AP, NEW YORKCanelo Alvarez landed dozens of body punches, knocking down Rocky Fielding four times and stopping him in the third round at Madison Square Garden on Saturday to earn his third weight class title, taking the WBA super middleweight belt. The sellout crowd of 20,112 cheered Alvarez as he delivered with power and precision, landing 73 punches, 35 to the body. “That was the plan in the gym, to hit the body and then move up, and that’s the result,” Alvarez said through an interpreter. It was quite a show in his debut at Madison Square Garden. He could not block the bevy of body punches launched by Alvarez.
AP, SELVA DI VAL GARDENA, ItalyNorway’s Aleksander Aamodt Kilde won by a large margin on Saturday in a World Cup downhill in Val Gardena, Italy, that was marred by a nasty crash involving Swiss skier Marc Gisin. He was then bumped into the air again and the back of his head hit the snow in a second impact. Kilde finished a significant 0.86 seconds ahead of Austria’s Max Franz, who led the training run. Franz moved atop the overall standings, seven points ahead of Svindal, who finished seventh. “I’m very happy after trying 10 times, but I can’t really celebrate because of my teammate Gisin’s crash,” Feuz said.
AP, WASHINGTONAlex Ovechkin scored his NHL-leading 29th goal of the season, extended his point streak to a career-best 14 games and had the shootout winner on Saturday to help hosts the Washington Capitals beat the Buffalo Sabres 4-3. He has 17 goals and six points during his point streak and has scored in six games in a row. An audible gasp came from the crowd each time Ovechkin had the puck on his stick in the offensive zone, and the goal was his 10th in the past six games. He is six ahead of the next-closest player in the league, Winnipeg’s Patrik Laine, and is on pace to surpass 60 goals at age 33. “Such a threat, especially when he’s confident and he’s shooting the puck where he wants,” said Brett Connolly, who scored the Capitals’ first goal.
AFP and Reuters, MANAGUANicaraguan police have raided the offices of an opposition daily, and then stripped human rights and advocate groups’ permission to operate, those targeted said on Saturday. “Police did not show any order at all ... so this is an armed assault on private property, freedom of the press, freedom of expression and free enterprise,” he later told reporters. A witness counted at least seven journalists from international and local media, including Chamorro, who were grabbed and kicked by police. The offices of the Nicaraguan Center for Human Rights and four other non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in Managua were also occupied, and lawmakers canceled their permits to operate. At least 322 people have been killed and more than 500 are incarcerated, according to the center.
By Liao Hsueh-ju and Sherry Hsiao / Staff reporter, with staff writerArtist Lu Cheng-min (呂誠敏) has decorated an alley in Hsinchu County’s Sinpu Township (新埔) with a mosaic of comic-book characters created by his elementary-school art teacher, late comic book artist Chen Ting-kuo (陳定國). Lu said that Chen inspired him to become an artist while he was a student at Sinpu Elementary School. Chen drew more than 2,000 comic books and 1,500 comic strips in his lifetime, but many are out of print, he said. The walls, floors and roof of the alley between Jhongjheng Road and Heping Street have all been covered with mosaic tiles. In the mosaic, Lu included one of Chen’s characters, Hua Hsiao Mei (花小妹), who was modeled after Chen’s daughter, Lu said, adding that he hopes visitors and the county’s young residents would take photographs of the alley as a tribute to Chen.
Staff writer, with CNAThe American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) is unlikely to move to its new compound in Taipei’s Neihu District (內湖) by the end of this year due to administrative delays, AIT spokeswoman Amanda Mansour said yesterday. In October, AIT Director Brent Christensen said that the institute was still waiting for final certification of the new compound. The new office compound occupies a 6.5 hectare hillside area. While the AIT handles consular and other affairs at its main compound on Xinyi Road in Daan District (大安), the institute’s agricultural division and the American Cultural Center are housed elsewhere in the city. All AIT operations are to be brought together at the new compound.
By William Hetherington / Staff writer, with CNAThe government is wholeheartedly committed to solving housing problems, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said at an awards ceremony held yesterday by the Taipei Architects’ Association. The government has received more than 100 applications to renovate older residential complexes and is implementing a public housing program nationwide, Tsai said. The scale of the government’s efforts to deal with housing issues is unprecedented, and her administration has established the first office tasked with urban renewal and social housing, she added. The amendment opened up more land for social housing and the central government has been cooperating with local governments to enact new social housing policy, she said. Housing projects provide an opportunity for the government and industry to cooperate and together build a fundamental component of society — the buildings that people use every day, she said.
By Lee I-chia / Staff reporterInfluenza vaccines match the viruses that are being detected at the moment, but government-funded vaccines are running low, so people at higher risk are advised to get vaccinated as soon as possible, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said on Friday. From on Oct. 15 to Wednesday, more than 4.62 million government-funded shots had been administered, the centers said. As about 700,000 vaccines were returned to their manufacturers after some were found to be discolored or contained suspended particles, the CDC is running low. People who are at risk and eligible are advised to get a shot as early as possible for better protection, CDC Deputy Director-General Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥) said. CDC disease monitoring data showed that the main circulating virus over the past four weeks has been influenza A (H3N2), which has caused 59 of the 89 serious flu complications confirmed between Oct. 1 and Dec. 1.
