Major Leak Suggests NSA Was Deep in Middle East … – WIRED

A woman walks past a branch of Noor Islamic Bank along Khalid Bin Al-Waleed Road in Dubai.

Reuters

For eight months, the hacker group known as Shadow Brokers has trickled out an intermittent drip of highly classified NSA data. Now, just when it seemed like that trove of secrets might be exhausted, the group has spilled a new batch. The latest dump appears to show that the NSA has penetrated deep into the finance infrastructure of the Middle Easta revelation that could create new scandals for the worlds most well-resourced spy agency.

Friday morning, the Shadow Brokers published documents thatif legitimateshow just how thoroughly US intelligence has compromised elements of the global banking system. The new leak includes evidence that the NSA hacked into EastNets, a Dubai-based firm that oversees payments in the global SWIFT transaction system for dozens of client banks and other firms, particularly in the Middle East. The leak includes detailed lists of hacked or potentially targeted computers, including those belonging to firms in Qatar, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Syria, Yemen, and the Palestinian territories. Also included in the data dump, as in previous Shadow Brokers releases, are a load of fresh hacking tools, this time targeting a slew of Windows versions.

“Oh you thought that was it?” the hacker group wrote in a typically grammar-challenged statement accompanying their leak. There was speculation prior to this morning’s release that the group had finally published its full set of stolen documents, after a seemingly failed attempt to auction them for bitcoins. “Too bad nobody deciding to be paying theshadowbrokers for just to shutup and going away.”

The transaction protocol SWIFT has been increasingly targeted by hackers seeking to redirect millions of dollars from banks around the world, with recent efforts in India, Ecuador, and Bangladesh. Security researchers have even pointed to clues that a $81 million Bangladesh bank theft via SWIFT may have been the work of the North Korean government . But the Shadow Brokers’ latest leak offers new evidence that the NSA has also compromised SWIFT, albeit most likely for silent espionage rather than wholesale larceny.

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EastNets has denied that it was hacked, writing on its Twitter account that there’s “no credibility to the online claim of a compromise of EastNets customer information on its SWIFT service bureau.” But the Shadow Brokers’ leak seems to suggest otherwise: One spreadsheet in the release, for instance, lists computers by IP address, along with corresponding firms in the finance industry and beyond, including the Qatar First Investment Bank, Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation Bahrain, Dubai Gold and Commodities Exchange, Tadhamon International Islamic Bank, Noor Islamic Bank, Kuwait Petroleum Company, Qatar Telecom and others. A “legend” at the top of the spreadsheet notes that the 16 highlighted IP addresses mean, “box has been implanted and we are collecting.” That NSA jargon translates to a computer being successfully infected with its spyware. 1

Those IP addresses don’t actually correspond to the client’s computers, says Dubai-based security researcher Matt Suiche, but rather to computers servicing those clients at EastNets, which is one of 120 “service bureaus” that form a portion of the SWIFT network and make transactions on behalf of customers. “This is the equivalent of hacking all the banks in the region without having to hack them individually,” says Suiche, founder of UAE-based incident response and forensics startup Comae Technologies. “You have access to all their transactions.”

While the Shadow Brokers’ releases have already included NSA exploits, today’s leak is the first indication of targets of that sophisticated hacking in the global banking system. Unlike previous known hacks of the SWIFT financial network, nothing in the leaked documents suggests that the NSA used its access to EastNets’ SWIFT systems to actual alter transactions or steal funds. Instead, stealthily tracking the transactions within that network may have given the agency visibility into money flows in the regionincluding to potential terrorist, extremist, or insurgent groups.

If that sort of finance-focused espionage was in fact the NSA’s goal, it would hardly deviate from the agency’s core mission. But Suiche points out that confirmation of the operation would nonetheless lead to blowback for the NSA and the US governmentparticularly given that many of the listed targets are in US-friendly countries like Dubai and Qatar. “A big shitstorm is to come,” says Suiche. “You can expect the leadership of key organizations like banks and governments are going to be quite irritated, and theyre going to react.”

Beyond EastNets alone, Suiche points to references in the files to targeting the Panama-based firm Business Computer Group or BCG, although it’s not clear if the firm was actually compromised. Beyond its Twitter statement, EastNets didn’t respond to WIRED’s request for comment. WIRED also reached out to BCG and the NSA, but didn’t get a response.

SWIFT aside, the leak also contains a cornucopia of NSA hacking tools or “exploits,” including what appear to be previously secret techniques for hacking PCs and servers running Windows. Matthew Hickey, the founder of the security firm Hacker House, analyzed the collection and believes there are more than 20 distinct exploits in the leak, about 15 of which are included in an automated hacking “framework” tool called FuzzBunch.

This is as big as it gets.

Matthew Hickey, Hacker House

The attacks seem to target every recent version of Windows other than Windows 10, and several allow a remote hacker to gain the full ability to run their own code on a target machine. “There are exploits here that are quite likely zero days that will let you hack into any number of servers on the internet,” says Hickey. “This is as big as it gets. Its internet God mode.”

In a statement to WIRED, however, a Microsoft spokesperson wrote that the company had previously patched all the vulnerabilities in Windows that the hacking tools exploited. “We’ve investigated and confirmed that the exploits disclosed by the Shadow Brokers have already been addressed by previous updates to our supported products,” the statement reads. In a blog post, the company clarified that several of the exploits do still work, but only on versions of Windows prior to Windows 7. 2

But the Shadow Brokers hinted in their release that they’re not done creating trouble for the NSA yet. “Maybe if all suviving [sic] WWIII theshadowbrokers be seeing you next week,” the group’s message concludes. “Who knows what we having next time?”

1 Updated 4/14/2017 12:15 EST to include comments from EastNets.

2 Updated 4/15/2017 3:50 EST to include a response from Microsoft.

Continued here:

Major Leak Suggests NSA Was Deep in Middle East … – WIRED

Posted in NSA

NITDA targets increase in ICT contribution to GDP – Guardian (blog)

The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) is working to ensure that Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector increases its 12.6 per cent contributions to the nations Gross Dometic Product (GDP) this year.

NITDA, through its Office for ICT Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OIIE), is already grooming some technology startups that would aid the countrys match towards the enthronement of a knowledge economy.

According to the Director-General, NITDA, Dr. Isa Pantami, at the weekend, in Lagos, NITDA is unleashing digital economy potential to deepen GDP contribution by making ICT play a key role in all aspects of the economy.Pantami said NITDA is organising the StartUP Nigeria programme, the sixth edition, where a number of startups pitched their ideas and IT solutions to angel investors.

The tech Startups that pitched included Acounteer, TheFarmyard, BeatDrone, Six, Nicademia, Livekampus, Comestibles Nigeria, Novael, TapPay, SwiftCheckup and Middleman.com.ng, which is an ecommerce platform connecting buyers and sellers while providing other auxiliary services.

Pantami said, ICT is not only indispensable for developing new products and services but also for ensuring the survival of any business in the competitive world by providing ample opportunities for growth and profitability.

According to him, the Nigerian startup ecosystem, with proper regulations and support, has capacity to become the strong catalytic force for sustainable economic growth across nations.He said that NITDA has since commenced processes for proper regulation and development, crucial for supporting the startup and entrepreneurs ecosystem in the country.

