Cavaliers Owner Dan Gilbert Released from Hospital After Suffering Stroke

FILE - In this Nov. 1, 2018, file photo, Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert speaks during a news conference in Cleveland about the 2022 NBA All -Star game. Gilbert remains hospitalized while recovering from a stroke suffered last month. Quicken Loans CEO Jay Farner said in a statement Wednesday night, June 5, that Gilbert’s family reported he “maintains his strong sense of humor and focus on constant improvement.” (AP Photo/Tony Dejak, File)

Tony Dejak/Associated Press

Cleveland Cavaliers team owner Dan Gilbert has been released from the hospital after recovering from a stroke he suffered May 26, according to

“Dan is looking forward to beginning an intensive rehabilitation program and is eager to continue the progress he has made over the last several weeks,” Quicken Loans CEO Jay Farner said in a statement.

Gilbert, who was discharged Wednesday, will undergo his rehabilitation at an an in-patient center. 

The 57-year-old purchased the Cavaliers in 2005, and under his watch, the organization won the NBA title in 2016 and reached the Finals five times.

He also infamously wrote an incendiary open letter to the city of Cleveland and Ohio in general after LeBron James left for the Miami Heat in 2010, calling James’ televised announcement a “several day, narcissistic, self-promotional build-up culminating with a national TV special of his ‘decision’ unlike anything ever ‘witnessed’ in the history of sports and probably the history of entertainment.”

Gilbert also guaranteed that the Cavaliers would win a title before James won one with Miami, though James and the Heat won titles in 2012 and 2013.

But the two patched things up before LeBron’s return in 2014, and James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love led the organization to its first title two years later.

James left again last summer, and the Cavaliers have undergone a rebuild around young point guard Collin Sexton. Love remains on the team, though he’s a potential trade candidate for the young Cavaliers, who also hold the No. 5 pick in Thursday’s NBA draft. 

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Trump: ‘Iran made a very big mistake!’

Remotely piloted aircraft

An MQ-1B Predator remotely piloted aircraft flies past a MQ-9 Reaper RPA as it taxis during a training mission at Creech Air Force Base in Indian Springs, Nevada. | Isaac Brekken/Getty Images



President Donald Trump warned Thursday that Iran “made a very big mistake” after the Islamic Republic claimed responsibility for shooting down an American drone, further ratcheting up a week of heightened tensions between Washington and Tehran.

Iran’s Revolutionary Guard said it destroyed the drone because it violated Iranian airspace, while the U.S. military’s Central Command asserted that the unmanned aircraft was taken down in “an unprovoked attack” over international airspace above the Strait of Hormuz.

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“We do not have any intention for war with any country, but we are fully ready for war,” Gen. Hossein Salami, the Guard’s commander, said in a televised address, according to the AP.

Hours later, Trump weighed in online, tweeting: “Iran made a very big mistake!”

The strike follows explosions on two oil tankers last week in the Gulf of Oman, which the Trump administration has blamed Tehran for perpetrating. A U.S. Navy official said Wednesday that a limpet mine used in the attack on one of the tankers, the Japanese-owned Kokuka Courageous, bore a striking resemblance to similar Iranian explosive devices, according to the AP.

Iranian Defense Minister Amir Hatami insisted Wednesday that Tehran was not behind the tanker assaults, declaring that “the accusation against Iran is totally a lie and I dismiss it firmly,” according to the semi-official Fars news agency and the AP.

The Pentagon on Monday announced the deployment of 1,000 additional troops to the Middle East “for defensive purposes to address air, naval, and ground-based threats” in the region, acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said in a statement.

But Ali Shamkhani, the secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, insisted Wednesday that “there will not be a military confrontation” between his country and the U.S., while Secretary of State Mike Pompeo tweeted later in the day that Trump “does not want war” with the Islamic Republic.

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Video: Hope Solo Previews USA’s Women’s World Cup Group-Stage Finale vs. Sweden

Former United States women’s national soccer team goalkeeper Hope Solo breaks down Team USA’s first real test of the World Cup versus Sweden, set for Thursday at 3 p.m. ET.

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All about the mysterious ‘brain fever’ killing children in India

More than 110 children in India, mostly from poor rural families, have died this month from encephalitis, a type of brain disease that has afflicted the eastern state of Bihar for more than two decades.

