Joe Biden is scheduled to make his first visit to Florida as the Democratic nominee on Tuesday.He is set to speak at the roundtable discussion with veterans at 1:30 p.m. in Tampa before heading to Kissimmee for a Hispanic Heritage Month event at 6:30 p.m.Last week Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris’ visited Miami-Dade County.
— The NFL Players Association says 95 players are known to have tested positive for the coronavirus. That number is up from 72 in the union’s last report on July 10. On Monday, the NFLPA and the NFL reached agreement on COVID-19 testing as rookies begin reporting to training camps. Most veterans come in next week, though some players rehabbing injuries could report this week.— The International Tennis Federation plans to resume its lower-level World Tennis Tour the week of Aug. 17 and its junior and beach tennis tours two weeks later when the U.S. Open is scheduled to begin. All ITF tours have been suspended since March because of the coronavirus pandemic. The governing body says it has not decided on return dates for the senior or wheelchair tours but neither will have tournaments take place before Aug. 31. The ITF also announced its COVID-19 protocols for its tournaments and players.— The PGA Tour Series-China season has been canceled. The China-based tour’s executive director says attempts to move the qualifying tournaments to other sites in Asia were not practical and restricted access into mainland China made it too difficult to stage tournaments in 2020. Greg Carlson says “staging a tour based in China with players from five different continents is just not feasible at this time.” The tour is owned by the PGA Tour and operates in partnership with the Chinese Golf Association. It started in 2014 and is open to all nationalities and attracts players mainly from Asia and the Pacific Rim.— The head of the Tokyo Olympics says the delayed games could not be held next year if conditions caused by the coronavirus pandemic remain as they are. But Yoshiro Mori says he expects conditions to improve and is hopeful a COVID-19 vaccine will be developed soon. The postponed Olympics open a year from now on July 23, 2021. Organizers and the International Olympic Committee say they want to simplify the games to help reduce soaring costs. Officials cannot say now if fans will be permitted next year. Plans call for the full contingent of 11,000 Olympic athletes and 4,400 Paralympic athletes to be competing.NHL-ISLANDERS-ARENA NAME July 22, 2020 Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditVIRUS OUTBREAK-SPORTSNBA returns with a new lookUNDATED (AP) — The NBA comes back Wednesday with a very different look. There’s no bench. The courtside broadcasters will not be courtside. Update on the latest sports The R&A announced Wednesday that AIG, a New York-based finance and insurance group, has extended its title sponsorship of the women’s major by two years through 2025.And now that the R&A is charge on running the event, it said its official title will be the AIG Women’s Open. It previously was called the Women’s British Open.The R&A began to pay closer attention to the branding of golf’s oldest championship several years ago with more prominent use of “The Open Championship,” while Americans such as Jack Nicklaus and players from a few other countries refer to it as the British Open to distinguish it from other national opens. The Open was first played in 1860.By any name, the sponsorship strengthens one of the LPGA Tour’s five majors. The Women’s Open is scheduled for next month at Royal Troon and will be the first women’s major held this year because the COVID-19 pandemic has shut down the LPGA Tour since February. It is to resume next week in Ohio.The Women’s British Open dates to 1976, but it did not become part of the LPGA Tour schedule until 1994, and it was not given status as a major until 2001. UBS Arena’s exterior and interior will pay homage to iconic New York landmarks, including Grand Central Terminal, Prospect Park Boathouse and the Park Avenue Armory.The Islanders have been splitting their games between Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale and the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. GOLF-WOMEN’S BRITISH OPENWomen’s British gets sponsorship extension, new brandingST. ANDREWS, Scotland (AP) — The Women’s British Open is keeping its title sponsor and getting a slightly different name. Seating in the bench areas will be assigned, with folding chairs set up on three rows instead of the customary two and spaced out several feet from one another — instead of players sitting shoulder-to-shoulder as they have in the past. And across the center stripe, the words “Black Lives Matter” are painted onto the surface.The league’s marketing motto for the restart of the season at Walt Disney World is “Whole New Game,” and in many respects, that’s very true. The arenas that will be used for the exhibitions, the seeding games that start July 30 and then the playoffs that are scheduled for mid-August through mid-October set up much differently than usual — all with safety during a pandemic very much in mind.In other developments related to the COVID-19 pandemic:— The Toronto Blue Jays will play at PNC Park in Pittsburgh if the state of Pennsylvania approves it. That’s according to two officials familiar with the matter, who tell The Associated Press that the agreement to share the stadium with the Pirates is pending state approval. Canada denied the Blue Jays’ request to play in Toronto because the regular-season schedule would require frequent travel back and forth from the United States, where COVID-19 cases are surging. Canada has flattened the epidemic curve.