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Brazil COVID inquiry staffers urge postponing Copa America | Coronavirus pandemic News



Senate commission staffers are latest to raise concerns about Brazil hosting tournament amid COVID-19 pandemic.

Staff members of a Brazilian Senate inquiry into the country’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic have called for the upcoming Copa America football tournament to be postponed, citing low vaccination rates and risks of spreading the virus.

In a letter to the country’s football team on Sunday, the Senate commission staffers said only 10.77 percent of the population had received first doses of coronavirus vaccines as of Friday across Brazil.

The Senate commission in late April launched its investigation into far-right President Jair Bolsonaro’s handling of the pandemic, which has killed more than 472,000 people across the South American nation, according to Johns Hopkins University data.

“Brazil does not offer sanitary security for holding an international tournament of this magnitude. In addition to transmitting a false sense of security and normality, opposite to the reality that Brazilians are living, it would encourage agglomerations of people and set a bad example,” the staffers said in their letter.

“We are not against Copa America in Brazil or anywhere else. But we believe the tournament can wait until the country is ready to host it.”

The staff members are the latest to raise concerns about plans to hold the international tournament in Brazil, as vaccination rates remain low and public health experts have warned about a potential new wave of infections.

Brazil was unexpectedly chosen last week to host the Copa America by the South American Football Confederation, CONMEBOL, after Colombia was forced to withdraw because of ongoing social unrest while co-host Argentina was ruled out amid soaring coronavirus infection rates.

Bolsonaro, a COVID-19 sceptic who has rejected calls to enact public health measures such as lockdowns to stem the spread of the virus, said “as far as it is up to me, and all the ministers, including the health minister, it is all decided”.

But questions continue to swirl about whether the tournament will go ahead, with some players and coaches raising concerns.

On Wednesday, Argentina’s coach Lionel Scaloni said “Brazil is not the best place”, while Chile’s Uruguayan coach Martin Lasarte described the decision to play the tournament in Brazil as “a huge, giant risk”.

The World Leagues Forum (WLF), which represents more than 40 professional leagues and their clubs, also said in an open letter to FIFA and the South American Football Confederation (CONMEBOL) on Saturday that South American players should be allowed to opt out of playing in the tournament.

A protest banner reads, ‘We don’t want the Cup, we want vaccine! Out Bolsonaro’ outside the Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on June 2 [Pilar Olivares/Reuters]

Nevertheless, Argentina said on Sunday that it would participate in the tournament, which is due to be held from June 13 to July 10.

Argentina “confirms its participation in the Copa America, as is reflected by its sportsmanship throughout history”, the country’s football association (AFA) said in a statement.

AFA added that it would provide all the “necessary tools to guarantee the specific care” needed to meet health protocols during the Copa.

Meanwhile, Brazilian media reports said this week that the country’s players do not want to play in a hastily arranged tournament while they are busy playing to qualify for next year’s World Cup.

The captain of the Brazilian team Carlos Casemiro said the squad would make a statement on Tuesday about whether or not they wish to compete in Copa America.

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Eddie Mutwe, Nubian Li Released on Bail




The General Court Martial in Makindye has on Monday released on bail the remaining members of the National Unity Platform who have been on remand since December last year.

The released include Bobi Wine bodyguard Eddie Mutwe,Singer Nubian Li and Producer Dan Magic.

The released are facing charges related to possession of fire arms.

The group had made several attempts at bail but kept getting stonewalled by government prosecution, on different grounds.

In the last court sitting in which teh army court released 17 of the 35 NUP supporters, Chairman Gen Court Martial sent back Eddie Mutwe and his group on remand, on grounds that prosecution was still examining their affidavits.

The group was arrested on December 30th 2020 in Kalangala district, while on the campaign trail with their candidate Robert Kyagulanyi.

“All our comrades who were arrested last year from Kalangala have been released on bail. These have spent six months while under detention for no crime whatsoever. Thanks to our legal team and everyone who has worked tirelessly to ensure these comrades regain their freedom,” NUP said in a statement.

This story is being updated

The post Eddie Mutwe, Nubian Li Released on Bail first appeared on ChimpReports.

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Kanungu DHO Dr Sebudde Dies of Covid19




Dr Stephen Ssebudde the Kanungu District Health Officer has succumbed to COVID-19.

Dr Ssebudde passed away on Sunday evening at Entebbe hospital where he has been receiving treatment for Covid19 after he started feeling unwell early this week.

News of his death was confirmed by a family who told this reporter that Ssebudde died at around 6Pm after three days of admission in Entebbe Hospital.

“Kanungu District Health Officer Dr Ssebudde died at around 6pm today after 3 days of admission in Entebbe Hospital. As per family, RIP” message from a family member reads.

Hajji Shaffiq Ssekandi the Kanungu Resident District Commissioner who also heads the District COVID-19 taskforce described Ssebudde’s death as a big blow to the district health department since he has been working selflessly to ensure that all people in the community are equally served when it comes to health.

His death comes at a time when the country has already registered cumulative confirmed covid19 cases of 61,977 representing a test positivity rate of 18.7%.

The country has 884 Active cases on admission, 48,160 Cumulative recoveries, and 428 total deaths.

According to Ministerial statistics, 777,895 Persons have so far been vaccinated against COVID-19.

The post Kanungu DHO Dr Sebudde Dies of Covid19 first appeared on ChimpReports.

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Iran says it has broad agreement with the US on lifting sanctions | Boycott Divest and Sanctions News




The landmark accord has been delayed because there are some sticking points, but not an impasse, Iran said.

By Bloomberg

Iran said it has reached a broad agreement with the U.S. over the lifting of sanctions on its industrial sectors, including energy, but warned there was “very little time left” for world powers to revive a 2015 nuclear deal.

Saeed Khatibzadeh, spokesman for Iran’s Foreign Ministry, didn’t give more detail on the potential easing of trade restrictions, which have all but prevented the Islamic Republic from exporting oil and battered its economy. The landmark accord was being delayed because there are still sticking points, he told reporters in Tehran on Monday.

Oil markets are closely watching the negotiations, which are taking place in Vienna, for any clues as to when the OPEC member will be able to resume crude sales and how quickly Washington will allow it to ramp up production.

“Some minute technical, political, legal and practical issues remain,” Khatibzadeh said. “No task was impossible for negotiators” and there’s no impasse, he said.

Brent crude rose 1% to $73.43 a barrel at 8:50 a.m. in London, extending its gain this year to 42%. Traders have pushed back their estimates for Iran’s oil comeback as the talks drag on.

World powers are trying to revive the 2015 agreement that the U.S. abandoned three years ago. It restricted Tehran’s atomic activities in return for sanctions relief.

On Saturday, Iran’s lead envoy in Vienna, Abbas Araghchi, said a deal was unlikely before presidential elections in his country this Friday.

President Hassan Rouhani — who negotiated the original deal in 2015 — is due to leave office in August after serving two terms. He is widely expected to be replaced by Ebrahim Raisi, a cleric generally seen as hostile to engaging with the U.S.

Still, a government spokesman said last week that the decision to try to resuscitate the accord was made by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and won’t be affected by Rouhani’s departure.

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