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U.S. fed funds price remains at .13 pct

NEW YORK The U.S. federal funds price USONFFE=, which banks charge each and every other to borrow excess reserves, averaged .13 % for a fifth day on Monday, according to Federal Reserve information released on Tuesday.

The typical, or efficient, fed funds rate, which the Fed targets to achieve its price objective, traded in a variety of .06 % to .35 percent for a third straight session on Monday.

(Reporting by Richard Leong)

Brussels Remains on Lockdown as Number of Arrests Rises to 21


A closed metro station in Brussels on Monday as a lot of the city remained shuttered. Credit Laurent Dubrule/European Pressphoto Agency

BRUSSELS â?? The capital of Belgium entered the third day of a siegelike lockdown on Monday: Schools, buying malls, public transit and food markets remained closed, and hotels and bars have been desolate, as the total number of arrests in a sweeping counterterrorism operation rose to 21.

The authorities searched 5 properties in the Brussels area and two in the Liège area overnight, seized 26,000 euros, or about $ 27,600, and arrested five folks, in addition to the 16 who had been detained on Sunday, according to Eric Van der Sijpt, a magistrate and a spokesman for the federal prosecutorâ??s workplace.

But a single of the chief targets of the raids â?? Salah Abdeslam, a 26-year-old Frenchman who is believed to have taken portion in the terrorist attacks in Paris on Nov. 13 â?? remained at massive. A BMW that was pulled more than on Sunday night about Liège, which was seized upon by some on the Net, has â??no link at all with the ongoing operation,â? Mr. Van der Sijpt said in a statement.

Some of the rhythms of everyday life resumed on Monday, the first weekday because the authorities place the Brussels area on the highest level of alert â?? Level four â?? out of fear of a â??serious and imminentâ? attack like the one particular in Paris. At least 4 of the attackers in Paris had lived in Belgium, which includes Mr. Abdeslam and the suspected organizer, Abdelhamid Abaaoud, who was killed in a police raid outdoors Paris last week.

Continue reading the main story Video

Officials Discuss Raids in Brussels

Federal officials in Belgium confirmed Salah Abdeslam, a chief suspect in the Paris attacks, was not found for the duration of raids in a number of towns more than the weekend.

Publish Date November 23, 2015. Photo by Olivier Hoslet/European Pressphoto Agency. Watch in Instances Video »

In Brussels, safety was tightened around the buildings that house the European Commission, although NATO advised some personnel to function from house. The central square, identified as the Grand Place or the Grote Markt, generally bustling with shoppers preparing for Christmas, was fairly empty. Several huge shops were closed.

The authorities urged citizens not to discuss police operations on Twitter for fear of tipping off the suspects they were in search of. A lot of Belgians complied by posting pictures of cats with the hashtag #BrusselsLockdown.

The level of anxiety was so high that the authorities felt compelled to remind men and women that â??you can leave your residence of course (in Brussels, too),â? whilst adding that â??we recommend you keep away from unnecessary travel to busy places and comply with any possible safety verify.â?

These who did venture out of their residences strolled in sunny weather on thoroughfares like the Boulevard Anspach, in front of the old stock exchange, just a few streets away from the scene of an intensive raid the prior evening. They stated they felt protected seeing so numerous police officers and soldiers in the streets.

â??Itâ??s a very strange atmosphere,â? said Guy Egerickx, 60, a retiree, who came out to shop. â??Itâ??s one thing that Iâ??ve never ever knowledgeable before.â?

Mukando Fortuna, 20, said the police presence was reassuring. â??Iâ??m usually stopped and searched by the police, which actually irritates me,â? he stated, wearing hip sunglasses and chatting with a group of close friends.

â??But this time, they havenâ??t. Theyâ??re cool,â? he said. â??Weâ??re not scared because of a group of idiots.â?

Abdel Messaoudi, who manages a Pizza Hut, said that revenues have fallen at least 75 % because Saturday due to the fact clientele have stayed away. He said he told his staff not to bother to come to work on Monday since the subway was not operating.