The NITDAs interwoven roles are relevant for the country to achieve its purpose of creative transformation of knowledge and ideas into new products, processes, or services meeting market needs, which culminates in successful enterprises, Pantami said.

He stated that the competitiveness of any economy in the long term depends on innovation potential of the economy gained through entrepreneurship and effective technology transfer, especially now that revenue from the oil and gas industry is on downward trend.Pantami warned that Nigeria cannot remain an oil and gas-based resource based economy, as every projections show other countries are making a turn away from oil.

The NITDA DG said, StartUPNigeria held in Lagos is a prelude to GITEX 2017, as NITDA tends to select the best startups to represent the country. This is critical in helping even the regulatory aspects of the IT sector. We identify with startups that need our technical, financial supports to push their solutions forward.

We believe Lagos is home to innovative startups; thus, we intend to assist them improve on their works. The truth is this: our country relies solely on oil and gas sector; in UK for instance by 2040 they intend to ban diesel or petrol cars, so our reliance on oil is disturbing.

We have to move from oil resource to knowledge-based economy. ICT has the answer to this. The contribution of 12.6 per cent of ICT to GDP is second to oil at the moment, but will soon takeover. India depends on ICT as $143 billion annual comes from ICT; Nigeria accounts for 180 million with 60 per cent young people who are addicted to ICT.

The DG explained that the winners from StartUp Nigeria programme, being held across the country, would later represent Nigeria at this years Gulf Technology Exhibition (GITEX) in Dubai to pitch their innovative ideas to global investment community.

Earlier, Acting National Coordinator of OIIE, Dr. Amina Sambo Magaji, thanked the exemplary leadership of the NITDA DG and the management for giving OIIE platform to meet with startups and solve needs in the ecosystem.

She said that OIIEs vision to drive ICT innovation and entrepreneurship through policies, initiatives, partnership and programs implementation by focusing on socio- economic impact, competitiveness, and sustainable & inclusive growth, was carefully crafted to ensure the startups are impacted positively.

She said the Office is not relenting on its focus, amongst others, on innovation and entrepreneurship by fostering a more innovative digital economy through turning new ideas and inventions into products and technologies that spur job growth and competitiveness while promoting economic development.

21 Jul Telecoms

4 Aug Technology

8 Aug Technology

16 Aug Telecoms

17 Aug Telecoms

2 days ago Telecoms

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NITDA targets increase in ICT contribution to GDP – Guardian (blog)

Traditional & Alternative Medicine

Glimpses of Traditional Medicine 2016

Track 1:Traditional Medicine Today: Clinical and Research Issues

These are naturally occurringplant derived substances with minimal or no industrial processing that have been used to treat illness.Traditionalherbalmedicinesare getting significant attention in gworld health debates. In China, herbal medicine played a prominent role in the strategy to contain and treat SARS. 80% of African populations use some form oftraditional herbal medicine.

Related Conferences:Naturopathic Physicians&Acupuncturists ConferenceJuly 24-26, 2017 Melbourne, Australia;5thInternational Conference andExpo on AcupunctureandOriental Medicine ConferenceIllinois, Chicago, USA;2ndInternational Conference andExpo on Holistic Medicineand Nursing August 14-15, 2017Toronto, Canada;8thInternational Conference on Natural &Alternative Medicine ConferenceSeptember 25-27, 2017 Dubai, UAE; 7thInternational Conference andExhibition on Traditional Medicine&Alternative MedicineOctober 24-26, 2017 Dubai, UAE; The 2ndEthnomedicineandTraditional Medicine conference(CETM) June 1-3, 2016, Nanjing, China; (AACMAC) 2016-AustralasianAcupuncturetherapyandChinese Medicine Annual Conference20-22 May 2016, Perth, Australia; (ICNM) InternationalCongress onNaturopathicMedicineJuly 1-3, Barcelona, Spain; 10thAustralianHomeopathicMedicine Conference, October 22-23, 2016 Brisbane, Australia;Society the Individual and Medicine,FloridaHerbalConference, February 26-28 2016 Florida, USA,Australian Traditional Medicine Association(ATMS) events,European Herbal conference&Traditional Medicine Practitioners AssociationNational Association,American Medical Association,Australian Natural Therapists Association(ANTA),World Association of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine

Track 2:Challenges and Future Directions of Traditional Medicine

Approximately 80% of people today depend uponherbal medicinesas a component of their primary healthcare according to the WHO, there is still great concern about the safety and efficacy of herbal use. While herbal medicines can potentially contribute to the advancements ofhealthcaresystem, many major challenges must be overcome prior to the successful integration of herbal remedies into mainstream medicines. One of the major barriers is the current lack of accurate translations andinterpretations of TraditionalChinese herbaltexts and research by Western scientists.

Related Conferences:Naturopathic Physicians&Acupuncturists ConferenceJuly 24-26, 2017 Melbourne, Australia;5thInternational Conference andExpo on AcupunctureandOriental Medicine ConferenceIllinois, Chicago, USA;2ndInternational Conference andExpo on Holistic Medicineand Nursing August 14-15, 2017Toronto, Canada;8thInternational Conference on Natural &Alternative Medicine ConferenceSeptember 25-27, 2017 Dubai, UAE; 7thInternational Conference andExhibition on Traditional Medicine&Alternative MedicineOctober 24-26, 2017 Dubai, UAE; The 2ndEthnomedicineandTraditional Medicine conference(CETM) June 1-3, 2016, Nanjing, China; (AACMAC) 2016-AustralasianAcupuncturetherapyandChinese Medicine Annual Conference20-22 May 2016, Perth, Australia; (ICNM) InternationalCongress onNaturopathicMedicineJuly 1-3, Barcelona, Spain; 10thAustralianHomeopathicMedicine Conference, October 22-23, 2016 Brisbane, Australia;Society the Individual and Medicine,FloridaHerbalConference, February 26-28 2016 Florida, USA,Australian Traditional Medicine Association(ATMS) events,European Herbal conference&Traditional Medicine Practitioners AssociationNational Association,American Medical Association,Australian Natural Therapists Association(ANTA),World Association of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine

Track 3:Herbal Medicine

Herbal medicinesare one type of dietary supplement. They are sold as tablets, capsules, powders, teas, extracts, and fresh or dry plants. People use herbal medicines to try to maintain or improve their health.Herbis a plant part or plant used for its flavor, scent or therapeutic properties forherbal remedies.

Many people believe that products labeled “natural” are always good and safe for them. This is not necessarily true.Herbal medicinesdo not have to go through the testing that drugs do. Some herbs, such as ephedra and comfrey, can cause serious harm. Some herbs can interact with prescription orover-the-counter medicines.

