June 29 – July 5 Weekly News

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Egypt imprisons famous belly dancer for immorality

A belly dancer has been put in prison. A court in Egypt sentenced Sama El-Masry to three years and fined her $18,500. The police arrested her and charged her with "immorality". She posted videos on the website TikTok doing different belly dances. Egypt is cracking down on social media posts. Police said Ms. El-Masry put "immoral" videos on social media. They said she was guilty of damaging Egypt's morals because the videos were of a sexual nature.

Sama El-Masry is 42 years old. She is a belly dancer and actress. She starred in a movie about the unfair treatment of female workers. It got lots of people talking about women in the workplace. She also got attacked in the past for posting videos about her political views. A lawyer defending Ms. El-Masry said: "Our traditional society is struggling with technological changes which have created a completely different environment."

 

https://breakingnewsenglish.com/2006/200630-belly-dancing-1.html

 

Stop Hate for Profit campaign stops temporarily social media ads

Stop Hate for Profit campaign stops temporarily social media ads

The "Stop Hate For Profit" campaign group has reduced the value of Facebook and Twitter. It asked advertisers to stop advertising with the social media giants until they reformed. The group wants stricter regulation of posts containing hate speech and misinformation. The value of Facebook fell by eleven percent as major brands paused their spending on the social media platform. Facebook's value fell by around $60 billion.

The Stop Hate For Profit campaign started after civil rights groups and non-profit watchdogs collaborated. It called for an advertising boycott and asked advertisers to, "hit pause on hate". It wants businesses to stand together with our most deeply held values of freedom, equality, and justice and not advertise on [these] services in July. Facebook said it will ban hateful content and on posts making false claims about voting.

 

https://breakingnewsenglish.com/2007/200702-stop-hate-for-profit-4.html

 

A red light could help improve vision in old age

A red light could help improve vision in old age

Scientists say they can help the eyes of older people. They say that looking at a red light for three minutes a day for two weeks could make them see better. A researcher looked at how red light could help older people see better. He said: "I strongly suggest that people do not just go and buy a red light off the web. They have to produce the right wavelength and be reliable. We are looking for a partner to do this and to price them at around $20."

Researchers did tests on 24 people aged between 28 and 72. They found that eye cells used to see light were worse in older people. The red light helped older people to see different colors better. Their sight got better by 22 percent. A doctor said poorer eyesight will be a big problem in the future. He said we need to get ready for this, because: "If you can't see you can't read or watch TV. You also fall down and break bones."

 

https://breakingnewsenglish.com/2007/200704-red-light-1.html

 

Countries Push Companies to Depend Less on China

Countries Push Companies to Depend Less on China

The United States, Japan, and France are promoting their businesses to depend less on China to make smartphones, drugs, and many other products. Too much dependence on China leaves global companies open to costly problems during major world crises. The spread of the new coronavirus is one example. China’s rise as the world’s low-cost factory has helped to lower costs for consumers and increased many companies’ profits. But it has fueled political tension over lost American and European manufacturing jobs.

Governments and industry experts worry dependence on China can be a threat to supply chains and national security. Japan is offering $2 billion to companies that move production to the country in a virus aid program announced in April. India and Indonesia have announced plans to increase their own production of unprocessed drug ingredients. German carmaker Volkswagen said it would spend $2.2 billion to buy control of Chinese electric vehicle and vehicle parts producers. Instead of manufacturing for export from China, some companies are planning to sell within the country.

 

https://learningenglish.voanews.com/a/us-japan-france-urge-companies-to-depend-less-on-china/5485122.html

 

Honeybees Show Improvement After Bad Year

Honeybees Show Improvement After Bad Year

A new study shows the American honeybee population is slowly recovering after suffering major losses the year before. Beekeepers in the United States lost only 22.2 percent of their honeybee colonies during the past winter, from October 1, 2019, to March 31 of this year. That is lower than the average winter loss of 28.6 percent. The Bee Informed Partnership organized a recent survey of thousands of U.S. beekeepers. The survey found that last winter was the second smallest winter loss in 14 years of studies. The loss last winter was less than the winter of 2018-2019 when a record 37.7 percent of colonies died off, researchers found.

