Topics : The 30-year-old Zhang, who as a child was challenged by her mother to jump out of ditches to toughen her up, has enjoyed a life-changing 10 months.Last August she thrilled a home crowd in Shenzhen with an upset knockout of UFC champion Jessica Andrade of Brazil in just 42 seconds to make Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) history.Zhang then successfully defended the strawweight title in a brutal dust-up in Las Vegas in early March against Poland’s Joanna Jedrzejczyk, despite her build-up being badly disrupted by the coronavirus outbreak. She boasts a 21-1 MMA record and UFC president Dana White has touted her to rank alongside Conor McGregor and Ronda Rousey as a global superstar of the sport. ‘I must not become lazy’ Zhang’s new-found stardom has seen many more demands placed on her for media and commercial obligations, while she also has an active presence on social media.But she says those have not placed any extra pressure on her or distracted her from training, and she knows that believing her own hype would be fatal for her career.”I told myself that I must not become lazy, I must remember who I am, I should be the same as before I was champion and keep the desire to win,” she said.”I have to keep that in mind, instead of thinking that I have already made it.”Because once I start thinking like that, it’ll fast be the start of the descent.” ‘I like that interaction’ Coronavirus has eased in China since the disease emerged in the country late last year, allowing Zhang to conduct an open workout for the media at UFC’s newly built Performance Institute in Shanghai this week.But UFC fight nights, like most sports, are taking place behind closed doors to prevent the spread of infections among spectators.Asked about the pandemic’s impact on her daily life, Zhang replied: “My life is about training. So if it affects my training, it affects my life.”Zhang’s next opponent has not been confirmed, but the prospect of defending her title with nobody there to cheer, or jeer, is not one she relishes.”Now there are no spectators, I feel a lot of things are missing and I don’t feel that special excitement,” said Zhang.”That’s why I think that spectators are really important. I don’t know how I would react if there is no audience. “I really like spectators cheering for me or even booing me. I like that interaction.”UFC supremo White last week said that UFC will stage a series of bouts on a “Fight Island” in the United Arab Emirates next month to ease travel headaches for international fighters.Zhang welcomes the idea of competing on Abu Dhabi’s Yas Island, where UFC staged a card in September last year.Zhang says that unlike travelling to the United States, she can get a visa on arrival, does not have so far to fly and does not have to suffer jetlag.”I’ve been there before and watched a fight, and I also lived on that island when I was preparing for a fight,” she said. Zhang Weili retained her UFC title in March in one of the greatest women’s fights in MMA history, was then stranded in the United States for six weeks by coronavirus and finally flew back to China in a protective suit and visor.But after all that, it was the sight of airport and medical staff with “welcome home” scribbled on their own protective gear to greet arriving passengers that deeply affected her.”I was really touched and excited, I’ve never felt such warmth in all my life,” China’s first and only Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) champion told AFP in Shanghai. The excitement surrounding Zhang’s swift rise to prominence has reached such an extent in China that she is being mentioned in the same breath as basketball giant Yao Ming, who led the Houston Rockets to the NBA playoffs four times.But the articulate Zhang, who hails from the northern province of Hebei, gives that lofty comparison a swift verbal jab.”I am not Yao Ming or anyone else,” she said. “I just want to be a better me.”
