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Leaders of Latin American Air Forces Promote Cooperation in Panama

first_imgBy Diálogo July 23, 2018 Leaders of Latin American air forces convened in the LVIII Conference of Chiefs of the American Air Forces (CONJEFAMER, in Spanish), held June 19-21, 2018, in Panama City. The System of Cooperation Among the American Air Forces (SICOFAA, in Spanish) sponsored the conference. Delegations of member nations of SICOFAA and observers participated. The goal of the annual meeting is to strengthen the bonds of friendship among partner nations, examine SICOFAA’s mission, approve combined exercises, and share lessons learned. The conference also serves as a platform to update member nations on each force’s operational capacity for optimal response to regional challenges. In addition, the meeting reviews SICOFAA’s operational focus: disaster and humanitarian relief. “This is a system of cooperation among friends and neighbors,” said U.S. Air Force Lieutenant General Mark D. Kelly, commander of Air Forces Southern. “When our nations are under the stress of natural disasters, floods, fires, hurricanes, earthquakes… you don’t want to meet at a time of crisis, you want to meet beforehand, well before the point of crisis, to learn how each other works, so that when that day comes everything works smoothly.” Onboarding of Jamaica The conference has been strengthening bonds of friendship between air forces of the Americas and enabling new forms of cooperation for more than 50 years. In CONJEFAMER 2018, SICOFAA voted to move Jamaica from observer to permanent member. “I think SICOFAA is a very important system of cooperation for the air forces, which can find ways of collaborating without a lot of political directives,” Major General Rocky Meade, chief of Defense Staff of the Jamaican Defense Force, told Diálogo. “They are just member states helping each other, getting together, analyzing common problems, seeking solutions that can work for all members, rehearsing the solutions, and when there’s a real problem, responding to each other. I think that’s very impressive.” Jamaica’s inclusion brings SICOFAA closer to the Caribbean, and brings the total number of member nations throughout the Americas to 21. The decision will be mutually beneficial, as Jamaica already takes part in humanitarian relief operations in a region prone to natural disasters. “I think we can contribute in some way,” Maj. Gen. Meade added. “We can certainly contribute a lot of ideas because we have plenty of experience with hurricanes and other disasters. We can assist with plans and, if we need to help another country, we may not have a very large aircraft, but we can contribute with the few resources we have. I look forward to contributing to the system.” Effective responses During the conference, participants analyzed SICOFAA’s responses and shared lessons learned from disasters in 2017. Among the operations carried out, the conference highlighted the combined humanitarian relief operations in Central America following hurricanes Irma and Maria, and the response to the wildfires in Chile. “SICOFAA’s new operational approach to humanitarian and disaster relief began in 2010,” Peruvian Air Force Colonel Jorge Reátegui Bartra, SICOFAA’s undersecretary general, told Diálogo. “It’s yielding results; we are improving communication systems and providing countries with better tools to better understand each other on humanitarian relief.” The conference also pointed to the more than 100 tons of medical and search and rescue equipment member nations delivered to Peru after the El Niño Costero floods, as well as the more than 40 tons of supplies sent to Mexico following the September 2017 earthquake. Air forces also assisted with the evacuation of hundreds of people in both countries, among other regional operations. “SICOFAA is focusing on man-made and natural disaster operations,” said Commissioner Jeremías Urieta, national director of the Panamanian Air and Naval Service Air Group. “The prompt, effective, and efficient responses in situations [such as] Mexico’s earthquake are a case in point.” For his part, Brigadier General Timo Hernández Duarte, commander of the Guatemalan Air Force, talked to Diálogo about SICOFAA’s response to the Fuego Volcano eruption in early June 2018. “We had a prompt reaction and cooperation through SICOFAA; this strengthened and impressed us.” Optimizing capabilities To hone its combined response capabilities, SICOFAA conducts real and virtual multinational exercises known as Cooperation. These exercises allow member nations to develop a common operational language and evaluate results. At the meeting, participants analyzed the cancelled Cooperation V exercise and approved the virtual Cooperation VI exercise, scheduled for April 2019 in Mendoza, Argentina. “In this period [2017], the real Cooperation V exercise was to be carried out in Puerto Montt, Chile,” Col. Reategui said. “It was cancelled because of the Mexico’s earthquake, and all aircraft, the [SICOFAA] system, and supplies were deployed to Mexico.” In addition to summing up operations of the previous period, approving the completion of an exercise, participants analyzed several technological systems to optimize operational capability. Among the technological systems highlighted: Objectives and Lessons Learned, a software tool that records observations to be shared as lessons learned; and the Communications Virtual Room System, which enables live transmission of the help a country may require and how each country can assist. “Through SICOFAA, regional air forces maintain the capacity to combine communications,” said General Jorge Robles Mella, commander of the Chilean Air Force. “Therefore, personnel can prioritize the best ways to help people in need.” Panama hosted CONJEFAMER for the first time. CONJEFAMER 2019 will be held in San Salvador, El Salvador. “This event is very important for the [Panamanian] Air and Naval Service and for the country, because we have the opportunity to gather the air force commanders of the Americas,” Commissioner Urieta concluded. “This gives us the opportunity to give back and thank the air forces for what we received all these years”.last_img read more

