Iran plans to reopen mosques in areas free of coronavirus, president says

first_imgSeeking a balance between protecting public health and shielding an economy already battered by sanctions, the government has refrained from imposing the kind of wholesale lockdowns on cities seen in many other countries.But it has extended closures of schools and universities and banned cultural, religious and sports gatherings.Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif had a phone call with United Arab Emirates Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan on Sunday and discussed the battle against the spread of the coronavirus and regional developments along with passing on a congratulatory message for the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan. He said the label given to any region in the Islamic Republic could change and he did not specify when the color-coding program would come into force.Deputy Health Minister Iraj Harirchi said in an interview with state TV on Sunday that 116 counties in the country could be considered white at the moment and 134 yellow.Iranians have returned to shops, bazaars and parks over the past week as the country eases coronavirus restrictions, with the daily increase in the death toll below 100 since April 14.The toll rose by 60 over the past 24 hours to 5,710, with 90,481 confirmed cases, Health Ministry spokesman Kianush Jahanpur told state TV on Sunday. Iran plans to reopen mosques in parts of the country that have been consistently free of the coronavirus outbreak as restrictions on Iranians gradually ease, President Hassan Rouhani said on Sunday.Iran, one of the Middle Eastern countries hardest hit by the pandemic, will be divided up into white, yellow and red regions based on the number of infections and deaths, Rouhani said, according to the presidency’s website.Activities in each region will be restricted accordingly, so an area that has been consistently free of infections or deaths will be labeled white and mosques could be reopened and Friday prayers resumed, Rouhani said.center_img Topics :last_img read more

France enjoy dream start as women’s World Cup kicks off

first_imgFrench players celebrate their win over South Korea in the opening game of the women’s World Cup on Friday.Paris, France | AFP | Host nation France crushed South Korea 4-0 in the opening game of the women’s World Cup on Friday, leaving former winners Germany with plenty to live up to as they prepare to launch their campaign.It was a fine start to a tournament that has been billed as the biggest yet for the women’s game, with a sell-out crowd of more than 45,000 filling the Parc des Princes in Paris and celebrating a rampant French victory.Les Bleues are among the favourites to win the trophy on home soil and they showed no mercy to the Koreans, with the prolific Eugenie Le Sommer giving them an early lead and defender Wendie Renard — the tournament’s tallest player — twice heading home before the interval.Captain Amandine Henry, impressive throughout, wrapped up the win late on in the Group A encounter, watched by French President Emmanuel Macron and FIFA chief Gianni Infantino.Infantino has promised the month-long tournament will see the “explosion” of the women’s game, with almost a million tickets sold so far for matches in the nine host cities.On an emotional opening night, Henry said she and her teammates had been “close to tears” as the national anthem played before kick-off.“I could not have dreamed for more than this,” Henry said.France coach Corinne Diacre struck a note of caution as she warned: “This is just one step. We have six more to go and we need to keep our feet on the ground and keep working hard.”It was a fine start for France and the tournament with a carnival atmosphere as the French showed their credentials having been set the target by their own federation of going all the way to the final in Lyon on July 7.The problem for Diacre’s team, ranked fourth in the world, is that, if they win their group, they could well end up facing reigning champions the United States back in Paris in the quarter-finals.The USA, whose legal battle to be paid the same as their male counterparts has made waves in the run-up to the tournament, start their campaign against Thailand on Tuesday in Reims.Germany are ranked second in the world behind the United States. They are bidding to lift the trophy for the third time after previous triumphs in 2003 and in 2007.They are hoping to get off to a winning start as they take on the Chinese in Group B in Rennes at 1300 GMT on Saturday. – ‘We can win it’ –China reached the final in 1999 but, two decades on, the prospects of a repeat run seem remote, even if Paris Saint-Germain’s Wang Shuang will be one of the players to watch.“It is always in the back of your mind that, alongside the USA, Germany used to be the leading country in women’s football,” Germany forward Svenja Huth told AFP.“Nowadays, there are eight or nine teams who can be world champions. England, Holland and France have developed amazingly in recent years. It is going to be tough, but we can win it.”Later on Saturday, in the same group, Spain take on South Africa in the northern port of Le Havre at 1600 GMT, with the Banyana Banyana hoping to make a big impression in their first World Cup appearance.They lost on penalties to Nigeria in the final of the last Africa Women’s Cup of Nations.Nigeria are in France’s Group A, and the Super Falcons face Norway in Reims in the final game of the day at 1900 GMT.– Norway missing Hegerberg –The Norwegians are confident of going far despite being without Ada Hegerberg, the winner of the women’s Ballon d’Or winner for the world’s top player.The striker, who scored a hat-trick in Lyon’s Champions League final win over Barcelona last month, refused to come to the tournament due to a dispute with her national federation, which she accuses of failing to respect women players.England and Brazil, both seeking to win the women’s global title for the first time, enter the competition on Sunday, facing Scotland and Jamaica respectively.Share on: WhatsApplast_img read more