“Clusters in the workplace have become a big problem lately” as people have emerged from the capital’s ‘Stay Home’ initiative, she told reporters earlier.”Businesses like eateries are taking steps to create partitions and such, but it’s difficult to see what kind of precautions are being taken at offices,” Koike said.”The latest case tells us that offices can become clusters too, so we’d like everyone to think again about what a new normal for the workplace should look like.”Koike said that in addition to the latest results from the office, more than 10 cases emerged from group testing in Shinjuku – an area known for its nightlife – on Wednesday.Still, Tokyo – like the rest of Japan – has been spared the kind of explosive outbreak seen elsewhere, with some 5,800 coronavirus cases and 323 deaths so far.In all of Japan, about 18,000 have tested positive and 965 have died so far from the COVID-19 illness. Globally, more than 9.26 million people have tested positive and some 475,880 have died. Tokyo’s new coronavirus cases climbed to 55 on Wednesday, public broadcaster NHK said, the highest tally in 1-1/2 months after a cluster of infections was found at an unnamed office in the Japanese capital.The metropolis, with a population of 14 million, has sought to keep new cases below 20 a day after Japan lifted a state of emergency on May 25. Tokyo has said it could re-impose restrictions if the figure crept up to 50 or more – something that last happened on May 5.Speaking before the latest figure was reported, Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike had warned of a “large number” on Wednesday as more positive test results followed a cluster of seven infections previously found at the office. Topics :
The death toll from demonstrations and ethnic violence that erupted in Ethiopia last week following the murder of a popular singer from the Oromo ethnic group has risen to 239, according to a tally of police figures.Pop star Hachalu Hundessa, a hero to many Oromo who saw him as the voice of their marginalization, was shot dead by unknown attackers on Monday of last week, fuelling ethnic tensions threatening the country’s democratic transition.Protests broke out in the capital Addis Ababa, as well as the surrounding Oromia region which is the homeland of the country’s largest ethnic group, who have long felt economically and politically sidelined in the diverse nation. Mustafa also said there had been “extensive damage and looting” of government and private property.”To control this unrest more than 3,500 suspects have been arrested. They were anti-peace elements who carried out attacks using the artist’s death as a pretext to dismantle the constitutional system by force,” he said.”The Oromo population should be inclusive of other ethnic groups that live among it.” Threat to planned democracy Hachalu’s music was the soundtrack to anti-government protests that swept Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, the country’s first Oromo leader, to office in 2018.Yet, as Ethiopia prepares for elections that will test its democratic transition under Abiy, many Oromo nationalists feel betrayed, arguing the prime minister has failed to champion their interests.Free and fair elections planned for August have been postponed due to the coronavirus epidemic.Simmering ethnic tensions in the country of over 100 million people have provided a major challenge to Abiy, whose efforts to loosen the reins of iron-fisted rule and open up the democratic space have led to increased jockeying for power and influence.Abiy, who won the Nobel Peace Prize last year for ending a long running conflict with neighboring Eritrea, has been accused of reverting to the tactics of his predecessors, with a wave of arrests of high profile opposition politicians during last week’s protests.Five senior members of the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) were arrested, as were Jawar Mohammed and Bekele Gerba from the Oromo Federalist Congress, as well as Eskinder Nega, a longtime government critic who has recently spoken out against government policies he argues favour Oromos.Abiy has said that Hachalu’s killing and the violence that ensued were part of a plot to sow unrest in Ethiopia.He has linked the chaos to another current major headache he is facing: the filling of a mega-dam Ethiopia has built on the Blue Nile River which is facing objections from neighbors Egypt and Sudan.”The desire of the breaking news is to make the Ethiopian government take its eye off the dam,” Abiy said Tuesday during a question-and-answer session with lawmakers, without giving evidence to support the claim. Officials have attributed the deaths to a combination of lethal force by security officers and inter-ethnic violence.”Due to the unrest that occurred in the region, nine police officers, five militia members and 215 civilians have lost their lives,” acting Oromia police commissioner Mustafa Kedir said on state television on Wednesday.Police in Addis Ababa had previously reported 10 deaths in the capital.The death toll is an increase from 166 fatalities reported at the weekend. Topics :
