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Farm owners in California mass shooting to pay workers $450,000

Farm owners to pay $450,000 to workers after mass shooting

The owners of two mushroom farms in northern California where a disgruntled employee shot and killed seven people last year will pay a total of more than $450,000 in back wages and damages to 62 employees.

In an announcement released on Monday following an extensive investigation, the US labor department said the payment is an element of administrative settlements reached by the department’s wage and hour division with California Terra Garden and Concord Farms.

The government’s announcement comes after the incident in which the accused gunman, 67-year old Chunli Zhao, opened fire on two farms in Half Moon Bay, a small community approximately 30 miles south of San Francisco, on 23 January 2023, killing seven workers and injuring another.

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Israeli soldiers and police tipping off groups that attack Gaza aid trucks

IDF tipping off settlers destroing food trucks for Gaza

Individual members of Israel’s security forces are tipping off far-right activists and settlers to the location of aid trucks delivering vital supplies to Gaza, enabling the groups to block and vandalise the convoys, according to multiple sources.

Settlers intercepting the vital humanitarian supplies to the strip are receiving information about the location of the aid trucks from members of the Israeli police and military, a spokesperson from the main Israeli activist group behind the blockades told the Guardian.

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U.N. Halts All Food Distribution In Rafah Due To Lack Of Supplies

Rafah hunger imcreasesGetting aid to displaced civilians has been hampered by closed and chaotic land crossings, as well as problems plaguing the U.S. military’s new floating pier meant to provide an alternative sea route for aid into Gaza. Over the weekend, hungry Palestinians took aid from a U.N. vehicle convoy coming from the pier, and the U.N. said since then it had been unable to receive trucks there.

Pentagon press secretary Maj. Gen. Pat Ryder told reporters in Washington that for the past few days, forward movement of aid from the pier was paused but it resumed Tuesday. There was no confirmation from the U.N.

The U.N.’s World Food Program said it was running out of food for central Gaza, where hundreds of thousands of people are now living.

“Humanitarian operations in Gaza are near collapse,” said Abeer Etefa, a WFP spokesperson. If food and other supplies don’t resume entering Gaza “in massive quantities, famine-like conditions will spread,” she said.

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UN humanitarian chief delivers ‘apocalyptic’ warning over Gaza aid

UN humanitarian chief warns of catastrophe

The United Nations’ humanitarian chief has warned of “apocalyptic” consequences due to aid shortages in Gaza, where Israel’s military offensive in the southern city of Rafah has blocked desperately needed food.

“If fuel runs out, aid doesn’t get to the people where they need it. That famine, which we have talked about for so long, and which is looming, will not be looming any more. It will be present,” the UN under-secretary general for humanitarian affairs and emergency relief coordinator, Martin Griffiths, told AFP on the sidelines of meetings with Qatari officials in Doha.

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US military says aid pier anchored to Gaza beach

Floating pier Gaza

US troops on Thursday anchored a long-awaited temporary pier aimed at ramping up emergency aid to a beach in the war-ravaged Gaza Strip, the US military and Israel said.

The US Central Command said the pier was "successfully affixed to the beach in Gaza" with around 500 tonnes of aid expected to enter the Palestinian territory in the coming days.

"It's a pretty substantial amount, and it's spread out over multiple ships right now," Vice Admiral Brad Cooper, deputy CENTCOM commander, told reporters in Washington.

Israel's military also said in a statement that the connection was "successfully completed".

But Farhan Haq, a spokesman for UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, said negotiations remained ongoing on distribution of the aid -- particularly on the safety of workers.

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Riot police arrest 50 people at UC Irvine and clear pro-Palestinian encampment

Riot police arrest 50 at UC Irvine

Hundreds of police officers in riot gear launched a crackdown on a pro-Palestinian demonstration on Wednesday at the University of California, Irvine, arresting 50 people and threatening students and faculty with batons and munitions.

Campus police and officers from across the region descended on the southern California public university after students with a Gaza solidarity encampment occupied a campus lecture hall. Photos and footage from the protest show sheriff’s deputies and other police officers grabbing students, pointing “less lethal” weapons at them and arresting students and at least one tenured professor with zip-ties.

Law enforcement officers cleared the encampment, which had been in place for more than two weeks and removed demonstrators from the building. The arrests at UC Irvine in Orange county mark the latest militarized responses to protesters in California and in campuses across the US. The crackdown follows a violent police raid and mass arrests at UCLA earlier this month.

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University president in California on leave after agreeing to campus protesters’ demands

Mike Lee, University president takes leave

A public university in California has placed its president on leave for “insubordination” after he agreed to student demands for an academic boycott of Israel.

Mike Lee was suspended from Sonoma State University following an announcement on Tuesday that the liberal arts college north of San Francisco had agreed with Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) to become the first US university to refuse to work with Israeli academic institutions.

“None of us should be on the sidelines when human beings are subject to mass killing and destruction,” Lee said in a message to students announcing the move.

But following a swift backlash from pro-Israel groups and the wider California state university system, Lee apologised for agreeing to the boycott, saying that it “marginalised” other students and caused harm.

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