New U.S. Department of Agriculture research suggests putting bees in “cold storage” to help them get through the winter. Scientists have long watched the population of animal pollinators – which are critical to the world’s food supply - shrink. Honeybees are among the easiest pollinators to follow. But experts say they are threatened by diseases, insects, chemical products, and loss of food. Steinhauer said she and other scientists are seeing the current loss rates as “part of the new normal.”

 

https://learningenglish.voanews.com/a/us-scientists-honeybees-show-improvement-after-bad-year/5477729.html

 

China Forces Birth Control on Uyghurs to Slow Population Growth

China Forces Birth Control on Uyghurs to Slow Population Growth

The Chinese government is taking extreme measures to cut birth rates among Uyghurs and other Muslim ethnic minorities. At the same time, it is forcing some of the country’s Han majority to have more children. A small number of ethnic Uyghur and Kazakh women have spoken out about forced birth control methods in recent years. But a new investigation by the Associated Press has found that the treatment is far more common and systematic than once suspected.

In some cases, officials also force such pregnancies to be ended through medical operations called abortions. And, they order birth control, like intrauterine devices (IUDs) to be used by minority women to prevent pregnancies. The population control measures are backed by mass detention, both as a threat and as a punishment for failure to follow orders. Having too many children is a major reason people are sent to detention camps, the AP found. Outside experts say the birth control campaign is part of a wider government effort to weaken Uyghur identity and culture. Adults are subjected to political and religious re-education in camps.

 

https://learningenglish.voanews.com/a/china-forces-birth-control-on-uyghurs-to-slow-population-growth/5482094.html

 

West Indies cricket legend Sir Everton Weekes dies aged 95

West Indies cricket legend Sir Everton Weekes dies aged 95

The cricket world is in sorrow after West Indies cricket legend Everton Weekes died at the age of 95. He was one of the "Three Ws" -- along with Frank Worrell and Clyde Walcott -- who put Barbados and West Indies cricket on the map in the 1950s. It is expected that he will be buried alongside Worrell and Walcott, who died in 1967 and 2006 respectively, at the Three Ws Stadium on the University of the West Indies' Cave Hill Campus in Barbados. A plot has been left vacant for Weekes.

Cricket West Indies paid recognition to Weekes, tweeting: "Our hearts are heavy as we mourn the loss of an icon. A legend, our hero, Sir Everton Weekes. Our hearts are heavy as we mourn the loss of an icon. A legend, our hero, Sir Everton Weekes. Weekes made his Test debut at the age of just 22 during England's 1947-48 tour of the Caribbean. That same year, he became the first batsman to score five Test centuries in following sessions -- a record that stands to this day.

 

https://edition.cnn.com/2020/07/02/sport/everton-weekes-obituary-spt-intl/index.html

 

Discord, a quarantine tech darling, raises another $100 million

Discord, a quarantine tech darling, raises another $100 million

One of the fastest-growing communications apps is Discord, known primarily within the gaming community. Discord allows people to join a voice call at any time and type in various channels to communicate with other gamers. They can sit in a call and listen to music, mute themselves or "deafen" themselves -- meaning they can't hear anyone else -- if they want to appear online only to friends without speaking.

The platform has flourished during the current pandemic, growing its monthly active users by 47% since February. It now has more than 100 million monthly active users and is taking off in countries where it already had a toehold, including Italy, France, Spain, and the United States.

Some 30% of users don't use Discord primarily for gaming, as of 2019. They are teachers, parents, Korean pop music fans, fashion enthusiasts, and others using the platform to connect with like-minded groups. Discord's success has also translated financially. It's set to have sales of $120 million this year, compared to about $70 million last year, and a $3.5 billion valuation, according to Forbes. It declined to say if it was profitable.

 

https://edition.cnn.com/2020/07/04/tech/discord-100-million-gaming/index.html

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