The Mahone Islands Conservation Association has arranged for 16 hectares of islands to be donated by the members of the Long Island Preservation Society for the use and enjoyment of all Nova Scotians. The members of the Long Island society have agreed to donate, at no cost, Long Island, Dry Island, Centre Island and Snipe Island in Mahone Bay, Lunenburg Co., to the province. “This is part of our ongoing efforts to expand the proportion of Crown lands and coastal access available for Nova Scotians now and for future generations,” said Natural Resources Minister David Morse. “Without organizations like the Mahone Islands Conservation Association and the Long Island Preservation Society, many of these accomplishments would not be possible.” The Mahone Islands Conservation Association’s mission is to protect and conserve the natural environment of the islands and shoreline of Mahone Bay. The recent acquisitions complement previous work the province and the association have done to help preserve Andrews, Backman and Covey islands. “These four islands represent valuable pieces of Nova Scotia,” said John Meisner, chair of the Mahone Islands association. “We are pleased to see that these islands will continue to provide traditional, social and recreational opportunities for all Nova Scotians, as well as the many visitors to our beautiful province.” It is an area rich in natural beauty and neighbouring historic influence, with high tourist and travel appeal. The members of the Long Island society have gone to great lengths to ensure an appropriate future for the sought-after islands. “These islands are some of our province’s treasures. We want to make sure that they are used in a way that is fitting for their pristine beauty and rare coastal lands,” said Jim Eisenhauer, Long Island society spokesman. “The agreement lets us rest easy that the land will be kept in it’s natural state and be available for recreational activities for all Nova Scotians.” Mr. Morse said the Mahone Islands Conservation Association is setting a great example. “It is helping the province achieve environmental and recreational goals by championing donations and acquisitions in its community,” Mr. Morse said. For more information on the Mahone Islands association, go to www.mahoneislands.ns.ca
The United Nations peacekeeping mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is assisting the Government in a new sensitization campaign encouraging all remaining armed groups in North and South Kivu provinces – where fighting has escalated in recent months leading to a dire humanitarian situation – to surrender. The campaign was launched by the Government on 1 January and comes ahead of a conference, set to begin on Sunday in the North Kivu capital of Goma, aimed at bringing peace and development to the troubled eastern region of the DRC. Hundreds of thousands of civilians have been forced to flee their homes in North Kivu in recent months after fighting intensified between Government troops and rebels allied with the dissident army general, Laurent Nkunda. The UN mission in the DRC, known as MONUC, is assisting the Government in its efforts to reach the remaining foreign combatants in the Kivu provinces. The mission’s Disarmament, Demobilisation, Repatriation, Resettlement and Reintegration (DDRRR) division will be using radio broadcasts and leaflets encouraging them to surrender and return home. The mission has 18 mobile radio teams, on the ground in both provinces, who have a broad knowledge of the foreign combatants and their location, said Ndiaga Diagne, a MONUC DDRRR officer based in Goma. “Our role is to support the DRC Government with all the means and expertise at our disposal. We are ready to assist contacts between the DRC Government representatives and the FDLR [Forces Démocratiques de Libération du Rwanda] on the ground, in order to have the most complete sensitisation possible,” he explained. He added that there are approximately 8,000 foreign combatants remaining in the Kivu provinces – 6,000 in North Kivu and 2,000 in South Kivu. “The majority of foreign combatants in the Kivus are FDLR combatants from Rwanda.” The campaign is also aimed at Congolese armed combatants in the Kivus – the majority of whom are Nkunda rebels and Mai Mai factions – and the respective Disarmament Demobilisation and Reintegration (DDR) programme. Last year, nearly 13,900 Congolese combatants were disarmed. Many ex-fighters from armed groups are retrained to form part of the national armed forces of the DRC (FARDC) through a process known as brassage. MONUC has also assisted in repatriating some 800 foreign combatants and their dependants from the DRC last year. 4 January 2008The United Nations peacekeeping mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is assisting the Government in a new sensitization campaign encouraging all remaining armed groups in North and South Kivu provinces – where fighting has escalated in recent months leading to a dire humanitarian situation – to surrender.
FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) – U.S. Sen. Rand Paul says most people would think the attack he suffered from a former neighbor should be punished by more than 30 days in prison.The Kentucky Republican went on WLAP radio Tuesday to comment on a federal appeals court’s decision vacating the sentence given to his attacker, Rene Boucher.- Advertisement – The court on Monday found “no compelling justification” for a sentence so far below guidelines as 30 days.Boucher tackled Paul in anger over a lawn maintenance issue along their property line, breaking six of Paul’s ribs. Paul suffered bouts of pneumonia and underwent surgery to remove part of his damaged lung.Federal prosecutors said 21 months would be a more appropriate sentence after Boucher pleaded guilty to assaulting a member of Congress.