Inclusive or unfair? Transgender weightlifter sparks Olympic debate

Transgender weightlifter Laurel Hubbard makes her Olympic debut in Tokyo on Monday, with the New Zealander’s historic appearance igniting heated debate on one of sport’s most divisive issues. Hubbard was born male and competed as a man before transitioning to become a woman in her 30s, taking up the sport again after meeting the International Olympic Committee (IOC) guidelines for transgender athletes. The IOC says she is the first openly transgender woman to compete at the Games, hailing it as a landmark moment for the Olympic movement. “Laurel Hubbard is a woman, is competing under the rules of her federation and we have to pay tribute to her courage and tenacity in competing and qualifying for the Games,” IOC medical chief Richard Budgett told reporters in Tokyo. However, her presence in the women’s +87kg category on the elite stage raises complex issues of bioethics, human rights, science, fairness and identity in sport. Supporters say her appearance is a victory for inclusion and trans rights. Critics argue she has an unfair advantage over female rivals due to physical attributes locked into her body during her decades as a male. Debate on the issue is intense and sometimes vitriolic, with barbs flying from both sides online, prompting to New Zealand Olympic Committee’s to take steps to shield Hubbard from social media trolls. But the IOC concedes there are legitimate questions about whether Hubbard has — in the jargon-heavy language the sporting body uses to discuss the issue — a “disproportionate competitive advantage”. – Searching for ‘sweet spot’ – Female sporting advocates, including pioneering gay tennis star Martina Navratilova, have expressed concern that including transgender competitors is unfair and threatens to undermine hard-fought gains in lifting the status of women’s sport. “I am happy to address a transgender woman in whatever form she prefers, but I would not be happy to compete against her. It would not be fair,” she said. Caitlyn Jenner, who won Olympic gold in the men’s decathlon at the 1976 Olympics before coming out as a woman in 2015, declared earlier this year: “It just isn’t fair.” #photo1 There are also fears that including trans women in high-impact sports could jeopardise the safety of other competitors, prompting World Rugby to ban them from international competition last year. But some national unions such as New Zealand Rugby have indicated they will allow trans women in grassroots competitions, underlining how opinions are divided on the issue. In making its decision, World Rugby cited scientific studies showing males were around 30 percent stronger than females. University of Otago physiologist Alison Heather told AFP other male physical advantages included longer limbs and higher muscle mass, as well as a larger heart and greater lung capacity, which increases oxygen flow and endurance. But the IOC’s Budgett said it was not as simple as comparing males to females, arguing it was possible trans women experienced a drop in performance when they underwent the process of transition. Budgett said more research was needed, adding: “Consider the fact there have been no openly transgender women at the top level until now (and) I think the threat to women’s sport has probably been overstated.” IOC conceded the new framework — which will only provide guidelines for international sporting federations, rather than hard-and-fast rules — would not be the final word on an issue set to remain hotly debated for the foreseeable future. “There needs to be a sweet spot to achieve what we need and wherever that sweet spot is, it’s probably going to be criticised by some — it’s not going to be the ultimate solution,” IOC spokesman Christian Klaue said.
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Iran’s Raisi set to focus on economy and nuclear deal

Iran’s ultraconservative Ebrahim Raisi will be inaugurated on Tuesday as the new president of the Islamic republic, a country mired in deep economic crisis and hit by crippling US sanctions. He replaces moderate president Hassan Rouhani, whose landmark achievement was the 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and six world powers. Raisi, 60, will have to tackle the nuclear talks aimed at reviving the deal from which the US unilaterally withdrew. Two days after Tuesday’s inauguration by the Islamic republic’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Raisi will take the oath before parliament. He won June’s election when more than half the voters stayed away after many political heavyweights were barred from standing. A former judiciary chief, Raisi has been criticised by the West for his human rights record. Iran’s economic problems, exacerbated by the American sanctions, will be the new president’s greatest challenge, according to Clement Therme, a researcher at the European University Institute in Italy. “His main objective will be to improve the economic situation by reinforcing the Islamic republic’s economic relations with neighbouring countries,” Therme told AFP. “The goal would be to build a business model that would protect Iran’s economic growth from American policies and decisions.” Therme believes Raisi’s main priority will be to “remove US sanctions” so Iran can bolster trade with its neighbours and non-Western countries such as China and Russia. The 2015 deal saw Iran accept curbs on its nuclear capabilities in return for an easing of sanctions. But former US president Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from the accord three years later and ramped up sanctions again, prompting Tehran to pull back from most of its nuclear commitments. Trump’s successor Joe Biden has signalled his readiness to return to the deal and engaged in indirect negotiations with Iran alongside formal talks with the agreement’s remaining parties — Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia. – Economic malaise – The US sanctions choked Iran, including by seeking to stop its oil exports, and the economy contracted by more than six percent in both 2018 and 2019. This was a blow to Rouhani who had hoped to liberalise the economy and develop the private sector. In the winter of 2017-2018, and again in 2019, street protests sparked by economic woes rocked the country. And in July this year, demonstrators in the oil-rich Khuzestan province, which has been hit by drought, took to the streets to vent their anger. The economic malaise has been exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic, which has left many Iranians struggling to get by. Iranian reformist economist Saeed Laylaz said that the outgoing president was an “idealist” in his approach to the West. “Rouhani believed he would be able to solve all the country’s problems quickly,” said Laylaz, who has acted as an adviser to Iranian presidents. Laylaz believes that Raisi will choose a different path. After his election, Raisi made clear that his key foreign policy would be to improve ties with regional countries. In mid-July, Rouhani said he hoped his successor can clinch a deal to lift US sanctions and conclude nuclear talks. But Khamenei, who will preside over Raisi’s inauguration on Tuesday and whose word is final in policy matters, has warned against trusting the West. – Nuclear talks – Raisi himself has already said he will not negotiate with the other parties to the nuclear deal, and indirectly with the US, just for the sake of negotiations. His government will support talks that “guarantee national interests”, he has said. Six rounds of nuclear talks between Iran and world powers were held in Vienna between April and June. The last round concluded on June 20, and no date has been set for another. Officials in Tehran said there would be no new talks until Raisi assumed office. According to Therme, the new administration in Tehran, where the ultra-conservative camp deeply distrusts the United States, has no wish to press things. There is a will in Tehran “to show the American side there is no urgency for a quick compromise”, he said. The new government also wants to show “it can clinch a better deal than the previous one”, Therme added. According to Laylaz, the future of the nuclear deal will be one of the factors that will affect the fate of the economy. “If Iran declares its intention not to pursue the negotiations, the sanctions will remain,” he said. But he also expects Washington and Tehran to reach a compromise. “Iran and the United States cannot continue with the status quo,” Laylaz said.
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La Asociación de Diplomáticos defiende al cargo de Laya que permitió al líder del Polisario saltarse la aduana

ICYMI: Sánchez ordenó traer a España al líder del Frente Polisario Brahim Ghali para que fuera atendido de coronavirus. La operación la lideró la ya ex ministra de Exteriores Arancha González Laya. Y la ejecutó, ordenando que eludiera el control de aduanas e inmigración, su jefe de Gabinete, Camilo Villarino. El presidente quiere ahora premiar a … Continuar leyendo “La Asociación de Diplomáticos defiende al cargo de Laya que permitió al líder del Polisario saltarse la aduana”
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Biden says US to see new Covid restrictions ‘in all probability’

US President Joe Biden said on Friday “in all probability” new guidelines or restrictions would be imposed in the United States in response to a resurgence of Covid-19 cases. Asked if Americans should expect new recommendations from health authorities or new restrictive measures, the president responded, “in all probability,” before leaving the White House by helicopter for the weekend. He did not specify what steps could be taken. US federal authorities, local officials and businesses have boosted health protocols in recent days in the face of surging cases spurred by the spread of the highly contagious Delta variant. Biden added, however, that the country had had “a good day” on Thursday in terms of vaccinations. “Almost a million people got vaccinated,” he said, as his administration works to revive a sluggish inoculation campaign. “I am hopeful people are beginning to realize how essential it is.” US health authorities this week recommended that even vaccinated Americans again wear masks indoors in areas with high infection rates. The federal government has also tightened health regulations for its millions of employees, who must now either be vaccinated or wear masks and be tested regularly, even in areas with low case numbers.
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La Asociación de Diplomáticos defiende al cargo de Laya que permitió al líder del Polisario saltarse la aduana