Related Conferences:Naturopathic Physicians&Acupuncturists ConferenceJuly 24-26, 2017 Melbourne, Australia;5thInternational Conference andExpo on AcupunctureandOriental Medicine ConferenceIllinois, Chicago, USA;2ndInternational Conference andExpo on Holistic Medicineand Nursing August 14-15, 2017Toronto, Canada;8thInternational Conference on Natural &Alternative Medicine ConferenceSeptember 25-27, 2017 Dubai, UAE; 7thInternational Conference andExhibition on Traditional Medicine&Alternative MedicineOctober 24-26, 2017 Dubai, UAE; The 2ndEthnomedicineandTraditional Medicine conference(CETM) June 1-3, 2016, Nanjing, China; (AACMAC) 2016-AustralasianAcupuncturetherapyandChinese Medicine Annual Conference20-22 May 2016, Perth, Australia; (ICNM) InternationalCongress onNaturopathicMedicineJuly 1-3, Barcelona, Spain; 10thAustralianHomeopathicMedicine Conference, October 22-23, 2016 Brisbane, Australia;Society the Individual and Medicine,FloridaHerbalConference, February 26-28 2016 Florida, USA,Australian Traditional Medicine Association(ATMS) events,European Herbal conference&Traditional Medicine Practitioners AssociationNational Association,American Medical Association,Australian Natural Therapists Association(ANTA),World Association of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine

Track 4:Traditional Chinese Medicine

Traditional Chinese Medicineis a healing system developed in China more than 2,200 years ago, incorporating therapies that are in some cases. One of its guiding principle is to dispel evil and support the good. In addition to treatingillness,Traditional Chinese Medicinefocus on strengthening the body’s defenses and enhancing its capacity forhealingherbsand to maintain health.

Related Conferences:Naturopathic Physicians&Acupuncturists ConferenceJuly 24-26, 2017 Melbourne, Australia;5thInternational Conference andExpo on AcupunctureandOriental Medicine ConferenceIllinois, Chicago, USA;2ndInternational Conference andExpo on Holistic Medicineand Nursing August 14-15, 2017Toronto, Canada;8thInternational Conference on Natural &Alternative Medicine ConferenceSeptember 25-27, 2017 Dubai, UAE; 7thInternational Conference andExhibition on Traditional Medicine&Alternative MedicineOctober 24-26, 2017 Dubai, UAE; The 2ndEthnomedicineandTraditional Medicine conference(CETM) June 1-3, 2016, Nanjing, China; (AACMAC) 2016-AustralasianAcupuncturetherapyandChinese Medicine Annual Conference20-22 May 2016, Perth, Australia; (ICNM) InternationalCongress onNaturopathicMedicineJuly 1-3, Barcelona, Spain; 10thAustralianHomeopathicMedicine Conference, October 22-23, 2016 Brisbane, Australia;Society the Individual and Medicine,FloridaHerbalConference, February 26-28 2016 Florida, USA,Australian Traditional Medicine Association(ATMS) events,European Herbal conference&Traditional Medicine Practitioners AssociationNational Association,American Medical Association,Australian Natural Therapists Association(ANTA),World Association of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine

Track 5:Acupuncture

Acupunctureis a form ofTraditional Chinese Medicinethat has been practiced for centuries. It’s based on the theory that energy, called chi, flows through around your body along pathways called meridians Acupuncturists believe that illness occurs when something block or unbalance your chi. Acupuncture is a way to unblock or influence chi and help it flow back into balanceAcupunctureis putting thin needles into your skin at certain points on your body. This is done to influence the energy . sometimes heat, pressure, or mild electrical current is used along with needles.

Related Conferences:Naturopathic Physicians&Acupuncturists ConferenceJuly 24-26, 2017 Melbourne, Australia;5thInternational Conference andExpo on AcupunctureandOriental Medicine ConferenceIllinois, Chicago, USA;2ndInternational Conference andExpo on Holistic Medicineand Nursing August 14-15, 2017Toronto, Canada;8thInternational Conference on Natural &Alternative Medicine ConferenceSeptember 25-27, 2017 Dubai, UAE; 7thInternational Conference andExhibition on Traditional Medicine&Alternative MedicineOctober 24-26, 2017 Dubai, UAE; The 2ndEthnomedicineandTraditional Medicine conference(CETM) June 1-3, 2016, Nanjing, China; (AACMAC) 2016-AustralasianAcupuncturetherapyandChinese Medicine Annual Conference20-22 May 2016, Perth, Australia; (ICNM) InternationalCongress onNaturopathicMedicineJuly 1-3, Barcelona, Spain; 10thAustralianHomeopathicMedicine Conference, October 22-23, 2016 Brisbane, Australia;Society the Individual and Medicine,FloridaHerbalConference, February 26-28 2016 Florida, USA,Australian Traditional Medicine Association(ATMS) events,European Herbal conference&Traditional Medicine Practitioners AssociationNational Association,American Medical Association,Australian Natural Therapists Association(ANTA),World Association of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine

Track 6:Alternative Medicine & Treatment Methods

Complementary andalternative medicineis also known as CAM.Complementary and alternative medicinetries to prevent and treat different conditions with the following techniques:Healing touch Energy Herbal medicines ManyComplementary and alternative medicine therapieshave been around for centuries. But do they really work..?

There is research to show that someComplementary and alternative medicine techniquescan help with problems like pain and nausea. But othertherapiesdon’t have enough medical evidence to decide if they are effective.

Related Conferences:Naturopathic Physicians&Acupuncturists ConferenceJuly 24-26, 2017 Melbourne, Australia;5thInternational Conference andExpo on AcupunctureandOriental Medicine ConferenceIllinois, Chicago, USA;2ndInternational Conference andExpo on Holistic Medicineand Nursing August 14-15, 2017Toronto, Canada;8thInternational Conference on Natural &Alternative Medicine ConferenceSeptember 25-27, 2017 Dubai, UAE; 7thInternational Conference andExhibition on Traditional Medicine&Alternative MedicineOctober 24-26, 2017 Dubai, UAE; The 2ndEthnomedicineandTraditional Medicine conference(CETM) June 1-3, 2016, Nanjing, China; (AACMAC) 2016-AustralasianAcupuncturetherapyandChinese Medicine Annual Conference20-22 May 2016, Perth, Australia; (ICNM) InternationalCongress onNaturopathicMedicineJuly 1-3, Barcelona, Spain; 10thAustralianHomeopathicMedicine Conference, October 22-23, 2016 Brisbane, Australia;Society the Individual and Medicine,FloridaHerbalConference, February 26-28 2016 Florida, USA,Australian Traditional Medicine Association(ATMS) events,European Herbal conference&Traditional Medicine Practitioners AssociationNational Association,American Medical Association,Australian Natural Therapists Association(ANTA),World Association of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine

Track 7:Ayurveda

According toAyurvedichypothesis, everything in the universe living or not is connected. Good health is achieved when your body, mind, spirit are in harmony with the universe. A disruption of this harmony can lead to poor health and illness.

Anything that affects your physical, spiritual, or emotional well-being can cause you to be out of balance with the universe. Some things that can cause a disturbance include:

Genetic birth defects

Injuries

Climate and seasonal changes

Emotions

Age

How your body works to keep you healthy and your unique physical and psychological characteristics combine to form your body’s constitution, or prakriti. prakriti is believed to stay the same for your entire life. but, how you digest food & eliminate waste can influence it.