Steelers go ‘Rogue’ for new Batman film

first_imgLinebacker LaMarr Woodley told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that he was a big Batman fan as a youngster and can’t wait to be in the movie.“I can tell somebody I was in ‘Batman,’” Farrior said. “That’s going to be awesome.”Production on the film, director Christopher Nolan’s third in the trilogy, will continue in Pittsburgh through the end of August. The film, scheduled to be released in July 2012, stars Christian Bale as the caped crusader and his alter ego, Bruce Wayne, along with Gary Oldman and Anne Hathaway.Thomas Tull, the film’s executive producer, joined the Steelers ownership group two years ago. He helped bring the movie to Pittsburgh and wanted to get the Steelers involved. PITTSBURGH (AP)—The Pittsburgh Steelers have gone rogue.About a dozen Steelers played members of the Gotham Rogues, the home team taking on the equally fictitious Rapid City Monuments in a new Batman movie currently filming in Pittsburgh. Thousands of extras playing fans also were recruited for Saturday’s shoot for “The Dark Knight Rises” at Heinz Field.The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported that players getting their star turn include Ben Roethlisberger, Hines Ward, Willie Colon, Maurkice Pouncey, Mike Wallace, Heath Miller, Aaron Smith, Ryan Clark, Troy Polamalu, James Farrior and Casey Hampton.“I don’t think it will be a big part, It’s not like we’re chasing Batman down or anything,” Roethlisberger said.last_img read more

