David S. Touretzky discusses Scientology, Anonymous and Tom Cruise

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

David S. Touretzky, prominent free speech activist and critic of Scientology, discussed his opinions on the recent Internet backlash against the Church of Scientology in an interview with former Scientologist and Wikinews reporter Nicholas Turnbull. The recent conflict on the Internet between critics of Scientology and the Church has been spurred on in declarations by a nebulous Internet entity using the name Anonymous that the Church of Scientology “will be destroyed”. Anonymous has directed recent protests at Scientology centres across the world, which have attracted significant numbers of individuals supporting the cause. In recent e-mail correspondence with Wikinews, a representative of the Church of Scientology declared that the Church considers the activities of Anonymous to be illegal, and that Anonymous “will be handled and stopped”.

Touretzky, a research professor in artificial intelligence and computational neuroscience at Carnegie Mellon University, has been a prominent critic of the Church of Scientology since mid-1995, and has been protesting against Scientology vociferously since then; he has also run websites that publish material that Scientology wishes to keep suppressed from the public eye, such as extracts from Scientology’s formerly-confidential Operating Thetan (OT) materials. Touretzky views the actions of the Church of Scientology as being “a threat to free speech”, and has endured harassment by the Church of Scientology for his activities.

The Church of Scientology continues to suffer damage to its public reputation through increased exposure on the Internet and vocal protests by Scientology critics such as Prof. Touretzky. A recent event that focused intense attention on Scientology’s totalitarian attitude was the leak of an internal Church of Scientology propaganda video to the Internet video sharing site YouTube, in which celebrity Scientologist Tom Cruise spoke heavily in Scientology’s jargon and stated that that “we [Scientology] are the authorities” on resolving the difficulties of humanity. The declaration of war by Anonymous followed shortly after this leak, in the form of a video posted to the Internet.

The ongoing dispute, cast by some as Scientology versus the Internet, brought Scientology terms such as “SP” (Suppressive Person, an enemy of Scientology) and “KSW” (Keeping Scientology Working) into general usage by non-Scientologists from the late 1990s onwards; increased attention has been drawn to Scientology by the release of the Cruise video in addition to media coverage. This focus has caused an even greater propagation of these terms across the outside world, as Touretzky comments in the interview.

Wikinews asked Prof. Touretzky about the impact that the activities of Anonymous will have on Scientology, the public relations effect of the Tom Cruise video, the recent departure of individuals from the Church of Scientology’s executive management, the strategies that Anonymous will employ and Touretzky’s experiences of picketing the Church.

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2008 Leisure Taiwan launched in Taipei World Trade Center

Saturday, July 19, 2008

This year’s Leisure Taiwan trade show (a.k.a Taiwan Sport Recreation and Leisure Show) started yesterday, with 131 companies participating including sports media companies such as ESPN and VideoLand Television, businesses selling sports equipment and fitness clubs.

There were also a variety of sports being played in the arena built for the trade show. The events included a 3-on-3 basketball tournament, free style shooting, and bicycle test-riding. In addition, conferences discussed issues related to sports and physical education.

A major topic in the trade show was energy-efficiency and, as a result, bicycles and similar sports equipment were being heavily promoted.

Next Tuesday, companies from the electronics industry plan to promote their industry at “2008 Digital E-Park.” In previous years, organizations from the electronics industry have showcased their products at Leisure Taiwan instead of at the Digital E-Park, so this move has reduced the number of markets covered by Leisure Taiwan.

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Spanish town council electee proposes nudist pool, marijuana field in park

Friday, June 1, 2007

A former mailman who proposed to paint the town hall pink, turn the local town square into a nudist pool, and to plant a marijuana field in the local park has been elected to the Reus, Spain town council.

Ariel Santamaria promised to show up to the town’s council meetings dressed up as Elvis Presley if he was elected and kept his word at the town’s first meeting on Thursday.

Before being elected, Santamaria who is a member of the Reus Independent Coordination, had also promised the town’s 100,000 residents that he would install a GPS system at the police department that would allow officers to track people who are smoking marijuana and provide them with a light if they need one.

