The story behind the photo that could define the Brussels attacks

Ketevan Kardava took the photo of two women which captures the horror experienced by those at the scenes of the Brussels attacks.

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Kardava, a special correspondent of the Georgian Public Broadcaster, was at the departure hall of Brussels’ Zaventem Airport on her way to Geneva on assignment, when the first explosion blasted.

Her first instinct was to take out her camera.

“As a journalist, it was my duty to take these photos and show the world what was going on. I knew I was the only one at this spot,” she told TIME.

As a journalist on the ground at the time of the attacks, Kardava knew it was crucial to capture those first moments of terror.

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“What do you do in this situation if you’re a journalist? Help? Ask doctor to come? Or take a photo?” she told USA Today. “In that very moment, I realised that to show the world what was happening in this moment of terror, a photo was more important.”

Once Kardava realised she wasn’t injured, she shouted for help for people who needed it. Eventually, armed soldiers came to the rescue and told everyone that able to run to run.

Speaking with USA Today she spoke of her predicament.  

“The people I photographed were not able to run and I wasn’t able to help them. It was very, very difficult for me to leave them. I was the only person on my feet. I wanted to help all of them but I couldn’t. I left them. I had to — we expected a third explosion,” she said.

Kardava’s photo of the two women has now been published and shared across the globe. Overnight it has become the iconic photo of encapsulating the horror of the terror attacks.  

“I don’t know how I did it. I don’t know how I took that photo. As a journalist, it was my instinct. I posted it on Facebook and wrote ‘Explosion … Help us.’”

Post by Ketevan Kardava.

She now truly realises the gravity of terror attacks.

“I’ve lived here for 8 years and I’ve covered a lot of things, even the Paris terror attacks. But now I know.  It can be anywhere, any time. Now I realize the meaning of the phrase ‘terrorism has no boundaries’,” she told USA Today.

Kardava will now stay in Brussels to report on the situation.

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Morgan unperturbed by England batting collapse

Morgan’s team slumped to 57-6 inside 10 overs against an Afghan side starved of top-level cricket with the same batting line-up that chased down a huge 230-run target against South Africa last week.

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Six of the seven dismissed Englishmen fell to spin bowlers on a Feroz Shah Kotla track which, Morgan admitted, was far from a raging turner.

“We chased down 230 a game ago. It was simply a matter of not adapting,” Morgan told reporters after the 15-run victory over Afghanistan which kept his team on course for a place in the semi-finals.

Down the order, Moeen Ali (41 not out) and David Willey (20 not out) plundered 57 runs in 5.3 overs to rescue the 2010 champions but the late rally could not gloss over the top order failure.

“I think we’ve been practising similar things that we needed today but we actually just didn’t produce,” Morgan said.

Asked if the fear of loss against an associate nation crossed his mind, Morgan said: “No, absolutely not. Before the game, we knew a lot about Afghanistan. They are a good side and certainly if they are going to beat us, we need to under-perform.

“We let them in today by under-performing with the bat but I thought our bowling was outstanding. In the field as well, we were pretty good, which is a good sign.”

Looking ahead, Morgan said it was only a matter of adapting to the pitch, something he expects his team to do in their next Group One match against Sri Lanka on Saturday.

“Coming here and playing a T20 World Cup, I think this is the kind of wicket that every single one of us was expecting,” he said.

“We spoke a lot about it before we play. I think executions of our plans today were off by a long way.

“It’s very important between now and the Sri Lanka game that we sit down as a group and emphasise what we are trying to do and make sure it’s the right plan, reinforce that…”

Asked to explain his own dismissal for a golden duck, the England captain said: “An error in judgement. I got the message that it was turning and it didn’t turn. I misjudged.”

(Editing by Ed Osmond)

Crowded funeral for murdered Melbourne gangland lawyer

Slain Melbourne gangland lawyer Joe “Pino” Acquaro’s family has paid tribute to their “butterfly” at a crowded funeral service.

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Mr Acquaro was gunned down as he walked to his car after closing his Gelobar cafe in Brunswick East near the corner of Lygon Street on Tuesday last week.

His body was found hours later by a rubbish-truck driver.

Hundreds of family, friends, clients and colleagues packed into St Mary Star of the Sea – including former client and extortion accused, Rocco Arico – and spilled on to the front steps.

Mr Acquaro’s brother Massimo and fellow lawyer Michael McNamara gave words of remembrance and his estranged adult sons Alessio, Alfredo and Adriano gave readings during the traditional Catholic ceremony, according to the order of service.

Earlier in the morning, his family arrived in a convoy of Rolls Royces.

His partner Marisa Di Liso arrived before Mr Acquaro’s family and was not a formal part of the ceremony.