Sánchez ordenó traer a España al líder del Frente Polisario Brahim Ghali para que fuera atendido de coronavirus. La operación la lideró la ya ex ministra de Exteriores Arancha González Laya. Y la ejecutó, ordenando que eludiera el control de aduanas e inmigración, su jefe de Gabinete, Camilo Villarino. El presidente quiere ahora premiar a … Continuar leyendo “La Asociación de Diplomáticos defiende al cargo de Laya que permitió al líder del Polisario saltarse la aduana”
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Un alcalde socialista intenta sustituir a sus policías por vigilantes de seguridad

El alcalde socialista de Viladecans (Barcelona), Carles Ruiz, intenta sustituir a los policías locales de su municipio por vigilantes de seguridad ante la escasez de personal con motivo de la temporada estival. A esto se une el conflicto laboral que mantiene Ruiz con los dos sindicatos profesionales de la Policía Local, SPC y SPC-CAT.Así lo … Continuar leyendo “Un alcalde socialista intenta sustituir a sus policías por vigilantes de seguridad”
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Fast-growing, controversial Robinhood set for market debut

Robinhood has said its mission is to “democratize finance for all,” and that stretches to its plan for the company’s debut on public markets Thursday. The online investment platform, which is expected to begin trading under the ticker symbol “HOOD” on the Nasdaq, has set aside up to 35 percent of the shares under its initial public offering for sale to its users. Individual investors are normally excluded from IPOs, making Robinhood’s move the latest rupture with tradition in its speedy rise that has only accelerated during coronavirus pandemic. On Wednesday night, the company said it raised $1.9 billion in an initial public offering priced at $38 per share, at the low end of the range in its prospectus. The firm, whose commission-free stock trading model has been copied by some rivals, had $81 billion in assets under its custody at the end of March, up from $14.2 billion at the end of 2019. Its entry to public markets is among the most buzzed about in recent memory, sparking enthusiasm over a valuation of around $32 billion, but also skepticism over its business model and prospects for continued growth. – ‘Next generation’ investors – Robinhood was founded in 2013 by Vladimir Tenev and Baiju Bhatt, who met as undergraduates at Stanford University. The company has pitched itself as a niche for underinvested “everyday people,” according to a prospectus that points to the need to serve “the next generation of investors,” who are younger and more diverse than earlier cohorts. Robinhood’s median customer age is 31. Robinhood’s growing population of individual investors has played a role in the so-called “Reddit Rebellion,” during which retail investors coalesced on the social network this year to support beaten-down stocks such as GameStop and BlackBerry. The company has significantly grown its user base during the pandemic, more than doubling the number of accounts to 18 million at the end of March. Robinhood’s plan for growing further includes attracting more customers, providing additional financial services to customers as they add wealth and expanding internationally. – Regulator risk – But Robinhood’s rise has not been without controversy. Last month, shortly before the company filed papers to go public, it agreed to pay a $70 million fine to settle charges from regulatory body FINRA that it harmed thousands of consumers through “false and misleading” communications and other lapses. The company has also been in the crosshairs of US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chair Gary Gensler, who has taken aim at its business model. Although Robinhood does not charge users commissions to trade, it takes in revenue from other financial firms by routing its users’ trades to these firms, a practice known as “order flow” that is barred in other countries including Britain and Australia. Gensler said such arrangements raise questions about conflicts of interest and also enable firms to trade consumer data. He has cited an SEC enforcement action in December against Robinhood that accused it of maintaining higher costs for traders in exchange for receiving payments from other firms to execute trades. While a complete overhaul barring these payments is probably not in the cards, “changes to the current rules could (temper) revenue growth or increase compliance costs,” according to Third Bridge’s Peter Hobson, who notes that there are more investigations outstanding. – Bear market concerns – A bigger unknown may be the platform’s fate when the stock market is less forgiving than over the last year, during which investors across the board have benefited from climbing equity values. “How is their platform going to react and how is their client base going to react when there is a bear market and things are not so easy?” asked Briefing.com analyst Patrick O’Hare. More questions concern Robinhood’s efforts to expand beyond its current trade offerings in stocks and cryptocurrency. For example, Tenev said during an investor presentation last weekend that Robinhood was considering offering retirement accounts. But such products are currently a big business for incumbent financial companies, which are still many times the size of Robinhood and will fight to defend their market share, analysts said.
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Bassa dice que la sentencia del 1-O ha truncado su plan de jubilación: «Tendré que trabajar más años»

ICYMI: La que fuera consejera del Gobierno autonómico de Carles Puigdemont, Dolors Bassa, explica en una entrevista que la condena de 12 años de prisión, e inhabilitación, por sedición ha truncado sus planes de futuro. Tal y como explica la propia Bassa, ya no podrá jubilarse «lo antes posible». La ex consejera de Puigdemont relata cómo … Continuar leyendo “Bassa dice que la sentencia del 1-O ha truncado su plan de jubilación: «Tendré que trabajar más años»”
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Sydney lockdown extended by four weeks as virus outbreak grows

Millions of Sydney residents will spend another month in lockdown, authorities announced Wednesday, citing a still-growing coronavirus outbreak and low vaccination rates. Australia’s biggest city had been due to exit lockdown on July 30 after five weeks but the restrictions will remain in place until August 28 as case numbers continued to climb. “I appreciate personally what we’re asking people do for the next four weeks but it is because we want to keep our community safe and want to make sure we can bounce back as quickly as possible,” New South Wales state premier Gladys Berejiklian said. Officials announced 177 new cases linked to the Sydney outbreak, which began mid-June when a driver for an international flight crew contracted the virus. People living in hotspots have been urged not to leave their neighbourhoods, but those living alone will be allowed to create a “singles bubble” with another person. Berejiklian said police would step up compliance efforts, while imploring Sydneysiders to report others breaking the rules. “We really need people to do the right thing at all times. Do not let your guard down,” she said. The announcement came as Melbourne awoke to the end of its fifth virus lockdown, after beating the Delta variant for the second time in recent months through “determination and hard work”, according to Victoria state premier Dan Andrews. They were among the roughly eight million people in Victoria and South Australia states who exited lockdown overnight after local outbreaks of the highly contagious variant were contained. Australia was lauded for its early pandemic success, after it slammed shut its international borders and moved quickly to quash Covid-19 clusters. But with a largely unvaccinated population, it has struggled to respond to the Delta variant, repeatedly sending cities into lockdown. About 13 percent of Australians have been vaccinated, with low supplies of Pfizer-BioNTech shots and scepticism about the AstraZeneca jab. The country has recorded more than 33,000 infections and 921 Covid-related deaths in a population of 25 million.
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Bermuda’s first Olympic gold ‘just unbelievable’: triathlete’s parents

The delivery of Bermuda’s first ever Olympic gold medal on Tuesday by triathlete Flora Duffy is a victory shared by the whole island, her parents told AFP. “Everybody’s going to take a piece of this pride,” said Maria Duffy, Flora’s mother. Flora Duffy won the first gold of the day Tuesday at the Tokyo Olympics for the women’s event, making Bermuda the smallest territory or nation in terms of population ever to win a gold medal at a Summer Games. The 33-year-old crossed the line in 1hr 55min 36sec, after traversing a distance of more than 30 miles (50 kilometers), around 10 miles longer than her home island, to beat out Britain’s Georgia Taylor-Brown, with US athlete Katie Zaferes taking bronze. Duffy’s parents watched her swim, cycle and run a grueling course from a pub on the tiny island, with a population of around 70,000, and they were “blown away” by the crowd that had gathered, they told AFP. “All these people coming to watch your daughter. You’re just hoping and praying: ‘Oh please, let’s hope it all pans out and doesn’t go pear-shaped.’ And it didn’t go pear-shaped, which was just unbelievable,” Maria Duffy said. The couple said messages had flooded in, and neighbors were “overcome and overwhelmed.” “It’s been 45 years since something like this has happened. It might be another 45 before it ever happens again,” Maria said. Bermuda’s only previous Olympic medalist was boxer Clarence Hill, who won a bronze in 1976. Despite the odds, and Duffy having faced persistent injuries and a diagnosis of anemia in 2013, her father Charlie said he was “fairly confident” she’d win, though he was still “worried.” “She only just recovered from an injury about four or five weeks ago. So really, just to have her on the start line fit was a huge step forward,” he said. He said the Tokyo Games would be his daughter’s final Olympic appearance. “This was her last hurrah,” his wife added. The enormity of the triumph was not lost on the triathlete herself, who said shortly after her victory: “It’s bigger than me, and that’s a really cool moment.” “I have achieved my dream of winning a gold medal, but also winning Bermuda’s first gold medal,” she said.
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Bassa dice que la sentencia del 1-O ha truncado su plan de jubilación: «Tendré que trabajar más años»

