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H5N1 virus found near home of Indonesian victims

first_imgJul 27, 2005 (CIDRAP News) – Indonesian investigators found the H5N1 avian influenza virus in chicken droppings near the home of three people who died of the virus this month, according to a report published yesterday.Health Minister Siti Fadillah Supari said further tests were needed to determine if the victims, a man and his two young daughters who lived in a Jakarta suburb, became infected through contact with the droppings, according to the report by Agence France-Presse (AFP).”It’s suspected to be the cause of the infection, but it requires another stage of examination to determine this is the case,” Supari said. Officials have said they had no evidence that the victims had any exposure to sick poultry, but they lived a few miles from farms where poultry and pigs were found to be infected this year.H5 outbreak in JapanIn other developments, Japanese officials have reported another outbreak of avian flu on a poultry farm near where several outbreaks have been reported since late June, according to a Reuters story today.Some chickens on the farm tested positive for an H5 virus, and fuller identification of the virus was still awaited, a local official in Ibaraki prefecture, northeast of Tokyo, told Reuters. The previous outbreaks in the area were identified as involving an H5N2 virus, which is less virulent than H5N1 and has not been known to cause illness in humans.The latest outbreak is on a farm with 35,000 birds, about 4 miles from where the first recent outbreak surfaced in late June, the report said. Since then, authorities have destroyed chickens at seven neighboring farms, after they tested positive for antibodies to the virus.An avian flu outbreak reported in southwestern Siberia last week was tentatively identified as H5N2. Conclusive identification of the virus in the outbreak in the Novosibirsk region was still awaited, according to a Reuters report published yesterday.Gennady Onischenko, Russia’s top epidemiologist, said the outbreak was Russia’s first avian flu outbreak, Reuters reported. He said the disease had killed 1,135 birds.Reports from Thailand, PhilippinesIn a report to the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) last week, Thailand said recent avian flu outbreaks had killed more than 16,000 birds and forced the destruction of more than 120,000.Outbreaks occurred in eight villages in Suphan Buri province, about 60 miles north of Bangkok, the report said. Initial reports on Jul 11 had cited five outbreaks in the area, ending a 3-month stretch with no poultry outbreaks in Thailand.All the cases occurred on farms or at other sites where traditional husbandry methods were used and biosecurity was minimal. The largest outbreak killed 14,880 birds and forced the culling of 107,120, the report said.The cases were detected during Thailand’s second nationwide active surveillance campaign, scheduled to run from Jul 1 to 31, officials told the OIE. Thailand has had 17 human cases of H5N1 infection, with 12 deaths, but none this year.Filipino officials told the OIE last week that testing in Australia had confirmed the previously reported finding of a low-pathogenic flu virus in ducks from one location, but found no virus in chickens. Authorities reported on Jul 8 that an H5 virus had been found in ducks on one farm north of Manila, marking the Philippines’ first avian flu outbreak in recent years.Tests at the Australian Animal Health Laboratory detected evidence of low-pathogenic H5 and H9 viruses in samples from ducks but not from chickens, the Filipino report said. Tests showed no sign of H5N1 viruses in any of the samples. Virus isolation tests using fertilized chicken eggs also were negative.Officials said they concluded that the Philippines is free of H5N1 and has no low-pathogenic flu in chickens. Further, officials said, “The Philippines has had previous LPAI [low pathogenic avian influenza] exposure in ducks, but the LPAI virus is no longer present and therefore we do not have active LPAI, even in ducks.”Authorities concluded that the original finding by a Filipino government lab of a flu virus in ducks was probably a false-positive, possibly because an inappropriate primer was used in the reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction test, the report says.Hong Kong lab suspends researchIn Hong Kong, a laboratory that had been criticized by the Chinese government for its research on avian flu said it was suspending the research while seeking government permission for it, according to a Reuters report published yesterday.In late May, the Joint Influenza Research Centre published an article in Nature saying that infected wild birds in western China might have picked up the H5N1 virus from poultry farms in southern China. The center is operated by Hong Kong University and Shantou University.A day after the article was published, Jia Youling, head of the veterinary bureau in the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture, criticized the findings and said no avian flu had broken out in southern China this year, Reuters reported. Jia also said the joint laboratory had inadequate biosecurity and had not received government approval to conduct avian flu research.A few days later, the government issued new regulations restricting H5N1 research to three governments labs and requiring labs to obtain government permission before doing research on deadly pathogens, the story said.A statement by the joint research center said it complied fully with World Health Organization safety standards for work on avian flu viruses but was suspending its work on H5N1 while it applied for government authorization.See also:Thai report to the OIEftp://ftp.oie.int/AVIAN%20INFLUENZA/infos_san_archives/eng/2005/en_050722v18n29.pdfFilipino report to the OIEftp://ftp.oie.int/AVIAN%20INFLUENZA/infos_san_archives/eng/2005/en_050715v18n28.pdflast_img read more