Related Conferences:Naturopathic Physicians&Acupuncturists ConferenceJuly 24-26, 2017 Melbourne, Australia;5thInternational Conference andExpo on AcupunctureandOriental Medicine ConferenceIllinois, Chicago, USA;2ndInternational Conference andExpo on Holistic Medicineand Nursing August 14-15, 2017Toronto, Canada;8thInternational Conference on Natural &Alternative Medicine ConferenceSeptember 25-27, 2017 Dubai, UAE; 7thInternational Conference andExhibition on Traditional Medicine&Alternative MedicineOctober 24-26, 2017 Dubai, UAE; The 2ndEthnomedicineandTraditional Medicine conference(CETM) June 1-3, 2016, Nanjing, China; (AACMAC) 2016-AustralasianAcupuncturetherapyandChinese Medicine Annual Conference20-22 May 2016, Perth, Australia; (ICNM) InternationalCongress onNaturopathicMedicineJuly 1-3, Barcelona, Spain; 10thAustralianHomeopathicMedicine Conference, October 22-23, 2016 Brisbane, Australia;Society the Individual and Medicine,FloridaHerbalConference, February 26-28 2016 Florida, USA,Australian Traditional Medicine Association(ATMS) events,European Herbal conference&Traditional Medicine Practitioners AssociationNational Association,American Medical Association,Australian Natural Therapists Association(ANTA),World Association of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine

Track 8:ArabicMedicineandUnani Medicine

HijamaCuppingby the Muslims is the application of suction cups to the skin to draw out stagnant, congested blood and Vital Force, as well as stagnant or morbid humors. By using different methods of cupping and new trends usually, theHijama cupsare made of glass, but they can also be made of bamboo, bone, horn or metal. The classical method for generating suction in the cup is to use fire to consume the air within it.

Related Conferences:Naturopathic Physicians&Acupuncturists ConferenceJuly 24-26, 2017 Melbourne, Australia;5thInternational Conference andExpo on AcupunctureandOriental Medicine ConferenceIllinois, Chicago, USA;2ndInternational Conference andExpo on Holistic Medicineand Nursing August 14-15, 2017Toronto, Canada;8thInternational Conference on Natural &Alternative Medicine ConferenceSeptember 25-27, 2017 Dubai, UAE; 7thInternational Conference andExhibition on Traditional Medicine&Alternative MedicineOctober 24-26, 2017 Dubai, UAE; The 2ndEthnomedicineandTraditional Medicine conference(CETM) June 1-3, 2016, Nanjing, China; (AACMAC) 2016-AustralasianAcupuncturetherapyandChinese Medicine Annual Conference20-22 May 2016, Perth, Australia; (ICNM) InternationalCongress onNaturopathicMedicineJuly 1-3, Barcelona, Spain; 10thAustralianHomeopathicMedicine Conference, October 22-23, 2016 Brisbane, Australia;Society the Individual and Medicine,FloridaHerbalConference, February 26-28 2016 Florida, USA,Australian Traditional Medicine Association(ATMS) events,European Herbal conference&Traditional Medicine Practitioners AssociationNational Association,American Medical Association,Australian Natural Therapists Association(ANTA),World Association of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine

Track 9:Naturopathic Medicine

Naturopathicmedicines, and treatment are a distinct primary healthcare profession emphasizing prevention, treatment & optimal health care through the use of therapeutic methods and substances that encourage individuals inherent selfhealingplantsprocess. Thepractice of naturopathic medicinesincludesevidence basednaturopathicmedicines, modern and scientific,traditional, naturopathic treatments and practicesand empirical methods.

Related Conferences:Naturopathic Physicians&Acupuncturists ConferenceJuly 24-26, 2017 Melbourne, Australia;5thInternational Conference andExpo on AcupunctureandOriental Medicine ConferenceIllinois, Chicago, USA;2ndInternational Conference andExpo on Holistic Medicineand Nursing August 14-15, 2017Toronto, Canada;8thInternational Conference on Natural &Alternative Medicine ConferenceSeptember 25-27, 2017 Dubai, UAE; 7thInternational Conference andExhibition on Traditional Medicine&Alternative MedicineOctober 24-26, 2017 Dubai, UAE; The 2ndEthnomedicineandTraditional Medicine conference(CETM) June 1-3, 2016, Nanjing, China; (AACMAC) 2016-AustralasianAcupuncturetherapyandChinese Medicine Annual Conference20-22 May 2016, Perth, Australia; (ICNM) InternationalCongress onNaturopathicMedicineJuly 1-3, Barcelona, Spain; 10thAustralianHomeopathicMedicine Conference, October 22-23, 2016 Brisbane, Australia;Society the Individual and Medicine,FloridaHerbalConference, February 26-28 2016 Florida, USA,Australian Traditional Medicine Association(ATMS) events,European Herbal conference&Traditional Medicine Practitioners AssociationNational Association,American Medical Association,Australian Natural Therapists Association(ANTA),World Association of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine

Traditional Medicine Strategy 2014 to 2023: The WHO Traditional Medicine Strategy 20142023 was developed and launched in response to the WH Assembly resolution on traditional medicine. The strategy aims to support Members States in developing proactive policies and implementing action plans that will strengthen the role traditional medicines plays in keeping populations healthy.

Addressing the challenges, responding to the needs identified by Member States & building on the work done under the World Health Organization traditional medicine strategy: 2002 to 2005, the updated strategy for the period 2014 to 2023 devotes more attention than its predecessor to prioritizing health services and systems, including traditional & complementary medicine products, practices and practitioners.

Importance & Scope: Currently the total global market of Herbal Products & Medicinal Plants is US$ 60 billion with a double digit growth. The diversified use of plant obtained products and its acceptance worldwide made the sector very promising one. As per the World Bank Report 1998, world trade in medicinal plants and related products is expected to be US$ 5 trillion by 2050.

Funding:As attention & public funding for international traditional and herbal medicine researchcollaborations grows, more detailed analysis of ethical matters in this research is warranted. Scant literature has addressed selected issues such as informed consent & independent review associated totraditional and herbal medicine research.6,7 Here we apply a practical, comprehensive & widely accepted ethical framework tointernational traditional and herbal medicine research. We examine in detail difficult questions related to social value, scientific validity and favourable risk benefit ratio. We conclude with implications for upcoming research in this field, focusing on the importance of collaborative partnership.

Funding NIH

National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine

Budget Mechanism $127,930 (Dollars in Thousands)

Major countries of Herbal Market:The largest global markets for medicinal and aromatic plants are Netherlands, China, Italy, Spain, Japan, France, Germany, UK and the USA.

It is estimated that Europe alone annually imports about 400,000 tonnes ofmedicinal plants with an average market valueof US$ 1 billion from Africa and Asia.

Japan:has the highest per capita consumption ofbotanical medicine in the world.Botanical medicine market in Japanin 1996 was estimated at US $ 2.4 billion and sales have grown rapidly in recent years.

China:china’s total output of medicinal plantsfrom both cultivated and wild harvested sources is 1.6 million tones. The total value of the finished TCM in 1996 was US$ 3.7 billion. This estimate excludes domestic consumption, the inclusion of which would result in a far higher figure. Overall sale ofbotanical medicine products in Chinain 1995 was estimated at US$ 5 billion.

Studies suggest that approximately 20% of people in theUnited States use herbal supplements, and the amount of money spent on these products exceed $4.2 billion per year.

UK:TheUK imports up to 90% of its medicinal herb requirement. The current total market is 139 million euro.

