Israel approves first new settler homes since suspending annexation

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israel approved more than 1,300 new settler homes in the occupied West Bank on Wednesday in the first such go-ahead since it suspended annexation plans in the territory.



a view of a city with tall buildings in the background: FILE PHOTO: A general view shows part of the Jewish settlement of Beit El in the forground near Ramallah in the Israeli-occupied West Bank


© Reuters/Amir Cohen
FILE PHOTO: A general view shows part of the Jewish settlement of Beit El in the forground near Ramallah in the Israeli-occupied West Bank

The decision drew an angry response from Palestinians, who seek to establish a state in the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem.

“We urge the international community to intervene immediately to stop this settlement madness, which destroys any chance for a genuine peace process,” said Nabil Abu Rudeineh, a spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

The construction could help mute criticism of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu from settler leaders, who are traditional allies.

They had bristled at the annexation suspension that helped pave the way for last month’s deals to forge diplomatic

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English councils told to set up hundreds of Covid-dedicated care homes

Hundreds of dedicated Covid-positive care homes are to be set up in an effort to keep patients discharged from hospitals from spreading the virus more widely, as happened in the first wave of the pandemic.



a man standing in front of a building: Photograph: Simon Rawles/Alamy Stock Photo


© Provided by The Guardian
Photograph: Simon Rawles/Alamy Stock Photo

The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has instructed councils to identify homes in their areas that could be used and to have them checked by inspectors to assure infection prevention controls are in place. As many as 500 facilities – sometimes known as “hot homes” – could be designated by the end of November, the equivalent of one or two in each council area.

But one leading care home boss said many in the sector had been “blindsided” by the demand and Care England, which represents the largest chains, said participation depended on the government providing more detail about funding, the safety of

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Infection Control Problems Persist in Nursing Homes During COVID


The new analysis draws on self-reported data from nursing homes collected by the federal government over four weeks from late August to late September. While some states fared much worse than others, all 50 states and the District of Columbia had one or more nursing homes that reported inadequate PPE supply, staff shortages, staff infections and resident cases. Forty-seven states reported at least one COVID-19 death among residents.

The analysis found that more than 28,000 residents tested positive for COVID-19 during the four-week reporting period, and more than 5,200 residents died, showing that the virus is still raging in nursing homes. More than 84,000 long-term care residents and staff have died since January, and more than 500,000 residents and staff have contracted the disease, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation’s tally, accounting for roughly 40 percent of the national death toll. Long-term care providers include assisted living, adult day care

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Israel Approves First New Settler Homes Since Suspending Annexation | World News

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israel approved more than 1,300 new settler homes in the occupied West Bank on Wednesday in the first such go-ahead since it suspended annexation plans in the territory.

The decision drew an angry response from Palestinians, who seek to establish a state in the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem.

“We urge the international community to intervene immediately to stop this settlement madness, which destroys any chance for a genuine peace process,” said Nabil Abu Rudeineh, a spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

The construction could help mute criticism of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu from settler leaders, who are traditional allies.

They had bristled at the annexation suspension that helped pave the way for last month’s deals to forge diplomatic ties between Israel and the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.

Israel’s West Bank Civil Administration planning committee gave final approval for building 1,313 housing units in several

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Developer Mehrdad Moayedi buys land for homes at Rowlett’s Bayside project

A North Texas developer known for some of the region’s biggest projects has bought sections of the Bayside development on Lake Ray Hubbard.

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Mehrdad Moayedi’s Centurion American Development Group purchased land in the Rowlett project on Interstate-30 for two residential projects.

In the works for more than five years, the 262-acre mixed-use development on the lake was originally planned to include everything from high-rise hotels to apartments and single-family homes.

The centerpiece of the $1 billion project was an 8-acore Crystal Lagoon waterpark to be built on the shore of Lake Ray Hubbard.

But after changes in ownership, Bayside has so far not met those ambitious plans. Parts of the project have been rechristened Sapphire Bay by the City of Rowlett.

Centurion American Development has purchased four acres in two tracts across the freeway from where the Crystal Lagoon is being built.

