Interview with Innocent Watat, City Council candidate for Wards 3 & 4 in Brampton, Canada

Saturday, October 21, 2006

The upcoming 2006 Brampton municipal election, to be held November 13, features an array of candidates looking to represent their wards in city council or the council of the Peel Region.

Wikinews contributor Nick Moreau contacted many of the candidates, including Innocent Watat, asking them to answer common questions sent in an email. This ward’s incumbent is Bob Callahan; Balbir Babra, Manny Bianchi-Morfino, Dolly Khokhar, Maria Peart, Tim Turcott, and Sheila White.


  • 1 Interview
  • 2 French message
  • 3 Notes
  • 4 External links

Asbestos controversy aboard Scientology ship Freewinds

Friday, May 16, 2008

Controversy has arisen over the reported presence of blue asbestos on the MV Freewinds, a cruise ship owned by the Church of Scientology. According to the Saint Martin newspaper The Daily Herald and the shipping news journal Lloyd’s List, the Freewinds was sealed in April and local public health officials on the Caribbean island of Curaçao where the ship is docked began an investigation into the presence of asbestos dust on the ship. Former Scientologist Lawrence Woodcraft supervised work on the ship in 1987, and attested to the presence of blue asbestos on the Freewinds in an affidavit posted to the Internet in 2001. Woodcraft, a licensed architect by profession, gave a statement to Wikinews and commented on the recent events.

According to The Daily Herald, the Freewinds was in the process of being renovated by the Curaçao Drydock Company. The article states that samples taken from paneling in the ship were sent to the Netherlands, where an analysis revealed that they “contained significant levels of blue asbestos”. An employee of the Curaçao Drydock Company told Radar Online in an April 30 article that the Freewinds has been docked and sealed, and confirmed that an article about asbestos ran in the local paper.

Lloyd’s List reported that work on the interior of the Freewinds was suspended on April 27 after health inspectors found traces of blue asbestos on the ship. According to Lloyd’s List, Frank Esser, Curaçao Drydock Company’s interim director, joined Curaçao’s head of the department of labor affairs Christiene van der Biezen along with the head of the local health department Tico Ras and two inspectors in an April 25 inspection of the ship. “We are sending someone so that they can tell us what happened, where it came from, since when it has been there,” said Panama Maritime Authority’s director of merchant marine Alfonso Castillero in a statement to Lloyd’s List.

The Church of Scientology purchased the ship, then known as the Bohème, in 1987, through an organization called Flag Ship Trust. After being renovated and refitted, it was put into service in June 1988. The ship is used by the Church of Scientology for advanced Scientology training in “Operating Thetan” levels, as well as for spiritual retreats for its members. Curaçao has been the ship’s homeport since it was purchased by the Church of Scientology.

According to his 2001 statement, Lawrence Woodcraft had been an architect in London, England since 1975, and joined Scientology’s elite “Sea Organization” (Sea Org) in 1986. He wrote that he was asked by the Sea Org to work on the Freewinds in 1987, and during his work on the ship “noticed a powdery blue fibrous substance approximately 1 ½” thick between the paint and the steel wall,” which he believed to be asbestos. He also discovered what he thought was blue asbestos in other parts of the ship, and reported his findings to Church of Scientology executives. Woodcraft discussed his experiences in a 2001 interview published online by the Lisa McPherson Trust, a now-defunct organization which was critical of the Church of Scientology.

The Freewinds regularly inspects the air quality on board and always meets or exceeds US standards.

Church of Scientology spokeswoman Karin Pouw responded to Radar Online about the asbestos reports, in an email published in an article in Radar on May 1. “The Freewinds regularly inspects the air quality on board and always meets or exceeds US standards,” said Pouw. She stated that two inspections performed in April “confirmed that the air quality is safe,” and asserted that the inspections revealed the Freewinds satisfies standards set by the United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the U.S. Clean Air Act.

