Enrichment stepped up
The government was yesterday to inform the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna over its start of a process to increase the nation’s uranium enrichment capacity, Atomic Energy Organization spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi told Iranian Students News Agency. Kamalvandi said the nation had the capacity to accelerate production of centrifuges, which are used to enrich uranium. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Monday said that he had ordered preparations to increase uranium enrichment capacity if a 2015 nuclear deal with world powers falls apart after the US withdrawal from it last month. European signatories of the accord back the deal, but have concerns over Tehran’s ballistic missile program and its influence in the Middle East. Under the agreement with the US, France, Germany, Britain, Russia and China, Tehran strictly limited uranium enrichment capacity to satisfy the powers that it could not be used to develop nuclear bombs. In exchange, Iran received relief from sanctions.
Students to tour nation
High school students in Parkland, Florida — where a former student shot dead 17 people in February — are to start traveling across the nation this month to urge young people to stand up and vote against the powerful gun lobby. The national tour announced on Monday and dubbed “March For Our Lives: Road to Change” is to begin on Friday next week and is scheduled to make 50 stops in more than 20 states — “places where the NRA [National Rifle Association] has bought and paid for politicians who refuse to take simple steps to save our lives,” the movement’s Web site said. The goal is to “hold politicians accountable,” said Cameron Kasky, a teenage activist who helped found the March For Our Lives campaign after surviving the carnage at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. “Our generation and many generations that are helping us can change the game,” the 17-year-old said. “We do not have to surrender to dirty, awful politics.”
Incoming asteroid burns up
A boulder-size asteroid disintegrated harmlessly over Africa, just hours after its weekend discovery. It was only the third time scientists had spotted an incoming asteroid on a direct collision course with Earth. NASA reported the latest episode on Sunday night. The asteroid was discovered out near the moon’s orbit early on Saturday, aiming straight for Earth. Asteroid trackers at NASA and elsewhere quickly determined the rock — 1m to 2m across — was too small to pose any danger. It burned up in the Saturday evening sky over Botswana, eight hours after first being spotted. NASA said the scramble among scientists and asteroid observers was a good training exercise.
Record price for Van Gogh
A painting by a young Vincent van Gogh was sold at an auction in Paris on Monday for more than 7 million euros (US$8.2 million), the Artcurial auction house said. Raccommodeuses de Filets dans les Dunes (Women Mending Nets in the Fields) dates from 1882 and was bought by a US collector in a hot bidding battle that boosted the selling price far above the estimated value of between 2 million and 5 million euros. “It’s a world record for a Van Gogh landscape, in the Dutch period, sold at auction,” Artcurial said. Monday’s event was the first auction of a painting by the Dutch artist in more than two decades in the nation.
‘SACRIFICED’: Hu Weifeng became the sixth doctor to die from COVID-19 at Wuhan Central Hospital, where calls to raise the alarm over the virus were suppressed The death of a Chinese doctor at Wuhan’s “whistle-blower hospital” has prompted a wave of anger at hospital authorities for not protecting front-line health workers in the face of the COVID-19 outbreak. Hu Weifeng (胡衛鋒), 42, a urologist at Wuhan Central Hospital where the whistle-blower ophthalmologist Li Wenliang (李文亮) worked, died of the virus on Tuesday after a four-month battle. Hu is the sixth doctor from his hospital killed by the virus. Another doctor who spoke out, Ai Fen (艾芬), said that authorities told hospital staff not to wear protective gear so as not to cause panic and reprimanded her for “harming
RALLYING A DEFENSE: Former envoys wrote an op-ed piece defending Anna Lindstedt, who was removed for attempting to free Swedish book publisher Gui Minhai in China Sweden’s former ambassador to Beijing goes on trial in Stockholm on Friday for allegedly overstepping her mandate by trying to negotiate the release of a Chinese-Swedish dissident held in China. Anna Lindstedt is accused of brokering an unauthorized meeting during her time as ambassador to free publisher Gui Minhai (桂民海). Lindstedt — a veteran envoy who had previously represented Sweden in both Vietnam and Mexico, and acted as Sweden’s chief negotiator at the 2015 climate summit in Paris — has denied the charges. Gui, a Chinese-born Swedish citizen known for publishing gossipy titles about Chinese political leaders out of a Hong Kong book
‘LEAST WE CAN DO’: The gesture was made famous by former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who was protesting police brutality that targeted minorities They are images that surprised and moved Americans: police officers taking a knee alongside protesters in the most widespread civil unrest to rock the US in decades — and in doing so embracing an anti-racism gesture denounced by US President Donald Trump. As Trump pushes for a crackdown on often-violent protests over the death of George Floyd, police officers from New York to Los Angeles to Houston, Texas, are making gestures of solidarity with demonstrators incensed at the latest case of an unarmed black man dying while in police custody. “I took off the helmet and laid the batons down. Where do
From boiled catfish soup to spicy fried frog, an eight-year-old in pyjamas and a chef’s hat is delighting Myanmar with her culinary prowess in a nation still being told to stay at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Moe Myint May Thu’s mother posted a video online at the end of April showing off her daughter’s skills as the youngster threw together some spicy fried prawns. With her wide, gap-toothed grin, the video has bounced across social media and brought stardom to the child along with an online moniker: “Little Chef.” She now sells dishes to order and is counting the dividends. “I just