All farmers with crops affected by Hurricane Michael are invited to attend an agriculture disaster assistance information session at the University of Georgia Tifton Campus Conference Center at 2 p.m. Monday, October 22.UGA Cooperative Extension and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will host the event, which will feature speakers from the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA), Natural Resources Conservation Service, Rural Development, and Risk Management Agency, as well as the Georgia Forestry Commission, Southwest Georgia Farm Credit and Rep. Austin Scott. Each organization will provide updates and information regarding disaster programs that are available to producers impacted by the hurricane.“During a time of disaster, it is important that farmers know where to turn to for assistance. This meeting will provide timely and important updates on USDA disaster assistance programs that are available for farmers,” said Adam Rabinowitz, UGA Extension economist.The storm hit south Georgia on October 10-11, causing more than $3 billion in losses to Georgia agriculture, the state’s No. 1 industry.Georgia’s pecan industry suffered a $560 million loss, including $260 million in lost trees that were uprooted during the storm. Georgia’s cotton losses range from $300 to $800 million in lost lint and seed. Damage to Georgia’s peanut infrastructure, including buying points and peanut shellers, will force a delay in peanut harvest this fall.“For many, this was the worst storm they have experienced in this area, thus a great relief for lives that were spared. Unfortunately, the toll that has been taken on crops and infrastructure is significant. After a few years of low prices and decreases in net farm income, there was hope in some farming communities that a bumper crop would improve financial outlooks,” Rabinowitz said. “Having to experience a disaster like this will involve a difficult or impossible recovery for some farmers.”Rabinowitz said the best course of action farmers can take is to document all damage.“Keep photographs of damages and records of all expenses related to cleanup and recovery. It is also important to communicate in the early stages with crop insurance agents, federal agencies such as the local FSA, and lenders,” Rabinowitz said.The Georgia Forestry Commission estimates that 1 million acres were damaged or destroyed and the financial loss is $1 billion. The FSA has a disaster program called the Emergency Forest Restoration Program to assist for losses.“Hurricane Michael has caused massive devastation to Georgia’s agricultural economy and it is critical for the USDA to be a partner and to update producers on the benefits of our program during this critical time,” said Tas Smith, state executive director for FSA Georgia. “Producers needing assistance should contact their local USDA service center.”For more information, contact the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics at UGA-Tifton at 229-386-3512 or the Georgia FSA at 706-546-2269.
May 25, 2007 (CIDRAP News) – Some of the H5N1 avian flu virus samples from human cases that China has promised to send to a World Health Organization (WHO) laboratory have arrived in the United States, apparently ending an almost year-long lapse in sample sharing.A WHO official said two of three promised samples have been sent by China’s health ministry and are awaiting customs clearance, the Associated Press (AP) reported today. Joanna Brent, a spokesperson in the WHO’s Beijing office, said the specimens are from a 2006 case from Xinjiang province in far western China and a 2007 case from Fujian province in the south.Publicity about China’s slowness in sharing H5N1 samples was triggered by a Canadian Press report in April. The story revealed that Indonesia wasn’t the only country dragging its feet about sharing human H5N1 samples with the international community.Indonesia’s reluctance has stemmed from its concern that the country couldn’t afford commercial vaccines derived from the use of its H5N1 strains. The reasons for China’s reluctance have been less clear, but Chinese officials have sometimes complained about how foreign researchers used samples gathered form birds in China. Last November, for example, China complained that investigators used such specimens to conduct and publish studies without properly crediting the country’s contribution.Brent said a third sample China promised—from a 24-year-old soldier who died in 2003—was not part of the shipment, because sample-sharing procedures involving the Chinese military are extremely complex, the AP reported. The soldier’s case was reported in a June 2006 New England Journal of Medicine article after new tests determined he had died of an H5N1 infection.China had previously sent six human H5N1 virus samples to WHO laboratories, said the AP report, which cited Chinese state media reports: