News Headlines - 31 March 2020

Olympic leaders misguided in setting new date for Tokyo Games

In these extraordinary times, in the midst of sickness and death and despair and uncertainty throughout the world, we now know the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games will begin July 23, 2021, one day earlier than they would have started this summer..... Once again, the International Olympic Committee has displayed how utterly tone deaf it can be. Everyone on earth is trying to live through, cope with and survive a pandemic. We don’t need to know the date of an event in 2021, even if it’s the world’s largest. Not today... Just a week ago, the IOC gave itself four weeks to decide whether to postpone this summer’s Olympics. Now that the Games are postponed, the IOC took less than a week to rush to give us a new date. There are still three weeks left on the clock from the previous deadline.

Adidas, H&M to stop paying rent over outbreak closures | DW

Many shops across Germany have been shut under regional state pandemic control decrees, but are receiving support from a new federal law that seeks to give tenants temporary relief.
Adidas spokesman Jan Runau told German ARD public television on Friday that the sports outfitter would temporarily suspend its rental payments at locations where "our shops are closed," but that the company is in "close consultation" with its landlords.
Kai Warnecke, the head of the German Property Owners' Federation, warned that defaults on payment unveiled by Bavaria-based Adidas must not set a precedent. "If so, it would be the end of the real estate market."

German state finance minister Thomas Schäfer found dead | DW

The body of a man identified as Thomas Schäfer, the finance minister of the German state of Hesse, was found on a high-speed train line in the town of Hochheim between Frankfurt and Mainz, police confirmed Saturday.
The presence of a body on the tracks was first reported by witnesses to paramedics, who were unable to initially identify the remains due to the extent of the injuries.
Investigators said an investigation on the scene confirmed the identity of the man as Schäfer and that the death was likely a suicide. Police did not immediately release further details of the case.
The politician apparently left a note before taking his own life, German daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reported, citing sources close to the investigation. The note, according to the report, referenced Schäfer's reasons for his apparent suicide.

Harry and Meghan post final SussexRoyal Instagram message | Sky News

Harry and Meghan have written their final post on their SussexRoyal Instagram account, thanking followers "for the support, the inspiration and the shared commitment to the good in the world".
From today, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will no longer use their Sussex Royal Instagram account or website, as they officially start their new independent life.

French national orchestra plays Bolero - from home

Musicians from the Orchestre national de France have posted online a version of Ravel’s Bolero played from their homes during Covid-19 confinement.
Usually based at the Maison de la Radio near the Eiffel Tower, the orchestra’s members have used technology to play together at a distance.
The result - which can be viewed on YouTube - is an enjoyable version of the classic in which the listener can watch each individual player and identify who is playing certain sections of music, as more and more players progressively join in and the sound builds up.







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