In this section you’ll find exercises designed to improve your reading skills and exam technique. Each of the ten short texts has a question with four different possible answers. Choose the correct one to answer the question.
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UN Savages Australia’s Human Rights Record
Less than a month after Australia was appointed to the United Nations’ peak human rights body, the U.N.’s Human Rights Committee has once again savaged the country’s record on refugees, prisons, Indigenous people and law enforcement.
Australia was elected unopposed to the United Nations’ Human Rights Council in October. At the time, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said Australia’s three-year term on the council would “provide a unique Indo-Pacific perspective and ensure that the voices of our Pacific neighbours and other small states are heard”, but just three weeks on from Australia’s election to the council, the Human Rights Committee has taken us to task over how we treat the most vulnerable in society.
Source: The Huffington Post Australia 09/11/2017 https://www.huffingtonpost.com.au/2017/11/09/un-savages-australias-human-rights-record-again-over-manus-marriage-and-prison_a_23272611/?utm_hp_ref=au-indigenous-australians
According to the article, Australia’s human rights record:CorrectoIncorrecto
Mastercard Drops Its Name From Company Logo
Following in the footsteps of branding legends Apple, Nike, and Target, Mastercard is choosing a wordless logo using only its iconic, intersecting yellow and red circles. It will be used as the brand symbol on credit cards and at retailers, as well as at events and on advertising. The new logo was also chosen to “work seamlessly across the digital landscape,” according to a press release.
Raja Rajamannar, chief marketing and communications officer at Mastercard, said the company undertook more than 20 months of global consumer research to ensure people could identify the brand solely by its circles. “And with more than 80% of people spontaneously recognizing the Mastercard symbol without the word ‘Mastercard,’ we felt ready to take this next step in our brand evolution,” Rajamannar said in the company’s press release.
Source: fortune.com 07/01/2019 http://fortune.com/2019/01/07/mastercard-drops-its-name-from-company-logo-post-text-future-target-nike-apple/
The nameless Mastercard logo…CorrectoIncorrecto
UAE passport world’s ‘most powerful’
Holders of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) passport can travel to 167 countries without the need for pre-visa requirements, dislodging Germany’s as the most powerful passport worldwide, an online ranking site said on Saturday.
A UAE passport holder can also obtain visas from 54 countries upon arrival, said the Passport Index in its December 2018 report.
Only 31 countries require visas for the UAE passport holder, it added.
The UAE government hailed the new Passport Index ranking as an “exceptional achievement “, which coincides with the ‘Year of Zayed’ and country’s 47th National Day.
The UAE passport’s rank this year was a big jump from its No. 24 individual rank in Passport Index’s December 2017 report.
Source: Arab News 01/12/2019 http://www.arabnews.com/node/1414136/middle-east
The UAE passport is the most powerful becauseCorrectoIncorrecto
Why our ancestors drilled holes in each other’s skulls
For a large part of human prehistory, people around the world practised trepanation: a crude surgical procedure that involves forming a hole in the skull of a living person by either drilling, cutting or scraping away layers of bone with a sharp implement.
To date, thousands of skulls bearing signs of trepanation have been unearthed at archaeological sites across the world.
But despite its apparent importance, scientists are still not completely agreed on why our ancestors performed trepanation.
Anthropological accounts of 20th-Century trepanations in Africa and Polynesia suggest that, in these cases at least, trepanation was performed to treat pain – for instance, the pain caused by skull trauma or neurological disease.
Trepanation may also have had a similar purpose in prehistory. Many trepanned skulls show signs of cranial injuries or neurological diseases, often in the same region of the skull where the trepanation hole was made.
But as well as being used to treat medical conditions, researchers have long suspected that ancient humans performed trepanation for a quite different reason: ritual.
The earliest clear evidence of trepanation dates to approximately 7,000 years ago. It was practised in places as diverse as Ancient Greece, North and South America, Africa, Polynesia and the Far East. People probably developed the practice independently in several locations.
Trepanation had been abandoned by most cultures by the end of the Middle Ages, but the practice was still being carried out in a few isolated parts of Africa and Polynesia until the early 1900s.
Source: BBC 26/08/2016 http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20160826-why-our-ancestors-drilled-holes-in-each-others-skulls
An important idea in the text is that…CorrectoIncorrecto
‘Social disaster’: South Korea brings in emergency laws to tackle dust pollution
South Korea has passed emergency measures to tackle the “social disaster” being unleashed by air pollution, after record levels of fine dust blanketed most of the country in recent weeks.
The national assembly passed a series of bills on Wednesday giving authorities access to emergency funds for measures that include the mandatory installation of high-capacity air purifiers in classrooms and encouraging sales of liquified petroleum gas vehicles, which produce lower emissions than those that run on petrol and diesel.
The measures will give government officials access to a US$2.65bn emergency fund, as criticism mounts of President Moon Jae-in’s failure to tackle the crisis.
Air pollution has become a key political issue after the concentration of fine dust particles surged to record levels in many parts of the country last week, according to South Korean media.
Seven major cities suffered record-high concentrations of dangerous PM 2.5 particles, according to the National Institute of Environmental Research.
The World Health Organization has warned that air pollution poses a major public health risk due to its links with a host of respiratory and cardiovascular illnesses.
Seoul has already introduced emergency measures, such as limiting vehicle use, curbing the use of coal-fired power stations and cutting the amount of dust generated by building sites and power plants. But they have had little success.
The crisis has also created friction with China, which South Korean public health experts say is responsible for between 50% and 70% of fine dust pollution in the Seoul area, home to almost half the country’s population. Experts say the particles, from Chinese deserts and factories, are carried to the Korean peninsula by prevailing westerly winds.
Source: The Guardian 13/03/2019 https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/mar/13/social-disaster-south-korea-brings-in-emergency-laws-to-tackle-dust-pollution
According to the writerCorrectoIncorrecto