La que fuera consejera del Gobierno autonómico de Carles Puigdemont, Dolors Bassa, explica en una entrevista que la condena de 12 años de prisión, e inhabilitación, por sedición ha truncado sus planes de futuro. Tal y como explica la propia Bassa, ya no podrá jubilarse «lo antes posible». La ex consejera de Puigdemont relata cómo … Continuar leyendo “Bassa dice que la sentencia del 1-O ha truncado su plan de jubilación: «Tendré que trabajar más años»”
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Estas son las nuevas restricciones nocturnas y los lugares con toque de queda en España

ICYMI: Ante un aumento cada vez mayor de incidencia acumulada en algunas comunidades y con UCIS cada vez más saturadas, algunas comunidades autónomas vuelven a imponer el cierre de bares y locales así como el que la gente no pueda salir a partir de determinada hora. Estas son las nuevas restricciones nocturnas y los lugares con … Continuar leyendo “Estas son las nuevas restricciones nocturnas y los lugares con toque de queda en España”
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Estas son las nuevas restricciones nocturnas y los lugares con toque de queda en España

Ante un aumento cada vez mayor de incidencia acumulada en algunas comunidades y con UCIS cada vez más saturadas, algunas comunidades autónomas vuelven a imponer el cierre de bares y locales así como el que la gente no pueda salir a partir de determinada hora. Estas son las nuevas restricciones nocturnas y los lugares con … Continuar leyendo “Estas son las nuevas restricciones nocturnas y los lugares con toque de queda en España”
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Uber driver independence a bumpy road

Uber driver Mae Cee scoffs at the notion, touted by the global ride-share service, that she and her peers are self-employed contractors — and that most of them are happy with the arrangement. In California, labor legislation endorsed by voters last November in a referendum, known as Proposition 22, effectively overturned a state law requiring Uber, Lyft and other app-based, on-demand delivery services to reclassify their drivers and provide employee benefits. That legislation, heavily backed by the companies themselves with $200 million in campaign spending, may have officially resolved the status of so-called “gig workers.” But many of them are still bitter and angry, and say they have all the inconveniences of being independent, and none of the advantages. They also accuse Uber of rolling out benefits while Prop 22 was being debated — and then retracting them. “No way I’m an independent contractor — not even close, it’s such a joke,” said Cee, an activist in a Rideshare Drivers United group. Drivers for companies such as Uber and Lyft use their own cars and chose their own work schedules in what the companies describe as cherished independence. But how work days turn out is orchestrated by a sophisticated computer algorithm that artfully nudges drivers to accept as many fares as possible — including less profitable routes. Some drivers see the situation as basically having a software version of a manager, making them tantamount to employees — without the security such an arrangement would give them. Prop 22 does guarantee some support such as pay topping the minimum wage and supplemented health care coverage — but it designates drivers as self-employed, meaning they do not have the right to some regular employee benefits such as collective bargaining. – Happy trails? – Uber says a recent survey found 82 percent of drivers are “happy” that Proposition 22 is in place. #photo1 But Nathan, a driver in San Diego who asked that his last name not be used to protect his privacy, said he felt some of the company’s promises went unfulfilled. “We had more independence, more freedom… we had more ability to control how much money we made,” he said. “Uber was finally working towards making drivers happy.” Transparency and price control are two things that Nathan wanted from Uber, and he thought he was getting those things. But within three months of Prop 22 passing, the company did away with an option to dictate fare prices using a “multiplier” during periods of high demand, he lamented. Drivers still have the option of picking which rides they want to provide, but say that the amount of information they get to see before deciding which fares to accept has dwindled. For example, Uber only starts sharing aspiring riders’ destinations after a driver has blindly accepted five out of 10 trips. An Uber spokesperson told AFP that about a third of drivers were refusing more than 80 percent of fares before the tweaks, which were made to improve the reliability of the service. “With the recovery from the pandemic, we wanted to make sure that passengers have a car when they need it and that all drivers have more trips on average,” the spokesperson said. – New horizons? – Critics argue that calculations regarding how much drivers earn hourly do not take into account time ride-share or delivery drivers spend waiting around. #photo2 They also contend that most drivers will not be eligible for the touted contributions to health insurance coverage. Meanwhile, Uber has been offering incentives to get drivers back on the road as rider demand picks up after being stalled by the coronavirus crisis. Drivers may still be wary of Covid-19, and could be getting financial help from government aid to the unemployed. And, as with the rest of the job market, the pandemic may have prompted some to shift gears on careers. “People did training, or they found other jobs,” Cee said. “The pandemic helped us realize we were hooked, trapped in an abusive relationship with Uber.” The Rideshare Drivers United group seeks to mobilize members against the Proposition 22 model, which Uber hopes to spread beyond California. The San Francisco-based company’s ride-share business was hard hit during the pandemic, but it has seen its food delivery and trucking units pick up speed. Uber has yet to post a profit.
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Another presidential hopeful arrested in Nicaragua

Another presidential candidate was arrested in Nicaragua on Saturday, police said — the seventh detained by Daniel Ortega’s government in the lead-up to elections on November 7. Noel Vidaurre was put under house arrest, accused of “undermining the sovereignty” of the country, in the latest of a series of arrests condemned by the United States and European Union. Long-term Nicaraguan leader Ortega is expected to seek a fourth consecutive presidential term in the elections. Ortega, 75, will be the ruling Sandinista National Liberation Front’s candidate for the presidential vote, Gustavo Porras, the speaker of Nicaragua’s assembly, confirmed last week. Seven opposition presidential hopefuls have been among 28 people detained by Ortega’s government. In a clampdown that began on June 2, Ortega’s government has rounded up political rivals in a series of house raids and night-time arrests on charges of threatening Nicaragua’s “sovereignty.” On Saturday, political commentator Jaime Arellano was also put under custody at his home. Julie Chung, the top US diplomat for Latin America, said on Twitter the two were “just the latest victims of a despicable campaign to criminalize peaceful opposition.” The charges are rooted in a law initiated by Ortega and approved by lawmakers in December that has been widely criticized as a means of freezing out challengers and silencing opponents ahead of the election. #photo1 The law bars “those who ask for, celebrate and applaud the imposition of sanctions against the Nicaraguan state” from seeking public office. – Increasing authoritarianism – Vidaurre, 66, was one potential candidate for the Alianza Ciudadanos por la Libertad group standing against Ortega. Presidential candidates will be able to register from July 28 to August 2. Ortega says the people rounded up by his forces are “criminals” seeking to overthrow him with US backing. But the clampdown has drawn international condemnation and fresh sanctions, with the United States branding the long-term leader a “dictator.” The European Union has said it was “inconceivable” the November elections “will be anything remotely approaching a democratic competition.” A firebrand Marxist in his younger days, Ortega and his Sandinistas toppled a corrupt autocratic regime to popular applause and seized control of the country in 1979. #photo2 He was elected president in 1984 and ruled until 1990 when he was beaten by Violeta Barrios de Chamorro, then returned to power in 2007. He has won two successive re-elections. Cristiana Chamorro, ex-president Chamorro’s daughter and widely seen as the favorite to beat Ortega this year, was the first to be targeted and is now under house arrest on government claims of money laundering. Ortega has been accused of increasing authoritarianism, especially following the brutal repression of anti-government demonstrations in 2018, which left more than 300 dead and thousands in exile, according to rights bodies. His vice president since 2017 is his wife, Rosario Murillo.
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Djokovic launches Olympic quest on first day of medal action in Tokyo

