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Indigenous people attend a protest to defend indigenous land and cultural rights that they say are threatened by the right-wing government of Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro, in Brasilia, Brazil, April 26, 2019. REUTERS/Adriano Machado
April 26, 2019
BRASILIA (Reuters) – Thousands of people representing the more than 300 tribes native to Brazil marched to government offices in Brasilia on Friday to protest the policies of right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro that threaten their reservation lands.
Wearing body paint and headdresses made with the colorful feathers of Amazon birds, they brandished bows and arrows and beat drums while chanting resistance songs. The march comes at the end of a three-day rally in the Brazilian capital called the Free Land Encampment.
“Our families are in danger, our children are under threat, our people are being attacked. In the name of what they call economic progress they want to kill our people,” said David Karai Popygua, an ethnic Guarani Mbya from the state of Sao Paulo.
Bolsonaro, a former army captain turned politician, was elected in October with the support of Brazil’s farm sector that has pushed for access to more land and fewer environmental controls. They also want him to ease gun possession laws.
One of his first measures on taking office on Jan. 1 was to dismantle the indigenous affairs agency FUNAI, handing reservation demarcation decisions to the Agriculture Ministry that is controlled by farming interests.
“It is an embarrassment for our country to have a government that does not understand the struggle of indigenous peoples and has no knowledge at all of the indigenous population,” said Daran, a Tupi Guarani chieftain.
Brazil has more than 850,000 indigenous people that make up less than 1 percent of its population. They live on reservations that make up about 13 percent of the country’s territory.
Bolsonaro has said that is too much land for so few people and has vowed to review some reservation borders. He says they live poorly and wants to assimilate them by allowing large-scale farming and commercial mining on reservations.
The government did not immediately comment on the protests.
The country’s Supreme Court on Thursday denied an injunction sought by the Brazilian Socialist Party to stop the transfer of indigenous land decisions to the agriculture ministry. Hundreds of tribal people protested outside the building.
Sonia Guajajara, national coordinator of Brazil’s Association of Indigenous Peoples, told Reuters that land invasions and other attacks on tribes by illegal miners and loggers had increased since Bolsonaro took office.
“They say that they have been authorized to occupy indigenous land,” she said. “We are here to oppose mining, hydroelectric and agribusiness companies that destroy tribal communities and Mother Nature.”
“We have resisted for five centuries and we are not going to surrender in four years. We will continue fighting,” she said.
(Reporting by Leonardo Benassatto and Anthony Boadle, Editing by Rosalba O’Brien)
New York City could be headed for bankruptcy, according to financial analysts who see warning signs of fiscal disaster.
However, the city is doing all it can to ensure that doesn’t happen.
Raul A. Contreras, spokesperson for the mayor’s office, told Fox News via email: “The city’s credit rating increased in February for the first time since 2010, putting us on par with the State — something few municipalities ever accomplish. This mayor has been a strong steward of the city’s finances, including mandating cuts across city agencies in the next budget while still providing for New Yorkers.”
Economists, however, see potential dire signs.
“The city is running a deficit and could be in a real difficult spot if we had a recession, or a further flight of individuals because of tax reform,” Milton Ezrati, chief economist of Vested, a financial communication agency, told the New York Post. “New York is already in a difficult financial spot, but it would be in an impossible situation if we had any kind of setback.”
The Post reported that long-term debt is now more than $81,100 per household in New York City.
Democratic Mayor Bill de Blasio wants to add $3 billion more in the new budget to the current $89.2 billion.
De Blasio has detailed $750 million in savings for the preliminary fiscal 2020 budget, while Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s preliminary budget has $600 million in city cuts in the coming year, the news outlet reported.
“New York City could go bankrupt, absolutely,” said Peter C. Earle, an economist at the American Institute for Economic Research. “In that case, the city would get temporary protection from its creditors, but it would be very difficult for the city to take on new debt.”