India:is a major exporter ofraw medicinal and aromatic plantsand processed plant-based drugs. Exports ofcrude drugs & essential oilfrom India in 1994-95 were valued at US$ 66,469 million. Important crude drugs included Plantogo ovata (psyllium), Panax spp. (ginseng), Cassia spp. (senna) and Catheranthus rosesus (rosy periwinkle). Essential oils included santalum album (sandlewood), Mentha arvensis (peppermint) and Cymbopogon flexuosus (lemongrass). Seventy percent of total exports from India are sent to six countries. France, Germany, Japan, Switzerland, the UK, and the US. Other major importers are Bangladesh, Pakistan and Spain.

Why Amsterdam, Netherlands:Herbal/traditional products are quite popular in the Netherlands due to their longstanding presence in the marketplace. Herbal/traditional products are mainly present in cough, cold and allergy (hay fever) remedies. Strong brands such as Anta Flu and Dampo have boosted the popularity of herbal/traditional products in this category. Consumers are tending to seek more natural and established solutions for their health problems. Most herbal/traditional products are based on very old recipes that have been handed down through the generations. Herbal/traditional products tend to be easily accessible and cheaper alternatives to standard pharmaceutical products.

Conference Highlights:

Herbal Medicine

Traditional Chinese Medicine

Acupuncture

Traditional Medicine Today: Clinical and Research Issues

Alternative Medicine & Treatment Methods

Ayurveda

Arabic & Unani Medicine

Challenges and Future Directions of Traditional Medicine

Naturopathic Medicine

Major Traditional Medicine Associations and societies around the Globe:

Australian Traditional Medicine Association ATMS

Bringing science and development together through original news and analysis

European Herbal & Traditional Medicine Practitioners Association National Association

American Medical Association

Society the Individual and Medicine

Dimensions of Culture

Native American Legends

Australian Natural Therapists Association ANTA

World Association of Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine

Future Projection:Although approximately 80 percent of people today depend upon herbal medication as a component of their primary healthcare according to the World Health Organization, there is still great concern about the safety and efficacy of herbal use [1]. While herbal medicine can potentially contribute to the advancement of healthcare, many major challenges must be overcome prior to the successful integration of herbal remedies into mainstream medicine. One of the major barriers is the current lack of accurate translations and interpretations of Chinese herbal texts and research by Western scientists. Indeed, for the incorporation of safe and effective herbs into the medical system to become a reality, more researchers and doctors need to be trained in both modern medicine and herbal compendium that has been accumulated since ancient times. Additionally, to establish credibility for herbal use in the modern settings, experience-based claims from Chinese herbal medical doctors must be transformed into evidence-based claims. Finally, the question of how to address the need for both individualizing (the basis of TCM) and standardizing (the basis of modern pharmacology) treatment with herbs must be settled. Once these issues are resolved, the prospect exists for widespread use of herbal medicine as a safe, effective, and affordable form of healthcare .

The number of patients seeking alternate and herbal therapy is growing exponentially. Herbal medicines are the synthesis of therapeutic experiences of generations of practicing physicians of indigenous systems of medicine for over hundreds of years. Herbal medicines are now in great demand in the developing world for primary health care not because they are inexpensive but also for better cultural acceptability, better compatibility with the human body and minimal side effects. However, recent findings indicate that all herbal medicines may not be safe as severe consequences are reported for some herbal drugs. Most herbal products on the market today have not been subjected to drug approval process to demonstrate their safety and effectiveness. Thousand years of traditional use can provide us with valuable guidelines to the selection, preparation and application of herbal formulation. To be accepted as viable alternative to modern medicine, the same vigorous method of scientific and clinical validation must be applied to prove the safety and effectiveness of a therapeutical product. In the present review we attempted to describe the present scenario and project the future of herbal medicine.

Traditional Medicine 2016

The6thInternational Conference and Exhibition on Traditional & Alternative Medicineconference: (Traditional Medicine 2016) was held on September 14- 16, 2016 at the Hyatt Place Amsterdam Airport in Amsterdam, Netherlands. This conference brought together an interdisciplinary group of professionals working in the field of Traditional Medicine and Alternative Medicine. The tone of the main conference was set during the opening remarks byPhilippe A Souvestre, NeuroKinetics Health Services, Inc., Canada&Phyllis L MacIntyre, Dickinson University, Canada. Throughout the conference, more than 30 experts in the field shared their knowledge with the 300 attendees of the conference.

The highlights of the meeting were the enlightening keynote lectures from:

Joshua Dunsky, Dunsky Rehabilitation and Spine Center, USA

MeLisa Gantt, Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, Germany

Lorne J Hofseth, University of South Carolina, USA

Rebecca Fung, University of East-West Medicine, USA

Philippe A Souvestre, NeuroKinetics Health Services, Inc., Canada

Phyllis L MacIntyre, Dickinson University, Canada

Ahmet Uyar, Yuzuncu Yil University, Turkey

Wen-Long Hu, KCGMH & Chang Gung University College of Medicine

Wendy Wong, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Domenico V Delfino,University of Perugia, Italy

Attendee Statistics

The conference was well-attended with 300individuals attending the main conference. The majority of participants came from Europe. Please refer to the chart on the right for a breakdown of main conference attendees by continent. We also welcomed international delegates from China, New Zealand, India and from all across the United States of America.

The conference was highly interprofessional in nature with more than 30 professions represented. Major professional groups included: Traditional Medicine researchers, Practioners, Herbalists, Acupuncturists, Homeopathic Practioners, Professors, Directors, Young researchers

We are also obliged to various delegate experts, company representatives and other eminent personalities who supported the conference by facilitating active discussion forums. We sincerely thank the Organizing Committee Members for their gracious presence, support and assistance towards the success of Traditional Medicine 2016. With the unique feedbacks from the conference, Conference Series LLC would like to announce the commencement of the 7thInternational Conference and Exhibition on Traditional & Alternative Medicine to be held during October 03-06, 2017, in Dubai, UAE.

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Traditional & Alternative Medicine

Major Leak Suggests NSA Was Deep in Middle East … – WIRED

A woman walks past a branch of Noor Islamic Bank along Khalid Bin Al-Waleed Road in Dubai.

Reuters

For eight months, the hacker group known as Shadow Brokers has trickled out an intermittent drip of highly classified NSA data. Now, just when it seemed like that trove of secrets might be exhausted, the group has spilled a new batch. The latest dump appears to show that the NSA has penetrated deep into the finance infrastructure of the Middle Easta revelation that could create new scandals for the worlds most well-resourced spy agency.

Friday morning, the Shadow Brokers published documents thatif legitimateshow just how thoroughly US intelligence has compromised elements of the global banking system. The new leak includes evidence that the NSA hacked into EastNets, a Dubai-based firm that oversees payments in the global SWIFT transaction system for dozens of client banks and other firms, particularly in the Middle East. The leak includes detailed lists of hacked or potentially targeted computers, including those belonging to firms in Qatar, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Syria, Yemen, and the Palestinian territories. Also included in the data dump, as in previous Shadow Brokers releases, are a load of fresh hacking tools, this time targeting a slew of Windows versions.

“Oh you thought that was it?” the hacker group wrote in a typically grammar-challenged statement accompanying their leak. There was speculation prior to this morning’s release that the group had finally published its full set of stolen documents, after a seemingly failed attempt to auction them for bitcoins. “Too bad nobody deciding to be paying theshadowbrokers for just to shutup and going away.”