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International students at risk of deportation, barred entry in the fall due to new ICE visa policies

first_imgAnushka Sapra, a rising senior majoring in international relations and political economy, already signed a lease to live off campus this semester. Since March, Sapra, who is originally from Bangalore, India, has been living in California for the past few months, and is frustrated with the reasons laid out by ICE for students to return to their home countries. International students pursuing degrees in the United States will have to leave the country or risk deportation if their universities’ plans for the fall return comprise only online courses, Immigration and Customs Enforcement announced Monday. The move impacts international students who are either still residing in the United States or who have traveled to their home countries during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and are planning on returning. “It’s disappointing to see that [we] are being punished despite doing everything right,” Sapra said. “And not being cared for by a government that should be caring for you because you are here.” “I already signed a lease and my whole life is here; my friends are here; my mental health support system is here,” she said. “I have health insurance here, I don’t have health insurance in South Africa. So with COVID, that’s really scary if I were to go back and potentially get coronavirus and not have health insurance. Everything that’s important is here, even my money, bank accounts and phone contracts … I’ve kind of left my life in South Africa.” “Active students currently in the United States enrolled in such programs must depart the country or take other measures, such as transferring to a school with in-person instruction to remain in lawful status,” ICE wrote. “If not, they may face immigration consequences including, but not limited to, the initiation of removal proceedings.” “It’s not like I can book a flight — there aren’t even emergency flights or repatriation flights being offered at the moment, so even if I really wanted to leave, I couldn’t,” she said. “But I don’t want to leave.” Some schools, such as the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, have already reached out to concerned students, pledging to work with the international student body on ways to configure schedules that can potentially include in-person instruction through field research and independent projects. Morteza Dehghani, an associate professor of psychology and computer science, and Leslie Berntsen, a psychology lecturer, wrote in tweets that while they await next steps from the administration, both professors would be willing to offer in-person independent study courses to help international students stay in the United States. At USC, the Marshall School of Business has already announced that all classes will be online for the fall, and the School of Cinematic Arts announced that all classes but one will be held online. The University said it would update the WebReg class registration system this week to reflect which classes will take place online and which will be in person. “I saw this for what it is … basically it has nothing to do with health and safety and any real concern with the pandemic, because this is very clearly a political move; it’s just another effort for the U.S. government to execute more atrocious immigration laws,” Sapra said. In the past few weeks, USC has made changes to its original plans for the fall semester, announcing that most classes will take place online and encouraging students to reconsider their arrangements to live on or near campus. This decision reverses announcements made earlier in the summer in which USC pledged to hold mostly hybrid courses for students, blending in-person and online instruction. According to Politico, the policy changes mark a distinct reversal from an announcement by President Donald Trump’s administration in early March when the Department of Homeland Security said students would be temporarily allowed to take online courses because of the unprecedeted nature of the pandemic. ICE’s Student Exchange and Visitor Program said that because of the coronavirus, temporary exemptions regarding online classes for summer semesters remain in place.  International students face uncertainty and risk of deportation following an announcement from Immigration and Customs Enforcement Monday stating that students holding F-1 and M-1 visas may not reside in the U.S. under a full online course load. (Vincent Leo | Daily Trojan) In Fall 2019, international students represented 25% of the student body. As a part of Project Restart, USC’s blueprint for the fall semester return in accordance with public health guidelines, administrators informed students that professors will record classes and make them available to watch asynchronously for students living in different timezones.  These professors echo calls from other faculty across the country scrambling to help students who face deportation. However, plans remain tentative, and many of USC’s other programs have yet to respond to the policy shift. Jay Goldstuck, a rising senior majoring in film and television production who hails from South Africa, said she is scared for the future following SCA’s announcement that all production classes will be held online. “My main reaction is just terrified because the wording of the update was pretty serious in that students who don’t comply with leaving the country will face removal proceedings, which is basically being deported,” Goldstuck said. “That makes it harder to get future visas.”center_img Goldstuck said she is also confused because there aren’t any commercial or emergency repatriation flights from the United States to South Africa. The University also wrote that deans and administrators are strongly advocating against the policy, alongside higher education professionals across the country. “The U.S. in 2020 is the only country that really punishes you for not being American — it’s like not being an American is a crime, no matter how valid your existence is here, no matter how valid your existence in this country is, no matter how many hoops you had to jump through to secure that, no matter how hard you worked to give yourself the opportunity to come here,” she said. “None of that matters because the passport you have is not American.” Goldstuck said she is currently looking to the Office of International Services and USC for guidance, though she said OIS has not been helpful in the past. But since University staff has been working from home and campus is not accessible to many international students at this time, the way forward is uncertain. OIS is, however, hosting a webinar for international students Tuesday to discuss the fall semester, travel restrictions and embassy closures. In a news release, ICE announced that students under F-1 and M-1 visas may not take a full course load online while remaining in the United States and that the U.S. Department of State will not issue visas to students enrolled in fully online schools and programs. Sapra said she is terrified and believes that the alternatives provided by ICE prove that there is little care for public health. Students either have the option to leave the country — which Sapra said causes more air travel during the pandemic — or transfer to another school that has in-person instruction — which Sapra said there are very few of, and a move that further damages the health of at-risk students. “Given the broad range of courses being offered, both in person and online, we are optimistic we will be able to support our international students to study in person safely if they wish, but it may take a few days,” USC wrote in an email to the community Wednesday. Sapra feels that the United States is disappointing thousands of students who pay to attend U.S. colleges, work and pay taxes in the United States and contribute to the U.S. economy. Sapra also said she made the difficult decision in March to stay in the United States and wait out the pandemic — being away from family and friends back home for months — because she knew it would be difficult to reenter the country in the fall. Now, she feels like she is being forced out. “I have all of my bank account information here. My phone, my therapy, my counselor, my friends are here,” Sapra said. “My family moved after I moved to college, so if I went back home, I would be going to a city that is a) in lockdown and b) where there is no one I know … and that’s just really scary. I’ve avoided going back home these past three years, because I was genuinely creating a life for myself here, and that’s now being thrown under the bus.” The decision also creates uncertainty for incoming international students set to live in USC housing and for returning international students who have already signed leases with off-campus housing providers. Incoming freshmen will not be able to defer their acceptances except in specific cases, including medical issues, religious obligations or required military service. Goldstuck has already signed a lease for the upcoming school year, which adds onto her stress over the lack of health insurance she has in her home country. The statement also announced that students at universities that, like USC, are using a hybrid learning system cannot take all of their classes online. USC told the Daily Trojan that it is aware of the situation and is “deeply troubled” by the new policy. Sapra, along with some international students, are looking to USC, not the government, for next steps and clarity on their status in the United States. Sapra said as a university that prides itself on diversity and geographic representation, she hopes the administration will fight for students and think of creative ways to keep students in the country. “This policy is especially concerning as it comes in the midst of a global health pandemic when universities need the autonomy and flexibility to adopt nuanced, multi-faceted models of instruction and research while preserving the health, safety and well-being of all our students, faculty, and staff,” USC wrote. This story was update on July 8 at 10:35 a.m. with a statement from USC.last_img read more

