By Seyhmus Cakan DIYARBAKIR, Turkey (Reuters) - Turkish military helicopters killed 12 Kurdish militants in strikes near the southeastern border with Syria on Wednesday, security sources said, in a conflict becoming increasingly intertwined with developments in Turkey's war-torn neighbor. The Cobra attack helicopters launched the assault at around 6 a.m. (0400 GMT) as a group of Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) fighters traveled through a mountainous area near the Idil district of Turkey's Sirnak province, the sources said. Parts of Idil were placed under 24-hour curfew last week as the security forces carried out an operation against the militants. That was part of a wider military campaign which began last December in towns in the mostly Kurdish southeast following the collapse in July of a ceasefire with the PKK. Late on Wednesday, Turkish warplanes carried out an air bombardment on PKK camps in Qandil, the group's center in northern Iraq, sources said, hitting ammunition depots, shelters and logistical centers. The violence in Turkey's southeast is at its worst since the 1990s, turning parts of the region into a war zone. PKK militants have dug trenches and erected barricades in towns and cities, and the death toll has climbed into the hundreds as the security forces try to flush them out. It has also complicated international efforts to end the war in Syria. Ankara sees the PKK as closely linked to the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia, which has enjoyed U.S. support in the fight against Islamic State insurgents but which Ankara sees as a hostile force bent on seizing Syrian territory abutting Turkey. Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has blamed a member of the YPG, working with Kurdish militants inside Turkey, for a suicide bombing that killed 29 people in the capital Ankara last week, most of them soldiers. The Turkish armed forces shelled YPG positions in northern Syria in the days after the attack and bombed PKK camps in northern Iraq, as the government vowed that those responsible would pay the price. Clashes inside Turkey have also continued. On Tuesday, security forces killed six PKK militants in Idil and two others in the Sur district of the region's largest city Diyarbakir, the armed forces said in a statement. One soldier died of his wounds after coming under attack from PKK fighters in Sur on Wednesday, it said. Another was lightly wounded. The statement also said security forces had detained four members of the PKK and PYD, the political arm of the Syrian YPG, on Tuesday in the Akcakale district of Sanliurfa province, two of whom had sought to cross the border from Syria illegally. The PKK is deemed a terrorist group by Turkey, the United States and European Union. It launched its insurgency in 1984. (Additional reporting by Humeyra Pamuk; Writing by Nick Tattersall; Editing by Daren Butler/Mark Heinrich)
- Associated Press
Shannon Keeler was enjoying a weekend getaway with her boyfriend last year when she checked her Facebook messages for the first time in ages. The messages rocketed Keeler back to the life-shattering night in December 2013 when an upperclassman at Gettysburg College stalked her at a party, snuck into her dorm and barged into her room while she pleaded with him and texted friends for help. Eight years later, she still hopes to persuade authorities in Pennsylvania to make an arrest, armed now with perhaps her strongest piece of evidence: his alleged confession, sent via social media.
- Business Insider
Bill Gates was dismissive toward Melinda Gates at work and pursued female employees at Microsoft and the Gates Foundation: NYT report
Six current and former employees of Gates and his endeavors told The New York Times he fostered an uncomfortable workplace.
YouTuber-turned-boxer Jake Paul is being investigated by Puerto Rican officials for violations of environmental laws after driving on a beach.
- The New York Times
RIO DE JANEIRO — Fretting over a fever in her toddler that wouldn’t break, the mother took the young girl, Letícia, to a hospital. Doctors had worrisome news: It was COVID-19. But they were reassuring, noting that children almost never develop serious symptoms, said the mother, Ariani Roque Marinheiro. Less than two weeks later, on Feb. 27, Letícia died in the critical care unit of the hospital in Maringá, in southern Brazil, after days of labored breathing. Sign up for The Morning newsletter from the New York Times “It happened so quickly, and she was gone,” said Marinheiro, 33. “She was everything to me.” COVID-19 is ravaging Brazil, and, in a disturbing new wrinkle that experts are working to understand, it appears to be killing babies and small children at an unusually high rate. Since the start of the pandemic, 832 children 5 and under have died of the virus, according to Brazil’s health ministry. Comparable data is scarce because countries track the impact of the virus differently, but in the United States, which has a far larger population than Brazil, and a higher overall death toll from COVID-19, 139 children 4 and under have died. And Brazil’s official number of child deaths is likely a substantial undercount, as a lack of widespread testing means many cases go undiagnosed, said Dr. Fátima Marinho, an epidemiologist at the University of São Paulo. Marinho, who is leading a study tallying the death toll among children based on both suspected and confirmed cases, estimates that more than 2,200 children under 5 have died since the start of the pandemic, including more than 1,600 babies less than a year old. “We are seeing a huge impact on children,” said Marinho. “It’s a number that’s absurdly high. We haven’t seen this anywhere else in the world.” Experts in Brazil, Europe and the United States agree that the number of children’s deaths from COVID-19 in Brazil appeared to be particularly high. “Those numbers are surprising. That’s a lot higher than what we’re seeing in the United States,” said Dr. Sean O’Leary, vice chair of the American Academy of Pediatrics’ committee on infectious diseases, and a pediatrics