An unnamed media consultant who works for Santamaria set up a website for his campaign and followed Santamaria wherever he went, dressed as a pirate.

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Top Five Cars Below Rs 5 Lakh

Top Five Cars Below Rs 5 Lakh

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carazoocars0

In India, people are more interested in buying small cars rather than sedans or SUVs. Hence, most car manufacturers have started to direct their resources towards manufacturing small cars. No doubt that Maruti Suzuki India leads the small car manufacturers pack, but other car makers such as Ford, Nissan and Toyota are picking up speed.

In this article, we will discuss the best hatchbacks available in the Indian market. As is evident from the title, these leading small cars are available in the Indian market with a sticker price below Rs 5 lakh.

1. Tata Nano Rs.1,37,555 (Ex-Showroom Price New Delhi ): Considered to be one of the best breakthroughs in Indian automotive industry, the

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Tata Nano

is available in eight variants: Base BSII, Base BSIII, CX BSII, CX BSIII, LX BSIII, Base-BS IV,CX-BS IV and LX-BS IV. The cute car is equipped with a 2-cylinder, 624 cc, multi-point fuel-injection petrol engine that produces 34.5 bhp. A four speed manual transmission is standard on all the variants.

2. Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 Rs.3,03,093 (Ex-Showroom Price New Delhi ): The

Maruti Suzuki Alto K10

boasts of a beautiful design and power-packed performance. Equipped with a 998cc, three cylinder engine that churns out 67bhp, the Alto K10 is available in four variants including two metallic variants. A 5- Speed Manual Transmission with Cable Gear Shift and McPherson Strut in the front and Coil Spring suspension at the rear is standard with all variants. Safety features in the Alto K10 include child safety lock and a high rigid monocoque frame along with seat belts.

3. Hyundai i10 Rs.3,54,146 (Ex-Showroom Price New Delhi ): The new Hyundai Next Gen i10 comes in two engine options including 1.1 iRDE2 and 1.2 litre Kappa2. While manual transmission is standard, an automatic is available as an option. Comfort features include air conditioning system and a modern instrument cluster. And imagine having a sunroof (optional) in a small car!

4. Chevrolet Beat Rs.3,55,000 (Ex-Showroom Price New Delhi ): The cute and funky looking Chevrolet Beat is available in 3 variants: 1.2 PS, 1.2 LS, 1.2 LT. Powered by a 79 bhp 1.2-liter engine, this car is all about style statement and road presence. Amazing interior features like 60/40 split seats, integrated music system, internally adjustable ORVMs, integrated central control panel and dash, just add to the overall appeal of the car.

5. Ford Figo Rs.3,56,030 (Ex-Showroom Price New Delhi ): When Ford India launched the Figo, it created a history. With multiple awards in its kitty, the Ford Figo has appealed to the youth as well as the rest of the nation alike. Available in both diesel and petrol engine variants. The Figo is available in a1.2L DuraTec petrol and a 1.4l Duratorq diesel engine options. Five speed manual transmission is standard across all the variants.

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Ford Figo

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SEPTA buys rail cars from NJ Transit to deal with crowding

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

As gas prices have risen in the United States, the regional transport authority for southeastern Pennsylvania, SEPTA, has seen a sharp increase in ridership, which has caused overcrowding on the trains.

“As fuel prices have continued to rise, SEPTA ridership has steadily increased and is the highest in 18 years,” said SEPTA General Manager Joseph Casey. Monthly ridership was 22 percent higher last month than a year ago.

“They have crushed loads on their rail lines, already where people are standing, and there’s not enough seats,” said Rich Bickel, the director of the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission.

“At peak times some railcars are standing room only and commuter parking lots are nearly full. All Regional Rail lines are running near full capacity and the train station parking lots are at about 90 percent capacity or more,” SEPTA spokesperson Felipe Suarez said.

While SEPTA awaits new Silverliner V trains from Hyundai Rotem, which begin arriving in 2009, it had hoped to lease eight rail cars from New Jersey Transit, at an agreed-upon rate of US$10,000 per month. However, due to problems with insurance and liability indemnification, the deal fell through, according to Casey.

