Tag Archives: prepares

Exclusive-U.S. prepares to downgrade Mexico air safety rating, sources say

Exclusive-U.S. prepares to downgrade Mexico air safety rating, sources say© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Screens show flight information at the almost empty Benito Juarez international airport, as the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues in Mexico City, Mexico, June 11, 2020. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido

By David Shepardson, Frank Jack Daniel and Tracy Rucinski

WASHINGTON/MEXICO CITY (Reuters) -The U.S. government is preparing to downgrade Mexico’s aviation safety rating, a move that would bar Mexican carriers from adding new U.S. flights and limit airlines’ ability to carry out marketing agreements, four sources briefed on the matter said.

The Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) planned move is expected be announced in the coming days and follows a lengthy review of Mexico’s aviation oversight by the agency.

Sources briefed on the matter, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the FAA has had lengthy talks with Mexican aviation regulators about its concerns. The sources said these concerns had not all been addressed following an in-country assessment.

The sources added that Mexican government officials have been informed about the planned action and raised concerns.

One airline industry source said the FAA’s concerns did not involve flight safety issues but rather Mexico’s oversight of air carriers.

Downgrading Mexico from Category 1 to Category 2 would mean that current U.S. service by Mexican carriers would be unaffected, but they could not launch new flights and airline-to-airline marketing practices such as selling seats on each other’s flights in code-share arrangements would be restricted.

The action would mean that the FAA has determined that Mexico does not meet International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) safety standards as part of its safety assessment program.

Mexico has been a top vacation spot for U.S. travelers during the COVID-19 pandemic, spurring U.S. airlines to redirect capacity they had previously flown to Europe before transatlantic travel restrictions were imposed last year.

In April, Mexico was the by far the busiest foreign air destination – with nearly 2.3 million passengers on U.S.-Mexico flights – more than three times that of the Dominican Republic, the next highest country, according to industry data.

An FAA spokesman declined to comment.

Mexico’s Communications and Transport Ministry did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Delta Air Lines (NYSE:), which has a codeshare arrangement with Aeromexico, will have to issue new tickets for some passengers booked on Aeromexico flights as a result of the downgrade, sources said.

Delta and Aeromexico declined to comment.

Delta and Aeromexico, joint venture partners since 2017, are together offering about 3,900 transborder flights in June, more than any other carrier, according to global data aviation company Cirium. Delta owns 49% of Aeromexico but took a $ 770 million charge on its investment last year after the carrier’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing.

Carlos Ozores, an aviation consultant at global consulting and digital services provider ICF, said the move could impact Delta and Aeromexico’s codeshares, which drive incremental sales, and force growth-driven low-cost airline Volaris https://www.reuters.com/article/mexico-volaris-idINL1N2IB2QA to revisit expansion plans to the United States.

This would not be the first time the FAA downgraded Mexico’s air safety rating. In 2010, the agency downgraded Mexico to Category 2 due to suspected shortcomings within its civil aviation authority, then restored its top rating about four months later.

The FAA has said that downgrades mean an aviation authority is deficient in areas such as technical expertise, trained personnel, record-keeping and inspection procedures. Mexican authorities said in 2010 there was no deterioration of flight safety and that the downgrade was due to a shortage of flight inspectors.

Author: Reuters
This post originally appeared on Stock Market News

Austin tries new homeless healthcare program as it prepares to enforce camping ban

AUSTIN (KXAN) — As staff work on educating the homeless community about Proposition B, which reinstitutes a camping ban, and identifying locations for sanctioned encampments, they’re also rolling out a new program that focuses on behavioral health.

Bill Brice with the Downtown Austin Alliance explained how the “Healthcare for the Homeless” program works during Wednesday evening’s Downtown Commission meeting.

“It provides a direct line to behavioral health care for people who are downtown experiencing homelessness,” he said. 

Brice said the program, which launched Wednesday, is in partnership with the Alliance, Integral Care, Downtown Austin Community Court and the Homeless Outreach Street Team (HOST).

“The genesis of this came out of research that was funded by Downtown Austin Alliance several years ago that really put a thumbprint on the need for increased behavioral healthcare for people experiencing homelessness,” he said.

Brice said they then asked Integral Care to draft a program model. The first year of the program will cost $ 520,000, split between the Alliance and the City of Austin. Integral Care’s Terrace at Oak Springs Clinic will serve as the program’s service hub.

“The goal: to provide 100 to 150 per year, with housing-focused health care,” he told commission board members on Tuesday. A spokesperson tells KXAN they’ve already enrolled 13 people in the program.

Brice said this is a new model they’re piloting downtown, for now. He said based on nonprofit ECHO’s Point in Time Counts, a third of unsheltered individuals live downtown.

ECHO Point In Time homeless count from 2019.