two in December 2005 and four in May 2006. Since then, China has reported six new human cases, including that of the soldier, according to the WHO list of confirmed H5N1 cases.In March 2006, China promised to send 20 veterinary H5N1 samples to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for analysis, but their arrival was delayed for several months because of logistical problems. Christine Pearson, a CDC spokesperson, told CIDRAP News today that the lab did receive the promised specimens.The WHO has coordinated the international sharing of flu virus samples for more than 50 years. Samples of both seasonal flu viruses and novel strains like H5N1 are used to monitor viral evolution and drug resistance and to develop vaccines.At the annual World Health Assembly, which ended 2 days ago, the WHO approved a resolution to establish an international stockpile of pandemic vaccines and create a working group to draw up new rules for the sharing of flu viruses by WHO collaborating centers and reference laboratories.In other avian flu news, health officials in Vietnam have confirmed the country’s first H5N1 case since 2005, in a 30-year-old farmer who got sick after he helped slaughter chickens for a wedding.A doctor from the National Institute of Epidemiology in Hanoi told Agence France-Presse (AFP) that two tests on the man were positive for the H5N1 virus. The deputy head of the health ministry’s preventive healthcare department told the state-run Vietnam News Agency that the man’s test results were confirmed, but the health ministry has not “directly confirmed” the case, the AFP report said today.The man, from Vinh Phuc province, is in critical condition in a Hanoi hospital, AFP reported.Meanwhile, Pakistan and Vietnam reported additional outbreaks of H5N1 in poultry today. Pakistani officials reported outbreaks at two more poultry farms in Islamabad, bringing the number of outbreaks this week to five, AFP reported today. Authorities in Vietnam reported an outbreak among ducks at a farm in the northern port city of Haiphong, as well as several outbreaks among ducks and chickens at private farms in Bac Giang, a northern province, the AP reported today.The virus reemerged in both countries recently after earlier outbreaks this year. Pakistan’s last outbreak was in April, and Vietnam had reported a rash of outbreaks that began in late December 2006.See also:Apr 16 CIDRAP News article “China said to be withholding H5N1 virus samples”Nov 10, 2006, CIDRAP News story “Chinese promise H5N1 samples, deny claim of new strain”
“We hereby demand that the panel of judges sentence the defendant to two years in prison,” Randi told the court.When the judges asked the defendant to respond, she said, “I feel the demand is not proper.”Presiding judge Sri Wahyuni Batubara gave the defendant and her legal advisor two weeks to prepare a defense statement.Read also: Commentary: Indonesia has serious ‘overcriminalization’ problem Prosecutors at the Medan District Court in North Sumatra are seeking two years of prison for defendant Febi Nur Amalia, who is on trial for defamation for demanding on Instagram that the wife of a police officer repay a debt of Rp 70 million (US$4,763).Prosecutor Randi Tambunan argued that the 29-year-old had no right to “slander” Fitriani Manurung, who filed the case against Febi, in her attempt to collect the debt on social media.Randi said the defendant’s actions violated articles 27 and 45 of the Electronic Information and Transactions (ITE) Law. The articles carry a maximum punishment of six years in prison and a fine of Rp 1 billion. The case started in December 2016 when Fitriani, who is the wife of a local police senior commissioner, reportedly borrowed Rp 70 million from Febi, her friend, a resident of the Menteng Indah complex in Medan.In 2017, Febi allegedly tried to collect the debt several times but to no avail. Fitriani reportedly blocked Febi’s phone number.Febi sent a direct message to Fitriani’s Instagram account in early 2019 to ask for the money, but Fitriani said she did not recognize her. She then allegedly blocked Febi’s account for a second time.Febi then posted an Instagram story using her handle @feby25052 and tagged Fitriani. It read, “I suddenly remembered the wife of a police senior commissioner who hasn’t paid her debt to me, amounting to Rp 70 million, for years @Fitri_Bakhtiar. I would easily let the money go if the debtor was poor, but it’s different in this case because the debtor herself is rich. So I have to claim the money.”In a previous hearing, Febi claimed to have strong evidence of Fitriani’s debt. Febi said Fitriani had asked for the money to buy a bag for the wife of a senior National Police officer.Fitriani has denied having a debt to Febi. She claimed the money was not transferred to her account but to her husband’s. Fitriani said the Instagram post had harmed her. (syk)Topics :