SEPTA has entered a new agreement to purchase the eight rail cars from NJ Transit. The transit authority will pay US$670,000 for the cars and assorted supplies plus one additional inoperative car which will be used for spare parts. The rail cars will be operated using a SEPTA provided locomotive as they are not self-propelled.

The cars are being disposed of by NJ Transit because it has switched from single-floor cars to double-decker cars.

SEPTA is expecting to raise US$3.1 million by selling rail that has been out of service since 1981 at auction.

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Cleveland, Ohio clinic performs US’s first face transplant

Thursday, December 18, 2008

A team of eight transplant surgeons in Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, USA, led by reconstructive surgeon Dr. Maria Siemionow, age 58, have successfully performed the first almost total face transplant in the US, and the fourth globally, on a woman so horribly disfigured due to trauma, that cost her an eye. Two weeks ago Dr. Siemionow, in a 23-hour marathon surgery, replaced 80 percent of her face, by transplanting or grafting bone, nerve, blood vessels, muscles and skin harvested from a female donor’s cadaver.

The Clinic surgeons, in Wednesday’s news conference, described the details of the transplant but upon request, the team did not publish her name, age and cause of injury nor the donor’s identity. The patient’s family desired the reason for her transplant to remain confidential. The Los Angeles Times reported that the patient “had no upper jaw, nose, cheeks or lower eyelids and was unable to eat, talk, smile, smell or breathe on her own.” The clinic’s dermatology and plastic surgery chair, Francis Papay, described the nine hours phase of the procedure: “We transferred the skin, all the facial muscles in the upper face and mid-face, the upper lip, all of the nose, most of the sinuses around the nose, the upper jaw including the teeth, the facial nerve.” Thereafter, another team spent three hours sewing the woman’s blood vessels to that of the donor’s face to restore blood circulation, making the graft a success.

The New York Times reported that “three partial face transplants have been performed since 2005, two in France and one in China, all using facial tissue from a dead donor with permission from their families.” “Only the forehead, upper eyelids, lower lip, lower teeth and jaw are hers, the rest of her face comes from a cadaver; she could not eat on her own or breathe without a hole in her windpipe. About 77 square inches of tissue were transplanted from the donor,” it further described the details of the medical marvel. The patient, however, must take lifetime immunosuppressive drugs, also called antirejection drugs, which do not guarantee success. The transplant team said that in case of failure, it would replace the part with a skin graft taken from her own body.

Dr. Bohdan Pomahac, a Brigham and Women’s Hospital surgeon praised the recent medical development. “There are patients who can benefit tremendously from this. It’s great that it happened,” he said.

Leading bioethicist Arthur Caplan of the University of Pennsylvania withheld judgment on the Cleveland transplant amid grave concerns on the post-operation results. “The biggest ethical problem is dealing with failure β€” if your face rejects. It would be a living hell. If your face is falling off and you can’t eat and you can’t breathe and you’re suffering in a terrible manner that can’t be reversed, you need to put on the table assistance in dying. There are patients who can benefit tremendously from this. It’s great that it happened,” he said.

Dr Alex Clarke, of the Royal Free Hospital had praised the Clinic for its contribution to medicine. β€œIt is a real step forward for people who have severe disfigurement and this operation has been done by a team who have really prepared and worked towards this for a number of years. These transplants have proven that the technical difficulties can be overcome and psychologically the patients are doing well. They have all have reacted positively and have begun to do things they were not able to before. All the things people thought were barriers to this kind of operations have been overcome,” she said.

The first partial face transplant surgery on a living human was performed on Isabelle Dinoire on November 27 2005, when she was 38, by Professor Bernard Devauchelle, assisted by Professor Jean-Michel Dubernard in Amiens, France. Her Labrador dog mauled her in May 2005. A triangle of face tissue including the nose and mouth was taken from a brain-dead female donor and grafted onto the patient. Scientists elsewhere have performed scalp and ear transplants. However, the claim is the first for a mouth and nose transplant. Experts say the mouth and nose are the most difficult parts of the face to transplant.

