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Six of SPPD’s top brass say they’ve applied for chief; deadline extended

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6 Internal Candidates For St. Paul Police Chief

St. Paul’s mayor has extended the deadline for police chief applicants by two weeks to encourage additional submissions.

The city received applications from 15 qualified candidates as of Tuesday afternoon. The applicants include six of the St. Paul police department’s top brass.

Clockwise from top left: St. Paul Police Senior Cmdr. Joshua Lego, Deputy Chief Julie Maidment, Cmdr. Axel Henry, Assistant Chief Stacy Murphy, Cmdr. Pamela Barragan, Senior Cmdr. Kurt Hallstrom. (Courtesy photos)

Kathy Lantry, co-chair of the police chief examining committee, said they don’t receive information about who applied, so the committee’s recommendation to extend the deadline wasn’t based on the caliber of candidates.

When the committee received an update last week, there were nine applicants. The question was, “Do we think the pool should be bigger?,” Lantry said. “The answer to that, in my opinion, is always, ‘Yes.’ You want to have choices.”

The search for St. Paul’s next police chief comes at a time of concern locally and nationally about gun violence, and as St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter describes a “public safety vision that centers not just around responding after someone calls 911.”

The mayor has said it’s about “making the strategic investments that can proactively help us minimize and reduce the number of times that someone has to call 911 in the first place” and the city’s Office of Neighborhood Safety got off the ground this year.

INTERNAL CANDIDATES STEP FORWARD

Todd Axtell stepped down in June after serving as police chief for six years. Jeremy Ellison is currently the interim chief.

The police chief examining committee — with 38 members and perspectives from the community, business, labor, public safety, social services and schools — will review applications, conduct interviews, lead community engagement and recommend five finalists to Carter. Carter will interview the finalists and make his choice for chief, who is appointed for a six-year term.

The names of the finalists will be public. In the meantime, six St. Paul police employees confirmed to the Pioneer Press that they applied for the job. They are:

  • Cmdr. Pamela Barragan, who oversees the community partnership unit and joined the department in 1999.
  • Senior Cmdr. Kurt Hallstrom, who is in charge of the department’s Eastern District and also joined the department in 1999.
  • Cmdr. Axel Henry, who oversees the narcotics unit, which also includes employees assigned to the state human trafficking taskforce, and an investigator assigned to the city’s Department of Safety and Inspections, and joined the department in 1998.
  • Senior Cmdr. Joshua Lego, who is in charge of the Western District and joined the department in 1996.
  • Deputy Chief Julie Maidment, who leads the operations division and joined the department in 1997.
  • Assistant Chief Stacy Murphy, who’s second in command and joined the department in 2002.

St. Paul’s police chiefs have traditionally risen through the department’s ranks. It was 1934 when someone was last named St. Paul chief who hadn’t come from within the police department, according to Ed Steenberg, St. Paul Police Historical Society president.

Carter hasn’t indicated if he favors an internal or external hire.

“Whoever we appoint …, I think we owe it to them and we owe it to ourselves to say they’re in place not because we limited our search, but because we conducted the widest search we possibly can and we can say, ‘This is the person for the job,’” Carter said in May.

SELECTING ‘THE RIGHT PERSON’

The original deadline to apply was Friday and is now Aug. 5. When Lantry was St. Paul’s public works director, she said it wasn’t unusual to extend job deadlines to allow for more recruiting.

Carter said in early May that he planned to name the next police chief in late summer or early fall. With the deadline extension, the city’s human resources department is working to develop an updated timeline, according to Kamal Baker, Carter’s press secretary.

“The mayor’s priority remains selecting the right person to lead our department,” Baker said this week. He “remains confident that our community is well served by the women and men of our police department, as well as our interim chief, while we work to identify the next person to lead our department.”

The next chief’s starting salary will be $132,000 to $180,000, depending on experience and qualifications, according to the job posting.

During the last St. Paul police chief search in 2016, there were initially four qualified candidates. After extending the application deadline, the city had 10 people to choose from.

