Bolt arrives to light up Glasgow

26 July 2014 Last updated at 21:03

These Commonwealth Games would have carried on without him. They probably would have thrived without him. Usain Bolt admitted so himself.

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Where would he be staying? The athletes village, but mainly in his room. I try not to walk around too much because I tend to have to take a lot of pictures,” he explained, as if without a care

A star-struck Australian journalist asked for a selfie, gushing None of us are here for work, we are here as fans The Jamaican obliged.

Twenty minutes after the show had begun, it was over. Bolt sat back, raised both arms and gave a Churchillian salute before walking to the front of the stage to shake and slap an outstretched hand or two, as if he were a pop star satisfying an appreciative crowd.

There were gifts, too, although the chances of seeing Bolt wear a tartan hat with red hair around its trim are slim.

He eventually left as unceremoniously as he had arrived. It had been fun, just like the Friendly Games are supposed to be It was laid-back, just like the man himself. And it cranked up the excitement for the rest of the Games, just like it was supposed to

Zoo owner in animal welfare charges

Peter Lockhart was the co-owner of the Fife Animal Park, Cupar, which closed in February after it could not be sold


A zoo owner is facing animal welfare charges including leaving an emu suffering from a beak ulcer.

Peter Lockhart was the co-owner of the Fife Animal Park, Cupar, which closed in February after it could not be sold.

Mr Lockhart faces allegations of causing animals unnecessary suffering and failing to ensure their welfare.

It is alleged between 24 January 2013 and 14 February 2014 Mr Lockhart failed to provide animals with a suitable, clean and ventilated environment

He is also accused of buying lemurs, tortoises, marmosets and wildcats without permission.

Prosecutors at Dundee Sheriff Court said Mr Lockhart also displayed and offered for sale three Hermann’s tortoises at the park between 27 June 2010 and 14 February 2014.

Three further charges accused Lockhart of failing to apply and identify three animals including a zebra at the park with “horse passports

He is further alleged to have failed to provide adequate bedding and a suitable balanced and varied diet, failing to provide treatment from conditions they were suffering from and failing to protect the animals from injury, suffering and disease.

Another allegation states that he failed to provide sufficient nutrition to two Hermann’s tortoises, while a third alleges he failed to provide treatment to an emu for ulceration to its beak as well as failing to provide it with “a suitable environment or exposure to external stimuli

Further charges claim he bought and displayed “for commercial gain two ring tailed lemurs, one red-ruffed lemur, two black and white-ruffed lemurs, five Swinhoe’s pheasants, an eagle owl, two barn owls, two wildcats, a Lesser Sulphone Crested cockatoo and a Geoffrey’s marmoset without authority to do so

Mr Lockhart, 50, from Newton of Falkland, Fife, faces a total of 16 charges under the Animal Health and Welfare Act, the Control of Trade in Endangered Species Regulations and the Horse Identification (Scotland) Regulations

Defence solicitor Amy Fox said Mr Lockhart was not yet in a position to enter a plea in the case

Sheriff Charles Macnair QC continued the case without plea for three weeks for discussions between the Crown and defence lawyers

Fife Animal Park closed to the public in February. The 10-acre park housed 76 species including a zebra, Shetland ponies, meerkats, raccoons and owls.

The park was put up for sale in 2013, but this was blocked by the charity regulator as it wanted to clarify which animals were owned by the Fife Animal Trust

Shortly after its closure, Fife Council’s protective services senior manager Roy Stewart said: The welfare of the animals at Fife Animal Park is our primary concern at this time.

Although Fife Council doesn’t own the park or the animals it has a duty to protect them and legally they are now in our care

Shortly after its closure nine wallabies and an emu were adopted by the Five Sisters Zoo in West Calder

Fukushima workers sue over pay

Tepco has been employing about 6,000 workers a day to decommission the Fukushima nuclear plant


Workers decommissioning Japan’s crippled Fukushima nuclear plant have sued its operator Tokyo Electric (Tepco) over unpaid hazard pay.

