By Brad Brooks HOUSTON (Reuters) - Travis Cains looks over to the spot where he and George Floyd watched the world go by when they were young. All that's left of the clubhouse across the street from the Cuney Homes projects where they debated sports and hip hop are two battered concrete steps now leading to nowhere. The clubhouse is long gone. It was on those steps that Cains — who considers himself Floyd's older brother and stuck with him through the highs of sports stardom at school to the lows of addiction and incarceration — became convinced that Floyd was destined to make his mark on the ...
By Francois Murphy
VIENNA (Reuters) - Iran must stop denying the U.N. nuclear watchdog access to a workshop making centrifuge parts as agreed two weeks ago or face diplomatic retaliation at the agency's Board of Governors within days, the United States said on Monday.
The workshop at the TESA Karaj complex makes components for centrifuges, machines that enrich uranium, and was hit by apparent sabotage in June in which one of four International Atomic Energy Agency cameras there was destroyed. Iran removed them and the destroyed camera's footage is missing https://www.reuters.com/world/middle-east/iaea-pressures-iran-fate-talks-nuclear-deal-hangs-balance-2021-09-07.
TESA Karaj was one of several sites to which Iran agreed to grant IAEA inspectors access to service IAEA monitoring equipment and replace memory cards just as they were due to fill up with data such as camera footage. The Sept. 12 accord helped avoid a diplomatic escalation https://www.reuters.com/world/middle-east/iaea-chief-iran-talks-before-showdown-with-west-2021-09-12 between Iran and the West.
"We are deeply troubled by Iran's refusal to provide the IAEA with the needed access to service its monitoring equipment, as was agreed in the September 12 Joint Statement between the IAEA and Iran," a U.S. statement to the IAEA's 35-nation Board of Governors on Monday said.
It was responding to an IAEA report to member states on Sunday that said Iran had granted access to sites as agreed on Sept. 12 but not to the workshop, where IAEA inspectors were denied access on Sunday. They had planned to check if the workshop was ready to operate and re-install cameras if it was.
Iran's envoy to the IAEA, Kazem Gharibabadi, said overnight on Twitter https://twitter.com/Gharibabadi/status/1442253099507326979?s=20 that before the deal with the IAEA, Iran indicated that monitoring equipment at Karaj was "not included for servicing" because of ongoing investigations and Sunday's report "goes beyond the agreed terms of the JS (Joint Statement)".
'WITHOUT FURTHER DELAY'
The European Union told the IAEA board that Iran's failure to grant the IAEA access to the workshop was "a worrying development, contrary to the Joint Statement reached on 12 September 2021."
A resolution criticising Iran at the Board of Governors could kill hopes of resuming indirect talks between Iran and the United States to bring both sides back into compliance with the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.
Iran usually bristles at such resolutions and its news hardline President Ebrahim Raisi has said Iran is prepared to return to the negotiating table but not under Western "pressure". Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian said on Friday Iran would return to the talks "very soon".
"We call on Iran to provide the IAEA with needed access without further delay," the U.S. statement said. "If Iran fails to do so, we will be closely consulting with other board members in the coming days on an appropriate response."
The European Union also called on Iran to grant access "without any further delay".
(Reporting by Francois Murphy; Editing by Hugh Lawson and Mark Heinrich, William Maclean)
‘Very scared’ state workers threatened with demotions for complaining about Ron DeSantis’ COVID policies: report
Florida state employees are being threatened with demotions if they complain about not being notified when a colleague becomes seriously ill or dies from COVID-19, according to a report from the Tampa Bay Times.
Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis' "efforts to keep Florida open" have had devastating impacts on state agencies — with entire offices closing due to outbreaks, and three state prisons shuttering due to a lack of corrections officers, the newspaper reported Monday.
"The workers are very scared," said Vicki Hall, president of a union that represents nearly half of Florida's 105,000 state employees. "The governor wants everything open and running. ... Management is not taking it seriously."
DeSantis' administration ordered state workers to return to their offices last October, with social distancing and masks optional.
One Department of Revenue employee complained recently that, "They don't tell us when people have been in the building sick. We have to hear through the grapevine that someone is in the hospital or dead. If we complain, we are offered demotions."
Democratic state Sen. Loranne Ausley told the newspaper, "Many state employees live in fear of making any noise. They call us and don't even say what agency they're calling from."
Ausley recently co-authored a letter from Democratic lawmakers to DeSantis citing a "lack of precautions" at state offices and pleading with the governor to allow employees to return to working remotely.
"I get contacted daily about state employees who are fearful about getting COVID," said Rep. Allison Tant, another co-author of the letter. "I don't think there was a single constituent who reached out to me who was not worried about retribution."
DeSantis' office declined to comment on the report, and state agencies have refused to provide data about COVID-19 cases among employees.
MSNBC's Joe Scarborough sounded the alarm over Donald Trump's continued election lies.
The twice-impeached one-term president falsely claimed during a Georgia rally that the Arizona "audit" showed he had won and called on other states to conduct similar partisan probes to justify his lies about fraud -- and the "Morning Joe" host explained how Trump was setting the stage to steal the 2024 election.
"Why are they changing election laws in states where Donald Trump won?" Scarborough said. "They're afraid in 2024 he may not do as well, it may get closer and they may need to steal the election. For those of you, again, when you hear about voting reforms, you hear about a lot of the challenges that this country and this democracy is facing, it's so important to look at the two phases these Trump-friendly states are doing."
"The first phase, of course, is putting up roadblocks to prevent [voting], especially for Black voters and other people of color, but even more frightening than that for all Americans is the fact that they're trying to change the rules on the counting of the votes, changing one state legislature after another in Trump-friendly territory is trying to make it so state legislatures can throw out your vote," Scarborough added. "If you don't vote for Donald Trump, if they don't like what your community does or your precinct does or what your state does, these Republican legislatures that are Trumpists are now passing legislation that takes the power away from election officials and takes the power away from secretaries of state and governors."
Scarborough warned that Trump and his conspiracy theories posed a direct threat to democracy, and he called on Democratic senators to eliminate the filibuster and pass legislation to save it over Republican objections.
"Democrats have the votes to actually pass legislation that will stop state legislators from stealing the election -- from stealing the election -- their intent, my good friend Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema, their intent is to steal the election," Scarborough said. "You can see the clear intent written on that legislation. If Mitch McConnell believes there should be an exemption for the filibuster for one of the most important things the Senate does, and that is confirming Supreme Court justices, there can't be a filibuster for saving American democracy for voting rights laws for civil rights laws?"
"I guess the question in Washington has been for some time now, will the Democratic Party have the courage to count the 50 to stop these schemes for stealing elections and destroying American democracy?" he added. "Will they have the courage to count the 50 and do what Republicans would do in a New York second?"
09 27 2021 06 06 52 www.youtube.com
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