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Mr Acquaro’s mother Anna paid tribute to her son in the order of service booklet with a poem, which when translated from Italian read: “My small butterfly. I will see you again one day. Caress your wings, your beauty will soothe the sadness strangling my soul.”

Following the funeral, Mr Acquaro was buried in Yarraville.

Mr Acquaro had increasingly focused on his Gelobar cafe since taking it on about five years ago.

However, the criminal lawyer had represented a raft of prominent gangland figures in Victoria and had been warned by police there may be a contract on his head.

He had strong ties within the Calabrian community and had been president of Melbourne’s Italian Chamber of Commerce and the Reggio Calabria Club.

A week on from his death, police said they are looking for a light-coloured “ute-like” vehicle seen driving with its lights off on Barkly Street in Brunswick East about the time of the shooting, which happened just before 1am.

Victoria Police’s gangland squad, Purana Taskforce, which was set up in 2003 in response to the city’s underworld war, is assisting in the murder investigation.

Thurston to dominate NRL for years: Locky

At least another three years of NRL dominance are in store for Johnathan Thurston, league great Darren Lockyer has warned.

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Thurston no doubt sent a shudder through the Brisbane camp ahead of Friday night’s grand final re-match when he claimed North Queensland could improve on their 40-0 last-round demolition of the Sydney Roosters.

But the real bombshell came from within after Broncos great Lockyer boldly stated on Wednesday he saw no immediate end in sight to 32-year-old Thurston’s brilliance.

Thurston appeared to be at the peak of his powers in 2015, steering the Cowboys to their golden-point title win over Brisbane in the same year he collected a record third Golden Boot award and fourth Dally M Medal.

Yet, former Test captain Lockyer expected more of the same for years to come.

Asked how long Thurston could maintain his standard of excellence, Lockyer said: “He has another two or three years in him, maybe longer.

“As you get older and more experienced, you learn to get by on the field without bashing yourself up too much.

“I think he is at that point now where is steering his team around but still has that individual brilliance.

“He will come on Friday night with plenty of confidence.

“The Broncos will have their work cut out to shut him down.”

Thurston sounded ready to rise to the occasion on Friday night in front of an expected Suncorp Stadium sell-out.

While Brisbane have gone to great lengths to play down the re-match, Thurston has embraced the hype.

“Both clubs circle it (derby) on the calendar,” the Cowboys co-captain said.

“They will come out firing.

“It will be a packed house. What is there not to love?

“You can’t not get caught up in the hype.”

North Queensland will need Thurston at his best.

The Cowboys have not won at Suncorp Stadium since 2012, losing their past four games.

Paul Green has never savoured victory as Cowboys coach at the venue.

Thurston did fear a backlash from the Broncos – but not from their heartbreaking 2015 grand final loss.

The Cowboys talisman expected Brisbane to find another gear after their second-half fadeout in last round’s shock one-point loss in Penrith.

But, Thurston reckoned the Cowboys could also improve on their rout of the Roosters.

“No doubt, we will have to be better against the Broncos,” he said.

“They will be stinging from their last game.

“It’s always a good battle when we come against the Broncs.”

The Cowboys have named an unchanged team for the derby, with Jake Granville starting at hooker and Rory Kostjasyn back on the bench.

Cops thought dying woman was a junkie

As the limp body of an Aboriginal woman in custody was put in a wheelchair and her eyes rolled back moments before her death, a police officer still believed she was exaggerating her illness.

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Senior Constable Shelly Burgess admitted at a coronial inquest in Perth on Monday that her actions were inhumane and she showed no compassion or professionalism towards Ms Dhu, whose first name is not used for cultural reasons.

The officer, who was on the verge of crying throughout her testimony, also accepted the findings of an internal investigation that saw her handed an assistant commissioner’s warning for failing to carry out her duties.

Ms Dhu, 22, died two days after being locked up at South Hedland Police Station in August 2014 for unpaid fines totalling $3622, stemming from offences including assaulting an officer.

Sen Const Burgess testified that Sergeant Rick Bond – who has since quit the force – told her Ms Dhu was a junkie who was faking illness.

She said Sgt Bond was frustrated and she wanted to appease him because “his word was law” and he was known to “verbally attack” people who questioned him.

When she came to take Ms Dhu to the shower, Ms Dhu complained of a numb leg so Sen Const Burgess suggested she go to hospital, which made Sgt Bond angry.

Sen Const Burgess pulled Ms Dhu’s wrist to sit her up, but Ms Dhu felt heavier than expected, so the officer had to let go and Ms Dhu hit her head.

After viewing footage in court, Sen Const Burgess admitted it looked bad but denied yanking on Ms Dhu.

When Sgt Bond arrived, Sen Const Burgess told him: “I’ve just dropped her, she’s hit her head”.

Sgt Bond allegedly whispered in Ms Dhu’s ear she was a “f***ing junkie” who was messing him around.