BLOG: We Stand with U.S. House Members Looking to Ban Discrimination

first_imgBLOG: We Stand with U.S. House Members Looking to Ban Discrimination Equality,  National Issues,  Non-discrimination,  The Blog The U.S. House passed a proposal Wednesday night to protect federal workers from being fired on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. Sponsored by Rep. Sean Maloney (D-N.Y.), the measure was approved 223-195.In April, Governor Tom Wolf signed non-discrimination executive orders in an effort to explicitly and decisively end discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity or expression in the executive branch of our state government.“Pennsylvania is open for business no matter who you are or whom you love.” — Governor WolfBut while these executive orders apply to commonwealth employees and employees of organizations with contracts or grants from the commonwealth, we still need to ensure the commonwealth extends protections statewide. Governor Wolf is committed to working with the legislature to pass a statewide non-discrimination bill that protects all Pennsylvanians, and encourages federal legislators to continue enacting measures to protect fundamental human rights. Like Governor Tom Wolf on Facebook: Facebook.com/GovernorWolf By: The Office of Governor Tom Wolfcenter_img May 26, 2016 SHARE Email Facebook Twitterlast_img read more

Nationwide recall issued on tons of beef products

first_imgWashington D.C. —  JBS Tolleson, Inc., a Tolleson, Ariz. establishment, is recalling approximately 6,500,966 pounds of various raw, non-intact beef products that may be contaminated with Salmonella Newport, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.The raw, non-intact beef items, including ground beef, were packaged on various dates from July 26, 2018 to Sept. 7, 2018. The following products are subject to recall: (Products List | Product Labels (PDF only))The products subject to recall bear establishment number “EST. 267” inside the USDA mark of inspection. These items were shipped to retail locations and institutions nationwide.On September 5, 2018, FSIS was notified of an investigation of Salmonella Newport illnesses with reported consumption of several different FSIS-regulated products by case-patients. The first store receipt potentially linking the purchase of FSIS-regulated product to a case-patient was received on September 19, 2018; FSIS was then able to begin traceback of ground beef products. To date, eight case-patients have provided receipts or shopper card numbers, which have enabled product traceback investigations.  FSIS, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and state public health and agriculture partners have now determined that raw ground beef was the probable source of the reported illnesses. Traceback has identified JBS as the common supplier of the ground beef products. The epidemiological investigation has identified 57 case-patients from 16 states with illness onset dates ranging from August 5 to September 6, 2018. FSIS will continue to work with public health partners and will provide updated information should it become available.Consumption of food contaminated with Salmonella can cause salmonellosis, one of the most common bacterial foodborne illnesses. The most common symptoms of salmonellosis are diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever within 12 to 72 hours after eating the contaminated product. The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days. Most people recover without treatment. In some persons, however, the diarrhea may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized. Older adults, infants, and persons with weakened immune systems are more likely to develop a severe illness. Individuals concerned about an illness should contact their health care provider.FSIS is concerned that some product may be frozen and in consumers’ freezers. Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them. These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase.FSIS routinely conducts recall effectiveness checks to verify recalling firms notify their customers of the recall and that steps are taken to make certain that the product is no longer available to consumers. When available, the retail distribution list(s) will be posted on the FSIS website at www.fsis.usda.gov/recalls.FSIS advises all consumers to safely prepare their raw meat products, including fresh and frozen, and only consume ground beef that has been cooked to a temperature of 160°F. Other cuts of beef should be cooked to a temperature of 145 °F and allowed to rest for at least 3 minutes. The only way to confirm that ground beef or other cuts of beef are cooked to a temperature high enough to kill harmful bacteria is to use a food thermometer that measures internal temperature, http://1.usa.gov/1cDxcDQ.Consumers with questions regarding the recall can contact the JBS USA Consumer Hotline at (800) 727-2333. Members of the media with questions regarding the recall can contact Misty Barnes, Public Relations Specialist at JBS USA, at (970) 506-7805.last_img read more