Health experts have long been dumbfounded by the cause of the encephalitis outbreak, commonly known as brain fever, in Bihar’s Muzaffarpur district.

Recent studies have suggested that natural toxins in lychees could harm undernourished children by blocking their ability to produce enough blood sugar, which can lead to death.

The link to the fruit, however, is inconclusive, said Alok Ghosh, the Muzaffarpur district magistrate, who said that in about half of the more than 400 known cases of encephalitis, the children had not consumed lychees.

Three medical sources at the Sri Krishna Medical College and Hospital, where some 95 patients have died, said they thought serious dehydration was likely to blame.

What is encephalitis?

Encephalitis is an inflammation of the brain, caused by any one of a number of viruses.

Early symptoms can be similar to those of flu, with patients suffering from high temperatures or headaches. But symptoms can worsen within hours, and can include serious complications like seizures, paralysis and coma.

In Bihar, children were typically taken to hospital with fevers.

How could lychees cause sickness?

Researchers who conducted a study of 390 children who fell sick in 2014 in Muzaffarpur said that lychees contained hypoglycin A, an amino acid that can disrupt metabolism, lowering blood sugar levels. That can trigger hypoglycaemia, and in extreme cases, death.

The study by India’s National Centre for Disease Control and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, added that when the brain lacks glucose, it turns to other sources of energy, which are rapidly depleted, eventually pushing people into coma.

“The synergistic combination of (lychee) consumption, a missed evening meal, and other potential factors such as poor nutritional status, eating a greater number of litchis, and as yet unidentified genetic differences might be needed to produce this illness,” the researchers said in their study, which was published in the Lancet in 2017.

Retired virologist T. Jacob John also raised the possibility that encephalitis cases in Muzaffarpur could be associated with lychees in a 2014 study published by Indian science journal Current Science. Muzaffarpur is a major hub for growing lychees, which ripen at this time of year.

Any other hypothesis?

Doctors and officials are testing children for a variety of conditions and many are divided on the cause of the disease.

But dehydration as a heat wave sweeps India could be to blame, according to medical staff in Muzaffarpur.

“In my observation it is nothing but an epidemic of heat stroke,” Gopal Shankar Sahni, the head of the Sri Krishna Medical College and Hospital’s paediatric department, was quoted as saying by Reuters news agency.

Still, another doctor visiting Muzaffarpur from India’s financial capital of Mumbai said eating lychees could exacerbate dehydration symptoms.

“The child is hypoglycaemic and if they eat them it gets worse,” said Ravikant Singh.

How are authorities reacting?

Officials are scrambling to contain the outbreak, but victims’ relatives say poor hospital facilities have allowed the death toll to balloon.

Two lawyers have filed a petition to the Supreme Court criticising government “inaction”, citing an inadequate number of doctors and hospital beds, according to a report by Reuters partner ANI.

District magistrate Ghosh told Reuters officials were running door-to-door awareness campaigns in villages by asking people to stay clean and hydrated. Other officials are ensuring children get sweets at breakfast to maintain glucose levels.

Health Minister Harsh Vardhan has sent special teams of paediatricians and paramedics to Bihar, and also made 10 ambulances available.

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What we know about the suspects in the downing of MH17


June 20, 2019 20:34:55

Investigators have identified four men they say were involved in the downing of flight MH17.

The Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 was travelling over territory in eastern Ukraine held by pro-Russia separatists in July 2014 when it was shot down by a BUK surface-to-air missile.

The Joint Investigations Team and a report by Bellingcat have now identified three Russians — Igor Girkin, Sergei Dubinsky and Oleg Poelatov — and Ukrainian Leonid Kharchenko as suspects.

They will be prosecuted by Dutch authorities in March next year.

Here’s a snapshot of what we know about them.

Igor Girkin

Call sign: Strelok

Also know as Igor Strelkov, in 2014 he was in charge of the bulk of the separatist forces known as the Donetsk People’s Republic (DNR).

He is believed to be the only person with BUK vehicles under his command and had been given 3,000 – 3,500 assault rifles that had been sent from Russia.

A recorded conversation suggests he was aware of the removal of the BUK missile launcher from separatist territory after MH17 was shot down.

Sergei Dubinsky

Call sign: Khmury

A former Russian military intelligence officer, Mr Girkin’s deputy and another leader of separatist forces, Mr Dubinsky headed the DNR’s intelligence arm.

