Archive For 08/19/2019

Three new ebola cases in Liberia

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Three new cases of Ebola emerged in Liberia on Friday, a setback for a country that had been declared free of the disease on September 3 and also a blow for the wider region as it struggles to end an epidemic that has killed around 11,300 people.

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The first of the new patients was a 10-year-old boy who lived with his parents and three siblings in Paynesville, a suburb east of the capital Monrovia, said Minister of Health Minister Bernice Dahn. Two direct family members have also since tested positive, officials said.

All six family members, as well as other high risk contacts, are in care at an Ebola Treatment Unit in Paynesville, she said.

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“The hospital is currently decontaminating the unit. All of the healthcare workers who came into contact with the patient have been notified,” she told a news conference.

“We know how Ebola spreads and we know how to stop Ebola but we must remain vigilant and work together,” she said.

Bruce Aylward, who leads the Ebola response for the U.N. World Health Organisation, said the patient had no history of contact with an Ebola survivor or victim.

“The family obviously is at particular risk and is being investigated right now,” he told a news conference in Geneva, speaking before confirmation that two of the first patient’s siblings had also tested positive.

Liberia has seen more than 10,600 cases of the disease and 4,808 Ebola deaths since it was first announced in March, 2014, WHO figures show.

The virus has killed a total of about 11,300 people in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia. Sierra Leone was declared free of the virus on Nov. 7 and Guinea has begun its countdown to the end of the virus.

The 42-day countdown to be declared Ebola-free starts when the last patient tests negative a second time, normally after a 48-hour gap following their first negative test.

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Djokovic unbeatable? Federer eyes two wins in a week

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The 34-year-old ended Djokovic’s 23-match winning streak on Tuesday with a classy straight-sets victory in the group stage of the ATP World Tour Finals but knows he will need to be at least as good to repeat that feat in the final.

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Federer dispatched fellow Swiss Stanislas Wawrinka 7-5 6-3 to keep alive his hopes of a seventh title at the year-ender, while Djokovic outplayed Rafael Nadal 6-3 6-3.

It sets up the perfect climax to the season between two players with 27 grand slam titles between them.

But Federer says Tuesday’s victory over world number one Djokovic will have no bearing on Sunday’s showdown.

“For me it’s an advantage because I guess it gives me a bit of confidence,” Federer, who has accounted for half of Djokovic’s meagre six defeats this year, told reporters.

“For him it’s an advantage because he gets a second chance, and he’s in another final. He’s played some great tennis since we’ve played.

“So, yeah, I still believe his confidence is slightly higher than mine with the amount of success he’s had this year.”

INCREDIBLE YEAR

Djokovic, who won three of the year’s grand slams and has a career-best 81-6 record this season, is looking to crown an incredible year with an 11th title and fourth in succession at the O2 Arena.

Nadal described him as “almost unbeatable” on Saturday but the Serb still trails Federer 22-21 overall and says the Swiss plays a game he finds uncomfortable, especially over three sets rather than in grand slam play when Djokovic has the edge.

“I’ve lost against Roger three times this year. When he’s on, it’s hard to play him,” said the world number one.

“I think he also likes playing me because he has a variety in his game with the slice, he comes to the net, he takes away the time from me. We always play matches with a lot of tension.

“There is a lot at stake. I know I have to be on top in order to win against him.”

Federer was supposed to play Djokovic in last year’s final but pulled out with a back injury sustained while beating Wawrinka in a tempestuous three-setter.

That match ended with Wawrinka and Federer’s wife Mirka embroiled in a row after she called him a “cry baby” on court.

This time there was no drama as Federer hit back from 2-4 down in the first set to claim a quick victory.

(Reporting by Martyn Herman, Editing by Ian Chadband and Ken Ferris)

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Clarkson laments sloppy Australian effort

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Australian coach Alastair Clarkson has lamented a sloppy display from his AFL ‘Dream Team’ in their 56-52 loss to Ireland in the one-off International Rules Test.

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The Australians started slowly in Dublin on Saturday night and were inaccurate in front of goal as they were humbled by the Irish amateurs in front of 33,386 fans at Croke Park.

Clarkson admitted his elite squad had been outclassed after making “simple hand-balling” errors which gifted Ireland possession in dangerous areas.

Ireland led from the fourth minute but had to withstand a furious Australian fourth-quarter fightback, the tourists getting within three points with four minutes remaining before the home side grimly clung on for victory.

Ireland captain Bernard Brogan was named man of the match having led from the front before lifting the Cormac Macanallen Trophy, though teammate Aidan O’Shea was equally damaging and finished with two six-point goals.

While Ireland landed three of the six-point majors, Australia nabbed just the one goal – focusing more on building their score through the three-point overs.