The four men are demanding about 65m yen (£375,000; $620,000) in extra pay.

They claim the compensation for removing contaminated debris and patrolling the plant has been inadequate given the risks involved.

It is the first time Tepco has faced legal action from Fukushima workers over pay and working conditions.

The BBC’s Rupert Wingfield-Hayes says if they win, it could set a precedent for thousands of other workers to come forward.

The lawsuit was filed by two current and two former workers at Fukushima.

The Japanese utility company had no immediate comment.

“My health may be harmed some day,” one of the workers was quoted as telling Japanese broadcaster NHK. “I believe there are many people who can’t speak out about this kind of problem.

“I may get fired or may be given no further work. But I hope people will take this as an opportunity to speak up and get paid.”

Fukushima fallout

The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactors went into meltdown after a massive earthquake and tsunami in March 2011 knocked out reactor cooling systems at the plant.

Subsequent radiation leaks made the surrounding areas around the plant unfit for habitation.

Tens of thousands of people had to leave their homes and businesses because of radioactive contamination, with the majority still unable to return home.

The facility is operated by Tepco, which has spent billions of dollars on the clean-up and decommissioning of the plant.

About 6,000 people have been working at the plant daily over the last two months, and the lawsuit is demanding that they either be paid directly by Tepco or the government.

However, many are employed by contractors and subcontractors.

Our correspondent says that there have long been complaints that many subcontractors are not paying their workers properly, and allegations that some are connected to Japan’s Yakuza crime gangs.

The lawsuit claims that the subcontractors profit from the funds allocated for the decommissioning at the expense of worker wages.

The lawyer co-ordinating the case on behalf of the Fukushima workers said at least two more people were expected to join the lawsuit.

Last month another court ordered Tepco to pay damages to the family of an evacuee, Hamako Watanabe, who killed herself after she was forced to leave her home because of radioactive contamination.

Euro inflation nears five year low

shoppers in Hamburg


The eurozone inflation rate has fallen to 0.3% in August, near a five-year low, adding to fears of a deflationary spiral, according to Eurostat figures

That compares with a rate of 0.4% in July.

The drop, driven by lower food and energy prices, will add to pressure on the European Central Bank (ECB) to take action to stimulate the economy

Separate figures showed the unemployment rate remained near a record high at 11.5% in July

The ECB meets next Thursday to decide on interest rates

Most analysts are not expecting any action yet, but speculation is growing that in the coming months it may inject money into the system, a practice called quantitative easing, in the hope of stimulating growth and pushing up prices.

Mario Draghi, head of the ECB, has previously described inflation at below 1% to be in a danger zone

There is plenty of ammunition here… to argue for more policy support wrote Jennifer McKeown from Capital Economics in a research note,

While the Bank is unlikely to act at its meeting next week, it is likely to hint that quantitative easing is firmly on the table she added.

Core inflation, which excludes food and energy, rose to 0.9% from 0.8%.

Deflation isn’t always a disaster. It depends on the circumstances. But in the eurozone’s current situation, even positive but very low inflation is troublesome, never mind the outright deflation that might be lurking.

The reason is debt. Households, firms and governments in many eurozone countries have a lot of it and are trying to get it down.

Falling prices means firms get less cash coming in, and it hits government tax revenue. It can also mean that wages and salaries fall.

But debts do not. Debtors have less cash to deal with a fixed liability.

To look at it another way when interest rates are already low, slowing inflation means that real interest rates are rising

Not what you want in an economy where growth, according to figures for the second quarter of the year, has come to a halt

The jobless figures showed improvements in Spain, Portugal and Ireland. “Along with Germany, these countries accounted for the bulk of the improvement seen over July,” said Timo del Carpio, E uropean economist at RBC.

“The notable exceptions this month were once again the usual culprits. France’s headline rate edged up to 10.3%, driven by a 19,000 increase on the month. More notably, Italy’s unemployment rose to 12.6%, once again a hair’s breadth short of its record peak,” he added.