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particularly vulnerable populations in the Amazon

Manaus, the capital of the Brazilian Amazon, has the highest death rate of the country’s 27 state capitals. The largest city in the Amazon has sunk into health chaos. Recent images of the situation there are striking. We see mass graves being dug in this city with an outdated health system. And on several occasions since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, the mayor, who officially registered more than 600 dead, has appeared in tears on television.

→ LIVE. Coronavirus: the latest information in France and worldwide

Manaus is home to many natives, often living in precarious conditions. Brazil-wide, there are 800,000. Officially, 28 have died from the coronavirus. The balance sheet is undoubtedly higher. Fear of contamination, ethnic groups decided to ” prohibit entry “ of their reservations to strangers to their community, says Augusto Falcon, president of the Association of Native Councils.

→ READ. Brazil: Minister of Justice resigns at the height of the Covid-19 epidemic

A Brazilian judge recently banned missionaries from the Evangelical Churches from contacting indigenous peoples, who are particularly vulnerable to imported viruses.

Sebastiao Salgado at the origin of a petition

Brazilian photographer Sebastiao Salgado relayed the fragility of these peoples. On Sunday May 3, he launched an online petition calling for “Urgent measures” authorities to protect the natives from coronavirus.

“These ethnic groups have been decimated for five centuries by the diseases brought by the European colonizers, he explains. Their situation is doubly critical, because the territories recognized as the exclusive use of the indigenous populations are illegally invaded by gold panners, timber traffickers or farmers who appropriate their lands. ” Sebastiao Salgado calls “The President of the Republic, the leaders of the Congress and the judiciary in Brazil” to stop these intrusions and “Provide protection” native peoples.

“The natives are annoyers”

The epidemic could further weaken a community threatened by those who want to exploit the riches of the Amazon rainforest. A “Climate of impunity reigns” since the election of Jair Bolsonaro, said Sarah Shenker, at the NGO Survival. “It opened the doors of the Amazon to agribusiness, the extractive industries, artisanal gold miners and foresters. It has done so much more than its predecessors. Under these conditions, the natives who live there are annoying. “

The solution to the epidemic is not to further isolate these populations, but to provide them with the health services they lack. Now the 1er In April, the government’s reaction to the first confirmed case of coronavirus on a native was to suspend permits to enter native land for 30 days. “This isolation measure endangers the indigenous populations, unable to provide for themselves with food without outside supplies”, estimates the NGO Planète Amazonie.

“We need hygiene products”

At the end of April, several indigenous chiefs asked to warn “An ethnocide throughout the Amazon basin”, denouncing the abandonment of which their peoples are victims. Chef Raoni, a figure in the fight against deforestation in the Amazon, has launched a call for donations to help indigenous populations cope with the coronavirus. “We need to be supplied with basic foodstuffs, hygiene products, medicines and also fuel to be able to transport them” to indigenous communities, said the cacique, in a video released by the NGO Amazon Planet.


deforestation accelerates during the epidemic

Deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon has reached a new peak in the first four months of the year, according to data released Friday May 8 by the National Space Research Institute of Brazil (INPE), a scientific research center that monitors the forest by satellite images. An indicator that is already worrying since normally it is not the time to cut trees because of the rainy season, Erika Berenguer, forest ecologist at the University of Oxford, told AFP.

→ LIVE. The latest information in France and worldwide

From January to the end of April, it is no less than 1,200 km2 of forest, equivalent to about half of Luxembourg, which have disappeared. An increase of 55% compared to the same period last year, the highest since 2015, the date of the first monthly observations.

An almost anti-ecological policy

These figures raise the question of how Jair Bolsonaro’s Brazil, a climate-skeptic favorable to the decommissioning of protected areas for their ecological quality and their transformation into mines and intensive agricultural crops, manages most of the world’s tropical forest .

