Anti-terror laws could affect legal aid

The Law Council of Australia says, under new anti-terror laws put forward by the Federal Government, legal-aid clients would no longer be able to choose their lawyers.

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The council says the Government’s proposal, still to be passed by parliament, requires legal-aid lawyers acting on certain cases to pass security clearances first.

The Law Council’s acting president, Bob Gotterson says clients could no longer choose their lawyers in cases relating to national security.

He says clients would be forced to see lawyers approved by federal government security agencies instead.

Mr Gotterson says that would deny them fair hearings and would especially put newly arrived migrants, who often need to access legal-aid services, at a disadvantage.

“If you want to select a lawyer who speaks your native language and, therefore, get your message across much more easily, and that lawyer hasn’t got government approval, under this new system, then you are disadvantaged. What this really amounts to is moving towards a system, at least at the legal-aid level and for cases where there are national-security overtones, a system of state-controlled lawyers.”

Mr Gotterson says the federal government is intent on introducing the new laws, despite opposition from state and territory governments and from the legal profession.

He says the federal government is simply following the lead of the United States on national-security policy, rather than adopting a more independent stance.

“One might venture the view that why this proposal is coming forward is simply to harmonise the provisions that you might find in some other nations, particularly the United States, for example, and to bring Australia into line with that. National security is very important, but, under the existing court processes and disciplinary proceedings, there’s enough there to protect legitimately national-security interests.”

America remembers September 11

In New York, children guided thousands through a tearful September 11 remembrance, held under brilliant blue skies that were reminiscent of the day of the attacks in 2001.

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A total of 200 children, mostly sons and daughters of the dead, read the names of the 2,792 killed at Ground Zero.

While the event was scaled down from the first anniversary, the three-hour ceremony still carried a powerful emotional punch, compounded by the new-found uncertainties of a country at war.

President George W Bush observed the first moment of silence on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington after attending a special church service.

“We remember lives lost. We remember the heroic deeds. We remember the compassion and the decency of our fellow citizens on that terrible day.”

Ceremonies were also held in Washington for the victims at the Defence Department headquarters where a third hijacked jet smashed into the building killing 184 people.

Meanwhile a bell tolled 40 times in a Pennsylvania field where a fourth jet crashed after an uprising by passengers against four al Qaeda hijackers, killing all 40 passengers and crew.

But nationals from 80 countries were killed in the attacks on New York and Washington, and mourning was held around the world.

World leaders also seized upon the anniversary to share the grief of the victims’ families and reaffirm their commitment to fight terrorism.

The danger of further attacks was emphasised by a US State Department warning that al-Qaeda could use the anniversary to stage a new strike “more devastating than the September 11 attack.”

The warning stated the European or Eurasian locations could be targeted “possibly to closely coincide with the anniversary of the September 11 attack”.

Police hunt for Sweden murder suspect

Police in Sweden are searching for a homeless “drifter” with a criminal record in connection with the murder of Swedish Foreign Minister Anna Lindh, who was stabbed while out shopping.

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The 32-year-old man is known to use knives as his weapon of choice, two Swedish daily newspapers reported on Friday.

Tributes have been paid to the 46-year-old popular minister and mother-of-two and with national flags flying at half-mast, the Swedish parliament held a moment of silence. There has also been a special cathedral service.

Outside the Stockholm store where she was attacked, people placed flowers on the pavement and stopped to pay respects.

Tributes have also been paid around the world, with international politicians and leaders shocked by the murder of a leading campaigner for the euro.

Ms Lindh was a vocal supporter of the euro currency and there was a question mark over whether Sunday’s referendum would go ahead.

However, Prime Minister Goeran Persson said it would go ahead as planned, because to do anything else would be to give into violence.

A spokesman said initial inquiries suggest the attacker probably acted on the spur of the moment.

Police have said that they are searching for a man of Swedish origin who they described as having a haggard face and heavy build, about 1.80 meters tall.

The Expressen newspaper said police were able to link the 32-year-old man to a set of handprints lifted off an escalator handrail in the NK department store. Police also have information placing the man in central Stockholm hours before the attack, it said.