In 2004, the same Cleveland Clinic, became the first institution to approve this surgery and test it on cadavers. In October 2006, surgeon Peter Butler at London‘s Royal Free Hospital in the UK was given permission by the NHS ethics board to carry out a full face transplant. His team will select four adult patients (children cannot be selected due to concerns over consent), with operations being carried out at six month intervals. In March 2008, the treatment of 30-year-old neurofibromatosis victim Pascal Coler of France ended after having received what his doctors call the worlds first successful full face transplant.

Ethical concerns, psychological impact, problems relating to immunosuppression and consequences of technical failure have prevented teams from performing face transplant operations in the past, even though it has been technically possible to carry out such procedures for years.

Mr Iain Hutchison, of Barts and the London Hospital, warned of several problems with face transplants, such as blood vessels in the donated tissue clotting and immunosuppressants failing or increasing the patient’s risk of cancer. He also pointed out ethical issues with the fact that the procedure requires a “beating heart donor”. The transplant is carried out while the donor is brain dead, but still alive by use of a ventilator.

According to Stephen Wigmore, chair of British Transplantation Society’s ethics committee, it is unknown to what extent facial expressions will function in the long term. He said that it is not certain whether a patient could be left worse off in the case of a face transplant failing.

Mr Michael Earley, a member of the Royal College of Surgeon‘s facial transplantation working party, commented that if successful, the transplant would be “a major breakthrough in facial reconstruction” and “a major step forward for the facially disfigured.”

In Wednesday’s conference, Siemionow said “we know that there are so many patients there in their homes where they are hiding from society because they are afraid to walk to the grocery stores, they are afraid to go the the street.” “Our patient was called names and was humiliated. We very much hope that for this very special group of patients there is a hope that someday they will be able to go comfortably from their houses and enjoy the things we take for granted,” she added.

In response to the medical breakthrough, a British medical group led by Royal Free Hospital’s lead surgeon Dr Peter Butler, said they will finish the world’s first full face transplant within a year. “We hope to make an announcement about a full-face operation in the next 12 months. This latest operation shows how facial transplantation can help a particular group of the most severely facially injured people. These are people who would otherwise live a terrible twilight life, shut away from public gaze,” he said.

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Party supporting Scottish independence from UK wins elections

Friday, May 4, 2007

The Scottish National Party (SNP), which supports Scottish independence from the UK, has pulled off a historic, albeit narrow, victory in yesterday’s Scottish elections.

In the third Scottish election since the opening of the Scottish Parliament in 1999, the left of centre SNP beat the ruling Labour Party by a single seat. It won 47 seats, while Labour won 46, down from the current 50.

It is the first time since the parliament opened that Labour has been beaten, and the first time in fifty years that they have not had a majority of Scottish constituency seats in any election.

SNP leader Alex Salmond declared: “Scotland has changed for good and forever.” He added that the Labour Party had “lost the moral authority to govern Scotland.”

The current First Minister of Scotland, Jack McConnell of Labour said: “While I recognise that the SNP are the largest party by the narrowest of margins, Alex Salmond must himself recognise that he does not have a majority in the Scottish Parliament or anywhere near a majority of the vote.”

It is believed that many factors caused the Labour vote to slump and the SNP vote to rise, including the war in Iraq and the renewal of Trident, which are both unpopular in Scotland.

The election also raises a serious dilemma for the Labour party’s Gordon Brown, a Scotsman widely tipped to succeed Tony Blair as the next prime minister of the United Kingdom. Brown is vehement in his support of the Union, and is a Westminster (London parliament) MP for Kirkcaldy. An SNP government in Scotland will find itself facing the very Labour party it beat in power in London.

Turnout was up 2% on the last Scottish election.

