Tag: Ezra

October 4, 2019

EU adopts new economic sanctions against Russia but delays implementation to asses

AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email EU adopts new economic sanctions against Russia, but delays implementation to asses cease-fire by Juergen Baetz, The Associated Press Posted Sep 8, 2014 2:13 pm MDT BRUSSELS – The European Union on Monday shied away from slapping new economic sanctions on Russia right away over its actions in eastern Ukraine. Instead, the 28-nation bloc said the punitive measures will come into force “in the next few days” depending on how well the cease-fire agreement in eastern Ukraine will be upheld.European Council President Herman Van Rompuy said in a statement delaying the sanctions would leave time for “an assessment of the implementation of the cease-fire agreement and the peace plan.”“Depending on the situation on the ground, the EU stands ready to review the agreed sanctions in whole or in part,” Van Rompuy said.Ukraine, Russia and the Kremlin-backed separatists agreed Friday to an immediate cease-fire and an exchange of prisoners. While the truce appeared to hold on Monday, the agreement seemed fragile over the weekend when occasional fighting occurred.The EU sanctions are expected to be co-ordinated with a new round of U.S. sanctions, a Western diplomat said. The U.S. sanctions are ready for release, the diplomat said, but the Obama administration wants to wait to act in concert with Europe in order to maximize the impact of the sanctions and present a united front against Russia.President Barack Obama and some European leaders have said that given their skepticism about the cease-fire, it was imperative to press forward with sanctions now. But they have said the penalties could be lifted if tensions between Ukraine and Russia ease.The new round of Western sanctions are expected to deepen earlier penalties targeting Russia’s energy and arms sectors. The penalties are also expected to tighten access to international loans, with the current ban on credits and loans of more than 90 days reduced to 30 days.More individuals, including Russian government officials and people close to Russian President Vladimir Putin, are also expected to be sanctioned, according to the diplomat, who insisted on anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the details of the sanctions before they were formally announced.A summit of EU leaders about 10 days ago called for the new sanctions to be finalized, but action was first delayed late last week as the cease-fire took shape. Earlier Monday, EU officials still insisted the sanctions would be decided by day’s end and take effect Tuesday. But another emergency meeting of the 28 nation’s ambassadors in Brussels then opted for another delay. Decisions on sanctions in the EU require unanimity.Brussels has been more reluctant than Washington to sanction Russia because of its broad economic ties. Moscow is an important gas supplier for many EU nations and it is the bloc’s third-largest trading partner overall. The EU’s sanctions, however, have more impact than those imposed by the U.S. since the EU is Russia’s largest trading partner by far.___Associated Press writer Julie Pace in Washington contributed to this report.___Follow Juergen Baetz on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/jbaetz read more

September 25, 2019

Mindfulness could help to stave off dementia research suggests

The findings back up recent evidence pointing to a link between anxiety and risk of mild cognitive impairment, and lend weight to the known association between depression and dementia, they say.Researchers said more research was needed to establish whether reduced anxiety in middle age could reduce the risk of dementia.But they said approaches other than anti-anxiety drugs were worth exploring/“Non-pharmacological therapies, including talking therapies and mindfulness-based interventions and meditation practices, that are known to reduce anxiety in midlife, could have a risk reducing effect, although this is yet to be thoroughly researched,” they said. “Given the high prevalence of anxiety seen in primary care, we suggest that general practitioners could consider anxiety alongside depression as an indicator of risk for dementia.”To improve the rate of earlier diagnosis of dementia, close monitoring of subtle cognitive decline in older adults with a history of anxiety, depression and cerebrovascular disease would be encouraged,” she said.Last year a trial suggested mindfulness – a meditative practice of paying more attention to the present moment, is more than twice as better at reducing stress than gardeningThe practice – which can involve deep breathing, has been growing in popularity in recent years, with the NHS recommending it as a way to reduce stress and anxiety.The eight week trial by the BBC and the University of Westminster showed it was better than gardening and yoga at helping people to relax. US scientists recently found that an eight week course of mindfulness, involving daily classes, can help lower inflammatory molecules and stress hormones by around 15 per cent. Mindfulness and meditation could stave off dementia, research suggests. Analysis of research involving 30,000 people found that those who suffered moderate to severe anxiety in mid-life were more likely to develop dementia years later.Researchers said responses to stress may speed up brain cell ageing and degenerative changes in the central nervous system, increasing vulnerability to conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease.And they said therapies such as mindfulness and meditation, which have been found to reduce anxiety, might reduce the risk of later dementia.Researchers from University College London examined studies looking at the association between mid-life anxiety, depression, and the development of dementia.The findings, published in BMJ Open, found an association between moderate to severe anxiety and future dementia, with a gap of at least 10 years in between diagnoses. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Study author Dr Natalie Marchant, from UCL’s division of psychiatry, said: “Clinically significant anxiety in midlife was associated with an increased risk of dementia over an interval of at least 10 years.”These findings indicate that anxiety may be a risk factor for late-life dementia”.GPs should monitor patients suffering from anxiety in case of heightened risks, she suggested. read more