TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran’s foreign ministry says the sailors from a South Korean tanker seized in the Persian Gulf by Iranian troops last month are free to leave the country on humanitarian grounds. State TV on Tuesday cited ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh, who said a legal investigation into the tanker and its captain would continue. Iran maintains the tanker and its 20-member crew were stopped because of the vessel’s “environmental pollution,” a claim rejected by the vessel’s owner. The crew, including sailors from Indonesia, Myanmar, South Korea and Vietnam, were in custody at the port city of Bandar Abbas near the Strait of Hormuz.
MANILA – It is government officials and not medical frontliners that Sen. Cynthia Villar was referring to in her earlier statement about “working harder.” The senator over the weekend rejected the appeal of health workers to enforce stricter quarantine measures against the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic. Villar made the clarification on Sunday after drawing flak from netizens for dismissing calls from the medical community to revert Metro Manila to enhanced community quarantine (ECQ). “We have to work harder and better, but I am not referring in particular to the medical workers—our frontliners. We are referring to all of us and DOH (Department of Health) and Philhealth (Philippine Health Insurance Corp.) in particular,” Villar said. Villar also said that she recognized the sacrifices that medical front liners had to make in order to respond to the COVID-19 cases in the country. In her radio interview on Saturday, Villar said: “Hindi na siguro (dapat ibalik sa ECQ ang Metro Manila). Pagbutihin nila trabaho nila. Hindi puwedeng isara ang ekonomiya kasi kung ‘di naman mamamatay sa COVID, mamamatay naman sa gutom ang tao.” “The Task Force and the LGUs will have to work harder in trying to trace and manage movements of people and businesses to prevent more infections, and at the same time, be mindful of the people’s desire to earn a living,” she added. “We in Congress have just passed the Bayanihan package 2, after intense debates, to provide health and financial support to the people. The government’s economic team will have to work harder to raise the money to fund the package,” she said. Villar clarified that her statement was not aimed at medical front liners but at government officials, including her. “There is so much room for improvement in the government’s response to curb the transmission of the disease,” she added. “We all want to be safe and COVID-free. All of us are doing a difficult balancing act to keep people safe and alive. We all need to keep our jobs, the economy, to do our respective roles to sustain this. All of us have to work harder and better,” she further said./PN
The Ireland team for tomorrow’s crunch Women’s Rugby World Cup Pool match against France is due to be named shortly.Coach Tom Tierney is said to have a fully fit squad to choose from.He rotated his team for the hard fought win over Japan, making seven changes from the side that overcame Australia in their opening game. © Womens Rugby