Novak Djokovic launches his quest for Olympic tennis glory on day one of the pandemic-delayed Tokyo Games on Saturday as Tour de France champion Tadej Pogacar goes for one of 11 gold medals on offer. Japanese tennis star Naomi Osaka lit the Olympic cauldron in Friday’s opening ceremony at an eerily empty stadium after the coronavirus forced organisers to ban spectators at all but a handful of venues. Games chiefs will be desperate to shift the focus to the sporting action from the pandemic, which forced a one-year postponement and has dominated the build-up to the start of the event. “Today is a moment of hope,” Thomas Bach, president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) said at the low-key opening ceremony, which unfolded in front of fewer than 1,000 VIPs and several thousand athletes. “Yes, it is very different from what all of us had imagined. But let us cherish this moment because finally we are all here together.” But the virus cast a fresh shadow when German Olympic chiefs announced cyclist Simon Geschke had tested positive for coronavirus, forcing him out of the men’s road race. And Covid-19 claimed the opening game of the Olympic beach volleyball tournament, with Czech pair Marketa Nausch Slukova and Barbora Hermannova forced to withdraw. More than 20 sports from archery to weightlifting start on Saturday. – Golden Grand Slam – Djokovic had cast doubt over whether he would participate because of the strict virus protocols and lack of crowds, but the possibility of the Golden Slam — winning all four majors and the Olympics in the same year — proved impossible to resist. “Without the key element of any sports events, the crowds, the fans, that energy, it’s different, but it is still the Olympic Games,” said the world number one. #photo1 Djokovic will face Bolivia’s Hugo Dellien in the opening round of a tournament missing half the men’s top 10 players, including 2008 Olympic champion Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer. The favourite and 2008 bronze medallist is hoping to emulate Steffi Graf’s 1988 feat of winning the Golden Slam after already snapping up the Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon this year. Women’s world number one Ashleigh Barty will make her Olympic debut for Australia alongside friend and compatriot Storm Sanders in the doubles. #photo2 Osaka, who plays in the singles on Sunday, has not played since her shock French Open pull-out over mental health concerns in late May but the 23-year-old said she was “excited to play” after taking time out. – Pogacar eyes gold – The first gold medal in Tokyo will come in the women’s 10-metre air rifle, which started before the road race cyclists set off from Musashinonomori Park. The demanding 234-kilometre (145-mile) route climaxes at the Fuji International Speedway racing circuit, with riders facing five climbs around Mount Fuji, the highest point in Japan at an altitude of 3,776 metres (12,388 feet). Slovenia’s Pogacar, who this month won his second successive Tour de France, headlines a star-studded peloton that includes 2016 champion Greg Van Avermaet and his Belgian team-mates Remco Evenepoel and Wout van Aert. Medals are also up for grabs in archery, fencing, judo, taekwondo and weightlifting. Swimming begins with heats in the men’s 400m individual medley, where Japan’s Daiya Seto is the favourite, before Sweden’s reigning champion Sarah Sjostrom, still recovering from a fractured right elbow, lines up in the women’s 100m butterfly. Britain’s Olympic and world champion Adam Peaty is the one to watch in the men’s 100m breaststroke, while Hungarian great Katinka Hosszu starts her fifth Games in the women’s 400m medley. The US women’s football team will look to bounce back from a humbling 3-0 loss to Sweden when they take on New Zealand in the second round of group games. Three-on-three basketball, played with a single hoop, makes its debut at the Olympics, which features four new sports — karate, skateboarding, sport climbing and surfing.
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Colombia authorizes export of dried cannabis flowers

Colombia gave the green light Friday to export dried cannabis flowers for use in medical products in addition to allowing manufacturers to produce goods such as textiles or food containing the plant. In a bold embrace of a booming global market, President Ivan Duque signed a decree ending “the ban on the export of dried flower” in an event organized at Clever Leaves, one of the 18 multinationals that grows medicinal cannabis in Colombia. Colombia “is coming in as a major player in the international market” for cannabis, Duque said. Colombia, the world’s top producer of cocaine and which has major cannabis production, legalized the production of medical marijuana in 2016. Until now, however, it was only allowed to export extracts of the plant, not its flowers. Authorities had feared that exportation of the flowers would allow them to be diverted to the illegal side of the trade. In a letter sent to Duque on July 14, the cannabis cultivation company Canamonte argued that a rule against exportation of the flowers prevented growers from “accessing the largest and most profitable market segment of the medical cannabis industry.” Flowers, which concentrate the plant’s medicinal and psychoactive compounds, “may represent 53 percent of this market worldwide,” according to Duque. The new authorization also allows for the manufacture of “non-psychoactive derivatives” from the plant. “We are no longer only in pharmaceutical use. We are opening the space to do much more in cosmetics… food and beverages” and even textiles, the president said. Fabian Currea, Canamonte’s director of cultivation, told AFP that ending the ban on exporting flowers “gives us the chance to explore new markets” and take advantage of the plant’s low production costs in Colombia. #photo1 The rule also “helps control the informal market for fraudulent products” based on marijuana that has had a recent boom in Colombia, Currea said. The government estimates that by 2024 the medical cannabis business could become a $64 billion industry. Other countries in the region such as Uruguay, Ecuador and Peru have also legalized the production of marijuana for medicinal purposes.
http://dlvr.it/S4KFYF

Iraqi officials discuss US military presence on Washington visit

Senior officials from Baghdad were in Washington Thursday for preliminary talks on the US military presence in Iraq, ahead of an upcoming meeting between leaders of the two countries, the Pentagon said in a statement. US President Joe Biden is set to host Iraq’s Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhemi at the White House on Monday, and Kadhemi is expected to push for a concrete timetable of foreign troop withdrawal. On Thursday Mara Karlin, Acting Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, hosted Iraqi National Security Advisor Qassem al-Araji and a military delegation, Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said in a statement. Both sides “reaffirmed the importance of the US-Iraq bilateral security relationship” as well as “the long-term US-Iraq security cooperation partnership and areas for cooperation beyond counterterrorism.” Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin joined the group to reaffirm his support for “the US-Iraq strategic partnership.” Talks are set to resume on Friday. Some 3,500 foreign troops are in Iraqi territory, including 2,500 Americans, who have been posted to help fight the Islamic State group since 2014. The implementation of their withdrawal could take years. Iraq, long an arena for bitter rivalry between the United States and Iran despite their shared enmity towards the IS, has seen growing numbers of rocket and drone attacks on US targets in recent months. Last week Iraq’s leader met with visiting US envoy Brett McGurk in Baghdad to discuss foreign troop withdrawal, his office in statement.
http://dlvr.it/S4Fr28

Markets await ‘clearer’ ECB language on stimulus path

The European Central Bank is expected to make it clear Thursday that monetary stimulus will keep flowing as concerns grow over economic risks from the latest, fast-spreading coronavirus variant. The ECB’s 25-member governing council is unlikely to tweak ultra-loose monetary policies at a meeting it holds every six weeks, observers say. But the Frankfurt institution is set to unveil a new-look “forward guidance” statement that will be scoured by investors for clues about future moves on interest rates and bond purchases. ECB President Christine Lagarde has described Thursday’s meeting as “important” and told Bloomberg News it would bring “interesting variations and changes” in how the bank communicates with the public. It comes just two weeks after the ECB announced a new inflation target of two percent for the eurozone, ditching the “close to, but below two percent” target that had been in place for 18 years. The bank’s revamped forward guidance is expected to be “shorter, clearer, crisper, and more straightforward” said Frederik Ducrozet of Pictet Wealth Management. The most obvious change would be the mention of the new inflation target, the result of an 18-month strategic review at the ECB — the first since 2003. Observers nonetheless expect the ECB to reiterate that interest rates will stay at record low and even negative levels until inflation is firmly on target. No tweaks are expected either to the ECB’s 1.85 trillion euro ($2.2 trillion) pandemic emergency bond-purchasing programme (PEPP), set to run until at least March 2022. The massive monthly bond buys are aimed at keeping borrowing costs low to encourage spending and investment in the 19-nation currency club. Although disagreement has emerged between ECB governors about when to start winding down the stimulus, “the recent surge in new Covid cases is likely to tip the balance of risks away from an early curtailment of the PEPP,” said Ducrozet. A solid economic rebound is underway across the eurozone thanks to mass vaccinations and the easing of pandemic-related restrictions. But the virus’ Delta variant is driving up cases again, forcing renewed restrictions in several countries. – ‘More patience’ – Lagarde has described the new two-percent inflation mark as a more “simple” and “symmetric” goal, meaning the bank will allow inflation to temporarily overshoot or undershoot before stepping in. She stressed however that the ECB was not going as far as the US Federal Reserve in offering more leeway for fluctuations. The Fed last year said it would allow inflation to rise above 2.0 percent “for some time” before raising interest rates, to boost employment. Eurozone inflation has remained low for years. #photo1 But the region has recently seen a surge in consumer prices, fuelled by one-off factors linked to the pandemic such as post-lockdown demand and shortages of semiconductors and timber. Former French finance minister Lagarde has repeatedly pledged to “look through” the spike, insisting that the eurozone still needs ample support to get through the pandemic crisis. “The new strategy, in our view, implies more patience but not necessarily immediate additional” measures, said Natixis economists in a client note. The ECB’s most recent estimates predict that inflation will reach 1.4 percent in 2023. Many analysts say the ECB is likely to hold off making policy changes until the next meeting in September, when the bank will have fresh inflation and growth estimates. Once the ECB does decide to start weaning markets off PEPP, it could ease the transition by increasing its pre-pandemic purchases of government and corporate bonds, some observers say. The pre-pandemic scheme is currently running at a pace of 20 billion euros a month.
http://dlvr.it/S4BPk9