“We think this is a program that might prove up a model that could be replicated into a broader geographic area once we’re able to test it,” he said.

KXAN’s Tahera Rahman will have more details on the new Healthcare for the Homeless program coming up on KXAN News at 5 p.m.

Author: Tahera Rahman
This post originally appeared on KXAN Austin

Indian variant ‘appears to affect children more’ – Singapore prepares to shut schools

The Indian Covid variant is set to become the dominant strain in the UK within days, say experts. The variant is said to be more transmissible than other strains and threatens to reverse moves to ease lockdown. In Singapore, all primary, secondary and junior colleges will shift to full home-based learning from Wednesday until the end of the school term on May 28 as it’s believed the variant is affecting more children than past strains.
The B1617 strain, which has been called the Indian variant, appears to affect children more, according to Singapore’s Health Minister One Ye Kung.

Speaking at a press conference on Sunday he said: “I did speak with him (Director of Medical Services, Kenneth Mak) before coming to this press conference.

“He did mention it will appear the B1617 strain appears to affect children more.

“So you’ll notice that for schools the response has been different compared to say last year.

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“So once we detect infection, but outside of school, the Ministry of Education (MOE) has been very fast actually to put the school on home-based learning for the next few days and test the entire school.

“So that is also a precaution that has been put in recently in view of the different behaviour of this strain of virus.”

Birmingham’s public health chief said there was emerging evidence to suggest the Indian variant posed a “significantly” greater threat to young adults than any previous variant, and the new variant could also be a greater threat to children.

Speaking at a council Health and Social Care Overview and Scrutiny Committee at the end of April, he said: “There are certainly disturbing images and information coming from India at the moment that suggest that the variant is a significantly greater threat to younger adults than any previous variants, so we are taking it very seriously.


“And it is very important that anyone that has returned from India or the surrounding regions takes the quarantine guidance incredibly seriously and takes the tests that are part of the quarantine protocol.”

He added: “I do fear the Indian variant, like the Brazil variant, is a vary clear and present danger to our current roadmap, and therefore we have to take it very seriously.”

There are now 2,323 confirmed cases of the Indian variant in the UK.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock told the House of Commons: “There are now 86 local authorities where there are five or more confirmed cases.”

Bedford is fast becoming a hotspot for the variant.

But early data suggests the Covid vaccines still work against it.

A new study has shown the AstraZeneca vaccine to be 97 percent effective.

The Covid vaccines developed by Pfizer/BioNTech and Modern appear to be effective against the Indian variant, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) said last week.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Health Feed
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Gogglebox Jenny prepares to move out of famous caravan

Gogglebox favourites Jenny and Lee left viewers disappointed – and some concerned – with their latest Instagram video.

The best friends took to social media on Friday to explain that Jenny would soon be leaving the caravan after filming for the latest series of the popular show wrapped up.

Posting the video, shown above on their Instagram page, the duo wrote: “Have a great Friday everyone last week of filming for us of series 17.”

In the video, Lee seemed thrilled that Jenny would be leaving the caravan – although fans who know Lee’s sense of humour will gather it was very tongue in cheek.

“Happy Friday everybody,” Lee said.

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“And sad Friday,” Jenny added.

“Why is it so sad?” Lee asked.

“It’s my last one,” Jenny said.

“Oh, it’s our last filming week this week so we are filming today,” Lee said.

“I’m going home soon,” Jenny continued.

And fans seemed disappointed to hear the news.

“Noooo that went too quick,” one said.

A second said: “Oh nooo, not the last one, what will I do with my Friday nights??”

But it left some speculating whether they would be back on Gogglebox at all after this series.

Watch: Gogglebox Jenny and Lee’s crisp sandwich revelation has intrigued fans

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One said: “Will you be back??? Love you guys.”

Another said: “Have you left all together?”

But one replied: “It’s the last episode they are not leaving.”

To find out what Jenny and Lee have been up to on the latest series of Gogglebox, click here.

Author: [email protected] (Sophie Kitching)
This post originally appeared on Hull Live – Celebs & TV

Easyjet chairman Barton prepares to step down in 2022 – Sky News

Easyjet chairman Barton prepares to step down in 2022 - Sky News© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: EasyJet aircrafts are seen on the tarmac at Terminal 1, marking the official opening of the new Berlin-Brandenburg Airport (BER) “Willy Brandt”, in Schoenefeld near Berlin, Germany October 31, 2020. REUTERS/Hannibal Hanschke/Pool

(Reuters) – The chairman of British airline EasyJet is preparing to step down once he has completed nine years at the company in May 2022, Sky News reported on Saturday.

The airline has hired Lygon Group to find a successor to long-serving chairman John Barton, who has held the role since 2013, according to Sky News https://

EasyJet did not immediately respond for comment on the report.