â??Iâ??ve never, ever observed Brussels this quiet,â? he said, taking a cigarette break. Generally the city is teeming with vacationers and workers in this element of the city, he stated, but the size of crowds has shrunk by at least two-thirds.

A employees member at an upscale Novotel said that the hotel has been dealing with â??cancellations one soon after the other.â? The employee, who asked not to be named since he was not permitted to speak to the news media, said that far more than half of the hotelâ??s guests canceled at the last minute. â??Weâ??ve never ever observed something like it,â? the employee mentioned, adding that the hotel is practically usually full.

In France, the countryâ??s finance minister, Michel Sapin, on Monday announced measures to restrict access to financing for folks who are planning or carrying out terrorist attacks.

Mr. Sapin mentioned that France would tighten guidelines for the use of prepaid bank cards, which can be utilised anonymously below certain thresholds, by early subsequent year.

Current rules do not demand ID checks for the use of nonrechargeable prepaid bank cards for sums under â?¬250, or for the use of rechargeable cards for sums below â?¬2,500 more than a year.

Prepaid cards were utilised by the attackers who killed 130 folks in Paris and neighboring St.-Denis on the evening of Nov. 13, Mr. Sapin stated, but he did not elaborate on where or how the cards had been utilized.

Mr. Sapin also stated that French authorities combating money laundering and the financing of terrorism would be offered direct access to the police database of wanted or suspected individuals. He added that the government would introduce legislation to expand the authoritiesâ?? capability to freeze the financial assets of terrorism suspects to include cars and genuine estate.


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Brussels Remains on Highest Alert Level as Manhunts Expand

BRUSSELS — The Belgian authorities for a second day on Sunday maintained the highest achievable alert level, practically locking down the capital as they extended their hunt for a widening number of suspects linked to the Paris massacres and who had been poised, they feared, to carry out an imminent new attack.

“We fear an attack equivalent to the 1 in Paris,” Prime Minister Charles Michel told a news conference on Sunday evening. “A quantity of men and women could launch an attack on many areas in Brussels simultaneously.”

He added: “We have indications that the targets of such an attack will be regions that attract huge crowds like industrial centers.”

Scores of police officers and heavily armed Belgian soldiers sealed off streets late Sunday about the headquarters of the Brussels police force, near the Grand Spot, the historic center of the Belgian capital and a significant tourist attraction. Soldiers ordered vacationers to return to their hotels nearby and barred entry to streets behind the Hôtel de Ville, a jewel of Gothic architecture dating from the 15th century. Armored vehicles stood guard in streets usually packed with Belgian and foreign visitors as a helicopter circled the area overhead.

It was not immediately clear precisely what triggered the safety operation, the biggest in Brussels considering that the Nov. 13 terrorist attacks in Paris, which killed 130 people.

Belgium’s interior minister, Jan Jambon, stated that the threat was wider than that posed by Salah Abdeslam, a suspected Paris attacker who is still at massive, suggesting that the Paris attacks may possibly have involved a far broader network than originally thought.

“There are a quantity of suspects,” Mr. Jambon earlier told a Sunday system on the Belgian broadcaster VRT. “That’s why we’ve place in location such a concentration” of security measures, he added. “We are following the predicament minute by minute. There’s no point in hiding it, there is a genuine threat.”

A former French intelligence official close to the investigations said that the Belgians were now seeking for eight to 10 men and women who are heavily armed with weapons and explosives, in addition to Mr. Abdeslam, a resident of the heavily immigrant Molenbeek district of Brussels, which was property to several of the Paris attackers.

A number of Belgian media outlets reported that the police had arrested 4 folks on Saturday evening, 1 wearing a suicide belt. Geert Schoorens, a magistrate at the federal prosecutor’s office, mentioned Sunday that he could “neither deny nor confirm” those reports simply because investigations had been continuing.