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South Africa to discuss ‘devastating’ FIFA order

first_imgSouth Africa host Burkina Faso in Johannesburg on October 7 and must also play Senegal away during November.Jordaan urged South Africans not to criticise FIFA general secretary Fatma Samoura, a Senegalese.“We hold her in high regard as the first African to hold this senior post in our world football governing body,” he said.Share on: WhatsApp South Africa defeated Senegal 2-1 at the group stage last November, but both their goals stemmed from controversial decisions by since-banned Ghanaian referee Joseph Lamptey.The penalty that enabled South Africa to take the lead was awarded for a non-existent handball with TV replays showing the ball striking the thigh of a defender.Later, Lamptey was ordering Senegalese players to retreat for a free-kick when it was taken and the home team increased their lead.FIFA gave Lamptey a life ban for match manipulation and his appeal was rejected this week by Switzerland-baaed international sport judicial body CAS. No details of who might have influenced the Ghanaian to fix the result have been released by FIFA.Lamptey has a history of controversial decisions in national team and international club fixtures, including allowing a handball goal and playing suspiciously long periods of stoppage time.The replay decision came this week after South Africa suffered home and away defeats by lowly Cape Verde within five days to diminish hopes of reaching the 2018 World Cup in Russia.Burkina Faso and Cape Verde have six points with two matches to play and Senegal five and South Africa one with three games left. Only group winners qualify.center_img Johannesburg, South Africa | AFP | South Africa football bosses will meet Monday to discuss a “devastating” FIFA order that a 2018 World Cup qualifier against Senegal must be replayed after the referee manipulated the result.National association president Danny Jordaan said Saturday in a statement that issues for debate could include appealing the decision, writing to FIFA or taking legal action.He called the order to replay the match during the November 6-14 international window “devastating news that had stressed South Africans”.last_img read more