Last year, Jair Bolsonaro’s first year in power, deforestation climbed 85% in the Brazilian Amazon, destroying 10,123 km2 (the surface of Lebanon). The destruction had created a worldwide stir for the future of the jungle, which was considered vital in the fight against climate change. Devastation due to record forest fires that ravaged the Amazon during the dry season from May to October, in addition to illegal logging and mining, and farming practices on protected land.

→ INFOGRAPHY. Focus on deforestation in the Amazon

This week, Jair Bolsonaro authorized the army to deploy to the Amazon to fight fires and deforestation from May 11. A measure he had already taken last year after being subjected to scathing criticism from the international community for having minimized these fires. However, this recourse to the army relates only to the fires, and does not deal with the illegal farmers and stockbreeders who cut down the trees then burn them, deplores Erika Berenguer.

What’s more, everyone burns the forest in Brazil, both big and small owners, because it is the easiest and cheapest way to clean the land before sowing or planting crops (especially exported soybeans in Europe to feed intensive breeding pigs) or to put the land in meadows to raise beef cattle which, too, will be exported to the world “, Explains Michel Le Tourneau (CNRS-University of Arizona), geographer specializing in the Amazon rainforest

With the new government, the environmental agency IBAMA, the ” forest policeman “As Michel Le Tourneau says, had to face reductions in staff and budget. And last month, the government sacked the top environmental law enforcement official, who had shortly before authorized a police raid on illegal mines in front of television cameras.

Faced with this disaster, environmentalists believe that it would be better to support more environmental protection programs.

In Manaus, the only intensive care unit in the region, is saturated

The coronavirus epidemic, which in Brazil has officially claimed the lives of nearly 10,000 people among some 150,000 people infected, further complicates matters. One of the worst affected is the state of Amazonas, the largest of Brazil’s northwestern states bordering Venezuela and Colombia, largely covered by nature. With his only intensive care unit based in Manaus, he was overwhelmed by the epidemic.


Marvel will return to the filming of the series “Falcon and Winter Soldier”

Marvel Studio returns to the filming of the series “Falcon and Winter Soldier” in the Czech Republic. The government removed the restrictions previously imposed because of the coronavirus, but subject to the filming crew observing special rules that would protect them from infection. About this writes the publication Variety.

In addition to Marvel, Amazon and Netflix provide the opportunity to resume shooting films and TV shows in the Czech Republic.

The series “Falcon and Winter Soldier” began to be shot in the United States in October last year. The exit was planned for the summer-autumn of 2020.

“The Falcon and the Winter Soldier” is the official continuation of the Avengers saga: it tells about the joint work of two heroes of the film universe, friends of Captain America.

The number of coronavirus infected in the world exceeded 3.87 million people, in Russia – 187.8 thousand people. To date, 1723 people have died from infection in the country.


Microsoft employees will work from home until October


, Text: Elias Kasmi

Microsoft allowed employees to work from home until October 2020, even if isolation measures associated with the coronavirus pandemic were removed earlier in countries in the home. Workers will have the right to decide for themselves whether to stay at home or return to the office.

No office work until mid-autumn

Microsoft has announced the extension of the remote work mode for its employees. According to Business Insider, they will continue to work from home until October 2020.

Renewing the удал udalenka ’does not include a complete ban on working from the office – company employees can choose this mode of work on their own. In other words, Microsoft employees will be able to return to their offices immediately after removing the isolation measures associated with coronavirus infection in their country of residence, but at the same time they will have the right to stay at home from May to the end of September 2020.

According to statistics from Statista.com, at the beginning of May 2020, Microsoft had more than 144 thousand people worldwide. Most of them (85 thousand people) live in the United States.

Microsoft initiated the transfer of its offices to remote work on March 5, 2020. According to Business Insider, it started from offices in Seattle and San Francisco (USA), asking their employees to work from home until March 28, 2020. Later on, the mode of remote work in Microsoft was extended: for example, in the state of Washington, where the corporation’s headquarters are located, its employees were ordered to work from home until May 31, 2020.