X: Therefore doesn`t .

Author: Reuters
This post originally appeared on Stock Market News

China vs Australia: Canberra prepares for war with £400m defence upgrade as tension mounts

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: World Feed

And also said his country would be teaming up with the United States in expanded war games aimed at ensuring both nations were battle-ready. In an announcement that comes amid an increasingly bitter diplomatic and trade spat with , Mr Morrison said must expand its military assets in the Northern Territory to be able to respond to unspecified tensions in the Asia-Pacific region.

A total of A$ 747million (£418million) is being invested, he announced.

Mr Morrison told reporters: “Our objective is a free and open Indo-Pacific, to ensure a peaceful region, one that, at the same time, Australia is in a position to always protect its interests.”

He avoided naming China – but Australia’s prioritising of the Indo-Pacific comes against a backdrop of increasing competition between the two in the region in recent years.

Relations deteriorated sharply last year, after Canberra demanded an international inquiry into the origins of the coronavirus, triggering trade reprisals by Beijing.

Mr Morrison said an airstrip in the Northern Territory will be lengthened to support larger aircraft, firing ranges overhauled and new training facilities developed for both Australia’s own defence personnel and US marines.

The military upgrades will get underway this year and are scheduled to be completed by 2026.

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The funds come from an Australian defence plan which will see Canberra spend $ 270 billion in the next decade to improve Canberra’s long-range strike capabilities, with the country increasing defence spending by 40 percent over the course of the next decade.

Speaking last year, Mr Morrison said the extra funding was needed as the Asia-Pacific region was experiencing the greatest level of economic and strategic uncertainty since World War II – again, without singling out China.

Australia’s assertive approach has gone down well in Washington, and Morrison said the new facilities will enhance joint military drills with the US

More than 2,000 US Marines have already travelled to northern Australia to take part in annual joint training activities.

Australia and the United States also hold war games twice a year, with the next due to begin in August.

In the past, more than 30,000 troops have taken part in the drills, which happen off Australia’s east coast.

Michael Goldman, Charge d’Affaires at the US embassy in Canberra, said: “The United States and Australia have been deeply engaged in defence cooperation for over half a century.

“We will continue to look for additional ways to partner with Australia, as our ally, to advance the security and prosperity of Americans, Australians, and the peoples of the Indo-Pacific region.”

The announcement comes hard on the heels of a claim by Mike Pezzullo, Australia’s Home Affairs Department Secretary, that liberal democracies must brace themselves for war.

Mr Pezzulo did not offer a specific reason for his remark, but tensions with China, particularly centred on Taiwan, are almost certainly a factor.

Speaking on Sunday, Australian Defence Minister Peter Dutton also said a conflict between China and Taiwan “should not be discounted”.

Last week the Australian Government used new powers to block up two deals struck between the state of Victoria and Beijing in accordance with the Belt and Road outward investment initiative.

The move prompted an angry reaction from the Chinese embassy in Australia, which branded the move “provocative”

In a statement, it claimed the decision was “bound to bring further damage to bilateral relations, and will only end up hurting itself.”

It added: “It further shows that the Australian government has no sincerity in improving China-Australia relations.”

UK military prepares for big role in Prince Philip's funeral

More than 700 military personnel are set to take part in the funeral ceremony, including Royal Marine buglers and an honor guard drawn from across the armed forces.

