No funeral for PM’s father
The father of Prime Minister Julia Gillard donated his body to science and did not want to be buried or remembered at a funeral, but privately mourned, his death notice said yesterday. John Gillard, 83, died suddenly on Saturday morning in Adelaide, prompting the prime minister to rush home from an APEC summit in Russia to be with her family. A death notice in the Adelaide Advertiser newspaper described Gillard as a “humble man who always sought to help others” and wanted those wishing to honor his memory to donate to Medecins San Frontieres, his favorite charity. “He died as he lived, and has donated his body to science and requested that there should be no formal funeral service,” the notice read. John Gillard and his wife, Moira, moved to Australia from Wales in 1966.
Judoka denies raping teen
Retired double Olympic judo gold medalist Masato Uchishiba yesterday denied raping one of his teenage students in a hotel room, as his trial opened in Tokyo. Uchishiba, 34, who won the under-66kg title at the 2004 and 2008 Olympics, maintains he had consensual sex with the girl, who was drunk after a training camp party in the capital in September last year. Prosecutors say Uchishiba attacked the girl, a member of the college judo team he coached, in a hotel room after she fell asleep at a karaoke parlor, intoxicated. “When she became aware, she resisted by saying: ‘What are you doing? Stop.’ But he turned up the volume of the television and covered her mouth with his hand,” prosecutors said, according to NHK. Married man Uchishiba admits that sex took place, but denies it was forceful.
Mock ad sparks uproar
A magazine insists it did not mean to cause offense following an uproar over a mock diet advertisement showing emaciated prisoners at a Nazi concentration camp. “It was published on our jokes page. I think people living in other cultural environments than ours just don’t understand it like we do,” said Sulev Vedler, deputy editor of Eesti Ekspress. He claimed the “Doctor Mengele weight-loss pill” ad was a swipe at national gas firm GasTerm Eesti, which last month posted a photo of the Auschwitz death camp’s notorious “Arbeit Macht Frei” gate on its Web site. GasTerm Eesti rapidly pulled the photo and apologized for what it claimed was a misplaced attempt to contrast lethal gas — which was used to kill Jews at Auschwitz — with the safe, home-heating variety. “For us it was an anti-fascist joke and a reaction to the recent, improper advertisement of one Estonian company. We didn’t mean to have fun at the expense of any nationality, there is no nationality mentioned in the picture,” Vedler said.
Team eyes mammoth clone
Scientists have discovered well-preserved frozen woolly mammoth fragments deep in Siberia that may contain living cells, edging a tad closer to the Jurassic Park possibility of cloning a prehistoric animal, the mission’s organizer said on Tuesday. North-Eastern Federal University said an international team of researchers had discovered mammoth hair, soft tissues and bone marrow about 100m underground during an expedition in the northeastern province of Yakutia. Expedition chief Semyon Grigoryev said South Korean scientists with the team had set a goal of finding living cells in the hope of cloning a mammoth. “Only after thorough laboratory research will it be known whether these are living cells or not,” Grigoryev said.