Microsoft offices will be empty for at least another five months

We add that large Russian IT companies also support the idea of ​​transferring employees to remote work. Among the first was Yandex, which on March 13, 2020 recommended that the staff work from home whenever possible. On March 16, 2020, the Mail.ru Group holding made a similar decision regarding the head office employees.

Copying Amazon Ideas

Microsoft invited its employees to work from home until October 2020, right after Amazon did the same. According to Reuters, on May 1, 2020, Amazon allowed workers not to appear in the company’s offices until October 2, 2020.

The innovation applies to those whose work does not depend on the location. Warehouse workers are not affected by these changes, and Amazon has already demonstrated its attitude towards them. how According to CNews, on April 1, 2020, Amazon laid off the organizer of the strike organizer at the New York JFK8 sorting center, urging management to protect them from coronavirus. The demands of the strikers were ignored. The initiator of the strike was now the former deputy manager of the center. Christian Smalls (Christian Smalls).

This was not the only such case, and all of them led to the fact that Amazon Vice President and Amazon Web Services lead engineer Tim Bray (Tim Bray) resigned. He did this in protest against the actions of the company’s management in relation to its employees and their protection against coronavirus.

Remote work is the future

Microsoft believes that after removing the insulation measures, many companies will wish to continue working from home instead of returning to the office. The company associates this with the fact that people will learn how to work effectively without personal meetings and will appreciate all the advantages of a more flexible schedule in comparison with the office. Microsoft spoke about this in her analytical report on new trends in the labor market, published on April 9, 2020.

Microsoft believes that after self-isolation, most people will continue to work from home.

In the report, she cites the growing popularity of her corporate Teams messenger, including in China, where the coronavirus was leaked. According to the document, even after quarantine was lifted in this country at the end of March 2020, the daily number of Teams users not only remained twice as high as the end of January 2020, but also continued to show weekly growth.

The effectiveness of remote work, as indicated in the report, is also indicated by the fact that between March 1 and March 31, 2020, Microsoft analysts recorded that the average interval between the first and last use of Teams during the day increased by more than an hour. They connected this with the possibility of building a flexible schedule when working from home.



Amazon bishops in Brazil worried about Covid-19 pandemic

Faced with the uncontrolled advance of the Covid-19 in Brazil and in particular in the Amazon “, The bishops of this region wished to express their” immense concern ” On Monday, May 4, the 65 bishops and the two apostolic administrators of the Brazilian Amazon published a ” Note on the situation of peoples and forests at the time of Covid-19

→ RECAP ’. Coronavirus: the essentials of Tuesday, May 5 in France and worldwide

In this Note, also signed by Cardinal Claudio Hummes, president of the Special Episcopal Commission for the Amazon, within the Conference of Bishops of Brazil (CNBB), they ask ” greater attention from governments, national and regional ”, about the pandemic “Which is spreading more and more in the Amazon

In fact, since the beginning of the pandemic, the mortality rate in the Amazon has been one of the highest and the main cities of Manaus and Belém have seen their hospital and health systems totally outdated.

The peoples of the Amazon demand special attention from the authorities so that their lives are not stolen “Continues the text, which reached the Fides missionary agency.

Unreliable statistics

The bishops recall that the statistics provided “ do not correspond to reality “, That the tests” are not enough “To find out how widespread the virus is, and that many people with obvious symptoms of the disease are dying at home” without medical assistance or access to a hospital

The Note also underlines how the natives living in the forest are in great danger. ” The data is alarming. The region is characterized by the lowest presence of hospitals in the country

The populations of the urban peripheries are also exposed to the pandemic. ” These are migrants, refugees, urban natives, industrial workers, domestic workers, people living in informal work “, Enumerate the bishops, worried that their living conditions will be further degraded by the lack of hygiene, housing, food and work. ” The State must guarantee the rights recognized by the Federal Constitution by offering them minimum conditions of security to overcome this serious crisis