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Joshua Cheptegei’s 5K world record ratified

first_imgCheptegei record ratified.  PHOTO FACEBOOK MONACO RUN/Robert PalombaParis, France | THE INDEPENDENT  |  The world athletics governing body IAAF has ratified four records, including that of Uganda’s Joshua Cheptegei, that were set before the COVID-19 pandemic brought activity to a halt.Others ratified are that of Armand Duplantis, world pole vault record of 6.17m, Yulimar Rojas’s world indoor triple jump record of 15.43m and the US men’s 4x100m relay quartet.On February 16, 2020 in Monaco, Cheptegei set an opening kilometre timed at 2:31,  just the blistering pace that he needed to shatter the 5km world record- that remained unofficial until this ratification. IAAF makes sure the right distance, drug tests, wind speeds and other criteria are met, before confirming a record.How Cheptegei did itIn Monaco that Sunday, 23-year-old Cheptegei followed the opening lap with times of 2:35, 2:36, and 2:35—for the next three kilometers, before finishing with a final split of 2:32.When it was all done, he had shaved 27 seconds off the previous best set by Kenyan Rhonex Kipruto —13min 18sec in January in Valencia. The Uganda lowered the 5km world record with a time of 12 minutes 51 seconds and revealed he had set out to “really go for” breaking the sub 13 minutes barrier.“Wow, this is really great,” Chepetegei told World Athletics. “I had sub-13 minutes on my mind today, so when my legs felt good during the race I decided to really go for it.” “To take this many seconds off the record makes me very happy and is a great first test for me in an important season,” he said, with the Tokyo Olympics in mind.The COVID-19 outbreak has unfortunately blown away his Olympics dream this year, with the Tokyo Games postponed to next year.Cheptegei last year also broke the 15km road record and now becomes the first Ugandan to hold three world records, moving a step ahead of the legend John Akii Bua, world record holder in the 400m Hurdles in 1972.Cheptegei’s 12:51 is the fastest over the distance on the roads and the track in the last year. Share on: WhatsApplast_img read more

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A list of the worst scandals in college sports