Source: Fox News National
FILE PHOTO: A combination of file photos shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un attending a wreath laying ceremony at Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum in Hanoi, Vietnam March 2, 2019 and Russia's President Vladimir Putin looking during a joint news conference with South African President Jacob Zuma after their meeting at the Bocharov Ruchei residence in the Black Sea resort of Sochi, Krasnodar region, Russia, May 16, 2013. REUTERS/Jorge Silva/Pool/Maxim Shipenkov/Pool/File Photo
April 23, 2019
MOSCOW (Reuters) – North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will meet Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Russian eastern city of Vladivostok on Thursday, Kremlin aide Yuri Ushakov told reporters on Tuesday.
The leaders will discuss political and diplomatic efforts to settle the nuclear issue on the Korean peninsula, and Kim’s visit is key in this process, Ushakov said.
He said Russia’s bilateral trade with North Korea fell by more than 56 percent last year because of sanctions against Pyongyang but Moscow thinks it is important that North Korea and the United States are interested in maintaining their contact.
(Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin; Writing by Maria Tsvetkova; Editing by Peter Graff)
LEBANON, Ind. – The family of a 12-year-old boy who alleges he was sexually abused by a central Indiana pediatrician has filed a civil lawsuit.
The Indianapolis Star reports the child's parents, identified in court records as Jane Doe and John Doe, are seeking damages from 41-year-old Dr. Jonathon Cavins of Jamestown.
Cavins' attorney in the civil case isn't commenting on the lawsuit, due to pending litigation. Cavins is awaiting trial and now faces accusations from five accusers.
Cavins is charged with child molestation involving a 12-year-old boy and sexual misconduct with a minor involving two other teenage boys. The 12-year-old came forward in February, accusing Cavins of fondling him. In April, a judge approved a motion from prosecutors to add two additional counts of child seduction.
Information from: The Indianapolis Star, http://www.indystar.com
Source: Fox News National
FILE PHOTO: Self checkout machines are seen at a supermarket of Swiss retail group Coop in Zumikon, Switzerland December 13, 2016. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann/File Photo
May 16, 2019
By Emma Thomasson
AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – Executives from major global retailers played down the threat to employment in stores from artificial intelligence and automation on Thursday and pledged more training to help staff adopt more high-value tasks as machines take over their work.
Retail is one of the largest employers in many developed economies and experts have predicted automation puts millions of low-skilled jobs in the sector at risk, particularly as the introduction of self-checkouts makes cashiers redundant.
“Technology can liberate people from repetitive tasks,” Barbara Martin Coppola, chief digital officer at Swedish furniture giant IKEA, told Reuters on the sidelines of the World Retail Congress, an annual industry gathering.
“These jobs are not gone. We are believers in the talent we have in our house and we look to repurpose it into more fulfilling tasks.”
Martin Coppola said IKEA needs far fewer people to select the goods displayed on the firm’s website, known as online merchandising, as algorithms get more sophisticated. But these people can be trained in digital marketing instead.
“It is important to see technology as an enabler and not to let it be at the expense of human beings and the planet,” she said.
Walmart, the world’s biggest private employer with 2.2 million staff, has been adding self check-outs and announced last month that it would be rolling out automated shelf scanners, to check product availability, and cleaning robots.
“Cleaning the floor is not a thing that brings a person fulfillment,” said Tom Faitak, Walmart’s senior manager for AI, robotics and automation, adding that automating repetitive tasks gives staff more time to help customers.
“Robots are not fantastic at interacting with people,” he said. “Robots are good at doing the same task over and over, not finding an item on the shelf.”
Walmart staff who are freed up from some repetitive tasks are increasingly being redeployed to pick orders placed online and prepare them for curbside pickup.
Consultants McKinsey estimate that 53 percent of activities in retailing are automatable, particularly in stock management and logistics. It predicts that next generation automated grocery stores could see the number of labor hours for inventory and stocking cut by two thirds.