The nation’s provinces have continued to experience a surge of infections and deaths, including Jakarta, where the share of positive test results out of the total tests administered had doubled to 10.5 percent by last week. As of Saturday, the total cumulative reported cases in Indonesia exceeded those officially reported in China, where the virus was first discovered, for the first time. As of the same day, China had recorded 83,644 cumulative cases, according to the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).Epidemiologist Riris Andono Ahmad from Gadjah Mada University said Indonesia could see a shortened doubling period for COVID-19 cases, possibly causing the country to become one of the worst hit in the world if there was no intervention.He mentioned several other potential hotspots, such as boarding schools, where a number of people from various regions tended to convene with limited social distancing. Confirmed hotspots have now spread outside of Jakarta to East Java, Central Java, South Sulawesi and South Kalimantan. After almost a month of taking gradual steps to reopen the economy, Indonesia has seen its COVID-19 cases and deaths double as crowds reemerge in virus epicenters like Jakarta. Experts have cautioned that the country is at risk of becoming one of the worst hit worldwide.Indonesia had recorded 86,521 total cases and 4,143 deaths as of Sunday, twice the cumulative figure from the previous month.The central government and local administrations gradually lifted requirements under large-scale social restrictions (PSBB) in the first weeks of June. By June 18, the Health Ministry had recorded 41,431 cases and 2,276 deaths nationwide, surpassing Singapore for the first time as the Southeast Asian country with most officially reported cases. “There must be tough enforcement from the government and popular awareness if [people] don’t want to prolong the pandemic. The problem is that there is sometimes resistance, and with the large number of people there, there has to be bargaining in prevention efforts,” he told The Jakarta Post.Indonesia’s daily fatality average among confirmed cases increased to 77 deaths per day in the past week from 62 deaths per day in the previous week, according to data compiled by the Post.The World Health Organization (WHO) warned in a report on July 15 that the deaths of patients under surveillance (PDP) in Indonesia had been substantially higher than the deaths of confirmed COVID-19 patients in most provinces in Java.Nationwide data compiled by volunteer group Kawal COVID-19 shows more than 8,000 deaths among PDPs and people under observation (ODPs), which the government has now renamed probable and suspected cases, respectively.Starting in early June, offices reopened as restrictions were eased. Only Jakarta and its satellite cities and regencies began the transition out of PSBB, which allowed the gradual reopening of several service sectors. Tangerang city and regency, as well as South Tangerang, remained under full PSBB, according to the national COVID-19 task force.Government COVID-19 spokesperson Achmad Yurianto said recently that many of the new confirmed COVID-19 cases in Indonesia were found in office settings with poor air circulation and workers who were not wearing masks.An epidemiologist at the University of Airlangga, Laura Navika Yamani, said with no mobility restrictions between provinces and cities that had different levels of risk, there could be a “widening spread of the virus” to areas that were thought to be virus free.”The exponential growth of cases to even double [within a month] is expected when taking into consideration the virus’ characteristics. One person may infect two to four other people, depending on how much interaction [the person] has [with others],” she said.The virus has now reached 464 of the country’s 514 cities and regencies from 431 on the same date last month. Currently, 269 labs are in operation to conduct COVID-19 tests.Despite a growing network of labs, Indonesia continues to have one of the lowest testing rates in the world, having tested 707,238 people so far. Data compiled by Worldometer shows that Indonesia has tested 439 people per 100,000, while China has tested 6,281 people per 100,000.The WHO report said that only Jakarta had met its minimum surveillance benchmark of 1 test per 1,000 people per week, one of the requisites for loosening restrictions that the government adopted in its latest COVID-19 prevention and handling guidelines.Riris said that without any government intervention, there would be “very big” collateral damage after reopening.”The epidemic is like burning fuel, and the fuel, in this case, is people without immunity. The sooner they’re burnt, the sooner it will end. But as a result, the healthcare system will be overwhelmed, fatalities will be high and the economy might collapse,” he said.Topics :