More generally, the bishops warn of the future in an increasingly devastated Amazon, where the pandemics of tomorrow “haswill have even more harmful effects than the ones we are currently experiencing

The signatories conclude their note by asking the authorities ” urgent measures to strengthen the health system in the Amazon, adopt restrictive measures for entry to all indigenous territories, set up tests on the natives so that they can adopt the necessary isolation measures, provide protective equipment recommended by WHO in adequate quantity, protect health workers, strengthen inspections against deforestation and extraction, and finally guarantee the presence of indigenous representatives in political decision-making


Interrogating the world’s richest people … This is the list of accusations

Source: Reuters

The US House Judicial Committee summoned Amazon founder Jeff Bezos to testify before it of “concerns about competition” related to the company’s business practices.

Bezos, who is the wealthiest of the year with a fortune, estimated at $ 149 billion, will not be the only CEO of one of the major technology companies, Amazon, Apple, Google and Facebook, which is being questioned in front of Congress, it was preceded by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and others.

In a letter to Bezos signed by Democrats and Republicans, members said, “If what was published on the Wall Street Journal is accurate, the Amazon data that I submitted to the committee about the company’s business practices appears to be misleading, and it may be false and incorrect to require criminal accountability.”

Members were referring to an article published in the Wall Street Journal on April 23 about Amazon practices.

According to CNBC, the commission’s request came after an investigation by The Wall Street Journal that revealed Amazon employees ’unauthorized data regarding external vendors cooperating with the company, while reviewing the product strategy.

The investigation was based on an interview with more than 20 former company employees and other documents seen by the newspaper, and committee members wrote to Bezos: “If these allegations are accurate, then the data Amazon has submitted to the committee regarding the company’s business practices appears to be misleading, possibly false or criminally harmful.” “.

House of Representatives anti-monopoly subcommittee David Cecilin said the report showed that Amazon “may have lied to Congress” in its earlier testimony before the committee.

At a hearing in July 2019, the associate general counsel for the company, Nate Sutton, said that “Amazon” does not use the individual data of each seller to clarify its strategy.

The company has faced scrutiny over the past year as lawmakers and regulators evaluate privacy and dominance issues among technology companies.


A press investigation leads Congress to question the world’s richest man

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The US House of Representatives Judiciary Committee summoned billionaire and Amazon e-commerce head Jeff Bezos to testify after Democrats accused his senior staff of lying to Congress.

According to CNBC, the commission’s request came after an investigation by The Wall Street Journal that revealed that Amazon employees had used unassembled individual data related to outside vendors cooperating with the company, while reviewing the product strategy.

The investigation was based on an interview with more than 20 former company employees and other documents seen by the newspaper. Committee members wrote to Bezos: “If these allegations are accurate, then the data Amazon has submitted to the committee regarding the company’s business practices appears to be misleading, and possibly false or criminally harmful.”

House of Representatives anti-monopoly chairman David Cecilin said last week that the report showed that Amazon “may have lied to Congress” in its earlier testimony before the committee.

At a hearing last July, associate general counsel for the company, Nate Sutton, said that “Amazon” does not use the individual data of each seller to clarify its strategy.

Bezos, who is the richest man in the world with a fortune of $ 149 billion, will not be the only CEO of one of the four major technology companies – Amazon, Apple, Google and Facebook – which is being questioned before Congress.

The company faced scrutiny over the past year as lawmakers and regulators assess privacy and dominance issues among technology companies.

Bloomberg said it is currently facing an investigation from the House of Representatives subcommittee on antitrust, a division of the Judicial Committee, and an investigation by the Federal Trade Commission.


DAX outlook: mood barometer cloudy outlook

Frankfurt In the past weeks there have been repeated attempts to recover the course, on some days one could believe that the corona pandemic has already been overcome. But on Friday, disillusionment returned – the collapsed ifo business climate index made the whole dilemma clear.