first_img•POINT SHAVING AT CCNY, 1947-51. The City College of New York men’s basketball team won both the National Invitation Tournament and the national championship in 1950. Then a point-shaving scandal that spanned 86 games dating to 1947 was discovered. Thirty-two players from seven schools were arrested. CCNY turned from powerhouse to trivia answer. Players from Kentucky were also involved, but the Wildcats program survived to remain a powerhouse.•THE BC THREE, BOSTON COLLEGE, 1978-79. BC basketball players Rick Kuhn, Joe Streater and Jim Sweeney were persuaded to fix nine Eagles games during the season. Kuhn and two money men were handed 10 years each in prison.•SMU GETS THE DEATH PENALTY, 1986. Southern Methodist boosters funneled thousands of dollars to football players through a slush fund that was administered by school officials, including former Texas governor Bill Clements. The NCAA gave the program the “death penalty”—forcing it to the sidelines for the entire 1987 season—and the Mustangs have never regained their national stature.•HOT ROD, TULANE, 1980s. Star forward John “Hot Rod” Williams was accused of accepting more than $8,000 to shave points in several games. He was later acquitted, but the school dropped the team until 1989.•THE FAB FIVE and ED MARTIN, MICHIGAN, EARLY 1990s. Several players, including star forward Chris Webber, were paid by a booster and factory worker, Martin, from his gambling operations. All records, including two Final Fours, featuring the so-called Fab Five recruiting class, were vacated, Michigan was put on two years of NCAA probation and head coach Steve Fisher lost his job.•ACADEMIC FRAUD, MINNESOTA, 1990s. Clem Haskins’ tenure with the Golden Gophers was brought down by a widespread academic fraud. Former manager Jan Gangelhoff claimed she had written papers for at least 20 players. Minnesota’s records were vacated and the program was docked five scholarships. Haskins, the AD and several other officials lost their jobs.•GEORGIA ACADEMIC SCANDAL, 2002. Georgia head coach Jim Harrick and his son, Jim Jr., provided high grades to players in classes they never or seldom attended and paid players’ expenses. The elder Harrick, who led the Bulldogs to NCAA tournament appearances in 2001 and 2002, resigned and his son was fired.•MURDER IN TEXAS, BAYLOR, 2003. Bears basketball transfer Patrick Dennehy was slain by teammate Carlton Dotson. Coach Dave Bliss instructed his players to lie to the NCAA by telling investigators that Dennehy was dealing drugs. Dotson pleaded guilty to murder, Bliss was fired and Baylor self-imposed penalties of a one-year postseason ban and a loss of scholarships.•NO MORE HEISMAN, USC, 2005. Reggie Bush, winner of the 2005 Heisman, was stripped of the award after it was revealed that his parents were paid hundreds of thousands of dollars by an agent. Southern California coach Pete Carroll left for the NFL, but the Trojans were stripped of 30 scholarships and given a two-year postseason ban.•TATTOO U, OHIO STATE, 2010. Buckeyes football coach Jim Tressel admitted that he knew several of his star players were trading memorabilia for cash and tattoos in violation of NCAA rules, but sat on that information for 10 months until after the players participated in a 12-1 season that resulted in a Sugar Bowl win over Arkansas. Tressel was forced to resign, Ohio State vacated the 2010 season and was hit with NCAA probation and a loss of scholarships.•THE BOOSTER, MIAMI, 2011. A total of 73 Hurricanes football players have been implicated in the latest scandal to hit the Miami program. A booster, Nevin Shapiro, subsequently jailed for running a pyramid scheme, allegedly dispensed money, prostitutes, cars and vacations to the players. Shapiro said coaches and university officials knew of his gifts. The case is pending before the NCAA.•BOBBY PETRINO, ARKANSAS, 2012. Petrino, the Arkansas coach, initially said he was riding alone when he was injured in a motorcycle accident. It was subsequently learned that Jessica Dorrell, a former Razorbacks volleyball player, was with Petrino and had had an extramarital affair with him. Petrino had paid Dorrell $20,000 and set her up with a job in the athletic department. Petrino was fired. (AP)—Years of child sex abuse at Penn State by longtime assistant Jerry Sandusky may represent the worst scandal in the history of college sports. The NCAA slammed Penn State with an unprecedented series of penalties July 23,, including a $60 million fine and the loss of all coach Joe Paterno’s victories from 1998-2011. While it’s hard to compare Sandusky’s crimes, and the institutional problems described in the Louis Freeh report released on July 12, to other cases involving unacceptable benefits or point-shaving, this is a list of some of the scandals that drew massive attention prior to Penn State. FAN REACTION—Susan DelPonte, center, of State College, Pa., reacts to a television in the HUB on the Penn State University main campus in State College, Pa., as the NCAA sanctions against the Penn State University football program are announced Monday, July 23. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) last_img read more

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TOGETHER! to Honor Youth Success with Awards of Excellence

first_imgFacebook23Tweet0Pin0Submitted by TOGETHER!Local youth will be recognized for their resilience in the face of adversity at youth development nonprofit TOGETHER!’s annual Awards of Excellence ceremony on May 13, 2017 at South Puget Sound Community College. Five or more nominees, selected by a committee of event organizers and key partners, will receive scholarships, sponsored by Gateway Rotary and other organizations. All nominees will see their pictures and stories printed in The Olympian, and be honored at the ceremony, where they and their families will be invited to enjoy dessert with representatives from their nominating schools and programs.SPSCC Foundation Development Manager Anne Larson is pictured with scholarship recipient Aylin Gonzalez-Ramirez holding her daughter, and Thurston County Commissioner Bud Blake at the 2016 Awards of Excellence Ceremony. Credit Shanna Paxton Photography.Nominations are currently being solicited from middle and high schools as well as some youth-serving community organizations in Thurston and Mason Counties. Nominators are encouraged to consider the diversity of their communities in selecting their nominees.Last year, TOGETHER! honored 32 exceptional children and youth for their strength and leadership as part of their first Awards of Excellence ceremony since 2012. Gateway Rotary, TwinStar Credit Union, and South Puget Sound Community College Foundation sponsored four $1,000 scholarships and one full-year SPSCC tuition waiver, which were awarded to five deserving students.TOGETHER! is a local nonprofit organization that engages and mobilizes families, schools and the community to advance the health, safety and success of our youth. They educate about issues affecting the community; work for laws, policies and community practices that support positive youth development; and provide direct services to children, youth and families. They work with coalitions and partnerships to improve effectiveness.last_img read more

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