Macklin backs Albanese in leaders ballot

Senior Labor MP Jenny Macklin has announced her support for leadership aspirant Anthony Albanese, saying the former deputy prime minister’s record in government makes him best placed to defeat Tony Abbott.

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In a brief statement, Ms Macklin said Mr Albanese had proven himself a “terrific parliamentary performer, a skilled communicator and a passionate advocate for working people”.

“I strongly believe that under Anthony’s leadership, Labor can defeat Tony Abbott at the next election,” the former families minister said on Thursday.

“His record in government – as a cabinet minister and as the Leader of the House – make him the best candidate to hold Tony Abbott to account over the next three years.”

Mr Albanese and Mr Shorten are contesting the Labor leadership, which will be settled in October by a ballot giving caucus and ordinary ALP members given an equal say in the outcome.

Acting opposition leader Chris Bowen, a member of the right faction which is backing Mr Shorten, dismissed suggestions people would be voting along factional lines.

Mr Albanese is a powerful figure in Labor’s left.

“I’m aware of rank and file members and caucus members who’ll be voting for the candidate that they think is the best for the job,” Mr Bowen told ABC Radio.

“It might not necessarily be a member of the same faction they would support.”

Mr Albanese took his leadership campaign to Brisbane on Wednesday night, telling supporters his loyalty made him the best man for the job.

Mr Albanese landed a solid blow against his right faction powerbroker opponent, who was instrumental in ending the prime ministerships of both Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard.

“We should not be shy about defending the interests of Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard and I am in a position to do both because I was loyal to both,” Mr Albanese told a supportive crowd at The Melbourne Hotel in Brisbane’s West End.

“I woke up each and every day and did my best for the cause of Labor. I didn’t engage in internal shenanigans.”

Comment: Sorry, you’re probably not an introvert

There is no such thing as a pure introvert or extrovert.

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Such a person would be in the lunatic asylum.

Carl Jung

23 Signs You’re Secretly an Introvert. 12 Tips to Better Care for an Introvert. 10 Myths About Introverts. The listification of the internet seems to have coincided with a mass self-diagnosis of a hitherto unidentified personality trait.

Tips such as “never embarrass an introvert in public” and “give them their privacy” may give a clue to why so many of us are now identifying with introversion.

Chances are you have read one of these “how to train your introvert” articles and nodded along. “Yes,” you’ve thought, “I do screen my calls! And I do have a constantly running inner monologue! Listen, I can hear it right now!”

These are just two of the 23 signs of introversion, according to a Huffington Post article.

Carl Jung coined ‘introversion’ and ‘extroversion’ in 1918, and they have been appropriated and redefined ever since. Jung initially used the terms to describe a flow of ‘libidinal energy’ either inwards or outwards. Meyers-Briggs later adopted ‘introvert’ and ‘extrovert’ as descriptors in their personality test, and turned them into explicit labels. Now instead of understanding introversion as a fluid state, it is used as shorthand for identity.

You are unlikely to be an introvert, by Jung’s or even Meyers-Briggs’ standards. A lot of us are merely responding to the new ultra-connected social and spatial structure of modern life by staging a retreat, of sorts. When you are available to others at every minute of the day, contactable via multiple platforms and constantly notified of every update, a few hours alone does start to sound desirable. Basic economic theory – as the availability of solitude decreases, demand increases.

Introversion is not shyness. Introversion is not ‘screening your calls’ (that’s just sensible). It is not necessarily characterised by being quiet and reserved. Not feeling comfortable speaking up at a meeting, or wanting to approach people at a party does not make you an introvert.

Introversion is the upper level at which you find yourself depleted by social interaction, and it works on a continuum with extroversion.

New forms of interaction are leading to people adopt the affectations of introversion in order to portray themselves as interesting or alluring. The impersonal intimacy of social media provides the opportunity to form an online identity that serves as a proxy for our actual selves. The imperative for exposure leads us to cultivate an image using what some have called a social media “fan dance”, exposing just enough flesh (metaphorical or otherwise) to gain attention.

