Putin on alert for Islamists
Russian President Vladimir Putin told security forces on Tuesday that they must outsmart and outmuscle Islamist militants to prevent attacks on major events to be hosted in Russia, like the 2014 Winter Olympics and the 2018 World Cup. Russia is working hard to prevent its image being tarnished by security problems at the events that will be watched around the world. Islamist insurgents have promised to attack the Olympics, which will be hosted in Sochi, near the region the militants want to turn into an Islamic state. Russia said in May authorities had foiled a plot by Islamist insurgents to attack the Olympics and confiscated arms, ammunition and explosives — including surface-to-air missiles. Russia’s Anti-Terror Committee suggested in May that the plot was likely the work of insurgent group Caucasus Emirate, led by Chechen-born Doku Umarov, Russia’s most wanted man. Umarov took responsibility for a suicide bombing at Moscow’s Domodedovo airport that killed 37 people in January last year and twin bombings that killed 40 people on Moscow’s metro in 2010. Kazan, another city where the soccer games are to be held, was rocked by an attack on the region’s top Muslim religious leader earlier this year.
Browns sale approved
The sale of the Cleveland Browns to Jimmy Haslam III was unanimously approved by NFL owners on Tuesday, and team president Mike Holmgren will be leaving the Browns at the end of the season. A person familiar with the sale told The Associated Press that Joe Banner has been hired as CEO of the Browns to replace Holmgren. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because Banner’s hiring and Holmgren’s departure have not been announced. Haslam bought the team from Randy Lerner for US$1 billion. Haslam, who built his fortune with Pilot Flying J truck stops, has been a minority owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers, but divested that stock to buy the Browns. Haslam and Lerner agreed to the sale in August just as training camp was opening.
Nazmul new BCB president
Bangladesh has appointed ruling party lawmaker Nazmul Hasan as the new president of the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB), a senior official said. Nazmul replaced AHM Mustafa Kamal, who was recently appointed vice president of the International Cricket Council for 2012-2014, a position that requires him to relinquish his BCB post. “The National Sports Council ... has appointed Nazmul Hasan MP as the new president of the Bangladesh Cricket Board,” a government statement said. Bangladeshi Secretary of Sports Mahbub Ahmed said the appointment would be effective from Wednesday. Nazmul, the only son of Bangladeshi President Zillur Rahman, is the chairman of one of Bangladesh’s top cricket clubs, Abahhani.
Cities bid for Super Bowls
Houston, San Francisco and South Florida are bidding for the 2016 and 2017 Super Bowls. NFL owners will vote in May between San Francisco — the 49ers are building a new stadium in Santa Clara, California, — and South Florida for the 50th Super Bowl in 2016. The loser of that race will then compete with Houston for hosting the 2017 game. Several owners have said a return to SunLife Stadium in Miami would require major upgrades to the building, and commissioner Roger Goodell said on Tuesday that the Dolphins “feel that [renovations] are a large part of their bid.”