For a second day, the government place the country’s threat level at four, the highest possible. The United States Embassy in Brussels continued to advise citizens to “remain at home” and stay away from public gatherings. The authorities announced that schools and subways in Brussels would stay closed on Monday as properly.

A railway station below the headquarters of the European Union’s executive remained sealed off on Sunday, and all visitors on the Brussels metro system was suspended. Soldiers with automatic weapons patrolled purchasing malls. Many large shops stayed closed. A massive Sunday market place close to the Brussels-South railway station that generally draws as numerous as 50,000 shoppers was canceled.

Prime Minister Michel said Saturday that the threat level had been raised due to the fact of “information, relatively precise, of a threat of an attack comparable to the 1 that unfolded in Paris.”

Bernard Clerfayt, the mayor of Schaerbeek, a commune of Brussels, was much more loose-tongued. On Sunday, he told the Belgian tv network RTBF that “there are two terrorists on the ground in the Brussels area.”

Brussels was below such high alert that Mr. Jambon said he requested that some football matches be canceled so the reserve federal police, who typically enforce the safety for the duration of matches, could be deployed in the capital.

At the same time, the French authorities on Sunday published a new call for witnesses connected to the attacks in Paris and last week’s raid in St.-Denis, appealing for a lot more details about the suicide bomber who was the second of 3 attackers to detonate explosive vests outdoors the Stade de France.

The call for witnesses, published by the French national police on Twitter, integrated a picture but not a name, and asked anyone who had information on the person to make contact with the French authorities. The second suicide bomber detonated his vest close to Gate H of the stadium, killing no a single.

The initial detonated his explosives near Gate D, killing one particular person. A Syrian passport for a 25-year-old man named Ahmad al-Mohammad, from Idlib, Syria, was identified close to his body, but the French authorities believe that the passport could have been stolen.

On Friday, the Paris prosecutor’s office mentioned that fingerprints for both the 1st and second bombers had been taken at the identical check for migrants in Greece on Oct. three. The third bomber, identified as Bilal Hadfi, 20, a French citizen living in Belgium, detonated his explosives on the nearby Rue de la Cokerie but did not kill anybody.

The appeal for help and the extraordinary security measures in Brussels came amid fresh revelations around another suspect, Abraimi Lazez, 39, a Belgian of Moroccan descent, who was arrested Thursday and charged with assisting Mr. Abdeslam after his return to Belgium following the Nov. 13 attacks in Paris.

The authorities arrested Mr. Lazez after discovering a handgun and an unspecified quantity of blood in his automobile, his lawyer, Sokol Vljahen, mentioned. Mr. Lazez, who grew up in the identical Molenbeek neighborhood as some of the Paris attackers, denied any hyperlink to the attacks, his lawyer said.

Mr. Abdeslam was stopped by French police officers on Nov. 14 for the duration of a routine visitors verify as he drove back to Brussels with two close friends, both of whom have because been arrested, a few hours soon after the Paris attacks. He had a criminal record, but no warrant linked to his file, and he had not yet been linked to the attacks, so he was allowed to drive on.

A single of the two men traveling with him and now beneath arrest has because told the police that Mr. Abdeslam had been wearing a large jacket, “with something underneath,” according to the suspect’s lawyer, Carine Couquelet. While he did not know what it was, the lawyer stated, the sight of it “made him scared.”

According to Mr. Lazez’s lawyer, his client never ever met Salah nor Ibrahim Abdeslam, his brother who died in Paris when he detonated a suicide vest. Mr. Lazez was not buddies with Abdelhamid Abaaoud either, he mentioned. Mr. Abaaoud, yet another Molenbeek resident, was the presumed ringleader of the Paris attacks and was killed in a police raid just north of the French capital on Wednesday.

Mohamed, a third brother of the Abdeslams who was detained briefly soon after the attacks but released, appealed for Salah to turn himself in.