Contents

  • 1 Controversy
  • 2 Other parties
  • 3 Gains and losses
  • 4 Wales and England
  • 5 Sources
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Shwapno Rajjo Park And Resort At Kuakata}

Shwapno Rajjo Park and Resort at Kuakata

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Shwapnorajjo

Shwapnorajjo Park & Resort in Kuakata is a best place for live, the hotel is little bit cheaper compare with all others hotels, with in BDT 800-5,000 πŸ™‚ you can live here easily with real beauty of nature, For Hotel Call us: 01971-841606

We provide amazing package to enjoy best ever Kuakata tour with your family and friends.From our resort have a lovely sea sight experience and make your Kuakata tour more memorable and enjoyable. πŸ™‚ Spend your vacation in the lap of nature. Enrich your experience by booking our cottage and resort area beside the Kuakata sea beach πŸ™‚

Welcome to Sawpno rajjo park and resort where business and leisure blend together.Enjoying an unrivalled location, overlooking the Bay of Bengal , we offer deluxe accommodation in 11 well appointed guest rooms .

Kuakata Tour

Package: Two days One night.

Package includes Transport, breakfast, lunch, dinner, night stay at cottage, tour guide etc.Booking should be made 7 days before the tour.

Package Single: 8,000 taka

Package Double: 15,000 taka

Night Stay: At our resort (Sawpnorajjo Park and Resort)

Foods: From our delicious food menu

Guide: Our selected guide will provide service throughout the entire package

Package Details

Day 1

Travel to Kuakata from Dhaka by Kanak AC bus.

Bus departs at 7:00 PM from Mirpur 12 and reaches Kuakata at 5:00 AM.

Travel to Sawpnorajjo Park and Resort.

Breakfast, then tour to sea beach.

Sea bathing.

Preparation for lunch then tour to Lebur Char and Lalkakrar Char.

Sun set observation from the beach.

Tea break at the resort and preparation for dinner.

Night stay at our cottage.

Day 2

Sun rise observation early in the morning

Tour to Rakhain polli and visit their religious places.

Breakfast at the resort

Sightseeing and observe fishing deep in the sea.

Tour to Shutki Polli.

Lunch break and rest.

Preparation for return back to Dhaka after tea cycle

Kuakata Tour

Package: Two days One night.

Package includes Transport, breakfast, lunch, dinner, night stay at cottage, tour guide etc.Booking should be made 7 days before the tour.

Package Single: 25,000 taka

Package Double: 40,000 taka

Night Stay: At our resort (Sawpnorajjo Park and Resort)

Foods: From our delicious food menu

Guide: Our selected guide will provide service throughout the entire package

Package Details

Day 1

Airway travel from Dhaka To Barisal, then to Sawpnorajjo park and resort by microbus

Breakfast, then tour to sea beach.

Sea bathing.

Breakfast, then tour to sea beach.

Sea bathing.

Preparation for lunch then tour to Lebur Char and Lalkakrar Char.

Sun set observation from the beach.

Tea break at the resort and preparation for dinner.

Night stay at our cottage.

Day 2

Sun rise observation early in the morning

Tour to Rakhain polli and visit their religious places.

Breakfast at the resort

Sightseeing and observe fishing deep in the sea.

Tour to Shutki Polli.

Lunch break and rest.

Preparation for return back to Dhaka after tea cycle

Then finally Barisal to Dhaka by Airplane.

Applied Conditions

You will be charged extra according to the rules for the following conditions

oProlonged Stay at our resort.

oUsing extra cottages.

All kinds of political activities are prohibited.

Company will not bear the cost for any tour not mentioned in the package.

Must arrive at the venue 30 minutes before the departure.

Company will not be responsible if the package is cancelled or the date is changed 3 days before the package starts. total value will not be returned for such occurrence.

Company will not be responsible for any political uncertainty or natural calamity or unexpected occurrence but package can be rearranged according to negotiation policy.

P: S: Authority must be informed 7 days before the tour and 100% payment should be done at the time of booking.

Article Source:

eArticlesOnline.com}

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Glasgow cannabis enthusiasts celebrate ‘green’ on city green

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Coinciding with Easter Sunday, Glasgow Cannabis Social Club’s annual 420 event was held on Glasgow Green, under sunny blue skies, and overlooking the river Clyde. Despite the city’s council attempting to revoke permission for the gathering at the last minute, police were happy for it to go-ahead with approximately a dozen officers attending in high-visibility vests.

