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Bright lights, big problems: hardship hits career dreams of Pacific youth

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Papua New Guinea is particularly hard hit, with a huge young demographic that faces few prospects without sufficient skills and education

Jim Pia is awake at five each morning to catch the first bus into the city.

Daily, the 20-year-old fights for a space on the bus from the Bushwara settlement, on the outskirts of Port Moresby, to ensure he is on time to secure a place within the capital’s Gordons Market.

Continue reading…Papua New Guinea is particularly hard hit, with a huge young demographic that faces few prospects without sufficient skills and educationJim Pia is awake at five each morning to catch the first bus into the city.Daily, the 20-year-old fights for a space on the bus from the Bushwara settlement, on the outskirts of Port Moresby, to ensure he is on time to secure a place within the capital’s Gordons Market. Continue reading…

Trump twists stats on police brutality: ‘more white people’ are killed

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In fact, studies have found that Black Americans are up to 3.5 times as likely to be killed by law enforcement

Donald Trump, in an interview aired Tuesday, pivoted when asked a question about the police killing of George Floyd, a Black American, which has sparked major national protests, to point out that white people also get killed by law enforcement in the US.

In a controversial moment that had echoes of his comments on white nationalist marchers and counter-protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia, in 2017, when he said there were “fine people on both sides”, the president did not take the opportunity to talk about the problem of racially-motivated police brutality on Tuesday but switched to talk about white victims.

Continue reading…In fact, studies have found that Black Americans are up to 3.5 times as likely to be killed by law enforcementDonald Trump, in an interview aired Tuesday, pivoted when asked a question about the police killing of George Floyd, a Black American, which has sparked major national protests, to point out that white people also get killed by law enforcement in the US.In a controversial moment that had echoes of his comments on white nationalist marchers and counter-protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia, in 2017, when he said there were “fine people on both sides”, the president did not take the opportunity to talk about the problem of racially-motivated police brutality on Tuesday but switched to talk about white victims. Continue reading…

Fauci warns young of Covid-19 risks and says crisis could match 1918 flu

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Infectious disease expert says young people socializing are ‘inadvertently part of the problem’

Top US public health expert Anthony Fauci warned on Tuesday that the global coronavirus outbreak could be as bad as the 1918 flu pandemic, calling that catastrophe “the mother of all pandemics”, which killed more than 50 million people worldwide.

Facing increasing attacks from Donald Trump and White House officials, Fauci spoke to Georgetown University students in Washington on Tuesday about the coronavirus pandemic and its risks to young people.

Continue reading…Infectious disease expert says young people socializing are ‘inadvertently part of the problem’Top US public health expert Anthony Fauci warned on Tuesday that the global coronavirus outbreak could be as bad as the 1918 flu pandemic, calling that catastrophe “the mother of all pandemics”, which killed more than 50 million people worldwide.Facing increasing attacks from Donald Trump and White House officials, Fauci spoke to Georgetown University students in Washington on Tuesday about the coronavirus pandemic and its risks to young people. Continue reading…

Countdown to a Bitter Battle Over the Water of the Nile?

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TUNIS, Jul 14 (IPS) – In the 1990s, after the collapse of the USSR, the idea that water would drive the wars of the future took hold among analysts and the media. Three decades later and that grim prospect has, fortunately, not yet materialised, and international cooperation, despite its ups and downs, is the norm in the management of transboundary waters.

Read the full story, “Countdown to a Bitter Battle Over the Water of the Nile?”, on globalissues.org

TUNIS, Jul 14 (IPS) – In the 1990s, after the collapse of the USSR, the idea that water would drive the wars of the future took hold among analysts and the media. Three decades later and that grim prospect has, fortunately, not yet materialised, and international cooperation, despite its ups and downs, is the norm in the management of transboundary waters.Read the full story, “Countdown to a Bitter Battle Over the Water of the Nile?”, on globalissues.org →

Moderna’s Coronavirus Vaccine Looks Promising In Its First Tests

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In a study published July 14 in the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers report on the results of the first COVID-19 vaccine to be tested in people. The trial, which involved 45 healthy volunteers, was designed to test the safety of the vaccine, but results offer early hints of its effectiveness.

Moderna Therapeutics, the Mass.-based biotech firm that developed the vaccine along with researchers from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, first reported the results in a press release on May 18. The NEJM paper formally describes those results.

The 45 participants, aged 18 to 55 years, were enrolled at either the Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute in Seattle or at Emory University in Atlanta; the first volunteer was vaccinated on March 16, just two months after the genetic sequence of the SARS-CoV-2 virus was published. All of the volunteers received one of three levels of doses of the vaccine, which were given in two injections about a month apart.

