Besiktas hold to 1-1 draw in Turkey’s Super Lig

Besiktas drew 1-1 against Kasimpasa on Friday in a Spor Toto Super Lig match, according to Anadolu Agency.

It was an upsetting result for last season’s Turkish champions.

The Black Eagles took the lead in the 12th minute at Recep Tayyip Erdogan Stadium in Istanbul when Can Bozdogan fired a classy left-footed strike outside the penalty area to draw first blood.

Kasimpasa forward Umut Bozok scored the equalizer in the 82nd minute, making a close range finish after Eren Elmali’s low cross from left.

Besiktas has underperformed in their last five league matches, with four losses and a draw.

The Black Eagles last won when they beat archrivals Galatasaray 2-1 at Vodafone Park on Oct. 25.

Besiktas then lost to Atakas Hatayspor, Trabzonspor, Aytemiz Alanyaspor and GZT Giresunspor, respectively.

They are in the ninth position with 21 points in 15 league matches.

Kasimpasa have 11 points and are in the relegation zone.

 

Source: Azerbaijan State News Agency

Manchester United defeat Arsenal as Ronaldo passes 800-goal mark

Manchester United beat Arsenal 3-2 Thursday in an English Premier League week 14 match, according to Anadolu Agency.

Arsenal took the lead early as Emile Smith Rowe scored while United goalie David De Gea lay injured in the 13th minute at Old Trafford.

Before the end of the first half, Portuguese midfielder Bruno Fernandes equalized the score in the 44th minute.

Manchester United started the second half fast as Portuguese superstar Cristiano Ronaldo scored the 800th goal of his career and gave his team the lead in the 52nd minute.

Norwegian midfielder Martin Odegaard responded in kind quickly for Arsenal as he scored just two minutes later.

Ronaldo took the stage again as he scored from the penalty shot given to the Red Devils in the 70th minute and the match ended 3-2.

Manchester United’s first win in its last four matches moved them up to seventh place in the Premier League table with 21 points while Arsenal remained fifth with 23 points.

Thursday’s results are as follows:

Tottenham-Brentford: 2-0

Manchester United-Arsenal: 3-2

 

Source: Azerbaijan State News Agency

China: Omicron and Africa

The latest variant of coronavirus Omicron has rattled the world, especially the Africa and the Europe continents. Panic triggered around the globe and consequently, countries across the world scrambled to impose border and travel curbs after the new omicron variant emerged.

Ironically, in China, it was business as usual. Even G7 Foreign Ministers stressed the need to have concrete and comprehensive measures to combat the new variant Omicron.

Till today, the World Health Organization (WHO) has confirmed that more than 20 countries have been infected and consequently 30 countries have closed their borders.

Most of the so-called modern countries have banned flights and travellers from South Africa and many other African countries and thus started another blame game and sort of rebirth of brutal westernized vaccine nationalism.

Most of the global health organizations have declared it most deadly and infectious virus which can produce havoc to humans around the globe, especially in South African countries.

Although the WHO has called for countries to keep calm and take rational measures in response to the new coronavirus strain, Omicron. But still momentum of panic and inability of capacity building has terrified most of the Western countries.

There has been panic among the most of the European Union countries in which the UK, Netherland, France and Belgium have so far confirmed patients of Omicron.

Even the United States of America has confirmed patients of Omicron in California. But mere news of the variant has once again plunged the US into a panic mode. Consequently, it crashed its stocks exchanges, commodity and oil markets.

Ultimately, US President, Joe Biden, sought to reassure markets saying the new variant was a cause for concern but not a cause for panic.

Unfortunately, Omicron has multiplier socio-economic, geopolitical and geostrategic consequences.

The emergence of the highly mutated form of the virus has once again revalidated the Chinese COVID Zero Strategy.

Right from the beginning, China has prioritized weeding out every last infection, upholding that the health of the population is its main priority and economic benefits will follow.

In this time of anxiety, global uncertainty and western manufactured black & white division due to which African countries are now contending with the devastating fallout of the newly discovered variant Omicron.

In this regard, the People’s Republic of China stood first and disseminated the message of hope among the most marginalized countries, communities and people of Africa.

While delivering a keynote speech via video at the eighth triennial Forum on China-Africa Cooperation in the Senegalese city of Diamniadio, Chinese President Xi Jiping pledged to supply another one billion doses of vaccines to African countries, as the world’s poorest continent struggles with the emergence of a new and potentially more transmissible Covid-19 variant.

In this connection, Chinese President Xi shared that 600 million doses will be donated while the rest will be jointly manufactured by Chinese enterprises and African countries.

He stressed the need to put people and their life first, be guided by science, support waiving intellectual property rights on COVID-19 vaccines, and truly ensure the accessibility and affordability of vaccines in Africa to bridge the immunization gap.

On its part, China has already sold 136 million vaccine doses to Africa and pledged 19 million in donation. Beijing has delivered 107 million of those doses and another 11.6 million through the Covax initiative.

In addition to this, Chinese President Xi assured financial support of $10 billion to African financial institutions, a $10 billion credit line and encouraging its firms to invest at least $10 billion in the continent in the next three years.

It will also provide $10 billion in trade financing to support African exports to China rising to $300 billion over three years.

Furthermore, Xi’s speech focused on the most immediate concern for the continent, namely the shortage of vaccines to combat the pandemic, especially in the light of the new variant.

Since 2006, China had doubled its investment pledge to Africa every three years at the FOCAC summit, Beijing’s main vehicle for managing its relationship with the continent. All the African countries considered their relations with China time tested.