Cómo ver en directo el vuelo espacial de Jeff Bezos: Horario y dónde verlo

ICYMI: Después de meses de anticipación y un solo billete extra que se subastó a un precio estratosférico, el primer viaje turístico de la nave espacial New Sheperd, construida por el grupo aeroespacial Blue Origin , propiedad de Jeff Bezos , está a punto de partir  por lo que os explicamos cómo ver en directo este … Continuar leyendo “Cómo ver en directo el vuelo espacial de Jeff Bezos: Horario y dónde verlo”
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Cómo ver en directo el vuelo espacial de Jeff Bezos: Horario y dónde verlo

Después de meses de anticipación y un solo billete extra que se subastó a un precio estratosférico, el primer viaje turístico de la nave espacial New Sheperd, construida por el grupo aeroespacial Blue Origin , propiedad de Jeff Bezos , está a punto de partir  por lo que os explicamos cómo ver en directo este … Continuar leyendo “Cómo ver en directo el vuelo espacial de Jeff Bezos: Horario y dónde verlo”
http://dlvr.it/S43NGb

Bucks focused as fans eye end to 50-year NBA title drought

Milwaukee Bucks supporters are buzzing about the possible end of a 50-year NBA title drought while star Giannis Antetokounmpo fights to keep his focus with a crown tantalyzingly near. The Bucks lead the best-of-seven NBA Finals 3-2 over Phoenix with game six Tuesday at Milwaukee, where 20,000 fans will fill the arena and 25,000 more will jam the “Deer District” outside to watch on huge videoscreens. “You can feel the excitement in the city. But we got to focus,” Greek forward Antetokounmpo said Monday. “We got to do our job first. Then they can do their job celebrating at the end.” The Bucks, in their first finals since 1974, would capture their first crown since 1971 by winning Tuesday. “The whole city is buzzing,” Bucks guard P.J. Tucker said. “Everybody wants it.” That just makes it tougher to stay in the moment for Antetokounmpo, who knows the Suns must win to force a seventh game Thursday at Phoenix. “You work so hard to be in that moment. It’s hard not to get ahead of yourself,” Antetokounmpo said. “But this is the time that you got to be the most disciplined. Don’t get too excited. Don’t get too pumped up for the game. None of that. “It’s hard. Sometimes you sleep and you’re dreaming about the game. But this is the time that we have to be disciplined. We cannot worry about having plans of celebrating. None of that, until it’s done.” Antetokounmpo won’t let himself ponder how it would feel to win the title in Milwaukee, determined to stay in the moment. “It would be nice to celebrate with the fans inside and outside and with our families, because this is something historical that’s happening in the city right now,” he said. “I can’t focus on celebrating. You get too ahead of yourself. We got to focus on right now, focus on each possession, compete as hard as possible and put ourselves in a position to be able to win.” Milwaukee guard Jrue Holiday wants the Bucks to play like they face elimination instead of celebration. “It’s about playing desperate, like our back is against the wall,” Bucks guard Jrue Holiday said. “The job is not done. “There would be no better place to do it than at home but we also have a team over there that doesn’t give up and plays well together.” The Bucks can become only the fifth team in NBA Finals history to win the title after losing the first two games, a fightback feat managed by such stars as LeBron James, Shaquille O’Neal and Bill Russell. “We don’t think about what’s at stake,” Bucks guard Khris Middleton said. “We’ve been doing a great job just blocking out distractions, focusing on the task at hand and what needs to be done.” – ‘Going to be dogfight’ – The Suns are focused as they face elimination for the first time in the playoffs. “It brings out a sense of desperation, a sense of urgency, a sense of collectiveness within your group, knowing what you’re battling,” Suns forward Jae Crowder said. “It’s going to be a dogfight. You have to leave it all out on the court.” The Suns were bolstered by rallying from a 16-point deficit to within a point with the ball in the dying seconds before losing game five at Phoenix. “It’s all in our hands we feel like, and the confidence is where it needs to be,” said Crowder. “We know what we have to do. We know the mental lapses we’ve been having are self-inflicted.” Suns coach Monty Williams has seen his team display resilience several times in the playoffs and knows it will help after dropping game five. “It’s certainly a point of focus moving forward,” Williams said. “We have a level of bounce-back on our team that allows for us to get the spirit back. “Those kinds of losses are hard, but if you’re going to do anything big, you have to overcome those kinds of ‘hards.’ We’ve talked about that, the deep playoff hurts that happen and the ability to bounce back from that. “We’re in the finals. We got here for a reason and our guys can glean confidence from that.”
http://dlvr.it/S4389v

England lifts Covid curbs as scientists warn of surge in cases

The British government on Monday lifted pandemic restrictions on daily life in England, scrapping all social distancing in a step slammed by scientists and opposition parties as a dangerous leap into the unknown. From midnight (2300 GMT Sunday), nightclubs were able to reopen and other indoor venues allowed to run at full capacity, while legal mandates covering the wearing of masks and working from home were scrapped. Prime Minister Boris Johnson — who is self-isolating after his health minister was infected — urged the public to remain prudent and for any laggards to join the two-thirds of UK adults who are now fully vaccinated. He defended the reopening — dubbed “freedom day” by some media — despite scientists’ grave misgivings after daily infection rates in Britain topped 50,000, behind only Indonesia and Brazil. “If we don’t do it now, then we’ll be opening up in the autumn, the winter months, when the virus has the advantage of the cold weather,” the prime minister said in a video message. This week’s start of summer school holidays offered a “precious firebreak”, he said. “If we don’t do it now, we’ve got to ask ourselves, when will we ever do it? So this is the right moment, but we’ve got to do it cautiously.” Jonathan Ashworth, the opposition Labour party’s health spokesman, said the government was being “reckless”, echoing experts who say the reopening endangers global health. #photo1 “We are against opening up without any precautions in place,” Ashworth told BBC television, attacking in particular the government’s plan on masks. After the success of the vaccination programme — which has now offered at least one dose to every adult in Britain — the government says any risks to hospital care are manageable. But professor Neil Ferguson from Imperial College London warned that Britain was on course for 100,000 cases a day, as the Delta variant of Covid runs out of control. “The real question is, do we get to double that or even higher? And that’s where the crystal ball starts to fail,” he told BBC television. “We could get to 2,000 hospitalisations a day, 200,000 cases a day, but it’s much less certain,” he said. – ‘Flashing red’ – Even if Britain is suffering far fewer deaths than in previous waves, such a caseload would still put severe pressure on the National Health Service (NHS) and risks seeding new variants, medics warned. Senior Conservative MP Jeremy Hunt, a former health secretary, said the government should learn from Israel and the Netherlands, which have been forced to reverse recent relaxations. “The warning light on the NHS dashboard is not flashing amber, it is flashing red,” he told BBC radio. #photo2 Scotland and Wales, whose devolved governments set their own health policy, said they would maintain the mandate on face coverings among other restrictions. But in England, all restrictions on social mixing were lifted. Sports stadia, cinemas and theatres can now return to full houses. Fully vaccinated residents returning from “amber list” destinations in Europe no longer have to quarantine — although in a last-minute policy shift, the government has kept the requirement in place for France. Also staying in place are requirements to self-isolate after a close contact, which have forced millions off work or school in recent weeks, leading to industry warnings of severe economic disruption. #photo3 After their contact with Health Secretary Sajid Javid, Johnson and finance minister Rishi Sunak initially tried to use an official testing pilot scheme that enables participants to escape full self-isolation. But after a public and political outcry, Downing Street staged a hurried U-turn. – ‘Epidemiological stupidity’ – Johnson, who nearly died of Covid last year, will remain at the prime minister’s country retreat at Chequers northwest of London until July 26. “We did look briefly at the idea of us taking part in the pilot scheme which allows people to test daily,” he said. “But I think it’s far more important that everybody sticks to the same rule.” #photo4 Others urged the government to stick to the cautious global consensus on tackling the pandemic, rather than acceding to the libertarian instincts of Johnson and other Conservatives. The government’s stated approach of lifting controls now before any winter surge of respiratory disease is marked by “moral emptiness and epidemiological stupidity”, said University of Bristol public health expert Gabriel Scally.
http://dlvr.it/S3zl4W