Pouw told Radar that “The Freewinds will be completing its refit on schedule.” The Church of Scientology-affiliated organization Citizens Commission on Human Rights (CCHR) had been planning a cruise aboard the Freewinds scheduled for May 8, but according to Radar an individual who called the booking number for the cruise received a message that the cruise had been delayed due to ongoing work on the ship. Citing an article in the Netherlands Antilles newspaper Amigoe, Radar reported on May 6 that a team from the United States and supervised by an independent bureau from the Netherlands traveled to Curaçao in order to remove asbestos from the Freewinds.

…if the Church of Scientology claims to have removed the blue asbestos, I just don’t see how, it’s everywhere. You would first have to remove all the pipes, plumbing, a/c ducts, electrical wiring etc. etc. just a maze of stuff.

“I stand by everything I wrote in my 2001 affidavit,” said Lawrence Woodcraft in an exclusive statement given to Wikinews. Woodcraft went on to state: “I would also comment that if the Church of Scientology claims to have removed the blue asbestos, I just don’t see how, it’s everywhere. You would first have to remove all the pipes, plumbing, a/c ducts, electrical wiring etc. etc. just a maze of stuff. Also panelling as well, basically strip the ship back to a steel hull. Also blue asbestos is sprayed onto the outer walls and then covered in paint. It’s in every nook and cranny.”

Many Scientologist celebrities have spent time aboard the Freewinds, including Tom Cruise, Katie Holmes, John Travolta, Kelly Preston, Chick Corea, Lisa Marie Presley, Catherine Bell, Kate Ceberano, and Juliette Lewis. Now magazine reported that Tom Cruise has been urged to seek medical attention regarding potential asbestos exposure, however a representative for Cruise stated he has “absolutely no knowledge” of the recent asbestos controversy. Cruise, Holmes, Travolta and Preston have celebrated birthdays and other events on the Freewinds.

There is not now and never has been a situation of asbestos exposure on the Freewinds.

In a May 15 statement to the United Kingdom daily newspaper Metro, a representative for the Church of Scientology said that “There is not now and never has been a situation of asbestos exposure on the Freewinds.” The Asbestos and Mesothelioma Center notes that agencies have recommended anyone who has spent time on the Freewinds consult with their physician to determine if possible asbestos exposure may have affected their health.

Raw blue asbestos is the most hazardous form of asbestos, and has been banned in the United Kingdom since 1970. Blue asbestos fibers are very narrow and thus easily inhaled, and are a major cause of mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is a form of cancer which can develop in the lining of the lungs and chest cavity, the lining of the abdominal cavity, or the pericardium sac surrounding the heart. The cancer is incurable, and can manifest over 40 years after the initial exposure to asbestos.

“This is the most dangerous type of asbestos because the fibres are smaller than the white asbestos and can penetrate the lung more easily,” said toxicologist Dr. Chris Coggins in a statement published in OK! Magazine. Dr. Coggins went on to note that “Once diagnosed with mesothelioma, the victim has six months to a year to live. It gradually reduces lung function until the victim is no longer able to breathe and dies.”

Australia The Dream Destination For The Visitors

Submitted by: Hariom Arya

Australia is one of the smallest continents but at the same it is the richest continent. This beautiful continent is located in the southern hemisphere lying southeast of Asia and beautifully intercepting the Pacific and the Indian Ocean. Australia from Sydney Opera House to Great Barrier Reef, Great Ocean Road to Australia Zoo truly speaking this amazing country is home to many Big and Great . The visitors love to shop in Bondi and adventure all the way to see and enjoy the indigenous animals and the camel riding here takes the head in the clouds of the visitors. Australia is truly a wonder which attracts millions of visitors from every nook and corner of the world through out the year.

