International News

International News (587)

14
August

PHOTO : REUTERS

The World Health Organization said on Thursday, Aug 13, it saw no evidence of coronavirus being spread by food or packaging and urged people not to be afraid of the virus entering the food chain. WHO head of emergencies programme Mike Ryan told a briefing in Geneva that people should not fear food, or food packaging or processing or delivery of food, there is no evidence that food or the food chain is participating in transmission of this virus. And people should feel comfortable and safe. WHO epidemiologist Maria Van Kerkhove said China had tested hundreds of thousands of packages and found very few, less than 10, proving positive for the virus. Earlier, two cities in China said they had found traces of the coronavirus in imported frozen chicken wings from Brazil and on outer packaging of frozen Ecuadorian shrimp, raising fears that contaminated food shipments might cause a new outbreak//Reuters

13
August

PHOTO : MEDICALEXPRESS

 

 

 

With a coronavirus vaccine still months off, companies are rushing to test what may be the next best thing: drugs that deliver antibodies to fight the virus right away, without having to train the immune system to make them. As reported by APNews.com (12/8), antibodies are proteins the body makes when an infection occurs; they attach to a virus and help it be eliminated. Vaccines work by tricking the body into thinking there’s an infection so it makes antibodies and remembers how to do that if the real bug turns up. But it can take a month or two after vaccination or infection for the most effective antibodies to form//APNews

13
August

PHOTO : BBC

 

 

British Chancellor Rishi Sunak said that his government is "grappling with something that is unprecedented" after figures showed the UK economy suffered its biggest slump on record. As reported by BBC.com (12/8), the economy shrank 20.4% between April and June compared with the first three months of the year. The two consecutive quarters of decline caused by the Covid-19 lockdown pushed the UK officially into recession. He told the BBC that it was "a very difficult and uncertain time". Responding to fears that the economic turmoil could trigger mass unemployment, the chancellor said the government should not pretend that "absolutely everybody can and will be able to go back to the job they had". 

Britain has suffered the deepest recession among the world’s top economies this year, shrinking by a fifth in the second quarter alone when much of the economy was delayed as part of efforts to contain the coronavirus pandemic. As reported by APNews.com (12/8), the Office for National Statistics said that Britain is in recession and the 20.4% quarterly drop is the worst since records began in 1955. While many of the lockdown restrictions have since been eased, the country faces a tough time in coming months, with unemployment likely to spike as the government phases out a support program that has effectively kept nearly 10 million workers on company payrolls. Britain’s recession is deeper than those recorded by comparable economies in Europe   notably Germany, France and Italy//APNews/BBC

13
August

PHOTO : ANADOLUAGENCY

 

 

Germany has recorded its biggest daily increase in coronavirus cases in more than three months, as countries across the region struggle to contain a surge in infections. As reported by BBC.com (12/8), the latest official figures showed a rise of more than 1,200 cases in Germany in the past 24 hours. German Health Minister, Jens Spahn said that the increase was due, in part, to people returning from holidays. It came as Germany warned against non-essential trips to parts of Spain. German Foreign Ministry said it had added a partial travel warning to the Spanish capital Madrid and the Basque region on Tuesday (11/8) amid rising infections there. Warnings were already in place for the regions of Aragon, Catalonia and Navarra. Germany has recorded more than 9,000 coronavirus-related deaths since the pandemic began//BBC

12
August

photo : gulftoday

New Zealand announced its first locally transmitted coronavirus infections more than 100 days on Tuesday and issued a stay-at-home lockdown order for the country's largest city.After receiving global praise for its success containing the virus, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said four cases had been detected in a single family in Auckland from an unknown source.Until Tuesday, the World Health Organization had hailed the country as an example to others for having successfully eliminated community transmission.Auckland will be locked down for at least three days from Wednesday and some social distancing restrictions will be reintroduced in the rest of the country//JP

12
August

photo : khaleejtimes

The United Nations has said 50,000 tonnes of wheat flour will be sent to Beirut to stabilise Lebanon’s wheat supply. A report by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) released on Tuesday said the World Food Programme would be sending 50,000 tonnes of wheat flour to the Lebanese capital in the aftermath of the deadly explosion in the port city. At least 171 people were killed and more than 6,000 others injured in the explosion believed to have been caused by a fire that ignited a 2,750-tonne stockpile of highly volatile ammonium nitrate.  The material had been stored at the port since 2013 with few safeguards despite numerous warnings of the danger.Reeling from years-long political and economic crises, Lebanese citizens have taken to the streets over the disaster, with many calling for heads to roll and for major changes. Prime Minister Hassan Diab announced the resignation of his government late on Monday, spelling even deeper turmoil ahead//Reuters