There were no serious side effects associated with the vaccine at any of the dosing levels, though more than half of the study participants who received the vaccine experienced minor events including fatigue, headache, chills, and pain at the injection site. All of the participants produced antibodies to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. And when researchers tested these antibodies against a lab version of SARS-CoV-2, they found these antibodies neutralized the virus as effectively as antibodies taken from people who were naturally infected with SARS-CoV-2 and recovered. They also tested the antibodies taken from a smaller group of study participants against actual samples of SARS-CoV-2 and found their ability to neutralize virus was at least equivalent to that found in people who had recovered from infection.

In both cases, the responses were stronger after the second shot, which experts expected. “We saw robust responses after the second vaccination,” says Dr. Lisa Jackson, lead author of the NEJM study. “It seems that two doses are needed, which is what is expected from this type of vaccine and from a vaccine against an emerging virus that hasn’t been present in the population. The immune system needs to be set up by the first dose to then respond more vigorously to the second one.”

The preventative treatment relies on a new technology that hasn’t yet yielded an approved vaccine for an infectious disease. Using mRNA from the SARS-CoV-2 virus, the shot uses the body’s own cells to mimic the process of a natural infection, by producing viral proteins that are recognized by the immune system.

How long the vaccine-induced immune response lasts to protect against COVID-19 isn’t clear yet; the 45 participants in this study will be monitored for a year to find out. In the meanwhile, Moderna is already planning for its phase 2 study of the vaccine, which will include 300 people—half placed in a placebo group. The study will continue to evaluate safety and efficacy of the vaccine, as well as narrow down the right dose for the final phase of testing. Given the urgent need for a vaccine, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has also already authorized that phase 3 study involving 30,000 people, which will also compare the efficacy of the actual vaccine against a placebo.

Researchers report on the first COVID-19 vaccine to enter human trials

Trump targets China with executive order ending Hong Kong’s special status

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President says city will now be treated same as mainland in move punishing Beijing for ‘aggressive actions’ over new security laws

President Donald Trump on Tuesday ordered an end to Hong Kong’s special status under US law to punish China for what he called “aggressive actions” against the former British colony.

Citing China’s decision to enact a new national security law for Hong Kong, Trump said he signed an executive order that will end the preferential economic treatment Hong Kong has received for years – “no special privileges, no special economic treatment and no export of sensitive technologies,” he told a news conference.

Continue reading…President says city will now be treated same as mainland in move punishing Beijing for ‘aggressive actions’ over new security lawsPresident Donald Trump on Tuesday ordered an end to Hong Kong’s special status under US law to punish China for what he called “aggressive actions” against the former British colony.Citing China’s decision to enact a new national security law for Hong Kong, Trump said he signed an executive order that will end the preferential economic treatment Hong Kong has received for years – “no special privileges, no special economic treatment and no export of sensitive technologies,” he told a news conference. Continue reading…

Coronavirus Australia live update: NSW rules out lockdown over Crossroads cluster as Victoria hospital numbers grow – live news

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Another shutdown ‘is an option we don’t want to take in NSW’, premier Gladys Berejiklian says as cases linked to Sydney pub reach 30. Follow the latest news and updates

12.21am BST

Our new global coronavirus blog is live, you can follow that coverage here.

12.19am BST

He was also asked about comments Alan Jones made on Sky News last night, which I won’t link to here but which repeat the song that Jones has been singing all pandemic long: the majority of people recover from the virus therefore we should not be locked down.

Morrison said:

Well you have got to get the balance right on this. It is true that the vast majority of people who do contract coronavirus recover, that is the case.

Your protection against the virus is not shutting things down all the time. You have to do that sometimes, as is the case in Victoria. The protection against the virus is on social distancing, it’s downloading the app, it’s washing your hands, I note the advice in Victoria around wearing face masks…

You don’t go to the extremes on any of this stuff you just keep going down the middle and thats where you make the most ground.

You don’t just shut the whole country down because that is not sustainable…The right strategy is the one that we have all together been pursuing as a country.

Continue reading…Another shutdown ‘is an option we don’t want to take in NSW’, premier Gladys Berejiklian says as cases linked to Sydney pub reach 30. Follow the latest news and updatesNSW won’t shut down despite risks of large venuesFollow live news from around the worldSign up for Guardian Australia’s coronavirus email 12.21am BSTOur new global coronavirus blog is live, you can follow that coverage here. 12.19am BSTHe was also asked about comments Alan Jones made on Sky News last night, which I won’t link to here but which repeat the song that Jones has been singing all pandemic long: the majority of people recover from the virus therefore we should not be locked down.Morrison said:Well you have got to get the balance right on this. It is true that the vast majority of people who do contract coronavirus recover, that is the case.Your protection against the virus is not shutting things down all the time. You have to do that sometimes, as is the case in Victoria. The protection against the virus is on social distancing, it’s downloading the app, it’s washing your hands, I note the advice in Victoria around wearing face masks…You don’t go to the extremes on any of this stuff you just keep going down the middle and thats where you make the most ground.You don’t just shut the whole country down because that is not sustainable…The right strategy is the one that we have all together been pursuing as a country. Continue reading…

Coronavirus live news: India Covid-19 cases top 900,000 as 133m re-enter lockdown

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Restrictions imposed on Indian city of Bangalore and state of Bihar; Venezuela’s capital Caracas to go into a strict lockdown on Wednesday; Face masks mandatory in France; Follow the latest updates

12.17am BST

Hello and welcome to today’s live coverage of the coronavirus pandemic.