Australia is one of the most sought after tourist destination in the world and thus become the dream destination for any visitors in the world. This beautiful is also home to many UNESCO World Heritage Site and these also attract the visitors in intense number. Some of the famous attractions which lure the thousands hundred and several tourists on their Australia trip are as follows:

The Big Banana

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The Big Banana is just located north of Coffs Harbour on the Pacific Highway and is most photographed spot in Australia. The newlywed couples, individuals, small groups and families flood in here as this park offers every one with something. This is the most renowned icons for this country. This tourist s park is over 40 years old and it offers toboggan rides, ice skating, candy kitchen, Trike ride, World of Bananas, Water Park and many alike. Truly this spot will rejoice and offer you fun at its best. So as you tour Australia set your mind that this spot should not be missed.

Great Barrier Reef

A World Heritage Site and a wonder of Australia is the Great Barrier Reef which is the biggest coral reef in the world. This incredible area that stretches down the east coast of Australia is composed over 2900 individual reefs and 900 islands. This reef is located in the Coral Sea of the coast of Queens land in northeast Australia. This reef is very big as it can be seen from the outer space. It is a paradise for the swimmers and divers as can plunge in the water and see sea creatures and life under water. The beaches here are bliss for the fun lovers and the azure water and glistering sands truly drive the visitor crazy. It is the crowning glory of Australia tourism and a sheer wonder of Australia.

Blue Mountains

The Blue Mountains is a must visit attractions as in one is in Australia. The eye catching formations of sandstones and the rocks are truly going to leave the visitors spell bound as on your visits. This place is very ideal for nature lovers and the sightseeing spots are fabulous and are heaven for the tourists who love adventure as Blue Mountain offers mountain biking, hiking, trekking and horse ridding. This place is truly awe inspiring and which will hook you to visit again and again.

Apart from these there are more attractions and destinations which will make you fall in love, so before your minds get diverse contact a leading Australia tour operator which offer you tailor made Australia tour packages which will offer you as the most remarkable tour in your life.

About the Author: Hariom Arya is an eminent analyst and writer in Travel & Tourism related topics. He has authored many books on tour guide for Australia tourism and Australia trip.Find more packages at



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Mozilla, Creative Commons, Wikimedia Foundation announce Bassel Khartabil Free Culture fellowship following execution of open culture activist

This article mentions the Wikimedia Foundation, one of its projects, or people related to it. Wikinews is a project of the Wikimedia Foundation.

Monday, August 14, 2017

On Friday, several free knowledge, culture and open source oriented organisations — Creative Commons, Mozilla, and the Wikimedia Foundation, amongst others — collectively announced a three-year commitment for a free-culture fellowship to honour Bassel Khartabil’s continuing influence on the open web, during the Wikimedia’s annual conference Wikimania in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Palestinian-Syrian Khartabil was held in captivity under the Syrian government starting in 2012 and went silent in prison in 2015. Early this month his wife confirmed Khartabil had been executed in 2015.

Khartabil worked as a computer engineer and contributed to Mozilla and Wikipedia. A supporter of free access to knowledge and culture, Khartabil co-founded Syria’s first hackerspace, Aiki Lab, and led Creative Commons’ Syrian project.

The fellowship to honour Khartabil aims to promote free culture in various forms, including art, music, software, and community. On their official blog, Creative Commons said they would encourage applications from the Levant, Middle East, and North Africa.

Amazon Web Services is to act as a supporting partner and the fellows would receive a stipend of US$50 thousand over the course of ten months. The fellowship is to be awarded on a one-year basis, which could be renewed. Additionally, the organisations are to provide up to US$3000 for the candidates to purchase equipment and software.

Promoting candidates from “closed societies” from the countries with a history of oppression of freedom of expression and access to free knowledge, the fellowship laid three requirements for the eligibility. The applicants must have a history of contribution to the open source/access or free culture communities, and propose in their application an initiative promoting free culture values, and in which the fellowship would be their primary work focus. The fellowship applications are to be accepted from February, and the fellowship is to be awarded in April.

Apart from contributing to Mozilla and Red Hat, Bassel Khartabil developed “Aiki”, an open source framework which is currently used by Open Clip Art and Open Font Library. He was listed among Top Global Thinkers by Foreign Policy, and given a Digital Freedom Award by the Index on Censorship.