infectious disease specialist at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus. “By any of the measures that we’re following here in the United States, those numbers are quite a bit higher.” There is no evidence available on the impact of variants of the virus — which scientists say are leading to more severe cases of COVID in young, healthy adults and driving up death tolls in Brazil — on babies and children. But experts say the variant appears to be leading to higher death rates among pregnant women. Some women with COVID are giving birth to stillborn or premature babies already infected with the virus, said Dr. André Ricardo Ribas Freitas, an epidemiologist at São Leopoldo Mandic College in Campinas, who led a recent study on the impact of the variant. “We can already affirm that the P.1 variant is much more severe in pregnant women,” said Ribas Freitas. “And, oftentimes, if the pregnant woman has the virus, the baby might not survive or they might both die.” Lack of timely and adequate access to health care for children once they fall ill is likely a factor in the death toll, experts said. In the United States and Europe, experts said, early treatment has been key to the recovery of children infected with the virus. In Brazil, overstretched doctors have often been late to confirm infections in children, Marinho said. “Children are not being tested,” she said. “They get sent away, and it’s only when these children return in a really bad state that COVID-19 is suspected.” Dr. Lara Shekerdemian, chief of critical care at Texas Children’s Hospital, said that the mortality rate for children who get COVID-19 remains very low, but children living in countries where medical care is uneven were at greater risk. “A child that might just need a bit of oxygen today may end up on a ventilator next week if they don’t have access to the oxygen and the steroid that we give early in the disease process,” Shekerdemian said. “So what might end up as a simple hospitalization in my world can result in a child needing medical care they simply can’t get if there’s a delay in access to care.” A study published in the Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal in January found that children in Brazil and four other countries in Latin America developed more severe forms of COVID-19 and more cases of multisystem inflammatory syndrome, a rare and extreme immune response to the virus, compared with data from China, Europe and North America. Even before the pandemic began, millions of Brazilians living in poor areas had limited access to basic health care. In recent months, the system has been overwhelmed as a crush of patients have flooded into critical care units, resulting in a chronic shortage of beds. “There’s a barrier to access for many,” said Dr. Ana Luisa Pacheco, a pediatric infectious diseases specialist at the Heitor Vieira Dourado Tropical Medicine Foundation in Manaus. “For some children, it takes three or four hours by boat to get to a hospital.” The cases in children have shot up amid Brazil’s broader explosion in infections, which experts attribute to President Jair Bolsonaro’s cavalier response to the pandemic and his government’s refusal to take vigorous measures to promote social distancing. A lagging economy has also left millions without income or enough food, forcing many to risk infection as they search for work. Some of the children who have died of the virus already had health issues that made them more vulnerable. Still, Marinho estimates that they represent just over one-quarter of deaths among children under 10. That suggests that healthy children, too, seem to be at heightened risk from the virus in Brazil. Letícia Marinheiro was one such child, her mother said. A healthy baby who had just started walking, she had never been sick before, Marinheiro said. Marinheiro, who got sick along with her husband Diego, 39, believes Letícia might have lived if her illness had been treated with more urgency. “I think they didn’t believe that she could be so sick, they didn’t believe it could happen to a child,” said Marinheiro. She recalled pleading to have more tests done. Four days into the child’s hospitalization, she said, doctors had still not fully examined Letícia’s lungs. Marinheiro is still unsure how her family got sick. She had kept Letícia — a first child the couple had badly wanted for years — at home and away from everyone. Her husband, a supplier of hair salon products, had been cautious to avoid contact with clients, even as he kept working to keep the family financially afloat. For Marinheiro, the sudden death of her daughter has left a gaping hole in her life. As the pandemic rages on, she says, she wishes other parents would quit underestimating the dangers of the virus that took Letícia away from her. In her city, she watches as families throw birthday parties for children and officials push to reopen schools. “This virus is so inexplicable,” she said. “It’s like playing the lottery. And we never believe it will happen to us. It’s only when it takes someone from your family.” This article originally appeared in The New York Times. © 2021 The New York Times Company
- Business Insider
Microsoft board members opened investigation into Bill Gates after a staffer said the pair had engaged in a sexual relationship: WSJ report
A spokesperson for Gates told The Wall Street Journal "there was an affair almost 20 years ago which ended amicably."
- Associated Press
A league of Muslim nations on Sunday demanded that Israel halt attacks killing Palestinian civilians amid heavy fighting between it and Hamas in the Gaza Strip, even as fissures between countries over their recognition of Israel emerged. A statement by the 57-nation Organization of Islamic Cooperation hewed closely to previous ones issued by the Saudi-based group, including backing the decades-old call for Palestinians to have their own nation with East Jerusalem as its capital.
- Business Insider
US Special Operations Command Europe planned simultaneous exercises to simulate a full-blown conflict with Russia from the Baltic to the Black Sea.
