Chicago Tribune: With Lollapalooza starting in 2 days, city urges anyone with COVID-19 symptoms to stay away, even if vaccinated by Tracy Swartz
Chicago health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady said Tuesday she is “certainly hopeful” the city “won’t see a significant problem” with COVID-19 when it welcomes 100,000 daily attendees from around the world to Lollapalooza this week.
“I would not feel comfortable moving ahead with Lollapalooza without COVID protocols in place. I don’t think I would feel comfortable if this were an indoor event either. And I, frankly, don’t think I would feel comfortable if we were sitting in Louisiana right now where cases are looking like they’re looking,” Arwady said at a news conference where she noted the highly contagious delta variant is fueling a rise in coronavirus cases in Chicago.
“But where we are right now, we’re taking COVID seriously. And I can’t promise that there won’t be any COVID cases associated with Lolla. When you’re having this many folks who are coming through, almost certainly there will be some cases. But I’m confident that the combination of what we know about limiting risk in outdoor settings, pairing that with vaccination and/or testing — and ideally mostly vaccination, which is what we expect — as well as all the other mitigation factors, I’m certainly hopeful that we won’t see a significant problem.”
Los Angeles Times: Ed Buck convicted in meth overdose deaths of Gemmel Moore and Timothy Dean by Michael Finnegan and Hailey Branson-Potts
Ed Buck, a longtime fixture of West Hollywood politics, was convicted Tuesday of charges that he supplied the methamphetamine that killed two men during “party-and-play” encounters at his apartment.
After about four hours of deliberations, the jury found Buck guilty of every charge in a nine-count indictment that also accused him of maintaining a drug den, distributing methamphetamine and enticement to cross state lines to engage in prostitution.
Buck, 66, could spend the rest of his life in prison. The convictions for supplying the meth that resulted in death each carry a minimum sentence of 20 years in prison.
The verdict concluded a two-week trial that featured harrowing testimony by Black men hired by Buck, who is white, to show off their bodies in underwear and get high on crystal meth and the party drug GHB. Excerpts from Buck’s hundreds of graphic videos and photos of the drugs-and-sex sessions were played at the trial.
Washington Post: Biden plans to require federal workers to be vaccinated or undergo repeated tests by Tyler Pager and Eli Rosenberg
President Biden will announce Thursday that all federal employees will be required to be vaccinated against the coronavirus or face repeated testing mandates, a White House official said, a dramatic escalation of the administration’s effort to combat the spread of the delta variant.
The new rules will closely align with policies recently put in place for government officials in California and New York City
, the person said, speaking on the condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to disclose the plan. The White House is not planning on firing government employees who aren’t vaccinated but will impose a number of restrictions on them as a way to encourage them to receive one of the vaccines that have received emergency-use authorization.
Another official cautioned that nothing is final until Biden announces it and the plan could change, adding that a policy review is underway. But Biden plans to make the policy announcement on Thursday, the official said. The military is not expected to be included in the new policy.
New York Times: Trump Is Gone, but the Media’s Misinformation Challenge Is Still Here by Marc Tracy
Inside a room at the Cannon House Office Building on Tuesday, witnesses testified to their experience on Jan. 6, when an armed mob egged on by President Donald J. Trump breached the Capitol. It eventually reached the Senate chamber, where senators had been certifying Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s victory under the gavel of Vice President Mike Pence, whom some of the rioters chanted that they wanted to hang.
But outside the room, prominent Republicans have painted a very different, significantly misleading picture of that day.
On Tuesday morning, Representative Elise Stefanik of New York falsely blamed Nancy Pelosi, the House speaker, for the breach, saying she had ignored evidence that the Capitol’s security might be compromised in favor of her own “partisan political optics.”
Last month, Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, a leading G.O.P. purveyor of misinformation, downplayed the attack with the false claim that the rioters had stayed “within the rope lines” inside the Capitol.
AlJazeera: Ennahda calls for dialogue to resolve Tunisia’s political crisis by Layli Foroudi
Tunis, Tunisia – Tunisia’s largest political party has called for dialogue to resolve the political crisis, changing tact after initially urging MPs and its supporters to protest outside parliament in the capital Tunis on Monday.
In a statement published on Tuesday, the Islamist Ennahda party reiterated that they considered President Saied’s decision to suspend parliament and sack the prime minister as “unconstitutional”, but took a more conciliatory approach, calling on Saied to reverse the measures.
Tunisia, touted as a success story of the 2010 Arab Spring revolutions, is facing deep political uncertainty after the president froze parliament for 30 days and fired Prime Minister Hichem Mechichi amid rising COVID cases and a faltering economy.
BBC News: Ivory Coast president and rival in first meeting since civil war
Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara and bitter rival Laurent Gbagbo have embraced in their first meeting since the civil war 10 years ago.
The conflict was sparked by Mr Gbagbo's refusal to admit defeat in an election, and 3,000 people were killed.
Mr Gbagbo returned to Ivory Coast last month after the International Criminal Court (ICC) acquitted him over charges of crimes against humanity.
Both men have been pushing for peace and reconciliation.
Mr Ouattara welcomed Mr Gbagbo into the presidential palace in the capital Abidjan on Tuesday.
"I am happy to see you," the president told Mr Gbagbo.
Images from the meeting show the pair smiling and holding hands while posing for photographs.
Speaking at a news conference after their meeting, Mr Ouattara said the turmoil was behind them.
"What is important for Ivory Coast is peace in our country," he added.
DW: Iran: Drought, water shortages spark protests by Shabnam von Hein
People in Iran's southwestern Khuzestan province are desperate. Suffering from drought and water shortages since March, they've taken to the streets in the last couple of weeks to express their anger with the government and its poor management of water resources. According to official sources, at least four men, including one policeman, have died in the protests. Authorities claim they were shot by "unknown rioters" in order to stir up trouble.
The Iranian government is very worried that the protests will spread. It has tried to disrupt communication between the protesters with repeated internet shutdowns, aiming to prevent photos and videos of clashes between protesters and the security forces from spreading.
But protests have already spread to other provinces; on July 23, a 20-year-old demonstrator died in the city of Aligudarz, in the western province of Lorestan. According to Amnesty International, as of that date security forces using live ammunition had already killed at least eight people in seven Iranian cities.
Local journalists have reported that additional security forces are being sent to Khuzestan. A delegation of representatives from the ministries of interior, energy and agriculture has also been sent to the province. The presidential chief of staff, Mahmoud Vaezi, told the state news agency IRNA that the delegation would be working with local authorities to "swiftly" resolve the problems.
Reuters: Biles spotlights mental health, Tokyo COVID cases hang over Games
TOKYO, July 28 (Reuters) - Simone Biles' abrupt exit from the U.S. team event and uncertainty over the gymnast's remaining time at the Games put the mental health of athletes under the spotlight on Wednesday as the Tokyo Olympics headed into its fifth day of events.
Biles' decision to put her wellbeing first was met with widespread support from fans and other athletes alike on Tuesday. read more
"There is more to life than just gymnastics," Biles said, saying a focus on her well-being was her goal.
Without Biles, the American team mates surrendered gold and their title to Russian gymnasts on Tuesday.
By stepping back from the gruelling competition and speaking openly about mental health, Biles joins Japanese tennis star Naomi Osaka, who took a break after she withdrew from the French Open in May.
Osaka, who lit the cauldron at the Games opening on Friday, lost out in her singles event on Tuesday and exited the Games.
Don’t forget Hunter’s News Roundup tonight.
Everyone have a great evening.