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The Coronavirus mortality rate in Aden Yemen can exceed wartime deaths

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Anwar Motref helped his brother-in-law Hmeid Mohammed find a hospital bed in his last days. Now,  Mohammed's children are in his care.

Al Radwan’s funeral has rapidly expanded over the past few months, with new graves creeping closer to the residential buildings bordering it. “You can see my excavator,” Saleh said. “I just dug up 20 graves.”

Local medical authorities said that the death rate in Aden jumped this year, despite the relative calm in the war that damaged the place in previous years.

In the first half of May, the city recorded 950 deaths – nearly four times the 251 deaths throughout March, according to a Ministry of Health report.

The 950 deaths in two weeks in May represented almost half of the total casualties suffered by the city in 2015, when the country’s civil war raged.

At that time, Aden was devastated by heavy fighting, the streets were blown up by rockets and his houses were filled with bullets. Now the city’s biggest killer is silent.

On top of Covid-19, there is also an outbreak of a virus that is transmitted by mosquitoes, known as Chikungunya virus, and more than 100,000 cases of cholera are known throughout the country. Many malnutrition centers and hospitals were closed due to lack of funds and doctors’ concerns about their personal safety from coronavirus. Flash floods this spring destroyed the city’s electricity grid.

“Yemen has faced war and cannot deal with three pandemics, economic collapse and war and the corona virus,” Dr. Ishraq Al-Subei, the health official responsible for the response to the disease, told CNN.

The official death toll of Covid-19 in southern Yemen is only 127. Health workers said they did not know the true number, due to low testing capacity. But the huge surge in deaths in Aden is seen as a warning of a coming of worse, as the health sector becomes overwhelmed and more people die from treatable diseases.

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Chasing the hospital bed

Hmeid Mohammed, 38, experienced a painful journey that began with a mild fever at home.

His family could not find a hospital to take when his fever began to increase rapidly in early May. He was in a coma when he was treated by the only hospital in Aden designated to treat Covid-19 at the time.

“They revived him,” recalls Anwar Motref’s brother-in-law.

He was diagnosed with meningitis, another common disease in Yemen. As soon as he showed signs of improvement, the doctor advised him to leave the hospital so as not to be infected with Covid-19.

About a week later, his health deteriorated. Once again, the family went to a different hospital in an effort to get him treated, but with little success. Finally they found him on a bed in the emergency ward that he shared with six other people. Fluid filled his lungs and his kidneys failed.

The family has funds for medical treatment, but the Aden hospital is closed or full. The hunt for admission to a hospital that could carry out surgery and dialysis in time to save him failed.

Mohammed died in late May, robbing his three children and widow of the only bread winner.

“Who is to blame for all this? We don’t have a government or state or anyone to help us in this country,” Motref said at the family home on the rocky hill around Aden.

“To whom should we complain? We are bored with this life. Every morning we wake up to hear 10-15 people die,” he added.

Loss of aid and a collapsing health sector

The weapons in Aden have calmed down in recent months but the Yemen war has not disappeared.

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Five-year conflict has begged the nation. At present more than half of the population depends on assistance for survival.

But the UN now faces a potentially catastrophic shortage of funds – around $ 1 billion – for this year. This is a warning of the collapsing health sector and the possibility that the number of Yemeni deaths could continue to increase dramatically – perhaps exceeding the total number of deaths during the five years of war, when the country experienced what it considered “the worst humanitarian crisis in the world.”

“We are short of one billion from our minimum target,” Lise Grande, head of UN humanitarian operations in Yemen, told CNN. “So, in Covid’s time what this meant was that we would see about half of the hospitals that we currently support in this country being closed – and that would happen in just the next few weeks.

“One week before the first Covid-19 case was confirmed in Yemen, we ran out of money and had to stop the benefits of 10,000 frontline health workers across the country. In the middle of Covid, this was very devastating,” he added.

There are only 60 hospital beds dedicated to Covid-19 in Aden, which has a population of around 800,000. These are in two hospitals operated by Doctors Without Borders (MSF). The city has 18 ventilators, all of which continue to be used, according to MSF.

Doctors and aid workers say that most patients seek treatment at the hospital in the final stages of the disease, when it may be too late to save them. And in most cases, there is no capacity to care for them.

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“Most cases are rejected because there are no ventilators available,” Dr. Farouk Abduallah Nagy, head of the isolation department at Gomhuria Hospital, told CNN.

Anwar Motref helped his brother-in-law Hmeid Mohammed find a hospital bed in his last days. Now, Mohammed's children are in his care.

“The health sector was already weak before the outbreak. And it’s getting worse and worse. The health sector is collapsing,” said Caroline Seguin, MSF communications officer in Aden.

Out of town, fighting between southern separatists and the government is raging, complicating the impact of the ongoing five-year war between Houthi rebels in the north and the coalition supported by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates in the south.

More than 112,000 people have been killed in air strikes, shootings and bombings, according to the Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED).

Hundreds of thousands of people have been moved to camp as refugees from the war. There they face the risk of endemic diseases, malnutrition, and overcrowding – all conditions ideal for the spread of diseases such as Covid-19.

Mokhtar Ahmed, who is from the northern port city of Hodeidah, came to a camp on the outskirts of Aden three years ago.

“Cholera and war are one thing and corona is something else,” he told CNN, flanked by his two children.

“With war, we move from place to place and we stay … But with the corona, wherever you go, it will find you.”

Ahmed Baider contributed to this report from Sanaa. Mahmoud Nasser and Mohammed Khaled contributed to this report from Aden.

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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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