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Outbreaks of new corona virus in China make Beijing take ‘wartime’ steps

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Top adviser warns China vulnerable to second wave

The Chinese capital reported 36 new Covid-19 cases on Monday, bringing the total to 79 since a local infectious infection was reported on June 12 for the first time in almost two months, according to the National Health Commission.

The case is linked to the Xinfadi market in the southwest of the city, which supplies most of the capital’s fresh fruit and vegetables. The market, which also sells meat and seafood, has been closed since Saturday.

Plague has spread to the provinces Liaoning and Hebei, where a total of five new cases were found as close contact with patients in Beijing.

The new cluster has sent shock waves across China, with Beijing city government spokesman Xu Hejian describing it as an “extraordinary period” during Sunday’s press conference.

Chinese state media has repeatedly heralded effective Chinese steps in controlling the virus when the number of infections and deaths surged overseas, in contrast to the success of Western governments, especially the United States.

The sudden reappearance of the virus in Beijing, previously thought to be among the safest cities in the country, has increased the prospect of a second wave of infection and the possibility of reintroduction of the type of sweeper lock which previously made most of the country stopped and hammered. the economy.

At a meeting of the State Council, China’s cabinet on Sunday evening, Deputy Prime Minister Sun Chunlan said the risk of spreading the latest outbreak was “very high,” citing a dense market and a very mobile population, according to the state news agency. Xinhua.

“Wartime” actions

Fengtai District, where the Xinfadi market is located, was announced Saturday, the launch of a “wartime mechanism” and the establishment of a command center to curb the spread of the virus.
On social media, Global Times, a nationalist tabloid run by the Chinese government, posted a the video Paramilitary police officers wearing face masks patrol the market after it closes on Saturday.

The authorities imposed closure on 11 housing complexes around the market, strictly forbidding anyone from entering or leaving. Residents will check their temperature and report it daily, and their food and daily needs are sent.

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Beijing also launched mass nucleic acid testing for the corona virus, establishing 193 sample stands throughout the city. More than 76,000 people were tested on Sunday, with 59 people tested positive, Xu said at a press conference on Monday.

The nucleic acid test works by detecting the genetic code of the virus, and can be more effective in detecting infections, especially in the initial stages, than tests that check the immune response, although the latter is easier to do.

Fengtai District has collected samples of 8,950 people who work in the Xinfadi market. So far, more than 6,000 samples have been tested and the results have all been negative, according to Xu.

The authorities also tracked and collected samples of nearly 30,000 people who had gone to the market in the 14 days before closing. All of the 12,000 tests carried out so far have shown negative results, Xu said.

A health worker wearing protective clothing took a wipe test from a woman at a testing center set up for people who visited or lived near the Xinfadi market in Beijing.

The Beijing government has ordered anyone who visits the market and their close contacts to stay at home for two weeks for medical observation. This also delayed the resumption of classes for elementary school students, which were originally scheduled for Monday.

Several local officials, including Fengtai deputy district head, were dismissed after the outbreak.

This outbreak is not the first time the virus has returned. In May, several parts of the country’s northeast were quickly locked tight after an import case caused an outbreak among local people.

However, before the new cluster, Beijing recorded only 420 local infections and 9 deaths compared to more than 80,000 confirmed cases and 4,634 deaths nationwide, thanks to the strict travel restrictions imposed at the start of the pandemic.

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Like most other countries, life in Beijing is returning to normal, with the reopening of businesses and schools, and the crowd returning to shopping centers, restaurants and parks.

As a sign of the Chinese government’s confidence in controlling its outbreak, the country’s parliament even held an annual meeting at the end of May after a two-month delay, which allowed thousands of delegates to travel to Beijing from all over the country and sit side by side for a 10-day meeting.
A woman stands behind a fence while she waits for the shipment of goods she ordered online in a residential area under locking near the closed Xinfadi market in Beijing.

Search for the source

The outbreak in Beijing will be the latest test of China’s corona virus containment strategy.

Hu Xijin, editor in chief of the Global Times, the word on Twitter that Beijing will not be the second Wuhan, the center of the original pandemic where the corona virus was first detected in December last year.
“There is no way for Beijing to become Wuhan 2.0. The world will see China’s strong capacity in controlling the epidemic, including strong government (leadership), respect for science, public willingness to work together and national coordination for control measures. We will win again,” he write in post Monday.