“This is on the north side

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Wildfire safety blackouts in California by PG&E could leave homes without power till Friday

A return of bone-dry humidity and gusty winds Wednesday in Northern Calfornia during the peak of wildfire season is expected to result in power outages for tens of thousands of customers that could last until Friday.

The nation’s largest utility, Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E), warned it may begin power shutoffs by Wednesday evening to as many as 54,000 customers in 24 counties.

“We really view it as a last resort option,” Mark Quinlan, the company’s incident commander, said at a briefing on Tuesday.

POWER OUTAGES IN NORTHERN CALIFORNIA MAY IMPACT 50,000 PG&E CUSTOMERS IN SAFETY SHUTOFFS

Wind gusts possibly hitting 55 mph have spurred the National Weather Service (NWS) to issue a red-flag warning from 5 a.m. Wednesday through Friday morning.

While PG&E said it will make a final decision sometime on Wednesday

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$1,325,000 Homes for Sale in Connecticut, California and South Carolina

One might have thought the most interesting thing about this house in southeastern Connecticut was that it belongs to Chris Elliott, the actor, comedian and writer, and his wife, Paula Niedert. But just as compelling is the identity of a previous owner: a local celebrity named Elizabeth Tashjian, better known as the Nut Lady. In 1972, Ms. Tashjian, an artist who inherited the property from her father, turned it into a cult attraction called the Nut Museum, ultimately charging three dollars and one nut as an entrance fee.

The Elliotts bought the house from a subsequent owner in 2008. Although it had been fixed up and endowed with central air-conditioning, they polished it, bringing in vintage and period-style fixtures, moldings and glass, and recreating a Victorian

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Israel approves first West Bank settler homes since Gulf deals

Israel approved 2,166 new homes in settlements across the occupied West Bank on Wednesday, official figures sent to AFP showed, ending an eight-month lull in settlement expansion. 

The approvals came less than a month after the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain signed agreements to normalise relations with Israel, which in return pledged to freeze its plans to annex swathes of the West Bank.

NGO Peace Now said the settlement uptick signals Israel’s rejection of Palestinian statehood and deals a blow to hopes of a wider Israeli-Arab peace.

It said that around 2,000 more homes are expected to be approved on Thursday.

“Netanyahu is moving ahead at full steam toward solidifying the de facto annexation of the West Bank,” it said in a statement ahead of Wednesday’s decisions.

US President Donald Trump sees the Gulf accords as part of his broader initiative for Middle East peace.

But a controversial plan he

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Some states raising doubts about federal tests sent to nursing homes

Several states have curtailed using coronavirus testing equipment in nursing homes that was provided by the Trump Administration after concerns were raised about the results, including false positives that risk mistakenly sending vulnerable seniors into special COVID isolation wings that could ultimately expose them to the virus.



a plastic bag: A medical center worker holds an antibody tests kit in White Plains, N.Y., April 29, 2020.


© View Press/Corbis via Getty Images, FILE
A medical center worker holds an antibody tests kit in White Plains, N.Y., April 29, 2020.

Since July, the administration had been rushing out the machines from manufacturers Becton, Dickinson and Company and Quidel to more than 14,000 facilities around the country in an attempt to identify outbreaks faster and stem the tide of the virus, which has taken a particular toll on the elderly, especially those in nursing homes and other assisted living facilities.

“We have a real crisis around testing,” said Dr. Michael Osterholm, an epidemiologist and director of the Center for Infectious

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Some states raising doubts about federal tests sent to nursing homes, citing shaky reliability

Several states have curtailed using coronavirus testing equipment in nursing homes that was provided by the Trump Administration after concerns were raised about the results, including false positives that risk mistakenly sending vulnerable seniors into special COVID isolation wings that could ultimately expose them to the virus.

Since July, the administration had been rushing out the machines from manufacturers Becton, Dickinson and Company and Quidel to more than 14,000 facilities around the country in an attempt to identify outbreaks faster and stem the tide of the virus, which has taken a particular toll on the elderly, especially those in nursing homes and other assisted living facilities.

“We have a real crisis around testing,” said Dr. Michael Osterholm, an epidemiologist and director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota. “We don’t have the capacity to supply every facility with … the more reliable and

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