta. Full story...

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