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White House press secretary tests positive for COVID-19

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White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany has tested positive for COVID-19 coronavirus. She has become the highest-ranking White House official to have contracted the virus after US President Donald Trump and the first lady tested positive.

The coronavirus has so far killed more than 200,000 Americans this year.

“After testing negative consistently, including every day since Thursday, I tested positive for COVID-19 on Monday morning while experiencing no symptoms,” McEnany said in a statement posted on Twitter.

No reporters, producers, or members of the press are listed as close contacts by the White House Medical Unit, she said.

“Moreover, I definitively had no knowledge of Hope Hicks diagnosis prior to holding a White House press briefing on Thursday,” she said, referring to her press meet in the White House while not wearing a mask.

“As an essential worker, I have worked diligently to provide needed information to the American People at this time. With my recent positive test I will begin the quarantine process and will continue working on behalf of the American People remotely,” McEnany said.

A close aide of the president and the first lady, Hicks was the first senior White House official last week to have tested positive. Soon thereafter Trump and his wife Melania tested positive.

To this end, the White House issued a statement to wish its president and all others struggling with the disease a speedy recovery.

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Famous Football Player Cristiano Ronaldo Tested Positive for COVID-19

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Cristiano Ronaldo

Famous football player Cristiano Ronaldo has been tested positive for COVID-19 coronavirus. He will miss Portugal’s Nations League sport against Sweden on Wednesday.

Due to Cristiano been found positive, the remaining players of the Portugal squad also underwent tests this Tuesday morning. But all of the negative and would be available for the upcoming match against Sweden.

We pray for his speedy recovery.

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Thousands of people protesting over Kyrgyzstan election result

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Kyrgyzstan Protest

Thousands of people are protesting in Kyrgyzstan over allegations of vote-buying and intimidation in Sunday’s parliamentary election. The capital Bishkek saw the largest protest while rallies were also held elsewhere in the ex-Soviet republic.

Only four parties out of 16 passed the 7% threshold for entry into parliament, three of which have close ties to President Sooronbai Jeenbekov. International monitors have said the claims of vote-buying are “credible”.

None of the established opposition parties got a seat in parliament. Now all of these parties have declared that they will not recognize the results of the election. Opposition candidates are calling on the Central Electoral Commission in Kyrgyzstan to cancel the results of the vote. One candidate, Ryskeldi Mombekov, told a crowd of more than 5,000 protesters: “The president promised to oversee honest elections. He didn’t keep his word.”

Mr. Mombekov’s party, Ata Meken, had been confident of entering parliament, but in the end, it was one of the eight parties that missed the threshold. Protesters are also calling on President Jeenbekov to resign. Thomas Boserup, head of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s election observation mission, said in a briefing that although the vote had been “generally well organized”, allegations of vote-buying were a “serious concern”.

The two leading parties, which got a quarter of the vote each, were Birimdik and Mekenim Kyrgyzstan. President Jeenbekov’s younger brother, Asylbek Jeenbekov, is in Birimdik.

Mekenim Kyrgyzstan, meanwhile, is seen as being closely connected to the powerful Matraimov family. The family’s figurehead, Rayimbek Matraimov, is believed to have helped finance Mr. Jeenbekov’s successful presidential campaign in 2017.

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23 Killed, More Than 100 Injured in Armenia-Azerbaijan War over Nagorno-Karabakh

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Armenia-Azerbaijan War

Worst clashes have broken out between Christian Majority Armenia and Muslim majority Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh, a disputed region dating back 2 decades – a remnant of Soviet legacy. 23 poeple have been killed and more than 100 are injured in this war.

The international community recognizes Nagorno-Karabakh as an integral part of Azerbaijan. Ethnic Armenians form the majority of population in this region.

Armenia-Azerbaijan Disputed Region

Armenia-Azerbaijan Disputed Region | Image Source: Wikipedia, BBC

Global community have called for ceasefire and have urged Moscow which backs Armenia and Turkey that back Azerbaijan to deescalate the situation in order to avoid a major crisis. The clashes between the two former Soviet republics, which fought a war in the 1990s, were the latest flare-up of a long-running conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, a breakaway region that is inside Azerbaijan but is run by ethnic Armenians.

As always, South Asia has its own views about. India has good ties with both Armenia and Azerbaijan. The North-South international transport corridor goes from Mumbai to Chabahar via Azerbaijan to Moscow, something crucial for India’s connectivity plans.

Azerbaijan exports the vast majority of its crude oil through the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline to an export terminal on Turkey’s Mediterranean coast. Additional volumes are pumped to the Black Sea port of Supsa in Georgia. Natural gas exports flow through the South Caucasus pipeline to Georgia and Turkey, and are due to reach EU markets later this year. All three run in parallel through Azerbaijan.

Most of the oil and gas pumped through the lines is produced by two consortia led by BP Plc, which lift oil from the Azeri, Chirag and Gunashli fields and gas from the Shah Deniz deposit in the Caspian Sea. Small volumes of crude from Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan on the eastern shore of the Caspian are also pumped through the BTC pipeline. It has a capacity of 1.2 million barrels a day, but carries less than half that in practice. Another 80,000 barrels a day flow to Supsa.

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