“We want for him to turn himself in,” he told RTBF tv in an interview on Sunday. “To answer us. For our household, for the loved ones of victims, for all the other people. We prefer to see him in prison than in a cemetery.”

He denied any understanding of his brothers’ plans, even though he mentioned that all three “got along well” and had the usual “banal conversations you have with brothers.”

He said he had not paid attention when the attitudes of his two brothers began to change six months ago. “They began praying,” Mohamed stated. “Or they stopped drinking alcohol, but it’s not a radical modify. For me it’s the sign of individuals who wanted to chasten themselves, and to be more respectful of their religion.”

When asked regardless of whether his brother Salah, may have been reluctant to participate in the attacks, Mohamed said: “It is my hope that he stepped back at the last minute.”

“Maybe he saw or heard one thing that made him turn back. Soon after, did he kill victims? Was he at the precise place? Was he there until the end? We don’t know.”

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Agen Sabung Ayam – Identical old story: girls paired with younger guys remains a cinematic rarity

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Kate Winslet has expressed surprise at the publicity surrounding the enjoy scenes amongst her and co-star Liam Hemsworth in The Dressmaker. Photograph: Allstar/Universal Images

In interviews this week, Kate Winslet, 40, expressed surprise at the publicity becoming given to the age of her on-screen lover in her most recent film, The Dressmaker, which characteristics a still rare pairing: an older woman and a considerably younger man. Her 25-year-old co-star, Liam Hemsworth, may possibly not have helped, nevertheless, by admitting that he initially worried about whether their scenes together may possibly appear weird.

In contrast, Hollywood top males are commonly cast in co-star combinations in which, if the ages of the performers at the time were represented as American football scores, it would be a wonderful evening for residence fans: 62-38 in between Robert Redford and Kristin Scott Thomas in The Horse Whisperer, and 62-34 for Jack Nicholson and Helen Hunt in As Good as it Gets, even though Clint Eastwood had a 63-39 benefit over Rene Russo in In the Line of Fire, and Bill Murray bested Scarlett Johansson 53-19 in Lost in Translation.

Clint Eastwood and Rene Russo in In the Line of Fire

Clint Eastwood and Rene Russo in In the Line of Fire. Their 24-year age discrepancy is not that unusual in Hollywood films. Photograph: Bruce McBrooom/Channel 5

The prevalance of such discrepancies, says Prof Linda Ruth Williams of Southampton University, has resulted “in a cultural revulsion against May possibly-to-December onscreen relationships in which the woman could only be May whilst the man could be any month up to and like December”.

Growing sensitivity to the notion of the dirty old man was probably the cause that, in Lost in Translation, the connection among Murray and Johansson remained at the level of ambiguous flirtation, and it could also be important that the director was a lady, Sofia Coppola. It was also a female film-maker, Jocelyn Moorhouse, who allowed Winslet her 40-25 margin in The Dressmaker.

Related: Kate Winslet: the gender pay gap debate is ‘a bit vulgar’

A complication in these circumstances is that there is frequently a contradiction amongst the chronological and character ages of an actor. The septuagenerian Harrison Ford nonetheless plays guys in a vague late middle age, and the age gap among Winslet’s and Hemsworth’s characters in the script of The Dressmaker is supposed to be far much less than in the actors’ passports. In basic, though, the age of an older man is ignored by the story whilst female seniority tends to be a plot point.

But Winslet, regardless of whether by accident or design, has turn out to be something of a poster lady for female-male age disparity in cinema. In the German wartime story The Reader (2008), she played adore scenes with David Kross, an actor who was also a decade and a half younger, a fact that was central to the narrative.

The fact that Kross was playing a teenager led to accusations of paedophilia, with Winslet’s character receiving as a lot flak from some for getting an alleged youngster abuser as for her character’s previous as a Nazi concentration camp guard. Similarly, in The Piano Teacher (2001), the middle-aged actor Isabelle Huppert’s onscreen partnership with a 17-year-old boy, even though just about legal, is sado-masochistic.