The transaction protocol SWIFT has been increasingly targeted by hackers seeking to redirect millions of dollars from banks around the world, with recent efforts in India, Ecuador, and Bangladesh. Security researchers have even pointed to clues that a $81 million Bangladesh bank theft via SWIFT may have been the work of the North Korean government . But the Shadow Brokers’ latest leak offers new evidence that the NSA has also compromised SWIFT, albeit most likely for silent espionage rather than wholesale larceny.

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EastNets has denied that it was hacked, writing on its Twitter account that there’s “no credibility to the online claim of a compromise of EastNets customer information on its SWIFT service bureau.” But the Shadow Brokers’ leak seems to suggest otherwise: One spreadsheet in the release, for instance, lists computers by IP address, along with corresponding firms in the finance industry and beyond, including the Qatar First Investment Bank, Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation Bahrain, Dubai Gold and Commodities Exchange, Tadhamon International Islamic Bank, Noor Islamic Bank, Kuwait Petroleum Company, Qatar Telecom and others. A “legend” at the top of the spreadsheet notes that the 16 highlighted IP addresses mean, “box has been implanted and we are collecting.” That NSA jargon translates to a computer being successfully infected with its spyware. 1

Those IP addresses don’t actually correspond to the client’s computers, says Dubai-based security researcher Matt Suiche, but rather to computers servicing those clients at EastNets, which is one of 120 “service bureaus” that form a portion of the SWIFT network and make transactions on behalf of customers. “This is the equivalent of hacking all the banks in the region without having to hack them individually,” says Suiche, founder of UAE-based incident response and forensics startup Comae Technologies. “You have access to all their transactions.”

While the Shadow Brokers’ releases have already included NSA exploits, today’s leak is the first indication of targets of that sophisticated hacking in the global banking system. Unlike previous known hacks of the SWIFT financial network, nothing in the leaked documents suggests that the NSA used its access to EastNets’ SWIFT systems to actual alter transactions or steal funds. Instead, stealthily tracking the transactions within that network may have given the agency visibility into money flows in the regionincluding to potential terrorist, extremist, or insurgent groups.

If that sort of finance-focused espionage was in fact the NSA’s goal, it would hardly deviate from the agency’s core mission. But Suiche points out that confirmation of the operation would nonetheless lead to blowback for the NSA and the US governmentparticularly given that many of the listed targets are in US-friendly countries like Dubai and Qatar. “A big shitstorm is to come,” says Suiche. “You can expect the leadership of key organizations like banks and governments are going to be quite irritated, and theyre going to react.”

Beyond EastNets alone, Suiche points to references in the files to targeting the Panama-based firm Business Computer Group or BCG, although it’s not clear if the firm was actually compromised. Beyond its Twitter statement, EastNets didn’t respond to WIRED’s request for comment. WIRED also reached out to BCG and the NSA, but didn’t get a response.

SWIFT aside, the leak also contains a cornucopia of NSA hacking tools or “exploits,” including what appear to be previously secret techniques for hacking PCs and servers running Windows. Matthew Hickey, the founder of the security firm Hacker House, analyzed the collection and believes there are more than 20 distinct exploits in the leak, about 15 of which are included in an automated hacking “framework” tool called FuzzBunch.

This is as big as it gets.

Matthew Hickey, Hacker House

The attacks seem to target every recent version of Windows other than Windows 10, and several allow a remote hacker to gain the full ability to run their own code on a target machine. “There are exploits here that are quite likely zero days that will let you hack into any number of servers on the internet,” says Hickey. “This is as big as it gets. Its internet God mode.”

In a statement to WIRED, however, a Microsoft spokesperson wrote that the company had previously patched all the vulnerabilities in Windows that the hacking tools exploited. “We’ve investigated and confirmed that the exploits disclosed by the Shadow Brokers have already been addressed by previous updates to our supported products,” the statement reads. In a blog post, the company clarified that several of the exploits do still work, but only on versions of Windows prior to Windows 7. 2

But the Shadow Brokers hinted in their release that they’re not done creating trouble for the NSA yet. “Maybe if all suviving [sic] WWIII theshadowbrokers be seeing you next week,” the group’s message concludes. “Who knows what we having next time?”

1 Updated 4/14/2017 12:15 EST to include comments from EastNets.

2 Updated 4/15/2017 3:50 EST to include a response from Microsoft.

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Major Leak Suggests NSA Was Deep in Middle East … – WIRED

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Sunquest Information Systems Announces the General Availability of Sunquest Mitogen: Molecular LIMS and … – Markets Insider

TUCSON, Ariz., Aug. 22, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Sunquest Information Systems, Inc. announced today the general availability of Sunquest Mitogen, a laboratory information management system (LIMS) and genetic analysis software suite for molecular diagnostics and precision medicine. The comprehensive, integrated molecular and genetics laboratory solution streamlines data and processes across the wet lab and the dry lab from sample accessioning and tracking; to lab workflows, inventory and reagent management; to data generation, genetic analysis, and clinical report creation and delivery.

“Sunquest is committed to advancing technology to allow our laboratory partners to respond to market demand. As medical treatments become more precise, clinicians are looking to laboratories to support precision medicine. This requires taking on complex lab processes and delivering easy-to-understand, clinically actionable reports with short turnaround times and at lower cost,” said Matt Hawkins, president/CEO of Sunquest. “The innovation embodied in Sunquest Mitogen makes this much easier.”

“We wanted a platform that was paperless, cutting-edge, alive and responsive. But with many LIMS platforms we looked at, attempting to adapt them to molecular testing was like fitting a square peg into a round hole. Sunquest Mitogen is different it is designed for molecular testing,” said Dr. Jason Walker, chief scientific officer at MedComp Sciences, a clinical laboratory services company and Sunquest client. “The end result is something we are truly proud of at MedComp. It is an investment we have made in laboratory quality and in our future.”

“Sunquest delivers laboratory solutions that support world-class labs,” Hawkins added. “Sunquest Mitogen is an innovative, comprehensive and flexible solution for laboratories to simplify and streamline extremely complicated molecular diagnostics and genetic testing processes and analysis. Sunquest Mitogen flexibly fits into existing laboratory workflows and new workflows are quick to build, which is essential in a molecular lab.”

Nabil Hafez, senior director of product management for Sunquest’s precision medicine solution added, “By taming the extreme complexity of molecular diagnostic laboratory processes and genetic variant analysis, we’re creating the right conditions for laboratories to offer these important diagnostic tests.”

Sunquest Mitogen laboratory software addresses the high complexity of sample lineage, laboratory processes, and genetic analysis for molecular diagnostics and precision medicine, which requires a laboratory platform designed from its foundation for this kind of laboratory work. In addition, Sunquest Mitogen interfaces with other clinical software, instruments, and services at the lab, and the electronic medical records used by healthcare providers.

The new solution combines the power of two key complimentary acquisitions, GeneInsight and UNIConnect, and optimizes the combined value with a set of pre-defined, out-of-the-box workflows for the LIMS and genetic analysis components.

Sunquest Mitogen: the comprehensive and configurable molecular LIMS for the wet lab

A modular, scalable, laboratory process management platform, Sunquest Mitogen supports a wide range of molecular testing requirements, from entrepreneurial molecular diagnostic companies to molecular pathology departments of major health systems. Sunquest Mitogen is a hosted, cloud-based platform accessed from a client’s web browser, making for a small footprint and minimal dependency on the client’s IT resources.