Khartabil was arrested by the Syrian military in March 2012. Following time in a Syrian General Intelligence Directorate facility, nine months after his arrest he was transferred to Adra Prison, and permitted family visits. He was relocated to an undisclosed facility in October 2015, and executed soon after. His wife, Noura Ghazi Safadi, confirmed Khartabil’s death on August 1 via a Facebook post.

Ukraine opposition candidate Yushchenko is suffering from a Dioxin intoxication, doctors say

Saturday, December 11, 2004

VIENNA –Doctors from the Rudolfinerhaus clinic in Vienna say “there is no doubt” Ukrainian opposition leader Victor Yushchenko was poisoned with Dioxin.

Yushchenko’s body had about 1,000 times more than the normal concentration of the toxin. It is unknown if there were any other poisons in his system.

Although it has not yet been proven that the poisoning was deliberate, doctors suspect it was. “We suspect a cause triggered by a third party,” said Michael Zimpfer, head doctor at the Rudolfinerhaus clinic. He suggested the poison may have been administered orally, through food or drink.

Today’s announcements are a follow-up of an earlier press conference, where Dr. Korpan that there were three hypotheses under consideration, one of them involving dioxin. He did not reveal what the other two hypotheses were. Dr. Michael Zimpfer, director of the Rudolfinerhaus clinic emphasized that time there was no proof yet to specify the substance causing the illness.

Yushchenko left Kiev on Friday (2004-10-12) for further examination in Vienna. When Yushchenko fell ill on October 6th, Ukrainian doctors had initially diagnosed food poisoning, leading to speculation that he had been poisoned deliberately. The illness has disfigured Yushchenko’s body and face which doctors say could take up to two years to heal.

He fell seriously ill on the September 6th, during his presidential campaign. Yushchenko was taken to the Rudolfinerhaus clinic of Vienna, where he stayed for four days under Dr. Korpan’s care. He was diagnosed with “acute pancreatitis, accompanied by interstitial edematous changes.” These symptoms were said to be due to “a serious viral infection and chemical substances which are not normally found in food products” as his campaign officials put it. In laymans terms, he developed an infection in the pancreas and got a bad skin condition that disfigured his face with cysts and lesions. The skin condition has similarities with the chloracne associated with dioxin posioning according to a British toxicologist John Henry.

Earlier, doctor Nikolai Korpan of Rudolfinerhaus clinic confirmed today that the illness of Ukrainian presidential candidate Viktor Yushchenko was caused by an attempt to kill him.

  • Ukraine political crisis – Wikinews’ special coverage portal

Four-year-old boy attacked by Pit bull mix

Friday, August 24, 2007

Just before midnight Wednesday, four-year-old Taylor Bailey, nicknamed Bucky, was attacked by a neighbor’s dog. The Staffordshire Bull Terrier mix named Money chased the boy after he stepped out of his mother’s car, eventually knocking the boy to the ground and latching onto his leg.

The same dog had bitten the boy’s father the week before, according to the family, although this has not been confirmed by police. He recognized the dog and alerted his mother to the dogs presence just moments before the attack. She urged her son to come to her, but the one-year-old, 85-pound (~39 kg) male broke free from his restraints and attacked the screaming boy.

The struggle lasted several minutes before the boy’s mother, Melinda Walters, was able to fight off the dog, leaving her knees scraped and thigh scratched. The boy’s legs were punctured, scratched and bruised with bits of flesh missing. “It didn’t go away. It was just trying to grab me … trying to kill me,” the boy said. Walters was carrying her three-year-old son Jason on her hip during much of the fight.

The dog’s owner, Marquita Mooney, 23, was ticketed along with a relative who was watching the dog. She said that rather than register the dog as a potentially dangerous animal—which involves an insurance bond, fees, kennel requirements and more—she would have the dog put down. Police reports indicate that the dog bit two other dogs about two weeks ago. Mooney has been ticketed for both incidents.