In chilly four-degree weather and playing with the unfamiliar Gaelic football, Australia were cruelled by wayward kicking – finishing with 13 one-point shots at goal compared to Ireland’s five.

“We had significant opportunity but we just could not convert the opportunities,” Clarkson said.

“We didn’t handle the ball anywhere near as well as we usually do during the first part of the game.

“Some of our turnovers gave the Irish side some very, very open opportunities and they capitalised on those chances.

“In the second half we were a little bit cleaner with the ball and took our chances a bit better.”

Australia roared back into the contest when a scrappy six-pointer, punched in by Eddie Betts, was followed up by an over to Robbie Gray – his third of the night – to reduce Ireland’s lead to three points with four minutes remaining.

Betts, with a goal and two overs, was an ever-present threat while St Kilda star Nick Riewoldt and Gray each kicked three overs, but it was Geelong defender Harry Taylor who was awarded the Jim Stynes Medal as Australia’s best player.

Ireland’s free-flowing style proved hard to stop in the opening half, and their ability to convert territory into six-point goals proved decisive as they kicked three majors to take a 43-23 lead into the big break.

Retiring Essendon champion Dustin Fletcher was at fault for the opening goal of the match, the Aussie goalkeeper failing to clear a well-placed cross which was soccered into the net by O’Shea.

Fletcher could do nothing about O’Shea’s second however – having rushed out to make a crucial save, he was out of position as the Ireland star shot low and hard into an open net at the start of the second quarter.

Australian captain Luke Hodge was warned over foul play late in the half, and gave away a penalty, which was converted by Conor McManus, for body-checking an Irish player into the goalpost.

Ireland coach Joe Kernan said the level of competition was as strong as ever.

“The competition has now gone to a different level because of the team Australia is sending over,” Kernan said.

“It is a great win but that is going to make it harder next year.”

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No fast victory against IS: French army chief

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France’s army chief of staff says he sees no short term military victory in the fight against IS as Paris intensifies its strikes on targets in Syria following the deadly attacks in the French capital.

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President Francois Hollande has called for a grand coalition, including the United States and Russia, to eradicate Islamic State in Syria, and is due to meet with Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin next week.

IS, also known as Daesh, claimed responsibility for the worst violence in France since World War Two, in which 130 people were killed in bombings and shootings. The group said the assaults were in retaliation for Paris’ involvement in US-backed air strikes in Iraq and Syria.

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“There will be no military victory against Daesh in the short term,” Pierre de Villiers, chief of staff of armed forces, told French newspaper Le Journal du Dimanche in an interview published on Sunday.

“In the military, we are used to the long term but people … want fast results. In Syria and Iraq, we are in the heart of that paradox. Everybody knows that in the end this conflict will be resolved through diplomatic and political channels.”

Hollande will travel to Washington to speak with Obama on Tuesday and then head to Moscow to meet with Putin to discuss how their countries’ militaries might work together.

Russia and Western countries are divided over Syria. Moscow is supporting President Bashar al-Assad while the West says he should leave power to end Syria’s civil war.

Since the November 13 Paris bombings and shootings, French war planes have launched their biggest raids in Syria to date.

In the space of three days, some 60 bombs were dropped as training camps or command centres were targeted last week, de Villiers said.

“I honestly think that we seriously hurt them,” he said.

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No fast victory against IS: army chief

By |

France’s army chief of staff says he sees no short term military victory in the fight against Islamic State as Paris intensifies its strikes on targets in Syria following the deadly attacks in the French capital.

杭州桑拿

President Francois Hollande has called for a grand coalition, including the United States and Russia, to eradicate Islamic State in Syria, and is due to meet with Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin next week.

Islamic State, also known as Daesh, claimed responsibility for the worst violence in France since World War Two, in which 130 people were killed in bombings and shootings. The group said the assaults were in retaliation for Paris’ involvement in US-backed air strikes in Iraq and Syria.

“There will be no military victory against Daesh in the short term,” Pierre de Villiers, chief of staff of armed forces, told French newspaper Le Journal du Dimanche in an interview published on Sunday.

“In the military, we are used to the long term but people … want fast results. In Syria and Iraq, we are in the heart of that paradox. Everybody knows that in the end this conflict will be resolved through diplomatic and political channels.”

Hollande will travel to Washington to speak with Obama on Tuesday and then head to Moscow to meet with Putin to discuss how their countries’ militaries might work together.

Russia and Western countries are divided over Syria. Moscow is supporting President Bashar al-Assad while the West says he should leave power to end Syria’s civil war.

Since the November 13 Paris bombings and shootings, French war planes have launched their biggest raids in Syria to date.

In the space of three days, some 60 bombs were dropped as training camps or command centres were targeted last week, de Villiers said.

“I honestly think that we seriously hurt them,” he said.

Read more »