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Brazil’s President Bolsonaro tests positive for coronavirus

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Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who has sought repeatedly to minimize the coronavirus as he urges the country back to work, has tested positive for covid-19, he told reporters on Tuesday.

Bolsonaro, who has been an outlier among world leaders in his skepticism of both the coronavirus and preventive measures intended to curb it, was tested Monday evening after developing symptoms that included a fever.

The result adds one more case to what has become the world’s second-worst coronavirus outbreak, after the United States. Brazil has reported more than 1.6 million cases and 65,000 deaths — both believed to be undercounts — an escalating disaster that scientists and health officials say has been exacerbated by Bolsonaro’s frequent dismissal of it.

Bolsonaro, 65, has described covid-19 as a “little cold,” repeatedly waded into crowds of supporters, threatened to host a large barbecue to spite health measures, and as recently as last week attended a Fourth of July party at the U.S. Embassy in Brasilia without wearing a mask. A Brazilian court last month ordered Bolsonaro to wear a mask while in public.

“In my particular case,” the former Army officer said in a national address in March, “with my history as an athlete, if I were infected by the virus, I wouldn’t need to worry. I wouldn’t feel anything or, if very affected, it would be like a little flu or little cold.”

Bolsonaro is at least the third world leader to test positive for covid-19. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was treated in intensive care in April; he has since recovered. Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernández was hospitalized last month. He announced last week he was leaving the hospital and resuming work.

Speaking outside the presidential palace Monday evening, Bolsonaro said he felt well. He’ll continue working in isolation, according to Brazilian media.

U.S. Ambassador Todd Chapman, who hosted Bolsonaro at the July 4 barbecue, said he will also be tested. Images shared on social media showed Bolsonaro and Chapman arm-in-arm at the event, without masks. Chapman said he has no symptoms.

Uncertainty over Bolsonaro’s coronavirus status has trailed him since almost the beginning of the pandemic. In March, his communication secretary tested positive for the virus after President Trump hosted Bolsonaro, the secretary and others at a dinner at Mar-a-Lago.

Bolsonaro said he had tested negative twice, but skepticism persisted as more than a dozen members of his presidential envoy tested positive for the virus. He refused to release his test results until he was ordered to do so by a court.

Late last month, he wondered aloud whether he did have coronavirus, and said he intended to take another test.

He has meanwhile urged Brazilians to disobey local orders to close businesses and self-isolate. He’s on his third health minister since the start of the pandemic. He fired the first after clashing over the need for social isolation. Then he pushed out the second, who had disagreed with Bolsonaro over liberally using the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine to treat virus patients.

Bolsonaro next installed a military man who isn’t a doctor. Bolsonaro said recently that the response to the virus had been exaggerated.

Without a coordinated federal strategy, the country has drifted. Governors and mayors have been left to make decisions on their own, often in conflict with Bolsonaro’s desire to keep the economy open. Responses didn’t vary only among states and cities, but neighborhood by neighborhood. The disorganization has abetted widespread contamination and left many Brazilians unsure of which officials to trust.

In recent weeks, cities have started to reopen. Scientists now fear that cases in the coming weeks will surge higher as bars, restaurants and other meeting places fill up once more.

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American journalist killed by Russian forces in Ukraine, police say

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 An American journalist was killed and another journalist was wounded by Russian forces in the town of Irpin outside the capital of Kyiv on Sunday, Ukrainian police said. 

Brent Renaud, a 50-year-old filmmaker, was killed when Russian troops opened fire, according to Andriy Nebytov, the head of Kyiv’s regional police force. Nebytov posted a graphic photo purportedly of Renaud’s body on Facebook, as well as pictures of his American passport and media credentials issued by The New York Times.

A spokeswoman for the Times said Renaud was “a talented filmmaker who had contributed to The New York Times over the years,” most recently in 2015, but he “was not on assignment for any desk at The Times in Ukraine.”

Nebytov wrote that Renaud “paid [with] his life for trying to highlight the aggressor’s ingenuity, cruelty and ruthlessness,” according to an automated translation of his Facebook post.

Renaud and his brother Craig Renaud have reported from a number of global hotspots over the past two decades, including Iraq, Afghanistan and Egypt, according to a biography on their website. The pair won a Peabody Award in 2015 for an eight-part documentary for Vice News about a school in Chicago for students with severe emotional issues.

White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan called reports of Renaud’s death “shocking and horrifying,” telling “Face the Nation” on Sunday that the U.S. and its allies would impose “appropriate consequences” against Russia for the killing.

“I will just say that this is part and parcel of what has been a brazen aggression on the part of the Russians where they have targeted civilians, they have targeted hospitals, they have targeted places of worship and they have targeted journalists,” Sullivan said.

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Singer Traci Braxton of ‘Braxton Family Values’ dies at 50

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Singer Traci Braxton, who was featured with her family in the reality television series “Braxton Family Values,” died at age 50 on Saturday.

Her sister, Toni, and family said that Braxton died “this morning as the snow was falling.” According to reports, Traci Braxton had been fighting esophageal cancer.

“Needless to say, she was a bright light, a wonderful daughter, an amazing sister, a loving mother, wife, grandmother and a respected performer,” the family said. “We will miss her dearly.”

“Braxton Family Values” aired for seven seasons starting in 2011 on WeTV. It focused on the lives of sisters Toni, Traci, Tamar, Trina and Towanda and their extended families.

Traci was an actress and singer who released albums in 2014 and 2018, with the singles “Last Call” and “Broken Things” her best-known songs.

She spent much of her time doing social work for children with disabilities, according to her website.

She was married to Kevin Surratt, with whom she appeared on the TV series “Marriage Boot Camp.”

Their son, Kevin Surratt Jr., said on Instagram Saturday that his mother fought to the end.

“I love my mother forever and this hurts so much but I’m at peace knowing she’s not in pain anymore,” he said.

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Boxer Gervonta Davis Involved in Minor Plane Crash, Documents Aftermath

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Gervonta Davis just, miraculously, walked away from a plane crash relatively unscathed — and it sounds like what’s hurting him the most in the aftermath are his feet … and his caboose.

The professional boxer went live Saturday to document a terrifying encounter he says he and his crew had just gone through after boarding a private jet … which apparently failed to properly take off and crash landed back down to the airport grounds it was trying to leave.

Thankfully, it doesn’t appear the aircraft got very far up before coming back down to Earth — because Gervonta and other passengers seemed more or less okay … with their health and bodies intact.

That’s not to say Gervonta wasn’t feeling some hurt afterwards — on his live feed, he noted that his booty was aching like no other … this while he wrapped his feet in gauze. He’s pretty jovial about the whole thing, which is great to see, but this could’ve easily been way worse.

Gervonta also was able to get some shots of the downed plane, and it sure looks like something went wrong internally. There were also fire engines that showed up on the scene to evaluate the damage and tend to anyone’s injuries. Again, though, most everyone seems to be fine … which is absolutely incredible, because it appears there were even children aboard, based on a photo Gervonta posted shortly before getting on his flight. His video doesn’t capture any kids, though.

It’s unclear what exactly caused the malfunction — but you can hear Gervonta and his friends speculate on what happened … seems like there might’ve been some overheating of some sort. They also appear to be discussing some of the flight maneuvers the pilot(s) were using in the air … and the group seems to think that may have attributed to it going down.

Stay tuned while we here at Prestige try to get a hold of Gervonta’s team for more answers.

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