Who’s who on Blue Origin’s first crewed flight

Blue Origin’s maiden crewed flight on Tuesday involves four people who will cross the Karman line, which separates Earth’s atmosphere from space, for the very first time. He is a brief look at the quartet of soon-to-be astronauts. – The tycoon, Jeff Bezos – Jeff Bezos, 57, will leave behind the planet where he made his vast fortune for a few minutes on a spaceship built by the company he founded in 2000, when he was still merely a single-digit billionaire. Six years before that, he started a small online bookstore called Amazon.com out of his garage. Bezos’ net worth is today estimated at more than $200 billion. – The brother, Mark Bezos – Jeff Bezos has invited along his brother Mark, a financier who directs the Bezos Family Foundation and works as a volunteer firefighter. The pair are best friends, and Jeff shared the moment he surprised his sibling, six years his junior, by asking him to join the mission in a video that went viral on Instagram last month. – Trailblazer Wally Funk – At 82, barrier-breaking woman aviator Wally Funk is about to become the oldest ever astronaut, fulfilling a lifelong dream that was thwarted by the sexism of the early space era. Funk, who took her first flying lesson aged nine, excelled in the Mercury 13 project which was intended to train women for space using the same standards as male astronauts, but the program was eventually nixed. She nevertheless had an accomplished career in aviation, becoming the first female air safety investigator for the National Transportation Safety Board, and serving as chief pilot in several flight schools. – Dutch teen Oliver Daemen – Oliver Daemen, 18, is set to become the youngest astronaut. He holds a private pilot’s license and is a space enthusiast who will study physics in university this fall. #photo1 The Dutch teen is flying in place of the still anonymous winner of a $28 million public auction, who asked to pass this time because of “scheduling conflicts,” and will go on a later trip. Daemen’s ticket was paid for by his father, the CEO of a private equity firm, CNBC reported.
http://dlvr.it/S3xR85

Earth’s richest man Bezos to blast off into space

Jeff Bezos, the richest person in the world, is set to join the astronaut club Tuesday on the first crewed launch by Blue Origin, another key moment in a big month for the fledgling space tourism industry. The mission comes days after Virgin Galactic founder Richard Branson crossed the final frontier, narrowly besting the Amazon magnate in their battle of the billionaires. Blue Origin’s sights are, however, set higher: both literally in terms of the altitude to which its reusable New Shepard craft will ascend compared to Virgin’s spaceplane, but also in its future ambitions. Bezos founded Blue Origin back in 2000, with the goal of one day building floating space colonies with artificial gravity where millions of people will work and live. Today, the company is developing a heavy-lift orbital rocket called New Glenn and also a Moon lander it is hoping to contract to NASA under the Artemis program. “They’ve had 15 successful New Shepard uncrewed flights and we’ve been waiting years to see when they’re going to start flying people,” Laura Forczyk, founder of space consulting firm Astralytical, told AFP, calling it an “exciting time” for enthusiasts. New Shepard will blast off at 8:00 am Central Time (1300 GMT) on July 20 from a remote facility in the west Texas desert called Launch Site One, some 25 miles (40 kilometers) north of the nearest town, Van Horn. #photo1 The event will be live streamed on BlueOrigin.com beginning an hour and a half before. – Richest, oldest and youngest – Joining Bezos on the fully autonomous flight will be barrier-breaking female aviator Wally Funk, who at 82 is set to be the oldest ever astronaut, Dutch teenager Oliver Daemen, the company’s first paying customer, who will become the youngest astronaut. #photo2 Rounding out the four-member crew is Jeff Bezos’ brother Mark, a financier who directs the Bezos Family Foundation and works as a volunteer firefighter. The pair are best friends, and Jeff shared the moment he asked his younger sibling to join him in a viral video on Instagram last month. Notably absent is the mysterious winner of a $28 million auction for a seat, who had “scheduling conflicts” and will take part in a future flight, and has asked to remain anonymous, the company said. After lift-off, New Shepard will accelerate towards space at speeds exceeding Mach 3 using a liquid hydrogen/liquid oxygen engine with no carbon emissions. The capsule soon separates from its booster, and the astronauts unbuckle and begin to experience weightlessness. The crew will spend a few minutes beyond the Karman line — the internationally recognized boundary between Earth’s atmosphere and space, at 62 miles altitude (100 kilometers), as the spacecraft peaks at 65 miles high (106 kilometers). They will be able to admire the curvature of the planet — and the inky black of the rest of the universe — from large windows that comprise a third of the cabin’s surface area. The booster returns autonomously to a landing pad just north of its launch site, while the capsule freefalls back to Earth before deploying three giant parachutes, and finally a thruster, to land gently in the west Texas desert. – Bigger prizes – Beyond the first flight, relatively little is known about Blue Origin’s future tourism plans. The company has a history of secrecy, its existence only becoming public knowledge three years after its creation. It then pursued a policy of “self-imposed silence” until 2015. Unlike Virgin Galactic, Blue Origin hasn’t officially started selling tickets — Daemen won his spot through the auction process. The company wants two more flights this year, then “many more” in 2022, it told AFP. #photo3 Forczyk, the analyst, said it will all depend on the level of demand that is generated by these early flights, and how well the industry recovers from accidents “which there inevitably will be, because spaceflight is inherently risky.” Elon Musk’s SpaceX will enter the fray in September with an all-civilian orbital expedition on its Crew Dragon, and is tying up with another company, Axiom, for visits to the International Space Station. Beyond tourism, Blue Origin would like to supplant SpaceX as NASA’s leading private sector partner, and sees New Shepard as “sort of the stepping stone and also the way to make money along the way for the greater ambition,” said Forczyk.
http://dlvr.it/S3xR7R

Aena gana todos los pleitos a los pequeños comercios, pero los pierde con las grandes cadenas

ICYMI: Aena está ganando casi todos los pleitos a los pequeños locales comerciales de los aeropuertos que pidieron medidas cautelares para que no se ejecuten los avales por no haber pagado el alquiler mínimo garantizado de 2020. Sin embargo, no está corriendo la misma suerte con las grandes multinacionales propietarias de cadenas de tiendas o restaurantes, … Continuar leyendo “Aena gana todos los pleitos a los pequeños comercios, pero los pierde con las grandes cadenas”
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Del profit warning a los aranceles de EEUU: ¿Siemens Gamesa seguirá cayendo en Bolsa?

ICYMI: El fabricante de aerogeneradores acaba de informar de su segunda reducción de previsiones, conocido como profit warnign, en a penas un año y medio y lo ha hecho en la misma semana en la que EEUU ha confirmado los aranceles para las torres eólicas fabricadas en España. Con una caída acumulada ya del 32% desde … Continuar leyendo “Del profit warning a los aranceles de EEUU: ¿Siemens Gamesa seguirá cayendo en Bolsa?”
http://dlvr.it/S3tmQn

La Audiencia de Almería anula una sentencia por «pérdida de imparcialidad» de la juez y ordena que se repita el juicio

ICYMI: La Audiencia Provincial de Almería, en funciones de apelación, ha anulado una sentencia del Juzgado de lo Penal 5 de esa ciudad por «pérdida de la debida imparcialidad» de la juez titular. Y ordena que se repita el juicio bajo la Presidencia de otro magistrado diferente al de la primera instancia. Así lo acuerda el […]
http://dlvr.it/S3tSy9

El dictador Maduro encierra al opositor Freddy Guevara en la cárcel del Sebin acusado de terrorismo

ICYMI: La brutal dictadura de Maduro aprovecha la represión en Cuba para continuar con su plan para amedrentar y silenciar a la oposición venezolana. La última víctima de la narcodictadura ha sido Freddy Guevara, diputado de la Asamblea Nacional por la Alternativa Democrática, secuestrado el mismo día que fuerzas del régimen intentaron secuestrar al presidente encargado … Continuar leyendo “El dictador Maduro encierra al opositor Freddy Guevara en la cárcel del Sebin acusado de terrorismo”
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Aena gana todos los pleitos a los pequeños comercios, pero los pierde con las grandes cadenas

Aena está ganando casi todos los pleitos a los pequeños locales comerciales de los aeropuertos que pidieron medidas cautelares para que no se ejecuten los avales por no haber pagado el alquiler mínimo garantizado de 2020. Sin embargo, no está corriendo la misma suerte con las grandes multinacionales propietarias de cadenas de tiendas o restaurantes, … Continuar leyendo “Aena gana todos los pleitos a los pequeños comercios, pero los pierde con las grandes cadenas”
http://dlvr.it/S3q9SY

Del profit warning a los aranceles de EEUU: ¿Siemens Gamesa seguirá cayendo en Bolsa?