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The Daily Record reported five arrests were made for minor offences, likely smoking and possession of small quantities of cannabis. Taking a less-sensational β€” and more accurate β€” line of reporting, the Monday edition of Glasgow’s Evening News stated five were referred to the Procurator Fiscal who is responsible for deciding if charges should be brought.

Official figures provided by the police were that 150 attended. With people coming and going, Wikinews reporters estimated upwards of 200 attended, compared to nearly 700 who had signed up for the event on Facebook. Hemp goods were advertised and on sale at the event, and some attendees were seen drinking cannabis-themed energy drinks.

“I was searched and charged under the Misuse of Drugs Act (which is a lot of bollocks)” one attendee noted online, adding “not fair to happen on a brilliant day like it was, other than that I had a great day!” A second said they were openly smoking and ignored by police, who “were only really focusing on people who looked particularly young”.

Cannabis seeds were openly and legally sold at the event and a hydroponics supplier brought a motortrike towing an advertising trailer. Actually growing cannabis is, however, illegal in the UK.

With the event openly advocating the legalisation of cannabis, speakers put their arguments for this to a receptive crowd. Retired police officer James Duffy, of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, spoke of the failed United States alcohol prohibition policy; stressing such policies needlessly bring people into contact with criminal elements. Highlighting other countries where legalisation has been implemented, he pointed out such led to lower crime, and lower drug use overall.

One speaker, who produced a bottle of cannabis oil he had received through the post, asserted this cured his prostate cancer. Others highlighted the current use of Sativex by the National Health Service, with a cost in-excess of Β£150 for a single bottle of GW Pharmaceuticals patented spray β€” as-compared to the oil shown to the crowd, with a manufacturing cost of approximately Β£10.

Similar ‘420’ pro-cannabis events were held globally.

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At least 53 killed, over 90 injured in Shanghai apartment fire

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

China’s Xinhua News Agency said Tuesday that at least 53 people were killed in Shanghai during a deadly fire. The blaze, which occurred on Monday at 2:15 p.m. CST (0615 UTC), consumed a 28-story high-rise apartment building in the city’s Jing’an District.

The building was being renovated at the time of the fire, and was home to over 150 families. At least 100 victims have been admitted to area hospitals, although some later died. Most survivors were not seriously injured, but needed treatment for smoke inhalation. Firefighters were still looking for survivors and over 70 were still hospitalized on the morning after the fire.

The fire was the worst in recent Shanghai history and took over 100 fire engines more than four hours to contain. Strong winds blew heavy smoke into the air, hampering rescue efforts by helicopters. The smoke was seen by witnesses around 15 kilometres (9.3 miles) away from the high-rise. The fire was largely extinguished by 6:30 p.m. local time (1000 UTC), allowing fire and rescue officials to enter the building.

The apartment building, built in the late 1990s, was home to mainly retired teachers. Some residents climbed down the scaffolding to escape, while others called for help but were unable to flee the blaze. “I saw at least four or five people hanging onto the scaffolding which covers the building, screaming for help,” said Li Qubo, who was working near the high-rise.

The cause of the fire has not yet been determined, but local residents said fire safety regulations were not strict, and workers often tossed used cigarettes into the building’s hallways. Qiu Jingshu, a 38-year-old worker who was outside the 18th floor when the fire struck, said he saw sparks from welding being done on an adjacent building fly over onto the high-rise. The sparks lit up foam on the scaffolding around the apartment, according to Qiu. “We had tried to put out the blaze, but the fire was so big and spread so quickly that we could barely escape ourselves,” he said. Crews were said to have been installing insulation at the time of the fire, and witnesses saw construction materials on fire before the building was overtaken by flames.

Two nearby buildings were evacuated, and their residents were temporarily sent to local hotels, and a school. Meng Jianzhu, China’s Minister of Public Security, said that an investigation would determine who was responsible for the fire, so they could be punished accordingly. Meng said that a team had been formed under China’s State Council to look into the disaster.

A similar incident occurred in Beijing early last year. In February 2009, the illegal use of fireworks caused a fire that gutted a 34-story building under construction at the time.

Shanghai has a population of about 20 million, housed mainly in high-rise apartments. Many buildings in the city are under construction or being renovated.

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