The label “introvert” suggests a higher degree of restraint – that the introvert is at a remove from the digital mass exhibitionism that the rest of us are involved in. So when you share that “87 Adorable Introvert Traits as Enacted by Puppies” listicle on Twitter, Facebook and Google+ accompanied by “this is SO me”, consider how introspective that drive to exhibit your introversion really is.

Anne Treasure is a recent survivor of the book industry.

New Zealand poised to win America’s Cup

Emirates Team New Zealand moved to the brink of capturing the America’s Cup with an eighth race victory on Wednesday before the potential clinching race was postponed by high winds.

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The Kiwis need to beat defending champion Oracle Team USA just once more to claim yachting’s coveted trophy, with the next two races scheduled for Thursday.

New Zealand darted past Oracle to snatch a lead over the starting line in Wednesday’s second race before getting word from officials that the match was cancelled due to strong winds.

“It was not a certain thing that it would have turned into a win. We were happy to be in first position,” New Zealand skipper Dean Barker said, downplaying how close his team is to victory. “If we can get a win, that would be great.”

New Zealand’s victory by 15 seconds in race 11 continued the humbling of billionaire yachtsman Larry Ellison and the team he is counting on to keep possession of the Cup.

New Zealand beat the Americans across the start and established a slight lead that lasted into the pivotal upwind third leg, where the rivals engaged in an intense tacking duel during which the Kiwis managed to fend off the hosts.

Oracle split the race at the third gate and opted for the opposite side of the course, closing the gap but eventually being cut off by the Kiwis on their way to victory.

It was New Zealand’s eighth triumph in the best-of-17 series, putting them one win shy of the trophy while Oracle, penalised two points before the start for pre-regatta violations, must win eight times in a row to deny the Kiwis the Cup.

“We’ve got one hell of a battle on our hands here, but stranger things have happened in sport,” said Oracle skipper Jimmy Spithill. “It’s never over until it’s over. We won’t give up.”

He contended that no matter how the event ends for Oracle, duelling on the San Francisco Bay with first-generation AC72 catamarans has proven to be a winning formula by adding excitement to the Cup.

“It is the ultimate test; the ultimate challenge,” Spithill said. “This event is great for the competitor, great for spectators, and more importantly we have introduced it to a broader audience.”

Safety measures lowering the wind threshold in which races would be conducted were put in place for the regatta following the death of Andrew Simpson from the crew of failed challenger Artemis during a training run in May.

The AC72 catamaran of Swedish team Artemis, one of three challenger hopefuls, capsized in May and Simpson, a British double Olympic medallist, drowned after being trapped under the overturned structure.

New Zealand will go into Thursday with the lead and the momentum, with Oracle having scrambled to make changes to its boat after being repeatedly out-sailed by the Kiwis.

The adjustments payed off with ramped-up speeds but the USA has been consistently out-manoeuvred on the bay.

“That is a good description; chess on rocket ships,” said Oracle strategist Ben Ainslee, a Britain who won four Olympic gold medals in sailing last year.

Mandarins punished for service: Labor

Punishing public servants for being honest or implementing the previous government’s policies is a petty move, Labor says.

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Prime Minister Tony Abbott sacked three department secretaries within minutes of being sworn in on Wednesday: Andrew Metcalfe at Agriculture, Blair Comley at Resources and Energy, and Don Russell at Innovation, Industry, Science and Research.

Acting opposition leader Chris Bowen says it’s Australia’s loss.

“These public servants will be very hard to replace in terms of their collective wisdom,” he told ABC radio.

Mr Metcalfe had previously headed the immigration department under Labor and the Howard governments as well working in then-minister Philip Ruddock’s office.

But he has said publicly he didn’t believe turning asylum seeker boats back to Indonesia, a key plank of the coalition’s policy, would work.

“If Mr Metcalfe’s being punished for being honest that’s a very poor start for this government,” Mr Bowen said on Thursday.

“He was secretary of the Department of Agriculture; that was hardly somewhere where he was going to have to implement the government’s immigration policies even if they were concerned about that.”