This is the second such incident in Minneapolis this month—seven-year-old Zach King Jr. was attacked and killed in his home last week by his family’s pit bull—fueling the debate over banning pit bulls and other “dangerous breeds” in some communities. Since 1966, there have been four other deaths from dog attacks in Minnesota, all but one of which were of children seven-years-old or younger.

Finding The Right Lawyer In Spain.}

Finding the Right Lawyer in Spain.


Mike D

This is probably the most important step and should be one of your first priorities if you are serious about buying a house in Spain. Seek the services of a good lawyer, before you start the hunt. Why? Because with Spain currently still experiencing a property boom, and the market favoring the seller, it is important that you are ready to act quickly, to avoid any disappointment, should that perfect property present itself. A lot of house hunters start searching first and then worry about other things later. Considering that this will be a large investment of your time and money it is important to start off with your paper work in order first.

Your lawyer should be an independent professional who will protect your interests, and should be someone with whom you are comfortable with in terms of service and of course price. He or she should be fully conversant with both Spanish and U.K law.

Your lawyer or Abogado must be fluent in English as any badly translated contracts can, and have in the past rendered them useless, and can lead to a whole host of problems and some massive headaches in the future.

It is very important that you never sign any documents without getting your lawyer to check them first. This may sound like common sense, and it is. But picture this scenario: Youve decided to buy a property in Spain but you are not entirely certain what you want . So you decide to start looking, just to get a feeling for the market’

You are with really nice agents and they have a great deal that has just come in that morning, a perfect property at a very low price. So you rush off to view it. And guess what, its the one.

But you havent arranged a lawyer yet.

“Thats not a problem “, say the nice agents ,”all you need to do is place a deposit to reserve it, then we can take it off our books immediately (so no one else will snap it up) and then your lawyer can check the property and legal stuff later.”

So you go ahead read and sign the deposit contract, under the premise that you only are reserving the property.

But this isnt true, and the contract can have clauses that bind you to adverse terms in the main document that you receive at a later date. If you were to do this then you could well have a problem getting your deposit back later, should your lawyer find something that may make you not go through with purchasing the property. So get a lawyer in place before you start your search.

Check that the person representing you is actually fully qualified and is a registered member of the Law Society. He or she should be happy to give you their registration number for the Colegio de Abogados which you can and should double check. If you should have any problems then you can and should complain to them.

Also, by using a register lawyer/solicitor you are covered in the unlikely event that they make a mistake or act negligently. Register lawyers are covered by professional liability insurance, so you would be able to take action against them, knowing that the fund exists to compensate you if your lawyer is found liable.

An added bonus would be whether your lawyer can advise you on the various forms of property ownership and the associated taxes. It is however advisable to get the advise of a specialized financial advisor or accountant.

Finding a good reliable lawyer goes hand in hand with finding your perfect property, you wouldnt buy a house just looking at it from the outside, to it recommended that you do your research as well when it comes to find a lawyer in Spain.Check out

Find a Lwyer in Spain lists the more popular and reliable layers and law firms in Spain , as well as free unbias advice. For more advice please take a look at

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Finding the Right Lawyer in Spain.}

Avalanche buries cars in Colorado

Saturday, January 6, 2007

An avalanche on U.S. Route 40, which was 100 feet wide and 15 feet deep, has buried many cars, caused other cars to be pushed over the edge of an expressway, and injured eight people, just outside of Denver, Colorado. The avalanche started at 10:30 AM, starting about 12 miles off Interstate 70, and taking three different paths down the mountain before coming to a stop.

“Our crews said it was the largest they have ever seen. It took three paths,” said a spokeswoman for the Colorado Department of Transportation, Stacey Stegman.

All eight (7 adults, 1 minor) have been taken to the St. Anthony Central Hospital in Denver. According to a hospital spokeswoman, all of the victims suffered minor injuries. Seven patients were released on Saturday. There were no casualties.

