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Colonial Pipeline back online, but gas might not be back until the weekend



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After almost a week since Colonial Pipeline shut down for the very first time in its history, President Joe Biden announced Thursday that the pipeline was back to full capacity. But, that doesn’t mean gas stations that were emptied over the last six days will be immediately replenished.

“But I want to be clear, we will not feel the effects at the pump immediately,” Biden said during a press conference. “This is not like flicking on a light switch.”

The pipeline is over 5,500 miles long. So Biden adjusted everyone’s expectations during the presser. “We expect to see a region by region return to normalcy beginning this weekend,” he said.

Yet Colonial Pipeline’s own statement was even more vague about the timeline. “Following this restart, it will take several days for the product delivery supply chain to return to normal,” their statement read.

However, when asked if Colonial Pipeline paid Ransomware, the group of hackers who initially attacked the pipeline’s cybersecurity apparatus, Biden refused to answer. From the beginning, the Biden administration has been clear that it is not the government’s decision to make. On Monday, Anne Neuberger, Deputy National Security Adviser for Cyber and Emerging Technology said it would be a “private sector decision” whether the ransom would be paid or not.

Sources involved in the transaction reportedly confirmed to Bloomberg News that a $5 million ransom was paid.

You can follow Jenny Goldsberry on Twitter @jennyjournalism

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Mental health crisis spikes among Afghan women after Taliban regained control two years ago



girls studying in afghanistan

The women of Afghanistan are suffering a mental health crisis since the Taliban regained power two years ago. According to a joint report from three U.N. agencies released Tuesday, approximately 70% of women experience feelings of anxiety, isolation and depression.

The numbers continue to rise, as there has already been a significant jump between April and June of this year alone, with an increase from 57%  the preceding quarter.

The report, conducted by U.N. Women, the International Organization for Migration and the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan, interviewed women online, in-person and in group consultations as well as individual telesurveys.

592 Afghan women in 22 of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces took part in the study. The Associated Press reports:

They have barred women from most areas of public life and work and banned girls from going to school beyond the sixth grade. They have prohibited Afghan women from working at local and non-governmental organizations. The ban was extended to employees of the United Nations in April.

Opportunities to study continued to shrink as community-based education by international organizations was banned and home-based schooling initiatives were regularly shut down by the de facto authorities — a term use by the U.N. for the Taliban government.

Afghanistan is the only country in the world with restrictions on female education and the rights of Afghan women and children are on the agenda of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

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