Similarly, the Labor leader believed Mr Comley was punished “simply for having to implement … the previous government’s climate change policy”.

“This is a pretty petty move,” he said.

Finance minister Mathias Cormann defended the changes, saying the government now had the right people in the right positions to deliver its agenda.

“There were some changes but those changes were not dramatic,” he said.

He also defended a move to merge AusAID with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

“We think it is important for our foreign aid objectives and our foreign affairs objectives to be more closely aligned,” he said.

“Australia needs to take a very close look at how our aid spending fits in with our national interests and our foreign affairs policy objectives.”

Abbott’s help sought on petrol discounts

A coalition of business and grocery groups has urged Prime Minister Tony Abbott to stop excessive shopper docket petrol discounting by the major supermarkets.

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The Independent Retailers of Australia group says the two national supermarket chains have resumed their misuse of market power now the federal election is over.

It has placed ads in the major newspapers to garner support for fairer competition.

“Prime Minister Abbott, we’re appealing to your new government to commit its support to ensure competition in the fuel and grocery markets is fair,” the ad says.

“As four organisations representing two million Australian businesses and the five million staff they employ, we implore you to ensure fair competition for the benefit of all retailers and consumers.”

Australian Retailers Association executive director Russell Zimmerman said discounts of up to 40 cents a litre were now being offered by the major retailers.

They feared it would result in the death of independent petrol retailers, he said.

“The cross market subsidisation is exclusive to the major chains, which are misusing their market power. This needs to be addressed urgently through competition policy,” he said in a statement.

“We urge the new prime minister to move quickly to halt deep fuel discounting, as any discount of fuel above the traditional level of 4 cents per litre must mean fuel is being sold below cost.”

Council of Small Business Organisations of Australia chief executive Peter Strong said action needed to be taken before it was too late for independent retailers.

How committed is Abbott to multiculturalism?

Labor, the Greens and some community groups say they are concerned about the direction multicultural policy could take under an Abbott government.

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The outgoing Labor government appointed Senator Kate Lundy to the position of Multicultural Affairs Minister last year after she had worked as the parliamentary secretary in the same portfolio since 2010.

But Tony Abbott’s incoming team doesn’t include a minister with the portfolio area.

Incoming Prime Minister Tony Abbott has announced that multicultural affairs and settlement services will not be managed by the Department of Immigration under a Coalition government.

Instead, it will fall under the control of a newly created Department of Social Services with Kevin Andrews the Minister, who will also be responsible for aged care services.

Mr Abbott has appointed New South Wales Senator Concetta Fierravanti Wells as parliamentary secretary for social services with special responsibility for multicultural affairs and settlement services.

The outgoing Minister for Multicultural Affairs under the Rudd Government, Senator Kate Lundy, says she believes the coalition is neglecting an important portfolio area.

“I think it’s profoundly disappointing for all of those people who devote themselves to that part of our community sector and are engaged in our multicultural communities. We worked very hard as a federal Labor government to lift both the status and the substance of the multicultural affairs portfolio and unfortunately the coalition government has taken some pretty giant steps backwards.”

Senator Lundy believes Labor put forward some strong initiatives including a National Anti Racism Strategy and an Australian Multicultural Council to provide policy advice to the government.

But she fears these programs now risk being axed or having their funding allocations drastically cut under the Coalition government.

The Australian Greens multicultural spokesman, Richard Di Natale, shares that concern.

He says he is also anxious about plans by Tony Abbott to repeal a section of the Racial Discrimination Act, which makes it unlawful to offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate someone on the basis of their race, colour or national or ethnic origin.

Mr Abbott argues the current Act does not sufficiently protect the right of freedom of speech.

Senator Di Natale believes repealing the Act could end up weakening the rights of migrant Australians.

“We’re looking at an Abbott Government that has already made some noises around abolishing particular sections within the Racial Discrimination Act. So rather than protecting those things and standing up for and making a robust defence of multiculturalism in making sure that racism is unacceptable in any of its guises, we appear to be moving in the opposite direction.”

The Settlement Council of Australia says it is also disappointed over Mr Abbott’s failure to appoint a Multicultural Affairs Minister.

