Daily News Roundup

May 1, 2018

TUESDAY, MAY 1

One of the world’s most respected sports lawyers has quit his position on a committee of the governing body of international athletics, slamming the controversial new rule that is believed to target gold medal-winning South African runner Caster Semenya.

Four months after being appointed to the IAAF’s disciplinary tribunal, Steve Cornelius said “in good conscience” he could not continue in the role, reports the ABC.

“The adoption of the new eligibility regulations for female classification is based on the same kind of ideology that has led to some of the worst injustices and atrocities in the history of the planet,” Professor Cornelius said.

In his resignation letter the South African law professor accused the IAAF president, Lord Sebastian Coe, of “empty” reform promises.

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One way to get beyond gender barriers in sport would be to scrap sex segregation and replace it with a system similar to that of Paralympic disciplines, Roslyn Kerr writes.

The letter was addressed to Lord Coe directly.

“How the IAAF Council can, in the 21st Century, when we are meant to be more tolerant and aware of fundamental human rights, even contemplate these kinds of objectionable regulations, is a sad reflection on the fact that the antiquated views of the ‘old’ scandal-hit IAAF, still prevails and that your promises of reform have been empty indeed,” the letter said.

Last week the IAAF announced that it would ban women with naturally occurring high levels of testosterone from specific events — such as the 800 metres, and 1,500 metres — favoured by world and Olympic champion Semenya.

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Israel’s Prime Minister has unveiled what he says is a “half ton” of Iranian nuclear documents collected by Israeli intelligence, claiming the trove of information proves that Iranian leaders covered up a nuclear weapons program before signing a deal with the international community in 2015.

In a speech delivered in English and relying on his trademark use of visual aids, Mr Netanyahu claimed that the material showed that Iran could not be trusted, and encouraged US President Donald Trump to withdraw from the deal next month reports the ABC.

“Iran lied big time,” Mr Netanyahu declared.

The Israeli leader showed pictures and videos purporting to be of historic secret Iranian nuclear facilities, as well as Iranian documents and plans to develop atomic weapons.

“First, Iran lied about never having a nuclear weapons program. One-hundred-thousand secret files prove it did,” Mr Netanyahu said.

“Second, even after the deal, Iran continued to preserve and expand its nuclear weapons knowledge for future use.

“Third, Iran lied again in 2015 when it didn’t come clean to the IAEA [International Atomic Energy Agency] as required by the nuclear deal.”

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One of the deadly substances uncovered at Canberra’s Groovin The Moo festival on Sunday is a highly potent new stimulant responsible for scores of deaths and hospitalisations worldwide.

The little-known ‘n-ethyl pentylone’ is part of the ‘bath salts’ (cathinone) family of stimulants. It is often sold as a white or coloured powder and looks just like MDMA (ecstasy) but can be three times more potent, depending on the dosage.

One dose for ecstasy is roughly 100 milligrams, whereas a dose for n-ethyl pentylone is as little as 30 milligrams. The drug may cause convulsions, paranoia and may result in death.

The substance was identified during Australia’s first legal pill-testing trial in Canberra, conducted by the Safety and Testing and Advisory Service at Festivals and Events (STA-SAFE) in collaboration with the ACT government and ACT Police.

Dr David Caldicott, an expert in emergency medicine who was part of the STA-SAFE group on Sunday, described the finding as an unexpected “red flag”.

“I’ve not heard of a lot of issues with it in Australia yet, so this is a double cause for alarm,” he told The New Daily.

“It has been clearly responsible for the deaths of people overseas, and a rather unfortunate phenomenon known as ‘mass casualty overdoses’, where 10-20 people drop simultaneously. So, it’s of great concern to the music festival environment.”

The prevalence of the new drug in Australia is unknown. Outside of mobile drug testing services at festivals, there is very little data available on n-ethyl pentylone substitution.

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