“The son, Selu, walked ahead of the group and was stopped and interrogated by TNI personnel at a post near Keneyam river. He was also beaten during the interrogation,” the witness told The Jakarta Post on Monday.He said at the time of the interrogation, Selu was carrying an axe. “He used the axe to cut firewood or to make emergency bridges to cross rivers during the journey.”Upon hearing Selu’s arrest, Elias went to the military post to pick up his son.”Not long after I and other displaced people resumed our journey to Keneyam, we heard gunshots,” the witness said. “We knew that Elias and Selu had been shot to death after arriving at the district.” Two men, Elias Karungu and Selu Karungu, from conflict-prone Nduga regency, Papua, were fatally shot by Indonesian Military (TNI) personnel on Saturday. Locals claimed the two were displaced civilians, while the Indonesian Military claimed the two were members of an armed group.The father and son were killed when returning to Keneyam district, the capital of the regency, after hiding in forests for more than a year to avoid conflicts between the TNI and an armed group linked to the Free Papua Movement (OPM), a witness who requested anonymity for security reasons claimed.The witness said that Elias and Selu made the trip with dozens of other displaced locals from Paro and Yengelo districts who were also seeking refuge in the forests. Read also: OPM says TNI, police shot medical workers in PapuaThe Indonesian Military have maintained a strong presence in Nduga regency since December 2018, following the killing of more than 30 workers of state-owned company Istaka Karya in the regency by an armed group linked to the Free Papua Movement (OPM) lead by Egianus Kogoya.The construction workers were assigned to build a 275-kilometer section of road to connect Wamena and Mamugu as part of President Jokowi’s flagship trans-Papua road project.The killings led to a protracted security crisis in Nduga, forcing civilians to seek refuge in the neighboring regency of Wamena.Residents from Paro, Yengalo and Yal districts who had difficult access to neighboring regencies opted to hide in forests in the wake of the conflicts. However, after illness and starvation plagued their hideout they decided to return to Keneyam.As many as 139 refugees had died from starvation and illness caused by poor living conditions in the shelters, as reported by the Nduga Solidarity Civil Society Coalition in July last year. The government vehemently rejected the figure and claimed that only 53 displaced people had died.The death of Elias and Selu sparked outrage among locals who staged a rally on Sunday near Keneyam airport.”We did not go to the church on Sunday. We took to the street demanding the military hand over Elias and Selu’s bodies,” a local, who also requested anonymity for security reasons, said.After the military handed over the bodies, Elias and Selu were buried in a cemetery where Hendrik Lokbere was laid to rest. Hendrik was a close aide of Nduga deputy regent Wentius Nimiangge who was shot dead by an unidentified perpetrator on a road in Kenyam district in December 2019.Col. GN Sunastawa of the Joint Defense Area Command III (Kogabwilhan III) covering Papua and Maluku claimed that both Elias and Selu were actually members of the Egianus Kogoya armed group.”Military personnel have marked them as targets. They were members of an armed group led by Egianus Kogoya. We have the evidence, guns and ammunition,” Sunastawa told the Post on Monday. (nal)Editor’s note: This article has been updated to clarify the sources’ requests for anonymity and to better clarify the TNI’s claim that the victims were not civiliansTopics :
Depok city in West Java has seen an increase in COVID-19 household clusters as the city continues to ease restrictions, Depok Health Agency head Novarita said.”We’ve started to see patterns, three or four people testing positive for COVID-19 [in a certain area] and it turns out they are a family living in one household,” Novarita said on Wednesday as reported by kompas.com.Novarita said the agency had coordinated with the Jakarta administration, as 60 percent of Depok residents commuted daily to Jakarta, the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak in the country, for work.”Jakarta has been conducting massive COVID-19 testing, much larger compared to other cities. A lot of times, we manage to find a household cluster after a Depok resident tests positive in Jakarta. We track their close contacts and find their family members have been infected as well,” she said.Novarita said the agency relied on people’s awareness to curb the spread of COVID-19 in Depok as the city administration could not “prevent people from working”.She also urged commuters to take a shower upon arriving home.Read also: ‘Don’t rush into new normal’, Jokowi tells local leaders amid rising COVID-19 cases”After arriving home from work, you should immediately change your clothes and take a shower. Don’t sit around and chit chat with your family right away,” she said.As of Wednesday, Depok had recorded 1,488 confirmed cases of COVID-19, the highest in West Java.Pandu Riono, an epidemiologist from the University of Indonesia (UI) in Depok, said the government needed to integrate COVID-19 mitigation in Greater Jakarta.”The mobility of residents in Greater Jakarta is very high, even though Jakarta and its satellite cities have different administrations and provinces, they should be considered one region to curb the spread of COVID-19,” Pandu said on Tuesday.If Jakarta’s satellite cities carried out active case findings and massive testing like the capital city, Pandu said there might be a spike in COVID-19 cases in those areas. (nal)Topics :