Beijing has emerged in the past decade as the world’s largest non-commercial international creditor, with its state-owned policy banks lending more to developing countries than the IMF and World Bank.

Despite western propaganda, its lending has been subject to international scrutiny which has intensified as the pandemic caused dozens of countries to suspend debt repayments.

On the contrary, Africa has always been near the bottom of the U.S. foreign-relations priority list, with the world’s poorest continent accounting for less than two percent of its total two-way trade.

Relations reached low ebb during President Donald Trump’s tenure, during which he made disparaging remarks about African countries and high-level diplomatic engagements were few and far between.

Even Foreign Minister of China, Wang Yi, assured African countries his country unconditional support in the time of crises.

In this context, Chinese Foreign Ministry is confident that next February’s Winter Olympics will go ahead smoothly and successfully despite the growing challenges posed by the new Omicron coronavirus variant.

Relying on snap lockdowns and a rapid vaccination rollout, China has largely managed to control its COVID-19 situation, with official figures placing the country’s total cases since December 2019 at 98,672, including 4,636 deaths.

As Beijing gears up to host the 2022 Winter Olympics from February 4 to 20, the world is bracing for a new wave of the pandemic after the emergence of the Omicron strain which, the WHO has said, carries a very high risk of infection.

Zhao Lijian, a spokesperson for China’s Foreign Ministry clarified that although “Omicron will bring challenges to the COVID-19 prevention work at the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics, yet China has experience in dealing with the coronavirus and is confident that the event will proceed smoothly and successfully.

Xu Wenbo, an official from China’s Center for Disease Control and Prevention, said the country’s existing COVID-19 response strategy “should be sufficient for tackling the new Omicron variant.

He assured that Chinese vaccines remain effective against the new mutated variant, but to better cope with this new variant, China has made technological reserve preparations in vaccine development.”

Data from the National Health Commission shows more than 1.1 billion people in China have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, with over 2.49 billion doses administered in the country to date.

On its part, Pakistan government has already taken all possible preventive measures against the emergence of Omicron further underlined the importance of nationwide vigorous vaccination drive and adherence to basic preventative measures of wearing masks and maintaining social distance to fight against Omicron that the WHO named a “variant of concern.”

 

Source: Azerbaijan State News Agency

No deaths related to omicron variant of coronavirus seen so far, says WHO

A World Health Organization spokesman said Friday the health body has not seen reports of deaths related to the new omicron variant of coronavirus and stressed that delta remains the focus of the fight against the pandemic, according to Anadolu Agency.

At a UN news conference, WHO spokesman Christian Lindmeier told journalists that the health organization is still collecting evidence on the new variant that was tracked down in southern Africa on Nov. 11 and named as omicron about a week ago.

“We have not seen reports of omicron-related deaths yet,” said Lindmeier.

“Let’s also not forget that the predominant variant right now still remains the delta variant. Omicron may be on the rise, and we may come to a point where it takes over as the dominant variant.”

The WHO spokesman said the world needs to protect itself against the delta variant.

Since COVID-19 was first discovered nearly two years ago, the WHO has confirmed nearly 263 million cases and over 5.22 million fatalities globally.

“The more countries keep looking into and keep testing people and looking into specifically the omicron variant, we will also find more cases and more information, and hopefully not, but also possibly deaths,” said Lindmeier.

After the omicron variant was tracked down in Botswana and South Africa, some countries in Europe and North American last week put severe travel restrictions on counties in the southern African region and even banned flights.

These measures drew top officials’ condemnation at the UN, WHO, international travel bodies, and workers’ associations.

“Instead of looking at closing borders, restrictions, and so on, it is much more preferable to prepare your country, your health system for possible incoming cases,” said Lindmeier.

“We can be pretty sure that this omicron variant will spread. Delta also started somewhere. And now we have it as a predominant variant in over 90% of the world.”

He said that due to the behavior of the omicron variant, “we will not be able, most likely, to keep it out of individual countries.”

 

Source: Azerbaijan State News Agency

To His Excellency Maha Vajiralongkorn Bodindradebayavarangkun, King of Thailand

Your Majesty,

I convey my most heartfelt congratulations to you and through you, to your entire people on my own behalf and on behalf of the people of Azerbaijan on the occasion of the National Holiday of the Kingdom of Thailand.

I believe that the bilateral relations between our countries will develop further in the spirit of friendship as our ties will broaden within international institutions, including the Non-Aligned Movement.

On this remarkable day, I wish you strong health, happiness, success in your activities, and everlasting peace and prosperity to the friendly people of the Kingdom of Thailand.

Sincerely,

Ilham Aliyev

President of the Republic of Azerbaijan

 

Source: Azerbaijan State News Agency

Azerbaijan’s Defense Ministry: Tactical exercises held in commando military unit

According to the combat training plan for 2021, live-fire tactical exercises were held in the Land Forces Operations Commando military unit, Azerbaijan’s Defense Ministry told AZERTAC.

“The military personnel left the points of permanent deployment on alert and moved to the assembly area.

In accordance with the scenario of the exercises, on the basis of introductory the personnel passing from the movement directly to the battle layout took their firing positions and carried out shots from small arms and grenade launchers.

The main objective of the exercises is to further improve the skills of the personnel in the use of small arms as well as combat skills of Operations (Commando) units, as well as to improve the management skills of command staff.

All the tasks assigned during the exercises were successfully accomplished,” the ministry said.

 

Source: Azerbaijan State News Agency