El fabricante de aerogeneradores acaba de informar de su segunda reducción de previsiones, conocido como profit warnign, en a penas un año y medio y lo ha hecho en la misma semana en la que EEUU ha confirmado los aranceles para las torres eólicas fabricadas en España. Con una caída acumulada ya del 32% desde … Continuar leyendo “Del profit warning a los aranceles de EEUU: ¿Siemens Gamesa seguirá cayendo en Bolsa?”
http://dlvr.it/S3q9P9

La Audiencia de Almería anula una sentencia por «pérdida de imparcialidad» de la juez y ordena que se repita el juicio

La Audiencia Provincial de Almería, en funciones de apelación, ha anulado una sentencia del Juzgado de lo Penal 5 de esa ciudad por «pérdida de la debida imparcialidad» de la juez titular. Y ordena que se repita el juicio bajo la Presidencia de otro magistrado diferente al de la primera instancia. Así lo acuerda el […]
http://dlvr.it/S3prs1

El dictador Maduro encierra al opositor Freddy Guevara en la cárcel del Sebin acusado de terrorismo

La brutal dictadura de Maduro aprovecha la represión en Cuba para continuar con su plan para amedrentar y silenciar a la oposición venezolana. La última víctima de la narcodictadura ha sido Freddy Guevara, diputado de la Asamblea Nacional por la Alternativa Democrática, secuestrado el mismo día que fuerzas del régimen intentaron secuestrar al presidente encargado … Continuar leyendo “El dictador Maduro encierra al opositor Freddy Guevara en la cárcel del Sebin acusado de terrorismo”
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El plan de recuperación para el automóvil del Gobierno no ayuda a CIE y Gestamp en Bolsa

ICYMI: El anunciado PERTE del automóvil por el Gobierno no tendrá impacto en las cotizaciones de CIE Automotive y Gestamp, las únicas empresas de este sector en la Bolsa española. Sin embargo, ambos valores intentan poner en precio los cambios en el sector y las mejores previsiones en una recuperación marcada por la crisis de los … Continuar leyendo “El plan de recuperación para el automóvil del Gobierno no ayuda a CIE y Gestamp en Bolsa”
http://dlvr.it/S3lS73

Disuelto por la Policía Nacional un botellón con 140 jóvenes sin mascarilla en El Postiguet

ICYMI: Pese a que el Régimen Sancionador Covid considera el botellón como una falta grave con multas de hasta 30.000 euros, esta práctica sigue de plena vigencia entre los jóvenes y la alicantina playa de El Postiguet fue anoche testigo de otro incidente. La Policía Nacional disolvió un botellón con más de un centenar de jóvenes que se encontraban consumiendo bebidas alcohólicas, sin llevar mascarilla y sin guardar distancia de seguridad entre ellos. La intervención se saldó con más de 20 actas de sanción por incumplir la normativa vigente de medidas de prevención ante la Covid-19. La mayoría de actas fueron por consumo de alcohol en la vía pública y desobediencia leve, según ha informado la Policía. Muchos de los participantes en el botellón intentaron huir pero algunos fueron interceptados por las patrullas. Los hechos han ocurrido en la madrugada de este martes cuando varias dotaciones de Policía Nacional de Alicante tuvieron que intervenir en la playa del Postiguet ante una aglomeración de entre 100 y 140 jóvenes que se encontraban de botellón sin respetar las medidas sanitarias
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Korda sister act, defending champions lead LPGA invitational

World number one Nelly Korda and sister Jessica fired a five-under-par 65 to join a four-way tie at the top of the first-round leaderboard at the LPGA’s Great Lakes Bay Invitational team tournament on Wednesday. Nelly Korda is chasing a fourth title this season after individual wins at the Gainbridge LPGA, Meijer LPGA Classic and the Women’s PGA Championship. The competition in Midland, Michigan, offers elder sister Jessica Korda a chance for a second victory of 2021 after her win at the Tournament of Champions in Lake Buena Vista, Florida in January. The tournament, which was launched in 2019 but cancelled last year due to the pandemic, follows an alternate shot or foursome format in the first and third rounds and better ball, or fourball, in the second and final round. Joining the Kordas at the top of the leaderboard were 2019 defending champions Cydney Clanton of the United States and partner Jasmine Suwannapura of Thailand, also on five under. Clanton said she and Suwannapura bring out the best in each other. “We played off each other really well,” Clanton said. “Our putters were hot today, we made a lot of really clutch putts which I think just helped with momentum moving forward. “We try not to apologize for anything because you’re going to hit bad shots and it’s like OK, well let’s just figure out what to do next…I think we blended really well today.” India’s Aditi Ashok and Thailand’s Pajaree Anannarukam were also on five under along with US duo Jillian Hollis and Lauren Stephenson. Thai duo Wichanee Meechai and Pavarisa Yoktuan were one off the lead on four under, tied for second with Spain’s Carlota Ciganda and England’s Mel Reid. Two all South-Korean pairings — Park In-bee and Ryu So-yeon, and Hur Mi-jung with Lee6 Jeong-eun, were on three under alongside Thai sisters Ariya and Moriya Jutanugarn.
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Disuelto por la Policía Nacional un botellón con 140 jóvenes sin mascarilla en El Postiguet

Pese a que el Régimen Sancionador Covid considera el botellón como una falta grave con multas de hasta 30.000 euros, esta práctica sigue de plena vigencia entre los jóvenes y la alicantina playa de El Postiguet fue anoche testigo de otro incidente. La Policía Nacional disolvió un botellón con más de un centenar de jóvenes que se encontraban consumiendo bebidas alcohólicas, sin llevar mascarilla y sin guardar distancia de seguridad entre ellos. La intervención se saldó con más de 20 actas de sanción por incumplir la normativa vigente de medidas de prevención ante la Covid-19. La mayoría de actas fueron por consumo de alcohol en la vía pública y desobediencia leve, según ha informado la Policía. Muchos de los participantes en el botellón intentaron huir pero algunos fueron interceptados por las patrullas. Los hechos han ocurrido en la madrugada de este martes cuando varias dotaciones de Policía Nacional de Alicante tuvieron que intervenir en la playa del Postiguet ante una aglomeración de entre 100 y 140 jóvenes que se encontraban de botellón sin respetar las medidas sanitarias
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El plan de recuperación para el automóvil del Gobierno no ayuda a CIE y Gestamp en Bolsa

El anunciado PERTE del automóvil por el Gobierno no tendrá impacto en las cotizaciones de CIE Automotive y Gestamp, las únicas empresas de este sector en la Bolsa española. Sin embargo, ambos valores intentan poner en precio los cambios en el sector y las mejores previsiones en una recuperación marcada por la crisis de los … Continuar leyendo “El plan de recuperación para el automóvil del Gobierno no ayuda a CIE y Gestamp en Bolsa”
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US to seek global rules on AI misuse, Blinken says