Sen Const Burgess said she never told Internal Affairs investigators about his comments because they did not ask.

Asked whether she was protecting her superior, she replied: “It can be looked that way.”

She said she also feared repercussions.

There remained no sense of urgency and Sen Const Burgess said she only learned Ms Dhu had also broken her ribs when her partner and fellow detainee Dion Ruffin shouted it from his cell.

Mr Ruffin also said Ms Dhu only used speed but it didn’t affect her that way.

Sen Const Burgess admitted telling Ms Dhu to be quiet as she took her to hospital.

As Ms Dhu was pulled out of the van, she said she could not feel her body and her head fell back in the wheelchair, but Sen Const Burgess thought Ms Dhu was pretending to faint to get quicker medical treatment.

Ms Dhu died during that third visit in as many days to the Hedland Health Campus from staphylococcal septicaemia and pneumonia, following an infection in her fractured ribs that spread to her lungs.

The inquest continues.

Bolton looks to boost Blues’ firepower

Fixing Carlton’s misfiring forward line is a top priority for Brendon Bolton as the Blues embark on a new era under the rookie coach.

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Carlton possessed the 18th-ranked attack last season and managed just 17 goals (including two nine-pointers) across their three NAB Challenge games.

The Blues take on Richmond at the MCG on Thursday night and Bolton must devise a way to kick a winning score with a forward line that has undergone significant personnel changes in recent years.

The last time the Blues beat the Tigers in their first clash of the season back in 2012 Eddie Betts, Jeff Garlett, Mitch Robinson, Jarrad Waite, Shaun Hampson and Chris Yarran were among the goal kickers.

Throw in Lachie Henderson and Troy Menzel, regulars in attack last season, and the list of forwards now plying their trade at other clubs is lengthy.

“It’s a work in progress but we do think if we can win enough of the supply battle we can give ourselves a chance there,” Bolton said of his attack.

“Make no mistake we’ve been training that really hard – it’s ongoing and we need to continue to train it.

“Also some of our midfielders might be able to hit the scoreboard … we’ve got to work really hard on it.”

Prized No.1 draft pick Jacob Weitering was named to make his AFL debut in the season-opener and is one of five new Blues with Jed Lamb, Matthew Wright, Andrew Phillips and Sam Kerridge also selected.

“From day one it wasn’t about the number at which he was drafted, it was about him earning a spot and he knew he wasn’t entitled to anything,” Bolton said of Weitering.

“But this one he’s entitled to … he’s played really well in the NAB series and he gets his first chance.”

The Blues will also be boosted by the return of skipper Marc Murphy, who did not play in the pre-season as he recovered from off-season shoulder surgery.

The Tigers had to reshuffle their own line-up with injuries to Brett Deledio (quad), Reece Conca (hamstring) and Ivan Maric (back).

First-round draft pick Daniel Rioli comes in for his AFL debut, while former GWS Giant Jacob Townsend will play his first game in yellow and black.

Richmond have won just two of the nine matches Deledio has missed over the past two seasons, but Carlton will still go into the game as rank outsiders.

“What we do know is Richmond are aiming for a premiership and have been in finals for three years, and we’re a bit of the underdog,” Bolton said.

“But we’ll give ourselves every chance.”

No question of cancelling game – Dutch coach

The Dutch football association (KNVB) contacted security officials but it was decided there was no cause to cancel the match.

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“There is naturally always a threat but there is no reason to have to postpone the game,” Blind told a news conference on Wednesday, two days ahead of the match in Amsterdam.

“And there are also no players who have let it be known they don’t want to play,” he added. Belgium’s planned friendly against Portugal has been moved from Brussels to Leiria following the attacks.

Last year a friendly between Germany and the Netherlands in Hanover was called off after a bomb threat, just days after the Paris attacks in November that killed 130 people. Both the Dutch and French teams will wear black armbands during Friday’s match and observe a minute’s silence before kick-off in memory of the 34 victims of Tuesday’s attack on Zaventem Airport and a rush-hour metro train in Brussels.

For the Dutch, Friday’s game is a chance to look ahead to the start of the 2018 World Cup qualifiers in September after they missed out on this year’s European Championship in France.

“We must use the preparatory matches we play in the coming months to develop the team and to get ready so that we can start our campaign positively,” Blind added.

Asked whether there was any future for discarded players like Robin van Persie and Nigel de Jong, Blind said there was no definitive end to their international careers.

“You can’t predict what will happen. If De Jong comes back to Europe he still has a chance. But his move to America does not help him.”

The 31-year-old De Jong, who has won 80 caps for the Netherlands, has joined LA Galaxy from AC Milan.

The Dutch are due to play England in a friendly on Tuesday.