Since Kuo and Fu were both known as “big cannons” (大砲) for their outspoken nature, this led to the rumor that “Big Cannon Kuo caused Big Cannon Fu to die of anger.”Then-minister of education Chen Hsueh-ping (陳雪屏) was quick to clarify that there were absolutely no tempers lost during the session. Nevertheless, a furious group of about 400 teary-eyed NTU students marched to the assembly headquarters after paying their respects to Fu’s body. After Japanese defeat, the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) took over Taihoku Imperial University, renaming it National Taiwan University in December 1945. By the time Fu arrived in Taiwan, the university had gone through seven presidents in just over three years. I am utterly exhausted and have grown ill as a result, and I don’t have the will to carry on.
By Lee I-chia / Staff reporterTaipei Medical University Hospital on Dec. 7 signed a contract with Taiwan AI Labs to collaborate on introducing an artificial intelligence (AI) system that would provide an earlier warning for sepsis in its intensive care units (ICUs). The five-year contract with the research organization was signed by hospital superintendent Chen Ray-jade (陳瑞杰) and Taiwan AI Labs founder Ethan Tu (杜奕瑾). Previously, sepsis could only be detected after its onset, but after the hospital last year introduced the TED-ICU, medical teams can predict the risk of sepsis about four hours before it occurs, Chen said. The system works by automatically collecting, integrating, analyzing and keeping a record of ICU patients’ physiological information, the hospital said. The hospital said it hopes to introduce AI to learn the medical records of people injured in falls to develop a mechanism to predict high-risk groups for such injuries and to analyze their causes to improve care.
By Lee I-chia / Staff reporterTaipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) yesterday said that the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) is being unfriendly to him, even as it has been reported to want to cooperate with him. The move was interpreted by the media as a signal that reported DPP attempts to cooperate with Ko have failed. The rumors that the DPP wants to cooperate with him are contradicted by this and many similar unfriendly gestures, Ko said. Even the culture ministry does not seem to agree with President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), he added, referring to a meeting with Tsai on Thursday. Among other mixed signals, Taipei has invited city councilors and academics to attend the Taipei-Shanghai twin-city forum in the city on Thursday, but not one DPP city councilor or academic has registered to attend, Ko said.
Reuters, NEW DELHIDenmark’s Carlsberg A/S and India’s United Breweries Group have filed pleas with Indian authorities, seeking leniency in a probe into alleged collusion to fix beer prices, five sources familiar with the matter said. The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has been investigating the two companies, as well as the world’s largest brewer, Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV (AB InBev). A Carlsberg spokesman in India said it was “cooperating fully with the CCI” and had done so from the beginning of the probe. An AB InBev spokesman in India said the company takes antitrust compliance “very seriously,” but declined to comment further. Individual executives can also be fined, though AB InBev could escape all of its share of the fines as it reported the issue.
BloombergLVMH has agreed to acquire Belmond Ltd in a deal that values the operator of high-end hotels and New York’s 21 Club at US$2.6 billion. The French luxury-goods company agreed to pay US$25 a share in cash for London-based Belmond, a 42 percent premium over Belmond’s closing price in the US on Thursday. The agreement ends a four-month sale process as Belmond sought to take advantage of a strong hospitality market. LVMH, owner of the Louis Vuitton brand and champagne maker Dom Perignon, is a surprise winner for Belmond. Belmond, which used to be known as Orient-Express Hotels, owns or has stakes in more than 30 high-end hotels.
Staff writer, with CNATaiwan People News is on Dec. 31 to cease daily operations after six years due to financial difficulties, founder Chen Yung-hsing (陳永興) said on Thursday on the news Web site, thanking readers for their support. Shareholders decided to stop daily operations because of the costs of running a daily news Web site. Over the past six years, Taiwan People News has spent NT$72 million (US$2.33 million), Chen said, adding that the decision was made with great reluctance, but it is time to say goodbye. Research conducted in October by Taiwan Media Watch, a non-governmental organization committed to maintaining press freedom and promoting media self-regulation, found that the Taiwan People News Facebook page was one of the most trustworthy and diverse among the 36 organizations publishing daily news in Taiwan. Organized by Chen, Nobel Prize laureate Lee Yuan-tseh (李遠哲) and film director Wu Nien-jen (吳念真), Taiwan People News publishes news without charge and seeks to reflect public opinion in Taiwan, according to its Web site.
AFP, KATOWICE, PolandNations at UN climate talks were haggling yesterday over the world’s plan to avert disaster as host Poland dumped a draft decision text on delegates just hours before the summit was due to end. Negotiators told reporters that delegates from nearly 200 nations were still far apart on several issues, from how the fight against climate change is funded to the levels of help given to countries already experiencing its effects. Ministers at the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change must agree on a common rule book to make good on promises made by countries in the 2015 Paris Agreement. A major sticking point remains finance: Developing nations have said they cannot afford to make their economies greener without reliable, transparent funding from richer nations. ActionAid global climate lead Harjeet Singh said that rich countries were “playing a cruel joke” on developing nations.