The United States will seek global rules on how to prevent misuse of artificial intelligence, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Tuesday, as he renewed warnings against Russia over hacking. Speaking at a conference on emerging technologies, the top US diplomat voiced alarm that a growing number of authoritarian states led by China are using the internet as well as new technologies to curb dissent and exert greater control. “So the world is at a tipping point. And our choice is between giving up on our vision for the internet — or stepping up the fight. We will step up the fight,” Blinken said. “We’ll defend the principles of an open, secure, reliable and interoperable internet across the full spectrum of our engagement — from trade agreements to governance to hardware.” His remarks come amid mounting concern about hacking for ransom, including an attack that shut down a major fuel pipeline in the United States. US officials say many such attacks come from Russia, although the extent of ties with the government is murky. President Joe Biden said he warned his counterpart Vladimir Putin in a telephone call on Friday that the United States would take action — a message reiterated by Blinken. “Our message is clear: countries that harbor cyber criminals have a responsibility to take action –- or we will.” Blinken said that the United States will deploy similar measures, using diplomatic as well as security leverage, on artificial intelligence and other emerging technologies. “If they’re going to be used as part of our national defense, we want the world to have a shared understanding of how to do that responsibly — in the same way that we’ve hammered out rules for how to use conventional and nuclear weapons,” Blinken said. “That’s how we reduce the risk of proliferation and prevent escalation or unintended incidents.” Blinken said he was had ordered recommendations on how the State Department can focus better on technology, saying he was determined to leave his successor “with strong capabilities in cyber and tech diplomacy.”
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Widow of Haiti’s slain leader speaks as political intrigue swirls

The widow of slain Haitian leader Jovenel Moise, who was critically wounded in the attack that claimed his life, on Saturday issued her first public remarks since the assault, calling on the nation not to “lose its way.” Martine Moise’s comments came three days after she was airlifted to a Miami hospital for treatment of grave wounds suffered early Wednesday when gunmen stormed the family home in the Haitian capital Port-au-Prince. They also come as the impoverished Caribbean nation reels from the slaying of its leader, with no clear succession plan on the horizon. “I am alive, thanks to God,” Martine Moise said in an audio message in Creole that was posted on her official Twitter account, and verified as authentic to AFP by Haiti’s minister of culture and communications, Pradel Henriquez. “In the blink of an eye, the mercenaries entered my home and riddled my husband with bullets … without even giving him a chance to say a word,” she said. According to Haitian authorities, a hit squad of 28 men — 26 Colombians, many of them retired soldiers, and two Haitian-Americans — burst in and opened fire on the couple in their home. So far, 17 have been arrested, and at least three were killed. A handful remain at large, police say. But no motive has been made public, and questions are swirling about who might have masterminded the audacious assassination. Martine Moise pointed at a variety of possible reasons: saying the killers could have been sent by people who might have been displeased with her husband’s plans to provide “roads, water and electricity, a (constitutional) referendum and elections set for the end of the year.” She suggested that perhaps those behind the killing “do not want to see a transition in the country.” “I am crying, it is true, but we cannot let the country lose its way,” she said. “We cannot let his blood… have been spilled in vain.” – No clear path forward – Moise’s assassination has plunged already troubled Haiti — the poorest country in the Americas — into chaos. #photo1 Amid deep uncertainty over its political future, the international community has called on the impoverished Caribbean country to go ahead with presidential and legislative elections slated for later this year. As for a transition of power, interim Prime Minister Claude Joseph says he is still in charge. But a group of senators, with the backing of several opposition groups, have endorsed a plan to install Senate leader Joseph Lambert as the provisional president, with Ariel Henry — who had been appointed by Moise earlier this week — as the new prime minister. It is not clear how Lambert could move ahead with his plan. And for now, Joseph seems to have the police and other security forces on his side. “The constitution is clear: I have to organize elections and actually pass the power to someone else who is elected,” Joseph said in an interview broadcast Saturday on CNN. US officials say Port-au-Prince has asked Washington for “security and investigative assistance,” and FBI agents have already been dispatched but a Haitian minister said troops were also requested. A senior US administration official has told US media that troops are off the table. In Port-au-Prince, businesses slowly reopened and people returned to the streets of the capital on Saturday. But at the US embassy in the suburbs, more than 200 people worried about the country’s uncertain future gathered in hopes of asking for political asylum, their passports and other documents in hand, though generally, people must be on US soil to make such a request. #photo2 “If the president can be assassinated here, I — a simple citizen — won’t be spared. I have to ask for asylum, to seek a better life elsewhere,” Louis Limage told AFP outside the guarded building. As for Martine Moise, she promised to engage with Haitians via Facebook “in the near future.” “I will not abandon you,” she said.
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Cuba approves emergency use of home-grown Covid vaccine, Latin America’s first

Cuba on Friday approved its home-grown Abdala vaccine for emergency use, the first Latin American coronavirus jab to reach this stage and a possible lifeline for a region trying to battle a killer pandemic with modest means. The country’s CECMED health regulator gave the go-ahead after Abdala’s makers last month announced the vaccine candidate was more than 92 percent effective at preventing Covid-19 disease after three doses. Cuba is working on five coronavirus vaccines, and in May started immunizing its population using two of them — Abdala and Soberana 2 — even before they received approval. By this week, 6.8 million of Cuba’s 11.2 million people have received at least one dose of either vaccine, while 1.6 million have the required three doses. The country has not bought or sought vaccines from elsewhere, and aims to immunize its population before the end of the year. In June, the state-run BioCubaFarma laboratory said Abdala “shows efficacy of 92.28 percent in its three-dose scheme.” The World Health Organization has set a 50-percent efficacy threshold for coronavirus vaccines to qualify for approved global roll-out, though individual countries can green-light jabs without the UN stamp for domestic use. The CECMED said approval of Abdala was based on its analysis that it met requirements for “quality, safety and effectiveness.” And Aica Laboratories, where the vaccine is produced, said there had been “a rigorous process of evaluation of the dossier and… inspections of the plants involved.” Under American sanctions, communist Cuba has a long tradition of making its own vaccines, dating back to the 1980s. Nearly 80 percent of its inoculations are produced locally. – Soberana 2 next? – On Thursday, the Finlay Institute which makes Soberana 2 said it, too, showed efficacy exceeding 91 percent after three doses. #photo1 Eduardo Martinez, president of BioCubaFarma, said Soberana 2 will be submitted to the regulatory authority in the coming days for its own emergency approval. Cuba has recorded more than 224,000 Covid-19 cases among its population of 11.2 million, and some 1,450 deaths. It has seen a recent spike in infections, with a new daily infection record reported Friday. On Wednesday, authorities sent an urgent deployment of doctors and medical equipment to the province of Matanzas — where foreign tourists have continued to visit — after hospitals there reached capacity. A local company has been commissioned to make more hospital beds for Matanzas and there is a social media campaign to raise donations. Elsewhere in Latin America, the situation remains worrying. Brazil has the world’s second-highest death toll — more than 530,000. Colombia recently crossed the grim threshold of 100,000 coronavirus deaths and Peru is now the country with the world’s highest death toll per capita. Mexico, whose recorded death toll of 234,000 is the fourth-highest in the world, said Tuesday it is battling a fresh pandemic wave. A locally produced vaccine offers a glimpse of hope for Latin America and the Caribbean, a region which the UN says has fully vaccinated just over 13.6 percent of its population compared to 34.9 percent in the European Union and 46.3 percent in North America. The region comprises a third of the world’s coronavirus death toll despite representing just 8.4 percent of the global population. Venezuela has signed a contract to purchase 12 million doses of Abdala and has already started using the Cuban jab in its vaccination campaign. Argentina’s health minister visited the island in May to discuss a possible vaccine deal and Mexico has expressed interest. There is no requirement for the WHO to approve such bilateral vaccine deals. Abdala and Soberana 2 are recombinant protein vaccines that work by recreating the “spikes” on the surface of the coronavirus and introducing it to the body, training the immune system to recognize intruders and fight back in case of a real infection. Recombinant vaccines, unlike some coronavirus shots already in use, do not need extreme refrigeration.
http://dlvr.it/S3QZ2b

El OK y KO del sábado, 10 de julio de 2021

OK: Isabel Díaz AyusoPor decirle a Sánchez en Moncloa que no aceptará más impuestos a los madrileños.OK: Tobías Martínez GimenoPorque Cellnex ha cerrado la compra de la polaca Polkomtel.OK: Mark CavendishPor igualar el récord de victorias en el Tour de Merckx: 34.OK: Gonzalo Ortiz ZevallosPor querellarse contra el presidente de Perú por fraude electoral.KO: Carmen … Continuar leyendo “El OK y KO del sábado, 10 de julio de 2021”
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