— Freddie Freeman is back and ready to anchor the Braves’ lineup after a scary battle with COVID-19 earlier in summer camp. The 30-year-old Freeman had career highs last season with 38 homers and 121 RBIs. The four-time All-Star hopes to lead Atlanta back to the top of the NL East for the third straight season. The Braves are just happy Freeman is healthy after he had a fever that got as high as 104.5 degrees early in his illness. His recovery will be closely watched because he had one of MLB’s more serious bouts with the virus. He’s one of several players to watch in the NL and AL East Divisions this season. UBS reaches 20-year deal for Islanders’ arena naming rightsNEW YORK (AP) — The New York Islanders have reached a 20-year naming rights deal for their new arena with wealth management service UBS.The facility on the grounds of the Belmont Park racetrack will be called UBS Arena at Belmont Park, and it is projected to open in time for the 2021-22 NHL season.A $1.5 billion project, it will also include surrounding redevelopment expected to generate some $25 billion in economic activity. The Islanders and UBS said Wednesday that 30% of construction contracting dollars are earmarked for state-certified minority- and female-owned businesses, with an additional 6% to service-disabled, veteran-owned businesses.UBS and Oak View Group, which is leading the arena project, plan for 30% of its permanent jobs to go to workers who live in the area at the eastern border of Long Island and the western border of the New York City borough of Queens. There also are plans for an additional $100 million investment in transit and infrastructure enhancements, including a newly constructed Long Island Rail Road station. Associated Press
Related posts:‘Writing was on the wall’ for child immigrant crisis, says new study Regional investment is key to Central American security, say foreign ministers 26 lawyers have been murdered in Guatemala in the past 3 years Discussion of Cuban migrant crisis to resume Tuesday in Mexico See also: Inter-American Dialogue honors Guatemalan businessman, civic activist Salvador PaizWASHINGTON, D.C. – Guatemala’s Eduardo Stein Barillas vowed to “clean up the mess” at the Organization of American States if he’s elected secretary-general of the politically divided, cash-strapped regional body.Stein, a former foreign minister and vice president of Guatemala, is vying for the top job against Uruguayan Foreign Minister Luís Almagro. A third candidate, former Peruvian Foreign Minister Diego García Sayán, dropped out of the race last month due to what he said was lack of support from the Peruvian government.Stein, 69, hopes to succeed José Miguel Insulza as OAS chief when the Chilean diplomat’s term expires in May 2015. Elections will take place in March or April. José Miguel Insulza, secretary-general of the Organization of American States, left, receives Eduardo Stein at the Washington headquarters of the OAS on Oct. 17. Stein, Guatemala’s former vice president and foreign minister, is a candidate to succeed Insulza next year for the top job at the OAS. (Courtesy Juan Manuel Herrera/OAS)Pulling no punchesSpeaking earlier this month at the Woodrow Wilson International Center – a Washington think tank – Stein didn’t pull any punches about the difficult road ahead.“There are questions not only about what candidates for the post are proposing to face these formidable challenges, but also deeper questions about whether reform of the organization is still really possible and feasible – and if whoever gets elected will really be able to pull the organization out of this mess,” said Stein, who served as Guatemala’s foreign minister from 1996 to 2000, and vice president from 2004 to 2008.“The OAS is in dire need of profound structural reform,” said the elder statesman. “There is a severe financial crisis in the organization. The original Cold War blueprint doesn’t cut it anymore.”Recommended: OAS chief urges new approach to failed ‘war on drugs’U.S. taxpayers finance about 60 percent of the struggling body’s $83 million annual budget. Canada, Mexico and Brazil account for another 38 percent, while the remaining 32 countries fund the remaining 2 percent.But Stein added that “no new secretary-general can work miracles on his own. Without full political and financial support, reforms will never come to be, and whoever gets elected to the post will be drowned in fruitless efforts to salvage a languishing organization that – as one foreign minister put it, privately of course – will become as extinct as the dinosaurs.”He also called for the elimination of OAS mandates that have long ago outlived their usefulness, noting that “there are 757 existing mandates in the organization without a proper budget to honor them. This will be a major institutional disaster if we don’t get our act together.”Stein, who was introduced by Cynthia Arnson, director of the Wilson Center’s Latin American Program, is used to formidable challenges. In the