U.S. route 40 is currently closed to traffic. According to Winter Park spokesman Matt Sugar, there are no plans to close the ski hills. “We’ve gotten calls from all over the country asking if the resort is closed,” he said, “and the answer is no.”

This is the third snow storm to hit the Denver area in three weeks.

Ontario Votes 2007: Interview with Progressive Conservative candidate Pam Hundal, Bramalea—Gore—Malton

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Pam Hundal is running for the Progressive Conservatives in the Ontario provincial election, in the Bramalea—Gore—Malton riding.

Wikinews’ Nick Moreau requested an interview regarding her values, her experience, and her campaign. In response, Hundal’s campaign office did not send replies to the questions asked, but a general statement. Moreau has excerpted parts of her statement, placing them as answers to related questions. However, a great number of questions have been skipped in the process.

Stay tuned for further interviews; every candidate from every party is eligible, and will be contacted. Expect interviews from Liberals, Progressive Conservatives, New Democratic Party members, Ontario Greens, as well as members from the Family Coalition, Freedom, Communist, Libertarian, and Confederation of Regions parties, as well as independents.

What Makes Aluminum Panels A Wise Choice In Construction?}

What Makes Aluminum Panels A Wise Choice In Construction?


nishiseoChina Beihai Building Material Group is a big group which has over 2300 workers with 6 different factories. We are special for producing different building materials for over 26 years.China Beihai Building Material Group is a big group which has over 2300 workers with 6 different factories. We are special for producing different building materials for over 26 years. We provide Aluminum Foam Sound Proofing, Acoustic screen, Sound Insulation, etc.Survey speakAccording to a report from the Aluminum Trade Associations, almost over 20% of the total aluminum production globally has now been consumed by construction industry. These days, very rarely, we see buildings that haven’t used aluminum components in any form. Top Foamed Aluminum Factory surveys for the building and construction industry suggest that aluminum is gradually leading its way into the promising future of buildings and construction industry.Aluminum panels in constructionAluminum panels in construction have always been considered to be a wise choice because it represents low weight, higher strength, super flexibility, great design and low cost. Such benefits make aluminum most preferred in construction work.Aluminum panels in refurbishment workWe are fortunate to have aluminum that can be used for refurbishment of old buildings which is a great idea as compared to its demolishing any day. Aluminum foam panels are lot more preferred for refurbishment because they are not just thermally efficient, light, highly cost effective but also hugely durable. Aluminum panels are capable of completely changing both external and internal appearance of any old building or property.Creative design with AluminumAirport terminals, office towers, residential buildings talk about it and aluminum panels are used everywhere. Aluminum panels also offer scope for creative designs and architecture and just like your skin protects your body, so does aluminum to the buildings made using them. They are a boon for the people working in such buildings as they are capable of keeping away cold, heat, noise and rain. Aluminum is an important element used in supporting structure and they are perfect for even large surfaces. They are also capable of supporting high-rise buildings and have proven their worth for various support purposes.How sustainable is Aluminum?Sustainability and supply with regard to aluminum is not an issue. Good thing with aluminum is that it can be recycled and this is done without any major degradation of the intrinsic properties of materials. In terms of recycling, aluminum’s case is comparatively stronger. It should be added that apart from being the third most abundant element present on the surface of earth, it is also an element that can be recycled without losing a bit on quality thus saving money.Requirements for easy to maintain, flexible and low cost-in-use buildings increase and with this, rises the demand for aluminum in construction and structural applications. They are capable of offering the most satisfying and elegant design solutions.Contact Details:-Address: Beihai Industry Park, Changhong Rd 280#, Jiujiang City, Jiangxi China Contact no: 0086 792 8322300/8322329/8322322Fax: 0086 792 8322312 E-mail: Website:

China Beihai Building Material Group is a big group which has over 2300 workers with 6 different factories. We are special for producing different building materials for over 26 years. We provide Aluminum Foam Sound Proofing, Acoustic screen, Sound Insulation, etc.

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