But the council’s chairman Cedric Manen says he’s pleased to see a politician from a non English speaking background in Senator Fierravanti-Wells appointed to the role of parliamentary secretary for multicultural affairs and settlement services.

He is hoping that the NSW Liberal Senator will continue a tradition of bipartisan support across politics for strong settlement services.

“Last year there was the inaugural settlement services awards and there was very strong bipartisan support at those awards from both the coalition and the Labor government at the time. I certainly think someone with the lived experience of migration or someone with a great degree of empathy will be highly valued in that role.”

Labor’s outgoing Multicultural Affairs Minister Kate Lundy says in the lead up to the election, the Coalition failed to release a multicultural policy.

She says it also failed to use the word “multicultural” in any of its frontbench titles in opposition, preferring the term “citizenship”.

“There doesn’t seem to be a consistent position and it depends on who you talk to and what forum it is in terms of how supportive or not they are of multicultural affairs. I think in that regard they should just grow up. Multicultural affairs is a fact of life in Australia and it is an enormous strength. It needs to be not only acknowledged and celebrated but social policy should be built around that.”

Professor Andrew Jakubowicz specialises in multicultural policy research at the University of Technology in Sydney.

He believes the Abbott government is likely to axe a number of programs set up by Labor including the National Anti Racism Strategy.

Professor Jakubowicz says ethnic aged care services are likely to be a priority for the Coalition government, with aged care under the same department as settlement services.

However he believes other migrant services could be overlooked in the process, including childcare and disability services.

Professor Jakubowicz believes the Abbott government’s overall approach towards multiculturalism will be guided by the views of the incoming Prime Minister himself.

“Mr Abbott declared just before the election that he was a convert to multiculturalism saying at the time that he was making this proclamation because he understood that people came to Australia to join us, not to change us, in his terms. So he has a fairly assimilationist notion of what multiculturalism might mean, but at least he was prepared to use the word.”

 

(SBS contacted several Coalition MPs for this story but so far has not received a response.)

Six dead as Canada train smashes into bus

Screaming commuters in the Canadian capital were thrown from a double-decker bus when it ploughed into a passenger train at a suburban crossing, leaving six dead and scores injured.

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Five people died at the scene – including the bus driver, whose remains were so mangled they could not be immediately formally identified – and a sixth in hospital.

Debris and bloody medical towels lay scattered trackside after emergency services mounted a large-scale rescue in a quiet district on the outskirts of Ottawa.

Hours after the early morning commute turned to tragedy 10 of the 34 people injured in the accident were still in a serious condition.

“We had bodies and debris pretty much everywhere at the impact site,” fire department spokesman Marc Messier told broadcaster CTV earlier.

Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson later told a news conference the accident had been felt across Canada.

“We lost six of our neighbours, people who started off this bright, sunny day as we all did heading from their homes and loved ones to go about with their daily lives. And then this terrible tragedy struck,” he said.

Ottawa police launched an investigation of the crash in the suburban neighbourhood of Barrhaven, about 17 kilometres south of downtown Ottawa.

The Via Rail company operating the train on the Ottawa-to-Toronto line – on which traffic has been suspended – reported no fatalities. The train was on its way from Montreal.

The OC Transpo bus was headed downtown during the morning rush hour when the accident happened.

At the time, the train was just 30 metres from a nearby station to pick up waiting passengers on one of Canada’s busiest rail corridors.

The front of the bus was mangled and shorn off while the locomotive and four rail cars were derailed by the crash that left parts of the track twisted.

Witnesses recounted panic aboard the bus just seconds before impact, which caused passengers to be thrown from the vehicle.

Several passengers braced themselves just prior to the collision.

Chad Mariage, on his way to work, was seated toward the back of the bus’s second level when the accident happened.

He wasn’t injured, he said, calling himself “one of the lucky ones.”

“The impact was pretty severe,” he said.

People on the bus were screaming just before the accident, he said, adding that the collision “wasn’t a direct hit.”

“We could all see the train coming towards us – almost in slow motion,” he said.

“The bus driver hit the brakes but too late.”

