World News in Brief: May 28

Turkey begun operating intercity trains on Thursday (May 28) after a two-month gap, as it gradually eases coronavirus curbs in a bid to restore normal life and reopen an economy facing the threat of recession. To fight the virus, Turkey had imposed weekend stay-at-home orders, halted most travel between large cities, shut restaurants and schools, and mostly sealed its borders. The virus has killed more than 4,300 people in Turkey, from nearly 160,000 infections. The economy is expected to tip into recession over the containment measures.

People enjoy a park, as seniors over 65 years old have been exempted from curfew for six hours during the first day of Eid, amid the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Istanbul, Turkey, May 24, 2020. (Photo: Reuters)
People enjoy a park, as seniors over 65 years old have been exempted from curfew for six hours during the first day of Eid, amid the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Istanbul, Turkey, May 24, 2020. (Photo: Reuters)

* China reported two new confirmed coronavirus cases in the mainland on May 27, up from one a day earlier, the country's health authority said on Thursday. China also confirmed 23 new asymptomatic coronavirus cases on May 27, compared to 28 the day before.

* The novel coronavirus has killed more than 100,000 people in the United States, according to a Reuters tally on Wednesday (May 27), even as the slowdown in deaths encouraged businesses to reopen and Americans to emerge from more than two months of lockdowns. About 1,400 Americans have died on average each day in May, down from a peak of 2,000 in April, according to the tally of state and county data on COVID-19 deaths.

* Russia on Thursday reported 174 deaths from the new coronavirus in the previous 24 hours, matching its record daily rise for fatalities and taking the overall death toll to 4,142. The country's coronavirus crisis response centre said the overall number of infections had risen by 8,371 to 379,051.

* Singapore's health ministry said on Thursday that it had confirmed 373 more coronavirus cases, taking the city-state's tally to 33,249.

* Malaysian health authorities reported on Thursday 10 new coronavirus cases, raising the cumulative total to 7,629 cases. The health ministry reported no new deaths, keeping the total number of fatalities at 115.

* Indonesia reported 687 new coronavirus cases, bringing the total number of infections in the Southeast Asian country to 24,538, a health ministry official said on Thursday. Indonesia also confirmed 23 new deaths from the virus, bringing the total fatalities to 1,496, the official, Achmad Yurianto, told reporters. As of Thursday, Indonesia has tested 201,311 people and 6,240 patients have recovered.

* The Philippines' health ministry on Thursday reported 17 more novel coronavirus deaths and 539 new infections, the largest number of cases reported in a single day since the virus was first detected in the country. In a bulletin, the ministry said total infections have risen to 15,588 and deaths have reached 921. The number of recovered patients was 3,598.

* Finland has seen no evidence of the coronavirus spreading faster since schools started to reopen in the middle of May, the top health official said on Thursday. Finland started to reopen schools and daycare centres from May 14 following an almost two-month shutdown.

* China and United States should respect each other's core interests and manage their differences, Premier Li Keqiang said on Thursday, adding that a decoupling of their economies is not good for the world.

* British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will resume Brexit talks in Brussels next month, the Times newspaper reported on Thursday.

* US President Donald Trump said he would veto legislation expected to be voted on in the House of Representatives on Wednesday night that would renew expired surveillance tools.

* Japan's Nissan Motor Co has decided to close its factory in Barcelona, resulting in the loss of about 3,000 jobs as part of a worldwide restructuring plan, the Spanish government said on Thursday. The move is a blow for Spain at a time when unemployment is increasing, with a steep recession looming because of the coronavirus crisis.

* British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline Plc will expand production of vaccine efficacy boosters, or adjuvants, to produce 1 billion doses in 2021 for use in shots for COVID-19, the company said on Thursday. The company added it was in talks with governments on backing for the programme, which would effectively allow the expansion of the scale of production of future successful vaccines for the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.

* Thailand on Thursday reported 11 new coronavirus cases and no new deaths, bringing its total to 3,065 confirmed cases and 57 fatalities since the outbreak started in January. There are 2,945 patients who have recovered since the outbreak started.

* The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Germany increased by 353 to 179,717, data from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases showed on Thursday. The reported death toll rose by 62 to 8,411, the tally showed.

* French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire told France 2 television on Thursday that he hoped the European Union could reach a deal on the EU's planned EUR750 billion (US$826.1 billion) economic recovery package in the coming weeks.

* Colombia will begin easing restrictions put in place to control the spread of the coronavirus starting from June, President Ivan Duque said Wednesday, though he asked the public to continue isolating at home and keep using measures to contain the disease. Colombia has reported more than 24,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19, the respiratory illness caused by the coronavirus, as well as 803 deaths. The country began a nationwide quarantine in late March.

* Mexico on Wednesday registered 3,463 new cases of coronavirus and 463 deaths, bringing its totals to 78,023 cases and 8,597 fatalities, according to information provided by health authorities.

* State-owned Kuwait Airways is planning to lay off 1,500 employees - 25% of its workforce - due to the impact on its business of the new coronavirus pandemic, a source said. The airline will lay off foreign staff only, Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Qabas reported, citing a source at the company.