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Hyde10: 10 Dolphins camp thoughts — Depth chart is telling; Roquan Smith on market; Patriots offense struggling; Did Robert Kraft push for tampering penalty?

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Hyde10: 10 Dolphins Camp Thoughts —  Depth Chart Is Telling; Patriots Offense Struggling; Did Robert Kraft Push For  Tampering Penalty?

Here are 10 observations from the first two weeks of Miami Dolphins training camp:

1. The linebackers were the most interesting unit of the first Dolphins’ depth chart. Melvin Ingram is listed as an outside starter over Andrew Van Ginkel. That’s not a big deal as both will play. The point here is they like Ingram this much, though the larger point is to ask if the Ingram of August will be the same as the Ingram of December and January. He’s 33 with a history of injuries. He had stops at two blue-chip franchises, Pittsburgh and Kansas City, the last two seasons and didn’t stick. But if the Dolphins get anything close to the Melvin Ingram of the Chargers then they have found someone valuable. This could be one of those uncertain signings that becomes big in retrospect. We’re still in the message-sending part of an NFL, so we don’t know if the Dolphins’ message is they like Ingram this much or want to push Van Ginkel. Maybe both?

2. Roquan Smith is asking the Chicago Bears to trade him, and every team in the league will kick the tires of a deal for the first-round draft pick in 2018. He’s 25, a versatile linebacker and second-team All-Pro last year. Those kind of players don’t come on the market very often. They’re expensive, too. The Dolphins are up against the cap next year, but those type of things can be massaged into working. Compensation? That’s where it gets tricky. The Dolphins sent a lot of picks for Tyreek Hill and lost a future first- and third-rounder due to their tampering penalty. They could use an impactful linebacker like this — who couldn’t? But assembling enough resources for a trade of this magnitude would be problematic.

3. A follow-up regarding the Dolphins’ penalty for recruiting Tom Brady back to his New England days and Sean Payton from New Orleans:

A. Did New England owner Robert Kraft push the NFL to penalize the Dolphins, as a league source suggests? It’s unclear how much sway his voice had in the proceedings, but you can understand Kraft’s anger at realizing Dolphins owner-in-waiting Bruce Beale recruiting Brady during his final Patriots year in 2019. Still, for tampering that was historic in scope, according to the NFL Commissioner, being penalized a first-round pick in 2023 and a third-round pick in 2024 isn’t a staggering penalty. Why wasn’t it more? Maybe because every team tampers. The league had to be concerned with a flood of cases. Of course, no team has done it as brazenly as the Dolphins in this instance. That’s the concern here – they don’t know how to tank or tamper within the accepted parameters.

B. The league source also offered what he says is a “league-wide belief:” The fact Don Yee was the agent of both Brady and Payton says he told their story on the tampering on the condition they’d suffer no penalties or even reproachment from the league. That’s the other half of this story. How do you handle if a player under contract talks with a team? Is that allowed? Evidently it is.

4. A month from the Sept. 11 opener at Hard Rock Stadium, let’s look in at how the New England offense looks with Matt Patricia and Joe Judge in some undefined roles of running it. Take this from long-time Patriots reporter Greg Bedard:

“Arguably worst start of offense to camp,’’ he tweeted from Monday’s practice before listing the plays: “False start 77, Stuff Incomplete, Stuff at handoff, Sack Flat 1yd would have been blown up if live, Incomplete, Sack on a waggle 1 yard pass blown up by Wilson, Stuff 5 yards flat to Meyers.”

And ESPN’s Mike Reiss: “A thought after watching the Patriots offense look efficient in 7-on-7 but struggle notably in multiple 11-on-11s: Might be time to give (legendary Patriots offensive line coach) Dante Scarnecchia a call for an independent evaluation.”

Here’s the counter-read to this: The Patriots defense must be great?

