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Hospitals in France are requiring expectant mothers to wear face masks during childbirth, allegedly causing complications during labor. Now an activist group is leading a wave of angry backlash over the practice.

The anti-masked-birth campaigners and some doctors say that mothers are finding themselves unnecessarily stressed out and having trouble breathing, which can lead to weakness and an inability to push during labor.

There have been multiple instances of hospital staff threatening to refuse medical service to maskless women reported in the French media. Some mothers have revealed that they were forced to keep their face masks on even when they were struggling to breathe while giving birth.

“I had the feeling that I was suffocating, I was very hot, I was sweating profusely under my mask, I wasn’t managing it,” the Daily Mail reported one French mother as saying.




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As a result of her stress, she said the doctor had to use forceps to pull out her son. The child was born with a bump on his head left by the instrument and with amniotic fluid in his lungs. The baby ended up having to be transferred to another hospital, because the one requiring masks didn’t have adequate facilities to treat him.

“This was very traumatic for my partner and me. Before giving birth, we are taught to manage our breathing and so to be in this situation was very traumatic,” the mother said.

The group Stop aux Violences Obstétricales & Gynécologiques (or Stop Obstetrical & Gynecological Violence) argues that the childbirth mask requirement in some hospitals is potentially harmful. It launched a social media hashtag #StopAccouchementMasque (#StopMaskedBirth) to shed light on stories where the mask requirement caused unnecessary stress and complications for mothers and newborns.




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The group’s founder and spokesperson, Sonia Bisch, told France 24 that face masks can cause women to “suffocate, vomit, panic” during childbirth by obstructing air intake. It could also increase the chances of women suffering from postnatal depression and even post-traumatic stress disorder, Bisch said, basing it on her professional experience of talking to new mothers in distress. 

Bisch and her campaign argue that since the World Health Organization (WHO) recognizes that people “should not wear masks when exercising” as it may “reduce the ability to breathe comfortably,” requiring masks at childbirth is especially “nonsensical.”

To allow mothers to give birth in comfort, the group recommends that only hospital staff use the masks and protective glasses. “It is up to healthcare professionals to protect themselves,” Bisch said.

In France, it is up to each maternity facility whether to require face masks, and the group has already created a hospital map guide, describing which rules are in place in each of them.

In the UK, things work similarly to Bisch’s concept – doctors and nurses have to protect themselves while patients do not have to mask up. In the US, women are also not required to wear masks in the delivery room.




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According to the WHO, France has registered more than 700,000 confirmed cases of Covid-19 and around 32,000

With its first international news channel launched in 2005, RT is now a global, round-the-clock news network of eight TV channels, broadcasting news, current affairs, and documentaries, with digital platforms in six languages and RUPTLY video news agency. Round-the-clock news channels in English, Arabic, Spanish, and documentary channel RT Doc, in English and Russian, broadcast from Moscow, while RT America airs from Washington, RT UK from London, and RT France from Paris. Today, RT is available in more than 100 countries spanning five continents.

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Closest to Earth ‘black hole’ turns out to be rare kind of star, after all

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A growing body of research posits that the star system HR 6819 does not contain a black hole, contrary to earlier findings. It may instead boast a unique pair of stars.

The object located some 1,120 light-years from Earth has been preliminarily demoted from a bewildering black hole to a binary star system with a rather unusual orbit. 

The system consists of a very hot Be spectral type star which spins at approximately 200km per second, shooting out a disc of hydrogen gas which surrounds it.

Previously, it was found to be accompanied by a B3 III star, measuring approximately six solar masses, with a roughly 40-day orbit. The Be star, also measuring in at about six solar masses, seemed to be spinning on the spot, which made no sense as two objects of similar mass should spin about a mutual center of gravity. 

Following a serious amount of number crunching, researchers earlier this year concluded that the pair must be orbiting a third, massive object that wasn’t visible which would explain why the spinning top star was essentially locked in place – a black hole.




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However, as is often the case in science, there was a competing theory: that the B3 III star was actually a low mass star that had been worn down by its companion, and that the initial calculations were off.

If this were the case, the almost imperceptible movement of the larger Be star would be visible via wobbles and shifts in the hydrogen gas disc emanating from it. 

Sure enough, astronomers Douglas Gies and Luqian Wang of Georgia State University discovered variations in the disc which aligned with the B3 III star’s orbit. 

“This indicates,” they wrote, “that HR 6819 is a binary system consisting of a massive Be star and a low-mass companion that is the stripped down remnant of a former mass donor star in a mass transfer binary.”

In other words, the Be star took a huge chunk out of its companion and, according to the recalculations, the B3 III star would be between 0.4 and 0.8 solar masses.

By coincidence, a second paper, produced by researchers at KU Leuven in Belgium, conducted an independent analysis of the hydrogen disc emitted by the star and reached almost exactly the same conclusion as Gies and Wang. 

In their analysis, they found the pair to have solar masses of 0.4 and 6 respectively. 

“This indicates that the primary might be a stripped star rather than a B-type giant,” they wrote. “In the framework of this interpretation, HR 6819 does not contain a BH.”




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By yet more happenstance, a third paper, currently in preprint, produced by astronomers Kareem El-Badry and Eliot Quataert of UC Berkeley also found 0.47 and 6.7 solar masses for the B3 III and Be stars respectively, providing yet more evidence of an unusual bi

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Danish inventor who murdered & dismembered journalist captured after attempted PRISON BREAK with ‘bomb’

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A Danish man who murdered and dismembered a female journalist touring his homemade submarine in 2017 was recaptured after attempting to break out of prison while allegedly armed with a bomb.

Peter Madsen escaped from Herstedvester prison, located in a suburb of Copenhagen, after threatening guards with an explosive device, and also possibly a “pistol-like object,” local media reported. Security forces cornered him after he fled several hundred meters from the prison. A photograph shows the convicted murderer leaning against a fence as two security personnel, wearing helmets and body armor, lie on the ground as they point their weapons at him. Snipers, a bomb squad and police dogs arrived on site, according to reports. 

Police confirmed that they were responding to an attempted prison break and had cordoned off the area.

After a standoff, law enforcement personnel arrested Madsen, who was reportedly wearing a suspicious belt-like object be

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Sweden bans use of Huawei, ZTE equipment in 5G networks

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A Swedish regulator on Tuesday banned the use of telecom equipment from Chinese companies Huawei and ZTE in its 5G networks. The move comes ahead of the spectrum auctions scheduled to start on 10 November.

The Swedish Post and Telecom Authority (PTS) has examined applications and approved four companies for participation in the 3.5 GHz and 2.3 GHz auctions. New legislation that came into force in January demanded the regulator consult the Swedish armed forces and the security service to ensure that the use of radio equipment in these bands will not “cause harm” to the country’s security.

And according to PTS, new installations for radio use in those frequency bands “must not be carried out with products from the suppliers Huawei or ZTE.” If existing infrastructure for central functions is to be used, “products from Huawei and ZTE must be phased out [by] 1 January 2025 at the latest.”

Central functions are equipment used to build the radio access network, the transmission network, and the core network, as well as their service and maintenance.

Participants in the auctions were also warned that dependencies on foreign states must be phased out or be replaced by functions or staff based in Sweden.




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The move may benefit rival firms Ericsson and Nokia, and it comes amid pressure on European states from Washington to review the role of Chinese companies. The US says that

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