Inside Conditions…Crime and Punishment

first_imgNew England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick, right, speaks to coaches on his bench during an NFL football game against the Cleveland Browns in Foxborough, Mass., Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013. The Patriots came from behind to win 27-26. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)Okay, Pittsburgh Steelers Head Coach Mike Tomlin is finally paying the “piper” for allegedly interfering with Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Jacoby Jones while he was in the process of returning a kick during the recent Steelers/Ravens skirmish.A $100,000 fine was recently levied on Tomlin in regards to alleged “act of football terrorism” because no one can really say whether his “confession” was coerced or not.The league also said that; “It will consider a forfeiture of draft choices for the Steelers because Tomlin’s conduct affected a play on the field.The fine is tied for the second-largest reported fine ever given to an NFL coach. First place belongs to the New England Patriots and their headmaster Bill Belichick who in 2007 had his hands slapped by having to fork out $500,000 “rubles” for invading the privacy of several other if not all of the additional franchises in the NFL.When I think of cheating or interference the first thing that leaps to the front of my mind as far as a penalty comparison goes is the 2007 New England Patriots “spygate” scandal.I have written about the “Belicheat” scandal several times but; here I go again.First of all how in the hell can the two acts even be mentioned in the same breath? One act was a calculated, premeditated and deliberate act designed by a few individuals and carried out by many in order not to only affect the outcome of a game or two but ultimately redesigned and altered the outcome of professional football and sports history.Coach Belichick was very much aware of the  NFL’s Constitution & Bylaws (article 9) that clearly stated that: “Any use by any club at any time, from the start to the finish of any game in which such club is a participant, of any communications or information-gathering equipment, other than Polaroid-type cameras or field telephones, shall be prohibited, including without limitation videotape machines, telephone tapping, or bugging devices, or any other form of electronic devices that might aid a team during the playing of a game.”The final ruling and penalty resulting from these insidious actions were this. Bill Belichick was fined $500,000 by the NFL, the maximum amount permitted under the NFL Constitution and By-Laws for violating league policy regarding the use of equipment to videotape an opposing team’s offensive or defensive signals.The Patriots were fined $250,000 by the NFL. The Patriots gave up their first-round pick in 2008 because they make the playoffs and eventually lost to the NY Giants in the Super Bowl.At the time that the incident was discovered and adjudicated NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell informed the Patriots that: “This episode represents a calculated and deliberate attempt to avoid longstanding rules designed to encourage fair play and promote honest competition on the playing field. I specifically considered whether to impose a suspension on Coach Belichick.  I have determined not to do so, largely because I believe that the discipline I am imposing of a maximum fine and forfeiture of a first-round draft choice, or multiple draft choices, is in fact more significant and long-lasting, and therefore more effective, than a suspension.”There are some people that will never take responsibility for their actions. At the time “Belicheat” I meant to say Belichick did not say, I take responsibility for encouraging an illegal act to be committed by my subordinates in order to get a leg up on the competition defined his actions as a “mistake” saying;” I apologize to the Kraft family and every person directly or indirectly associated with the New England Patriots for the embarrassment, distraction and penalty my mistake caused” defines the word mistake as: ” mis•take PA noun, verb, mis•took, mis•tak•en, mis•tak•ing. noun 1. an error in action, calculation, opinion, or judgment caused by poor reasoning, carelessness, insufficient knowledge, etc. 2. a misunderstanding or misconception.There was no mistake that occurred in regards to the heinous actions of Bill Belichick,  the New England Patriots or their staff.  Mike Tomlin made a “misstep” Bill Belichick plain and simple “misled.”If Mike Tomlin had been discovered illegally recording another teams signals, the past, present and future of all Black NFL head coaches including but not limited to Tony Dungy,  Lovie Smith, Dennis Green would have been examined and reexamined.In my opinion the suspension or even the expulsion of Bill Belichick at the time that the Patriots violations were discovered would have been justified because more than likely a new or interim coach would may have brought in a new or revised system and that could have created a whole new set of problems for the personnel of the Patriots.Case in point, look at the affect that the 1 year  suspension of New Orleans Saints Head Coach Sean Payton had on his team as a result of the bounty scandal.In March of 2012, Payton was suspended for one year.  The team was also forced to forfeit their second round pick in 2012 and ’13 and pay $500,000 as a result of the NFL’s bounty investigation, the league announced. The Saints were 7-9 in 2012 during his suspension.In 2013 they sit atop their division at 10-3 and are a lock to make the playoffs.Tell me that a suspension of your head coach doesn’t hurt. The Saints actions may have been immoral, possibly harmful to the opposition but they did not “cheat.In the 2004-2005 NFL AFC Championship game between the Steelers and the Patriots it has been established that the Patriots may have cheated as well and went on to beat the Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl XXXIX.Why aren’t there any asterisks attached to the Patriots many hallowed victories.  My uncle Will used to say; “it’s only a fair fight if you win.” “Cheaters win all of the time but you can bet they will win most of the time.”Aubrey Bruce can be reached at; [email protected] or 412.583.6741last_img read more

Saint Martin’s University and Japanese Sister School Mukogawa Celebrate 30 Years…

first_imgSubmitted by Saint Martin’s UniversitySt. Martin’s celebrates a 30 year partnership with Mukogawa Women’s University.Long before international and intercultural exchange activities became  a regular part of life at Saint Martin’s, the presidents of Saint Martin’s University, then a college, and Mukogawa Women’s University in Nishinomiya, Japan, forged a sister-school relationship that is still going strong today.This summer, the two universities will celebrate the 30th anniversary of their summer cultural exchange agreement, which has enabled students on both sides of the Pacific to personally experience and learn about another culture, language and way of life.A 30th Anniversary celebration will mark the occasion on August 14 at the Norman Worthington Conference Center.  More than 100 guests are expected to attend the event. Guests will include host families, student cultural ambassadors, visiting students from Mukogawa, and U.S. students.  Hirotoshi Yano, chief professor of Mukogawa’s education department, will be traveling to Saint Martin’s especially for the anniversary celebration.“Our relationship with Mukogawa is particularly important, as it started the Saint Martin’s tradition of promoting educational partnerships and intercultural exchange with higher education institutions in other parts of the world,” says Josephine Yung, vice president of international programs and development. “It serves as a model of successful cultural exchange that connects people to people, and provides wonderful and exciting opportunities for young people from all over the world.”Yung says the exchange program with Mukogawa was started in 1984 by then president of Saint Martin’s President John Ishii, Ph.D., Washington state’s first Asian-American college president, and Mukogawa President Akira Kusaka.  Both considered promotion of international understanding and intercultural friendships a crucial part of preparing their students to live and work in an increasingly interconnected world.  The legacy of both presidents lives on, even though both presidents have died.Each year, about 30 to 40 young women from Mukogawa – most of them early childhood education majors – come to Saint Martin’s for the summer program. Included are workshops and learning experiences, sightseeing, a weekend stay with a local host family, fieldtrips to daycare centers, libraries and other institutions, a cultural celebration – and of course, shopping. They live in Saint Martin’s residence halls, dine in the cafeteria and get to know U.S. students, experiences that give them a window into life in the United States.  Close to 1,000 students from Mukogawa Women’s University have participated in cultural exchange with Saint Martin’s students the last 30 years, Yung said.What began as a single exchange paved the way for other sister university relationships for Saint Martin’s. The University now has educational and cultural exchange with other Japanese schools, China, South Korea, Taiwan, Northern Ireland, England, France, Italy, Russia and most recently, Brazil. Facebook0Tweet0Pin0last_img read more