5. If the Dolphins even get anything of substance in a trade for Preston Williams, GM Chris Grier is the early leader for executive of the year. Is there really a market for a player who went undrafted, has played half the games in three years due to injury and had one catch for seven yards in 2021? The Dolphins had him compete for a job for the first time since his rookie training camp. The results are speaking. So, yeah, listing him as second team is either to bolster his (cough) trade value or …

6. It’s a statement of how thin this Dolphins receiving corps is. Remember when GM Jeff Ireland said on HBO’s Hard Knocks he has, “fours, fives and sixes,” in his receiving group but needed to find some “ones, twos and threes?” It’s about the opposite issue here. Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle are No. 1 receivers. Cedric Wilson is No. 3, and it seems rookie Eric Ezukanma is No. 4 in training camp.. Undrafted rookie Braylon Sanders sounds like a player you want on the practice squad to develop. But then? What to think of Lynn Bowden Jr., River Cracraft and Trent Sherfield? A team typcially has a wide receiver on special teams and that could be Cracraft. Let’s also remember there’s been no hitting of receivers just yet so this is a position that can be overrated in summer workouts.

7. The top-end talent and good camp work of this roster is apparent and commendable. The depth of this roster is the concern — just as it is in many teams by now. The healthiest team often wins. It’s not just the offensive line and receivers where the Dolphins must look for help. Look at cornerback. Xavien Howard and Byron Jones are as good a unit as any team. Nik Needham is a solid third cornerback. But after that? Noah Igbinoghene is listed as the fourth cornerback and he couldn’t get on the field his first two years. Has he improved that much? Maybe. The saying in football is you can never have enough offensive tackles and cornerbacks. The Dolphins must be looking for cornerbacks, just as many teams are.

8. The three players the Dolphins can’t lose this season: Hill, cornerback Xavien Howard and left tackle Terron Armstead. Hill is the most dynamic player on the team — maybe in the league. Howard isn’t just a game-changer but frees up the defense to do many things. Armstead is the anchor on an offensive line. It’s not just their talent, though. Again, it’s depth. Look at the line. There are three uncertain players are in new positions: center Connor Williams, right tackle Austin Jackson and left guard Liam Eichenberg. Armstead is the sure thing.

9. That said, remember when the Dolphins constantly juggled players across the offensive line all last training camp? Eichenberg started at right tackle, moved to guard, then had time at left tackle. His head had to be spinning. This coaching staff made decisions on where to put players and is letting the players sink or swim in those positions all summer. We’ll see how it goes through combined practices with Tampa Bay and the preseason. But keeping players at one primary position gives them the best chance to succeed.

10. Notes:

A. Speaking of the Patriots camp, DeVante Parker is listed as a second-team receiver. That can’t be why they traded for him, but Parker was among the worst receivers getting separation the past three years. His one big year came when Ryan Fitzpatrick threw jump balls to him. He can get those. The question is if you want a one-trick receiver like that.

B. Which team is going to sign former Cleveland center JC Tretter?

C. Tackle Mekhi Becton suffering an injury to the knee that knocked him out last season is about the worst news the New York Jets could have in August.

D. The fun part of the summer is young players at taking developmental steps. That’s why hope and optimism bloom across almost every team right now. Mike McDaniel has done a great job of changing the feel around this team into one of that hope and optimism. But with the combined practice in Tampa and preseason, we’ll start to get a better picture of the steps some players have taken.

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Jeep has reinvented the windshield wiper. Here’s how it works

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Jeep Has Reinvented The Windshield Wiper. Here'S How It Works

NEWYou can now listen to Fox News articles!

The gas station raclette has nothing on this.

Jeep has developed a new type of wiper designed to clean dirt and mud from glass in a single pass.

The Clean Sweep: Jeep is a new accessory kit available in the Mopar Parts Catalog for current-generation Wrangler and Gladiator trucks.

The set includes new wiper arms and blades with 12 laser-cut holes that spray washer fluid as they sweep across the windshield.

JEEP NAMED MOST PATRIOTIC AUTOMOTIVE BRAND AND MANUFACTURER

Traditional spray nozzles are turned off and fluid is routed back to the blades through the tubing that comes with the package.

The Clean Sweep: Jeep system features wiper blades with 12 integrated water spray holes.
(Jeep)

When the washer is activated, fluid begins to flow before the wipers begin to move, creating a leading edge of fluid that helps clean the glass.