It was not immediately clear what caused the crash, which occurred on a cloudless and sunny autumn day in an area of wide open fields.

Lead investigator Jean Laporte of the Transportation Safety Board said his team was already documenting and photographing the scene of the accident.

They will assess the crossing – which had been upgraded in 2005 after locals voiced safety concerns – and its visibility lines, check signals and warnings and barriers to ensure they were working correctly, and analyse data from train recorder and the bus global positioning system, he said.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper expressed his condolences via Twitter to the families of those killed.

“Deeply saddened to hear about the bus-train collision in Ottawa this morning,” he tweeted.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of those involved.”

Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird, a member of parliament for the affected district, praised the resiliency of the people of Ottawa in face of tragedy.

“I have no doubt that today, our city will mourn those we’ve lost, and support those in need as we move forward as a city, and as a community,” he said in a statement.

Ottawa flags will be flown at half mast to honour the dead.

The accident happened just over two months after an oil tanker train derailed and exploded in the Quebec resort town of Lac-Megantic, killing 47 people.

Skaf gang rapist granted parole

Skaf gang rapist Mohammed Sanoussi will be released from custody after having his parole revoked weeks earlier.

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During a parole hearing in western Sydney on Thursday, judge Terence Christie said Sanoussi, 29, would be released next month but ordered that he not associate with his brothers.

Sanoussi was initially granted parole earlier this month with strict conditions, including a ban on associating with the Brothers For Life gang.

Hours after that hearing, however, it emerged his brothers Ahmed Sanoussi, 30, and Mahmoud Sanoussi, 28, had been charged with bashing a cleaner at Revesby in Sydney’s southwest.

The younger brother remains behind bars but the older one was given bail and is still living in the family home.

The State Parole Authority subsequently revoked Sanoussi’s parole, saying his post-release accommodation was unsuitable because his brothers, who are allegedly Brothers For Life members, lived there.

During the hearing on Thursday, Sanoussi was ordered to live in a Community Offenders Support Program centre or a half-way house near Long Bay jail until his brothers move out of the family home or until he finds his own accommodation.

The court ordered that he not associate with his brothers without the permission of his supervising officer.

Judge Christie said the “stressful situation” with his brother “was not of his own making” and that he had been in jail since he was 16.

His lawyer, well known Sydney Barrister Charles Waterstreet, said his client had paid the price for what he had done, saying the welfare of his parents was his main concern.

Paul Nash, who was representing Corrective Services, tried to delay the parole until there was stability in his living arrangements.

Sanoussi, who faced the court from jail via a video link, remained quiet during the court proceedings but smiled briefly before going back to his cell.

The 29-year-old was sentenced to 16 years in prison for his role in the August 2000 gang rapes of young girls in isolated Sydney locations.

He was 16 at the time of the attacks involving 14 men, led by brothers Bilal and Mohammed Skaf.

European magic lifts City and United before derby

Last season’s champions and runners-up meet at the Etihad Stadium, hoping midweek Champions League success can ignite their domestic campaigns after some uninspired performances from both in their first four games, each taking just seven points.

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While Wayne Rooney’s return to form in Tuesday’s 4-2 win over Bayer Leverkusen stole the headlines, Fellaini’s physical presence and ability to hold the ball in his first start since signing just before the transfer deadline added a new dimension.

It was no coincidence that a side who had not scored in two of their last three league games and only netted from set pieces in the other were suddenly able to put together more meaningful charges forward with the big Belgian on the pitch.

Similarly, City, who had failed to repeat the scintillating showing of their season-opening demolition of Newcastle United, rediscovered some attacking flair in a stylish 3-0 win at Viktoria Plzen on Tuesday.

“It will give confidence for all the players,” City manager Manuel Pellegrini told reporters.

“We have the derby next Sunday and always winning away in the Champions League, scoring three goals, having at least three or four more chances to score and a clean sheet – I think it will give all the players a lot of confidence.”

City midfielder Yaya Toure, who like Fellaini offers a towering presence, creative instinct and ability to read a game, scored a sublime goal at Plzen and it could well be the battle between these two powerful players that proves key on Sunday.