Lacey-Area Military and Families Recognized for Commitment, Sacrifice

first_imgSubmitted by The Landing at Hawk’s Prairie 11 year old Sarah Bamesberger was the grand prize winner at The Landing at Hawks Prairie’s Military Appreciation Day.For the second consecutive year, The Landing at Hawks Prairie shopping center in Lacey played host recently to a special celebration at which Lacey-area military families from Joint Base Lewis-McChord were treated to an afternoon of free hot dogs and refreshments, face painting, giveaways from center tenants and children’s games and activities.The highlight of the July 25 event was 11-year-old Sarah Bamesberger winning the grand prize in a raffle conducted by the Hawks Prairie owner, Cimmarusti Holdings LLC/Lucia Properties.Sarah, the youngest of five children, moved from Kentucky to Fort Lewis just one month prior to the event. Her father has served in the Army for 18 years and the family has lived in Texas, Missouri, Alaska, Georgia and South Korea prior to Kentucky and now Washington.“We saw the sign in front of Navy Federal and I told my Mom we had to come,” said Sarah, who won a $50 Domino’s gift certificate, a $100 gift card to Pho Hoa’, a free haircut from Jack and Jill’s, a free massage and facial from Hand and Stone Spa, and a stuffed animal and free yogurt from Menchie’s. All of these stores are tenants at The Landing at Hawks Prairie.Despite being the big winner, Sarah said that wasn’t the highlight of her day, but rather, “our favorite was the snow cones.”Attendance this year was twice what it was at the inaugural event in 2014, and in addition to the participation of nearly all of the center tenants, the event was supported by radio station KAYO, Rutledge Farm train cars, Costco, the Lacey Fire Department, and Kidz n’ Motion.The River Ridge High School Taiko Band entertained guests.“We also had the River Ridge Taiko Band there to entertain our guests, and we served more than 1,000 hot dogs, in addition to all of the other treats,” said center owner Larry Cimmarusti. “Everyone loved the 40 foot obstacle course and the face painting – it was a great military family turnout and we can’t wait to do it again next year!”“We consider this to be a small gesture of our immense appreciation for these selfless, modern-day heroes,” said owner Ralph Cimmarusti. “In our minds, we can never do enough to thank the brave members of our military for the sacrifices they make to protect and preserve our freedoms,”Brothers Ralph and Larry Cimmarusti, who currently own and operate the Original Roadhouse Grill restaurants in Oregon and California, have a two decade-plus history of staging fundraisers on behalf of the families of law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty.“It is our responsibility as members of the local communities we are part of to honor the memories of officers who have made the ultimate sacrifice in protecting those communities, and here in Lacey we wanted to create an event to pay tribute to the brave service men and women, and their families, who are stationed at Joint Base Lewis-McChord,” said Ralph Cimmarusti.Lacey Firefighters came out to honor local military soldiers and their families.“This event is just our way of recognizing these service men and women, and their families, to whom we owe so much,” said Larry Cimmarusti. “It’s just one way for us to say ‘thank you.’”In addition to Domino’s, Hand and Stone, Jack and Jill’s, Menchie’s and Pho Hoa’, other Hawks Prairie tenants participating in the event included Red Robin, Comfort Dental, Navy Federal Credit Union, Kiddie Academy, Mattress Depot, LA Fitness, Total Nutrition, Sprint, Game Stop, Tan Republic, America’s Best and the Military Recruitment office.Located in the heart of the Puget Sound region, Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM) is the Defense Department’s premiere military installation on the West Coast. JBLM provides world-class installation support to more than 40,000 active, Guard and Reserve Service members and about 15,000 civilian workers. The base supports 60,000 family members who live on and outside the base, and nearly 30,000 military retirees living within 50 miles. Facebook34Tweet0Pin0last_img read more

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