I’m Helen Sullivan and I’ll be bringing you the latest from the next few hours. As always, we love to hear from you. Get in touch on Twitter @helenrsullivan or email: helen.sullivan@theguardian.com.

Continue reading…Restrictions imposed on Indian city of Bangalore and state of Bihar; Venezuela’s capital Caracas to go into a strict lockdown on Wednesday; Face masks mandatory in France; Follow the latest updatesCities worldwide reimpose lockdowns as Covid-19 cases surgeFrance: baby boy infected with coronavirus in wombDoes coronavirus spread in the air and how do we stay safe?Revealed: the inside story of Europe’s divided coronavirus response 12.17am BSTHello and welcome to today’s live coverage of the coronavirus pandemic. I’m Helen Sullivan and I’ll be bringing you the latest from the next few hours. As always, we love to hear from you. Get in touch on Twitter @helenrsullivan or email: helen.sullivan@theguardian.com. Continue reading…

‘We raise hope’: Young nurse fights on Covid-19 frontlines in Iraq’s war-ravaged Mosul

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Once a bustling city devastated during its liberation from Islamic State militants, Mosul is engaged in another life-and-death struggle – against Covid-19. Nurse Soror al-Husseini has told Ruptly about life on this new frontline.

The nature of her job is to focus on the patient’s “positive psychological state,” to give them the proper medication and to meet their needs where possible, Soror, a 23-year-old woman says.

She works in eastern Mosul’s al-Shifa hospital. The place was once the main Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) headquarters during the terrorist occupation of the city.


©  Ruptly

The building was severely damaged during the nine-month-long battle waged by the Iraqi forces with the support of the US-led coalition to wrench the city from the hands of jihadist extremists. Now, its renovated rooms and hall once again take in patients in need of medical assistance. 

The hospital now wages another battle as its quarantine wing is filled with men, women and children affected by the dreaded novel coronavirus that has already claimed hundreds of thousands of lives around the world. Saving lives in Mosul has once again become an urgent – if uneasy – task. 

Yet, Soror and her colleagues do everything they can to help despite the fact that a cure for the deadly disease has not yet been found. “Together with my colleagues, we work on the patient’s positive psychological state to [help them] overcome the disease with a strong immunity system,” the nurse told RT’s Ruptly video news agency.


©  Ruptly

Not all Mosul hospitals can boast being able to provide even such a remedy. The US-led coalition bombings between 2016 and 2017 severely damaged nine out of the city’s 13 hospitals and the recovery has been slow and painful. After the liberation, the city, reduced to ash, virtually laid in ruins for years. Even in 2019, most of the damaged health care facilities were unable to offer any kind of medical assistance.

Although young, Soror has already gone through a traumatic experience once before. She was involved in the taxing and dangerous job of clearing dead bodies from the streets following the city’s “liberation.” Thousands of dead bodies scattered around the Mosul ruins lay buried in rubble for years as a grim reminder of a battle that took the lives of more than 10,000 civilians. 

Also on rt.com

A Woman walks next to ruins in the Old City of Mosul © Reuters / Khalid al-Mousily
‘We are like the living dead’: Citizens of Mosul in despair 1.5 years after liberation from ISIS

“During almost six months we recovered more than 1,000 bodies,” the nurse recalls. Despite the “big difference” between her previous work and her current occupation, Soror admits that in ways the two jobs share depressing similarities.

“Here death risk occurs, and there too. The fatigue is the same here and there.”

Yet, despite all the dangers and long odds of beating the disease in a city that is still reeling from the previous catastrophe that befell it, Soror manages not only to keep her hopes up, but also to share her positivity with those fighting for their lives now on the ruins of the past battles. 

“We raised hope there. We had hope and wanted to create hope for people,” she said. “I will [inspire] hope and want to be a source of hope [for] people that they will survive.”


©  Ruptly

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Once a bustling city devastated during its liberation from Islamic State militants, Mosul is engaged in another life-and-death struggle – against Covid-19. Nurse Soror al-Husseini has told Ruptly about life on this new frontline. Read Full Article at RT.com