But the Beijing authorities are still trying to trace the source of the latest outbreak, but promised to conduct “the most stringent epidemiological investigation.”

Zhang Yuxi, market leader, told the government-owned Beijing News on Friday that a virus had been detected on the chopping board used by importing salmon sellers in the market, which led to fears of wider contamination. Some supermarket chains have since removed salmon from their shelves, according to the Beijing Daily.

While the investigation is still ongoing, a researcher with the Beijing Center for Disease Prevention and Control the word Genome sequencing indicates that viruses found on the market are similar to strains normally found in Europe.
“But it’s still uncertain how the virus originated. It could come from contaminated seafood or meat, or has been transmitted by people who come to the market through their secretions,” Yang Peng, a researcher, be told The state’s CCTV announcer on Sunday.

Steven Jiang and Shawn Deng from CNN contributed to the reporting.

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Portuguese rider Miguel Oliveira in 16th place after the first free practice in Assen – DNOTICIAS.PT

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Portuguese rider Miguel Oliveira in 16th place after the first free practice in Assen – DNOTICIAS.PT

Portuguese rider Miguel Oliveira (KTM) finished the first two free practices of the MotoGP Grand Prix in Assen in 16th place.

Oliveira finished the day with a time of 1.34.676 minutes, 1.402 seconds behind the best rider of the day, Italy’s Francesco Banagia (Ducati). Spaniard Aleix Espargaro (April) was second with 0.178 seconds and French champion Fabio Quartararo (Yamaha) was third with 0.305 seconds.

After the first session in the rain, in which the rider from Almada was sixth fastest, the rain stopped before the start of the second session.

The riders started with intermediate tires, but as the track in Assen in the Netherlands, considered the “cathedral” of motorsport, dried up, they installed dry tires (slicks).

Under these conditions, Miguel Oliveira was losing ground in the table, ending the day in 16th place, despite an improvement of about nine seconds from the morning’s record, in rain, in which Australian Jack Miller (Ducati) was the fastest. , fifth in the afternoon.

On Saturday there will be two more free practices and qualifications.

The 10 fastest in the set of the first three sessions go directly to the second stage of qualification (Q2), and the remaining 14 “brawl” in Q1, resulting in the two fastest qualifying to the next stage.

Fabio Quartararo enters this 11th round of the season leading the championship with 172 points, while Miguel Oliveira is in 10th place with 64 points.

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Portuguese MNEs defend that Mercosur is a “natural partner” of the European Union at the moment – Observer

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Portuguese MNEs defend that Mercosur is a "natural partner" of the European Union at the moment - Observer

This Thursday, Portugal’s foreign minister said that at a time when the European Union (EU) seeks to diversify suppliers and markets, MERCOSUR is a natural partner whose importance cannot be “underestimated”.

For Portugal, “the current delicate context makes us appreciate even more the mutual advantages of the Agreement between the EU and MERCOSUR,” João Gomes Cravinho said, without directly referring to the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.

“At a time when the EU is seeking to diversify suppliers and markets in order to ensure greater strategic autonomy, MERCOSUR is a natural partner, whose importance we cannot underestimate“, the minister added at a conference entitled “Brazil and Portugal: perspectives for the future”, which takes place from Thursday to Friday at the Gulbenkian Foundation in Lisbon.

The Southern Common Market (MERCOSUR) is a South American economic bloc created in 1991, whose founding members are Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay.

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But still, within the framework of the European Union, Joao Gomes Cravinho believed that EU strategic partnership with Brazil left ‘untapped’.

The Minister stressed that in the context of the EU, Portugal “always knew how to use its position in favor of strengthening relations with Brazil.”

Therefore, it was during the Portuguese presidency, in 2007, that a “strategic partnership with Brazil” was established, he stressed.

However, according to the head of Portuguese diplomacy, this is “a partnership that has clearly not been used for a variety of reasons and which still retains the ability to position Brazil as Europe’s great interlocutor for South America.”

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With regard to bilateral relations between the two countries, the minister emphasized that “in this context of global turmoil, the wisdom of the central characteristic common to the foreign policy of Brazil and Portugal, which is active participation in many multilateral structures, in recognition of the indispensability of multilateralism, international cooperation and global rules based order.

Portugal meets with Brazil in all areas of Portuguese foreign policy. We are Atlantic, we are Ibero-American and Portuguese-speaking,” he said.