Walmart and Kroger – the biggest U.S. supermarket chain – say they are committed to developing their store workers so they are not left behind.
Walmart offers training to tens of thousands of associates through an “Academy” program, while Kroger launched a new scheme last year to promote continued education, from high school certificates to doctorates.
Kroger Chairman and Chief Executive Rodney McMullen, who started out as a store clerk at the chain and had his college education supported by the company, noted that U.S. unemployment was at its lowest for decades, pushing automation.
“Part of it is because you just can’t find people,” he said,
noting that the company was creating higher-paid jobs in software engineering as it seeks to modernize the business.
The Cincinnati-based company has built robot-aided warehouses and is trying out self-driving vehicles to improve delivery.
(Editing by Alexandra Hudson)
VIENNA – The Latest on the video scandal that's rocked the Austrian government (all times local):
Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz says he wants to fire interior minister over the video scandal that's rocked the government.
Kurz told reporters in Vienna that removing Herbert Kickl of the far-right Freedom Party from his post was necessary to achieve "total transparency" in the case.
Two of Kickl's party colleagues were caught on video apparently offering government contracts to a supposed Russian benefactor.
Austria's leader is apparently preparing to force out the country's interior minister, a prominent and divisive figure in the far-right Freedom Party, after the country's vice chancellor resigned in a scandal over a covertly filmed video.
Conservative Chancellor Sebastian Kurz has called for a new national election after Vice Chancellor Heinz-Christian Strache quit his post and the leadership of the Freedom Party on Saturday. The election is expected in September, but it remains unclear how the country will be governed until then.
For now, the Freedom Party's ministers remain in place in Kurz's ruling coalition.
A minister from Kurz's party, Gernot Bluemel, told ORF television he expects that Kurz will dismiss Kickl. Bluemel cited a need to end the scandal triggered by a video in which Strache apparently offered government contracts to a Russian investor.
Source: Fox News World
FILE PHOTO: New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft arrives for the 89th Academy Awards Oscars Vanity Fair Party in Beverly Hills, California, U.S., February 26, 2017. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok/File Photo
February 25, 2019
(Reuters) – Florida prosecutors on Monday filed formal charges against Robert Kraft, the billionaire owner of the New England Patriots football team, and about two dozen other men for soliciting prostitution at massage parlors, authorities said on Monday.
The investigation by law enforcement officers in three Florida counties into the trafficking of young women to work at day spas and massage parlors has led to hundreds being charged.
Kraft, 77, and the other defendants charged with first-degree misdemeanors “come from all walks of life,” Dave Aronberg, the state attorney for Palm Beach County, told reporters.
On Friday, police named Kraft as a client at the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter, saying they had video of him engaging in paid sex acts with a worker there on two occasions.
Florida law requires that defendants convicted of those crimes pay a $5,000 fine, perform 100 hours of community service and take classes on the dangers of prostitution and human trafficking, Aronberg said. While they also face possible jail time of 60 days to one year, it is not likely to be applied to first-time offenders, he said.
Kraft denies engaging in “any illegal activity,” according to Aaron Salkin, a spokesman for Kraft and the Super Bowl champion Patriots, the National Football League’s dominant franchise.
Kraft and the other defendants were charged as part of a statewide probe into human trafficking, which Aronberg said was still underway.
“The larger picture which we must all confront is the cold reality that many prostitutes in cases like this are themselves victims,” he said.
The NFL, which said last week it was monitoring the case, released a new statement on Monday saying everyone, including team owners, were bound by the league’s personal conduct policy.
“We are seeking a full understanding of the facts, while ensuring that we do not interfere with an ongoing law enforcement investigation,” the statement said. “We will take appropriate action as warranted based on the facts.”