Jeep Claims This Feature Can Clean A Windshield Better Than A Traditional Windshield Washer System.

Jeep claims this feature can clean a windshield better than a traditional windshield washer system.
(Jeep)

Some other vehicles have spray nozzles located on the wiper arms to create a similar effect, but Jeep’s 12-hole blade design is unique.

THE JEEP WRANGLER HIGH TIDE WAS DESIGNED FOR THE BEACH

Jeep said the technology will help eliminate “blind seconds” that are often created when traditional windshield wipers smear debris on a windshield for a few passes before beginning to clean them. This is especially useful off-road for traversing the types of puddles and other mud the Wrangler and Gladiator were designed to tackle.

The Kit Comes With Two Sets Of Blades.

The kit comes with two sets of blades.
(Jeep)

The kit is available now and priced at $140, including two sets of blades.

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Jeep also touched on the subject of forward vision last year when it introduced a new line of Mopar windshields for the Wrangler and Gladiator made from the type of shatter-resistant Gorilla glass used on smartphones.

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86% of voters vote to recall Two Harbors mayor

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86% Of Voters Vote To Recall Two Harbors Mayor

TWO HARBORS — After seven months of controversy, residents voted to recall embattled Mayor Chris Swanson, ending his nearly 6-year run as mayor.

An unofficial tally of both in-person and absentee ballots, with 100% of precincts reporting, show 86% of voters voted to recall Swanson, with 1,149 voting “yes” to recall Swanson and only 180 voting “no” to keep him in office, according to the Minnesota Secretary of State website . The question on the ballot was: “Shall Mayor Christopher Swanson be recalled?”

There were 2,215 registered voters in Two Harbors as of 7 a.m., according to the Secretary of State website.

Swanson did not immediately return an email or voicemail seeking comment from the News Tribune.

Todd Ronning, chair of the Resign or Recall Committee, said the group “couldn’t be more happy with the results.”

“Our group and our community has been through a lot in the last six months,” Ronning told the News Tribune.

According to the Two Harbors City Charter , the council president will take over mayoral duties and a special election will be held during the next general election to fill the remainder of Swanson’s term, which expires January 2025. Ben Redden is the council president.

Recall efforts were spurred by Swanson’s underwater hotel and cryptocurrency pursuits in January, which brought a slew of other potential conflicts of interest and ethical concern to the surface.

Reviews of his actions have found he violated the city’s code and communications policy and was less than forthcoming with potential interests.

Two Harbors City Attorney Tim Costley in March issued a memorandum of opinion that found Swanson repeatedly used his official city position “for personal benefit or business interests” on a number of issues .

And in July, the Minnesota Office of the State Auditor found Swanson may not have disclosed all of his business and nonprofit interests before they went in front of the City Council. The auditor’s office also sided with the City Council and city attorney in their handling of the potential conflicts of interests.

“I would suggest that the actions of the City Council not only protected local citizens’ interest, but also helped protect the mayor, too,” State Auditor Julie Blaha told the News Tribune at the time. “I think he avoided some problems because (the City Council) avoided a number of contracts.”

Swanson has maintained he’s done nothing wrong and refused to resign, even after the City Council voted 6-0 in June asking him to resign. He did not attend a regularly scheduled council meeting from mid-June until Monday, when he arrived about nine minutes into the meeting, after the public comment period ended.

The Resign or Recall Committee began collecting signatures to move the recall forward in March. It needed 20%, or 498 signatures, of the city’s registered voters to sign the petition. It first gathered nearly 1,000 signatures, 735 of which were verified by the city. But the committee withdrew its petition because it had told people their signatures would be private and it learned later that would not be the case. Its second round of signatures garnered 618 signers, 532 of which were verified by the city.

“It looks like everyone who signed that petition pretty much got out and voted,” said Cynthia Kosiak, an organizer and attorney for the Resign or Recall Committee. “Which is not, generally, what happens.”

A lawsuit seeking to nullify the recall brought forward by a supporter of Swanson, who was represented by Swanson’s attorney, against the city and recall committee was dismissed in June.