Rumours mount despite Jose claims

first_img Mourinho has for weeks insisted January is not the month for buying the players he needs and that Chelsea will only make a move if circumstances dictate the time is right. Prior to last week’s FA Cup win at Derby, he said: “The market is open, but for us, almost closed.” And before the defeat of Crystal Palace in mid-December, he said: “The market opens in January, but as I was saying, I don’t think we will be there, buying or selling. “If something happens it will happen (with) one player because the occasion was very good. “We always thought to try the best with this team and wait for the right moment to improve the squad and be strong.” Gone are the days when owner Roman Abramovich writes a blank cheque, and the Blues must cope with a £49.4million loss in their most recent annual results in an era of Financial Fair Play. Mourinho has dismissed a move for Gonzalo Higuain of Napoli and believes the “killer” striker he covets is not available at this time of year. He insisted he would be sticking with Fernando Torres, Samuel Eto’o and Demba Ba. Ba has had opportunities limited and been repeatedly linked with a switch away, including to his former club West Ham. Inter Milan’s Colombian winger Fredy Guarin has been linked with a move to Stamford Bridge, but Chelsea are hardly short in the forward-thinking-midfielder department, even if Kevin De Bruyne is allowed to leave. Belgium forward De Bruyne is eager to move amid reports linking him with Wolfsburg; all that stands in the way is the not insignificant hurdle of a fee being agreed. Chelsea face Hull on Saturday amid speculation Jose Mourinho is planning to be active in the transfer market despite the manager’s protestations to the contrary. Mourinho wants De Bruyne and Juan Mata, who have struggled to adopt the work ethic he has asked for, to fight for their places. Mata has indicated he is prepared to but should the Spanish playmaker or De Bruyne be sold, Chelsea may reinvest the funds. One player who has coped well with Mourinho’s demands is Willian, the Brazil forward who Chelsea snatched from under the noses of Tottenham in August. “The last few matches have gone very well and in each match I’m looking to do better,” Willian told Chelsea TV. “I’m looking to keep up good form until the end of the season.” Chelsea have won four of their last five games, conceding one goal, but will be wary of Hull, who beat Liverpool at the KC Stadium in early December and Fulham 6-0 in their most recent home match. Chelsea played some of their best football of the season against Hull in Mourinho’s first match of his second spell in charge in August and the Portuguese will hope for a similar showing on Saturday. Press Associationlast_img read more

Hurricanes match Canadiens’ offer sheet to Sebastian Aho

first_img“In tendering an offer sheet to Sebastian Aho on July 1, our objective was to add a talented young forward entering the prime of his career,” Bergevin said. “With Carolina matching our offer, we wish Sebastian and the Hurricanes all the best.”Aho, 21, had 83 points (30 goals, 53 assists) in 82 games last season, setting career highs in goals, assists and points and becoming only the sixth player in franchise history to record at least 30 goals and 50 assists in a season. He also became the fourth player in franchise history to record 80 points in a season before turning 22 and the seventh player in franchise history to score 30 goals in a season before his 22nd birthday.The move by Montreal to sign Aho to the offer sheet didn’t come as a shock given that they created space ahead of the start of free agency by moving veteran Andrew Shaw back to the Blackhawks and Nicolas Deslauriers to the Ducks. Aho’s deal, according to Sportsnet, is heavily frontloaded, paying him $21 million in the first year, and contains the maximum signing bonus allowed.The offer sheet was the first in the NHL since 2013, when the Flames tried to snatch Ryan O’Reilly from the Avalanche.It has been 12 years since an offer sheet was not matched. In 2007, the Oilers acquired Dustin Penner from the Ducks. DONE DEAL!We have OFFICIALLY matched the @CanadiensMTL’s offer sheet for @SebastianAho! pic.twitter.com/A9zpAJRUI7— Carolina Hurricanes (@NHLCanes) July 7, 2019″This was an easy decision,” Hurricanes general manager Don Waddell said in a statement. “Sebastian is one of the best players in the league and the centerpiece of what we’re building here. We’ve spoken to him throughout this process and he’s made it clear that he wants to be in Raleigh and be a part of this organization. … There was no concern at any point that we would not be able to match this contract. Once again, the Carolina Hurricanes should not be underestimated. We have a plan and all the resources to win a Stanley Cup.”Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin released a statement Monday acknowledging defeat in his pursuit of Aho.  Related News The Hurricanes have matched the Canadiens’ offer sheet to center Sebastian Aho worth $42.27 million over five years, Carolina president and GM Don Waddell announced Sunday. The deal, which carries an average annual value of $8.454 million, runs through the 2023-24 NHL season.center_img Artemi Panarin free agency news: Rangers land star winger Sergei Bobrovsky free agency news: Panthers get goaltender on 7-year deallast_img read more

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