(Reporting by Mark Gleeson; Editing by Ed Osmond)

First officer at Sydney siege tried to calm hostages: inquest

The first police officer to arrive at Sydney’s Lindt Cafe during the siege tried to reassure distressed hostage Marcia Mikhael as she stood at the shop’s glass doors, an inquest has heard.

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Senior Constable Paul Withers was in Walsh Bay when he received a call at 9.45am on December 15, 2014 about the siege at Martin Place.

He was soon edging along the eastern wall in the cafe foyer, trying to communicate with Ms Mikhael from a position of cover, the inquest into the fatal siege heard on Wednesday.

“I pointed to my name badge,” he said, adding that he mouthed to Ms Mikhael that “it’ll be okay”.

Sen Const Withers said that when he arrived at the scene he saw two female hostages standing at the door with their hands above their heads.

He tried to calm them with some hand gestures and Ms Mikhael flicked her eyes in the direction of gunman Man Monis, quickly raising her finger to confirm there was one hostage taker.

“She was very upset, very distressed,” Sen Const Withers said.

He described seeing Monis pacing up and down the cafe, holding a shotgun and wearing a black backpack from which a thin wire was protruding.

“I believed it was a bomb,” he said.

After his initial reconnaissance of the situation, Sen Const Withers left the cafe to report back to senior officers.

He said he mouthed to Ms Mikhael that he would be back.

After putting on a bulletproof vest he returned but was then directed to leave for a second time.

“I didn’t want to leave them in there,” he said.

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He told the inquest he had “extreme concern” for the hostages.

Earlier on Wednesday, the inquest heard from Rosemary Birt, who arrived at the cafe to meet colleagues as the siege started to unfold.

She tried numerous times to open the locked doors, but upon seeing Monis pull a shotgun from a plastic bag she left the building and phoned police.

She was so scared she had trouble keying in the PIN and it took her about 30 seconds to unlock the phone, the inquest heard.

The inquest into the siege, which left hostages Katrina Dawson and Tori Johnson and gunman Monis dead, continues.

High Court hearing on Senate voting change

A High Court challenge is about to be launched against new laws changing the way Australians elect senators.

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The first directions hearing will be held in Sydney via video link from Perth before Chief Justice Robert French at 11am (AEDT) on Thursday, two days after Family First senator Bob Day filed an application challenging the changes.

It comes less than a week after the changes cleared parliament, following a marathon 40-hour debate.

“Political parties have seized control of the states’ house, the Senate, and I look forward to hearing what the High Court has to say about that,” Senator Day said on Wednesday.

The federal government has insisted the changes are constitutionally sound and will withstand any challenge.

It argues the changes will hand power back to the people, allowing voters to choose their own preferences rather than having them directed via backroom deals.

At the next federal election, voters will allocate their own preferences by numbering at least six boxes above the line on a Senate ballot paper.

Below the line they need only number 12 boxes.

Senator Day and other crossbenchers argue these changes will prevent minor parties and independents from getting elected, ignoring the will of the three million voters who voted for them at the last federal election.

“The seriousness of the matter is demonstrated by the High Court bringing it on urgently,” Senator Day said.

“People wrote off my case saying I had no chance, but they have scant regard for voters’ rights and the constitution.”

Constitutional law expert Anne Twomey, from Sydney University, believes the changes are likely to be upheld by the High Court.

She says no one’s right to vote is being limited or taken away, with the changes enhancing a voter’s ability to express and control their voting choices.

Trump church billboard stolen

A billboard outside an Auckland church attacking Donald Trump has been stolen but the church will resurrect it.

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The thieves left only two poles in the ground.

The deed was done in broad daylight while the minister, Rev Glynn Cardy, was inside the church conducting a funeral service.

The billboard put up outside St Luke’s Church, Remuera, for Lent a couple of weeks ago, depicts the frontrunner for the Republican nomination for US president looking across at Jesus Christ nailed to the cross while holding a hammer in his hand and declaring: “I don’t like losers”.

Mr Cardy says he’s not sure why the thieves stole the sign.

“Some people don’t like the billboard because they like Donald Trump. Some don’t like the billboard because it infers Jesus was a loser.

“Whereas others, like myself and those here at the community of St Luke, see the cartoon as showing that the values and views of people like Mr Trump are completely at odds with those of Jesus.”

St Luke’s will be replacing the billboard after the church’s Easter Sunday celebrations of the resurrection of Jesus, and intends to keep the billboard up as long as the issue of Mr Trump’s candidacy remains undecided.

It’s not the first time Mr Cardy has used shocking billboards to get across a message.

When he was at Auckland’s St Matthew-in-the-City Church, he unveiled a risque billboard of Jesus’ mother looking dejected after unsatisfying sex with Joseph in 2009.

And again in 2011, the progressive church opted to depict a contemplative Virgin Mary holding a positive pregnancy test.