(Reporting by Jonathan Allen and Peter Szekely in New York; editing by Jonathan Oatis)
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FILE PHOTO: Feb 2, 2019; Atlanta, GA, USA; Gerald McCoy during red carpet arrivals for the NFL Honors show at the Fox Theatre. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
May 23, 2019
Interest from the Cleveland Browns is being reciprocated by free agent defensive tackle Gerald McCoy, who will be in Berea, Ohio, at team headquarters on Friday.
McCoy will take his first-ever free agency visit with the Browns, and he informed other suitors of the pecking order on Thursday.
McCoy, the third overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, was released by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Monday with three years left on his contract. The deal called for him to make $13 million in base pay this season. The original contract was for six years and $95.2 million.
Cleveland general manager John Dorsey confirmed he’d host McCoy on Friday. Dorsey, speaking Thursday after organized team activities, said he will continue to “turn over every rock.” Of McCoy, Dorsey said he is “a good player the Browns want to get to know a little better.”
Dorsey has been aggressive in stocking the Browns’ roster, including trades that brought in wide receivers Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry and defensive end Olivier Vernon. According to reports, the Browns have been interested in adding McCoy for months but didn’t offer a draft pick in exchange because they expected him to be released.
“These decisions are very difficult, personally and professionally,” Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht said in a statement when the team released McCoy. “Over the past nine years, Gerald has been a cornerstone of this franchise and a leader in our community. Parting ways with a player and person such as Gerald is one of the toughest responsibilities of this job. We wish Gerald, along with his wife, Ebony, and the entire McCoy family continued success and thank them for everything they have meant to our organization and community.”
After the Tampa Bay Times’ Rick Stroud originally reported McCoy was released, ESPN’s Adam Schefter noted that the Bucs tried for two months to find a trade partner, but when it was clear there was none, the two sides “mutually parted ways.”
The 31-year-old McCoy has been a pillar on otherwise subpar defenses for most of his career in Tampa, earning six Pro Bowl selections and tallying 54.5 sacks.
Earlier this month, McCoy voiced his displeasure with trade rumors while skipping voluntary workouts.
“I will be playing football somewhere,” McCoy told a local reporter at the time. When asked where that would be, McCoy said, “I don’t know. We’ll see.”
–Field Level Media
President Trump said at a freewheeling news conference Thursday that reports of his behavior during a meeting the previous day with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, whom he called “Crazy Nancy,” were untrue — and he called on other White House officials to back him up.
“She’s not the same person. She’s lost it. … She is a mess,” he said about Pelosi.
White House Counselor Kellyanne Conway backed him up, saying he was “very calm, no temper tantrum.” Others spoke in his defense as well.
Trump allegedly stalked out of the Cabinet Room Wednesday demanding an end to all congressional investigations before he would work with Congress on crumbling U.S. infrastructure and other matters.
Pelosi said Trump has established a pattern of unpredictability, and at one point she even joked about the 25th Amendment, the Constitution’s provision laying out the procedure for replacing a president.
“I wish that his family or his administration or his staff would have an intervention for the good of the country,” Pelosi said at her weekly news conference, adding that she prays for him and the nation.
“Maybe he wants to take a leave of absence,” she said. Asked whether she’s concerned about Trump’s well-being, she replied, “I am.”
This is a developing story; check back for updates.
Source: Fox News Politics
FILE PHOTO: Tennis – Fed Cup Final – Belarus v United States – Chizhovka Arena, Minsk, Belarus, November 12, 2017 – President of International Tennis Federation David Haggerty. REUTERS/Vasily Fedosenko
May 23, 2019
LONDON (Reuters) – The International Tennis Federation (ITF) has announced a major change to “optimize” the structure of lower-rung professional tournaments, six months after launching the World Tennis Tour.
The change will mean ATP and WTA ranking points will once again be available to players competing in ITF $15,000 events — the entry level for professional players.
Additional ranking points will be available at men’s $25,000 tournaments while qualifying draws will be increased.
From August, ranking lists will be updated to reward players who were not allocated ATP and WTA points in ITF-level tournaments played in the past 12 months.