late 1980s, he participated in the Esquipulas Accords aimed at bringing peace to Central America. He was also active in the San José Dialogue between Central America and the European Union, and played a critical role in the peace talks that brought an end to Guatemala’s civil war in 1996.Stein was also chief of an OAS electoral mission to Peru in 2000 that found then-President Alberto Fujimori’s re-election to be fraudulent; in Honduras, he presided over the Truth and Reconciliation Commission formed after the controversial 2009 ouster of President Manuel Zelaya. Organization of American States headquarters in Washington, D.C. Larry Luxner/The Tico TimesRelated: World Bank chief to OAS: Still ‘long way to go’ toward social equality in Latin AmericaSpeaking in English, and occasionally Spanish, to an audience that included a number of foreign ambassadors to both the White House and the OAS, Stein said the 34-member body “needs to be transformed into a 21st century organization,” but that such a lofty goal is easier said than done.“Nosotros somos campeones en planear, pero flojos en implementar,” he said, to much laughter. (Translation: We are champions in planning, but lazy in implementing.)“The new strategic vision demands a revamping of the organizational structure, and a restating of its objectives and operational agendas. The OAS therefore needs to be a solid, mature and responsible institution that could project hope among new generations for a united hemisphere. We should be a platform to discuss and agree upon strategic objectives for the region, not just meet to bicker among ourselves.”Insulza, who has led the OAS since 2005, has often been criticized for not standing up to human rights abuses in Venezuela and elsewhere. Uruguay’s Almagro, meanwhile, is perceived to be a leftist and close to the ALBA bloc of countries led by Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador and Cuba.Yet Stein isn’t without controversy either. Last year, he signed a public document condemning genocide charges against former Guatemalan dictator Efraín Ríos Montt, who was overthrown in 1983 after ruling the country for little more than a year. As a high-ranking general, Ríos Montt was accused of masterminding the massacre of thousands of indigenous Guatemalans.Even so, Stein solidly backs the Inter-American Human Rights Commission, a separate OAS agency that’s been highly critical of abuses committed by Venezuela’s late populist president, Hugo Chávez, and his protégé, President Nicolás Maduro.Related: Venezuela’s crackdown on sales of everyday goods risks alienating loyalists“Some voices arguing that they want to strengthen the system in fact want to impose severe limitations on it. That would be disastrous,” he warned. “I come from a region where the Inter-American Human Rights Commission – because of the swiftness with which it acted – saved individual lives, entire families and even populations as a whole. If we are going to impinge upon our human rights structures and procedures, it should be to take steps forward and make an even better system than we have today.”Stein added that the commission’s work “is among the most important contributions of the inter-American system” and should be treated with respect. Organization of American States headquarters in Washington, D.C. Larry Luxner/The Tico Times“The commission – one of the first entities created under the OAS charter – has a very important job to do. It is certainly not the role of the secretary-general to interfere with how they carry out their mission. Their independence is part of their value. If I were to get elected, my role would be to define the importance of these organizations and the binding human rights treaties they represent.”Stein has previously told reporters that his candidacy to lead the OAS has the backing of Costa Rica, Panama and El Salvador. Almagro, meanwhile, has received support from Brazil and Chile as well as from the Central American nation of Belize, whose ambassador to the United States, Nestor Mendez, hopes to become the next assistant secretary-general of the OAS. The man who currently occupies that post, Suriname’s Albert Ramdin, will be stepping down next June.Stein said the next secretary-general must “take a proactive role in defending democracy and human rights” while placing a greater emphasis on gender equality, science and technology education and the fight against corruption and organized crime.“The OAS has tried to reach out to the youth of our hemisphere, but maybe we need to step forward in a more vigorous way,” he said. “In the three countries with the gravest of citizen security problems – Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala – we also have very young populations. About 70 percent of the people in our three countries are below 30 years of age. Not all countries in the Americas are the same, but we do need to have a more coherent set of forward-looking objectives.”He added: “We should use the OAS as an instrument to set bold new objectives on improving the lives of our people, and making our region more competitive in the global economy. We also need a thorough review of our activities, so that the OAS concentrates its efforts on doing very well what others cannot do.”Recommended: US to grant refugee status to Central American child migrants Facebook Comments