The course of the mood barometer looks like a “Highway to Hell”, was the analysis of the VP Bank. The index is now significantly below the values ​​of the crisis year 2009. The simple message for the future was: “Massive income losses are imminent. We will all get poorer. This applies not only to Germany, but to all economies. ”Sometimes it is better to hear the unvarnished truth.

Other analysts and experts are also skeptical about the weekly outlook. Cautious savings by consumers and companies create a completely different economic and inflation environment than one knows from the post-war period, the analysts at MFS Investment Management believe.

They expect the earnings recovery to be weaker than the market and point to the possible dilution of earnings through capital increases. They particularly highlight 2008 as a comparison.

“When the extreme risk of the international financial crisis subsided, companies were no longer concerned with distributions, but with recapitalization. To this end, new shares were issued – at the expense of existing shareholders, whose capital was heavily diluted, ”said the investment professionals. The new wave of recapitalization has probably just started. In the past few weeks, leisure companies and service providers in the United States and Europe have already offered new shares.

Warning to bargain hunters

The BLI – Banque de Luxembourg Investments is also cautious. “The financial markets are currently giving the impression that they are underestimating the extent of the economic damage and are counting on a rapid recovery as soon as the containment measures are reversed,” is the BLI’s assessment.

Many investors are conditioned to view any decline as an opportunity to buy. However, the analysts recall that while the fall in share prices in February / March was dramatic, the valuations were also very high. As a result, the markets today are anything but cheap, especially after the recent price recovery.

Quality companies with a very solid balance sheet, one or more sustainable competitive advantages and the ability to self-finance should be preferred. The main factor that will continue to speak for stocks remains the low interest rate level and thus the lack of alternatives. At the same time, gold will become an “indispensable part of a balanced portfolio because of the inflation risks.”

After the significant recovery since mid-March, the European stock market has recently lost some momentum, the Weberbank experts believe. In addition, the balance sheet season that is already underway shows significant impacts on corporate balance sheets due to the global “lockdowns”.

Correspondingly, the analysts have also significantly lowered their profit expectations for industrial companies, but also for the banking and energy sectors. Due to the economic slump, banks faced increased write-downs on their credit books and the massive drop in yields clouded interest income. Most recently, they also negatively impacted the rating agency Standard & Poor’s (S&P).

The Deutsche Bank and the Commerzbank were therefore particularly under pressure on Friday “We continue to distance ourselves from these sectors and prefer creditworthy pharmaceuticals or companies from the non-cyclical consumption. In addition, titles from the technology sector are promising in our eyes, ”said the Weberbank experts.

Central banks meet worldwide

If the economic situation continues to be poor, the states and central banks will have to take further support measures. Robert Greil, chief strategist at Merck Finck Privatbankiers, sees an opportunity for this next week because the European Central Bank, the US Federal Reserve and the Bank of Japan are meeting.

“As a result of the unprecedented economic downturn caused by the Covid 19 consequences, all central banks will reaffirm their willingness to support,” says Greil. The economic downturn left neither governments nor central banks a choice but to take further measures to support and recover the economy.

The gross domestic product for the first quarter of 2020 will be published in the euro area on Thursday, and new growth figures will come in the US on Wednesday. Further important economic data in Germany are the preliminary inflation figures and the labor market report for April.

According to DZ Bank, the next quarter should bring an improvement in the economy, but there does not have to be a “V” or “I” recovery. This is not ignored on the stock market, many stocks are up to 80 percent down.

A large number of “mega-caps” hold up against this, mainly in the USA. Amazon, Google, Microsoft, Netflix and Facebook, but also Adobe or Comcast, be stable on the way. Things are also going well for the great values ​​of the “old economy”, including Pepsico, Johnson & Johnson, Procter & Gamble, Home depot and Pfizer. The German Leading index Dax the strategists from DZ Bank see 11,200 points by the end of the year, and the S & P-500 for US equities at 2,800. This would at least stabilize in the medium term.

More: Yield in Corona times: With which investments you can still make money