The molecular LIMS architecture offers rich sample tracking and deep auditing capabilities. In molecular testing, samples can move from one container type (plates, wells, vials) to another multiple times. Sunquest Mitogen tracks every step and transfer, so users can view sample path by process step, user or time frame. The information is captured and organized automatically to create a detailed audit trail and chain of custody for CAP and CLIA compliance and audits.

The Sunquest Mitogen LIMS also provides robust reagent, instrument, inventory, document, personnel and sample storage management capabilities. Users can drill down through interactive charts and graphs to individual customers, payers, and samples, and to view consumables and costs across projects and time.

Ready-made and custom laboratory workflows provided with the Sunquest Mitogen LIMS include:

Sunquest Mitogen: scalable genetic analysis software for the dry lab

Sunquest Mitogen’s genetic analysis software helps clinical laboratories expand into and scale next generation sequencing (NGS) testing services for precision medicine from a single gene to a whole genome. Pathologists, data scientists, and lab directors use the Sunquest Mitogen genetic analysis software in the dry lab to bring in data from the LIMS, produce actionable reports with consistent genetic variant annotation and interpretation, and deliver to clinicians electronic medical record (EMR)-ready reports and variant data.

About 80% of each customizable report is generated automatically, reducing the time spent creating each clinically actionable genetic test report to minutes instead of hours. The reports are easy to edit and are customizable to each laboratory’s needs.

The ability to tap into trusted content from well-known sources to identify clinically significant genetic variants saves time and improves report quality, and also provides information to incorporate disease, drug, and clinical trial information into the reports. Each lab can access external sources to develop its own knowledgebase and can choose to share data in real-time with other labs greatly speeding the flow of up-to-date knowledge and improving consistency and accuracy.

Monarch Initiative’s ontology is among the knowledge sources to which access is provided. A collaboration of multiple organizations steeped in the advancement of genetic knowledge, the Monarch Initiative integrates biological data from multiple authoritative data sources at an unprecedented level, connecting phenotypes to genotypes across species. For example, a mutation may give rise to similar diseases in multiple species, including humans. Monarch Initiative brings this data together to help identify a patient’s clinical features.

About Sunquest Information Systems

Sunquest Information Systems Inc. provides diagnostic informatics solutions to more than 1,700 laboratories. Since 1979, Sunquest has helped laboratories and healthcare organizations across the world enhance efficiency, improve patient care, and optimize financial results. Sunquest’s solutions enable world-class lab capabilities, including multisite, multi-disciplinary support for complex anatomic, molecular and genetic testing, and engagement with physicians and patients outside the hospitals at the point-of-care.

Headquartered in Tucson, AZ with offices in Boston, London, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, and Bangalore, India, Sunquest is a global leader in healthcare information Technology. For more information, visit http://www.sunquestinfo.com/mitogen

Contact info: Trish Moxam Vice President, Corporate Marketing rel=”nofollow”>trish.moxam@sunquestinfo.com 520-237-4024

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SOURCE Sunquest Information Systems, Inc.

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Sunquest Information Systems Announces the General Availability of Sunquest Mitogen: Molecular LIMS and … – Markets Insider

Dubai Aerospace completes AWAS acquisition, jets into top tier – Reuters

DUBAI (Reuters) – Dubai Aerospace Enterprise (DAE) has become one of the world’s largest aircraft lessors after announcing on Sunday it had completed the acquisition of Dublin-based AWAS [AWASA.UL], the industry’s tenth biggest firm.

The deal triples the Dubai government-controlled aircraft leasing and maintenance company’s portfolio of owned, managed and committed fleet to about 400 aircraft worth more than $14 billion.

That makes DAE one of the world’s top aircraft lessors behind the likes of General Electric (GE.N) and AerCap (AER.N).

DAE will use the brand name ‘DAE Capital’ to conduct its aircraft leasing business, the company said in a statement announcing the deal had finalised.

DAE said last month it had raised $2.3 billion to finance the acquisition from private equity firm Terra Firma Capital Partners [TERA.UL] and the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB).

DAE announced the acquisition in April, and later said it expected the deal to close in the early part of the third quarter.

“This acquisition of the best-in-class AWAS platform provides DAE with an enhanced market position,” DAE Chief Executive Firoz Tarapore said in the statement.

“This combined with our capital strength and our committed long-term ownership will allow us to provide a more comprehensive range of aviation fleet and financing solutions to our clients across the globe.”

The deal increases DAE’s number of aircraft leasing customers to include 117 airlines in 57 countries.

Tarapore told Reuters in June the company would consider a jet order of more than 20 aircraft once the deal closed, and that he was interested in Airbus (AIR.PA), Boeing (BA.N) and ATR (LDOF.MI) aircraft.

Reporting by Alexander Cornwell; Editing by Andrew Bolton

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Dubai Aerospace completes AWAS acquisition, jets into top tier – Reuters

Dubai Aerospace completes AWAS acquisition, jets into top tier – Reuters

DUBAI (Reuters) – Dubai Aerospace Enterprise (DAE) has become one of the world’s largest aircraft lessors after announcing on Sunday it had completed the acquisition of Dublin-based AWAS [AWASA.UL], the industry’s tenth biggest firm.

The deal triples the Dubai government-controlled aircraft leasing and maintenance company’s portfolio of owned, managed and committed fleet to about 400 aircraft worth more than $14 billion.

That makes DAE one of the world’s top aircraft lessors behind the likes of General Electric (GE.N) and AerCap (AER.N).

DAE will use the brand name ‘DAE Capital’ to conduct its aircraft leasing business, the company said in a statement announcing the deal had finalised.

DAE said last month it had raised $2.3 billion to finance the acquisition from private equity firm Terra Firma Capital Partners [TERA.UL] and the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB).

DAE announced the acquisition in April, and later said it expected the deal to close in the early part of the third quarter.

“This acquisition of the best-in-class AWAS platform provides DAE with an enhanced market position,” DAE Chief Executive Firoz Tarapore said in the statement.

“This combined with our capital strength and our committed long-term ownership will allow us to provide a more comprehensive range of aviation fleet and financing solutions to our clients across the globe.”

The deal increases DAE’s number of aircraft leasing customers to include 117 airlines in 57 countries.

Tarapore told Reuters in June the company would consider a jet order of more than 20 aircraft once the deal closed, and that he was interested in Airbus (AIR.PA), Boeing (BA.N) and ATR (LDOF.MI) aircraft.

Reporting by Alexander Cornwell; Editing by Andrew Bolton

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Dubai Aerospace completes AWAS acquisition, jets into top tier – Reuters

Space exploration will send our economy into orbit – The National

Alia Al Mansoori is a fine example of how space research can galvanise young minds. Scott A Miller / The National

At precisely 12.31pm on Monday, a Falcon9 rocket lifted off from Nasas Kennedy Space Centre in Florida. The rocket shot a 2,900 kg Dragon cargo capsule into space. When astronauts aboard the International Space Station retrieve the capsule today, they will find, among its contents, an experiment by Emirati teenager Alia Al Mansoori that will study DNA to identity how proteins in living organisms are synthesised, modified and regulated in space. The results of the experiment may yield clues that could aid in the prevention of unwanted cell death in astronauts on long-haul missions into deep space, including future flights to Mars. Ms Al Mansooris experiment won the Genes in Space competition, which is sponsored by The National, the UAE Space Agency and Boeing. She is the first winner from outside the United States.