It will be the first Manchester derby for both clubs’ managers and they will be aware that City hold a slight advantage in recent years having taken 10 points to United’s seven in league encounters in the past three seasons.

The return of captain Vincent Kompany, who made a successful comeback from a groin injury on Tuesday, will offer the hosts a further boost ahead of what he describes as a “special game.”

“It is becoming one of the most sought-after fixtures in the world and it is always great to be involved in such games. I never take them for granted,” the Belgian defender said.

This fixture two seasons ago, which City won 1-0, proved decisive as they went on to secure the Premier League crown on goal difference from their neighbours.

It is far too early in the season to be talking of the title race but it is nevertheless a crunch game with both sides keen to establish the edge on their opponents.

MAKE AMENDS

Early season pacesetters Liverpool, who are unbeaten with 10 points from four matches, host Southampton on Saturday but have suffered a blow with midfielder Philippe Coutinho ruled out until the end of next month with a shoulder injury.

They are, however, full of confidence over the form of striker Daniel Sturridge. He has netted in all their league matches this season and will be keen to keep up his scoring escapades before the return of Uruguay striker Luis Suarez from a 10-match ban, which comes to an end after this game.

Later on Saturday, Chelsea host Fulham in a west London derby eager to make amends after suffering their first league defeat of the season at Everton last weekend and losing at home to Basel in the Champions League.

Everton, the only unbeaten Premier League side along with Merseyside rivals Liverpool, travel to West Ham United who are proving miserly at both ends of the pitch.

North London rivals Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur, who both have nine points, are in action on Sunday, with Arsene Wenger hoping for more magic from record signing Mesut Ozil when they host Stoke and Andre Villas-Boas taking his team to Cardiff.

Ozil enjoyed an exciting Arsenal debut, taking only 11 minutes to create a goal against Sunderland, and team mate Aaron Ramsey, whose rich scoring vein continued in the 2-1 Champions League win at Marseille, said it was just the beginning.

“You saw what Mesut is all about with those lovely, telling through balls to set people up one on one with the keeper,” local media quoted him as saying. “That’s why he is top of the assist chart around the whole of Europe.

“He is an unbelievable talent and hopefully that is just the start of many things to come from him.

Two of the early season strugglers, West Bromwich Albion (two points) and Sunderland (one), meet at the Hawthorns on Saturday, while fellow slow starters Crystal Palace entertain Swansea City on Sunday.

The weekend’s other games are Norwich City at home to Aston Villa and Hull City travelling to Newcastle United.

(Reporting by Sonia Oxley; Editing by Sam Holden)

Gay marriage by end of year in ACT

Gay and lesbian couples should be able to get married in the ACT by the end of the year.

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The ACT government is introducing a Marriage Equality Bill to legalise same sex marriage on Thursday.

It’s expected to pass the Legislative Assembly as soon as October, with the Greens supporting the Labor minority government on the move.

That would make the ACT the first Australian jurisdiction to allow same sex marriage.

Chief Minister Katy Gallagher says the government is working towards people being able to marry under the law before the end of the year.

But she concedes it could be subject to challenge in the High Court or overturning by a vote of both houses of federal parliament.

“We know there’s some risks attached with this legislation,” Ms Gallagher told ABC radio.

“But we don’t think those risks should stop us proceeding with a commitment we made to the people of the ACT in the election campaign last year.”

Her government had waited to see if the former federal Labor government would legalise same sex marriage but decided to go ahead with territory legislation since no national position emerged.

Under the law, anyone who can’t marry under the Commonwealth’s Marriage Act will be able to wed.

The commonwealth act defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

Couples from outside the ACT would be able to get married in the territory but their relationships may not be recognised in their home state.

“There’s a very strong desire by couples including couples in the ACT to have their partnerships recognised legally,” Ms Gallagher said.

“I don’t think that people who want to use the Marriage Equality Bill will not use it because of fear that it may be overturned in the future.”

Her government hadn’t discussed the planned laws with new Prime Minister Tony Abbott but she didn’t expect they would come as a surprise to him.