Supermodel Bella Hadid donned traditional dress and joined a 'Free Palestine' march in New York City
Bella Hadid, whose father Mohamed Hadid is Palestinian, marched in New York and posted messages of support on social media.
- Associated Press
After Joel Bautista died of a heart attack last month in Peru, his family tried unsuccessfully to find an available grave at four different cemeteries. The excavation in a poor neighborhood in the capital city of Lima was broadcast live on television, attracting the attention of authorities and prompting them to offer the family a space on the rocky slopes of a cemetery. “If there is no solution, then there will be a space here,” Yeni Bautista told The Associated Press, explaining the family’s decision to dig at the foot of a tropical hibiscus tree after her brother’s body began to decompose.
- LA Times
LeBron James injured his right ankle again after a 360-degree spinning layup in a win over the Pelicans. Lakers finish seventh and play Golden State next.
- The Week
Actor Matthew McConaughey has been "quietly making calls to influential people in Texas political circles," Politico reports, suggesting that his hypothetical gubernatorial run in the Lone Star State may actually be in the works. As Politico notes, McConaughey — who has said entering politics is a "true consideration" and appears to poll quite well in Texas — is widely expected to forego a campaign, but he apparently wants to take folks' "temperature" on the idea, multiple people familiar with the conversations said. One of McConaughey's phone calls was reportedly with a "deep-pocketed moderate Republican and energy CEO," which does little to clear up whether he'd run as a Republican, Democrat, or independent. Regardless of what party McConaughey might affiliate himself with, though, Austin-based GOP strategist Brendan Steinhauser told Politico he's "a little surprised that people aren't taking him more seriously, honestly. Celebrity in this country counts for a lot ... it's not like some C-list actor no one likes." Read more at Politico. More stories from theweek.comPoll: Most GOP voters think 2020 election was illegitimate, but lawmakers should prioritize other issues7 scathingly funny cartoons about Liz Cheney's ousterManhattan prosecutors are reportedly investigating if Trump paid tuition of CFO's grandkids
- USA TODAY
'Small mistake': Israeli military spokesman denies inaccurate information was a ploy to deceive Hamas
The Israeli military spokesman said Israeli troops were trying to trick Hamas into going into its network of underground tunnels, but he denied being part of the ploy.
ATHENS (Reuters) -Greece formally opened to visitors on Saturday, kicking off a summer season it hopes will resurrect its vital tourism industry battered by the coronavirus pandemic. After months of lockdown restrictions, Greece also opened its museums this week, including the Acropolis museum, home to renowned sculptures from Greek antiquity. "I feel really alive and good because it has been such a hard and long year because of COVID," said Victoria Sanchez, a 22-year-old student on holiday from the Czech Republic.
- The Telegraph
The Duke of York has been quietly or publicly removed as patron of almost 50 organisations, The Telegraph can reveal, despite his expressed intention to one day return to public life. The proportion of his charities and organisations, thought to be at least one in four, that opted to sever ties with the Duke following his friendship with convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein, underlines the scale of the damage to his reputation. Many, particularly those working with children, felt it was “no longer appropriate” to continue their associations with him. Others said they were determined to find a representative “better suited” to their aims and values. When the Duke, 61, announced on Nov 20 2019 that he was “stepping back from public duties for the foreseeable future” following the furore over his disastrous Newsnight interview, many of his charities found themselves in a difficult position. Board meetings were called, frantic phone calls made. Several took the decision to end their association with immediate effect. They included the Royal National Institute for the Deaf, the Golf Foundation, the Children’s Foundation, the Outward Bound Trust and the British Science Association. The Royal Navy and Royal Marines Children’s Fund said: “We felt that as a children's charity it was not appropriate for him to remain patron.” Other organisations such as Berkshire County Cricket Club, the Society for Nautical Research, the Association of Leading Visitor Attractions and Whitgift School in Croydon, also severed ties.
Thuzar Wint Lwin doesn't believe she will be able to safely return to Myanmar after speaking out during the competition.
- The Independent
‘Members of Congress aren’t able to cast votes, or feel that they can’t, because of their own security,’ Ms Cheney says
- Business Insider
Some Amazon managers say they hire people they intend to fire later just to meet their turnover goal
The practice is internally called "hire to fire," according to three Amazon managers.
An elderly Indian woman whose family believed she had died from COVID-19 was moments from being cremated when she opened her eyes and began crying
The 76-year-old woman shocked her family when she woke up. They believed she had died outside a hospital that was too crowded to treat her.
- Miami Herald
The body of a missing 16-year-old girl was found Sunday night on the 79th Street Causeway near Pelican Harbor Marina in Miami.
- Business Insider
Anti-maskers and COVID deniers have been yelling about 'freedom' since the pandemic began. Now many of them are standing in the way of America's actual freedom.
COVID deniers and turning into anti-vaxxers and preventing the rest of us from getting through the pandemic and back to normal.