Ralph Fiennes, Kate Winslet and David Kross at The Reader premiere

Kate Winslet and David Kross have been onscreen lovers in The Reader, which also starred Ralph Fiennes. Photograph: Image Best/Rex Features

These films contrast starkly with Summer of ’42, a common 1971 film in which an American teenager is sexually initiated throughout the second globe war by an older lady. Coming 4 years soon after The Graduate, in which the fortysomething Anne Bancroft showed a good time to a 21-year-old Dustin Hoffman, that film was one particular of a quantity of what may possibly be referred to as post-Graduate films that dramatised the schoolboy fantasy of seduction by a mature lover. Late examples are Tadpole (2002), and Y Tu Mama Tambien (2001), which claimed higher sexual leeway by being set in Mexico.

In the US and Britain, improved legal and social respect for the age of consent have lowered the reputation of this genre. Surely, it is hard to picture the generating these days of Homework (1982), a comedy in which Joan Collins plays a teacher who sets out to “make a man” of a teenage pupil. The trope of becoming shown the ropes by an skilled female nonetheless exists but the ladies involved are reduced to ridicule in gross-out comedies such as Cougars Inc, Cougar Club and Milf.

Even in serious dramas, the older female lover, although not laughed at, is regularly at risk of death or social exclusion. In Unfaithful (2002) and In the Bedroom (2001), Diane Lane and Marisa Tomei unleash events that lead to murder by taking boyish lovers. Just this year, in The Boy Subsequent Door, Jennifer Lopez puts herself in terrible danger by hitting on the young hunk in the next apartment.

Connected: Is Hollywood afraid of older girls?

Among the very handful of examples of consensual romances in which the lady is old enough to be the man’s mother are the Catherine Zeta-Jones romcom The Rebound (2009) and, most notably, The Mother (2003), in which the female lead, Anne Reid, was old adequate to be the lover’s grandmother.

The film’s director, Roger Michell, remembers there was stress from potential financiers to cast a performer with a history of sexual allure, such as Julie Christie or Charlotte Rampling, but he held out for Reid.

“Anne is quite eye-catching,” he stresses. “But the point of the film is that it is a sort of sexual Pygmalion, in which the character starts off invisible and becomes radiant. If the audience currently had a memory of lusting right after that actress in film sex scenes, it is a cop-out.”

The Mother is almost exclusive in treating a mature woman’s passion for a young man as passion rather than perversion. It is a film, Michell says, about a grandmother “who wants to have sex with James Bond”. Which, as Reid’s lover was played by Daniel Craig, she did.

“What is so great about Reid’s performance in The Mother,” says Williams, “is that it gestures to an apparently infinite road ahead. It’s a new type of coming-of-age story. At the finish, Could is seen packing her bag and passport and basically disappearing down her suburban road. She may well be simply going to the shops. But she’s slipping off the edge of the types of films girls of her age utilized to feature in.”

Anne Reid and Daniel Craig in The Mother

Anne Reid and Daniel Craig in The Mother. Photograph: Everett/Rex Shutterstock

In a further try at balance, Michell and screenwriter Hanif Kureishi went on to make Venus (2006), in which a partnership in between an octogenarian man played by Peter O’Toole and a lady virtually six decades his junior outcomes, really unusually in movies, in rejection and humiliation for him.

Michell and Kureishi also collaborated on Le Week

Agen Sabung Ayam – Paris attacks: police examine remains of ‘cowgirl’ turned suicide bomber

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Police officers gesture throughout a search in the residence of the mother of Hasna Aitboulahcen, in Aulnay-sous-Bois, near Paris. Photograph: Peter Dejong/AP

French forensic and health-related specialists are examining what remains of the woman who blew herself up in the course of a police shootout after the Paris terrorist attacks, believed to be Islamic State supporter Hasna Aitboulahcen.