He is thought to have been central to arranging for the BUK launcher to be taken the site where the missile was fired at MH17, but he was not there when it was launched.

He is now living in Russia and is thought to be unlikely to face justice.

Oleg Poelatov

Call sign: Gyurza, Khalif

A veteran of the Afghan and Chechen wars and a Russian citizen, he held the rank of lieutenant colonel in the Russian Armed Forces.

He was the head of reconnaissance and special operations in Mr Dubinsky’s intelligence division.

He arrived at the MH17 crash site soon after the plane went down and claims to have found the aircraft’s black box and removed it to take to authorities.

Leonid Kharchenko

Call sign: Krot

Kharchenko was involved in the separatist movement early on and led the militia in his hometown of Kostyantynivka, in eastern Ukraine.

A subordinate of Poelatov and Dubinsky, he is believed to have been involved in sending the BUK launcher to Russia.










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Modi to Khan: Trust key to boosting India-Pakistan relations

Islamabad, Pakistan – Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has told his Pakistani counterpart that while India desires normalised relations with its western neighbour, this would require “an environment of trust, free of terror, violence and hostility”.

Modi, a right-wing nationalist who was re-elected with an overwhelming majority last month, wrote a letter responding to a congratulatory message by Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, the Indian foreign ministry said in a statement on Thursday.

“As per the established diplomatic practice, PM and [Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar] have responded to the congratulatory messages received from their counterparts in Pakistan,” Raveesh Kumar, spokesman for India’s foreign ministry, said.

“In their messages, they have highlighted that India seeks normal and cooperative relations with all neighbours, including Pakistan.”

Tensions between the nuclear-armed South Asian neighbours have been high since February when a military standoff saw them conduct air raids on each other’s territory and engage in an aerial dogfight that saw at least one Indian fighter jet shot down.

The Indian air raids, which hit near the northern Pakistani village of Jaba, were a key part of Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) election campaign as the prime minister vowed to continue to “punish” Pakistan.

India accuses Pakistan of supporting armed groups that target Indian security forces in the disputed territory of Kashmir and elsewhere, saying that the country’s intelligence services have aided such groups. Pakistan denies the charge and accuses India of fomenting unrest in its own southwestern Balochistan province.

The military skirmish followed a suicide attack in the Indian-administered Kashmir town of Pulwama, which killed more than 40 Indian security forces personnel. Both India and Pakistan claim the mountainous Kashmir territory in full, but administer separate parts of it. They have fought two of their three wars over Kashmir.

Twitter exchanges

Khan had congratulated Modi on his election win shortly after results were announced last month, saying in a Twitter post that he “look[ed] forward to working with him for peace, progress and prosperity.” 

He followed up with a formal letter sent earlier this month, local media reported, in which he renewed Pakistan’s offer to resume talks.

Modi responded to Khan’s congratulatory tweet by saying he had “always given primacy to peace and development in our region”.

Thursday’s messaged echoed that sentiment, hinting at a possible resumption of dialogue without committing to it.

“For [normal relations], it is important to build an environment of trust, free of terror, violence and hostility,” Modi said in his letter, the Indian foreign ministry said.

For his part, Jaishankar, the Indian foreign minister, “emphasised the need for an ‘atmosphere free from the shadow of terror and violence’,” the statement said.

In May, Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi held informal talks with his then-counterpart, Sushma Swaraj, on the sidelines of a Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) meeting in the Kyrgyz capital Bishkek. 

Khan and Modi shook hands at a meeting of the SCO last week, Pakistan’s foreign minister said. 

Reporting by Asad Hashim, Al Jazeera’s digital correspondent in Pakistan. He tweets @AsadHashim

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Man arrested in Melbourne over plans to travel overseas for ‘hostile activities’


June 20, 2019 21:07:49

A 29-year-old man who allegedly planned to travel overseas to engage in “hostile activities” has been arrested by counterterrorism police in Melbourne.

The Joint Counter Terrorism Team said they arrested the man at his Roxburgh Park workplace just after 8.30am (AEST).

Victoria Police said there was no ongoing threat to the community as a result of their investigation.

The man has been charged with “preparations for incursions into foreign countries for the purpose of engaging in hostile activities”.

Victoria Police said the arrest came as a result of Operation Kozjak, but was not related to any previous operational activity.

The man is due to appear in Melbourne Magistrates’ Court tomorrow.









First posted

June 20, 2019 20:36:00

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