In the Atlantic dimension, “Portugal and Brazil are united by an ocean, which we recognize as growing in importance in the context of new, complex and truly existential issues,” he said.

According to João Gomes Cravinho, “Some of these problems can be answered in the Atlantic Center, co-founded by Portugal and Brazil”, and “the other part of the huge ocean problems will be addressed in detail at the great Summit.” Oceans”, which will be held in Lisbon next week.

“In any of the areas, new prospects are opening up for Portuguese-Brazilian relations,” he stressed.

With regard to Ibero-America, the minister believes that Portugal and Brazil share “an enormous strategic space with the Castilian-speaking countries, where a joint Portuguese-Brazilian reflection is undoubtedly recommended on the potential to exploit opportunities and create synergies”.

“Value of CPLP [Comunidade de Países de Língua Portuguesa] is gaining more and more recognition at the international level – and the evidence of this is the growing number of states that become associate observers” of the organization, he believes.

“Because they want to engage with us and reinforce the value of the linguistic, cultural and historical ties that unify lusophony and create a unique dynamic for relationships with third parties,” he stressed.

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But even at this level, he argued that there was an urgent need to find a “convergence of visions and desires” that “allows us to enhance” our “separate realities.”

The minister also mentioned that “despite the break caused by the pandemic”, Portugal has a “real air bridge” with Brazil, consisting of more than 74 weekly TAP flights, which is a cause and effect of “a dynamic that is being updated and reinvented”. relations between the two countries.

This dynamic, according to Gomes Cravinho, is also reflected in economic and commercial relations.

Thus, “Brazil is the first Latin American export market for Portuguese merchandise and is already the fourth largest merchandise export destination (outside the EU).

“However, the conviction remains that the potential is far from being realized, and that nostalgia for the future entails a vision of a different profile of our exchanges, a technological, creative profile that corresponds to global geo-economic transformations,” he defended. .

At this stage, João Gomes Cravinho also underlined the potential of the port of Sines, “whose strategic importance, which has long been noted, takes on new importance in the troubled times that we are going through.”

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A cycle of Portuguese cinema will be held in New York from Friday.

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A cycle of Portuguese cinema will be held in New York from Friday.

Dand from June 24 to 30, an event called “New Stories from Portuguese Cinema” will present the perspectives of a new generation of filmmakers “whose films embody the artistic, social and political reflections that mark the 21st century,” according to the organization in a statement.

Balad o batrachio by Leonor Teles, Amor, Avenidas Novas by Duarte Coimbra and O Cordeiro de Deus by David Pinheiro Vicente are three of the 20 films that are part of this cinematic cycle.

Pedro Cabeleira, Laura Carreira, Susana Nobre, Joao Rosas, Tomas Paula Marquez, Catarina de Souza and Nick Tyson, Maya Cosa and Sergio da Costa, Christel Alves Meira, Paulo Carneiro, Pedro Peralta, Diogo Salgado, Catarina Vasconcelos and Aya Korezli other directors integrated into this movie cycle.

In addition to FLAD, this event is also the result of a partnership with New York-based Anthology Film Archives, an iconic venue for independent and experimental filmmaking, hosting a Portuguese film cycle featuring Francisco Valente.

“Anthology Film Archives has been a reference space for over 50 years. It seemed to us ideal to promote the works of these directors, emphasizing their uniqueness and quality. We believe that Portuguese cinema can gain more space in the United States and we want to do our part to internationalize it,” said FLAD President Rita Faden.

Francisco Valente, guest programmer, explained that the 18 selected directors are distinguished by “their unwavering commitment to using the screen to express their personal freedom, reflect their racial and gender identity, and develop narratives that comment on and expand our reality.” – in Portugal, in the United States, or in that beautiful and imaginary country called cinema.

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This connection between Portugal and the United States of America is also expressed in the documentary “In the Footsteps of Utopia”, based on the testimonies of “weird” teenagers from Queens, filmed by Catarina de Souza and Nick Tyson, who will come to New York to find out their joint production, which closes this cycle.

The program of the cycle is available in the Screenings section of the Anthology Film Archives “website” (anthologyfilmarchives.org) and on the FLAD “website” (https://www.flad.pt/wp-content). /uploads/2022/02/new_tales_final_bx.pdf).

See also: Michael J. Fox received a humanitarian “Oscar”, and Diane Warren – an honorary “Oscar”.

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