Blaming “IT problems”, Public Health France was unable to provide the numbers of people hospitalized or in intensive care or who had died with the virus in the 24 hours to Wednesday.On Tuesday, the figures were 4,600 hospital patients and 410 in intensive care. So far at least 30,544 people have been killed by the virus in France. French health authorities on Wednesday reported more than 5,000 new coronavirus cases for the previous 24 hours, hitting their highest figure since May days before children return to school nationwide.Public Health France said it had recorded 5,429 new infections, after 3,304 on Tuesday.The daily figure has topped 4,000 several times in recent days, ahead of the September 1 return to school for millions of pupils. Topics : The French public must act in “a spirit of responsibility” to limit the surge in new cases, Prime Minister Jean Castex said on France Inter radio Wednesday morning.”The state has its share of responsibility… but everyone has to feel like it’s their job to fight the pandemic,” Castex added.On Monday, German health authorities labeled the Ile-de-France region including capital Paris and the Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur region around Mediterranean port city Marseille “risk zones” for the virus.Anyone travelling to Germany from the two regions must submit to a Covid-19 test and quarantine themselves while awaiting the result.
Jakarta saw the highest number of new cases with 760, followed by East Java with 367 and East Kalimantan with 206.National COVID-19 Task Force spokesperson Wiku Adisasmito said that three of Jakarta’s municipalities in Jakarta remained “red zones” in the past four weeks, and showed no signs of improvement.“West Jakarta, Central Jakarta and North Jakarta recorded continuously increasing numbers of cases […] Residents must put more effort into implementing health protocols to contain the disease transmission,” Wiku said in a press conference on Thursday afternoon.But despite the deteriorating situation, the task force has given the green light for city authorities to reopen movie theaters.“We will prepare the complete regulation soon, which will include every aspect pertaining to health protocol implementation, following the task force’s recommendations,” Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan said on Wednesday.Wiku said that reopening movie theaters would contribute to public health “because people’s immunity can increase if they are happy.”Topics : The Health Ministry confirmed 2,719 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, another new one-day high. The new cases bring the official count of cases nationwide to 162,884.Thursday’s death toll of 120 was also the third-highest daily increase recorded since the outbreak began in March.
“First and foremost I’m a United fan. This is my club. I’m so proud to wear this shirt but there are no excuses, it’s just not good enough and to every single fan around the world that tuned in today, I’m just so sorry,” Rashford tweeted.”You deserve so much better than that. I would have stayed away from social media tonight but you deserve to hear from me during the highs and the lows, there is no hiding.”I feel horrible but I promise you we will do better.”Defender Luke Shaw said the result was “embarrassing” and that the players had to take more responsibility. Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford has apologised to the club’s supporters following their 6-1 hammering by Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday.Spurs’ Son Heung-min and Harry Kane each scored twice as manager Jose Mourinho celebrated a victorious return to the club which sacked him 22 months ago.The result at Old Trafford equalled United’s worst defeat in the Premier League era. They were previously beaten 6-1 by local rivals Manchester City in October 2011. “A club like United shouldn’t be losing, but losing in this way … it really hurts and it is kind of embarrassing because I feel like we have let a lot of people down today who were watching at home,” Shaw told Sky Sports.”We’re the players on the pitch and we need to have very high standards. The players we have, have quality but it hasn’t been showing.”We need to look at ourselves in the mirror as individuals but as a team … we’re nowhere near it at the moment.”United visit Newcastle United in the league on Oct. 17 after the international break.Topics :