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British-Muslims fear for their future under Johnson govenment

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Boris Johnson

London, Dec 14 : British-Muslims have said that they feared for their future under a new Boris Johnson government after his landslide win in the December 12 general election, a media report said on Saturday.

The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) has called on the Prime Minister, who has been personally accused of Islamophobia, to reassure British-Muslims of their place in the UK, metro.co.uk said in the report.

Harun Khan, Secretary General of the MCB, said that as ruling Conservative celebrated their win, there was a “palpable sense of fear” among Muslim communities around the country.

“We entered the election campaign period with long standing concerns about bigotry in our politics and our governing party. Now we worry that Islamophobia is ‘oven-ready’ for government.

“Johnson has been entrusted with huge power, and we pray it is exercised responsibly for all Britons,” Khan said.

In the December 12 election, Johnson gained a Commons majority of 80, his party’s largest since since Margaret Thatcher triumphed in 1987, and in contrast, the opposition Labour suffered its worst election result since the 1930s

The warning from MCB came as Sayeeda Warsi, a former Conservative co-chair and Cabinet Minister, said the party “must start healing its relationship with British Muslims”, the mirror.co.uk report said.

In a tweet on Friday, she said: “Independent Inquiry into Islamophobia is a must first step. The battle to root out racism must now intensify.”

During campaigning, the Prime Minister had apologised for hurt caused to the Muslim community by his party, but stopped short of saying sorry for offensive comments which included comparing Muslim women who wear the burqa to letterboxes.

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7 lakh jobs gone in 14 days, worst yet to come in US

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Unemployment rate of US

Washington, April 4 The worst stage of coronavirus pandemic became visible in the US when the Donald Trump government reported that employers cut over 7 lakh jobs in the first two weeks of March — close to the May 2009 financial crisis peak of 800,000 job losses.

Most of the job losses were reported from restaurants and bars, followed by retailers. It was the first decline in payrolls since September 2010, CNBC reported.

The unemployment rate rose to 4.4 per cent – from 3.5 per cent — the first job decline in a decade, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Friday.

The Labor report, however, doesn’t capture “the nearly 10 million laid-off and furloughed Americans who filed initial jobless claims in the past two weeks as much of the nation’s economy was shut down to contain the spread of the virus”.

According to a USA Today report, that’s because Labor’s survey was conducted the week ending March 14, before most states ordered residents to stay at home and nonessential businesses — such as restaurants, movie theaters and most stores — to close.

It means the job loss numbers for March will actually be way high.

The US Labor Department on Thursday revealed that another 6.6 million workers filed jobless claims last week.

“The report does capture the first stumble in the economy’s historic free fall. The number of workers filing initial jobless claims rose by 70,000 — the most since 2013 — to 282,000 in the week of Labor’s survey”.

The April jobs report, which won’t be released until May 8, could include the nearly 10 million Americans who filed for first-time unemployment benefits as the pandemic forced businesses to close and people to stay at home, CNN reported.

Job losses over the next few weeks will come from a wider range of sectors, according to Daniel Zhao, senior economist at careers website Glassdoor.

“White collar jobs are not safe from this,” Zhao was quoted as saying.

“If this is an indication of what was happening before the full force of the crisis hit, then it will be hard to come up with the words to describe the numbers in future months,” added Nick Bunker, economic research director at job search site Indeed.

By comparison, it took about two years for the US economy to lose nearly nine million jobs during the Great Recession.

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7 lakh jobs gone in 14 days, worst yet to come in US

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Donald Trump

Washington, April 4 (IANS) The worst stage of coronavirus pandemic became visible in the US when the Donald Trump government reported that employers cut over 7 lakh jobs in the first two weeks of March — close to the May 2009 financial crisis peak of 800,000 job losses.

Most of the job losses were reported from restaurants and bars, followed by retailers. It was the first decline in payrolls since September 2010, CNBC reported.

The unemployment rate rose to 4.4 per cent – from 3.5 per cent — the first job decline in a decade, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Friday.

The Labor report, however, doesn’t capture “the nearly 10 million laid-off and furloughed Americans who filed initial jobless claims in the past two weeks as much of the nation’s economy was shut down to contain the spread of the virus”.

According to a USA Today report, that’s because Labor’s survey was conducted the week ending March 14, before most states ordered residents to stay at home and nonessential businesses — such as restaurants, movie theaters and most stores — to close.

It means the job loss numbers for March will actually be way high.

The US Labor Department on Thursday revealed that another 6.6 million workers filed jobless claims last week.

“The report does capture the first stumble in the economy’s historic free fall. The number of workers filing initial jobless claims rose by 70,000 — the most since 2013 — to 282,000 in the week of Labor’s survey”.

The April jobs report, which won’t be released until May 8, could include the nearly 10 million Americans who filed for first-time unemployment benefits as the pandemic forced businesses to close and people to stay at home, CNN reported.

Job losses over the next few weeks will come from a wider range of sectors, according to Daniel Zhao, senior economist at careers website Glassdoor.

“White collar jobs are not safe from this,” Zhao was quoted as saying.

“If this is an indication of what was happening before the full force of the crisis hit, then it will be hard to come up with the words to describe the numbers in future months,” added Nick Bunker, economic research director at job search site Indeed.

By comparison, it took about two years for the US economy to lose nearly nine million jobs during the Great Recession.

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Pak Senator urges UN to probe if COVID-19 is man-made

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Coronavirus Scare

Islamabad, April 4 (IANS) Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Senator Rehman Malik has urged the UN to form a high-powered commission to probe if the COVID-19 was a man-made or a naturally grown virus and also to locate its origin, a media report said on Saturday.

In a letter to UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, Malik, also a former Interior Minister, said the proposed commission on COVID-19 under the UN Convention on Biological Weapons, 1975 might comprise virologists, scientists, professors, researchers, analysts and experts in the fields of microbiology, reports Dawn news.

Making the letter public at a press conference through a video link, Malik on Friday said the commission should present its report to Guterres in three months, and its ‘terms of reference’ (ToR) should include recommendations to prevent future breakouts of such viruses, and international standards for coordination in case of a breakout.

For the proposed UN commission, Malik in his letter has proposed seven ToRs.

These include accurate identification of the geo-location of the COVID-19’s origin; identification of areas with zero patient; discovery as to why the behaviour, intensity and fertility rate of COVID-19 varies from country to country; investigation whether COVID-19 is a man-made or naturally-grown virus and examination of the allegations of transportation of the virus from one place to other destinations in the world, as a ‘biological warfare tactics’.

He said the deadly coronavirus pandemic had stirred up the worst global crisis since World War II.

Malik asserted that he was not blaming any government or a group or levelling any allegation or endorsing any media report about the origin of the disease, said the Dawn news report.

Pakistan has so far recorded 2,696 coronavirus cases with 40 deaths.

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