The city spent $35,773 by bringing in outside attorneys to defend itself, Miranda Pietila, city financial director, said at the council meeting Monday.

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Samsung announces the Galaxy Z Fold 4

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Samsung Announces The Galaxy Z Fold 4

By CNBCTV18.com August 10, 2022, 7:15 PM STI (Update)

mini

Samsung is touting the Galaxy Z Fold 4 as its lightest and strongest Fold ever with a 6.2-inch cover screen and a 7.6-inch main screen.

Samsung is touting the Galaxy Z Fold 4 as its lightest and strongest Fold ever with a 6.2-inch cover screen and a 7.6-inch main screen. The phone is available in three colors – Graygreen, Phantom Black or Beige.

The device also has a new taskbar to help you do more as a multitasker. Samsung describes it as a “PC-like powerhouse in your pocket that transforms One UI-optimized apps to give you menus and more at a glance.”

The Galaxy Z Fold 4 comes with plenty of tools to get your gears going. And when you add third-party apps optimized for Multi-View, you unlock new levels of comfort with every press.

(This is a developing story. Follow this space for more updates.)

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US inflation slows from a 40-year peak but remains high

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Us Inflation Slows From A 40-Year Peak But Remains High

By CHRISTOPHER RUGABER

WASHINGTON (AP) — Falling gas prices gave Americans a slight break from the pain of high inflation last month, though overall price increases slowed only modestly from the four-decade high that was reached in June.

Consumer prices jumped 8.5% in July compared with a year earlier, the government said Wednesday, down from a 9.1% year-over-year jump in June. On a monthly basis, prices were unchanged from June to July, the smallest such rise in more than two years.

Besides gasoline, among the consumer purchases whose prices sank from June to July were airfares, which plunged nearly 8%. Hotel room costs fell 2.7%, used car prices 0.4%. Such items had previously delivered some of the economy’s steepest price jumps.

Those declines lowered so-called core inflation, a measure that excludes the volatile food and energy categories to provide a clearer picture of underlying inflation. Core prices rose just 0.3% from June, the smallest month-to-month increase since April. And compared with a year ago, core inflation amounted to 5.9% in July, the same year-over-year increase as in June.

Wednesday’s report raised hopes that a modest slowdown in inflation might enable the Federal Reserve to raise short-term interest rates by less than had been anticipated when it meets in late September. Many economists had forecast that it would increase its benchmark rate three-quarters of a point for a third straight time. But financial markets are now predicting that a half-point increase is more likely.

The prospect of slower inflation and smaller Fed rate hikes buoyed the stock market as trading began Wednesday, with futures pointing to a solid increase in the S&P 500 index.

Still, core prices have slowed in the recent past only to re-accelerate in subsequent months. And plenty of items are continuing to grow more expensive. Food prices kept surging in July, for example, and have risen 13% from a year ago, the largest such increase since 1979. The costs of rent, medical care and furniture also rose at elevated rates.

Average paychecks are rising faster than they have in decades, but not fast enough to keep up with higher costs.

President Joe Biden has pointed to declining gas prices as a sign that his policies — including large releases of oil from the nation’s strategic reserve — are helping lessen the higher costs that have strained Americans’ finances, particularly for lower-income Americans and Black and Hispanic households.

Yet Republicans are stressing the persistence of high inflation as a top issue in the midterm congressional elections, with polls showing that elevated prices have driven Biden’s approval ratings down sharply.

On Friday, the House is poised to give final congressional approval to a revived tax-and-climate package pushed by Biden and Democratic lawmakers. Economists say the measure, which its proponents have titled the Inflation Reduction Act, will have only a minimal effect on inflation over the next several years.

While there are signs that inflation may ease in the coming months, it will likely remain far above the Federal Reserve’s 2% annual target well into next year or even into 2024. Chair Jerome Powell has said the Fed needs to see a series of declining monthly core inflation readings before it would consider pausing its rate hikes. The Fed has raised its benchmark short-term rate at its past four rate-setting meetings, including a three-quarter point hike in both June and July — the first increases that large since 1994.