12
August

photo : sputnik

Russia has become the first country in the world to register a vaccine against COVID-19, President Vladimir Putin announced on Tuesday  (11/08/20) during a government meeting. Russia's President Vladimir Putin said that the world has its first vaccine against the coronavirus. The President announced on a meeting with Russian Government members, via videoconference that the vaccine has been registered and his daughter is among those who have been vaccinated. The move comes before the country plans to start mass vaccination in October.

"As far as I know, today in the morning the first vaccine against the new coronavirus infection was registered. In this respect, I would like to ask health minister  Mikhail Albertovich Murashko to inform us more detail. Although I know, it work effectevely, forms stable immunity and I repeat, it has gone trough all necessary checks" President Putin said. 

As quoted from sputniknews.com, Russia's first vaccine against the coronavirus was jointly developed by the Gamaleya Research Institut and Defence Ministry. Clinical trials kicked off on 18 June and included 38 volunteers including President Putin’s Daugther. All of the participants developed immunity. The first group was discharged on 15 July, the second group on 20 July.

"It has a  more spesific effect, it forms stable anti-body and cell-mediated immune response. I also know it very well, because one of my daugthers was subject to this vaccine. I think it means that she took part of this experiment" President Putin added. 

The vaccine was named 'Sputnik V' in reference to the 1957 launch of a Soviet satellite, which opened space to exploration by humans. The vaccine is expected to go into civilian circulation on 1 January 2021, according to the registration certificate. The vaccine developers have prepared documents for further clinical trials involving several thousand people. For emergency monitoring of the health status of those vaccinated and to control effectiveness and safety, the Russia Healthcare Ministry is developing a single digital system that makes it possible to monitor the safety and quality of the medication at all stages of the life cycle. This includes a registry of the vaccinated patients////Kremlin realese/Sputniknews.com/NK/AHM

11
August

PHOTO : RNZ

 

 

Australia has reported the fewest number of new daily cases in its virus hotspot, Melbourne, since last month. But it also reported the nation’s highest daily death total since the virus outbreak began. As stated by APNews.com on Monday (10/8) the state of Victoria reported 322 new infections and 19 new deaths on Monday, with 14 of the deaths connected to outbreaks at aged-care facilities. Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said he was more hopeful now that cases are stabilizing in Victoria than he has been at any time over the past week. But state Premier Daniel Andrews cautioned that not too much could be read into a single day’s worth of data, and that some of the state’s most stringent lockdown measures had only come into effect at midnight Sunday. The number of new cases was the lowest recorded in Victoria since July 29//APNews

11
August

PHOTO : YAKIMA HERALD 

 

 

A Royal Air Force surveillance plane flew over the English Channel on Monday as the British government sought to stop a growing number of people making the hazardous crossing from France in small boats. As stated by APNews.com on Monday (10/8) Britain’s Conservative government has talked tough amid a surge in the number of migrants crossing the Channel during recent warm summer weather. More than 650 have arrived so far in August — including 235 in a single day last week — with pregnant women, babies and unaccompanied children among them. An inflatable dinghy carrying about 20 people was met by a U.K. Border Force boat on Monday and escorted to the port of Dover. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said trying to make the voyage was “a very bad and stupid and dangerous and criminal thing to do//APNews

11
August

PHOTO : ASTROAWANI

 

Lebanon’s government resigned Monday amid widespread public fury at the country’s ruling elite over last week’s devastating explosion in Beirut. As stated by APNews.com on Monday (10/8)  the move risks opening the way to dragged-out negotiations over a new Cabinet amid urgent calls for reform. Prime Minster Hassan Diab headed to the presidential palace to submit the Cabinet’s group resignation, said Health Minister Hamad Hassan. It follows a weekend of anti-government protests in the wake of the Aug. 4 explosion in Beirut’s port that caused wide spread destruction, killed at least 160 people and injured about 6,000 others. The moment typified Lebanon’s political dilemma. Since October, there have been mass demonstrations demanding the departure of the entire sectarian-based leadership over entrenched corruption, incompetence and mismanagement//APNews

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