LONDON, UK — British soldiers, sailors and air force personnel were making final preparations Friday for Prince Philip’s funeral, a martial but personal service that will mark the passing of a royal patriarch who was also one of the dwindling number of veterans of World War II.
More than 700 military personnel are set to take part in Saturday’s funeral ceremony at Windsor Castle, including army bands, Royal Marine buglers and an honor guard drawn from across the armed forces.
But coronavirus restrictions mean that instead of the 800 mourners included in the funeral plans before Philip’s death last week, there will be only 30 inside St. George’s Chapel, including the widowed Queen Elizabeth II and her four children.
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Philip, who died April 9 at age 99, was closely involved in planning his funeral, an event which will reflect his Royal Navy service and lifelong military ties – and his love of the rugged Land Rover Defender. Philip drove several versions of the four-wheel-drive vehicle for decades until he was forced to give up his license at 97 after a crash. His body will be borne to the chapel on a modified Land Rover that he designed himself, painted military green and with an open back to carry a coffin.
He and the queen’s children – Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward – will walk behind the hearse. So will grandsons Prince William and Prince Harry, although not side by side. The brothers, whose relationship has been strained amid Harry’s decision to quit royal duties and move to California, will flank their cousin Peter Phillips, the son of Princess Anne.
RELATED: Queen returns to royal duties after death of Prince Philip
The moment is likely to stir memories of the image of William and Harry at 15 and 12, walking behind their mother Princess Diana’s coffin in 1997, accompanied by their grandfather Philip.
Armed forces bands will play hymns and classical music before the funeral service, Inside the chapel, Royal Marine buglers will sound “Action Stations,” an alarm that alerts sailors to prepare for battle. Philip spent almost 14 years in the Royal Navy and saw action in the Mediterranean, Indian Ocean and Pacific during World War II.
Gen. Nick Carter, the head of Britain’s armed forces, said the ceremony would “reflect military precision and above all, I think, it will be a celebration of a life well-lived.”
“It will also show, I think, how much the armed forces loved and respected him,” Carter told the BBC. “The military always have a great respect for people who have their values and standards and who indeed have shown great courage, and I think that, when we look back at his war record, that sense of courage and what he did is something all of us have great admiration for.”
Along with Philip’s children and grandchildren, the 30 funeral guests include other senior royals and several of is German relatives. Philip was born a prince of Greece and Denmark and, like the queen, is related to a thicket of European royal families.
Mourners have been instructed to wear masks and observe social distancing inside the chapel, and not to join in when a four-person choir sings hymns. The queen, who has spent much of the past year isolating with her husband at Windsor Castle, will sit alone.
In a break with custom, members of the royal family who have served in the armed forces or have ceremonial military appointments will wear civilian clothes to the funeral.
The decision, signed off by the queen, means that Harry won’t risk being the only member of the royal family not in uniform. Harry lost his honorary military titles after he gave up frontline royal duties last year. As a result, protocol suggested that Harry, an army veteran who served two tours of duty in Afghanistan, would only wear a suit with medals at royal functions.
The decision also sidesteps another potential controversy after reports that Prince Andrew, the queen’s second-oldest son, considered wearing an admiral’s uniform to his father’s funeral. Andrew retains his military titles even though he has been sidelined from royal duties because of scandal around his friendship with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

This article originally appeared on CBS8 – Entertainment

‘I’m f***ing coming for everything’: American starlet Tracy Cortez prepares to face Russian-born Justine Kish in third UFC fight

Backed by ex-UFC flyweight champ Henry Cejudo and fighting for the first time since a win on Fight Island in Abu Dhabi, Tracy Cortez is determined to extend her eight-match winning streak as she returns to Las Vegas this weekend.

Born in a household of Mexican immigrants, Cortez began training in MMA after seeing her older brother, Jose, compete in 2008.

Jose was diagnosed with stem cell cancer shortly after that formative experience for his sister, and his struggle has inspired Cortez through periods of doubt, as well as the support of Cejudo, who was one of her sibling’s close friends.

Since losing on her debut for Invicta FC in 2017, the Arizona-based flyweight has been on an impressive run. After beating current UFC fighter Erin Blanchfield with Invicta in 2019, she defeated Kazakh star Mariya Agapova to win UFC president Dana White’s Contender Series later that year, earning her a spot with the top promotion.

“Straight hunger, ambition and hustle,” the 27-year-old has said of her ethic, highlighted by her frequent training clips showing her hard at work in the gym for the benefit of her following of more than 285,000 on Instagram.

“No rich parents. No favors. Definitely no excuses. This year everyone will know who [I am].

“A rising star. A champ in the making. I’m f***ing coming for everything I’ve worked so hard for.”

Cortez is hugely excited ahead of her return on the card headlined by Robert Whittaker and Kelvin Gastelum on Saturday, and coach Santino Defranco – who she has effusively praised and is a former professional with appearances on Ultimate Fighter – shares that enthusiasm.

“Of all the fights we’ve gone through together, I’ve never seen her work harder than she did during this camp,” he said.

“More focus. More training. More dedication. More self discipline. The whole coaching squad has been working with her and she’s on point and dialed in.”

The pair traveled to the UFC’s makeshift pandemic fight headquarters in the Middle East for Cortez’s win over Stephanie Egger in October.

“I’m happy I did it,” she told MMA Fighting about the experience, adding that she was grateful to the UFC but finds it far more logistically easy to compete at the UFC Apex, where she will be again for her next fight.

“Would I do it again? Probably not. It was long.

“I’m not satisfied. That win for me is just like, ‘yeah, I passed this – on to the next one.’

“Even though I should enjoy the victory and I worked hard on it, I want to move up in the rankings.”

That bid starts against Justine Kish, a boxer and kickboxer born in St. Petersburg as Svetlana Nasibulina.

Kish has a record of three wins and three defeat in the UFC, having won all four of her previous professional MMA bouts.

The former Muay Thai world champion starts as an underdog against Kush and headed to Vegas for the fight on the day she turned 33, sounding as confident as her opponent.

“Feeling prepared as f**k for this fight thanks to my kick ass coaches,” she said.
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This article originally appeared on RT Sport News

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