A blockbuster jobs report for July that the government issued Friday — with 528,000 jobs added, rising wages and an unemployment rate that matched a half-century low of 3.5% — solidified expectations that the Fed will announce yet another three-quarter-point hike when it next meets in September. Robust hiring tends to fuel inflation because it gives Americans more collective spending power.

One positive sign, though, is that Americans’ expectations for future inflation have fallen, according to a survey by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, likely reflecting the drop in gas prices that is highly visible to most consumers.

Inflation expectations can be self-fulfilling: If people believe inflation will stay high or worsen, they’re likely to take steps — such as demanding higher pay — that can send prices higher in a self-perpetuating cycle. Companies then often raise prices to offset higher their higher labor costs. But the New York Fed survey found that Americans’ foresee lower inflation one, three and five years from now than they did a month ago.

Supply chain snarls are also loosening, with fewer ships moored off Southern California ports and shipping costs declining. Prices for commodities like corn, wheat and copper have fallen steeply.

Yet in categories where price changes are stickier, such as rents, costs are still surging. One-third of Americans rent their homes, and higher rental costs are leaving many of them with less money to spend on other items.

Data from Bank of America, based on its customer accounts, shows that rent increases have fallen particularly hard on younger Americans. Average rent payments for so-called Generation Z renters (those born after 1996) jumped 16% in July from a year ago, while for baby boomers the increase was just 3%.

Stubborn inflation isn’t just a U.S. phenomenon. Prices have jumped in the United Kingdom, Europe and in less developed nations such as Argentina.

In the U.K., inflation soared 9.4% in June from a year earlier, a four-decade high. In the 19 countries that use the euro currency, it reached 8.9% in June compared with a year earlier, the highest since record-keeping for the euro began.

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Prominent Iranian poet Houshang Ebtehaj dies at 94

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Prominent Iranian Poet Houshang Ebtehaj Dies At 94

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Tehran, Iran — Houshang Ebtehaj, a distinguished Iranian poet whose modest but influential work made him a major figure in his own country and in world literature, died Wednesday in Cologne, Germany. He was 94 years old.

His death was confirmed by his daughter, Yalda Ebtehaj, who said on Instagram that her father, known by his pseudonym “Sayeh”, or Shadow, had “joined the other world”. In the message, she quoted a verse written by her father in the style of the great mystical poet Rumi: “Roam, roam roam… There are strangers in this house, so you wander strangely.”

The cause of death was kidney failure, according to semi-official Iranian media. Ebtehaj had lived in Germany since the late 1980s.

He was born in 1928 in the Iranian city of Rasht, some 240 kilometers (150 miles) northwest of Tehran, the capital. He started writing when he was young and published his first book of poetry when he was just 19 years old. Throughout the 20th century, Ebtehaj contributed to the popularity of the ghazal – a traditional form of Persian poetry set to music that expresses the writer’s feelings, especially about love, with moving intensity.

Filled with romance and melancholy longing, his work was not considered too political. But socialist politics was central to Ebtehaj’s identity. He sympathized with Iran’s communist Tudeh party and paid the price after the overthrow of Iran’s secular Western-backed monarchy in 1979. During the young Islamic Republic’s crackdown on leftists and liberals after the revolution, Ebtehaj landed in jail for almost a year.

He was released in 1984, when a well-known Iranian poet appealed to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, then President, to secure Ebtehaj’s freedom. Poet Mohammad-Hossein Shahriar wrote in a letter that Ebtehaj’s detention made angels cry on the throne of God.

Ebtehaj became recognized in Iran for his innovative verse which built on the foundations of Rumi and the famous 14th century Persian poet Hafez, combining traditional forms with modern social themes. He was also a musicologist and scholar, lecturing at universities across Europe on his critique of Hafez’s mystical lyric poetry. However, the international reach of his poetry remained somewhat limited, with only one collection translated into English.

Ebtehaj is survived by two sons and two daughters. His wife, Alma Maikial, died last year.

Condolences poured in from dozens of Iranians on Twitter, as well as cultural institutions and Iranian embassies.

The Iranian Embassy in Berlin said it was in mourning with “all lovers of Persian culture and literature around the world”.

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