The inclusion of Ms Al Mansooris experiment in the Nasa mission is a measure of the strides the UAE has made since Sheikh Zayedquizzed visiting American astronauts in the 1970s about space exploration. In 2014, the UAE launched its own Space Agency, the first in the Arab world. In 2020, the agency will launch space probe that will reach Mars the following year, coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the UAEs founding. In 2015, the UAE established the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre. Two years later, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, unveiled the Mars 2117 Project: a plan to buildthe first human settlement on Mars within a century. “Nothing is impossible … we can compete with the greatest of nations in the race for knowledge,” he said when he announced the project earlier this year.

The UAEs space programme drew sceptical responses from some quarters in the beginning. To others, space exploration has always seemed like a waste of resources. This is a profoundly misplaced view. Ms Al Mansoori is a fine example of how space research can galvanise young minds. It is a catalyst for technological innovations; in addition to making hugely important discoveries in space, it gives rise to unexpected inventions on earth that benefit us all. John FKennedy understood this; as, in our own day, does Sheikh Mohammed.

The computer microchip, the CAT scanner (which can detect cancer), the satellite television and the smoke detector these are all among the dozens of technologies we now take for granted but which would not be available to us were it not for space research. As Dr Ahmad Belhoul, the UAEs Minister of State for Higher Education and the Chairman of the UAE Space Agency, wrote in these pages last month, space exploration is a necessity not only because of its tangible benefits to our everyday lives, but because of its potential to inspire and uplift mankind in ways we can only imagine.It will, in short, drive the knowledge economy and ensure that our post-oil economy receives a necessary boost of rocket fuel.

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Space exploration will send our economy into orbit – The National

Dubai looks to the stars as Dh50 million Astronomy Centre to open next month – The National

Hasan Al Harriri founder of the Al Thuraya Astronomy Centre. A soft opening is expected in September 15. Anna Nielsen for The National

Dubais Dh50m astronomy observatory will open next month and a landmark astronomy resort in the Marmoun desert is planned for next year, as the city seeks to tap into an enduring fascination with the stars that draw in old and young alike.

After some delays, construction of Al Thuraya Astronomy Centre is complete and a soft opening is expected in September 15. The grand opening will be on National Day, December 2.

The centre will be home to a telescope with a one metre diametre mirror. First announced two years ago, it will have an academy with classrooms and labs, an outside observation deck, a 100-seat theatre an astronomy shop, a cafe and an library. The 2,696 square building located in Al Mushrif Park will have landscaped gardens in the shapes of constellations. Construction began in 2015.

The Dubai Astronomy Group currently has 7,000 general members and is in the process of recruiting 40 new employees for the new centre. The centre will be educate the public on the Mars 2117 Project, a national plan to build a city on Mars in one hundred years.

Thuraya will be a place where everyone to come and meet together, said HasanAl Hariri, the centres director and chief executive of the Dubai Astronomy Group. Its going to have lots of places where people come and enjoy themselves and create a road map to Mars.

Our Sheikh Mohammed has given us a mandate to go to Mars 2117 to build a Mars city so we want to pave the road for that. Our Sheikh Mohammed he is a very visionary man and when he says something like that it means we have to develop ourselves, we have to come up to do something which is beyond normal people. We have to go to Mars.

________

Read more on UAE astronomy

Love for the night sky leads Emirati to build private spacer observatory

Dubai astronomer’s lifelong passion for stargazing

________

Mr Al Hariri envisions a Mars camp at the observatory that stimulates life on the Red Planet.

We want to give people the chance to live on Mars. They will have no atmosphere, they will have no food, they will have no soil. They will have to prepare everything for themselves.

Planning has already begun on the next project, the Marmoun Astronomy Resort, a dark sky reserve 40 km away from the city so that tourists and researchers can observe the skies in complete darkness. The municipality has designated land, said Mr Al Hariri.

We want to make it an astronomy resort so people can come throughout the year and enjoy the beautiful sky, he said. We are anticipating my 2018 we will have this available. At the moment its on the drawing board in collaboration with the municipality. We hope that to finalise it this year so we can start construction early next year.

The next project will be an observatory in the Hatta mountains, with a tentative 2019 opening.

________________

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Perseid meteor shower to light up UAE desert skies this weekend

My UAE: Getting starry eyed with Hasan Ahmad Al Hariri

________________

Mr Al Hariri was speaking on the sidelines of a desert viewing of the Perseids meteor shower in Marmoun desert south of Dubai.

An estimated 500 people came out to a free talk and sightings on the Perseids hosted by the Dubai Astronomy at Al Mushrif Park. On Saturday night, about 40 people came to a closed event. There has been a growing interested in astronomy with the growing popularity of photography.

Mr Al Hariris 12-year-old daughter, Amna, helped visitors take photographs of the ringed planet Saturn through a 23cm telescopeusing iPhones.

The annual meteor shower is one of the most popular events in the celestial calendar but this years meteors were outshone by a three quarter moon that rose over the eastern horizon shortly after 10pm. Only a handful of meteors were visible but there will be another chance to watch meteors at the Leonids meteor shower in November and the Geminid meteor shower in December.

Al Hariri spoke about constellations, traditional navigation and stories learnt from his grandmother.

She used to tell us, dont switch on the air conditioning. Go sit outside. Live in nature. Touch and feel nature. Then you will be good, healthy.

By his grandmothers measure, Saturdays gathering was a success.

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Dubai looks to the stars as Dh50 million Astronomy Centre to open next month – The National

The UAE Will Launch Its First Mission to Mars in 2021 – Futurism

In Brief The United Arab Emirates Space Agency has finally unveiled the first of its missions to Mars: sending a probe to study the planet’s atmosphere. This plan puts in motion a major goal of the space agency since its foundation back in 2014.

While, in the United States, NASAs plans to go to Mars are in financial trouble, other nations seem to be stepping up their own goals for the Red Planet. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) Space Agency has finally announced its plans to send a probe to Mars. The Al Amal (which means Hope in Arabic) Probe is set to reach the Mars orbit by 2021, which is the 50th anniversary of the UAEs independence.

The objectives of the mission are to build highly qualified UAE human resources in the field of space technology, to develop knowledge, scientific research and space applications that benefit mankind, to create a sustainable knowledge-based economy, to promote diversification and encourage innovation, the announcement said.

The probe will study the Martian atmosphere to understand how it developed into its current state. This mission would be taking us to another level so it would be adding to the level of Science or knowledge about Mars and its atmosphere to the scientific community, Salem Humaid AlMarri, assistant director general for Scientific and Technology Affairs, told EuroNews. This knowledge, the UAE Space Agency hopes, will help us to better protect the Earths atmosphere.A crucial part of UAEs Al Amal mission, which already has a total funding of $5.44 billion, is academic progress. Working with scientists from the University of Colorado, the Al Amal teams are expected to learn everything they need to construct the space probe.

Disclosure: The Dubai Future Foundation works in collaboration with Futurism and is one of our sponsors. This post was not paid for or edited by DFF.

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The UAE Will Launch Its First Mission to Mars in 2021 – Futurism