One major criticism of the World Tennis Tour was that there were separate rankings lists and fewer playing opportunities, leading to a petition signed by around 15,000 people.
There will now be one ranking system for men’s and women’s professional tennis, meaning a smoother transition for players moving up through the system, the ITF said.
“Collaborating further with the ATP and WTA, our goal is to ensure the professional pathway from juniors to professional tennis is fit for purpose,” ITF president David Haggerty said.
“These additional reforms to the pathway will further strengthen the new structure introduced in 2019, that in turn will create a true professional group of players, increase playing opportunities at all levels of the game, and help widen the number of nations hosting professional tournaments so that tennis can remain a truly global sport.”
Steve Simon, WTA CEO and Chairman added: “The WTA is pleased to work with the ITF in the shared goal of developing a clear structure and pathway to provide for the competitive opportunities and rewards needed for a player to transition through the ITF World Tennis Tour in their quest to compete on the WTA Tour.”
(Reporting by Martyn Herman, editing by Ed Osmond)
FILE PHOTO: A worker cycles past containers outside a logistics center near Tianjin Port, in northern China, May 16, 2019. REUTERS/Jason Lee/File Photo
May 23, 2019
(Reuters) – The recent ratcheting up of U.S.-China trade tensions is creating uncertainties for businesses and could threaten economic growth, four Federal Reserve policymakers said on Thursday.
The remarks suggest the outcome of the 10-month trade war between the world’s two largest economies will be an important factor as Fed policymakers weigh how long to stay “patient” on interest rates.
“I feel like the data is good, but the mood is teetering, so if we get a relaxation or a reduction in the uncertainty…then I expect the economy’s momentum to be an upside risk to growth,” San Francisco Federal Reserve President Mary Daly said at a Dallas Fed conference. “If the uncertainties persist…then I think that’s a downside to the economy, because the uncertainty has real effects, but it also has effects on confidence, and that confidence feeds back into investment.”
Richmond Fed President Thomas Barkin and Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic, who spoke on the same panel, also said that uncertainties around trade could hurt growth, while their resolution could boost it.
“I’m watching very carefully how these trade tensions unfold because I have a concern.. whether that could cause some deceleration in the rate of growth,” Dallas Fed President Robert Kaplan told reporters after the panel. “It’s too soon to say.”
The comments came as researchers at the New York Fed published research showing the newest round of U.S. tariffs on Chinese imports will cost the typical American household $831 annually.
The Trump administration this month increased existing tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods to 25% from 10%, prompting Beijing to retaliate with its own levies on U.S. imports, as talks to end a 10-month trade war between the world’s two largest economies stalled.
“Our rate setting for the moment — key words being ‘for the moment’ — is in the right area,” Kaplan said. “I think the new development over the last month has been increased trade tensions and more business uncertainty, and it’s going to take a little while to sort out how that might unfold, or how long that might last.”
The policymakers made the comments at a Dallas Fed conference on technology, where academics, educators, and policymakers gathered to discuss the effect of technological advances like artificial intelligence on inflation, labor markets and the economy.
Research presented suggested that the adoption of new technologies may be pushing down on inflation and changing the nature of work in a way that could exacerbate what are already big income inequalities.
(Reporting by Ann Saphir; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)
U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) holds her weekly news conference with Capitol Hill reporters in Washington, U.S., May 23, 2019. REUTERS/James Lawler Duggan
May 23, 2019
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Donald Trump said on Thursday that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi does not understand the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade deal and had told U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer she wanted two weeks to get to know the agreement.
“Pelosi does not understand the bill, she doesn’t understand it … so she’s got to get up to snuff, learn the bill,” Trump said.
The Speaker and Representatives in the House would typically spend some time studying such an agreement before presenting it to the chamber as part of the legislative process.
(Reporting by David Alexander; editing by Grant McCool)