The Frenchwoman, aged 26, was heard engaging in an practically hysterical exchange with police shortly just before she trigged a suicide belt, killing herself quickly.

Related: Paris attacks: nine individuals held in Brussels raids – reside updates

Aitboulahcen, whose name was also spelled Ait Boulahcen, was reported to be a cousin of Abdel-Hamid Aba Oud, the man believed to have masterminded the coordinated series of bombings and shootings in Paris on Friday evening that left 129 folks dead. Even so, investigators remain unsure of any family members connection.

On Thursday particulars emerged of Aitboulahcen’s journey from extroverted cowboy-hat-wearing girl to business boss to suspected terrorist.

Born in Clicy-la-Garenne in the Hauts-de-Seine on the outskirts of France on 12 August 1989, of Moroccan parents who had come to France in 1973, Aitboulahcen was young when her parents separated.

She was reportedly brought up by her mother in the Paris region, but spent time with foster parents and often visited her father following he moved to a housing estate in Creutzwald, east of Metz on the French-German border, where she studied.

Despite the fact that her father nonetheless has an apartment in the town, he has been in Morocco for the past six months, the neighborhood mayor mentioned.

Neighbours in Creutzwald mentioned they had not observed Aitboulahcen for at least five years but stated back then she was “extrovert”, “bubbly” and a “bit lost”. She liked to wear a big hat, leading to her nickname “the cowgirl”.

“She didn’t appear like a suicide bomber and she drank alochol,” one particular of her young neighbours at the Impasse du Dauphin told the neighborhood newspaper Le Républicain Lorrain. “We saw her fairly typically and we called her the cowgirl because she usually wore a large hat.”

One more neighbour in Paris said she was a “tomboy” who dressed in jeans, trainers and a black hat till she began wearing a niqab eight months ago.

In Might 2013, she was registerd as having founded a constructing company called Beko Building, a organization that has been inactive for two years, according to official records.

In current years, Aitboulahcen had created no secret of her assistance for Islamic State on social media networks. Conscious of her relationship with Aba Oud, instantly identified as the man behind the Friday 13 attacks, French intelligence service place her under immediate surveillance.

Her phone was already getting tapped and bank movements traced as element of an investigation into drug trafficking in the region. After the Paris attacks, further phone taps have been authorised. It was info gleaned from this surveillance that led police investigating the attacks to the apartment on the third floor of 8 rue du Cotillon in the Saint Denis suburb of the French capital, exactly where yet another alleged terror cell was holed up.

Suspecting the cell was organizing a additional attack on the city, French particular anti-terrorist forces arrived to neutralise the group at 4.20am on Wednesday.

Soon after heavy gunfire and a brief exchange with police, during which officers shouted to Aitboulahcen “where’s your friend?” and she replied: “It’s not my buddy,” there was heavy gunfire followed by a big explosion.

Another neighbour, Christian, 20, reported hearing a blonde woman he believed was Aitboulahcen shouting “help me, help me, assist me,” and police ordering her to raise her hands just before hearing a burst of gunfire.

It was unclear regardless of whether Aiboulahcen had detonated her suicide vest or whether the fire from French snipers outside the apartment had set it off.

Her contact with the terror cell was of tiny surprise to those who had been following her. On 11 June, Aitboulahcen, who studied at the Paul Verlaine University in Metz, posted on her Facebook page a photo of herself in a headscarf and long robe making V signs with her hands to the cameras.

Her status, written in a form of abbreviated slang, study: “Jver binto aller en syrie inchallah biento depart pour la turkie!” (I’ll quickly be going to Syria, God prepared, soon leaving for Turkey.)

She had also expressed her admiration for Hayat Boumeddiene, the widow of Amédy Coulibaly, who carried out the attack on the the Hyper Casher supermarket in Paris three days following the Charlie Hebdo attack in January, killing four folks.

BFMTV said she was “obsessed by jihad”, but had in no way produced it to either Syria or Iraq.